The Winters Museum

Winters Veterans Speak

  • Historical Society of Winters has published the video recording of the program portion of the Honoring Winters Veterans event that was held at the Winters Museum on 03/01/2020. See it here:


Open Now!

The Winters Museum is open

Thursday through Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 PM.

Or contact the Museum for an appointment.

Admission is free.

The Museum is located at 13 Russell Street in Winters.

Recent Event

Lunch for Winters Veterans

The Rotary Club of Winters and the Historical Society worked with the Lest We Forget Project to sponsor the Lunch for Winters Veterans to both honor Winters veterans and to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Dedication of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

Recent Event

Robyn Rominger with Books

Book-signing by Robyn Rominger

Author Robyn Rominger of Winters discussed and signed her new book, A Ranch For Generations, at the Winters History Museum on Tuesday, Oct. 26th.

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anch For Generations is about the history of a ranch in western Yolo County from the time it was settled in the mid-1800s during the California Gold Rush to the turn of the 21st Century. The people who homesteaded the ranch were pioneers who relocated from other states back East and in the Midwest. The land changed hands over the years and was home to renowned beef cattle and sheep producers, including a family who emigrated from Spain along with many other Spaniards who settled in the Winters area. The experiences of the different generations of people who lived on the ranch ranged from tough times to the enjoyment of great wealth. This book chronicles their lives and the situations that they faced along the way, from their family and business lives to their romantic encounters. It also provides an in-depth look at how the land has remained in agriculture for nearly two centuries.

Rominger is an agricultural journalist with more than 30 years of professional experience She has written extensively about farming and livestock production issues for publications across the United States. She also has a passion for local history.

Books will be available for sale at the Winters Museum soon.

Our Featured Presentation

Preserving Perseverance

Japanese American Community of Winters

Learn about the perseverance of the Japanese American community of Winters and how that history is being preserved.

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As part of the 2021 Sacramento Archives Crawl, and in partnership with the Yolo County Archives, Floyd Shimomura presented on his research into the Japanese American community of Winters, California. He was joined by Emily Masuda who discussed her efforts to preserve this history as a teacher and creative writer. Their presentation explored findings from archives, museums, and online databases to reveal information about the Winters Japanese School, genealogy, wonderful treasures from family collections, and the redress movement. The presentation was facilitated and moderated by Yolo County Archives Coordinator Heather Lanctot. It was recorded on Friday, October 8th.

Floyd and Emily played vital roles in assembling the Lost Japanese Community of Winters exhibit currently at the Winters Museum. Heather and the Yolo County Archives were valuable resources.

Our Featured Exhibit

Apricot School Students c.1930.

The Lost Japanese Community

The Winters Museum features the story of Japanese community in its new exhibit entitled "The Lost Japanese Community of Winters." The exhibit is open now!

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This photo is included. Here is the caption that goes with it: The Apricot School District was formed in 1881 and was located 3 miles west of town, on the southeast corner of what is now State Highway 128 and County Road 87. A new Apricot School was built in 1904 a little west of the old school. The school was so named because the apricot was the most valuable orchard crop in that region. Due to declining enrollment in the rural areas and because of its proximity to the town, the Apricot School closed in 1945. This picture is c. 1930 and includes many Japanese and Spanish immigrant children.

FRONT ROW: John Young (WHS 1935, became Woodland lawyer); Arthur Ish (WHS Class of 1938); Frank Kawamoto (family returned to Japan in 1935); Bert Coman; Dick Rubio; Billie Ish; Pedro Rubio; Frank Rubio.

SECOND ROW: unknown boy; unknown boy; Bobby Kohara; Fred Kawamoto (family returned to Japan in 1935); Henry Nishioka; unknown Japanese girl (maybe Sumilo Horibe?); Grace Asai; unknown girl.

THIRD ROW: unknown girl; unknown girl; unknown girl; Saki Yamamoto (WHS Class of 1940); unknown girl; Susie Asai (WHS Class of 1938); Ben Shimomura (WHS Class of 1939); May (Nobuko) Asai (taller girl leaning in; WHS Class of 1935; Harry Kohama.

