Guide to the Edmund A. Laport Collection

Administrative Information

Repository Information

Archives Center, National Museum of American History

P.O. Box 37012
 Suite 1100, MRC 601
 Washington, D.C., 20013-7012
 Phone: 202-633-3270

Revision Description

 Robert S. Harding, archivist,  1994 July

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use note

Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.

Custodial History note

The collection was transferred from the Division of Electricity (now the Division of Work and Industry) on April 13, 1983.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Donated by Edmund A. Laport, circa 1971.

Processing Information note

Processed by Robert Harding, archivist, April 1983.

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Summary Information

Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Creator - Creator
Laport, Edmund A.
Edmund A. Laport Collection
Date [inclusive]
.66 Cubic feet, 2 boxes
Language of Materials note
Collection is in English.
The collection documents Edmund A. Laport, a former director of broadcast engineering for the Radio Corporation of America.

Preferred Citation note

Edmund A. Laport Collection, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.

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Biographical/Historical note

Six months after graduation from Concord, New Hampshire High School in 1920, Edmund A. LaPort obtained a commercial first grade radio operator's license from the Department of Commerce in Chicago. The autumn of 1921 found him as a radio operator at KDKF in New York City. However, due to lack of funds this station closed shortly after he arrived. In December of 1921, he moved to the New York Service Department of Westinghouse installing radio receivers.

On January 2, 1923 he joined General Electric and was made laboratory assistant to I.F. Byrnes, who was in charge of low-power transmitter design. However, LaPort decided he wanted to be a forest ranger and left in July of 1923 and headed back to the woods of New Hampshire. In early 1924 LaPort began working in Montana as a forest ranger. Within a very short time, however, he realized that he was more interested in radio. Before the year was out he returned to Westinghouse where he worked largely on high power transmitters until the spring of 1933. On one assignment he traveled to Peking, China where he helped build three short-wave broadcasting stations.

The Depression proved difficult for fledgling radio companies with many going out of business shortly after opening up. LaPort worked for one of these unfortunate firms before settling in at Wired Radio, Inc. in Newark, New Jersey. Here he gained invaluable experience helping to develop equipment for commercial program transmission over power distribution systems.

In May of 1936 he joined RCA in Camden, New Jersey where he headed up the formation of their first high-power transmitter operation. He stayed with RCA until he retired in 1967. In December of 1938 he moved to Montreal where he helped RCA Victor Co., Ltd. start the development and manufacture of military and professional equipment. He organized engineering and manufacturing facilities and trained personnel. He also took a role in leading the company in developing aviation navigational equipment.

In July1944 he returned to the United States to become chief engineer of the newly formed RCA International Division. Over the next ten years he traveled widely, undertaking many important field construction projects and consulted with other governments in communications, broadcasting, aviation, and marine matters.

Edmund A. LaPort was a director of broadcast engineering for the Radio Corporation of America. From 1954 until 1967 he worked with others in a corporate level engineering consulting group to coordinate work in the many RCA plants in all aspects of communications. He authored Radio Antenna Engineering which was published by McGraw-Hill in 1952.

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Scope and Contents note

This collection, assembled by LaPort, consists of approximately three hundred photo prints of antennas and broadcast installations. Mr. LaPort's original order for these photo prints has been maintained. His extensive captions for these photo prints can be found in the individual folders. Series two contains three articles by LaPort on aspects of radio and an autobiographical essay.

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Arrangement note

The collection is divided into two series.

Series 1: Photographs, 1923-1949

Series 2: Articles, undated

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Controlled Access Headings


  • Articles
  • Photographs--1900-1950.


  • Antennas (Electronics)
  • Radio
  • Radio broadcasting
  • Radio--Antennas
  • Radio--Transmitters and transmission
  • Television

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Collection Inventory

 Series 1: Photographs, 1923-1949

Box Folder

U.S. Navy Type MB Spotting Set, 1925

1 1

(2) 500 Watt and (1) 1000 Watt transmitters for installation in China, 1928

1 2

TV, TW, TX Radio Telegraph Transmitters, 1925-1927

1 3

RE, RF, RG Radio Receivers, 1925

1 4

Miscellaneous Radio & Audio Equipment, undated

1 5

RCA, Type 50-A, 1927 May-1927 June

1 6

RCA 50KW HF & AM Type 50F, 1940s

1 7

Cone-of-Silence Transmitter and Antenna, 1940-1942

1 8

RCAF-AT 3 Transmitter, 1939

1 9

RCA CW-1,4 gc Microwave Relay, 1947

1 10

U.S. Navey Model TZ Transmitter, 1926

1 11

RCA 50-B 50 KW Broadcast Transmitter, 1929

1 12

Westinghouse Plant, Home Receiver Production, 1926

1 13

Westinghouse Automatic HF Telephone System for Carrier-Current Communication Over Utility Power Lines, 1925

