September 2020

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From the Archives

Tod Ruhstaller

Little Trunk of Horrors

Although one of Stockton’s most intriguing court cases took place 114 years ago, it had all the elements that make today’s cable news networks salivate:

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Mel Corren

School Boy, Soldier Boy

Basic Training – Part II of Ongoing Series My fondest recollections of Basic Training were chow, calisthenics, drills, and parades. However, I excelled only in

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Howard Lachtman

Back to Square One

The Man in the Recliner series #4 Maybe it was the heat of a Fourth of July garden party or the hard lemonade. But it

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Michael Cockrell

2020 Mosquito Fish Programs

The five Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta counties enter mosquito season when mosquitos begin to appear in numbers during the early spring months. The season continues on

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Cyndy Green

Virtual 4th of July Parade

United Veterans Council of San Joaquin County Back in March we thought summer would come with freedom, releasing us back into the familiar world.  But

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Demi Stewart

Betty

STAY AT HOME orders came on March 19, 2020. In spite of that, on Ryer Island near Walnut Grove, CA, life didn’t change much. Primarily

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Howard Lachtman

Unlocked

Man in Recliner #3 “…on my homage list were Stocktonians Al and Mel Corren. Uncle and nephew, the two Correns found one another in wartime

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Robert Benedetti

Visionaries and Miners

Come to the Sacramento San Joaquin Delta 1830-1860 Traveling the Delta rivers did, of course, have their dangers. Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), writing for the

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Howard Lachtman

Aunt Ellie’s Inheritance

Part One Avoid gatherings.  Isolate but keep connected.   Quarantine to save lives including your own. Times are tough, but you’re tougher. Take care of your

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Michael Cockrell

Mosquito Abatement in the Delta

Though the nation is facing a disastrous COVID-19 pandemic, other viruses continue to threaten Californians. April 19-25 is California Mosquito and Vector Control Awareness Week,

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Howard Lachtman

500 Pieces

When life hands you a puzzle, it tests your ability to be a player. The 2020 pandemic is what one might call the ultimate puzzle.

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Howard Lachtman

One Leg Up

When I first heard that an epidemic had grown into a pandemic and might be heading our way, I reasoned that the calculation could prove

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Cyndy Green

Living in Isolation

Tips for Alleviating Cabin Fever The days are beginning to drag on in this grand social distancing /stay at home experiment (or Physical Distancing as

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Rich Turner

Moon Chasing

Time to Wonder – What If? Sometimes waiting for a good thing can allow a person time to think. To savor life’s under-appreciated magnificence. Reflect

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Phil Hutcheon

A Doctor Someday

First in his clan to come to college, First, in fact, to finish grade ten, At age twelve, Daniel followed his father one day Into fields

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Cyndy Green

Doing Good the Ding Dong Way

Ahhhhh…you’ve just shut the front door, stored away the bounty of your latest shopping trip. You have everything you need for an extended staycation, thanks

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Cyndy Green

Isleton Spam Festival

The Meat That Survived a Flood Never. Take. Life. Too. Seriously. Ever. Attracting locals and out-of-towners alike, the Isleton Spam Festival is a quintessential Delta

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Howard Lachtman

Closed for the Holidays

Part Two If you missed Part One A nice, quiet Delta vacation with his friends, his boat and his fish. That’s all the Delta Detective

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David Stuart

George Shima

The Well-known “Potato King” and Japanese Leader In the 1920s, Shima had to dismantle his farming empire due to the Alien Land Laws. He then

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Rich Turner

Down to the Sea

Ocean-going ships smack in the middle of prime agricultural land? No ocean in sight? With 234 ships calling on the Port of Stockton in 2019,

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Cyndy Green

Illegal Delta Dumping

Mountains of Trash Near Isleton “I do this one-woman and low key. I’m hoping to get a few more people involved, you know, get the

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Cyndy Green

King Tides of 2020

Sun and moon align creating King Tides (perigean spring tides) It is that time of year when the sun and moon align creating King Tides

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Howard Lachtman

Closed for the Holidays

Part One Ho, ho, ho! Can the Delta Detective enjoy his Christmas holiday without a crime caper?   One would expect the DD to utilize the

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Cyndy Green

Handouts of Hope

Combat Veterans Battling Homelessness More than $4,000 was raised by the Lynn Hahn Lighted Boat Parade this year, with the funds going to the Combat

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Cyndy Green

Mt. Diablo Beacon

This is a tale that is more than the restoration of a 1928 beacon, shut down on December 7, 1941 for fear it would allow

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Rich Turner

Tule Fog in the Delta

The fog comes on little cat feet.  It sits looking over the harbor and city on silent haunches and then moves on. –Carl Sandburg It’s

