PictureAlonzo Coffin and his family and friends pose for a photo at a picnic at Old Mill Park in 1898. Photo courtesy the Lucretia Little History Room, Mill Valley Library.

The Mill Valley Historical’s Society‘s Walk Into History annually explores the people, places and things that serve as the foundation of our community.

For the 42nd edition, the event, set for Sunday, May 26 (9:30am-3pm) over Memorial Day weekend, heads back into time to some of the earliest days of Mill Valley with “Exploring Family Ties,” a walk that starts at the Mill Valley Library’s SmartGarden and visits “Eastland,” the earliest subdivision in Mill Valley, bordering Old Mill Park, Lovell and downtown.

Eastland was named after oseph Eastland, who wielded great power in California and headed the Tamalpais Land & Water Company (T.L.&W.), which was formed with the goal of developing land in Mill Valley. Eastland was joined by Lovell White, Roger Magee, Louis Janes, and C.O.G. Miller, who began their work in 1889. Eastland, who had been president of the North Pacific Coast Railroad in 1877 and retained an interest, saw to it that a spur came into Mill Valley from Almonte.

The Walk Into History allows participants to meet some of the founding families, interesting characters, raucous children, long forgotten swimming holes, historic hotels, soap box derbies, hikers retreats, the old Carnegie library, a Japanese “colony” and a sulphur springs. The event offers the chance to re-live the stories of the people who worked and played in this area from 1910-1950, from the town’s founding through two World Wars and consequent social unrest.

This year’s walk also includes a special free family activity event for elementary school age children in Old Mill Park from 10 am to 2 pm, featuring games, crafts and treats from the mid- 20th century.

MVHS is a local, non-profit organization dedicated to gathering, cataloging and preserving the historical records of the City of Mill Valley and celebrating the city’s historical past. The organization has more than 400 members and is located in the Mill Valley Library.

The 411: The Mill Valley Historical Society‘s 42nd Walk Into History, “Exploring Family Ties,” takes place on Sunday May, 26, between 9:30am – 3:00pm. The Walk begins in the Mill Valley Library’s SmartGarden and tours leave every 20 minutes. Advance tickets are available here or on the day of the event. MVHS members – $15, Non- members – $20, children under 18 are free. MORE INFO.

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