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Jeff Donaldson papers

Creator:
Donaldson, Jeff, 1932-2004  Search this
Names:
AFRICOBRA (Artists' group)  Search this
Conference on the Functional Aspects of Black Art  Search this
Howard University -- Faculty  Search this
Organization of Black American Culture  Search this
World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture  Search this
Extent:
12.5 Linear feet
0.003 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Sound recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Date:
1918-2005
bulk 1960s-2005
Summary:
The papers of African American artist and educator Jeff Donaldson measure 12.5 linear feet and 0.003 GB and date from 1918 to 2005, with the bulk of the records dating from the 1960s to 2005. The collection documents Donaldson's work as a professional artist, his academic career at Howard University, and his leadership role in the Black Arts Movement through biographical material, a small amount of professional and personal correspondence, personal business records, writings by Donaldson and others, research files, artist files, sound recordings of interviews Donaldson conducted with over 40 artists, teaching files, exhibition files, printed and digital material, and photographs. Also found are detailed records of his professional activities and leadership roles in AfriCOBRA, CONFABA, FESTAC, and the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC), including documentation on the Wall of Respect mural.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of African American artist and educator Jeff Donaldson measure 12.5 linear feet and 0.003 GB and date from 1918 to 2005, with the bulk of the records dating from the 1960s to 2005. The collection documents Donaldson's work as a professional artist, his academic career at Howard University, and his leadership role in the Black Arts Movement through biographical material, a small amount of professional and personal correspondence, personal business records, writings by Donaldson and others, research files, artist files, sound recordings of interviews Donaldson conducted with over 40 artists, teaching files, exhibition files, printed and digital material, and photographs. Also found are detailed records of his professional activities and leadership roles in AfriCOBRA, CONFABA, FESTAC, and the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC), including documentation on the Wall of Respect mural.

Biographical material includes biographical summaries and resumes detailing Donaldson's career, and documents such as his birth certificate, veteran and education records, and passports.

The correspondence series includes 0.3 linear feet of letters to and from colleagues, friends, and educational and art organizations. This correspondence relates primarily to Donaldson's professional activities. Also found are one folder of letters each from Gwendolyn Brooks and Hoyt Fuller. The bulk of Donaldson's professional correspondence can be found in other series.

Interviews consist of transcripts and sound recordings of interviews conducted by Donaldson for research for his dissertation on the Harlem Renaissance, with more than forty artists including Charles Alston, Romare Bearden, Bob Blackburn, Nancy Cox, Mildred Howard, Suzanne Jackson, Senga Nengudi, Mary Lovelace O'Neal, James Phillips, and Lamonte Westmoreland. This series also includes two transcripts of interviews with Donaldson.

Writings by Donaldson include articles, catalog essays, notes and draft excerpts from his dissertation, and draft lectures on TransAfrican art.

Artist files were compiled by Donaldson and relate to various projects including his dissertation, his teaching, and his involvement with FESTAC and other projects. Artists represented include Romare Bearden, John Howard, Jacob Lawrence, Archibald Motley, James Phillips, Hale Woodruff, and others. The files contain scattered correspondence, writings and notes, printed material, and photos of artists and artwork.

Exhibition files document Donaldson's involvement with the TransAfrican Art Invitational Exhibition (1997-1988) at the Orlando Museum of Art through correspondence and other planning documents, catalog essays, artist records, printed and digital material, and photographs. The series also documents solo and group exhibitions of Donaldson's artwork from 1980-2000, and includes correspondence, printed material, and photographs.

Professional files provide a rich and substantial record of Donaldson's leadership roles in the African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists (AfriCOBRA), the Conference on the Functional Aspects of Black Art (CONFABA), the Second World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture (FESTAC), and the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC). The records are particularly extensive for AfriCOBRA and FESTAC, and include correspondence, planning documents, financial records, meeting records, printed and digital material, and photographs. Additional professional files document Donaldson's involvement with other committees and conferences, including his role as guest editor for the International Review of African American Art.

Research files provide additional material related to Donaldson's dissertation and his teaching career. Of particular note is correspondence from the 1940s-1950s between the Harmon Foundation and the Department of Art at Howard University, as well as notes and a photograph of Harlem Renaissance artists outside 306 West 41st Street where Charles Alston taught art classes.

Teaching files document Donaldson's role as art department chairman and subsequently dean of the College of Fine Arts at Howard University, through correspondence and employment records. The files also include his lecture notebooks and other course documentation.

Personal business records document Donaldson's personal art collection, as well as appraisals, sales, and consignments of his own artwork. Printed material includes announcements and catalogs for exhibitions of Donaldson's artwork and the artwork of others, as well as news clippings compiled by him on subjects of interest, particularly African American artists and racial injustice.

Photographs are primarily slides of Donaldson's artwork produced from the 1950s to 2000, but also include some photos of Donaldson, including contact sheets and photographs of late career portraits, and photos of Donaldson with his wife, Arnicia. One set of photos documents a visit to Uganda in 1974, where Donaldson and his travel companions met with Idi Amin.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 12 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1954-2004 (0.3 Linear feet; Box 1, OV 14)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1957-2004 (0.3 Linear feet; Box 1)

Series 3: Interviews, 1959-1997 (1.7 Linear feet; Boxes 1-3)

Series 4: Writings, 1963-2003 (0.5 Linear feet; Box 3)

Series 5: Artist Files, 1928-2003 (1.1 Linear feet; Boxes 3-4)

Series 6: Exhibition Files, circa 1966-2000 (1.3 Linear feet; Boxes 4-6, 0.002 GB: ER01-ER02)

Series 7: Professional Files, 1960s-2005 (5.2 Linear feet; Boxes 6-11, OV 14, 0.001 GB; ER03)

Series 8: Research Files, 1930-2001 (0.4 Linear feet; Box 11)

Series 9: Teaching Files, 1961-2002 (0.6 Linear feet; Boxes 11-12)

Series 10: Personal Business Records, 1966-2001 (0.2 Linear feet; Box 12)

Series 11: Printed Material, 1918-2003 (0.5 linear feet; Box 12)

Series 12: Photographs and Personal Sound Recordings, 1956-2003 (0.4 Linear feet; Box 13)
Biographical / Historical:
Jeff Donaldson (1932-2004) was an African American artist and educator who worked in Chicago and Washington, D.C. He was a leading figure in the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 1970s and promoted the "TransAfrican" aesthetic.

Donaldson was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas with a B.A. in studio art in 1954. He briefly served in the U.S. Army and taught art in a Chicago high school from 1957 to 1965. In 1963, he received his M.S. in Art Education from Illinois Institute of Technology, and taught at Northwestern University while pursuing his Ph.D. there. He received his Ph.D. in art history in 1974 with a dissertation on young African American artists working in Harlem during the 1930s. In 1970, Donaldson became director of the Howard University Art Gallery and chairman of the art department. From 1985 to 1998, he served first as associate dean and then dean of the Howard University, College of Fine Arts.

As a leading member of the Black Arts Movement, Donaldson co-founded the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC) Visual Art Workshop which created the influential Wall of Respect mural in 1967 on the southside of Chicago. He also co-founded the AfriCOBRA artist collaborative in 1968 of which he was a lifelong member. Donaldson promoted the TransAfrican art aesthetic through his leadership role in FESTAC, the Second World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture, held in Lagos, Nigeria in 1977. He was guest editor for a TransAfrican focused issue of the International Review of African American Art which coincided with the TransAfrican Art Invitation Exhibition he curated at the Orlando Museum of Art in 1997.

