Scope and Contents
The collection consists of approximately five cubic feet of correspondence, bulletins, price lists, business record books, stock certificates, sales and advertising materials, scrapbooks, photographs, and lantern slides. The collection documents the technology of lighting and various business aspects of the GE Lighting Division throughout the twentieth century.
Series 1, Historical Background Materials, 1910-1969, contains documentation on the history of the National Electric Lamp Company and the development of the incandescent lamp. The
European Diary of 1928
is a narrative written by three General Electric employees—Samuel Doane, Chief Engineer, Joseph Kewley, Sales Manager, and George Osborn, Sales Manager. This narrative describes their business trip to Europe in the spring of 1928. It contains black-and-white photographs, menus, brochures, maps, postcards, and drawings detailing their travels in Paris, Nice, Milan, Venice, Berlin, Amsterdam, and England. The
Record of Accomplishment
, 1969, is a chronological listing (time line) of various events and/or accomplishments within General Electric.
Series 2, Executive Records, 1903-1955, consists of correspondence, annual reports, and technical standardization notices. The technical standardization notices were created by the Standardization Committee. This committee made decisions on how to facilitate and increase sales, improve quality, cheapen cost, and further the interests of the members of the Lamp Association. The reports cover a variety of subjects such as packing boxes, felt washers, high candle power lamps, and tabulating machines. Many of the reports contain black-and-white photographs. The
Lamp Committee Reports
seek to detail the demand for incandescent lamps and their improvements.
Series 3, House Organs, 1919-1959, contains documentation on in-house publications for General Electric.
, 1919-1920, promoted "lighting profits and cemented friendliness, cooperation, progress, and quality." The
, 1947-1950, was published by the Lamp Department and dealt specifically with lamp-related issues. The
Lamp Department Bulletin
, 1947-1950, was produced for GE personnel and dealt with a variety of issues from sales to lamp types to licensing issues. The
Work Better Bulletin
, 1959, was published by the Lamp Division as a service to industrial and commercial lamp users.
Series 4, Sales and Advertising Materials, 1910-1955, includes price lists for lamps from both General Electric and other companies, manufacturers' schedules, data books, sales notebooks for sales representatives, and Edison Mazda Lamp advertising cards. The advertising cards are approximately 3" x 6" and are in color. They contain ad slogans such as "His Only Rival," "Satisfied Customer," Edison's Dream Comes True," "Have You Electricity?" and "I like Lots of Light."
Series 5, NELA School of Lighting Records, 1920-1930, documents the school, now known as the GE Lighting Institute, for training sales people and customers in the proper application of various lighting products. The records contain quarterly reports and general and lighting course descriptions.
Series 6, Business and Stock Records, 1890-1912, contains record and minute books and stock certificates from other lamp companies. The record books contain correspondence, resolutions, stockholder information, and committee reports.
Series 7, Scrapbooks and Photographs, 1890s-circa 1950, contains one scrapbook from 1923 with black and white photographs, clippings, correspondence, charts, telegrams, and booklets documenting General Electric's Nela Park location. The photo albums contain black and white photographs of staff, lamps, bulbs, tubing, tabulating, filaments, lead wires, stems, mounts, and lighting installations. The scrapbook and photo albums have indices.
Series 8, Lantern Slides, 1880-1950, consists of glass plates of Edison, images of people in the work place, and lighting equipment.