Back to Basics

Once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away (better know as the USA), three companies, Tabulating Machine Company, the International Time Recording Company and the Computing Scale Company of America merged to form the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (CTR) on June 16, 1911.

Thomas J. Watson Sr. joins CTR in 1914 and begins the transformation that leads to a name change to IBM in 1924 – but we were changing the world long before that.

1890: Our tabulating system is used in the U.S. Census, reducing a nearly 10-year-long process to two-and-a-half years and saving $5 million.

1914: We hires our first employee with a disability—59 years before the passage of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and 76 years before the Americans with Disabilities Act.

1918: An early list of CTR’s diverse charitable contributions demonstrates philanthropic leadership and commitment to the community dating back to the company’s earliest years.

1920: We introduce the first Printing Tabulator.

1923: Introduce the first electric key punch.

1924: Thomas Watson Sr. establishes the Quarter Century Club (QCC), recognizing employees with 25 years of service.

1925: The first meeting of the Hundred Percent Club, composed of IBM sales representatives who have met their annual quotas, convenes in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

1928: Introduce a revolutionary 80-column punch card design. The “IBM Card” becomes an industry standard.

1934: IBM introduces the 405 Accounting Machine. It will remain the company’s flagship product until it is taken out of production in 1949.

1934: IBM places all factory employees on salary, eliminating piecework. A group life insurance plan is also initiated for employees.

1935: IBM markets the first commercially successful electric typewriter, the Electromatic.

1935: Inaugural systems service engineering class for women which trains employees for professional-level positions.

Find a complete and interactive history here.


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