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March 3, 2023
President’s Message
March 3, 2023
Truckee-Donner Historical Society

Dear TDHS Family,


What does March bring, either cold winter nights or warm blooming tulips and daffodils, or something in between as it is in Truckee most every year.  Currently at our new site, what we like to call Nick's Pond, (the Truckee Springs property) has received a ton this year, and crazy amounts up in Tahoe Donner with 462' so far the winter season. Reminds me of how it used to snow in the '60s but there wasn't the snow removal - and the power went out. 

   We've been talking that we'd like to bring back the winter carnival to downtown Truckee, so if you would like to be included in helping volunteer organize this project, let us know and shoot us an email at Just recently I thought of a new event - having two dogs pull the owners on skis, it's pretty fun to watch. I'd love to see snow sculptures all around town and right now is the perfect time to do it, so send us your photos.  Check out this snow sculpture downtown Truckee by an unknown talented artist.

   On another note, things are progressing at the Research Cabin virtually with lots of research going on and new photos being uploaded to our website often, so check it out.
   Did I mention we received another grant to get our Sierra Suns cataloged and ready for scanning, so if anybody would like to help with that project we'd greatly appreciate it. We are constantly processing donations of all types, so thank you all for keeping Truckee history stored away for all these years; we cherish them. 

   Well short and sweet - I need to get back to shoveling snow and let's think about what kind of flowers we want to plant in July. 

Greg Zirbel
President Truckee-Donner Historical Society

And don't forget we are on Facebook as well.
Last program in the series, Wed., Mar. 8.  Topic:  

Truckee in WWII: Shortages, Sacrifice, and more... $10.00

Heidi Sproat, Researcher, Truckee-Donner Historical Society. What happened in our then-tiny rural town during WW II? How Truckee, California became stalwart and reliant to sustain America’s war efforts. How and why Truckee was, and still is, vital to the defense of our nation.
To purchase tickets benefitting Tahoe Donner Giving Fund

The Blizzard of Feb. 26 - Mar. 1, 2023.  Someone has some digging out to do!
March 1, 2023 morning photo taken at Tahoe Donner Downhill Ski Hill - chairs are BURIED in snow.  See Tahoe Donner Downhill site for full image.
Special Recognitions
Truckee-Donner Historical Society has indeed been very fortunate these last few months as we have a few special recognitions we would like to share with you.
In the summertime 2022, President Zirbel gave a tour to a group of visitors who kindly rewarded us with enough funds to purchase a much needed - and now very well used - special scanner.  We've named it "The Prezifier"! and what a job it can do.  We now can take bound books, journals, ledgers, newspapers and lay them FLAT without having to place them face down page by page on your typical flatbed scanners.  And is it fast!  Below are two examples.  Click on the examples to see larger images.
(L) The Green Journal, pp. 6-7, c. 1883, image no. 3; (R) The Green Journal, pp. 54-55, c. 1884, image no. 31. Click on the above images to see larger renderings.
Map Collection Digitization Progress !!!
More maps now available digitally!
Second Box of Scanned Maps
The Historical Society has also been the recipient of a very generous personal donation to commence the digital scanning of our extensive map collection.  To date, we have only been able to offer a listing of our maps to an online researcher, compiled and maintained until very recently by our own Karl Pape. Until December 2022, researchers have had to come visit Truckee's Joseph Research Library in person in order to avail themselves to explore our map collection.  While we have a link to our map listing available on our website, until this recent contribution, we could not afford to commence this digitization process effort in earnest.  THANK YOU TO OUR GENEROUS DONOR who helped get us started!

