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Guide to the American Institute of Architects Santa Clara Valley Collection
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Collection Contents

Box Nos. 1-7

Series 1.  Board Meeting Minutes 1969-1997

Physical Description: 6 boxes and1 folder

Series Scope and Content Summary

Executive Board Meetings were held monthly and documented by the Executive Secretary. The minutes vary in length by year; some are bound with hardcover. Meetings consisted of a summary from the previous meeting; President's report, Treasurer's report, and Committee reports; special orders of business (legislative issues, etc.); event planning; membership approvals; membership levels and funding issues; direction of the Chapter, etc. Each set of minutes includes a monthly financial report and summary of membership levels.
This series is arranged chronologically.
Box No. 7

Series 2.  Annual Reports and Chapter Membership Records 1951-1984

Physical Description: 4 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

There are three annual reports, for 1974, 1975 and 1977. 1974 is a six-page summary of the Chapter's activities, Committee members, President's annual report, Membership report, list of new members, Committee reports, and the Treasurer's comments on the 1975 budget.
The 1975 annual report consists of the Acting Secretary's report on past year's activities; Associate Director's report; summary of public relations activities; and reports from the following committees: Membership, history book, 1975 Energy Commission; Bulletin advertising; Program Committee; Trust & Scholarship; Architectural Barriers; Compensation; Conservation; and Associates.
The 1977 annual report is similar to the 1975 report, including summaries from the following committees: Treasurer; Energy Conservation; Compensation; By-Laws; Public Relations; Continuing Education; Ethics; History; and Committee Supervision.
The three President's reports from 1974, 1968 and 1964 are directed at the Chapter's members to summarize the accomplishments of the Chapter and set goals for the coming year.
Membership records are in two sets. The yearly Chapter certifications were submitted to the California Council and consist of an "Official Certification Statement" and certified roster of members, listing individual architects. The collection includes these records from 1960-1969. In addition, the Chapter kept rosters of corporate and associate members, including addresses. These are divided into two folders, for Coast Valleys Chapter and Santa Clara Valley Chapter.
This series is arranged chronologically within four sub series:
  • Sub series 2.1. Annual Reports, 1974, 1975, 1977. 3 folders.
  • Sub series 2.2. Presidents Reports, 1964, 1968, 1974. 1 folder.
  • Sub series 2.3. Coast Valley Chapter Membership Records, 1951-1969. 2 folders.
  • Sub series 2.4. Santa Clara Valley Chapter Membership Rosters 1969-1975, 1983-4. 1 folder.
Box Nos. 8-11

Series 3.  Newsletters 1953-2008

Physical Description: 4 boxes

Series Scope and Content Summary

The first newsletters, titled "Coast Valley Chapter Bulletin," were distributed as mimeographed copies, stapled in one corner, and usually 3-5 pages long. The first one in the collection is dated April 1953. The newsletters were issued monthly throughout the 1950s and 1960s and usually contain news of upcoming chapter meetings, a letter from the President, report from the Public Relations Committee, news items, minutes from the previous month's meeting, and minutes of the Executive Committee meeting. Many of these earlier newsletters contain details of the price of dinners at the meetings, and restaurant and club locations, for anyone interested in tracking economic and social aspects of Santa Clara Valley life.
In 1968 the Chapter changed its name to Santa Clara Valley Chapter. The newsletter continued under the name "Bulletin" and had undergone a few changes with each editor. By 1969 it was issued with a title page and included more community information: continuing education classes, seminars, conventions and awards.
In 1976 the newsletter's name changed to "Tracings" and it was streamlined again, the cover page dropped, to allow for quick reading. However, it continued to grow over the course of the next few years, accumulating fliers and more local information. In 1981, the cover page was re-instated to feature an architectural drawing or photograph submitted by chapter members. In 1988 the newsletter became a professionally produced, single-fold item without a cover sheet and has continued in that format since, with variation in content depending on the editor. The focus is on news from the Chapter's president and/or Executive Director, chapter news and events, local news items, continuing education courses, scholarships, public relations and legislative news.
The newsletters are useful for researchers tracking topical issues as well as trends in continuing education and architectural design (Cold War nuclear focus; 1970s focus on energy conservation; 1980s return to aesthetics, 1990s and 2000s sustainability).
This series is arranged chronologically and includes 1953-1969 inclusive, 1975 Vol. 6., 1976-1993 inclusive, 1996-1998, Nov 2001, Nov 2008.
Box Nos. 14, 23

