National Archives at Atlanta

National Archives at Atlanta

RG 156 - Office of Chief of Ordnance, Historical Reports - Holston Ordnance Works


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Historical Reports, 1942-1946National Archives Identifier 6997147
This series consists of formerly classified historical reports from the Holston Ordnance Works in Kingsport, Tennessee. Records in this series concern subjects related to engineering and construction, procurement, and production. Included in some of the reports are photographs of installation activities and personnel and detailed production statistics.

        Box 1: Historical Reports, 1941-1944

        The historical reports all contain the history of Holston Ordnance Works from Tennessee Eastman Corporation to research and develop of acetic acid for production

         

        Folder 1: 1941-1942

        ▪ Organization Charts

        ▪ Schedule and Progress Report for All Engineering Work Charts

         

        Folder 2: 1942- June 1943

        ▪ Major problems securing required equipment and critical materials

        ▪ Increasing employment

        ▪ Schedule and Progress Report for All Engineering Work Charts

        ▪ Beginning of permanent work of Holston Ordnance Works on April 17, 1943 and on April 29, the initial operation of the first production line commenced

        ▪ Employing significant amounts of women

        ▪ Homes being constructed for Ordnance employees

        ▪ Purchase Orders Placed

        ▪ Production Statistics

        ▪ Lost Time Injury Record

        ▪ Transportation set-up to get employees to and from work during all operating shifts

        Photographs (8) of initiation ceremony for first line of production

        ▪ Plant B began production on May 27, 1943

        ▪ Development of a recreational program

        ▪ Employment Schedule Charts

         

        Folder 3: September-October 1943

        Photograph of the works manager of Tennessee Eastman Corporation

        Photograph of the commanding officer of Holston Ordnance Works

        ▪ Visit from the National Defense Research Committee

        - Told the work will hasten the end of the war

        Photographs (2) of anhydrous ammonia tanks

        ▪ Production Statistics

        ▪ Employment Schedule Chart

        ▪ Time Injury Record

        ▪ Receiving Reports Chart

        Photograph of Assistant Works Manager of Holston Ordnance Works

        Photograph of General Superintendent of Production of Holston Ordnance Works

        ▪ In October 1943 the attention was turned towards expansion

        ▪ Constant research and adjustments to find the best production method and to get the best product

        Photograph of X-Ray apparatus in Medical Department Building

        Photograph of Medical Building

         

        Folder 4: October- December 1943

        Photograph Office Manager of Holston Ordnance Works

        Photograph of Executive Assistant to the Works Manager

        ▪ End product is Composition B for Army and Navy Requirements, foreign governments, and Composition B-2 for Navy Department

        Photograph of Superintendent of Explosives Division with an RDX Reactor Control Board

        Photograph of Reactor Platform

        ▪ Production Statistics

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        Photograph of Army and Navy Production Award

        Photograph of Chief Engineer of Holston Ordnance Works

        Photograph of Superintendent of the Chemical Control Division

        ▪ Breakdown of Personnel

        Photograph of  RDX Sensitivity Machine

        Photograph of Laboratory

        Photograph of facility that makes Composition B from RDX

         

        Folder 5: January-February 1944

        ▪ Summary of Operations

        ▪ RDX operating data

        ▪ Composition B operating data

        ▪ Primary Distillation operating data

        ▪ Acid Concentration operating data

        ▪ Summary of Chemical Analysis

        ▪ Medical Department data

        ▪ Fiscal Statistics

        Photograph of Commanding Officer Estate

        Photograph of magazine located in Solitude Area

        Photograph of protective fence surrounding Area B

        ▪ Requesting deferments for men of age to be drafted by Selective Services Act

        ▪ Source of Manpower

        ▪ Breakdown of personnel and terminated employees

         

        Folder 6: December 1943- March 1944

        ▪ Placing women in men’s jobs as the war creates labor shortage

        ▪ Explosions accidents shut down operations for days in order to inspect and repair

        Photograph of protective fence surrounding Area B

        Photograph of magazine located in Solitude Area

        ▪ Material Consumption Conversion Cost Summary

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Salary and Wage Statistics

         

        Box 2: Historical Reports, 1944-1945

        Folder 1: March- May 1944

        ▪ Photograph of Administration Building, Area B

        ▪ Personnel data

        - 3.2% increase in colored employees

        - Source of Manpower map

        ▪ Summary of accidents and injuries

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        Photograph of Superintendent of the Shops and Maintenance Division directing construction

        Photograph of a plate for a fractioning column showing the bubbling cups in place

        ▪ Absenteeism decreased sharply

        Photograph of Purification Building in Area B

        Photograph of Laboratory in Area B

         

        Folder 2: May-July 1944

        ▪ Emergencies in Area A caused lost time

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Personnel Data

        ▪ Summary of accidents and injuries

        Photograph of Guard Force in Area B

        Photograph of Office Manager of Holston Ordnance Works

        ▪ Fiscal Statistics

        Photograph of Steam Plant in Area B

        Photograph of the Medical Laboratory

        ▪ Rigorous Job Training program is described

        ▪ Letter from the Works Manager about the Fifth War Loans Drive

        Life Magazine photograph of Composition B from Holston to Japan

         

        Folder 3: July-September 1944

        Photograph of Superintendent of the Payroll and Office Services Division

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        Photograph of an Addressograph Operator inscribing bonds

