Collection is open for research. Some items may be restricted due to fragile condition.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Aviation, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. Collection, Acc. 1992.0023, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
This collection consists of the records of the Waco Aircraft Company. The material includes office files of the company, marketing and sales information, and design data. Also included are original engineering drawings and report files.
Scope and Contents note:
In 1920 Clayton J. Bruckner, Elwood "Sam" Junkin and George "Buck" Weaver formed Weaver Aircraft Co. In April of 1923, they renamed the company Advanced Aircraft Co. and, in May of 1929, Waco Aircraft Co. By the 1930s the company was a leader in the design of wood and fabric aircraft. At their most widespread use, Waco aircraft were operated by public, private, military and corporate owners in thirty-five countries. During World War II, Waco devoted itself entirely to war production, manufacturing large numbers of troop- and cargo-carrying gliders. Following the war Waco attempted to market a wholly new design, but the post- war slump in the private aviation market and the high development costs of the aircraft forced Waco to withdraw from aircraft manufacture in June 1947. During its twenty-seven year existence Waco produced sixty-two different aircraft models and led all its competitors in the number of aircraft registered.
The Waco collection is divided into two parts. Part One comprises 24,855 drawings. The locations and descriptive information of these drawings are listed on an electronic database entitled the Waco Aircraft Engineering Drawings Data Base. The drawings vary greatly in size from small drawings of 4x5" to large sheets of over 150" in length. The majority of the drawings included in Part One are numbered, but many of the drawings are unnumbered. These drawings span most of the Company's existence and depict many of its powered and glider aircraft. There are several smaller sets of drawings which include layout drawings, tool drawings and stress analyses. Production charts and data charts are also among these drawings.
Part Two includes the business records of the Waco Aircraft Company. These documents can be generally divided between the engineering and sales departments. Most of the drawings within Part Two are from sub-contractors and U.S. Government agencies.
Waco aircraft company designations are confusing. Many variations exist regarding the practice of assigning model designations. Despite these exceptions, some basic rules serve as a guideline. Prior to 1930, Waco models were designated by a single number, 1 through 10. The last aircraft designated in this manner, the Waco 10, became the Waco Model O under the new scheme of designation.
Waco early models were additionally referred to by their horsepower. This may have been a practice of distributors and salesmen.
Since 1930, The Waco Aircraft Company used a combination of three letters with which to name its models. An example would be the Model ASO. The letters are best read from right to left. The letter on the right represents the fuselage, i.e. Model O. The middle letter represents a modification to the basic model, i.e. CSO for straight wing or CTO for tapered wing. The letter on the left represents the engine, i.e. CSO for Wright J-6, 225 horse power engine. Additionally, Waco models were often followed by a number indicating the year in which the aircraft was built. A YPF-6, for example, was manufactured in 1936.
Waco World War II gliders, designed for the U.S.A.A.F, were designated by an alpha-numeric combination. The four unpowered gliders produced shared the same letter prefixes of CG, which stood for cargo glider. The numeric suffix distinguishes the aircraft. They were the Models CG-3A, CG-4A, CG-13A and CG-15A. An X preceding the designation denotes experimental, i.e. XCG-4A. An addition of two letters denotes the manufacturer, i.e. CG-4A- TI for Timm Aircraft Co. Many of the Waco designed gliders were constructed by various companies. Powered versions of the gliders were referred to by the prefix PG for powered gliders.
Series 1: Numbered Engineering Reports
Series 2: Model Engineering Reports
Series 3: Engineering Documents
Series 4: Government Contracts
Series 5: Contractor Reports
Series 6: Correspondence
Series 7: Publications
Series 8: Sales
Series 9: Blueprints & Drawings
Series 10: Drawings Lists
Series 11: Model Indexes
Series 12: Contractor Drawings
In 1920 Clayton J. Bruckner, Elmwood "Sam" Junkin, and Buck Weaver formed an aircraft company known as the Weaver Aircraft Company in Troy, OH. By the 1930s the company, known as Waco Aircraft Co. since 1929, was a leader in the design of wood and fabric aircraft, with Waco aircraft being operated by public, private, and corporate owners in thirty-five countries. During World War II Waco devoted itself entirely to war production, manufacturing large numbers of troop- and cargo-carrying gliders. Following the war Waco attempted to market a wholly new design but the postwar slump in the private aviation market and the high development costs of the aircraft forced Waco to withdraw from aircraft manufacture in June 1947. During its twenty-eight year existence Waco produced sixty-two different aircraft models and led all its competitors in number of aircraft registered.
