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ADI quietly continued its activities during the war. The kinds of operations ADI had initiated were taken over by other agencies and expanded far beyond the scope of the original projects. Libraries were routinely engaged in microfilm copying. Industrial organizations feverishly copied key documents to ensure that provision of strategic products would not be disrupted by sabotage or air raids. The govern­ment carried out large-scale microfilming for its own operations, from intelligence to the V-mail service for soldiers on the front. But science information and scientific communication had become so important during the war that they soared to a high level of national priority and continued at a high pitch after the war.

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The social and political forces set in motion during World War II changed U.S. society, propelled the government to become a chief supporter of scientific research, and added a new dimension to the way we view and the way we provide access to information. The push to make the results of scientific and technical advances achieved during the war available to the general public brought about an information turmoil. New tools and processes for informa­tion were developed and new kinds of organizations had to be established to control and distribute the masses of nontraditional documents.

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The American ideals of individualism and minimal government were set aside while the country concentrated on winning the war through an unprecedented communal effort. The feverish atmosphere in Washington reflected that mood.

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The War Years, then Information Turmoil  100

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Never before had the energies of so many Americans repre­senting so many interests, talents, and points of view been brought into play in a single enterprise. In part this result flowed simply from the magnitude of the national effort required and the extraordinary unity of the nation after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The primitive challenge of the Japanese assault, followed by Hitlers declaration of war, made the fighting of the Second World War an unambiguous affair, into which all but a tiny minority of Americans could throw themselves without inner reservation. On many domestic issues New Dealers and businessmen found themselves, in mutual surprise, working side by side without conflict—a human process that helped remove some of the scars of earlier domestic battles and prepare the way for the widening of domestic consensus in the postwar years.1

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The isolationist sentiment in the country was so strong that not until 1941 did President Roosevelt start the Lend Lease Program to help Great Britain, which was in desperate straits from the German as­saults. The United States did not enter the war until December 1941, after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Nonetheless, by the spring of 1940, the leaders of the country realized that the defense needs of the country demanded a close linkage among military men, scientists, and industrialists and that an organization was needed that could get the necessary weapons developed, preferably with the assistance of the Services but over their opposition if necessary.2 Scientists had been drawn into the military effort during previous wars, but in this war the relationship between the scientists and the military was reversed. Modern science has progressed to the point where the military chieftains were not sufficiently acquainted with its pos­sibilities to know for what they might ask with reasonable expecta­tions to be developed. Men familiar with the state of the art in science were allowed to become familiar with the needs of the military in order that they [might] tell the military what was possible in science so that together they might assess what should be done. Scientific and engineering research were so closely tied together that the terms scientific research or scientific effort here refer to both scientific and engineering research, and scientific information refers to scientific and technical information needed for research and development.

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The National Defense Research Committee (NDRC) was established in June 1940; with expanded authority, it was replaced a year later by the Office of Scientific Research and Development (OSRD) by execu­tive order of the president of the United States. NDRCs task was to correlate and support scientific research on mechanisms related to all aspects of warfare except flight, which was the responsibility of the

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The War Years, then Information Turmoil 101

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National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). OSRD was established to reduce the time lag between the completion of war-re­lated research and the implementation of the necessary procurement programs, to improve coordination among the armed services and NACA, to enable scientific research groups to carry projects of interest through the engineering development phase, and to perform research in military medicine. The OSRD was also provided with funds that could be allocated for research and development above and beyond those available to the armed services.3

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The experience of World War I seems like a pilot project when compared with the organization and use of national science during World War II, the first war in history to be affected decisively by weapons unknown at the outbreak of hostilities. In the United States this was the result of a centrally organized and remarkably managed research and development effort. Concern about these matters began at the highest levels. Vannevar Bush, the chairman of OSRD, reported directly to the president. Key figures in the Roosevelt administration, as well as Gen. George C. Marshall and others in the military estab­lishment, were sympathetic to scientists and open to innovation in military technology.

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The success of the OSRD also derived from the extraordinary effort of capable leaders whose prestige opened doors for them in the White House and enabled them to recruit outstanding scientists and en­gineers. The interaction of first-rate young American scientists with established European scientists who had been forced into exile by Nazi politics had a synergistic effect on U.S. science. The close col­laboration with British scientists and of basic researchers with in­dustry was also critical in the successful development of technology.

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Franklin Delano Roosevelts mode of operation during these pres­sure-filled times was another factor contributing to OSRDs success. He used the same ad hoc problem-solving approach to deal with complex wartime issues as he had with those arising during the depression years. During the war he would assign partially overlap­ping tasks to different sections within the armed forces, thus en­couraging competition. Once each group determined the best way to proceed and presented the results, the president decided on what action to take. This approach kept the government less focused and caused some difficulties in dealing with the Allied high command, but it may well have contributed to the wartime success in scientific and technical innovation. This approach also set the pattern for the govern­ment-supported research and development activities of the postwar years. But such an approach, without an organizational fulcrum or clearly assigned responsibilities, caused serious management problems.

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During the war the services functioned as a unit when dealing with the British allies and fighting the enemy, but in research and develop­ment each of the services, NACA, and the OSRD carried out its own projects. The air force did not become an independent service until 1947; both the navy and the army had its air corps, which by 1941 was recognized as an arm virtually equal to the ground forces and the Navy.4 Instead of creating new laboratories, OSRD initiated a pro­gram of research by contract, giving the research effort a jump start. The various agencies let thousands of contracts to colleges and univer­sities, to research organizations, to large and small industrial con­cerns, and to individual contractors.5

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The United States and Great Britain agreed to exchange informa­tion on weapons; later liaison offices were established in London and Washington to facilitate exchange of information between the two nations.

