These records comprise seven archival boxes and consist of files relating to patents applied for through Northwestern University. Most of the patents are for inventions, procedures, or substances created by Northwestern University faculty. A few patents were transferred to Northwestern as bequests; of particular note is NU 4005, a series of patents for Refrigerator Car Floors, which was donated to the University by Walter P. Murphy.
The first file contains lists of patents applied for through 1987, showing U.S. patent numbers, dates, inventors' names and titles. The Container List for this series is structured in a similar way.
Most records pertain to patents which were actually forwarded to the government and approved. Several, however, were merely under consideration by Northwestern, and the University's sponsorship was ultimately withdrawn.