Donaldson also worked as a professional painter, exhibiting in over a hundred and fifty group and solo exhibitions, and wrote critical essays for several arts publications. He regularly served as an exhibition juror, conference presenter, and served on advisory committees and as a board member for many arts and African American organizations.
Provenance:
Donated 2015 by Jameela Donaldson, Jeff Donaldson's daughter.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information. Use of archival audiovisual recordings and born-digital records with no duplicate access copies requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Jeff Donaldson papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Educators -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Painters -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Painters -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Topic:
Black Arts movement  Search this
African American artists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Citation:
Jeff Donaldson papers, 1918-2005, bulk 1960s-2005. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.donajeff
See more items in:
Jeff Donaldson papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-donajeff
Online Media:

Gretchen Bender papers

Creator:
Bender, Gretchen  Search this
Extent:
2.8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1980-2004
Summary:
The papers of Gretchen Bender measure 2.8 linear feet and date from 1980-2004. This material documents her career as a filmmaker and multimedia artist through biographical materials, correspondence, personal business records, writings, notebooks, printed material, photographs, slides and transparencies, and artwork. Also included are project files detailing Gretchen's collaborations with dancer/choreographer Bill T. Jones, as well as a handwritten transcription of a conversation between Bender and Cindy Sherman.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of Gretchen Bender measure 2.8 linear feet and date from 1980-2004. This material documents her career as a filmmaker and multimedia artist through biographical materials, correspondence, personal business records, writings, notebooks, printed material, photographs, slides and transparencies, and artwork. Also included are project files detailing Gretchen's collaborations with dancer/choreographer Bill T. Jones, as well as a handwritten transcription of a conversation between Bender and Cindy Sherman.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 9 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1996 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence/Letters, 1985-2003 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 3: Personal Business Records, 1985-1990 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 4: Project Files, 1982-2002 (Boxes 1-2, 5; 0.9 Linear Feet)

Series 5: Writings, 1983-1988 (Box 2; 0.1 Linear Feet)

Series 6: Notebooks, 1980-2000 (Box 2; 0.6 Linear Feet)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1981-2004 (Boxes 3, 6; 0.3 Linear Feet)

Series 8: Photographs, 1984-1989 (Boxes 3-4, 0.3 Linear Feet)

Series 9: Artwork, 1984-1985 (Boxes 4, 5; 0.2 Linear Feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Gretchen Bender (1951-2004) was a New York City based filmmaker, multimedia, and conceptual artist. Bender borrowed from elements found in advertising, television, popular contemporary art, and computer graphics to explore issues of race, gender, politics, and culture in her work. During the 1990s, Bender worked with choreographer/dancer Bill T. Jones as a co-director, set designer, and filmmaker on a number of theater and television projects. Bender was a director, editor, and producer for television, primarily working on music videos. Bender participated in solo and group exhibitions at Metro Pictures and Nature Morte in New York.
Provenance:
Donated 2005 by Kate Bender, Gretchen Bender's sister.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
The Gretchen Bender papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Citation:
Gretchen Bender papers, 1980-2004. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.bendgret
See more items in:
Gretchen Bender papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bendgret
Online Media:

Spanish Language Broadcasting Collection

Creator:
WKAQ (Television station : San Juan, Puerto Rico)  Search this
WNJU (Television station : New York, NY)  Search this
Telemundo Group, Inc.  Search this
Univisión (Television network)  Search this
Mirós, Gilda  Search this
Aguilar, Héctor  Search this
Extent:
3.5 Cubic feet (27 boxes, 8 map-folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Advertisements
Floor plans
Motion pictures (visual works)
Photographs
Statistics
Programs
Resumes
Scripts (documents)
Videocassettes
Writings
Immigration records
Letters (correspondence)
Diplomas
Commercials
Appointment books
Certificates
Clippings
Contracts
Dvds
Place:
Puerto Rico -- 20th century
Date:
1940-2017
Summary:
The collection documents Spanish language television stations in America, and the Telemundo network.
Scope and Contents:
The collection documents Spanish language television stations in America, and the Telemundo network. The WNJU portion includes photographs of reporters and other station personnel; portrait shots of on-air personalities, both negatives and prints; photographs of the reporters at the anchor desk, including both negatives and pritns; a reel of motion picture film of a children's show.
Arrangement:
The collection is organized into four series.

Series 1: Gilda Mirós

Subseries 1.1: Personal Papers

Subseries 2.2: Audiovisual Materials

Series 2: Hector Aguilar

Subseries 2.1: Personal Papers

Subseries 2.2: Audiovisual Materials

Series 3: Telemundo Group, Incorporated.

Subseries 3.1: WKAQ Television Station

Subseries 3.2: WNJU Television Station

Subseries 3.3: WSCV Television Station

Series 4: Univision

Subseries 4.1: Edgardo Gazón Files

Subseries 4.2: Mayda Delgado Files

Subseries 4.3: Ismael Moctezuma Files

Subseries 4.4: Eduardo Kachscovsky Files
Biographical / Historical:
WNJU was the second television station to broadcast in Spanish in the United States. It eventually was owned by Telemundo. WKAQ was the first television station to broadcast in Spanish in the United States. Telemundo stations provide diverse programming, including variety shows, telenovelas, sports, reality television, news programming, and films. Their target audience is the Hispanic and Latin American population in America.
Provenance:
Initial donation by by Jose Cancela, President of WNJU, 2016. The 2016 accrual was donated by station WKAQ. The television stations WKAQ, WNJU, and WSCV also donated materials in 2017.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
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.
Topic:
Actresses  Search this
advertising  Search this
Broadcasting -- New York  Search this
Broadcasting -- United States  Search this
Ethnic television broadcasting  Search this
Minorities in broadcasting  Search this
Radio broadcasting  Search this
Television  Search this
Television broadcasting  Search this
Television journalists  Search this
Television advertising  Search this
Television stations  Search this
Theater  Search this
Notebooks  Search this
Awards  Search this
Genre/Form:
Advertisements -- 20th century
Advertisements -- 21st century
Floor plans
Motion pictures (visual works) -- 20th century
Motion pictures (visual works) -- 21st century
Photographs -- Color negatives -- Acetate film -- 1980-2000
Photographs -- Color photoprints -- 21st century
Photographs -- Color photoprints -- 1980-2000
Photographs -- Color negatives -- Acetate film -- 21st century
Statistics
Programs
Resumes
Scripts (documents)
Videocassettes
Writings
Immigration records
Letters (correspondence)
Diplomas
Commercials
Appointment books
Certificates
Clippings
Contracts
DVDs
Citation:
Spanish Language Broadcasting Collection, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.1404
See more items in:
Spanish Language Broadcasting Collection
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-1404
Online Media:

Notebooks

Collection Creator:
Bender, Gretchen  Search this
Container:
Box 2, Folder 20-34
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1980-2000
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Collection Rights:
The Gretchen Bender papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Collection Citation:
Gretchen Bender papers, 1980-2004. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Gretchen Bender papers
Gretchen Bender papers / Series 6: Notebooks
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-bendgret-ref59

Notebooks

Collection Creator:
Bender, Gretchen  Search this
Extent:
0.6 Linear feet (Box 2)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1980-2000
Scope and Contents:
The notebooks series contains notebooks written by Gretchen Bender.
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Collection Rights:
The Gretchen Bender papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Collection Citation:
Gretchen Bender papers, 1980-2004. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.bendgret, Series 6
See more items in:
Gretchen Bender papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-bendgret-ref6