Series 4.  Anniversary Celebrations 1975-2000

Physical Description: 1 box; loose photographic materials

Series Scope and Content Summary

The Chapter celebrated its 25th anniversary in 1975 at Villa Montalvo in Saratoga, and staged a month-long event, "Festival of Architecture." As part of the event, San Jose State University students designed a garden at the villa for the occasion, and the Chapter sponsored a five-lecture series in conjunction with the University of California Extension, Santa Cruz, and the Villa Montalvo Center for the Arts. An exhibit on architecture and related professions was also displayed at Villa Montalvo. Free programs and discussions were held on Saturday and Sundays throughout the month. To commemorate the anniversary, a 25th anniversary Yearbook was planned, with history written by Birge Clark and Chester Root. A copy of the Chapter's history was presented to each Charter Member at the December Chapter meeting. Planning documents, press releases, invitations, fliers, correspondence, news clippings, and photographs make up the bulk of these records.
The 35th anniversary Christmas gala held at the San Jose Athletics Club was combined with a surprise retirement send-off for Lola Millard Huber, who served 21 years as the Executive Secretary. Each former Chapter president was asked to submit a questionnaire documenting his term's accomplishments and activities, and memories of Ms. Huber. Her contributions to the success of the Chapter were detailed in a letter from William R. Hawley to the Mayor of the City of Mountain View, dated August 8, 1985. The documents for this event include photographs, invitations, planning documents, committee notes, and questionnaires from each President.
For its 50th anniversary, the Chapter again planned a Yearbook, and a "Family Tree" of the SCVC architectural firms. The Yearbook was announced and orders taken during 2000; however, due to cost overruns the book was not actually published and distributed until 2005. The time line is poster-sized; one is included in these documents. A separate box of duplicates is not included with this collection. Unfortunately, a copy of the yearbook was not submitted as part of the collection. The 50th anniversary gala was held on 13th October 2000 at Chateau La Cresta, 14831 Pierce Road, Saratoga. Kent Mather gave a detailed speech on the history of the Chapter; his notes are included in the folder as well as invitations, event planning documents, yearbook planning and budgeting, and a series of photographs of the Hotel De Anza restoration project submitted by Ken Rodrigues for the occasion.
The series is organized chronologically into three sub series:
  • Sub series 4.1. 25th Anniversary film negatives, planning and correspondence, press and announcements, 1975. 3 folders.
  • Sub series 4.2. 35th Anniversary and Lola Huber retirement party planning, correspondence, 1985. 1 folder.
  • Sub series 4.3. 50th Anniversary Yearbook planning and correspondence, event planning and correspondence, news clippings, 2000. 4 folders.
Box Nos. 12, 19

Series 5.  Knox-Goodrich Building Commemoration and Office Move 2000

Physical Description: 1 folder; 1 poster; loose photographic materials

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains documents related to the Chapter's move to the Knox-Goodrich Building in downtown San Jose, coinciding with the Building's Centennial. It includes a Centennial poster (oversize), Resolution of Commendation presented to AIA SCVC for involvement in historical preservation of the Knox-Goodrich building, and loose photographs.
Box Nos. 13, 23

