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Braniff International Collection

Identifier: H017-78

Scope and Content

The Braniff International Collection contains administrative and operational materials including activities, equipment, and personnel involving airports and related buildings (such as administrative offices, city ticket offices, and hangars—interiors and exteriors). It also encompasses material pertaining to historic terminals, construction, groundbreakings, other public relations activities, and maintenance procedures. There are some aerial photographs, architectural drawings and reels of film.


  • 1900 - 1982
  • Majority of material found within 1932 - 1980

Language of Materials

Collection is in English.

Access Restrictions

Materials in this collection are open for research.

Literary Rights Statement

Permission to publish material from this collection in any form, current or future, must be obtained from the Special Collections and Archives Division, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.

Historical Sketch

Braniff was progressively named Paul R. Braniff, Inc., Braniff Airways, Braniff International Airways, and Braniff International. The company began operating a maintenance base at Love Field, Texas, in the early 1930’s and moved its entire base of operations there in 1942. The creation of the DFW Airport can largely be attributed to Braniff's success. The company also introduced many innovations to the airline industry, such as computerized reservations, instrument landing, and jet assisted take-off.

In 1965 and later, the volume of promotional items in the collection increases greatly. Braniff's then president, Harding L. Lawrence, set a new tone for the company by using unique and stylish ad campaigns with such slogans as “the end of the plain plane.” Although advertising hype and aggressive expansion led to phenomenal success for Braniff for approximately fifteen more years, it eventually contributed to its downfall after deregulation of the airline industry. Lawrence was forced to resign in 1981, and Braniff International was declared bankrupt the following year.


20.8 Linear Feet (Fifty-two manuscript boxes)


The material in the Braniff International Collection illustrates the development of commercial aviation in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and the history of Braniff as a company. The collection documents the first twenty years when founder Thomas Elmer Braniff achieved extraordinary business success, based on high quality service to customers and a warm, paternal relationship with employees. It also contains material pertaining to Braniff’s pioneering of many new routes to South American countries in the 1940’s. Thomas E. Braniff's general humanitarian efforts, such as the founding of the World Organization for Brotherhood, are also documented in the collection. After Thomas Braniff’s death in 1951, his second-in-command, Charles Beard, capably managed the company for fifteen years until he retired in 1965.

Series Description

A hierarchical subject arrangement was utilized in order to position like subject matter together. Standard Library of Congress subject headings were used for all main headings and most subheadings. For the most part, documents are arranged chronologically under their subject headings.

Provenance Statement

The Braniff International Collection was donated to the History of Aviation Archives, Special Collections and Archives Division, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas, in multiple accessions starting in 1978 with all literary rights by Braniff International. The main part of the collection arrived in 1982. Braniff public relations employee, Pat Zahrt supervised the transfer of the documents, most of which had originated in the public relations office. The collection has thus been added to in multiple donations until 1988.

Additional Sources

Additional information about this topic can be found in the History of Aviation Archives in the following Collections:

History of Aviation Archives

Image ID

It is the researcher's responsibility to secure permission from copyright holders of materials to which this institution does not own copyright.

Images in this collection are identified by a unique number that provides information about the format, record group, collection, series, box, folder, and image numbers. Please use this number when ordering reproductions of images from this collection.

Record Group Code

1 = CAT/Air American Archives

2 = Doolittle Archives

3 = Lighter than Air Archives

4 = George H. Williams, Jr., World War I Aviation Library

5 = History of Aviation Archives

6 = University Archives

7 = HAC Stacks

8 = WPRL Stacks

9 = Cecil H. and Ida M. Green Collection

10 = Belsterling Collection

11 = Closed Stacks

12 = Unidentified

13 = Chance Vought Archives

14 = Twirly Birds Archives

Image Format Code

P = Photograph/Postcard

S = Slide

N = Negative

T = Positive Transparency

B = Black and White

C = Color

Example: 5BRI-1-1-PC1

5 = History of Aviation Archives (HAC)

BRI = Braniff International Collection

= Series Number

1 = Box Number

1 = Folder Number

P = Photograph/Postcard

C = Color

1 = Image Number

Images archived in plastic image holders may also have a location code in the format: 1/TL. In this example, the number is the sheet number and the letters indicate the top left position on the sheet. Position indicators are T = top, L = left, R = right, M = middle, and B = bottom. Position indicators may be combined to describe the position on the sheet, as shown in this example.

Name Index

To provide access to well-known personalities, a selected proper name index was compiled. Specific Braniff directors and employees can be found alphabetically under their subject headings. In the case that an individual held more than one position in the company, their biographical information is located at highest level they attained. For example, R. V. Carleton was initially a pilot, but his file is located under DIRECTORS, since he ultimately became a director.