Related Archival Materials note:
Other collections within the Archives Division of the National Air and Space Museum which are relevant to Waco are as follows:
The Hattie Meyers Junkin Papers(1906-1982), Accession #XXXX-0171. Junkin was married first to George Weaver and later to Elwood Junkin, both founders of the Waco Aircraft Company.
The A. Francis Arcier(1890-1969) Collection, Accession #XXX-0072. Arcier was one of the leading engineers with the Waco Aircraft Company.
The National Air and Space Museum Archival Video Discs. Included in this collection are three blocks of Waco Aircraft photographs; prints listed by model type under the Company name in the Aircraft Finding Aid, prints listed under "Glider Aircraft" in the U.S. Air Force Collection finding aid and prints listed under the Company name in the "General Subjects" of the U.S. Air Force Collection Finding Aid.
The NASM Archives Technical Files. The documents filed under "Waco" include mostly photographs and newspaper articles. Information about some of the individual Waco employees, including Hattie Junkin and George Weaver, can be found filed under the individual's name in the biographical section of the Technical Files.
This collection consists of approximately 1.15 cubic feet of material relating to various aircraft companies including Fairchild Corporation; Lockheed Corporation; Grumman Corporation; Republic Aviation Corporation; United Aircraft Corporation; General Electric; and Convair. The types of material in this collection include employee newsletters; annual reports; technical manuals and reports; technical drawings; and published materials. There are also two black and white photographs in the collection, one of the Grumman G-44 (Widgeon) and one of the Republic P-47 (F-47) Thunderbolt. Other specific aircraft mentioned in the collection include the Convair 440 Metropolitan; Republic F-105 Thunderchief; Fairchild F-27 Friendship; Fairchild A-10 Thunderbolt II; Republic F-84 (P-84) Thunderjet; and the Lockheed L-2000 (SST Proposal).
Jim Iannuzzi, Gift, 2017
No restrictions on access.
Technical manuals -- 20th century
Aircraft Industry Materials, Acc. 2018-0023, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration Search this
0.02 Cubic feet ((2 boxes))
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of thirty-one black and white three by four glass lantern slides and sixty film slides of Republic's work with Project Fire.
Biographical / Historical:
Project Fire, announced in 1962, was a NASA high-speed reentry heat research program to obtain data on materials, heating rates, and radio signal attenuation on spacecraft reentering the atmosphere at speeds of about 24,500 miles per hour. Information from this program would support manned and unmanned reentry from lunar missions. NASA awarded a five million dollar contract to Republic Aviation Corporation for the construction of two experimental reentry spacecraft.
Benjamin and Lillian Sokol, Gift, 2006
No restrictions on access.
This collection consists of historical files on FI, its predecessors, and subsidiaries. The material consists primarily of historical/public relations material, including photographs and brochures, but also includes significant amounts of business records for FEAC, Kreider-Reisner, Hiller, Republic, Ranger, Stratos, and Swearingen. The collection also documents Fairchild's joint ventures with Fokker, Pilatus, and other aircraft manufacturers. The material also includes an extensive negative collection as well as film and videotape libraries.
Scope and Contents note:
Sherman Mills Fairchild (1896-1971) founded Fairchild Aerial Camera Corporation (FAEC) in 1920. FAEC was incorporated in New York State for the purpose of developing, manufacturing and selling aerial photographic equipment. It went through many changes over the course of its existence. By 1971, FAEC was called Fairchild Industries, Inc. and had become an enormous corporation that produced such famous and history making aircraft as the Model 24 and A-10 as well as acquired other aviation industry giants such as Republic Aviation and Hiller Aircraft Company.
The Fairchild Industries, Inc. Collection, accessions 1989-0060 and 1990-0047, was donated to the Archives Division of the National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution in 1989 and 1990. The collection consists of printed and photographic materials. The subject matter of the material has a wide scope that includes, but is not restricted to, the following subject areas: public relations, legal matters, production photography, aircraft drawings and manuals, company published materials such as brochures and press releases, and history files. This collection does not contain the engineering files or the complete photo holdings or corporate records of Fairchild Industries, Inc or any of its predecessors.
The collection was maintained for many years by Theron Rinehart, a Fairchild Industries employee. Due to the large size and lack original order, the Archives Division decided to create a database as well as a traditional finding aid for access to the collection. Access to the Fairchild Docs database is available from the Archives Division by appointment. Aircraft types and designations are listed in the database and finding aid as they are in The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Directory of Airplanes Their Designers and Manufacturers, edited by Dana Bell, 2002 (Greenhill Books: London). Folder titles are those that appeared on the original folders and dates are provided for those materials that had them. The material was rehoused by the Archives Division and is now in acid free folders and boxes. There are few instances of water damage; these materials are indicated in the finding aid and database.
