The material includes technical notes, operating instructions and descriptions relating to projects which Hopper participated in at Harvard during and after World War II and later in the private sector. These projects involved the creation of the Navy's Mark I, II and III "mechanical calculators" (the fore runners of today's computers) and the UNIVAC and ENIAC civilian models. The photographs document both equipment and Hopper with her colleagues at work and on social occasions. There are numerous published articles and memoranda by Hopper and others on various technical aspects of computers. Clippings of newspaper and magazine articles relating to computers and their development are also included, as well as periodicals and brochures. A "humor file" contains jokes and anecdotes collected by Hopper.
Much of the material is annotated by Hopper, primarily through notations on 3 x 5 white slips of paper. Some of the annotations by Elizabeth Luebbert, who served as a summer research assistant in the Museum's Computer History Project.
The collection is divided into eleven series.
Series 1: Technical Documents, 1944-1949
Series 2: Photographs of Mark II, 1948
Series 3: Photographs at Harvard, 1944-1945
Series 4: Reports and Articles, 1946-1948
Series 5: Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corporation, 1949-1965
Series 6: Compiling Routines, 1952-1954
Series 7: Press Clippings, 1944-1953
Series 8: Periodicals and Brochures, 1950-1953
Series 9: Humor file, 1944-1953
Series 10: Machine Tape, undated
Series 11: Audiovisual Materials, undated
Biographical / Historical:
Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992) obtained her Ph.D. in mathematics from Yale University in 1934. She was an associate professor of mathematics at Vassar College
when she joined the Women's Reserve of the United States Navy, Women Accepted
for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES) in 1944 and was assigned to the computing project at Harvard University. She served under Commander Howard H. Aiken as a Wave until 1946, and remained at Harvard's Computation Laboratory as a research fellow until 1949. In that year she joined the Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corporation as a senior mathematician. When Eckert-Mauchly became a division of Remington Rand, Hopper remained as senior programmer, a title she retained until 1959. Subsequently, she served as systems engineer and director of automatic programming development (1959-1964) and staff scientist in systems programming (1964-1971) for the UNIVAC division of Sperry Rand Corporation. Hopper retired from UNIVAC in 1972, having returned to active service in the U.S. Navy from which she eventually retired with the rank of Rear Admiral.
Materials at the Archives Center
Computer Oral History Collection (AC0196)
This collection contains five oral history interviews with Grace Murray Hopper conducted on: July 1, 1968;
November 1, 1968; January 7, 1969; February 4, 1969; and July 5, 1972.
Grace Murray Hopper donated her materials to the National Museum of American History, Section of Mathematics in 1967 and 1968. The majority of the collection was donated through the Museum's Computer Oral History Project in 1972.
Collection is open for research.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
The papers of modernist painter and activist Harold Weston (1894-1972) date from 1894 to 1978 and measure 24.3 linear feet. The papers focus on Weston's painting career and his involvement with humanitarian and artistic causes. Found are biographical materials, correspondence, personal business records, association and organization records, commission and project files, materials relating to Weston's book Freedom in the Wilds, writings, artwork, printed materials, two scrapbooks, and photographs.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of modernist painter and activist Harold Weston (1894-1972) date from 1894 to 1978 and measure 24.3 linear feet. The papers focus on Weston's painting career and his involvement with humanitarian and artistic causes. Found are biographical materials, correspondence, personal business records, association and organization records, commission and project files, materials relating to Weston's book Freedom in the Wilds, writings, artwork, printed materials, two scrapbooks, and photographs. The papers document his involvement with the Committee to Defend America, Federation of Modern Painters and Sculptors, Food for Freedom, the International Association of the Plastic Arts, National Countil on the Arts and Government, National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council for the Arts, Reconstruction Service Committee, and the YMCA in Baghdad.
Biographical materials include biographical sketches and resumes, including a short biography written by Faith Weston in 1969. There are records from his school years at Exeter Academy and Harvard University that include yearbooks, report cards, scholarship information, Harvard Lampoon materials, and a diploma from Harvard. Also found are materials relating to Faith Weston, membership cards, memorials information, passports and travel papers, and wedding wishes.
Correspondence from Harold Weston dates from his school years up until his death in 1972. In letters to his family, Weston discusses his education; his travel and activities in the Middle East during World War I; the Adirondacks; convalescense in France in the mid-1920s; his immediate family life; and exhibitions. Also found are holiday cards designed and printed by Weston. The majority of correspondence is with his father S. Burns Weston, mother Mary, sister Esther, brother Carl, Faith Weston and the Borton family, children Barbara, Bruce, and Haroldine, and others. Also found are letters between Weston and friend Theodore Sizer and Duncan Phillips of the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C.
Personal business and financial records relating to Weston's exhibitions include delivery receipts, agreements, hand-drawn gallery plans for exhibitions, lists of exhibitions, framing invoices, legal information, pricelists, records of sales, and lists of works of art. Galleries with which Weston held exhibitions, sold, or lent works of art include Boyer Galleries, Corcoran Gallery, the Gallery in Paoli, Montross Gallery, the Phillips Collection, and Studio House Galleries.
Records relating to Harold Weston's memberships and involvement with professional associations and service organizations are from the Adirondack Trail Improvement Society, the Committee to Defend America, Federation of Modern Painters and Sculptors, Food for Freedom, International Association of the Plastic Arts/International Arts Association, National Countil on the Arts and Government, National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, Reconstruction Service Committee, and the Young Men's Christian Association, Baghdad. The files include correspondence, financial records, meetings and membership information, notes, organizational history, photographs, printed materials, programs and activities records, speeches, and writings.
Files that document Weston's Building the United Nations and the Treasury Relief Project sponsored "Procurement Building Murals" are found within the Commissions and Project files series. The files include correspondence, financial information, legal documents, photographs of the works of art and research photos, and printed materials. Correspondence of note includes letters written by Lewis Mumford, Duncan Phillips, Eleanor Roosevelt on behalf of Weston's Building of the United Nations and letters from Leonard Carmichael, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. Letters from Olin Dows of the Treasury Relief Art Project are within correspondence relating to the "Procurement Building Murals." Also found are preliminary sketches of the murals.
The Freedom in the Wilds series contains materials relating to the book which combined Weston's autobiography with a history of the Adirondack Mountain Reserve. Additional writings and notes are by Harold Weston and others, and include articles, poetry, notes, speech notes and speeches, and lists. Harold Weston's articles include "Persian Caravan Sketches" published in 1921 discussing his travels throughout the Middle East. Other articles are written by Duncan Phillips, Paul Rosenfeld, Barbara Weston, and Faith Weston. Also found are postcards annoted with notes by Harold Weston about his travels.
Artwork inlcudes sketches, etchings, copperplates, and woodcuts. There are copperplates entitled "Shroud" and of the series Building the United Nations for the Harvard Alumni bulletin in 1957; an untitled etching by Weston; sketches including those from Baghdad and watercolor sketches; a woodcut of the 1924 Weston holiday card; and scattered unsigned sketches probably not by Weston.
Printed materials include calendars with notations; clippings; exhibition catalogs and announcements for Weston's exhibitions dating from 1922-1976 and for others; gallery tags or labels for paintings shown in exhibitions; reproductions of illustrations for the Harvard Lampoon and full issues from 1911-1916; materials relating to the Harvard production of Henry IV, for which Weston designed the sets; reproductions of works of art by Weston and by others; school seals; and various art related publications.
There are two scrapbooks compiled by Faith Weston about her husband. The first contains materials relating to Weston's activity with the International Association of the Plastic Arts Conference of 1963, including a letter and photograph of President John F. Kennedy. The second scrapbook dates from 1977 and consists of general clippings relating to Weston's career, dating from 1917 to 1952 with additional materials added by Faith in 1977.
