Benjamin Thomas Epps papers

Benjamin Thomas Epps papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Hargrett Manuscripts
Creator: Epps, Ben, 1888-1937
Creator: Epps, Ben, 1916-2001
Title: Benjamin Thomas Epps papers
Dates: Bulk, 1904-1937
Dates: 1904-2001
Quantity: 6.25 Linear feet (10 boxes, 1 oversize folder)
Coll. Number: ms3074

Biographical/Historical Note

Ben Epps, Georgia's pioneer aviator, was born in 1888. He grew up in Oconee County, was educated in Clarke County, and attended Georgia Tech in Atlanta. In Athens, Georgia he started an electrical contracting shop, which he later converted into an auto garage. He built and flew his first plane in 1907, only a few years after the Wright Brothers' successful flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. In the following years he built seven more planes including the Epps Lightplane. Later he established Epps Field where he taught flying, carried passengers on short trips, and gave exhibitions. He died in a plane crash in 1937. Ben Epps, Jr. was born in 1916. He first flew a plane solo at the age of 13 making him the nation's youngest aviator at the time. He served as a flight instructor during WWII and later during the war flew a supply route from India into China. After the Air Corps, Ben Epps, Jr. was a pilot for Southern Airways. He built a replica of his father's 1912 monoplane, which he flew to air shows around the country. In addition to his father, Ben Epps, Jr. has been inducted into the Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame. He died in 2001.


Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of many folders of loose material including clippings, letters, drawings of Epps planes, writings, and photographs. Of particular note are several good aerial views of Athens and the University of Georgia (circa 1920-1930s). Also of interest are several pages of reminiscences by Ben Epps, Jr., in which he writes about his early life and flying. Additional material received in 2002 includes flight manuals, membership cards, transcripts of interviews, etc. The most important item in this collection is a scrapbook (1904-1963) which documents Epps' life as a builder and flyer of airplanes. Included are over 200 photographs, as well as some clippings and letters. A few photographs, etc. can be found here of other pilots, planes, and Epps' children who were also flyers.


Arrangement

Arranged in chronological order.


Index Terms

Aerial photographs.
Aeronautics--Georgia--Athens--History.
Air pilots, Military--United States.
Air pilots--Georgia--Athens.
Airplanes--Georgia--Athens--History.
Assembly drawings.
Athens (Ga.)--Aerial photographs.
Clippings (information artifacts)
Correspondence
Epps, Ben, 1888-1937 -- Correspondence
Magazines (periodicals)
Scrapbooks.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Benjamin Thomas Epps papers, 1904-2001, (bulk 1904-1937). MS 3074. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.


Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

 
BoxFolder
11Clippings
 
2Drawings of Ben Epps Airplanes
 
3Letters, receipts, etc., 1904-1990
 
4Negatives
 
5Photographs, Aerial views of Athens and University of Ga.
 
6Photographs, Aerial views unidentified
 
7Photographs, Ben Epps, Epps Family members & others
 
8Photographs, Epps monoplane
 
8aPhotographs, Epps (Ben) plane crash, 1937
 
9Printed material
 
10Speech by Ben Epps Jr.
 
11Writings
 
12Writings - Reminiscences of Ben Epps Jr.
 
BoxItem
21Scrapbook
 
BoxFolder
31Personal items
 
2Ledger - Epps Aircraft Service
 
3Pilots operating manual C-46, C46a, C46-D, R5C1
 
4Route manual (Southern Airways)
 
5Pilots operating manual (Southern Airways) M-404
 
6Pilots training questionaire (Southern Airways) M-404
 
7FAA Academy Flight Training Maneuvers
 
BoxFolder
41DC-9 Annunciator panel manual (Southern Airways)
 
2Training manual (Southern Airways) DC-9
 
3Operations manual (Southern Airways)
 
BoxFolder
51Pilots operating manual (Southern Airways) DC-9
 
2Crew flight manual (Southern Airways)
 
