Guide to Federal Records

Records of the Wage and Hour Division [WHD]


(Record Group 155)
1922-75 (bulk 1938-75)

Overview of Records Locations

Table of Contents
  • 155.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY
  • 155.2 RECORDS OF THE WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION 1938-42
  • 155.2.1 General records
  • 155.2.2 Records of the Hearings Branch
  • 155.2.3 Records of Industry Committees
  • 155.3 RECORDS OF THE WAGE AND HOUR AND PUBLIC CONTRACTS DIVISIONS 1922-70 (bulk 1939-70)
  • 155.3.1 General records
  • 155.3.2 Records of the Branch of Child Labor
  • 155.4 FIELD OFFICE RECORDS OF THE WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION AND ITS PREDECESSORS 1939-75
  • 155.4.1 Records of ESA Region I, Boston, MA (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT)
  • 155.4.2 Records of ESA Region II, New York, NY (NJ, NY, PR, VI)
  • 155.4.3 Records of ESA Region III, Philadelphia, PA (DE, DC, MD, PA, VA, WV)
  • 155.4.4 Records of ESA Region IV, Atlanta, GA (AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC, TN)
  • 155.4.5 Records of ESA Region V, Chicago, IL (IL, IN, MI, MN, OH, WI)
  • 155.4.6 Records of ESA Region VI, Dallas, TX (AR, LA, NM, OK, TX)
  • 155.4.7 Records of ESA Region VII, Kansas City, MO (IA, KS, MO, NE)
  • 155.4.8 Records of ESA Region VIII, Denver, CO (CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, WY)
  • 155.4.9 Records of ESA Region IX, San Francisco, CA (AZ, CA, HI, NV)
  • 155.4.10 Records of ESA Region X, Seattle, WA (AK, ID, OR, WA)
  • 155.5 CARTOGRAPHIC RECORDS (GENERAL)
  • 155.6 MOTION PICTURES (GENERAL) 1970-73
  • 155.7 SOUND RECORDINGS (GENERAL)
  • 155.8 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL)
155.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY

Established: In the Workplace Standards Administration, Department of Labor, by Secretary's Order 19-70, August 24, 1970.

Predecessor Agencies:

In the Department of Labor:

Public Contracts Division (1936-42)
Wage and Hour Division (1938-42)

Wage and Hour and Public Contracts Divisions (WHPCD, 1942-69)
WHPCD, Wage and Labor Standards Administration (1969-70)

Transfers: To the Employment Standards Administration (ESA), Department of Labor, effective April 28, 1971, by Secretary's Order 13-71, May 4, 1971.

Functions: Administers the minimum wage, overtime pay, child and convict labor, and safety and health provisions of the Walsh- Healey Act concerning public contracts (49 Stat. 2036), June 30, 1936; the wage and hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (52 Stat. 1060), June 25, 1938; the wage provisions of the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965 (79 Stat. 845), September 29, 1965; the minimum wage and fringe benefit provisions of the Service Contract Act of 1965 (79 Stat. 1034), October 22, 1965; and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (81 Stat. 602), December 15, 1967.

Finding Aids: Herbert J. Horwitz, comp., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Wage and Hour and Public Contracts Divisions," NC 77 (Nov. 1964); supplement in National Archives microfiche edition of preliminary inventories (1986).

Related Records: Record copies of publications of the Wage and Hour Division in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.

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155.2 RECORDS OF THE WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION
1938-42


History: Established in the Department of Labor pursuant to the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (52 Stat. 1060), June 25, 1938, to administer the act's provisions regarding minimum wage, overtime compensation, equal pay, and child labor standards for persons employed in interstate or foreign commerce and in the production of goods for such commerce. Consolidated with the Public Contracts Division to form the WHPCD, 1942. SEE 155.3.

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 155.2.1 General records

Textual Records: Records relating chiefly to personnel, but including copies of administrative orders and issuances, 1938-42. Regulations defining terms used in the Fair Labor Standards Act, 1938-42. Orders to investigate alleged violations of the act, 1939-42. Records relating to cooperative enforcement agreements with OK and DC, 1940-41; and with CT, MN, and NC, 1940-42. Press releases, 1938-40.

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 155.2.2 Records of the Hearings Branch

Textual Records: Records relating to establishment of minimum wage rates for apprentices in 17 industries ("Learners Files"), 1938-42. Records relating to the issuance, cancellation, and reconsideration of permits (learners' special certificates) to hire apprentices at less than minimum wages, 1939-42. Transcript of special hearing on establishing uniform wage rates in the apparel industry, 1940-41. Records relating to exemptions from provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act for operators of seasonal industries, 1938-42. Records of investigations of special industries partially exempted from provisions of the act, 1938-42. Records of hearings on claims for exemptions for facilities furnished by employers to employees, 1940-41; on amendments to recordkeeping regulations for employers, 1940-41; and on amendments to regulations regarding employees in areas of production exempt from provisions of the act, 1939-42.