Photographs are of Weston, family members, exhibitions and installations, and works of art by Weston and others. There are also numerous photographs of Weston's travel through the Adirondacks, the Middle East, Europe, and India. Also found are glass plate negatives of works of art painted in France between 1926-1930; scattered glass plate negatives of Baghdad and the Middle East; glass plates belonging to S. Burns Weston of the Adirondacks, circa 1900; and approximately 100 lantern slides of the various Middle Eastern cities and ruins - probably used by Weston to illustrate his talks given in the 1920s.
The collection is arranged as 11 series. Glass plate negatives are housed separately and closed to researchers:
Series 1: Biographical Information, 1896-1974 (Box 1, 38; 0.4 linear feet)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1894-1975 (Box 1-3, 38; 2.5 linear feet)
Series 3: Personal Business and Financial records, 1912-1977 (Box 4; 0.4 linear feet)
Series 4: Associations and Organizations records, 1916-1972 (Box 4-10, 37-38; 6.5 linear feet)
Series 5: Commissions and Project files, 1935-1965 (Box 10-12, 38, OV 39; 1.4 linear feet)
Series 6: -- Freedom in the Wilds -- records, late 1960s-1976 (Box 12-13; 1.8 linear feet)
Series 7: Writings and Notes, 1912-1975 (Box 13-14; 0.6 linear feet)
Series 8: Artwork and Artifacts, circa 1917-1967 (Box 14, 21; 0.6 linear feet)
Series 9: Printed Material, circa 1900-1978 (Box 15-18, 38; 2.5 linear feet)
Series 10: Scrapbooks, circa 1963-1977 (Box 17-18; 0.5 linear feet)
Series 11: Photographs, circa 1900-1975 (Box 18-20, 22-36, 38; 4.8 linear feet)
Modernist painter and federal Treasury Relief Art Project artist Harold Weston (1894-1972) worked primarily in New York City and St. Huberts, New York in the Adirondacks. Weston was president of the U.S. Commission of the International Association of Art/Plastic Arts and the Federation of Modern Painters and Scultors. He was also chairman of the National Council on the Arts and Government and active with various political and humanitarian causes.
Harold Weston was born in 1894 in Merion, Pennsylvania into a privileged family. He attended school in Europe as a teenager, where he began to draw and sketch. In 1910, Harold contracted Polio which left him with a weak leg. After graduating from Exeter Academy, Harold entered Harvard University with the class of 1916 and was active in the Delta Upsilon Club and the Harvard Lampoon, for which he illustrated.
Despite his leg, Weston was determined to serve in some form during World War I. He traveled to Baghdad and volunteered with the YMCA. Here he started the Baghdad Art Club and organized exhibitions of soldier art. He remained in the Middle East until 1919 and served as the official painter for the British Army. The colors and the landscape of the region also inspired later works of art.
Upon returning to the United States, Weston built a one-room cabin in the Adirondack Mountains, where he lived and painted. He had his first one-man exhibtition at the Montross Gallery in 1922. In 1923, he married Faith Borton who moved with him to the Adirondacks. His wife inspired his series of "landscape nudes" which treated the body with different techniques that would typically be used in landscape painting. After suffering from a kidney infection in 1925, Weston and his wife moved to Ceres, France to recover. Weston continued to paint and started a family with Faith while in France. In 1930, the family moved back to the United States and lived in Greenwich Village, New York.
From 1936-1938, Harold Weston worked with the federal Treasury Relief Art Project and painted murals in the Procurement Building in Washington, D.C. The murals represent the growth of public buildings during the Great Depression. He took on a second major project to document the contruction of the United Nations in a series of six paintings. Later, the Smithsonian Instution received the paintings as gifts through an independent committee.
In addition to painting, Harold Weston devoted himself to public service by becoming involved in humanitarian causes, artist professional organizations, and federal government support of the arts. Weston served as president or chairman of three different organizations including the Federation of Modern Painters and Sculptors, the International Association of Art/International Association of the Plastic Art, and the National Council on the Arts and Government. Before the start of World War II, Harold Weston was named the Chairman of Essex County Committee to Defend America, which argued for financial support of the allied forces in World War II. After the start of the war, he helped form the Food for Freedom movement which urged American aid for European and Asian refugees. Similarly, Weston served as Executive Secretary for the Reconstruction Service Committee which was established to assist the rebuilding of Europe.
Later in life, Weston wrote a book Freedom in the Wilds, which combined his own autobiography with a history of the Adirondack Mountain Reserve. Harold Weston died on April 10th, 1972 in New York City.
The Archives of American Art also holds material lent for microfilming (reel N69-76) including biographic notes, exhibition material, clippings, a presentation album, and commemorative stamps.
Some, but not all, of these papers were included in later donations. Materials not donated remain with the lender and are not described in the collection container inventory.
Syracuse University also holds circa 14 linear feet of Harold Weston's papers.
Harold Weston lent the Archives of American Art materials for microfilming in 1969. Faith Borton Weston, Harold Weston's widow, donated the papers in several increments between 1972-1980 and lent materials for microfilming in 1977.
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
The Harold Weston papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Painting, Abstract -- New York (State) -- New York Search this
World War, 1914-1918 -- Personal narratives, American Search this
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- New York (State) -- New York Search this
Harold Weston papers, 1894-1978. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art. Glass plate negatives in this collection were digitized in 2019 with funding provided by the Smithsonian Women's Committee.
The papers of art historian and educator Milton Wolf Brown date from 1908 to 1998 and measure 26.0 linear feet and 0.225 GB. The collection documents Brown's career through scattered biographical material, correspondence with friends, publishers, colleagues, artists, museums, and art organizations, travel journals, files for the Prendergast Catalogue Raisonne Project, exhibition, research, teaching, and organization files, printed and digital material, and scattered photographs. A large portion of this collection consists of writings by Brown including notebooks, draft writings for books and other publications, lectures, and his writings as a student.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of art historian and educator Milton Wolf Brown date from 1908 to 1998 and measure 25.8 linear feet and 0.225 GB. The collection documents Brown's career through scattered biographical material, correspondence with friends, publishers, colleagues, artists, museums, and art organizations, travel journals, files for the Prendergast Catalogue Raisonne Project, exhibition, research, teaching, and organization files, printed and digital material, and scattered photographs. A large portion of this collection consists of writings by Brown including notebooks, draft writings for books and other publications, lectures, and his writings as a student.
Biographical material includes academic records, travel documents, financial documents, Brown's military records, and a transcript of a 1997 interview. Correspondence is with students, museums, universities, publishers, art organizations, and others. The bulk of these letters document Brown's professional activities, but also found are scattered letters from friends, artists, and colleagues such as Russell Lynes, Stanley Meltzoff, Louis Lozowick, Erwin Panofsky, and Paul Sachs.
This collection also contains 33 detailed travel journals written primarily by Milton Brown's wife, Blanche, documenting their travels in Europe, the United States, and other parts of the world. Within the writings series are notebooks from the period that Brown was a student and while traveling in Europe in 1959 and 1960; book project files, which include draft writings as well as related correspondence, research material, notes, photographs and other material. Files are found for American Art: Painting, Sculpture, Architecture, Decorative Arts, Photography (1979), American Painting, From the Armory Show to the Depression (1955), The Story of the Armory Show (1963, 1988 2nd ed.), and other books. Among the writings are files for lectures written by Brown; essays, articles, and scripts written for various publications; general research notes and student writings; and writings by others sent to Brown for review and feedback.
