Sunday, May 28, 2023

This Day in MendoHistory: June 9, 1940- California Governor Dedicates the Russian Gulch Bridge


In collaboration with Mendocino’s Kelley House Museum, MendoFever will be publishing their “This Day in Mendocino History” Facebook posts. The Kelley House Museum works hard to document and curate Mendocino County’s rich history and can be visited in the seaside town of Mendocino.

Photo: Russian Gulch bridge under construction, 1939. (Emory Escola, Emery Escola Collection)

On this day in Mendocino history…

June 9, 1940 – California Governor Culbert Olson officially dedicated the Russian Gulch bridge. The new bridge replaced an old timber trestle that was located 500 feet further upstream. The old structure was built in 1911 and had been designed to support a 6-horse team. Increased vehicle weight had made the 30-year-old bridge unsafe. The new bridge and about 2800 feet of new approaches were built for $109,000.

Prior to the dedication ceremonies, Governor Olson and his party attended an abalone luncheon at Russian Gulch and the annual rhododendron festival.

In his speech, Governor Olson spoke of the beauty of the Mendocino coast and the need for adequate fire protection for the forests of California, citing the appalling losses through fires and calling for more fire-fighting funds.

Following the governor’s address, Secretary of State Paul Peek cut the ribbon and the governor’s party proceeded across the structure on their way back to Sacramento.

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𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘒𝘦𝘭𝘭𝘦𝘺 𝘏𝘰𝘶𝘴𝘦 𝘳𝘦𝘭𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘰𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘨𝘦𝘯𝘦𝘳𝘰𝘶𝘴 𝘴𝘶𝘱𝘱𝘰𝘳𝘵 𝘰𝘧 𝘪𝘵𝘴 𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘮𝘶𝘯𝘪𝘵𝘺, 𝘸𝘩𝘪𝘤𝘩 𝘩𝘢𝘴 𝘩𝘦𝘭𝘱𝘦𝘥 𝘶𝘴 𝘨𝘦𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘳𝘰𝘶𝘨𝘩 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘥𝘪𝘧𝘧𝘪𝘤𝘶𝘭𝘵 𝘺𝘦𝘢𝘳. 𝘋𝘰𝘯𝘢𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘢𝘯𝘺 𝘢𝘮𝘰𝘶𝘯𝘵 𝘢𝘳𝘦 𝘢𝘭𝘸𝘢𝘺𝘴 𝘸𝘦𝘭𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘦. https://www.kelleyhousemuseum.org/donations/

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I like to think of myself as a reporter for the Average Joe. Journalism has become a craft defined largely by city dwellers on America's coasts. It’s time to take it back. I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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