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Rockefeller, William Curtis (Aeronautical Engineer)



  • Existence: 1910 - 1982


Background: Caltech BS (eng) 1932; MS aeronautical engineering, 1934; Instructor 1934-1938.
Biographical/Historical Description: William Curtis Rockefeller, known as Rocky, was born in Ogden, Utah, in 1910. He moved to California to study at the California Institute of Technology, where he became a student of Theodore von Karman (BS, engineering, 1932; MS aeronautical engineering, 1934). Rockefeller worked as an instructor at Caltech from 1934-1938. In 1936 Rockefeller was the first recipient of the Lawrence B. Sperry Award for young aeronautical engineers. He served as meteorologist for Howard Hughes's record-setting around the world flight in 1936 and worked on the design of Hughes's racers.

Rockefeller worked for Vultee Aircraft Inc. during World War II and stayed with the company in an executive role after its merger with Atlas Corp. in 1949. He later founded Via Computer Inc.
Biographical/Historical Collection Notes: Papers, 1933-1940. 0.5 lin. feet. Historical File on W. C. Rockefeller. Selected papers, c. 1930s. Lecture notes and papers related primarily to airplane design but also on rocket motors. Weld Arnold's copy of "Structure of the Atmosphere" by Beno Gutenberg.

Collection size: 1 box, 0.5 linear ft.

Finding aid available at the Archives.

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records: