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From the Editor

Vivian Larson Ziegler was a dedicated archivist of her family history, and was alert to the histories of others, too. She embraced all the many interconnections which her ninety-six years of life and phenomenal memory continuously revealed to her. When she came across information touching on friends and acquaintances old and new, she found a way to share it with them. Recently, she was so pleased to be able to share her memories of a woman's mother with her, for the woman had lost her mother as a child. The first time I met Vivian, it emerged that she knew the history of my house, and she even presented me with a lovely old photograph of Minnie and John Lundberg, who built it in 1923. Vivian spent much of her last six months on hospice care working on the life story of her mother, Anna Elizabeth Larson, who died when Vivian was eleven years old. Part III of this story—the part we were both so anxious to get to, because it contains the story of her aunties and the Titanic—opens this issue, on page 10.

Imagine if someone stopped by your house in the morning, picked up your grocery list, and returned with your groceries in the afternoon. Ben Fleckenstein, at your service! Ben delivered to Bayside for Seely & Titlow.

We will accompany a country doctor as he makes house calls in the night across raging rivers, then during his quiet time tosses away bills he knows his patients can't afford to pay. It's all in a day's work for Dr. Comfort.

Also in the issue is a history of the small settlement of Stafford, which grew up around Brown's Mill and lived to survive, with losses, some side effects of its main business during the ‘64 flood and the ‘96 landslide.

Then we'll visit a truly longtime survivor, Founders Tree, the world's tallest and oldest living Christmas tree, which inspired hope during the years of WWII. With this, we at the Historical Society wish all of you ongoing renewals of hope and joy this holiday season.


HUMBOLDT HISTORIAN

Summer 2017 - Volume 64, Number 4

10 - ANNA ELIZABETH LARSON, PART III - By Vivian Ziegler

Ever since Anna arrived in Arcata from Sweden in 1900 at age fifteen, she has been longing for her family and hoping at least one of her siblings will join her in Arcata. Finally, in 1912, her two sisters are coming, lured by the great RMS Titanic, on which they have booked their passage.

20 - BEN'S DAY - By Barbara Canepa Saul

For over fifty years, Ben Fleckenstein delivered groceries to Bayside. He loved his job and his customers, who returned the sentiment.

24 - STAFFORD - By Jerry Rohde

A history of Stafford, from its obscure lumber mill days to its brief illumination at the millenium.

30 - LOGGERS' DAY OFF - YOU DIDN'T HEAR IT FROM ME - By Louella Parsnips

A photo journal of woodsmen as they entertain themselves at camp.

34 - THE DOCTOR'S NAME WAS COMFORT - By Jerrold Comfort

Remembering a genuine old time country doctor.

40 - THE OLDEST LIVING CHRISTMAS TREE - By James R. Garrison and Susan J. P. O'Hara

The world's tallest and oldest living Christmas tree inspired hope during the World War II years.












From the Editor

You are fifteen years old, you've traveled from Sweden to Arcata to take a job as a maid. From your earnings you must repay the debt you've incurred for the long trip, and send money home to your family in Sweden. How do you fare in your daily life? Anna Elizabeth Larsson has the answers to these questions and more in our opening story.

Another young woman, Zipporah Patrick, came to Humboldt by wagon train, meeting on the way, and soon marrying, Joseph Russ. Though she would become one of the earliest major landholders in Humboldt, she began her early married life in the back country during the Indian Wars. Her story begins on page 20. Readers, now that you know something of Zipporah's life, you may wish to attend a celebration of the 150th birthday of her eventual Ferndale home, Fern Cottage, taking place September 16-18, and presented by the Fern Cottage Foundation. Details on page 9.

Loni Hollenbeck is back with another romantic tale from the front lines of really hard work. The task: dismantling a water tank. Join Loni for the adventure on page 28.

Then hit the road with Karen Campbell Hendricks, where a new postwar travel amenity is blooming across the land: the auto camp. Don't miss a night in Eureka's "veritable fairy bower." Also, join Jerry Scott in paying tribute to master bridge builder Lowell Allen, and join Barry Evans for a leaping cross-county ramble: a trip to Six Rivers National Forest.

And now for a surprise: we are introducing a new feature, suggested by reader Jud Ellinwood. A map, with all the locations mentioned in this issue of the Historian added on, with page numbers, appears on our back cover. If you encounter an unfamiliar place name, chances are you will find it on the map.


HUMBOLDT HISTORIAN

Fall 2016 - Volume 64, Number 3

10 - ANNA ELIZABETH LARSSON, PART II - By Vivian Ziegler

As the author continues her mother's life story, fifteen-year-old Anna Elizabeth Larsson travels from her home in Sweden to Arcata to work as a maid. Her family in Sweden believes she will soon be rich.

18 - THE LOWELL C. ALLEN MEMORIAL BRIDGE - By Jeremiah Scott, Jr.

A bridge is dedicated to a longtime bridge builder.

20 - ZIPPORAH RUSS AND THE JOURNEY TO FERN COTTAGE - By Donald Morrill

For most of the first twelve years of her married life, Zipporah Russ lived in the back country on a slope above a tributary of the Bear River, often alone with her children. Then came Fern Cottage.

28 - THE WATER TANK: DISMANTLING A LANDMARK - By Loni D. Hollenbeck

"The great thing was, I knew it so well. The problem was . . . I knew it so well."

37 - SIX RIVERS NATIONAL FOREST: THE NAME NOBODY WILL GO TO WAR OVER - History's Mysteries - By Barry Evans

Naming Humboldt's back country.

36 - SOUTH PARK RACE TRACKS, HOTEL, AUTO CAMP, AUTO COURT, AND MOTEL - By Jerry Rohde

The many faces of South Park from 1869 to 1920.

40 - EUREKA AUTO COURTS - By Karen Campbell Hendricks

The The motorized era in full flower.



Anna Elizabeth Larson, circa 1904.