Mendocino County Genealogical Resources
Museums & Historical Organizations
Cemeteries Ghost Towns
1895 Map
Mendocino State Hospital Staff - 1899 Mendocino County History Texts Mendocino County Family Histories

I have listed many of the Mendocino County resources that are available, although certainly not all. If you own any Mendocino County books, whether listed or not, and will do look-ups, please let me know. As you can see, volunteers are needed.

Feel free to request a look-up from the following books. Please limit your request to one name per request. Please put MENDOCINO COUNTY LOOKUP in the subject line of your request to insure the message is not overlooked or accidentally deleted. In the first line of the message please put the name of the book you are requesting the lookup in. If you request a lookup, don't forget to thank your volunteer for their time.

Mendocino County Libraries 

Ukiah Library 105 N. Main St., Ukiah, CA 95482

Coast Community Library, 280 Main St., Point Arena, CA 95468
Held-Poage Research Library, 603 W. Perkins St., Ukiah, CA 95482
707-462-6969  Email address: Website:
Mendocino Library, 10591 William St., Mendocino, CA 95460
Mendocino County Library, Fort Bragg Branch, 499 Laurel St., Fort Bragg, CA 95437
Round Valley Public Library, 23925 Howard St., Covelo, CA 95428
Willits Library, 390 E. Commercial St., Willits, CA 95490


Mendocino County Historical Agencies, Societies & Museums 
Anderson Valley Historical Society

P.O. Box 676
Boonville, CA 95415

We are a historical society and house museum with artifacts.

Number of members: 300 Activities: 1 yearly letter; 10-12 books of area for sale; displays at Mendocino Co. Fair. Hours: Fri-Sun, 11-4 Summer, 12-4 Winter Contact: Beth Tuttle, Secretary 

Grace Hudson Museum and The Sun House
431 South Main Street
Ukiah, CA 95482

We are an art, history, and anthropology museum, and historic home, dedicated to preserving the legacy of painter Grace Carpenter Hudson (1865-1937) and her talented family. 

Number of members: approx. 450 Activities: Temporary and long term exhibits, Craftsman-era home (1911), docent tours, educational programs, lectures, symposia. Published A Sense of Place. California North Coast Ethnographic Photography by Scott M. Patterson. Circles of Life:  Katsina Imagery on Hopi Wicker Basketry. Aurelius O. Carpenter: Photographer of the Mendocino Frontier. Hours: 10-4:30, Wed-Sat; 12-4:30, Sun Contact: Sherrie Smith-Ferri, Director

Guest House Museum
416 N. Franklin Street
Fort Bragg, CA 95437

We are a house museum.

Activities: Logging and lumber museum in 1892 C.R. Johnson House. Artifacts and photos. Temporary and permanent exhibits. Hours: Apr-Oct: 10-4, Wed-Sat and 1-4, Sun; Nov-Mar: 10-4, Sat; adults $1 Contact: Alder Thurman, Director 

Held-Poage Memorial Home and Research Library
603 W. Perkins Street
Ukiah, CA 95482-4726
707-462-6969  This is the best source of genealogy and history for those with Mendocino County connections.

If you use the services of this historical library please make a contribution. They are a non-profit organization with an all volunteer staff and your contribution is needed for their continued operation.  Your contribution is tax deductible.

Hours: Wed - Fri, 1 - 4 pm

We are an archives and/or manuscript repository and house museum operated by the Mendocino County Historical Society.

Activities: 1903 Queen Anne Victorian home of William D.L. Held. Native American and local historical artifacts for exhibit and research. Kitchen and parlor furniture. 5,100 volume library, county records, and newspapers. Guided tours. Bi-monthly newsletter.

