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Ralph H. Baer Papers

Creator:
Baer, Ralph H., 1922-2014  Search this
Extent:
16 Cubic feet (44 boxes and 1 oversize folder)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Audiotapes
Audiocassettes
Cd-roms
Diagrams
Drawings
Interviews
Videotapes
Correspondence
Sketches
Photographs
Oral history
Notes
Manuals
Date:
1943 - 2015
Summary:
Ralph H. Baer was a German-born ordnance specialist, inventor, and engineer. He was a pioneer of early videogame technology. The papers include autobiographical materials; firearms notes, manuscripts, and photographs; and videogame and television engineering notes, diagrams, schematics, and video documentation.
Scope and Contents:
The Ralph Baer Papers include autobiographical materials and an extended oral history interview. The Papers also include materials about military small arms created by Baer during his World War II service. The largest portion of the collection documents Baer's work on video games.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 12 series.

Series 1: Autobiographical Documents, 1962-2006

Subseries 1.1: Manuscript, book and other documents, 1962-2006

Subseries 1.2: Other Media: CDs, VHS videos, periodical, 1991, 2000-2003

Series 2: WW II Small Arms Documents, 1943-1953

Subseries 2.1: Correspondence, 1950-1953

Subseries 2.2: Writings and notes, 1943-1948

Subseries 2.3: Drawings and schematics, undated

Subseries 2.4: Manuals and encyclopedias, 1943

Subseries 2.5: Photographs, 1945

Series 3: Hans Otto Mauksch Materials, 1944-1964

Subseries 3.1: Personal background information, 1944, 1945, 1946, 1964

Subseries 3.2: Instructional materials, 1944-1946, undated

Subseries 3.3: Ft. Riley, Kansas, 1946, 1953

Series 4: TV Game Documents, 1966-1972

Subseries 4.1: Working notes, diagrams and schematics, 1966-1971

Subseries 4.2: Administrative documents, 1966-1972 Subseries 4.3: Notebooks, 1966-1968

Subseries 4.4: TV game development documentation, 1966-1968

Series 5: Sanders Associates, Transitron, and Van Norman Industries, 1952-2003

Series 6: Product Development Documents, 1974-2015

Series 7: Product Guides and Technical Support, 1943-2011

Series 8: Legal and Patent Documents, 1966-2014

Series 9: Writings and Notes, 1946-1999

Series 10: Miscellaneous, 1961-2012

Series 11: Correspondence, 1983-2014

Series 12: Publicity and Awards, 1979-2015
Biographical / Historical:
Ralph H. Baer (1922-2014) was born in Germany and immigrated to the United States with his family in 1938. A graduate of the National Radio Institute (1940), Baer worked as a radio technician in the New York City area, servicing all types of home and auto radios. During World War II, Baer served in the United States Army, one year stateside, and two years in Europe. He was assigned to Military Intelligence and became an expert on military small arms. Baer returned to the United States with eighteen tons of foreign small arms for use in exhibits at Aberdeen, Maryland; Springfield, Massachusetts Armory; and Ft. Riley, Kansas.

After the war, Baer attended the American Television Institute of Technology in Chicago, graduating with a BS in television engineering. In 1949, Baer joined a small electro medical equipment firm, Wappler, Inc., as their chief engineer. He designed and built surgical cutting machines, epilators, and low frequency pulse generating muscle-toning equipment. In 1951, Baer moved to Loral Electronics of Bronx, New York as a senior engineer, designing power line carrier signaling equipment for IBM. During 1952-1956, Baer worked at Transitron, Inc., in New York City as a chief engineer and later as vice president. In 1956, Baer joined Sanders Associates in Nashua, New Hampshire building airborne radar components. He became manager of the Electronic Design Department at Sanders and eventually Division Manager and Chief Engineer for Equipment Design. Baer retired in 1987.

At Sanders in 1966, Baer began an independent project experimenting with ways for consumers to interact with standard home television sets. Development of interactive TV Game (TVG) ideas became a company-supported project continued by Baer and assisted by William H. Harrison and William T. Rusch (download the TV Game chronology prepared by Ralph Baer in 2006). By mid-1967, ping pong videogames were played inside Sanders, patent disclosures were applied for, and hardware was designed. Baer and his associates called the devices they were developing "boxes" and numbered the various versions one through seven. In 1971, Magnavox became Sanders Associates's first videogame licensee. Between 1972 and 1975, Magnavox produced and sold over 700,000 units of Odyssey, a set of games played on its television receivers. Atari became a licensee in 1976 after the first of many lawsuits won by Sanders in pursuit of patent infringements.

During his tenure at Sanders and thereafter, Baer was a prolific inventor. His creations included many electronic toys and games and other consumer electronic products. Among the better known products based on Baer's work are Milton Bradley's Simon, Galoob's Smarty Bear Video, and Kenner's Laser Command. In 2004 President George W. Bush awarded Baer the National Medal of Technology.

Baer married Dena Whinston in 1952 and they had three children, James, Mark, and Nancy. Ralph Baer died on December 6, 2014, at the age of 92.
Related Materials:
Materials at the Archives Center, National Museum of American History

Ralph H. Baer Innovative Lives Presentation, August 15, 2009 (AC1179)

The presentation documents a moderated conversation about Baer's life and work. Baer reenacts, with his partner William Harrison, the first time he played "Odyssey," the first home video game for the consumer market, which he invented, and answers questions from the audience. Materials include original video (born digital), master videos, and reference videos.

Materials at Other Organizations

Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play at The Strong

Ralph H. Baer Papers, 1968-2010 inclusive; 1975-1998 bulk

The Ralph H. Baer papers are a compilation of correspondence, game designs, drawings, notes, reference materials, photographs, product descriptions, digital videos, schematics, electronic components, and manuals utilized by Ralph H. Baer throughout his lengthy career in the toy and game industry. The bulk of the materials are from 1975 through 1998.

U.S. Ordnance Museum, Fort Lee, Virginia

Materials consist of data on foreign small arms brought back from Europe in 1946 by Ralph H. Baer.

Museum of the Moving Image, Astoria, New York

Holdings include set of seven recreations of "TV game" prototypes originally created between 1966 and 1969, donated by pioneering game developer Ralph Baer. One of Baer's game prototypes, known as the "Brown Box," was licensed by Magnavox and released in 1972 as the Magnavox Odyssey, the world's first commercial home video game console.

University of Texas, Austin, Briscoe Center for American History

Ralph H. Baer "Brown Box" replica, 1952-1983, 2006-2012

The Ralph H. Baer "Brown Box" replica includes a fully-functional replica of Ralph Baer's "Brown Box," the prototype video game console that was used as the basis of the Magnavox Odyssey in 1972. The collection also contains related research materials.
Separated Materials:
The Division of Medicine and Science holds artifacts related to this collection including early video game prototypes and TV Game products.

TV Game Unit #1 (TVG#1); 1966; vacuum tube spot generator with Heathkit IG-62 Generator (See Accession 2006.0102.01)

Heathkit IG-62; used with TVG #1 (See Accession 2006.0102.02)

TV Game Unit #2 (TVG #2), aka the "Pump Unit," 1967; large aluminum chassis with wooden "pump" handle (See Accession 2006.0102.03)

TV Game Unit #7 (TVG#7), aka "Brown Box," 1967/1968; prototype for Magnavox Odyssey (See Accession 2006.0102.04)

Cardboard program cards for use with Brown Box (See Accession 2006.0102.05)

Lightgun, 1967/1968; game accessory for Brown Box (See Accession 2006.0102.06)

TV Game Unit #8, 1968; "de/dt" (velocity responsive) ballgame chassis for use with Brown Box (See Accession 2006.0102.07)

Magnavox Odyssey (Model ITL200) video game unit, 1972; with all accessories in the original carton (See Accession 2006.0102.08)

Milton-Bradley Company SIMON handheld microprocessor-control game, 1978 (See Accession 2006.0102.09)

Ideal Toy Company MANIAC microprocessor-control game, 1979, in original box with game instructions (See Accession 2006.0102.10)

Golf Game accessory, 1968; golf ball mounted on joystick handle for use with Brown Box (See Accession 2006.0102.11

"Brown Box" programming card, target shooting, 1967 (See Accession 2006.0102.12)
Provenance:
The collection was donated by Ralph H. Baer in 2003.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research use. Gloves must be worn when handling unprotected photographs and negatives.
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. Copyright held by the Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Books  Search this
Firearms  Search this
Games  Search this
Litigation  Search this
Inventions -- 20th century  Search this
Machine guns  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Weapons  Search this
Video games  Search this
Toys -- 20th century  Search this
Television -- History  Search this
Rifles  Search this
Pistols  Search this
Military intelligence  Search this
Genre/Form:
Audiotapes
Audiocassettes
CD-ROMs
Diagrams
Drawings -- 1940-1950
Interviews -- 2000-2010
Videotapes
Correspondence -- 1950-2000
Sketches
Photographs -- Black-and-white photoprints -- Silver gelatin -- 1940-1950
Photographs -- 20th century
Oral history -- 2000-2010
Notes
Manuals -- 1940-1950
Citation:
Ralph H. Baer Papers, 1943-2015, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0854
See more items in:
Ralph H. Baer Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0854
Online Media:

Landy R. Hales Papers

Creator:
Hales, Landy R., 1889-1972  Search this
Extent:
5.5 Cubic feet (15 boxes)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photograph albums
Design drawings
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Clippings
Date:
1908 - 1969
Summary:
Papers document Landy R. Hales (1889-1972), an inventor and commercial artist who designed window and interior store displays, posters, children's games, and puzzles primarily from 1920s to 1930s in New York City and Baltimore. Of significance is Hales's work for Macy's Department Store. The papers consist of correspondence, patents, business records for several of Hales's companies, photographs, drawings/sketches, prototypes, and newspaper and magazine clippings.
Scope and Contents:
The papers document Hales's career as an inventor and commercial artist as well as his work in games, puzzles, educational tools, and posters. The collection includes sketches and design drawings, photographs, publicity materials, clippings and articles, and game prototypes.

