Taylor Instrument Company Papers

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Taylor Instrument Company papers
Creator: Taylor Instrument Companies
Call Number: D.120
Dates: 1850-1960s [bulk]
Physical Description: 16 Linear Feet
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Table of Contents:

Biographical/Historical Note
Scope and Content
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Content List
Series I: History
Subseries I: General history
Subseries II: Centennial, 1951
Series II: War effort
Series III: Business papers
Subseries I: General papers
Subseries II: Bureau of Aircraft Production
Subseries III: Salesmen's conventions and publications
Subseries IV: Scientific information
Subseries V: Instrument designs and specifications
Subseries VI: Leaflets, advertisements, and order materials
Collection Overview
Title: Taylor Instrument Company papers
Creator: Taylor Instrument Companies
Call Number: D.120
Dates: 1850-1960s [bulk]
Physical Description: 16 Linear Feet
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Biographical/Historical Note
George Taylor (d. 1889) and David Kendall founded the Taylor Instrument Company in Rochester, New York in 1851 under the original name Kendall & Taylor. The general stock and trade of the company was in thermometers and other instruments for monitoring temperature; this focus would continue into the twentieth century. Both Kendall and Taylor had worked independently as thermometer makers before forming the partnership which would found one of the largest manufacturers of thermometers in the United States. Kendall's father was the pioneer thermometer maker in the United States. The was located in a single room over what was then Post's Drug Store on Exchange Street, where they designed and produced the thermometers themselves. Kendall left the company in 1853 and George Taylor succeeded him as sole owner, before withdrawing himself in 1859. Under George the company moved to 11 Hill Street, a larger space with more room for the company's expanding employee forces. His brother Frank came to Rochester in 1862 from New Hampshire and re-named the company as Taylor and Richardson, under himself and Hamlet Richardson in 1866, operating out of a space at 145 Buffalo Street. Richardson eventually left the company [due to ill health] in 1866, and sold his interest to George Taylor in 1870. Under the two Taylors, the company officially became the Taylor Brothers Company in 1872. George Taylor stayed with the company as its president until his death in 1889. His brother Frank succeeded him, and would stay on as president until 1900. In 1890 the company was incorporated as the Taylor Brothers Company, with a capital stock of $75,000.00. George's two sons, J. Merton Taylor and G. Elbert Taylor [dates], were also associated with the company under Frank Taylor. Herbert J. Winn , who would later become company president andbegan working for the company in 1893, originally travelling as a salesman in Canada. Taylor began branching out with the purchase of several other companies, experiencing a period of rapid expansion and success. They first acquired the Watertown Thermometer Co. in 1891. The acquisition of the Hohmann & Maurer Manufacturing Co. of Brooklyn, NY, in 1895, opened up business opportunities in the field of industrial applications for temperature and pressure instruments, expanding the range of the company's efforts far beyond the simple household and fever thermometers and barometers the company had produced up until then. In 1896 the Hohmann & Maurer Mfg. Company was moved to Rochester. Two years later in 1898 a new manufacturing branch was opened in London, England, at 106 Hatton Garden. The same year, Herbert J. Winn opened a branch office for the Taylor Brothers Co. in London. James Ely, who would become an important figure in company history, began working for the company in 1899. In this same year Charles W. Taylor was transferred to take charge of the New York office; he would later come back to Rochester to serve as J. Merton Taylor's assistant in the active management of manufacturing. He would die in 1912, while J. Merton was president, just one year before J. Merton's own death in 1913. The acquisition of the Hohmann & Maurer Mfg. Co. was followed by the purchase of the Short & Mason Co., Ltd. of London in 1900. Short & Mason were manufacturers of high grade barometers, compasses, and other meteorological instruments. G. Elbert Taylor also became president in this year. By October of 1900 the capital stock of the Taylor Brothers Company had increased to $535,000.00, and the business had relocated to a property on Industrial Street, known later as Hill Street. The business became incorporated as the Taylor Instrument Company.. In 1905, they purchased the Davis & Roesch Manufacturing Co., which manufactured automatic temperature and pressure controlling devices, and the R. Hoehn Company. The consolidation of the individual companies under the umbrella name Taylor Instrument Companies allowed them to continue manufacturing for some time as "The Hohmann & Maurer Manufacturing Company, a Branch of Taylor Instrument Companies." By January, 1906, a new building on Ames Street was completed, with office and manufacturing departments shifting there over the winter season. G. Elbert Taylor retired from the company presidency in 1910, and his brother J. Merton succeeded him. In 1911, after discussions about moving the plant closer to Rochester, the Watertown Thermometer plant was closed and all of its equipment installed in a new building adjacent to the main plant on Ames Street. 1911 also saw the opening of Taylor's own hospital, as well as the establishment of the Research Department. The company also opened an Export Sales Department. In July of 1913, J. Merton Taylor diedHerbert J. Winnwas elected President and Treasurer of the company. The company's growth continued during World War I. The company opened offices in Toronto and St. Louis in 1914, Baltimore in 1915, Washington state and Washington, D.C. locations in 1917, and the Chemical Laboratory,Physical Laboratory, and Sales Engineering Department in Rochester all before 1920. The company developed numerous contracts with the United States government and other manufacturers of munitions and instruments. Much of the business done with the government in altimeters for aircraft was only possible because of the company's acquisition of Short & Mason, and the consequential acquisition of experience manufacturing aneroid barometers in their London factories. By 1918 Taylor's work force had expanded from 600 people to a team of more than 1270. During this period James Ely was the Consulting Engineer on Instruments as Applied to Aircraft and travelled extensively, monitoring the use and function of Taylor instruments being used in fighter planes, among other applications. In 1919 he was recalled to Rochester to serve as General Sales Manager, and the following year in 1920 he would be elected Vice President of the company. The 1920s saw the opening of offices in several more cities, including San Francisco, Cincinnati, Seattle, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Tulsa, and Milwaukee. The Tycos Company Library, which preserved many of the publications and materials of the company as well as collections of papers from important company figures, was opened in 1922. During this period the company's Board of Director's experienced turn-overs as Frank Taylor, who had been on the company Board of Directors, died in 1920; G. Elbert Taylor died in 1923, and John W. Taylor died in 1928. F.K. Taylor and G.H. Taylor were elected to the Board, and the construction of a new building budgeted at some $56,000.00 was authorized. The capital stock of the company doubled, rising from $2.5 million to $5 million in 1929. The Taylor Instrument Companies of Canada, Ltd, was incorporated in 1930.The capital stock remained wholly owned by the Taylor Instrument Companies. The "Tycos" name was discontinued in an effort to promote brand unity and stability under the name "Taylor," though some instruments would remain branded with "Tycos, a subsidiary of Taylor Instrument Companies" for continuity. James Ely retired from active work in 1932 due to illness, though he would continue to serve on the Board of Directors until his death in 1942. Herbert J. Winn, after serving as president since 1913 and treasurer since 1907, retired in 1938, and L.B. Swift was elected president after him. Winn was elected Chairman of the Board, a new position created after a special meeting of the stockholders in December of 1928. During World War II, in 1943, the company became the prime contractor for the manufacture or procurement of instruments for the gaseous diffusion process in the Oak Ridge Atomic Bomb Project at Oak Ridge, Tennessee. The production of these instruments, along with the manufacture of the bomb sights used in A-26 Invader aircraft, were classified. Barometers and altimeters were also produced for use in aircraft, as well as millions of compasses for the Army and Army Corps of Engineers. Taylor also produced a glass boot which could modulate the pressure inside, ensuring more consistent body temperatures for soldiers. . Taylor received the Army-Navy "E"award for excellence in wartime production three times, with presentation of a large flag to display their achievement on-site. The company was also the joint recipient of the Award for Chemical Engineering Achievement, presented by Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering Magazine for their work as prime contractor for process control instruments for the Oak Ridge facility. Many Taylor employees were drafted for service during WWII, and the company took it upon itself to send boxes of support materials from home, including newsletters with company updates, to the employees in service. Substantial contributions to the Red Cross efforts were also made, with clubs made among the employees, like the Red Cross Sewing Circle, which was occassionally hosted at Taylor. Louise Pritzbure, who had been with the company since 1888 and worked in the Tube Store at the factory, organized the donation of clothes for war refugees. Many social clubs and functions started at the company during the war era continued after the end of the war. Production of the company's commercial line began again in November of 1945.

