Welcome to the Sunnyvale Heritage Park Museum

 MUSEUM (and Museum Store) HOURS:     Sundays/Tuesdays/Thursdays 12pm to 4pm
BECOME A MEMBER:   receive newsletters, store discounts and more.   CLICK HERE

Please check our MUSEUM CALENDAR frequently to find out about upcoming events.          Or click this FACEBOOK link below to Like us on Facebook.


Winter 2019 Special Exhibit

Our upstairs rotating exhibit this winter is, Communications before TechnologyMuch of the technology being developed here in Silicon Valley is all about communication: instant, distributable to the masses, easy. But how did people wish one another a happy birthday or let their family know that they would be visiting soon fifty, a hundred, a hundred and fifty years ago? The museum’s new exhibit will answer those questions. You will see letters written by the Taaffe twins (Mattie and Molly, Elizabeth Yuba Murphy Taaffe’s daughters) and learn how postal worker Joe Stanich hung Sunnyvale’s outgoing mail pouch on a tall crane at Murphy’s Station, the pouch to be grabbed by someone on the passing train. You will be able to refresh your memories of a Walkman, typewriters, a calculator that is NOT part of your phone, IBM punch cards, and much more!

This special exhibit will be open from January 22nd to the end of May.

Museum’s proposed Lockheed / Blue Cube Exhibit and Sunnyvale Research Library

The mission of the Sunnyvale Historical Society is to preserve, teach, and protect items pertaining to the history of our community. The Museum is looking to expand in order to build a much-needed historical research library and create a permanent exhibit on the Blue Cube and Lockheed Missile programs – both important parts of Sunnyvale history as well as national history.

The Sunnyvale Historical Society and Museum Association has taken into consideration how this project may temporarily impact Orchard Heritage Park. The Orchard, located next to the Heritage Park Museum, is respected as a valuable part of the community and Sunnyvale’s living history. Preserving the integrity and heritage of The Orchard Heritage Park, and maintaining the ten-acre site is important to The Sunnyvale Historical Society, so it can also be enjoyed by many generations to come. The 1600 sq. ft addition may impact 6 to 10 apricot trees, all of which will be replaced in other areas of the orchard. There will be no net loss of trees.

Entryway Construction Completed

A new, grand entrance has been created to welcome visitors to our museum building. Delays in construction have pushed the celebration to 2019, so please join us on September 28th for a dedication of the new outdoor exhibits and a “Ten Plus One” anniversary event.   Click Here to see the 2018 demolition and remodeling  photos.

April 6, 2019 – Spring Garage Sale

2014 Garage Sale

2014 Garage Sale

Mark your calendar for our next fundraiser garage sale!  We always accept DONATIONS, so keep us in mind all year as you find things of value that you no longer need.  Suggested donation items are: tools, decorations, jewelry, furniture and kitchen items. You can bring donations to the museum whenever we are open, Sundays, Tuesday and Thursdays from Noon – 4pm.  The garage sale itself will be at 795 South Wolfe Road, Sunnyvale, CA (closest cross street is Iris Avenue).

April 27-28, 2019 – Spring Victorian Teas

2014 Museum-Spring TeasA formal, Victorian tea will please and delight all your senses. Come and enjoy assorted tea sandwiches and sweets complete with all the trimmings.  Arrive by 2 P.M. Space is limited, so you must reserve in advance. Come by the museum store when it is open (Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday, 12-4pm) or give us a call (408-749-0220) to reserve your space at a table.  Or Click Here for a printable form.

Past 2019 Events

February 11, 2019 – General Meeting

Past 2018 Events

2018 Holiday Exhibit

The 2018 Holiday exhibit features Miniatures and Models. Minuscule items and models will be displayed to show history through these artifacts, the majority of which stem from the museum’s own collections, augmented by private loans. Some of those items are children’s sets, others are salesmen samples: anything from bikes to cars and doll houses to tea sets. Models include the Bianchi barn, the Murphy Bay View home, and the Lockheed Agena Spacecraft, among others.


December 1 & 2, 8 & 9, 2018 – Victorian Holiday Teas

Our annual Victorian Holiday Teas were sold out early this year!  Thank you to everyone who participated, either as a volunteer or as a guest.