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After the Americans entered the war, research was intensified. Keeping the various groups on both sides of the Atlantic apprised of recent progress on a need-to-know basis proved to be quite difficult. True, the contracting agencies, as stewards of the public interest, required that their contractors prepare regular progress reports. Re­search workers, however, were too busy working on the problems to write about their progress in detail. The monthly or bimonthly reports of the various groups frequently were several months late in publica­tion and were often delayed further by overseas mail, by delivery to the wrong office, and by necessary duplication and redistribution procedures. Furthermore, the reports were often too general to be of much technical use. Not until after the war were reports prepared that provided a complete overview.

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The realization that scientists work better in teams than in isola­tion was a major finding during World War I. During World War II research and development efforts improved with closer com­munication among participants. Scientists and engineers respon­sible for projects commuted long distances within the country. When the liaison offices in London and Washington initiated per­sonal contacts among scientists working on related projects, com­munication across the Atlantic also improved, and in 1944, technical aides were assigned to liaison office staffs to stay in touch with critical projects. High-level civilian and military decision makers also stayed in touch with the scientists working on the projects through special arrangements. For instance, administrators and officers, from junior grades to chiefs of staff, met informally with research scientists on Sunday afternoons in the office of the head of the Telecommunication Research Establishment (TRE) at Malvern, England. When they returned to their offices on Monday they could

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make better military decisions based on the information they had received.6

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The magnitude of the effort to assure adequate communication among scientists, engineers, and contractors across borders can be illustrated by some OSRD figures: through September 1945, nearly sixty thousand separate reports, letters, and samples had been for­warded from the United Kingdom and Canada, and over eighty-two thousand reports had been dispatched from the United States to the United Kingdom and Canada; in addition, the OSRD had also ar­ranged overseas travel for more than eighteen hundred persons.

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Scientific information was also being gathered from the enemy during the war. Teams of engineers would evaluate enemy informa­tion from occupied territories, prepare digests of the captured docu­ments, and review them with Allied intelligence officers. The air force eventually accumulated the largest collection of enemy documents. In October 1944, the U.S. Navy and the British Air Ministry established an Air Documents Research Center (ADRC) in London to collect and reproduce all important enemy documents captured in the field to assure their availability for later study. At the end of the war, when it was discovered that German scientists had not been able to bring themselves to destroy records of their work as instructed, the air force added a wide variety of documents obtained from dry cisterns, salt mines, attics, and laboratories of industrial concerns to the collection of ADRC. In June 1945, a team of twenty-five scientists and engineers, two of whom had library training, was sent to London by the Air Force. Tremendous loads of documents arrived daily and were counted by weight. Each day four to five thousand documents were screened, and six to seven hundred selected documents were processed, abstracted, and microfilmed at once by the ADRC. By December 1945, 186 tons of documents had been received.7

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But not all information about German science came from captured documents. Wild Bill Donovan, director of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), realized that much information of importance appears in daily papers and professional journals. In the United States, with the cooperation of the Committee on Interdepartmental Cooperation of the Library of Congress and a program of the Alien Property Custodian, in which the ADI also participated, many important foreign publications were made available on microfilm or photo-fac­simile.

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As part of OSS operations, coordinated by Eugene Power, mailbags from Germany were intercepted in Stockholm, where newspapers, serials, and scientific journals were microfilmed. Between 1942 and 1945 5 million pages were copied and sent to Washington.8 In the United Kingdom, Aslib, the professional association of special

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librarians, carried out major microfilming activities. After the war, about 300,000 Japanese documents, obtained for intelligence pur­poses, were added to the collection of the Library of Congress, and 13 million pages of censorship intercepts on microfilm were deposited in the National Archives under the presidential sea1.9

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Today most people associate only the atomic bomb with a scientific breakthrough of the war, but scientific developments had an impact already early in the war. In October 1940, because of developments in radar technology, the Battle of Britain was won despite the over­whelming numbers of German aircraft. The combination of cryptog­raphy and computing helped break the Germans Enigma code. The early computers were analog devices. The first working digital com­puter, the Z3, was built in Germany by Konrad Zuse in 1941 and was used for calculations by the military, but Zuses instruments were destroyed during a Berlin air raid later in the war. Although the superior German technology of the 1930s was geared up for the war, because of the attitude of the German high command and a general mistrust of scientists by the military, the scientists were not exploring new weapon systems.10

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In the United States, librarians had not been drawn into the war effort as systematically as they had been in Germany. Nonetheless, U.S. librarians made substantial contributions. Some of the leading librarians became involved in library-related international activities and later, for the first time in history, cooperated in making overall plans for the research collections in the country.

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During the war the ALA, which had become an important institution in the 1930s with the aid of Carnegie grants, established an International Relations Office under the remarkable leadership of H. M. Lydenberg, who had the full cooperation of the librarian of Congress. The office collected books; conducted numerous international projects; assisted individuals, national bodies, and government officials; and in general served as liaison for libraries throughout the world.11 Under the auspices of an ACLS committee chaired by Keyes Metcalf and with the help of Rockefeller funds, Eugene Power was microfilming valuable manu­scripts in England after the war broke out in Europe.12

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During this war librarians did much more than serve in the military, work intensively in their civilian jobs, or respond generously to library problems of other countries. Their leaders led the way, participating in the war effort and in special information-gathering activities; they

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worked on longer-range national plans; and some of their younger members were involved in work on automation of information and document retrieval.

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Archibald MacLeish, the librarian of Congress, who became assistant secretary of state for public and cultural relations in 1944, wrote speeches for the president and carried out one intelligence and information job after another. During the war the country drew extensively on the resources of scholarly research libraries when, for the first time, information on German and Japanese technology and the politics and the economy of numerous countries around the world became vitally important to the U.S. government. MacLeish and his successor, Luther Evans, were deeply concerned about the incompleteness of the librarys collections and conceived a larger role for the library.13 The library would have felt enlarged demands on its collection in any case, according to Dan Lacy, but because of the war and postwar situation the pressure came sooner and more intensively.