Brown maintained a set of files documenting his work on the Prendergast Catalogue Raisonne Project, which consist of correspondence, drafts, reports, and research materials, including notes on twenty meetings with Mrs. Prendergast. Exhibition files document Brown's work as curator on several major exhibitions, including a Jacob Lawrence exhibition at the Whitney Museum, and his contributions to others. Also found here are three interviews of Milton Brown and Marcel Duchamp concerning the 50th Anniversary of the Armory Show and anniversary exhibition. Research files include notes, research material, and printed material on various art-related subjects that were maintained by Milton and Blanche Brown for regular use for lectures, teaching, and writing projects. Brown's teaching files contain scattered lecture notes, syllabi, correspondence, faculty records, and other materials from his time at CUNY, Brooklyn College, and other visiting professorships. Organization Files contain correspondence, reports, planning documents, and event materials. These records document his membership or advisory role in various organizations such as the Archives of American Art and Century Association.
This collection also contains printed material, such as exhibition announcements, newsletters, brochures, journals, event programs, and magazine and newspapers clippings compiled by Brown. Scattered photographs include nine photographs of Milton Brown, a few photographs of friends, and photographs of artwork.
The collection is arranged as 11 series:
Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1932-1998 (Box 1; 0.3 linear feet)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1908, 1934-1998 (Boxes 1-3; 1.8 linear feet)
Series 3: Travel Journals, 1941-1996 (Boxes 3-4; 1.6 linear feet)
Series 4: Writings, circa 1929-1990s (Boxes 4-13, 25; 8.7 linear feet)
Series 5: Prendergast Catalogue Raisonne Project, circa 1952-1990 (Boxes 13-14, 25; 1.8 linear feet)
Series 6: Exhibition Files, 1962-circa 1997 (Boxes 14-16, 28; 2.0 linear feet, ER01; 0.225 GB)
Series 7: Research Files, circa 1930s-1986 (Boxes 16-19; 3.0 linear feet)
Series 8: Teaching Files, circa 1946-1993 (Boxes 19-21; 2.0 linear feet)
Series 9: Organization Files, 1959-1995 (Boxes 21-22; 1.3 linear feet)
Series 10: Printed Material, 1925-1990s (Boxes 22-24, 26, 27; 3.2 linear feet)
Series 11: Photographs, circa 1956-1990s (Boxes 25, 27; 0.2 linear feet)
Milton Wolf Brown (1911-1998) was an art historian and educator in New York City.
Known to his friends as "Mainey," Brown was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1911. At a young age he intended to be a painter and studied with Louis Lozowick. However, instead of attending art school, he entered New York University to study education and eventually received his master's and doctorate in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts. While there he took courses with Walter Friedlander, Erwin Panofsky, and Mayer Schapiro. He also received fellowships to the Courtauld Institute of Art in 1934 and Brussels in 1937, and studied from 1938-1939 at the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University. In 1938 he married fellow student Blanche Levine. After serving in World War II, he began teaching in the art department at Brooklyn College in 1946. There he developed a specialization in American art history and his doctoral dissertation, American Painting from the Armory Show to the Depression, was published in 1955. In 1963 he participated in the fiftieth anniversary exhibition of the 1913 Armory Show. The publication of his book Story of the Armory Show coincided with this event.
In 1971 Brown established the graduate program in Art History at the City University of New York, which became preeminent in the areas of modern art and American art history. During the 1980s he remained a resident professor at CUNY, though he retired in 1979, and he held visiting professorships at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts at the National Gallery of Art. From 1983 to 1987 he had a senior fellowship at Williams College for the Prendergast Catalogue Raisonne Project.
Over the course of his career Brown curated exhibitions, including an exhibition on the works of Jacob Lawrence and The Modern Spirit: American Painting and Photography, 1908-1935, and wrote for numerous publications. He also served as an active member of several professional societies. Brown was close friends with art scholars and artists, such as Jack Levine, Moses and Raphael Soyer, Ad Reinhardt, and Paul Strand. In 1991 he returned to painting landscape watercolors, and had the opportunity to exhibit his work before his death in 1998.
Also at the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Milton Wolf Brown, conducted in 1976 by Paul Cummings.
The Milton Wolf Brown papers were donated in 2000 and 2001 by Blanche R. Brown, Brown's widow. Three reel-to reel sound recordings were lent for duplication to cassette and transcript in 1986 by Milton Brown. A cassette copy of the Martha Deane interview was donated in 2006 by Milton Brown's estate, via Naomi Rosenblum. Additional material was donated in 2002 and 2004 by Naomi Rosenblum, executor for the estate of Blanche R. Brown, who died in 2002.
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
The Milton Wolf Brown papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Patterson, Frederick D. (Frederick Douglass), 1901-1988 Search this
18.66 Linear feet (21 boxes)
1882 - 1988
President of Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute (later Tukegee Institute; now Tuskegee University) from 1935 - 1953 and founder of the United Negro College Fund (1944). Patterson was born on October 10, 1901. Orphaned at age two, he was raised by his eldest sister, Wilhelmina (Bess), a school teacher in Texas. He studied at Iowa State College, where he received a doctorate in veterinary medicine in 1923 and a master of science degree in 1927. Five years later, he was awarded a second doctorate degree from Cornell University. Patterson taught veterinary science for four years at Virginia State College, where he was also Director of Agriculture. His tenure at Tuskegee University started in 1928 and spanned almost 25 years, first as head of the veterinary division, then as the director of the School of Agriculture and finally as Tuskegee's third president. He married Catherine Elizabeth Moton, daughter of Tuskegee University's second president, Dr. Robert R. Moton. Patterson also founded the School of Veterinary Medicine at Tuskegee in 1944, the same year he founded the United Negro College Fund (UNCF). The UNCF continues today as a critical source of annual income for a consortium of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tuskegee University among them.
Scope and Content note:
The Frederick Douglass Patterson Collection comprises 18.66 linear feet of correspondence, manuscripts, research material, published writings, photographs, audiovisual material, scrapbooks, diplomas, awards, and other materials chronicling the personal life and professional career of Frederick D. Patterson.
The collection is comprised of glimpses into the life of Dr. Patterson. The little correspondece that survived is located in Series 2: Career, Series 3: Correspondence, and Series 4: Organizations. Some of the correspondence takes the form of congratulatory notes from 1953 during Patterson's transfer from Tuskegee Institute to the Phelps-Stokes Fund, located in Series 2. There is also a personal note sent to Patterson's wife, Catherine Patterson, from George Washington Carver in which he describes peanut oil as a good massage oil.
The collection is arranged by series and chronologically therein:
1. Biography: This series provides insight into Patterson's family life through primary documents. It is comprised of family wills, insurance policies, and his autobiography. Sub-series are arranged alphabetically by title.
2. Career: This series contains materials from Patterson's long professional career in the field of higher education, including his tenure as present of both the Tuskegee Institute and the Phelps-Stokes Fund. Sub-series are arranged chronologically.
3. Correspondence: This series contains letters sent to Patterson (and his wife) of a personal and professional nature. Several letters relate to Patterson's personal business "Signs and Services," which was a small billboard advertising company. There are also letters from George Washington Carver. The series is arranged chronologically.
4. Organizations: This series contains material from the various foundations Patterson founded and to which he belonged, including the R.R. Moton Fund and the College Endowment Funding Plan. He is especially noted for developing the United Negro College Fund. The series is organized alphabetically by sub-series title.
5. Honors: This series contains the awards, citations, and resolutions Patterson received during his lifetime. Folders are organized chronologically.
