The National Archives at Seattle

Guide to Archival Holdings at NARA's Pacific Alaska Region (Seattle)


Record Group 202
Records of the National War Labor Board (World War II)

Administrative History
The National War Labor Board (NWLB) was established in the Office of Emergency Management by an Executive order of January 12, 1942, to succeed duties of the National Defense Mediation Board. The NWLB was to act as final arbiter of wartime labor disputes and to pass on adjustments in certain wages and salaries. It established 12 regional war labor boards and a territorial war labor board for Hawaii. It also created for key industries commissions and panels authorized to settle all but the most important disputes and wage stabilization cases. The NWLB was terminated in 1945, its functions to be performed by the newly created National Wage Stabilization Board, which was terminated in 1946.

Records Description
Dates: 1942-47
Volume: 225 cubic feet
Records of the NWLB Region XII office, which covered Oregon, Washington, and Alaska. The records relate to enforcement activities and disputes. Included are case files, correspondence, press releases, and reports.

Records of the West Coast Lumber Commission, 1943-1945. The records relate to wage scales in the lumber industry, the Commission's wage policy, and the interpretation of general orders. Included are case files, historical and policy documentation files, and transcripts.

Finding Aids
List of folder titles.
Entries 165-167, 172-174, 177-178, 277-286, 462-463, and 465 in Estelle Rebec, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the National War Labor Board (WWII), PI 78 (1955).

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Record Group 219
Records of the Office of Defense Transportation

Administrative History
The Office of Defense Transportation (ODT) was created within the Office for Emergency Management on December 18, 1941, to ensure that the United States domestic transportation facilities were used to win the war in the most efficient manner. The ODT was authorized to coordinate activities of Federal agencies and private groups in adjusting the transportation system to the needs of the war, to determine adequacies of facilities and act to provide additional transportation, to coordinate transportation to prevent congestion, and to determine storage and warehouse requirements. In addition the ODT coordinated with the U.S. Maritime Commission and other agencies to recommend to Congress legislation affecting wartime transportation. The ODT was authorized to limit and regulate domestic use of transportation facilities, to advise all parties on transportation service for essential personnel, and to operate transportation properties seized by the Government. After the war, ODT's responsibilities steadily diminished until the agency was terminated on July 1, 1949.

Records Description
Dates: 1942-45
Volume: 2 cubic feet
Records of the Office of Waterway Transportation, Seattle, 1944-45. The records relate to barge service; deferments; engine stockpiling; personnel; and port committee meetings. They are correspondence.

Records of the Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon, offices of the Division of Storage, 1942-45. The records document the storage of defense-related materials. They are primarily correspondence.

Finding Aids
List of folder titles.

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Record Group 232
Records of the Petroleum Administrative Board

Administrative History
On September 11, 1933, the Secretary of the Interior established the Petroleum Administrative Board to enforce regulations issued under the National Industrial Recovery Act intended to prohibit the transportation in interstate or foreign commerce of petroleum products exceeding amounts permitted by State laws or regulations. The Board assumed most of the functions of the Federal Oil Conservation Board, 1924-34, and was responsible for the enforcement of the Connally "Hot Oil" Act of February 22, 1935. The Board was terminated March 31, 1936, and replaced by the Petroleum Conservation Division.

Records Description
Dates: 1933-36
Volume: 4 cubic feet
Records of the Seattle office. The records relate to the Pacific Coast Petroleum Agency and the Pacific Supply Cooperative. They are correspondence.

Finding Aids
Box contents list.

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Record Group 234
Records of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation

Administrative History
The Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC) was established by an act of January 22, 1932 (47 Stat. 5). It was authorized to extend financial aid to agriculture, commerce and industry by means of direct loans to banks and other credit agencies and, upon approval by the Interstate Commerce Commission, to railroads. Later legislation authorized the RFC to purchase certain capital stock and make loans, to assist in financing construction of public works and various self-liquidating projects, and to accept drafts and bills of exchange drawn upon by the RFC by purchasers abroad of American products.

