Rob Melton was born in Berkeley, Calif., grew up in the Bay Area, and is a great-grandson of John Edgar McElrath and Elsie Ann Alden, and James Alexander Smilie and Isabella Lawrence McDonald. He was editor of several weekly newspapers in Sonoma County and graduated with a degree in journalism from the University of Oregon, where he met his future wife. They have three children, and three grandchildren. He was a reporter for an Oregon daily newspaper before teaching high school journalism in Oregon for 31 years. Since retiring from teaching, he has been researching and writing about his family's history in the Oakland area. He is also a Google Maps Local Guide who has written reviews and taken photographs of the Pacific Northwest that have been viewed more than 20 million times.
I'm a news guy, and one of my favorite resources for California newspapers is the California Digital Newspaper Collection. This collection contains 405,311 issues comprising 4,801,844 pages and 30,689,584 articles. The California Digital Newspaper Collection is a project of the Center for Bibliographical Studies and Research (CBSR) at the University of California, Riverside.
Pages I'm following at the moment:
I'd like to see more stories about the pioneering women of Oakland, and more biographies about the women of Oakland. A partial starting point in the past is in the Ladies Relief Society wikipage.
Welcome! Thanks for the updated info. Looking forward to learning more. -Gene
I'm hoping I can use your picture of Solomon Alden for the Legendary Locals of Oakland book. But I'll need a higher resolution scan, and of course your permission. You can email me at gene at ouroakland.net. - Gene
Yes, no problem. I emailed you a digital copy of my photograph as well as written permission to use it. Let me know if you need anything else. - Rob
Thank you!! - Gene