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FTC: For the Consumer

Federal Trade Commission: A History

90th Anniversary Lobo - Woodrow Wilson signed FTC Act Legislation September 26, 1914

The FTC at 90: Symposium

President Woodrow Wilson signed the FTC Act into law on September 26, 1914. To celebrate its 90th anniversary, the Federal Trade Commission hosted a public symposium on September 22-23, 2004, in Washington, DC. The symposium featured panel discussions covering a broad range of topics relevant to the Commission's past, present and future. A detailed agenda of the panel topics and speakers, with links to some working papers prepared for the symposium, is available. The program brochure contains a short history of the FTC, a note on the FTC Building, and an FTC Quiz."

The Bureau of Corporations at 100

Under legislation sought by President Theodore Roosevelt, the FTC's predecessor, the Bureau of Corporations, was created on February 14, 1903.

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of that event, the Bureau of Economics held a roundtable on September 4, 2003. The focus of the roundtable was the contributions of economics and of the Bureau of Economics to the Commission's mission and to economic policy generally over the past several decades. The Bureau of Economics was featured because the original functions of the Bureau of Corporations were to collect information, to conduct industry and policy research, and to prepare reports at the request of Congress and the President. Participants in the roundtable included FTC Chairman Timothy J. Muris, former FTC Chairman and OMB Director James C. Miller III, and BE Directors from the 1950s to the present. More information about the roundtable, including a transcript, is available.

The Origins of the FTC: Concentration, Cooperation, Control and Competition
Marc Winerman, reprinted from 71 Antitrust Law Journal 1 (2003) [PDF 510K]

FTC Minutes: The Early Years

Annual Reports of the Federal Trade Commission

Commissioners and Chairmen of the Federal Trade Commission: 1915-2004

Oral Histories

Full text interviews are available, online, from the follow:

  1. Commissioner Mary Gardiner Jones (1964-73)
    Conducted by FTC staff, October 9 and 24, 2003

  2. Commissioner Leon Higgenbotham (1962-64)
    Conducted by the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library, October 7, 1976

  3. Commissioner Stephen Spingarn (1950-53)
    Conducted by the Harry S Truman Library, March 20-28, 1967

Interviews for the following are available from the Columbia University Oral History Project and various Presidential Libraries:

  1. Commissioner Paul Rand Dixon (1961-81; Chairman, 1961-69; 1976)
    Conducted by the John F. Kennedy Library

  2. Commissioner Philip Elman (1961-70)
    Conducted by Columbia University Oral History Project

  3. Commissioner Lowell B. Mason (1945-56; Chairman,1949-50)
    Conducted by the Harry S Truman Library

  4. Commissioner James Landis (1933-34)
    Conducted by Columbia University Oral History Project

  5. Commissioner George Rublee (1915-16)
    Conducted by Columbia University Oral History Project

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Last Updated: Friday, October 15, 2004