1951 saw the marking of 100 years for the Taylor Instrument Company, a centennial for which much celebration and publicity was planned. The company held a large open house for the public and families of employees, taking the occasion as an excellent opportunity for publicity and promotion.

The company continued to develop in the second half of the twentieth century, and merged with Combustion Engineering in 1983, becoming one of the largest process instrumentation companies in the United States. Combustion Engineering became part of the ABB Group in 1989, joining the largest electrical engineering company in the world.

Scope and Content
The Taylor Instrument Company Papers are organized in three series. The first series, General History, contains timelines, company histories, meeting notes, correspondence, and photographs relating to the history of the company, from its earliest stages in 1851 through its centennial celebrations in 1951. The second series, War Efforts, contains records, correspondence, newsletters, a large number of photographs, publicity and media articles on the Taylor effort in World Wars I and II. The third series includes materials specific to Taylor's business, salesmen, scientific investigation, and instrument specification and design, containing correspondence, company publications, scientific reports and writeups, blueprints, advertising materials, and various kind of records of price and order.

Within each series, items have been arranged in folders by subjects, which underscore the company's development. Where possible, items have been kept in original order. Correspondence and other dated materials have been ordered chronologically within folders.

New York (State)--Rochester
Measuring instruments industry
World War (1914-1918)
World War (1939-1945)
Taylor, George, -1889
Taylor Instrument Companies
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The Taylor Instrument Company Papers were made a gift of the company in 1972.Access
The Taylor Instrument Company papers is open for research use. Researchers are advised to contact Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation prior to visiting. Upon arrival, researchers will also be asked to fill out a registration form and provide photo identification.Use
Reproductions are made upon request but can be subject to restrictions. Permission to publish materials from the collection must currently be requested. Please note that some materials may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the researcher's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information contact rarebks@library.rochester.eduCitation
[Item title, item date], Taylor Instrument Company papers, D.120, Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Administrative Information
Author: L. Earle
Publisher: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Rush Rhees Library
Second Floor, Room 225
Rochester, NY 14627-0055

Finding aid publication date: March 2015
Content List
Series I: History
Subseries I: General history
Box 1, Folder 1Timelines, 1851-1950
Box 1, Folder 2Company history write ups
Box 1, Folder 3Company history write ups - manuscript with pictures, 1926
Box 1, Folder 4Company history write ups - the Tycos Factory in 1930; The Taylor Clipper, Vol.1, No.11
Box 1, Folder 5History of the Taylor Company by J. Ely
Notes, write ups, copies of correspondence

Box 1, Folder 6-8Company history by George H. Taylor
Box 1, Folder 9Notes and correspondence on Taylor history manuscript, 1951
Box 1, Folder 10History of the Taylor Instrument Company of Canada Ltd. write up, February 19, 1954
Box 1, Folder 11Taylor Bros. mortgage record, 1915
Box 1, Folder 12History of the Pacific branch
Box 1, Folder 13History of Henry W. Maurer
Box 1, Folder 14History of the Kendalls - inventory of David Kendall's stock, October 13, 1851
Box 1, Folder 15History of the Kendalls - correspondence about Marker, family
Box 1, Folder 16History of the Kendalls - letter to John Kendall, 1858
with plant historian efforts, provenance, clarifications, original item transcription, etc.