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 155.2.3 Records of Industry Committees

History: The Fair Labor Standards Act authorized the Administrator of WHD to establish committees for various industries, with equal representation of labor, management, and the public, to recommend higher minimum wages than required by statute.

Textual Records: Hearing and investigation case files on 41 industries, 1938-42, with accompanying exhibits and briefs. Records of the Puerto Rico Industry Committee, 1940-42 (in New York).

Related Records: Records of the Division of Industry Committees, 1939-69, including docket files containing transcripts of hearings, correspondence, economic reports, and statistical studies; and records relating to the Special Industry Committee for Puerto Rico, 1940-51, in 155.3.1.

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 155.3 RECORDS OF THE WAGE AND HOUR AND PUBLIC CONTRACTS DIVISIONS
1922-70 (bulk 1939-70)


History: Public Contracts Division established in the Department of Labor pursuant to an act of June 30, 1936, also known as the Walsh-Healey Act (49 Stat. 2036), to administer the act's provisions regarding the minimum wage, overtime pay, child and convict labor, and safety and health standards in federal supply contracts. Consolidated with the Wage and Hour Division (SEE 155.2) by Secretary's Order, October 15, 1942, under a single administrator, to form the WHPCD, which inherited the functions of its predecessors with respect to the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Walsh-Healey Act. Administrator's authority to establish industry committees limited by the Fair Labor Standards Amendments of 1949 (63 Stat. 911), October 26, 1949, effective January 25, 1950, to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Augmented responsibilities since 1942 included enforcing provisions of the Service Contract Act of 1965, the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967. WHPCD assigned, by Secretary's Order 24-69, May 19, 1969, effective July 1, 1969, to the Wage and Labor Standards Administration (WLSA), redesignated Workplace Standards Administration, 1970. Concurrently with redesignation of WLSA, WHPCD redesignated WHD. SEE 155.1.

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 155.3.1 General records

Textual Records: Records relating to organization, budget, and Congressional and interagency relations, 1938-47. Correspondence with unions, trade associations, national organizations, and Members of Congress, 1938-52. Records relating to cooperative enforcement agreements with CT, MN, and NC, 1940-63. Records of the Division of Industry Committees, 1939-69, including docket files containing transcripts of hearings, correspondence, economic reports, and statistical studies. Records relating to the Special Industry Committee for Puerto Rico (also known as the Puerto Rico Industry Committee), 1940-51. Industry economic studies, 1942-64. Issuances associated with revisions to the Field Operations Handbook, 1949-70.

Related Records: Records of the Puerto Rico Industry Committee, 1940-42, in 155.2.3.

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 155.3.2 Records of the Branch of Child Labor

Textual Records: Hazardous occupations orders, 1939-63. Shipboard occupations investigation file, 1953. Proposed order on shipbuilding, 1940-42. Historical files, 1922-68.

Photographs (246 images): Employment of children in various occupations, including industry and agriculture, 1930-60 (CL). SEE ALSO 155.8.

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 155.4 FIELD OFFICE RECORDS OF THE WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION AND ITS PREDECESSORS
1939-75


History: WHD established 25 field offices in 1939, which by mid- 1940 had been organized into a system of 16 field offices and subordinate branches. Reorganized into 14 regions, numbered as 1- 3 and 5-15, 1941. Region 6 abolished, 1941. Regions realigned as I-XIII under WHPCD, 1943. Realigned and consolidated, 1948, as I- IX. Realigned and Regions X and XI added, 1951 and 1963. Regional designations discontinued, 1967, with old Regions V and VI consolidated as Chicago Regional Office. Regional structure stable since adoption of standard federal regions (I-X) by the Employment Standards Administration (ESA) and its components, 1972.

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 155.4.1 Records of ESA Region I, Boston, MA (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT)

History: Boston field office of WHD established in 1939. WHD Region 1 (ME, MA, NH, RI, VT), with Boston as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated as WHPCD Region I, 1943, with CT transferred from old WHD Region 2 (New York). Geographical extent subsequently stable. Redesignated Boston Regional Office, 1967. Redesignated as headquarters of ESA Region I, 1972.

Textual Records (in Boston): Selected inspection (investigation) case files, 1939-62.

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 155.4.2 Records of ESA Region II, New York, NY (NJ, NY, PR, VI)

History: New York field office of WHD established in 1939. WHD Region 2 (CT, NJ, NY), with New York as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated as WHPCD Region II, 1943, with CT transferred to WHPCD Region I (Boston). Redesignated New York Regional Office, 1967. Jurisdiction extended to former Territorial Office for PR and VI with adoption of standard federal regions, and redesignation of NY as headquarters of ESA Region II, 1972.

