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Colonel Alexis B. McMullen photograph and postcard collection of West Africa

Creator:
McMullen, Alexis B. (collector and photographer)  Search this
Photographer:
Zagourski, Casimir  Search this
Extent:
70 Postcards (70 photographic postcards, silver gelatin)
86 Prints (silver gelatin)
Culture:
Mputu (African people)  Search this
Komo (Congolese (Democratic Republic) people)  Search this
West Africans  Search this
Mangbetu (African people)  Search this
Tutsi (African people)  Search this
Kuba (African people)  Search this
Hausa (African people)  Search this
Ashanti (African people)  Search this
Bangala (African people)  Search this
Ghanaians  Search this
Banziri (African people)  Search this
Ngbaka (African people)  Search this
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Postcards
Prints
Photographs
Place:
Rwanda
Congo (Democratic Republic)
Kenya
Ghana
Africa, West
Date:
circa 1943-1944
Scope and Contents note:
Photoraphs made and collected by Alexis B. McMullen documenting peoples and culture in West Africa. The images created by McMullen and Captain D. B. McCloskey depict ceremonies at Kibib honoring Ofori Atta, a chief in the Central Province of the Gold Coast; a dance to the god of the sea at Teshi; and fishing boats and equipment. Additionally, the collection contains photographic postcards collected by McMullen and made by Casimir Zagourski, Leopoldville, and Methodist Book Depots, Cape Coast. These show African "types," a Bwake female circumcision ceremony, scarification (cicatrization), African animals (including giraffes, elephants, and a hippopotamus), agriculture, dances, and musical instruments. Depicted West African peoples include the Ashanti, Bangala, Banziri, Hausa, Kuba, Kumu, Mangbetu, Mputu and Tutsi.
Biographical/Historical note:
Colonel Alexis B. McMullen participated in American aviation activities for about 50 years. During World War II, he was the commanding officer of a United States Air Corps Air Transport Command (ATC) base in Accra, Ghana (then the Gold Coast).
Local Call Number(s):
NAA Photo Lot 90-14
Location of Other Archival Materials:
The National Air and Space Museum Archives Division holds the Colonel Alexis B. McMullen Collection, 1915-1983, documenting McMullen's aviation career and interests.
Additional Zagourski photographs can be found in the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives in EEPA 1987-0024 and the EEPA Postcard Collection.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research.

Access to the collection requires an appointment.
Rights:
Some items were copyrighted. Researchers will have to determine current status of copyright and demonstrate expiration to the archives before copies of thost items can be reproduced.
Topic:
Musical instruments  Search this
Scarification (Body marking)  Search this
Cacao  Search this
Cooking  Search this
Fishing  Search this
female circumcision  Search this
Dance  Search this
Boats and boating  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Postcards
Citation:
Photo Lot 90-14, Colonel Alexis B. McMullen photograph and postcard collection of West Africa, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NAA.PhotoLot.90-14
Archival Repository:
National Anthropological Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-naa-photolot-90-14

Frank Purdy Lahm Collection

Creator:
Lahm, Frank Purdy, 1877-1963  Search this
Names:
International Balloon Race  Search this
United States. Army  Search this
United States. Army. Air Corps. Training Center. Randolph Field. Texas  Search this
United States. Army. Army Air School -- Phillippines  Search this
United States. Army. Second Army Air Service  Search this
Lahm, Frank Purdy, 1877-1963  Search this
Extent:
1.04 Linear feet
1.09 Cubic feet (1 records center box; 1 flatbox)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Manuscripts
Photographs
Publications
Posters
Correspondence
Diaries
Date:
1906-1965
bulk 1912-1930
Summary:
Major General Frank Purdy Lahm (1877-1963) was the first balloon pilot, the first airship pilot, and the first airplane pilot in the US Army. Like his father, Frank Samuel Lahm, his early interest was in ballooning, and in 1906 he won the James Gordon Bennett International Balloon Race. In 1909 Lahm and Lt. Frederick E. Humphreys were trained by Orville and Wilbur Wright to fly the first plane the US Army purchased from the Wrights. In 1912 he was made commanding officer of the US Army Flying School in the Philippines, and during World War I he was commander of the Second Army Air Service. Following the war Lahm founded the Air Corps Training Center at Randolph Field, a source of great pride to him, but was reassigned in 1931 as air attaché and later military attaché to France and Belgium. When Lahm retired from the military in 1941 he had distinguished himself as recipient of the Distinguished Service Medal and the French Legion of Honor.

This collection consists of photographs and news clippings detailing Lahm's military career and his personal life.
Scope and Contents:
The Frank Purdy Lahm Collection (Acc. 1986-0044), located in the National Air and Space Museum Archives Division, is made up of approximately 1 cubic foot of newsclippings and other materials relating to his personal life and aviation-oriented career. The collection was donated by Lahm's children, Colonel Lawrence Lahm and Mrs. R.E. McMahon on September 12, 1985. The collection was formally received by NASM Archives Division in January of 1986.