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The fact is that the problems which all commonwealths must face in our civilization are so complex, affected by so many obscure and intertwined facts, and so instant and perilous in their demand for decision that they can be dealt with only by a mar­riage of government and learning. . . .It is a fruitful and recipro­cally enlightening (but demanding) union that the Librarys collection must serve.14

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After the war, the Library of Congress took advantage of its position as an arm of the U.S. government and engaged in acquisi­tions in the liberated countries even before regular civilian and banking facilities had been fully restored. The representative of the library in Rome could make excellent arrangements with Italian and French booksellers because he could make use of the resources of the army and the Department of State and could command certain forms of assistance such as jeeps, trucks, packing boxes, stenog­raphers, etc.13

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In Portugal, during the war, Reuben Peiss obtained books, jour­nals, and other materials published in Axis countries for the Inter­departmental Committee for the Acquisition of Foreign Publications. Later, just as the Soviets were occupying Leipzig, he was able to commandeer a number of army trucks, pick up the materials or­dered by U.S. libraries before the war and saved in the cellars of the German book dealers, and bring the materials back through the Soviet lines.

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The massive contribution of science and technology to winning the war created a compelling interest in the highest levels of governments. Inthe United States the federal government had become the chief supporter of scientific research, and the leaders of the nation were persuaded that scientific and technical information was essential for the national research and development. During the war technical reports had inadvertently become the critical medium for scientific communication; suddenly, at the end of the war, information con­tained in n uncounted number of unorganized reports had to be made available to the nation by presidential mandate.

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The frontiers of science continued to expand. New kinds of infor­mation services were gearing up. Attempts were made to revise and reinvent ways to control the materials, to open up new bibliographic channels to make known the work among the general public, and to find alternate ways to distribute the reports. These efforts led to experimentation with punched cards and mechanized devices and to the reexamination of the principles of intellectual access and of stand­ard library procedures that did not fit the kinds of services now being demanded.

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World War II, even more than World War I, produced sharp breaks with the past. Europe was in ruins, as were Japan and China. Despite postwar stresses and adjustments following a fiercely fought war, the horror of the Holocaust, and the grim portent of the nuclear bomb, the high elites in the nation created a tremendous drive to ensure lasting peace. They participated in establishing the United Nations. Even though the League of Nations had failed earlier, they wanted to establish a forum where the peoples of the world could work together and solve disputes at the conference table instead of on the battlefield. This was a time for reaching out to build from the ruins and reduce hunger, ignorance, and sickness in the world.

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These challenges brought forth a search for new solutions and an eagerness to redefine the world. This was not a generational rebellion such as Carl Schorske discusses in relation to late nineteenth century changes,18 but rather a reexamination of every facet of cultural life, of science and technology, and of the gray areas in between. The discon­tinuity brought on by the war and its aftermath demanded a new self-definition from each nation and from each individual, whether returning from the front or a laboratory near home. The necessary readjustments brought turmoil, as well as excitement. In the midst of confusion and restlessness this was a period of remarkable creativity; it was a period of social and organizational innovation, of harnessing technologies, of setting bold policies in the United States, of old

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nations shifting political gears, and of new nations attempting to gain control of their destinies.

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Turning hopes into reality required establishing political structures and communication of a different order on all levels. A new informa­tion and communication infrastructure had to be developed. The Information Age had its roots in the nineteenth century with the emergence of larger companies and the use of complex machinery requiring precise coordination and accurate communication. Now there was a need to develop administrative structures and devise better ways to select, transmit, and receive information to support global needs. Methods developed by libraries and businesses for managing and disseminating information had to be revised; new methods had to be harmonized with established and still necessary operations.

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The war was still raging in November 1944, when President Roosevelt wrote to Vannevar Bush:

New frontiers of the mind are before us, and if they are pioneered with the same vision, boldness, and drive with which we have waged this war we can create a fuller and more fruitful employment and a fuller and more fruitful life.19

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Looking toward peace, the president wanted to redirect wartime science and use the information, the techniques and research ex­perience of the OSRD developed by the thousands of scientists in universities and in industry during the war to improve national health, create new jobs, raise the national standard of living, and also avert a bad postwar depression.20

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Bush in his response, Science, the Endless Frontier, advised that the federal government accept new responsibilities for promoting the creation of new scientific knowledge and the development of scientific talent in our youth.21 He also urged that the scientific information acquired during the war be made widely available. Therefore, he proposed to declassify it expeditiously, except in areas that might threaten national security.

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On behest of President Truman, John R. Steelman then examined the capacity of the American system to absorb the wartime scientific and technical effort and convert it to peaceful purposes. In his report, Science and Public Policy, he proposed a ten-year plan for developing science in the nation.22 Surprisingly, this significant work is hardly remembered.

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Bushs proposal, together with Steelmans report, set the basis for U.S. science policy. Both reports acknowledged the need for adequate scientific communication and recommended that funds be budgeted

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to develop information resources and to continue the personal con­tacts among scientists that had proved so useful during the war. The plan focused on the hard sciences and did not make specific recom­mendations for research in the social sciences.

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With so complex an assignment and too little time for preparing a report, Steelman explained, he restricted his analysis to scientific research, although he believed that it was important that competent social scientists work hand in hand with the natural scientists. This admonition was ignored; the value of social science research had not yet been sufficiently appreciated in the turmoil following the war.

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The acceptance, by and large, of the Bush and Steelman proposals marks a significant shift in the domestic policy of the United States. In the past, the private sector had been primarily responsible for scientific research and development. After World War II, however, the federal government, representing, as it were, the public household, took on the responsibility for funding key scientific developments and for developing an integrated science policy.23 This was one of the rare occasions when national objectives were clearly stated, and thus it was possible to begin to implement them even at a time of postwar adjust­ments, the change from military to civilian direction of the govern­ment, and also a change in administration.

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In line with the stated objectives, the government began to redirect the immense wartime research and development effort of World War II. Converting new technologies to peacetime use and redeploying skilled manpower became the order of the day.24 Government-funded contract research, however, did not end with the war, as many had expected. The onset of the Cold War within a few years after the peace treaties were signed and the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950 extended the interest in national science, which had been expected to ebb after World War II.

