Walker's Wagon Wheel (1967-2000)
Walker's Wagon Wheel was a bar in Mountain View. Named after an old wagon wheel that was displayed in the bar, Walker's was a place where engineers came to mingle, unwind, and share information. Even the fiercest rivals came together at Walker's, a sort of neutral territory where ideas could be discussed freely in a cooperative environment. Ideas were shared and employees recruited here, fueling Silicon Valley's rapid rise as a leader in tech. The tavern was demolished in 2003.
Backstory and Context
According to David Laws, who works with the Computer History Museum, "The Wagon Wheel played a legendary role in the valley. People would get together and talk about technical problems. 'How did you etch that?' It's the sort of thing that would horrify an intellectual property lawyer" (quoted in Quinn / LA Times).
The interior of the bar featured upholstered booths and tables. Guests could order any number of cocktails from the wooden bar, as well as food, of which the hamburgers seemed to be the most popular. The western theme continued with wagon wheels and pictures, as well as an entire replica of a wagon on the roof of the building.
The bar was closed in 2000 after investigators found that the bar's card room was not meeting requirements stated in the 1997 Gambling Control Act, which all gambling institutions were required to follow. After three years of sitting empty and unused, the building was demolished in 2003. The lot that the bar sat on is still vacant as of this time.
Quinn, Michelle. "Preserving semiconductor's history, one bit at a time." Los Angeles Times, May 29, 2007. http://articles.latimes.com/2007/may/29/business/fi-semi29.
"Remembering Walker’s Wagon Wheel." SF Gate. May 21, 2007. Accessed June 04, 2017. http://blog.sfgate.com/techchron/2007/05/21/remembering-walkers-wagon-wheel/.