6. Subject Files: This series comprises articles, employee vitas, and other documents collected and organized by Patterson. Among the subjects in the files are higher education, Negroes, segregation, civil rights, and employee records. There is no key to this system.
7. Photographs: The Photograph series mostly documents Patterson's tenure at Tuskegee University. The series includes images of Patterson and various other notable figures during formal functions at the university. Noteworthy personalities include George Washington Carver, Eleanor and Franklin D. Roosevelt, and President Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana.
8. Printed Materials: This series contains books, programs, and other documents from Patterson's personal collection. The series is organized alphabetically by author's last name.
Frederick Douglass Patterson was born on October 10, 1901 to parents William and Mamie Brooks Patterson, in the Buena Vista Heights area of Anacostia in Washington, D.C. The youngest of six children, Patterson's parents died of tuberculosis before he reached the age of two years, his mother when he was eleven months old and his father a year later. Following his parents' death, the Patterson children were split up and sent to live in the homes of family and friends as stipulated in his father's last will and testament until he was seven years old, Patterson lived in the Anacostia area with a family friend he called "Aunt Julia."
When he was seven years old, Patterson's older sister Bess (a recent graduate of the Washington Conservatory of Music) decided to seek employment in Texas and took him with her. Many of their parents' family still lived in the state, which allowed Patterson the opportunity to spend months with various aunts and uncles, while his sister taught music throughout the South. After completing eighth grade, Patterson joined his sister at the Prairie View Normal School, where she taught music and directed the choir. Patterson attended the school for four years, during which time he developed an interest in veterinary medicine.
In 1920, Patterson enrolled at Iowa State College as a veterinary student. He graduated in 1923 and moved to Columbus, Ohio, to join his brother John. While there, he took the Ohio State Board exam for Veterinary Medicine. Although he became certified, a lack of money prevented him from practicing. Four years later he received a teaching offer from Virginia State College (VSC) in Petersburg, Virginia, which afforded him the opportunity to work within his profession. While at VSC Patterson took a leave of absence and returned to Iowa, in 1926, to pursue a Master's degree in veterinary medicine.
After five years at VSC, the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute offered Patterson a position running the veterinarian hospital and teaching veterinary science. He moved to Tuskegee, Alabama in 1928. While at Tuskegee, Patterson decided to pursue a Ph.D. in bacteriology at Cornell University. During his year and a half leave from Tuskegee, Patterson completed his coursework and wrote his dissertation. After he returned to Tuskegee, a serial killer murdered three people, including the head of the Department of Agriculture. Confronted with this tragedy, school officials quickly offered Patterson the vacant position, which he accepted in 1934.
Robert R. Moton, second president of Tuskegee, retired in 1935 and a search was soon commenced to find the next president for the school. Patterson, in the meantime, pursued more personal matters when he met and married Catherine Moton (with whom he would have a son) in June 1935. By then he was already hired to take his now, father-in-law's, position as President of Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute.
As president of Tuskegee, Patterson made several changes and many additions to the institution. He increased faculty housing for professors; integrated the Board of Trustees' meeting meals and eventually arranged for both balck and white members to eat at one table; shortened the name to Tuskegee Institute; and established the Department of Commercial Dietetics in 1935, the veterinary medicine program in 1942, and the engineering program in 1948. While many considered Patterson's changes important achievements, it was his development of the Commercial/Military Aviation Program that would bring the school distinction and fame.
Patterson first attempted to develop the aviation program in 1939. The government fostered the development of such programs by subsiding the expenses. All a university had to do was present able-bodied instructors and willing pupils. Tuskegee had both. By 1940 the United States Air Force was interested in integrating its forces. In order to do this they needed trained black pilots. Tuskegee was the perfect place to provide the needed pilots since the school was situated in an all-black environment where students could concentrate on learning to fly without having to worry about racist reactions from their fellow classmates. To accommodate this program, the Tuskegee Army Air Base was created. Tuskegee pilots flew missions throughout World War II and would later be recognized for their bravery.
An important part of Patterson's duties as president was fund-raising. By 1943 he found it increasingly difficult to find ample sources of funds to run the Institute. He came to realize Tuskegee and similar black colleges would benefit if they pooled their funding resources and asked for larger amounts of money from philanthropic individuals and organizations as a collective. Working together would cut fund-raising expenses; this in turn would leave more money for the colleges to use as they wished. Patterson named his new creation the United Negro College Fund (UNCF); it would go on to raise millions of dollars for the nation's historically black colleges. He served as the first president of the organization.
During the fifteen years Patterson served as president of Tuskegee, he hosted many famous personalities, including W.E.B. DuBois, Mary McLeod Bethune, Eleanor Roosevelt, Duke Ellington, Paul Robeson, Pearl Buck, and Andre Segovia. He developed a lasting relationship with George Washington Carver, who had been a professor with Tuskegee since the days of Booker T. Washington.
Patterson served on many organizational boards in addition to his educational work. His involvement with the Phelps-Stokes Fund would ultimately lead Patterson to leave his beloved Tuskegee Institute to apply his educational philosophies on a broader scale. In 1953 the Fund approached Patterson and offered him the presidency of the organization. Patterson, feeling he needed a change, accepted the offer. He resigned from Tuskegee that same year and moved to New York to begin a new life.
Organized in 1911, the Phelps-Stokes Fund supported African, African American, and Native American education and worked on solving housing problems in New York City. Patterson's interest in African education began before he joined Phelps-Stokes. In 1950 the World Bank/International Bank Commission to Nigeria hired him to "evaluate the resources of Nigeria and…to study the educational programs and the organizational structure of advanced education." Through his work with the Fund he continued his efforts to improve the educational opportunities for Africans and help them move beyond colonialism. Patterson traveled extensively throughout the west coast of Africa in support of these goals.
In addition to forming the UNCF, Patterson created two other organizations (the Robert R. Moton Institute and the College Endowment Funding Plan), during the mid 1960s and 1970s. Each was designed to improve funding efforts for historically black colleges. The Robert R. Moton institute began as an off-shoot of the Phelps-Stokes as a site for conferences to address the Fund's primary concerns. Patterson's idea for the Institute came from a desire to put to use a piece of property inherited after Moton's death. Empathy with the frustrations of college presidents regarding the restricted funding for institutional expenses led Patterson to create the College Endowment Funding Plan. The Endowment was designed to alleviate this situation by providing matching funds to eligible colleges. The Endowment made its first payment in 1978. Unfortunately, by the 1980s, the Moton Institute lost most of its government funding due to federal cutbacks. This resulted in reductions to the Institute's programming.
