Skip to main content

Wilmer and Mildred Stultz papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSP 209

Scope and Contents

The Wilmer and Mildred Stultz papers (circa 1917-1960; 1.40 cubic feet) document the career, travels, and family life of the Stultzes. The photo albums feature some of the 50 planes flown by Stultz, colleagues in the aviation field, aerial photographs of air fields and cities, automobiles from the 1920s, key flights flown by Stultz and events surrounding those flights, including the 1928 flight of the “Friendship” Fokker with Amelia Earhart and Louis Gordon, and other aspects of his career. Types of materials include: artifacts, books, photo albums, programs, and shadowbox containing memorabilia.


  • 1917-1960
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1928
  • Other: Date acquired: 11/08/2011


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open fro research.

Conditions Governing Use

Purdue University per deed of gift

Biographical / Historical

Wilmer Lower Stultz was born on a farm near Williamsburg, Pennsylvania on April 11, 1900. In August 1917, he enlisted in the United States Army Air Force and in March of 1919, Stultz was honorably discharged as sergeant in the 634th aero supply squadron.

On August 4, 1919 he married Mildred Botts of Middletown, Pennsylvania.

Stultz enlisted in the Naval Air Service on December 22, 1919 and was honorably discharged on December 1, 1922. In his government training, Stultz was one of a group of men to receive special instruction in aviation. He personally conducted the tests made on the Josephine Ford plane in which Commander Richard Byrd made his famous journey to the North Pole. Stultz was the winner of a national airplane speed race at Dayton, Ohio. He was approached in the Fall of 1927 by Commander Byrd to be the assistant pilot on Byrd’s proposed South Pole flight. Frances Wilson Grayson employed Stultz as the pilot on her flight across the Atlantic. Grayson and Stultz turned around on their flight due to storms and Stultz ended their professional relationship.

Stultz is primarily remembered today for his role as the pilot in the 1928 transatlantic flight aboard the “Friendship” airplane. During this flight, Stultz piloted the Fokker F7 (nicknamed the “Friendship”) that carried Amelia Earhart across the Atlantic Ocean. Although she was only a passenger on the flight, Earhart became instantly famous for being the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean.

Tragically, Stultz died in 1929 during a test flight. He was thirty years old. At the time of his death, he had over 2000 hours in the air and had flown 50 different types of planes.


MSP 38, Wilmer Stultz papers, Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries

Souvenir booklet, “Home-coming Celebration for Wilmer Stultz From His Trans-Atlantic Flight,” Williamsburg, PA, July 18, 1928


1.04 Cubic Feet

1 mss box and 2 flat boxes other_unmapped


The papers contain artifacts, books about Amelia Earhart, photo albums featuring the career, family, friends and lives of the Stultzes, a program from an Earhart lecture, and a shadowbox containing memorabilia from Stultz’s transatlantic flight aboard the “Friendship” with Amelia Earhart and Louis Gordon in 1928.

Physical Access Requirements

Photo alubum #1 is in fragile condition.

Source of Acquisition

Donated by Carol Pulk, as ingerited from her mother, Blanche Botts Hecht and aunt, Mildred Botts Stultz, August 11, 2011

Existence and Location of Originals

multi-part note content

Related Materials

Wilmer Stultz papers: [url=][/url] George Palmer Putnam collection of Amelia Earhart papers: [url=][/url]

Processing Information

All materials have been housed in acid-free folders and acid-free boxes. The photographs have been placed in polyester sleeves.
Wilmer and Mildred Stultz papers
Mary A. Sego
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 W. State Street
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States