The following books and other reference material are highly recommended for
additional information on the Bell System and related telecommunications
Theses books are available from
End of the Line - The Rise and Fall of AT&T by Leslie Cauley. Free
Press, Copyright 2005. ISBN-10: 0743250257. The author, Leslie Cauley,
is a veteran telecom journalist having worked for the Wall Street
Journal and USA Today.
The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of
American Innovationby Jon Gernter.
Penguin Press, Copyright 2012. ISBN-10: 1594203288.
sweeping, atmospheric history of Bell Labs that highlights its
unparalleled role as an incubator of innovation and birthplace of
the century's most influential technologies.
Laboratories, which thrived from the 1920s to the 1980s, was the
most innovative and productive institution of the twentieth century.
Long before America's brightest scientific minds began migrating
west to Silicon Valley, they flocked to this sylvan campus in the
New Jersey suburbs built and funded by AT&T. At its peak, Bell Labs
employed nearly fifteen thousand people, twelve hundred of whom had
PhDs. Thirteen would go on to win Nobel prizes. It was a citadel of
science and scholarship as well as a hotbed of creative thinking. It
was, in effect, a factory of ideas whose workings have remained
largely hidden until now.
New York Times Magazine writer Jon Gertner unveils the unique
magic of Bell Labs through the eyes and actions of its scientists.
These ingenious, often eccentric men would become revolutionaries,
and sometimes legends, whether for inventing radio astronomy in
their spare time (and on the company's dime), riding unicycles
through the corridors, or pioneering the principles that propel
today's technology. In these pages, we learn how radar came to be,
and lasers, transistors, satellites, mobile phones, and much more.
more important, Gertner reveals the forces that set off this
explosion of creativity. Bell Labs combined the best aspects of the
academic and corporate worlds, hiring the brightest and usually the
youngest minds, creating a culture and even an architecture that
forced employees in different fields to work together, in virtually
complete intellectual freedom, with little pressure to create
moneymaking innovations. In Gertner's portrait, we come to
understand why both researchers and business leaders look to Bell
Labs as a model and long to incorporate its magic into their own
Written with a novelist's gift for pacing and an ability to convey
the thrill of innovation, The Idea Factory yields a
revelatory take on the business of invention. What are the
principles of innovation? How do new technology and new ideas begin?
Are some environments more favorable than others? How should they be
structured, and how should they be governed? Can strokes of genius
be accelerated, replicated, standardized? The history of Bell Labs
provides crucial answers that can and should be applied today by
anyone who wants to understand where good ideas come from.
Just An Old Telephone Man - 2nd Edition [Kindle Edition] by Judge
Pattengill. WrightWay; 2nd edition (April 30, 2009). ISBN:
978-1-4276-4113-7. A collection of stories from a few "just old
telephone men and women". This 2nd Edition includes the stories of the
1st plus many more. If you are or were ever a telephone man or woman,
they should bring a chuckle or a smile. If you were not, they may make
you wish you had been!
Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design
by Jennifer Bass & Pat Kirkham. Free Press, Copyright 2011. ISBN-10:
1856697525. Jennifer Bass is a graphic designer and artist. She
has worked at CBS Television in New York and at Sussman/Prejza & Company
in Los Angeles. In 1994, she and her husband, Lance Glover, opened their
studio, Treehouse Design Partnership in Los Angeles, working in the
areas of environmental graphics, identity and book design.
Pat Kirkham is Professor in the History of Design, Decorative Arts and
Culture at the Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts,
Design & Culture, New York. She has written and edited a number of
books, including Charles and Ray Eames (1998) and Women Designers in the
USA 1900-2000 (2001).
This is the first book to be published on one of the greatest American
designers of the 20th Century, who was as famous for his work in film as
for his corporate identity and graphic work. With more than 1,400
illustrations, many of them never published before and written by the
leading design historian Pat Kirkham, this is the definitive study that
design and film enthusiasts have been eagerly anticipating. Saul Bass
(1920-1996) created some of the most compelling images of American
post-war visual culture. Having extended the remit of graphic design to
include film titles, he went on to transform the genre. His best known
works include a series of unforgettable posters and title sequences for
films such as Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo and Otto Preminger's The Man
With The Golden Arm and Anatomy of a Murder. He also created some of the
most famous logos and corporate identity campaigns of the century,
including those for major companies such as AT&T, Quaker Oats, United
Airlines and Minolta. His wife and collaborator, Elaine, joined the Bass
office in the late 1950s. Together they created an impressive series of
award-winning short films, including the Oscar-winning Why Man Creates,
as well as an equally impressive series of film titles, ranging from
Stanley Kubrick s Spartacus in the early 1960s to Martin Scorsese s Cape
Fear and Casino in the 1990s. Designed by Jennifer Bass, Saul Bass's
daughter and written by distinguished design historian Pat Kirkham who
knew Saul Bass personally, this book is full of images from the Bass
archive, providing an in depth account of one of the leading graphic
artists of the 20th century.