Series 1, Brilliant Sign Company, 1908-1909, consists of stock shares, transferred by Hales to others in the amount of twenty dollars for the Brilliant Sign Company of Baltimore City, Maryland.

Series 2, Landy R. Hales, Inc., 1927-1929, 1944, consists of of invoices, orders, and check stubs from R.H. Macy and Company and Gimbel Brothers, Inc. for work by Landy R. Hales, Inc. for window displays. The orders detail what will be constructed and decorated. The R.H. Macy materials also contain a 1927 souvenir from Macy's Wonderland Christmas. Included in this series is a 1944 United States Treasury Department War Finance Program citation to Landy R. Hales.

Series 3, Hales Layer Poster Corporation, 1922-1969 (bulk 1920s), consists of materials documenting Hales poster company. Hales's formed Hales Layer Poster Corporation in New York State on July 16, 1925 to manufacture, purchase, sell and deal in layer posters and equipment for constructing layer posters in packaged or other forms. The corporation's other directors were Alfred J. Silberstein and Alvin A. Silberman, both of New York. Hales developed a new method of making a poster by placing cut-out pieces of materials such as composition board or wood on a background, then building layers to form three dimensions in the finished product. The first store to use Hales layer posters was Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City. The posters were never sold and were only used in advertising and window displays.

The materials consist of stock shares and values, a certificate of incorporation, branded letterhead, correspondence, an order book (blank forms), a point-of-purchase ad featuring Little Red Riding Hood, a patent for a display device, layer poster instructions, examples of posters, sample card stock, and instructions for the ABCD Ease Game. The display device patent (US 1,563,485) was issued to Hales on December 1, 1925. The invention relates to display devices for commercial advertising arrangements constructed out of layers of veneer or cardboard for reproducing and illustrating articles for sale, magazines, posters or art works. The principal object was to provide a display picture having depth. The correspondence, 1922-1937, 1969 and undated, contains letters with individuals companies, hotels, and department stores primarily in New York City such as B.F. Keith's New York Hippodrome, Saks & Company, Hotel Nassau, Keystone Manufacturing Company, and Rialto Theatre. Much of the correspondence relates to services provided by Hales Layer Poster Corporation. Hales's correspondence with Morris Gest, a theatrical producer who introduced La Chauve-Souris, a touring revue during the early 1900s, to the United States. There is also a letter typewritten by Hales in 1969 to Pablo Picasso about copying Picasso prints using the Hales layer poster method.

The instructions for "how to make" a Hales layer poster are well documented, detailing the step-by-step process and including the use of Hales Studio colors for painting. Specific instructions for the "Tom, Tom Piper's Son" with color guide are found here. A full, unused layer poster kit is in box 14. Additionally, Hales created the ABCD Ease Game, a board game played with dice with the objective to reach "ease." The way to reach "Ease" is through truth, courage, justice, thrift, study, work, loyalty, and honesty. Instructions and prototypes of the gameboard are represented.

Series 4, Hales Manikins, Inc., 1938-1948 and undated, consists of correspondence, a voting trust agreement, board of directors meeting minutes, stock shares, a floor plan for the company, blueprints for rubber figures, and a patent for a manikin and method of making the same (US 2,129,421). Hales Maninikin incorporated in 1941 in Baltimore, Maryland to manufacture, distribute, sell and otherwise deal in manikins and other display advertising figures. The board of directors meeting minutes contain articles of incorporation, by-laws, and minutes.

Series 5, Hales Pictures, Inc., 1937-1938, 1967 and undated, consists of an agreement with Walt Disney Enterprises, sketches by Kay Kamen, Ltd., a press release about Hales Picture Puzzles, and prototypes of Hales Puzzle Pictures. Of note is a copy of the February 1938 Rockefeller Center Magazine. The magazine contains articles about science, technology, publishing, the arts, events at Radio City Music Hall (Disney-related) and television. It offers good documentation of office business machines.

The first series of puzzles Hales introduced in 1937 were four subjects from Walt Disney's characters: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Pluto, and Donald Duck. The object of the puzzle was to put all of the pieces together in their proper place--some of the puzzle pieces were raised to different levels. After the puzzle was completed, it could be glued to a backboard. There are prototypes for the Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Donald Duck puzzles. Only the Mickey and Minnie puzzles contain puzzle pieces. The Donald Duck puzzle consists of the box only.

In August 1937, Hales Pictures Inc., entered into a one year agreement with Walt Disney Enterprises that granted Hales the right to reproduce Disney characters for his puzzles and poster pictures. Hales paid Disney the sum of five-hundred dollars as an advance on future royalties. Disney also provided to Hales typical representations of the Disney characters. There are a series of Kay Kamen Ltd., Disney character drawings for Pluto, Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, and Mickey Mouse. These drawings were provided to Hales by Kamen. The Minnie and Mickey Mouse drawings have been heavily annotated and mocked up by Hales for the purposes of creating his signature Hales Puzzle Pictures. Kamen (d. 1949) began his professional career as a retail hat merchant and later entered advertising. In 1932, Kamen contacted Disney, soon signed a contract, and was named the company's sole licensing representative. Through merchandising, Kamen made Disney's mouse star popular.

Series 6, Hales Sign Company, 1909 and undated, consists of examples of promotional and branded pieces for Hales's sign painting business that was located in Baltimore, Maryland.

Series 7, Drawings/Sketches, 1927-1930 and undated, consists of pencil, ink and paint sketches. The bulk of the sketches are Christmas-related, such as the poster study for the Macy's Christmas Wonderland, 1927 and the toy department displays for a bridge, drawbridge, house and tower. Other sketches include Noah's Ark, a matador, the "The Wise Woman of Gotham," Carlin's Amusement Park of Baltimore, Maryland, and resort scenes (tennis, golf and sailing).

Series 8, Photographs, 1925-1935, consists primarily of black-and-white prints documenting Hales's work in his studio and for clients such as Macy's. Some of the photographs were taken by Worsinger Window Service, Hughes Company of Baltimore, Le Don Studio of White Plains, New York; Apeda Studio, Inc. of New York City; Schultze Studio of Brooklyn, New York, and H.C. Campbell Company of Oakland, California.

Series 9, Greeting Cards, undated, consists of examples of greeting cards and postcards, primarily for Christmas, Easter, and Valentines Day, assembled by Hales.

Series 10, Clippings, 1922-1935, consists of loose photocopies and original news and magazine clippings in a bound volume. The clippings primarily relate to Hales's work in New York City, but there are clippings about The Corner Shop at Macy's, and there are copies of illustrations assembled by Hales, specifically the "Best Fifty Small Folio Currier and Ives Prints. " The majority of these he clipped from the New York Sun. Also included are clippings about La Chauve-Souris the touring revue during the early 1900s.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into ten series.

Series 1, Brillant Sign Company, 1908-1909

Series 2, Landy R. Hales, Inc., 1927-1929, 1944

Series 3, Hales Layer Poster Corporation, 1922-1969 (bulk 1920s)

Series 4, Hales Manikins, Inc., 1938-1948 and undated

Series 5, Hales Pictures, Inc., 1937-1938, 1967 and undated

Series 6, Hales Sign Company, 1909 and undated

Series 7, Drawings/Sketches, 1927-1930 and undated

Series 8, Photographs, 1925-1935

Series 9, Greeting Cards, undated

Series 10, Clippings, 1922-1935
Biographical / Historical:
Landy R. Hales was born on September 17, 1889 in Baltimore, Maryland to Landy J. Hales and Fanny Linthicum Hales. Hales grew up in Anne Arundel, Maryland and had one brother, Wesley Hales. Hales began his career with no formal art training and apprenticed as a sign painter in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1908, Hales formed the Brilliant Sign Company in Baltimore to design displays for area businesses. In 1913, Hales married Lenore McCully. They had two children, Elizabeth McCully Hales (b. 1915) and Landy Romain Hales (b. 1921).