See list of publications for sale HERE

Mendocino County  Pioneer Families Project

Held Poage Research Library is seeking descendants of the Pioneer
Families of Mendocino County to contribute to the growing collection
The library staff and volunteers have compiled a number of files, but
need assistance with documentation and clarification of the family
connections.  Those who can contribute information or additional
material are invited to visit Wed - Fri, 1 - 4 p.m. or by appointment, 
or  to contact  Held Poage Historical
Library,  603 W. Perkins Street, 
Ukiah, CA 95482-4726,  telephone (707)

Held Poage Research Library has been open to the public since April

Little River Museum
Little River Improvement Club
8185 Hwy One
Little River. CA  95456

Located in the historical
International Order of Good Templars Building

The building was constructed in 1885 and was used as the community center, school, poling place, 
and first phone switchboard. It was originally owned by the
International Order of Good Templars, 
then taken over in the early 1920s
by the Improvement Club, a nonprofit community organization. 
It was
restored by the Improvement club and converted to a museum in 2009. It currently houses 
numerous exhibits based on the history of Little
River's pioneering families, including Pomo trail and basket exhibits.

Open weekends, 12-4 p.m. during the summer months. 
Contact Ronnie James,

Mendocino County Historical Society, Inc.
603 West Perkins Street
Ukiah, CA 95482-4726

We are a historical society.

Memberships: Life $300, Life Couple $500, Patron $100, Contributing $25, Couple (one address) $40, Individual $30


    Mendocino County Museum

    400 East Commercial Street
    Willits, CA 95490
    Contact: Herbert E. Pruett, Director

    Check their website for current information and resources.

    Mendocino Headlands State Park
    Russian Gulch State Park
    Highway 1 Mendocino, CA 95460

    We are a historical park and house museum.

    Hours: 10-5, daily Contact: Dave Bartlett 

    Kelley House Museum
    45007 Albion Street
    (Mailing address: P.O. Box 922)
    Mendocino, CA 95460

    The research office contains a museum-quality vault, which stores documents, photographs and artifacts from the mid-1800s through today. It is the #1 resource for research and genealogy information on the Mendocino Coast. 

    The Kelley House Museum houses a period museum in the 1861 residence of a local lumber mill owner.

    The Kelley House sponsors the July 4th BBQ, a silent auction in October, and traditional Christmas tree lighting. An annual Review and qtrly newsletters are published. Hours: Museum, 11 am-3 pm, Fri-Mon; office and research, 9-4, Tue-Fri; by appointment. 707-937-5791

    Mendocino Coast Genealogical Society

    Genealogical Society disbands, source brochure to be final project

    Advocate Staff

    Updated:   08/23/2012 07:55:35 AM PDT

    Submitted by Jane Lamb

    For nearly four decades, the Mendocino Coast Genealogical Society has been devoted to researching, recording and preserving local history; the organization itself became history as the books closed forever at its traditional annual picnic, Aug. 14, at the home of President Claire Tavares and her husband, Dennis.

    The Mendocino Coast Genealogical Society was founded in 1976 when a dozen local people formalized their shared interest in genealogy and began meeting at Kelley House in Mendocino and various other sites. The date and time, set at 1:30 p.m. the third Tuesday of the month, has remained the same until the last business meeting, June 19, at the Fort Bragg Library Community Room, the long-time meeting venue.

    The inevitable was decided. A venerable institution must succumb to the vast research facilities of the digital age and the complex schedules of interested but busy folks who can do their genealogy at their own convenience. Membership that once swelled to nearly 40 dwindled to 20, with barely a half-dozen at a meeting, all of whom had served as officers too many times.

    Betty Stavely, who will celebrate her 100th birthday Aug. 24, was the guest of honor at the gathering as the Society commemorated 36 years of dedicated service to anyone interested in finding ancestral roots. Stavely, a founding member, served as president, vice-president, treasurer, program chairman and keeper of the society history books. For years, she volunteered in the Fort Bragg Library Genealogy Room helping anyone who came to research.