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Howard Lachtman

The Serpent’s Tooth

Part Three You can take the Delta Detective to lunch, but can  you expect an interview in return? You can invite the Delta Detective to

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

Bob’s Bait Shop, Isleton, CA, 1979 Remember the days before digital imaging took over? Don’t get me wrong, I love digital now because of the

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

Black-necked Stilt, Shin Kee Tract In 2009 I had never heard of Shin Kee Tract on the eastern edge of the Delta and west of

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Cyndy Green

High Winds of October

It’s an inconvenience…you have to go out and reset the clock. So every time you know…you have to reset everything. It’s a pain to wait

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Howard Lachtman

The Serpent’s Tooth

Part 2 A riverside dinner party celebrating the end of a Delta summer has paired the Delta Detective with an intelligent and inquisitive woman whose

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

Pipe Rats Back in the mid-1990’s I was privileged to document the seismic retrofitting of the East Bay Municipal Utility Districts aqueducts that bring water

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David Stuart

Robert G. LeTourneau

Stocktonian Was the Greatest Inventor of Earthmoving Equipment Abraham Grunauer’s Whitehall Ranch near Tracy hired Robert G. LeTourneau (1888-1969) in 1919 to repair its old

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Carrie Alexander

Fenced Off – Part 3

Negotiating Memory and Access at the Antioch Dunes and Waterfront Part 1 introduces the current state of the Antioch Dunes Wildlife Refuge and covers the

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Howard Lachtman

The Serpent’s Tooth

Part One The sun is setting on the Delta summer. Time once again for the Delta Detective to attend his favorite harvestfest party. But with

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Rich Turner

Tilting at Windmills*

“Some just don’t like change and these people didn’t want change.”   — Shirley Paolini If you are anywhere near Rio Vista or the Diablo Range

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Carrie Alexander

Fenced Off – Part 2

Negotiating Memory and Access at the Antioch Dunes and Waterfront Part 2 (if you missed Part 1) Life Between Fences: Survival and Access at the

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Carrie Alexander

Fenced Off

Negotiating Memory and Access at the Antioch Dunes and Waterfront Part I  A Time Before Fences: Memories of Childhood at the Antioch Waterfront This is

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Cyndy Green

Know Before You Have to Go

Understanding Emergency Evacuations In depth look at how emergency evacuations are proclaimed and carried out with focus on terminology and how different counties handle emergencies.

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Robert Campbell

Art from Salt

The Cargill Salt Ponds are located in San Francisco Bay in the cities of Newark, Redwood City and Napa. The Napa and Redwood City operations

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

When Getting Lost is Highly Recommended    It’s fun to turn off the better traveled roads and onto those of questionable quality going who-knows-where. Not

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Josie Iselin

Mixing

New on Old and West goes East   There is something about mixing—fresh and salt, old and new, east and west—that keeps our souls keen. I

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David Stuart

New Hope Colony

Supporting a New Mormon Zion New Hope was a farming colony established in 1846 on the lower Stanislaus River to support the anticipated new western

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Rich Turner

8 1/2 Months

Editor’s note about Soundings Magazine  8 1/2 months. Already? !  The title of this post refers to how long we’ve been publishing SoundingsMag. You might

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

Tinsley Island Every so often I like to take low and slow flights over the Delta just to see what I can see. In all

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Rich Turner

The Kindness of Others

What started out as a short drive to the river for an after dinner Delta walk became something else altogether. As it happens, everything work

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Cyndy Green

Vietnam Moving Wall

June 20 – 24, 2019, Stockton, California The Vietnam Moving Wall was in Stockton last month. I spent four days working a night shift patrolling

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Cyndy Green

First Generation Farmers

The Delta historically has been an agricultural paradise.  But sometimes there is a disconnect between the agricultural community and the urban culture. A fourth generation

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Carol A. Jensen

Oakley Through Time

The settlement and development of Oakley is the experience of every pioneer California town. Originally a Native American paradise, this Delta settlement quickly becomes San

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Charlene Nevill

Spirit of Place

The Filbert Steps Revisited If you’ve climbed the world-famous Filbert Steps on Telegraph Hill in San Francisco, you may have seen the plaque crediting Grace

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Rich Turner

A Conundrum

“One oil well would eliminate all those wind mills and you could make it look like a tree.” After enjoying the quietude, beauty, and splendor

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Rich Turner

Bound for Glory

California is a garden of Eden, a paradise to live in or to see, but believe it or not, you won’t find it so hot if you ain’t got

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Glenn Stewart

Peregrines in the City

Since the appearance of Peregrines at PG&E we have found nests on the Bay Bridge, on a boat moored near San Francisco Giants Oracle ballpark,

