Stanford's PDP-6 ( was Re: Hardware Hobbyists vs. Emulator Jockeys)

Al Kossow aek at bitsavers.org
Wed Jun 17 10:32:07 CDT 2009


I'm resending this with a revised title so someone has a chance of finding
this again in the future. I sent a similar message to alt.sys.pdp10 when
the subject came up last time.

Al Kossow wrote:
> Brent Hilpert wrote:
>> Rich Alderson wrote:
>>> On the other hand, the last PDP-6 in existence was destroyed by the 
>>> Computer
>>> Museum in Boston about 20 years ago, so you're one up there.
>>
>> OK, I don't think I've heard this story.
>> Someone contributing to Wikipedia seems to want to tangentially 
>> counter it,
>> without explaining the background story.
> 
> That would be me, a CHM employee, that has access to all of the Boston 
> museum
> collection records. I have spoken to several of the staff members who 
> were there
> at the time. I have been trying to find ANY evidence this occurred, and 
> have not
> been able to.
> 
> CHM has the fast memory box from Stanford's PDP-6. It came from the 
> Compaq donation
> to CHM of what they had in >> DEC's << internal collection, and was NOT 
> donated to
> the Boston Museum. As best as I've been able to determine, the 6 was 
> sent to a DEC
> warehouse after the anniversary at DECUS, and sat there until what was 
> there was
> sent to CHM. Since there is no record of this machine going to the 
> Boston museum,
> nor does anyone there that I have talked to remember it coming there, it 
> would have
> been difficult for them to have dismantled it. Every major donation to 
> the Computer
> Museum was cataloged. I cannot find anything for Stanford's PDP-6 in 
> their records
> or in the Museum Report, which at the time listed every donation they 
> received.
> 
> I would like to find someone INSIDE of DEC that saw it in while
> it was in the warehouse, but I haven't been able to locate anyone yet.
> 
> The rumor of the Museum destroying the system started because their gift 
> shop was selling
> modules, including the ALU modules from the PDP-6. I have been told 
> these were from a
> collection of DEC module spares that DEC donated. I haven't been able to 
> determine
> the earliest that they were being sold. If it was before the 
> anniversary, they obviously
> could not have been from Stanford's machine.
> 
> Because of this controversy, CHM has a policy that no artifacts will 
> ever be offered for
> sale to the public. Items that are deacessioned are offered only to 
> other non-profit
> institutions.
> 
> 





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