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Sunday, April 25, 1999

County abounds with sites to uncover region’s past

Kristin Delaplane

Most of these organizations have a membership service and welcome volunteers.
Following is a listing of these centers, sites and resources:

Solano County Archives

Solano County Archives is a repository for original Solano County government records. Collection includes assessment rolls from the 1850s, county clerk records, court records, county recorder documents, newspapers, aerial photographs, maps and more. Open Tuesdays and Fridays, 9 a.m. to 1. Address: 1745 Enterprise Drive, Bldg. 2, No. A, Fairfield. Contact: 421-4843.

Solano Historical Society

The Solano Historical Society is devoted to collecting local history information for the public. Meetings feature presentations on Solano County history. An annual spring tour is made to points of historical interest in Northern California. Pioneer Day, a fair featuring speakers and focuses on local families and history, is held in September. The society is supported solely by membership dues and contributions. Membership fees ranging from $10 to $15 include a subscription for the Solano Historian, a bi-annual publication with updated and newly researched articles with photos on local history. For more information call 644-3803.

Solano County Genealogical Society

The Solano County Genealogical Society is headquartered in the historic Town Hall in Vacaville where they maintain an extensive reference library, publish books and update their files on early pioneer families. Keynote speakers and genealogists provide information on researching family trees and family history at their monthly meeting.

The society also publishes two newsletters for members; one is once a month and one is a quarterly publication. Periodically they offer classes on researching family trees.

Library hours: Mondays and the third Saturday of the month, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Closed federal holidays and from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day.) Address: 620 E. Main St., Vacaville. The monthly meetings are the fourth Thursday of the month, except July, August and December. The November meeting is usually on the third Thursday of the month. These meeting are held at 7 p.m. at the Fairfield Senior Center, 1200 Civic Center Drive, Fairfield. Guests are welcome. For details call 446-6869 or visit the web site at

Solano County Public Library

The Solano County Public Library system offers excellent opportunities to read up on local history and conduct research. In addition to books and newspapers on microfilm, some libraries serve as archives for rare reference material and special collections. Also, Grand jury reports, Environmental Impact Studies and the Vertical Files as relates to major businesses and areas of interest to each community. Many libraries also carry back copies of the Solano Historian. Web site: . At this web site you may also be connected by modem to the catalog and database.

Dixon Library

The Dixon Library is the source for the city’s archival material and photographs. A new collection includes about 30 oral interviews transcribed. Available on request only. Other materials available are: the Dixon Tribune dating from 1874 on microfilm; specialty news clippings and information on neighboring areas including Binghampton, Denverton, Elmira, Maine Prairie and Silveyville; photocopies of original photographs; and scrapbooks of Dixon history.

The library is located at 230 N. First St., Dixon, and is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday and Friday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. For more information visit the web site at or e-mail at or call 678-5447.

Vacaville Library

The Vacaville Library’s collection includes The Reporter on microfilm from 1883. Also, Wickson’s “Vacaville Early Fruit District” (1888 Crystal), “Beginnings of Vacaville” (1933), “Vacaville, An Enterprising Center” (1947). The library is located at 1020 Ulatis Drive, Vacaville. and is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Contact by modem for catalog and database at 421-6137 or call 449-6290.

Fairfield Library

The Fairfield Library’s collection includes several unique, irreplaceable books on local history (available by request only). A large collection of high school yearbooks from Armijo and Fairfield high schools. Daily Republic (Solano County Herald) is on microfilm dating from 1855. The library is located at 1150 Kentucky St., Fairfield and is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Contact by modem for catalog and database at 421-6137 or call 421-6500.

SCC Library

The Solano Community College Library has a collection of Solano County newspapers on microfilm including Solano County Herald dating from 1855 on and Solano County Press dating from 1868 on. They have a full collection of the Solano Historian, documented history of the Suisun Marsh and open space plans. The college is located at 4000 Suisun Valley Road, Suisun Valley and is open from 7:45 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7:45 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Fridays. Summer schedule is in effect May 26-Aug. 20. Normal hours resume Aug. 23. For more information call 864-7132.

