HSJ E-News
June / 30 / 2017
Valley of Heart's Delight 2017
A big thanks to everyone who joined us at this year's Valley of Heart's Delight event at History Park, where we celebrated 
"The Greatest Generation" and the Valley's men 
and women who served during WWII.

History San José is especially grateful to our Lead Sponsor, 
Linda Lester. Linda gave $100,000, providing critical support for our operations and educational programming. She made her donation to the Valley of Heart's Delight event in honor of her father Lee Lester. It is such an appropriate tribute as few know the Valley of Heart's Delight better that the Lester family! Read more about Lee and the Lester family 

In honor of Linda's donation History San José will name the main street running through History Park, Lee Lester Street.
Special thanks to all this year's sponsors: Linda L. Lester
Robert J. Bettencourt,  Riverview Systems Group, 
Heritage Bank of Commerce, Samaritan Medical Center, Jack & Sandi Frazer, San Pedro Square Market, 
Catered Too!, Joseph George Fine Wines, 
Gordon Biersch Brewing Company, and Spirit of '45.

In This Issue
Thank You Lee Lester Family!

Lee Lester was born into a farming family and begin farming on his own at the age of 17. He later convinced his brother Ray to join him in business when Ray was released from the U.S. Navy in 1946. Together, the Lester Brothers farmed more than 700 acres of prunes, apricots, cherries and walnuts. They owned some ranches and leased others. Lee married Eva Daggett in 1952 and, a year later, built their first home on Almaden Road at the family ranch. Their daughter Linda, was born in 1954.
In addition to running the ranches, Lee also had his own business spraying pesticides for not only his family orchards, but for other farmers. Resourceful from the start, Lee designed and hand built much of his own farm and fruit processing equipment.
History San José still uses his modified orchard forklift, which he donated more than 25 years ago!

In 1969, the Lester brothers took over care of orchards on IBM's main facility on Cottle Road and at the Santa Teresa Laboratory. They disked, irrigated, pruned and picked fruit to sell for processing. They cared for the IBM properties for over 30 years. Lee served the community in a number of capacities from being the President of the Santa Clara County Farm Bureau; to the Director of San Jose Production Credit Association; to Director of the San Jose Chamber. Lee is a founding member of the Silicon Valley Capital Club and past President of the Rotary Club of San Jose. 

As the fruit growing industry slowly declined in the Santa Clara Valley, Lee exercised intuition and confidence and began investing and developing properties in the Valley. Linda Lester worked with her father managing Lester Investment Properties, ultimately becoming the owner. Linda's son Ryan Lester is also actively involved in the family business overseeing tenant improvements for multiple properties as he continues the family legacy. 

Like her father, Linda embodies a truly generous heart. Her primary passion in life is philanthropy. She is committed to helping those who are underserved in our community, from individuals with special needs to those with medical challenges. She is also dedicated to promoting animal welfare, and strives to help strengthen numerous educational and arts organizations. She takes pride in personally learning the details surrounding the needs and positive outcomes of each and every organization she helps. 

Her most recent contributions include dedicating the Linda L. Lester Equestrian Center with Via Services; sponsoring Unity Care, Cancer CAREpoint, Valley Medical Association, 
Stroke Awareness Foundation, San Jose Police Foundation, Humane Society of Santa Clara Valley; as well as Jazz on the Plazz, Happy Hollow Park & Zoo Foundation, 
Kristi Yamaguchi's Dream Foundation, The Sourisseau Academy and History San José. It is her wish that she will inspire others to join her on her philanthropic journey!

Members-Only 4th of July Celebration 
July 4, 2017 from 5:00pm - 11:00pm at History Park

HSJ Members, join us for an  EXCLUSIVE, MEMBERS-ONLY  Celebration at History Park! We supply the Park, you supply the fun and food! Use the Park's large BBQ and picnic tables, ride the trolley, have some ice cream and take in a private view of the fireworks, courtesy of the San Jose Giants!

RSVP With Your Guest Names to  jevins@historysanjose.org
Gates open to our Members at 5:00pm. 
Please bring your current membership card to enter History Park and park on the grounds.

To become a new Member and join us for this event, please
CLICK HERE to learn about our different membership levels.
Are you a lapsed member looking to
renew your membership status? CLICK HERE!
Mystery Images 

Attention all photo sleuths! We recently received a collection of over 200 glass plate negatives from the early 1900s, that have no provenance other than we know they were taken by the same amateur photographer. Do you want to help us identify the locations? If you think you know the locations from any of these images, email research@historysanjose.org.

Click Here to look through all the negatives! 
Collections Corner

Earthquakes Come Home
This online exhibit is an extension of an exhibit curated by History San José and displayed at the Quakes 74 anniversary celebration for players and fans at San Jose's San Pedro Square Market in 2014. The exhibit, sponsored by the San Jose Earthquakes Major League Soccer Team, displayed materials from History San José's extensive Soccer Legacy Collection, celebrating 40 years of professional men's soccer in San Jose. Learn more. 

As part of the SFO Museum's latest exhibit, The Typewriter: An Innovation in Writing, 
History San José loaned several historic typewriters for the exhibit. The one pictured above is the Sun Index typewriter, patented Apr. 7 1885, and one of only two known to exist. Learn more.

AMGEN Tour of California
HSJ helped celebrate the Valley's long history of cycling at the   Amgen Tour of California  bicycle race, which returned to San Jose with a festival at the Metcalf County Motorcycle Park. Learn more.

L ast Month's Mystery Object

Did you figure out what the last mystery art ifact was?
If you guess  Hand Crank Corn Sheller you are correct! Cranks like these could make quick work of corn husks, taking off corn kernels quickly and with ease.  Click here to see a similar model in action . Thanks to everyone who sent in their guesses!
Hot Rods & Hootenanny
Sunday, July 9, 10:00am - 4:00pm
History Park
Tickets: $5
Come check out this car show dedicated to pre-1975 Custom Cars & Hot Rods!
Enjoy live music, food, a variety of vendors and much more!

Shiny Side Up Bicycle Show
Sunday, July 23, 10:00am - 4:00pm
History Park
Tickets: $5
Shiny Side Up is one of the longest running Bicycle Shows in the United States. The Show continues to grow every year. At Shiny Side Up you will find everything from fully custom built bikes to original rusted Schwinns. We invite anyone with any kind of bike to bring it out to share with everyone.  Besides the hundreds of Bicycles, we have Bicycle related vendors, food trucks, stunt shows, live DJ and more. Learn more at: www.shinysideupbikeshow.com

Spirit of '45 1940s Dance Party
Friday, August 4, 6:00pm - 10:00pm
History Park
Admission: $10
Pick out the best 40's outfit you've got, put on your dancing shoes, and join 
Spirit of '45 Bay Area as they swing dance under the lights at History Park to the sounds of the big band, Swing Solution!

Spirit of 45 Day
Saturday, August 5, 12:00pm - 5:00pm
History Park
Admission: Admission is $5; 
FREE for WWII Veterans, children under 10, and HSJ Members
Step back in time as Spirit of '45 Bay Area transports you back to August 1945 when America's Greatest Generation celebrated their Greatest Day - the victory of WWII. 
Learn more at: www.spiritof45.org