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Susie Baker Fountain Papers - Chronology of Susie Baker Fountain's Newspaper Work

P.O. BOX 568


printed 5/19/04
additions 8/19/04

BLA (19 June 1948) "Blue Lake In Years Gone By"

Mrs. Eugene Fountain of Blue Lake, who is engaged in historical research of early day history and events of this section, is preparing a column of news for the Advocate gathering from early day files of the paper, which will be printed from time to time for the edification of our newer people, who, we feel certain, will be interested in the way early-day people lived and what they did. This week's items are taken from the Advocate files of 60 years ago.

[This series appeared initially without a by-line, but by the 17 July 1948 issue the words "By Mrs. Eugene Fountain" appeared below "Blue Lake In Years Gone By." These columns were verbatim quotes from historic issues of the Advocate and appeared in chronological order, beginning with 1888 when the paper was first published and proceeding through those early years.

Captions were added to identify the subjects of the columns. For example, the column of 25 July 1957 which covered items from the 16 October 1909 issue of the Advocate, these captions appeared: A Honeymoon Trip to New River, Shingle Mill at Trinidad, New Engineer at Korbel, Frightened to Death, Bucksport Titles Conferred, Hoopa Indian Victories, Sheep Herded to Market, Dr. Minor's New Home.

After Susie took a vacation in June 1958, Wava DeMotte continued the column. Up until the summer of 1966, when the Fountains moved to Berkeley, Susie compiled or wrote five different series and wrote many special features on local history, all of which were carried in the Advocate.]

BLA (23 Dec. 1954) "First Explorers Observed Christmas In Humboldt in 1849" By Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, Historian.

BLA (3 Feb. 1955) "The Story of Blue Lake" Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, Historian.

This issue we are publishing the Prelude to "The Story of Blue Lake' written by Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, widely known historical research author and lecturer.

This story of the development of the City of Blue Lake portrays in graphic manner the lives and accomplishments of the people who opened Northern California to settlement, and is written in an interesting style by a writer who has painstakingly assembled a great store of material heretofore unpublished. In addition, Mrs. Fountain has used some of the better-known early-day historical books and articles for references in compiling this most easily read story.

Many readers will undoubtedly wish to make a scrap book record with the installments of the story. Be sure to start with this week's issue and do not miss an installment of this story of the coming of civilization to this part of Humboldt County.

AU (27 April, 11 May, 25 May, 8 June, 22 June, 6 July, 20 July, 3 August, 24 August, and 21 Sept., 1956) Susie Baker Fountain wrote a series of articles in the Arcata Union that addressed the individual buildings that appeared on the 1857 Kuchel and Dressel lithograph of Arcata. In each article, Mrs. Fountain provided a detailed history of one of the buildings, along with a reproduction of the building's image from the lithograph.

The Editor's Note accompanying the first article introduced the series: "This is the first article in a series of articles which will appear at regular intervals describing historical material in the Arcata area. The series has been especially arranged for the Arcata Union by Mrs. Eugene Fountain, noted local historian" (AU 27 April 1956).

In introducing the series, Mrs. Fountain wrote: "In the days when Arcata was still known as Union, it was visited by a group of men from San Francisco whose work was unheralded at the time, but the value of which continues to increase with every passing year. Thanks to their efforts, the present generation can share some of the views familiar to the pioneers a hundred years ago. These artists, connected with the firm of Kuchel and Dressel of San Francisco, were the forerunners of our modern photographers. From their drawings on stone, fifteen lithographs were made, one of which accompanies this article. Only five structures remain today of the fifteen included in the set of illustrations, and only three of the five are in their original locations."

BLA (1 Nov. 1956) "The Story of Blue Lake" identified the column, but Susie was writing about people and events beyond Blue Lake and the following issue, 18 Nov. 1956, the title changed to "Early Days of Humboldt."

BLA (8 Nov. 1956) "Early Days of Humboldt" Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, Historian. The subject of this week's column, with photos, was Ole Torgersen and the Life Saving Station on the Peninsula.

