Records of a family-owned manufacturing firm, best known for kitchenware products including the Bundt Pan and Micro-Go-Round. The collection richly documents the entrepreneurial spirit of the Minnesota firm and its history of product innovation through technical files, marketing materials, and administrative and financial records.
Scope and Contents:
The Nordic Ware collection consists of approximately twenty-eight cubic feet of records from the Northland Aluminum Company, most dealing with its Nordic Ware business. The Dalquist family recognized the importance of record keeping, and this collection documents very well the evolution of an entrepreneurial, family-owned American business from its earliest years.
Of particular interest for researchers may be the Pillsbury and Bundt Cake Pan dual marketing strategies, showcased mainly in Series 3, Marketing and Sales Records, 1948-2004, the introduction of ethnic cookware into American Culture through such dishes as the Rosettes and Timbales set and Taco dinner kit, the segmentation of product lines by price level to target consumers of differing incomes, and the issue of a trademarked term like "Bundt" becoming generic as seen in Series 6, Legal Records, 1962-1978. Series 4, Engineering Department Records, 1950-1994, provide in-depth documentation of the technical development of several of Nordic Ware's innovative products.
Series 1: Historical and Background Materials, 1940s-2006
These materials provide a history of Dave Dalquist as an entrepreneur and how this led to his ownership of Northland Aluminum Products and the Nordic Ware brand. There are histories put together by the company as well financial summaries for some years. The series contains The Nordic Ware Saga, a book edited and produced by the Dalquist family, and America at Home: A Celebration of Twentieth-Century Housewares. Both books have valuable background information on the company and how it fits into the housewares industry. There also are materials from the original business, Plastics for Industry. An undated marketing booklet, published about 1990, briefly describes the company's history and its product line and corporate structure. Additional company history is found in six installments written by Dave Dalquist under the title "From the Skipper" and covering the years 1946 to l985.
Series 2: David Dalquist Files, 1963-1993
David Dalquist, the president and founder of the company, kept these files in his office and home. Dalquist had no formal filing system and preferred to group records together as he used them. This order has been maintained as much as possible to the folder level. Several files contain information and notes from Dalquist's attendance at the National Housewares Shows and the meetings held there with his sales representatives. The annual Housewares Shows in Chicago were key events in this industry and Nordic Ware made them a high priority. The sales meetings materials include speeches Dalquist delivered. This series reveals Dalquist's involvement with every aspect of the company. It portrays an entrepreneur who began with an engineering degree, very limited capital, and no business experience. Dalquist built a multi-million dollar company while insisting on high ethical and business standards.
The several companies owned by the Dalquist family are documented in these files. There is a merger agreement between Northland Metal Finishers and Northland Aluminum. The records show the company went through several phases and had several brands besides Nordic Ware, including Minnesota Ware, DuNord, and Norcast.
Series 3: Marketing and Sales Records, 1948-2004
The Marketing and Sales Records focus mainly on the promotion of the Nordic Ware Brand and the sale and distribution of products, especially to the retail trade industry. There is evidence of how Nordic Ware presented its products to the industry and of other types of promotions to build brand awareness. These records are divided into three subseries: Subseries 1, General and Department Records, 1967-1995; Subseries 2, Promotional and Trade Sales Materials, 1958-2004; and Subseries 3, Public Relations, 1948-1992
Subseries 3.1: General and Department Records, 1967-1995
Dave Dalquist initially handled most of the company's marketing and sales, but as the company grew, a separate department was created. Among other things, this department created sketches of new product ideas that employees submitted as part of the New Product Idea meetings periodically scheduled by Dave Dalquist. Several files contain this artwork and a design notebook. There are also the files of Doug White, a Vice President of Marketing and Sales. Other art renderings, such as line art used in catalogs, are in this series.
Subseries 3.2: Promotional and Trade Sales Materials, 1958-2004
This subseries consists both of advertising geared towards the trade industry and that aimed at the consumer to promote brand image and sales. A 1970s scrapbook is a record of cross-promotional offers in which Nordic Ware and other firms advertised their products together in a single advertisement. The scrapbook also documents Nordic Ware products offered as sales premiums. The advertisements are organized by the brand co-featured in the advertisement. The Bundt Pan was the predominant Nordic Ware product in these advertisements. The Pillsbury file is especially important as it shows the building of the dual marketing arrangement which allowed Bundt Pans to be packaged with Pillsbury mixes. Nordic Ware received national publicity that it would otherwise have been difficult to generate. The Bundt Pan was integrated into magazine recipes and articles and included in mentions of other brands. These records document the remarkably brief time in which the Bundt Pan achieved national recognition.
The trade market was critical to Nordic Ware. The Sales Guides, 1982-2004, were given to regional sales representatives with information on sales promotions and incentives to representatives for sales of Nordic Ware products in specific markets. The Guides also have product descriptions, so that each representative was fully familiar with the products. Along with these guides, Nordic Ware put out trade catalogs, also found in this subseries. Although there is no master list of the catalogs, many have been hand-dated by Nordic Ware employees. Many of the models in the catalogs and the advertisements were members of the Dalquist family, neighbors, and other acquaintances.
Subseries 3.3: Public Relations, 1948-1992
These materials mainly document a series of campaigns created by Sara Jean Thomas, a public relations contractor. She worked with the marketing and sales department to build the Nordic Ware brand and to create a series of television and radio product promotions in the form of household hints. Several scripts are included here along with details of the overall campaigns. There also are files documenting the reach of these promotions. Other materials include a press kit for Chef Tell, a celebrity chef who represented Nordic Ware products for several years and who made appearances at its booth at the National Housewares Shows. New product press releases (with photographs) and general public relations files (1986-1989), along with the Marketing Communication Plans (1987-1989), give details on the planning of other public relations efforts. The trade press clippings scrapbook documents mentions of Nordic Ware and its products, competitors' advertising, and general developments in the house wares industry. Trade press clippings also are found in Series 8, subseries 4.
Series 4: Engineering Department Records, 1950-1994
The Engineering Department was vital to the success of Nordic Ware. Records in this series reveal the process by which a new product idea was developed, built, tested, and turned into a saleable product. Museum staff members selected the records in this series, occupying about five cubic feet, from a much larger group of files, roughly twenty-five feet in extent. The criteria for selection included substantive information on the design development of new products, especially those requiring substantial engineering work, and on product re-design to create cost efficiencies and resolve product problems.
Subseries 4.1: General Records, 1969-1992
These records deal with general departmental business and include incoming and outgoing correspondence and general files kept by individual engineers. They also provide operational information such as source for production materials, work orders processing, and treatment of employee issues in the department.
Engineers in the department kept these notebooks mainly for developing design ideas and working out the technical logistics of bringing the designs into production. The notebooks also served as evidential records for patent disputes. The engineers signed and dated the pages of their notebooks as proof of when ideas were conceptualized and who recorded them.
Subseries 4.3: Product Files, 1976-1993, undated
These records originally were organized by product number, but no index to the numbering system accompanied the records so files of like products were grouped together. The Micro-Go-Round, Oven-Aire, and Wok are the most thoroughly documented. The records include blueprints at various stages of the products development, work orders for research and development, outside quotations, invoices, quality control tests and guidelines, memoranda to and from other company offices about product development, and other types of operational materials. Most of these products had multiple versions, and evidence of ongoing testing and modification is seen in the records.
These records document some of the innovation that made Nordic Ware an important presence in the housewares industry. The Micro-Go-Round was a particularly revolutionary product at the time, and the records show how the company recognized a need for the product and did what was necessary to develop it, although it had little or no experience with microwave technology. Micro-Go-Round records also are found in Subseries 5 of this series. The Oven-Aire required extensive development efforts to bring to fruition. The idea behind this product was to make conventional ovens cook more evenly and operate like a convection oven. The records include photographs of the original working model, tests done in some of the engineers' home kitchens, and comparison photographs of foods cooked with and without the device. Though the product never took off in the market, the invention and development process is documented here from the perspective of the several parties who worked on it. To a much more limited degree, records for some of the other products -- like the Popgun Popcorn Popper and the Supremer Ice Creamer --demonstrate the design and development process. There is even information about packaging design for some of the products.
Subseries 4.4: New Product Ideas Files, 1976-1993
These records document Nordic Ware's efforts to identify and develop a stream of new products and to involve employees in that process. They include product ideas submitted from outside the firm but primarily relate to New Product Meetings at which employees shared their own ideas. The meetings often included voting for the best ideas and for those that would be most feasible to manufacture. Most of the files contain original artwork, usually brought to the meeting by the marketing department. They also include lists of product ideas and who submitted them, ballots for the voting on the best ideas, and notes taken at the meetings. Several files have memoranda to the employees encouraging submission of ideas outside the annual meeting cycle. Related materials are found in Series 3, Marketing and Sales Records, 1948-2004, Subseries 1, General and Department Records, 1967-1995.
Subseries 4.5: General Research and Development, 1976-1993
This subseries mainly contains files on the development of microwave cookware products and the Micro-Go-Round. Dr. T.K. Ishii, a leading researcher in microwave technologies from Marquette University, served as a consultant to Nordic Ware. He advised on technical problems and explained processes to the Nordic Ware engineers to enable them to develop products. Other materials deal with the application and certification process for Underwriters Laboratories, an independent organization that tested products and certified them as meeting its safety standards.
Subseries 4.6: Patent Materials, 1950-1994
Many records in this subseries deal with the patent application process. An outside legal firm submitted Nordic Ware's applications and negotiated with the Patent Office. The records include correspondence surrounding patent disputes and sworn affidavits by engineers submitted as proof of their work. Several reference files of non-Nordic Ware patents are in this subseries. Many were sent by the law office to Nordic Ware engineers to keep them current on new developments.
Subseries 4.7: Trade Associations, 1977-1994
These records reflect the participation of Engineering Department staff in trade associations, especially The Society of the Plastics Industry, Inc. Lloyd Keleny and several others were involved with the Microwave Oven Cookware Committee. The Society was concerned with the absence of standards for microwave ovens and the resulting problem that cookware used in these ovens was not always effective. The Committee gathered data and encouraged the microwave industry to recognize that consistency was needed. There also are files from the Frankfurt International Housewares Fair, 1994. Nordic Ware tried to build its presence internationally, and fairs such as this were opportunities to meet foreign manufacturers and distributors. They also enabled the company to see what was happening on a global level.
Series 5: Financial Records, 1948-1982
These records include financial information for Nordic Ware and other Dalquist interests, including Maid of Scandinavia Company, when it was still joined with Northland Aluminum Products, and the Minnesota Brand of Cookware. The intermixing of financial reports, invoices and receivables, petty cash receipts, and bank statements for the various enterprises demonstrates the close relationship of all of the beginning operations of the Dalquist family. There are many examples of consolidated financial information in the records including the balance sheets, combined financial reports, income statements, and the audit reports. Of particular interest is the accounting ledger (1949-1950) for Plastics for Industry, the Dalquist brothers' original company. It has handwritten entries and shows the company's simplified bookkeeping system. It also provides important financial data on the startup capital and the progress in the first year of business.
Reports created by the research firm Dunn and Bradstreet contain information submitted by the Dalquists to prove their credit worthiness to lenders. Several loan agreements document the company's practice of borrowing money on future earnings in order to meet operating expenses and finance innovation. Machinery owned by Nordic Ware is listed in several factory inventories. The firm also leased machinery instead of buying in order to save money. Inventory summaries (1950-1978) detail the numbers and value of the unsold product then on hand.
