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One of the oldest homes in the area is also open to the public. William Henry Kelly House, which today sits at Main and Albion streets and overlooks the Big River and Mendocino Bay, was built by William Henry Kelly, a founding father of the town. Finished in 1861 the house utilizes few trapping of Victorian luxury of the day, with Mendocino being a true frontier town, and serves to show construction methods of the era.
The house is open for visitors daily from June through September from 11am until 3pm, and October through May from Friday through Monday from 1pm until 4pm. It is closed on most holidays but the 4th of July is a day of big celebration with live musical performances on the grounds. And the first Friday of December is the annual lighting of the Christmas Tree!While open by appointment only the Temple of Kwan Tai is worth the effort. Built in 1852, and restored in 2001, this is the oldest Chinese temple in Northern California. It is dedicated to the Chinese god of war, which is actually a Taoist symbol for integrity and loyalty, the temple provides a look into the 19 th century Chinese community that settled in California. Contact Lorriane Hee-Chorley at 707-937-5123 to arrange a tour.