Ontario City Library, Robert E. Ellingwood Model Colony History Room > California Revealed from Ontario City Library, Robert E. Ellingwood Model Colony History Room > Forrest Doucette oral history interview

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Forrest Doucette oral history interview
Alternative Title
Model Colony oral history collection
Ontario City Library
Baker, Ron
Bergstedt, Linda
Covey, Harriet
Date Created and/or Issued
Contributing Institution
Ontario City Library, Robert E. Ellingwood Model Colony History Room
California Revealed from Ontario City Library, Robert E. Ellingwood Model Colony History Room
Rights Information
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Forrest Ernest Doucette was born on May 16, 1894 in Little Falls, Minnesota to Ernest and Electa (nee Fearing) Doucette. He was christened Ernest Forrest, but reversed his first and middle names in junior high school. Doucette started in the newspaper business in 1909 as a “printer’s devil,” an apprentice who performs varied tasks related to the newspaper printing process. He enlisted in the US Army in 1917 and was assigned to Co. B, 21st Engineers, Light Railroad as a Private First Class. He was a victim of poison gas in September 1918, and spent over a year convalescing, and the exposure would have an effect on him for the rest of his life. He was discharged on April 26, 1919. For the next few years Doucette attempted to attend college, but his health hindered his ability to complete his studies. Several physicians recommended that he move to a milder climate, and in 1923 he was moved to a veteran’s hospital at Whipple Barracks in Prescott, Arizona. After his discharge in December 1924, he returned east and became employed as district manager for the Minneapolis Daily Journal, but his health once again deteriorated. He returned to Whipple Barracks and while there served as editor of the hospital publication called the Whipple Echo. After his discharge he remained in Arizona and worked in various publishing positions. In 1933, Doucette was appointed Executive Secretary of the Arizona State Board of Health in Phoenix. The Doucettes moved to Hollywood, California in 1935, and Doucette worked for the Los Angeles Daily News in advertising and special editions. In 1937, Doucette purchased half interest in the Ontario Herald from Dean D. Sellers, and also edited an award winning special anniversary edition of the Sanger Herald. For several years, Doucette divided his time between the Ontario Herald and the Los Angeles Daily News, and during World War II, also worked as managing editor of the Douglas Airview News. In 1945, Doucette bought out Dean Sellers, and in 1946 he sold the Ontario Herald to A. Q. Miller, the former manager of the Ontario Daily Report. His wife, Ferna Doucette, was a schoolteacher in Fontana and the Doucettes lived in Ontario and later in Upland. He continued working in newspaper publishing, primarily in special editions and advertising, and retired in the 1960s. During his retirement he remained active in the community and traveled. Forrest Doucette died June 15, 1989 at age 95, and Ferna Doucette died on November 4, 1990 at age 86. Their son Dail, a retired Air Force colonel, currently lives in Washington, D.C. In this interview, Mr. Doucette discusses the local newspaper business, people he's known, local places, and events. His wife Ferna is present during the interview and makes a few remarks as well.
California Preservation Service
1/8 inch audio cassette
2 Tapes of 2
Ontario (Calif.)
Ontario City Library
The California Revealed Project is supported by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian.

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