HCBE Faculty Articles

Title

A New Method of Discovering Primary Management History: Two Examples Where 'Little Things Mean a Lot.

Document Type

Article

Date

1-1-1997

Publication Title

Journal of Management History

ISSN or ISBN

1355-252x

Volume

3

Issue

1

First Page

59

Last Page

92

Description

Outlines a new method of discovering original documents related to management history. Uses seemingly insignificant statements in books, articles or original documents to locate documents not listed on any computer database or public archive records, but which are undiscovered in attics or basements. The method involves the use of sources not commonly used by management scholars: obituaries, wills, cemetery records, deeds, land‐ownership maps, city directories and court records. Provides two examples to illustrate the discovery of actual documents: (1) the discovery of ten years of correspondence between F.W. Taylor and S. Thompson on the time required to do work, and (2) new evidence on F.W. Taylor’s interest in high‐heat treatment of tool steel leading to high‐speed steel and in shovels and shovelling. Finally presents new evidence on Taylor’s secret agreement with Bethlehem Steel to give favourable testimony in a patent case in exchange for a free licence for the high‐speed steel process Taylor had sold to Bethlehem for more than $50,000 in 1901.

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Peer Reviewed

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