Textual Records: Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the New York field office, WHD Region II, and WHPCD Region II, 1939-45 (in New York). Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the San Juan (Santurce), PR, Territorial Office, 1939-45 (in New York), and 1957-61 (in Atlanta).

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 155.4.3 Records of ESA Region III, Philadelphia, PA (DE, DC, MD, PA, VA, WV)

History: Philadelphia field office of WHD established in 1939. WHD Region 3 (DE, PA, part of WV), with Philadelphia as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated WHPCD Region III, 1943, with responsibility for WV transferred to Region IV (Richmond) same year. Jurisdiction expanded to include MD and WV from Region IV (Richmond), abolished in realignment of 1948. WV transferred to newly created Region X (Nashville), 1951. Regional headquarters transferred to Chambersburg, PA, 1958, and DC assigned to Region III. DC had previously been part of Region IV (Richmond), 1943-48, and subsequently unassigned. Regional headquarters returned to Philadelphia, 1968. Redesignated Philadelphia Regional Office, 1967. Jurisdiction extended to include VA and WV from abolished Nashville Regional Office (formerly Region X), with adoption of standard federal regions, and redesignation of Philadelphia as headquarters of ESA Region III, 1972.

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Selected inspection (investigation) case files, 1939-45, 1948-71.

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 155.4.4 Records of ESA Region IV, Atlanta, GA (AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC, TN)

History: Atlanta, Birmingham, Charlotte, Nashville, and Cleveland field offices of WHD established in 1939. Initial WHD regional alignment, 1941, designated Atlanta as regional office for Region 7 (FL, GA); Birmingham, Region 8 (AL, MS, LA); Nashville, Region 9 (TN, part of KY); Raleigh, Region 6 (NC, SC); and Cleveland, Region 10 (OH, MI, part of KY). Region 6 abolished 1941. SC to Region 7 and NC administered by state agency under cooperative agreement. WHPCD regional realignments, 1943, redesignated Region 7 as Region V, Region 8 as Region VI, Region 9 as Region VII, Region 10 as Region VIII, and assigned NC to Region V. Jurisdiction of Region VII extended to all of KY, 1943. Reorganization of 1948 consolidated Regions V (Atlanta) and VI (Birmingham) as new Region IV (Birmingham), transferring LA to new Region VIII (Dallas); abolished Region VII (Nashville), transferring TN to new Region IV and KY to new Region V (Cleveland); and assigned VA to new Region IV from abolished Region IV (Richmond). New Region X (Nashville), comprising VA and TN (from Region IV), KY (from Region V), and WV (from Region III, Philadelphia), established 1951. New Region XI (Atlanta), comprising GA, NC, and SC (from Region IV) established 1963. In 1966 realignment, Region IV lost FL (to Region XI) and acquired AR and LA (from Region VIII). Numerical designations dropped, 1967-72. Nashville, Birmingham, and Atlanta Regional Offices consolidated as Region IV (Atlanta) in realignment resulting from ESA adoption of standard federal regions, 1972, with VA and WV to ESA Region III (Philadelphia) and LA and AR to Region VI (Dallas).

Textual Records (in Atlanta): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the Atlanta, Birmingham, Nashville, Raleigh, and Richmond field offices, 1939-41; WHD Regions 5, 7, 8, and 9, 1941-43; WHPCD Regions IV-VII, 1943-45; WHPCD Region IV, 1951-67; WHPCD Region XI, 1959-67; Atlanta Regional Office, 1967-71; Birmingham Regional Office, 1967-71; Fort Lauderdale Area Office, 1972-73; Raleigh Area Office, 1955-59; Nashville Area Office, 1954-66; Lexington field office, 1972; Louisville field office, 1963-75; and Jackson field office, 1972-73. Selected inspection (investigation) case files for NC, separately maintained by the State of North Carolina under a cooperative agreement, 1939-45.

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 155.4.5 Records of ESA Region V, Chicago, IL (IL, IN, MI, MN, OH, WI)

History: Chicago established as WHD field office in 1939. WHD Region 11 (IL, IN, WI), with Chicago as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated WHPCD Region IX, 1943. Redesignated as Region VI with addition of MN from old Region XII (Minneapolis), 1948. Acquired MI and OH from abolished Region V (Cleveland) and redesignated Chicago Regional Office, 1967-72. Geographical extent subsequently stable. Redesignated as headquarters of ESA Region V, 1972.

Cleveland established as WHD field office in 1939. WHD Region 10 (OH, MI, KY), with Cleveland as regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated WHPCD Region VIII, 1943. Redesignated WHPCD Region V, 1948. Lost KY to newly established Region X (Nashville), 1951. Abolished, with MI and OH to Chicago Regional Office, 1967.