During World War I, Hales designed posters for the Liberty Bond Program, created by then Secretary of the Treasury William Gibbs McAdoo (1863-1941). This poster campaign was intended to popularize the bonds, and Hales created posters using his "layer technique," which was a method of making a poster by placing cut-out pieces of materials such as composition board or wood on a background, then building layers to form three dimensions in the finished product. In the early 1920s, Hales moved to New York City to advance his career and expand his opportunities. In New York, Hales specialized in display devices, commercial art, and advertising. An artist-inventor, Hales patented two ideas, a display device (US Patent 1,563,485) and a manikin (US Patent 2,129,421). He founded Landy R. Hales, Inc. (1925), Hales Layer Poster Corporation (1925), Hales Manikins, Inc. (1941), and Hales Pictures, Inc. 1937. In 1937, Hales Pictures Inc., entered into a one-year agreement with Walt Disney Enterprises that granted Hales the right to reproduce Disney characters for his puzzles and poster pictures. During the same year, Hales leased office space at Rockefeller Center.

Hales worked for Morris Gest, a theatrical producer, creating advertising for the Russian show Le Chauve Sourvis which featured the Parade of the Wooden Soldiers. Hales also manufactured and installed mechanical displays in Macy's Christmas windows at 34th Street and worked as an independent contractor for other department stores such as Gimbel Brothers and Saks & Company as well as the Hotel Nassau, Keystone Manufacturing Company, Rialto Theater, Keith's New York Hippodrome, and the Music Box Theatre.

Hales left New York City in 1945 and returned to Maryland, where he did commercial work for Carlin's Amusement Park in Baltimore and created layer posters for himself and family members. Hales died in 1972 at the age of 84.
Related Materials:
Materials at the Archives Center

Warshaw Collection of Business Americana, Parades:stereographs, circa 1880-1908 (AC0060)

Messmore and Damon Company Records, 1930s-1990s (AC0846)

Hudson Fulton Celebration Parade Photograph Album, 1909 (AC1149)

William L. Bird "Holidays on Display" Collection (AC1288)
Provenance:
The collection was donated by Katharine Landa McNulty Hogben, Frances Helen McNulty Beverage, Margaret Ann McNulty Klipp, Lenore Hales McNulty Frey, and Elizabeth Stuart McNulty on November 27, 2005.
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:
Games  Search this
Display of merchandise  Search this
Toys -- 20th century  Search this
Store decoration  Search this
Parades  Search this
Parade floats  Search this
Show windows  Search this
Packaging  Search this
Parade float designers  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photograph albums
Design drawings
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Photographs -- 20th century
Clippings
Citation:
Landy R. Hales Papers, 1908-1969, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0906
See more items in:
Landy R. Hales Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0906
Online Media:

Sally L. Steinberg Collection of Doughnut Ephemera

Collector:
Steinberg, Sally L. (Sally Levitt)  Search this
Names:
DCA Food Industries, Inc.  Search this
Doughnut Corporation of America  Search this
Doughnut Machine Company.  Search this
Dunkin' Donuts, Inc.  Search this
Mayflower Doughnut Shop  Search this
Mayflower Doughnuts  Search this
Mister Donut  Search this
Allen, Gracie  Search this
Brown, Joe E.  Search this
Durante, Jimmy  Search this
Eisenhower, Dwight D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969  Search this
Kennedy, John F. (John Fitzgerald), 1917-1963  Search this
Levitt, Adolph  Search this
Skelton, Red, 1913-1997  Search this
Stevenson, Adlai E. (Adlai Ewing), 1900-1965  Search this
Extent:
3.5 Cubic feet (7 boxes)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Audiocassettes
Advertisements
Photograph albums
Catalogs
Clippings
Magazines (periodicals)
Playbills
Sheet music
Photographs
Posters
Videocassettes
Reports
Packaging
Cartoons (humorous images)
Books
Drawings
Place:
New York (N.Y.) -- Food industry
Date:
1920s-1987
Summary:
This collection consists of ephemeral materials gathered by Sally L. Steinberg while she was researching her 1987 publication, The Donut Book: The origins, history, literature, lore, taste, etiquette, traditions, techniques, varieties, mathematics, mythology, commerce, philosophy, cuisine, and glory of the donut.
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of ephemeral materials gathered by Sally L. Steinberg while she was researching her 1987 publication, The Donut Book: The origins, history, literature, lore, taste, etiquette, traditions, techniques, varieties, mathematics, mythology, commerce, philosophy, cuisine, and glory of the donut. Photographs comprise the bulk of the collection. These depict doughnut making machines, early doughnut packaging, doughnut shops and doughnut production, doughnut promotional activities (many of them sponsored by DCA), celebrities and entertainment figures with doughnuts, and the role of doughnuts in the military. Other ephemeral materials featuring doughnuts include advertisements, posters, newsclippings, music, examples of doughnut packaging, toys, and artwork. Also included are several publications that feature doughnuts, notably such children's classics as Curious George Learns the Alphabet, Who Needs Donuts?, and Homer Price, as well as a copy of Ms. Levitt's book.

Materials relating to the history of the Doughnut Corporation of America include a 1947 memo entitled "History of Mayflower Operations, 1933 1944"; pages and clippings from the company's in house magazines, The Doughnut Magazine, 1931 1936, and DCA News, 1945 1947 (most of which are not in their entirety, since Ms. Steinberg seperated them for the production of her book); a script of the "DCA Merchandising Story"; inter office correspondence from 1947; a 1961 DCA Study of the Donut Market; and a 1973 prospectus for DCA Food Industries, Inc. Also included is a store display figure of "Danny Donut," the symbol of Mayflower Doughnuts. In addition, the collection contains 1980 and 1981 Annual Reports from Dunkin' Donuts, Inc., a sample degree from their "Dunkin' Donuts University," and a large training poster for employees. Also included are in house publications relating to other donut companies, including Krispy Kreme and Winchell, the predecessor of Denny's.
Biographical / Historical:
Sally Levitt Steinberg describes herself as a "doughnut princess," since her grandfather, Adolph Levitt, was America's original "doughnut king." Levitt's family had emigrated to the United States from Russia when he was eight and settled in Milwaukee. In 1920, he moved to New York City, where he invested in a bakery in Harlem. He soon realized that there was a strong consumer demand for doughnuts, sparked by veterans of World War One who fondly remembered those cooked by Salvation Army girls in the trenches in France. Levitt, with a flair for showmanship, placed a kettle in the bakery's window and began to fry doughnuts in it. This attracted crowds of customers, who enjoyed watching the process, smelling the aroma, and eating the doughnuts. Soon, doughnut production could not keep up with the customers' demands.

In consultation with an engineer, Levitt soon developed and patented an automatic doughnut making machine, which he then placed in the bakery's window. The result was the creation of the modern doughnut industry in America. In 1920, Levitt founded the Doughnut Machine Company to make and sell the machine across the country and to sell doughnuts under the tradename of "Mayflower." Soon after, the company began preparing and selling standardized mixes for use in the machine, and began to acquire bakeries in which its products could be made. In 1931, the company opened the first Mayflower doughnut shop at 45th and Broadway in New York City; ultimately, 18 shops were opened across the country the first retail doughnut chain.

The company, which changed its name to the Doughnut Corporation of America, dominated the doughnut industry. Its operations were characterized by a large scale approach, incorporating a full range of product and equipment systems unique in the food industry. As consumers demanded a wider variety of doughnuts from glazed to jelly filled the company developed and manufactured the necessary machinery, prepared the ingredients, and marketed the products. The company diversified its product line in the 1940s to produce pancake mixes and waffle mixes and machinery, including Downyflake Food products. The company is still in operation as DCA Food Industries, Inc.
Materials in the Archives Center:
The Doughnut Machine Company Scrapbooks (AC #662) contains two scrapbooks documenting the company=s advertising and marketing campaigns, ca. 1928.

The Industry on Parade Film Collection (AC #507) contains a 1956 film (reel #273) about the Doughnut Corporation of America.

The Earl S. Tupper Papers (AC #470) contain a number of World War One photographic postcards that show Salvation Army doughnut girls.

The Warshaw Collection of Business Americana (AC #60) contains four boxes of material on "bakers and baking."

