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It's been a fun ride, but I'm ready to explore the West
When I started writing Solano County history articles for The Reporter, I couldn't help wondering if there was enough history to write about different subjects for any amount of time. I must admit that while I was the editor and writer for the United Prospectors Inc. publications, there was plenty of fodder about the gold country but I wasn't sure about Solano County.
Annie Lizzie Gill: A pioneer in every sense
In my last column, we left off with Annie Lizzie Gill's husband, Newton, dying on Jan. 22, 1924, by a fall. Then her youngest son, Homer, left home to see the world by working on ships, leaving just her and No. 1 son, Howard, to carry on with the future.
Starting an orchard barely panned out for Gills
In my last column, the Home Acres Improvement Association failed to get the teacher promised by the Vallejo School Board even though they had obtained a building for a school.
Making a life in Vallejo wasn't easy for the Gills
When I started this story two weeks ago I made a whopper of a mistake when I said, "Annie wasn't very generous with dates in her book," but it appears she and her husband Howard left Florida by train in the winter of 1918. If I was a politician I guess I could say I "misspoke" but truth is always better.
Vallejo's Annie Lizzie Gill was a pioneer activist
As I start this series of columns, I have absolutely no idea on how many installments it will take to finish the story of a remarkable lady that lived in Vallejo, Annie Lizzie Gill who was born in 1863 on a farm outside the town of Oblong, Ill. Her story is a wonderful cavalcade of events and personal anecdotes before arriving in Vallejo in 1918, but since this is a local history column, I'll stick mostly to her life here in Solano County.
Pena descendant was active in local affairs
In 1868 Juan Felipe Pena's granddaughter, Maria Delores Pena, married John Patton. John's father, Albert Lyon, first arrived in the Vacaville area in 1847 and settled north of the Pena Adobe. Lyon Road is named after the Lyon family. His son, John Patton, married Maria Delores Pena on June 2, 1868, and they had a son, John Edward Lyon, who married Josephine Hanna Murray [...]
Lonely historic site awaits much-needed help
It lies on a windswept knoll above the confluence of the San Joaquin River and the Sacramento River. Slowly but surely, giant windmills move stealthily ever closer to the deteriorating wood shell covered adobe. Mold on one of the interior walls appears as a small sinister-looking waterfall from a leak in the roof.
It was a taxing situation during the Depression
In my last column we began to take a brief look at some of the history of the Depression of the 1930s. A look at our elected officials performance gives us reason to wonder if they have learned anything from the past.
Great Depression caused hard times in Solano
Today I saw an interesting front page from a United Kingdom newspaper, The Independent, showing a photo that may or may not be a modern soup line waiting for handouts. The headline blatantly shouts, "United States of America 2008; The Great Depression."
Suisun City's Early History full of Drama
Suisun was a fast growing town from the 1870s to the 1890s. Loads of marble passed through Suisun from Judge Swan's marble quarry located about seven miles north of Suisun at Tolenas Springs en route to San Francisco. A few of the old Suisun families had 40-pound clocks encased in the marble. The mineral water there was bottled and sold, along with sarsaparilla in the bars of the period [...]
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