Magellan Systems Corporation GPS Records

Creator:
Magellan GPS  Search this
Extent:
12 Cubic feet (14 boxes)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Correspondence
Notebooks
Instructional materials
Design drawings
Photographs
Notes
Memorandums
Manuals
Videocassettes
Reports
Press releases
Advertisements
Clippings
Audio cassettes
Articles
Date:
1978-2005
bulk 1986-1998
Summary:
The Magellan Systems Corporation Records document various aspects of the development of several different Magellan GPS devices through engineering, research, design, manufacturing, and marketing records. Magellan Systems Corporation introduced the first hand-held differential GPS product and the conpany's focus was on research, product engineering, and design activities for GPS receivers. The collection includes correspondence and internal company reports and memoranda; design drawings; research notes; engineering notebooks, technical notes, schematics; photographs, slides and negatives; video and audiocassettes; advertisements; product literature, magazine articles and newspaper clippings; press releases; and user guides and manuals.
Scope and Contents:
The Magellan Systems Corporation Records document various aspects of the development of Magellan GPS devices, including the engineering, research, design, manufacturing, and marketing of the devices. The collection includes correspondence and internal company reports and memoranda; design drawings; research notes; engineering notebooks, technical notes, schematics; photographs, slides and negatives; video and audiocassettes; advertisements; product literature, magazine articles and newspaper clippings; press releases; and user guides and manuals. In Series 1, Operational Materials, Subseries 3, Weekly Reports, 1988-1996, provides an excellent overview of the issues facing the company and what actions/decisions were made and in Series 3, Engineering and Product Development Materials, Subseries 8, Technical Product Development Seminars provide a good foundation for understanding what the product development staff accomplished.

The core team of players who developed, tested and brought to market the GPS devices included: Janice Jones Blankenhorn, Gary Barta, John Foukos, Randy Hoffman, Norm Hunt, Sab Ifune, Don Rea, Dennis Rich, Ed Tuck, Jon Vavrus, Larry Weill, Val Fife Wong, and James Yuan. The majority of the core team were software and hardware engineers as well as mechanical designers. Their energy, enthusiasm, vision, and unwillingness to fail produced the first handheld commercial GPS receiver in 1989 and Magellgan was the first company to make GPS devices affordable to consumers.

Series 1, Operational Materials, 1988-1993, is divided into four subseries: Subseries 1, Organizational Materials, 1988-1994; Subseries 2, Strategic and Operating Plans, 1989-1995; Subseries 3, Weekly Reports, 1988-1996; and Subseries 4, Company Newsletters, 1991-1992.

Subseries 1, Organizational Materials, 1988-1994, consists of an organizational chart detailing Magellan's corporate structure, a document discussing the communication and functional objectives of the company, and a company Christmas card. The Orbital Sciences Corporation profile was prepared by Alex. Brown and Sons Incorporated and provides an overview of the ORBCOMM system technology, a two-way data-only personal communications service.

Subseries 2, Strategic and Operating Plans, 1989-1995, consists of a variety of strategic and operational plans for the company. The plans are arranged chronologically.

Subseries 3, Weekly Reports, 1988-1996, consists of handwritten and typescript reports primarily from Randy Hoffman, president and CEO of Magellan and Gary Barta, Senior Engineer and Vice President of engineering. The reports document issues that include, personnel issues, product development, technological developments, military orders, investments, marketing and sales, financial issues, orders, resource activities, and future activities. The subseries is arranged chronologically and provides an excellent overview of the issues facing the company and what actions/decisions were made.

Subseries 4, Company Newsletters, 1991-1992, consists of two external company newsletters, The Global Navigator, 1991 and The Magellan Explorer, 1992. The Global Naviagtor was created for the marine market and was sent to all NAV PLUS owners as well as dealers.

Series 2, Correspondence, 1989-1994 and undated, is divided into two subseries: Subseries 1, Customer Correspondence, 1989-1993 and Subseries 2, Business Correspondence, 1989-1994 and undated. The customer-related correspondence consists of letters from users of Magellan GPS units (primarily maritime-related) and their feedback about the product. Some color photographs are included. The business-related correspondence consists of records of conversations, invoices, suggestions for strategic planning, correspondence between Randy Hoffman and the Boundary Found, and the agreement and plan for the merger of Orbital Sciences Corporation and Magellan Corporation in 1994.

Series 3, Engineering and Product Development Materials, 1978-1998, consists of ten subseries: Subseries 1, Product Development, 1989-1994; Subseries 2, Engineering Notebooks, 1987-1996; Subseries 3, Technical Notes, 1978-1994; Subseries 4, Breadboard Design, 1986-1994; Subseries 5, First Generation (NAV 1000/NAV 1200), 1985-1994; Subseries 6, Second Generation, 1988-1996; Subseries 7, Third Generation, 1986-1994; Subseries 8, Swiss Army Chip (SAC) Development, 1987-1995; Subseries 9, Technical Products Development Seminars, 1997-1998; Subseries 10, Specifications, 1992-1994 and Subseries 11, TriQuint Semiconductor Materials, 1986-1992.

Subseries 1, Product Development, 1989-1994, consists of documentation related to product development at Magellan. There are sketches for the third generation of GPS products, descriptive materials for the Meridian Plus and third generation receiver, testing data from the Forest Service using GPS in the wilderness near Missoula, Montana, and position description for the director of product engineering at Magellan outlining the skills and responsibilities.

Subseries 2, Engineering Notebooks, 1987-1996, consists of bound, paginated and handwritten notebooks belonging to two Magellan engineers, Janice Jones Blankenhorn, senior software engineer and Don Rea, director of engineering. Each of Don Rea's notebooks contains a page of handwritten annotations made in 2010 describing the contents. Don Rea's 1987 notebook contains documentation on the original Magellan breadboard, custom digital chip (SAC 1), and the digital board design and test, all of which deal with the first generation of the NAV 1000. Rea's 1986 and 1988 notebook contains information about the first generation of software used, GaAS chips, radio frequency (RF) board, second generation (NAV 5000), design work for Swiss Army Chips (SACs), SAC2 digital chip, SAC2B, and the SAC3 chip. Don Rea's 1993-1995 notebook contains notes on the testing of the SAC5, SAC5M and SAC6 custom digital integrated circuit for the third generation.

Subseries 3 Technical Notes, 1978-1994, consists of handwritten and typescript notes of Gary Barta, Janice Jones Blankenhorn, John Foufos, Janice Intyre, Don Rea, Larry Weill, and James Yuan. Where possible, file level information about what the notes relate to and the Magellan staff member who wrote the notes is listed. Much of the documentation consists of equations, algorithms, sketches, block diagrams, and narrative describing processes and research. The subseries is loosely arranged chronologically.

Subseries 4, Breadboard Design, 1986-1994, consists of memoranda, technical notes, drawings, and sketches detailing the radio frequency breadboard design. Magellan's first-generation breadboard, circa 1987, was developed by the team of Janice Jones Blankenhorn, Val Fife Wong, Ed Tuck, Norm Hunt, Sab Ifune, Gary Barta, Larry Weill, Randy Hoffman, and Don Rea.

Subseries 5, First Generation (NAV 1000/NAV 1200), 1985-1994, consists of technical notes, design notes, memoranda, drawings, and blueprints documenting the development of the first generation (primarily the NAV 1000/NAV 1200), handheld GPS unit produced by Magellan. The first generation of GPS were single channel receivers and were quite simple. The NAV 1000 was 8.75" x 3.5" x 2.25" and weighed only 1.5 pounds. The NAV 1000 converted GPS satellite information into a satellite/navigation (sat/nav) positioning. It used Gallium arsenide (GaAs) a compound of the elements gallium and arsenic, and monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) technology to reduce its size and power consumption. GaAs is a semiconductor used in the manufacture of devices such as microwave frequency integrated circuits, monolithic microwave integrated circuits, infrared light-emitting diodes, laser diodes, solar cells, and optical windows. The device sold for approximately $3,000 dollars.

