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About the Collections

Willmer Strout with crew of members of Petaluma and Santa Rosa Railroad car No. 55

The Sonoma County Library, through our Sonoma Heritage Collections, seeks out, acquires and makes digitally accessible, materials in all formats to illuminate Sonoma County history and culture. The Sonoma Heritage Collections builds on the extensive group of historical photographs gathered in the the Library's History & Genealogy Library , Petaluma History Room and Sonoma County Wine Library, as well as archival collections located in the Sonoma County Archives. We have collaborated with a number of Sonoma County organizations the Western Sonoma County Historical Society to the Sonoma County Fair to broaden our offerings. The Sonoma Heritage Collections currently include photographs and digitized maps, architectural drawings, newspaper clippings and historical advertising matter. These represent approximately 60% of our digitized materials (most also available through the Library's catalog for now) and we will continue to add retrospective images as well as new materials, but until all existing images have been added, please also check the Library's catalog if you can't find a favorite image.


Contributing to the Sonoma Heritage Collections

We invite individuals and organizations with photographs or other materials related to Sonoma County history and life to contact us. We have partnered with a number of organizations to showcase their treasures and aim to further expand the Collections in the future. For local history, contact Katherine Rinehart at the Sonoma County History & Genealogy Library; for wine-related materials, please contact Megan Jones at the Sonoma County Wine Library.


Sonoma County seal

Past funding for Sonoma Heritage Collections comes from the Sonoma County Advertising Program with additional funding by Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants provided by the California State Library through the Califa Library Group . It is also supported by the time and talent of the participants in the Sonoma Heritage Collections.


Unknown Locations and Subjects

We welcome information on unidentified locations and people in our collections -- unfortunately, we have many such images . If you know something more, leave a comment on this site or at our Flickr collection of unidentified images .

Other Questions and Comments

We welcome your questions about materials in these collections. For local history, contact Katherine Rinehart at the Sonoma County History & Genealogy Library; for wine-related materials, please contact Jon Haupt at the Sonoma County Wine Library.

Website questions may be directed to Geoffrey Skinner.

Use of the Images or Other Media on this Site

The Sonoma County Library makes no assertions as to ownership of any original copyrights to digitized images and can claim only physical ownership of the image(s) described in this records. However, these images are intended for Personal or Research use only. Any other kind of use, including, but not limited to commercial or scholarly publication in any medium or format, public exhibition, or use online or in a web site, may be subject to additional restrictions, including but, not limited to the copyrights held by parties other than the Library. USERS ARE SOLELY RESPONSIBLE for determining the existence of such rights and for obtaining any permissions and/or paying associated fees necessary for the proposed use. Preferred credit line is: Courtesy, the Sonoma County Library. Please see additional reproduction and reuse information at