Though Nordic Ware stock was never traded publically, there was an employee shareholder plan that included profit sharing. Records in this subseries document the evolution and operation of the plan, including one employee's case for a public offering of the company stock. At some point Dave Dalquist did consider making the company public but decided to maintain private ownership. The emphasis on taking pride and ownership in the company was often repeated in memoranda that Dalquist wrote to employees about stock options. The records show that he was very conscious of morale and high standards of work within the company.
Series 6: Legal Records, 1962-1978
The bulk of these records deals with trademark issues, especially Nordic Ware's creation, licensing, and protection of the "Bundt" mark. Included are copies of correspondence with the law firms that handled applications to the Patent and Trademark Office and correspondence from that office. Correspondence and legal papers document licensing negotiations with Pillsbury and others. In several instances Nordic Ware took legal steps when the Bundt Pan trademark was being misused.
Series 7: Recipes and Cookbooks, 1966-2004, undated
This series is comprised of a large selection of cookbooks and recipe files maintained by Dotty Dalquist and reflect her active role in business activities. She did much of her cooking and experimenting in a test kitchen in her own home and was integral to the preparation of foods to be photographed in Nordic Ware products. These photographs demonstrated the use of the products and were included in the advertisements, catalogs, and product or recipe brochures.
Dotty Dalquist kept recipes, product booklets, notes, and other materials to aid in the development of her own recipes. She organized much of the material by food type, but she also had several files for specific Nordic Ware products. The Bundt Pan was a major product, and the files on it reflect that. As Nordic Ware sought new ways to promote the use of its products, Dalquist's development of new and inventive recipes was a major part of that effort.
Subseries 7.2: Bundt Pan Cookbooks, 1966-2004
Nordic Ware published several books by Dotty Dalquist to promote use of the Bundt Pan. Pillsbury and other firms also published their own books. Pillsbury incorporated its products into the recipes to promote the dual product relationship between the Bundt Pan and the Pillsbury brand of cake mixes. These books were sold in stores and added as premiums to go along with the purchase of the other products.
Subseries 7.3: Other Recipe and Public Relations Materials, 1970-1996, undated
Recipe contests and a cookbook were among the efforts to involve employees with the Nordic Ware products and to generate new recipes and ideas. These files include photographs and entries and correspondence about these employee activities.
A file of correspondence, mainly to and from Dotty Dalquist, concerns problems consumers encountered using specific recipes that she had published. Consumers also wrote about recipes they had tried on their own and could not get satisfactory results with a Nordic Ware product. Dalquist's problem-solving efforts were an example of the personal customer service in which Nordic Ware took pride.
Series 8: Non-Nordic Ware Reference Materials, 1940-2001, undated
The materials in this series were used by Nordic Ware as reference resources. They have been organized into subseries by type.
Dotty Dalquist collected cookbooks published by a wide range of manufacturers and trade organizations. The cookbooks are arranged in alphabetical order by the name of the sponsor. Many companies, such as Pillsbury and General Foods, put out these kinds of books to promote their own brands. This may have influenced Dalquist's creation of her own Bundt Pan cookbook.
Subseries 8.2: Product Guides (some with recipes), 1940-1992, undated
These product guides, for appliances and other items used in Dotty Dalquist's kitchen, include use instructions and, often, recipes. Nordic Ware often included recipes in the print materials packaged with its products and associated with its advertising.
Subseries 8.3: Home and Food Related Ephemera, 1950-1980, undated
These materials include booklets of general household hints, recipe cards published by various organizations, and information on food processes.
Subseries 8.4: Periodicals, 1967-2001
Several scrapbooks in this subseries contain clippings from various trade publications. Some focus on Nordic Ware and Northland Aluminum Products in articles or advertisements while others contain industry, including competitors', product advertisements. There are several issues of trade periodicals with Nordic Ware related stories. Trade press clippings also are found in Series 3, Marketing and Sales Records, 1948-2004, Subseries 3, Public Relations, 1948-1992.
Most of these newsletters were for reference use with Nordic Ware's microwave cookware projects. With its extensive line of these microwave products, there was an active effort to stay up to date with the field. The firm also tried to find different kinds of foods and recipes that could be prepared using a microwave oven.
Series 9: Photographs, 1940s-2006, undated
This series consists of a wide range of photographic prints re-housed in archival sleeves and assembled into a single binder. The photographs are arranged roughly by image content and document the Dalquist family and employees; factory and offices scenes, including a series of black and white images by Mel Jacobsen, a commercial photographer; and product displays at trade shows and other locations. The photographs also include a few images of Nordic Ware products and of baked foods and black and white images of plastic molds created by Plastics for Industry. Most of the photographs are undated and many are unidentified. There is a View Master viewer with one viewing card containing photographs assembled for Nordic Ware's sixtieth anniversary in 2006. Series 2, David Dalquist Files, includes five photographs of foods baked in Bundt Pans. Series 3, Marketing and Sales Records, Subseries 1, General and Department Records, 1967-1995, has photographs of a factory outlet store and product displays.
The collection is divided into nine series.
Series 1: Historical and Background Materials, 1940s-2006
Series 2: David Dalquist Files, 1963-1993
Series 3: Marketing and Sales Records, 1948-2004
Subseries 1, General and Department Records, 1967-1995
Subseries 2, Promotional and Trade Sales Materials, 1958-2004
Subseries 3, Public Relations, 1948-1992
Series 4: Engineering Department Records, 1950-1994
In 1946, the year he returned from Navy service in the Pacific, H. David (Dave) Dalquist (1918-2005) joined his brother Mark to launch a new manufacturing firm, Plastics for Industry, in Minneapolis. The two University of Minnesota graduates soon were making foundry patterns and industrial plastic products for area businesses, as well as aluminum consumer cookware. Among their earliest products were ebelskiver pans, krumkake irons, and rosette irons, essential kitchen tools for the area's large Scandinavian population. Their first employee, Donald Nygren, remained as head designer for many decades.
In 1950, the brothers bought Northland Aluminum Products, a small firm with a line of "Nordic Ware" products including griddles and steak platters. The same year, Dave Dalquist created a cast aluminum, fluted cake pan at the request of two local women, members of the Hadassah organization. The women sought to replicate a heavy mold used in Europe. Northland Aluminum registered the trademark "Bundt" for the new product and began to sell it to local department stores. (The women sold manufacturing "seconds" as a fund raiser for their group.) Mark Dalquist created a firm, Maid of Scandinavia, to market products by mail. It separated from Northland Aluminum in 1963. Over the years, Northland Aluminum increasingly used "Nordic Ware" to identify itself for marketing and public relations purposes.
Northland Aluminum created a subsidiary finishing and coating firm, Northland Color Anodizing Company, in 1962. In 1964, Northland became one of the first to license the use of Teflon from its inventor, DuPont, and non-stick products became an important part of the company's line. Northland also did coating work for many industries including medical, computer, and commercial food processing. For many years Northland also had a division to produce heads for video recording machines. Product sales reached $1,000,000 in 1964.
During the 1960s, Nordic Ware grew slowly, gradually increasing its product line to include specialty baking and cookware items and stove-top cookware. The company also expanded its production capacity and built its sales and marketing capabilities, including a national network of sales representatives working on commission. Dorothy Dalquist, Dave's wife, played a vital role in the company's history. She joined him at crucial annual sales conventions to demonstrate products, tested new products, and developed recipes for them in her home kitchen. Additionally, she represented the firm in public relations activities.
Although the Bundt Pan was only one of many Nordic Ware products, it became a national celebrity in 1966 when a Texas woman used it for her prize-winning Tunnel of Fudge Cake in the immensely popular Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest. In 1970, Nordic Ware licensed the Bundt trademark to Pillsbury for use with a line of cake mixes. Customers received a cake pan at a small additional price with the purchase of the packaged mix. Although this pan was spun of light aluminum, not cast like the original models, the Pillsbury promotion was very successful. In addition to the classic Bundt design, the company began producing special designs, including a cathedral, a castle, a rose, a heart, and, in 2006, a stadium shaped pan. The Bundt Pan continues to be the most popular cake pan in America, and the company estimates it has sold sixty million pans over the past six decades.
Despite the steady popularity of the Bundt Pan, Dalquist and his firm knew that the spike in Bundt Pan sales resulting from the Pillsbury promotion was temporary, and they continued their strategy of seeking new products to buoy overall sales revenues. In 1978 Nordic Ware developed a "new thermoset plastic molding technology to create an extensive line of cookware designed to work in both conventional and microware ovens."
In these same years, as microwave oven use rapidly spread, Nordic Ware developed its second celebrity product. Designed by the company's own engineers, the Micro-Go-Round was promoted in print and television advertising and is still its most successful product. Since then, Nordic Ware has introduced a wide range of new products, some of them successful (for example, nonstick Barbecue Grill Cookware), others not (including a device to create convection currents in a baking oven and a bicentennial cake platter). Northland Aluminum holds at least twenty-five patents for its products.
Today David Dalquist (born 1949) -- son of founder "Dave Dalquist" and, like his father, an engineer -- heads Nordic Ware. He has been involved with the company for his entire working life with major executive responsibilities since the early 1980s. David Dalquist's mother, Dotty, is on the Board of Directors and serves as Corporate Secretary. David's three sisters—Corrine, Linda, and Susan—are also involved in the business. The firm employs between 200 and 400 people and continues, as a point of pride, to manufacture its products in the United States. The family has refused numerous buyout offers. Nordic Ware has managed to design and market products for the large, low price retailers, including Wal-Mart, and for the upscale, specialty gourmet market. Williams-Sonoma, a leader in the latter field, has exclusive sales for a small number of new Nordic Ware products each year.
For its sixtieth anniversary, Nordic Ware produced a company history, H. David Dalquist, The Nordic Ware Saga: An Entrepreneur's Legacy (Kirk House Publishers, Minneapolis, 2006). The volume provides edited recollections of "Dave," many family members, and other employees drawn from oral history interviews. This finding aid is based largely on that information, other historical sources within the collection, and visits to Nordic Ware offices by National Museum of American History staff members Paula Johnson and Nanci Edwards (June 2006) and Paula Johnson and John Fleckner (August 2006).
The Division of Work and Industry holds thirty-six objects from Nordic Ware (Accession # 2007.0034), including Bundt Pans in a variety of shapes, foundry patterns and molds for Nordic Ware products, a wood panel display of products manufactured by Plastics for Industry, three versions of the Micro-Go-Round, and other kitchenware products.
This collection was donated by Dorothy M. Dalquist and H. David Dalquist in 2007.
Collection is open for research but is stored off-site and special arrangements must be made to work with it. Contact the Archives Center for information at email@example.com or 202-633-3270.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning intellectual property rights. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Collection consists of approximately 13,500 images (original photographs, copy prints, and film and glass plate negatives) for freight, passenger, private, and street and rapid transit cars manufactured by the Pullman Palace Car Company. The collection contains primarily early railroad Americana, including interior and exterior views of private and business cars as well as passenger and street cars. The collection is an important part of the historical record of the railroad car-building industry as well as the history of architecture and interior design.
Scope and Contents:
The collection consists of approximately 13,500 images (original photographs, copy prints, and film and glass plate negatives) for freight, passenger, private, and street and rapid transit cars manufactured by the Pullman Palace Car Company. The collection contains primarily interior and exterior views of private and business cars as well as passenger and street cars. The collection is an important part of the historical record of the railroad car-building industry as well as the history of architecture and interior design. Historians, designers, railroad enthusiasts, model railroad hobbyists, scholars, and others will find this collection useful.