Box 1, Folder 17History of the Kendalls - "The Kendall Thermometer Company, New York State Historical Association"
Collection of pages bound in folder

Box 1, Folder 18The Taylor Bros. local/family history - photo of Frank Taylor
Box 1, Folder 19Collection of old letterheads in binder, 1940
Box 1, Folder 20Correspondence on employment
Box 1, Folder 21List of personnel
Box 1, Folder 22Assorted personnel materials
Box 15, Folder 7-8For exactness in all things, Tycos yearbook, 1925-1926
Box 1, Folder 23Tycos Employees' Quarter-Century Club
Box 2, Folder 1-4Photographs of personnel, 1880-1919
Box 15, Folder 4Oversize photographs of personnel
Box 15, Folder 9Photograph of personnel with signatures
Box 2, Folder 5Photograph of Hamlet Richardson, undated
Box 2, Folder 6"Thirty three years service with the Taylor Brothers Company and Taylor Instrument Companies," by J.A. Sutherland, 1895-1926
Box 2, Folder 7J. Merton Taylor, President
Box 2, Folder 8John W. Taylor, Director
Box 2, Folder 9Herbert J. Winn correspondence - 75th Anniversary of Taylor
Box 2, Folder 10Articles announcing election of H.J. Winn, Chairman of the Board and L.B. Swift, President, November 1938
Box 2, Folder 11Photographs of group of employees of Hohman and Maurer Mfg. Co.
Box 2, Folder 12Photographs of company buildings
Box 2, Folder 13Painted/retouched image of Tycos Building
Box 2, Folder 14Information on factory buildings
Includes brief notes, maps

Box 3, Folder 1Photograph of construction of Taylor Plant at Ames St., 1905
Box 3, Folder 2Short and Mason Factory photograph album, P.R. Jameson, 1936
Box 3, Folder 3-7Photographs
Box 3, Folder 8Newspaper clippings, 1909-1915
Box 3, Folder 9Articles about the Taylor Company in other publications
Box 3, Folder 10Newspaper clippings on Taylor Company - business and people
Box 3, Folder 11Social ephemera (Non-Taylor)
Box 15, Folder 5Matted print of D.G. Fahrenheit's signature with documentation
Volume 1"H.&M. general letters", December 15, 1904- October 17, 1910
Volume 2"H.&M. general letters", October 24, 1910- March 30, 1912
Volume 3"General letters", May 29, 1911- January 13, 1913
Volume 4"Taylor Cambridge general letters" and "Taylor Cambridge publicity bulletins", January 1909-January 1919 and February 1914-January 1919
Volume 5"Publicity bulletins, T.I. Cos. and H.&M.", 1911-1914
Volume 6"General letters", November 17, 1904-May 6, 1908
Volume 8"General letters", January 10, 1906- September 14, 1908
Volume 11"George Taylor: early letter book", 1857-1858
Volume 13"H.&M. general letter book: Lewis B. Swift"
Volume 14"Taylor Brothers early cash & inventory records", 1844-1893
Volume 15"George Taylor journal & order book", 1853-1859
Volume 17"Original Short and Mason catalog", 1898
Box 16Eastman program records
78 RPM

Subseries II: Centennial, 1951
The contents all relate to the centennial celebration. Box 4, folders 2-7 were removed from a binder and include correspondence, centennial project planning, and announcements

