[SIGCIS-Members] Manufacturers of Punch Cards

Martin Schmitt schmitt at zzf-potsdam.de
Fri Sep 22 01:12:57 PDT 2017

Hello everybody,

thats really an interesting question which also applies to other data carriers as magnetic or tape. Thank you Pierre for that insight to the French situation. I want to take that one step further. It is always telling to look beyond the Iron Curtain to understand Computerization processes. In this case most of the punch cards in the Eastern Block were produced in the CSSR. For example, they produced many of the punch cards for the ES EVM systems under the label "ES 9014". Paper was a scarce resource in that times (1950s-1970s) so most of the companies used paper tape in stead of punched cards as data carriers. And to complete the link to Pierres comment: The CSSR had strong economic ties in computing to France. So I could well imagine that french punch card developments entered the Eastern Block through the CSSR, but this has to be verified.

Good luck with your research and I’m looking forward to your talk in Philly.

Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter | Doktorand | digital enthusiast

Mail: schmitt at zzf-potsdam.de <mailto:schmitt at zzf-pdm.de>
Tel: +49 331 - 74510-119
BLOG - www.computerisierung.com

Vice Chair of IFIP WG 9.7 „History of computing"

Neu erschienen: Martin Schmitt - Internet im Kalten Krieg.

> Am 21.09.2017 um 14:10 schrieb Kidwell, Peggy <kidwellp at si.edu>:
> I write in preparation for next month’s meeting in Philadelphia.  Those of you staying late will be able to hear about punch cards, particularly punch cards in the Smithsonian collections, as symbols of the spread of computing from the nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. This is the result of a cataloging project based on looking at eighty-odd punch cards and groups of punch cards in Smithsonian mathematics and computer collections (as well as one from textiles).  A small matter that interests me is who actually made and/or distributed the cards. Sometimes this was a manufacturer like IBM or Remington Rand UNIVAC. At other times, businesses seem to have specialized in printing punch cards – or at least distributing them. At present, I’m still mystified as to who made/distributed the punch cards listed below, and would welcome identifications:
> 1.       A punch card marked ISC 5081. This isn’t the IBM card by that name, though It looks like it.
> 2.       Another IBM clone, the MIDCO C-5081.
> 3.       The Pryor 5280
> 4.       The NECS/WIC-282
> 5.       The ths 942/3/2367 – this was designed for use in Stockholm
> 6.       A card designed for use at the University of Wisconsin with the name OEI M73926 – we also have a punch card with number OEI E19618 used at the DeVry Institute of Technology in Chicago
> 7.       SDC A1004 punch cards – used in Canada
> 8.       BP-16309 BSC punch cards
> Many thanks!
> Peggy Kidwell
> Curator of Mathematics
> National Museum of American History
> Smithsonian Institution
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