This finding aid contains a corporate history and chronology of the companies owned by of Fairchild Industries, Inc and a list of the Fairchild, Hiller, Republic and Swearingen aircraft documented in this collection. The books, periodicals and artifacts that were part of this collection have been removed. This finding aid contains a list of these materials. Please ask for assistance in contacting the NASM Branch and Smithsonian Libraries and the NASM Aeronautics Division.
Sherman Mills Fairchild's personal papers, The Sherman Fairchild Papers, can be found in the Manuscript Division of the Library of Congress.
The following information was taken from The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Directory of Airplanes: Their Designers and Manufacturers, edited by Dana Bell, 2002 (Greenhill Books: London).
"In 1924, Sherman Fairchild established the Fairchild Aviation Corp as the parent company for his many aviation interests. In 1930, The Aviation Corp (AVCO) purchased Fairchild Aviation and its subsidiaries, initially operating the various companies under their original names. The following year, Sherman Fairchild repurchased Fairchild Aviation Corp and began repurchasing the subordinate companies. In a December 1936 reorganization, Fairchild Aviation Corp divested itself of all aircraft manufacturing interests, placing them under a new Fairchild Engine and Airplane Co.
The original aircraft manufacturing subsidiary of Fairchild Aviation Corp was Fairchild Airplane Manufacturing Co; it was created in 1924 to design and build aircraft as platforms for Fairchild's aerial survey cameras. Fairchild Airplane Manufacturing was one of the subsidiaries purchased by AVCO in 1930, but not one of the first companies repurchased by Sherman Fairchild. In 1931 AVCO combined the aircraft company with Fairchild Engine Co, forming American Airplane and Engine Corp. Fairchild Aviation Corp bought American Airplane and Engine in 1934, renaming the company the Fairchild Aircraft Manufacturing and Engine Co.
In the 1936 reorganization that divided Fairchild Aviation Corp assets, Fairchild Aircraft Manufacturing and Engine Co became Fairchild Engine and Airplane Co and took charge of all Fairchild aircraft and engine holdings. Fairchild Engine and Airplane Co became Fairchild Engine and Airplane Corp in 1950 and Fairchild Stratos Corp in 1961. With the 1964 purchase of Hiller Aircraft Corp, Fairchild Stratos was renamed Fairchild Hiller Corp, then, again, renamed Fairchild Industries after the separation of all Hiller interests in 1973. Although Fairchild Industries closed and sold its military and commercial aircraft manufacturing divisions in 1987, "Fairchild" aircraft continued to be produced through the Swearingen Metro and Fairchild Dornier lines (see below).
Fairchild created, purchased, and merged with several companies during its history. The following are the most important subsidiaries:
Fairchild Aircraft Ltd was created in 1929 as Fairchild Aviation Corp's Canadian subsidiary. The company ended all aircraft production in 1948.
The Kreider Reisner Aircraft Co Inc was formed in 1927. Kreider Reisner became a wholly-owned division of (first) the Fairchild Airplane Manufacturing Co in 1929, (second) AVCO's American Airplane and Engine Corp (which renamed KR aircraft "Pilgrims") in 1931, and (third) Fairchild Aircraft Manufacturing and Engine Co in 1934. Kreider-Reisner was renamed the Fairchild Aircraft Corp in 1935, becoming Fairchild Engine and Airplane Co's principle US aircraft manufacturing subsidiary. Fairchild Aircraft Corp was renamed the Fairchild Aircraft Division in 1939, the Fairchild Aircraft and Missiles Division in 1961, the Fairchild Stratos Aircraft and Missiles Division in 1961, the Aircraft-Missiles Division in 1965, and the Aircraft Division in 1967. With a growing number of aircraft subsidiaries reporting to Fairchild Industries, the Aircraft Division was broken up in a corporate reorganization of the 1970s. While the Kreider Reisner Midget is listed under Kreider Reisner, all Kreider Reisner Challenger series aircraft (designated "KR" biplanes by Fairchild) appear under Fairchild.
In 1936 Fairchild Engine and Airplane Co founded the subsidiary Duromold Aircraft Corp to better account for time spent developing the Duromold wood/resin bonding process and the Model 46 aircraft. In 1938, the majority interest in Duromold was bought by a group of investors (including process inventor Col. Virginius E. Clark), who formed the Clark Aircraft Corp. Fairchild kept a minority interest in Clark, retaining Duromold as a holding company. In September 1938, Fairchild renamed its Duromold division Fairchild Airplane Investment Corp, and Clark created a subsidiary called Duramold Aircraft Corp (note the spelling change). In 1938 Duramold was renamed Molded Aircraft Corp. In 1939, Fairchild Engine and Airplane Corp bought back a controlling interest in Clark and renamed Molded Aircraft Duramold Aircraft Manufacturing Corp. The Duramold and Clark companies disappeared during one of Fairchild's World War II reorganizations.
