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A home for our Town's history.

CM Heritage & History Archives

Excitement abounds in Corte Madera as we anticipate the opening of our beautiful new Town Hall.  Thanks to the efforts of the Corte Madera Community Foundation, the building will include our new Corte Madera Heritage and History Archives, a treasure trove of materials about the delightful history of our town which will be accessible to the public both in-person and online.


The story of the Town’s archive project began in 1976, when Corte Madera resident Gerrie Reichard organized a group of local volunteers eager to know more about our town’s early years.  Their enthusiasm soon led them to establish the Corte Madera Heritage & History Group as a nonprofit organization.


During the next 17 years, Gerrie personally contacted dozens of longtime Corte Madera residents who gladly shared their photo albums with her and participated in a series of oral history interviews.  Gerrie continued to catalog and preserve historic photographs and other information about the Town drawn from a wide range of sources until her death in 1995.


In 2002, Jana Haehl, our own unofficial Town Historian, compiled and edited “A History of Corte Madera,” published by the Corte Madera Community Foundation.  Jana’s book features many of Gerrie’s photographs and stories.


Following the death of Ken Reichard in 2005, the Reichard family asked Jana to take custody of the extensive materials in the Corte Madera Heritage & History archives, knowing that she would preserve these artifacts for the benefit of the community.  Jana accepted custody of boxes and boxes of archival materials, and she then arranged for the Corte Madera Community Foundation to become the legal steward of the archives as part of our mission to preserve local history.


A few years ago, we determined that that the best way to ensure that the archived materials are both accessible to the public and securely preserved would be for the Town to agree to provide the space and the necessary infrastructure in the new Town Hall for in-person and remote access to the materials by the public.  We then found and contracted with a provider of an online portal system that offers secure online access to the archives to virtually anyone on the planet.


The Corte Madera Community Foundation is thrilled to sponsor this important project for our community.  We invite everyone to take advantage of this wonderful gateway to our history.  The first phase of the project will offer secure online access to hundreds of photographs, clippings, articles, memoirs, oral history interviews, maps, and links to other data related to Corte Madera.


After the Town Hall opens, please stop by to visit our new archives in person and enjoy easy access to Corte Madera’s rich history through our online portal - or try it anytime right from your own home!

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