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Collection Scope and Content Note


The professional papers include routine job measurement forms; charts; notes and reports; correspondence with management theorists, including Frederick W. Taylor and Frank Gilbreth; and publications and reports by Thompson. Papers of Frederick W. Taylor, contained in the Thompson papers, pertain generally to Taylor's and Thompson's collaborative efforts in the building trades (1892-1915). Thompson's papers include charts, notes, reports, time cards, job instructions, and computation sheets pertaining to consulting work in job design, operations management, and work measurement studies for the following companies: Moosehead Paper Co. (1889-1890); Manufacturing Investment Co. Paper Mills at Appleton, Wisc. and Madison, Me. (1892); Mt. Tom Sulphite Pulp Co., Mt. Tom Mass. (1893); Umbagog Papers Mills (collaborative study with Frederick Taylor on work measurement, 1892); Tabor Foundry (operating under Taylor production system, 1914-1915); Forstmann Woolen Company (1939-1940); Schwarzenback Huber Weaving Company (1928-1938); and Ludlow Textile Manufacturing Company (1915).

Also, notes and drafts for books on marketing and scientific management (1940); reports on spinning mills (1936), defense production (1941), and unemployment and emergency measures for the construction trades (1921); correspondence pertaining to Thompson's work with the U.S. secretary of war on operations management and planning (1917); letters to E.C. Harwood and John Maynard Keynes on economics, unemployment and the Depression (1934-1935); professional certificates; MIT notebook (1888-1889); notebook on experiments (1896); a contract between Thompson and Taylor for collaboration on work measurement and construction studies (1895); press releases; and notes, brochures, and clippings on economics, engineering, marketing, and military spending.

The correspondence series includes Thompson's correspondence with various manufacturers and suppliers of machinery and work measurement devices; with the Boston Society of Civil Engineers on programs (1894-1948); with the Midvale Steel Company, Philadelphia, on Taylor's production system (1895); with Frank Gilbreth on concrete studies, construction, publications, and various work measurement studies (1897-1905); with Carl Barth (Bethlehem Steel Company) on Taylor's operation research (1902); with Frederick W. Taylor on concrete and work measurement studies (1915); with Mrs. Frederick W. Taylor on a biography of Taylor (1923); with William Danforth (Ralston Purina Company) on marketing, productivity and wages (1933); with E.C. Harwood (director, American Institute for Economic Research) on national economic policies (1934-1935); open letters to President Franklin D. Roosevelt on the economy (1934); and correspondence with Ordway Tead (Harper and Brothers) on the biography of Taylor (1936-1938). Also, letters on personal matters, consulting work, speaking engagements, publications (1892-1949), and three letter press books of outgoing letters to various manufacturers and suppliers, and some letters to Gilbreth and Taylor on construction, concrete, and work measurement studies (1903-1905).

The publications series includes notes, rough drafts, and correspondence regarding the production and publication of Reinforced Concrete Bridges (John Wiley, 1939), written in collaboration with Edward Smulski. Also, articles and supporting documents pertaining to various issues in economics, marketing, management, and work measurement. The subjects include scientific management, productivity, wages, unemployment, profit, cost accounting, production, purchasing, management and marketing in the apparel, construction, textile, and rubber industries, engineered marketing, technological change, defense production (1941), and post-war cost reduction (1944). Also included is a speech on the Salvation Army (1939), a speech, with program, from a "Symposium on Frederick W. Taylor" (Boston, 1933); and charts, notes, and drafts on chapters for an unpublished book on marketing (ca. 1946).

The Thompson & Lichtner Company files include statements and reports on company policy; promotional letters and brochures; and notes and reports on the following topics: job design, work measurement, bricklaying (1902), marketing, management, finance, Hoover's approach to economic problems (1930), an opinion survey of retailers and manufacturers (1946), productivity, post-war costs (1946) and various personnel management issues. Also, publications of the Thompson & Lichtner Company, and scattered letters concerning routine business matters, including letters regarding Thompson's appointment to various associations and organizations.

Correspondence between Thompson and Frederick W. Taylor concerns personal matters and Thompson's career plans (1892-1893), as well as the conduct of experiments, technology, work measurement and publications on coal, plastering, bricklaying, pig iron, and concrete and soils studies conducted by Taylor and Thompson (1892-1914). Also, correspondence of Carl Barth concerning the Bethlehem Iron Works experiments (1901-1903); and Frank Gilbreth concerning the reinforced concrete experiments (1904-1906).

Materials pertaining to Thompson and Taylor's concrete studies include notes, letters and reports on experimental procedures, specifications for pouring and mixing and strength testing (1909).

Soil and grass experiments were conducted by Thompson and Harold Van Du Zee for Taylor (1909-1915). Documents include graphs, charts, diagrams, computation sheets, and notes and instructions from Taylor on conduct of the experiments. Also, correspondence between Thompson and Van Du Zee on the conduct of the experiments, and the work measurement studies directed by Taylor (1909-1915).

Additional documents pertaining to Taylor include notes, reports and data on pig iron experiments (1901), work measurement studies, and a job design study conducted by Taylor for the Philadelphia Civil Service Commission (1912-1914); articles by Taylor on scientific management and profit sharing (1909-1912); photographs and diagrams of machinery and testing instruments; Taylor patents (1897-1902); Industrial Management (photocopy of book by Taylor and Morris Cole) (1909);correspondence of Taylor with Frank Gilbreth on concrete experiments (1908); National Consumers League on productivity and work measurement (1910-1912); and a letter to Richard A. Feiss on Taylor's visit to the Joseph & Feiss Company (1915); correspondence of Gilbreth and H.K. Hathaway on their meetings with Thompson and Taylor; notes and letters of the Stevens Institute of Technology regarding Taylor's professional papers (1963); and a document (upon Taylor's death) establishing Carl Barth, Morris Cooke, James M. Dodge and H.K. Hathaway as collaborators in Taylor's work in scientific management (1915).

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