A guide to the William Wallace Hanscom papers, 1875-1915

Processed by: .
San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park
Building E, Fort Mason
San Francisco, CA 94123
Phone: 415-561-7030
Fax: 415-556-3540
SAFR_Historic_Documents@nps.gov
URL: http://www.nps.gov/safr
2012

A Guide to the William Wallace Hanscom papers

HDC0131

San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, National Park Service
2012, National Park Service

Title: William Wallace Hanscom papers
Date: 1875-1915
Date (bulk): 1887-1915
Identifier/Call Number: HDC0131 (SAFR 16121)
Creator: Hanscom, William Wallace
Physical Description: 41.00 items
Repository: San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, Historic Documents Department
Building E, Fort Mason
San Francisco, CA 94123
Abstract: The William Wallace Hanscom papers ([SAFR 16121], [HDC 131]) consists largely of scrapbooks and notebooks, but also includes some trade catalogs and oversize naval architecture and marine engineering plans. The research strength is largely in the area of technical aspects of turn of the century iron and steel shipbuilding, but information on a few San Francisco building projects of the 1920s can also be found in the collection. The collection is open for use without restrictions.
Physical Location: San Francisco Maritime NHP, Historic Documents Department
Language(s): In English.

Access

This collection is open for use unless otherwise noted.

Publication and Use Rights

Some material 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.

Processing Note

Note on Description: The descriptions in this collection guide were compiled using the best available sources of information. Such sources include the creator's annotations or descriptions, collection accession files, primary and secondary source material and subject matter experts. While every effort was made to provide accurate information, in the event that you find any errors in this guide please contact the reference staff in order for us to evaulate and make corrections to this guide. P lease cite the title and collection number in any correspondence with our staff.

Preferred Citation

[Item description], [Location within collection organization identified by Collection Number/Series Number/File Unit Number/Item Number], HDC0131 (SAFR 16121), William Wallace Hanscom papers, San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

Acquisition Information

SAFR-00001
This collection was originally a gift to the San Francisco Maritime Museum from a private donor in 1965. Transferred to San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park as part of accession SAFR-00001 (GOGA-00735). Processed by Stephen A. Haller on August 13, 1985. Reprocessed and recataloged by Sara Diamond in 2012.

Historical or Biographical Note

BIOGRAPHY: W.W. Hanscom was born in 1870. He began his career at San Francisco's Union Iron Works as an apprentice in the patterns shop. He advanced steadily during his more than twenty years of service with the firm, becoming successively draftsman, electrical engineer, and chief electrical engineer. Around 1908, he became the manager of the Century Electric Construction Co. of San Francisco. He lived in San Francisco and died in November 1956 at the age of 86. Sources: San Francisco Maritime Museum accession ledger, information contained in this collection, and various San Francisco city directories.

Collection Scope and Content

The William Wallace Hanscom papers ([SAFR 16121], [HDC 131]) consists largely of scrapbooks and notebooks, but also includes some trade catalogs and oversize naval architecture and marine engineering plans. The research strength is largely in the area of technical aspects of turn of the century iron and steel shipbuilding, but information on a few San Francisco building projects of the 1920s can also be found in the collection. The collection is open for use without restrictions.
The scrapbooks contain technical information about electrical systems on ships constructed at Union Iron Works ca. 1887-1915, including data on the battleships WYOMING and OHIO, and photographs of the early U.S. submarines TARPON, NARWHAL, and GRAYLING. Also included in these scrapbooks is information about shore-side electrical projects undertaken by the Century Electric Construction Co., such as the Columbia Theatre of 1910 in San Francisco. The remainder of the collection consists of notebooks on various subjects related to marine engineering, specifications of vessels constructed at Union Iron Works, a scrapbook containing reports and papers on aspects of marine engineering, and various trade catalogues. The reports and papers include oversize plans, which are stored separately in oversize storage. The original locations of all removed documents have been marked in the collection.