        Photograph of original and improved Automatic Transporter Trucks

        ▪ Continued improvements to production

        Photograph of Presentee Bulletin Board

        ▪ Mobile medical unit put into practice

        Photographs (2) of Mobile Medical Unit

        ▪ Source of Manpower Map

        Photograph of Superintendent of the Plant A division

        ▪ Operating Hours Lost by Location Chart

        Photograph of new barricades at the Burning Ground in order to improve safety

        Photograph of the Diversion Bar that separates the North Fork from the South Fork of the Holston River

         

        Folder 4: October-December 1944

        ▪ Newspaper Clippings about war explosives being made by Holston Ordnance Works

        Photograph of the Cottages in the Staff House Area

        Photograph of the “Accident Record” scoreboards for employees to keep track of safety

        ▪ Source of Manpower Map

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Extension of contracts

        ▪ Employees now able to submit suggestions regarding safety

        Photograph of an employee receiving an award for his suggestion of improving the methods of his operation

        Photograph of Building 330 which was developed by Holston Engineers and saves money/time

        ▪ 100% participation in War Bond Purchasing

        ▪ Explanations of Recreational activities and facilities

        Photograph of Guard Forces

        Photograph of Women’s Softball Team

        Photograph of the “banding operation” in the N building, which is the end of the line of production for Composition B

         

        Folder 5: January and August 1945

        ▪ Process Improvement Progress Report

        - Process improvement work being carried out by the Chemical Control Division

        - Greater safety, increased production, improved quality, and lower costs

        - Effect of Temperature History of Hexamine Solution on RDX Yield Chart

        - Effect of Acetamide on RDX Yield Chart

        - Effect of Ammonium Nitrate Usage on RDX Yield Chart

        - Solubility Data Charts

        - Other Uses of RDX

        - Vapor Liquid Equilibrium Diagram

        ▪ The Preparation of DINA by a Continuous Process

        - A process for refining the crude material

        - Variables Affecting Yield and Quality

        - Photograph of Laboratory Continuous Reactor

        - Purification of DINA

        - Analytical Methods

         

        Box 3: Historical Reports, 1945-1946

        Folder 1: December 1944-February 1945

        ▪ Change of Contract with Tennessee Eastman

        Photograph of Pay Day Line

        ▪ Personnel Data

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        Photograph of the Clothing Store

        ▪ Preparations for Termination of both employees and excess government land

        ▪ Departments continue to be reduced and consolidated

        Photograph of female chauffeurs for the Mail Room, Car Pool, and Shuttle Service

        Photograph of the inter-plant railway system carrying the raw materials for Composition B

        - Includes negative

        Photograph of TNT unloading docks

        Photograph of Hexamine being unloaded from a box car

         

        Folder 2: February-April 1945

        ▪ Source of Manpower Map

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Personnel Data

        ▪ Finance and budget estimates

        ▪ Production Reports

        Photograph of Commanding Officer of the Holston Ordnance Works

        ▪ New Safety practices put into place to make accidents rare

        Photographs (3) of the operations of Building D

        ▪ Organization Charts

         

        Folder 3: April-June 1945

        Photograph of Commanding Officer of the Holston Ordnance Works

        ▪ Two years of operation in May 1945 and coincides with VE Day

        - Honored for their great work in the production of Composition B and explosives

        Photograph of Area B

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Finance and budget estimates

        ▪ Production Reports

        Photograph of Building E

        Photograph of pumps outside of Building E

        ▪ Source of Manpower Map

        ▪ Personnel Data

        Photographs (2) of Building G

        ▪ Work on a confidential explosive project

         

        Folder 4: June-August 1945

        ▪ Personnel Data

        ▪ Excess material being shipped to other Ordnance Districts or back to the government

        Photographs (3) of Building H

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Finance and budget estimates

        ▪ Production Reports

        ▪ Laboratory work on DINA, a new explosive, is almost complete

        ▪ On August 6, 1945 Composition B production was cut to one line and the rest of the lines to be in standby condition

        ▪ New insurance plan for accident and sickness offered to employees

        ▪ Reduction in Personnel—transferred to main Tennessee Eastman plant

        Photograph of operations in Building K

        Photographs (3) of TNT melting kettles

        Photograph of Building H

        ▪ Deactivation Organization

        ▪ Cleaning, decontamination, and final preparation for standby in all buildings not being used

        ▪ Organization Chart

         

        Folder 5: August1945- June 1946

        ▪ On August 15, 1945 Holston Ordnance Works was ordered to stop production

        ▪ Personnel Data

        ▪ Summary of Operations and Operating Data for each unit

        ▪ Finance and budget estimates

        ▪ Production Reports

        Photograph of Composition B pellet cooling

        Photograph of tote box filled with Composition B

        Photograph of operations in Building N

        Photograph of a trailer transporting Composition B

        Photograph of loading docks

        Photograph of pallet loads of Composition B

        ▪ Deactivation Department to deal with preparing the plant for standby and storage

        ▪ Exit interviews were given to employees through Clinton Engineer Works and Eastman Kodak

        ▪ Deactivation Organization Chart

        ▪ On November 18, 1945 the contract between Tennessee Eastman and the US Government was completed and all standby and storage passed into the hands of the Ordnance Department

        ▪ Sold all recreation property and the funds were given to the Red Cross

        Photographs (2) of Army Navy  E Award

        Photographs of reservoir hill before and after soil erosion control work

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