Photograph of David Wheatley, early Napa Valley farmer  Photograph of David Wheatley circa 1957.

Napa Valley College is fortunate to have a local history collection, entitled the California Collection. The books were purchased from a bequest to build a local history collection and promote student and community interest in Napa's heritage. The collection comes primarily from the holdings of David Wheatley, a local prune farmer, and avid collector of California history.

 Jessamyn West  Photograph of Jessamyn West circa 1972.

Through a generous gift of Jessamyn West's husband, Henry Maxwell McPherson and daughter, Ann McCarthy Cash, the Napa College Library is pleased to feature the Jessamyn West Collection. Jessamyn West (1902-1984) was born in Indiana and spent her childhood there as a Quaker in an Irish Quaker community. She wrote several novels set in the southeastern part of the state. The Friendly Persuasion, published in 1945, was later made into a movie starring Gary Cooper. West lived in Napa from the 1950's until her death in 1984. In 1998, upon presenting a book for the collection, Mr. McPherson wrote: "For Napa College Library. This is the literary history of my wife, Jessamyn, who shared my struggles and successes in birthing and nurturing Napa College. Her one and constant reminder: The Library is the heart and soul of any college."


The Copia Collection of Cookbooks was purchased by the Napa Valley College Library in 2011 when the Copia Center closed. 


To support Napa Valley College's Viticulture and Winery Technology program, the library has developed a special Viticulture Collection of books donated by local vintners.