The Palo Alto Historical Association is charged by the City of Palo Alto with maintaining the city's historic archives and making them available to the public. The archives are named the Palo Alto Historical Association - Guy Miller Archives, in honor of Guy Miller, Palo Alto's first historian.
The archives are located in the main reading room of the Palo Alto Main Library located at 1213 Newell Road.
The archives include:
Steve Staiger is our Historian. He is at the History Desk in the Main Library Tuesday evenings from 4 to 8 p.m. and Thursday afternoons from 1 to 4 p.m. to answer questions and assist in research. His phone number at the library is (650) 617-3100, x3211, and his email address is email@example.com.
The Association can provide a speaker for your group's meeting. The Historian will give a talk to your church group, social club, neighborhood meeting or school class on a topic relating to Palo Alto's history. There is no charge for this service. For information please contact the Historian.
Who may use the archives?
The archives are available to everyone.
Do I need to make an appointment?
You are welcome to stop in during the hours the history desk is open: Tuesday evenings from 6 to 9 p.m. and Thursday afternoons from 2 to 5 p.m.
How can I find out what is in your collection?
A general listing of the contents of the archives can be found above. The historian is there to help you during the hours the history desk is open.
Can I get photocopies of material?
There are public photo copying machines in the library that you may use.
Can I photograph or scan material from the archives?
At the discretion of the staff, digital photography and scanning are permitted.
Are digital images of the photographs available?
Part of our historic collection of photos is available online at Photograph Collection. If you need a higher resolution copy of a photo, a digital file of the photograph is available for a fee. Contact our historian for further information.
Personal, non-commercial use of digital images from our Web site is permitted, with attribution to the Palo Alto Historical Association, for all images unless otherwise noted.
Let us recycle it for you!
The Association actively seeks donations of material to bolster our collection. Photographs, maps, brochures and school yearbooks are examples of items that have been donated to us recently. Photographs are the true treasures of any local history collection. Desirable photographs include class photographs, snapshots of neighborhood street scenes and houses, and photos that document local places and events. Photos taken last week, last year, or 100 years ago are equally desirable. We don't want to compete with your family for these items; rather we are trying to preserve material destined for the dump. Our founding historian's motto was "Let me throw it away for you.", we have updated it to "Let us recycle it for you."
Please contact Steve Staiger to discuss your potential donations.