This is similar to Farley file , a file kept by politicians to record all the people they meet; and they meet a lot of people daily, dealing with a variety of issues, so it is good to write everything down. When it is time to meet them again, they now know enough details about the person to appear considerate and caring: their name, spouse's name, last topic discussed etc.
It gets its name from James Farley, Franklin Roosevelt's campaign manager:
>> A bad memory is not a great asset in politics, so Jim Farley devised a clever remedy: he kept an index card of every person that Roosevelt met, and recorded the names of spouses, children, hobbies, education, place of employment—any personal information that you could reasonably expect a "good friend" to remember. If Roosevelt returned to the same area, Farley would hand him the index cards of everyone he might meet. << 
In Rome, they had slaves for this sort of thing, called Nomenclators . Their duty was to remind their master of people he had met earlier.
A dear friend of mine was a lobbyist in Washington, DC for 40 years. When he retired I was tasked with helping him export his Outlook contacts. IIRC it came to around 40,000 contacts which to was astonishing. Senators, Diplomats, lobbyists, the works. It's amazing the contacts you can collect over a career.
I recently made an effort to groom my addressbook better. This article shows me that I have still a lot room to the upside.
Are there any details what he recorded? It seems to be more than just the contact information:
> One Kissinger card mentions the time when Queen Elizabeth II knighted him in June 1995. “He is not to be referenced as Sir Henry as he is an American,’’ the card said, with the word “not” underlined for emphasis.
Maybe thirty years ago, John Dvorak wrote a jocular piece about what we'd all be reading if personal computers hadn't taken off. Among his possibilities were "advances in rolodexes", as I recall.
100,000 people met in 50 years, that’s meeting 5 new people every day including week ends. That seems hardly believable. The article probably meant 100,000 encounters. Which is still massive.
My favorite part:
Maybe they tried using a CRM but Rockefeller wasn't it to it.
 Bill Gates note: see data base for add'l entries  Gerald Ford note: See Rolodex Card
Excellent article. Thanks for posting.
Non paywal link for fellow HNs https://outline.com/cDXZDm
Any photos of that monster Rolodex machine?
In August 2015, Rockefeller staffers tossed the oversize Rolodex machine ... custom-built Rolodex machine that stored about 200,000 3-by-5-inch cards ... They [cards] now nearly fill a wall of filing cabinet