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Yountville (Images of America

Over the past decade, the town of Yountville has received worldwide recognition as a tourist destination specializing in fine wine, luxurious hotel and spa accommodations, and award-winning restaurants. In fact, these achievements and accolades have earned it the name "Heart of the Napa Valley." Longtime residents, however, realize that Yountville's temperate weather, rich soils, and serene environs have been attracting visitors to the area not for decades but rather for thousands of years. The original indigenous residents called the surrounding area Caymus and constructed their homes out of willow and tule. Later the village of Caymus became known as Sebastopol, a name used by mountain man George C. Yount, the first American settler to receive a Mexican land grant. Yount's Kentucky-style blockhouse provided a welcome mat for many of California's early pioneers. He is also credited with planting some of the first grapevines in the Napa Valley. Upon his death in 1865, local residents wanted to honor the contribution of Yount and changed the name from Sebastopol to Yountville.
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Title: Yountville Pictorial History Released Author: Staff Writer Publisher: Yountville Sun Date: 4/9/09 At last there is a published history of Yountville. Pat Alexander, the Napa Valley Museum, the Napa Historical Society and a strong team of local supporters and donors of historical photos have succeeded in producing Images of America Yountville. This 128-page softcover book features over 200 vintage photographs that witness the incredible transformation of our town over the past 200 years. It is a breezy but illuminating visual walk down memory lane and into a past known only to our forebearers. Arcadia Publishing released the book late last month, and it is now available at local retailers and online for $21.99, but Alexander hopes those with a strong interest in the community will celebrate the publication with her and the Museum at a book release party from 5 to 7 p.m., April 18 at the Museum. Activities will include a community barbecue, slide show and Alexander signing copies of the new book. Images of America Yountville portrays the gamut of hometown treasures of which the community is proud from young, local urchins swimming in the Napa River on a summer's day to Col. Nelson Holderman, a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient and long-time commander of the California Veterans Home here. This pictorial history is heavily "peopled" with both long-expired and often admired though younger contemporary faces. It has its share of buildings that a local can't help but recognize by their familiar framework. Organized into six chapters, the photography and captions flow from Yountville's Natural History and Early Settlement and Pioneer Days to the Mid-20th Century and Yountville Today. Alexander and her helpers have captured a small, rural Northern California town in all of its sweet simplicity -- from rural free postal delivery, a mule team and an octagonal barn to a rock quarry, a successful deer hunt and homemade pies.

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