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:

Brigadier General James Raymond Alfonte Collection

Brigadier General Alfonte had a long military career and this collection contains material related to his association with aviation starting with his assignment to Rockwell Field in 1916, through his re-assignment...

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George B. Arnold Collection

George B. Arnold was the VP and general manager of Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company in China, where he was sent in 1937 to build the factory. He served as an associate with Curtiss-Wright in Buffalo...

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American Volunteer Group (Flying Tigers) Collection

The 1st American Volunteer Group (AVG) - known famously as the Flying Tigers - was a group of volunteer US pilots, serving in China before and during WWII and led by Lieutenant General Claire Lee Chennault

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Charles Babb Collection

Charles H Babb was a man who played a very significant role in the history of Southern California Aviation. The Museum is the honored recipient of papers, patents, and photos from his estate.

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Philip Babcock Personal Papers

Philip Babcock served in the 88th Aero Squadron during World War I, doubling as the group's unofficial historian. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and Silver Star Citation for his achievements.

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