Guide to the Delphine Bohn Papers, 1913-1992
H069-82

 Finding aid prepared by Patrizia Nava, CA. Arranged by Gay Orczy-Barstow.

Collection Overview

Repository
Special Collections Department, History of Aviation Collection
Creator - Creator
Bohn, Delphine, Mrs., Major
Title
Delphine Bohn Papers
ID
H069-82
Date [bulk]
Bulk, 1944-1973
Date [inclusive]
1941-1988
Extent
5.0 Linear feet (Five non-standard boxes (12.75x16.5x3).)
Language of Materials
Collection is in English and Portuguese.
Abstract
Delphine Bohn was a member of the Women's Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron (WAFS), later named Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) . These aviatrices ferried various types of aircraft from the United States to Great Britain during World War II. In her private life, Bohn was a salesperson for Beech Aircraft Comp. and J.R. Gray Comp. before founding her own business, Western Aviation, Inc., which operated out of Meacham Field, Fort Worth, Texas.

Citation

Delphine Bohn Papers, Document name or type, Folder number, Box number, Series number, History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Special Collections Department, History of Aviation Collection 2 October 2013

800 West Campbell Road, MC33
Richardson, TX, 75080-3021
972-883-2570
LIBSPCO@utdallas.edu.

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 Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.

Provenance Statement

The Delphine Bohn Papers were donated to the History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas, by Delphine Bohn in multiple accessions ranging from 1981 through 1989.

Note to the Researcher

Where possible, the items were detached from the scrapbook paper. Records containing sensitive personal information were photocopied onto acid-free paper and the information was redacted. The original was placed in the holding file and is for staff view only.

Material Removed List

0.1 linear ft. (one item) of Skyways, vol. 8, no. 1, Jan. 1949 has been recycled because of its poor condition and was duplicate item .

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Controlled Access Headings

Personal Name(s)

  • Bohn, Delphine, Mrs., Major

Subject(s)

  • History of Aviation Collection

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Biographical Sketch

Delphine Bohn was born on July 5, 1913 near Elk City, OK to Marion Grover and Lenore Bohn. She graduated from Amarillo High School and later attended the Amarillo Junior College. She took her first flying lessons in April 1940 at Municipal Airport, Amarillo, Texas.

Bohn's stepfather, Mr. R.C. Highly, sought to further encourage her flying ability and bought her a Piper Cub Cruiser. She practiced constantly, accumulating many hours and soloed the same year. Upon earning her private pilot's license, Bohn qualified for a commercial pilot's license. She then prepared extensively for an instructor's flight examination license and upon passing this examination, she began teaching for the Civilian Pilot's Training Program in 1942.

At the same time, Bohn contacted the Acting British Consul, the U.S. Army Air Force, The Royal Canadian Air Force, and the British Air Transport Auxiliary American Women's Section seeking employment in any one of the above. Bohn also contacted her representative, Congressman Eugene Worley, who indicated he would recommend her as a capable pilot in her quest to become an aviatrix in the war effort.

On October 21, 1942, Bohn was accepted in the United States Women’s Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron (WAFS) as one of the original pilots. Her first training assignments were in Delaware and Big Spring, Texas. After completion of training, in April 1943, Bohn was based at Love Field, Dallas, Texas with the 5th Ferrying Group until deactivation on January 22, 1945. While with the WASP, she completed transitional training on BT-13, AT-6, PT-18, AT-9, G-78, AT-11, A-24, C-47, B-17, A-20, A-26, B-26, and P-38 aircraft. Bohn also commanded the 601st Squadron of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP).

After deactivation, Bohn moved to Burbank, California where she was employed by Pacific Aircraft Sales Co., operated by Norm Lawson, a distributor for Beech Aircraft Co. In September of 1949, three former WASPs (Delphine Bohn, Byrd H. Granger, and Ruth Dailey) each flew in a Beech Bonanza to Rio de Janerio, Brazil, generating much publicity for them in newspapers and magazines.

Four months later Bohn was appointed as a reserve officer with the rank of Major in the United States Air Force. During this time, Bohn returned to Dallas, TX, where she was employed by J.R. Gray Co. at Love Field, working in the sales department. In the mid 1950s, Bohn moved to Fort Worth, Texas and formed her own company - Western Aviation, Inc. - selling aircraft operating out of Meacham Field.