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The OSRD was abolished according to plan and in 1946 transferred its research and development responsibilities to the three armed ser­vices, the National Institutes of Health of the Public Health Service, and the new Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), which took over the Manhattan District Project from the army.

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In 1945 the navy established the Office of Naval Research (ONR) to maintain contacts with universities, in 1947 a Research and Develop­ment Board was set up under the Department of Defense, and in 1950 the National Science Foundation was created to evaluate scientific research programs undertaken by the agencies of the federal govern­ment to support basic research.25 By that time, however, the ties between soldier and scientist had weakened. Neither the National Science Foundation in the civilian sector nor the Research and Development Board in the military was able to coordinate research as

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effectively as the OSRD had during the war. The armed services continued to fund basic research until 1969, when the Department of Defense was prohibited by law from supporting research that did not have military application or was not of immediate military concern.26

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Both Roosevelt and Truman believed that information gained through war research should be distributed freely to the public: the public had paid for the war effort, and therefore, as long as released information did not affect national security, the public should benefit from information gathered from this research and collected from Axis sources. The confluence of the awesome volume of unorganized reports on the research and development work that had been carried out for the U.S. government and the Allies and the captured Axis documents brought about an urgent quest for information retrieval systems that lasted through the 1960s. This, in turn, led to new ap­proaches to cataloging, to a revision of subject access, to new methods of producing secondary publications, and to active experimentation with mechanical devices that could be used when searching for tech­nical information. In Scott Adamss view, the forces generated by World War II helped to bring about the greatest explosion of bibliog­raphic activity the world has ever known.27

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The services, NACA, and the other agencies were intent on follow­ing through on the presidents directives. The agencies turned their energies to handling the tasks, devising new structures for informa­tion services, and carrying out development work in the midst of operations. In retrospect, the results were remarkable.

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The first task was to register and organize for retrieval the mass of technical reports, many of which were in foreign languages. The contents had to be made accessible to potential users and means had to be found to distribute the documents to those who had asked for them. The magnitude of this task exceeded all expectations; the pat­tern of library or archival services did not fit the information services the situation now demanded. There was a shortage of librarians. But even those with library training had never had experience in manag­ing the control and distribution of such highly diverse materials. New agencies had to be established, and some existing agencies had to be modified and enlarged to carry out the responsibilities mandated by the president.

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The greatest difficulty was not only that the technical literature cumulated and grew at a rate beyond anything previously known, but

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also that its character was altered by the war. So much of the research work was classified that informal communication among scientists and engineers had to be curtailed and their work could not be reported at scientific or technical meetings. Still, scientists and engineers work­ing on related projects in different laboratories or in industry had to communicate with one another and with the funding agency. This was done through technical reports, which, as a result, emerged as the principal mode for scientific and technical communication and be­came the vehicle of technology transfer.

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The periodical article had superseded the book before World War I for more timely dissemination of the findings of science and technol­ogy, and scientists presumed that the results of nonproprietary re­search would eventually find their way into a scientific journal. The purpose of technical reports was to inform the sponsoring agencies of progress made and conclusions reached. Contract research, requiring such reports, had existed earlier, and internal reports were common • in industrial laboratories and government projects. But those were but a few documents.

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Taking control of the masses of research reports after the war proved to be much more complex than anyone had realized. Getting a handle on these materials—reproduced by some near-print method, without standard format, size, or arrangement, and issued at intervals ranging from a week to a year—was overwhelming. Their contents usually covered a single project but at times several projects. Some reports covered major scientific or technical discoveries, others dealt only with changes in laboratory personnel. The OSRD tried to establish a uniform system for preparing reports, but only about one-fourth to one-third of its reports followed the system and listed OSRD numbers.

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New Agencies to Manage Reports

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If contractors for the Department of Defense and private industry were to benefit from the collection of U.S. and Allied reports and Axis documents, they had to be made aware of their existence as soon as possible. Ever since the Thirty Year War, victorious armies have cap­tured archives, along with national treasures, to keep control over the enemy.28 During World War II, scientific documentation had become so significant that it was placed into a special category and treated like other valuables added to the national riches.

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On the advice of Ralph Shaw, librarian of the USDA library and a noncommissioned officer in the army, Vannevar Bush, chairman of OSRD, recommended to the president in 1945 that he establish a publication board by executive order. The board was established that

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summer under the U.S. Department of Commerce to declassify tech­nical information obtained through war research and also to handle the release of declassified captured Axis technical documents and those obtained from the Allies.29

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The Publication Board was to organize the materials for which it had become responsible to make them accessible to the people who could make use of them. The operating arm of the board, which became the Office of Technical Services (OTS), was placed under John C. Green, chief engineer with the National Inventors Council, an agency that examined and analyzed civilian inventions directed to the defense effort in cooperation with the armed services. In August 1945, a few days after receiving the presidential order, Green wrote to Davis asking for advice on how to handle the task and later adapted ADIs auxiliary publication plan to cope with the declassified technical reports and enemy documents.30 The board inherited hundreds of packing cases of technical reports from OSRD alone. Even in 1946, the number of reports to be handled by OTS, scattered all over the country and half the world, could not be determined exactly, but in their totality were comparable to one of our great research collec­tions.31

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The OTS had been expected to exist at most for three years. But the Cold War and the Korean War stimulated continued support of na­tional science and with it the flow of technical reports. In 1965 the OTS was transformed into the Clearinghouse of Federal Scientific and Technical Information (CFSTI) with considerably broader respon­sibilities, and in 1971 CFSTI was reorganized into the National Tech­nical Information Service (NTIS).

