Edwin S. Cramp papers

Biographical and Historical Notes

Edwin S. Cramp was the President of the Standard Arms Company which operated out of Wilmington, Delaware. The company was involved in producing and selling the Smith-Condit military rifle to various governments, including those of Great Britain and China. This endeavor included a business agreement between the Standard Arms Company and the Vickers, Sons & Maxim, Ltd. company of Great Britain.

Although Cramp resigned as President of the Standard Arms Company in March, 1909, he continued to be involved with the company and its business. He was also involved with establishing the American Control & Equipment Company, which sought to secure commissions and contracts for war material, ships, railroads, and the development of natural resources in foreign countries.


Biographical information derived from the collection.

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of correspondence (1905-1910) to and from Edwin S. Cramp during and after his term as President of the Standard Arms Company. Five individuals figure prominently in this collection: E. S. Cramp, Irenee DuPont (Vice-President of Standard Arms from 1908), Charles M. Dally (private dealer of armaments), H. C. Wilson (Captain and later Major in the U. S. military and associated with the Sub-Target Gun Company), and B. Atwood Robinson (President of the Sub-Target Gun Company). The correspondence primarily concerns the development of designs for automatic machine-guns, and the negotiation of contracts supplying these guns to the military of Great Britain, Russia, and China. The prominent companies involved include: the Standard Arms Company, the Sub-Target Gun Company, the Smith-condit Arms Company, and the American Control & Equipment Company, (USA); the Vickers, Sons & Maxim, Ltd., and the Birmingham Small Arms Company, (Great Britain); and the Hotchkiss Company (France).

Also included in the collection are financial reports of Sir W. G. Armstrong, Whitworth & Co. and Vickers, Sons & Maxim, Ltd. and contemporary newspaper clippings concerning Russia, China, Great Britain, and France.