News


Timeline: 40 years of news

The events and issues that defined Palo Alto over a generation

A pole with signs of Palo Alto's sister cities is installed outside of Palo Alto City Hall at 250 Hamilton Ave. Photo by Veronica Weber.

Looking back at history through the lens of news coverage reveals the contours of a community: historic events that defined an era, ideas that rose and then fell away, movements that seized people's collective imagination and created change, annual traditions that marked the passage of time.

The Palo Alto Weekly, like all locally rooted news organizations, has borne witness to all of these things. Over the past 40 years, our reporters, photographers and editors have chronicled moments in time both small — the arrival of a new Barron Park donkey — and large, such as local residents' reactions to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

We've compiled an interactive timeline that can be viewed here to represent those distinct strands of community life. It was a difficult task to decide what to include and what to leave out. When possible, we looked for news that had consequences beyond the initial event. We hope you enjoy taking the time to reflect on where we've been as a city — and where we might be going.

Related content:

This article is part of the Palo Alto Weekly's 40th Anniversary edition. Click on the links below to read the complete package:

The price of 'paradise': Palo Altans love their hometown, but the stress of living in the heart of Silicon Valley is growing

Block by block: Longtime and new residents living in four neighborhoods share their outlooks on living in Palo Alto

Survival of the nimblest: For locally owned businesses, the biggest challenge is finding the right employees

Editorial: Why our next 40 years depends on you

VIDEO: 'When I think about Palo Alto...'

---

Follow the Palo Alto Weekly/Palo Alto Online on Twitter @PaloAltoWeekly and Facebook for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.

What is democracy worth to you?
Support local journalism.

Comments

11 people like this
Posted by Gimmee
a resident of another community
on Oct 11, 2019 at 10:45 am

Make sure you give your money to bill Johnson, as he launches his new "gimmee money" campaign. If you don't, how will the weekly be able to support the Palo alto elite. They surely will not give any money as Johnson is their toady- they command, he obeys and writes the stories they want.


20 people like this
Posted by your call
a resident of Green Acres
on Oct 11, 2019 at 11:40 am

Support local journalism - whether this paper, the regionals, a national with local coverage, whatever. You can support them digitally or old school newsprint.

No one else will track the miscreants.

Or don't support journalism, and guys like @gimmee win. Dark money and dark deeds will thrive.


Like this comment
Posted by your call
a resident of Green Acres
on Oct 11, 2019 at 2:53 pm

Cool, thanks. So we have two viewpoints:

1. support journalism as the 4th estate, part of checks and balances

2. someone with a vendetta against a local paper's editor, using name-calling, etc..

Thanks again for sharing your view.


10 people like this
Posted by Gimmee
a resident of another community
on Oct 11, 2019 at 3:49 pm

Your call - just employing the same techniques that the weekly uses in their one sided stories and editorials and in their selective editing of comments on TSF that are critical of the people that Johnson is serving.
Now can bill count on you for a $10,000 donation?


Like this comment
Posted by your call
a resident of Green Acres
on Oct 11, 2019 at 6:28 pm

Whine, whine, whine. As my math teacher used to say: "show your work."

You have lots of complaints - show us: "employing the same techniques".

Links.


6 people like this
Posted by Jane Brooks
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2019 at 7:59 pm

Two anonymous posters:

* One espouses a free press
* Another calls the editor a toadie

Uh-huh.


17 people like this
Posted by your call
a resident of Green Acres
on Oct 12, 2019 at 7:31 am

I'm okay with anonymous trash comments in an open forum being deleted - their sandbox, their rules. Just ask Dougie M, it's a sign he lost his argument, even with his verbosity. re: your blog - it is your representation of what you claim others have posted - okay.

That's not what I replied to, however:

"just employing the same techniques that the weekly uses in their one sided stories and editorials"

I asked for a list of one-sided stories. Editorials are just that - opinions. I frequently detest opinion pieces in the NYT. Doesn't mean I don't support the reporters at NYT, WSJ, etc.. Yes, even they make mistakes, of course.


16 people like this
Posted by Gimmee
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2019 at 9:04 am

Your call - you hit the nail right on the head regarding dougie m.
You want one sided stories-- coverage of the children's theater scandal, Karen Holman finders fee scandal, buena Vista trailer park owner, Persky recall, just to name a few. All have a common denominator--think placating someone.this is my opinion. If you are for free press as you claim, then you have to support my criticism of Johnson and his "gimmee money" machine called the weekly.


10 people like this
Posted by Local journos
a resident of Greater Miranda
on Oct 13, 2019 at 6:39 pm

We have to support local journalism. What's the alternative? Fox? MSNBC?

Love it or hate it, gotta have it.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 14, 2019 at 1:05 am

Nature abhors a vacuum.


11 people like this
Posted by MVresident2003
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 14, 2019 at 9:34 am

MVresident2003 is a registered user.

As I have said to Bill and staff several times I would be glad to support the paper except that I am frequently censored in a highly biased manner. Several times comments have been deleted and when I ask for explanation they are unable to substantiate being against terms....they just don’t like what I say.

Why would I support a paper that doesn’t allow my views or comments?


Like this comment
Posted by use it or lose it
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 14, 2019 at 11:27 am

> Why would I support a paper that doesn’t allow my views or comments?

Because you use it?

Your saner comments stick; I've seen some of the ones that didn't - are you really surprised? iirc, even DM deleted some of yours, and he's pretty much reading from the same playbook as you.


8 people like this
Posted by Glad to pay
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Oct 18, 2019 at 1:12 pm

Journalism is a service that I am glad to pay for. If newspapers aren't well-funded by subscribers, we will lose them. I'd miss the Weekly--as well as other papers I subscribe to.

I wish they'd delete this comment board...or at least require people to use their names. The rude and hostile tone of discourse here is truly appalling. I bet people would behave more like adults if they had to own their comments.

I'm not using my name because I know I will get blasted for saying this. I'll use my name if you'll use yours.


4 people like this
Posted by Gimmee
a resident of another community
on Oct 18, 2019 at 2:28 pm

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by Madelyn Alton
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 19, 2019 at 7:40 am

" Why would I support a paper that doesn’t allow my views or comments?

Because you use it?"

Fabulous answer. Shocked that the poster is occasionally censored, just shocked.


3 people like this
Posted by irony
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
23 hours ago

I wonder if the Weekly was willing to be transparent and open up its finances to show the good people of out town exactly where the money was being spent?


3 people like this
Posted by Gimmee
a resident of another community
14 hours ago

Irony- good idea though I doubt it would happen. From the continuous emails demanding money and the anniversary issue, one would Think the weekly is running a deficit. If course some people think the weekly has the community's best interests at heart


Like this comment
Posted by Twins of the 4th estate
a resident of Midtown
17 minutes ago

"wonder if the Weekly was willing to be transparent and open up its finances"

I guess since we are posting here, we should show our finances as well, of course!

Makes sense.

Support journalism. All journalism matters.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Email:


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields


All your news. All in one place. Every day.

DoorDash is opening a shared delivery kitchen in Redwood City. What does that say about the future of the restaurant industry?
By Elena Kadvany | 9 comments | 3,171 views

What did you learn last week?
By Sherry Listgarten | 13 comments | 1,834 views

Bond. Bond Touch.
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 887 views

The holiday season
By Cheryl Bac | 2 comments | 782 views

Free speech – Zuckerberg’s version and mine
By Diana Diamond | 3 comments | 416 views