About the Nevada County Historical Society

The Nevada County Historical Society had its beginning in the fall of 1944 after being inspired by Dr. Robert E. Burns, President of the College of the Pacific. Dr. Burns was interested in the preservation of the history of the Mother Lode and gold country, and he spoke to the Grass Valley Lions Club about organizing a county historical society. Soon afterwards another meeting was held for more people who were interested, after which a constitution and by-laws were adopted. The objective of the new organization as stated in its constitution was to preserve every source of Nevada County history. The new society began with 48 members, and dues were a dollar a year! Monthly programs were planned to entertain and educate members, and the committee chairmen and groups formed the foundation of the society by collecting, displaying, and preserving the memorabilia of the county. The Firehouse Museum in Nevada City, the Mining Museum in Grass Valley, and Searls Library in Nevada City were opened to locals and tourists alike. The Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum opened in Nevada City during May, 2003.

In March 1948 the first newsletter of the Society was published, which contained small notices about Nevada County history. These were 5 by 8 inches, and were published until 1976. From that date to the present, the newsletter evolved into a quarterly Bulletin, usually an 8 page issue on some historical topic. Now the newsletter, also quarterly, is sent out at the same time. The newsletter tells the members about programs of the month, special events such as outings to historical areas, and news from the museums and Searls Library.

Since 1948, the Historical Society has held an annual banquet to honor the "Citizen of the Year," someone (or sometimes an organization) who has made an outstanding contribution toward preserving Nevada County history.

Meeting Information:
The Board of Directors Meetings are held the second Thursday of each month at the Historical Society’s new building at 161 Nevada City Hwy, Nevada City [map]. Meetings begin at 5:00 pm and all interested parties are invited to attend. 

General Membership Programs:

These programs are held the third Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm, at Historical Society’s new building at 161 Nevada City Hwy, Nevada City. Free of charge. These programs are regularly announced in the local media and can also be found posted on our Events Calendar. All interested parties are invited to attend. Refreshments are usually served following the general membership meetings.

2019 NCHS - Board of Directors

Back Row: Pat Chesnut, David Bard, Cathy Wilcox-Barnes, Linda Jack, Steve Fry and Desmond Gallagher.
Front Row: Brita Rozynski, Madelyn Helling, Carolyn Jones-Rogers, Daniel Ketcham and Wally Hagaman.
Missing: Rudy Cisar and John Christensen

Officers, Board Members, Committee Chairs

Executive Board:
President: Daniel Ketcham
Vice-President: Carolyn Jones-Rogers
Executive Secretary: Linda Jack
Treasurer: David Bard

Firehouse No. 1 Museum: Wally Hagaman
North Star Mining Museum: Rudy Cisar
NCNG Railroad Museum: John Christensen

Searls Historical Library: Pat Chesnut
Books: Desmond Gallagher

Membership: Open
Director at Large: Steve Fry

Director at Large: Brita Rozynski

Director at Large: Cathy Wilcox-Barnes

Standing Committee Chairs:
Finance: By committee
Fundraising: Recruiting

Public Relations: Recruiting

Programs & Events: Carolyn Jones-Rogers
Nomination: Daniel Ketcham
& Madelyn Helling
History Center: Daniel Ketcham, David Bard, Pat Chesnut, Verne Taylor & Steve Fry

Special Committee Chairs:
Hospitality: Desmond Gallagher

Awards/Citizen of the Year: David Bard
Constitution & Bylaws: Linda Jack
Volunteer Picnic: Linda Ketcham
Sunshine: Brita Rozynski