The collection consists primarily of newsclippings relating Lahm's aviation-oriented military career. Also included are personal items such as correspondence, photographs, and published materials. Materials in this collection date between 1906 and 1963, with the bulk dates being between circa 1912 and 1930, when Lahm's military career appears busiest. The materials were divided into 3 Series:

1) The personal life of Frank Purdy Lahm: this includes newsclippings, personal correspondence, speeches and presentations, awards and honors both won by and established in the name of Lahm, and newsclippings in which Lahm speaks about other aviation happenings.

2) Materials relating to Lahm's Military Career: this series includes Lahm's ballooning experiences and reports to his superiors, his establishing of the U.S. Army Flying School at Fort McKinley in the Philippine Islands and his establishing of the U.S. Army Air Training Corps, Randolph Field, TX. Also included in this series is a copy of a pamphlet entitled Training the Airplane Pilot, which Lahm wrote for Great Britain while he was Military and Air Attaché to France and Belgium.

3) Clippings relating to aviation figures: this series contains newsclippings collected by Lahm for other aviation figures he apparently knew. While the bulk of these relate to Henry Arnold and the Wright Brothers, there is also a folder entitled "Clippings on other Aviation Figures."

As the bulk of this collection is made up of newsclippings, arrangement was made difficult by the fact that items relating to the same incident were spread out over a period of years. As such, a chronological arrangement of materials on the folder level was impossible. Arrangement on the folder level has been done by subject, with either chronological or alphabetical arrangement for items within the folder.
Arrangement:
The collection is divided into 3 Series:

1) The personal life of Frank Purdy Lahm: this includes newsclippings, personal correspondence, speeches and presentations, awards and honors both won by and established in the name of Lahm, and newsclippings in which Lahm speaks about other aviation happenings.

2) Materials relating to Lahm's Military Career: this series includes Lahm's ballooning experiences and reports to his superiors, his establishing of the U.S. Army Flying School at Fort McKinley in the Philippine Islands and his establishing of the U.S. Army Air Training Corps, Randolph Field, TX. Also included in this series is a copy of a pamphlet entitled Training the Airplane Pilot, which Lahm wrote for Great Britain while he was Military and Air Attaché to France and Belgium.

3) Clippings relating to aviation figures: this series contains newsclippings collected by Lahm for other aviation figures he apparently knew. While the bulk of these relate to Henry Arnold and the Wright Brothers, there is also a folder entitled "Clippings on other Aviation Figures."

As the bulk of this collection is made up of newsclippings, arrangement was made difficult by the fact that items relating to the same incident were spread out over a period of years. As such, a chronological arrangement of materials on the folder level was impossible. Arrangement on the folder level has been done by subject, with either chronological or alphabetical arrangement for items within the folder.

Series 1: Personal Life

Series 2: Military Career

Series 3: Other Aviation Figures
Biographical/Historical note:
Frank Purdy Lahm was born on 17 November 1877 in Mansfield, Ohio, the son of balloonist Frank S. Lahm and Adelaide Purdy Lahm. Following his mother's death in 1880, Frank's father moved to Paris to pursue his ballooning interests, leaving his son in the care of a widowed aunt. Between 1880 and 1901, Lahm attended a number of schools and military institutes, finally graduating in 1901 with a Bachelor of Military Science degree from the United States Military Academy, West Point. After graduation, Lahm was assigned to the cavalry branch and immediately departed to the Philippines for duty with the Sixth Cavalry. He served there until 1903, when, much to his dismay, he was reassigned to West Point to teach French. In the summer of 1904, Lahm went to visit his father in Paris on leave. While there, Lahm made his first ascent in a balloon. One year later Lahm was awarded Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (F.A.I.) Balloon Certificate #4. In 1906 Lahm represented the United States in the first Gordon Bennett International Balloon Race, which Lahm and his aide, Major Henry Hersey, won after out distancing their nearest opponents by fifty miles. Lahm was then transferred to the Aeronautical Section of the Army Signal Corps. Lahm was ordered to investigate aeronautical activities in Britain and Germany, where he spent much of 1907. In February of 1908, Lahm drafted a report on military aviation and presented it to Theodore Roosevelt, who then approved a sum of $25,000 for military aeronautics. Having received F.A.I. Airship Pilot Certificate #2, Lahm was deemed the best candidate to direct trial flights leading to the possible purchase of military aircraft.

With his prior aviation experience, Lahm was put in charge of organizing the 1908 trials of the Wright brothers' aircraft at Fort Myer, Virginia. While at Fort Myer, Lahm was the first passenger in a heavier-than-air craft, flying eight days prior to the accident in which Lt. Thomas Selfridge became the first Army flight casualty. After the accident, Lahm and the other directors were re-assigned to their original branches, with Lahm returning to the cavalry. Trial flights of the Wright Military Flyer resumed in 1909. On 9 September, Lahm and Orville Wright set the world endurance flying record with a flight of six minutes. During October, Wilbur Wright taught Lahm and Lt. Frederick Humphries to fly at College Park, Maryland, and Lahm received F.A.I. Airplane Pilot Certificate #2 on 26 October, soloing three minutes after Humphries.