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The number of declassified documents for which OTS became responsible was just a small fraction of the technical reports held by the services, NACA, the AEC, and other government agencies. During the five years after the war, information and documentation services were established within the Department of Defense and various government agencies to collect classified documents to bring them to the attention of authorized persons both within and beyond a par­ticular agency and to make them available on request.32

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With no existing models to guide such operations, each of the services and government agencies attacked the problem in a some­what different way. The diversity of practices can be illustrated by the OTS, the Central Air Documents Office (CADO), and the Navy Project in the Library of Congress. The information division set up by the AEC is not described here but must be mentioned because of the quality of services it offered and the excellent training ground it provided under its first chief, Alberto Thompson. Several of those who later became responsible for major projects and who pioneered the use of

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automated data-processing equipment for compiling bibliographies and for retrieving information were first exposed at the AEC to a new style of information management.33

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After demobilization, the Air Document Division (ADD) at Wright Field took over the responsibilities of ADRC, mentioned in the pre­vious chapter. Under Col. H. M. McCoy and later Col. A. A. Arnhym, ADD became one of the largest document-handling centers at the time, although it was by no means the only air force establishment concerned with the management of scientific information. Wright Field also ac­cumulated the largest collection in the country of IBM and ozaphone film equipment, which it used for pioneering work on automatic processing of documents and for the voluminous copying carried out at the Air Documents Division.33 In the fall of 1948 ADDs operations broadened when the secretaries of the navy and the air force estab­lished the Central Air .Document Office (CADO). CADO was taken over in 1952 by the new Armed Services Technical Information Agency (ASTIA), which expanded and in 1965 became the Defense Documen­tation Center. NACA remained an independent agency; when the National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) was estab­lished in 1958, it took over NACAs library and information services.34

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The Office of Naval Research, having inherited tens of thousands of reports from OSRD, turned to the Library of Congress for assistance. Evans, the librarian of Congress, had been distressed that the library had not been able to fulfill as it might have the critical demands of the country during the war. He believed that the library should be a superior depository of knowledge that, with full bibliographic con­trol, should be able to provide all the information needed for national purposes in peace or in war; to accomplish this he would have wanted to join the Army Medical and the USDA libraries with the Library of Congress. Because of his grand vision of the librarys role, in the years following the war Evans accepted various assignments from the ser­vices.33 In 1947 the library established the Science and Technology project, later renamed Navy Research Section (NRS), under Burton W. Adkinson, with Mortimer Taube as its first chief. NRS, like CADO, eventually merged with the ASTIA reference center. Adkinson later became the head of the Office of Science Information Service of the National Science Foundation. The assignment led Taube to his pioneering work in information retrieval and, later, to the estab­lishment of his own firm, Documentation Incorporated.

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Bibliographic Control and Dissemination

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Davis initiated the documentation projects of Science Service be­cause of the problems of access to scientific publication. The growth

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of scientific research in the United States and Europe, combined with the Great Depression, caused new problems and aggravated already existing difficulties of scientific journals and bibliographic control. After the Second World War the technical report literature played havoc with the orderly publication process; its effect on scientists and engineers was nothing less than catastrophic, wrote the chief of the Navy Research Section at the Library of Congress, Dwight Gray, in 1951.36

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Established journals, routinely plagued by financial problems, were unable to expand fast enough to meet the needs of their constituencies to disseminate the results of the expanded research. Editors were forced to reject papers of a caliber they would once have accepted. Publication lags were a year or longer, and the papers that were eventually published were so condensed that they were rendered almost meaningless to all but the author and a few fellow specialists.

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Technical reports, despite the difficulties of controlling them, had some advantages. Authors could discuss issues relating to the research in full detail and could include, at times, useful reviews of negative results. Reports were also timely; they became available shortly after the experimental work had been completed and were distributed to the groups most concerned with the progress made in the project. Reports were also likely to have been announced by one of the new government bibliographic publications before an article, written at the same time, could appear in a journal. On the other hand, reports, often highly specialized, were typically released without the benefit of impartial technical review or even critical editing. The policies of the distributing agencies controlled the distribution of reports, which, in the case of classified materials, was restricted on a need-to-know basis.37

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A major difficulty was that no single organization had before carried out all the tasks necessary to gain physical and bibliographic control, provide appropriate intellectual access in new areas of research, and also distribute the technical reports. Traditionally, librarians had been responsible for organizing library collections: registering and catalog­ing books and other monographs, assigning classification numbers, analyzing the content of the works, and selecting subject headings for intellectual access. Typically, scholarly, scientific, and professional societies were responsible for journals in their specialties. Scientific societies, special publishers, and at times governments provided ac­cess to broad areas of specialized knowledge through secondary pub­lications, such as indexing-abstracting services and reviews. Now the new information and document distribution centers responsible for the management of technical reports were expected to perform all of these functions: to register and catalog reports, to analyze the docu­ments and assign subject headings or index terms, to provide further

The War Years, then Information Turmoil 115

access to the material, to abstract the reports and initiate secondary publications, and finally, taking on the traditional role of publishers, to distribute the reports. It was almost as if the Scientific Information Institute (SII) proposed by Davis in 1933 had materialized without any preliminary organizational work.

70 0

Thus, one can well imagine the chaotic situation in 1945 when information centers were inundated by the tidal wave of U.S., Allied, and German reports. A sense of urgency prevailed. Speed was the implicit objective for every facet of the bibliographic control of the literature: if engineers and scientists were to benefit, they needed timely access to research results. The twenty-year hiatus between publication and utilization of research results, as in the case of the discovery of reflected radio waves and the development of radar, which was so important in the war effort, had to be eliminated.

71 0

After the war several organizations did process technical reports in somewhat the same manner Davis had suggested for the SIT. Instead of establishing a comprehensive bibliographic tool for science and technology, however, the major information and documentation centers started their own bibliographies. These bibliographies supple­mented but did not incorporate or supersede traditional tools of scientific communication, which continued to be published inde­pendently.

