Frank Berry: Los Altos’ First Ophthalmologist

Although I’m a San Diego native who has only lived in the Bay Area for the past two years, interning for Los Altos History Museum has given me the opportunity to get to know the city of Los Altos almost as well as I know the city I grew up in. The Museum’s Oral History Committee works tirelessly to preserve the history of Los Altos through the eyes…
November 30, 2023

Wish Come True

A fluttering yellow ribbon with the message “Drip Irrigation” caught my eye in the Los Altos Heritage Orchard. In December, a volunteer tied this wish to the apricot tree that we planted in memory of Phil Doetsch, our former orchardist who taught me so much. Now, that wish is coming true as we install a new drip irrigation system, and my heart sings as so many join…
October 5, 2023

History Museum grateful for support

Letters to the Editor, Los Altos Town Crier The Los Altos History Museum wishes to express its gratitude to the Los Altos City Council for voting unanimously Sept. 12 to increase financial support for museum operations and programs. The process leading to this increase involved several council meetings, as well as detailed analysis with city staff, as appropriate when allocating public funds.…
September 27, 2023

Corn Husk Doll

For northeast Native American, enslaved African American, and early American pioneer children, corn husk dolls were common toys. Corn husks were easily accessible during the early 19th century, and the dolls were fairly easy to construct. Northeast Native Americans made their corn husk dolls without faces. A Seneca craftswoman, Mrs. Snow, explains why: Corn, one of the “Three Sisters,” along…
June 29, 2023

2022 Year in Review

I want to thank you, dear friends and supporters of Los Altos History Museum, for being a part of the Museum community over the last year. By opening our e-newsletters, logging onto our webinars, renewing your membership, donating to our campaigns, and attending our events, you let us know that the work we do matters to you. Over the last…
December 8, 2022
Watch for Eliseo Perez perched high on a ladder. He has been tending our orchard for over 35 years. Each morning, Eliseo takes ten boxes a day over to DeMartini.Blog

Apricot Harvest is Early!

Have you noticed the orange apricots decorating the trees of our Heritage Orchard along San Antonio Road? The summer harvest is underway, two weeks earlier than in the previous century. Old-timers planned for apricot harvest around the 4th of July. Maybe this is an indicator of climate change? “When the apricots ripen is the highlight of my year,” declared one…
June 24, 2022

Finding Asian America in the Museum

The Museum has issued an official statement condemning the recent resurgence of racial violence against Asian, Asian American Pacific Islander communities. As local historians, we celebrate the impactful contributions of AAPI members in our community and embrace the educational power of intercultural connections. This essay is in response to racial violence and what role history museums can play in cultivating…
April 15, 2021

Thanks from Oak Grove School!

Dr. Amy Ellison, the Museum’s Exhibition Curator, had the opportunity to talk with a class of 4th grade students at Oak Grove School in San Jose after they saw our virtual field trip of the exhibition, “Rise Up! The Fight for Women’s Suffrage.” In this blog post, the classroom teachers share their appreciation, and some of the student’s artwork related…
March 2, 2021

Building Equity through Museum Collections

The Museum has begun a collecting initiative that actively seeks photographs, artifacts, artworks and materials to document the history of civil rights movements, immigration and race in Los Altos and the greater Santa Clara County. The materials collected through this initiative will be a part of the newly-created collection we are calling the "Social Justice Collection." Race is oftentimes referred…
February 3, 2021

The Dawn of 2021

Los Altos History Museum welcomed 2021 with a note of sadness and hope, which I think captures how so many of us feel right now. We are sad to not be welcoming the public to our in-house curated special exhibition, "Rise Up! The Fight for Women’s Suffrage." It sits in all its glory in our main gallery, without any visitors,…
January 7, 2021

Art and the Gathering of Community

Over the course of this year, the Museum had the opportunity to examine the history and role of art in our community. Our Spring exhibition, “Gallery 9: Celebrating Art in Los Altos,” inspired us to tinker with the idea of hosting an art auction fundraiser for the first time and informed our collecting process for the 2020 Benefit Collection. Some…
December 11, 2020

AAUW Applauds Rise Up!

Los Altos-Mountain View American Association of University Women (AAUW) salutes the Los Altos History Museum for the creation of "Rise Up! The Fight for Women's Suffrage," an illuminating exhibition about the local and national struggle that led to women being granted the right to vote in California in 1911, and in the rest of the country in 1920. Since 1882,…
November 9, 2020