Humboldt County Historical Society

Humboldt Historian

Spring 2015: Volume 63, No. 1

Historic Profile of the McKay Tract: Logging, Ranching, and Railroads
Jerry Rohde
After many years and industries, calm descends on the Valley of the Giants.

History's Mysteries: The Punta Gorda Light
Barry Evans
A springtime historical outing beckons.

Severin Jacobson, Owner of the Opera Saloon in Arcata
Vivian Ziegler
Swedish immigrants survive and thrive on the Humboldt frontier with a little help from their friends.

Cudber to Zingiber
Deborah Baskette
Secrets of the antique apothecary cabinets that serve as bookshelves in the HCHS Bookstore.

Henrietta Heilbronner Galinger
Nan Abrams
New to Arcata, a Jewish widow starts a business and raises her family among new friends.

Celebrating 125 Years in Eureka 
Jae Emenhiser
Presbyterians celebrate the Eureka church’s 125th anniversary.

You Didn't Hear it from Me: Weddings Humboldt Style
Louella Parsnips

The cover features the oil painting that appears on the cover of Marvin Shepherd’s new book, A Scottish Syndicate in the Redwoods: Monopoly and Fraud in the California Redwoods, 1882–1892. The painter is Harold John Shanahan, born in Eureka on March 27, 1898. Shanahan worked on his brother’s dairy farm on Elk River. He lived all his life in Eureka and made trips to nearby redwood forests to oil paint. He died on May 2, 1945 at the age of forty-seven. The painter was known to author Marvin Shepherd’s family. Shepherd recalls:

In 1937 and 1938, Shanahan was employed as a painter by the Works Progress Administration (WPA). Unfortunately, he had an affinity for alcohol. When he needed money, he used to visit my grandmother, Opal Monck, at 930 F Street in Eureka, and she would buy his paintings at $25 apiece. Four of his oil paintings were passed down through the years to the Shepherd family, and the one featured on the cover of my new book, and on the present Historian cover, is now in my possession.
— On The Cover