The RFC was organized as a Government business corporation, with a considerable degree of independence, but (unlike most Federal agencies) directly accountable to Congress. Under the law that created it the RFC would have expired after 10 years (in 1942), but amendments extended its life several times. It eventually was abolished on June 30, 1957.

Loan agencies were established in the field, usually in cities that had Federal Reserve banks.

Records Description
Dates: 1942-46
Volume: 12 cubic feet
Records of the Seattle office of the War Damage Corporation. The records relate to insurance against loss and damage from enemy attack or contact with the enemy. They are general correspondence.

Finding Aids
Entry 190, Charles Zaid, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, PI 173 (1973).

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Record Group 237
Records of the Federal Aviation Administration

Administrative History
The Civil Aeronautics Act of June 23, 1938, established an independent Civil Aeronautics Authority "to promote the development and safety and to provide for the regulation of civil aeronautics." In 1940 the authority was divided into a Civil Aeronautics Board with safety regulatory authority and a Civil Aeronautics Administration to enforce civil air regulations; aid the development of a national airport system; and plan, construct, and operate the Federal Airways System. Both organizations were part of the Department of Commerce until 1958, when the newly-established Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) assumed all of their functions. The FAA became a part of the Department of Transportation by an act of October 15, 1966, and was redesignated the Federal Aviation Administration.

Records Description
Dates: 1958-84
Volume: 70 cubic feet
Records of the Northwest Mountain Region, Seattle. The records relate to airport airspace analysis and rulemaking; and organizational planning and management. The records are advisory committee files and project files.

Finding Aids
List of folder titles.

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Record Group 245
Records of the Solid Fuels Administration for War

Administrative History
The Bituminous Coal Conservation Act of 1935 (49 Stat. 991) created the first Bituminous Coal Commission. A commission order of October 9, 1935, established 23 producer districts throughout the country. The first Commission was succeeded by the second Bituminous Coal Commission in 1937, when the 1935 act was modified (50 Stat. 72) to take constitutional objections to the initial act into account. Both commissions were independent Federal agencies.

On April 3, 1939, the Commission's functions were transferred to the Department of the Interior, and in July the Bituminous Coal Division was established within the department. Authorization of the division lapsed on August 24, 1943, and many of its functions, as well as its district offices, were transferred to the Solid Fuels Administration for War.

The two Bituminous Coal Commissions and the Bituminous Coal Division determined production costs, regulated prices, wages, and marketing procedures for the bituminous coal industry. To this end, they established the producer districts, gathered statistics, undertook research, and compiled the Bituminous Coal Code.

On November 5, 1941, a letter from the President to the Secretary of the Interior established the Office of Solid Fuels Coordinator for National Defense within the Department of the Interior. The name of the office was changed to the Office of Solid Fuels Coordinator for War on May 25, 1942. Under both names, the office was essentially a planning and advisory agency. Executive Order 9332 of April 19 transformed the Office into the Solid Fuels Administration for War (SFAW). The SFAW had the legal authority, lacking in its predecessor, to implement an emergency distribution and controls program.

With the lapsing of authorization for the Bituminous Coal Division on August 24, 1943, the SFAW inherited its district office structure, staff, and records, renaming the district offices area distribution offices.

All field offices of the SFAW were closed on April 30, 1947. The SFAW itself ceased to exist on June 30 of that year under an Executive order of May 6, 1947.

Records Description
Dates: 1937-47
Volume: 9 cubic feet
Records of the Seattle, Washington, office. The records relate to emergency control and distribution of solid fuels. They are primarily correspondence.

Finding Aids
Entries 215-216 in Forrest R. Holdcamper, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Field Records of the Solid Fuels Administration for War, NC 145 (1966).