Series 6.  Architecture Week 1980, 1992

Physical Description: .5 box; 1 poster; loose photographic materials

Series Scope and Content Summary

The collection contains records for two "Architecture Week" celebrations, designed to educate the public on the role of architects and their designs. In September 1980, the Chapter sponsored an exhibit at the San Jose Museum of Art, "Architecture for Industry in the Santa Clara Valley," featuring nineteen industrial sites designed by thirteen architectural firms. Former State Architect John Worsley spoke on the restoration of the historic State Capitol and Alan Williams AIA presented information on the designing and construction of the IBM Santa Teresa Laboratories in San Jose. At the end of the week, the "Orchids & Onions" awards banquet was held at the San Jose Hyatt to honor projects which "notably enhance the environmental quality of life in Santa Clara County." The Chapter received resolutions from the Santa Clara Board of Supervisors and thirteen cities proclaiming September 20-26, 1980 "Architecture Week." Planning and press for these events, as well as exhibit fliers, are included in the collection.
The next set of Architecture Week documents in the collection is from 1992 and consists of proclamations from seven Santa Clara County cities proclaiming April 19-26, 1992 as Architecture Week.
This series is arranged chronologically.
Box Nos. 13, 15-20, 23

Series 7.  Design Awards 1967-2004

Physical Description: 5 boxes; display boards; loose photographic materials

Series Scope and Content Summary

The first design award documents in the collection are from 1967 for the "Community and Architectural Design Awards Program." Honor, Merit and Commendation Awards were given in the categories of "Public, Municipal, Single Family Housing, Multiple Family Housing, Religious, Civic Buildings, and Office Building." As part of this competition, the town of Los Gatos submitted an extensive photo album which includes examples of each category. In 1971 the awards were for "Community Design." Lists of "Design Award" winners for 1974 and 1979 are included without categories. Next, the Mar/Apr 1980 issue of Santa Clara County Business proclaims that "not since 1975 has the Santa Clara Valley Chapter…conducted a countywide design awards program to honor and publicize examples of architectural excellence…Awards were made on the basis of merit without regard to types of projects." The article goes on to list jury members and award recipients, with several small photographs. (The larger versions of these photographs are included in the photographic collection).
As part of Architecture Week in 1980, the Chapter also initiated a publicly-nominated design award "Orchids & Onions," to seek "pleasing and displeasing man-made additions to our environment." From these nominations, a jury composed of representatives from industry, government, education and professions related to architecture awarded Orchids, Special Commendations and Honorable Mentions in the categories of Environmental Design, Planning Solutions, Buildings, Historic Preservation, Energy Management, Ecological Progress, Landscaping, and Graphic Design. All of the nominations in detail are included in the collection as well as full list of winners, and planning documents for the event and jury selection.
The 1981 "Orchids for Energy" Design Awards again commended man-made contributions to the environment. The awards presentation took place at the San Jose Hyatt on 30th September 1981, with speaker Peter Schwartz, futurologist from SRI International. The awards are broken into two folders. The first folder contains the Awards presentation Program; Press Release (handwritten draft and final); Background Information on the winning projects (draft with notes, and final); nomination/entry forms; finance report; copy of award to the City of San Jose, Computer-Based Load Management System; correspondence to city managers and mayors, solar distributors and community conservation and solar energy groups (including distribution lists). In 1982 the Design Awards returned as "Great Places Design Awards" and awarded Honor, Merit and Commendations without regard to the type of project. A brief list of winners is included.
The purpose of the 1985 Design awards was "to recognize, honor and encourage high quality design in the built environment constructed in the Santa Clara Valley or designed by Santa Clara Valley Architects; and to provide a stimulus for architects and owners to keep aesthetics as an overriding concern in the design of the built environment." Documents include a list of companies registered in the awards (number of entries, payments, category, registration number), and completed registration forms for the Industrial, Commercial, Public and Community categories, many of which also include a detailed description of the project.
The 1988 Design Awards Program's objective was "to stimulate and encourage excellence in the profession of architecture by publicly recognizing and honoring the truly exemplary achievement of the architect, his client and contractor...Careful consideration will be given to submittals which exhibit excellence in function, economy, environmental harmony, distinguished execution of the program, energy saving functions, and creative aspects in total design." Included are Call for Entries brochure; Awards presentation invitations; planning and correspondence for the awards presentation; list of competition winners; correspondence with the winners; recommendations from the Design Awards Committee dated June 5, 1987 recommending standardization of the design awards; Design Awards Committee roster and minutes; juror background; and completed registration forms.
The Call for Entries for the 1991 Design Awards seeks entries that reflect excellence in the profession of architecture and exemplary achievement. After 1988 a fourth category of historic preservation/adaptive use was added in addition to the existing categories of buildings, additions and remodels/renovations, interiors of buildings, and People in Architecture. The Awards presentation was held on November 15 at the San Jose Athletic Club. Included are planning documents, news clippings, press releases, transcript of juror's comments, correspondence with jurors, award certificates, invitations, completed registration forms (with detailed descriptions of the projects). Black and white photographs of design entries are cataloged in the photographic collection. The Chapter began displaying design award winners in its office lobby in 1991 and the exhibit boards for 1991 and 1993 are included in the collection.
From 1993 until 2001, the design awards were standardized and held every two years (2000/2001 an exception when it was held both years), honoring submissions that "exhibit excellence in function, economy, environmental harmony, distinguished execution of the program, energy saving functions and creative aspects in total design" For each year, the collection generally includes completed registration forms, lists of award winners, event planning documents, and invitations. The 2001 Design Awards were a slight departure. The theme was "Visions of the Valley" and its intent was to be a "celebration of good design." In addition to the awards reception held at the San Jose Museum of Art on October 25, 2001, the awards committee made an effort to publicize the work in San Jose Magazine and created a traveling show of entry boards for public display. In response to criticism about too few awards, they increased the number of categories and tailored those categories to match types of projects common to the community.
The partnership with San Jose Magazine continued with the 2002 and 2004 "Visions of the Valley" awards. The 2004 awards are the last in the collection and were held at the Community School of Music and Arts Finn Center, Mountain View, on October 21, 2004. These later awards documents include correspondence with event sites and San Jose Magazine; planning memoranda; Call for Entries; invitations; juror announcement; San Jose Magazine issues featuring the winners; and lists of winners.
This series is arranged chronologically.
Box Nos. 12, 18, 19, 21

