Document Type



At the time of its inception every scientific journal is a new journal, and its future course is in doubt. Does it have a functional niche in the scientific community, and will it survive? Later, when the new journal is taken for granted by the younger generation of scientists, the question of what conditions led to the establishment and maintenance of the publication arise. This historical review addresses these issues for the first five volumes of The Psychological Record. The Record was founded to decrease publication lag at a time when American psychology was expanding rapidly just before the onset of World War II. Although the Record was immediately successful, the wartime diversion of psychological energies to war-connected activities greatly diminished the submission of manuscripts, and concomitant wartime paper rationing led to suspension of publication with Volume V. The careers of those persons who participated as editors for the first five volumes are evaluated, and it is concluded that they were of extremely high quality. Indeed, many became exceptionally well known both within and outside of the field of psychology. The contents of those volumes are evaluated in a summary fashion. Certain of the papers are seminal in specific psychological traditions, and the authors of these must be regarded as significant representatives of scientific developments within psychology. After World War II ended, a new, younger, generation of psychologists resumed publication of The Psychological Record, and it has become a prominent feature of scientific American psychology in the second half of the twentieth century.