About the Pinole Historical Society

The Pinole Historical Society was incorporated in 1974, with the late Dr. Joe Mariotti and Director Emeritus George Vincent as charter members. They provided a wonderful background and inspiration for us to achieve our mission.

The Pinole Historical Society strives to meet its mission of promoting awareness and appreciation of history through preservation and education, and chronicling the city’s heritage for current and future generations.

Our board of directors is working hard to deserve its viable charitable, private, non-profit organization classification, deserving of needed sustained financial support from foundations, grants, bequests, etc.

As a “museum without walls,” PHS volunteers are inventive in bringing history to the community outside the walls of a museum building. We accomplish this in several ways:

• In 2009, we began a community outreach program where PHS volunteers introduced Pinole history to fourth-graders in five elementary schools. George Vincent and Jeff Rubin prepared a one-hour program about the history and experiences of children in early Pinole schools at the turn of the 20th century.

• Our outreach activities include talks illustrated with PowerPoint presentations from our now vast collection of photos to Pinole Rotary, AARP, the Pinole Library, St. Joseph Church Seniors, Sons in Retirement, Bay Park Retirement Residence, Pinole Senior Village, and the Pinole City Council. Additionally, The PHS participates in several community events, including the Pinole Classic Car Show, National Night Out, and the St. Joseph’s Christmas Festival.

• We hold our annual Veterans Day Memorial and Flag Retirement Ceremony on November 11, commemorating those who served in the military, past and present. Participants include the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Brownies, Pinole Valley High School Marching Band, Pinole Police Explorers color guard, and hundreds of school children and folks from the community. In addition to speeches from veterans, city officials, and youth leaders, attendees share in the solemn ceremony of the retirement of worn flags by the Boy Scouts. The event draws as many as 500 people to Fernandez Park.

• The PHS has conducts a successful essay contest in Pinole schools every spring. The children have written some thoughtful essays.

PHS Newsbriefs, our newsletter, begun in 2008 as a two-page information sheet, has expanded to 16 pages. In addition to historical articles about Pinole, the newsletter includes ads from more than 50 businesses. The newsletter reaches several thousand people via 1,500 printed copies placed in more than 60 locations in Pinole, Richmond, El Sobrante, Hercules, and Rodeo — and countless more via our website and e-mail database.

• Our activities are highlighted on the PHS website (www.pinolehistoricalsociety.org), and on our Facebook page. Also, visit the Pinole Historical Society YouTube channel to view all the history videos we’ve recorded over the last 15 years.

• PHS members/authors George Vincent, Jeff Rubin, and Dr. Joe Mariotti wrote — and Arcadia Publishing published Images of America: Pinole, which chronicles the city’s history from its pre-settlement days to the present. Including books sold at retail outlets and bookstores, more than 2,000 have been sold. In 2015, George and Jeff collaborated on a second book, Pinole Through Time, published by Fonthill Media, an Arcadia Publishing subsidiary.

• We have two exhibits at the Pinole Library that chronicle different periods in our city’s history. We also have an exhibit about the Ellerhortst family at Mechanics Bank in Pinole.

• We have a booth at the Pinole Farmers Market where and sell our books, flags, greeting cards, postcards and magnets. COME VISIT US APRIL – DECEMBER!

• On July 25, 2013, Wells Fargo Bank unveiled The Pinole Mural, a spectacular piece of art that chronicles important events and people in Pinole’s history. With images provided by the Pinole Historical Society, Wells Fargo’s graphics staff created a magnificent addition to our historical archives. The mural resides on the back wall of the bank’s Pinole office at 1374 Fitzgerald Drive. Please stip by and take a look. To commemorate the event, Wells Fargo Bank created a video featuring descendants of people in the mural. Click here to watch The Pinole Mural video.

or watch it on the Pinole Historical Society YouTube channel.

All this in addition to quarterly membership programs that focus on interesting people, events, architecture, and industry in Pinole.

Click here to read the PHS by-laws.