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Midtown Market (Duca Hanley) 1959 with Santa and me

Original post made by Andrew L. Freedman, College Terrace, on Dec 27, 2006

Note Santa - He doesn't look much like a Santa Claus. Behind me were about 40 kids waiting in line. A photographer from the Palo Alto Times was taking pictures, too. Jeans with rolled-up cuffs and PF Flyers were what kids wore back then. Not much in the way of “style” back then.


Comments (8)

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Posted by Mayfield child
a resident of Green Acres
on Dec 29, 2006 at 12:47 am

Andy! THAT'S A GREAT PHOTO! Looks a little like the same Santa that I sat on his lap over on California Avenue! Hummmmm!

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Posted by Andrew L. Freedman
a resident of College Terrace
on Dec 29, 2006 at 9:04 am

Thank you Mayfield child,

I was just thinking - It would be interesting to find out who that Santa was. Like, could it have been one of the Duca/Hanley, a city counsel member, the mayor, a clerk from the store? Maybe someone on this list could figure it out or maybe someone actually knows.


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Posted by Mayfield Child
a resident of Green Acres
on May 15, 2007 at 3:54 am

Hahahahahahahaha! Never really thought of that angle..Think I will have to pull out my picture and take another look at my Santa...hummmm! You were only 4 in this picture, I was about 15, so Santa could not have been tooooo much older than I was...don't think it was Gary Fazzino (old Palo Alto Mayor, Councilman) ..but I will take another look...never know what jobs people have in their early years before the "Big Time"!

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Posted by Andrew L. Freedman
a resident of College Terrace
on May 15, 2007 at 10:14 am

You're correct - It couldn't have been Gary F. He would have only been in 1st grade.

It could have been Ducca or Hanley, maybe?

It's funny how history repeats itself. Folks talk about how weird it is to have two pharmacies within 500 yards of each other.

Remember - there was Midtown Pharmacy and Fremont Pharmacy - about the same distance, except Fremont Pharmacy was on the corner of Colorado and Middlefield Road.

Also, before Wallgreeens (or Longs? can remember which is which) you know that it was a Co-Op store.

Remember when it was the Purity Market (they had 2 Purity's - one on California Ave)?

So you had the Purity Market, Duca Hanley (Midtown Market), across the street, you had Market Basket and you also had Safeway.

Four (4) supermarkets within one block - not to mention Bergmann's and the Variety Store.


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Posted by Perry
a resident of College Terrace
on Jun 28, 2010 at 6:48 pm

I recall Purity, Co-op, & across from Purity was Farmers Market, Safeway was gone when I was hanging out on Calif. Ave. I looked at magazines at the Calif. Ave Pharmacy. Entered a model car contest at the Ben Franklin Five and Dime, and again at a toy store, cant remember name, close to the pharmacy. There was Harryman's clothing store. Bishops Creamery for best selection of penny candy. Stout's Vacume's. A bakery across from pharmacy, A gas station next to Farmers Market or close to it. Can't recall what went into Safeway building. And a chinese butcher shop. Also gas station on N/W corner of El Camino. And a dairy behind it.

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Posted by Frank
a resident of another community
on Jan 24, 2011 at 5:59 pm

My Mother worked in the old JCPenney store. I had to get all my school clothes there because employees got a 15% discount on purchases. I wore Foremost jeans while everyone else in school wore Levis. On weekends we would go to the Purity store at Stanford Shopping Center to buy groceries. In the Summer, while I was in elementary school, we would all go to the Stanford theater once a week to see movies with tickets from the PTA. University Avenue, El Camino Real, and all my friends from that era can never be replaced.

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Posted by Rico
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 18, 2012 at 7:51 am

I used to live up the end of Matadero; the house has since been razed and replaced by a monster house owned by a founder of Google. (Check Google Maps for a picture.)
I was just lamenting how my new pair of Levi's 501 jeans costs about ten times what it did when I bought them (riding my bicycle) at Harryman's.
Ah, the good old days...

Like this comment
Posted by Sonny M.
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 25, 2014 at 7:06 pm

This is interesting. I want to know more about Duca and Hanley as I am related to the Duca family and just recently relocated back into Palo Alto. Pretty cool knowing I have family history here. Does anyone have more pictures of Duca and Hanley the market?

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