The glass plate negatives in this collection were produced using the wet collodion process, which was introduced to the United States in 1855 and used into the 1880s. The plates were coated with chemicals, sensitized, exposed and developed, all while the plate was wet. Later, Pullman photographers used the dry collodion process. This process involved using glass plates with a photographic emulsion of silver halides suspended in gelatin. This process had shorter exposure times.
George Pullman assembled a variety of photographers to document his company's work. The photography was primarily used as a record of work, especially for the Operating Department and Manufacturing Department at Pullman, as well as for prospective corporate customers.
Before establishing an in-plant photographic department in 1888, Pullman relied on local photographers. Some of the photographers included John Jex Bardwell, Wylie Dennison, Henry R. Koopman, J. W. Taylor, Thomas S. Johnson, Wylie Dennison, John P. Van Vorst, Clayton Ford Smith, Joseph McAllister, Melvin C. Horn, Ernie Stutkus, and Donald J. O'Barski. Many of the photographers signed the glass plates using their initials. For example, John P. Van Vorst signed his J.P.V.V.
Photography of Pullman activities began in the Detroit Shops (property of the Detroit Car & Manufacturing Co. which was purchased by Pullman in 1873 and operated as the Detroit Shops of Pullman) in the 1870s and expanded to include photographing the town of Pullman, steel car construction, shop accidents, workers, panoramic views, and in some instances, for company publications. In-plant photography was started with Wylie Dennison in 1888. Dennison was the first full-time Pullman photographer, and he created the Pullman Photographic Department. Dennison instituted the practice of recording each photograph, noting the negative number, description of the car, the type of view (typically one interior view and one exterior view) and lot number. All of Dennison's photography was done outside in the daylight.
The negative numbers assigned to the glass plates were identified with a "lot" number. The lot number identified the production order, and in later years, the plan number was added, designating the layout of the car. Photographing one car out of each new lot was the intital practice, but over-time, the Photographic Department began taking six or more views of the interior and exterior as well as end views.
Lot numbers include:
Lots 1 - 500 (Pullman Car Works - Chicago)
Lots 1 - 500 (Detroit Car Works)
Lots 500 plus (can be freight and passenger mixed)
Lots 1000 to 4999 (Pullman passenger equipment)
Lots 5000 to 5999 (Pullman freight equipment)
Lots 5000 + Haskell and Barker (Pullman overlap)
Lots 6000 to 7000+ (Pullman and P-S passenger)
Lots 8000 to 9999 (Pullman freight equipment)
Lots 10000+ (Pullman freight equipment)
Series 1, Original prints, circa 1880-1949, are arranged numerically by Pullman numbers. The original prints begin with number 7343 and end with number 33091. The photographs document Pullman cars, including freight, passenger, private, and street railway/rapid transit. Many of the images depict interior views of the cars, and there are some views of porters and passengers. There is some documentation of the workmen constructing the cars. The prints are primarily 8" by 10" black-and-white and were originally bound into books and backed on linen. The prints were unbound at some time. Many of the original prints bear an embossed stamp "Built by Pullman Car and Manufacturing Corporation Chicago." Some photographs are sepia-tone and there are no negatives for these prints.
Series 2, Copy prints, 1885-1955, consists of prints made from the glass plate negatives by the Smithsonian photographic services office. The copy prints were originally stored in loose binders but were re-housed into folders and arranged numerically according to the original Pullman Company number. The number is typically found in the lower right corner of the image. The copy prints are black-and-white and are either 5" x 7" or 8" x 10".
Series 3, Film negatives, 1917-1955, consists of film negatives (4" x 5" and 8" x 10") that are arranged numerically by Pullman numbers. In some instances, information on the enclosure includes the type of car (e.g. sleeper, freight), the name of the car if applicable, name of railroad company, geographical information, and date(s). In some instances, "repro," or "broken glass" are recorded. For negatives that did not conform to the Pullman numbering system, the container list provides additional information. For example, Haskell and Barker Car Company (Haskell and Barker merged with the Pullman Company in 1922) machine shop views, or Pullman cars in St. Paul, Minnesota are recorded in the collection inventory listing.
Series 4, Glass plate negatives, [circa 1882-1948], is divided into two subseries, Subseries 1, 6" x 8" negatives and Subseries 2, 8" x 10" negatives. The series consists of approximately 13,500 glass plate negatives arranged by Pullman Company negative number. The negatives document primarily Pullman cars, including freight, passenger, private and street railway/rapid transit. Many of the images depict interior and exterior views of the cars and some views of porters and passengers. The interior views include details such as seating, window treatments, lighting fixtures, bathroom fixtures, wood paneling, marquetry work, fabrics, floor treatments, and other furnishings. There is some documentation of the construction of the cars by workmen in the factory.
The negative numbers and lot numbers are etched on the glass plates. Overall the series is in good condition, although there are some broken plates which have been separated. The negatives are not inclusive and some plates are missing, or there are two copies. If plates are missing or additional copies exist, this is noted in the collection inventory. In some instances, plates are labeled 3937 and then 3937-A. This numbering distinguished two different views/angles of the same car.
Many of the envelope enclosures contain the negative number, sometimes preceed by the letter "P" (e.g. P9597), lot number (L4700), and in some instances, text describing the negative. Text typically includes the type of car (sleeper, freight), the name of the car if applicable, name of railroad company, geographical information, and date(s). If a copy print was created from the negative plate, the enclosure is stamped "printed." However, this practice was not consistent. Plates that were not printed are occasionally noted, but not with any consistency.
The 6" by 8" glass plates numbered 82-4130 to 82-4167, represent numbers assigned by the Office of Photographic Services, Smithsonian Institution. Previously labeled "Pullman" on the enclosures, the plates primarily document engines and passenger cars for the New York, New Haven, & Hartford Railroad, 1870-1890 and undated. The plates do not have Pullman negative numbers etched in the lower left or right corners and it is unclear if these plates belong to this collection.
Series 5, Indices, 1990 and undated include bound, typescript indices to the Pullman negatives. Created by the National Museum of American History, Division of Transportation (now known as the Division of Work and Industry), the indices include listings by railroad, private cars, freight cars, street cars and rapid transit, and Pullman negatives. The indices provide the name of the railroad/railway (e.g. Chicago & Alton), type of car (e.g. coal car or box car), number, lot, remarks (e.g. baggage area), year, type of view (e.g. exterior or interior) and frame number (for the laser disc).
One index is a supplemental guide listing sepia tone prints for which no negative exists in our collection. The indices for the negative listings on laser discs one and two are available. However, the actual lasers discs are missing.
Horn, Don. "The Pullman Photographers," Railroad Heritage, No. 7, 2003, pp. 5-13.
Arnold, Rus. "This Negative File was a Sleeper." Technical Photography. May 1970, pp. 21-XX.
Pullman State Historic Site, http://www.pullman-museum.org/theCompany/timeline.html (last accessed April 18, 2011)
The collection is arranged into five series.
Series 1, Original prints, 1904-1949
Series 2, Copy prints, 1885-1955
Series 3, Film negatives, undated
Series 4, Glass plate negatives, circa 1882-1948
Series 5, Indices, 1990 and undated
Biographical / Historical:
Recognizing a market for luxurious rail travel, George M. Pullman, who had earlier
experimented with sleeping car construction and was wealthy from the provisioning and transporting of Colorado miners in the early 1860s, incorporated the Pullman's Palace Car Company in 1867. By the 1870s his operations were already national and included the operation of sleeping cars under contract with the nation's railroads, the manufacture of cars at the Detroit Works, and the creation of subsidiary firms serving Great Britain and Europe. In the three decades before the turn of the century, the prosperous company grew enormously and included a much heralded model company town adjacent to the new car works at Pullman, Illinois. Acclaim turned to condemnation following the nationwide strike that originated at the Pullman Car Works in 1894. Pullman died in 1897, two years before his company absorbed its last major competitor, the Wagner Palace Car Company, which had been financed by the Vanderbilts.
The Pullman's Palace Car Company entered the twentieth century with a new name, the
Pullman Company, and a new president, Robert Todd Lincoln. An extremely profitable
virtual monopoly, the Pullman Company began replacing its wood cars with safer all steel bodied models (heavyweights) in its newly segregated manufacturing department and at the same time (1906) came under the regulation of the Interstate Commerce Commission. From 1918 to 1920, the United States Railroad Administration, citing the war emergency, assumed control of the operating arm of the firm, renamed the Pullman Car Lines for the duration of federal control.
The Pullman Company reached its peak during the 1920s, manufacturing new heavyweight
cars at a rapid pace. Seeking to expand its freight car production, Pullman merged with the Haskell and Barker Car Company in 1922. Edward F. Carry and his Haskell and Barker associates assumed the presidency and other executive positions in the enlarged Pullman Company. More reorganization took place in 1924, when the Pullman Company Manufacturing Department became a distinct firm, the Pullman Car and Manufacturing Corporation, and in 1927, when a parent or holding company, Pullman Incorporated, was created to oversee the two subsidiary firms. In 1929, following Carry's death, President David A. Crawford engineered the merger of the Pullman Car and Manufacturing Corporation with the Standard Steel Car Company, forming the Pullman-Standard Car Manufacturing Company.
During the first three decades of the twentieth century Pullman sought to impede the
unionization of its workers by offering new benefits, including a pension plan in 1914, a death benefit plan in 1922, and a plan of group insurance in 1929. F. L. Simmons' Industrial Relations Department, created in 1920, also directed the formation of company-sponsored occupationally-based unions under the plan of employee representation. A. Philip Randolph's Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters and other unions would not successfully organize company workers until the New Deal Railway Labor Act of 1934 forbade corporate interference in union matters.
The Depression marked the end of Pullman prosperity. Both the number of car orders and sleeping car passengers declined precipitously. The firm laid off car plant and service workers, reduced fares, and introduced such innovations as the single occupancy section in an effort to fill its cars. During this decade the firm built fewer new cars, but it added air conditioning to its existing heavyweights and remodeled many into compartment sleepers.
In 1940, just as orders for lightweight cars were increasing and sleeping car traffic was growing, the United States Department of Justice filed an anti-trust complaint against Pullman Incorporated in the U. S. District Court at Philadelphia (Civil Action No. 994). The government sought to separate the company's sleeping car operations from its manufacturing activities. In 1944 the court concurred, ordering Pullman Incorporated to divest itself of either the Pullman Company (operating) or the Pullman-Standard Car Manufacturing Company (manufacturing). After three years of negotiations, the Pullman Company was sold to a consortium of fifty-seven railroads for around forty million dollars. Carroll R. Harding was named president of this new Pullman Company. The new Pullman Company started out optimistically in 1947 with good passenger traffic figures, but the years following brought steady and marked decline. Regularly scheduled lines were cancelled; all shops except St. Louis and Chicago were closed; employees were furloughed, and major railroad owners such as the New York Central and Pennsylvania Railroad totally or partially withdrew from service. On January 1, 1969, at the age of 102, the Pullman Company ceased operation, though it maintained a small central office staff to wind up affairs and handle an equal pay-for-equal-work lawsuit (Denver Case) that continued in the courts until 1981.
