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Archives at The Museum of Flight

Halden H. Emrick Collection

Identifier: 1989-02-16
The Halden H. Emrick Collection contains materials relating to Emrick's personal life and varied aviation career. Materials span his service as a pilot's instructor during World War I with the 820th Aero Squadron, to work as the chief pilot for Curtiss-Wright and other aircraft companies, to his escapades as a stunt pilot during the heyday of barnstorming in the 1920s and 1930s. The collection is predominantly comprised of photographs, most of which are personal snapshots relating to Emrick's aviation activities in Ohio, as well as hunting and camping trips with his wife Peggy in later years. Images feature numerous views of airfields, aircraft, and fellow aviators. Further supporting materials include a pilot log book from the 1930s, clippings documenting Emrick and his colleague's activities, correspondence, and various membership, guest pass, and pilot cards for air shows and organizations.


  • circa 1914-1975
  • Majority of material found within 1920 - 1949


Language of Materials

All materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research and is accessible in the Dahlberg Research Center by appointment. For more information contact us.

Conditions Governing Use

The Museum of Flight (TMOF) Archives is the owner of the physical materials in the archives and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from TMOF archives before any publication use. TMOF does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from copyright owners. Consult repository for more details.


0.5 Cubic Feet (1 legal-size half-width document box, 1 expandable file folder and 3 oversize folders)


The collection contains materials relating to Halden H. Emrick's personal life and varied aviation career as a pilot's instructor during World War I, chief pilot for Curtiss-Wright and other aircraft companies, and a stunt pilot during the heyday of barnstorming in the 1920s and 1930s.

Biographical Note

Halden H. Emrick learned to fly at the Wright School of Aviation of Dayton, Ohio in 1914. After completing his training, he built his own plane, a Curtiss type pusher, finished in 1916. During World War I, he taught flying for the U.S. Army Air Service at Kelly Field (Texas) and Mineola Field (New York). The 820th Aero Squadron, of which Emrick was part, was based out of Kelly Field and remained there for the duration of the war. Several detachments of the squadron were stationed around the country, and at some point Emrick was part of the Boston Detachment in addition to his service at the Texas base and in New York.

After the war Emrick flew in a number of different roles. He became a well-known stunt pilot, barnstorming with his partner Carter G. Buton in the Ohio area. He continued to teach flying and serve as a pilot for a number of different aircraft companies, including the Sanford Aviation Company (a Waco aircraft distributor), the Dungan Airways Co., Inc. (a Fairchild and Waco aircraft distributor), and finally the Curtiss-Wright Flying Service at their Cleveland base.


Biographical note derived from collection materials.


No further accruals are expected.

Existence and Location of Copies

Materials from this collection have been digitized and are available at The Museum of Flight Digital Collections.

Related Archival Materials

The following collections at The Museum of Flight also relate to barnstorming and stunt flying in the 1920s and 1930s:

Dorothy Hester Stenzel Collection. Collection contains scrapbooks, manuscripts and photographs documenting Stenzel's career as one of the first female stunt pilots.

Elrey B. Jeppesen Collection. Collection contains materials relating to the life of early aviator and air mail pilot who revolutionized aerial navigation, and the development of his company, Jeppesen & Company (also known as Jepco).

Clyde Pangborn Collection. Collection contains materials relating to the personal life, education, and military experience of Pangborn, as well as his career as a barnstormer and record-setting pilot.

Separated Materials

The following items have been separated from the archival component of this collection and are kept in Objects storage:
  • Air Associates compass course protractor

  • Leather pilot’s license holder-pouch

  • Leather ID tag
Guide to the Halden H. Emrick Collection
Completed - Level 4
A. Demeter
Description rules
Language of description
Processing, cataloging and digitization of this collection was made possible by a Council on Libraries and Information Resources (CLIR) "Digitizing Hidden Special Collections and Archives" grant.
Edition statement
2nd Edition

Revision Statements

  • 2018 November: Finding aid migrated to ArchivesSpace.
  • 2023 May: Removed negatives to new container and stored in freezer.

Repository Details

Part of the The Museum of Flight Archives Repository

9404 East Marginal Way South
Seattle Washington 98108-4097

The Museum of Flight | 9404 E. Marginal Way South | Seattle WA 98108-4097 | 206-764-5874
Contact us with a research request