Songs of the IBM

At some point in 1937, IBM decided that publishing a book of songs that all of their workers could stand up and sing, rejoicing in the virtues of their humble master, IBM, was a great idea.

This strange piece of IBM history was printed as a thin paperback volume of 54 pages, entitled “Songs of the IBM, 1937 Edition”. The first page gives you a good idea of what is in store:

For thirty-seven years, the gatherings and conventions of our IBM workers have expressed in happy songs the fine spirit of loyal cooperation of good fellowship which has promoted the signal success of our great IBM Corporation in its truly International Service for the betterment of business and benefit to mankind.

In appreciation of the able and inspiring leadership of our beloved President, Mr. Thos. J. Watson, and our unmatchable staff of IBM Executives, and in recognition of the noble aims of purposes of our International Service and Products, this 1937 edition of IBM songs solicits your vocal approval by hearty cooperation in our song-fests at our conventions and fellowship gatherings.

I found this to be very, very strange. Big groups of IBM employees singing the praises of their leaders and pledging loyalty to their dear IBM is something right out of North Korea.

Here are a few scans from the book, including the “To our IBM Girls” song:

You can download the entire booklet here (2MB).

3 Responses to Songs of the IBM
  1. Robert

    Thanks for this! I work at IBM now, and I assure you my co-workers and I will enjoy plenty of laughs from this gem. Absolutely hilarious.

  2. Brant Huddleston

    When IBM was sinking like the Titanic in the mid-1990’s, I was asked to lead the troops with some of these songs as a moral booster. I did, and it is one of the more embarrassing moments in my 17 year career with the company.