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The United States Air Force (USAF) Engineering Drawing Section was established in 1917 to maintain and reproduce engineering data for the USAF. The Drawing Collection was originally developed by the USAF for two major functions: to create a historical record of the equipment operated by the USAF and its predecessors and to provide engineering drawings of current equipment for maintenance operation centers requiring such information. Engineering drawings of then-current equipment and extant engineering drawings for obsolete equipment were microfilmed either by the USAF, by vendors under contract to the USAF, or by the manufactures. Additional microfilm created by or for the United States Navy (USN) covering some aircraft also operated by the USAF were added to the collection.




United States. Air Force. Engineering Drawing Section


[ca. 1910s-1940s]


United States Air Force Museum, Gift, mid-1980s, XXXX-0521, unknown


? Cubic feet ((1 box))

Archival Repository

National Air and Space Museum Archives

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of 8000 reels of 35 mm microfilm engineering drawings of aircraft and engines from the early years through World War II. The microfilm contains engineering drawings, reports, and standards covering aircraft, engines, and other equipment used by the USAF and its predecessors. The original documents filmed were in a variety of media, in some case the original drawing was filmed, in others a blueprint or other duplicate was filmed instead of the original. Because of the variation in the quality of the original document and variations in the quality of the filming process, the quality of the filmed image varies considerably throughtout the collection


Material is subject to Smithsonian Terms of Use. Should you wish to use NASM material in any medium, please submit an Application for Permission to Reproduce NASM Material, available at Permissions Requests


No restrictions on access


Aeronautics, Military

Airplanes, Military



Airplanes -- Design and construction


Collection descriptions

Archival materials