In 1961, Bohn moved to Houston, TX working as a saleswoman for Business Aircraft, Inc. In the late 1960s, Bohn shifted gears and studied oceanography in San Francisco and received a certificate in Celestial Navigation at the Academy of Sciences at Golden Gate Park.

By 1981, Bohn returned back to Texas and was involved in an aviation class at Amarillo College, however, she had ceased piloting airplanes.

Delphine Bohn passed away after having been diagnosed with cancer on January 18, 1992 at the age of seventy-nine.

Source
 Hannah Pauley, The Unsung Heroines of World War II. The Story of the Women's Airforce Service Pilots. The 28 Original WAFS. Delphine Bohn, http://www.megavision.net/wasp/tDelphineBohnpage.html, accessed 23 September 2013
Source
 Delphine Bohn Papers, Clipping, Anonymous, "Delphine Bohn Is Member of Women's Ferrying Service," November 22, 1942, Folder 1, Box 1, Series I., Subseries 1., History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.
Source
 Delphine Bohn Papers, Tom Walton, "Woman recalls experience of being World War II ferrying pilot," Folder 1, Box 1, Series I., Subseries 1., History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.
Source
 Delphine Bohn Papers, Anonymous,  The Beech Log, "Three ex-WASPs Fly Bonazas Down to Rio," October 1947, 5, Folder 1, Box 1, Series I., Subseries 1., History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.
Source
 Delphine Bohn Papers, Transcript of Employment, General Services Administration, Folder 1, Box 5, Series I., Subseries 5., History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.
Source
 Delphine Bohn Papers, Correspondence, Office of the Director of Air Training, 11 January 1945, Folder 1, Box 2, Series I., Subseries 2., History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections Department, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.

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Scope and Content

This collection contains scrapbooks, clippings, articles, magazines, radiograms, correspondence, personal notes, military records, photographs, training booklets, postcards, training certificates, narratives, newsletters, newspapers, travel brochures, memorabilia, press releases, flight chart to Brazil, and ephemera that were collected and assembled by Delphine Bohn. The Delphine Bohn Papers are housed in five non-standard boxes totaling 5 linear feet.

The collection arrived in multiple accessions and in good condition. The archivist identified one series the Scrapbook Series, which is further organized into five subseries: 1. Scrapbook No. 1, 2. Scrapbook No. 2, 3. Scrapbook No. 3, 4. Scrapbook No. 4, and 5. Scrapbook No. 5.

Subseries 1 contains photographs, a personal note from Maj. Gen, USAF Larry Tibbets, an article about early aviation in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas and an article about Bohn, Granger, and Dailey flying their Beech Bonanzas to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; ephemera and memorabilia. Of interest is a radiogram addressed to Bohn regarding the WAFS's requirements and the correspondence regarding employment at the USAF Ferry Command, the Royal Canadian Air Force, the British Air Transport Auxiliary, the United States Congress, and commercial companies; 5th Ferrying Group By-Laws; articles regarding the transition from WAFS to WASP and their disbandment, letters of commendation, deactivation records of Bohn, awards, clippings about early aviation in Amarillo, Texas, and foreign currency from Island, Brazil, Canada, Chihuahua, El Salvador, Guatemala, and China as well as an U.S. one Dollar bill signed by members of New Castle Army Air Base of 1942.

Subseries 2 covers, ephemera, memoranda, magazines, clippings, radiogram, poems, and correspondence regarding the deactivation of WASPs, and the magazine Air Facts. Of interest is the address by General H. H. Arnold, Commanding General Army Air Forces before WASP Ceremony, Sweetwater, Texas, Thursday, December 7, 1944, thanking the women for their outstanding service; portrait sketch, photographs, articles by Tony Page under the pseudonym Tony Hagman, photographs and clippings regarding delivery of a Beech Bonanza to actors Robert Taylor and Lee Cobb; survival instructions, photographs and clippings regarding Bonanza delivery to Brazil, and other general aviation related clippings.