1 14

RCA 100 KW AM Broadcast Transmitter Type 100 D for Norway, 1937

1 15

RCA TE-260A Telegraph Transmitter and TE-343 20-30 KW Transmitter, 1942-1943

1 16

RCA 75-MC Transportable Cone-of-Silence Transmitter, 1940-1942

1 17

RCA 500-KW AM Transmitter installed at Hornby, England Called " Aspedistra", 1936-1937

1 18

Broadcast Station Speech Input Equipment, 1928

1 19

Station 2XAR (WJZ) 30 KW on 760 KC at Bound Brook, New Jersey, 1926

1 20

Westinghouse Aircraft Radio Communication Equipment Sold to Royal Japanese Navy, 1927

1 21

U.S. Army Signal Corps BC-137 Receiver, 1926

1 22

Westinghouse 200W 2000-3000 KC Telegraph Transmitter, 1928

1 23

Westinghouse 20 KW HF Model T-7 Transmitter, Modulator, and Amplifier, 1927

1 23

U.S. Army BC-127 Mobile Telephone-telegraph Transmitter 250-400 W at 150 to 350KC, 1923

1 24

Stati Photographs, 1924-1925

1 25

ERA Antennas, Equipment, and Possible Later Model Amplifier, 1924-1925

1 25

Westinghouse 200 W CW and MCW 200 to 500 KC Shipboard Model, 1926

1 26

RCA Victor (Montreal) Type TE-147 50-80 KW Telegraph Transmitter, undated

1 27

Westinghouse, high power, low frequency Transmitter, circa 1926-1927

1 28

Turnstile Antennas, undated

1 29

Wide Band Television Antenna development stages at RCA Laboratories, Rocky Point, New York, undated

1 30

Electronic production photos at RCA Victor Company, Ltd., Montreal, 1942

1 31

Royal Canadian Air Force AT-12 HF & LF Radio Equipment, 1943

1 32

RCA SSB-1, 60 Watt HF single-sideband complete communication system, undated

1 33

Radiomarine Corporation of America, undated

1 34-35

High Frequency Broadcast Monitoring Equipment, Vatican Radio, 1949

1 36

Pacific Communication Program, undated

1 37

NBC, Miscellaneous, 1930s-1940s

1 38

RCA ET-4332; RCA ET-4336 Telegraph Transmitters, undated

1 39

RCA Communications, Inc., undated

1 40

Royal Canadian Air Force GT-24 5 kw Transmitter, undated

1 41

U.S. Navy Type TAH 5 kw low frequency Telegraph Transmitter, undated

1 42

500 Watt 150/200 kc Telegraph Transmitter TE 237, 1941

1 43

U.S. Navy TAK Shipboard Radio Telegraph Transmitter, 1929-1930

1 44

Wired Radio Inc. suppressed carrier single sideband Exciter, undated

1 45

200 watt LF Radio Telegraph Transmitter, 1925

1 46

NBC 50 KW Broadcasting Station WEAF (Later WNBC), undated

1 47

Navy Transmitter, possibly TBQ, 1932

1 48

10 KW Low-Frequency Transmitter, 1926-1927

1 49

CTR-140 VHP Radio Relay Equipment, undated

1 50

Pre 1955 RCA Test & Measuring Equipment, undated

1 51

WCFL of the Chicago Federation of Labor, Navy Pier, Chicago, 1931

1 52

Phasing and Impedence-matching Networks for Broadcast Directive Antennas, undated

1 53

Inspector's Wavemeter, 270-550 KC, 1926

1 54

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Broadcast Studio Control and Switching System, 1941

1 55

RCA 250 watt & 5000 watt AM Broadcast Transmitters, circa 1944

1 56

Production of Electronic Equipment, RCA Camden Plant, during WWII, undated

1 57

Developmental low-power HF Radio Transmitter, 1940

1 58

Schmidt Optical System Control Console & RCA Large-Screen Home Television, 1940s, circa 1940s

1 59

Fixed-Frequency Receivers for Airport Traffic Control, Canadian Department of Transportation, Airport Receiver Console, 1940

1 60

RCA 15 watt Hailing System, Royal Canadian Navy, 1942

1 61

RCA Type PM-45 Portable Sound Film Recording Equipment, 1943

1 62

U.S. Navy TBH Radio Telegraph Transmitter, undated

1 63

40,000 watt Broadcast Transmitter, Khobarsk, 1927-1928

1 64

Photo album of Finnish Transmitters, undated

1 65

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 Series 2: Laport Articles, undated

Box Folder

"Notes on Radio Instrumentation," and "Modulation Systems for Amplitude Modulation", undated

1 66

"Technical Evolution of American Broadcast Transmitters, " and "Brief Outline of Career of Edmund A. LaPort in Radio Engineering" (autobiographical), undated

1 67

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