Following the successful trial flights, Lahm returned to the cavalry branch and remained in relative anonymity until July 1911, when he won the National Balloon Race in St. Louis, Missouri, and placed second in the International Balloon Race, held at the same time. On 18 October, 1911, Lahm married Gertrude Jenner. In 1912, Lahm was transferred to the Philippine Islands, where he established and commanded the U.S. Army Flying School at Fort McKinley. Lahm remained in the Pacific until 1914, when he was again reassigned to the cavalry and served on the Mexican border. After his tour with the cavalry, Lahm was promoted to the rank of captain in April of 1916 and served as the secretary of the U.S. Army Flying School, Rockwell Field, San Diego, California. He remained here until 1917, when he was put in command of the U.S. Army Balloon School, Omaha, Nebraska, and promoted to the temporary rank of colonel. Later in that same year, Lahm was ordered overseas to observe British and French use of balloons in combat. Originally intending to return home, Lahm was then put in command of the American Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.) lighter-than-air service. He also acted as Commander of the Second Army Air Service, A.E.F. In 1918, due to the wartime necessity for officers, Lahm was promoted to the permanent rank of colonel and continued his service with the Second Army Air Service.

In 1919 and 1920 Lahm attended the Army War College, followed by assignment to the War Department General Staff in Washington, D.C. until 1924. From 1924 to 1926 Lahm acted as Air Officer for the Ninth Corps Area, and in 1926, Lahm was instrumental in planning and organizing the Air Corps Training Center, which was to soon become Randolph Field, San Antonio, Texas. His duties at Randolph Field kept him in Texas until 1930, when Lahm was temporarily promoted to the rank of brigadier general and assigned as the Assistant Chief of the Air Corps. In 1930, Lahm returned to the position of Air Officer, Ninth Corps Area. In 1931, Lahm's wife died. Following his duty as Air Officer, Lahm reverted to his permanent rank and was assigned as the Air Attaché to France, Belgium, and Spain. In 1933, Lahm picked up the additional responsibility of being Military Attaché to France and Belgium, remaining in both of these posts until 1935. He then served as Air Officer for the Second Corps Area until 1940, when he became the Chief of Aviation, First Army, at Governors Island, New York. In 1941, Lahm was promoted to the permanent rank of brigadier general and assigned as the Commanding General at the Gulf Coast Training Center, Randolph Field, Texas. While here he received an honorary promotion to the rank of major general from President Franklin Roosevelt. Having reached mandatory retirement age, Lahm retired on 30 November, 1941 with the rank of brigadier general.

Following retirement, Lahm moved back to his hometown of Mansfield, Ohio. His interest in aviation continued, and within two years he and Charles de Forest Chandler co-authored How Our Army Grew Wings, on aeronautical activities in the U.S. Army prior to 1914. Lahm also became interested in civic activities during this time, becoming involved with the Boy Scouts, various local historical societies, and with stimulating local interest in international events. He helped establish International Affairs Committees in Cleveland and Mansfield, Ohio. Lahm also spoke on the lecture circuit, relating his personal experiences and providing support for the advancement of military aviation. On 4 April, 1948, Lahm married Grace Wolfe Kenson.

On 3 July, 1963 Lahm suffered a stroke and was hospitalized in Sandusky, Ohio. On 7 July 1963 he passed away at the age of eighty-five. His body was cremated and the ashes were spread into the air from a plane flying over Randolph Field, Texas.

In addition to being a member and past President of the Early Birds of Aviation, Inc., Lahm was also a member of the Washington, D.C. Army and Navy Club, the National Aeronautical Association, the American Legion, the Aéro-Club de France, and an Honorary Member of the Aero Club of America. Besides his many balloon competition victories, his awards include the Distinguished Service Medal (U.S.A.), the Commander of Legion of Honor (France), and the Ordre d'Avis (Portugal).
General:
Frank Purdy Lahm Timeline

1877 -- Frank Purdy Lahm born on 17 November, Mansfield, Ohio, the son of Frank S. Lahm and Adelaide Purdy Lahm.

1880 -- Adelaide Purdy Lahm died and Frank S. Lahm moves to France, leaving their son in the care of a widowed aunt.

1901 -- Graduated with a B.S., U.S. Military Academy, West Point. Commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant in the U.S.Army.

1901-1905 -- Served with the Sixth Cavalry in the Philippine Islands and then reassigned as instructor in French at the U.S. Military Academy.

1904 -- Lahm makes his first ascent as passenger in a balloon.

1905 -- Awarded Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (F.A.I) Balloon Pilot Certificate #4 after soloing 15 July while visiting his father in France.

1906 -- Winner (with Henry Hersey) of the first Gordon Bennett International Balloon Race, 30 September to 1 October.

1907 -- Investigator of military aeronautics production facilities and bases in London, England, and Berlin, Germany.

1908 -- Awarded F.A.I. Airship Pilot Certificate #2, August, after flying the Signal Corps Dirigible #1.

1908-1909 -- In charge of the Wright Brothers test flights at Fort Myer, Virginia. First passenger in a heavier-than-air craft, flying eight days prior to the Wright-Selfridge accident.