It was not until Patterson was well into his eighties that he began to retire from his life of public service. On June 23, 1987, President Ronald Reagan presented Dr. Patterson with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest possible honor that can be bestowed upon a civilian, for his service in higher education and his role in creating funding sources for the nation's historically black colleges. A year later Frederick Douglass Patterson died at the age of eighty-seven.
undated -- Xavier University
1941 -- Virginia State College
1941 -- Wilberforce University
1953 -- Morehouse College
1956 -- Tuskegee Institute
1961 -- New York University
1966 -- Edward Waters College
1967 -- Atlanta University
1969 -- Franklin and Marshall College
1970 -- Virginia Union University
1975 -- Bishop College
1977 -- St. Augustine's College
1982 -- Brooklyn College of the City University of New York
1984 -- Stillman College
1985 -- Payne College
undated -- Association for the Study of Negro Life and History Carter
undated -- The Southern Education Foundation, Inc. Distinguished Service Citation
undated -- The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) and Texas Association of Developing Colleges Annual Leadership Awards
1950 -- Christian Education department, African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, Inc. Citation for Distinguished Service
1953 -- Bethune-Cookman College, the Mary McLeod Bethune Medallion
1953 -- John A. Andrew Clinical Society at Tuskegee Institute, Citation for Distinguished Service in the Cause of Humanity
1953 -- Tuskegee Institute, Certificate of Appreciation for 25 Years of Service
1957 -- Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. Beta Lamda Sigma Chapter, Bigger and Better Business Award
1960 -- National Alumni Council of the UNCF, Inc. Award
1963 -- National Business League, Booker T. Washington Award
1965 -- Booker T. Washington Business Association, Certificate of Acknowledgement
1970 -- Moton Conference Center Award
1970 -- Tuskegee National Alumni Association, R.R. Moton Award
1972 -- American College Public Relations Association, 1972 Award for Distinguished Service to Higher Education
1972 -- UNCF F.D. Patterson 71st Birthday Award
1975 -- National Business League, Booker T. Washington Symbol of Service Award
1976 -- Phelps-Stokes Fund, Continuous Creative and Courageous Leadership in the Cause of Higher Education for Blacks
1977 -- Yale Alumni Associates of Afro-America, Distinguished Service Award
1979 -- Alpha Phi Alpha Education Foundation Inc., Distinguished Educator Award
1979 -- Tuskegee Institute Alumni Association Philadelphia Charter Award
1980 -- The Iowa State University Alumni Association, Distinguished Achievement Citation
1980 -- Gary Branch NAACP Life Membership Fight for Freedom Dinner 1980, Roy Wilkins Award
1980 -- State of Alabama Certificate of Appreciation
1982 -- St. Luke's United Methodist Church Achievement Award
1983 -- Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., Distinguished Service Award
1984 -- Booker T. Washington Foundation, Booker T. Washington Distinguished Service Award
1984 -- The Ohio State University Office of Minority Affairs, Distinguished Humanitarian and Service Award
1985 -- Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc, Eta Zeta Lamda Chapter Civic Award
1985 -- United States, Private Sector Initiative Commendation
1987 -- Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc of New York State, Founders Day Award
1987 -- Presidential Medal of Freedom
1987 -- Brag Business Achievement Award
1987 -- Phelps-Stokes Fund, Aggrey Medal
1941-1971 -- Southern Educational Foundation, Inc., Board Member
1943-1988 -- United Negro College Fund, Founder, President, and Member
1960s-1988 -- Robert R. Moton Memorial Institute, Founder
1970s-1988 -- The College Endowment Funding Plan, Founder
undated -- American National Red Cross, Board of Governors Member
undated -- Boys Scouts of America, National Council Member
undated -- Citizens Committee for the Hoover Report on Reorganization of Federal Government, Board Member
undated -- Institute of International Education, Advisory committee Member
undated -- National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Life Member
undated -- National Business League, President and Board Member
undated -- National Urban League, National Committee Member
undated -- Phelps-Stokes Fund, Board of Trustees Member
undated -- President's Commission on Higher Education for Negroes
undated -- Southern Regional Education, Board of Control Member
Additional biographical materials in the Dale/Patterson Collection of the Anacostia Community Museum Archives.
This collection contains artifacts catalogued in the ACM Objects Collection.
The Frederick Douglass Patterson papers were donated to the Anacostia Community Museum in 2001 by Frederick Douglass Patterson, Jr.
Use of the materials requires an appointment. Please contact the archivist to make an appointment: ACMarchives@si.edu.
The Frederick Douglass Patterson papers are the physical property of the Anacostia Community Museum. Literary and copyright belong to the author/creator or their legal heirs and assigns. Rights to work produced during the normal course of Museum business resides with the Anacostia Community Museum. For further information, and to obtain permission to publish or reproduce, contact the Museum Archives.
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Papers of Uriah A. Boyden (1804-1879), a Boston civil and mechanical engineer and the inventor of the Boyden turbine. Materials include correspondence, notes, calculations, articles, notebooks, legal documents, financial documents, patents and patent assignments, design drawings, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, business cards, and a print of a daguerreotype.
Scope and Content:
This collection documents the activities of Uriah Atherton Boyden (1804-1879), a Boston civil and mechanical engineer. The papers cover the span of Boyden's life, but the bulk of the papers date from between 1830 and 1879. The materials relate to his professional engineering life, including his work as an engineer for the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Corporation and his work with turbines at New England mills and manufacturing companies. The collection also contains papers that illustrate his scientific interests, including sound, meteorology, chemistry, and physics. Materials include correspondence, notes, calculations, articles, notebooks, legal documents, financial documents, patents and patent assignments, design drawings, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, business cards, and a print of a daguerreotype.
Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879, consists of three subseries: Subseries 1, Outgoing Correspondence, 1830-1879; Subseries 2, Incoming Correspondence, 1823-1879; and Subseries 3, Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1825-1879. The bulk of the series is comprised of letters, although some telegrams are included. The majority of Boyden's letters discuss his business dealings and scientific interests, but some correspondence is related to family matters. Family correspondents include his brothers Seth Boyden (1788-1870), William Pitts Boyden, Otis Boyden, Benjamin F. Boyden, and Alexander Boyden (1791-1881); his sisters Sarah Boyden (d. 1834) and Sabra Smith; and his parents Seth (1764-1840) and Susanna Boyden. He also corresponded with his niece Susan Boyden Burnet and sister-in-law Abigail Boyden. Subjects discussed include Seth Boyden's illness, death, and will in 1840 and Sarah Boyden's death in 1834.
Correspondence from the 1830s discusses the construction of the dry dock at the Charlestown Navy Yard, Massachusetts; experiments conducted at the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam; Boyden's work as Chief Engineer for the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Corporation and his subsequent lawsuit against the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Corporation over a pay dispute; the employment of assistants; and the construction of a mill at the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company.
Frequent correspondents include William Livingston, who was deposed in Boyden's lawsuit of the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Company; F. George Stark of Amoskeag Village; John Jacques of Worcester, Massachusetts; R. Read of Amoskeag Manufacuring Company; and Ezekial Albert Straw (1819-1882), a civil engineer and agent for the Amoskeag Manufacuring Company and the governor of New Hampshire from 1872-1874. Correspondence from the 1840s is primarily about turbines. Subjects include the development of the Boyden Turbine at the Lowell Appleton Company and Boyden's patents (US Patents 5,068, 5,090, 5,114, 10,026, and 10,027).
Other topics include the Merrimack Manufacturing Company's new mill; the Stark Company's turbine; turbine pits for the Merrimack Company's Picking House; Boyden's design for a turbine built at the Lowell Machine Shop and used at Tilestons & Hollingsworth Upper Mill; and requests for books. During this period, Boyden sent letters to various manufacturing companies and mills, informing them he would be willing to sell his patent rights for turbine improvements and provide plans and specifications, although he would not oversee the construction of turbines. Recipients of these letters include hydraulic engineer James B. Francis, P. T. Jackson, treasurer of the Proprietors of Locks and Canals; T. G. Cary, treasurer of the Appleton Company; John Avery, agent of the Hamilton Manufacturing Company; Alexander Wright, agent of the Lowell Manufacturing Company; Charles T. Storrow, treasurer of the Essex Company and the Atlantic Cotton Mills; R. Read, agent of the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company; Amos A. Lawrence, treasurer of Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company; John Mixer, treasurer of the Suncook Manufacturing Company; and William Dwight, treasurer of the Saco Water Power Company.
