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Archives at The Museum of Flight

Merwin W. Vining World War II Collection

Identifier: 1996-07-12
The Merwin W. Vining World War II Collection is comprised of materials related to Vining's time in the United States Air Force (USAF) from 1935-1945. The bulk of the collection is from Vining's time as a cadet, including a large framed black-and-white group portrait of Vining's 1935 aviation cadet graduation. In this portrait, Vining is to the right of the "Aviation Cadets '35" banner in the 3rd row. Additionally there is a large framed black-and-white group portrait of the "C" Squad Detachment college training class in 1943, and a 1944 graduation announcement for Class 44-C pilots from Marfa Army Air Forces Pilot School in Marfa, Texas.

There is also a 1944 yearbook, Marfa Tower given to Class 44-C graduates. The yearbook contains portaits of faculty, staff, and cadets, as well as daily activities, training, and a small section at the end, "Co-Pilots" which is portraits of the cadets' loved ones, primarily wives or "sweethearts", though there are a few children.

Additionally, the collection includes a pilot log book, embossed in gold on the front right corner with "Merwin W. Vining," that begins in November 1943, when Vining is learning to fly. The log book continues through September 1945 and details Vining's war-time bombing runs in Germany, usually in a Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress.


  • circa 1939 to 1945


Language of Materials

All materials are in English.

Condition 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.


0.2 Cubic Feet (1 expandable folder and 2 oversized folders)


Merwin W. Vining was a United States Air Force pilot with the 381st Bombardment Group during World War II. The collection includes two (2) photographs, a yearbook and graduation announcement, and a pilot's log primarily related to Vining's time as a cadet, although the log book covers Vining's 1944-1945 service in the European theater.

Biographical Note: Merwing W. Vining

Merwin W. Vining served as a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress pilot during World War II in the United States Air Force. He was assigned to the 381st Bomb Group, and served in the European Theatre.

No further information is known.


Biography derived from collection materials.


No furthers accruals are expected.

Separated Materials

The following items have been separated from the archival component and are kept in Objects Storage:
  • Leather jacket (Type A-2 "Liberty Belle")
  • Leather gloves (Type B-3A)
  • Souvenir scarf (purchased in England during World War II)
A yearbook for the Marfa (Texas) Army Air Field Class 44-C titled Marfa Tower, was transferred to the library.


Guide to the Merwin W. Vining World War II Collection
Completed - Level 4
L. Zaborowski, J. Parent
Description rules
Language of description
Edition statement
3rd Edition

Revision Statements

  • November 2018: Finding aid migrated to ArchivesSpace.
  • 2018: This finding aid was updated to reflect updated DACS and Museum of Flight standards.
  • 2023 June: Yearbook transferred to library

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
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