1909 -- Learned to fly at College Park, Maryland, with Wilbur Wright. Later awarded F.A.I. Airplane Pilot Certificate #2, 26 October. Established endurance flying record with Orville Wright, 9 September.

1911 -- Married Gertrude Jenner, 18 October. Winner of National Balloon Race, St. Louis, Missouri, July.

1912-1913 -- Organized and acted as commanding officer, U.S. Army Flying School, Fort William McKinley, Philippine Islands.

1913 -- Appointed "Military Aviator" by the War Department, and "Expert Aviator #15" by the Aero Club of America, July.

1914-1916 -- Service on the Mexican border with the U.S. Cavalry.

1916 -- Promoted to the rank of captain and designated a "Jr. Military Aviator," April.

1916-1917 -- Assigned as secretary of the U.S. Army Flying School, Rockwell Field, North Island, San Diego, California.

1917 -- Temporarily promoted to rank of lt. colonel and assigned as commanding officer of the U.S. Army Balloon School, Omaha, Nebraska. Later served as an observer with British and French air units on the Western Front.

1917-1918 -- Organized and commanded the American Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.) lighter-than-air service. Also served as commander, Second Army Air Service, A.E.F.

1918 -- Temporarily promoted to rank of colonel, U.S. Army.

1919-1920 -- Attended the Army War College.

1920-1924 -- Assigned to the War Department General Staff, Washington, D.C.

1924-1926 -- Served as Air Officer for the Ninth Corps Area.

1926 -- Established the Air Corps Training Center, San Antonio, Texas, 1 September.

1926-1930 -- Promoted to the temporary rank of brigadier general, 17 July, and assigned as the Assistant Chief of the Air Corps.

1930 -- Returned to duty as Air Officer, Ninth Corps Area.

1931 -- Death of Gertrude Jenner Lahm, October.

1931-1935 -- Reverted to rank of colonel and assigned as Air Attaché to France, Belgium, and Spain.

1932-1935 -- Assigned as Military Attaché to France and Belgium.

1935-1940 -- Acted as Air Officer for the Second Corps Area.

1940-1941 -- Served as Chief of Aviation First Army, Governors Island, NY.

1941 -- Promoted to brigadier general and assigned as Commanding General, Gulf Coast Training Center, Randolph Field, TX. Honorary promotion to rank of major general by Franklin Roosevelt, September. Frank Purdy Lahm retires with the permanent rank of Brigadier General, 30 November.

1943 -- Co-authored How Our Army Grew Wings with Charles De Forrest Chandler. Published by Ronald Press.

1948 -- Married Grace Wolfe Kenson, 4 April.

1949-1950 -- Served as President of the Early Birds of Aviation, Inc. organization.

1956 -- Lahm and his wife are seriously injured in car accident, Mansfield, Ohio.

1963 -- Frank Purdy Lahm died following a cerebral hemorrhage, Sandusky, Ohio, 7 July. Lahm was cremated and his remains were scattered over Randolph Air Force Base, Texas.
Provenance:
Lawrence Lahm, gift, 1986, 1986-0044, Not NASM.
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.
Topic:
Periodicals  Search this
Aeronautics  Search this
Works of art  Search this
Airships  Search this
Aeronautics, Military  Search this
Genre/Form:
Manuscripts
Photographs
Publications
Posters
Correspondence
Diaries
Citation:
Frank Purdy Lahm Collection, Acc. 1986-0044, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NASM.1986.0044
See more items in:
Frank Purdy Lahm Collection
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nasm-1986-0044
Online Media:

Scrapbook

Collection Creator:
Jones, William  Search this
Container:
Box 1
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
bulk 1943 - 1946
Collection Restrictions:
No restrictions on access.
Collection 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
Collection Citation:
William Jones World War II Scrapbook, NASM.2006.0067, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
William Jones World War II Scrapbook
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nasm-2006-0067-ref506
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The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17 Collection

Topic:
The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17
Creator:
Brownstein, Herb  Search this
Names:
United States. Army Air Forces  Search this
United States. Army Air Forces. 19th Bombardment Group  Search this
United States. Army Air Forces. 19th Bombardment Group. 14th Bombardment Squadron  Search this
United States. Army. Air Corps  Search this
Kurtz, Frank  Search this
Smith, Weldon H.  Search this
Extent:
1 Cubic foot (3 boxes)
Container:
Box 4
Box 5
Box 6
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Diaries
Photographs
Maps
Reports
Manuscripts
Publications
Interviews
Correspondence
Date:
1939-1943
Summary:
The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17 Collection consists of materials collected during research by Herbert Brownstein, the author.
Scope and Content:
This collection consists of materials collected by author Herbert Brownstein during his research for the book The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17. Fifty-four of the images collected were used in the book. These images feature the aircraft, its crew, its insignia, air fields where it was stationed and maps of the flights of The Swoose. Mr. Brownstein collected approximately six hundred additional photographs from former crew members and other sources which were not used in the book. Included among these are images of air bases including Milne Bay, New Guinea; Marreba, Australia; Clark Field, Philippine Islands; Port Moresby, New Guinea; Del Monte, Philippine Islands; Randolph, Texas; Wheeler, Hawaii; Brooks, Texas; and Kelly, Texas. Aircraft featured include the Bell P-39, Douglas C-47, Boeing B-17B, Boeing B-17G, North American B-25B, Curtiss P-40, North American N4J Pensacola Trainer, and Boeing B-17 Suzy-Q. Aviation field maps include those for Northeast Australia, Malaya, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, and the Philippine Islands. Individuals represented include Henry Godman, Weldon S. Smith, Lyndon B. Johnson, Frank Kurtz, Sir Charles Burnett, Brigadier General George Acheson and several group shots of crew. There are also histories of the 14th and 19th Bombardment Groups, operations, battle honor lists, damage reports, debriefing reports, and crew lists as well as periodical articles about the aircraft and its crew.
Arrangement:
The collection has been organized into three series:

SERIES 1: Photographs Used in The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17 SERIES 2: Photographs Collected but not Used in The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17 SERIES 3: Official Government Documents, Periodical Articles, Miscellaneous Material
Biographical/Historical note:
The Swoose was the name given to Boeing B-17D Flying Fortress serial number 40-3097 by Weldon H. Smith, one of its crew members. The aircraft flew four historic trans-Pacific flights: California to Hawaii, May 13-14, 1941; Sidney, Australia to Hawaii and back, May 17-30, 1942; and Brisbane to Washington, DC, August 4-12, 1942. It was stationed in the Pacific theater during the first two years of World War II (1941-1943) and was assigned to both the 14th and 19th Bombardment Groups. In the Pacific, The Swoose carried out bombing and transport operations in the Philippines, Java, and Australia. In 1943, the aircraft was stationed in Panama. The aircraft remained in service until 1953, when it was transferred to the National Air and Space Museum. In 2008, The Swoose was transferred to the National Museum of the United States Air Force.
Provenance:
Herb Brownstein, gift, 1994, 1996, 2000, 1994-0024
Restrictions:
No restrictions on access
Rights:
Permissions Requests
Topic:
Aeronautics  Search this
Aeronautics, Military  Search this
Boeing B-17D Flying Fortress "Swoose"  Search this
Genre/Form:
Diaries
Photographs
Maps
Reports
Manuscripts
Publications
Interviews
Correspondence
Citation:
The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17 Collection, Acc. 1994-0024, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NASM.1994.0024
See more items in:
The Swoose: Odyssey of a B-17 Collection
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nasm-1994-0024
Online Media:

Carl Myers Balloon Farm Collection

Names:
United States. Army. Signal Corps  Search this
United States. Weather Bureau  Search this
Benbow, Thomas C.  Search this
Curtis, George E. (George Edward)  Search this
Hazen, Henry Allen, 1849-1900  Search this
Myers, Carl, 1842-1925  Search this
Myers, Mary, "Carlotta Queen of the Air"  Search this
Extent:
0.25 Cubic feet (1 slim legal document box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Correspondence
Photographs
Place:
Carl Myers Balloon Farm
Date:
1889-1910
Summary:
Carl Myers (1842-1925) was a meteorologist, photographer and balloonist. In 1875, Myers and his wife Mary ("Carlotta, Queen of the Air") began experimenting with balloons and made their first ascensions in 1880. Myers constructed and flew a variety of balloons and airships, and worked on the following technical advances: he developed a varnishing machine for producing fabrics impervious to hydrogen gas; he produced a portable system for generating hydrogen gas; he patented an apparatus for guiding balloons; and he made the first balloon ascension using natural gas as the lifting medium. Myers manufactured balloons for the U.S. Weather Bureau's rainmaking experiments and also supplied the United States Army Signal Corps (USASC) with twenty-one balloons for use in Spanish American War. Myers retired in 1910.

The collection consists of 91 images of the following: balloons, airships, and aeronautical gear in various stages of construction and flight; interior and exterior views of the Carl Myers Balloon Farm; and a number of portraits taken of the family and visitors, including Thomas C. Benbow, a noted pioneering aeronaut. It also contains correspondence written by Myers to Professor Henry Allen (H.A.) Hazen, a meteorologist connected with the United States Signal Office, and one letter to George E. Curtis, head of the U.S. Weather Bureau.
Scope and Contents:
The Carl Myers Balloon Farm Collection spans the years 1889-1910 and contains photographs and documents produced at the property of that name in Frankfort, New York, owned and operated by Carl Myers. "Professor Myers" as he was called by the press in his day, was a pioneering aeronaut, inventor, and experimenter actively engaged in all aspects of ballooning during these years.

The bulk of the collection consists of ninety-one captioned photographs showing a variety of balloons, airships, and aeronautical gear in various stages of construction and flight. Also included in this material are several interior and exterior views of the main house known as the Gates Mansion (see note) along with a number of portraits, both individual and group, taken of the family and visitors - possibly including several of Thomas C. Benbow. The latter was another pioneering aeronaut who visited the Balloon Farm in 1903 in conjunction with the construction of an airship later identified in contemporary press accounts of the St. Louis Exposition of 1904 as the Benbow Airship "Meteor."