Subseries 3 encompasses photographs, ephemera, radiograms, military records regarding Bohn's reserve status; newspapers and articles regarding the veteran status for WASPs; articles regarding air races and articles about Bohn's civilian career as aircraft sales person; articles, rosters, programs regarding AWTAR air races; clippings and articles about the history of WASP and where they were in that point in time; general information about women in aviation and a sketch by Tony Page regarding Bohn and her moving her business to Houston.

Subseries 4 comprises clippings in regard to general information about WASPs, a negative of the Certificate of Honorable Discharge of Bohn, clippings about the Ninety-Nines, correspondence including roster of original WASPs, correspondence in terms of gathering history of WASPs, newsletters, articles about ballooning and general topics, Amarillo Air Show, WASPs reunion menu card signed by participants, clippings general aviation topics, and women in aviation. Correspondence concerning the WASP's memorial bronze statue at Air Force Museum, 30th Anniversary reunion package, roster Air Transport Command, certificate in Celestial Navigation by the California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA, clipping regarding Fifinella logo, newsletters, clippings regarding the passing of Roscoe Turner, correspondence regarding WASP's collection at Air Force Museum, clippings benefit status of WASPs, and military records as to the honorable discharge of Delphine Bohn.

Subseries 5 includes clippings, articles, newsletters about the WASPs, the Ninety-Nine's program brochures, Bohn's military service record, correspondence regarding reunions, clippings regarding Amarillo Air Show, photographs, correspondence regarding air races, and correspondence regarding Bohn as sales person.

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Series Description

The Delphine Bohn Papers are organized in one series and five subseries:

Series I. Scrapbooks 5 linear ft. (five non-standard boxes), 1941-1988.

Arranged into five subseries: 1. Scrapbook No. 1, 2. Scrapbook No. 2, 3. Scrapbook No. 3, 4. Scrapbook No. 4, and 5. Scrapbook No. 5.

Subseries 1. Scrapbook No. 1 1 linear ft. (one non-standard box), 1941-1988.

Arranged in original order.

Subseries 2. Scrapbook No. 2 1 linear ft. (one non-standard box), 1944-1973.

Arranged in original order.

Subseries 3. Scrapbook No. 3 1 linear ft. (one non-standard box), 1946-1985.

Arranged in original order.

Subseries 4. Scrapbook No. 4 1 linear ft. (one non-standard box), 1949-1985.

Arranged in original order.

Subseries 5. Scrapbook No. 5 1 linear ft. (one non-standard box), 1946-1988.

Arranged in original order.

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Related Materials

Additional Sources

Further information regarding women in the aviation industry can be found in the Tony Page Papers in the History of Aviation Collection, Special Collections, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.

The Texas Woman's University in Denton, Texas subsists comprehensive holdings of WASP collections and has dedicated a Women Airforce Service Pilots Digital Archive through their Gateway to Women's History portal website:

http://twudigital.cdmhost.com/cdm/landingpage/collection/p214coll2

Books and Magazines

Books and magazines were pulled and catalogued to be included into the HAC monograph and magazine stacks.

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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, 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 : 5DB-1-1-PB1

5 = History of Aviation Archives (HAC)

DB = Delphine Bohn Papers

1 = Box Number

1 = Folder Number

P = Photograph/Postcard

B = Black and White

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.

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Collection Inventory

Series I. Scrapbooks 

Subseries 1. Scrapbook No. 1 

Magazine and Article. 1947-1985   Personal note and articles.


    Box Envelope
Mixed materials   1 1

Memorabilia and Ephemera. 1942-1943   Menu card, drink list, and miniature flags.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   1 2

Scrapbook, Pages 1-22. 1941-1942   Image number 5DB-1-3-PB1 through 5DB-1-3-PC46 depicting Delphine Bohn and other WAFS, articles, ephemera, clippings, radiograms, correspondence, operation orders, and sketches.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   1 3

Scrapbook, Pages 23-58. 1943-1970   Image number 5DB-1-4-PB1 through 5DB-1-4-PB59 depicting Delphine Bohn and other aviatrices, ephemera, clippings, articles, and 5th Ferrying Group's By-laws.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   1 4

