John F. Kennedy Library

The John F. Kennedy Library provides access to over a thousand fully transcribed and searchable interviews. These interviews are also categorized by subject term, and an initial survey of relevant subject terms revealed 10 interviews with significant regulatory content. There are likely more.

These interviews are most useful for understanding public/private partnerships in utilities markets, especially electrical power and emerging commercial satellite communications. In the realm of environmental regulation, policies under the purview of the Department of Interior such as mining and mine safety, forest management and fire responses, and the use of federal lands and resources to generate and transmit electrical power garner the most attention. Rural electrification and the structure of power “wheeling” agreements in the west receive much discussion.

Researchers interested in the regulation of the communications industries will also find interviews of interest. Some interviews provide extensive discussion of the FCC, the State Department and the development of the Communications Satellite Corporation (COMSAT) to provide and regulate multinational commercial satellite communications, as well as the development and regulation of cable television.

Other interviews examine the workings of the Federal Trade Commission and the role of the Council of Economic Advisors is shaping economic policy during the Kennedy Administration.

Summary by:  Elizabeth Brake

Mining Engineers Project

Project description: Brief interviews with notable mining engineers on salient phases of their careers. Consultants and executives of companies in widely scattered areas from Alaska to South Africa, they also provide information on the discovery and exploration of new mines.

Regulatory significance: This project appears to have only marginal regulatory significance, but some interviews potentially involve mining regulation of labor and environmental conditions. Researchers interested in issues of transnational regulation and regulatory pluralism may find value in some interviews involving mine exploration and contracts outside the U.S. Given the focus on engineering, interviews might involve issues of private regulation, particularly concerning standardization. Finally, at least one interview involves the Foreign Economic Administration and resource management during World War II.

RepositoryColumbia Center for Oral History

Interview dates: Circa 1961

Digital access: Only abstracts. No online transcripts or audio.

Physical access: For transcripts and audio, researchers may visit the Columbia Center for Oral History.


Interviewees: Robert Annan; John Baragwanath; Alan Bateman; Arthur Bunker; Henry Carlisle; Louis Cates; Cleveland Dodge; John Gustafson; David Irwin; Ira B. Joralemon; James Knapp; Robert Koenig; Lewis Levensaler; Jaffet Lindberg; Donald McLoughlin; W. W. Mein; Reno Sales; Henry DeWitt Smith; Comar Wilson; William E. Wrather.

Colorado Coal Mining Project

Project description: The Colorado Coal Mining Project consists of approximately 20 interviews focused on the mining of coal and on coal mining communities in Colorado. Of primary concern are the 1914 coal miners’ strike and the Great Depression.

Regulatory significance: Three interviews discuss working conditions, mine safety, and the effect of mining regulations on worker safety.

Repository: Center for Oral and Public History, California State University – Fullerton

Interview dates: 1970-1971

Digital access: No online availability.