Collection Arrangement

Arranged into 25 files by type or format

Related Materials

I.M. Scott, Jr. Papers (SAFR 15792, HDC 125)
J.T. Scott Papers (SAFR 15793, HDC 126)
I.M and J.T. Scott were both employed at the Union Iron Works at the same time as Hanscom. SAFR collections are part of the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park musuem and archival collections. Further information about Union Iron Works can be found using the library and photograph card catalogues.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Electrical Engineering
Naval architecture
Archives
Union Iron Works Co.
San Francisco (Calif.)
Scrapbooks
Mechanical engineering
Naval architects
Mechanical engineers
Design and construction

Collection Contents

 

Series 1.  William Wallace Hanscom papers,

Extent: 26 folders

Arrangement

25 files housed in 6 boxes and 1 oversize folder.
Box 1

File Unit 01.  Project scrapbook Vol. 1, 1890-1910

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor condition. Bound ledger used as a scrapbook, binding is breaking. Tabbed index section. Use book cradle.

Scope and Content Note

Scrapbook of project notes, small electrical and mechanical engineering blueprints, specifications for various vessels built by Union Iron Works (San Francisco), including but not limited to U.S. Navy vessels: USS Kentucky, Kearsage, Ohio, Maine, South Dakota, and Tacoma, as well as the electrical panel for the Columbia Theater.
Box 2

File Unit 02.  Project scrapbook Vol. 2, 1887-1911

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor condition. Bound ledger used as a scrapbook, binding is fragile. Tabbed index section. Use book cradle.

Scope and Content Note

Scrapbook of project notes, small electrical and mechanical engineering blueprints, specifications for various vessels built by Union Iron Works (San Francisco).
Box 3

File Unit 03.  Project scrapbook Vol. 3, 1902-1906

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor condition. Bound ledger used as a scrapbook, binding is fragile. Tabbed index section. Use book cradle.

Scope and Content Note

Scrapbook of project notes, small electrical and mechanical engineering blueprints, specifications for various vessels built by Union Iron Works (San Francisco).
Box 4

File Unit 04.  Project scrapbook Vol. 4, 1902-1903

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor condition. Bound ledger used as a scrapbook, binding is fragile. Tabbed index section. Use book cradle.

Scope and Content Note

Scrapbook of project notes, small electrical and mechanical engineering blueprints, specifications for various vessels built by Union Iron Works (San Francisco).
Box 5, folder 5

File Unit 05.  Subject notebooks: electrical equipment, 1893-1904

Extent: 2 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition. Two leather-bound notebooks. First notebook is bound in dark red leather with a gilt "cash" on the front cover. It measures 10 x 7 x 1.5 cm (4 x 6 1/2 x 1/2 inches). Second notebook has "W.W. Hanscom" inscribed on the front cover, and measures 13.8 x 21.9 x 2.5 cm (8 3/4 x 5 1/2 x 7/8 inches).

Scope and Content Note

First notebook is untitled, but includes electrical data for various vessels, including the United States Naval vessels Monterey, San Francisco, California, and Olympia, among others. The second notebook is marked on the spine as "Calculations and tests No. 3" and includes "specifications for the illumination devices...for ships of the U.S. Navy."
Box 5, folder 6

File Unit 06.  Subject notebook: tests of gun turrets and hoists, 1903

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor to fair condition, requires book cradle for use. One bound volume with weakened boards, measuring 13.5 x 21 x 2.5 cm (5 1/2 x 8 /1/4 x 1 inches).

Scope and Content Note

Volume 1
Box 5, folder 7

File Unit 07.  Subject notebooks, 1901-1903

Extent: 2 EA.
Physical Description: Fair. Use book cradles. Two bound volumes. First measures 12 x 19 x 1 cm (4 3/4 x 7 1/2 x 3/8 inches). Second measures 13.5 x 21 x 2.5 cm (5 1/2 x 8 1/4 x 3/8 inches).

Scope and Content Note

Two volumes. The first is titled "Navy standard apparatus price list commencing with [USS] Wisconsin." The second volume is "Spare parts Navy construction."
Box 5, folder 8

File Unit 08.  Specifications for USS Ohio electrical apparatus, undated

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition. blueprint copies of document.
Box 5, folder 9

File Unit 09.  Specifications for USS Ohio detail plans, 1905

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition. Blueprint copies of document.
Box 6, folder 10

File Unit 10.  Specifications for U.S. Navy vessels, 1897-1915

Extent: 12 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition. Some oversize material needs rehousing.