John H. White (1933-), historian and curator, collected the Pullman photographs in 1969. White was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and graduated with a bachelors of arts in history from Miami University Ohio in 1958. Shortly after receiving his degree, He joined the staff of the Smithsonian Institution as Assistant Curator of the Division of Transportation, Department of Science and Technology, Museum of History and Technology. White later became Associate Curator of the Division, 1961-1966, Curator, 1967-1985, and Senior Historian, 1986-1989. White specialized in land transportation, particularly the history of railroads.
White worked closely with Arthur Detmers Dubin (1923-) to acquire the Pullman photographs for the museum. Dubin was an avid train enthusiast and collector, and he frequently used the Pullman "archives" for his own research on railroads. Dubin was born in Chicago, Illinois and began his architectural education at the University of Michigan in 1941 but his education was interrupted by World War II, and he served with distinction in the United States Army until 1946. After completing his studies in 1949, Dubin joined his father's and uncle's architectural firm, Dubin and Dubin, as a second--eneration architect. The leadership of the firm soon passed to Arthur and his brother, Martin David, and in 1965 they were joined by John Black and in 1966 by John Moutoussamy. Arthur's life--ong interest in trains and transportation and their implications for architecture is evident in transit stations commissions and service on transportation--elated advisory boards (Dubin was a member of the Illinois Railroad Commission), as well as in his writings and personal collections.
In July, 1966, Dubin contacted then Vice President of Public Relations at Pullman-Standard E. Preston Calvert about the history and future of the photographic negative plates. Dubin appealed to Calvert to preserve these materials. Dubin and White were also in contact by correspondence and in June, 1967, White contacted Calvert also, stating that the Chicago Historical Society or Illinois State Historical Society should be offered the plates as a first option. Failing a local Illinois repository accepting the materials, White indicated that the Smithsonian would accept the negatives.
During the spring of 1968, White, working with Dubin and Nora Wilson, editor of the company's publications, coordinated a visit by White to Chicago to examine the photographic negatives at the Pullman Car Works factory in south Chicago. In April 1968, White examined the vast collection of glass plate negatives (approximately 20,000). From April, 1968 to August, 1969, Pullman-Standard and the Smithsonian negotiated acquisition details, including shipping and related costs. In August, 1969, White returned to complete the task of sorting the glass plates, discarding broken plates, and weeding repetitive views. He selected approximately 13,500 glass plates. Views of Pullman towns were donated to the Chicago Historical Society. Dubin appraised the photographic plates and film negatives, presumably on behalf of Pullman-Standard, and estimated the plates to be worth between $54,000 and $67,500 dollars.
Historical note courtesy Martha T. Briggs and Cynthia H. Peters, Guide to Pullman Company Archives, The Newberry Library, Chicago, 1995.
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago Area Architects Oral History Project
http://www.artic.edu/aic/resources/resource/734?search_id=1 (last accessed on February 23, 2011)
John H. White papers, 1959-1989, Record Unit 007384, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Washington, D.C.
Telephone conversation of Alison Oswald, archivist, with John H. White, April 14, 2011.
Materials in the Archives Center
Pullman Palace Car Company Materials, 1867-1979 (AC0181)
John H. White, Jr. Railroad Reference Collection, 1880s-1990 (AC0523)
Materials in Other Organizations
•Art Institute of Chicago
•California State Railroad Museum
•Chicago History Museum
•Arthur Dubin Collection at Lake Forest College
•Illinois Railway Museum
•Indiana University Northwest's Calumet Regional Archives
Pullman-Standard Railroad Car Manufacturing Company Personnel Records—Personnel Record Series CRA 314
This index of employee names was created from the original personnel cards housed at Indiana University Northwest's Calumet Regional Archives from the Indiana locations. Although the records are not complete from the Michigan City plant for the entire period from 1912 to the 1970's, there may be information that will assist researchers with finding key details of a family member. The Hammond Pullman plant was merged with the Haskell Barker Company of Michigan City in 1922.
•Newberry Library, Chicago
The Pullman Company archives at the Newberry Library consists of 2,500 cubic feet of records from the Pullman Company and Pullman heirs. The collection is comprised of business archives of the Pullman Palace Car Company from 1867 and includes records of the entire firm up to the 1924 split into operating (sleeping car operation, service, and repair) and manufacturing companies. From 1924 to 1981 the records chronicle the activities of the operating company only.
•Pennsylvania State Archives
•Pullman State Historic Site
•Pullman Technology (Harvey, Illinois)
•Smithsonian Institution Archives
•South Suburban Genealogical & Historical Society (South Holland, Illinois)
The collection was donated by Pullman-Standard Company, through Nora Wilson, editor of employee publications for the Department of Public Relations and Advertising, on October 8, 1969.
The collection is open for research.
Gloves must be worn when handling unprotected photographs and negatives. Special arrangements required to view original glass plate and film negatives due to cold storage. Using negatives requires a three hour waiting period. Contact the Archives Center at 202-633-3270. Unrestricted access to photographic prints and other portions of the collection.
Original documents and papers generated by William J. Hammer and by various companies and individuals with whom he was associated. Includes material related to the research and inventions of Edison, Bell, Tesla, the Curies, etc.
Scope and Contents:
This collection includes original documents and papers generated by Hammer and by various companies and individuals and various secondary sources assembled by Hammer between 1874 and 1934. Hammer's lifelong association with the foremost scientists of his day -- Edison, Bell, Maxim, the Curies, the Wright brothers, and others - afforded him a unique opportunity to collect materials about the development of science along many lines.
This collection, which includes rare historical, scientific, and research materials, was donated by the International Business Machine Corporation to the Museum of History and Technology in 1962 and held by the Division of Electricity. In 1983 it was transferred to the -Archives Center. The collection was badly disorganized when received and contained many fragile documents in poor condition. The collection was organized and arranged as reflected in this register.
The collection documents in photographs, manuscripts, notes, books, pamphlets, and excerpts, the beginnings of electrical technology. In its present state, it comprises four series: Series 1 contains twenty-two boxes of the William J. Hammer Papers, containing both biographical and autobiographical material; Series 2 has twenty boxes of material on Edison; Series 3 consists of thirty-three boxes of reference material; and Series 4 holds twenty-one boxes of photographs and portraits. See the container list beginning on page 39 for more detailed information on the contents of the collection.
Most of the material in the collection is chronologically arranged. However, in some cases alphabetical arrangement has been employed, for example, in the arrangement of portraits of eminent men of electrical science (Series 4, Boxes 78-80, 100-101), and the arrangement of publications (by authors' last names).
Hammer did original laboratory work upon selenium, radium, cathode rays, x-rays, ultra-violet rays, phosphorescence, fluorescence, cold light, and wireless. These aspects of his career are reflected in many parts of the collection: in Series 1 there are articles, notes, diagrams, sketches, graphs,, and correspondence; in Series 3 articles, magazines, news clippings, and bound pamphlets. Tie contributed many technical writings, some of which are found in Series 1.
Papers detailing Hammer's aeronautical activities were transferred to the National Air and Space Museum. They consist of two scrapbooks and one cubic foot of aeronautical photographs of balloons, airplanes, and gliders and one-half cubic foot of correspondence. For further information contact the National Air and Space Museum Archives at (202) 357-3133.
The collection is divided into four series.
Series 1: William J. Hammer Papers, 1851-1957
Series 2: Edisonia, 1847-1960
Series 3: Reference Materials, 1870-1989
Series 4: Photographs, 1880-1925
Biography of William J. Hammer:
William Joseph Hammer, assistant to Thomas Edison and a consulting electrical engineer, was born at Cressona, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, February 26, 1858, and died March 24, 1934. His parents were Martha Augusta Bech (1827-1861) and William Alexander Hammer (1827-1895). He attended private and public schools in Newark, New Jersey, and university and technical school lectures abroad.
On January 3, 1894, Hammer married Alice Maud White in Cleveland, Ohio. They had one daughter, Mabel (Mrs. Thomas Cleveland Asheton). Alice Hammer died in 1906.
In 1878 Hammer became an assistant to Edward Weston of the Weston Malleable Nickel Company. In December 1879 he began his duties as laboratory assistant to Thomas Edison at Menlo Park, New Jersey. He assisted in experiments on the telephone, phonograph, electric railway, ore separator, electric lighting, and other developing inventions. However, he worked primarily on the incandescent electric lamp and was put in charge of tests and records on that device. In 1880 he was appointed Chief Engineer of the Edison Lamp Works. In this first year, the plant under general manager Francis Upton, turned out 50,000 lamps. According to Edison, Hammer was "a pioneer of Incandescent Electric Lighting"! (Hammer's memoranda and notes, Series 2).
In 1881 Edison sent Hammer to London as Chief Engineer of the English Electric Light Co. In association with E. H. Johnson, general manager, Hammer constructed the Holborn Viaduct Central Electric Light Station in London. This plant included three, thirty-ton "Jumbo" steam-powered dynamos (generators), and operated 3,000 incandescent lamps. Holborn was the first central station ever constructed for incandescent electric lighting. Hammer began its operation on January 12, 1882, by lighting the Holborn Viaduct.
In 1882 Hammer also installed a large isolated lighting plant containing twelve Edison dynamos at the Crystal Palace Electric Exposition and the Edison Exhibit at the Paris Electrical Exposition.
At this time Hammer also designed and built the first electric sign. The sign spelled the name "Edison" in electric lights, and was operated by a hand controlled commutator and a large lever snap switch. It was erected over the organ in the Crystal Palace concert hall.
In 1883 Hammer became Chief Engineer for the German Edison Company (Deutsche Edison Gesellschaft), later known as Allegemeine Elektricitaets Gesellschaft. Hammer laid out and supervised the installations of all Edison plants in Germany. While in Berlin he invented the automatic motor-driven "flashing" electric lamp sign. The sign, which flashed "Edison" letter by letter and as a whole, was placed on the Edison Pavilion at the Berlin Health Exposition in 1883.
On his return to the United States in 1884, Hammer took charge of some of Edison's exhibits, including Edison's personal exhibit, at the International Electrical Exhibition held under the authority of the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. There he built the first flashing "Column of Light." He also became confidential assistant to E. R. Johnson, president of the parent Edison Electric Light Company. Together with Johnson and Frank J. Sprague, he became an incorporator of the Sprague Electric Railway and Motor company. He also was elected a trustee and the company's first secretary.
Hammer installed an all-electric house at Newark, New Jersey in 1884 and he devised various electrical devices and contrivances for an unusual party for friends and colleagues. (See "Electrical Diablerie" beginning on page 6).
At the end of 1884 Hammer became chief inspector of central stations of the parent Edison Electric Light Company. For over two years he made financial, mechanical, and electrical reports on the various stations throughout the United States. During 1886-87 he was chief engineer and general manager of the Boston Edison Electric Illuminating Company. He also acted as contractor for the company. He laid $140,000 of underground tubing and installed Sprague Electric Motors.
In 1888, acting as an independent engineer, he was placed in charge of completing the 8,000 light plant of the Ponce de Leon Hotel in St.Augustine Florida. At the time this was the largest isolated incandescent lighting plant ever constructed. Also in 1888 Hammer was appointed consulting electrical engineer to the Cincinati Centennial Expostition, and as a contractor designed and installed over $40,000 worth of electrical effects.