In 1952 Fairchild licensed the rights to Dutch Fokker's F.27 medium-range airliner. In 1953, the USAF transferred production contracts for the Chase Aircraft Co, Inc C 123 to Fairchild. The Chase-built XC 123 and XC 123A appear under Chase, while Fairchild's C-123 production is listed under Fairchild.
In 1954, the American Helicopter Co, Inc (founded 1947) became the Helicopter Division of Fairchild Engine and Airplane Corp. The division closed by the end of decade.
In 1964, Fairchild Stratos purchased Hiller Aircraft Corp, and both companies were renamed: Hiller Aircraft Co Inc become a subsidiary of Fairchild Hiller Corp. In the 1973 reorganization of Fairchild Hiller into Fairchild Industries, Hiller helicopter interests passed to an independent Hiller Aviation Inc….
In 1965, the Republic Aviation Corp became Republic Aviation Division (also known as Fairchild Republic) of Fairchild Hiller Corp. In 1987, Republic was shut down when Fairchild Industries ceased building commercial and military aircraft.
Swearingen Aircraft formed in the late 1950s, modifying Beech aircraft for executive transport. In 1965 the company produced its first new design, the Merlin. In 1970 Swearingen began development of the Metro, a joint venture to be marketed by Fairchild Hiller Corp. As a subsidiary of Fairchild Industries, Swearingen became Swearingen Aviation Corp, in 1971, Fairchild Swearingen in 1981, and Fairchild Aircraft Corp in September 1982. When Fairchild Industries closed its aircraft design and production facilities in 1987, Fairchild Aircraft Corp was sold to GMF Investments, Inc; GMF continued to operate the company under the Fairchild name. In 1990, Fairchild Aircraft filed for Chapter 11 protection and was purchased by Fairchild Acquisition Inc as Fairchild Aircraft Inc. Fairchild Aircraft delivered its last aircraft in 2001. Most Swearingen designs are filed under Swearingen; the Metro and Expediter can be found under Fairchild.
In 1996, Fairchild Acquisition became Fairchild Aerospace. While continuing to operate Fairchild Aircraft, the company also purchased 80% of the stock of Germany's Dornier Luftfahrt GmbH (with the remaining 20% of shares held by Daimler Benz Aerospace). Dornier's aircraft manufacturing operations were taken over by Fairchild Dornier Luftfahrt Beteiligungs GmbH. In 2000, Fairchild Aerospace was renamed Fairchild Dornier Aerospace, with corporate headquarters moved to Germany. Dornier designs predating Fairchild's takeover are listed under Dornier. Subsequent designs are found under Fairchild Dornier."
The following lists companies owned by Sherman Fairchild Industries and their years of incorporation. Major divisions of Fairchild are also listed. This list does not include when these entities were divested of or liquidated.
1926 -- Fairchild Air Transport, Limited (name change from Elliot-Fairchild Air Transport, Limited)
1927 -- Fairchild Aviation Corporation (reorganization and refinancing of the following subsidiaries and minority holdings, Fairchild Aerial Camera Corporation, Fairchild Aerial Surveys, Inc., Fairchild Flying Company, Inc, Fairchild Caminez Engine Corporation, Fairchild Airplane Manufacturing Corporation, Fairchild Aviation, Limited, Compania Mexicana de Aviacion, S.A. [20% stock] and International Aerial Engineering Company [20% stock])
1928 -- Faircam Realty Corporation
1928 -- Fairchild Boats, Incorporated
1928 -- Fairchild Engine Corporation
1928 -- V.E. Clark Corporation
1928 -- West Indian Aerial Express, Incorporated
1928 -- Fairchild Aviation Corporation of Illinois
1958 -- Fairchild Aircraft and Missiles Division (name change from Fairchild Aircraft Division)
1958 -- International Aluminum Structures Incorporated
1960 -- Astrionics Division (name change from Electronics Systems Division)
1960 -- Aircraft Service Division
1961 -- Fairchild Stratos Corporation (operating division, subsidiaries and affiliates: Aircraft-Missile Division, Aircraft Service Division, Electronic Systems Division, Stratos Division, Fairchild Arms International Ltd, Fairchild Aviation (Holland) N.V., and Aerotest Laboratories, Inc.)
