This collection consists of approximately 0.20 cubic feet of material relating to Serge Gluhareff's career with Sikorsky Aircraft including: photographs; news clippings; correspondence; philatelic materials; immigration paperwork; and his pilot's licenses, medical certificates, and ratings. Notable figures who appear in the photographs (in addition to Serge Gluhareff) include Michael E. Gluhareff; Igor Ivanovich Sikorsky; H. Franklin Gregory; Dimitry D. "Jimmy" Viner; Reginald Alfred Charles Brie; Charles L. "Les" Morris; and Leslie Bradford Cooper. Aircraft seen in the photographs include the Sikorsky (VS-317) S-51; Sikorsky S-39 Sport Amphibion; Sikorsky (VS-316A, S-48) XR-4; Sikorsky (VS-317, S-51) XR-5; Sikorsky (VS-316A, S-48) R-4B (H-4B); Sikorsky S-43 Amphibion (Baby Clipper); Sikorsky VS-300 ; and the Sikorsky S-37 "Ville de Paris" ("Southern Star"). Also in the collection are digital image files scanned from a diary, loaned for copying by the donor, written by Serge Gluhareff's wife, Norma. These pages contain both her written recollections of Serge and his career, as well as photographs.
Biographical / Historical:
Serge Eugene Gluhareff (1903-1958) was an engineer who worked on several major Sikorsky aircraft models. Gluhareff was born in Russia in 1903 and went to school in Finland from 1919 to 1924, obtaining an engineering degree from the School of St. Alexis. While in Finland, Serge and his brother Michael (also an engineer) built and flew their own gliders. Serge and Michael came to the United States in 1924 and went to work for the Sikorsky Aero Engineering Corp. in Westbury, Long Island, New York as engineering draftsmen. Serge rose through the ranks becoming engineering supervisor at the Sikorsky plant in College Point, Long Island (1926-1929), then executive engineer (1934-1943) and later assistant engineering manager for research and development at the Stratford, Connecticut facility, a position he held from 1943 until he was forced to retire for health reasons in 1954. Serge had a long and close association with Igor Ivanovich Sikorsky and was the project engineer for important Sikorsky models such as the Sikorsky S-39 Sport Amphibion; Sikorsky S-40 Clipper; Sikorsky S-42 Clipper; Sikorsky VS-44; Sikorsky S-34; and the Sikorsky S-36. Serge also assisted in the development of Sikorsky's early helicopter models, including the Sikorsky VS-300. Serge obtained his pilot's license in 1928 and acted as test pilot for some early flights of the VS-300. Serge was also a member of many professional organizations including the Institute of the Aeronautical Sciences; American Helicopter Society; Society of Automotive Engineers; and the Connecticut Association of Professional Engineers.
David Gluhareff, Gift, 2015
No restrictions on access.
Collection consists of materials created by and collected by Richard Wheatland II during the period when he served as a Vice President of New York Airways (1953-1968), a helicopter airline operating in the New York City metropolitan area from 1952-1977.
Scope and Contents:
The collection includes a variety of material, probably collected by Richard Wheatland II (1923-2009) during the period 1953-1968 when he served as a Vice President of New York Airways (NYA). The material reflects the administration of the airline and many of the activities of its president, Robert L. Cummings, Jr., as well as its dealings with organizations such as the Air Transport Association (ATA), American Helicopter Society, Bell Helicopter, Eastern Air Lines, the Grand Central Building, the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Pan America World Airways (Pan Am), the Port of New York Authority (PONYA), Sikorsky, Trans World Airlines (TWA), other organizations interested in helicopter operations, and the federal government. In addition to administrative correspondence, memoranda, proposals, employee operations manuals, speeches, and reports, there are also a large number of manuscripts and publications, clippings, timetables and other ephemera, and a small number of photographs.
