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John M. Slattery Collection

 Collection
Identifier: TB037-09

Scope and Content

This collection contains articles, press releases, brochures, engineering and technical reports, government reports, marketing documents, moving images, photographs, helicopter models, autogiros, and small memorabilia that were created and/or collected by John M. Slattery during his military career, as a helicopter pilot, and private career. The John M. Slattery Collection is housed in thirty boxes of various sizes, totaling 23.4 linear ft.

The collection arrived in good condition and was initially organized in six series. More materials were donated and these materials were incorporated into the already existing collection. After the first revision, the archivist identified nine series with the first series being the Helicopter Manufacturer Series, which includes articles, press releases, brochures, and other information about the products of the world’s major helicopter manufactures.

The second series is the Hiller Aircraft Corporation Series, which contains material generated by the helicopter arm of the Hiller Aircraft Corporation. The bulk of the collection relates to Hiller’s work on a contract for a Light Observation Helicopter for the United States Army, eventually designated the OH-5 Cayuse. Other information includes engineering and technical reports about helicopter propulsion and systems. Materials are technical reports, test documents, and marketing publications.

The third series is the Magazine Articles Series, which houses articles from various magazines related to aviation, science, and the military. The bulk of the articles are about helicopters, but all aspects of aviation are encompassed.

The fourth series is the Helicopter General Information Series, which includes information covering on a variety of topics related to helicopters. It includes government reports, marketing documents, material discussing other helicopter associations, and information about various practical applications of helicopters.

The fifth series is the Videos Series, which houses video tapes used for helicopter marketing purposes for trade and shows, and conferences to advertise various helicopter models.

The sixth series is the Helicopter Model Series, which houses models of helicopters from the private collection of John Slattery. At one time, these models were on display in at the Helicopter Foundation International, HFI.

The seventh series is the Photographs Series, which includes photographs of Army and Navy helicopters at work, helicopter crash sites, pilots and ground crew, as well as a photo album of material on Autogiros.

The eight series is the Autogiros, Compound Helicopters, and Maintenance Series, which contains documents and information about the maintenance of Bell and Sikorsky helicopters, experimental helicopter variants, and Admiral Byrd’s use of Autogiros during his Antarctic expedition.

The ninth series is the Artifacts Series, which contains pins, paperweights, patches, and an unassembled balsawood model of an Autogiro.

Dates

  • 1954 - 2003
  • Majority of material found within 1954 - 1979

Language of Materials

Collection is in English and Italian.

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.

Biographical Sketch

John Matthew Slattery was born in Bay City, Michigan in 1928. During World War II, he enlisted in the Marine Corps and fought in the Pacific. At the outbreak of the Korean War, he was recalled to active duty and served with the Marine Corps. During the Korean War, he was afflicted with frostbite and was evacuated by medical helicopter. This experience fascinated Slattery, and was the start of his lifetime interest in helicopters.

In 1954, he entered the Air Force as an aviation cadet and trained to be a helicopter pilot. He served two tours of duty during the Vietnam War and eventually left the Air Force with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During his Air Force Career, Slattery was decorated numerous times, receiving the Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, and eleven awards of the Air Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal.

During his Air Force career, Slattery began collecting and documenting information about the history of the helicopter, as well as amassing a collection of models of various helicopters. The bulk of this material was used to establish a historical collection/museum at the offices of Helicopter Foundation International (HFI) in Alexandria, Virginia.

Slattery dedication to helicopter history led to his involvement with the Twirly Birds, a helicopter association, as longtime secretary and treasurer. Slattery also was a member of the Royal Aeronautical Society, and several veterans and helicopter organizations. Slattery also worked with Hollywood, consulting on the use of helicopters for 20th Century Fox/Warner Brothers film The Towering Inferno, and the syndicated helicopter action-adventure television show AirWolf.

Slattery passed away from complications related to emphysema on March 6, 2008. He was survived by his wife of fifty-three years F. Jane Slattery, two sons, and six grandchildren.

Sources

Source
Schudel, Matt, “John Matthew Slattery, 80, Air Force Pilot.” “The Washington Post,” March 21, 2008.

Extent

23.4 Linear Feet (Ten manuscript boxes, eighteen record center boxes, and two video storage boxes (8.5x17.5x5.0).)

Abstract

John Matthew Slattery, a World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam War veteran left the Air Force with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During his Air Force career, Slattery began collecting and documenting information about the history of the helicopter, as well as amassing a collection of models of various helicopters. The bulk of this material was used to establish a historical collection/museum at the offices of Helicopter Foundation International (HFI) in Alexandria, Virginia.

Slattery dedication to helicopter history led to his involvement with the Twirly Birds, a helicopter association, as longtime secretary and treasurer.

Series Description

The John M. Slattery Collection is arranged in nine series:

Series I. Helicopter Manufacturers 0.4 linear ft. (one manuscript box), 1953-1980.

Arranged alphabetically by manufacture name.

Series II: Hiller Aircraft Corporation 1.2 linear ft. (three manuscript boxes), 1960-1970.

Arranged chronologically.

Series III. Magazine Articles 0.5 linear ft. (one manuscript box and four folders), 1954-1980.

Arranged alphabetically by magazine title.

Series IV. Helicopter General Information 0.6 linear ft. (twenty-eight folders), 1947-1980.

Arranged topically.

Series V. Videos 1.6 linear ft. (two video storage boxes and two video cassettes), 1992-1996.

Arranged by title.

Series VI. Helicopter Models 18.0 linear ft. (eighteen record center boxes), Undated

Arranged by topic.

Series VII. Photographs 0.8 linear ft. (two manuscript boxes), 1952-1971.

Arranged by title.

Series VIII. Autogiros, Compound Helicopters, and Maintenance 0.25 linear ft. (nine folders), 1929-1997.

Arranged by date.

Series IX. Artifacts 0.1 linear ft. (four envelopes), 1952-1994.

Arranged by title.

Provenance Statement

The John M. Slattery Collection was donated to the History of Aviation Archives, Special Collections and Archives Division, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas, by F. Jane Slattery and William J. Yarber in multiple accessions ranging from 2009 through 2017.

Additional Sources

Additional information can be found in the History of Aviation Archives in the following collections: William J. Yarber Papers and Emmit A. Koelle, Jr. Papers.

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: 14JMS-1-1-PC1

14 = Twirly Birds Archives

JMS = John M. Slattery 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.
Title
Guide to the John M. Slattery Collection, 1928-2008
Status
Completed
Author
Thomas J. Allen, PhD
Date
2010-03-03
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
English (eng)
Edition statement
First revision by Thomas J. Allen, PhD. 2011-09-16. Second revision by Patrizia Nava, CA. 2018-08-08.

Repository Details

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

Contact:
3020 Waterview Pkwy
SP2
Suite 11.206
Richardson Texas 75080 US
972-883-2570
972-883-4590 (Fax)