Letters relating to the Atlantic Cotton Mills turbine design, testing, and lawsuit comprise a portion of the correspondence from the late 1840s and 1850s. Other correspondence from the 1850s includes letters to and from Boyden's employee Norman W. Stearns, who traveled to California and Australia; discussion of the testing of a turbine at the Hamilton Manufacturing Company Mills at Lowell; an extract from a report on the power derived from the tides at the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam; a letter from the Smithsonian Institution encouraging Boyden to publish his research on turbines; and the difficulties with turbine experiments at the Nashua Manufacturing Company's mills. Boyden continued to offer his patent rights to various companies, including James T. Ames, agent of the Ames Manufacturing Company, and Ezekial Albert Straw, agent of the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company.
Some letters were written by assistant Edward Sawyer on behalf of Uriah Boyden. Letters from the 1860s include Boyden's correspondence with the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia concerning the prize he created for any resident of North America who could determine by experiment whether all rays of light are transmitted at the same velocity. Common subjects include turbines; physics; Henri Giffard's invention of the injector; an apparatus for atmospheric electrical experiments; expanding gas; and the purchase of chemical substances.
There are many letters to the Bailliere Brothers, importers of periodicals; and E. G. Wallis, the Assistant Assessor of the third district of Boston for taxes. In 1862, Boyden wrote a letter to Massachusetts Governor John A. Andrew offering a letter of recommendation for hydraulic engineer James B. Francis. Boyden also paid for a lecture in 1862 given by George Boutwell on liberating some Southern slaves. Letters from the 1870s discuss a variety of topics, including patents, the New England Glass Company, and the purchase of books. Finally, a folder of miscellaneous materials includes several letters of recommendation and introduction for Boyden, and a few letters neither to nor from Boyden.
Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870, contains primarily Boyden's notes and calculations relating to the design, development, construction, and testing of turbines. There are also drawings of turbines, excerpts from scholarly journals about turbines, and the manuscript article about turbines for American Cabinet authored by Boyden. A published copy of this article is located in Series 10, Printed Material, 1835-1879. Some materials are in French.
A large portion of the papers are the calculations and results of experiments on Turbine No. 3 of the Atlantic Cotton Mills. More information on these experiments can be found in the Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867, and Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864. Experiments conducted at the Appleton Company, where Boyden developed the Boyden turbine, appear in this series.
The turbine notes also contain measurements and computations for turbines for the Chicopee Manufacturing Company; designs and calculations for the Tileston and Hollingsworth's turbine in Dorchester, Massachusetts; an estimate for installing turbines for the Jackson Company; and a report to the Boston Water Power Company on the estimate of power from the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam. Boyden was assisted in his calculations and experiments by Maximilian L. G. Wilde, Edward Sawyer, [Neil?], W. Mertz, David Dows, and James Emerson. The series contains an oversize miscellaneous folder comprised of calculations and tables.
Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875, contains groups of papers that Boyden assembled into packets and numbered and labeled with topical categories. The papers cover a wide range of topics. A large portion of the materials are excerpts or notes from published sources, although some packets contain Boyden's own calculations, tables, and surveys. Some materials are in French, German, and Greek and some have been translated from French and German into English.
One subject Boyden explores in depth is tobacco, including the tobacco trade, taxes on tobacco, consumption statistics from the United States and Europe, different varieties of plants, and tobacco's effect on health, including whether or not it contributes to mental illness. In addition, he discusses alcohol's effect on health; whether crime is connected with drinking alcohol, liquor licensing laws, and the option of prohibition in Massachusetts. He was also interested in the early history of the Bible, including how it was translated from the original Hebrew and how Egyptian connects to Old Testament history. Boyden compares different religious practices, including Islam, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, and ancient Greek and Egyptian religion.
Boyden collected a great deal of information from census data in the United States and Great Britain. In the Boston area, he looks at the number of births among Irish immigrants compared to native born Americans, and in particular explores whether tobacco use increases or decreases births among Irish immigrants. He also utilizes population statistics to discuss mental illness in both Europe and the United States. Like Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879, the Subject Files contain statistics on the cause of and response to fires in Boston.
Finally, the Subject Files include information on a variety of scientific subjects. For instance, a portion of materials discuss hydraulic lime, atomic theory and molecules, chemistry, thermoelectricity, meteorology, astronomy, batteries, and water pressure through pipes. Boyden quotes from Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species in his explorations of natural history. Several packets are comprised of surveys of property lots in Brookline, Massachusetts and the Longwood area of Boston. Sources Boyden utilized include publications such as the Encyclopaedia Britannica, the Bible, the New York Herald, The Boston Daily Advertiser, L'Annales des Ponts et Chaussées (The Annals of the Department of Civil Engineering), Brockhaus's Encyclopaedia, Annals of Chemistry and Pharmacy, Les Comptes Rendus de l'Académie des Sciences (The Proceedings of the French Academy of Sciences), Annales de Chimie et de Physique (Annals of Chemistry and Physics), Annales d'Hygiène (Annals of Hygiene), Appleton's Cyclopaedia, Hunt's Merchant's Magazine, Esquirol's Treatise on Mental Maladies, The London Times, and Poggendorff's Annals. The packets also contain call slips from the Boston Athenaeum and the Boston Public Library.
Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879, consists of a wide range of material. Some papers are in French and German, or translated from published French and German into English. The series encompasses notes from Boyden's scientific experiments and observations. One subject Boyden studied indepth was meteorology, and the series contains weather observations, recordings of temperature and air pressure, and eyewitness accounts of unusual weather.
In addition, Boyden conducted experiments on the effect of a dam in the Merrimack River, the specific heat of steam, electricity, the effects of rays on bisulphide of carbon, glass making, and oils. Five notebooks document experiments on the chemical combination of oxygen with liquids at atmospheric temperatures. Furthermore, the series contains information on sound experiments made at Chelsea, Massachusetts, and at the Charlestown, Massachusetts aqueduct, which are also discussed in Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867, and Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872. Boyden conducted surveys of various industrial projects, including the Jackson Manufacturing Company's mill work and dam; the sewers of Lowell, Massachusetts; the Nashua Mills; the aqueduct, cistern and pumping apparatus for the Boston Iron Company; the Lewiston Water Power Company; the bursting of a locomotive for the Boston and Lowell Railroad; and the cold well at Brandon, Vermont.
The series consists of several folders of drawings, including sketches of an apparatus for making signal sounds, and a design for a mercurial pump, and various scientific instruments. There are also copies of drawings of a differential galvanometer, dynamometer, pneumatic apparatus, and pneumatic glasses. The originals are located in Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872. A significant portion of the series consists of Boyden's investigations of the causes of fires in Boston, including statistics and eyewitness accounts. The series also contains Boyden's computations and design for a chronometer.
Boyden is the author of several published papers found in this series, including "Researches in Meteorology," "Paper on Mechanical force," "An Essay on Caloric's Repulsing Caloric and its Attracting Ponderable Matter," and "Paper on Sound." "Explosions produced by Niter in Burning Buildings" appeared in The Boston Post May 9, 1862. Boyden also wrote Researches in Physics, which was printed in 1863. The series also contains translations and copies of papers and articles on various scientific subjects, including magnetism, electricity, heat, light, meteorology, and physics. These include articles from the Annales de Chimie et de Physique (Annals of Chemistry and Physics), the Bulletin des Sciences Mathématiques (Bulletin of the Mathematical Sciences), the Annalen der Physik und Chemie (Annals of Physics and Chemistry), Mémoires de l'Academie Royale (Imperial) des Sciences de l'Institut de France, and Les Comptes Rendus de l'Académie des Sciences (The Proceedings of the French Academy of Sciences). Boyden also collected single works, including A Treatise on the Heat of Permanent Gases by John Plana, New Branch of Physics, or Studies Concerning Bodies in the Spheroidal State by P. H. Boutigny, and Thermochrosis, or Calorific Coloration by Macedoine Melloni.
