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National Broadcasting Company history files, 1922-1986

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Topical Folders, 1922-1986
649 folders.
FOLDER 1 Advertising & Promotion Department. 1935 - 1949.
33 items.
Mimeographed memoranda and reports from the NBC Advertising & Promotion Department, many about personnel.
Highlights: December 4, 1941, 16-page memo from Ken Dyke to Niles Trammell regarding the scope and role of the Advertising & Promotion Department. January 1, 1941, organization chart of the Advertising & Promotion Department. July, 1944 32-page survey by Sheldon R. Coons of the research activities at NBC.
FOLDER 2 Advertising Agencies — Television Contacts. 1931 - 1941
4 items.
A television script and onionskin and mimeographed memoranda describing the involvement of advertising agencies in television production.
Highlights: April 19, 1940, television script of a McCann-Erickson television production, Indian Summer. September 16, 1931, memo from C. W. Horn to G. F. McClelland regarding budget requirements for television which mentions the installation of transmitting equipment at the Empire State Building and the upcoming broadcast demonstration to RCA executives.
FOLDER 3 Analysis Classification. 1940 - 1942.
6 items.
Onionskin and mimeographed memoranda and reports regarding classification of radio and television programming into genres.
Highlights: March, 1941 CAB ratings of radio programming by genre.
FOLDER 4 Anecdotes. 1935.
2 items.
Mimeographed, onionskin, and original letters from radio pioneers recalling their experiences in early radio.
Highlights: Amusing recollections by Harford Powel and D. S. Tuthill. New York Times article from March 22,-- featuring a humorous statement from Sir Ian Jacob of the BBC defending non-commercial broadcasting from criticism by Sylvester Weaver of NBC.
FOLDER 5 Tenth Anniversary (1 of 3). 1936.
2 items.
Guest list for tenth anniversary party and a photocopy of the dinner menu.
Printed items: Photocopy of dinner menu.
FOLDER 6 Tenth Anniversary (2 of 3). 1936.
28 items.
Mimeographed, onionskin, and photocopied memoranda, press releases, reports, menus, invitations, guest lists, and programs from the tenth anniversary party.
Highlights: Onionskin copy of 1936 summary of developments.
Printed items: Two bound programs of tenth anniversary dinner. Four foil-covered news releases celebrating NBC's growth and accomplishments since 1926. Invitation to a fashion show. November 9, 1936, soft-bound seating arrangement program. 1936 paste-up of a testimonial ad for NBC from the Joint Religious Radio Commission.
FOLDER 7 Tenth Anniversary (3 of 3). 1936.
5 items.
Original programs, an article, and a poster promoting the tenth anniversary celebration.
Highlights: The "only remaining copy" of the 1936 reissue of the program from the first broadcast in 1926.
Printed items: November 13, 1936, reissue program from the first radio show. November 15, 1936, tenth anniversary edition of NBC Transmitter. Fold-out NBC poster proclaiming NBC as the number one advertising medium. November 5-14, 1936, foil-bound program of daily events from the tenth anniversary celebration.
FOLDER 8 Twelfth Anniversary. 1938.
2 items.
Onionskin memoranda from the twelfth anniversary program.
FOLDER 9 Fifteenth Anniversary. 1941.
5 items.
Original and onionskin programs and reports regarding the anniversary party.
Highlights: December 30, 1941, 12-page report, "Fifteen Years of Broadcasting."
Printed items: November 10, 1941, anniversary program, This is the National Broadcasting Company.
FOLDER 10 WNBC/WEAF Twentieth Anniversary. 1942 - 1948.
6 items.
Original, mimeographed and photocopied memoranda, a press release, and an article about the NBC flagship station's anniversary.
Printed items: 1947-48 Annual Review of NBC.
FOLDER 11 Twenty-fifth Anniversary. 1951.
10 items.
Original and mimeographed memoranda, press releases from the twenty-fifth anniversary celebration.
Printed items: Three NBC twenty-fifth anniversary souvenir booklets. A working manual for the twenty-fifth anniversary for affiliates by the Press Department.
