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Attention researchers! The History Desk and Guy Miller Archives manned by historian Steve Staiger has moved to room K-7 at Cubberley, 4000 Middlefield Road. Steve's hours remain the same, Tuesdays from 4 to 8 p.m. and Thursdays from 1 to 5 p.m.

Another expanded research tool temporarily available at the History Desk is the collection of microfilmed local newspapers — the oldest is the Mayfield Enterprise from 1870!
Check out a sample of what's available at
Choose "Browse All". The collection will be moved to the Rinconada Branch of the Palo Alto Library when it reopens.

Currently, full-text digital scans are searchable by keyword, name, place, and publishing year for the following newspapers, but be aware that your search might not be very accurate since the key word dictionary is based on the OCR of the microfilmed text. Many words are not interpreted correctly.:

 Palo Alto Live Oak  (10/28/1896 – 1903)
 Palo Alto Press   (1901 – 1902)
 Palo Altan   (12/1/1905 – 12/28/1906, 1912 – 1914)
 Mayfield Enterprise   (3/5/1870 – 5/3/1871)
 The Palo Alto Times (1893 – )

The Palo Alto Inventory of Historic Buildings was initiated in 1979 with the goal of identifying historic or unique buildings. There are four categories ranging from contributing to exceptional. Properties are listed alphabetically with year of construction. If a property is simply identified as "Professorville", that indicates that it is a supporting structure that is not on the Inventory, but is significant because of its location. As more information becomes available, it will be added. Please contact us if you have information to add to our listings.


Palo Alto/Stanford Properties on the National Register of Historic Places

Palo Alto and Stanford University are home to a variety of properties listed on the National Register.

Criteria for Inclusion

Local Listings with pictures



History Links



Other Preservation Organizations


As part of a June 2008 presentation, Tim Cannan, President of, at the Architectural Heritage Center's "Old House Fair" in Portland, Oregon, compiled a comprehensive resource guide for historic and cultural resource preservation. The title of the resource guide is Preservation Resources on the Web.

The comprehensive resource guide presents primary online resources in the field of historic and cultural resource preservation, with an emphasis on resources in Portland and the State of Oregon. Topics include researching your historic home; funding sources and tax credit programs available; utilizing your State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO); finding an undergrad/graduate program in historic preservation; historic real estate resources online; preservation event/conference directories; and much more. The presentation cover national resources in depth, so this will be of interest to preservationists and historic homeowners everywhere.


Resources for Your Old House and Garden


Places to visit




Library Books

Many preservation books are available in the Palo Alto libraries. The Main Library has books that were purchased with a PAST Heritage grant on history, architecture, preservation and restoration of homes. And don't forget to check the links to modern architectural books through on the Eichler page. See Advocacy page for the link!

The books listed below were donated to the Palo Alto Public Libraries by PAST Heritage.

The Ultimate Frank Lloyd Wright, (CD-Rom), Microsoft.
Anscombe, Isabelle
Arts and Crafts Style, Phaidon Press Ltd., 1996.
Bowman, Leslie Greene
American Arts and Crafts: Virtue in Design, Bulfinch, 1990.
Calloway, Steven
Elements of Style: a Practical Encyclopedia of Interior Architectural Details from 1485 to the Present, Simon & Schuster, 1997.
Dickinson, Duo
Expressive Details: Materials, Selection, Use, McGraw Hill, 1996.
Dowell, Clifton
Out on the Porch: An Evocation in Words and Pictures, Algonquin, 1992.
Ford, Kristina; Lopach, James; O'Donnell, Dennis.
Planning Small Town America, Planners Press, 1990.
Gere, Charlotte
Nineteenth-Century Decoration: The Art of the Interior, Abrams, 1989.
Golany, Gideon
Ethics and Urban Design, J. Wiley, 1995.
Gross, Steve
Old Houses, Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 1996.
Guild, Robin
The Victorian House Book, Rizzoli, 1992.
Hoskins, Lesley, ed.
The Papered Wall: History, Pattern, Technique, Abrams, 1994.
Jones, Bernie
Neighborhood Planning, Planners Press, 1990.
Massey, James C.
House Styles in America: The Old-House Journal Guide to the Architecture of American Houses, Penguin, 1996.
McAlester, Virginia
A Field Guide to American Houses, Knopf, 1984.
Middleton, Andrew
Rugs and Carpets: Techniques, Traditions and Designs, Mitchell Beazley, 1996.
Miller, Judith
Miller's Art Nouveau and Art Deco: A Buyer's Guide, Millers, 1995.
Miller, Judith
Period Fireplaces: A practical Guide to Period-Style Decorating, Reed Books, 1995.
Miller, Judith
Period Kitchens: A Practical Guide to Period-Style Decorating, Antique Collectors Club, 1995.
Moss, Roger W.
Lighting for Historic Buildings: A Guide to Selecting Reproductions, Preservation Press, 1989.
Nylander, Jane C.
Fabrics for Historic Buildings: A Guide to Selecting Reproduction Fabrics, Preservation Press, 1990.
Poore, Patricia
The Old-House Journal Guide to Restoration, E.P.Dutton, 1992.
Smith, Bruce
The Beautiful Necessity: Decorating with Arts and Crafts, Gibbs Smith, 1996.
Sucher, David
City Comforts, City Comforts Press, 1995.
Van Rosensteil, Helene
Floor Coverings for Historic Buildings, Preservation Press, 1988.
Vogelsong, Diana, ed.
Landscape Architecture Sourcebook: A Guide to Resources on the History and Practice of Landscape Architecture, Omnigraphics, 1996.
Wayne, Kathryn.
Architecture Sourcebook: A Guide to Resources on the History and Practice of Architecture, Omnigraphics, 1996.
Zingman-Leith, Elan.
The Secret Life of Victorian Houses, Elliott & Clark, 1993.

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