Guide to Federal Records

Records of the Federal Trade Commission [FTC]

(Record Group 122)
1903-84

Overview of Records Locations

Table of Contents

  • 122.1 Administrative History
  • 122.2 Records of the Bureau of Corporations 1903-14
  • 122.3 Records of the Federal Trade Commission 1914-69
  • 122.4 Records of the Economic Division 1914-38
  • 122.5 Records of the Docket (Legal) Section 1914-84
  • 122.6 Records of the Export Trade Section 1921-29
  • 122.7 Records of the Special Board of Investigation 1936-38
  • 122.8 Records of the Bureau of Consumer Protection 1978-79
  • 122.9 Cartographic Records (General)
  • 122.10 Sound Recordings (General) 1937
  • 122.11 Machine-Readable Records (General)

122.1 Administrative History

Established: As an independent agency by the Federal Trade Commission Act (38 Stat. 717), September 26, 1914.

Predecessor Agencies:

  • Bureau of Corporations, Department of Commerce and Labor (1903-13)
  • Bureau of Corporations, Department of Commerce (1913-14)

Functions: Develops and administers federal regulations to prevent unfair methods of competition and undue restraint of trade in interstate commerce. Regulates the advertising of food, drugs, curative devices, and cosmetics. Compiles data concerning U.S. economic and business conditions. Promotes the adoption of trade practice rules.

Finding Aids: Estelle Rebec, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Federal Trade Commission, PI 7 (1948); supplement in National Archives microfiche edition of preliminary inventories.

Security-Classified Records: This record group may include material that is security-classified.

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122.2 Records of the Bureau of Corporations
1903-14

History: Established in the Department of Commerce and Labor by the act creating the department, February 14, 1903 (32 Stat. 825), to investigate and publish reports on the operation of interstate corporations (except common carriers). Assigned to the Department of Commerce by the act establishing separate Departments of Commerce and Labor, March 4, 1913 (37 Stat. 736). Abolished and superseded by the FTC, 1914. See 122.1.

Textual Records: Numeric file, including administrative records; records of special investigations of particular industries; and reports on federal, state, and foreign incorporation, taxation, trust, and insurance laws, 1903-14 (484 ft.), with indexes.

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122.3 Records of the Federal Trade Commission
1914-69

Textual Records: Minutes, 1915-69; with index, 1915-78. General file, 1914-55 (514 ft.), including a staff report on the international petroleum cartel, 1952; with a combined index, 1914-38 (123 ft.), to the general file and to the investigations file of the Economic Division. Press releases, 1914-59, and press clippings, ca. 1918- 44. Records of special economic studies, including studies of certain industries, cost of living, and cartelization; and ad hoc opinions on other economic matters, ca. 1939-40. Records relating to administration of the program for licensing patents, trademarks, and copyrights owned during World War I by nationals of the Central Powers ("Trading with the Enemy Files"), 1916-24. Records of Roy A. Prewitt, specialist on cartels and decartelization, relating to international wartime materiel emergencies, and to planning postwar decartelization policy for former enemy countries, with related reference and working papers, ca. 1939-60.

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122.4 Records of the Economic Division
1914-38

Textual Records: Economic investigations files, 1915-38, including records of an investigation of the automotive industry.

Maps and Charts (293 items): Prepared by the Economic Division, relating to public utilities, farm products, northwestern timber holdings, national wealth, farm machinery, and petroleum, 1914-36.

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122.5 Records of the Docket (Legal) Section
1914-84

Textual Records: General file relating to administrative procedures and investigatory activities, 1914-84, with an index. Docketed, 1915-72 (953 ft.), and auxiliary, 1915-36 (959 ft.), case files, relating to complaints of unfair competition or undue restraint of trade. History sheets for docketed files, 1915-59. Formal consent case files, 1961-68, for cases in which respondents agreed to a settlement out of court. Docketed, 1915- 26, and a sample of undocketed, 1919-25, applications for issuances of complaints.

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122.6 Records of the Export Trade Section
1921-29

Textual Records: Records relating to complaints about business practices of American exporters and importers, 1921-29.

122.7 Records of the Special Board of Investigation
1936-38

History: Created in 1929 to investigate charges of false and misleading advertising.

Textual Records: Radio program scripts containing advertisements passed upon by the board, 1936-38.

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122.8 Records of the Bureau of Consumer Protection
1978-79

Machine-Readable Records (3 data sets): Study of the effects of coaching on the test scores of students taking standardized admission examinations, 1978-79, with supporting documentation.

Finding Aids: Supplementary inventory in National Archives microfiche edition of preliminary inventories.

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122.9 Cartographic Records (General)

See Maps and Charts under 122.4.

122.10 Sound Recordings (General)
1937
1 item

President Franklin D. Roosevelt's dedication of the Federal Trade Commission Building, July 12, 1937.

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122.11 Machine-Readable Records (General

See under 122.8.


Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

Ordering information

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.


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