The Stories that Shape Inyo County

Inyo County turns 150 this year! At our monthly Brown Bag Lunches, learn about the colorful history of the county we call home.

Want to spice up your lunch break? Swing by Eastern Sierra Land Trust’s backyard each month this summer for our annual Brown Bag Lunch Series!

In honor of Inyo County’s 150th birthday, this year’s Brown Bag Lunch speakers will focus on the rich cultural and natural history of this remote and beautiful county we call home. Presenters will join us on the first Tuesday of each month from May through September to share informative, entertaining stories that provide insight into our region’s past.

At our Brown Bag Lunches, hear true tales that give color to Inyo’s history – tales of deception and disgrace, intrigue and romance, conquest and adventure. And, of course, no history of Inyo County could be complete without a story or two about the miraculous resilience of the Mule.

Join us May 3 as we welcome Bishop resident Rob Pearce, who will share stories about the rich history of agriculture in Inyo County.

Join us May 3 as we welcome Bishop resident Rob Pearce, who will share stories about the rich history of agriculture in Inyo County.

We’ll kick off our Brown Bag Lunch Series on May 3 with Rob Pearce, who traces his Owens Valley roots back 5 generations and has authored several books on a variety of topics pertaining to Inyo County’s history. At our Brown Bag Lunch, he will share stories about the ranchers and farmers who built up a tradition of agriculture in Inyo County over the past 150 years. Pearce is the grandson of longtime Inyo County civil servant A.A. Brierly, who played an interesting role in the historic land sales to LADWP. Join us to learn more about this controversial time in our county’s agrarian history.

For our June 7 Brown Bag Lunch, Bishop’s annual Mule Days Celebration Executive Director Tammy Mandrell and Board President Richard Underwood will join us to tell stories from the many years of Mule Days, and share how this notable tradition has come to shape Inyo County.

Due to busy summer schedules and the 4th of July holiday, we will not be holding a Brown Bag Lunch that month. But on August 2, Bernadette Johnson, Superintendent of the Manzanar National Historic Site, will share a part of our nation’s past that many have tried to sweep under the rug: the history of forced removal and relocation of Japanese Americans to the internment camp at Manzanar during World War II.

Last but not least, we’ll wrap up our 2016 Brown Bag Lunch Series on September 13 with Jennifer and Lee Roeser of the McGee Creek Pack Station. They will provide insight into the sometimes-tragic, oft-entertaining tradition of mule (and horse) pack trains that brought early prospectors, explorers, soldiers, and more deep into the High Sierra in Inyo County’s earliest days.

All of the ESLT Brown Bag Lunches are free and open to the public. Each event will take place from 12 – 1pm in the ESLT office backyard at 250 N. Fowler St. in Bishop. Guests are encouraged to bring lunch and sunglasses; in case of rain, the event will be held indoors. We hope you’ll join us!

To learn more about the Inyo 150 Celebration and other community events geared towards exploring the history of Inyo County, visit the Inyo 150 online Calendar.

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