Twentynine Palms Historical Society
29 Palms, California

Accessions Report - Fall 2019

by Cathy Snodgrass

Wednesday morning volunteers

In early August 2019, Marilyn Collier decided to retire from her position as Accessions Goddess to focus more on her writing career. Having just retired from my own writing career, I more than appreciate the path she is walking and wish her continued success in that endeavor.

When I first joined the Historical Society, I watched the attention to detail Marilyn put into Accessions. I felt then that it might be something I would be able to handle in the event the position became vacant. So at the end of August I stepped into the job. Thanks to Marilyn's record-keeping, I was able to easily understand her process and appreciate the work she had done.

Since I stepped into her shoes, I've been focused on learning the Society's Past Perfect computerized record-keeping system, and working on streamlining our donation system to make things easier for everyone and eliminate redundancies I've discovered. I wasn't focused on the goings-on around me, and only recently realized I was to do a column for the Journal. Yikes! And, of course, it was due "yesterday." I can't promise that my columns will be as chatty as Marilyn's. I tend to be very work focused and unaware of other things happening around me. I'll do what I can.

Things really get hopping on Wednesday morning workdays with volunteers, multiple donations, individuals coming in to do research, and planning for upcoming events. Sometimes donations don't trickle in—they pour! Ditto with researchers needing assistance. It's all quite exciting. What doesn't pour in are volunteers. You can imagine our delight when Steven Reyes joined us!

Steven has hit the ground running and already proven to be a superb volunteer. He helped inventory six boxes of telephone books that are now ready to be officially accessed. He's also been helping Cheryl Erickson go through the thirteen boxes of books donated to the Society by the Twentynine Palms Library.

The military exhibit is now on display. It focuses on World War II era items in honor of the glider base at Condor Field and includes a diorama showing how these gliders were used. Jim Krushat has been working on this for over a year and is most likely relieved to see it nearing completion.

Dana Bowden and Melanie Robbins continue making the Gift Shop and Exhibit Rooms the very best. If you're looking for something unique to our area as a gift, this is the place for you. Dana has also worked diligently to hang artwork (previously stored in the Archives) on the walls of our multipurpose building.

Rosalee Mendoza is now in charge of Membership and also continues to digitize old negatives and photographs for preservation.

Pat Rimmington, John Steiner, Marilyn Fernald, and Dana Bowden have completed the huge task of going through all the boxes from the Susan Luckie Reilly estate, and those items have been accessed.

All researchers studying the history of Twentynine Palms or the Morongo Basin are welcome to visit us on Wednesday mornings from 9:00 a.m. to noon. This is the work day for volunteers and we are always at the Old Schoolhouse Museum Library on that day. Those of you who live out of the area may contact us through our website for information on how to obtain research assistance. Our website is:

The list of accessions for the time period covered in this journal is below:

  1. Book - Songs of Joshua Tree, An Odyssey Through the Music History of the Park and its Surrounds, by Lauren Beth Eisenberg Davis. (This was donated by the author, who spent some time at the museum researching for the book).
  2. Book - Back Door to California, The Story of the Mojave River Trail by Clifford J. Walker, donated by Sue Lute.
  3. From Sue McMahan, a sugar canister (slow-blue onion pattern circa 1940) used by Pioneer Elizabeth Campell and a seascape painting by Harris Moore (former president of Security Pacific Bank).
  4. Debra Ohlfs donated a Security Pacific Bank cardboard sun visor.
  5. CD with print-out of roads and road rights of way 1949-1959 from Jeff Ohlfs.
  6. Vintage sewing notions. (There was little identification on the mailer these items came in, just the last name Vallejo.)
  7. The Combat Center Government and External Public Affairs Office donated the following: Frisbee with the Marine Corps School Liaison Program on it; an orange bandanna (Ten Commandants of Survival in the Desert When Lost or Stranded); a black tote bag (The Combat Center).
  8. Laura Morang-Worsfold donated 14 VHS tapes of CSA 70 (County Service Area 70) TV-5, Mesa Television, Community TV shows, Our Neighborhood, and a flash drive with all these programs digitized.

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