Family Stories and Histories
In this Section we capture a family member presenting the history of their family in the Greater Elk Grove area, including when they settled here, where and how the came, details about their lives, occupations and their involvement in community activities. Recordings will be listed alphabetically either by family namely or subject matter. All recordings throughout the collection will be cross-referenced, as applicable, between Sections.
Adams Family History
In 2018, Tonya Ray Ward, Robin Lynn Pask and Robert Hale, Jr., all members of the Adams family originally from the area around Carmencita Avenue in Florin, met with Louis Silveira and Elizabeth Pinkerton of the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation to relate the story of their early family settlers. They discussed the family’s involvement in the California Vineyard Company, the old Reese School and the Reese Library.
Beitzel Family History
The Beitzel family has owned land and ranched along the Cosumnes River near the community of Sheldon for over 100 years. George Beitzel, III shares the story of his family in America and their migration to California across the Isthmus of Panama, including being in the company of a young Army officer named Ulysses S. Grant.
Dennis Buscher – His Story
In 2018, Dennis Buscher presented to the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation his story of his years of undertaking genealogical research and of building a ‘Family Tree’ of the greater Elk Grove area.
Clark Family History
In May, 2019 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation recorded a conversation with Calvin Clark where he discusses the history of the Clark family in the Florin and Elk Grove areas. The Clark Family Ranch was situated between Florin and Gerber on the north and south and Bradshaw and Elk Grove-Florin Roads on the east and west. They were a large family of 2 girls and 10 boys who, through the years, married into other nearby families such that, as Calvin said, they seemed to be related to everyone in the area.
Croup Family History
In March 2017, the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation spent the afternoon with Lorraine Croup, a native of Hood, CA with many family connections throughout the area. Today, she lives in Elk Grove and is very active in the Historical Societies of both Elk Grove and the Sacramento River Delta. During our visit, Lorraine first shared with us her family story then she took us on a driving tour of the Delta from Freeport to Isleton, stopping along the way to review documents, chat with neighbors and revisit the bygone riverboat era of the Sacramento River.
Margaret Duarte – Van Styne Family Story
In 2018 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation recorded Margaret Van Styne Duarte as she related her Van Styne family story to the general membership of the Elk Grove Historical Society.
In 2018, 101 year old Elk Grove resident Virginia Fife shared her family story with the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation. Mrs. Fife was recently honored with a Key to the City of Elk Grove, acknowledging her contributions to the community for over 80 years.
In 2018, Jim and Barbra Foskett related to Judy Pierson and Louis Silveira, of the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation, the story of their many family connections through many generations in and around the greater area of Elk Grove
In early 2018, the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation recorded the presentation of Dennis Buscher to the Elk Grove Historical Society as he related the history and the stories of the families of the Franklin area.
Grimshaw Family History
In January 2018, the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation interviewed Rick Grimshaw, a native of Sloughhouse, CA. Today, Rick owns and operates the Davis Ranch Produce Company, famous for its Sloughhouse sweet corn. Rick has deep roots in Sloughhouse dating back to 1850 and therefore takes a keen interest in the history of the area.
In December, 2018 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation recorded a conversation between Jo Gusman and Elizabeth Pinkerton, where Jo shared the Gusman family story and their history in Elk Grove, Slough House and Bridge House, particularly of her father Antonio and his many accomplishments.
USMC Corporal Preston Hanford, Sr
In the spring of 2018 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation discovered a rather compelling story that has its roots deeply steeped in all that is California. It involves a WWII USMC Veteran who is now interred in the Pleasant Grove Cemetery in Elk Grove. His sons shared his story with us.
In January, 2019 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation spent time with Doris Holm as she related the Holm family story. Doris is a retired long-time teacher in Elk Grove and an active civic leader in the area.
Jackson Family History
In March 2017, the LMML Foundation interviewed members of the Jackson family who are from Florin and Elk Grove. During our discussion, they told of their family’s migration across the plains, of their settling in Florin in the 1860s and of the impact the family had, and is continuing to have, on the area and its residents.In March 2017, the LMML Foundation interviewed members of the Jackson family who are from Florin and Elk Grove. During our discussion, they told of their family’s migration across the plains, of their settling in Florin in the 1860s and of the impact the family had, and is continuing to have, on the area and its residents.
In January, 2017, the LMML Foundation recorded a meeting of the general membership of the Elk Grove Historical Society which featured speaker Ed Keema. His topic was the history of the town of Siwash, which became Bruceville, and the families of the area. The Keema’s are early residents of the Siwash area of Elk Grove, having
emigrated from Prussia then crossed the plains to the West Coast in 1851.
Mix Family Story
In February, 2017, the LMML Foundation interviewed Oscar Mix, a native of Elk Grove. During our discussion, he told of his family’s immigration from Europe, of their deeds in early America and across the country to California. Mr. Mix shared a great number of unique and compelling stories about his family and about the Elk Grove area from 1900 to today.
Mel Pierson – Patterson Family Story
In 2016, Mel Pierson tells the story of the Patterson family branch of his family tree. The account begins with the famine in Ireland and continues with the family’s migration to America and eventually the Perkins and Walsh Station areas of Sacramento County.
In 2019 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation had a conversation with 95-year-old Kiyo Sato in which she related her family story. In our discussion she related how her Grandfather came to California in the early 20th Century seeking to take advantage of the opportunities presented here so he could benefit his family in Japan. With him he brought his youngest son, Kiyo’s father, who was advised by his mother that staying in California was the best way for him to have a meaningful life. Kiyo shares many poignant moments of the family’s story including how they attained land ownership when they were forced into internment during World War II, and of Kiyo’s service as a nurse during the Korean War.
In November, 2016, the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation spent time with Jerry and Jeanie Strong at their home on Bond Road in Elk Grove, recording their family stories and many fond memories they both held.
In December, 2017, the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation spent time with George Waegell as he takes us through the years relating the story of the Waegell Family, their ranching operations and what it was like growing up in Elk Grove. George also shares his perspective on the Japanese Internment during World War II, his many travels around North America, and his impressions of today’s computers and the impact of technology on humans.
In March, 2019 the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation chatted with Bev Waterman as her discussed the history of the Waterman family. During the discussion, Louis Silveira and Tom Mackey join the conversation as Bev relates interesting stories of the family including where the Waterman ranch was located, tales of early schooling and the connection to the nudist colony in Wilton. Bev also chats about her husband’s lifelong friendship with Dr. Gus Windmiller.
In 2018, Mel Pierson sat down with David Lema of the Linda Mae Mahon Lema Foundation to discuss why ‘everyone has a story to tell’. He demonstrates his point by relating the story of the Zito Family, his maternal ancestors.