Escadrille Lafayette: American Volunteers in the French Air Service

December 11, 2013

While the official US involvement in World War I (WWI) did not occur until April of 1917, unofficially the US volunteered military services as part of a squadron known as the Escadrille Lafayette or Escadrille Americaine, as part of the French Air Service.

Leap of Faith: Robert Cocking’s Parachute Experiment of July 24, 1837

July 24, 2013

To take a leap of faith is to jump without knowing how one will land, either physically or metaphorically. For some, purposefully jumping from a plane and placing full faith in the parachute strapped to one’s back would constitute such a leap. Imagine the level of faith involved when jumping from a balloon when the technology of the parachute had yet to be perfected and often animals were sent in lieu of more »

Digitizing a piece of aviation history

Greetings History, Art, and Culture digitization fans! This month we have the rare privilege of highlighting a dramatic turn in the history of early aviation though primary source material from the library at the National Air and Space Museum.

Wi-Fi @ SIL

Louis Figuier, Les nouvelles conquetes de la science [The new conquests of science], 1883-85, Tome 1, plate opposite page 430 – "Fig.163: Fig. 163: Bureau centrale telephonique" (Telephone Exchange). In recent weeks Wi-Fi access points were installed at the National Air and Space Museum Library, Dibner Library and Botany Library. This brings the total number of libraries with wireless access to: 13! An increasing number of researchers are visiting with and using laptops and they can now access Libraries' online resources in many of the branches via wireless access. This aligns with the Libraries' Strategic Plan: Goal 1, Strategy 1.1: Libraries connects users to people, information, and programs.—Richard Naples

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