Nine miscellaneous folders contain citations from encyclopedias, notes from scientific articles and newspapers, calculations, notes on laws, notes from experiments, a tide table, accounts of the weather, directions for experiments, specifications for a section of a canal built in Lowell by the Proprietors of the Locks and Canals, and a description of a heliostat. One oversize miscellaneous folder contains a legal document concerning lease from the Boston and Roxbury Mill Corporation to Horace Gray, a plan of a screwdriver, a table of experiments made in grinding rye at the City Mills, and experiments on the flow of water over dams made at the Lower Locks in Lowell, Massachusetts.
Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867, consists of bound notebooks ranging in size from 5" x 7" to 7" x 8". The notebooks demonstrate Boyden's wide-ranging scientific interests. They contain primarily technical information, such as experiments on sound, electromagnetism, and thermometers and include drawings and tables with data. His notebooks include excerpts from scientific journals on physics and chemistry, including some materials in French.
The personal memoranda feature notes from his travels around New England and the Mid-Atlantic States, including descriptions of railroads, dams, and mills; bridges in Georgetown, Washington, District of Columbia; a smelting furnace in Pottsville, Pennsylvania; and the Baltimore Water Works aqueduct. Several additional personal notebooks document Boyden's property and expenditures. Many notebooks were written or corrected by others, presumably Boyden's assistants, including Edward Sawyer, Levi York, Maximilian S. G. Wilde, Charles Leonard, Charles Mason, Jeremiah Dickson, L.W. Cushing, and A. Neill. One common subject is Boyden's work with turbines and water-wheels at New England mills and manufacturing companies. Many notebooks record turbine experiments at the Lowell Appleton Company, where Boyden developed the Boyden turbine, and at the Atlantic Cotton Mills. For more information on Boyden's work at the Atlantic Cotton Mills, see Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864 and Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870.
Other notebooks document Boyden's involvement in the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company in Manchester, New Hampshire, where he developed a hydraulic power system. Other mills Boyden studied include the Stark Mills, the Lawrence Company's mills, and the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam. Boyden was interested in the construction of canals and locks, including the Weston Canal near Lowell, Massachusetts. Railroad surveys comprise a significant portion of the notebooks' content and include his work with railroad companies, including the Boston and Lowell Railroad Corporation and the Boston and Worcester Railroad Corporation. Boyden conducted a survey of a cold well at Brandon, Vermont. More information about that well can be found in Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875, and Series 3, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879.
Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864, consists of legal materials related to lawsuits Boyden was involved in, both as a plaintiff and as a witness. The majority of the series is comprised of documents relating to Boyden's Atlantic Cotton Mills lawsuit, a conflict over whether Boyden had a right to conduct tests on turbines built from his design at the Atlantic Cotton Mills. The suit also involved a dispute over Boyden's patent rights to his turbine improvements used at the Atlantic Cotton Mills. On February 14, 1856, the court decided in favor of Boyden, and required the Atlantic Cotton Mills to award him reparations.
The series contains copies of correspondence related to Boyden's dealings with the Atlantic Cotton Mills, including letters to and from Charles S. Storrow and William Gray, treasurers of the Atlantic Cotton Mills. Also included are depositions; replies to allegations; Boyden's drafts of his answers to interrogatories; and calculations, notes, and drawings, presumably used as evidence in court. Bernhard Schultze (see Series 12, Bernhard Schultze Materials, 1837-1857) compared and corrected Boyden's November 21, 1855 reply to the answer of the Atlantic Cotton Mills and a statement of some expenses in measuring the power expended in actuating turbine No. 3 of the Atlantic Cotton Mills.
Also included are letters of reference for Boyden, probably related to his lawsuit of the Nashua and Lowell Railroad; Boyden's answers to interrogatories filed by the Boston Water Power Company in the case of Boston Water Power Company v. Horace Gray, which also includes his answers to interrogatories filed by the Boston and Worcester Railroad Company in regard to the receiving basin of the Boston Water Power Company; and Boyden's deposition in the case of Oswego Canal Company v. Henry M. Ames & Isaac L. Merriam.
Series 7, Financial Papers, 1820-1876, contains both personal and business financial papers. A large portion documents the New England Glass Company, including records of the stockholders meetings and end of year reports on the financial state of the company. There are also copies of receipts of bills Boyden sent to companies he worked for, including the Atlantic Cotton Mills, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Boston and Lowell Railroad Corporation, the Ames Manufacturing Company, the Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company, the Lowell Machine Shop, and the Holyoke Water Power Company. Boyden also received stock dividends from some of the same companies and others, including the Merrimack Manufacturing Company, the New England Glass Company, the Old Colony Railroad Company, Stark Manufacturing Company, the Lancaster Mills, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Boston and Lowell Railroad Corporation, and the Boston Gas Light Company.
Another aspect of the papers includes Boyden's requests to buy certain items, including metals, glass cylinders, and wire for his experiments; books in English, French and German; and periodicals. There are also reports of Boyden's income for the Internal Revenue Service dating from 1864-1871. One document is a quitclaim deed for the Savin Hill property in Dorchester, Massachusetts, which Boyden surveyed. Surveying records can be found in Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875.
Series 8, Patents, 1838-1847, consists of three subseries, Subseries 1, Boyden's Patents, 1843-1847; Subseries 2, Other Patents, 1838-1843; and Subseries 3, Patent Assignments, 1849-1856.
Subseries 1, Boyden's Patents, 1843-1847, consists of issued patents for Boyden's turbine improvements with attached drawings and specifications, including patents for improvement in turbines, September 20, 1843 (US Patent 10,026); improvement in hydraulic motors, September 20, 1843 (US Patent 10,027); improvements in hanging shafts of waterwheels, April 17, 1847 (US Patent 5,068); and improvement in diffuser for waterwheels, May 1, 1847 (US Patent 5,090).
Subseries 2, Other Patents, 1838-1843, consists of a patent granted to John R. Wheeler for an improved waterwheel on April 14, 1838, and a patent granted to Amasa B. Beckwith for improvement in waterwheels on October 20, 1843.
Subseries 3, Patent Assignments, 1849-1856, consists of legal documents giving various companies the right to use Boyden's patented turbine improvements in their mills in exchange for royalties. Companies include the Great Falls Manufacturing Company, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Appleton Company, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Merrimack Manufacturing Company, the Lowell Manufacturing Company, and the Lowell Machine Shop.
Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872, contains oversize drawings and some tables, ranging in size from approximately 48'' x 30'' to 21'' x 30''. Some of the papers are brittle and crumble easily. The series contains one work in German, "Werke Theorie und Bau der Wasserraeder" (A Work on the Theory and Construction of Waterwheels).
A significant portion of the series consists of Boyden's designs for turbines used at various mills throughout New England, including the Ames Manufacturing Company; the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company; the Appleton Company, the Atlantic Cotton Mills; the Hamilton Manufacturing Company; the Essex Company Machine Shop and Blacksmith Shop; the Lancaster Mill; the Manchester Printing Works; the Merrimack Manufacturing Company; the Merrimack Print Works; the Perkins Mills the Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company; the Stark Mills; and the New England Worsted Company and Suncook Manufacturing Company. More information on Boyden's work designing turbines for these companies can be found in Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879; Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870; and Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867.
Of particular note are drawings from "Lowell Hydraulic Experiments", a work published in 1855 by James B. Francis. Francis developed an improved turbine based on the inward flow Poncelet turbine, which became known as the Francis turbine and was more efficient than the outward flow Boyden turbine. Boyden was an associate of Francis's, but it is unclear how closely involved he was in the development of the Francis turbine. One subseries, Boyden's improvements, contains drawings that demonstrate Boyden's development of new turbines.