Subseries 6, Second Generation, 1988-1996, consists of technical notes, design notes, memorandums, drawings, and blueprints documenting the development of the second generation (primarily the NAV 5000) handheld GPS unit produced by Magellan. The NAV 5000 used five channels working simultaneously to locate and collect data from GPS satellites. The units GaAs circuitry rapidly processed the data received from the satellites to compute current location, altitude, velocity and navigation in under one minute. The NAV 5000 was designed primarily for marine use. Other second generation products included: OEM Brain, OEM 1/2 Brain, Nav 500 Pro, NAV 100M5, Skaynav, Fieldpro, NAV 5200 PM, NAV 5000A, NAV 5000D, DX, DLX, Pro mark V, and the Map 7000.

Subseries 7, Third Generation, 1986-1994, consists of technical notes for the development of the third generation (primarily Meridian and Trailblazer models) of Magellan GPS devices. Third generation models were intended for the lower end of the GPS market and were compact hand-held (size, weight, battery life) and a retail price that was reasonable. Other third generation devices included: the meridian, Trailblazer, AIV10 OEM, Skatblazer, NAV 6500 PM, Meridian/TB/SB XL, NAV 1200 Pm, NAV 1200 XL PM, NAV DLX 10, Promark X, and the Pro Mark X-CM.

Subseries 8, Swiss Army Chip (SAC) Development, 1987-1995, consists of technical notes, diagrams and drawings, and specifications for the development of a digital chip used in Magellan GPS products. Don Rea and Norm Hunt of Magellan are credited with naming the chip. The chip combined several elements--GPS DPS channels, correalators, real time clock, alarm timer, interval timer, keyboard interface, display interface, precise timing, power sequencing, memory decoding, code generators, and beeper driver, to name a few--which allowed the development team reduce the overall power, size, and cost of the chip. Magellan outsourced the manufacture of the SAC.

Subseries 9, Technical Products Development Seminars, 1997-1998, consists of documentation for nine seminars in a series of technology seminars initiated by the product develpment group at Magellan. The seminars were created to keep all staff up to date on past, present, and future technology developments at Magellan. The nine seminars cover the history of Magellan GPS technology and address specific areas of development such as antennas, circuits, signal processing, software, navigation needs, and radio frequency. Other information includes tables providing comparisons for the first, second, and third generations, timelines, SAC chip characteristics, and product shipping dates. The seminars provide a good foundation for understanding what the product development staff accomplished. Researchers should consult Series 8 which documents some of the technical seminars.

Subseries 10, Specifications, 1992-1994, consists of preliminary, functional, and system requirements describing technical characteristics for several Magellan products.

Subseries 11, TriQuint Semiconductor Materials, 1986-1992, consists of materials documenting TriQuint Semiconductor, Inc.'s work. TriQuint was a division of Tektroninix, Inc., a manufacturer of analog and mixed signal gallium arsenide (GaAs) integrated circuit products. TriQuint supplied custom radio frequency (RF) and Gallium arsenide (GaAs) chips for Magellan's hand-held GPS systems and tested its chips. Documentation includes trip summaries and observations to TriQuint by Don Rea, a Magellan engineer as well as technical drawings, memorandums, development schedules, invoices, purchase orders, and tests results, production quantity and costs, and specifications. In 1986, Don Rea met Gary Barta, then principal engineer at TriQuint through his frequent visits to the company. Barta led the engineeering development of the an integrated circuit which combined the GPS L-band low-noise pre-amplifier, UHF local oscillator, down converter and high speed digital divisers on a single gallium-arsenide chip. Nothing like this had been done before for a cost senstive commerical application. Barta later joined Magellan in November 1988 as Vice President of Engineering and made the chip he had designed actually work in the environment of a hand-held product.

Series 4, Marketing and Promotional Materials, 1985-1997, is divided into six subseries: Subseries 1, Market Research, 1985-1993 and undated; Subseries 2, Product Literature, circa 1990s; Subseries 3, Advertisements, 1988-1995 and undated; Subseries 4, Press Releases, 1988-1996; Subseries 5, Presentation Materials, 1990-[1997?] and undated; and Subseries 6, Newspaper and Magazine Clippings, 1988-1996 and undated. The series consists of product literature, advertisements, press releases, presentation materials, and newspaper and magazine clippings about Magellan products as well as competitors.

Subseries 1, Market Research, 1985-1993 and undated, consists of market research data in the form of reports prepared by Merrill Lynch, Simmons Market Research Bureau, J & H Instruments, and others, directed interviews and focus group data. There are directed interviews and discussion documentation from 1986 with Coast Guard Rescue, survival trainers, surveyors, hunters, harbor patrols, expeditionists, and mountaineer trainers providing detailed feedback into experiences with the product. The focus group information consists of transcribed interviews, survey text, selection criteria, participant lists, invoices, and technical drawings and mock-ups for the marine, outdoor and hunting markets.

Subseries 2, Product Literature, circa 1990s, consists of one file folder of product information sheets detailing specifics about Magellan products such as the NAV 1000, NAV 5000DX, NAV 1000 PRO/Geolink, NAV 5200, NAV 1000M, Meridian GPS, ProMARK V, GPS 2000, and the Global Satellite Communicator (GSC) 100.

Subseries 3, Advertisements, 1988-1995 and undated, consists of point of purchase ads, artwork and transfer designs for Magellan products. There are some oversize drawings (copies of blueprints) with the transfer design materials.

Subseries 4, Press Releases, 1988-1996, consists of press releases and one press kit containing biographies of staff members, black-and-white prints of Randy D. Hoffman, President and Chief Executive Officer, prints of the NAV 1000, and press releases introducing the NAV 1000. The marine outdoor press releases also contain 1993 dealer price lists for the Trailblazer, Meridian, NAV 5000DX, NAV 5200DX, and the mimimum advertised price policy for 1993.

Subseries 5, Presentation Materials, 1990-[1997?], consists primarily of staff presentation materials used to promote Magellan products. There is one bound presentation, Magellan Systems Corporation Management Presentation, undated, prepared by Merrill Lynch, that provides documentation about the company (an overview), market segments, competition, sales and marketing, product development, technology, manufacturing, and a financial overview.

Subseries 6, Newspaper and Magazine Clippings, 1988-1996 and undated, consists primarily of magazine articles. The articles appeared in a variety of publications and included Defense Electronics, Southern Boating, Maritime Reporter, Cruising World, Boating the Journal of the Sport, International Defense Review, and Navigation News. The subseries is arranged chronologically.

Series 5, User Guides and Manuals, 1989-2005 and undated, consists of training, reference, and user guides for the consumer who purchased Magellan products. The guides are primarily spiral bound and some are annotated. Multiple copies of some years exist. The series is arranged chronologically.

Series 6, Financial Materials, 1991-1995 and undated, consists of stock information, a Securities and Exchange Commission registration statement, correspondence, registration rights agreements, preferred stock purchase agreements, agreement and plan of merger documents between Magellan Corporation and Orbital Sciences Corporation (November 1994), and two floppy discs (3 1/2" and 5") containing information about the company and its staff.

Series 7, Photographs and Slides, 1987-1995 and undated, consists of slides, negatives, transparencies, and color and black-and-white prints of Magellan products. Many of the images document early product concepts, and there are some promotional and publicity materials. There is one folder of photographs with images of employees from 1989.

Series 8, Audiovisual Materials, 1991-1998 and undated, consists of 1/2" VHS, BETA Cam SP, and 8 mm video cassettes documenting technical seminars presented by Magellan Systems Corporation staff and instances of Magellan products featured in news segments. Researchers consult the technical seminar documentation in Series 3, Engineering and Product Development Materials. The series is arranged chronologically.
Arrangement:
Collection arranged into eight series.

