Frequently Asked Questions

of the Pacific County Historical Society and Museum

Please Note:  If you plan to visit the Museum to do research, please contact us to make an appointment.  This ensures access to the material you need.

Can you help me find my ancestor?

The Museum owns a number of reference works helpful in tracing genealogy in Pacific county. In addition to the Sou’wester index, we have an index of proper names found in Pacific County newspapers. Currently available only in print form, you are welcome to visit us and check this material at the Museum any day during our regular business hours. Other resources available without an appointment include Federal Census indexes from 1860 to 1910 (excluding 1890, which was lost in a fire), and an incomplete set of County Directories. Access to the Society’s extensive historical collections is by appointment only. A research fee may apply. Requests are processed as time allows by our limited staff of volunteers. Other genealogy sources include:

I would like to give something to the museum. Can you tell me what its value is?

IRS rules governing non-profits prevent us from appraising objects.

How long has the museum been here?

Organized in 1949, the Pacific County Historical Society is an offshoot of the Pacific county Pioneers Association. Incorporated as an IRS 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in 1966, Ruth Dixon organized the Museum in rented space in 1970. The society purchased and moved to its present site in 1980.

Is the Museum a unit of government?

The Museum is a program of the Pacific County Historical society, a non-profit, educational organization. The Museum building and everything in it the property of the Society. The Museum director is an employee of the society. While the society receives no funds from property tax, we have been fortunate to receive grants from the County’s Lodging Tax Fund in recent years to support operation of the Museum as a visitor information center.

Do you have old photos?

Our files contain tens of thousands of historic photos of Pacific County. We are continually adding and cataloging photos to the collection. The Museum director can help you in locating particular images.

Are you interested in stories for publication in The Sou'wester?

Yes – We are always looking for interesting articles. Please contact the Museum.

How many people live here?

Pacific County’s population is now slightly over 20,000. South Bend’s population is about 1,600 and Raymond about 3,000. Most of the recent population growth has occurred outside the incorporated cities and especially on the Long Beach Peninsula. More Info: US Census Bureau