Terrell, William Dandridge (radio communication specialist) 1871-1960s
Electricity and Modern Physics, Division of, NMAH, SI
United States. Commerce Department
United States. Federal Radio Commission
0.5 cu. ft
1 box: 8 folders
William Dandridge Terrell (1871-1965) was born in rural Virginia and worked in government service for twenty-two years in the communications field. His specific duties are unknown, but in 1911, after his government service, he was appointed to a New York civilian post. His new duty was to insure the efficient operation of the freshly pioneered wireless apparatus on all Atlantic based Naval ships. In 1915, Terrell was transferred to Washington, D.C. where he supervised a staff of thirty-five. As Chief of Radio Division in the Commerce Department, Terrell was responsible for monitoring the [the use of?] radio nation's defense forces. Terrell was promoted to Chief of Field Operations for the Federal Radio Commission (FRC), which was created in 1934. Terrell continued in that post even when the FRC was changed to Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Terrell retired to Florida in 1943 at the age of 72. He died on March 23, 1965.
Collection documents William Dandridge Terrell's life from his 1911 appointment to the Commerce Department to the his death in the 1960s. The collection consists of a brief and partially completed autobiography and descendant listing; a large body of correspondence related to financial planning, insurance policies, and appointment notices; a program from an American Wireless Operators Convention held in his honor; several retirement announcements; business correpsondence concerning Terrell's inspection job from 1911-1914; and four photographs of Terrell, his family, and his friends. .
William Dandridge Terrell Papers, 1911-1964, Archives Center, National Museum of American History