1962 -- Space System Division formed by Fairchild Stratos Corporation
1962 -- Data Systems Engineering formed by Fairchild Stratos Corporation
1964 -- Hiller Aircraft Company, Inc
1964 -- Fairchild Hiller Corporation (name change from Fairchild Stratos Corporation; division and subsidiaries: Aircraft Missiles Division, Aircraft Service Division, Electronic Systems Division, Data Systems Engineering, Space Systems Division, Stratos Division, Hiller Aircraft Company, Inc., Fairchild Aviation (Holland) N.V. and Fairchild Arms International, Inc.)
1965 -- Republic Aviation Corporation
1965 -- Republic Aviation Division
1965 -- Electronic and Information Systems Division (formed by combining Electronic Systems Division, Data Systems Engineering and similar disciplines from Republic Aviation Corporation)
1966 -- Burns Aero Seat Company, Incorporated
1966 -- Fairchild Hiller – FRG Corporation
1966 -- Aircraft Division (formed by combining Aircraft-Missiles Division and Hiller Aircraft Company, Inc.)
1966 -- Space and Electronics Systems Division (formed by combining Space Systems Division and Electronic and Information Systems Division)
1966 -- Industrial Products Division (forms from the Industrial Products Branch of Stratos Division)
1967 -- S.J. Industries, Inc.
1967 -- Air Carrier Engine Services, Inc.
1967 -- Fairchild Chemical Corporation
1967 -- EWR-Fairchild International
1968 -- Fairchild Aircraft Marketing Company
1968 -- FAIRMICCO
1969 -- Fairchild-Germantown Development Company, Incorporated
1970 -- Fairchild Aviation (Asia) Limited
1971 -- Fairchild Industries, Incorporated (name changes from Fairchild Hiller Corporation, division and subsidiaries: Fairchild Aircraft Marketing Company, Fairchild Aircraft Service Division, Fairchild Industrial Products Division, Fairchild Republic Division, Fairchild Space and Electronics Division, Fairchild Stratos Division, Burns Aero Seat Company, Incorporated, Fairchild Arms International, Ltd., Fairchild Aviation (Asia) Limited, Fairchild Aviation (Holland) N.V., Fairchild-Germantown Development Company, Incorporated and S.J. Industries, Inc.)
1971 -- Fairchild KLIF, Incorporated
1971 -- Swearingen Aviation Corporation
1972 -- American Satellite Corporation
1972 -- Fairchild Minnesota, Incorporated
1972 -- Fairchild International Sales Corporation
1979 -- Bunker Ramo Corporation [18.4% interest]
1980 -- American Satellite Company
1980 -- Space Communications Company (Spacecom) [25% interest]
Horace E. Weihmiller (1902-1963) was a professional aerospace consultant and pilot. During the 1950's he was an active member of the American Astronautical Society (AAS), serving as Vice President, Chairman of the Nominating Committee, Chairman of the New York section, Chairman of the National Affairs Committee and a member of the Scientific Research Committee. This collection consists of correspondence, notes and reports dealing with Weihmiller's activities in the AAS from 1957 thru 1963. 1 cubic foot (3 boxes).
Scope and Content:
This collection consists of correspondence, notes and reports dealing with Weihmiller's activities in the AAS from 1957 thru 1963.
The materials are arranged in chronological order.
Horace E. Weihmiller (1902-1963) was a professional aerospace consultant and pilot. Following his graduation from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (BSE, 1925) he served briefly in the Army Air Corps (1926), receiving his wings at Brooks Field, Texas. He joined the Travel Air Corp and served as Chief Engineer from 1927 to 1928. Weihmiller then became the President and General Manager of the Corman Aircraft Company from 1928 to 1931. He later joined the Ford Motor Company, Airplane Division as an Aeronautical Engineer from 1931 to 1933. Weihmiller went on to work for the Consolidated Aircraft Corporation from 1933 to 1937 and Vice President from 1937 to 1943. In 1943 he formed a scientific and aircraft consulting service in Washington, D.C. and in 1945 was appointed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to survey the German aircraft industry, receiving the Patriotic Civilian Service Certificate, the Army's highest civilian award. Weihmiller acted as consultant to the Air Policy Commission under President Truman and as administrative assistant to the Director of Science Research at Republic Aviation Corporation. During the 1950's he was an active member of the American Astronautical Society (AAS), serving as Vice President, Chairman of the Nominating Committee, Chairman of the New York section, Chairman of the National Affairs Committee and a member of the Scientific Research Committee.