The N W Ayer Collection (AC #59) contains advertising proofsheets for several bakeries.
Provenance:
Collection donated by Sally L. Steinberg, December 12, 1991, 1993, and 2009.
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:
Food habits -- United States  Search this
advertising  Search this
Doughnuts  Search this
Celebrities  Search this
Entertainers  Search this
Periodicals  Search this
Genre/Form:
Audiocassettes
Advertisements
Photograph albums
Catalogs
Clippings
Magazines (periodicals) -- 20th century
Playbills
Sheet music
Photographs -- 20th century
Posters
Videocassettes
Reports
Packaging
Cartoons (humorous images) -- 20th century
Books
Drawings -- 1980-1990
Citation:
Sally L. Steinberg Collection of Doughnut Ephemera, 1920s-1987, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0439
See more items in:
Sally L. Steinberg Collection of Doughnut Ephemera
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0439
Online Media:

Pratt, Read Corporation Records

Donor:
Nickse, Hugo  Search this
Johnson, Hanford  Search this
Steinway, Henry Ziegler  Search this
Creator:
Comstock, Cheney and Co.  Search this
Pratt, Read and Company  Search this
Extent:
84 Cubic feet (104 boxes, 28 oversize folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Motion pictures (visual works)
Financial records
Employee records
Advertisements
Minute books
Sales records
Design drawings
Manufacturing records
Legal documents
Annual reports
Publications
Photographs
Correspondence
Labels
Stock records
Place:
Ivoryton (Conn.)
Date:
1839-1990
Summary:
Records documenting Pratt, Read and Company; its early competitor and later partner, Comstock, Cheney and Company; and a number of predecessor, subsidiary and related companies. Other topics include the late 19th century African ivory trade and Pratt, Read's production of troop-carrying gliders during World War II.
Scope and Contents:
Pratt, Read & Company, located in the Essex area of Connecticut, was once the world's largest producer of ivory products. Beginning with the manufacture of combs, collar buttons, and toothpicks, the company moved on to the production of piano and organ key veneers, and soon dominated the field. Eventually, it began to produce complete piano and organ keyboards and actions, becoming the major supplier to the American piano industry. The records in this collection document Pratt, Read & Company; its early competitor and later partner, Comstock, Cheney & Company; and a number of predecessor, subsidiary, and related companies. Other topics of interest dealt with in this collection include the late nineteenth century African ivory trade and Pratt, Read's production of troop carrying gliders during World War II.
Arrangement:
The Collection is divided into six series.

Series 1: Predecessor and Miscellaneous Companies, 1839-1870s

Series 2: Comstock, Cheney and Company, 1863-1936

Series 3: Pratt, Read and Company, 1863-1988

Series 4: Gould Aeronautical Division, 1941-1977

Series 5: Subsidiary and Related Companies, 1859-1980

Series 6: Information on Related Companies, 1977-1992
Historical:
Pratt, Read & Company is one of the oldest companies in the state of Connecticut. The firm traces its origins to 1798, when an Essex goldsmith and clockmaker named Phineas Pratt invented a circular saw to cut the teeth on ivory combs. In 1809, George Read and his brother in law, Phineas Pratt II, dammed the Deep River in the nearby town of Deep River and constructed a waterwheel to power ivory cutting machinery. Read left the partnership in 1816, and Phineas Pratt II joined with Alfred Worthington to manufacture ivory combs under the name of Pratt Worthington & Company. When Worthington died in 1830, two of Phineas Pratt II's sons, Ulysses and Alexis, took over the business, operating as U & A Pratt. The name was changed in 1844 to Pratt Spencer & Company, when a new partner was added, and changed again in 1850, to Pratt Brothers & Company. In 1856 the company erected a much larger factory in Deep River.

In the meantime, Julius Pratt, another of Phineas Pratt I's sons, had joined with Thomas Howard to set up an ivory comb factory in the town of Meriden. This firm was known as Howard, Pratt & Company. After Howard's death in 1822, it became Julius Pratt & Company. In 1854, the firm began to produce wooden piano keyboards, which then were fitted with keys of ivory. One half interest in this firm was owned by George Read.

When Read left his original partnership with Phineas Pratt II in 1816, he joined with Essex comb maker Ezra Williams to set up a new ivory working factory in Deep River. This new firm was known as Ezra Williams & Company. In 1829, Read became the senior partner and the company's name was changed to George Read & Company. This company later secured a very important contract to supply ivory keys for the first American manufacturer of pianos, Chickering & Sons of Boston.

In 1863, the firms of George Read & Company, Julius Pratt & Company, and Pratt Brothers & Company, were merged to form Pratt, Read & Company. The new company further enlarged its factory in Deep River in 1866. In 1871, the old Julius Pratt & Company factory in Meriden was closed and its operations moved to Deep River. Though this factory was destroyed by fire in 1881, a larger factory was quickly rebuilt and the company was back in business early in 1882.

With the election of George L. Cheney as president in 1892, Pratt, Read & Company began a period of continued expansion. In December of that year the company joined with another Connecticut piano component manufacturer, Comstock, Cheney & Company, to organize a midwestern manufacturing branch, under the name of the Piano & Organ Supply Company. This firm was to serve the territory west of Toledo, Ohio, operating in competition with its parent companies. In 1929 Pratt, Read and Comstock, Cheney combined to buy out the Piano & Organ Supply Company and it was dissolved.

In 1910 Pratt, Read & Company decided to begin the manufacture of piano actions. An independent manufacturer of piano actions, New York based Wasle & Company, and its subsidiary, the Wasle Unique Player Action Company, were acquired that same year. In 1914, Pratt, Read built a second factory solely for the production of player piano actions in Deep River. Wasle & Company was dissolved in 1919 and its production was continued under the Pratt, Read name. The company soon acquired two additional keyboard and action manufacturers: the Sylvester Tower Company of Cambridge, Mass., was purchased, dissolved, and all its equipment was moved to Deep River in 1924; and Strauch Bros. Company of New York was purchased in 1926. The Deep River player action plant operated until 1928, when business declined and production of player piano actions was discontinued in favor of manufacturing small motorboats. This line of business also soon declined and the project was abandoned by 1932.

COMSTOCK, CHENEY & COMPANY. Meanwhile, other manufacturers of ivory products had been at work in the Essex area. Chief among these was the firm of Comstock, Cheney & Company of Ivoryton. The dominant figure in this company was Samuel M. Comstock. He had learned the ivory cutting trade while working in his older brother's Saybrook area ivory cutting shop, known as Joseph A. Comstock & Company. By 1838, Samuel had left his brother's shop and joined with Edwin Griswold to set up Comstock & Griswold Company further west up the Falls River in Centerbrook. In 1848, the company moved its operations to a new factory in the Ivoryton area, where combs, toothpicks, and other ivory products were made. At the same time, the firm's name was changed to S. M. Comstock & Company, reflecting Samuel's sole ownership.

In 1860, Samuel Comstock allied his firm with George A. Cheney to form Comstock, Cheney & Company. Cheney had invested in Comstock's firm and was one of the principals in the important New York based ivory importing firm of Arnold, Cheney & Company. The new firm began production of thin slices of ivory for mounting on wooden piano keys. It also had its own agents buying ivory in Africa, most of which went toward production of piano keys. The company was formally incorporated in 1872 and in 1873 it opened an even larger factory in Ivoryton.

1936 MERGER. On December 31, l936, Pratt, Read & Company of Deep River was consolidated and merged with Comstock, Cheney & Company of Ivoryton. The resulting corporation was titled Pratt, Read & Company, Inc. By l938, all manufacturing operations had been consolidated in Ivoryton and the Deep River factory closed. During World War II, both the Deep River factory and the Ivoryton factory were used to produce CG 4A "Waco" troop carrying gliders for the U.S. Army Air Forces, along with LNE 1 training gliders and the GLOMB experimental plane for the U.S. Navy. Production of piano keyboards and actions was sharply curtailed for the duration of the war, and was slow to resume afterward. In l946 the Deep River factory was sold.

From 1948 to l957, the Ivoryton factory was enlarged and modernized on a large scale. During the Korean War, the company contracted to make helicopter blades for the Kaman Corporation of Bloomfield, Conn., and this partnership lasted for fourteen years. In l958, Pratt, Read transferred all of its piano action manufacturing operations to a newly built plant in Central, S.C. This move was made primarily in order to modernize production facilities at a lower cost than would have been possible through continued renovation of the Ivoryton plant.

With the election of Peter H. Comstock (a great grandson of one of the founders of Comstock, Cheney & Company) as President in 1954, the firm began an ambitious plan of diversification. The Cornwall & Patterson Company of Bridgeport, Conn., manufacturer of piano hardware, was purchased in l957. In 1959, Pratt, Read joined with six British Commonwealth firms to acquire British Piano Actions, Ltd., of Wales. Keyboards, Inc., a Chicago based producer of keyboards for electronic organs, was acquired in 1960. The Tech Art Plastics Company of Morristown, N.J., a custom molder of plastics materials especially for the piano industry, was acquired in 1961. The F. Kelly Company of Derby, Conn., which specialized in the production of small metal parts, was acquired in l964, and operated as a division of Cornwall & Patterson. In l966, Pratt, Read purchased the Allen Rogers Corporation of Laconia, N.H., which produced wooden furniture and piano components.

MERGER WITH VOCALINE COMPANY. In February l968, Pratt, Read & Company, Inc., was merged into the Vocaline Company of America, Inc., of Old Saybrook, Conn. Peter H. Comstock became chairman and chief executive officer of Vocaline Corporation, while remaining president of Pratt, Read. Vocaline was then organized into two major divisions the Vocaline Division and the Pratt, Read Division. The Pratt, Read Division concentrated on the production of piano keys and actions. It operated three subdivisions: the Ivoryton Division (keyboards, wooden and plastic moldings, and unfinished furniture); the Action Division (piano actions); and the Lund Division, formerly Keyboards, Inc., (electronic organ components). Both of the latter divisions operated out of the Central, S.C., plant. The Lund Division was known as the Electronics Division by 1970.

