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E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, Employee Relations Department records

1914-1972
 Collection
Identifier: 1615

Abstract

The Employee Relations Department of the E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company became a formal entity in 1951, but each industrial department was responsible for its own recruitment and personnel practices. E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company is a chemical company more commonly referred to as the DuPont company. The records include reports, tables of hourly wages for production workers, benefits for employees, and personnel record cards for early twentieth century employees.

Dates

  • 1914-1972

Extent

55.5 Linear Feet

Historical Note

The Employee Relations Department of the E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company traces its roots to 1914, even though the department itself did not come into existence as a formal entity until 1951. E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company is a chemical company more commonly referred to as the DuPont company.

Beginning in 1914, each of the industrial departments was responsible for its own recruitment and personnel practices, and each had its own safety and medical committees. During the First World War, the company formed a Welfare Division and staffed it with trained industrial relations specialists. In 1921 the personnel function was consolidated in the Service Department, and in 1945 a formal Employee Relations Division was set up. In 1951 the Service Department was abolished and replaced with an Employee Relations Department. It was renamed DuPont Human Resources in November 1990.

Scope and Contents

The Employee Relations Department records include tables of hourly wages for production workers (4 volumes, 1919-1926). Also included are records documenting "Deliberation on Employee Relations Matters," the bonus plan (1902-1923), group insurance (1906-1923), pensions (1903-1923), and stock subscriptions. There is also considerable documentation on accident prevention, fire protection, and personal injuries. Annual reports of the Employee Relations Department and Safety and Fire Protection Division span the years from 1930 to 1971.

The records of DuPont Human Resources are arranged in seven series, which reflect a broad range of functions and contain material from several periods in the company's history. These records consist almost entirely of files from predecessor divisions and departments.

Series I contains the records of the Employee Relations Department consisting of a set of reports to the Executive Committee from 1952 to 1972. These reports cover a range of topics, including labor and industrial relations, management training, recruitment of technical personnel, and safety and fire protection.

Series II contains the records of the Industrial Relations Division. Sub-Series A contains personnel record cards that document the employment and wage histories of workers from the company's industrial departments in the early twentieth century. The face of the card contains the employee's name, address, date, and place of birth, nationality, marital status, plant location, job title, and pay scale. The back of the card lists previous employment and next of kin to be notified in case of emergency. The cards also record changes in position or wages and date and cause of discharge. All plants and occupations appear to be represented, not merely the Brandywine Works. The cards reflect the boom in employment caused by expanded munitions production during World War I. This period saw the increased, if often temporary, employment of African Americans, particularly at southern plants such as Hopewell, Virginia. Sub-Series B contains a set of worksheets prepared for a study ordered by the Executive Committee in 1923 to analyze relations between labor and management in the years following the company's reorganization in 1902. Sub-Series C consists of records of meritorious service awards, wage increase schedules, and a wage rate study. The bulk of these records document wage patterns during the period from the end of World War I until several years prior to the Great Depression.

Series III contains the records of the Safety and Fire Protection Division. These records include annual reports to the Executive Committee from 1930 to 1971, historical records on the development of company safety standards, insurance reserves from the 1920s to 1940s, newsletters, and various reports and studies documenting field safety organization and plant safety records during the 1920s to 1930s. Series IV contains the files of Curtis B. Patterson, an engineer, and consultant with the Survey and Engineering Sections of the Safety and Fire Protection Division. These files include safety and fire protection bulletins, DuPont Company reference guides and safety publications, records of the National Safety Council, personal injury statistics, and Safety Commission case histories and recommendations.

Series V contains the records of the Education and Development Division from the 1970s and 1980s. This series contains records of a company-sponsored financial management program and a forum devoted to managing global businesses.

Series VI contains the records of the Medical Division (Health Promotion Section). These records consist of a set of newsletters called Health Horizons Highlights from 1985 to 1992.

Series VII contains several sets of DuPont Company organization charts. These records include a complete set of charts for the years 1919 to 1925 and a set of charts from the 1920s and 1930s delineating the functional arrangement of industrial and auxiliary departments. Also included in this series are charts from the 1920s to 1950s outlining the organizational structure of former DuPont departments that were either renamed or absorbed by other departments, as well as charts for companies in which DuPont held an interest.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions on access; this collection is open for research.

Related Materials

E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company records (Accession 0500, Series II), Manuscripts and Archives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Willis F. Harrington papers (Accession 1813), Manuscripts and Archives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Language of Materials

English


Additional Information

Finding Aid & Administrative Information

Title:
E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, Employee Relations Department records
Status:
Description rules:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description:
English
Script of description:
Latin

Revision Statements

  • 2021: Ashley Williams

Repository Details

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscripts and Archives Repository

Contact:
PO Box 3630
Wilmington Delaware 19807 USA
302-658-2400