FOLDER 12 Thirtieth Anniversary 1956 (1 of 3).
10 items.
Onionskin and photocopied reports, a newspaper article, and a trade paper focusing on the thirtieth anniversary celebration.
Highlights: December, 1956 25-page chronology of important NBC highlights, "The NBC Story 1926-1956;" December 3, 1956, edition of Television Age.
FOLDER 13 Thirtieth Anniversary 1956 (2 of 3).
2 items.
Printed items: Dinner and lunch menus from the thirtieth anniversary celebration.
FOLDER 14 Thirtieth Anniversary 1956 (3 of 3).
35 items.
Original, onionskin, and mimeographed reports, speeches, memoranda, letters, and telegrams from NBC's thirtieth anniversary.
Highlights: "Sidelights of the Early Days," features humorous anecdotes of unusual incidents. Speeches by David and Robert Sarnoff. Congratulatory telegram from Frank Stanton of CBS to Robert Sarnoff. "The NBC Story," a history of NBC from 1926 to 1956.
Printed items: NBC 30th Anniversary Fashion Show Program. December 13, 1956, copies of the NBC anniversary section which appeared in the New York Herald Tribune. November, 1956 8-page WRCA-TV Tele-Log program schedule.
FOLDER 15 Thirty-fifth Anniversary 1961.
3 items.
Original and photocopied reports and a press release from the thirty-fifth anniversary celebration.
Highlights: 1961 3-page report, "Notes on the Development of 35 Years of Broadcasting," a description of the format and content of a retrospective television program. November 28, 1961, 18-page report, "The History of NBC 35 Years of Broadcasting Leadership," an extensive history of NBC.
FOLDER 16 Thirty-seventh Anniversary 1963.
1 item.
Original press release announcing office move.
FOLDER 17 Fortieth Anniversary 1966.
11 items.
Onionskin and photocopied newsletters, a press release, and a periodical about NBC history and an affiliates meeting.
Printed items: May 16, 1966, edition of Sponsor magazine which features an article on NBC history. 1944 29-page NBC publication, Two Dozen Years of Radio. Summer, 1966 edition of Electronic Age, which includes an article about NBC
FOLDER 18 Fiftieth Anniversary 1976 (1 of 2)
100 items.
Original and photocopied memoranda, articles, reports, press releases, pamphlets, and other material from NBC's fiftieth anniversary celebration.
Highlights: A one-page guide to the location of certain archival material in the NBC files. November 18, 1976, article in theWall Street Journal about the settling of an antitrust case by the Justice Department against NBC. A letter from the Indiana Historical Radio Society Bulletin recounting the history of the NBC chimes. Content descriptions of "The First Fifty Years," a broadcast retrospective. Printed items: Agenda of the NBC Radio/Television Affiliates 50th Anniversary Convention. Fifty Years with the NBC Radio Network, a 1976 photo book of NBC radio highlights and milestones. NBC Engineering-Fifty-Year History, an extensive two-part history of NBC engineering that includes many photographs.
FOLDER 19 Fiftieth Anniversary 1976 (2 of 2)
37 items.
Original, onionskin, photocopied and mimeographed periodicals, articles, in-house histories, and invitations to various NBC festivities
Highlights: An undated 80-page 50-year history of NBC compiled by Samuel Kaufman (3 copies).
Printed items: Invitations to NBC anniversary functions. Menu and program from 50th anniversary dinner. Broadcasting: the Next Ten Years, a 94-page book produced by NBC corporate planning that assesses NBC's future growth and challenges.
Sixtieth Anniversary. 1986.
2 items.
Two lengthy histories of NBC that are similar to previous histories except for the years 1976-86.
FOLDER 21 Announcements Television. 1937 - 1958.
22 items.
Onionskin and mimeographed television announcement procedures.
Highlights: May 7, 1948, memo from Sidney Strotz listing allowable ratios of commercial time per hour.
FOLDER 22 Artists Service Authorities. 1931 - 1940.