The Vocaline Division produced and sold electric motors, timing devices, and other small electromechanical mechanisms through its Electronics Section and its Bristol Motor and Timer Section. Another subsidiary of the Vocaline Division Altron, Inc., based in Westerly, R.I. produced wire coils. Through its Research and Development Center in Waldboro, Maine, Vocaline conducted antisubmarine warfare research for the U.S. Navy. By 1970, the Vocaline Division had been streamlined into four divisions: the Allen Rogers Corporation (small shaped wood products); Altron, Inc. (wire coils); the Bristol Division, later known as the Bristol Saybrook Company (electric motors and timers); and the Cornwall & Patterson Company (piano hardware and small tools). In addition, research for the Navy had been expanded and combined with other oceanographic research under the control of a subsidiary company, VAST, Inc., with operations in both Maine and the Caribbean.

PRATT READ CORPORATION. In October 1970, the Vocaline Corporation changed its name to the Pratt Read Corporation. This was done partly to increase identity with its oldest traditions and partly to reflect a shift away from the early emphasis on the Vocaline side of the corporation. The new corporation continued to refine its interests under the direction of Peter H. Comstock, who became company president in February 1970. The Tech Arts Plastic Company was sold off in May 1972, although it remained a source of supply for custom molded parts. In 1974 Pratt Read purchased the Atlas Plywood Company of Morrisville, Vt., in order to use its mill and kilns in the preparation of lumber for the Ivoryton factory, whose own facilities were overburdened. This company was operated as a subsidiary of Pratt Read.

By 1976, the Pratt Read Corporation was organized into five operating divisions. The Allen Rogers Corporation produced toys, golf tees, spools, knobs, and other turned and shaped wood products. Altron, Inc., produced bobbins and coils of copper wire. The Bristol Saybrook Company produced small electric motors and timers. The Cornwall & Patterson Company produced piano hardware parts, screwdriver blades, and other small hand tools. Pratt, Read & Company produced wooden components for pianos and other musical instruments. The company's ownership of VAST, Inc., was sold off in March 1976. Later that year, the company acquired Sight Line Corporation, a Freehold, N.J., manufacturer of golf clubs. This subsidiary, operated as the Sounder Sports Division, was sold in May 1979.

In October of 1979, James H. Tucker replaced Peter H. Comstock as president of Pratt Read; Comstock remained chairman of the board and chief executive officer. His nephew, Harwood B. Comstock, became the next president in October 1982. In June 1982, the Ivoryton factory was severely damaged by flooding after two dams burst upstream during a torrential rainstorm. Although the administrative offices were destroyed and the plant filled with several feet of mud and debris, the facility was back in production within two weeks. In August 1982, Pratt Read acquired the Sohmer Piano Company, a 111 year old Long Island based manufacturer of pianos, and in December 1982 Sohmer's production facilities were moved into the Ivoryton factory. By July 1983 Sohmer was producing about six upright pianos a day in its new location.

By the early 1980s, the American piano industry had entered a period of decline and even Peter Comstock's diversification efforts could not keep it out of trouble. A major blow came in 1984 with the loss of a large contract to manufacture keyboards for Mattel Electronics's Intellivision home video system. This was exacerbated by a slump in the piano industry in mid year. The increased import of Japanese and Korean pianos further undercut the American industry, resulting in slowdowns and profit losses for Pratt Read. Attempting to compete on the same basis with this foreign competition, Pratt Read joined with the Baldwin Piano and Organ Company in May 1985 to establish the Pratt Win Corporation. This joint venture resulted in the closing of Pratt Read's Central, S.C., piano action manufacturing plant and the transfer of its operations to a new Baldwin plant in Juarez, Mexico. Pratt Read sold its interest in Pratt Win to Baldwin in October 1986.

Piano sales continued to decline, however, and Pratt Read continued to suffer losses. In March 1986, the company was acquired by Crescent & Company, a corporation controlled by Harwood B. Comstock, president of Pratt, Read & Company. It became a wholly owned subsidiary of Crescent & Company, but retained the name Pratt Read Corporation. In April 1986, the company sold its Sohmer piano subsidiary together with the Ivoryton factory where it was housed; Sohmer & Company continued to produce upright pianos under independent ownership in Ivoryton until December 1988. In December 1986 the Bristol Saybrook Company was sold off. By 1990, the company had sold off all remaining assets except for a sawmill in Vermont and the Cornwall & Patterson Company in Bridgeport, Conn., where the remaining corporate staff relocated.

Sources

Deep River Historical Society, Inc. A History of Pratt Read & Co. 1973.

1899 Souvenir of Essex, Connecticut. Rpt., The Ivoryton Public Library, 1979.

Johnson, Curtiss S. "From Ivory Combs to Carnegie Hall and Today:The History of the Pratt Read Corporation." [Unpublished history in the collection.]

Moore, Ernst D. "History of Pratt, Read & Company." [Unpublished history in the Ernst D. Moore Collection, Archives Center Collection #321.]

Newspaper Clippings in the collection.

Pratt Read Corporation. Annual Reports.

Vocaline Corporation. Annual Report, 1970.
Materials in the Archives Center, National Museum of American History:
Records relating to Pratt, Read and to Comstock, Cheney can be found in a number of other collections, both within the Archives Center and in other repositories. The Wood & Brooks Company Records (Archives Center coll. #457) contain significant information on Pratt, Read's operations and an important record of production statistics gathered by George Wood while he was factory superintendent and taken with him when he set up a rival firm in Buffalo. While the Ernst Moore Collection (Archives Center coll. #321) primarily documents the purchase of ivory in Africa (much of which was ultimately used by Pratt, Read), it also includes a history of Pratt, Read written by Moore while he was employed by them. The Sohmer & Company Records (Archives Center coll. #349) document the piano manufacturing firm that Pratt Read acquired in 1982.
Separated Materials:
The Pratt Read Corporation also donated a number of objects to the National Museum of American History at the same time as their 1988 donation of archival records. Included were combs and letter openers and other examples of products made from ivory; piano components, such as gauge boards, key actions, and keys; and such diverse items as tools used in the factory, World War II employee I.D. badges, and a uniform from the company sponsored basketball team.
Provenance:
Donated by Pratt, Read Corporation in 1989. In addition to the papers donated by the company, several individuals donated Pratt, Read materials in their possession.
Restrictions:
Collection open for research on site by appointment. Unprotected photographs must be handled with gloves.
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:
Piano  Search this
Ivory industry  Search this
Piano makers  Search this
Ivory  Search this
Gliders (Aeronautics)  Search this
Genre/Form:
Motion pictures (visual works)
Financial records
Employee records
Advertisements -- 20th century
Minute books
Sales records
Design drawings
Manufacturing Records
Legal documents
Annual reports
Publications
Photographs -- 19th century
Correspondence -- 19th century
Correspondence -- 20th century
Labels
Stock records
Citation:
Pratt, Read Corporation Records, 1839-1990, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0320
See more items in:
Pratt, Read Corporation Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0320
Online Media:

Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives

Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Extent:
36 Cubic feet (89 boxes, 10 map-folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Advertisements
Clippings
Blueprints
Books
Auction catalogs
Design drawings
Date:
circa 1662-1999, undated
Scope and Contents:
Collection primarily documents American folk art collected by Frederick Fried (1908-1994) and his wife Mary McKensie Hill Fried (1914-1988). It includes photographic materials, newspaper clippings, magazine articles, research files, lecture notes, unpublished manuscripts, brochures, drawings, printed advertisements, blueprints, books, patents, correspondence, trade literature, sheet music, auction catalogs, oral history interviews, and commercially recorded music. Of particular interest is the material relating to carousels. There is a substantial amount of material relating to New York architecture, wood carvings, show figures, weathervanes, mechanical and coin operated machines, amusement parks, the circus, tattoos and lesser-known folk arts. The collection is arranged by subject or genre in the order maintained by Frederick and Mary Fried.
Arrangement:
Series 1, Professional Materials, 1930-1995, undated