Hammer was appointed Edison's personal representative remarked, "There are a lot of crowned heads in the Edison business. How many of them am I subservient to?" Mr. Edison answered "You take no instructions except from Thomas A. Edison." Hammer asked "What are your instructions?" Mr. Edison replied, 'Hammer, I haven't any. Go and make a success of it.' In Paris he set up and operated all of Edison's inventions, which embraced nineteen departments and covered 9,800 square feet of space. He also built a huge Edison lamp forty-five feet high employing 20,000 lamps. Edison remarked, 'He had entire charge of my exhibit at the Paris Exposition, which was very successful." This was the largest individual exhibit at the Exposition, costing $100,000. Mr. Edison replied, "I want you to go right out and have a card engraved William J. Hammer, Representative of Thomas A. Edison. You are the only representative I have here," and he complimented him on his work adding, "The French government will do something handsome for you for your work." Hammer replied that he would not raise his hand to get it and did not believe in giving such honors to people who seek them. Mr. Edison said, "You are wrong. You are a young man and such things are valuable. At any rate if there's anyone in this exhibition who deserves recognition, you do, and I'm going to see you get it' (Hammer's memoranda and notes, Series 2). Thirty-four years later, in 1925, through the personal influence of Edison, Hammer was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honor by the French government.
In 1890 Hammer returned to the United States and opened an office as a consulting electrical engineer. He was in private practice until 1925, making reports, conducting tests, and giving expert testimony in patent suits.
On January 31, 1890, Hammer formed the Franklin Experimental Club of Newark where boys could come and carry on experiments, build apparatus, and listen to lectures. Hammer equipped the laboratory at his own expense. One side was an electrical laboratory and the other a chemical laboratory. About forty-five boys joined. Each boy had a key to the club and a section of a bench with his own drawer for keeping notes, tools, and other equipment. In 1892 the structure was destroyed by fire from a saloon next door, ending Hammer's plans for a large and useful institution.
In 1896 Hammer was elected president of the National Conference of Standard Electrical Rules, which prepared and promulgated the "National Electric Code."
In 1902 in Paris, Hammer visited Pierre and Marie Curie, the discoverers of radium and polonium. They gave him nine tubes of radium and one of polonium to bring back to the United States. He also acquired some sulphide of zinc, with which he mixed radium carbonates, producing a beautifully luminous powder. This was the first radium-luminous material ever made. By mixing the powder with Damar varnish he produced the first radium-luminous paint. He was also the first person to make colored (and white) luminous materials. In 1907 he invented and patented a process for producing colored phosphorescent materials by combining phosphorescent and fluorescent substances.
Back in the United States in the fall of 1902 and into 1903, Hammer applied his radium-luminous materials to thirty different objects: luminous dials for clocks and watches, toys, artificial flowers, radium luminous gun sights, taps and pulls for lamp sockets, switches, keyholes, push buttons, telephone transmitters, poison bottle labels, a small plaster figure, push pins, and writing implements among others. He did not patent the invention due to the scarcity and high cost of radium, but later in an important suit involving foreign and American patents of radium-luminous materials, his testimony and that of other noted scientists and professionals of the day who had visited his home and laboratory proved that his work completely anticipated that of all inventors both in the United States and abroad. In 1902 he was one of the first persons to be burned with radium.
Hammer gave eighty-eight lectures on the Curies' work and on radium and radioactive substances. He wrote the first book published on radium, Radium and other Radioactive Substances, 1903. Hammer proposed and used radium for cancer and tumor treatment, successfully treating and curing a tumor on his own hand in July 1903. Tie also supplied several hospitals with radioactive water he had made and conducted extensive experiments with x-rays, cathode-rays, radium-rays, ultraviolet lights, phosphorescence, fluorescence, and cold-light. He was probably the first to suggest many wartime uses for radium-luminous materials, such as airplanes, instruments, markers, barbed-wire, and landing fields.
Hammer also did important work with selenium, a nonmetallic element that resembles sulphur and tellurium chemically. It is obtained chiefly as a by-product in copper refining, and occurs in allotropic forms. A grey stable form varies in electrical conductivity depending on the intensity of its illumination and is used in electronic devices. Hammer invented selenium cells and apparatus, and suggested industrial uses for selenium and other light-sensitive cells.
In 1886 Hammer devised a system for automatically controlling street and other lights by use of a selenium cell. In 1892 he designed a torpedo that could be steered by searchlight and selenium cell. In the early 1900s he suggested many other uses for "light" cells, including burglar alarms, dynamo control, buoy, railroad signaling, automatic gun firing, transmission of music, stethoscope recorder, automatic operating shutters, automatic boiler feed, snow recorder, and electric motor control.
At the St. Louis Exposition of 1904 Hammer was Chairman of the Jury for Telegraphy, Telephony, and Wireless. He was also a member of the "Departmental" Jury ("Applied Science: Electricity") and of the committee appointed to organize the International Electrical Congress at St. Louis in 1904.
In 1906 Hammer received the "Elliott Cresson" gold medal from the Franklin Institute for his "Historical Collection of Incandescent Electric Lamps," accumulated over thirty-four years. This collection received a special silver medal at the International Electrical Exposition at the Crystal Palace, London, England, in 1882, and "the Grand Prize" at the St. Louis Exposition of 1904.
During the First World war Hammer served as a major on the General Staff of the, Army War College, Washington, D.C., where he was attached to the Inventions Section of the War Plans Division and later to the operations Division at the war Department in charge of electrical and aeronautical war inventions. He did special work at the U.S. Patent office, marking and delaying patents that might be useful to the enemy and served on the Advisory Board of Experts attached to the Alien Property Commission. He was elected Historian general of the Military order of the World War (1926-1928) and was a member of the Society of American Military Engineers.
Hammer was an early aeronautics enthusiast and became the owner of one of the first airplanes sold in the United States to an individual. Even in his last few years of his life, Hammer's interest in airplanes did not wane. In 1931, by the permission of the Secretary of the -Navy, Hammer made a twelve-hour flight in the Los Angeles dirigible from the Lakehurst, New Jersey airdrome along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean to New York, flying over New York City at night.
Hammer served on numerous committees. In 1916 he was a member of a special committee, appointed by the Aeronautical Society of America. one of his responsibilities on this committee was to recommend methods for the formation of a reserve force of civilian aviators for the Army. At the start of World War I, Hammer was appointed chairman of a committee on camouflage by the Aeronautical Society. During the war, he flew airplanes and tested sound devices and was also among the first five selected out of thousands for the dissemination of propaganda into many countries. He also examined documents and papers captured from spies and prisoners of war to see if these material contained any technical matter of value to the U. S. Army.
Hammer traveled extensively as a delegate of the Military Order of World War I. For example, in 1922 he attended the aeronautical Congress and Flying Meet in Detroit, Michigan. In the same year he also attended Immigration Conferences of the National Civic Federation in New York.
Between 1922 and 1928 Hammer intensified his efforts in collecting and organizing autographed portraits of eminent scientific men, a project he had been working on for over forty-five years. Tie displayed many of these portraits with his Historical Collection of Incandescent Electrical Lamps in -his New York home. At this time he also prepared an elaborate bibliography on selenium and its industrial and scientific applications.
Major William Joseph Hammer, described by Edison as "my most valuable assistant at Menlo Park" died of pneumonia March 24, 1934.
N.Y. World, January 3, 1885 and Newark, N.J. Daily Advertiser and Journal, January 3, 1885
Some years ago, (1884) on New Year's eve, an entertainment was given at the home of Mr. William J. Hammer, in Newark, N.J., which, for the display of the powers of electricity has seldom, if ever, been equaled. Mr. Hammer, who has for years been associated with Mr. Edison, both in this country and in Europe, desiring to give his old classmates, the "Society of Seventy-Seven," a lively and interesting time, invited them to "an electrical dinner"at his home.
The invitations which were sent out were written upon Western Union telegram blanks with an Edison electric pen. When the guests arrived and entered the gate, the house appeared dark, but as they placed foot upon the lower step of the veranda a row of tiny electric lights over the door blazed out, and the number of the house appeared in bright relief. The next step taken rang the front door bell automatically, the third threw open the door, and at the same time made a connection which lit the gas in the hall by electricity.
Upon entering the house the visitor was invited to divest himself of his coat and hat, and by placing his foot upon an odd little foot-rest near the door, and pressing a pear-shaped pendant hanging from the wall by a silken cord, revolving brushes attached to an electric motor brushed the mud and snow from his shoes and polished them by electricity. As he was about to let go of the switch or button, a contact in it connected with a shocking coil, caused him to drop it like a hot potato. Up-stairs was a bedroom which would be a fortune to a lazy man; he had only to step on the door sill and the gas was instantly lighted. The ceiling was found to be covered with luminous stars, arranged to represent the principal constellations in the heavens-while comets, moons, etc., shone beautifully in the dark. By placing one's head on the pillow, the gas, fifteen feet away, would be extinguished and the phosphorescent stars on the ceiling would shine forth weirdly, and a phosphorescent moon rose from behind a cloud over the mantel and slowly describing a huge arch disappeared behind a bank of phosphorescent clouds on the other side of the room; by pressing the toe to the foot-board of the bed the gas could again be relit.
Pouring a teacup of water into the water clock on the mantel and setting the indicator would assure the awakening of the sleeper at whatever hour he might desire. There was also in the hall outside the room a large drum, which could be set to beat by electricity at the hour when the family wished to arise. The whole house was fitted throughout with electric bells, burglar alarms, fire alarms, telephones, electric cigar lighters, medical coils, phonographs, electric fans, thermostats, heat regulating devices, some seven musical instruments, operated by electricity, etc.
Upon the evening referred to nearly every. piece of furniture in the parlor was arranged to play its part. Sit on one chair and out went the gas, take another seat and it would light again; sitting on an ottoman produced a mysterious rapping under the floor; pressure on some chairs started off drums, triangles, tambourines, cymbals, chimes and other musical instruments; in fact, it seemed unsafe to sit down anywhere. The quests stood about in groups and whispered, each hoping to see his neighbor or a new comer caught napping.
One visitor (Brown) secured an apparently safe seat, and was telling a funny story--he had left electricity far behind--but just as he reached the climax, a pretty funnel-shaped Japanese affair like a big dunce cap, that seemed but a ceiling ornament which was held in place by an electromagnet, dropped from overhead and quietly covered him up, thus silently extinguishing the story and the story-teller.
A big easy chair placed invitingly between the folding doors joining the double, parlors sent the unwary sitter flying out of its recesses by the sudden deafening clamor of twenty-one electric bells hidden in the folds of the draperies hanging in the doorway. In a convenient position stood the silver lemonade pitcher and cup, the former was filled with the tempting beverage, but no matter how much a guest might desire to imbibe one touch convinced him that the pitcher and cup were so heavily charged with electricity as to render it impossible for him to pour out a drink or even to let go until the electricity was switched off from the hidden induction coil.
Some one proposed music, and half a selection had been enjoyed when something seemed to give way inside the piano, and suddenly there emanated from that bewitched instrument a conglomeration of sounds that drowned the voices of the singers, and the keys seemed to beat upon a horrible jangle of drums, gongs and various noise-producing implements which were fastened inside of and underneath the piano.