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    Mendocino County Cemeteries

    Russian River Cemetery District P.O. Box 421, Ukiah, CA  95482   707-462-8012
    (located on Low Gap Rd.)
    Point Arena Cemetery
    Potter Valley Cemetery
    Mendocino-Little River Cemetery P.O. Box 1185, Mendocino, CA  95460   707-937-2010

    Rose Memorial Park Assn Inc 760 N Franklin St, Fort Bragg, CA  95437    707-964-2626
    Cemetery District Of Redwoods 1200 Fort Bragg Rd, Willits, CA  95490    707-459-5252

    Mendocino County, California Cemeteries on-line

    Mendocino County Map - 1895

    Mendocino County Ghost Towns
    The following was taken from the History of Mendocino County, California
    Andersonia - near Bear
    Alpine (Duffy)
    Bear Harbor
    Bridgeport (Miller)
    Boyles *
    Cuffey's Cove
    Fish Rock - north of 
    Anchor Bay
    Glen Blair
    Greenwood (Elk)
    Howard Creek
    Hullsville (Lake Pillsbury)
    Hermitage - near Yorkville
    Hardscratch (to make a living)
    Nip and Tuck
    (to get in or out of harbor)
    8 miles up Navarro River
    Hansen's Halfway House
    Kendallville (Boonville)
    Laguna (Cleone)
    Little Lake (Willits)
    Meigsville (Mendocino)
    Manzanita (Salsig)
    Newport - near Westport
    Navarro (mouth of river)
    Northwestern (Brooktrails)
    Salmon Creek (Whitesboro)
    Sanel (Hopland)
    Union Landing
    Wendling ( present Navarro)
    Weges Creek
    Whitehall (south of 
    Cloverdale on Hwy 128)
    Willitsville (Willits)
    * Not from the text

    To search for Old California Post Offices go to

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    Mendocino State Hospital Staff - 1899

    The following is the entire staff of the Mendocino State Hospital at Ukiah
    in 1899:

    Appointed by the Governor.  Term, 4 years, $10 dollars per diem for
    attendance at meetings and traveling expenses.
    J H Seawell, President, Ukiah
    J C Ruddock, Ukiah
    M Gardner, Sacramento
    J Q White, Ukiah
    A W Foster, San Francisco
    W W Cunningham, Ukiah, Secretary and Treasurer, $840 per annum

    E W King, Medical Supt.
    L A Elster, Asst. Physician
    F C Handy, Private Secretary to Supt.
    W G Jones, Steward
    C H Duncan, Steward's clerk
    M M Carothers, Engineer
    O J Moseley, Supervisor
    Mrs. R N Willing, Acting Matron
    E W Twitchell, Interne
    Miss J Wilson, Laundress
    Miss G Hargis, Seamstress
    B T Farrel, Laundryman
    James George, Carpenter
    L F Doering, Gardener
    C P Turner, Baker
    George Haugstead, Chief Cook
    Charles Roller, Second Cook
    John Sweeney, Third Cook
    L M Johnson, Basement Man
    William York, Teamster
    A N McPeak, Teamster
    E A Townsend, Cartman
    Alfred Nelson, Hostler
    D S McKinley, Fireman
    I Tellefsen, Assistant to Baker
    G A Keller, Painter
    S A McDonald, Shoemaker
    G A Corley, Blacksmith
    J A Harvey, Usher
    H B Kister, Head Waiter
    Miss V Locher, Housemaid
    Miss M Waltrip, Housemaid

    C W Mero
    Amos Mahurin
    W W Ware
    W P O'Neil
    C W Wallace

    A Opplinger
    J D Ginochio
    George Hildreth
    E Barlow
    E Blomquist
    E J Donahue
    C Finney
    C U White
    A G Bechtol
    F W Dart
    George Pratt
    W D Akers

    Miss M Osborn
    Mrs. F Henley

    Mrs. A Montgomery
    Miss E Fotzpatrick
    Miss F Presley
    Miss H Orr

    E V Stanfield, Night Watch
    Thomas Mothersole, Outside Night Watch
    Miss K Lydon, Night Watch