FOURTH ROW: unknown Japanese girl (related to Dote family and lived on McGarr ranch); Dorothy Martin; unknown girl; Margaret Ish (WHS Class of 1940); unknown girl; unknown girl; unknown girl; unknown girl; unknown girl; Jane Youn (WHS Class of 1939); Anna C. Gregory (teacher); Isomura (Yura’s sister; family returned to Japan.)

Turlock Assembly Center 1942

Columnist Gerald Taylor writes in the 09/15/2021 Winters Express: "'The Lost Japanese Community of Winters' exhibit now on display at the Winters Museum is informative, thought-provoking and insightful, and embodies the best of what a historical museum can offer to a community. Untold hours of research and preparation were wisely spent on this project. It’s best if you go and see for yourself, for I cannot do it justice in the few words of this column."

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Photo shows members of the Kato, Kozen, and Esaki families who were sent to the Turlock Assembly Center in 1942 and are awaiting placement in an internment camp at Gila River, Arizona. They are, from left to right, (first row) Jim and Bobby Kozen (second row) Bud Kato, Tony Kozen, holding son Roy; Henry Kato, Masako (Kato) Kozen, Mike Kato, George Esaki; and his mother Fusano, (third row) Yoneko Kato, Harry Kato, and Utae Kato.

The Kato and Kozen families were from Winters. The Esaki family was from Monterey. Jim Kozen was 6 years old; Bobby Kozen was 4 years old. Harry and Utae Kato were first generation or Issei as was Fusano Esaki. All the other Kato members (Bud, Henry, Mike, and Yoneko) along with Tony and Masako Kozen were second generation or Nisei as was George Esaki. The three Kozen boys (Jim, Bobby, and Roy were third generation or Sansei. (Identified by a family member, May 2020).

.Both Bud and Mike Kato later joined the Army. Mike served in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and received a purple Heart and Bronze Star.

Photo is a Dorothea Lange reprint. The original currently is in the Dorothea Lange Collection at UC Berkeley Bancroft Library Collection.

Museum Hours

Winters Museum Schedule

  • Open Thursday - Sunday: 1:00 - 5:00 PM.

  • Or contact the Museum for an appointment.

  • Please be safe and stay healthy.


Museum Location

The Winters History Museum is centrally located in downtown Winters at 13 Russell Street, on the corner of Russell and First Streets, a short walk from Buckhorn Steakhouse, Putah Creek Cafe, Preserve, Steady Eddy's, Hooby's, Chuy's, Pizza Factory, Ocean Restaurant, El Pueblo, Carboni's, Winters Hotel, Winters City Hall, and Winters Community Center.

Shimomura Family Visits the Museum

Ben Shimomura & Family in 2021

Ben Shimomura Family

The Winters Museum was so very fortunate to have the Shimomura Family visit to help open our Lost Japanese Community of Winters Exhibit. And Ben is 100!

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Back row (adults standing): Mark Shimomura, Floyd Shimomura, Brian Shimomura, Lisa Shimomura Quon, Reina Shimomura, Susan (Shimomura) Shimizu, Grant Shimizu, Craig Shimizu, Linda (Shimomura) Don, Tim Shimizu.

Front row (adults kneeling and kids standing): Malcolm Quon, Ruth Shimomura, Russell Quon, Ben Shimomura (wheel chair), Ben Quon, Jamie Shimomura, Ryan Shimomura, Ali Nakaji (Brian’s fiancé).

Open Now!

Support the Winters Museum!

Please support the Winters Museum with a donation to Historical Society of Winters.

Joann and Evelyne Visit the Museum

Big Day of Giving 2021 Is Over!

Thanks to the Museum Donors!

We are having a parade on Main Street in Downtown Winters to thank our donors for contributing more than $15,000 to the Winters Museum!


Sad News

Rich Rominger (Elder Day 2017 photo by Woody Fridae)

Richard Rominger will be missed. . .

It is with deep sadness that the Historical Society shares the news that one of our board members, Richard Rominger, passed away this week. He and his wife Evelyne were instrumental in helping us move from “a museum without walls”, to obtaining a location and opening the doors to our Winters History Museum.