Other material in the Carl Myers Balloon Collection consist of correspondence composed between 1891 and 1894. Except for one unrelated item, all are copies of letters written by Myers to George E. Curtis, head of the U.S. Weather Bureau, Department of Agriculture, and Henry Allen Hazen, then Professor of Meteorology at the Weather Bureau. The contents of these letters contain proposals for, discussions about, and observations involving the use of balloons for meteorological research. Information documented in these letters includes material on balloon technology, economical aspects of ballooning, and the operational aspects of conducting aeronautical activities with balloons in the 1890s.

Detailed information on the life of Carl Myers can be found in the biographical files of the National Air and Space Museum's Archives Division. Additional correspondence between Myers and the Weather Bureau is purported to be located in the archives of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. Materials concerning Henry Allen Hazen can be found in two locations: at the Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, listed under the Aeronautical Archives, Institute of the Aerospace Sciences, and at the Smithsonian Institution Archives under the Office of the Secretary, Records of the Smithsonian Institution.

Further information on Thomas Benbow and the Benbow "Meteor" (which the donor referred to as the "Montana Butterfly") can be located in the biographical files held at the National Air and Space Museum's Archives. Additional photographs of the Benbow Airship can be found in the Museum's photographic collection, images 2B 2166-2179.

NOTE: Gates Mansion - The main building at the Balloon Farm was located on Cemetery Hill Road in Frankfort, New York. It was a large mansion constructed by William Gates, the inventor of the sulfur safety match, in 1878 at a cost of $35,000. The property was sold to Carl Myers by Gates' son Fred.
Arrangement:
The Carl Myers Balloon Farm Collection is organized into two series.

Series 1: Photographic Images of the Carl Myers Balloon Farm (1889-1910); 91 images

Series 2: Correspondence (1891-1894); 20 items
Biographical/Historical note:
Charles Edgar Myers (1842 1925) was a meteorologist, photographer and balloonist. He grew up in the town of Mohawk, New York, becoming adept at the use of all types of electrical, chemical, and mechanical apparatus.

Myers started working in 1861 when he was hired as a teller by the Mohawk Valley Bank, a position which soon led to his interest in developing, and the subsequent invention of, a comparison system for identifying bogus bank notes. In 1863, at the solicitation of the Bank's officers, Myers established the town's first telegraph office. He resigned his position at the bank in 1867 and purchased a photograph gallery in the village of Hornell (then Hornellsville), New York. Fascinated with the rapid technical advances then being made in photography, he constructed a portable photographic set up for taking wet process photographs in scenic, remote locations. Using this equipment he produced the first known series of stereoscopic views of the Adirondack Wilderness billed as "The Adirondack Series."

While living in Hornellsville he met Mary Breed Hawley, seven years his junior, whom he married in 1871. In 1875 Myers sold the photographic gallery and moved back to Mohawk where he and Mary began to experiment with methods of making fabrics impervious to hydrogen gas so they would be suitable for manufacturing balloons and airship envelopes. Myers' interest in ballooning appears to have arisen out of his continuous involvement in meteorological measurements and a desire to further his studies of the atmosphere. One of his earliest achievements was the development of an automatic self-recording mercury barometer which properly compensated for temperature changes and kept a continuous record of local barometric pressure.

In 1878, Myers constructed his first balloon, but did not make his first ascension until 1880. Mary, who would later win notoriety as "Carlotta Queen of the Air," made her first ascension a few months later. Their only child, a daughter whom they named Elizabeth Aerial, was born the following year in 1881.

During the ten years that the Myers resided in Mohawk, Carl constructed and flew a variety of balloons and airships. He also developed a varnishing machine for producing fabrics impervious to hydrogen gas, produced a portable system for generating hydrogen gas, patented an apparatus for guiding balloons, and made the first balloon ascension using natural gas as the lifting medium. Within this time period he also published the writings of his wife, The Aerial Adventures of Carlotta, and started The Balloon Bulletin, a four page illustrated periodical devoted to aeronautics. Mary, it is said, made more balloon ascensions than any person in America and was one of the only balloonists of that era to attain a measure of navigational control during untethered flight.

In 1889 Myers purchased the property owned by Fred Gates in Frankfort, New York, renaming it the "Balloon Farm." When the Weather Bureau was transferred to the Agriculture Department in 1891, he visited Mr. George E. Curtis in Washington, D.C., to propose his services as a supplier of balloons for meteorological use. In the next few years Myers manufactured more then one hundred balloons for the Weather Bureau and personally participated in rainmaking experiments involving "exploding " balloons which he designed for this purpose. In 1898 the Balloon Farm supplied the United States Army Signal Corps (USASC) with twenty-one balloons for use in the Spanish American War. In 1904 Myers was appointed Superintendent of Aeronautics at the St. Louis Exposition where he was in charge of aeronautic exhibits and also arranged for, and supervised, such special features as balloon races and demonstrations of the latest airships.

