archival collection


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:

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:

Raymond Fife Special Collection

Ray Fife (b. 1900) began his career as an aircraft mechanic as a child. The World Wars had him in factories and then North Island. He contributed to the construction of a Curriss A-1 replica and a Curtiss...

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Colonel Harold E. Fischer Personal Papers

Colonel Harold E. Fischer, Jr. was a fighter pilot in the Korean War. He was credited with shooting down 10 Soviet-made Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-1MiG-15 fighters, enough to qualify him as a double ace during...

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Harold A. Fisher Personal Papers

Harold Albert Fisher (1919-2009) served as an administrative officer for Air Group Eight during WWII. He later served as the Bureau of Aeronautics Representative to the Grumman Aircraft corporation, where...

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General Dynamics Environmental Impact Report

After General Dynamics terminated its aerospace manufacturing operation in San Diego in 1995, this report was created to deal with the facilities, which were on land leased from the San Diego Unified Port...

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Elwyn H. Gibbon Collection

Elwyn Gibbon served in the Chinese 14th Volunteer Squadron from 1937-38. He was a test pilot for TWA, Lockheed, and was working for Vultee and the Chinese Air Force when he was killed in a crash.

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