After the guest were treated to a beautiful display of electrical experiments, under the direction of Mr. Hammer, and Professor George C. Sonn, they were escorted to the dining-room, where an electrical dinner had been prepared and was presided over by 'Jupiter," who was in full dress, and sat at the head of the table, where by means of a small phonograph inside of his anatomy he shouted, "Welcome, society of Seventy-Seven and their friends to Jove's festive board." The menu was as follows: "Electric Toast," "Wizard Pie," "Sheol Pudding," "Magnetic Cake," "Telegraph Cake," "Telephone Pie," "Ohm-made Electric Current Pie," "Menlo Park Fruit," "Incandescent Lemonade," "'Electric Coffee" and "Cigars," etc., and music by Prof. Mephistopheles' Electric Orchestra.
About the table were pretty bouquets, and among the flowers shone tiny incandescent lamps, while near the center of the table was placed an electric fan which kept the air cool and pure, and at each end was a tiny Christmas tree lighted with small incandescent lamps, planted in a huge dish of assorted nuts and raisins. Each lamp had a dainty piece of ribbon attached to it upon which the initials of the Society and the date were printed, and each guest received a lamp to take away with him as a souvenir of the occasion. Plates of iced cakes made in the form of telephones, switches, bells, electric lamps, batteries, etc., stood on each side of the center piece.
Promptly at 12 o'clock, as the chimes of the distant churches came softly to the ears of the assembled quests, pandemonium seemed to change places with the modest dining-room. A cannon on the porch, just outside the door, and another inside the chimney, were unexpectedly discharged; and at this sudden roar, every man sprang back from the table; the lights disappeared; huge fire-gongs, under each chair beat a tattoo. The concussion produced by the cannon in the fireplace caused several bricks to come crashing down the chimney, and as the year of 1884 faded away, the table seemed bewitched. The "Sheol Pudding" blazed forth green and red flames illuminating the room, tiny tin boxes containing 'Greek" fire which had been placed over each window and door were electrically ignited by spirals of platinum iridium wire heated by a storage battery and blazed up suddenly; the "Telegraph Cake" clicked forth messages said to be press reports of the proceedings (it was also utilized to count the guests and click off the answers to various questions put to it); bells rang inside the pastry; incandescent lamps burned underneath the colored lemonade; the thunderbolt pudding discharged its long black bolts all over the room (long steel spiral springs covered with black cloth) and loud spirit rapping occurred under the table. The silver knives, forks and spoons were charged with electricity from a shocking coil and could not be touched, while the coffee and toast (made by electricity) were made rapidly absorbed; the "Magnetic Cake' disappeared; the "Wizard" and "Current Pies' vanished, and 'Jupiter" raising a glass to his lips began to imbibe.
The effect was astonishing! The gas instantly went out, a gigantic skeleton painted with luminous paint appeared and paraded about the room, while Jupiter's nose assumed the color of a genuine toper! His green eyes twinkled, the electric diamonds in his shirt front (tiny lamps) blazed forth and twinkled like stars, as he phonographically shouted "Happy New Year'. Happy New Year!" This "Master of Cererionies' now becoming more gentle, the guests turned their attention to the beautiful fruit piece, over four feet high, that stood in the center of the table. From the fruit hung tiny electric lamps, and the whole was surmounted by a bronze figure of Bartholdils "Statue of Liberty;" uplifted in "Miss Liberty's" right hand burned an Edison lamp no larger than a bean.
The dinner finished, and there was much that was good to eat, notwithstanding the "magical" dishes which they were first invited to partake of, speeches were delivered by Messrs. Hammer, Rutan, McDougall, 'Brown, Duneka, and Dawson, and an original poem was read by Mr. Van Wyck. Upon repairing to the parlors the guest saw Mr. Hammer's little sister, May, dressed in white and mounted upon a pedestal, representing the "Goddess of Electricity:" tiny electric lamps hung in her hair, and were also suspended as earrings, while she held a wand surmounted by a star, and containing a very small electric lamp.
Not the least interesting display of electricity took place in front of the house, where a fine display of bombs, rockets, Roman candles, Greek fire and other fireworks were set off by electricity, which was by the way, the first time this had been accomplished. The guests were requested to press button switches ranged along the front veranda railing thus causing electricity from a storage battery to heat to a red heat tiny platinum iridium spirals attached to each fuse of the various pieces of fireworks thus sending up rocket after rocket, as well as igniting the other pieces which had been placed in the roadway in front of the house.
An attempt was made to send up a large hot air balloon to which was attached a tiny storage battery and an incandescent signal lamp but a sudden gust of wind caused the ballon to take fire as it rose fr(xn the ground. This constituted the only experiment made during the evening which was not an unqualified success. The innumerable electrical devices shown during the progress of the dinner were all operated by Mr. Hammer, who controlled various switches fastened to the under side of the table and attached to a switchboard, which rested on his lap, while the two cannons were fired by lever switches on the floor, which he operated by the pressure of the foot. Electricity was supplied by primary and storage batteries placed under the table. After an exhibition of electrical apparatus and experiments with a large phonograph, the guests departed with a bewildered feeling that somehow they had been living half a century ahead of the new year."
Expositions and Exhibitions:
The many Expositions held at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries were important for the Edison Electric Company's future business. In particular the Paris Electrical Exposition, 1881, and the Crystal Palace Exposition in London in 1892 were introductions for the company's international business enterprises. Edison, therefore, sent his ablest men from the Menlo Park staff (Batchelor, Hammer, Jehl, Johnson) to Europe to oversee the installation and promotion of the company's exhibits.
THE INTERNATIONAL PARIS EXPOSITION OF 1881
The International Paris Electrical Exposition was held during the summer of 1881. Many of Edison's electric lighting systems, ranging from arc lights to incandescent devices, were exhibited. A model of the Edison central-station lighting system showed an arrangement of incandescent lights within a complete electrical distributing system, including novel appliances and controls of the Edison system. "The completeness of its conception made a profound impression on the foremost European electrical engineers of that era." (Josephson, Matthew. Edison, A Biography. p. 252). Edison also exhibited his first "Jumbon generator. It was "direct-connected" to its driving engine, another area in which Edison pioneered. Edison improved upon the original design of William Wallace's "Telemachon' - a generator coupled to a water-powered turbine. Wallace had earlier in the decade produced the first dynamo in America.
Charles Batchelor headed the Edison exhibits within Paris. Edison received many gold medals and diplomas and was awarded the ribbon of the Legion of Honor.
The William J. Hammer Collection contains various reports and catalogues exhibited at the International Exposition of Electricity. (Series 3, Box 44, Folders 1-4)
THE CRYSTAL PALACE EXHIBITION OF 1882
At the Crystal Palace Exhibition of 1882 in London, Edison displayed a great many of his inventions, including: the steam dynamo; specimens of street pipes and service boxes used in the Edison underground system of conductors, and the system of house conductors with devices for preventing abnormal increase of energy in house circuits; apparatus for measuring the resistance of his lamps, for measuring the energy consumed in lamps, and rheostats for restoring currents; also thermogalvano-meters, carbon rheostats, dynamometers, photometers, carbon regulators, Weber meters,, current regulators, and circuit breakers for controlling electric light circuits; the carbon relay, the pressure relay, and the expansion relay; the telegraph system in Morse characters; and the Roman character automatic telegraph.
Thomas Edison also exhibited the carbon telephone, the musical telephonograph, telephone repeater, and numerous apparatus for demonstrating the method of varying the resistance of a closed circuit by contact with carbon, illustrative of the experimental factors of the Edison carbon transmitter. Incandescent lamps, the process of the manufacture of lamps, and various designs of electric light chandeliers were also on display.
Hammer won the silver medal at the exposition for the first complete development of the incandescent electric lamp from its initial stages to date. At the exhibition the first hand-operated flashing electric lamp sign was displayed, which was invented and built by Hammer.
The collection contains photographs of the Edison dynamo, and the Edison Electric Lighting Plant of 1882 erected by Hammer. The official Catalogue of the International Electric and Gas Exhibition, and various articles from the Daily Telegraph, Daily Chronicle, and Daily News are also included within the collection (Series 4, Box 99 and Series 3, Box 42, Folder 1-2).
THE BERLIN EXPOSITION OF 1883.
The Berlin Exposition of 1883 had the first motored flashing electric sign designed, built and operated by Hammer. The electric sign spelled out the word "Edison" letter by letter and was used on the Edison pavilion in the Health Exposition. It has most features of today's flashing sign.
The collection contains two photographs of the first flashing sign (Series 4, Box 99).
THE FRANKLIN INSTITUTE INTERNATIONAL ELECTRICAL EXHIBITION OF 1884
The Franklin Institute International Electrical Exhibition was held in Philadelphia from September 2 to October 14, 1884. Many of Edison's companies had display booths at the exhibition. The Edison Electric Light Company showed in operation their system of house lighting as supplied from a central station. The Edison Company for Isolated Lighting exhibited their system of lighting factories, hotels, hospitals, and other places situated beyond the reach of a central lighting station. A full assortment of Edison lamps and dynamos also made up parts of other exhibits. Also displayed at the exhibition was the first flashing column of light, which Hammer designed and built.
Included within the collection are a variety of photographs of the exhibitions. Four pamphlets also are contained in the collection (Series 3, Box 1, Folder 3), (Series 4, Box 99).
THE EXPOSITION OF THE OHIO VALLEY AND THE CENTRAL STATES OF 1888
The Exposition of the Ohio Valley and Central States, in Cincinnati from July 4 to October 27, was in honor of the one hundredth anniversary of the settlement of Cincinnati. The exposition showed the progress and ramifications of the first hundred years of this settlement.
The space occupied by permanent buildings was greater than that covered by any building for exhibiting purposes on the Western continent. T',ie exposition developed the Electric Light Plant to make a special feature of electric lighting in the evening. Several companies used this opportunity to make exhibits of their apparatus and for their equipment to be used for illumination. The Edison Lamps were used for displays in showcases and pavilions of exhibitors of the Park Building.
The collection contains photographs of the halls of the exposition and a poster which is a souvenir of the electrical display of the exposition. An official Guide of the Centennial Exposition of the Ohio Valley and Central States is included within the collection. (Series 4, Box 99), (Series 3, Box 42, Folder 4).
THE SUMMER CARNIVAL AND ELECTRICAL EXHIBITION, ST. JOHN, NEW BRUNSWICK, 1889
The Summer Carnival and Electric Exhibition held at St. John, New Brunswick, Canada was to celebrate the opening of the Canadian Pacific Short Line to St. John and Portland. The Electrical Exhibition was the most popular of the displays present, containing the Monster Edison Lanm, the Mysterious Electric Fountain, and many other inventions.
The William J. Hammer Collection contains a poster that illustrates some of the leading exhibits at the Electrical Exhibition (Series 4, Box 99).
PARIS UNIVERSAL EXPOSITION OF 1889
The Universal Exposition of 1889 held in Paris was larger than all previous expositions held there. The famous Eiffel Tower was its principal attraction.
A large portion of the exhibit hall within the Palace of Mechanical Industries contained Thomas Edison's electrical inventions, including various electric lamps for use in houses. Variations of the telephone also were shown. During the Paris Exposition Europeans were exposed to the phonograph for the first time. Hammer represented Edison's interests at the Paris Exhibition.
The collection contains articles from New York World, New York Herald and Electrical World on Edison's exhibits at the Paris Exposition (Series 3, Box 44, folder 6). A scrapbook of photographs from the exhibition showing exhibit buildings and halls and loose photographs showing Edison's exhibits are included in the collection (Series 4, Box 98).