14 items.
Onionskin and mimeographed memoranda and telegrams outlining correct office procedures in the Artists Service Division.
FOLDER 23 Artists Service Private Entertainment Division. 1935 - 1939.
1 item.
A series of onionskin memoranda between D. S. Tuthill and Miss Frances Rockefeller King of the Private Entertainment Department regarding compensation of NBC artists for public appearances and the excessive fees charged to clients hiring these artists.
FOLDER 24 Artists Service Radio Features Division 1939- .
1 item.
Mimeographed memo from D. S. Tuthill announcing the creation of the Radio Features Division to facilitate the hiring of NBC radio personalities for advertisements and commercial broadcast programs
FOLDER 25 .Artists Television 1932 - 1936.
2 items.
Two pages of cross-references that indicate where to find files pertaining to early television.
FOLDER 26 Awards. 1981 - 1984.
6 items.
Photocopied memoranda and lists of awards earned by NBC radio and television in the early to mid-1980's.
FOLDER 27 Bicentennial Celebration. 1975.
1 item.
Excerpt of speech by Senator Warren G. Magnuson in the Congressional Record commending NBC for its extensive American Revolution Bicentennial programming.
FOLDER 28 Biographies. 1962.
1 item.
"Biographical statements of officers and directors of Radio Corporation of America and National Broadcasting Company, Inc." submitted to the FCC.
FOLDER 29 Broadcast Ads Newspapers. 1930 - 1941.
12 items.
Onionskin and mimeographed memoranda, letters, and reports describing the battle between radio and newspapers and references to cross-ownership issues.
Highlights: April 19, 1935, six-page analysis by M. H. Aylesworth of the history of the contentious relationship between radio and newspapers and why tensions are lessening. A special report for NBC covering radio publicity in 25 selected newspapers. An extensive collection of letters, memoranda, and telegrams that illustrate the complex problems created by cross-ownership. A list of radio stations owned by newspapers. April 4, 1938, excerpt from Variety announcing that newspapers will drop all radio news except daily logs.
FOLDER 30 Broadcast Advertising Policies. 1930 - 1945.
20 items.
Photocopies and mimeographed letters and memoranda regarding radio advertising policies and relations with sponsors.
Highlights: November 22, 1940, compilation of NBC Blue network sales policies. A January 8, 1935, memo from the General Sales Department stating that the words "safe" and "harmless" must be deleted from all food, beverage, or medical products advertised on NBC. A series of memoranda (from the February 24, 1937, minutes of the local program committee) discussing NBC's fear of broadcasting dramatized divorce cases and the advisability of avoiding the subject of sex. May 20, 1932, memo from NBC and the July 15, 1932, response from J. Walter Thompson regarding kidding advertising or apologizing for advertizing. An extensive series of memoranda on the ethics of airing advertising for vocational schools that are "pretty close to rackets." October 11, 1932, memo from John F. Royal to E. P. H. James suggesting the development of a radio series about U.S. Army carrier pigeons and the potential interest by a pet food company. December 9, 1932, memo forbidding "cross announcements" announcements on the Blue network referring to programs on the Red network or on a non-NBC network. November 22, 1932, 17-page address, "Advertising by Radio," given by J. W. Gilbert, proprietor of Woburn Advertising at a meeting of advertising executives in London. July 14, 1932, letter from ASCAP regarding broadcast announcements about restricted compositions and follow-up NBC memoranda. September 14, 1939, memo regarding the morality of airing advertising from companies that sell items on credit and mislead their customers. Memoranda about the ethics of airing advertising of cosmetic products not approved by the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Administration.
Printed items: NBC Standards for Broadcast Advertising, 1960s[?] pamphlet outlining the process by which commercials are cleared.
FOLDER 31 Broadcast Advertising. 1922 - 1956.
30 items.
Mimeographed, onionskin, and original memoranda, letters, and reports on broadcast advertising and promotion.