BLA (15 Nov. 1956) "Early Days of Humboldt" Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, Historian. "John Vance and Essex"

BLA (5 Sept. 1957) "Advocate Award Accepted by Mrs. E. Fountain" The Blue Lake Advocate received the California State Fair and Exposition Bronze Medal award in the Press Top Story classification for their series on Blue lake and early Humboldt County history. Shown receiving the plaque at the Governor's Dinner in Sacramento Saturday from Governor Goodwin J. Knight is Mrs. Eugene Fountain. Her weekly series of articles on "Early Days of Humboldt" based on extensive personal research was the prize winning story.

More than 1,000 representatives of newspaper, radio, television, magazine, trade publications and advertising enterprises attended the event….

The Blue Lake Advocate won the State Fair Public Service Award in 1954 for its special edition commemorating the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Arcata and Mad River Railroad, and also holds the Benjamin Franklin Award.

Dr. and Mrs. Fountain drove to Vallejo Friday to the home of their son and daughter-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Matthew Fountain and then went on to the State Fair Grounds in Sacramento on Saturday in time to attend the Governor's dinner honoring press-television-radio executives. Representing the Blue Lake Advocate as award winners, they were seated at the honor table….

BLA (29 May 1958) "In Memoriam to Blue Lake Pioneers" by Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, Historian. Four pages of photo and text, including a drawing of Scottsville by Dr. Fountain, who was in charge of sketches and contemporary photography.

BLA (5 June 1958) Historian To Take Vacation (with familiar photo of Susie in the hat)-Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain, Blue Lake's beloved historian, is going to take a well deserved vacation for the summer. She has been doing intensive historical research for about 10 years, and has been writing special weekly historical articles for the Blue Lake Advocate since February 1955 and has been the Advocate's guest editor for several special historical editions.

Such organizations as the California Historical Society, the College of the Pacific's "Library of Western Americana," the Huntington Library, and others continue to give recognition to Mrs. Fountain's research and writings. R.R. Stuart, Director of the California History Foundation, comments that Mrs. Fountain's writing is fresh, honest, original, and charming.

Mrs. Fountain will resume her research and writing this fall, which we know will please her many interested followers.
[Wava DeMotte continued the "Blue Lake In Years Gone By" items]

BLA (9 July 1959) Historical Society To Meet In Blue Lake Tuesday; Early Pictures To Be Shown By Dr. And Mrs. Fountain. [Three pages of historic photos]

BLA (24 Dec. 1959) "The French Christmas Eve" by Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain

BLA (14 Jan. 1960) "Out Of The Shadows" by Mrs. Eugene F. Fountain. [This appears to be first column under this title. The last title appeared on 14 Jan. 1961. The 26 Jan. 1961 issue began a series titled "Pioneers of the Past" by Howard Melendy. This series continued to January 1964.

BLA (9 Jan. 1964) Susie Baker Fountain's Manuscript "The Settlement Of The Humboldt Bay Region in 1850"-Publication of Susie Baker Fountain's manuscript, "The Settlement of the Humboldt Bay Region in 1850" will start in next week's edition (January 16th) of the Blue Lake Advocate. Originally planned to be issued in book form, the work will deal with the first claims in the Eureka-Arcata area, presenting material, which has been thoroughly researched by Mrs. Fountain and secured from sources, which were made available to her, which had not been previously explored by other historians.

As with other series of historical materials published in the Advocate readers are urged to preserve the valuable manuscript, as many do, clipping and mounting the weekly chapter in book form.

The Advocate welcomes the return of Susie Baker Fountain as writer-researcher in this most important phase of early day Humboldt history, with much new material to enrich our knowledge of county's beginning.

BLA (9 June 1964) Last column of "The Settlement Of The Humboldt Bay Region in 1850"

BLA (3 April 1969) Last issue of the Blue Lake Advocate