Series 1, Operational Materials, 1988-1993

Subseries 1, Organizational Materials, 1988-1994

Subseries 2, Strategic and Operating Plans, 1989-1995

Subseries 3, Weekly Reports, 1988-1996

Subseries 4, Company Newsletters, 1991-1992

Series 2, Correspondence, 1989-1994 and undated

Series 3, Engineering and Product Development Materials, 1978-1998

Subseries 1, Product Development, 1989-1994

Subseries 2, Engineering Notebooks, 1987-1996

Subseries 3, Technical Notes, 1978-1994

Subseries 4, Breadboard Design, 1986-1994

Subseries 5, First Generation (NAV 1000/NAV 1200), 1985-1994

Subseries 6, Second Generation (NAV 5000), 1988-1996

Subseries 7, Third Generation, 1986-1994

Subseries 8, Swiss Army Chip (SAC) Development, 1987-1995

Subseries 9, Technical Product Development Seminars, 1997-1998

Subseries 10, Specifications, 1992-1994

Subseries 11, TriQuint Semiconductor, 1986-1992

Series 4, Marketing and Promotional Materials, 1985-1997

Subseries 1, Market Research, 1985-1993 and undated

Subseries 2, Product Literature, circa 1990s

Subseries 3, Advertisements, 1988-1995 and undated

Subseries 4, Press Releases, 1988-1996

Subseries 5, Presentation Materials, 1990-[1997?]

Subseries 6, Newspaper and Magazine Clippings, 1988-1996 and undated

Series 5, User Guides and Manuals, 1989-2005 and undated

Series 6, Financial Materials, 1991-1995 and undated

Series 7, Photographs and Slides, 1987-1995 and undated

Series 8, Audiovisual Materials, 1991-1998 and undated
Biographical / Historical:
Ed Tuck of the Boundary Fund, a venture capital firm specializing in technologies founded the Magellan Systems Corporation in 1986 and served as its director from 1986 to 1993. Tuck assembled the initial team of Norm Hunt, Larry Weill, Val Wong, and Sab Ifune to conduct a feasibility study in early 1986 to pursue commercial markets for products based on global positioning system (GPS) technology. Magellan introduced the first handheld commercial GPS receiver in 1989 and was the first company to make GPS devices affordable to consumers. Magellan introduced the first handheld commercial GPS receiver in 1989 and was the first company to make GPS devices affordable to consumers. The company successfully introduced GPS products into the marine, professional, military and automotive and general aviation markets.

The Global Positioning System (GPS) began as a United States Department of Defense Program in the 1960s with a navy system known as Transit (first satellite navigation system). Two other projects soon followed, Timation (satellite to broadcast accurate time reference) and Air Force Project 612B, which began in the 1970s. In 1973, the development of the Navigation Signal Timing and Ranging Global Positioning System (NAVSTAR) began under the management of the Air Force. Designed by the military, the system provided twenty-four positioning satellites under all- weather conditions using passive (non-transmitting) receivers. This kept a user's presence from being detected as a result of the receiver. Although primarily for military use, the system also offered a less-precise coded signal for civilian use.

GPS uses a group of twenty-four earth-orbiting satellites which broadcast continuously. The data being broadcast can be processed by a portable receiver to determine a user's position, velocity and time. GPS has three parts: 1) space part with twenty-four satellites; 2) ground part with monitor and 3) user part with receivers that process the signals and calculate position.

In the spring of 1986, the Magellan team published a specification for a custom mixed signal RF (radio frequency) integrated circuit and by fall 1986, had a breadboard (used in prototyping of electronics) and began software development and testing. Magellan focused its research, product engineering, and design activities on the development of GPS receivers that were application-specific, software-intensive, reliable, lower power, easy to use, and affordable.

From 1986 to 1988, the Boundary Fund provided the venture capital for feasibility studies and the initital product design. By 1988, the company occupied its first stand-alone facility in Monrovia, California with thirty-five employees. In May 1989, the company's first product, the NAV 1000, shipped, and in that same year, the company entered the military market with the NAV 1000M. The company entered the professional market in January 1990 with the NAV 1000 PRO, the world's first hand-held GPS product. By 1991, Magellan moved to a new facility in Dimas, California and introduced advanced five-channel technology. It also incorporated in the United Kingdom (UK) as Magellan Systems to handle product distribution in the rest of the UK and Europe.

The SkyNAV 5000 was introduced in 1992 for the general aviation market, and in the same year, hand-held differential GPS technology for the marine market appeared. Magellan was purchased by Orbital Sciences Corporation in 1994. In 2001, Thales Group purchased the Magellan division of Orbital Sciences, and the company became known as Thales Navigation. In 2006, a private equity firm, Shah Capital Partners, and other investors purchased Thales Navigation, and the company was officially renamed Magellan Navigation. Magellan (also known as MiTAC Digital Corporation) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of MiTAC International Corporation and promotes and sells products and services under the Magellan brand name. Magellan is headquartered in Santa Clara, California.
Related Materials:
The Division of Work and Industry holds related artifacts (GPS receivers, computer electronics boards, computer chips, antennas, packaging, components, circuit boards, keyboards, a Swiss Army Chip (SAC), and receiver brackets). See Accession numbers 2010.0117; 2010.0118; 2010.0151; 2010.0152; 2010.0153; 2010.0154 and 2010.0155.
Provenance:
Donated to the Archives Center in 2010, by MiTAC Digital Corporation through Michael Williams, Director of Marketing and Gary Barta, Janice Itnyre, Jean Tuck McGregor, Donald Rea, Edward F. Tuck, Lawrence R. Weill, and James P. White.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
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.
Topic:
Navigation  Search this
Navigation equipment and supplies  Search this
Global Positioning System  Search this
GPS receivers  Search this
Satellites  Search this
Genre/Form:
Correspondence -- 1950-2000
Notebooks
Correspondence -- 2000-2010
Instructional materials
Design drawings
Photographs -- 1980-2000
Notes
Photographs -- Black-and-white negatives -- 2000-2010
Photographs -- Black-and-white negatives -- 1950-2000
Memorandums -- 1950-2000
Manuals
Memorandums -- 2000-2010
Videocassettes
Reports
Press releases
Reports -- 2000-2010
Advertisements -- 1980-2000
Reports -- 1950-2000
Photographs -- 2000-2010
Clippings -- 2000-2010
Photographs -- Color transparencies -- 2000-2010
Photographs -- Color transparencies -- 1950-2000
Audio cassettes -- 1990-2000
Audio cassettes -- 1980-1990
Clippings -- 1950-2000
Audio cassettes -- 2000-2010
Articles
Advertisements -- 2000-2010
Citation:
Magellan Systems Corporation GPS Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.1214
See more items in:
Magellan Systems Corporation GPS Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-1214
Online Media:

Matt Mullican papers

Creator:
Mullican, Matt, 1951-  Search this
Names:
König, Kasper  Search this
Mullican, Lee, 1919-1998  Search this
Weiner, Lawrence.  Search this
Extent:
27.8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Notebooks
Diaries
Writings
Date:
circa 1968-2017
Summary:
The papers of New York City and Berlin, Germany based multi-media and conceptual artist Matt Mullican measure 27.8 linear feet and date from circa 1968-2017. The collection consists of biographical material, including a few interview transcripts; correspondence; over 100 notebooks; gallery and exhibition files; project and commission files; personal business records; printed material; and photographs. The notebooks document nearly five decades of Mullican's work process and illustrate his material and conceptual explorations. Large sequences of gallery and exhibition files, as well as project and commission files comprise the remaining bulk of the collection, providing detailed documentation of his professional career, particularly from the 1980s-2000s.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York City and Berlin, Germany based multi-media and conceptual artist Matt Mullican measure 27.8 linear feet and date from circa 1968-2017. The collection consists of biographical material, including a few interview transcripts; correspondence; over 100 notebooks; gallery and exhibition files; project and commission files; personal business records; printed material; and photographs. The notebooks document nearly five decades of Mullican's work process and illustrate his material and conceptual explorations. Large sequences of gallery and exhibition files, as well as project and commission files comprise the remaining bulk of the collection, providing detailed documentation of his professional career, particularly from the 1980s-2000s.

