Bright Ideas
from the National Archives for NHD 1999

Resources at
NARA's Northeast Region (New York City)


Patent Cases. Records of District Courts of the United States (Record Group 21)
NARA's Northeast Region in New York City houses a large number of patent suits from New York and New Jersey. Included are court cases involving some of the most important inventors and inventions in American history - Charles Goodyear and vulcanized rubber, Alexander Graham Bell and the telephone, Cyrus McCormick and the reaper, the Wright brothers and their flying machine, and a host of patents by Thomas Alva Edison. Along with a full record of lesser-known suits, these voluminous records contain ample material for studying the role of invention in the national experience. Since Edison spent much of his career in New York City and New Jersey, his material is especially voluminous. Related materials are available in the Online Catalog (OPA).

Project Paperclip

Records of the Third Naval District, New York City (Record Group 181)
The Navy's Project Paperclip brought German rocket scientists and engineers to the United States after World War II. Records at NARA's Northeast Region in New York City include correspondence, medical information, travel authorizations, drawings, and photographs.

Atomic Espionage

Court and U.S. Attorneys Records on Julius and Ethel Rosenberg and Alger Hiss (Record Groups 21 and 118)
The National Archives at New York City has both court and U.S. Attorneys records for two of the most famous atomic spy cases of the Cold War period - the Rosenbergs and Alger Hiss. The attorneys files include evidence used in the trials. Related materials are available in the Online Catalog (OPA).

Flight Testing

Records of the Naval Training Device Center, Port Washington, New York, 1942 - 1961 (Record Group 181)
The records available at the National Archives at New York City document the development and testing of training devices such as the Human Centrifuge and flight trainers.

Additional materials related to flight testing are available in the Online Catalog (OPA).

IBM Accused of Monopoly

Antitrust Case in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (Record Group 21)
In antitrust cases that went on from the 1950s well into the 1990s, the Justice Department accused IBM of monopolizing the market for the pre-computer tabulating machines of the day and the punch cards for storing information on these machines. It anticipated today's battles over computer software by about forty years. Related records are available at the National Archives at New York City.

Bright Ideas Main Page

Teachers >

The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
1-86-NARA-NARA or 1-866-272-6272