J.P. Smith worked on the development of the television at Radio Corporation of America (RCA). This collection contains mostly
his early papers and schematics.
John Paul Smith (frequently referred to as J.P.) was born in 1905 and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical
Engineering in 1927 from Texas A & M College. Upon graduation he joined General Electric in Schenectady where Ernest Alexanderson
led the six person television research group, which broadcast a 24 line television signal in 1928 from its station WGY. WGY
produced and transmitted the first television drama, “The Queen’s Messenger.” Smith worked on carrier current and early television
circuits at GE. With the merger of the television interests of GE, Westinghouse, and RCA in 1930, Mr. Smith moved to Camden,
New Jersey to work as a television development engineer at RCA Victor, “where he worked on studio and terminal equipment,
specializing in sync generators” (quoted from his resume). Smith worked at Camden on a number of television projects. During
World War II Smith seems to have worked in radar and communications primarily. In 1947 Smith resumed his work on television
and was focused a great deal on broadcast transmission equipment, especially mobile broadcasting. From 1949 until about 1962
Smith worked on color television on a wide variety of important technical issues. He also trained RCA television dealers on
the television sets they were selling. For the rest of his career until he retired in 1971 he worked on a number of diverse
government contracts and on satellite communications in such fields as ground stations and image perceptibility and clarity.
1.75 Linear feet
(4 manuscript boxes)
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