    Received courtesy of Sue Jacobsen

    Mendocino County History Texts
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    History of Mendocino County by Palmer 1880
    See:CH Men 1880 PALMER, LYMAN L. History of Mendocino County, California, comprising its geography, geology, topography, climatography, springs and timber. Also, extended sketches of its mills and milling, mines and mining interests; together with a full and particular record of the Mexican grants; early history and settlement, compiled from the most authentic sources, names of original Spanish and American pioneers; a full record of its organization; a complete political history, including a tablular statement of its office holders since the formation of the County. Separate histories of Anderson, Arena, Big River, Calpella, Little Lake, Round Valley, Sanel, Ten-mile River and Ukiah townships; incidents of pioneer life, and biographical sketches of early and prominent settlers and representative men, also a historical sketch of the State of California, in which is embodied the raising of the Bear Flag. San Francisco: Alley, Bowen and Company, 1880.

    You can search this text yourself thanks to the great effort of a group of volunteers who have placed it all on the web.  Simply click on the text title above and it will take you to the directly to the resource.

    History of Mendocino and Lake Counties California by Carpenter and Millberry 1914
    See: CH Lak 1914 CARPENTER, AURELIUS O. History of Mendocino and Lake Counties, California, with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the Counties who have been identified with their growth and development from the early days to the present. Los Angeles: Historic Record Company, 1914

    To determine if your family member is in this publication click on the text heading and follow the instructions.  If your family member is found you may e-mail the volunteer lookup with the name of the family member and the name of the book for further details.

    Historical and Descriptive Sketch Book of Napa, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino Counties by Menefee, 1873
    See: CH Nap 1873 MENEFEE, CAMPBELL AUGUSTUS. Historical and descriptive sketch book of Napa, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino Counties. Napa City: Reporter Publishing House, 1873.

    To determine if your family member is in this publication click on the text heading and follow the instructions.  If your family member is found you may e-mail the volunteer lookup with the name of the family member and the name of the book for further details.

    Memories of the Mendocino Coast by Ryder 1948
    See: 979.415 R97 RYDER, DAVID WARREN. Memories of the Mendocino Coast; being a brief account of the discovery, settlement and development of the Mendocino Coast, together with a correlated history of the Union Lumber Company and how coast and company grew up together. San Francisco: Privately printed, 1948.
     Mendocino Remembered Vol. I & Vol. II
    Early Portuguese Families of Mendocino
    by Sverko, 1995 
    All of the above texts are available at the
    Held - Poage Historical Library

    Miscelleanous Mendocino County Research Materials 
    Mendocino County Historical Society

    Held Poage Memorial Home and Research Library
    603 West Perkins Street
    Ukiah, California 95482
    (707) 462-6969
        The Historical Society maintains an extensive library of Mendocino County related records including but not limited to the following:
        • Card Index to Mendocino County History 1880
        • Biographies from Sonoma County History 1879 (Mendocino Section)
        • Biographies from 1904 North Coast Counties, History of the State of California
        • Biographies from 1915 Davis' Commercial Encyclopedia of the Pacific Southwest, CA, NV, UT and AZ
        • Langleys Pacific Coast Business Directory (Mendocino County 1867, 1871-1873)
        • Paulson's Directory of Mendocino County 1874
        • McKinney's Eight County Directory (1883-4, 1884-5, &1885-6)
        • Genealogy Card File
        • Genealogy Pioneer Files
        • Mortuary Records
        • Funeral Cards (Ukiah area) (Covelo area)
        • Card Index - Misc. Births, Marriages and Deaths
        • Obituaries (Two Books)
        • Newspaper Clipping Files
        • Dr. Ross' Record of Marriages and Deaths (1873 - 1914) Coast Area
        • Births, Deaths & Marriages (mainly coast) 1889 - 1909
        • Photograph - Negative File, Families
        • Most countywide newspapers on microfilm
        The Historical Society maintains an extensive library of old Mendocino County Records including the following:
        • Great Registers 1867 - 1896 (Microfilm) 1898 (Book)
        • Index to Great Registers 1902 - 1958
        • Assessor's Records (Property Assessments)
        • Possessory Claims, Book 1 years 1859 - 1877
        • Death Index Book 1 & 2 1800 - 1907 (Complete)
        • Marriage Index, Men Book 1 1859 - 1893 A through M
        • Birth Index 1850 - 1905 A through H
        • Water Appropriation Applications Filed prior to 1914
        • Probate - Inheritance Tax Receipts 1921 - 1929 and 1936 - 1939
        • Architectural and Historical Resources Inventory (Older Ukiah residences and buildings with information on the owners)
        • Mendocino County Census for 1860 - 1870 - 1880 - 1900 - 1910 - 1920

