By Arthur E Thiessen
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Extra info for A history of the General Radio Company
17 This popular instrument was so well designed that it was not changed for fifteen years, until it was superseded by the Type 716-A Capacitance Bridge. " Audio oscillators are so commonplace today that it seems as if they could have had no beginning. Actually, the first commercial low frequency oscillator (the Type 377 ) was announced by GR in 1927. It was, of course, battery-operated; the operation of vacuum tubes from alternating-current circuits in those days was not satisfactory because of hum problems.
Those plants and laboratories, both military and civilian, soon called for instruments in unprecedented quantities, and still more were required for held maintenance of the military electronics gear which, as the war progressed, became ever more complex and sophisticated. 49 A second problem that caused more than a little concern was the so-called priorities system. Recognizing long before the war that a shortage of basic materials, especially metals, was a certainty in case of war; government planners had devised a priority system whereby the makers of primary implements of war---guns, tanks, aircraft, and the like-would by first priority, receive a sufficient supply of needed raw materials.
The idea of the fund was to provide help for those who, because of serious illness or other personal catastrophies, were in financial difficulties. Shaw had been interested in and concerned with all aspects of employee welfare and in 1934 donated 2,255 of his shares of General Radio stock (there were 9,144 shares outstanding at the time) to this fund, which was named the Genradco Trust. With this generous gift the Trust was able to expand its activities and, in addition to providing emergency financial help, also provided free medical advice for all employees as well as free eyeglasses to those who needed them.