Biographical material includes address books, high school and college ephemera, papers and photographs relating to Mullican's family, identification cards, interview transcripts, a resume, and a few writings.

The small amount of correspondence arranged in Series 2 is with friends, artists, colleagues, fans, and museum professionals. Notable correspondents include artist Lawrence Weiner and museum director Kasper König. Additional professional correspondence is located in the Gallery and Exhibition Files, as well as the Project and Commission Files.

Over 100 notebooks document nearly five decades of Mullican's work process and artistic explorations from the time he was a student up to the present.

A large sequence of gallery and exhibition files encompass a variety of material documenting Mullican's extensive solo and group exhibition history throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan.

Extensive project and commission files contain documentation of international public and corporate commissions, academic engagements, performances, publishing projects, print editions, illustrations, grants, residencies, and other project based artwork. Public and corporate commissions include artworks and installations for banks, airports, office complexes, university buildings, public transit stations, and other spaces.

Personal business records relate to bookkeeping and sales, donations, inventories, publication, copyright, supplies, invoicing, recommendations, residences, storage of works, and studio administration.

Printed material includes announcements, posters, articles, reviews, exhibition catalogs, and periodicals related to Mullican's career.

One folder of photographs documents Mullican, his family, and installations of his work at various venues and exhibitions.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as eight series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1968-2002 (0.6 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1986-2000s (0.2 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 3: Notebooks, circa 1968-2017 (7.2 linear feet; Box 1-8)

Series 4: Gallery and Exhibition Files, 1985-2000s (6.1 linear feet; Box 9-13, OV and RD 23-25)

Series 5: Project and Commission Files, 1980-2000s (10.3 linear feet; Box 14-19, OV and RD 26-43)

Series 6: Personal Business Records, 1978-2000s (1.7 linear feet; Box 19-21)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1971-2000s (1.5 linear foot; Box 21-22, RD 44)

Series 8: Photographs, 1980s-1990s (1 folder; Box 22)
Biographical / Historical:
Matt Mullican (1951- ) is a multi-media and conceptual artist working in New York City and Berlin, Germany. Born in Santa Monica, he is the son of abstract surrealist painters Lee Mullican and Luchita Hurtado Mullican. Educated at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) in the early 1970s, and mentored by John Baldessari, Mullican moved to New York City after earning his BFA and became associated with the "Pictures Generation" artists, including friends Troy Brauntuch, Jack Goldstein, James Welling, and Robert Longo. His multi-disciplinary practice encompasses drawing, painting, collage, video, installation, and performance under hypnosis as his alter ego, 'That Person.' Through these media, Mullican explores systems of knowledge, the construction of reality, as well as meaning, language, and signs. Throughout his career, Mullican has participated in international solo and group exhibitions, and has undertaken dozens of public and corporate commissions.
Provenance:
Donated to the Archives of American Art in 2014-2017 by Matt Mullican.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Use of born-digital records requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Matt Mullican papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Topic:
Artists -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Conceptual artists--Germany--Berlin--Interviews  Search this
Conceptual artists--New York (State)--New York--Interviews  Search this
Multimedia (Art)  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Notebooks
Diaries
Writings
Citation:
Matt Mullican papers, circa 1968-2017. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.mullmatt
See more items in:
Matt Mullican papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-mullmatt
Online Media:

Notebooks

Collection Creator:
Mullican, Matt, 1951-  Search this
Extent:
7.2 Linear feet (Box 1-8)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
circa 1968-2017
Scope and Contents:
Over 100 notebooks document nearly five decades of Mullican's work process, dating from circa 1968-2017. Central to Mullican's practice from the time he was a student up until the present, the notebooks richly illustrate both his material and conceptual exploration. The term 'notebook' is used here to encompass the breadth of content collected in the books, including drawings and sketches, conceptual frameworks, notes, lists, calendars, travel logistics, as well as diary entries. In most cases, Mullican created titles for the notebooks in retrospect. Early subjects tackled as a high school student (including comics, superheroes, and cars) evolve during his time at CalArts and beyond to form the basis of his text-based, conceptual, performance works. The 1970s notebooks demonstrate the development of Mullican's cosmology, the stick figure 'Glen,' and his alter ego 'That Person.' Notebooks from the 1980s-2000s contain plans for public artworks, commissions, exhibition installations, and books. Mullican experimented with a variety of media and techniques throughout the notebooks including pencil, pen, marker, crayon, acetone transfer, and collage. Mullican has identified a few of the notebooks as single works of art, including artist books and altered books. Also arranged here are a diary from 1975 and an undated collection of watercolor studies.
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Use of born-digital records requires advance notice.
Collection Rights:
The Matt Mullican papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Collection Citation:
Matt Mullican papers, circa 1968-2017. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.mullmatt, Series 3
See more items in:
Matt Mullican papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-mullmatt-ref3

Pocket Notebooks

Collection Creator:
Kainen, Jacob  Search this
Kainen, Ruth Cole.  Search this
Container:
Box 12, Folder 48-50
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
circa 1980s-1990s
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Collection Rights:
The Jacob Kainen papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Collection Citation:
Jacob Kainen papers, 1905-2008, bulk 1940-2001. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Jacob Kainen papers
Jacob Kainen papers / Series 3: Writings / 3.1: Writings by Jacob Kainen
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-kainjaco-ref806

Records of Wedge Innovations

Interviewer:
Shayt, David H.  Search this
Creator:
Wedge Innovations  Search this
Extent:
13 Cubic feet (28 boxes, 5 oversized folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Videotapes
Notebooks
Oral histories (document genres)
Audiotapes
Financial records
Financial statements
Interviews
Correspondence
Photographs
Drawings
Advertisements
Date:
1985-1996
Summary:
The records of Wedge Innovations document the invention and development of a new hand tool, the SmartLevel, an electronic builder's level; also included are company management and policies.
Scope and Contents:
The SmartLevel story gives excellent insight into the life cycle of a small Silicon valley start-up in the 1980s. SmartLevel's creator, Wedge Innovations, established a market for a new product, achieved national distribution, off-shore manufacturing, and product licensing, before going out of business due to pressure from profit-hungry venture capitalists.

The records of Wedge Innovations is a "tool biography" that documents the invention and development of a new hand tool, the SmartLevel, an electronic builder's level first conceived in 1985 by Andrew Butler. The SmartLevel Collection is divided into seven series: Corporate Records, Engineering Records, Financial Records, Marketing Records, Operations Records, Product Development Records, and Corporate Culture, reflecting both the organizational structure of Wedge Innovations and the company's working environment.

Series 1, Corporate Records, 1985-1993, address the overall management of Wedge Innovations and document its policies, especially through the company's annual business plans, 1986-1992, and the monthly reports prepared for the Board of Directors' meetings, 1989-1992. This series also details the workings of each department through weekly departmental reports. The staff meetings files, July-November 1989, February 1990-November 1992, are particularly useful for understanding the day-to-day operation of the company.

Series 2, Engineering Records, 1985-1993, document the design and development of the SmartLevel from its conception in 1985 as the WedgeLevel, through its production as the SmartLevel in 1989, and through its refinement into the Pro SmartLevel and the Series 200 SmartLevel in 1991. The design process is particularly well documented through Andrew Butler's and Kevin Reeder's design notebooks and through the detailed technical drawings done by Butler, Reeder, and Ronald Wisnia. Also well documented are the efforts made to solve the many problems associated with the development and quality control of the electronic sensor module that was the heart of the SmartLevel.

Series 3, Financial Records, 1985-1992, include Wedge's summary financial statements from 1985 to 1992.

