Marilyn L. Geary

Marilyn L. Geary

I’m a Bay Area native from the Santa Clara Valley. Marin has been my home for twenty years, first in Mill Valley and now ‘over the hill’ in rural San Geronimo Valley.  Local history is of my passions. I’m oral historian for the Anne T. Kent California Room,  and I produce family and community histories in print and video as owner of Circle of Life Stories.

Recent Contributions

History: West End Training Ground for Boxing Champs

History: West End Training Ground for Boxing Champs

Billy Shannon's Villa was a combination saloon, restaurant and boxing facility in San Rafael's West End where world-class boxers trained.

NAMI Walk

History: San Rafael Brewery Produced Self-Proclaimed Best Beer on the Coast

History: San Rafael Brewery Produced Self-Proclaimed Best Beer on the Coast

Award-winning microbreweries abound now in Marin, but for decades San Rafael was home to Marin's only brewery.
History: San Rafael Arcángel Mission Pears Saved with Graftings

History: San Rafael Arcángel Mission Pears Saved with Graftings

For over 30 years, one lone pear tree from the historic San Rafael Arcángel Mission stood as a reminder of a once-flourishing orchard. The tree was accidentally destroyed in 1963, but its p
Early Soda Works Tapped Mt. Tamalpais Spring Waters

Early Soda Works Tapped Mt. Tamalpais Spring Waters

San Rafael has seen a long line of bottlers drawn to the pure spring waters of Mt. Tamalpais.
History: Italian-Americans Maintain Gardens in Albert Park

History: Italian-Americans Maintain Gardens in Albert Park

When Albert Park showed signs of neglect in the 1990s, a group of Italian-Americans stepped in to revitalize the park where many of their parents and grandparents had played bocce in years p
History: Dr. Alfred W. Taliaferro Dispensed Cures Without Pay

History: Dr. Alfred W. Taliaferro Dispensed Cures Without Pay

For over three decades, Dr. A.W. Taliaferro cared for San Rafael's medical needs with selfless generosity.
Improvement Club Waged Mosquito War

Improvement Club Waged Mosquito War

Ladies of the San Rafael Improvement Club rid the city of mosquitoes, planted thousands of trees and made their historic clubhouse a community center.
History: The Gerstle and Schloss Families Savored Summers at Violet Terrace

History: The Gerstle and Schloss Families Savored Summers at Violet Terrace

For over 50 years the wealthy Gerstle and Schloss families spent summer retreats at their neighboring San Rafael estates.
History: Swimmers Flocked to Saltwater Baths

History: Swimmers Flocked to Saltwater Baths

Concrete now covers what was once a recreational haven for swimmers and boaters and the training waters for an Olympic champion.
History: Infamous Hotel Rafael Ended in Flames

History: Infamous Hotel Rafael Ended in Flames

The Hotel Rafael once vied with the Hotel Del Monte and Hotel del Coronado as California’s swankest inns of the Victorian era. Owner Baron von Schroeder’s rowdy behavior tattered the hot
San Rafael History: Community Leaders Championed Chinese Mission

San Rafael History: Community Leaders Championed Chinese Mission

Fon Ton Jue and Soo Chong were among several members of the First Presbyterian Church who supported a mission in San Rafael's Chinatown.
San Rafael History: The Man Behind Albert Field

San Rafael History: The Man Behind Albert Field

Rags-to-riches immigrant Jacob Albert donated a park to San Rafael for the benefit of children and sports.