Manufacturing Rationality: The Engineering Foundations of the Managerial Revolution

By Yehouda Shenhav | Go to book overview

APPENDIX
Description of the EngineeringManagement Literature

1. AMERICAN MACHINIS

American Machinist was founded in 1877 as a weekly. It was published in New York, with Horace Miller as its first owner, president, and publisher. It was the first and the longestlived periodical in the post-1876 period, and probably the most important outlet of the mechanical engineering profession before 1905 ( Calvert 1967: 136). The magazine focused on metal-working firms and the machine-building industry, where most of the industrial innovations as well as the revolution in management practices during the last two decades of the nineteenth century took place. American Machinist was an outlet to publicize information regarding professional conferences, cross-national comparisons of labor markets, 'modern management techniques', and methods of payment. The editors were firm supporters of the safety movement in industry and had a clear record of supporting the advancement of wages to labor ( American Machinist, 15 November 1879: 8; American Machinist, 11 October 1879: 8; American Machinist, 26 June 1902: 917; see also American Machinist, 19 May 1927: 865). In 1896 John Hill -- an ex-correspondent of American Machinist in Colorado -- became proprietor and publisher of the magazine and McGraw-Hill took it over in 1917.

During the period under study, the American Machinist had nine editors, beginning with Jackson Bailey ( 1877-87), then Frank Hemenway ( 1887-95), Frederick J. Miller ( 1895-1907), Frederick H. Halsey ( 1907-11), Leon P. Alford ( 1911-17), John H. Van Deventer ( 1917-19), Ethan Viall ( 1919-20), and finally Frederick Colvin and Kenneth Condit as chief co-editors ( 1921-38) (for a full list of the individuals who had contributed to the American Machinist see: American Machinist, 19 May 1927: 822-3. See also ' "Fifty Years of the American Machinist"', American Machinist, 19 May 1927: 824). The publication sought to retain independence and not to accept payment for published materials except in the advertising columns (see also Ferguson 1989). In the first issue, Bailey stated that 'We shall always act independently, not holding ourselves under the least obligation to give "favorable notices" of anything under review, but rather to elicit the plain truth whether it be favorable or unfavorable.' James H. McGraw, president of the McGraw-Hill Publishing Company, recalled fifty years later that initially Bailey was thinking of a newspaper that would 'reflect accurately' events in the metal-working industry, but, realizing that being 'an accurate reflector' was an insufficient role in an evolving world, he also assumed leadership in the field ( American Machinist, 19 May 1927: 824). Indeed, several editors of American Machinist were influential figures in the field of mechanical engineering; mainly Jackson Bailey, Fred Miller, Fred Halsey, Leon Alford, and Fred Colvin. The position taken by the first

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