The Archives has many collections of documents devoted to particular subjects, organizations or persons.
- Organizational Papers: Documents created for corporations or groups such as Ryan Aeronautical (Ryan, 1922-1969 and Teledyne Ryan, 1969-1999) and Convair (Consolidated Aircraft, 1923-1942; Consolidated Vultee (Convair), 1942-1956; General Dynamics, Convair Division, 1956-1996).
- Personal Papers: Documents created and accumulated by individuals and groups, including Charles A. Lindbergh, T. Claude Ryan, Reuben H. Fleet, Admiral Marc Mitscher, John Montgomery, Ed Heinemann, the Ninety-Nines, Oscar Perdomo, T.P. Hall, and Waldo Waterman.
We are currently working on cataloging, creating finding guides and digitizaing our special collections. Many of those which have been processed can be seen below. Here is a list of most of our special collections, which includes basic information on them.
We also have a variety of archival documents:
- Historic Photo Albums Index
- Pilot Log Book Index
- Aircraft Data Files Index (Not Complete)
- Misc. Subject Files Index (Not Complete)
- Rolled Drawings Index 1 and Index 2
The Library and Archives has digitized several of our rare books, including important publications from Consolidated/Convair Aircraft and Ryan Aeronautical, San Diego’s two most important aerospace companies. These documents highlight the day to day activities at these companies, the corporate history of both Ryan and Consolidated, life in San Diego during the Second World War and the flight schools Ryan operated. These books are searchable and can be found at: http://www.archive.org/details/sandiegoairspacemuseum
Francis O. Smith Collection
Francis Smith was WWII pilot who flew 'over the Hump' - the route over the Himalayas between India and China. He received various accolades and after his service, he worked at the FAA from 1962 to 1998.find out more
Hazel Smothers Collection
Hazel Smothers was born in 1929 in San Luis Obispo. She held numerous licences and certificates for aircraft, received several honors, was a deputized pilot for San Luis Obispo Sheriff's office, and won...find out more
Wally Timm Special Collection
Wall D. Timm was an aviation mechanic, then SIgnal Corps instructor, then during the 1920s, became a barnstormer and Hollywood stunt pilot. After WWII, he worked for Beechcraft.find out more
Onita Thorley Topping Collection
Onita Thorley Topping was a popular pilot of the 1930s. She held both a commercial pilot's rating and a Master Mechanic certificate, was a member of the 99s, and participated in various air derbies and...find out more
Joseph Martin Tschirgi Collection
Joseph Martin Tschirgi graduated from Alabama Polytechnic Institute in 1948 after serving as a Weather Officer with the Army Air Corps. Later at the Douglas Aircraft Company, he worked on the Sparrow Missile.find out more