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    • Mendocino County Family Histories

      Family History or Resource Book    Owned by               E-mail address
      Some Reminiscences of my Seventy-Four Years in Mendocino County by Lilburn Gibson Lewis Ruddick
      The Ruddick Family in America 
      by John W. Hanneman
      Lewis Ruddick
      In The Round Valley Area 60 Years Ago
      Mendocino Co. Historical Society. Author John V. Brereton 
      Barbara Morehead
      The Story of the Stolen Valley
      Copyright 1977 by L & S Publishing, Willits, CA. by Rena Lynn
      [about Covelo outlaws] 
      Barbara Morehead
      The Hollingsworth Family
      by Elva [Hollingsworth] Firebaugh 
      [Willits/Covelo areas] 
      Barbara Morehead
      From Acorns to Oaks, A Potter Valley History-1855-1985
      by Delight Corbett Shelton [1986] 
      Barbara Morehead
      Early Settlers of Comptche, Along Its Many Roads
      by Elsa E. Thompson [1973] 
      Barbara Morehead
      Mendocino County Grangers Directory
      Grangers Business Association, 38 Cal. St., SF. For years 1893-1894
      It has a lot of great old business advertisements, business owners names,etc. Just for a little sample of the rest of the book: For Ex: Laytonville. A post-office on the Overland Stage Line, 50 miles no. of Ukiah. The Laytonville Hotel, kept by Mr. M.V. Helm, is the only hotel in the place. Mr. M.V. Helm has also a first-class livery stable connected with his hotel. The town derives its support chiefly from the stock and farming interests. [There is a description like this of each town listed]. Then it lists everyone in that town, his occupation, how many acres he has... It lists towns like Albion, Boonville, Bridgeport, Cahto, Calpella, Caspar, Comptche, Covelo, Cleone, Cuffey's Cove, Ukiah, Schooner Gulch, Navarro Ridge, Laytonville, Eden Valley, Hopland, etc.etc.
      Barbara Morehead
      A Little Bit of Willits History
      Kathryn L. Preast

      Ernest Everett Rawles oral history
      Delcena McAbee Rawles oral history
      Ermine (Wallach) Turner oral history
      Susan Weaver McAbee oral history
      James Wesley Rawles
      "Births, Deaths and Marriages on California's Mendocino Coast Volume two 1910-1919" Carylon Osborn Viuhkola
      Lighthouses & Lifeboats on the Redwood Coast, by Ralph C. Shanks, Jr. and
      Janetta Thompson Shanks; 1978; Costano Books; San Anselmo, CA
      Jan Ramos

      Family History Centers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 

      Ukiah Family History Center
      1337 South Dora Street
      Ukiah, CA 95482

      Fort Bragg Family History Center
      355 South Lincoln
      Fort Bragg, CA 95437
      Hours Tuesday 9AM to 1 PM Thursday 3PM to 9PM Saturday 9AM to 3PM
      Director Merle Carden
      Asst. Dir. Florence Scott

      Enter or View Mendocino County Queries

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      Lewis M. Ruddick
      Updated August 15, 2016

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