Subseries 1.1, Lectures, 1968-1989, undated

Subseries 1.2, Research Notes, 1962-1975, undated

Subseries 1.3, Published and Unpublished Materials, 1960-1990, undated

Subseries 1.4, Exhibitions, 1966-1985, undated

Subseries 1.5, Correspondence, 1945-1995, undated

Subseries 1.6, Office Files, 1930-1991, undated

Series 2, Sculptors and Ship Carvers, 1855-1987, undated

Series 3, Ship Carving Reference Files, 1875-1990, undated

Series 4, Show Figures, 1847-1989, undated

Subseries 4.1, Carvers, 1847-1987, undated

Subseries 4.2, Reference Files, 1864-1989, undated

Series 5: Carousels, 1851-1999, undated

Subseries 5.1, Reference Files, 1851-1990, undated

Subseries 5.2, Manufacturerst, 1854-1999, undated

Subseries 5.3, Carvers, undated

Subseries 5.4, Foreign, 1902, undated

Subseries 5.5, Organizations, 1974-1991, undated

Subseries 5.6, Museum Collections, 1959-1989, undated

Series 5.7, Sites, 1962-1991, undated

Series 6, Charles W. Parker Company, 1904-1905; 1922-1924, undated

Subseries 6.1, Glass Plate Negatives, 6x8, 1904-1905, undated

Subseries 6.2, Glass Plate Negatives, 8x10, 1922-1924, undated

Series 7, Amusements Parks, 1917-1992, undated

Series 8, Amusement Industry, 1662-1994, undated

Subseries 8.1, Companies, 1903, undated

Subseries 8.2, Reference Files, 1662-1994, undated

Series 9, Circus, 1902-1992, undated

Series 10, Architectural Ornaments, 1832-1988, undated

Subseries 10.1, Residential Architecture, 1899-1985, undated

Subseries 10.2, New York City Municipal Parks, 1968-1988, undated

Subseries 10.3, South Street Seaport, 1965-1970, undated

Subseries 10.4, New York Civic Sculpture, 1832-1977, undated

Subseries 10.5, Architectural Ornamentation, 1873-1985, undated

Series 11, Weathervanes, 1854-1981, undated

Series 12, Automatic, Coin Operated and Vending Machines, 1960-1980, undated

Series 13, Banner Paintings and Painters, 1892-1999, undated

Series 14, Folk Arts, 1783-1999, undated

Subseries 14.1, Reference Files, 1831-1988, undated

Subseries 14.2, Clocks and Watches, 1869-1876; 1976, undated

Subseries 14.3, Eagles, 1843-1989, undated

Subseries 14.4, Musical Instruments, 1963-1999, undated

Subseries 14.5, Painters and Paintings, 1950-1990, undated

Subseries 14.6, Signs and Symbols, 1974, 1976, undated

Subseries 14.7, Other Materials, 1872-1988, undated

Subseries 14.8, Miscellaneous, 1783-1954, undated

Series 15: Photographic Materials, 1832-1988, undated

Subseries 15.1, Photographs and Contact Sheets, 1940-1984, undated

Subseries 15.1.1, America's Forgotten Arts, undated

Subseries 15.1.2, Artists in Wood, undated

Subseries 15.1.3, General, 1940-1984, undated

Subseries 15.2, Slides, 1832-1987, undated

Subseries 15.3, Negatives, undated

Subseries 15.4, Glass Plate Negatives, undated

Subseries 15.5, Snapshots, 1964-1988, undated

Subseries 15.5.1, Artists, Manufacturers, and Dealers, undated

Subseries 15.5.2, Museum or Public Collections, 1964, undated

Subseries 15.5.3, Parks or Other Locations, undated

Subseries 15.5.4, Private Collections, 1987-1988, undated

Subseries 15.5.5, General, 1987-1988, undated

Series 16, Audiovisual Materials, 1940-1991, undated

Subseries 16.1, Audiocassette Tapes, 1971-1988, undated

Subseries 16.1.1, Lectures, 1974-1986, undated

Subseries 16.1.2, Interviews, 1971-1984, undated

Subseries 16.1.3, Music, 1972-1988, undated

Subseries 16.2, Audiotapes, 1940-1977, undated

Subseries 16.2.1, Lectures and Performances, 1969-1973, undated

Subseries 16.2.2, Interviews, 1940-1976, undated

Subseries 16.2.3, Conferences and Meetings, 1973-1977

Subseries 16.2.4, Music, 1956, undated

Subseries 16.2.5, Other, undated

Subseries 16.3, Videotapes, 1982-1991, undated
Biographical / Historical:
Frederick P. Fried was born December 11, 1908 in Brooklyn, New York. He grew up in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn where his father owned a clock business across the street from Charles Carmel, a carousel carver. Fried acquired a fine-arts education in the 1930s with an emphasis on sculpture. He served with the Air Force during the Second World War. After a successful military career, Fried worked as art director in several fashion agencies. He met Mary McKenzie Hill, an academically trained artist in one of the studios.

Mary McKenzie Hill was born in 1914 in Baltimore, Maryland. She graduated from the Maryland Institute of Fine Arts. After graduation, she spent a year abroad studying before she returned to the United States to work as a fashion illustrator in Baltimore and New York. During World War Two Hill was a draftsman for a firm of architects.

Fried and Mary Hill married in 1949. The couple had two children Robert Hazen and Rachel. Around 1953 Fried began to collect architectural ornaments in New York. Fried served as the art director for Bonwit Teller in New York City from 1955-1962. He left the fashion world in 1962 to pursue his passion for collecting and writing full time. Fried published his first book, Pictorial History of Carousels in 1964. In 1967, Fred and Mary Fried purchased a forty-acre farm in Bristol, Vermont where the family spent their summers.

In 1968, Fried led a national campaign to preserve the Titanic Memorial Lighthouse (Seamen's Church Institute at South Street). He also became active in politics and served as the campaign manager for a New York State senator. His interest in Indian cigar store figures resulted in his publication Artists in Wood: American Carvers of Cigar Store Indians, Show Figures and Circus published in 1970. The focus of the book was Samuel Anderson Robb a New York wood carver. Fried co-founded the National Carousel Association in 1973. In 1978, Fried wrote America's Forgotten Folk Art with his wife Mary. This publication covered subjects such as carousels, banner painting, scarecrows, beach sand sculpture, tattoos, cast iron toys, amusement park architecture and trade signs.

Fried's collecting goal was to first preserve artifacts and to then make them available through his writings and exhibitions. His most treasured relics were the items he salvaged from the ruins of Coney Island. Fried referred to such artifacts as the uncelebrated arts. He became one of the founders of the Anonymous Arts Recovery Society a group of individuals who saved architectural ornaments from the wreckers' balls. In addition, he was one of the founders of the National Carousel Round Table which was created to preserve hand-carved merry-go-rounds. As a result of his collecting, research and writing Fried became recognized as the authority on carousels, coin-operated machines, and cigar store figures. He served as a consultant to many Museums; in particular as chief consultant on American Folk Art for the Smithsonian Institution.

Frederick and Mary Hill worked together in many ways to document, collect, preserve and increase the awareness about primarily the folk arts. Mary McKenzie Hill Fried passed away in 1988 at the age of seventy-four. Frederick P. Fried died July 1994 at the age of eighty-six.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center, National Museum of American History

E. Howard Clock Company Records (NMAH.AC.00776)

M. Francis Misklea Carousel Collection (NMAH.AC.0665)

Archives Center Carousel Collection (NMAH.AC.0675)

Messmore and Damon, Incorporated Company Records (NMAH.AC.0846)

Anthony W. Pendergast Collection (NMAH.AC.0882)

Frank Paulin Photoprints (NMAH.AC.1373)

Wurlitzer Company Records (NMAH.AC.0469)
Provenance:
Collection a bequest of the Frederick Fried Estate.
Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Occupation:
Wood-carvers  Search this
Topic:
Periodicals  Search this
Merry-go-round art  Search this
Signs and signboards  Search this
Weather vanes  Search this
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Architecture -- Details  Search this
Amusement ride equipment industry  Search this
Amusement rides  Search this
Folk art  Search this
Merry-go-round  Search this
Figure sculpture -- United States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs -- 20th century
Advertisements
Clippings
Blueprints -- 20th century
Books
Auction catalogs
Design drawings
Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0528
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0528
Online Media:

Janese Swanson Innovative Lives Presentation and Oral History

Topic:
Innovative Lives Program (NMAH public program series)
Creator:
Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation.  Search this
Interviewee:
Swanson, Jackie  Search this
Swanson, Janese  Search this
Names:
Girltech  Search this
Extent:
1.5 Cubic feet (4 boxes,)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Oral history
Videotapes
Interviews
Photographs
Slides (photographs)
Date:
1998
Summary:
Janese Swanson developed video game software, a website, and an array of toys and gadgets aimed at making technology more accessible to girls. The collection contains approximately six hours of original and reference video footage of Swanson's Innovative Lives Presentation, in which she discussed her background and demonstrated her inventions with her daughter, Jackie. The material also includes a brief interview.
Scope and Contents:
This collection contains six (6) hours of original (BetaCam SP) recordings, six (6) hours of master (BetaCam SP) recordings, and six (6) hours of reference (VHS) copies documenting the life and work of Dr. Janese Swanson, inventor of toys, books, a website, magazine, and software. This video documentation was created on March 25, 1998. The recordings include a presentation by Swanson for the Lemelson Center's Innovative Lives Program. Audience participants are students from Thoreau Middle School (Vienna, Virginia), Options Charter School (Washington, D.C.), Carrollton Elementary School (New Carrollton, Maryland), and Rosa Parks Middle School (Olney, Maryland). The collection also contains a brief interview with Dr. Swanson.
Arrangement:
The collection is organized into three series.

