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Group wants to preserve community’s history

INCLINE VILLAGE — A group of Incline Village residents led by the son of late “Bonanza” star Lorne Greene is trying to preserve the history of the north Lake Tahoe community.

Chuck Greene and other history buffs have discussed plans to create a local historical society and to open a museum.

“Our near-term goal is preserving documents and memorabilia from the history of the community and doing oral histories with as many early residents as we can,” Greene told the North Lake Tahoe Bonanza.

“In the longer term, we’re looking at creating a museum that will focus on the history of our community and, through that lens, the history and the heritage of the rest of the basin,” he added.

While the museum’s main focus would be on Incline Village and Crystal Bay, they would be used as jumping-off points for issues affecting the entire Tahoe Basin, Greene said.

The museum also would feature exhibits on local entertainment history, including Frank Sinatra’s ownership of the Cal Neva Resort and the old Ponderosa Ranch tourist attraction in Incline Village.

The latter was the fictional home of the Cartwright family on “Bonanza” during its network run from 1959 to 1972.

The group wants to conduct oral histories with the community’s old-timers as soon as possible, Greene said.

“We’re in the process of getting the funds for the equipment, contacting the people involved to see if they’d be interested and doing the background research,” he said. “I’d love to start interviewing in the next three months.”

Longtime resident Manny Sylvester said the oral histories would help clear up mysteries surrounding the community’s history. “Why do we have an improvement district and not a town? Why don’t we have a town center? Why aren’t we part of Crystal Bay?” he asked. “There are still some people who may be able to help us answer those questions, and we need to get to them before they leave, too.”

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