Highlights: June 9, 1930, 18-page report on a fact-finding mission to the BBC. March, 1932 confidential 15-page report of radio advertising possibilities in England by the London Press Exchange. October 7, 1926, letter from William H. Rankin to NBC addressing early radio advertising. October 13, 1938, Blue network discount rate card. Undated 33-page "Report of the Committee on Sales Improvement." "William H. Rankin: First Radio Advertiser," 1928 report by Alfred M. Caddell.
Printed items: September 7, 1922, program of the first evening commercial program that aired on WEAF. 1935 34-page pamphlet, Broadcast Merchandising-a Review. Keynote address to the Advertising Federation of America by Edgar Kobak, president. August 1, 1938, Sales through the Air..., an 11-page history of radio advertising. February 18, 1952, program from The Cities Service Silver Radio Jubilee, celebrating 25 years on NBC as a sponsor. The Invention That's Never Finished, a poster celebrating NBC's technical prowess. October 23, 1956, 8-page pamphlet, Network Radio Looks Ahead-a Report to Advertisers. October 23, 1956, 15-page pamphlet, Where Television Stands-a Report to Advertisers. February 23, 1956, 19-page pamphlet by Robert W. Sarnoff, Challenge in 1956.
FOLDER 32 Broadcast Pioneers Reference Library Progress Report 1968.
2 items.
Pamphlet and photocopy of material on activities of the Broadcast Pioneers. Highlights: January 27, 1976, content description and tape count from cassette recordings of the Broadcast Pioneers 16th annual banquet. Printed items: July, 1968 Broadcast Pioneers History Project, a 76-page historical inventory and industry reference library.
FOLDER 33 Budget Television 1941.
13 items.
Mimeographed and onionskin memoranda and budgets concerning television.
FOLDER 34 Budget Television 1940.
27 items.
Mimeographed and onionskin memoranda and budgets concerning television.
FOLDER 35 Budget Television 1939.
40 items.
Mimeographed and onionskin memoranda and budgets concerning television.
Highlights: December 18, 1939, memo from H. F. McKeon to O. B. Hanson regarding the television airplane demonstration of October 17, 1939. June 9, 1939, memo from Frank Mason to Niles Trammell concerning a proposal to present television receiving sets to the New York newspapers. February 24, 1939, memo from Lenox Lohr to David Sarnoff proposing a $495,000 television budget for 1939.
FOLDER 36 Budget Television 1937-38.
14 items.
Mimeographed and onionskin memoranda and letters about the television budget and programming plans.
Highlights: May 7, 1938, 29-page confidential report from C. W. Fitch to John F. Royal laying out a plan for six hours of daily television programming; contains two studio charts and a comprehensive description of the cost as well as the content of each program. (Lessons in Bridge will air twice daily.) April 3, 1937, memo from C. W. Fitch to John F. Royal outlining television program organization that includes an apparent original crude pencil diagram of a studio layout.
FOLDER 37 Budget Television 1930-36.
31 items.
Mimeographed and onionskin memoranda, reports, and letters regarding budgets from early television.
Highlights: October 28, 1936, memo from O. B. Hanson to David Rosenblum regarding allocation of $1,350 for television demonstrations.
Budgets. 1933 - 1961.
113 items.
Original, mimeographed, onionskin, and photocopied memoranda, budgets, letters, and reports on budgets of various departments.
FOLDER 39 Canadian Group. 1937 - 1938.
5 items.
Onionskin memoranda regarding NBC operations in Canada.
FOLDER 40 NBC Charter Stations Nov 15, 1926.
2 items.
Photocopy excerpt from Sponsor magazine listing the 27 charter stations (2 copies).
FOLDER 41 Chimes. 1933 - 1978.
57 items.
Original, onionskin, photocopy, and mimeographed memoranda, letters, telegrams, press releases, and cross reference pages concerning the NBC chimes and trademark
Highlights: September 14, 1978 press release that includes an older history of the NBC chimes. February 4, 1938 log of actual chime times for February 4, 1938. January 3, 1935 memo recommending the abolishment of the NBC chimes.
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