Papers of Arthur A. Small, including materials on the Iowa Communications Network (ICN)
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Acquisition and Processing Information: This Collection was donated to the University of Iowa Special Collections by Arthur A. Small in 2006.
Scope and Contents
This collection, assembled by Arthur A. Small, contains legislative documents, handwritten notes from committee and legislative meetings, news clippings, reports, and other documents directly pertaining to the development of the Iowa Communications Network (ICN). It also contains a number of thematically related documents and news clippings regarding such topics as fiber optics, rural depopulation, and the "information highway of the future," which provide context for the milieu in which the ICN was developed.
Arthur A. Small was born on October 14, 1933 in Brunswick, Maine. He graduated from Bowdoin College with his BA in 1959, received an MA from the University of Iowa in 1962, and earned his JD from the University of Iowa in 1982. He served in the Iowa State House of Representatives from 1971 to 1978, and in the Iowa Senate from 1979-1986. Judging from the kinds of documents in the collection, Small appears to have been closely involved with the development of the ICN; however, the precise capacity in which he collected these materials is not clear.
During the 1980's, Iowa's legislature began exploring the exciting possibilities of cutting-edge communications technologies. The State of Iowa Communications Task Force and the Education Uplink Study Committee were two early efforts to determine what the state government's role in the field of communications technology would be.
In 1989, a bill was passed that allowed for the construction of a statewide telecommunications network, which was to be completed in three stages. Parts I and II, begun in 1990, included 104 fiber optic endpoints--one per county (99), per state university (3), at Iowa Public Television (IPTV), and at the state capitol complex. These endpoints became operational in 1993.
The ICN became a state agency in 1994, when the Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission (ITTC) was established by the legislature as the ICN's govening body. In 1995, implementation of part III began with the establishment of full-motion video sites in public and private school districts, area education agencies, and public libraries.
As of 2007, the ICN continues to upgrade its technology as it administers a statewide fiber optics network that allows hospitals, state and federal government, public defense armories, libraries, schools, and higher education institutions to make use of telephones, high speed internet connections, and full-motion video.
Based in part on The ICN Story - Bringing a State Together (available at the Iowa Communications Network).
In addition to the Papers of Arthur A. Small, the Iowa Women's Archives holds documents related to the ICN in
Box 10 of the Betty Jean Furgerson Papers, and Box 26 of the Mary C. Neuhauser Papers. There are also numerous documents pertaining to the Iowa Communications Network in the University of Iowa Library's government publications, which may be found via the online catalog. Further information may also be sought through the Iowa Communications Network Homepage.
Box Contents List
"The State of Iowa Communications Task Force Final Report," February 12, 1985.
Miscellaneous legilsative documents, including a position paper from the Department of General Services and "Answers to Questions in the Area of Communications," 1986
Education Uplink Study Committee materials: membership, mailing list, correspondence, minutes, miscellaneous documents, and final report, 1987.
"Iowa Educational Telecommunications Plan," 1987.
Legislative documents from the Office of Governor Terry E. Branstead, Joe O'Hearn, Chief Clerk, 1989.
Case No. CE 36-21264 Millage v. Iowa Department of General Services, 1990.
Iowa Department of General Services, 1990-1991.
Telephone Companies' statements, 1990-1991.
"Analysis of the Proposed ICN," 1991
Senate Files and House Resolutions, 1991-1992.
Small's legislative session notes and misc. clippings, March-April 1991.
Small's legislative session notes, April 1991.
Kiewett Network Technologies, 1991-1993.
Community Colleges' statements, November 1991.
Miscellaneous notes and other documents, including a 1993 "State of Iowa Communications Network Report."
ICN Newspaper Clippings, 1986-1994.
Non-ICN Newspaper Clippings, 1984-1993, on related topics.
"Funding Iowa Schools" no. 1-4, 1988.
Miscellaneous documents on related topics, 1984-1993, including a 1984 study by the Iowa Development Commission, a 1990 publication of "Telecommunications: Infrastructure for Ideas," and several others.
"Words of Wisdom - A Collection of Advice from our Elders," Iowa Press Citizen 21 February 2008. Features Arthur Small.