Allred, James, 1937. Box 12, Folder 2

Caulfield, Joan, 1947. B10, F4

Colonna, Jerry, 1947. B10, F4

Cugat, Xavier, Undated. B11, F1

De Gaulle, Charles, 1960’s. B24, F7

Douglas, Donald W., 1940. B15, F3, B27, F8

Douglas, Donald W., 1956. B43, F5

Eisenhower, Dwight, Undated. B16, F5

Eisenhower, Mamie, 1953. B16, F1

Haddaway, George, 1944. B13, F4

Hays, Bob, Undated. B37, F2

Iturbi, Jose, 1946. B10, F4

Johnson, Lyndon, 1957; 1961. B13, F3

Jordan, Leroy, Undated. B37, F2

Kay, Herbie, 1939. B10, F4

Lilly, Bob, Undated. B37, F2

Malone, Dorothy, 1956-1976. B8, F1

Mansfield, Jayne, 1956. B31, F2

Mansfield, Mike, 1961. B13, F3

Miller, Ann, 1940. B30, F3

Murphy, Audie, 1940’s. B25, F5

Nixon, Richard, 1957. B13, F3

Nixon, Richard, 1971. B18, F5

O’Daniel, W. Lee, 1940. B27, F4

Peary, Harold, 1930-1940. B8, F3

Peron, Eva, 1950. B42, F3

Peron, Juan, 1950. B42, F3

Post, Wiley, 1930’s. B5, F3; B27, F7

Prince Philip, 1966. B34, F6

Rickenbacker, Eddie, 1940’s. B13, F4

Rickenbacker, Eddie, 1952. B14, F2; B42, F6

Rickenbacker, Eddie, Undated. B21, F5

Rockefeller, Nelson, Undated. B16, F4

Rodgers, J. Woodall, 1941. B3, F3

Rogers, Ginger, 1956. B43, F5

Rogers, Will, 1930’s. B17, F4

Roosevelt, Elliot, 1936. B27, F7

Roosevelt, Franklin, Jr., 1946. B10, F4

Sanger, Mrs. Eli, 1930’s. B15, F2

Singleton, Penny, 1930-1940. B8, F3

Smith, Kate, Undated. B16, F4

Thornton, R. L., 1955. B43, F1

Thornton, R. L., 1956. B43, F4

Truman, Harry, 1948. B15, F5

Tunney, Gene, 1941. B10, F4

Wayne, John, 1940. B30, F3

Wise, Wes, 1972. B37, F1

Film Inventory

16 mm:


Calder DC 8 Rollout and Air to Air 1973

Paris Air Show with BI uniforms

NY, CHI, LAX Beard Mantle 1956

Air to Air of Calder DC 8 62 1973


Calder paints DC 8 62 with H. Lawrence Maintenance 1973

BI maintenance painting Calder DC 8 1973


New Terminal and Golden Eldorado BI presents new food 1954, 66, 70

C and Silent – New Love Field terminal History of 1970

BI 1928 – 1970, Cargo on 727

442 B / W – Job film footage 1960


Sound – End of the Plain Plane 1966

Art students watch Calder paint 1973

42 L Calder DC 8 Air to Air

BI Painting Calder DC 8 62 1973

BI Inaugural Service DSA 1948

Solid Orange DC 62 Air to Air and 707, 727, and DC 8 1967


BI: A Family Affair: Employee promo

MSC Braniff Family Vacation 1935

BI Family Vacation 1936


New BI Terminal at Love Field, Dallas 1969

Braniff Family Vacation: Yellowstone, Europe 1932

Calder Flying Colors U.S.A. (Press Film)

BAC 111 at factory and BI (C. Beard) accepts 1st 1961 delivery at Love Field


Calder painting DC 8 BI maintenance finished 1973


Calder DC 8 Air to Air

Calder “76”

Flying Colors U.S.A. (Bicentennial Film)

BI goes to Europe 747 Fly by

B12 to 4 is Calder 747

“Flaunt It” Commercials


BI Maintenance finished painting Calder DC 8 1973

BI accepts Convair 340 1950

1981 Dallas w/Commercials

Recording Inventory - Reel to Reel

“Braniff Salute” by Walter Henshel 1966, 2-7” reels

Distinguished Alumnus Awards Banquet 1966, 5-7” reels

[BI] Stock Holders meeting 1981, 2-7” reels 7 ½ IPS 1981

H. Lawrence’s talk: BI Management Club 1965, 1-7” reel

Duncan MacDonald WOXR 1967, 1-7” reel

Pucci, 1-5” reel, 7 ½ IPS

[H. Lawrence’s] telephone conversation: R. Edward Van Natta, Public Relations, Morton Int., Inc., Chicago, 1-3” reel, 3 ¾ IPS

Tex McCrary Time WOR 1966, 1-7” reel

H. Lawrence’s talk: Dallas Rotary Club 1965, 1-7” reel

Tom Braniff’s speech: BI employees: 25th anniversary 1953 of airline, 1-7” reel

Recording Inventory - Records 33 1/3

New Year’s Eve at the Terrells by Charley Paine 1944-45

Tom Braniff: Air Safety Awards 1946

Happy Landing Excerpt 1950

BI and Cabana Excelsior: Desi Arnez Program 1951

Tom Braniff’s Speech: BI employees: 1953

25th Anniversary of Airline

Braniff Company Meeting (2 albums) 1954

Speech at Sales Meeting (2 albums) 1955

“The Braniff Promise” Promo 1980

Maiden Flight Boeing 707 by Tex Johnson, Undated.

The Great Outdoors Show (6 albums), Undated.

Charles Beard, Pres., BI: KOA Marketing News, Undated.

Audio Disc (3 albums), Undated.

Graphics and Photographs - Archives Map Case

D-6 Travel Posters

Calder Photographs and layouts

D-7 Photographs



D-8 Die-cuts

D-9 Photo murals


D-10 Progressive color proofs


Advertising: Welcome to Braniff Place

New Routes

New Colors



Annual Report 1974

Note to the Researcher

The present finding aid is based on currently processed materials and will be updated as more materials are processed and made available to the public.

Material Removed List

9.5 linear ft. (nine and a half record center boxes) of duplicate materials, clippings, posters and damaged items as well as private documents and photographs that were not pertinent to the collection have been de-accessioned and were sent to recycling.
Guide to the Braniff International Collection, 1928-1982
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
English (eng)
Edition statement
First revision by Cassandra Zawojek, 2018-05-25. Second revision by Patrizia Nava, CA, 2020-08-24.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Division, History of Aviation Archives. Repository

3020 Waterview Pkwy
Suite 11.206
Richardson Texas 75080 US
972-883-4590 (Fax)