Final Report of the 1981 Historic Resources Survey
The Western Sonoma County Historic Resource Survey team conducted a comprehensive visual assessment of County Planning areas #1, #6, and the City of Sebastopol, excluding prehistoric or archaeological data. The extent of historical research varied across different areas due to the availability of research volunteers and historical materials. The survey area predominantly comprised farmland, agricultural land, and timber areas, which have remained unchanged since the 1850s. Due to limited secondary research materials, they heavily relied on the knowledge of property owners. General historical information was obtained from the 1877 Atlas, as well as the 1911 and 1937 histories of Sonoma County. Conducting primary research would have been necessary to gather more historical data, but it was challenging considering the vast scope of the survey and the volunteer resources available.
|Sebastopol's "Train Down Main" (Photo 30-21)|
To verify ownership names, old road locations, transportation routes, and defunct towns, the survey team cross-referenced many sites and areas with the 1867 Bower's Map, the 1877 Atlas, and The Official Map of Sonoma County, dated 1908. They also consulted professional historians, such as Gaye LeBaron, Harvey Hansen, Harry Lapham, The Fort Ross Historical Society, The Jenner Historical Society, the Sonoma County Historical Society, and their sponsoring organization, The Western Sonoma County Historical Society, for the histories of more sensitive areas.
This survey presents a well-balanced collection of resources from throughout the map areas, showcasing various activities that have taken place since the 1830s. It includes landmarks, farm units, the rural narrow-gauge railroad, towns of different sizes, and remnants of various structures representing human involvement in the area's growth between 1850 and 1940.
The survey is available in three volumes (see below for detailed contents and access to specific sections):
Due to the number of included forms, Volume 2 is divided into three parts, outlined below. The resource lists for the map areas (also included in Vol. 1) are organized by map numbers (e.g., 24A), and accompanied by multiple resources or district resource identification letters (e.g., 24Ac). The lists contain information such as the Historic Name (if known), address, Architectural Style, estimated construction date, use or zoning, parcel numbers (1981 and 2023), National Register of Historic Places designation (4D, etc.), photo numbers (e.g., 02-35), and selective notes on the current (2023) status.
Please note that survey page references included in the Sonoma County Local History Index refer to the photocopy of the original edition and have not yet been updated to reflect the present edition.
Photographs From the Survey
View more than 500 individual photographs of historic resources taken for the survey in 1979-1980, as well as a small number of photos taken for the 1975/1976 Sebastopol Historic Buildings & Site Survey. Each photograph is linked to its resource survey page and includes additional links to maps showing the resource location.
Expanded resources lists including photo file names, parcel coordinates and current parcel use are available for download as Excel spreadsheets: