Skip to main content

Kenneth L. Thompson papers

 Record Group
Identifier: UA-17.261

Scope and Contents

The papers consist of bulletins, manuals, development plans, and reports created by the Michigan State University Computer Lab from 1964-1971. There are also time-sharing proposals for the Michigan State Computer Lab from various companies. Additional documents include reference manuals and booklets by Control Data Corporation and reports from Ballistic Research Laboratories. There is also a paper written by Thompson that describes his introduction into electronic digital computers. The Kenneth L. Thompson papers also include faculty records such as administrative files, personal faculty documents, and travel vouchers. The collection also consists of a CD-ROM with photographs of early computing and computers and audio of Thompson describing the photographs. The topics include early computing at the state government of Michigan and MSU. He describes the Control Data 3600 computer and Control Data 6500 computers at MSU. There are images of the installation of the computer through the window and the raised flooring, and chillers for cooling. There are also images of punch cards as well as a read-writing arm.


  • 1961 - 2019

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from this collection must be obtained from University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University.

Biographical Note

Kenneth L. Thompson grew up in South Bend, Indiana and attended Michigan State University, graduating with a B.S. in 1969. Thompson was appointed assistant director of the Michigan State University Computer Laboratory in July 1965. Prior to this he worked for the State of Michigan in the Department of Administration and the Michigan State Highway Department.


1.0 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Preservica Public URL|7099914a-3a1c-4834-aadb-a5f797e41159/

Legal Status

Copyright: Michigan State University. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

Kenneth L. Thompson Papers
3 Ready For Cataloging
Annakathryn Welch
March 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.
  • TypeCollection

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives and Historical Collections Repository

Conrad Hall
943 Conrad Road, Room 101
East Lansing MI 48824 US