Bell Labs Memoirs: Voices of Innovation -- A Michael Noll (Author),
Michael Geselowitz (Author). CreateSpcae, Copyright 2011. ISBN-10:
1463677979. In structure and history, Bell Labs was unique in the
world. Its discoveries and inventions (advances on its earlier invention
of the transistor, the laser, UNIX, the charge-coupled device)
transformed global society and helped to form the information age and
the digital era. The collection of narratives in this book focuses on
Bell Labs’ peak years during the 1960s and 1970s. Whether by accident or
providence, these years correspond almost exactly with the years when
William Baker led the Labs (1955 – 1973). The chapters are mini-memoirs,
ranging from personal background to research accounts to stories of
social life at the Labs, as told by persons from every aspect of the
Lab’s research operations, from chauffeurs and technicians to top
scientists. Bill Baker’s presence runs through all the narratives,
leading the organization and defining its tone. His personal aptitude
and leadership left an indelible stamp on Bell Labs and, indeed, on
global science and technology.
Rape of Ma Bell
by Constantine Raymonod Kraus and Alfred W. Duerig. Lyle Stuart, Copyright
1988. ISBN-10: 081840468X. (Link leads to book reviews)
TELE-Tales - A SURVEY OF SERVICE by A.J. Ryan, Copyright 2006. ISBN-10: 1412014522. (paperback). True tales of situations met
and often endured while living a wandering life, the story describes the
career of a Bell Canada employee through promising beginnings to
humiliation, defeat and revival after his shock is mistakenly understood
as his standing in the way of a plan to cover up a tragic act of
The Phone Book - What the telephone company would rather you not know
by J. Edward Hyde. Henry Regnery Company - Chicago. Copyright 1976.
a dark view of Ma Bell but interesting reading nonetheless. ISBN-10:
"Manufacturing the Future - A History of Western Electric" by Stephen B.
Adams and Orville R. Butler. Excellent book! Published in 1999
by Cambridge University Press. ISBN-10: 0521651182. (hardcover).
"Telephone - The First Hundred Years" - The Wondrous Invention that
Changed a World and Spawned a Corporate Giant. By John Brooks. First
Published in 1976 by Harper & Row, Publishers. ISBN-10:
Labs - Life in the Crown Jewel" by Narain Gehani. First
published in 2003 by Silicon Press. ISBN-10: 0929306279. (hardcover).
"Bell Labs, the greatest research
lab of the 20th century, is going through difficult times. The
current events at Lucent will have a deep impact on Bell Labs.
Gehani talks about Bell Labs with an insider's perspective. He has
seen Bell Labs during its best times and during its difficult days.
He was at Bell Labs during the monopoly and post monopoly days, and
when Lucent was doing great and during its difficult times.
Gehani’s Bell Labs book is the
first book that tells the story of this very famous organization.
Bell Labs is part of the heritage of the many of the current and
past companies in the telecom industry. People associated with the
telephone companies will find this book great reading, historical
information of their employer’s glorious past, will get an
understanding of the workings of this great institution, how the
AT&T divestiture affected it, and the challenges faced by it now.
Gehani's story of America's
national treasure and corporate crown jewel will keep you riveted to
reading about a way of life possibly gone forever. To read the book
description, click HERE.
Technologies of Freedom Ithiel de Sola Pool, 1983 Cambridge:
Belknap/Harvard. ISBN-10: 0674872339.
The Deal of the Century: The Breakup of AT&T Steve Coll, 1986
New York: Atheneum. ASIN: B00165FWH4 (paperback).
Signals: The Telephone and Beyond (Revised edition) John R.
Pierce and Michael A. Noll San Francisco: Freeman.
ISBN-10: 0716713365 (paperback).
America Calling: A Social History of the Telephone to 1940 Claude
S. Fischer, 1992 Berkeley: University of California Press.
ISBN-10: 0520086473 (paperback).
The Telecommunications Revolution: Past, Present and Future
Sapolsky, Crane, Neuman, and Noam, 1992 London & New York: Routledge.
ISBN-10: 0415067715 (paperback).
The American Telegrapher: A Social History, 1860 - 1900 Edwin
Gabler, 1988 New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press.