The series also includes records from Boyden's experiments on sound in Charlestown, Massachusetts. Notes from other experiments on sound can be found in Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879, and Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867. Included in the series are designs for various tools, including a chronometer, differential galvanometer, hydraulic apparatus, and pneumatic glasses. Smaller copies of some of these drawings can be found in Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879.
Two folders of miscellaneous materials include several tables documenting people admitted to mental hospitals, the observation of tides made at the Charlestown Navy Yard; a table of fires in Boston; experiments on the wheel of the Poncelet System; a plan and sections for showing the results of surveys at the cold well in Brandon, Vermont; and designs for a brass apparatus, a rack of reflectors, an apparatus for measuring the heights of water, a glass scale, and a dynamometer. Nine folders contain unidentified drawings.
Series 10, Printed Material, 1835-1879, contains newspaper clippings and other printed material collected by Boyden. The major subjects covered by the newspaper clippings include a campaign to supply Boston with drinking water, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Smithsonian Institution. Other newspaper clippings discuss the career of Patrick Tracy Jackson, the founder of the Merrimack Manufacturing Company; Boyden's turbine wheel; railway accidents; a court case involving an escaped slave; the rotation of the earth; the establishment of a public library in Boston; the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; the Louisiana imbroglio of 1874-1875; and smoking. Boyden frequently clipped from the Daily Evening Traveller, the Boston Advertiser, The Boston Atlas, the Boston Post, and the Boston Evening Transcript. Some newspapers have been saved and placed in a folder in a map case drawer.
The series also includes a pamphlet entitled Martin's Twenty-One Years in the Boston Stock Market, or Fluctuations Therein from January 1835 to January 1856, two bulletins of new books offered by the Boston Public Library and marked up by Boyden, patents for Alfred Nobel's new explosive compound, several of Boyden's business cards, a print portrait of Boyden, and a metal sign that hung outside his office in Boston. The series contains one miscellaneous file that includes items such as a price list for mechanists' tools, an article on the phenomena of sound, and a table of the work and expenses on the Boston and Lowell Railroad.
Series 11, Seth Boyden Materials, 1840-1841, is comprised of documents related to the death of Uriah Boyden's father, Seth Boyden (1764-1840). Included are drawings of the headstones for the graves of Seth Boyden (1764-1840) and Uriah Boyden's sister, Sarah Boyden; Seth Boyden's last will and testament; a poster for an executer's sale; and the account of Uriah Boyden and Benjamin F. Boyden, the executers of Seth Boyden's (1764-1840) last will and testament.
Series 12, Bernhard Schultze Materials, 1837-1857, contains the letters and papers of Bernhard Schultze, a man employed by Boyden as a translator from around November 26, 1853 until his death in August 1857. Schultze was a witness in the case of Boyden v. Atlantic Cotton Mills and compared and corrected materials related to the case. These can be found in Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864. He died from a head injury that occurred in Boyden's offices at 81 Washington Street.
More information about the accident in Boyden's official statement, August 17, 1857, to the coroner and the jury investigating Schultze's death, in Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879. Half of the materials are in German and consist of correspondence, receipts, registered letter slips, a medical bill, and a program for the Paine Festival and Annual Ball in 1857. Several of the documents relate to politics in the late 1850s and the election of 1856. Included is a newspaper article reporting on a pro-German James Buchanan rally; a circular supporting John C. Fremont and William L. Dayton, the Republican ticket in the election of 1856; and the by-laws of the Boston Kansas Club.
Series 13, Joseph Sidney Francis Materials, circa 1855-1872, consists of drawings made by Joseph Sidney Francis while studying at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They are labeled as the property of James B. Francis, the hydraulic engineer and inventor of the Francis turbine who worked closely with Boyden. Included in this series are tables documenting the number of fires in Boston and the number of people admitted to French mental hospitals.
The papers are arranged into thirteen series. The contents of each series or subseries is arranged chronologically, with the exception of Series 3, which is arranged numerically, and Series 9, which is arranged alphabetically by subject. The series and subseries arrangement of the papers are as follows:
Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879
Subseries 1, Outgoing, 1830-1879
Subseries 2, Incoming, 1823-1879
Subseries 3, Miscellaneous, 1825-1879
Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870
Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875
Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879
Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867
Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864
Series 7, Financial Papers, 1820-1876
Series 8, Patents, 1838-1847
Subseries 1, Boyden Patents, 1843-1847
Subseries 2, Other Patents, 1838-1843
Subseries 3, Patent Assignments, 1849-1856
Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872
Series 10, Printed Material, 1835-1879
Series 11, Seth Boyden (1764-1840) Materials, 1840-1841
Series 12, Bernhard Schultze Materials, 1837-1857
Series 13, Joseph Sidney Francis Materials, circa 1855-1872
Civil and mechanical engineer and multi-faceted scientist, Uriah Atherton Boyden was born on February 17, 1804 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. His father Seth Boyden (1764-1849) was a farmer and blacksmith and invented a machine to split leather (Reynolds 2010). His brother Seth Boyden (1788-1870) was a noted inventor in Newark, New Jersey, and in 1825 Boyden worked for him in a "leather and sheepskin bookbinding business" (Reynolds 2010). Boyden moved back to Massachusetts in 1828 and worked with James Hayward on surveys for the Boston and Providence Railroad, and with Loammi Baldwin on a dry dock for the Charlestown Navy Yard (now Boston Navy Yard) (Reynolds 2010). In the 1830s he opened his own engineering practice and worked on mills in the growing industrial center of Lowell, Massachusetts and was the chief engineer from 1836-1838 on the Nashua and Lowell Railroad. He designed a hydraulic power system for the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company in Manchester, New Hampshire around 1840 (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 5).
Boyden is best known for inventing the Boyden turbine, "the first turbine to be manufactured in quantity in the United States"(American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 1). Boyden developed this turbine around 1844 while working for the Appleton Company in Lowell, Massachusetts(American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 5). Boyden improved the efficiency of the Fourneyron outward flow turbine by "providing a conical approach passage for the incoming water… providing guide vanes in the outlet passages and by adding a submerged diffuser" (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 2). Boyden assigned his patent rights to a number of mills and manufacturing companies in New England and provided them with plans and specifications for turbines, although he did not oversee construction.
The Boyden turbine was superseded in 1849 by the more efficient inward flow Francis turbine, developed by James B. Francis with Boyden's assistance (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 2-3). The Francis turbine is now used throughout the world (Reynolds 2010).
After 1850, Boyden focused on scientific pursuits, including chemistry, physics, and meteorology. His other interests included the causes of fires in Boston, tobacco's effect on people's health, and mental illness in Europe and the United States. However, he rarely published the results of his research (Reynolds 2010). In 1874, Boyden "deposited $1,000 with the Franklin Institute of Philadelphia to be awarded to any resident of North America who should determine by experiment whether light and other physical rays are transmitted at the same velocity" (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 5). No one has claimed the prize. Boyden died on October 17, 1879 in Boston. In his will, he bequeathed approximately $250,000 to Harvard University, which it used to build an observatory in Peru (Reynolds 2010). The Boyden Observatory is now located in South Africa.
1975. The 102-inch Boyden Hydraulic Turbines at Harmony Mill No. 3, Cohoes, New York. The American Society of Mechanical Engineers. http://files.asme.org/ASMEORG/Communities/History/Landmarks/5507.pdf, (accessed 18 July 2010).
Reynolds, Terry S. 2010. Boyden, Uriah Atherton. American National Biography Online. Oxford University Press. http://www.anb.org/articles/13/13-00178.html (accessed 18 July 2010).
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