Scrapbook, Pages 59-88. 1944   Image number 5DB-1-5-PC1 through 5DB-1-5-PB37 depicting Delphine Bohn and other female pilots, clippings, ephemera, training booklet, correspondence, training certificates, and letters of commendation.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   1 5

Scrapbook. 1942-1988   Image number 5DB-1-6-PB1 through 5DB-1-6-PB19 depicting Delphine Bohn and other female pilots, ephemera, clippings, correspondence, military records, and articles.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   1 6

Subseries 2. Scrapbook No. 2 

Scrapbook, Pages 1-27. 1945-1948   Image number 5DB-2-1-PB1 through 5DB-2-1-PB30 depicting Delphine Bohn, aircraft, and actor Robert Taylor in a cockpit, memoranda, clippings, radiogram, poems, address by General H.H. Arnold, portrait sketch, and articles.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   2 1

Scrapbook, Pages 33-53. 1947-1973   Image number 5DB-2-2-PB1 through 5DB-2-2-PB18 depicting Delphine Bohn and aircraft, articles, "The Beech Log," correspondence, press release, ephemera, "Western Flying," and narrative.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   2 2

Scrapbook, Pages 57-61. 1944-1947   Image number 5DB-2-3-PB1 through 5DB-2-3-PB8 depicting Delphine Bohn on her tour to Brazil, "The Beech Log," "P-47 Thunderbolt Pilots Association," newspaper, and flight chart to Brazil.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   2 3

Scrapbook, Pages 63-71. 1947-1949   Image number 5DB-2-4-PB1 through 5DB-2-4-PB9 depicting Delphine Bohn on her travel to Brazil, "The Beech Log," Trinidad and Tobago travel brochure, "Skyways," clippings, and ephemera.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   2 4

Subseries 3. Scrapbook No. 3 

Scrapbook, Pages 1-33. 1949-1956   Image number 5DB-3-1-PC1 through 5DB-3-1-PB56 depicting Delphine Bohn and Tony Page, airplanes and showroom, Amarillo Municipal Airport, airplanes, and vendor's show room, ephemera, newspaper, "The Beechcrafter," articles, and "Southern Flight."


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   3 1

Scrapbook, Pages 35-63. 1946-1985   Image number 5DB-3-2-PC1 through 5DB-3-2-PC38 depicting Delphine Bohn receiving an award, her participating at reunions, with Tony Page and other aviation industry personalities, at Bandera, Texas; roster, air race program, articles, clippings, "Airman," "Skyways," and "Western Flying."


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   3 2

Scrapbook, Pages 67-87. 1959-1972   Image number 5DB-3-3-PC1 through 5DB-3-3-PB39 depicting Delphine Bohn at Bandera, Texas, women of the Ninety-Nines women pilots, and award ceremonies; articles, "The Beechcrafter," clippings, and "Delphine Bohn Business Aircraft" newsletter.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   3 3

Subseries 4. Scrapbook No. 4 

Scrapbook, Pages 1-48. 1949-1985   Image number 5DB-4-1-PC1 through 5DB-4-1-PC98 depicting Delphine Bohn, Texas Chapter of Ninety-Nines, AMA Airshow, astronaut Jerry L. Ross, articles, clippings, ephemera, correspondence, roster, "The Beechcrafter," and "National Aeronautics."


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   4 1

Scrapbook, Pages 89-129. 1966-1975   Image number 5DB-4-2-PB1 through 5DB-4-2-PC13 depicting WASPs, postcards, articles, clippings, correspondence, ephemera, roster, "WASP Newsletter," and military records.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   4 2

Subseries 5. Scrapbook No. 5 

Scrapbook, Pages 1-65. 1946-1988   Image number 5DB-5-1-PB1 through 5DB-5-1-PB18 depicting WASPs, Delphine Bohn, Avanger Field, clippings, articles, newsletters, programs, military records, ephemera, and correspondence.


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   5 1

Scrapbook, Pages 73-101. 1948-1950   Image number 5DB-5-2-PB1 through 5DB-5-2-PB35 depicting Delphine Bohn and other WASPs, and Bohn with actors Robert Taylor and Lee J. Cobb, correspondence, and "The Beech Log."


    Box Folder
Mixed materials   5 2

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An Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action University