Near the end of the age of grand scale sponsored museum expeditions, inventor and former corporate magnate Eldridge Reeves Johnson developed a relationship with the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology that would indirectly result in a pioneering work in film technology history. E.R. Johnson was the President and co-founder of The Victor Talking Machine Company, the leading sound reproduction company in the world, and largest manufacturer of record players, an engineer and inventor. In December 1926, E. R. Johnson sold Victor which was again sold to RCA in 1929. At this time the variable area optical film sync sound recording system called RCA Photophone began practical Hollywood sound stage usage.
E.R. Fenimore Johnson, son of the Victor Talking Machine founder E.R. Johnson, became very interested in sound and film engineering technologies as well. Both father and son were members of the board for the University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (Penn Museum), and E.R.F. Johnson became particularly attached to the development of the film collections, to the extent of publishing a manual on the proper storage and maintenance of motion picture film for museums and archives. E.R.F. Johnson funded a complete temperature controlled vault and a fund for a film library