Textual Records (in Chicago): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the Chicago and Cleveland field Offices, WHD Regions 10 and 11, and WHPCD Regions V and VI, 1939- 45.

Microfilm Publications: T950.

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 155.4.6 Records of ESA Region VI, Dallas, TX (AR, LA, NM, OK, TX)

History: Dallas established as WHD field office in 1939. WHD Region 14 (AR, NM, OK, TX), with Dallas as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated WHPCD Region XII, 1943. Redesignated as Region VIII with addition of LA from old Region VI (Birmingham), 1948. AR and LA to Region IV (Birmingham), 1966. Redesignated Dallas Regional Office, 1967. AR and LA restored and Dallas redesignated as headquarters of ESA Region VI in realignments resulting from adoption of standard federal regions, 1972.

Textual Records (in Fort Worth): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the Dallas field office, WHD Region 14, and WHPCD Region XII, 1939-45; WHPCD Region VIII, 1952-65; Oklahoma City, OK, District Office, 1964-66; and New Orleans, LA, Area Office, 1973-75.

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 155.4.7 Records of ESA Region VII, Kansas City, MO (IA, KS, MO, NE)

History: Kansas City established as WHD field office in 1939. WHD Region 13 (CO, IA, KS, MO, NE, WY), with Kansas City as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated as WHPCD Region XI, 1943. Redesignated as Region VII, with addition of ND and SD from abolished Region X (Minneapolis), 1948. MT and UT assigned from Region IX (San Francisco), 1967. Redesignated Kansas City Regional Office, 1967. Redesignated as headquarters of ESA Region VII, with CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, WY to ESA Region VIII (Denver), in realignments resulting from adoption of standard federal regions, 1972.

Textual Records (in Kansas City): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of WHPCD Region VII, 1956-65.

Maps (96 items, in Kansas City): Removed from inspection case files, 1956-65.

Sound Recordings (1 item, in Kansas City): Employee statements, removed from case file no. 45189 (Wilkie-Langford, Inc.), October 1959.

Photographic Prints (22 images, in Kansas City): Removed from case file no. 33892 (Eckert Mineral Research Co.), 1956. SEE ALSO 155.8.

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155.4.8 Records of ESA Region VIII, Denver, CO (CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, WY)

History: Denver became headquarters of ESA Region VIII, with CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, and WY from Kansas City Regional Office (new ESA Region VII), in realignments resulting from adoption of standard federal regions, 1972.

Textual Records (in Denver): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the Kansas City and Minneapolis field offices, WHD Regions 12 and 13, and WHPCD Regions X and XI, 1939-45.

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155.4.9 Records of ESA Region IX, San Francisco, CA (AZ, CA, HI, NV)

History: San Francisco established as WHD field office in 1939. WHD Region 15 (AK, AZ, CA, HI, ID, NV, OR, UT, WA), with San Francisco as the regional office, established in 1941. Redesignated WHPCD Region XIII in 1943. Redesignated as Region IX in 1948, with jurisdiction extended to MT from old Region X (Minneapolis) and AK and HI becoming separate territorial offices. AK and HI (as states) restored to Region IX, 1959 and 1960. MT and UT transferred to Region VII (Kansas City), 1967. Redesignated San Francisco Regional Office, 1967. Redesignated as headquarters of ESA Region IX, with AK, ID, OR, and WA to ESA Region X (Seattle), in realignments resulting from adoption of standard federal regions, 1972.

Textual Records (in San Francisco): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the San Francisco field office, WHD Region 15, WHPCD Regions XIII and IX, and the San Francisco Regional Office, 1939-71.

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 155.4.10 Records of ESA Region X, Seattle, WA (AK, ID, OR, WA)

History: Seattle, established as a branch of San Francisco WHD field office in 1940, and continued as such under subsequent regional organizations, became headquarters of ESA Region X, with AK, ID, OR, and WA from San Francisco Regional Office (new ESA Region IX), in realignments resulting from adoption of standard federal regions, 1972.

Textual Records (in Seattle): Selected inspection (investigation) case files of the Seattle, WA, and Portland, OR, field offices, 1969-71.

155.5 CARTOGRAPHIC RECORDS (GENERAL)

SEE Maps UNDER 155.4.7.

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155.6 MOTION PICTURES (GENERAL)
1970-73


Public service announcements, Age Discrimination and It's the Law, 1970-73 (2 reels).

 155.7 SOUND RECORDINGS (GENERAL)

SEE UNDER 155.4.7.

155.8 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL)

SEE Photographs UNDER 155.3.2.
SEE Photographic Prints UNDER 155.4.7.

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Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

Ordering information

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.


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