Benjamin Thomas Epps papers

Benjamin Thomas Epps papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Hargrett Library
Creator: Epps, Ben, 1888-1937
Creator: Epps, Ben, 1916-2001
Title: Benjamin Thomas Epps papers
Dates: Bulk, 1904-1937
Dates: 1904-2015
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.

Index Terms

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

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation note

Benjamin Thomas Epps papers, ms3074, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

2Drawings of Ben Epps Airplanes
3Letters, receipts, 1904-1990
5Photographs, Aerial views of Athens and University of Georgia
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.
12Writings - Reminiscences of Ben Epps Jr.
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
41DC-9 Annunciator panel manual (Southern Airways)
2Training manual (Southern Airways) DC-9
3Operations manual (Southern Airways)
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
61Printed material, Beechcraft propellers
2Printed material, Southern Pilot Newsletter
3Printed material, The Tin Goose
4Printed materials
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
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
35Photographs, post-war Japan
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.
48Correspondence, Epps Family, 1931-2002
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
81-2Personal notes and stories, Ben Epps, Jr., 1965-1999
3Press clippings, Ben T. Epps, Sr., 1926
4Press clippings, Pat Epps, 1990-2004
5Short stories by Buddy Epps
6Photographs, Epps Family
7Personal Items, Epps Family
8 Pat's World, Volume 1, 2015 May 28
9Handbooks and flight log books, 1932-1992
OS Folder
1Newspaper clippings, 1945-1995