Palo Alto

Downtown Palo alto (pen and ink and water color)

This pen and ink and water color piece was created from archived photos from The Mountain View Library. Looking north on University Avenue during the forties, the downtown district was popular with the Stanford College students, including THE CIRCLE CAFE (scene on the picture left), Walgreens Drugs (complete with a soda fountain) and the STANFORD and VARSITY THEATRE. Because of strict Palo Alto zoning laws prohibiting the sale of alcohol within a mile of the Stanford Campus, a small business strip located further up University Avenue next to Bayshore Highway known as WHISKY GULCH was the happening spot with the students. WHISKY GULCH, which included MIKE'S AND ?, THE ZOMBI HUT, HOUSE OF THE LORDS, DUMBARTON CLUB, RENO CLUB and THE COLLINS CLUB was quite popular throughout The Santa Clara Valley. These clubs not only sold alcohol, but it was not unusual to hear the sound of slot machines coming from their back rooms. Apparently, the Santa Clara County Sheriff's department was aware of the illegal activity during this period but looked the other way.

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