Rochester chronology

Page 2


Feb. 8

February 8 -- Arthur L. Becker is named general manager, succeeding Frizzell.
Arthur L. Becker is named general manager, succeeding Frizzell.

 The plant begins producing brush blocks for GPD products.

A new semiautomatic parts supermarket method is begun for handling parts in the warehouse.

IBM stockholders are told that the plant will develop the card reader and punch machine for IBM's new STRETCH computer and IBM 609 calculator.

Sep. 1

The company announces the IBM 1622 card reader-punch, with which Rochester enters the domain of electronic data processing.
The company announces the IBM 1622 card reader-punch, with which Rochester enters the domain of electronic data processing.

Sep. 15
Rochester is assigned manufacturing responsibility for the IBM 802 and IBM 803 bank proof machines, and the IBM 1201 proof inscriber.


The last IBM 085 collator is manufactured.
The last IBM 085 collator is manufactured.

 The IBM Supplies Division opens a warehouse in Rochester.


The first IBM 802 is shipped, along with a preproduction model of the IBM 1622 card reader-punch.

An improved technique of wiring electric panels is implemented.

During its first two years, GPD has achieved in Rochester: an integrated assembly line that steps up efficiency, cuts costs by some 18 percent and eliminates multiple handling of materials and parts; and a parts supermarket which puts a newly received part into storage in six hours instead of the previous 24.

A Development Laboratory mission is established. Francis F. (Dutch) Fairchild is named as its manager.

The first shipments are made of the IBM 803 bank proof machine and IBM 1201 proof inscriber.

The Product Testing Laboratory's environmental test chamber is used for the first time.

There are approximately 2,300 employees at the site.


The addition of 100,000 square feet of space is announced by GPD president John W. Haanstra. The proposed new structures will house the development lab established in 1961 and expanded manufacturing operations.

The Rochester-developed IBM 188 collator reaches full production at the plant.

Six departments move into the leased Northgate office complex.

The plant installs an IBM 1410 data processing system to handle purchase order preparation, payroll, assembly and manufacturing schedules and parts requirements forecasting.

The lab is working on mechanical synthesis (the programming of a computer to enable it to help solve transfer of power problems), character recognition and document input and output.

The site implements the "Speak Up" program as a medium for voicing complaints, opinions, questions or requests for information.


The new 100,000-square foot addition is completed, bringing the site's total floor space up to 685,000 square feet.

Rochester develops the IBM 1060 banking system and IBM 1030 data collection system.

A record 1,190 Rochester employees share $173,202 suggestion awards for 3,218 winning ideas. The largest award to date -- $5,200 -- is given to John Dube for recommending that circuit breakers be salvaged from outdated machines and reworked for installation into rebuilt machines.


Plans for a 220,00-square foot laboratory building are announced and ground is broken for its construction.

Rochester develops the IBM 2540 card reader/punch. One Rochester 2540 is installed with the first IBM System/360 Model 40 shipped to a customer (NASA at Cape Kennedy, Fla.).

The Centrex telephone system is installed.


Jan. 28
The company establishes the IBM Systems Development Division (SDD) to develop IBM's regular product line of information handling systems and provide programming support for that equipment. The new division consists of the development laboratories of the former IBM Data Systems, General Products, and Components divisions located in Poughkeepsie, Kingston, East Fishkill, and Endicott, N.Y.; Rochester; and San Jose, Calif.

Frank Delaney is named site general manager, succeeding Art Becker; and Richard Trachy becomes lab director, succeeding Dutch Fairchild.

May 10
IBM has linked more than 250 computers in 16 IBM U.S. manufacturing, development and headquarters locations including Los Angeles and San Jose, Calif.; Washington, D.C.; Chicago; Cambridge, Mass.; Rochester; Armonk, Endicott, Harrison, Kingston, Mohansic, New York, (two locations), Poughkeepsie and White Plains, N.Y.; and Mechanicsburg, Pa.

Ground is broken for a new 105,000-square foot warehouse.

Oct. 28
The IBM Advanced Systems Development Division (ASDD), which has a Rochester-based Medical Applications Group, publicly reports on an experimental electrocardiogram system that allows as many as 50 ECGs to be recorded in an hour at Rochester's Mayo Clinic and then later analyzed by an IBM 7040 computer at the rate of 250 daily.