Box 4, Folder 1Planning
Box 4, Folder 2-7Original order
Box 4, Folder 8Materials for publicity - history and involvement in other industries
Box 4, Folder 9Publications "Graduated by years from 0 to 100," no.1-4
Box 4, Folder 10Publications - "Taylor technology"
Box 4, Folder 11Banquet program
Box 4, Folder 12Posters of employees with Taylor Company 40+ years
Box 4, Folder 13Publicity, newspaper clippings, broadcast transcript
Box 4, Folder 14-15Photographs
Box 5, Folder 1-6Celebration photograph album
Box 5, Folder 7Corning Glassworks, 1951
Series II: War effort
Box 6, Folder 1History of the war effort
Box 6, Folder 2Constructing a history of Monroe County's past
Correspondence of requests for information, 1922 (Tycos Service List)

Box 6, Folder 3Workers during the war
Box 6, Folder 4Armed Forces recruiting of employees
Box 6, Folder 5Contribution to war efforts by departments
Box 6, Folder 6Correspondence about war effort
Box 6, Folder 7"Tycos effort during the Great World War, 1916-1918" book
Box 6, Folder 8"The Tycos effort in the war" booklet, Instrument Assembly Division, P.R. Jameson, June 1, 1921
Box 6, Folder 9"Tycos war service" booklet
Box 6, Folder 10Citations and awards - WWI, 1920
Box 6, Folder 11Photographs of employees in the Armed Forces
Box 6, Folder 12Nomination for Army - Navy "E" award/correspondence and office notes, December 1942-February 1945
Box 6, Folder 13-14Nomination for Army - Navy "E" award charts, graphs, and presentation
Box 6, Folder 15Army - Navy "E" award ceremony invitation and programs
Box 6, Folder 16Army - Navy "E" award ceremony photographs
Box 6, Folder 17Liberty Loan Bulletin newsletters, April 8, 15, and 22, 1918
Box 6, Folder 18"Atomic bomb production posed toughest processing problems ever faced by industry," by Taylor engineers
Box 6, Folder 19Taylor Px - Newsletters to deployed Taylor Employees, No. 17 June 1945; May 1945 supplement
Box 6, Folder 20Taylor Meteor clippings: "Two secrets revealed at war's end," "Taylor sight in A-26 invader", August 1945
Box 6, Folder 21Wartime newspapers - Democrat & Chronicle, July 28, 1943-July 31, 1943
Box 6, Folder 22Effort in peacetime
Box 1 oversized"Army-Navy 'E' award flag"
1 Box(es) total
Oversized Box 1 Located on top of flat file cabinet in Alcove 6

Box 7, Folder 1Archival paperwork accompanying WWII photographs
Box 7, Folder 2A-26 invader combat photographs
Box 7, Folder 3-6Photographs of optical sight production
Box 7, Folder 7-10Wartime instrument production
Series III: Business papers
Subseries I: General papers
Box 8, Folder 1Office/organizational matters
Box 8, Folder 2Financial planning, 1903, 1909, 1911-1912
Box 8, Folder 3Factories and buildings - construction planning
Box 8, Folder 4Executive meeting minutes, 1917, 1922
Box 8, Folder 5Underwriting Committee meeting minutes, 1910's
Box 8, Folder 6Meetings with Hohmann and Maurer Division
Box 8, Folder 7-8Factory staff meetings, April 1912-August 1928
Box 8, Folder 9Lists of business associates, 1853-1872
Box 8, Folder 10"Foreign trip Herbert J. Winn - Stephen J. Zand, October 7-November 21, 1929"
Notes and correspondence from business trips

Box 8, Folder 11-16"No commission to Short and Mason" correspondence
Box 8, Folder 17-19Correspondence and orders
Subseries II: Bureau of Aircraft Production
Box 9, Folder 1-3J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" aerial navigation series
Box 9, Folder 4J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" Instrument Department personnel
Box 9, Folder 5-7J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" correspondence
Box 9, Folder 8J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" NY District Aircraft Production office memos
Box 9, Folder 9J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" blueprint of structure/hierarchy in Science and Research Division
Box 9, Folder 10J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" airplane instruments altimeter (first edition)
Box 9, Folder 11J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" instruction manual: instruments technical notes
Box 9, Folder 12J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" aeroplane instruments manual
Box 9, Folder 13J. Ely's "Bureau of Aircraft Production Instruments" miscellaneous
Subseries III: Salesmen's conventions and publications
Box 10, Folder 1Scrapbook of Mr. Chester A. Haak
Box 10, Folder 2Salesmen's conference programs
Box 10, Folder 3Report of salesman's convention booklet, July 20-25, 1914
Box 10, Folder 4Salesmen's convention, 1915
Box 10, Folder 5Reports and papers presented before the Tycos Sales Convention, January 1927

