The Mount Diablo Surveyors Historical Society

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Celebrating California: Admission Day 2001

Event sponsered by the

Native Sons and Native Daughters of the Golden West

Sank Park, Oroville, CA

September 7, 8 & 9, 2001


Founded in 1875, the Native Sons of the Golden West is an organization with a rich history of historical preservation, which began in 1890 with the purchase of Sutter’s Fort when that landmark faced demolition and which continues to this day. The Native Sons was formed as a lasting monument to the men and women of California’s Gold Rush.

Established in 1886 The Native Daughters of the Golden West is a fraternal and patriotic organization founded on the principles of; love of Home, devotion to the Flag, veneration of the Pioneers and faith in the existence of God.

To this end, Argonaut Parlor 8, Native Sons of the Golden West and Gold of Ophir Parlor 190 Native Daughters of the Golden West sponsered Oroville's first annual Admissions Day Celebration inviting visitors to step back in time to the beginning of California's history in celebration of California's admission to the Union on September 9, 1850 with living history displays, food, activities, BBQ, a parade and historic information displays.

The Mount Diablo Surveyors Historical Society provided one such display with historic surveying instruments, maps, photographs and Land Surveyor docents.

To learn more about the sponsers of this event visit their web pages:
Native Sons of the Golden West:
Native Daughters of the Golden West:

Please scroll down to view photographs of this event/exhibit...


By Joddie Heavener, PLS

Both the Native Sons and Native Daughters welcomed the MDSHS Display Committee with enthusiasm on Friday morning September 7. We were given a good location, in the shade, near the Gazebo, at Sank Park on Montgomery Street. Sank Park is the location of the historic LOTT HOME. The Display Committee consisted of Duncan Marshall, Joddie Heavener, Earl Cross, Gara Cross, and Hal Davis.

Unfortunately the 6,168-acre "Poe Fire", which started at 8:21 am Thursday September 6, North of Lake Oroville near the town of Jarbo Gap, created a diversion from the celebration. More than 800 firefighters descended upon the Oroville area to help fight the fire. However, the celebration continued on as planned.

Friday morning the opening ceremonies at the Gazebo took place at noon, as scheduled, and all displays were opened for viewing. From 5:00-8:00 PM a 49er Type Supper was available to all who wanted to attend. There was a Melodrama at the Monday Club planned for 7:00 PM. Friday evening, but had already sold out as of Friday morning.

On Saturday all displays were again open at 10:00 am. There were also Opening Ceremonies at the Gazebo. From 12:00 noon to 5:00 PM the Native Sons put on a Cowboy Bar-B-Que that included tri-tip steak, chicken, beans, rolls, salad and cookies for desert. Beer and wine were also available. The parade went right past our display on Montgomery Street.

The Mayor of Oroville, Gordon Andoe, stopped by our exhibit booth and spoke to us about his career as a surveyor. He later returned to show us a number of old time photographs of survey crews that had worked on some of the Feather River Projects in and around the area. Also, John Christofferson, a local Land Surveyor stopped by and shared with us an old photograph of a survey crew that had perhaps 7 to 8 crewmembers. On Saturday afternoon a couple of children (brother and sister) were awarded key chains for correctly telling us what the square root of 25 and 16 were. They were then shown the 3-4-5 triangle and how it all comes together.

Once again, Duncan Marshall volunteered to sleep out overnight with the equipment and display items. It certainly saved the committee all of the labor of setting up and taking down the display.

Sunday was a slow day, so the committee took down the exhibit around 10:00 AM. Earl, Gara, Joddie, and Duncan decided to go up to the fish hatchery and view the returning salmon. The Feather River was loaded with salmon, many of them leaping out of the water. These salmon were early returnees to the hatchery. There was also a viewable fish ladder where the public can view the salmon and steelhead trout up close.

It was a good display for MDSHS and a good first effort for the Native Sons. They will want us back next year. They learned a lot about putting on such a celebration and feel that next year will be better. Besides the distraction of the fire, there were a number of other celebrations going on at the same time. Everyone who participated had a good time and enjoyed our visit to Oroville.

Article reprinted from the 19th edition (fall 2001 vol 10 number 2) of the Mount Diablo Surveyors Historical Society news letter. ©2001 Joddie Heavner, MDSHS. All rights reserved.


Photograph #1
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MDSHS member Joddie Heavner, event chairman


Photograph #2
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MDSHS member Duncan Marshall


Photograph #3
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MDSHS members (l-r) Earl Cross, Duncan Marshall & Joddie Heavner.


Photograph #4
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Close up of a portion of the display


Photograph #5
MDSHS members (l-r) Joddie Heavner, Earl Cross & Duncan Marshall
tend to the display setup.


The display committee Chariman for this event was Joddie Heavener. Other MDSHS committe members that helped with this event were; Duncan Marshall, Earl Cross, Gara Cross, and Hal Davis. Photographs by Gara Cross, ©2001 MDSHS. All rights reserved.

MDSHS is a California non-profit public benefit corporation organized under
IRS 501(c) (3) (Federal #8916806802, CA 1835904).
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Page last updated September 15, 2013
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