72 0

At first even the expertise of the Library of Congress was of little help. Every decision on how to process the thousands of incoming documents proved ineffective because no factor or [pointer] common to all reports could be found, as Mortimer Taube, the first head of its NRS project, later recalled.38 Grappling with these problems, Taube, like some other librarians, came to believe that cataloging practices for books and journals, evolved over a long period, were too time-con­suming even for traditional materials. The practices were certainly inappropriate for the volume of documents that had to be processed at a rapid rate.39

73 0

Even the hitherto unquestioned practice of designating the author as the main entry for a document had to be reexamined. The names of those who carried out the research were not always indicated on the reports, and, because of wartime activities, even the names of U.S. authors were not as meaningful to others as they had been in the past. The invisible college (using early Royal Society terminology)—people working in the same area who are familiar with one anothers work— had been temporarily suspended by the security restrictions imposed during wartime. Furthermore, research typically was carried out by expanding teams, joined by many new workers; thus often the authors were not as well known as the agency where the research was carried out. Identifying authors who had the primary intellectual respon

The War Years, then Information Turmoil 116

sibility for the work to be cataloged became more difficult and less useful than with traditional library materials. To speed up processing, some information centers recorded only the names of the first three listed authors, a custom adopted by many bibliographies since that time. Corporate entries were simplified and revised. Titles, on the other hand, were fully listed, even though they often included cryptic references, chemical symbols, or even code words.40

74 0

Each agency struggled to gain control over the technical reports and occasionally made arbitrary decisions about practices and procedures based, in part, on what seemed to be most useful for its special clientele. This resulted in a range of different practices: the OTS, for example, entered reports under source organization until 1949, when it switched to using title entries; NRS first considered titles but later adopted the source agency as the main entry, while the AEC retained the use of the personal author.

75 0

Publishers make their business plans by anticipating the likely demand for their materials. The new centers had the impossible task of foretelling which of the highly specialized reports would be of immediate or of continuing interest to research workers. In the case of the declassified reports the OTS had to handle, it was hopeless to predict who the potential users might be or to what extent the private sector would make use of reports.

76 0

Clearly, users had to be able to retrieve reports by subject; thus a list allowing rapid scanning had to be provided for them. The general subject headings used in libraries were inadequate for retrieving highly specialized material from the fast-growing collections, espe­cially in newly developed areas of science and technology. Each of the major information centers therefore generated its own subject head­ings to specify the subject content of documents.

77 0

CADOs subject heading list, for instance, was started in the sum­mer of 1945 under crisis conditions. With thousands of pounds of German documents arriving daily, it was the time for action, not for niceties. Pragmatically, ADRC personnel wrote subject headings on cards, then eliminated duplicates and near-synonyms. The list had to stay confidential; thus CADO could not draw on the broader com­munity of users for suggestions. In contrast, the subject heading list of the OTS and the Navy Research Section at the Library of Congress was first compiled by two librarians while on active duty, after they consulted with the best specialists they could find in the navy; the NRS then printed up five hundred copies of the list and circulated it for comment.

78 0

By 1950 CADOs list had grown and had been refined and reissued several times. But the specific subject headings, including code names and model names, allowed CADO to provide faster reference service

The War Years, then Information Turmoil 117

to its collections of documents than other organizations could to theirs. To improve retrieval of documents, CADO staff also worked on classification schemes. Their approach was pragmatic. They did not attempt to develop a classification scheme or a complete list of subject headings for all of technology but only to provide a guide to materials of interest to the air force and its contractors.

79 0

NRSs list contained 4,500 subject headings in 1948 and by 1950 the section used four times as many headings. At NACA, on the other hand, subject headings were developed in an ad hoc manner until 1950, when they were systematically edited for the first time.41

80 0

CADO, NRS, and other Department of Defense information services eventually merged into the Armed Services Technical Information Agency. The second edition of the ASTIA thesaurus of descriptors intended for the use of all three armed services was published in 1962—seventeen years after the war—and prepared with the assis­tance of 125 businesses, organizations, and government agencies. By then there was time to select subject headings carefully. Each entry in the hefty volume had been considered from three points of view: usefulness in indexing, reliability in retrieval, and acceptability in the scientific community.42 While useful, not even such a carefully prepared list could be satisfactory to all.

81 0

New Bibliographies

82 0

After World War II, personnel at the major information and document centers found it impossible to wait for announcements in established bibliographic publications. The centers approached dissemination of information in various ways, but all abstracted their reports and aimed to make their published abstract bulletins as good as or better than Chemical Abstracts; some centers distributed catalog card sets to notify users and contractors of current works. Gradually, most of the organiza­tions turned to some nonconventional means to maintain lists of their publications.43

83 0

In August 1947, CADO issued the Captured Document Index catalog, compiled at Wright Field with the assistance of IBM accounting and tabulating machines. The catalog was physically awkward, but, with 55,000 document entries, it represented a pioneer use of tabulating machinery for bibliographic purposes.

84 0

By 1951, CADO, NACA, NRS, and the Technical Information Service of AEC produced an estimated 150,000 reports and had 80 to 85 per cent of them under bibliographic control. Yet in spite of considerable duplication of coverage, users could never be certain that all technical

The War Years, then Information Turmoil 118

reports of concern had been included in the bibliographic publica­tions.

85 0

In general, distribution of the reports did present a special problem. To selected users on the agencies distribution lists—including lists for classified materials with need-to-know designations—reports would be sent automatically after their release. But responding to specific requests was not so simple. The information centers had three options: to reproduce copies of reports for distribution ahead of time, to lend out copies of reports, or to copy on demand. NACA for a time printed and stocked copies of reports and sent them out on request to those whose work was judged to warrant receiving them. But mass storage of documents was cumbersome. NRS at first loaned some reports but soon found that users had to wait longest for the most frequently requested and, presumably, the most urgently needed materials. Later NRS stockpiled microcards, carrying the full bibliographic citation on one side, and on the other, the text in reduced form, which could be read with the aid of optical devices. The air force, with the largest collections of documents, reduced all reports to microfilm and then prepared airgraphs off these copies. The air force used the same rationale Davis had for the Auxiliary Publication Service of the ADI, a diminutive operation compared to these services. This method was the most expensive on a copy-by-copy basis, but overall the air force considered it to be the most cost effective.45

86 0

The Publication Board and OTS, with more restricted budgets, developed the philosophy to make known where reports were avail­able and to encourage other agencies to reproduce the bulk of the materials it announced. John Green made arrangements for OTS reports to be distributed by the Library of Congress,46 which, like the Auxiliary Publication Service, sent out microfilm or photoprint copies of reports on request.

