an old Glen Ellen bridge the present Glen Ellen bridge The Glen Ellen Historical Society: Bridging the Past & the Future


Look through these pages to learn about our community and its heritage, and you will find impressions and images of Glen Ellen, past and present. You will also find our vision for the future— and we invite you to take part in visualizing and realizing that future.

Our vision statement, as it was originally written in 1996, reads: “The mission of this Society is to encourage the participation of the people in the community to research, disseminate, preserve and celebrate the history of Glen Ellen.”

Over the years since this was written we have come to understand that our history is not simply about what has happened here in the past; it is in fact about the soul of this place today, as it has evolved over the years.

Its stories document the discoveries and the mistakes of famous people and anonymous people, the triumphs and the failures that have shaped what we know of ourselves, and the vision as well as the damage that has been brought here, and remains here still, today.

As custodians of the past we undertake learning about the people who have lived here before us. As stewards of the future we recover and remember their vision, in order that a better world can be provided for those who have yet to arrive.

We are fortunate that our rich history is so recent and accessible (we've been here less than two hundred years) that the historical record is still quite easy to retrieve and preserve. But we must retrieve it, or it will be lost. This is our responsibility.

A great deal of California history took place right here in the Valley of the Moon. Our work is to understand the consequence and significance of what has happened, in order to know what it is we must do next. There is room for everyone to join in, because it takes many points of view to form a thorough sense of our community, and to find a direction for it to take.