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Record Group 252
Records of the Office of the Housing Expediter

Administrative History
A Housing Expediter was appointed in the Office of War Mobilization and Reconversion by the President on December 12, 1945, to plan, coordinate, and expedite postwar housing programs. The Expediter was authorized by an Executive order in January 1946 to plan and coordinate a veterans' housing program. The Office of the Housing Expediter, which had been authorized by an act of Congress of May 22, 1946, was terminated by an Executive order of July 31, 1951, and its functions were transferred to the Office of Rent Stabilization of the Economic Stabilization Agency and the Housing and Home Finance Agency.

Records Description
Dates: 1942-53
Volume: 78 cubic feet
Records of the following area rent offices: Bremerton, Washington; Seattle, Washington; Tacoma, Washington; and Wenatchee, Washington. (These offices reported to a regional office in San Francisco.) The records relate to rent control issues. The records are correspondence.

Records of the Western Log and Lumber Administration, Portland, Oregon, 1942-47. The records relate to the price and allocation of lumber, and are general correspondence and meeting minutes.

Finding Aids
List of folder titles.

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Record Group 269
General Records of the General Services Administration

Administrative History
The General Services Administration (GSA) was established as an independent agency by the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of June 30, 1949. The act consolidated and transferred to GSA certain real and personal property and related functions formerly assigned to various agencies. Its purpose is to provide an economical and efficient system for managing Government property and services, such as constructing and operating buildings, procuring and distributing supplies, disposing of surplus property, managing traffic and communications, and stockpiling strategic and critical materials.

Records Description
Dates: 1949-77
Volume: 26 cubic feet
Records of the Region 10 office, Seattle, Washington. The records document the disposal of Federal lands and installations in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. They are primarily case files, with some organizational files. See RG 121, RG 270, and RG 291 for related records.

Records of the Office of Emergency Preparedness, Federal Preparedness Agency, Seattle. The records relate to emergency planning. They are correspondence and plans.

Finding Aids
List of folder titles.

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Record Group 270
Records of the War Assets Administration

Administrative History
The War Assets Administration (WAA) was established in the Office for Emergency Management by Executive order on March 25, 1946. Its immediate predecessors were the Surplus Property Administration, created in 1945, and War Assets Corporation, created in 1946. The chief WAA function was the disposal of surplus consumer, capital, and producer goods; industrial and maritime real property; and airports and aircraft located in the United States and its Territories. The WAA was abolished by an act of June 30, 1949, and its functions were transferred to the newly created General Services Administration for liquidation.

Records Description
Dates: 1941-54
Volume: 269 cubic feet
Records of the Seattle regional office. The records relate to property claims; deeds and leases; and real property management, transactions, and disposals. The records are case files. See RG 121, RG 269, and RG 291 for related records.

Finding Aids
List of folder titles.

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Record Group 291
Records of the Federal Property Resources Service

Administrative History
The Property Management and Disposal Service (PMDS), established July 29, 1966, by the Administrator of General Services, assumed functions formerly assigned to the Defense Materials Service and the Utilization and Disposal Service. PMDS acquires, stores, and manages inventories of strategic and critical materials and promotes maximum utilization of Federal personal and real property through donations, sales, and other authorized methods.

Records Description
Dates: 1956-68
Volume: 65 cubic feet
Records of the Seattle office. The records document excess Federal installations in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington, and consist of bids, correspondence, real property case files, property assessments, and transfer documents. See RG 121, RG 269, and RG 270 for related records.

Finding Aids
A list of case file numbers and names.

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Record Group 293
Records of the Wage and Salary Stabilization Boards of the Economic Stabilization Agency

Administrative History
The Wage Stabilization Board was established by Executive Order 10161 of September 9, 1950, to control wages and salaries during the Korean War. In May 1951, a Salary Stabilization Board was created with authority over administrative, executive, and professional salaries. Wage controls were suspended February 6, 1953, and the boards were terminated April 30, 1953.

Records Description
Dates: 1951-53
Volume: 2 cubic feet

Records of the Region 13 Office, Seattle. The records document agriculture, the forest and fishing industries, organized labor, and the general economy of the Pacific Northwest. Included are minutes, general correspondence, and transcripts of public hearings.

Finding Aids
Draft inventory.

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