Series 1, Original Videos, 1998

Series 2, Master Videos, 1998

Series 3, Reference Videos (viewing copies), 1998

Series 4, Photographs and Slides, 1998
Biographical / Historical:
Janese Swanson, a native of California, was the founder and CEO of Girl Tech (1995), a company created to bring girls into the world of technology. The second of six children, Swanson was raised by her mother after her father died in the Vietnam War. From a young age, Swanson had an interest in technology, often tinkering with household appliances. Building on her experience as a flight attendant and school teacher, Swanson served on the team at Broderbund Software that developed the video game Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? She produced Playroom and Treehouse, early learning software, and has developed award-winning curricula, electronic toys, and books that encourage girls to explore technology and inventions. Some of Swanson's toy inventions include the Snoop Stopper Keepsake Box, Me-Mail Message Center, Zap N' Lock Journal, YakBak, and Swap-It Locket. Her publications include Tech Girl's Internet Adventures, Tech Girl's Activity Book, and Girlzine: A Magazine for the Global Girl. Swanson received her Ed.D. in Organization and Leadership Technology in 1997 from the University of San Francisco.

The Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation was founded in 1995 at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History through a generous gift from the Lemelson Foundation. The Center's mission is to document, interpret, and disseminate information about invention and innovation; to encourage inventive creativity in young people; and to foster an appreciation for the central role invention and innovation play in the history of the United States. The Innovative Lives series brings together museum visitors and, especially, school aged children, and American inventors to discuss inventions and the creative process and to experiment and play with hands-on activities related to each inventor's product. This collection was recorded by the Innovative Lives Program of the Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation.
Provenance:
The collection was transferred to the Archives Center by the Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation in 1998.
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. Copies of oral history releases on file.
Topic:
Computer software -- Development  Search this
Inventors -- 20th century  Search this
Inventions -- 20th century  Search this
Toys -- 20th century  Search this
Genre/Form:
Oral history -- 1990-2000
Videotapes -- 1990-2000
Interviews -- 1980-2000
Photographs
Slides (photographs) -- 20th century
Citation:
Janese Swanson Innovative Lives Presentation and Interview, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0642
See more items in:
Janese Swanson Innovative Lives Presentation and Oral History
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0642
Online Media:

The Carolyn and Donald Grepke Paper Doll Collection

Creator:
Grepke, Donald, 1932-  Search this
Grepke, Carolyn, 1937-1995  Search this
Extent:
70 Cubic feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
circa 1880-1998
Summary:
The collection consists of paper dolls dating from circa 1880 to 1998.
Scope and Contents:
The collection consists of paper dolls dating from 1890-1998. The bulk of the paper dolls, however, date from the 1900s-1970s. Some of the paper dolls have been cut while others remain intact. There is also a large collection of dolls that are still contained within their original packaging. Such packaging could include the periodical or comic book in which it was published, the original box, or a folder or booklet. While a substantial amount of the paper dolls were commercially produced, there are examples of hand made dolls and clothing. The clothing for the dolls is mostly created from paper with some examples of cloth and plastic. Hand colored commercially produced dolls and clothing also exist within the collection. Special features on the dolls could include hair, plastic eyes, photographic faces, and moveable parts. The artwork aspect of the paper dolls may be of interest to researchers. The collection includes works by such paper doll artists as Queen Holden, who was renowned for her dolls of the 1930s, and Tom Tierney, who has depicted almost every celebrity of the 20th century in paper doll form. Originals and reproductions of Grace Gebbie Drayton's (1877-1936) Dolly Dingle paper dolls series, which appeared in the Pictorial Review from 1913-1933, are included among the materials. Drayton is well known for her creation and illustration of the "Campbell Kids". She illustrated a number of books and other publications and designed dolls and toys. Frances Tipton Hunter, creator of the "Little Busy Bodies" who appeared in Women's Home Companion in 1922 and 1923, career spanned from the 1920s to her death in 1957. Besides the "Little Busy Bodies" her work also appeared in a number of periodicals including the Saturday Evening Post, The Delineator, Collier's and Ladies Home Journal.

Not just seen from the perspective of artwork or playthings the serious scholar will be able to focus on a variety of topics related to the dolls. Researchers interested in fashion, popular culture, and images of women, children, or celebrities will find this collection of great value. The collection has a large representation of movie and television stars from the 1930s through the 1950s. These particular series would be of interest to research pertaining to the entertainment industry. In addition, American notions of ideal family sizes, settings, relationships, teenage life and leisure activities are represented in the collection.
Arrangement:
The collection is divided into 14 series.

Series 1, Advertising, circa 1800-1980

Series 2, Animals, circa 1950-1995

Series 3, Celebrities, circa 1930-1995

Series 4, Characters in Literature and Folklore, circa 1920-1995

Series 5, Characters in Mass Media, circa 1935-1995

Series 6, Dolls and Toys, circa 1890-1990

Series 7, Family, circa 1880-1990

Series 8, Fashion and Costume, circa 1890-1995

Series 9, Historical Figures and Events, circa 1950-1998

Series 10, Holidays and Celebrations, circa 1930-1990

Series 11, Occupations, circa 1900-1995

Series 12, Periodicals, circa 1890-1995

Series 13, Miscellaneous Materials, circa 1890-1995

Series 14, Publications about Paper Dolls, circa 1980-1990
Biographical / Historical:
The Grepkes were prolific collectors of paper dolls, beginning their collecting in the 1970s.
Provenance:
The collection was donated to the Center, NMAH, Smithsonian Institution, by Donald Grepke in memory of his wife Carolyn Grepke in December 2000.
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:
Paper dolls  Search this
Dolls  Search this
Citation:
The Carolyn and Donald Grepke Paper Doll Collection, 1895-1991, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0752
See more items in:
The Carolyn and Donald Grepke Paper Doll Collection
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0752
Online Media:

Bob Rule Papers

Creator:
Rule, Bob (Robert M.)  Search this
Extent:
1.5 Cubic feet (1 box )
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Clippings
Articles
Correspondence
Catalogs
Photographs
Date:
ca. 1950-1999.
Summary:
Materials document Bob Rule's career as a yo-yo demonstrator, expert, promoter and contest winner.
Scope and Contents:
The collection documents the career of Bob Rule as a professional demonstrator and promoter of yo-yos and spinning tops for Donald F. Duncan Yo-Yo Company, Incorporated, the Union Wadding Company, and his own KIEVE Enterprises. Materials in this collection include photographs, newspaper clippings, scrapbook pages, correspondence, manuals, and other business records. The bulk of this collection consists of photographs and newspaper clippings that document the promotional events and contests he managed between 1960 and 1970. Materials found in this collection would be useful to those interested in the history of toys and recreation in general, as well as the history and promotional strategies of Duncan Yo-Yo Company, Incorporated.

Series 1, Personal Papers, circa 1950s–2002, undated, includes correspondence, biographical narratives, clippings, photographs, and other papers associated with the personal life and professional career of Bob Rule. Photographs in this series are mostly of Rule demonstrating yo-yos and spinning tops, but also present are photographs of Rule posing with specialized cars, his family and friends, and of social events attended by Rule. Correspondence in this series focuses on business matters including his book Yo-Yo Secrets and letters from children in response to a promotional event aired on television in 1963 and 1964. The correspondence and photographs are arranged in chronological order when possible.

Series 2, Duncan Yo-Yo Company, Incorporated, circa 1955–1964, undated, include field manuals, trade literature, business cards of Duncan employees, clippings, and photographs. The newspaper clippings in this series are about the business ventures and employees of Duncan Yo-Yo Company, Inc. Photographs are mostly of Duncan top and yo-yo displays in the 1950s and 1960s, but photographs of the Duncan factory in Luck, Wisconsin, and Duncan employees are also present. Materials in this series are arranged chronologically when possible.

Series 3, Promotional Events and Competitions, circa 1950s–1990s, undated, comprise of photographs, newspaper clippings, correspondence, event itineraries, and other printed material associated with promotional events and yo-yo competitions attended and managed by Bob Rule across the United States and in Canada, Puerto Rico, and Mexico. The itineraries, rules, rosters, and programs associated with various local, regional, and national competitions are present. Many of these materials were originally included in a scrapbook, which was disassembled and scattered throughout the collection prior to the collection coming to the Museum. Materials in this series are arranged chronologically when possible.

Series 4, Other Yo-Yo Professionals, circa 1955–2000, undated, consists of photographs and clippings that document the careers of other yo-yo experts and contest winners. Also included are various group photographs of yo-yo personalities, many include Bob Rule. A minimal number of pages from Rule's personal website (www.mryoyo.com) that detail the materials found in this series are also present. Files are arranged alphabetically by last name and by date within the folder when possible.
Arrangement:
The collection is divided into five series.

Series 1, Personal Papers, circa 1950s–2002, undated

Series 2, Duncan Yo-Yo Company, Incorporated, circa 1955–1964, undated

Series 3, Promotional Events and Competitions, circa 1950s–1990s, undated

Series 4, Other Yo-Yo Professionals, circa 1955–2000, undated
Biographical / Historical:
Bob Rule grew up in Detroit, Michigan, and began yo-yoing as a young boy in 1948. He entered his first yo-yo contest in 1949 and in 1952, began working part-time for Donald F. Duncan, Incorporated managing yo-yo contests and demonstrations in the Detroit area. In 1955, he went to work full-time for Duncan as a professional yo-yo demonstrator. In this role, he traveled across the United States and to Canada, Puerto Rico, and Mexico demonstrating yo-yo tricks, managing yo-yo contests, and appearing on local television stations to promote the Duncan line of yo-yos and spinning tops. In 1960, he began calling himself "Mr. Yo-Yo" and eventually trademarked the name in 1970.

