Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (54.56 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography/Administrative History
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms
  • Additional collection guides

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Leo Jones Papers
    Dates: 1950-1977
    Collection Number: 2003-54
    Creator/Collector: Jones, Leo Hugh (1926-2002) Fargo Company Saber Industries
    Extent: 7 linear feet
    Online items available
    Repository: History San Jose Research Library
    San Jose, California 95112
    Abstract: Correspondence, technical manuals, product catalogs, and photographs from Leo Jones' two businesses, Fargo Company and Saber Laboratories.
    Language of Material: English


    The collection is open to the public for research by appointment with the Curator of Library & Archives.

    Publication Rights

    Contact the Curator of Library & Archives with regard to publication or reproduction.

    Preferred Citation

    Leo Jones Papers. History San Jose Research Library

    Acquisition Information

    Originally donated by Leo Jones to the Foothill Electronics Museum. Transferred to History San Jose in 2003 as part of the Perham Collection of Early Electronics.

    Biography/Administrative History

    Leo Hugh Jones was born in Sioux City, Iowa in 1926 and moved with his family at a young age to Stockton, California. He attended the University of Santa Clara for 3 years then took a job selling air conditioners in 1948. Jones continued his education with extension and night classes from the University of California at Berkeley and the University of San Francisco until 1949. He never completed the requirements for a degree, instead starting up the Fargo Company in 1950 at age 24. In 1957, Jones married Helen R. Kenny. Leo Jones was an avid boat enthusiast, often inviting law enforcement and political dignitaries on his boating excursions. He was also a relentless perfectionist, as was evident in his correspondence. He was closely involved in the shaping of eavesdropping laws; engaging in a letter writing campaign, making arguments to political and law enforcement leaders and providing expert testimony to congressional committees.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    Correspondence, technical manuals, product catalogs, and photographs from Leo Jones' two businesses, Fargo Company and Saber Laboratories. Fargo was founded in San Francisco in 1950 to design and manufacture high-tech specialty devices for electronic surveillance and countermeasures, and sold its products exclusively to law enforcement organizations. In 1965, Jones formed Saber Laboratories to provide countermeasures equipment to businesses. The collection includes a folder of correspondence and notes from Jones' work as technical adviser to Frances Ford Coppola's movie "The Conversation," as well as letters to law makers and law enforcement officials regarding privacy legislation.

    Indexing Terms

    Business intelligence
    Electronic surveillance
    Law enforcement
    San Francisco (Calif.)
    manufacturers’ catalogs
    technical manuals
    photographic prints

    Additional collection guides