THE CRYSTAL PALACE EXHIBITION OF 1892
The Crystal Palace Exhibition of 1892 was held in London. Hammer displayed a great variety of products in the machine room of the Electrical Exhibition. Sockets for controlling individual incandescent lamps on alternating currents and the Ward Arc Lamp for use on incandescent circuits were just a few of the items displayed. Edison's companies displayed specimens of all types of incandescent electric lamps for public and private illumination. They also displayed primary batteries for use in telegraphy, telephony, household work, and engines.
The William, J. Hammer Collection contains a variety of photographs of the electrical exhibition. The Official Catalogue and Guide of the Electrical Exhibition is also contained within the collection (Series 4, Box 99), (Series 3, Folder 2, Box 42).
LOUISIANA PURCHASE EXPOSITION, 1904
The Louisiana Purchase Expostition of 1904, held in St. Louis, Missouri from April 30 to December 1, celebrated the centennial of the Louisiana Purchase. The nineteen million people who attended made it the largest exposition ever. The year 1904 marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of Edison's invention of the carbon filament lamp and central power station system.
F.J.V. Skiff, the exhibits classifier for the fair, developed a twofold classificatory arrangement. He organized exhibits in a sequential synopsis corresponding to the sixteen different departments of the exposition. The principal exhibition buildings were built in the shape of a fan. The departments of education, art, liberal arts, and applied sciences-including electricity - headed the classification, Skiff noted, because they "equip man for the battle and prepare him for the enjoyments of life.' Departments devoted to displays of raw materials such as agriculture, horticulture, !inning, forestry, fish and game came next. Anthropology, social economy, and physical culture concluded the classification.
The Hammer collection contains photographs of Hammer with other Chairmen of Domestic and Foreign Jurors of the Electricity Section of the International Jury of Awards of the Louisiana Exposition and Hammer as chairman of the jury on telegraphy, telephony, and wireless. (Series 4, Box 102). A pamphlet by the American Telephone and Telegraph Company on the exhibit of the Radiophone at the Department of Applied Science is also part of the collection (Series 3, Box 42, Folder 5).
THE PANAMA-PACIFIC EXPOSITION OF 1915
The Panama Pacific Exposition celebrated the opening of the Panama Canal and the four hundredth anniversary of the European discovery of the Pacific Ocean. It was held in San Francisco from February 20 to December 4, 1915. Approximately nineteen million people attended the exposition.
The eleven main buildings of the exposition were grouped around a central court of the Sun and Stars at the entrance of which was the famous Tower of Jewels. The main group of exhibits comprised the Palaces of Education, Liberal Arts, Manufactures, Varied Industries, Mines,
Transportation, Agriculture, Horticulture and all kinds of food products. During the exposition special days were set aside to honor industrialists Henry Ford and Thomas Edison. The Pacific Gas and Electric Company provided a large searchlight to flash out a Morse code greeting on the nighttime sky for their arrival.
The William J. Hammer Collection contains a pamphlet on the "Illumination of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition." The pamphlet describes the lighting of the exposition, and the use of arc lamps ' searchlights, incandescent electric lamps, and gas lamps (Series 4, Box 99), (Series 3, Box 43).
Collection donated by IBM, 1962.
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.
Kaslov, Steve, ca. 1888-1949 (King of the Red Bandanna Romany Gypsies ) Search this
4.3 Cubic feet (15 boxes)
West Virginia -- 1930-1950
New Jersey -- 1930-1950
Maspeth (Queens, Long Island, N.Y.) -- 1930-1950
New York (N.Y.) -- photographs -- 1930-1950
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of 4.3 cubic feet of manuscript, print, and photographic materials created or collected by Carl de Wendler-Funaro (1898-1985) in pursuit of his interest in Gypsy life and culture. (Carlos de Wendler-Funaro used several forms of his name; he wrote mostly as Carl de Wendler-Funaro.) The -collection was brought to the attention of the Division of Community Life, National Museum of American History, by Matt T. Salo and donated to the Smithsonian by Dr. de Wendler-Funarol's widow, Cornelia de Funaro, in May 1985, through Richard E. Ahlborn, Curator.
The number and breadth of the photographic materials, especially, the accompanying documentation and their representation of many Gypsy groups in a single time period, make this collection an important resource for research.
Print and Manuscript Materials
The print and manuscript materials in the collection are organized-into six series: (1) materials for which Carl de Wendler-Funaro is author, co-author or editor; (2) materials about de Wendler-Funaro; (3) correspondence; (4) journals, books, or extracts from them, by various authors; (5) newspaper and magazine articles; (6) photomechanical images from newspapers, magazines, and books.
The manuscript materials include drafts of portions of planned books, reading notes, and Gypsy language notes and transcriptions. De Wendler-Funaro seems to have planned two books. One was to have been a book of his photographs, with accompanying essays describing his encounters with Gypsies, the other a work on Gypsies, especially those in the United States. The major element of the second book was to have been the history of the Rom in this country as told by Steve Kaslov. The second work was to have included the manuscripts, 'The Last Caravan,' on Romnichels in the United States; 'Romanian Gypsies in Maspeth Village,' on the Ludar; 'Hungarian Gypsies,' orx these musicians in the United States; and some folk tale materials. Several outlines for the two books are in the collection.
The draft materials written with Steve Kaslov include an account of the Gypsy leader Chaiko Jura. The account, which seems to approach legend at some points, describes his immigration to the United States, adventures in this country, and death. Also among the draft materials, and intended to follow in the proposed book, is what may be termed an official biography of Steve Kaslov (c. 1888-1949). Apparently tentatively entitled "The Ways of my People,' the manuscript recounts a few incidents, told at length, in the experiences of Kaslov's family and social network from about 1900 to about 1938.
De Wendler-Funaro's notes suggest that the Kaslov biography was dictated to an unnamed lawyer in the early 1930s and given to de Wendler-Funaro in 1934. Kaslov dictated the story of Chaiko to de Wendler-Funaro. (Perhaps this is the source of a statement in the New York Sun, June 20, 1941, that Kaslov had written two books.)
The okaslov manuscripts' are written mostly in a variety of American English common among American Rom. Parts of the biographical section are written in the first person, others in the third. Cultural material includes descriptions of weddings, funerary ritual, business transactions, conflicts and conflict resolution. As factual sources the manuscripts are unreliable: dates, for example, are only very approximate; birth places for Steve Kaslov and his family are incorrect.
Evidence in the manuscripts indicates that de Wendler-Funaro hoped, through 1976, to publish these texts in some form. Apparently Kaslov made a first attempt to publish in 1940, when he sent a draft to Eleanor Roosevelt. Mrs. Roosevelt sent the manuscript on to George Bye, a literary agent, who returned it in 1941 as unpublishable, calling it a Oterribly disorganized manuscript .... [Kaslov] is now working with a doctor (de Wendler-Funarol who claims to be an author but the results are very unhappy' (Correspondence in FDR Library).
Correspondence in the collection (series 3) includes letters to and from de Wendler-Funaro; drafts of letters by Steve Kaslov, soliciting aid for Gypsy education; and correspondence between the U.S. Consulate in Matamoros, Mexico, and the U.S. Department of State. According to Mrs. de Funaro, Carl de Wendler-Funaro destroyed his other correspondence before his death.
Many of the books, journals, articles, and extracts in the collection (series 4)- are materials upon which de Wendler-Funarol's dissertation is based. They include typed transcriptions of published articles as well as printed matter; dates of the materials range from 1554 to 1979.
The collection includes about 2,000 photoprints, including multiple copies, and 2,000 negatives. These materials are organized into eleven series: (7) photographs by de Wendler-Funaro: Gypsies in the United States; (8)photographs by de Wendler-Funaro: Gypsies outside the United States; (9) heirloom photographs'; (10) photographs by other creators; (11) photographs ;rom commercial agencies; (12) photographs of non-Gypsies; (13) photocopies, of numbered photos, in numerical order; (14) negatives; (15) contact sheets made from negatives from by the Smithsonian Office of Printing and Photographic Services, 1986; (16) scrapbook sheets; (17) slides made from negatives and prints by the Smithsonian Office of Printing and Photographic. services, 1986.
The original photographs by Carlos de Wendlet-Funaro span the,period 1922 to 1966, but the majority were taken from about 1932 to about 1942. More than half the photographs are of the Rom group of Gypsies in the United States, and most of these were taken in New York City from about 1938 to about 1942. Other original photos by de Wendler-Funaro are of other Gypsy groups in the United States -- Ludar, Romnichels, 'Black Dutch,w and Hungarian musicians -- as well as of Gypsies in Mexico, Holland, Germany, Austria, France, England, and Hungary. Photographs by other creators include copies of portraits collected from Gypsy families, photos by other photographers, and commercial news photographs collected by de Wendler-Funaro.
De Wendler-Funaro seems to have used the photographs to gain access to Gypsy families and communities (many photos show Gypsies examining albums and sets of pictures). Some photographs were published in his 1937 article, and in two articles by Victor Weybright (1938a, 1938b). De Wendler-Funaro apparently also used lantern slides made from these photographs in lectures on the subject of Gypsies; a handbill advertising his availability on the lecture circuit is part of the collection.
Manuscript drafts for book outlines, introductions, and accompanying essays show that de Wendler-Funaro long nurtured hopes of publishing a popular tool-, 'Incorporating his photographs. To this end he numbered and captioned more than a hundred of these; a partial list of captions is part of the manuscript files. For the most part, the captions are not very helpful in understanding Gypsy cultures. Photocopies of these pictures with captions, in numerical order, are in box 8. With some exceptions, most of the photographs can be used to study costume, personal ornament, and kinesics; these will not be listed separately as subjects in the inventory. The photos of the Rom in New York City show several types of traditional costume, contemporary modish dress, and a wide range of variations on both. Taken together with the "heirloom photos' collected from the same group, they show change and variety in men's and women's dress.
In the photographs of individuals and groups one may compare, for example, sitting positions of women with relation to costume and use (or non-use) of chairs.
Most of the photographs of Rom taken in New York City show Gypsies relaxing on stoops or in the street during the summer, a common pastime in their neighborhoods. They contain little culturally specific information other than that discussed above.
Information on housing is most clearly represented in photographs of camps, in which the type of tent and, to some extent, the relationships of tents, are visible. All the tents shown appear to be commercially made. Since it was the practice to raise the tent walls in good weather, many photos also show tent interiors, with wooden platform floors used on non-grassy sites (Rom) or linoleum as a ground cloth (Romnichel). The use of featherbeds; either alone (Rom) or with bedsteads (Romnichel) is documented.
There are few photographs showing the use of interior space in urban storefront or apartment dwellings (Rom). The photographs taken in the Maspeth, Long Island, 'Gypsy village' show exteriors of the shacks built@by the Ludar.
Of cooking and heating equipment, the cast-iron or sheet-metal stoves of the Romnichels are most evident. The Rom are shown using a variety of equipment, the traditional trivet (Mexico), the Coleman-type camp stove (U.S), and the pot-bellied coal stove (New York City).
Photographs of autos and trucks, auto-drawn luggage trailers (Romnichels in the North), and horse-drawn wagons (by the horse and mule trading Romnichels in the South) reveal something of the transport of people and goods.
A few photographs show subjects at work, but most work pictures are static demonstrations or mere associations with productive enterprise. There are demonstrations of coppersmithing and fender repair work (Rom), and manufacture of rustic furniture (Romnichels), as well as posed demonstrations of palm-reading. Romnichels in the South are shown posing with horses and mules. The business that appears most frequently is fortune-telling, through photographs of roadside business tents (Romnichel); amusement, fair, and resort-area tents and stands (Rom); and canvas facades, banners and signs carrying the fortune-teller's message.