Box 10, Folder 6-8Convention proceedings, September 15, 1930
Box 10, Folder 9Tycos sales wedge and correspondence
Box 10, Folder 10Tycos - Rochester publication, 1926
Box 10, Folder 11Salesman's affairs
Box 10, Folder 12Informal papers from salesmen's conventions
Box 10, Folder 13Hohmann and Maurer - Salesmen's convention, 1906-1908, 1910
Box 10, Folder 14-16Sales news bulletin: No. 1-3, 22, 24-25, 34-40
Box 15, Folder 1Photographs of salesmen's convention, 1905
Volume 7"S.&M. London salesmen's instruction letters", October 1903- August 1910
Volume 9"Office notices" and "Salesmen's meeting reports", 1905-1912 and 1906-1908, 1910
Subseries IV: Scientific information
Box 11, Folder 1-2Evolution of the thermometer and barometer, 1929
Box 11, Folder 3"Temperature control in the distillation of hardwoods"
Box 11, Folder 4The Dr. Rogers' "Tycos" sphygmomanometer story
Box 11, Folder 5Scientific promotion efforts
Box 11, Folder 6Temperature and thermometer
Box 11, Folder 7Association of Scientific Apparatus Makers of the USA meeting program
Box 11, Folder 8Production of penicillin, 1944
Box 11, Folder 9-14The Cambridge Scientific Instrument Co. Ltd. "Stolzenberg file"
Box 15, Folder 3Photograph recording barograph charts
Volume 12"Manometres, barometres et autres instruments a tubes metalliques de E. Bourdon"
Volume 16"Certificate records of standards and other thermometers, 1905 to 1908"
Subseries V: Instrument designs and specifications
Box 12, Folder 1Thermometer design and specifications
Box 12, Folder 2History of sphygmomanometer
Box 12, Folder 3The Hohmann and Maurer Mfg. Co. instrument specification
Box 12, Folder 4Assorted blueprints
Box 12, Folder 5Photographs of instruments
Box 12, Folder 6Changes to instrument specification
Box 12, Folder 7-11Pages from "Day book, Hohmann and Maurer Mfg. Co., Brooklyn, N.Y." scrapbook, 1886-1918
Includes pages 7-20, 29-48, 59-60, 71-89, 95-98, 155-158, 175-182, 195-196, 203-228, 237-246, 251-252, 337-338, 361

Subseries VI: Leaflets, advertisements, and order materials
Box 13, Folder 1Advertising campaigns - company materials
Box 13, Folder 2Newspapers publicity
Box 13, Folder 3Magazine advertisements
Box 13, Folder 4Leaflets, posts, and displays
Box 13, Folder 5-8H.J Winn's leaflet scrapbook
Box 13, Folder 9Correspondence
Box 13, Folder 10Copies of advertising materials
Box 13, Folder 11Correspondence on orders
Box 13, Folder 12Letters and records of order, 1852, 1857
Box 13, Folder 13Letters of order, 1857, 1888
Box 13, Folder 14Unfulfilled orders, 1913
Box 13, Folder 15Import price book, 1906-1909
Box 14Record/personal order books, 1856-1910
Volume 10"Foreign order book", 1898
Box 15, Folder 2Copies of advertising materials
Box 15, Folder 6Advertising campaign introducing the new 1932 Tycos Recording Thermometer to the dairy industry

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