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Catalog Data

Collection Creator:
Sanford, Robert S., 1897-1981  Search this
Container:
Box 1, Folder 6
Type:
Archival materials
Summary:
The Robert S. Sanford Collection consists of material relating to both Sanford's World War I service, and his work in Alaska with the US Bureau of Mines. The material relating to his service with the 139th Aero Squadron includes the following: a series of over 100 letters from Sanford to his family from 1917-1919, chronicling his entry into the military, training stateside, his overseas deployment and service in the Toul sector; nine photographs of Sanford in uniform and of aircraft in France; a May 4, 1918 copy of "Plane News"; and a small brown diary with entries written by Sanford from 1917 to 1918.
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of material relating to both Robert Sanford's World War I service and his work in Alaska with the US Bureau of Mines. The material relating to his service with the 139th Aero Squadron includes the following: a series of over 100 letters from Sanford to his family from 1917-1919, chronicling his entry into the military, training stateside, his overseas deployment and service in the Toul sector; nine photographs of Sanford in uniform or of aircraft in France; a May 4, 1918 copy of Plane News; and a small brown diary with entries written by Sanford from 1917 to 1918. The material relating to Sanford's work with the United States Bureau of Mines includes the following: two brown notebooks containing Sanford's notes on his work in Alaska, including flying information; one notebook containing photographs of Alaska, mostly of hunting and fishing; a few letters from Sanford in Alaska to his family; negatives from Alaska; newspaper articles about Sanford's contributions to finding the Alaskan oil fields; a certificate given to Sanford for crossing the Arctic Circle as a passenger of Wien Alaska Airlines in 1945; and a 1947 Wien Alaska Airlines, Inc. calendar. Note: The digital images in this finding aid were repurposed from scans made by an outside contractor for a commercial product and may show irregular cropping and orientation in addition to color variations resulting from damage to and deterioration of the original objects.
Arrangement:
The Robert S. Sanford Collection is arranged by content type.
Biographical / Historical:
Robert S. Sanford (1897-1981) served as an airplane mechanic for the 139th Aero Squadron during World War I. The 139th was assigned to the First Army on June 12, 1918 and engaged in the Toul Sector. They ceased operations on December 11, 1918. After the war, Sanford was employed by various private mining companies in South America, Mexico, Nevada, Colorado, Oregon, Canada and Oklahoma. He joined the US Bureau of Mines in 1940, and in 1943 was the district engineer in charge of the mineral development program in Alaska. While there, he found large oil areas on the Arctic slope. In the early 1950s, Sanford served with the State Department, on loan from the Bureau of Mines, as a mining consultant to Afghanistan, India, and Nepal. He resigned from the Bureau of Mines in 1966.
Provenance:
Bonnie Gitlin, Gift, 2004, NASM.2004.0063.
Restrictions:
No restrictions on access.
Rights:
Material is subject to Smithsonian Terms of Use. Should you wish to use NASM material in any medium, please submit an Application for Permission to Reproduce NASM Material, available at Permissions Requests.
Citation:
Robert S. Sanford Collection, Acc. NASM.2004.0063, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Robert S. Sanford Collection
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nasm-2004-0063-ref511