Mill Valley has been home to an active queer community for generations, from Druid Heights founder Elsa Gidlow to civil rights advocate Bob Harmon. Inspired by Elsa's poem "Chains of Fires," we have assembled a 100-year chronicle of this interweaved history. Throughout the exhibit are links to our LGBTQ+ Oral History project, which features interviews with current community members, ranging from influential Mill Valley residents to a roundtable discussion between young students.
Visit the online exhibition to learn more about this vibrant part of the town's story through archival materials, such as a digitized recording of the first Marin Gay Parade, the front page of the county's gay newspaper, and letters of love between lifelong companion
Sweetwater: The Jeanie Patterson Years
Since 1972 Sweetwater has been a part of Marin, its culture, and its community. For over 50 years, the venue has been a mecca for live music fans. While it has passed through the hands of various owners over the years (and a couple different locations), Sweetwater has always been a major hub for musicians and artists.
Visit the online exhibition to explore material from the History Room's Jeanie Patterson Sweetwater Collection, and learn about the history of the iconic music venue and the owner who put it on the musical map.
Village Music: The Best Little Record Store in the World
Mill Valley music legend John Goddard owned and operated the beloved local record shop Village Music for nearly 40 years. In that time, he developed lasting friendships, a renowned concert series, a mighty personal record collection, and a deep sense of community that continues to resonate with Mill Valley’s music lovers.
What a Difference a Year Makes: Mill Valley During the 1918 Influenza Pandemic
Across the globe, 1918 was a turbulent and difficult year. No aspect of life remained untouched by a devastating war and an unexpected, deadly virus but life did march on. This virtual exhibit explores how Mill Valley residents persevered through the travails of 1918.
On December 25, 1969, Rita Abrams sat at the Mill Valley bus depot and penned an ode to the town she'd come to call home the year before. In June 1970, a record featuring the undeniably catchy "Mill Valley" was released and became an international hit.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Rita's Abrams's tune, the Lucretia Little History Room curated an online exhibition that examines the song's history and its lasting cultural impact.