The Computer Museum History Center Collections Policy

From: Merle K. Peirce <>
Date: Wed Nov 24 19:08:06 1999

The Computer Museum seemed to engender a remarkable amount of ill feeling
in the East, not alleviated by the flight of the collection from Boston.
Daq is the beneficiary of that great reservoir of suspicion and distrust.
He certainly has his work cut out for him, but being forthcoming and
addressing these concerns could go a long way towards settling them.

On 24 Nov 1999, Eric Smith wrote:

> Allison asks about the disposition of some of the Computer Museum's
> collection:
> > Specifically there are three DEC systems that TCM/Boston had, PDP-1, PDP-6
> > and a PDP-7. Where are they and what is their current status?
> The PDP-1 is definitely in the Computer Musuem History Center in Mountain
> View. I've seen it with my own eyes.
> When it was in Boston they reportedly fired it up once a year to
> show Steve "Slug" Russel's "SPACEWAR!" game. However, as I understand
> it they have not yet tried to operate it in Mountain View.
> I hadn't heard about the PDP-7. The PDP-6 is the one that many of us
> are indignant about. The "facts" seem to be:
> 1) DEC contributed a bunch of hardware to help found The Computer Museum,
> including a PDP-6.
> 2) The Computer Museum sold some PDP-6 modules in their gift shop. These
> modules may or may not have been from the aforementioned PDP-6.
> 3) The whereabouts of the PDP-6 are now unknown.
> The conclusion that people have reached is that the PDP-6 was parted out.
> Regardless of the veracity of point 2, no one has successfully explained
> the chain of events leading from point 1 to point 3.
> However, I would like to point out that if the PDP-6 was in fact parted
> out, it almost certainly would have happened prior to the founding of
> The Computer Museum History Center. It seems clear, based not just on
> Dag's word but also on the experiences of several of my friends who
> volunteer for TCMHC projects, that any sort of problem like this would
> not be likely to happen today.
> TCMHC is now expecting a shipment of more equipment from DEC, which
> is claimed to contain one of every type of computer DEC made in the
> early days. So perhaps if we're lucky there will be another PDP-6
> that can be restored (if needed) and preserved.
> Eric

M. K. Peirce
Rhode Island Computer Museum, Inc.
215 Shady Lea Road,
North Kingstown, RI 02852

"Casta est qui nemo rogavit."
              - Ovid
Received on Wed Nov 24 1999 - 19:08:06 GMT

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