Guide to the William Sawyer manuscript history of the Corliss steam-engine

Summary
Collection ID:
NMAH.AC.1329
Creators:
Vogel, Robert M.
Sawyer, William D.
Dates:
1988
Languages:
English
Collection is in English.
Physical Description:
0.3 cubic feet
1 box
Repository:
This collection contains a manuscript history of the Corliss Engine written by William Sawyer. The documents include text with written edits and illustrations.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The collection consists of a manuscript about George Corliss by William Sawyer, 1988, Corliss--Man and Engine with photocopies of drawings and illustrations.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged into one series.
Series 1: William Sawyer, History of the Corliss Engine Manuscript, 1988

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
William Sawyer, the author of Corliss, man and engine, is an independent scholar of the history of the stationary steam engine. Sawyer's research was supported by materials from Brown University, the Smithsonian Institution, and other libraries and archives with holdings related to the topic.
The text was considered for publication by Lindsay Publications, Inc., a well-known publisher in the history of technology field, but was not published for "various reasons." The first twenty-one pages of this manuscript are in the typeset format used by Brown, with the rest unformatted. This particular copy dates to 1988, after it was typeset by Brown and before its eventual publication in Stationary Power, the Journal of the International Stationary Steam Engine Society in 1999.
This manuscript was donated to the Archives Center by Robert M. Vogel, Curator Emeritus of Mechanical and Civil Engineering at the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution in 2014. He had been given a copy by the author for copy and content editing, but was unable to finish before his retirement. The hand-written edits on the manuscript belong to Vogel. Vogel also provided the illustrations credited to the Smithsonian Institution and the author.
According to Sawyer, a Corliss engine is a type of "stationary reciprocating steam engine, bolted down to a foundation, and used to provide power for factories and other users in which the machine(s) driven are fixed in one place" (Chapter 1, Corliss—Man and Engine). George Corliss received US Patent 6162 for his valve gear on March 10, 1849, a type of steam engine which ran more efficiently on less fuel. The patent covered the use of a wrist-plate to convey the valve motion from a single eccentric to the four valves of the engine, as well as the use of trip valves with variable cutoffs under governor control that were associated with Corliss Engines.
Sources
Donor Foreword, Corliss Steam Engine Reference Collection, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.
Corliss—Man and Engine, Corliss Steam Engine Reface Collection, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.

Administration
Processing Information
Collection processed by Holly Nelson, intern, 2016.
Author
Holly Nelson
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated to the Archives Center by Robert Vogel, former curator in the Division of Engineering and Industry (now the Division of Work and Industry) in 2014. William Sawyer had given the materials to Vogel in 1988.

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation
Corliss Steam Engine Reference Collection, 1988, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Conditions Governing Use
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark.
Conditions Governing Access
Collection is open for research.

Related Materials
Materials in the Archives Center
Chuse Engine and Manufacturing Company Records (AC1088)
Evolution of the Corliss Steam Engine Album (AC1016)

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Manuscripts -- 20th century Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photocopies Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Steam-engines Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Corliss steam-engine Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Drawings -- 1980-1990 Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Xerographic copies Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Corliss, George H. (George Henry), 1817-1888 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
P.O. Box 37012
Suite 1100, MRC 601
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012
archivescenter@si.edu
http://americanhistory.si.edu/archives