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Manuscript Library

Welcome to the Booth Library manuscript index. 

The manuscript index contains links to finding aids for the collections of the Booth Library.  Each finding aid has a description of that collection along with a listing of the items within that collection.  The Booth Library staff and volunteers are updating the index daily in order to make your research experience more productive.

The Manuscript Index is arranged alphabetically by collection name.  To access a finding aid, please click on its name.

To search the Manuscript Index for a specific research topic, please enter the term into the Search Library Box below. 

Please keep in mind that many collections have not been inventoried while others are currently in progress.  If you have any questions regarding the Finding Aids or the Index, please contact the archivist at

Collection TitleCL 126 Hungerford Brothers CollectionCreatorBooth Library
Processed ByRachel Dworkin
Date Completed:3/5/2008
Provenance:The items in this collection were compiled by David Smith as part of his research for a documentary on the Hungerford brothers.  He donated the material to the Booth Library in 2004.
Terms:Aeronautical engineers; Aeronautics in astronomy; Aeronautical museums; Aeronautics--exhibitions; Aeronautics--history; Aeronautics--patents; Air pilots; Astronomy; Elmira (N.Y.); Housing; Mechanical engineering; Rocket engines; Rockets (Aeronautics)

Daniel Hungerford- Daniel Hungerford was born on August 14, 1886 in the town of Wells in Bradford County, PA.  He came to Elmira, NY in 1907 and in 1909 he and his younger brother Floyd opened up a garage and mechanic shop at 823 West Second Street.  On August 7, 1918, Daniel married Jessie Hopkins. The couple eventually had one daughter named Shirely Lois.  Daniel Hungerford died at age 80 on April 9, 1967.

Despite their lack of a high school education, the Hungerford brothers were brilliant inventors in fields ranging from aeronautics and rocketry to astronomy and snow plows.  In 1909, they built the first airplane to fly in Elmira and, in 1929, they built their most famous invention, America's first successful rocket-propelled car which they called "Shirely Lois, Moon Girl" after Daniel's daughter. 

Scope:This collection contains photocopies of newspaper articles and Daniel Hungerford's personal correspondence, compact disks with images of the Hungerfords and their inventions, and letters concerning the disposition of the rocket car following Hungerford's death.  The newspaper articles primarily concern Daniel Hungerford's inventions and his eviction from his home in 1966.  They range in date from 1914 to 1981, with the bulk of the articles coming from the 1930's and the 1960's.  The personal correspondence ranges in date from 1933 to 1967, with the bulk of the letters dating from the 1960's.  The images on the CD's were scanned from various collections throughout the United States and are stored in both TIFF and JPEG formats.  The collection of correspondence oertaining to the ultimate disposition of the rocket car dates from 1979 to 1995 and involves communications between various museums, researchers and lawyers. 
Extent.5 linear feet
Date Span1914-1995
AbstractThis collection consists of notes and photocopies of original documents made by David Smith while working on his documentary on the Hungerford brothers.

Filter by:
TitleDocumentBox NumberFolder NumberLocation
Article, "Hungerford's Rockets," December 1974.Article010304
Compact disk containing images of the Hungerford rocket car in both Tiff and JPEG form. CD10101
Compact disk containing images of airplanes designed by the Hungerfords in both Tiff and JPEG form. CD10102
Compact disk containing images of the Hungerfords and their associates in both Tiff and JPEG form. CD10103
Compact disk containing assorted images relating to the Hungerfords in both Tiff and JPEG form. CD10104
Compact disk containing images of documents relating to the Hungerfords and their inventions in both Tiff and JPEG form. CD10105
List of the images found on the CD's in the collection. List10106
Folder of 30 newspaper articles concerning the Hungerfords, their activities and inventions, ranging in date from 1914 to 1981.Newspaper clippings102
Article, "The Wizards of West Second Street."Article10301
Article, "Misguided Missile: The Strange Tale of a Recluse's Rocket-powered Car," February 1980.Article10302
Draft of article "The Wizards of West Second Street" by Keith Marvin.Documents10303
Article, "1929 Hungerford Rocket Car," Spring 2000. Article10305
Article, "1920 Hungerford Rocket," no date. Article10306
Article, "First rocket car to be displayed at May 15 open house," May 1965.Article10307
Article, "Museum displays unique Hungerford rocket car," July 21, 1994.Article10308
Article, "Moonstruck," Spring 1986.Article10309
Article, "Elmira's rocket car," February 1980.Article10310
Article, "Aviation and soaring," no date. Article10311
Transcipt of a conversation about early Elmira aviators. Transcript10312
Article, "Where do we go from here? The Moon!"Article10313
Motor vehicle registration forms for the Hungerford rocket-car. Documents10401
Thirty day's notice to terminate tenancy for Daniel Hungerford's residence, April 1966. Documents10402
Smith's handwritten notes on Daniel Hungerford. Documents10403
Smith's notes on the Hungerford's involvement in Socialist politics. Documents10404
Daniel Hungerford's entry in "Who's Who in American Aeronautics," 1925 edition. Documents10405
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