New York Airways' fleet included several helicopter models over the airline's lifetime, including the Sikorsky S-55, Sikorsky S-58, Bell 47H (used for charter work), Vertol V-44 (civil version of the Piasecki H-21 Workhorse), Boeing-Vertol Model 107, and Sikorsky S-61L and S-61N models. The collection contains materials relating to these aircraft and helicopter operations in general as well as other vertical flight and short take off and landing (STOL) aircraft including the Cierva CR Twin (CR LTH.1, Grasshopper III), Hughes H-500, Hiller FH-1100, Bell 206 JetRanger, and Fairchild (Pilatus) Porter (Heli-Porter, Turbo-Porter).
In addition to the material directly relating to NYA, the collection includes material on topics of interest to the NYA executives. This includes information on the other two helicopter carriers, Los Angeles Airways (LAA) and Helicopter Air Services (HAS) of Chicago, as well as the later San Francisco & Oakland Helicopter Airlines (SFO), and other international, national, and local airlines. Also included are a large number of materials directly relating to air transportation and urban planning issues in the New York City metropolitan area (including northern New Jersey), particularly those related to the airports NYA served: Newark International Airport (IATA airport code EWR) and Teterboro Airport (TEB) in New Jersey, LaGuardia Airport (LGA), West 30th Street Heliport (JRA), Downtown Manhattan/Wall Street Heliport (JRB), Pan Am Building Heliport (JPB), and New York International Airport, Anderson Field, commonly known as "Idlewild" (IDL). New York International Airport was renamed as John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) on December 24, 1963.
Series 2I (1973 Acquisition) contains more of Wheatland's personal notes on various topics, and also includes materials on topics of general business executive interest such as public speaking and management techniques.
Contents are in original order as received by NASM Archives. Folders in both series are arranged (roughly) in alphabetical by original folder title. Materials within the folders in Series 2 (1973 Acquisition) tend to appear in reverse chronological order. Multiple copies of the same materials may appear in different folders.
Digital images of materials in this collection were repurposed from scans made by an outside contractor for a commercial product and may show irregular cropping, orientation, and color variations. Some materials may not be visible online due to copyright restrictions.
Biographical / Historical:
Incorporated on August 31, 1949, New York Airways (NYA), one of the first three helicopter carriers certificated by the United States Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), began mail service between New York City's three major airports on October 15, 1952, and on July 8, 1953, inaugurated the world's first regularly scheduled passenger helicopter service. As was the case with all of the helicopter carriers, NYA depended heavily on government subsidies for its economic health, but worked steadily towards its goal of financial self-sufficiency, extending its routes into nearby Connecticut and New Jersey, carrying freight, and doing charter work. In October 1955, NYA signed joint fare agreements with many national and international airlines, promoting their service by making it easier for passengers transferring to and from the major New York City airports to go "all the way by air." As ground traffic in the New York metropolitan area became increasingly congested, NYA, based at LaGuardia Airport, worked closely with the Port of New York Authority (PONYA) to establish heliports on the island of Manhattan, inaugurating service into the West 30th Street Heliport in 1956 and the Wall Street Heliport (at Pier 6 on the East River) in 1960. In December 1956, as part of a campaign to break the color barrier in the airline industry, NYA hired pilot Perry H. Young, Jr.; Young made his first regularly scheduled flight for NYA as a co-pilot on February 5, 1957, becoming the the first Black pilot for a commercial airline in the United States.
High operating costs continued to be an issue for all of the helicopter carriers, and in 1958, after continuing criticism from the CAB on the subject of alleged excessive costs and increasing subsidy need, NYA was forced to suspend some services. In 1961 Congress put a ceiling on helicopter carrier subsidy payments. The 1964-1965 New York World's Fair provided NYA the opportunity to add passenger and sightseeing service to and from the rooftop heliport of the Port of New York Authority Building at the Fair. Ever seeking a way to reduce its need for government subsidies (which were eventually withdrawn), in June 1965 NYA entered into operating support agreements with Trans World Airlines (TWA) and Pan American World Airways, whose passengers were some of NYA's biggest customers. NYA is perhaps most famous for its regularly scheduled passenger service from the rooftop heliport atop the Pan Am Building, inaugurated on December 21, 1965. Though undeniably glamorous, the noisy NYA helicopters were not appreciated by many of their midtown Manhattan neighbors. Service to the Pan Am Building heliport was cancelled on February 18, 1968, due to inadequate passenger loads, then was briefly resumed in early 1977 until a fatal accident on May 16, 1977, ended NYA service from the heliport. Already suffering from financial setbacks and rising fuel prices, NYA ceased operations permanently following a fatal accident at Newark International Airport on April 18, 1979, and filed for bankruptcy the following month in May 1979.