Series 4, Marketing Records, 1986-1992, document customer and dealer relations through marketing department correspondence, operational records, and advertising campaigns. This series is particularly rich in promotional material (1988-1992), such as advertisements, advertising copy, photographs, product promotion plans, and videotapes that demonstrate the varied features and uses of the products.

Series 5, Operations Records, 1990-1993, document the manufacturing process and the Company's offshore operations.

Series 6, Product Development Records, 1986-1993, document the company's intended development of an entire "Smart Tools" line.

Series 7, Corporate Culture, 1985-1996, contains employee photographs and oral history interviews with key Wedge personnel conducted in 1995 and 1996 by David Shayt, Division of Work and Industry, National Museum of American History. The interviews discuss the background of the participants, the company's origins and history, product development, the Silicon Valley context, and the efforts of Wedge Innovations successor firm, SmartTool Technologies.
Arrangement:
The collection organized into seven series.

Series 1, Corporate Records, 1985-1993

Series 2, Engineering Records, 1985-1993

Series 3, Financial Records, 1985-1992

Series 4, Marketing Records, 1986-1992

Series 5, Operations Records, 1990-1993

Series 6, Product Development Records, 1986-1993

Series 7, Corporate Culture, 1985-1996
Biographical / Historical:
Andrew G. Butler (b. 1955), the founder of Wedge Innovations exhibited an interest in building construction and an entrepreneurial spirit early in life. From age 12 to 17 he built a boat that he then sailed alone from California to Tahiti, where he spent several years as an independent carpenter and building contractor. After returning to the United States, he earned a B.S. degree in electromechanical engineering from Stanford University (1983) and became a software specialist for Bechtel Construction. In 1985, he conceived of an idea for an electronic carpenter's level that could read a range of angles. Butler formed Wedge Innovations in 1986. He worked in the basement of his home in order to develop and market this level, selling his boat to finance the venture. He hired Marilyn Crowell as his secretary and Robert Nagle and Dan Kellogg as engineers. This company developed the sensor technology and software necessary to build the company's first product, the WedgeLevel. The heart of this tool was an electronic sensor circuit connected to a microprocessor capable of measuring the tool's orientation. This sensor module fit into an ergonomically-designed teak rail with anodized aluminum edges jointly developed by Butler, engineering design consultant Kevin Reeder, and engineer Ronald Wisnia.

In 1987, Wedge moved to Santa Clara to begin manufacturing the WedgeLevel. The transition from a research and development concern to a manufacturing company proved difficult, due to manufacturing and financial difficulties. It was difficult to obtain a reliable yet inexpensive source of teak for the rails, designs for a plastic composite and aluminum rail were developed, while offshore manufacturing of the sensor components was established. Overarching all concerns was the persistent difficulty of obtaining sufficient investment capital. While managing his growing company, Butler also began planning for a line of hand tools that combined microelectronics and user-oriented, ergonomic design. In 1988, the company changed the name of its product to SmartLevel in order to emphasize the company's proposed line of Smart Tools. That same year, the company adopted a new corporate logo, a stylized W with a red wedge, signaling its growing maturity. Promotion of the product also began through demonstrations of the prototype done by consultant building contractor, Rick Feffer.

In January 1989, the SmartLevel prototype was launched at the National Association of Home Builders Show in Atlanta, Georgia. The favorable publicity generated by this launch and by the company's media campaign generated many orders. To supply these orders, Wedge moved to larger quarters in Sunnyvale on April 1, 1989. In June 1989, Wedge gained further publicity by donating several SmartLevels to a Habitat for Humanity project in Milwaukee, where former president Jimmy Carter used one. Although Wedge expected to ship the first SmartLevels in July 1989, there were considerable delays in manufacturing. In particular, there were stability and performance problems with the sensor, which engineer Ken Gunderson was brought in to remedy. The sensor module was re-engineered to be more rugged and the level was redesigned with a plastic composite and aluminum rail. The new level, known as the Pro SmartLevel, was intended for the professional construction market. The first SmartLevels were shipped on September 5, 1989.

In 1990, patents were granted to Andrew Butler, Donald G. Green, and Robert E. Nagle for an inclinometer sensor circuit and to Butler and Ronald Wisnia for a carpenter's level design. That same year, Brian Bayley joined Wedge as Vice-president for Engineering, and Edwin "Win" Seipp joined as Project Manager - DIY SmartLevel. Seipp's responsibility was to develop a low-cost, "do-it-yourself" version of the SmartLevel, which was eventually called the Series 200 SmartLevel. This level had an all-aluminum rail and a non-removable sensor.

In September 1990, the company moved to San Jose and by 1991 had over 60 employees. Although sales continued to grow and name recognition of the product was quite strong, Wedge had difficulty meeting the expectations of its investors. Butler entered into financial negotiations with the Macklanburg-Duncan Corporation, a large-scale manufacturer of hand tools, to seek investment in his company. These negotiations led in November 1992 to the acquisition of Wedge by Macklanburg-Duncan, which dissolved all but Wedge's engineering section. Macklanburg-Duncan today manufactures a "SmartTool" level, while Butler co-owns D2M (Design To Market), a company that develops new product ideas for the market.

SmartLevel Chronology

1992 -- Butler negotiates with Macklanburg-Duncan for a merger to save Wedge. In the midst of the negotiations, Butler is fired by his Board of Directors. Butler regains control of Wedge three months later, fires the replacement president, and sells Wedge outright to Macklanburg-Duncan, which dissolves all but the engineering functions of Wedge.

1991 -- Wedge sponsors a "New Product Development Conference," where numerous designs for new hand tools are worked on. SmartLevel sales and name recognition grows but not quickly enough to meet overhead expenses of new facility or investors' demands.

1990 -- Yet more redesign work, both in-house and with Kevin Reeder, who also develops idea for "SmartTube" carrying case (not built). Patents granted to Andy Butler et al. for inclinometer sensor circuit and carpenter's level design. Wedge hires Brian Bayley as vice-president for engineering to develop a low-cost model of the SmartLevel. The all-aluminum Series 200 SmartLevel is born. Wedge moves to larger facilities in San Jose.

1989 -- SmartLevel launched at National Association of Home Builders show in January. Good press coverage, but cannot meet orders. More publicity from Habitat for Humanity project when former President Jimmy Carter uses a SmartLevel. But stability and performance problems plague sensor. More redesign work results in more rugged Pro SmartLevel. The first SmartLevels shipped on September 5, 1989.

1987-1988 -- Wedge moves to Santa Clara; intends to begin manufacturing and todevelop an entire line of "Smart Tools" but encounters financial and engineering difficulties; Wedge consults with independent design engineer, Kevin Reeder, on level design. Intensive redesign effort develops the SmartLevel, made of plastic and aluminum rail.

1986 -- Wedge Innovations founded in the basement of Butler's house; basic sensor design worked out; teak & aluminum WedgeLevel developed.

