The Kern River Valley Historical Society is celebrating over 50 years of operation! Our mission is to preserve and communicate the rich and colorful history of this region. The Kern Valley Museum in downtown Kernville, next to the Post Office, welcomes visitors to explore our rich history.

Location

49 Big Blue Road
PO Box 651
Kernville, CA 93238

(760) 376-6683

 

************  NOTICE **************

THE MUSEUM AND ANNEX ARE CURRENTLY CLOSED THROUGH THE END OF APRIL DUE TO THE CORONA VIRUS SITUATION.

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USUAL HOURS (WHEN THE MUSEUM REOPENS):
10 am to 4 pm
Thursday through Sunday

We are regularly closed:
New Year's Day, Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.


Admission is Free

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What's Happening in APRIL 2020 - Please see CALENDAR

As the population began to grow in the Kern River Valley and surrounding area, the need to educate the children became increasingly important. The first recorded school started in Linns Valley in 1854, known as the Linns Valley School. The first classes were held under a large oak tree on the Lavers Ranch where the barn stands. Schools were then built to accommodate the growing number of students. This school district is still an active school district. As Kernville began to grow, and families moved in, Adam Hamilton, of Whiskey Flat fame, gave up selling spirits and whiskey to the Big Blue miners. About 1860, he opened a private school and became the first school master. It is little wonder that many children were sent to relatives to further their education. Prominent families, like Andrew Brown, hired private tutors for their children. In 1866, Kern County was formed from the northern portion of Los Angeles County and the southern portion of Tulare County. Four school districts were formed at that time: Linns Valley School District; Havilah School District; Kernville School District and Kelso School District. The history of our schools is as rich as the gold history. My research to date has found 35-40 schools. To name a few of those schools: Kelso School District; Erskine School District; North Fork School District (an Edison school); Breckenridge School (a WPA school); Havilah Parochial School (a Catholic school); and Greenhorn School District. If you have information, pictures, stories, that you are willing to share about our schools, I would appreciate your input. You may email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or send in care of the Historical Society, P.O. Box 651 Kernville, CA 93238. Please indicate if the materials should be returned to you.