Richard Wheatland II, born in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1923, served in the United States Navy from 1943-1946 as a deck officer on a destroyer-minelayer in the Pacific; after his discharge he did one year of graduate work in government at Harvard University and then attended Columbia Law School, receiving his law degree in 1949. From 1950 to 1952, Wheatland was based in Paris, France, employed by the US Government in a division of the Office of the Special Representative in Europe for the Marshall Plan. Wheatland returned to New York to join New York Airways in January 1953 as the Manager of the airline's Traffic and Sales Department, and soon became NYA's Vice President of Sales and Service. He was married in 1954 to Cynthia McAdoo. Wheatland left the company in 1968 to take a position in his native home of Boston, and died peacefully at his home on June 26, 2009.
NOTE: The airline covered by this collection, New York Airways (1951), should not be confused with an earlier New York Airways (1927) which was founded July 8, 1927, operated as a subsidiary of Pan American Airways, and was sold to Eastern Air Transport on July 15, 1931. It should also not be confused with the unrelated but similarly named New York Air (owned by Frank Lorenzo's Texas Air Corporation) which was founded in late 1980 and ceased operations on February 1, 1987, when it merged with Continental Airlines.
Richard Wheatland II, Gift, 1973, 1992, NASM.1992.0052
No restrictions on access
12.11 Cubic feet ((1 shoebox) (7 slide and card cabinets))
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of approximately 6000 color slides and over 2000 negatives/prints (a mixture of color and black and white) of civil and military aircraft taken by Seele, circa 1950s-1970s. The shots were taken in the United States, specifically in the Midwest. Aircraft from the following manufacturers are represented: Aero Commander, Arrow, Aeronca, Beechcraft, Bell, Bellanca, Boeing, Bristol, Bucker, Callair, Cessna, Consolidated, Convair, Curtiss, Dassault, de Havilland, Davis, Dart, Douglas, ERCO, Fairchild, Fleet, Ford, Goodyear, Great Lakes, Grumman, Howard, Hawker Siddeley, Hughes, Heinkel, Jodel, Junkers, Lockheed, Ling-Temco-Vought, Lawson, Parsons, Pitts, Pitcarin, Piper, Pazmany, Piaggo, Porterfield, Republic, SAAB, Sikorsky, Stampe, Stearman, Stinson, Swearingen, Taylor, Vickers, and Waco. In June of 2001 the Smitihsonian's Museum of American History transferred an additional shoebox of Seele photography that had been sent directly to them from the widow. This color images included balloon events as well as aircraft shots. The ballooning images are color prints taken mostly around Topeka, Kansas, while the aircraft images are color transparencies of aircraft taken, again, mostly around Topeka.
Biographical / Historical:
Jean Warren (J. W.) Seele (1924-1993) was born in Topeka, Kansas, and spent almost his entire life there. After his graduation from Topeka High School he was enrolled for about one and a half years at the Spartan School of Aeronautics, Tulsa, Oklahoma. Although he worked for a few years at Bendix Aviation Corp, Kansas City Division during the 1950s, most of his professional career was spent as an engineering technician for the Kansas Department of Transportation. While he was not directly employed in the aviation field, Seele's hobby was photographing aircraft. Over a twenty year period, Seele photographed aircraft and at various times he was the official photographer for the National Antique Airplane Association, and for the annual fly-in sponsored by the Experimental Aircraft Association at Rockford, Illinois. Seele's photographs often appeared in the publications of both organizations, and several of this photographs also appeared in Jane's All the World's Aircraft during the 1970s.
Additional materials: photographs taken by Seele of the Kansas countryside, including many of threshing demonstrations, were transferred to the Archives Center at the National Museum of American History.
Charline Seele, Gift, 2000, 2000-0057, NASM, except for images not taken by Seele.
No restrictions on access