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Press Release: Story of early Soquel baroness Martina Castro finally told

SANTA CRUZ, CA, October 26, 2020—The history of one of Santa Cruz County’s most famous women is finally revealed in the book The Tragedy of Martina Castro: Part One of the History of Rancho Soquel Augmentation by Ronald G. Powell, edited by Derek R. Whaley, a well-known Santa Cruz author and historian. In this historical chronicle, the Spanish property baroness Martina Castro acquires one of the largest land grants in Santa Cruz County before the annexation of… Read More »Press Release: Story of early Soquel baroness Martina Castro finally told

Two Trilogies to Rule Them All, Part 2

Last week I discussed my progress with Ronald G. Powell’s The History of Rancho Soquel Augmentation trilogy of books. They are all on track with the first coming out this month and the others planned to release next year (fingers crossed!). However, Santa Cruz Trains remains my core focus both online and mentally, and the Powell books are partially being done in order to make future Santa Cruz Trains books better all around, since they… Read More »Two Trilogies to Rule Them All, Part 2

Two Trilogies to Rule Them All, Part 1

It has been a very strange year and I think this is something everyone on Earth can agree on. For me personally, I went from making quite a lot of progress on several projects to being stuck at home and then redeployed to Auckland Emergency Management for two separate lockdowns (the second redeployment was only two weeks, fortunately). Despite having some extra time at home during all of this, I actually made much less progress… Read More »Two Trilogies to Rule Them All, Part 1

Writing in a Time of Plague

I must admit, when I wished that I had a bit more time to write and research, I didn’t intend that to herald the greatest plague since the post-World War I flu pandemic. But such is life and I have tried to make the most of it way down here in Auckland, New Zealand. I remain employed and officially working 40 hours per week, but I have had more time than usual without commuting, and… Read More »Writing in a Time of Plague

The Lodge house on Rancho Soquel, taken by Tom King.

Organising an Epic

Powell did not divide his seven-volume epic history into chapters but he did have four divisions in the first two volumes, each bookmarking an important epoch in California history, namely the start of the Spanish period, Mexican period, American colonial period, and finally statehood and beyond. But after this last bookmark, he appears to have felt that this aspect of the chronology was at an end and he discontinued it for the remaining five volumes.… Read More »Organising an Epic