October 13, 2018 – Garage Sale

October 8, 2018 – General Meeting 7:00 PM

Tobin Gilman

Tobin Gilman

At the museum’s Fall General Meeting, guest speaker Tobin Gilman presented an illustrated discussion of the McGlincy Killings in Campbell.

On the morning of May 27, 1896, the peaceful township of Campbell awoke to shocking news. Six people had been brutally murdered at the home of Colonel Richard P. McGlincy, one of the town’s most respected citizens. The suspect, James Dunham – the colonel’s son-in-law – fled the scene and disappeared into the hills of Mount Hamilton overlooking Santa Clara County. This heinous crime triggered a massive, nationwide manhunt while investigators pieced together the details. Author Tobin Gilman examines the mind and motives of the killer, the sensational media coverage, and the colorful personalities associated with the protracted and unresolved pursuit of justice. Please join us for a presentation and discussion on this fascinating era in South Bay history.

Summer 2018 – History of Schools in Sunnyvale

Sunnyvale UniformOur summer rotating exhibit upstairs was the History of Schools in Sunnyvale. From our first Encina Grammar School of the late 1800s through today, we have always prided ourselves in excellent education in Sunnyvale.  Come and see the many artifacts we have from a majority of them. Your grammar school or high school may have been bulldozed but your treasures and memorabilia of them are in our collections. This exhibit will remain up through the summer so organize a class reunion to see it.  Planned exhibit dates are June 19 through October 7.

July 15 – Reception for History of Schools Exhibit

Click Here to see photos from the reception.

June 11, 2018 – General Meeting

Thanks to everyone who came to our June General Meeting! And a special thanks to our guest speaker James R Smith who gave an interesting presentation on the California Snatch Racket–a string of crimes of kidnapping for ransom in the early 20th Century.

If you missed the talk, considering picking up his book: “The California Snatch Racket: Kidnappings During the Prohibition and Depression Eras.” Also, here is the video recording of the talk.


Spring 2018 – Hats in Sunnyvale

Spring Victorian Teas – April 28-29, 2018

Spring Garage Sale – April 21, 2018

Winter 2018 – History of the Canneries in Sunnyvale

Libby Water Tower 1930 design

Libby Water Tower 1930 design


Our rotating exhibit for the winter of 2018 was about the Canneries of Sunnyvale. With the multitude of orchards and national fruit industry here, Libby’s, Del Monte, and Schuckl’s were the largest employers in the city/town for many decades.



March 1, 2018 – Santa Clara County Watercolor Association Visit

It was a rainy day, but artists from the Santa Clara County Watercolor Association visited for sketching and painting at the museum. Click Here for more photos.

February 11, 2018 – Cannery Workers Reception

This Cannery Workers Reception was part of the winter special exhibit on the Canneries of Sunnyvale.

General Meeting – January 29, 2018

Thank you to all who attended our general meeting!  Jeanne MacVicar gave a presentation on the Orphan Trains.  If you missed this informative talk, you can view all the slides and hear her talk on our YouTube channel, click on the image below.


“Blue Cube” Donations and Stories Wanted!

The Sunnyvale Historical Society is looking for engineers to help tell the story of the Blue Cube. Please contact the museum if you have momentos or stories to share.

Give the Gift of Membership

Your membership to the Sunnyvale Historical Society and Museum Association helps to support our daily operations.  Members Benefits include, our members-only Newsletter, special invitations to members-only events, and a 10% discount on Museum Gift Shop purchases.  You can become a member online (below) or come into the museum Gift Shop.

Click image to the left for a full-color example newsletter issue that you receive every month as a society member.

Members can decide to receive this full-color PDF via e-mail instead of via US Mail.  If this is a Gift Membership, add the recipient info in the Add a special message Section when completing the transaction on PayPal.

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Orchard Heritage Park

Winter day with back view of the Sunnyvale Heritage Park Museum, Feb 8, 2014

Winter day with back view of the Sunnyvale Heritage Park Museum, Feb 8, 2014

In 1994, the City of Sunnyvale preserved 10 acres of apricot trees to celebrate the important contribution of orchards to the early development of the local economy. The museum opened next to the orchard in 2008. Click the photo for views of our apricot orchard throughout the year .