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Typical of Rich, he was involved in an act of kindness when he collapsed, arranging for food to be delivered to locals in need. His participation in the affairs of the Historical Society of Winters was just one of many organizations for which he served. But the fact that he was part of six generations of history in Yolo County and farming make this loss especially poignant and regretful for the Historical Society. He and Evelyne told first-hand stories and contributed artifacts that enrich our collections. Last year, Rich, dressed up in his navy cap, told an audience who came to the Veterans Day exhibition of his experiences serving during the Second World War. Perhaps less important, but equally generous of his time, he addressed legions of fifth graders as President Lincoln while they prepared for their living history experience as Union soldiers on an overnight trip on Angel Island. Rich dressed in a period costume, complete with top hat, as he sent the troops off.

Many of you know that Richard Rominger was the former Deputy Secretary of Agriculture under the Clinton Administration, (assuming all the duties of the Secretary post as “Acting Secretary” for five years while Clinton wrestled with his nominations to be approved.) He also served as California Secretary of Agriculture under Jerry Brown during his first term in the 70’s and 80’s. He served on the UC Davis Board of Regents, the board of the American Farmland Trust, and California Roundtable on Agriculture and the Environment just to mention a few of his leadership positions. It has been the Winters community’s good fortune to call Rich our own, and his death is a significant loss.

Our hearts grieve along with Evelyne and the rest of the Rominger family as we say goodbye to this generous statesman, historian, farmer, and friend.

Rich Rominger at the Museum's Youth Day Exhibition Opening Reception in 2019.
Rich checks photos at the Museum's Youth Day Exhibition Opening Reception in 2019.
Rich emcees the Museum's Winters Veterans Reception on March 1, 2020.
Evelyne Rominger, sitting at left, "raises the roof" for Rich in March, 2020.

A Brief History of Winters

Newt Wallace writes his Express column

Thanks to the Winters Express for including an article which details the early history of our town in the Welcome to Winters 2020 publication. Please pick up a copy while they are available, or . . .

Winters Historical Mural Project

Monday 06/15

Sunday 08/16

Mural Wall 2020

Following the safety protocols of the CDC due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Winters Participation Gallery, and eighteen students painted the east wall of the John Rogers building which houses the Winters History Museum.

For more:

Winters Historical Mural Project

A Salute to Winters Veterans

Winters Veterans


If you can help us to add to our photo collection, please let us know.


Sweethearts and Mayors

Youth Day Royalty


If you can help us to fill in the blanks or improve our photos and info, please let us know.


Yesteryear Photos

Yesteryear Photos

From The

Winters Express


Connect with HSW!

What People Are Saying

"I guess you really *can* make a silk purse of a sow's ear now and again. The Winters Historical Society has transformed the unutterably funky Winters Express office in the old library building into a small and lovely museum. I look forward to watching it grow over time. Stop in and take a look and see what you can do to help them grow, whether its monetary contributions or handing over some of those great old artifacts you have around the house or volunteering time."

"Yes - it was a wonderful event and a marvelous museum. Thanks to all who contributed to the success of both. "

"Great beginning to what will blossom into a great treasure for the people of Winters and the world."

"Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I will support you always!"

You Can Help!

The Museum Needs Docents

Volunteer to serve a two-hour shift at the Museum:

Send any questions to


One of the Museum's dedicated volunteers recently wrote: "Volunteering at the Winters Historical Museum is a pleasure. Visitor numbers are increasing, my estimate, 40% locals and the balance from across the nation and abroad. They love it, they contribute and value our history...without exception. The contributions the Museum founders have made in terms of time and donations is generous and loving, ‘so native Winters proud.’

"Visit if you haven’t, volunteer for a 2 hour shift, I believe you’ll be happy you did. While some shifts may not see a visitor at all, the opportunity to view and read the collection of history is priceless - from Winters root’s families to Winters High School class lists and news tidbits each year since WHS held its first classes. Thank you for this gift."

Recent Exhibits and Events

Celebrate Friday the 13th

Join us as we continue the tradition of the Wallace Family's Friday the 13th Party. We will honor Newt's memory with the extra special Newt's Black Ink Ale served in an extra special Newt's Black Ink Ale Pint Glass.

Celebrate Winters Agriculture!

