Drawing Courtesy Frank Germano
FORT CROOK MUSEUM
FORT CROOK HISTORICAL SOCIETY
PO Box 397
43030 Fort Crook Museum Ave.
Fall River Mills, CA 96028
Fort Crook Historical Society
Board of Directors
Larry grew up in Monte Sereno, CA
on the former property of
Los Gatos & Saratoga Wine & Fruit Co.
which operated from 1885 until it was
closed by prohibition in 1919.
His interest in history began by
constantly finding things in the dirt,
sometimes even identifiable like an
1898 Indian head penny in the rose garden.
He made a career as an engineer first in
mine and tunnel construction then in heavy
civil construction. He worked in multiple
western states but ended up back in the
Bay Area where he started. His wife, Kaye,
found the Fall River Valley for them by
taking fly fishing classes 1998 and they
ended up buying a home here in 2000 and
retiring full time in 2004.
Larry’s connection with the museum began
with his interest in blacksmithing and
the museum’s winter blacksmithing workshops.
After that his interest in history and desire
to help out took over.
Sarah was born and raised in the suburbs of
Los Angeles, growing up she was greatly involved
in Girl Scouts, cross country, track and field and
always loved camping, hiking and anything outdoors.
So it came as no surprise to her friends and family
when she went to Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo to major
in forestry and natural resources. At Cal Poly, Sarah
became involved with many forestry departments activities
but her favorite was the logging team. The logging team
competes in traditional lumber jack activities against
other schools in the western states. It was here she
met her future husband, Jeff Oldson, now the W.M. Beaty
and Associates reforestation forester, from the UC Berkeley
team. She came to work for W.M. Beaty and Associates in
May of 2011 as a seasonal timber marker and became a staff
forester in 2012. Jeff and Sarah have come to love the
intermountain area where they bought a house and spend
their weekends gardening, doing home improvement projects
and finding new swimming holes with their dog, Dozer.
Gail is a California native who grew up in Orinda
just outside of her birthplace in Oakland. She
graduated from Acalanes High School in Lafayette,
CA. After moving to the Redding area she continued her
education at Shasta College, earning degrees in
Finance and Small Business Administration.
Marriage brought her to the Fall River Valley in 1984.
She is married to Harold Bassett, a member
of the Bassett and St. John pioneer families
of this area. Gail is currently employed with the
Fall River Mills Fire Protection District as Clerk of
the Board. She was also an employee of the
Fall River Jt. Unified School District, working in
the Fall River High School office for ten years
and as the high school librarian for ten years before
retiring. She enjoys researching her family
history and has been a volunteer at the Fall River
Family History Center for many years. She also
enjoys all types of paper crafting such as
scrapbooking and stamping.
Jeannette’s love of history
led her to become involved
with the museum. This new
resident’s passions are
education and gardening.
The museum gardens are
beautiful because Jeannette
and other volunteers share
their skills. She also
volunteers in the first
grade and at the local
co-chairs the museum’s
annual quilt show
fundraiser. Her numerous
activities enable her to
promote the museum's events
Jeannette’s vision is to
finish the round barn and
secure funds to upgrade the
museum's buildings and
grounds. In doing so, she
hopes to make it a first
class tourist attraction
generating community pride
and support while
contributing to the local
This Ohio native married
into the Totten family who
were early settlers in the
Fall River Valley. Through
them, John developed his
interest in local history.
A retired international
John’s knowledge of
and marketing enables the
museum to build major
physical exhibits and
develop a strong
A resident of numerous
countries, including some
third-world locations, John
preservation is a world-wide
interest. An award winning
gardener, he shares this and
his cooking passion to
educate youth and raise
funds for local
organizations, including the
Harry grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area but,
having spent summers working on his grandparents
dairy farm in Wisconsin, always preferred living in a
rural area. He and his wife Cathy discovered the
Fall River Valley after camping and skiing in the area.
They bought property here in 1998 and spent 10
years building a house and moved here to live full
time in 2008.
Harry's career was in computer programming and
he became involved with the museum when he
was asked to help maintain the museum's web site.
His interest in history, dutch oven cooking and the
pioneer way of life has led to a greater involvement
with museum activities.
Billy was born in Gypsum, Colorado
and moved to California in 1951.
He served in the United States
Navy from 1957 to 1961. After
leaving the navy he owned and
operated a trucking company
in California for 30 years.
2002 he and his wife Dorothy
moved to the Fall River Valley
and Billy became involved with
museum and local history when
Dorothy became the curator of