1985 -- Idea for electronic carpenter's level formulated by Andy Butler.
Related Materials:
Materials at the National Museum of American History

The Division of Work and Industry, National Museum of American History contains artifacts related to the SmartLevel Collection. These include five SmartLevels (Accession #1991.0823; 1996.0284; 1996.0285; 1996.0288; and 1996.0289). They are an original teak WedgeLevel, a Pro SmartLevel, a Series 200 SmartLevel, a Bosch version of the SmartLevel, and a Macklanburg-Duncan SmartTool level. There are also four sensor modules (torpedo levels), two sensors, two carrying cases, one cap, one tee shirt, and one wooden puzzle with the inscription "The World Isn't Just Level and Plumb."
Provenance:
The collection was donated by Andrew Butler, SmartLevel inventor and company founder, Brian Bayley, Vice-President for engineering at Wedge Innovations from 1989-1992, and Kevin Reeder, an independent industrial designer, 1995-1997.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research use.
Rights:
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.
Topic:
Product demonstrations -- 1980-2000  Search this
Technological innovations -- Hand tools -- 1980-2000  Search this
Electronics -- Tools and implements -- 1980-2000  Search this
Industrial design -- 1980-2000  Search this
Leveling -- 1980-2000  Search this
Teak -- Use of -- 1980-2000  Search this
Level indicators -- 1980-2000  Search this
Venture capital -- 1980-2000 -- United States  Search this
Silicon Valley -- 1980-2000  Search this
Tools -- 1980-2000 -- United States  Search this
Small business -- Management -- 1980-2000  Search this
Investors -- 1980-2000  Search this
Inventors -- 1980-2000  Search this
Engineers -- 1980-2000  Search this
Industrial designers -- 1980-2000  Search this
advertising -- Tools -- 1980-2000  Search this
Carpenters -- 1980-2000  Search this
Carpentry -- Tools -- 1980-2000  Search this
Merchandise displays  Search this
Genre/Form:
Videotapes
Notebooks -- 1980-2000
Oral histories (document genres) -- 1990-2000
Audiotapes
Financial records -- 1980-2000
Financial statements -- 1980-2000
Interviews -- 1980-2000
Correspondence -- 1970-2000
Photographs -- Black-and-white photoprints -- Silver gelatin -- 1980-2000
Drawings -- 1980-2000
Advertisements -- 1980-2000
Photographs -- Black-and-white photoprints -- Silver gelatin -- 1950-2000
Citation:
The Records of Wedge Innovations, 1985-1996, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0534
See more items in:
Records of Wedge Innovations
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0534
Online Media:

Janice Lowry papers

Creator:
Lowry, Janice Ann, 1946-2009  Search this
Names:
Art Center College of Design (Pasadena, Calif.) -- Students  Search this
Extent:
18 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Notebooks
Visitors' books
Sketchbooks
Photographs
Paintings
Sketches
Collages
Diaries
Illustrated letters
Date:
1957-2009
Summary:
The papers of collagist and painter Janice Lowry measure 18.0 linear feet and date from 1957 to 2009. Lowry's career as an artist in Arizona and California is documented through biographical material, printed material, teaching files, and photographs. The bulk of the papers consist of six diaries; thirteen morning journals; 126 art journals which include both written text and artwork in the form of sketches, paintings, and collages; hand-made artist books; nine notebooks with sketches; and one sketchbook.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of collagist and painter Janice Lowry measure 18.0 linear feet and date from 1957 to 2009. Lowry's career as an artist in Arizona and California is documented through biographical material, printed material, teaching files, and photographs. The bulk of the papers consist of six diaries; thirteen morning journals; 126 art journals which include both written text and artwork in the form of sketches, paintings, and collages; hand-made artist books; nine notebooks with sketches; and one sketchbook.

Biographical material includes artist statements, price lists, guest books, scattered correspondence, and exhibition, consignment, and sales records. Six diaries document Lowry's childhood from the age of 11 to 16. Thirteen morning journals date from 1998 to 2008 and are almost entirely stream of consciousness written text. In these journals Lowry records her daily life, thoughts, and dreams.

Janice Lowry's artwork is combined with her personal writings in three different sets of books, named and numbered by her - art journals, artist books, and notebooks. She kept the "art journals" for most of her adult life, averaging about four per year; some contain mainly written text, whereas others are mostly visual. There are 126 art journals found within her papers. They are filled with sketches depicting vacation spots, objects around the house, studies for works, and people. The art journals also include collages of photographs, ephemera such as ticket stubs and receipts, and other common household objects.

Artist books were handmade and titled by Lowry. They include comic book stories about her family, collage booklets, and children's books.

Lowry's notebooks contain many sketches and date primarily from Lowry's days as a student at Art Center College of Design. Three later notebooks also contain autobiographical essays about her life and family. There is one sketchbook from the 2000s.

Printed material includes newspaper clippings, magazines, press releases, posters, and gallery catalogs and guides. There are personal photographs of Janice Lowry as well as slides of her work. Teaching files contain class project, assignments, and syllabi.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 7 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1964-2009 (Box 1, 18; 1.4 linear feet)

Series 2: Diaries, 1957-1962 (Box 2; 6 folders)

Series 3: Morning Journals, 1998-2008 (Box 2; 0.6 linear feet)

Series 4: Art Journals, Artist Books, Notebooks and Sketchbooks, circa 1973-2009 (Box 3-15, 17-20, 22; 14.2 linear feet)

Series 5: Printed Material, 1974-2009 (Box 15-16, 20; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Photographs, 1965, circa 1980s-2000s (Box 16, 20; 4 folders)

Series 7: Teaching Files, circa 1989-2008 (Box 20-21; 0.5 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Janice Lowry (1946-2009) created paintings, collages, and assemblages in Arizona and California. She is known for her box creations of homemade frames filled with found objects that often questioned and commented on life, death, journeys, and rites of passages.

Lowry was born in 1946 in Phoenix, Arizona. She started writing diaries when she was 11, and, with the exception of a decade, continued journaling until 2007. She married Jan Gilbert in 1965 and had two sons, Brandon and Kevin. During this period Lowry also set up a studio and started showing her artwork. In 1973, the family moved to California. Shortly after, she began her long battle with depression, and she divorced Jan in 1976.

Remaining in California, Lowry attended Art Center College of Design where she earned a BFA with honors in 1979 and a MFA in painting in 1980. She married Jon Gothold in 1983, and had another son, Brent. Her work sold well in the 1980's, but after her studio was destroyed in an earthquake in 1987, she took a break from making art.

Janice Lowry's first solo show was at Art Space in 1980, and the gallery continued to showcase and sell her work for many years. She taught at Art Center, Cypress College, and Oakridge Private School. Among other shows, she was part of an exhibition about 9/11 at Legacy Arts Gallery in 2001. In 2007, she was named the region's "Best Visual Artist" by the Orange County Weekly. After several health issues, Janice Lowry died of liver cancer in 2009.
Provenance:
Donated 2007 and 2009 by Janice Lowry and in 2014 by Jon Gothold, Lowry's widower and executor.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Janice Lowry papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Topic:
Women artists -- California  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Painters -- California  Search this
Artists' books  Search this
Collagists -- California  Search this
Genre/Form:
Notebooks
Visitors' books
Sketchbooks
Photographs
Paintings
Sketches
Collages
Diaries
Illustrated letters
Citation:
Janice Lowry papers, 1957-2009. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.lowrjani
See more items in:
Janice Lowry papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-lowrjani
Online Media:

Janice Lowry papers, 1957-2009

Creator:
Lowry, Janice Ann, 1946-2009  Search this
Subject:
Art Center College of Design (Pasadena, Calif.)  Search this
Type:
Notebooks
Visitors' books
Sketchbooks
Photographs
Paintings
Sketches
Collages
Diaries
Illustrated letters
Topic:
Women artists -- California  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Painters -- California  Search this
Artists' books  Search this
Collagists -- California  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13665
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)274660
AAA_collcode_lowrjani
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_274660
Online Media:

Matt Mullican papers, circa 1968-2017

Creator:
Mullican, Matt, 1951-  Search this
Subject:
König, Kasper  Search this
Mullican, Lee  Search this
Weiner, Lawrence.  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Notebooks
Diaries
Writings
Topic:
Artists -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Conceptual artists--Germany--Berlin--Interviews  Search this
Conceptual artists--New York (State)--New York--Interviews  Search this
Multimedia (Art)  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)16215
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)368431
AAA_collcode_mullmatt
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_368431
Online Media:

Gretchen Bender papers, 1980-2004

Creator:
Bender, Gretchen, 1951-2004  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13377
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)256159
AAA_collcode_bendgret
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Audio - Visual
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_256159

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