I went to the
in Marin on Wednesday and was treated to a nice surprise. Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Civic Center
I had gone there to look at some court documents, and was dismayed to find that the records office had closed at 12:30 pm, due to budget cuts. I had a few hours to kill before a talk, so I wandered to the
library on the fourth floor. There I stumbled upon something I had never heard of: the Anne T. Kent California History Room. Marin County
This is an amazing space (really just a portioned section of the library) containing a fabulous collection of books, newspaper clippings, ephemera, and photographs. I looked at some books I had not been able to track down during my research for Towers of Gold and saw others I really wanted to browse through. The collection is wonderful. There was a complete run of the San Francisco Blue Book, a sort of society-oriented phone book, numerous oral histories of
Marin County residents, early voter registration records, and books on all the other sections of . California
Marin County Librarian Virginia Keating started collecting material in the 1930s and the room is named after Anne T. Kent, who led the way in the 1920s to establish the county’s free library system.
Its photographs are on-line.
I have to return to Marin to look at those court files. It will be difficult not to spend my time poking around instead in the history room.