Between 1938 and 1939, Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard, former Stanford University students, rented a 12 foot by 18 foot garage (at that time, with address 369 Addison Avenue), which was near the university campus, as a workshop for their pioneering endeavors. They also rented the ground floor of the house as a three-room apartment for Packard and his wife (Lucile). A shed was also rented for the bachelor Hewlett.
It is recorded that the two men started their company with just over $500.
The HP Garage has been considered a Palo Alto, California city landmark, according to the Palo Alto Historic Resources Board, since 1985, and a California Historical Landmark (No. 976) since 1987.
The partners built several audio oscillator at the workshop, which were sold to Walt Disney Studios to test sound quality for the movie Fantasia, the first major film with stereophonic sound.
Hewlett and Packard formalized their company on January 1, 1939, when they named their business Hewlett-Packard Company. It is considered as the birthplace of Silicon Valley, which is regarded as the world’s first high-technology area.
The Hewlett-Packard Company purchased the property in the year 2000. HP began to restore the Garage in 2004 to what it looked like back in 1939. The project was completed at the end of 2005. Information about the restoration efforts are found at: http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/abouthp/histnfacts/garage/.
Pictures of the garage appear at: http://www.pbase.com/pradipta/the_garage.
Hewlett-Packard (HP) is the world’s largest information technology corporation (by revenue). It is commonly known for such products as printers, personal computers, and computer services. Its headquarters is located in Palo Alto, California.