Scope and Content Note

12 items, including but not limited to specifications. (1) Navy Department, Bureau of equipment, "Specifications for wiring appliances for ships of the United States Navy," (GPO, Washington D.C, 1897) (2) Department of Commerce, "Circular # 37 of the Bureau of Standards: Electrical wire and cable terminology," (GPO, Washington D.C., 1915). (3) "USS Oregon illuminating panel and panel box," 1903 March 10. Oversize blueprint, folded. (4) "USS Oregon electrical illumination," 1902 November 5. Oversize blueprint, folded. (5) Navy Department, Bureau of equipment, "Specifications for illuminating outfits for ships of the U.S. Navy," (1903 May). (6) "USS Tacoma booklet no. 12," 1904. Includes some oversize material. (7) Navy Department, Bureau of equipment,"Specification for motor generator sets," 1903. (8) "Ship test laundry motor [for] USS California, USS South Dakota, and USS Milwaukee," 1906 June 25. (9) "Ship test [for] deck winches [for] USS California, USS South Dakota, and USS Milwaukee," 1906 June 25. (10) Ship test [for] FW pump motors [for] USS California, USS South Dakota, and USS Milwaukee," 1906 June 25. (11) "Navy standard interior communication cables," 1905 . (12) "Specifications for motor generator sets for gun elevating equipment," 1906 January.
Box 6, folder 11

File Unit 11.  Trial of steam machinery for U.S. Revenue steamer Gallatin , 1875

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor condition. Pencil annotations. dis-bound from a notebook or scrapbook.
Box 6, folder 12

File Unit 12.  Specifications for electrical lighting, undated

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition. Carbon typescript dis-bound from a notebook or scrapbook.
Box 6, folder 13

File Unit 13.  Notes on electrical engineering, undated

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition. Handwritten. dis-bound from a notebook or scrapbook.
Box 6, folder 14

File Unit 14.  The rise and progress of rifled naval artillery", 1899

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 40th Summer session of the Institute of Naval Architects, July 1899.
Box 6, folder 15

File Unit 15.  Novelties in ship fittings, 1899

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 7th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1899 November.
Box 6, folder 16

File Unit 16.  The electrical plans of the battleships Kearsarge and Kentucky, 1899

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 7th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1899 November.
Box 6, folder 17

File Unit 17.  Tests of the electrical plan of the battleships Kearsarge and Kentucky, 1899

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Poor condition, torn.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 7th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1899 November.
Box 6, folder 18

File Unit 18.  Methods of handling material over shipbuilding berths in American shipyards, 1902

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 43rd Spring session of the Institute of Naval Architects, March 1902.
Box 6, folder 19

File Unit 19.  Two professional papers presented to SNAME general meeting, 1902

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

"Technical training for shipbuilders," and "Why it takes so long to build and equipt a naval vessel for the United States Navy," both from the proceedings of the 10th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1902.
Box 6, folder 20

File Unit 20.  The development of modern ordnance and armor in the United States, 1902

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 10th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1902.
Box 6, folder 22

File Unit 21.  Remarks on the design of naval vessels, 1902

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 10th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1902.
Box 6, folder 23

File Unit 22.  The building of valve gears, 1902

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 10th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1902.
Box 6, folder 24

File Unit 23.  Simple methods in warship design a necessity , 1904

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Fair condition.

Scope and Content Note

From the proceedings of the 12th general meeting of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME), New York, 1904.
Box 6, folder 25

File Unit 24.  Catalog No. 1 Union Iron Works, undated

Extent: 1 EA.
Physical Description: Good condition. Photocopies of title pages, table of contents, and introductions only.
Box 6, folder 21; Oversize folder

File Unit 25.  Oversize plans,

Extent: 1 folder 2 blueprints; separated print illustrations and graphs.
Physical Description: Folder 21 contains a separation sheet for oversize plans.

Scope and Content Note

Oversize plans: USS Colorado tests; Experimental model basin, 1904; multiple sheets of plate illustrations and graphics separated from published proceedings, with original file numbers on versos.