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History Collection

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The San Bruno Public Library maintains a local history collection, comprised of photographs, newspapers, books and manuscripts, and other ephemera. The listing below reflects a portion of the Local History Collection. Most items may be scanned or photocopied for a fee; fragile items may require staff action. A library card or photo identification is required for viewing materials and will be held at the Reference Desk while items are being viewed. Most items listed below are library use only and must be requested at the Reference Desk. Making an appointment to view items is not required, but is appreciated, as items must be retrieved from a storage area.

To make an appointment, call the library at 650-616-7078 or email sbpl@plsinfo.org.

Alphabetical Listing of History Collection

Clipping Files: The San Bruno Public Library has newspaper clipping files covering a broad range of topics of local and regional interest, for a range of dates (earliest 1938, latest 2007). Click here to see the complete subject and date coverage of the clipping files.

Local Newspapers Archive/Historical Documents - Digital Collection:  In Library use only.  Documents available are:  History of San Mateo County California (1883); Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps; San Bruno Herald (1920-2004); The Millbrae and San Bruno Sun (1997, 1998); The Millbrae Sun (1996); The Sun-The Independent (1998-2004); Who's Who Pen News (1914, 1930-1937, 1939-1945).  Some document collections may be incomplete.

Edgemont Parent-Teacher Association Scrapbook: Binder containing notes, newspaper clippings and other documents, dating April 1, 1933 - April 1, 1934.

Friends of the San Bruno Library Newsletter: Bound collection of monthly newsletters from 1977 - 2002 (noninclusive).

La Peninsula: Magazine of the San Mateo County Historical Association. Index and hard copies. Click here to find the date ranges.

Lomita Park Fire District, Board of Commissioners Minutes: Bound ledger containing meeting minutes and correspondence from November 3, 1937 - November 3, 1954.

Polk Directories: Telephone directories for San Bruno: 1950, 1953, 1955, 1959.

Posy Parade Photographs: Binder containing more than one hundred original photographs, 1954 - 1956.

Precinct Register: San Bruno Precinct, San Mateo County, 1908 register book contains affidavits for voter registration filed in 1908, bound and sealed by the county clerk. Also separate Supplement to San Bruno Precinct Register: contains affidavits for voter registration filed after the close of registration in 1908, through July 1909, bound and sealed by the county clerk.

San Bruno Board of Health Meeting Minutes: Bound ledgers containing meeting minutes in two volumes, July 22, 1926 - August 23, 1932 and September 27, 1932 - September 26, 1939.

San Bruno Community Center Scrapbook: One scrapbook (1946 - 1951) containing photographs, newspaper clippings and documents surrounding the efforts to build the Community Center, now the Veterans' Memorial Recreation Center.

San Bruno Garden Club: Four scrapbooks (1959, 1960, 1967 and 1976) containing photographs, newspaper clippings and documents.

San Bruno Golden Anniversary Scrapbook: Large scrapbook containing photographs, newspaper clipping and programs relating to the City of San Bruno's 50th Anniversary in 1964.

San Bruno Historical Photo Gallery: The San Bruno Public Library has digitized a number of photographs and other ephemera from its local history collection. They are available for viewing at the Online Archive of California. The first 25 photos have also been arranged as a slideshow. An additional 130 photographs and other items from the library’s historical collections are available for viewing on Califa.

San Bruno History Timeline: Come explore the rich history of San Bruno! Made up of historic photographs and oral histories, this interactive timeline details San Bruno’s history from 1849 to the present. Learn about Eugene Ely’s daring flight, the Queen of the Charter Day Parade, Tanforan Racetrack, San Bruno’s first woman mayor, and many other aspects of our community’s history. Visit San Bruno’s Timeline now!

San Bruno Honor Roll: Bound ledger containing the names, addresses and family members of San Bruno residents who signed up for the armed forces during World War II (c.1941 - 1945).

San Bruno Library Commission Minutes: Bound ledgers containing meeting minutes in two volumes, March 9, 1943 - February 7, 1952 and March 6, 1952 - April 23, 1957.

San Bruno Public Library Records: Two boxes of records, including annual reports, budget information, and circulation statistics, dating from 1937 - 1984.

San Bruno Stories Project (Oral Histories): As part of the San Bruno Centennial (2014), a variety of San Bruno residents were interviewed about their lives, their memories, and their experiences in the San Bruno community. Visit the San Bruno Stories page and listen now!

San Bruno Voices (Oral Histories): Additional oral histories from San Bruno residents were recorded during the US Bicentennial. Here are stories from some of San Bruno’s founding citizens and first families, sharing their memories and experiences of San Bruno going back to the 1800s. These are glimpses of San Bruno’s past, as told by the people who helped shape our town. Listen to interview excerpts; listen to the full interviews.

San Bruno Water Commission Minutes: One ledger containing meeting minutes for July 9, 1920 - July 15, 1924.

School Newspapers: The Crest, Crestmoor High School, 1962 - 1969, bound copies.

US Bicentennial Committee Records: Two boxes of records, including meeting minutes, correspondence and information related to oral histories, dating from 1975 - 1977.

USO Club Scrapbook: One scrapbook (c.1940s) containing photographs and newspaper clippings related to the USO Club that operated in San Bruno during War World II.

Victory War Album of San Bruno & Lomita Park: Men and Women who Have Served in the Uniformed and Armed Forces in World War II: Bound volume from San Bruno Herald, circa 1946.

Yearbooks: The San Bruno Public Library holds yearbooks for the following schools: Belle Air Elementary School, Capuchino High School, Crestmoor High School, Engvall Intermediate School, and Parkside Intermediate School. Date ranges vary for each school and can be found here. Library use only; please request at Reference Desk.