Ritual life is poorly represented in the photographs. There are some photos of a funeral procession, and one interior shot of a funeral; two photos of a saint's-day feast; one of a memorial feast; and one set taken in preparation for Christmas festivities. Curiously, there are no photographs of Rom weddings. The dearth of pictures of rituals and celebrations, which form so important a part of Rom life, may be due to difficulties with interior lighting.
Because of internal and other inconsistencies, exact dating of the photographs is often difficult. Discrepancies of as much as ten year occur in some of the dates in de Wendler-Funaro's notes.
Collection is arranged into seventeen series.
Biographical / Historical:
According to information supplied by Mrs. de Funaro, Carl de Wendler-Funaro was born in Brooklyn, New York, on October 12, 1898. After attending Boys' High School and Erasmus Hall High School in Brooklyn, he attended the University of Illinois and Cornell University, receiving a bachelor's degree in entolomology from Cornell in 1923. Subsequently he taught foreign languages at New York University, the McBurney School of the YMCA in New York City, Newark Academy and Wagner College. He began graduate work in the late 1930s, and in 1958 earned a doctorate from Columbia University with a dissertation on 'The Gitano in Spanish Literature' (a copy is in the collection, Box 1, folders 2 and 3). De Wendler-Funaro retired from teaching in 1963; he died in Tucson, Arizona on February 15, 1985.
Carl de Wendler-Funaro was an avid amateur collector of insects, especially Coleoptera, as well as shells, minerals, stamps and coins; his insect collections were donated to the American Museum of Natural History in New York.
De Wendler-Funaro's interest in Gypsies, according to his manuscripts, began in childhood. The manuscripts and one published article indicate that this interest continued to be personal, rather than professional,,,,apd @hat,,he, did not pursue his contacts with Gypsies systematically. (it was, not, 'until' the late 1940s that anthropologists began systematic studies of GYPSY.@ cultures.) It appears that de Wendler-Funaro sought out Gypsies in fairgrounds, amusement parks and urban storefronts, collecting specimens of language and taking photographs. Irving Brown's letter to de Wendler-Funaro (1929), and de Wendler-Funarol's article in Leisure (1937) refer to his visits to amusement parks. Some of his Romnichel (English Gypsy) subjects recall him as the man who drove along the roads, stopping to take pictures wherever he saw a tent. About 1938 de Wendler-Funaro became involved with a Committee on Gypsy Problems of the Welfare Council, a social service agency of New York City. This involvement may have been an outgrowth of his association with Steve Kaslov, styled by some a Gypsy king. De Wendler-Funaro seems to have served as Kaslov's amanuensis.
Gypsies in the United States:
Several groups, all known to outsiders as "Gypsies," live today in the United Sates. In their native languages, each of the groups refers to itself by a specific name, but all translate their self-designations as 'Gypsy' when speaking English. Each had its own cultural, linguistic, and historical tradition before coming to this country, and each maintains social distance from the others. An overview of these groups and their interethnic relations is presented in "Gypsy Ethnicity: Implications of Native Categories and Interaction for Ethnic Classification," by Matt T. Salo.
The Rom arrived in the United States from Serbia, Russia and Austria-Hungary beginning in the 1880s, part of the larger wave of immigration from southern and eastern Europe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Primary immigration ' ended, for the most part, in 1914, with the beginning of the First World War and subsequent tightening of immigration restrictions (Salo and Salo 1986). Many people in this group specialized in coppersmith work, mainly the repair and retinning of industrial equipment used in bakeries, laundries, confectionaries, and other businesses. The Rom, too, developed the fortune-telling business in urban areas.
Two subgroups of the Rom, the Kalderash ('coppersmiths') and, Machwaya natives of machva,' a county in Serbia) appear in the photographs iiv, this collection. De Wendler-Funaro identified some, but not all, Kalderash as, 'Russian Gypsies.' Another group he identified as "Russian Gypsies' seem, to,, be the Rusniakuria ('Ruthenians'), who in New York are known as musicians and singers.
The Ludar, or "Romanian Gypsies,' also immigrated to the United States during the great immigration from southern and eastern Europe between 1880 and 1914. Most of the Ludar came from northwestern Bosnia. Upon their arrival in the United States they specialized as animal trainers and show people, and indeed passenger manifests show bears and monkeys as a major part of their baggage. Most of de Wendler-Funarols photographs of this group were taken in Maspeth, a section of the borough of Queens in New York City, where the Ludar created a village of home-made shacks that existed from about 1925 to 1939, when it was razed. A similar settlement stood in the Chicago suburbs during the same period. One of de Wendler-Funarols manuscripts, "Romanian Gypsies at Maspeth Village,' (box 1, folder 9), and a letter from Ammiee Ellis, a social worker (box 2, folder 2), refer to this settlement.
The Romnichels, or English Gypsies, began to come to the United States from England in 1850. Their arrival coincided with an increase in the demand for draft horses in agriculture and then in urbanization, and many Romnichels worked as horse-traders. After the rapid decline in the horse trade following the First World War, most Romnichels relied on previously secondary enterprises, 'basket-making,* including the manufacture and sale of rustic furniture, and fortune-telling. Horse and mule trading continued to some extent in southern states where poverty and terrain slowed the adoption of tractor power (Salo and Salo 1982).
Photoprints in box 6, folders 2 through 10, correspond with de Wendler-Funarols trip described in his manuscript 'In Search of the Last Caravan' (box 1, folder 10). Discrepancies between this manuscript and the photos should be noted. De Wendler-Funarols notes date this trip variously between 1931 and 1945. I have dated it about 1940. Although one man appears as a frequent subject in the largest set of photos (box 6, folders 22 and 23), in the manuscript, de Funaro mentions having missed meeting him.
Gypsies from Germany, whom de Wendler-Funaro refers to 'as Chikkeners (Pennsylvania German, from the German Zigeuner), sometimes refer to themselves as wblack Dutch.w They are few in number and claim to have largely assimilated to Romnichel culture. They are represented in de Wendler-Punarols photographs by a few portraits of one old man and briefly referred to in the manuscript mIn Search of the Last Caravan.*
The Hungarian musicians also came to this country with the eastern European immigration. In the U.S. they continued as musicians to the Hungarian and Slovak immigrant settlements.
Collection donated by Mrs. Cornelia de Funaro, June 26, 1985.
Collection is open for research.
Photographs by de Wendler-Funaro are available for reproduction. Fees for commercial use. Permission to reproduce photographs by Alexander Alland must be granted by the photographer's estate; other photographs may have copyright restrictions.
Funeral rites and ceremonies -- manuscripts -- Gypsies Search this
This series contains more than 87,000 color transparencies (slides) taken by Sultner between 1947 and 1980.
The arrangement is Sultner's: General slides (United States, World, Cruises, European Architectural Styles, Subjects, and People), Framed Subjects, Note¬cards, and Lectures. Detailed container lists are available for each subseries.
With regard to all of the transparencies: comments such as "from 1952" indicate that more than one year, and probably more than one decade are included in the section. The white slips interfiled with the transparencies contain the information provided by Sultner on his original filing envelopes and refer to the images following the information. Bracketed "" information has been provided by the cataloger. Spelling corrections have been made and many abbreviations have been eliminated. U.S. Postal Service standard abbreviations for states are used frequently.
Of special interest are Sultner's images of "Roadside Americana" (box 102), Vietnam (boxes 81, 137-138), and post-World War II views of Germany (boxes 52-60, 129-131, 138, 158-159). Among the famous people photographed and included in this series are Indian Prime Minister Nehru, Robert Frost, George Balanchine, and tenor Roland Hayes.
"United States," "World": The transparencies are filed in geographic, then subject order. For example, all of the towns in a particular state are filed alphabetically, then routes between areas and finally any subject headings for that state. Sultner often num¬bered his envelopes within a city. That order has been honored, even if the material is no longer filed alphabetically. Sultner often subdivided materials by a geographic region, for example, Cape Cod, and within that, by town. Those geographic distinctions have also been retained.
Cruises: This section covers Sultner's travels with the Holland-America Cruise lines. Sultner partially sorted the materials based on five main cruises: Africa, Asia, Caribbean, Mediterranean, and the Scandinavian coast, known as the North, Cape. Because the cruises left from Florida, there are often small sections of the port in Florida included in what would otherwise be a non-American section. Other countries not necessarily part of the "name" cruise appear because they were ports of call along the way. For example, Mexico and Panama are in the Asian section because the ships passed through the Panama Canal to arrive in the Pacific Ocean. The mate¬rial is arranged alphabetically by country, rather than the order in which visited on the cruises.
"European architectural styles": Buildings representative of ba¬roque, Palladian, and rococo architecture are in this subseries. The images are filed geographically; in the case of Italy, the transparencies are arranged by north, central, or south Italy, then by date and finally by building name.
Subjects: The transparencies in this subseries are in Sultner's own categories. Subjects such as Christmas, Gardens, People, Color, and Design are included. The materials are filed alphabetically.
People: Identified people from Sultner's travels are filed alphabetically.
Framed subjects: This section contains slides used by Sultner in preparing a lecture. Instead of white slips identifying sections, Sultner's original tags were used. Any tags that were loose are filed at the end of each section. If no tag was found with a group of slides in a rubber band, a paper insert will read "No Tag." If you are able to identify a particular section, please let a staff member know so that the information may be recorded in the finding aid and database. The materials were inserted in sleeves in the order in which they appeared in the box. It appears that some of these slides were originally part of a lecture and were moved to this section by Sultner. These transparencies are filed alphabeti¬cally by Sultner title.
Notecard Files: Interfiled with his notecards were transparencies. These images are filed as they were interfiled in the boxes of notes and cover recurring themes: gardens, cruises, architecture, light and color.
Lectures: A date at the end of a particular section indicates the time that the lecture was given. Only on rare occasions does the date mean the actual time the photograph was taken. A check in the biography section will quickly show whether Sultner was in the area for that date. A semicolon separates each section within a group. These transparencies are filed alphabetically by Sultner's title.
Framed Sublects and Lectures: Explanation of Sultner's shorthand:
"A" or "A/" -- Architecture
"Bll: -- Beautification/Beauty
'IC" -- Conservation
"IC&L" -- Color and Light
"(C)II -- Central
"D" -- Design
"F" -- Framed; ie., mounted between glass in aluminum slide mounts
"G" or "G/11 -- Gardens
"GD" -- Garden design
"H/G" -- House(s) and garden(s)
"L" or "L/" -- indicates that Sultner used the section in one or more of his public lectures.
"L&C" -- Light and Color
"M" or "M/" -- means that the transparencies were shown to music and the "xxp. #:OO" indicates the number of transparencies shown in that amount of time. The "M" is generally followed by Sultner's choice of music for that section.
"(N)" -- North
"P" -- Portraits, people, palace, palazzo
"[PROJECT]" -- "[PROJECT]" indicates a set of slides designated a "project" by Sultner. There are related notes in series 3, box 41.
"(S)" -- South
"V/G" -- Villa/Gardens
"Redo" -- indicates that Sultner intended to re-do the transparencies for that particular section.
Collection is open for research but a portion of the collection is stored off-site and special arrangements must be made to work with it. Contact the Archives Center for information at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-633-3270.
A small number of letters and photographs are restricted until the year 2031. Identification list in box.
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.