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About this collection

miSci, the Museum of Innovation and Science, is a dynamic destination which celebrates science, invention, and imagination. miSci explores the area's rich technological heritage, with some of the region's finest interactive exhibits and a research archive; a must-see for families, tourists, area residents, and other visitors. 


The miSci Archives contains manuscript collections, photographs, trade literature, and other materials relating to the history of General Electric and Schenectady. The Archives was formed in 1997 through the merger of miSci and the Hall of Electrical History and is open to the public Monday through Friday. A highlight of the collection is the General Electric Photograph Collection, a collection of nearly 1.6 million images that depicts the development of the electrical industry and 20th century American life.

The Archives is more than just photographs. There are manuscript collections highlighting the founding and early history of GE. Papers from Gerard Swope and Owen D. Young, President and Chairman of GE from 1922-1939 and 1942-1944, highlight the welfare capitalism of the 1920s. Other collections highlight the GE Research Laboratory and radio station WGY. There are also books and periodicals, including a complete run of the GE Schenectady Works News, the employee newsletter for GE's Schenectady Works, as well as a collection of 1,500 motion picture films created by GE.


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miSci's Sub-collections:


General Electric Photographs

Highlights from the collection of General Electric publicity photographs, dating from about 1880-1970. The images include factory scenes, consumer and industrial products, images used in advertising, and installation photographs of lighting, locomotives, and industrial equipment.

General Electric Research Laboratory Photographs

A sample of the 100,000 images documenting the inventors and inventions of the GE Research Laboratory from 1900-1990. Electric lighting, radio, Man-Made Diamonds, lasers, and electric cars are just a few of the innovations to come from the GE Research Laboratory, which still thrives today as GE Global Research.

 Capital District Radio and Television Broadcasting

A collection of images and media documenting the rich history of radio and television broadcasting in the region. Radio station WGY, founded in 1922, is the oldest radio station in New York State, and television station WRGB, founded in 1928, is credited as being the oldest television station in the world. Both stations contributed to the national development of broadcasting. WGY created the first radio dramas and the use of sound effects, while WRGB developed the first regular schedule, newscast, news remote, and television drama. The collection will also feature other local stations, including radio stations WTRY and WPTR and television station WTEN.

General Electric Historical Documents

A collection of text documents highlighting the history of General Electric and the development of the electrical industry. Highlights include source materials collected by John Winthrop Hammond in the 1920s and 1930s while writing his history of GE, "Men and Volts." The collection features interview notes, correspondence, and advertising from early electrical inventors such as Thomas Edison, Elihu Thomson, Charles Brush, and William Stanley. They also include documentation of important GE inventions, including radio, television, home appliances, and the steam turbine. Educational and advertising materials from the 1940s through the 1970s, including GE Comic Books and GE Monogram magazine, are also highlighted in this collection.




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