Change of Name of New Milpitas Park

O. H. P (Oliver Harrison Perry) Vennum Park

The November 2015 issue of the Milpitas Muse stated that of two new parks being planned for Milpitas, one is to be named for Bob McGuire (1930-2012), the first Director of Parks and Recreation for Milpitas, a longtime member of the PRCRC, and the late husband of our current Events Director Harriett McGuire.

The other, much smaller, new park was to be named for Captain Calvin Valpey, (1806-1880) who sailed produce from the Santa Clara Valley to San Francisco. He owned land and warehouses in Warm Springs and at Dixon Landing, Milpitas. Further research, however, revealed that his home, most of his holdings, and most of his time spent were in Warm Springs, not Milpitas.

Therefore it was decided that the new park would be named for
O. H. P (Oliver Harrison Perry) Vennum, who was a prominent farm owner and the first Justice of the Peace for Milpitas Township starting in 1861. He farmed in the eastern area of Milpitas and is believed to be buried at Laguna Cemetery.

From left to right are: Fred Vennum, O. H. P. Vennum, Mrs. Mary Vennum (his wife) and Charles Phillips. The child by the pumpkin in the foreground is Leo Vennum.
Photo courtesy of the Clyde Arbuckle Photograph collection, Martin Luther King Jr. San Jose Library
The 1895 photo, taken by famed
local photographer and painter
Andrew P. Hill, shows a field of mammoth pumpkins at the Vennum farm on Lundy Road.