ISBN-10: 0813512859 (paperback).
The Biggest Company On Earth: A Profile of AT&T Sonny Kleinfield,
1981 New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
ISBN-10: 0030453267 (hardcover).
I'm Sorry, The Monopoly You Have Reached Is Not In Service... K. Aubrey Stone, 1973 New York: Ballantine/Grassroots.
ISBN-10: 0345030753 (paperback).
Monopoly Joseph C. Goulden, 1968 New York: Putnam.
ISBN-10: 0671771957 (paperback).
In One Man's Life: Being Chapters from the Personal and Business Career
of Theodore N. Vail Albert B. Paine, 1921 New York: Harper.
ISBN-10: 1112191011 (paperback).
Disconnecting Bell: The Impact of the AT&T Divestiture Harry M.
Shooshan II (Editor), 1984 Elmsford, NY: Pergamon Press.
ISBN-10: 0080301738 (hardcover).
The Hacker Crackdown: Law and Disorder on the Electronic Frontier
Bruce Sterling, 1992 New York: Bantam.
ISBN-10: 055356370X (paperback).
The First Amendment in the Information Age Joel M. Bolstein, 1987
Washington, D.C.: Freedom of Expression Foundation & The Media Institute. ISBN-10: 0937790362 (paperback).
The Virtual Community: Homesteading on the Electronic Frontier
Howard Rheingold, 1993 Menlo Park, CA: Addison Wesley.
ISBN-10: 0262681218 (paperback).
The Intelligent Network Task Force Report Barbara O'Connor, et
al., 1988 San Francisco: Pacific Bell Consumer Affairs.
American Tel. & Tel., The Story of a Great Monopoly
by Horace Coon, Longmans, Green and Co., New York, 1939.
ASIN: B002EG2G3W (hardcover).
AT&T -- The Story of Industrial Conquest
by N. R. Danielian, The
Vanguard Press, New York, 1939. ISBN-10: 0405060386 (hardcover).
The Telephone in a Changing World
by Marion May Dilts,
Longmans, Green and Co., New York, 1941. ASIN: B0007E2OI0 (unknown binding).
Communications in the World of the Future
by Hal Hellman, M. Evans and
Company, New York, 1969. ASIN: B004BIWQ3Q (paperback).
Alexander Graham Bell by Catherine
MacKenzie, Houghton Mifflen Co., Boston and New York, 1928. ISBN-10: 0766143856 (paperback).
The Bell Telephone System
by Arthur W. Page, Harper & Brothers, New York and London, 1929. ASIN: B0006APE0A (hardcover).
Beginnings of Telephony
by F. L. Rhodes, Harper & Brothers, New York and London, 1929. ASIN: B000TZT2LE (hardcover).
Views on Public Questions
by Theodore N. Vail, privately printed, 1917.
ISBN-10: 1152102915 (paperback).
For Noteworthy Public Service, The Theodore N. Vail National Awards
published by the Bell System, New York, 1950.
ASIN: B000NSBHEM (hard cover).
Exploring Life, The Autobiography of Thomas A. Watson
by D. Appleton and Company,
New York and London, 1926. ASIN: B00270C67Q (paperback).
Muddling Through, A selective autobiography by John M. Fraser
by CreateSpace, Pueblo, CO,
2009. ISBN-10: 1438258496 (paperback).
G. Langley, 1983
London: Pitman ISBN-10: 0273601571 (paperback).
Understanding Communications Systems
Don L. Cannon and Gerald Luecke
Dallas: Texas Instruments ISBN-10: 0672270161 (paperback).
A History of Engineering and Science in the Bell
System (in seven volumes):
The Early Years (1875-1925)
M. D. Fagen, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1975
xii+1073 pages ASIN: B003X5CIEU (hardcover).
National Service in War and Peace (1925-1975)
M. D. Fagen, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1978
xv+757 pages ISBN-10: 0932764002 (hardcover).
Switching Technology (1925-1975)
A. E. Joel, Jr. et al
G.F. Schincler, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1982
xii+639 pages ISBN-10: 0932764029 (hardcover).
Physical Sciences (1925-1980)
S. Millman, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1983
xi+674 pages ISBN-10: 0932764037 (hardcover).
Communications Sciences (1925-1980)
S. Millman, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1984
xxii+521 pages ISBN-10: 0932764061 (hardcover).
Transmission Technology (1925-1975)
E. F. O'Neill, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1985
xv+812 pages ASIN: B000WW6U32 (hardcover).
Electronics Technology (1925-1975)
F. M. Smits, Editor
Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. 1985