Upcott and the Early History of Aeronautics

This post was also featured on the blog of the National Air and Space Museum. Among the treasures found within the special collections of the DeWitt Clinton Ramsey Room, a branch of the Smithsonian Libraries located at the National Air and Space Museum, is a collection of oversized scrapbooks with an interesting and complicated history. Originally bound in one volume, William Upcott’s Scrapbook of Early Aeronautica captures the history of lighter-than-air aircraft more »

The trials and tribulations of post binding repair

The Book Conservation Lab often receives items that require new sewing or new adhesive on the text block as part of their treatment. Infrequently, an item arrives that has been bound atypically and extraordinary repair measures are needed.

A notable autograph for National Aviation Day

In honor of National Aviation Day, Smithsonian Libraries (SIL) turns to a piece of history found in the Ramsey Room. Established by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1939, National Aviation Day is celebrated every year on August 19th, which is also the birthday of Orville Wright.

Smithsonian Libraries Celebrates Women Pioneers in Air & Space

As the month of March winds down, the Smithsonian Libraries (SIL) honors Women’s History Month by celebrating women pioneers in the field of air and space.

Morale: the Navy’s Trans-Atlantic flight

In honor of Memorial Day, we feature this recently digitized book, Morale: the Navy’s Trans-Atlantic flight.

Escadrille Lafayette: American Volunteers in the French Air Service

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.

A date which will live in infamy

Tomorrow, December 7th, 2013, marks the 72nd anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor. On that day in 1941, Japanese bombers and other aircraft launched a surprise attack on the U.S.’s Pearl Harbor naval base on Hawaii’s Oahu island. The attack left nearly 2,500 dead and over 1,000 wounded. In addition it destroyed hundreds of American ships and aircraft and launched the United States into World War II.  Congress and President Franklin more »

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