Rio Vista Library

The Rio Vista Library has a collection of books on the city’s history and history of the River-Delta area. They also have microfilm of the River News Herald from its beginnings in 1890. The library is located at 44 S. Second St., Rio Vista and is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday and Thursday, 10 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday Contact by modem for catalogue and database 374-6822 or call 374-2664.

Benicia Public Library

Benicia Public Library’s collection includes microfilm of the Benicia Herald from 1899 on. Books on California and Solano County history, and a collection of books written by Benicia authors. The library is located at 150 East L St., Benicia and is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, noon to 5 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Contact by modem for catalog and database 553-5081 or call 746-4343.

John F. Kennedy Library

Vallejo’s John F. Kennedy Library has the Vallejo newspapers on microfilm dating from the 1860s. Also on microfilm are the Solano County censuses for 1850, 1860, 1880, 1900, 1910 and 1920. Sanborn maps of Solano County are available from 1884 to 1903. Of local interest are the Historical Resources Inventory, which includes photos and descriptions of properties of historical interest and Vallejo Architecture of Mare Island and Vallejo. Address: 505 Santa Clara St., Vallejo. Hours: Monday-Thursday 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Friday and Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Contact by modem for catalog and database 553-5081 or 553-5082 or call 553-5568.

McCune Library

The McCune Library is housed in the Vallejo’s John F. Kennedy Library on the ground floor. Dr. McCune gifted this extraordinary collection of more than 2,000 rare volumes to the city of Vallejo. The collection includes a sheet of the Gutenberg Bible and a complete set of the Book Club of California, which features a great deal of California history. The collection also includes books about miners in California. Also for viewing is a hand press. The library offers a series of lectures on the “Art of the Book.” You may call to be put on the mailing list. The library is open the first and third Tuesday each month from 2 to 4 p.m. and by appointment. Admission is free. Donations are welcome. Contact by modem for catalog and database 553-5081 or 553-5082 or call 644-4629.

Vacaville Museum

The Vacaville Museum, a center for Solano County history, is located on historic Buck Avenue. The museum focuses on the interpretation and presentation of local Solano County history. A small Solano County exhibit upstairs includes fruit ranching equipment, colorful fruit labels and a selection of the Museum’s extensive flatiron collection. The main gallery features innovative exhibits centered on aspects of local history. Current exhibit: Solano’s Gold, The People and Their Orchards examines the role of the contemporary and historic orchard industry in Solano County using the words and images of local ranchers who remember or still participate in this way of life. Exhibit dates are through Jan. 16, 2000. Research materials are available by appointment. Museum family membership is $30 a year.

The museum is located at 213 Buck Ave., Vacaville and is open from 1 to 4:40 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is $1 for adults and 50 cents for students. Wednesdays are free to all. Visit the web site at . or call 447-4513.

Vacaville Heritage Council

The Vacaville Heritage Council was instrumental with saving the historic Town Hall and is headquartered there. The council has a vast collection of historic photographs and in an effort to update and add to this collection, they will copy your photos of local historical interest (people and places) at no charge (small donations are accepted, but not expected). Their extensive library of archival material includes the publications and files of Solano County. They also have a large collection of Western history books and literature and act as a lending library. Membership is $3 a year. The council is located at 620 E. Main St., Vacaville. Its hours are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursdays. For more information call 447-6737.

Dixon Historical Society

The Dixon Historical Society meets quarterly featuring programs relating to the pioneers and early days in the area.

An annual publication features articles and oral histories; cost, $5 per issue.

To add your name to the mailing list call 678-2440.

Silveyville Cemetery District, located at 7661 Rio Dixon Road, Dixon, offers genealogical information from burial permits and is open from 9 to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information call 678-5578.

Travis Air Museum

The Travis Air Museum’s exhibit hall covers more than 15,000 square feet of aviation and aerospace displays. These are the older aircraft and those covered with fabric. Included in this hall are the 15th Air Force in World War II, Medal of Honor Exhibit, World War II Aircraft Recognition Models and Nose Art Display.

Visit the following web sites: , or call 424-5605.