In Memoriam

It is with great sorrow that we announce the
August 19, 2017 passing of Jeanine Stanek, the Sunnyvale Historical Society’s Chief Archivist. Her dedication to history, her positive attitude, and her endless energy was an inspiration to us all. She will be greatly missed. Click Here for the Museum Director’s memories of Jeanine.

Here is a photo from February 2014, of Jeanine receiving the 2013 Murphy Award for Lifetime Community Contribution.




Copyright © 2018 Sunnyvale Historical Society & Museum Association, Inc., All Rights Reserved 

7 thoughts on “Home

  1. H B

    I worked in the STC from Jan 1963 t0 Sept 1992. I was a Charter Member of the 6594th Aerospace Test Wing Training Team. I also taught Data Handling Equipment Maintenance Courses at both Hawaii and Kodiak Tracking Stations. I conducted over 250 classes and trained over 2500 personnel. I also worked as the Mission Director’s Technical Advisor on the GPS and DSP satellite programs. I conducted Orientation tours thru the Satellite Test Center and the Blue Cube. Our training office was the first office to open in the Blue Cube.

  2. Margarete M

    Thanks for your comment, Mr. B. I’ll add your name and email address to our list of people who have reached out to us for help in creating an exhibit on the Blue Cube.

  3. Donald Fair

    Hi, my name is Don Fair, I lived in Sunnyvale from April of 1967 until October 1968 after being recruited by Lockheed Missiles & Space Co. following graduations from DeVry Institute of Technology now DeVry University. I worked in the Lockheed manufacturing division worked on both the AGENA spacecraft, and POSEIDON SLBM programs. After departing Sunnyvale in October of 1968 for New Hampshire to continue work on the AGENA spacecraft for the 6594th Aerospace Test Wing as an Operations and Command Control Officer, From a remote satellite tracking station still maintaining contact with the “Blue Cube”. I supported over 127 combat missions associated with the CORONA, GAMBIT, HEXAGON, DSP, VELA and IDSP (USAF/NRO reconnaissance programs). I have many photos and stories of those programs dating back to the 1960’s and 70’s. I am also working with the Smithsonian Air and Space Museums in Washington, DC and often run bus trips to those museums as tour guide. I teach high school and college students about the early days of space exploration.

  4. Tony Kearns

    I was wondering what became of relic’s from Sunnyvale high , in particular , there was a board that had students names added to it at the end of school year , The board honored outstanding students for particular sports , if anyone knows where this board went , I’d appreciate help finding it’s location

  5. Ken S

    I worked at the Cube in Security from 1987 – 1990. I don’t really have much of any stories as even though I was inside every day all I got to see were the hallways as each MCC (Mission Control Center) was only open to the people that worked in it and unless you had a need to be in one, you wern’t. I’m guessing that the janitorial staff were the only ones that actually made it into multiple MCCs. Actually, many of the janitorial staff did the job part-time and worked elsewhere in the cube, as everybody needed a security clearance and it was easier for the janitorial company to hire a moonlighter vs. pay for the clearance for a new employee.

    One persistent rumor that I heard was the when you worked in an MCC that you had to sign a waiver that if you had a medical emergency that you were okay to rely on whatever aid your co-workers could provide you, until they could get you out of the MCC. This was due to the fact that Sunnyvale Fire did not have clearances and were not going to be allowed in.

    Finally, I have a Sunnyvale AFS badge that was given to me when our badges were changed out to Onizuka AFB. I know it’s not much, but let me know If you would like to have it for your collection, and I would be more than happy to send it to you.

  6. Margarete Minar

    Thanks so much for your comments, Ken. Your old badge would be most welcomed at the museum archive. I’ll have someone contact you to talk about it. Kind regards, Margarete

  7. Margarete Minar

    Hi Donald, Thank you for your comments. They are very much appreciated. I will keep your contact information and will email you if/when we have any questions, when we are ready to begin assembling our Blue Cube exhibit. Kind regards, Margarete

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