Series 8.  News clippings and Scrapbooks 1950-1994

Physical Description: 2.5 boxes; 2 folders; 1 oversize scrapbook

Series Scope and Content Summary

Chester Root, an influential architect in the area and one of the founding members of the Chapter, also started the firm Higgins & Root. His individual photo album contains black and white photographs of residential and commercial properties which appear to date to the late 1940s. The Higgins & Root scrapbooks contain news clippings on their own projects, local legislation, architectural news from 1963-1983, and the San Jose State Spartan Stadium development. An index exists for the oversize Higgins & Root scrapbook, available as both an Excel spreadsheet and a printed copy.
The Chapter kept its own news clippings on members (1954-1959) as well as the "Architects Activities" column (1981-1994) from the Daily Pacific Builder. The Women's Architectural League kept scrapbooks of clippings, invitations and correspondence related to home tours, design shows, scholarships, and membership activities (1950-1966). Their scrapbooks are also interesting for their insights into fashion and social norms of that period.
This series is arranged chronologically.
Box Nos. 12, 22

Series 9.  Miscellaneous Activities various

Physical Description: 1 box; 3 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

An architectural exhibit documenting 200 years of architecture in the Santa Clara Valley, held at the Triton Museum in Santa Clara for the 1976 national bicentennial, was curated by Kent Mather, former Executive Director of AIASCV. The exhibit photographs and the exhibit catalog are included in the collection.
A 3-ring binder of 35mm slides contains residential, commercial and landscape photographs, as well as design award submissions. It includes a simple index with location names. The origin of the slides is not clear.
This series also includes Hawley and Peterson Architects Christmas card designs, miscellaneous correspondence, and the "Legends of the Valley" series featuring William R. Hawley FAIA.

Series 10.  Oversize Items various

Physical Description: 3 posters; 1 scrapbook; display boards of various sizes

Series Scope and Content Summary

Oversize items include the display boards for the 1993 Design Awards exhibit, an Architectural Week poster, 1889-1989 Knox-Goodrich Building Centennial poster, 1989 Shaker Crafts exhibit poster at Palo Alto Cultural Center, and Higgins & Root oversize scrapbook (includes news clippings).
Box No. 21

Series 11.  Loose Photographs various

Physical Description: 1 box

Series Scope and Content Summary

Variety of photographs including events, publicity photographs for publications, office interiors.