Artifact Details


Silicon valley napkin

Catalog Number





A cocktail napkin from Walker's Wagon Wheel circa late 1980s. It is designed so that a prospective entrepreneur need only complete the check boxes in order to have a business plan ready to present to a venture capitalist for funding. The napkin designer/entrepreneur Bob Zeidman tells the following story about its creation. "In 1986 I created the Silicon Valley Napkin and began marketing and selling it. The printer required minimum print runs in the thousands, so I had boxes stacked to the ceiling in the kitchen of my one-bedroom apartment. By 1990, the napkin had run its course, and I still had boxes left. I approached The Garage, the precursor to the Tech Museum, to make a napkin donation. They were excited to have the napkins at their invitation-only, kickoff donor event, and I was glad to supply them. Afterwards, I thought maybe I could get my girlfriend and myself invited to this gala event and impress her by hobnobbing with the Silicon Valley bigwigs. The Garage invited us, and we mingled with, among others, Andy Grove, Ed Zschau, and Margaret Wozniak (filling in for her son Steve who couldn't make it at the last minute). Sitting at the table I asked the man on my right what he did for a living. He waved his arms around his head, "embracing" the room, and told me his company had designed the museum's interior space. Cool! I turned to the man on my left and asked him what he did for a living. He was the founder and CEO of a biotech firm in Berkeley. Wow! They both asked me what I did and, a little sheepishly, I picked up a napkin, proclaimed that I had supplied the napkins for tonight's event, and wiped the béarnaise sauce from my mouth. As a footnote, my girlfriend at the time is now my wife. I guess she was sufficiently impressed." Donated by David Laws. 1 scanned page.


ca. 1986


Zeidman, Bob


Z Enterprises

Identifying Numbers

Other number doc-45354e91765be Deprecated ITCHP Number


1 p.



Collection Title

Information Technology Corporate Histories Collection

Lot Number