The new warehouse is occupied.


The site celebrates its 10th anniversary with an Open House during which approximately 30,000 visitors tour IBM Rochester.
The site celebrates its 10th anniversary with an Open House during which approximately 30,000 visitors tour IBM Rochester.

May 10

 Horace W. (Bud) Thue is named general manager, succeeding Delaney.
Horace W. (Bud) Thue is named general manager, succeeding Delaney.

The Rochester lab develops the IBM 1287 optical reader, the first scanner capable of reading handwritten numbers.

Oct. 28
ASDD's Medical Applications Group in Rochester experiments with the use of an IBM 7040 computer at the Mayo Clinic and an IBM 7090 computer at the SDD Development Laboratory in Rochester to help locate tumors and malignant tissue in the human body.


Don Stephenson becomes lab director, succeeding Trachy.

The site encompasses 397 acres of land and about 22 acres of floor space. There are approximately 4,000 employees.

The Rochester lab develops the IBM 2780 data transmission terminal and 2780 manufacturing begins.

The plant has produced or is manufacturing: the IBM 88 collator; IBM 188 card collator; IBM 519 document originating machine; IBM 521 punching unit; IBM 548 interpreter; IBM 803 bank proof machine; IBM 1013 card transmission terminal; IBM 1201 bank proof inscriber; IBM 1203 unit inscriber; IBM 1230, 1231 and 1232 optical mark scoring readers; IBM 1260 electronic inscriber; IBM 1285 and IBM 1287 optical readers; IBM 1402 and IBM 1442 card read punches; IBM 1444 card punch; IBM 1978 teleprocessing terminal; IBM 2501 card reader; IBM 2520 and IBM 2540 card read punches; IBM 2560 multifunction card machine; and IBM 2780 data transmission terminal.

The IBM Information Records Division's facility in Rochester is redesignated from a card operation location to a field card plant.

Manufacturing engineering people develop a process for molding acrylic plastic into machine push buttons.


The plant is cited as the safest factory of its kind in the United States for its record of 5.8 million man-hours worked without a disabling injury during the fourth quarter of 1967.

The plant ships the first Rochester-developed IBM 1287 optical reader.

Mar. 8
The company rolls out a new version of the IBM System/360 Model 20 computer. The new Model 20 was developed at IBM laboratories in San Jose, Calif.; Rochester; Endicott, N.Y.; and Boeblingen, West Germany; and is manufactured at IBM's facility in Boca Raton, Fla.

An IBM System/360 Model 40 is installed in the expanded systems and data processing room in Building 001.

The Rochester lab develops the IBM 1288 optical page reader.

The site kicks off an extensive expansion program, including a 69,000-square foot one-story field education center, a 65,000-square foot two-story building (Building 040); a 44,000-square foot addition to Building 105; and a 6,000-square foot expansion of the power plant. These projects are scheduled for completion in mid-1969. An additional 1,300 parking places are created and the site's perimeter road is moved 350 feet farther east. Upon completion, the site totals nearly 1.2 million square feet.


Work begins on constructing a third laboratory building, scheduled for completion in mid-1970. The new three-level, 156,000-square foot facility will increase the SDD Rochester lab to 440,000 square feet.

The manufacturing floor is given a facelift as machines are painted blue to contrast with the gray tones of the walls, ceilings and floors.

The plant ships its first IBM 1288 optical reader.

The Rochester lab develops the IBM 2502 card reader.

Jul. 30

 IBM System/3
The company announces the Rochester-developed IBM System/3, the site's first system totally developed in-house and the most significant IBM product announcement since the IBM System/360 in 1964. The System/3 is manufactured in Building 105-A.

IBM chairman Thomas J. Watson, Jr., visits the site.

Nov. 3
The company establishes the IBM General Systems Division (GSD), headquartered in Atlanta, and Rochester becomes one of its two principal manufacturing and development sites.

 Don Stephenson is named general manager.

The facility is reorganized with the merger of the plant, lab and support organizations into one unified team.

 The Customs Systems manufacturing unit ships a new product: the IBM 1907-5 tape terminal. A 400-ton molding press is installed.

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