The need for a greatly expanded network of strong-motion accelerographs throughout the seismic regions of the world is stressed. A summary of the characteristics of currently available strong-motion accelerographs is presented, and the design details are given for an instrument suitable for acquiring the basic data needed by structural engineers for earthquake resistant design. It is shown that for such an instrument, the natural period must be less than 0.1 seconds, and that the recording speed must be at least 1 cm/sec. The critical nature of the inertia starting device is discussed, and some information is given on the transient response of the standard pendulum starter used in the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey Strong-Motion Accelerograph. The use of simpler, non-time-recording instruments such as the U.S.C.G.S. Seismoscope to supplement the accelerograph network is described.