87 0

Such riches of bibliographic publications caused frustration and brought about considerable duplication of effort: scanning the publica­tions of various government agencies consumed so much of research workers time that numerous laboratories set up small information units. The organizations tried to get on as many distribution lists as possible and, typically, started their own announcement lists and abstract bul­letins for their clientele; the information units also provided reference and bibliographic services tailored to their clientele.47

88 0

Attempts of Standardization and Coordination

89 0

Long before the Armed Services Technical Information Agency (ASTIA) was established in 1951, the managers of the major information

The War Years, then Information Turmoil 119

services recognized that standardizing procedures and coordinat­ing efforts of information services would be useful for all agencies and, most important, for users. Mortimer Taube was among the first advocating such action. A group of managers from the four major services, CADO, NRS, NACA, and AEC, started to meet informally in 1949. Among them were Taube (NRS of the Library of Congress, later AEC), Eugene Jackson (CADO, later NACA), Eugene Miller (NACA, later ASTIA, then AEC), John Green (OTS), W. Kenneth Lowry (NRC at the Library of Congress), and Colonel Arnhym (CADO).48

90 0

Gradually meetings became more formal, and the group for stand­ardization of information services (originally g.s.i.s., in lower case letters) achieved semiofficial status in spite of itself. Thus began the first, albeit informal, organization of information managers in the United States.

91 0

GSIS reviewed the areas of major concern to the four information services: cataloging, subject headings, indexing practices, classifica­tion, and announcements. After considerable effort, the group developed a common catalog card format to technical reports that was acceptable to all, although it was entirely different in arrangement, size, and text from the cards prepared for books and other materials by the Library of Congress. Despite their continuing meetings and discussions the group could not bring about further standardization. Each agency had a different approach to the problems in the manage­ment of technical reports, each service defended its own turf, and was reluctant to change practices to accommodate a rival service.49

92 0

The people responsible for the operations of the new information and documentation centers typically worked in Washington and had opportunities to meet with one another. Their responsibilities had taken them to new frontiers, beyond established library and bibliog­raphic practices. They felt the need for a more formal meeting ground where they could hear more systematically of others experiences and of new approaches to their problems.

