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Kern at 150 - CSUB Celebrates the Region's Past

Kern County is turning 150 years old, and the California State University, Bakersfield (CSUB) Department of History and Public History Institute (PHI) are holding a conference on Saturday, October 15 from 8 am to noon at CSUB in the Dezember Reading Room of the Walter Stiern Library. Guests are invited to park for free in Lots C and D.

This half-day conference will commemorate the 150th anniversary of the founding of Kern County, which was on April 2, 1866. Some 15 presentations on Kern County’s history will be available to guests, covering such topics as the Isabella Dam project, women in the farmworker movement, and punk music in 1980s Bakersfield.

At 11 a.m. the keynote speaker, Dr. Philip Garone of CSU Stanislaus, will discuss the history of water policy and management in the San Joaquin Valley: “Intersections: A History of Water, Agriculture, and Wildlife in the San Joaquin Valley.” Other sessions throughout the morning include: “Women of Granite: The ‘Backbone’ of the Family Ranch,” “I Saw it on the Grapevine: Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s Umbrellas on the Tejon Ranch,” “Finding a Happier Medium: Flood, Drought, and Damming the Kern River,” and “Onyx Ranch: A Western Cowboy Tale Too Tough for Hollywood.”

Following the conference, all are welcome to attend a no-host lunch at Wool Grower’s Restaurant for $19 per person (plus tip). Individuals are responsible for their own lunch bill at the restaurant. Seating is limited; to reserve a spot for lunch, contact Miriam Raub Vivian with your name and the number of dinners at or (661) 654-2230.

Following lunch, those interested are invited to join CSUB archivist, Chris Livingston and Ken Hooper, Bakersfield High School archival instructor in front of the Padre Hotel (corner of 18th and H) at 2 p.m. for a complimentary 90-minute walking tour of downtown Bakersfield.

For Media Requests

Contact CSUB Public Affairs
(661) 654-2136

For General Information

Contact the CSUB Operator
(661) 654-CSUB