Above is a screenshot of the 2nd batch of maps we've had our local Tahoe Print Shop scan as high resolution pdfs for us.  If you see in this list above a map in which you're interested, you can give us the corresponding number on the far left side and ask that we provide you a link to the available high resolution digital image. How's that for efficiency!  Below is an example:  Say you're interested in the map Truckee River Camp (Proposed Development).  Locate the corresponding number 1-164L, let us know, and we can provide you a link to the high resolution PDF.  Check it out. Do keep in mind these are high resolution pdf scans and they may take awhile to download as most of them are in the 30-40 MB size range = BIG.  This is just so cool!  You can even expand and hone in on on particular places.  As California's Gold producer Huell Howser used to say,  it is simply "amazing!" Enjoy.
Sierra Sun Truckee Republican
Scanning Update !!!
As part of yet another digitization effort - to get the Sierra Sun Truckee Republican (SSTR) issues digitally scanned - we were fortunately selected to receive a nominal California Revealed* award to digitize 10 years worth of these valuable bound newspapers.  The years run from 1933-1944 (see image below), years for which there are currently NO available online Truckee newspapers.  We were very lucky to retrieve these volumes before they were lost in time.  After a submission for a grant to prepare them for digitization, Truckee-Donner Historical Society was awarded 10 years worth.  Thank you President Zirbel for being at the right place at the right time to coordinate an application, thank you to Dave DePuy for spearheading the submission, and a HUGE thank you to all the volunteers - Chaun, Barbara, Dave, Eric, Greg, Heidi, Jackie - who spent countless hours indexing some 3,100 pages of 565 issues. [Collectively we reviewed some 86,854 pages for 38 years and there are an additional 2,313 issues, you can see why we were cross-eyed by the June 30, 2022 deadline.  So if you know of anyone who would like to continue to assist us in this MOST IMPORTANT task of scan preparation of these newspapers, PLEASE let us know.  We can't do this alone!  Of the 182 volumes we retrieved, we still have another 53 volumes to index, and are still MISSING these years: 1934, 1945, 1947, 1948, 1963, 1967, 1968 - Jan. - June, and 1969 July - Dec.  if you know where these MISSING SSTR volumes are, PLEASE let us know. ]

Above images show TDHS pickup of the SSTR volumes from a Carson City warehouse, books stacked on the Old Truckee Jail Museum floor - not a safe place for irreplaceable historical text - and more SSTR volumes stacked wherever we have room.
* California Revealed is a California State Library initiative that helps heritage organizations digitize, preserve, and provide FREE online access to materials documenting the state’s history, art, and cultures. By providing online access to digitized materials, California Revealed is working to aggregate California’s digital collections into a single resource available at California Revealed records are also accessible through the Internet Archive, the Digital Public Library of AmericaCalisphere, and the Home Movie Registry, affording multiple free public access points. Examples of small newspaper digitization efforts, similar to our Truckee Republican Sierra Sun bound volumes, are Pacific News and Miners' Advocate, both publications dealing with Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park.)
We recently received notice Friday evening, December 23 that TDHS' monumental efforts have been again rewarded with a second grant to scan additional issues for this California Revealed digitization process. We are so grateful to be able to continue this effort and eventually make these SSTR issues available FREE online for public review. 
Image Collection Update
We've been able to add another 100 mages to our ever expanding online Image Collection.  Check it out at .  We added many images from the Alice Belle Bliss Ruffer Collection, mostly of Hobart Mills.  We also added a number of new images in the Donner Lake Collection.  You will be amazed at some of these photographs!
Click on the photographs below to see larger images.
Above images left to right, top to bottom:
* Wedge Snow plow at Hobart Mills (RUF0051)
* At the Turntable, Hobart Mills (RUF0054)
* Hobart Mills Post Office (RUF0024) (taken after 1907)
* Is there a house in there? (RUF0038) - guess we're glad we have better shoveling equipment these days than they did in them 'olden days'