Myers continued to operate the Balloon Farm until 1910, when he sold the farm and moved to his daughter's home in Atlanta, Georgia. His last known work on ballooning appeared in 1913 when he wrote an article for Scientific American titled "Half a Lifetime with the Hydrogen Balloon."
Provenance:
Lynn Fitzpatrick, gift, 1991, 1991-0075, NASM (images only)
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.
Topic:
Meteorology  Search this
Aeronautics -- Exhibitions  Search this
Balloons -- Exhibitions  Search this
Balloons  Search this
Meteorology -- Research  Search this
Balloons -- Materials  Search this
Meterologists  Search this
Balloon gases  Search this
Balloonists  Search this
Aeronautics  Search this
Genre/Form:
Correspondence
Photographs
Citation:
Carl Myers Balloon Farm Collection, Acc. 1991-0075, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NASM.1991.0075
See more items in:
Carl Myers Balloon Farm Collection
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nasm-1991-0075
Online Media:

Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical Photography Collection

Creator:
Smith, Larry  Search this
Names:
Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical  Search this
Extent:
0.18 Cubic feet ((1 slim letter box))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Digital images
Digital versatile discs
Date:
bulk 1970s-2003
Summary:
This collection consists of 82 scanned photographs and four DVDs relating to Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical's aircraft and operations.
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of 82 scanned photographs and four DVDs relating to Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical's aircraft and operations. The scans of the photographs were produced by the National Air and Space Museum's Archives Division, from originals lent by, and returned to, Mr. Larry Smith. The DVDs were made from four VHS-C format tapes of crop spraying runs also lent, and returned, to Mr. Smith. The following aircraft are represented: Bell UH-1B; Air Tractor AT-400A and AT-602; Hughes 269C; Hiller UH-12E; Ayres Corp. S2R-G6 and 660 (S2R-T660); Piper PA-25-235 Pawnee; Cessna 340A; and Weatherly Aviation Co. 620A.
Arrangement:
Arranged by type of media.
Biographical / Historical:
Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical, a division of J & L Smith Farms, is a crop spraying business run by Larry Smith based in Ulysses, Kansas. Tri-Rotor was started with the purchase of a Hughes 269A in 1978 as a way to get crop spraying on Smith Farms done in a timely manner. That first year a neighbor came by and said, "It looks good, could you do mine?" and so started Tri-Rotor's expansion. In 1979, Tri-Rotor purchased a Hughes 300-C that they kept for four years, during which time they sprayed between 7000 to 12000 acres a year. In 1982, they bought a Hiller H-23E, and started to enlarge their fleet in response to demand, buying two additional Hiller H-23Es and one spray coupe ground rig. In 1988, they sold one of the Hillers and purchased a Bell 204B. After a fatal accident in the Bell during May of 1989, Tri-Rotor switched to turbine airplane spraying and bought their first Air Tractor AT-400. Currently Tri-Rotor has three Air Tractors AT-402s and one AT-602, one Ayres Corporation 660 Turbo-Thrush, one Bell OH-58 Kiowa, one Hiller 12E Soloy, one Hiller H-23E (Model 12E), and four ground rig machines. They spray in Texas and Kansas, and have a business in Arizona where they spray predominately lettuce, cauliflower, broccoli, cotton and alfalfa. In Arizona, Tri-Rotor also sprays for mosquito control and noxious weed control for the State. They are preparing to be involved in tamarisk control on the major watersheds to increase and improve ground water and to be involved in fire fighting with the US Forest Service. Currently Tri-Rotor employs 50 personnel and sprays approximately 450,000 acres per year. They also sell chemicals directly to farmers.
Provenance:
Larry Smith, Gift, 2004
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
Topic:
Aeronautics  Search this
Aerial spraying and dusting in agriculture  Search this
Piper PA-25 Pawnee Family  Search this
Bell UH-1B (HU-1B) Iroquois (Huey)  Search this
Air Tractor AT-400  Search this
Air Tractor AT-602  Search this
Hughes 269 Family  Search this
Ayres Corp Turbo-Thrush S2R  Search this
Ayres Corp 660 Turbo-Thrush  Search this
Cessna 340  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Digital images
Digital versatile discs
Citation:
Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical Photography Collection, NASM.2004.0023, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NASM.2004.0023
See more items in:
Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical Photography Collection
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nasm-2004-0023
Online Media:

