Napa Valley Chronicles

Napa Valley Chronicles

by Lauren Coodley


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In 1905, Napa's mayor, J.A. Fuller, announced, Napa for half a century has been slumbering in a Rip Van Winkle sleep but she has awakened at last." Back then, fifteen cents bought coffee and a donut at the Depot and Sawyer's Tannery made soft leather baseball gloves. In this collection, local author Lauren Coodley reimagines the unvarnished country life of historic Napa Valley through the stories of notables like postmaster Ernest Kincaid, "Napa Register" reporter Phyllis King, firefighter historian Rita Bordwell and Brewster's owners Rachel and Larry Friedman. Trace the region's lasting legacy, from the time when a horse and buggy purchased Browns Valley to the days when art galleries replaced blue-collar businesses and the California grape took center stage from Sunsweet prunes."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781609499266
Publisher: History Press, The
Publication date: 09/03/2013
Series: American Chronicles
Pages: 160
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Historian Lauren Coodley is the author of numerous articles and books about Napa Valley and California heritage. Coodley holds an MA in History from Sonoma State University and has taught courses on regional and national history at Napa Valley College, where she was awarded the McPherson Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2003.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements 7

"Brown Street," Paula Amen Judah 9

Prelude to Part I 11

1 Nineteenth Century

Retracing Juliana's Path 15

"The Sky's Blue Looking-Glass": Rediscovering Robert Louis Stevenson 19

Stories of Suffrage 22

2 Early Twentieth Century

Turn-of-the-Century Downtown 27

A Japanese Journey 32

Time Passing in Napa 37

3 The 1920s

Voices from Early Browns Valley 43

Napa's Roaring Twenties 47

A Tannery in a Town, I and II 51

4 The 1930s

Two Love Stories from Dunn Lee Manor 57

Discovering Rita Bordwell, I and II 62

Every Memory a Door 68

5 The 1940s

Listening for Trains 73

Following the Trail 77

The Construction of History, I and II 81

Prelude to Part II 89

6 The 1950s

"History Isn't Always Taught Properly": The Legacy of Ivy Loeber 93

Napa's Unknown Brenda Starr 98

What West Park Was 102

7 The 1960s

Searching for Peggy Connolly 107

Remembering Napa's Service Stations 110

Fancy Faire and Community Projects 113

8 The 1970s

Feminism Finds Napa 117

Mrs. Brewster's Double Life 121

Treasures of Terrace Drive 126

9 The Way We Live Today

A Fine State of Perfection: Dr. Phong Vu's Napa Childhood 133

Maria's Story 137

A Collins Family Christmas 142

Epilogue 147

Notes 151

About the Author 160

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