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Rich Turner

Save the Date

By Wednesday, “hump day’ to some, as the glorious weekend looms on the nearing horizon, most of us start thinking about what to do with

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Charlene Nevill

In Plain Sight

THE HEALING POWER OF PLANTS OUTSIDE YOUR DOOR    We think we know them. We’ve seen them in the woods, in gardens and along city

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

THE BEST CAMERA? People often ask me about equipment, favorite lenses, and accessories, but I tend to not focus so much on the hardware as

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James Motlow

Locke in the 1970’s

Editor’s Note: The Locke Foundation presents photography by James D. Motlow from his book, “Bitter Melon”. The exhibition runs now through September 30th at the

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Joanna Jeronimo

Short Takes

Yellow Iris, Levee Road Yellow Iris are an invasive species, but they fly their spring flags so brightly they are a delight to see every

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Rich Turner

Mountain Moods

Because it’s there. –George Mallory In the 1920’s, when George Mallory was touring to gain support for one of his expeditions, “Because it’s there”, was

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Rich Turner

Bittersweet Goodbye

Moon Glow, Staten Island A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song. — Maya Angelou Like a

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Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla

Guest Editorial

Metropolitan Water District of Southern California as a Delta Neighbor Gas well flare test, Bouldin Island What does it mean for our community when large

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Alex Breitler

Delta Anthology

Collecting stories of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Because in the end literature helps to build that sense of place that the Delta seems to lack. 

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Rich Turner

Shorty’s La Amistad Cafe

“To all of us kids, this 1992 picture of Mom and Dad represents their success in life.” -Gilberto, Jr. (photo courtesy the Lopez family) Perseverance,

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

Pampas Grass, Andrus Island, Circa 1985 Digging deep in the archives I ran across this Kodachrome slide from  about 1985. I say, ‘about’, because the

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Phil Hutcheon

A Stockton Hero

My friend Cenon, With a smile on his face, Empties the trash from my basket, Asks me how I’m doing, chides me if I’m working

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Rich Turner

Sundown on an Era

Twitchell Island Poplars, 1981 That special place you go for the renewal you feel — that special place you have come to count on to

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Paula Sheil

First Cormorants

Black arrows of winter come in pairs, building a sooty patch in theturning basin. I anchor out on the Delta, the sky the color of

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

Sky Light, circa 1976 Some things are just worth being late for. I was working for the Record newspaper in Stockton in the winter of

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Alex Breitler

Her View from the Bridge

I’m not just sharing something I really love, but also bringing people closer to nature in a way that makes them look at what’s going

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George Turner

Short Takes

SOMETIMES WE JUST DON’T When it comes to wildlife photography, there is a lot of sitting and waiting. One afternoon, I sat in a patch

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Cyndy Green

Frozen Bun Run

Videographer and storyteller, Cyndy Green, gives us a glimpse of the event that has become a Delta tradition. The 39th annual “Frozen Bun Run” was

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Rich Turner

Short Takes

On Serendipity Yellow-eyed Cat, February 1986 This is a case of following one of my self-imposed rules. A rule that has been so good for

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Adrian Mendoza

Water Wars Continue

Hog Slough The California Delta is the largest estuary on the Pacific coast of this hemisphere and the source of freshwater for over 23 million

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Michael Fitzgerald

Skiing the Friendly Skies

It’s probably impossible to identify the craziest thing ever done on the Delta, but “Ni” Orsi, Jr. has a contender: his father water skied behind

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Rich Turner

The Night Shift

Fruit of the vine. Yum. I’m guilty of not really paying attention to what it takes to get a bottle of wine to my table. So I asked a prominent California Delta wine grape grower and vintner if I could tag along while they labored to bring in their crush-ready crop of pinot noir grapes. For several fall harvest seasons I’ve been wanting to chase the odd looking machines that trundle up and down rows of wine grapes in the California Delta starting in early evening. The Clarksburg area, just south of Sacramento, has a state-wide reputation, and beyond, for the quality and variety of grapes and wines produced there. It’s a part of the Delta that I wander from time to time and when I see these unusual machines on rolling stilts at dusk, headlights blazing, I’ve made mental notes to ask permission to ride along. Unfortunately mental notes aren’t worth the paper they’re written on. But this season I say to myself, if not now when?

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Alex Breitler

Fire on the Water

San Francisco’s morning fog is lifting as the Delta Dragons do warm-up exercises prior to running 300 meter sprint practices on Lake Merced. Whether they

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Howard Lachtman

A Perfect Day for Sailing

This post is for registered users only. Please register & choose a level of subscription to view the content. Register Thank you so much for

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