Monday, December 6, 2021
Peacock Dairy advertisement

Early Days of Kern County Dairy Production

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By Mike McCoy, Executive Director, Kern County Museum Mike McCoy Executive Director, Kern County Museum I was nosing around in the museum’s archives the...
Kern Island Canal headgate

Colonel Baker: The Engineer Who Tamed the Valley

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By Mike McCoyExecutive Director, Kern County Museum Mike McCoy Executive Director, Kern County Museum The story of agriculture in the San Joaquin Valley is...
Sunkist packing house, about 1900

The Second California Gold Rush: Oranges in Kern County

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By Mike McCoyExecutive Director, Kern County Museum Digging through the Kern County Museum’s Library, one of my favorite old books is A...
Henry Millers house

The Land Barons Versus the Water Barons

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By Mike McCoyKern County Museum Mark Twain once famously said, “Whiskey is for drinking and water is for fighting.” With the increasing...
man shearing sheep

The Lambs That Won the West

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By Mike McCoy, Kern County Museum While Hollywood has traditionally celebrated the cowboy in motion pictures and television, there is a strong argument...
potatoes

When Potatoes Were King

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By Mike McCoyKern County Museum A recent visit to the Shafter Depot Museum, with a long lunch with curator Stan Wilson, yielded...
vintage wine

Hot Days, Warm Nights and Sweet Wine

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Four young easterners came out to California in 1849 following the siren call of gold. John Tone, David Hudson, Charles Valentine and John Stevens planted a vineyard North of Stockton remembering the vineyards of New York. Although the early Spanish missions of California also cultivated grapes and had significant wine production, this was the first effort of Anglo-Americans to bring wine grapes to the southern San Joaquin Valley. This effort was soon followed by brothers William and George West who established a nursery and vineyard in Stockton in 1852.

The Shafter Cotton Research Station: 97 Years of Innovation

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The general public is blissfully unaware of how much science is involved in agriculture and how science defines the industry. With...

More than a Farmer’s Wife

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An amazing woman has come to my attention. Her name is Jean Hardy and she was the daughter of a farmer,...

The Rosedale Colony: Land Speculation, English Gentry And Water Rights

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By Mike McCoy, Kern County Museum If you drive out Highway 58 west from Bakersfield, you will see a line of ancient...
Shafter Camp 1939” Photo: Dorothea Lange. U. S. National Archives

Farm Labor Camps: A Look Back at How America Solved the Crisis...

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By: Mike McCoy Kern County Museum Providing housing for seasonal agricultural workers has been a traditional obligation of the employer or at least...