He left Duncan when the company went out of business in 1965 and settled in Atlanta, Georgia, with his family where he went into the slot car racing business. He owned Champion Slot Racing Products, which he eventually merged with another company he founded, BoLINK Industries, a radio control car racing company. Bob Rule also founded KIEVE Enterprises, a public relations firm with a division by the name of Yo-Yo Promotions. This division combined Rule's yo-yoing skills with sales pitches for various companies that hired him to advertise their products or entertain their employees and/or customers.

From 1970 to 1973, Bob Rule went back to work as a yo-yo demonstrator in connection with the Union Wadding Company of Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Although he was not on their payroll, Rule demonstrated their line of Festival yo-yos.

Rule prides himself on the confidence and presentation skills he acquired throughout his career as a yo-yo professional. He believes that these skills laid the foundation for the success he experienced in other aspects of his life. Rule and his second wife Elleda (his first wife Kathy died of cancer in 1988) reside in Duluth, Georgia, where he continues to promote the yo-yo by attending yo-yo contests, staying in contact with other yo-yo personalities, and hosting a website that documents his career as a yo-yo professional, www.mryoyo.com.
Materials in the Archives Center, National Museum of American History:
Duncan Family Yo- Yo Collection (AC0807)
Provenance:
The collection was donated to the Museum by Bob Rule in 2003.
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:
Toys  Search this
Toy industry  Search this
Yo-yos  Search this
Genre/Form:
Clippings
Articles
Correspondence -- 1950-2000
Catalogs
Photographs -- 20th century
Citation:
Bob Rule Papers, 1950-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0855
See more items in:
Bob Rule Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0855
Online Media:

William J. Hammer Collection

Source:
Electricity and Modern Physics, Division of, NMAH, SI.  Search this
Creator:
Hammer, William J. (William Joseph), 1858-1934 (electrical engineer)  Search this
Former owner:
Electricity and Modern Physics, Division of, NMAH, SI.  Search this
Names:
Batchelor, George  Search this
Bell, Alexander Graham, 1847-1922  Search this
Berliner, Emile, 1851-1929  Search this
Curie, Marie  Search this
Curie, Pierre  Search this
Edison, Thomas A. (Thomas Alva), 1847-1931  Search this
Jehl, Francis  Search this
Johnson, Edward H.  Search this
Sprague, Frank J.  Search this
Tesla, Nikola, 1857-1943  Search this
Upton, Francis R.  Search this
Extent:
36 Cubic feet (84 boxes, 16 folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Correspondence
Photographs
Date:
circa 1847-1989
Summary:
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.
Arrangement:
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.
'Electrical Diablerie':
"ELECTRICAL DIABLERIE"

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).
Provenance:
Collection donated by IBM, 1962.
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:
Fluorescence  Search this
Electrical engineering  Search this
Incandescent lamps  Search this
Phosphorescence  Search this
Selenium cells  Search this
Cathode rays  Search this
X-rays  Search this
Radium  Search this
Genre/Form:
Correspondence -- 1930-1950
Photographs -- 1850-1900
Photographs -- 20th century
Citation:
William J. Hammer Collection, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0069
See more items in:
William J. Hammer Collection
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0069
Online Media:

Jacob's Ladder

Discipline:
Anthropology  Search this
Region:
US Southwest (NM, AZ, UT, NV)  Search this
Material:
Wood, Ribbon
Object Type:
Education and Outreach collections
Collecting Locality:
North America, United States, New Mexico, Santa Fe County
Topic:
Education & Outreach  Search this
USNM Number:
EO400698
See more items in:
Q?rius, The Coralyn W. Whitney Science Education Center
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3555a2bf9-3600-4e01-b7c3-014c93a96aef
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnheducation_11020350
Online Media:

Pinocchio an exciting new version of a popular fairy tale designed and illustrated by Jonathan and Lynn Shook ; illustrated by Linda Griffith ; paper engineering by Tor Lokvig

Author:
Shook, Jonathan  Search this
Author:
Collodi, Carlo 1826-1890 Avventure di Pinocchio English  Search this
Lokvig, Tor  Search this
Shook, Lynn  Search this
Illustrator:
Griffith, Linda Hill  Search this
Subject:
Pinocchio (Fictitious character)  Search this
Physical description:
[12] pages color illustrations 28 cm
Type:
Specimens
Juvenile fiction
Fiction
Toy and movable books
Fairy tales
Illustrated works
Juvenile literature
Juvenile works
Pop-up books
Date:
20th century
Topic:
Pop-up books  Search this
Puppets  Search this
Toy and movable books  Search this
Fairy tales  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1025545

A Step Back into 1907 and Some Possible Gifts

Creator:
Smithsonian Libraries  Search this
Type:
Blog posts
Smithsonian staff publications
Blog posts
Published Date:
Wed, 16 Dec 2020 14:00:07 +0000
Topic:
Library science  Search this
See more posts:
Smithsonian Libraries / Unbound
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:posts_0cf8899136b3a3cb324a6a385b4eb6f1

figures, set of

Physical Description:
paint (overall material)
wood (overall material)
ceramic (cup material)
tin (box material)
Object Name:
Figures, Set of
Other Terms:
Figures, Set of; Animals; Toys; Toys
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Toys  Search this
Credit Line:
Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Richmond
ID Number:
DL.69.0026
Catalog number:
69.0026
Accession number:
279532
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-0fc4-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_311097

backgammon board; checkerboard

Physical Description:
paint (overall material)
wood (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 3/4 in x 16 in x 16 1/2 in; 1.905 cm x 40.64 cm x 41.91 cm
Object Name:
Backgammon Board
Checkerboard
Other Terms:
Backgammon Board; Checkerboard; Toys
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Games  Search this
Toys  Search this
ID Number:
DL.69.0194
Catalog number:
69.0194
Accession number:
280900
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-167f-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_313374

set, coffee, toy

Physical Description:
metal, tin (overall material)
Object Name:
Coffee Service
set, coffee, toy
Other Terms:
Coffee Service; Toys
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Toys  Search this
Children  Search this
Coffee Drinking  Search this
Girls  Search this
Credit Line:
Mrs. John White (Mary Taggert Marshall) McBurney
ID Number:
DL.65.2684
Catalog number:
65.2684
Accession number:
258259
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Domestic Furnishings
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-13f9-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_314426

bear, stuffed

Physical Description:
brown (overall color)
textile (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 16 in; 40.64 cm
Object Name:
Bear, Stuffed
Other Terms:
Bear, Stuffed; Animals; Toys
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Toys  Search this
Teddy Bears  Search this
ID Number:
DL.65.1469
Catalog number:
65.1469
Accession number:
211897
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746b3-d8a3-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_314508

bear, stuffed

Physical Description:
brown (overall color)
textile (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 9 in; 22.86 cm
Object Name:
Bear, Stuffed
Other Terms:
Bear, Stuffed; Animals; Toys
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Toys  Search this
Teddy Bears  Search this
ID Number:
DL.65.1468
Catalog number:
65.1468
Accession number:
211897
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746b3-d8a4-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_314511

track, sections of

Physical Description:
metal (lid color)
metal (tracks (9) color)
wrapped (lid connector/connecting technique)
wrapped (tracks (9) connector/connecting technique)
Measurements:
segment: 10 in; 25.4 cm
overall: 100 in; 254 cm
Object Name:
track, sections of
Track, Sections of
Other Terms:
track, sections of; Track, Sections of; Trains; Toys
Date made:
20th century
Subject:
Toys  Search this
Train  Search this
ID Number:
DL.288662.0001
Catalog number:
288662.0001
Accession number:
288662
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-066e-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_310115

buggy, doll

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
metal (overall material)
wood (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 32 1/2 in x 34 in x 12 1/4 in; 82.55 cm x 86.36 cm x 31.115 cm
Object Name:
buggy, doll
Other Terms:
Carriage, Doll; Doll Clothing & Accessories; Toys
Used:
United States: Vermont, Island Pond
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Children  Search this
Girls  Search this
Toys  Search this
Dolls  Search this
Credit Line:
Claire L. Hodgkins
ID Number:
DL.284197.0003
Catalog number:
284197.0003
Accession number:
284197
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-124a-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_314057
Online Media:

machine, washing, toy

Physical Description:
wood (overall material)
paint (overall material)
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 14 cm x 22.2 cm x 21 cm; 5 1/2 in x 8 3/4 in x 8 9/32 in
Object Name:
Machine, Washing
machine, washing, toy
Other Terms:
Machine, Washing; Doll House Furnishings; Toys
Place owned; place used:
United States: Vermont, Island Pond
Date made:
early 20th century
Subject:
Girls  Search this
Children  Search this
Toys  Search this
Household Tools and Equipment  Search this
Laundry  Search this
Credit Line:
Claire L. Hodgkins
ID Number:
DL.284197.0001
Catalog number:
284197.0001
Accession number:
284197
See more items in:
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-15dd-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_314433

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