* Panorama image of Donner Lake from Bucknam Tract area (historical newspaper article) (DLK0027)
* Donner Lake Saloon and Hotel (DLK0003)
We Need Your Help!
Truckee-Donner Historical Society would like to thank each of you, our members, who help keep Truckee History Alive!  Coming out of this bizarre COVID mess, your TDHS Board and core group of volunteers want to thank you for your continued support of our mission. 
We are continually searching for and open to find meaningful ways to improve our organization's service to our members and our community, so we always encourage you to bring forth your ideas, suggestions, and volunteer talents.  As a non-profit 501(c)(3), do keep in mind that we are wholly dependent on YOUR membership for our support.  We do NOT receive any federal, state, nor local funding of any kind to support our efforts to maintain our Old Truckee Jail Museum, our Joseph Research Cabin, and most recently, our wonderful Museum of Truckee History (MoTH).  We are entirely dependent on donations and volunteer docents to keep us in business and open to the public. Please consider assisting us in whatever capacity you are able.  We are dedicated to continue to have a meaningful impact on the research services we provide to our members and to those interested in our history.  We cannot do this without your continued support!  As "stewards" of our varied historical collections, we need YOU to be as invested in our continuing desire for preservation as we are.
In gratitude, we remain
Your Truckee-Donner Historical Society volunteers
Museum of Truckee History
Museum of Truckee History (MoTH) IS OPEN!!!  Depending on docent coverage, MoTH should be open Friday, Saturday, and Sundays from 10 to 4 pm to schedule a tour. 
By appointment only: (530) 582-0893 or email .
Winter 2023 Calendar Activities
The Museum of Truckee History is open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, from 10 am to 4 pm, by appointment, and depending on docent availability. (530) 582-0893.

The Joseph Research Library is open most Thursdays, 10 am - 2 pm. Call first please. We have to do all our own shoveling as we have NO service to do so.  Want to volunteer to clear our walking path to the Cabin when it snows so we can share with you how many "special" documents we have for which we are stewards.
Old Truckee Jail Museum
New Website Articles
Just in case you haven't had a chance to catch up on the latest articles posted to our website in the last month, here is a link to all the articles we have posted in the last 3 months.  
Do take some time to view these intriguing articles.
Reference Library Index Updated
We are pleased to report that our Master
TDHS Reference Book List Index is updated as of
November 27, 2022.

Monthly Donation Option
Remember YOUR membership keeps the work of the Truckee-Donner Historical Society going strong. 
* All membership renewals have shifted to July only
We appreciate the faithful support of our historical society members and of visitors to our website. We are offering an additional way for you to support the work of the society through monthly patronage, at an amount that fits your budget. Annual memberships are not going away!
​You can be a member with an annual payment of dues or with an automatic electronic donation to the society.
We receive no funding (nada! zilch!) from federal, state, or local government, and are wholly supported by an all volunteer group of dedicated individuals who have a passion to
Keep Truckee History Alive! 
We depend entirely on your support and generosity. 
Please visit our homepage link to take advantage of this opportunity: donations; membership.
Join Us! Become a TDHS Member!!!

If you are not yet a member, and appreciate what our organization does for the community, please join us. We depend on the essential support of our members to continue with our mission of making local history come to life through our  website, image collection, and articles.
Many members have also found that getting involved is lots of fun, educational, and very rewarding.

Please visit the Membership page of our website for more information.

Please contact us at with any questions or contact updates.
Membership Renewals
Because the historical society lacks a membership chair, members due for renewal will NOT receive a renewal notice by email in advance of their annual renewal date.  (We are still trying to find a Membership Chair.)  A prompt response for membership renewal is very much appreciated. Reminders will be sent as needed but require additional processing costs.

We will continue to email a link to our most recent eNews to the email address that we have on file for our members, and will send the renewal mailings to the same email address. We no longer send out 'snail mail' renewal notices as our donation funding stream is too sporadic. 
To avoid problems, members should make sure to inform us of any email address changes.

If you receive a renewal notice but have already recently renewed, you do not need to take further action, unless you need to provide us with updated contact information.

Please contact us at with any questions
or contact updates.
Support the Society with Amazon
The Amazon Smile program allows Amazon customers to designate a registered charity to receive a small percentage (0.5%) of qualifying purchases, at no additional cost to the customer. This is a great way to support our Truckee-Donner Historical Society, and we encourage you to use the link below to set up Truckee-Donner Historical Society as your Amazon Smile beneficiary.

Make sure to use the Amazon Smile entry page ( when you shop at Amazon to ensure that the Truckee-Donner Historical Society receives the benefit. Clicking on the Amazon Smile logo here, or on our Home page will always take you there.
HCS 3/3/2023
Copyright © 2023 Truckee-Donner Historical Society, All rights reserved.

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