Sylvia Achter Photography Collection

Creator:
Achter, Sylvia  Search this
Names:
Ptarmigan Airway LTD  Search this
Tri-Rotor Spray & Chemical  Search this
Extent:
0.01 Cubic feet ((1 folder))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Digital images
Date:
bulk 1980-2003
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of 49 scanned photographs relating to Sylvia Achter and her aviation career. The scans were produced by the National Air and Space Museum's Archives Division, from originals lent by, and returned to, Ms. Achter.
Biographical / Historical:
Sylvia Achter (b. 1968) has amassed over 3000 hours of commercial flying hours, including over 800 agricultural spraying hours. Born and raised in Alberta, Canada, she graduated from Lethbridge Community College in 1989, and is currently taking distance education courses from Oregon State University. From 1995 until 1997 Achter was first a flight attendant, and then a charter line pilot, with First Air / Ptarmigan Airways (Northwest Territories). From Ptarmigan Airways, Achter moved to NTair Inc. (Prince George, British Columbia), where she was a scheduled and charter line pilot. She then worked from 1998 until 2000 as a charter and medevac airline pilot for Alkan Air (Whitehorse, Yukon), and also as a charter line pilot for Centennial Flight Center (Edmonton, Alberta). From May of 2000 until June of 2002, Achter worked at ranches, feed yards and Can-Am Horse Transport before becoming employed in March of 2002 by Tri-Rotor Spray and Chemical, a Division of J & L Smith Farms, located in Ulysses, Kansas. Over her aviation career, she has flown the following aircraft: Beech Super King Air 200; De Havilland DHC-7 Twin Otter: Piper 30, PA-31-350 Navaho Chieftain, PA-44 Seminole, and PA-18 Super Cub: Cessna 340, 337 Skymaster, 206 Super Skywagon, 182P Skyland, 172 Skyhawk, 152/150, and 188A Ag Wagon; Air Tractor AT-402; and Ayres Thrush S2R 550. She is a member of Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), the National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA), and has a Kansas Pesticide Applicators License.
Provenance:
Achter, Sylvia., Gift, 2003
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
Topic:
Aeronautics  Search this
Aerial spraying and dusting in agriculture  Search this
Cessna 340  Search this
Ayres Corp Turbo-Thrush S2R  Search this
Cessna 188A AgWagon B  Search this
Lockheed C-141Starlifter  Search this
Beech Super King Air 200  Search this
Cessna 172 Skyhawk  Search this
de Havilland (Canada) DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 300l  Search this
Airbus A310  Search this
Genre/Form:
Digital images
Citation:
Sylvia Achter Photography Collection, 2004-0024, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
NASM.2004.0024
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nasm-2004-0024

Exhibition Records

Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Extent:
0.5 cu. ft. (1 document box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Manuscripts
Architectural drawings
Color photographs
Date:
1992-1998, 2005
Descriptive Entry:
This accession consists of records documenting the planning of exhibitions based on the archival collections of the National Air and Space Museum. Exhibitions documented in this accession include National Air and Space Archives; Airships in the Archives; World War II Files; National Air and Space Film Archives; Army Green to Air Force Blue: The First Years of the Independent Air Force; When the Going was Good: The Golden Age of Commercial Air Travel; and Fauna in the Files. Materials include scripts, concepts, memoranda, images, layouts, and an elevation plan.
Topic:
Museum exhibits  Search this
Museum archives  Search this
Aeronautical museums  Search this
Genre/Form:
Manuscripts
Architectural drawings
Color photographs
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
Identifier:
Accession 12-088
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-fa12-088

Box 1

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e230

National Air and Space Archives (First Exhibit) - Script, 1992

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e238

Airships in the Archives - Script, 1993

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e252

World War II Files - Script, 1995

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e266

National Air and Space Museum Film Archives - Script, 1995

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e280

Army Green to Air Force Blue: The First Years of the Independent Air Force (United States Air Force 50th Anniversary) - Script, 1997

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e295

When the Going Was Good: The Golden Age of Commercial Air Travel - Script, 1998

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e309

Fauna in the Files - 2005

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e323

Box 2

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e338

Archives Exhibit Case Elevation Plan, 1992

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Container:
Box 2 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 12-088, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Exhibition Records
See more items in:
Exhibition Records
Exhibition Records / Box 2
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa12-088-refidd1e346

Grant Records

Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Extent:
1 cu. ft. (2 document boxes)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Manuscripts
Pamphlets
Clippings
Black-and-white photographs
Color negatives
Color photographs
Black-and-white transparencies
Place:
Mexico
Central America
South America
Caribbean Area
Date:
1995-2007
Descriptive Entry:
This accession consists of records created and maintained by Dan Hagedorn documenting grants received for projects related to Latinos in aviation. The records document both the grant process as well as the exhibitions, events, films, and other programs that were funded by the grants, such as the exhibition Arriba!: The History of Flight in Mexico, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. Materials include proposals, correspondence, scripts, images, notes, photocopies of articles, pamphlets, clippings, and related materials.
Topic:
Museum exhibits  Search this
Hispanic Americans  Search this
Aeronautical museums  Search this
Aeronautics  Search this
Research grants  Search this
Museums -- Educational aspects  Search this
Museum archives  Search this
Fund accounting  Search this
Genre/Form:
Manuscripts
Pamphlets
Clippings
Black-and-white photographs
Color negatives
Color photographs
Black-and-white transparencies
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 08-085, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Grant Records
Identifier:
Accession 08-085
See more items in:
Grant Records
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-fa08-085

Box 1

Collection Creator::
National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Accession 08-085, National Air and Space Museum. Archives Division, Grant Records
See more items in:
Grant Records
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-fa08-085-refidd1e237

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