Apricots drying in the sun

Farm girl with apricots

Music at the Museum

Friday May 31st 6-9 PM

Please join the Historical Society of Winters for an evening of music at the Winters Museum on Friday 06/31. The event will feature live music by amazing local artists and will benefit the Winters History Museum. In addition, the event will provide one of the last opportunities to see the Winters Plein Air Festival Art Show. The paintings will be coming down on Sunday 06/02.

Plein Air Paintings of Winters

The Winters Museum will feature the plein air paintings of the artists who participated in the 2019 Winters Plein Air Festival. The art will remain on display at the Museum through Sunday, June 2nd. You will be able to see and purchase paintings. Museum hours are Thursday through Sunday from 2:00 until 6:00 PM. Don't wait. Plan a visit today.

Reliving Our Youth Days

Remember Youth Days of the Past with a visit to the Winters Museum and the current feature exhibit "Reliving Our Youth Days." The exhibit opened on Thursday, March 21, and will run through May 5th.

The Museum is open Thursday through Sunday from 2:00 until 6:00 PM.

Opening Night Event

On Friday, November 30, we opened with our first exhibit!

We titled it "Historical Society of Winters 'Expresses' Itself."

The Winters Express, especially the Wallace years, are featured. The short film “Winters Express” featuring Newt Wallace was shown. Charley Wallace shared his comments.

Museum Feature Wall

The Opening Exhibit

We called it "Historical Society of Winters 'Expresses' Itself." The Winters Express, especially the Wallace years, was featured. We hope you were able to visit.

Video Slideshow of the Youth Day Opening

Video slideshow of photos from the opening night for the Reliving Our Youth Days exhibit at the Winters Museum.

Photo Slideshow of First Exhibit

Opening Night Video

Former Winters Express publisher Charley Wallace demonstrates an antique Campbell Country Cylinder Press built in 1861 at the Historical Society of Winters (CA) Museum opening, November 30, 2018, with the help of his brother, John.

(Video by Shaunie Briggs)

Future Exhibits

Future Exhibits

We are planning our next themed exhibits. Here are a few that we are considering. Drop by and tell us what you think.

Building The Museum

This video slideshow follows the HSW team's conversion of the Winters Express office space into the Winters Museum.

Winters History on Social Media

Theodore Winters and Family, 1885

Caption reads: "Theodore Winters and his family are shown in this 1885 photo owned by the Nevada Historical Society. In the back row, left to right, are Nettie and Louis; front row, left to right: Nellie, George, Neva, Theodore, Maggie, Mrs. Winters, Archie and Theodora."

(Winters Express, 1975 Winters Centennial Supplement)

Winters History... Media Posts...

Lunch with President John F. Kennedy 1962

Newt Wallace, Winters Express publisher, and 24 other California editors and publishers met with President John F. Kennedy at a White House Luncheon on Friday, August 3, 1962

(Winters Express photo)

Winters History... Media Posts...

See recent Facebook posts in the Facebook Feed. (No Facebook account is required.)

Winters History

The Saloons Have Moved!

A 1875 Los Angeles Herald news item mentions Buckeye and Winters. Learn how a decision regarding the routing of an extension of the Vaca Valley Railroad led to the demise of Buckeye and the rise of Winters.

(Source: Tom Crisp's The People of Buckeye and Early Winters)

Buckeye and Early Winters. . .

John Reid Wolfskill

John Reid Wolfskill, the area’s earliest American settler, 1842.

More. . .

Theodore Winters

The City got its name from early businessman Theodore Winters.

More. . .

The Winters Express

The first Express came off the press in February of 1884.

More. . .

1975 Centennial

In 1975, The Winters Express printed a special supplement commemorating the Winters Centennial.


Winters History Mural 2018

Completed! (08/08/2018)


Winters Participation Gallery (WPG) sponsored a summer class titled “The Winters History Mural Project.” It was taught by local professional muralist, Jaime Montiel, and included a dozen students ranging in age from 11-18.

For more photos and videos, visit Winters Participation Gallery.

You Can Help!

Museum Needs Items!

The Winters Museum is looking for items to display.

We are particularly interested in items that relate to local agriculture, local businesses, or family history. Items should be small and have a connection to Winters. If you have an item that you would be willing to donate or loan, please email a photo with a short description to