Native Sons preserving local history

By: Brandon Darnell, News Messenger Reporter
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The mission of the Native Sons of the Golden West is to preserve the history of California, according to Tom Jones, president of Lincoln’s parlor. Lincoln’s Native Sons parlor was founded in the 1870s, and has been actively preserving local history ever since. One activity of the local parlor is placing plaques on buildings of historical significance, including last year’s placement of a plaque commemorating Lincoln High School’s 100th anniversary. The organization also facilitates the operation of the Lincoln Area Archives Museum, located at 472 E St. and open from 9 a.m. – noon Wednesdays. “Community service – that’s the rewarding part,” Jones said. “The interesting part is the history. That’s why I joined.” Lincoln’s parlor has about 50 members, and saw a large increase in the past year, as about 20 members were added to its rolls. The only requirement to join is that the applicant be a native Californian – despite the name, women are also welcome to join the Native Sons, and many women are involved in Lincoln. Lincoln’s parlor is just one of more than 200 statewide, according to Jones. Some of the Native Sons’ greatest accomplishments include the preservation of the California Missions and the salvation of Sutter’s Fort in Sacramento – which was then donated to the state of California and now faces an uncertain future as budget cuts target the state parks system. Closer to home, the Native Sons will be hosting a reunion for students of Lincoln’s schools – to be held from 5-9 p.m. Aug. 22 at McBean Park. Anyone who attended any schools in the Lincoln area is welcome to attend. The event will feature dinner, a raffle drawing, games and entertainment. For tickets, call Roberta Babcock at 645-3490. The organization stays active in the community, most recently holding the pancake breakfast at McBean Park before the Fourth of July Parade Saturday. Jones enjoys being involved with the Native Sons because “It’s working to preserve and educate people on the history of the city of Lincoln and because I just belong to this community – that’s just interesting to me.” Why should someone care about Lincoln’s history? “You get to find out the way it was in simpler times, the good life,” Jones said. “At our meetings, Jerry (Logan) tells historical stories. You hear some of those stories, and it makes you feel like you’re in a Norman Rockwell painting.” Additional Information: What: Native Sons of the Golden West Mission: To preserve California’s and the city of Lincoln’s history Requirements for joining: Be a California native Annual dues: $30 How to apply: Visit the Lincoln Area Archives Museum during operating hours and pick up an application or visit Tom Jones at Sierra Hills Framing Meeting times: Meetings are held at the archives at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of every month