3Ben Epps project, Interviews, 2001
 
4Ben Epps project, Scrapbook copies, 2001
 
5Ben Epps project, CD, disc, 2001
 
BoxFolder
61Printed material, Beechcraft propellers
 
2Printed material, Southern Pilot Newsletter
 
3Printed material, The Tin Goose
 
4Printed materials
 
BoxFolder
71Photographs, Epps 1910 monoplane
 
2Photographs, Epps 1911 monoplane replica
 
3Photographs, Epps 1912 monoplane replica
 
4Photographs, Ben T. Epps, Sr. and Ben Epps, Jr. in an Epps automobile, 1920
 
5Photographs, Epps 1925 light plane
 
6Photographs, Epps 1930 biplane
 
7Photographs with descriptions, 1927-1931
 
8Photographs, Ben Epps, Jr., 1929-c. 1990
 
9Photographs, Ben T. Epps, Sr. and a Curtiss JN-4
 
10Eugene B. Ely - biography and photographs
 
11Photographs, Aerial views of an unidentified location
 
12Photograph, Eastern Airlines 25th Anniversary, 1928
 
13Photograph, Bootleggers, 1931
 
14Troyer Boats plane parts advertisements, 1932; 1938
 
15Photographs, Airplanes
 
16Photographs, Aeronca C3
 
17Photograph, First transatlantic balloon flight commemorative photograph
 
18Negatives, 1951
 
19Negatives from photo album
 
20Negatives, undated
 
21Registration - Culver Lea 365 aircraft, 1953
 
22Commemorative airplane prints
 
23Correspondence, Ben T. Epps, Sr., 1909-1937
 
24Correspondence, Percy Rolfe - Ben T. Epps, Sr., 1921-1924, undated
 
25Correspondence, Ben T. Epps, Sr., Undated
 
26Epps 1920 monoplane recreation plans
 
27Epps 1930 biplane recreation - printed materials and photographs
 
28Photographs, airplane construction, 1968
 
29Photographs, Johnston Aircraft Corporation
 
30Photographs, Automobiles
 
31-33Airforce papers, Ben Epps, Jr., 1944-1957
 
34Photographs, Douglas, GA Airforce training, Ben Epps, Jr., 1943, undated
 
35Photographs, Japan, post-WWII
 
36Southern Airways professional papers, Ben Epps, Jr., 1956-1969
 
37Southern Airways professional papers, Ben Epps, Jr., 1970-1976
 
38Southern Airways pilot strike newspaper clippings, 1960
 
39Epps Air Service plane theft - report and photographs, 1977
 
40FFA airman file, Ben Epps, Jr.
 
41Line drawings of Ben T. Epps, Sr. planes
 
42Application to the Army Air Corps, Ben Epps, Jr., 1939
 
43-45Correspondence, Ben Epps, Jr., 1944-2001
 
46Correspondence, Bill Rodenberg - Ben Epps, Jr., 1986
 
47Correspondence, Ben Epps, Jr., undated
 
48Correspondence, Epps Family, 1931-2002, undated
 
49Model airplane contest - printed material and photograph, 1957
 
50Athens High School class of 1933 50th reunion book, 1983
 
5163rd AAF-FTD Douglas, GA 40 year reunion contact book, 1984
 
52OX5 Club - printed material, 1957-1962
 
53Athens-Ben Epps Airport Dedication - printed material and photographs, 1987
 
54Program - 47th Annual Hump Pilots Association Reunion, 1992
 
55Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame Induction, Ben Epps, Jr., 1994
 
56Ben T. Epps Restorations - bill and photographs, 2000
 
57Press clippings, Ben Epps, Jr., 1952-1991, undated
 
58Certificates, Ben Epps, Jr., 1933-1999
 
59Memorials, Ben Epps, Jr., 2001
 
BoxFolder
81-2Personal notes and stories, Ben Epps, Jr., 1965-1999, undated
 
3Press clippings, Ben T. Epps, Sr., 1926, undated
 
4Press clippings, Pat Epps, 1990-2004
 
5Short stories by Buddy Epps
 
6Photographs, Epps Family
 
7Personal Items, Epps Family
 
Box
9Handbooks and flight log books, 1932-1992
 
Box
10Ephemera
 
OS Folder
1Newspaper clippings, 1945-1995