Neal Cobb is proud of his roots in Nevada, and has used his parent’s work in radio and photography as a way to contribute to history. All of his family’s photos have been donated to the Nevada Historical Society and Neal has given countless presentations on Reno’s history.

Neal co-authored Reno Now and Then and Reno Now and Then II with his friend Jerry Fenwick. Check out their book at or in person at Sundance Books and Music.

Calder, Will and David Chism discuss what it’s like living in Reno with seven generations of history behind their family. The Chism family has contributed in diverse ways over 130+ years through an apple orchard, a dairy farm, the Chism Ice Cream Company and the Chism Auto Camp/ Chism Trailer Park. Now, the Chism House still stands as a beautiful—as well as historic—wedding and events venue on Keystone Ave. just north of the Truckee River.

The Townsell Family shares the rich, inspirational family history of preserverance through Northern Nevada’s Civil Rights Era struggles in the 1950s, 60s and 70s.

Today, Helen Townsell has written a book on the historic community of Black Springs and is the founder of the Westbrook Foundation, an organization benefiting educational institutions in the areas of scholarships, student financial aid services and awards programs.

JoJo Townsell, a former NFL wide receiver for the New York Jets, moved back to make Northern Nevada his home, and is a founding member of the MEFIYI (Me-For-Incredible-Youth Inc.) Foundation, supporting student-athletes in the areas of amateur athletics, recreation programs and physical fitness.

Reno’s Family Tree series is created in honor of Nevada’s 150th Anniversary to celebrate families rooted in Reno. These families- big or small- have all contributed in a unique way to make our wonderful community what it is today.

Having grown up milking cows on his grandfather’s dairy—Model Dairy— where the existing Reno/Tahoe Airport is, Neil Brooks has experienced more of Reno than most of us.