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Noran Kersta collection of NBC Television Network commercial cooperative files

Identifier: 00540

Collection Overview

This collection consists of papers from Noran Kerstas time as an employee at NBC Television Network. There are several folders of press releases and newspaper clippings about television viewing rates, and popular programming on television and radio. There are also chronological records and indexes of television activity, annual reports, commercial-cooperative program records, interdepartmental and intercompany correspondence, a NBC operations guide, and a sales manual used to acquire clients at the early stages of post-war commercial television. The collection also includes some biographical information on Kersta.


  • Creation: 1934-1950

Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

Copyright is retained by the creators of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Processing Information

Processed by Special Collections staff.


3 Cubic feet


Noran Edward Kersta, of Jersey City, New Jersey, was a pioneer in television research and development in his work for NBC, which he joined in 1932.


This collection consists of papers from Noran Kersta's time as an employee at NBC television network. Items include newspaper clippings, NBC interdepartmental and intracompany correspondence, and lists of television activity.


For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Penn State University Libraries catalog via the link above. Archival collections may be housed in offsite storage. For materials stored offsite, please allow 2-3 business days for retrieval.

Biographical or Historical Note

Noran Edward Kersta was born in Jersey City, New Jersey on 17 July 1911. He joined Bell Telephone Laboratories and attended the special engineering academic school conducted by Bell. Kersta was then admitted to Georgia School of Technology for chemical engineering. While there, he was on the honor roll for two years, active in football and lacrosse, and active in the Phi Eta Sigma honorary fraternity. Kersta spent a year at New York University for electrical engineering as well as studying at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in advanced mathematics, economics, and psychology.Kersta was a pioneer in television research and development when he joined NBC in 1932. He was appointed manager of the NBC Television Department in 1941. During World War II, Kersta served overseas as a radar and operations officer in the Marine Corps. He returned to NBC in 1945 to re-energize the television activities and was responsible for building that organization. In 1948, he was appointed the executive assistant to the administrative vice-president in charge of television. After three years, Kersta signed on with the Weintraub Advertising Agency, setting up their radio and television department while simultaneously organizing his own consulting company in Florida. With colleagues William Fairbanks and Arthur Hungerford (who helped initiate Penn State's public television station, WPSX), he set up the Television Research Institute in 1935. The Institute released monthly reports to radio and advertising executives on the developments occurring in television. Other companies that Kersta worked for include Seaboard Railroad in 1932, the New England Power Company in 1935, and the Television Corporation of America in 1935.

Noran Kersta Collection of NBC Television Network commercial cooperative files, 1934-1950
Prepared by Special Collections Library faculty/staff
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Eberly Family Special Collections Library Repository

104 Paterno Library
Penn State University
University Park 16802 USA