Issue 31pulse

Modesto’s an Open Book

“We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.” –Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States

By Author Ken White

We choose to rejoice because our hometown is blanketed with roses. Showcasing those roses is the purpose of “Touchstones: Life and Times of Modesto,” a new book commissioned by the McHenry Museum & Historical Society, as we near the sesquicentennial founding of our city.

Touchstones is a contemporary snapshot of the values, people, places, organizations, and activities that make Modesto a unique, attractive, and authentic California city; that contribute to its identity and quality of life and form the foundation of our community.

This hard-bound book features essays, illustrations, stories, photographs, and artwork that capture the vibrant lifestyle, rich heritage, distinctive culture, evolving diversity, and essential character of our hometown. It showcases what connects and unites us. It identifies what we’ve done, are doing, will do, and still need to do. It also contains a special sponsored section entitled Sharing the Heritage, which profiles prominent businesses and institutions.

Touchstones is much more than another history book, as it reaches into our past, present, and future to tell a memorable story about this town. Each chapter covers an important aspect of our hometown; significant themes that help illuminate our ever-transforming city. Each chapter was written by experts in their respective fields; a prestigious group of knowledgeable, well-known, and well-respected contributors.

Touchstones will cost $40 and is now available for purchase at the McHenry Museum store. An on-line storefront is being created. All sales benefit the McHenry Museum & Historical Society.

A book release party will be held Dec. 14 at the Museum. The details will be released once they have been confirmed.

I want to thank the many people who were a part of this project, who are too numerous to include here. However, I would like to extend a special thank you to Carl Baggese, Janet Lancaster, Henrietta Sparkman, John Mattos, James Ewing, Michael Mangano, Scott Mitchell, Amy Vickery, Cory Warner, and Autumn Link for all they did, as well as to Gwen Larsen, Susan Belt-Highiet, and Lois Belt for their patience and support.

There are many common threads that unite this uncommon town. It is compassionate, inclusive, and hopeful. It is a community. It is our hope that Touchstones: Life and Times of Modesto will change how we are viewed by highlighting the distinctive threads that make up this amazing tapestry we call home.

Previous post

Out & About: Modesto Con

Next post

Quiet Retreats in Amador County