93 0


94 0
  1. Rostow, United States in the World Arena, 43-44 (see chap. 1, n.1).
  2. Irvin Stewart, Science in World War II: Organizing Scientific Research for War: The Administrative History of the Office of Scientific Research and Development (Boston: Little, Brown, 1948), 5-6. Stewart, director of the Committee on Scientific Aids to Learning of the National Research Council, became deputy director of the Office of the OSRD. The manner in which scientific research was carried out is also discussed by Rostow.
  3. Stewart, Science in World War II, 34-36.
  4. Rostow, United States in the World Arena, 63,246.
  5. Stewart, Science in World War .11,169-71.
  6. A. P. Rowe, From Scientific Idea to Practical Use, Minerva 2 (Spring 1964):303-19.
  7. Eugene B. Jackson, CADO Used Varied Skills, Library Journal 74(15 May 1949):778-80.
  8. Scott Adams, interview with author, Louisville, Ky., 12 August 1978; and Eugene B. Power, interview with author. Powers Notes of a Visit to England; March-May 1942 (E.B. Power Collection, Box 48, 1941, title in Powers hand­writing dated 7/11/75) describes how microfilm operations were first set up in London for copying newspapers and journals from Axis contries in cooperation with Great Britain. The volume of microfilm sent from the Stockholm operations is mentioned in Power to Henry J. Lilienfield, 23 Apri11945 (Carbon), E.B. Power Collection, Box 49, April 1945.
  9. Dan Lacy, The Library of Congress: A Sesquicentenary Review; I. The Development of the Collections, Library Quarterly 20 (July 1950):157-79; also discussed in Verner W. Clapp, The Purchase of Books in Europe, College and Research Libraries 7 (Apri11946):130.
  10. Hans Queisser, The Conquest of the Microchip, tran. Diane Crawford- Burkhardt (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1988), originally published as Kristallene Krisen (Munich: R. Piper, 1985); and Andrew Hodges, Alan Turing: The Enigma of Intelligence (London: Unwin Paper­backs, 1985), first published by Burnett Books Limited and Hutchison Publishing Group, 1983.
  11. Vincent Eaton and Eloise Taylor, International Middleman, ALA Bulletin 41 (January 1947):49-51; on wartime activities, see H.M. Lydenberg, Some Thoughts on the Part the Printed Book May Play in the International Field, Die 6sterreichische Nationalbibliotek, Festschrift herausgegeben zum 25 Jahrigen Dienstjubildum des Generaldirektors Univ.-Prof. Dr. Josef Blick (Vienna, Austria: H. Bauer Verlag, 1948), 463-71; the work of the Washington office is described in Ralph R. Shaw, International Activities of the American Library Association: A Policy Statement of the A.L.A. International Relations Board and Report to the Board, ALA Bulletin 41 (June 1947, part 2):207-11.
  12. Lucia Moholy, The ASLIB Microfilm Service: The Story of Its Wartime Activities, Journal of Documentation 2 (December 1946):148-51.
  13. Luther H. Evans, Problems Facing the Library of Congress, Special Libraries 36 (December 1945):467-70.
  14. Lacy, The Library of Congress (see n. 9).
  15. This section draws on Clapp, The Purchase of Books, on Lydenberg, Some Thoughts, and on authors interview with Scott Adams; see also Julian P. Boyd, A Landmark in the History of Library Cooperation in America, College and Research Libraries 8 (Apri11947):101-9. Peiss subsequently became head of the Library of Congress mission in Europe and then served with the Department of State.
  16. Clapp, The Purchase of Books, 131 (seen. 9); and Boyd, Landmark, 101-3.
  17. Ibid.
  18. Schorske, Fin-de-Siècle Vienna (see prologue n. 8).
  19. Franklin Delano Roosevelt to Vannevar Bush, cited in Vannevar Bush, Science, the Endless Frontier: Report to the President on a Program for Postwar Scientific Research. Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1945, vii-viii, also cited below. Also, authors interview with Scott Adams.
  20. Scott Adams, Information for Science and Technology: The International Scene, Occasional Paper No. 109 (Urbana,              University of Illinois Graduate
  21. School of Library Science, 1973) 3; and Scott Adams, interview with author.
  22. Bush, Science, the Endless Frontier (see n. 19).
  23. John R. Steelman, Science and Public Policy: A Report to the President, report of U.S. Presidents Scientific Research Board, vol. 1: A Program for the Nation; (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 27 August 1947); the other volumes describe the proposed plans in further detail.
  24. This change in expectation concerning responsibilities of the public household is discussed in Daniel Bell, The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism (New York: Basic Books, 1976).
  25. The information to the end of this section relies heavily on Adkinson, Two Centuries (see chap. 1, n. 4) as the basic reference volume; Scott Adams, interviews with author; Eugene B. Jackson, interview with author, Chicago, Ill., 16 May 1977; and Jerrold Orne, interview with author, 5 January 1977; also Adams, Information for Science and Technology: The International Scene (n. 20).
  26. Rostow, United States in the World Arena, 246 (see chap. 1, n. 1).
  27. The armed services continued to fund basic research until 1969, when the Mansfield amendment explicitly prohibited the Department of Defense from supporting any research that did not have an immediate military concern or military application.
  28. Scott Adams, Medical Bibliography in an Age of Discontinuity (Chicago: Medical Library Association, 1982), 3, and interview with author.
  29. Frank B. Evans, personal communication, April 1989.
  30. Ralph R. Shaw, The Publication Board, College and Research Libraries 7 (April 1946):106-7.
  31. John C. Green to Davis, 29 August 1945, SA; Davis to Green, 13 September 1945 (Carbon), SA; Watson Davis, Documentation Unfinished: Statement at the 25th Anniversary Meeting of the American Documentation Institute, Hotel Diplomat, Hollywood-By-The-Sea, Fla. December 12, 1962 (Mimeographed), ASIS HQ.
  32. Shaw, The Publication Board (see n. 29).
  33. The historic aspects are discussed, among others, in Rostow, United States in the World Arena; details of the national research expenditure are discussed in Eugene W. Scott, New Patterns in Scientific Research and Publication, in The Communication of Specialized Information: Papers Presented before the Seventeenth Annual Conference of the Graduate Library School of the University of Chicago, August 11-15, 1952, ed. Margaret E. Egan, University of Chicago Studies in Library Science (Chicago: American Library Association for the University of Chicago Library School, 1954), 72-87.
  34. Scott Adams, interview with author, also cited in the paragraph below.
  35. Eugene E. Miller, interview with author, Chevy Chase, Md., 12 January, 1977.
  36. Scott Adams, Luther Evans, and Burton Adkinson, interviews with author; Two Centuries (see chap. 1, n. 4).
  37. Dwight A. Gray, The Technical Report and its Bibliographic Control, paper delivered 12 May 1951 at a meeting of the National Capital Area Section of the ASEE at the U.S. Naval Post Graduate School, Annapolis, Md., LC Research Collection, Research Materials 6,5 pp; also discussed in Gray, Organizing and Servicing Unpublished Reports, in Communication of Specialized Information, ed. Egan (see n. 31), 34-53.
  38. Eugene B. Jackson, Unpublished Research Reports: A Problem in Bibli­ographical Control, Occasional Paper No. 17 (Urbana: University of Illinois Graduate School of Library Science, November 1950), 1; Scott, New Patterns in Scientific Research and Publication, 18; and Gray, Organizing and Servicing (see n. 32), 41.
  39. Mortimer Taube, Memorandum for a Conference on Bibliographic Con­trol of Government: Scientific and Technical Reports, Special Libraries 39 (May- June 1948):155.
  40. Eugene E. Miller, The Distribution-Acquisition Problem in Technical Reporting, in The Communication of Specialized Information, ed. Egan, 30; and CADO Central Documentation Program (Blueprint, n.p., n.d. [1948 from internal evidence]), a remarkably well-written document, describes the aims and activities of CADO. Received through the kindness of E.B. Jackson.
  41. Jackson, Unpublished Research Reports, 2.
  42. Jackson, Unpublished Research Reports, 2. Eugene B. Jackson, CADO Used Varied Skills, Library Journal 74 (15 May 1949): 778-80; Adkinson, Two Centuries; and Jerrold B. Orne, interview with author.
  43. U.S. Armed Services Technical Information Agency, Thesaurus of ASTIA Descriptors, 2d ed. (Arlington, Va: Armed Services Technical Information Agen­cy, 1962), iii.
  44. Taube, Memorandum, 155; and Jackson, Unpublished Research Reports.
  45. Two earlier bibliographies had been prepared from punched cards: U.S. Bureau of Ships, Index of Manufacturers Instruction Book (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Bureau of Ships, 1945), 10733 pp., and the following year a cost accounting bibliography. These are typically cited for historic reasons but otherwise never mentioned.
  46. Miller, The Distribution-Aquisition Problem, 30-32.
  47. Shaw, The Publication Board, 106-107; and Jackson, Unpublished Re­search Reports, 6-7.
  48. Gray, The Technical Report, 6-7 (see n. 36).
  49. Taube, Memorandum; and Adkinson, Two Centuries, 70-71.
  50. Jackson and Miller, interviews with author. Ten years later 75 catalog card-producing organizations used the card developed by GSIS (W. Kenneth Lowry, Trends in United States Documentation Research, Special Libraries 48 [October 19571:365).