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William W. Betts Papers

Identifier: LP000558
The papers of Mr. Betts reflect his work with Braniff and ALPA, especially his efforts as the Central Air Safety Chairman for Braniff.

Important subjects covered in the collection are: Skyscrapers and air safety Safety design for airports Aircraft safety testing Aircraft equipment testing

Among the correspondents is: Erik Jonsson

Series Description: Series I, ALPA Negotiations and Union Business: Hearing excerpts, correspondence relating to contract negotiations.

Series II, ALPA/Air Safety Committee: Correspondence, memoranda, reports, clippings, from ALPA Dallas office files relating to the Air Safety Committee and Mr. Betts' chairmanship of that committee.

Series III, Memorabilia: Personal file of Mr. Betts and his various diplomas, pilot's log books and airman's file.


  • 1944 - 1971
  • Majority of material found within 1962 - 1971


Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials.


2.5 Linear Feet (5 MB)


The papers of William Betts reflect his work with Braniff and ALPA, especially his efforts as the Central Air Safety Chairman for Braniff.


William Betts was born in Wilmington, North Carolina on May 24, 1917. After being graduated from Dallas Aviation School and Air College, Love Field, in 1935, he flew as a co-pilot and then a captain for Braniff Airlines; he received a diploma from the University of Southern Cali¬fornia's Institute of Aerospace Safety. He was a leading figure in the Airline Pilots Associations, (ALPA), serving as Central Air Safety Chairman for Braniff and as Chairman of the Fourth Region Air Safety Committee. In those capacities, he participated in many important projects for ALPA such as the SST Boeing Committee, BAC 1-11 Evaluation, (making several trips to Britain and France), Crew Complement-BAC 1-11, Tall Buildings Dallas, Pilot Protective Provisions Committee ALPA 1958, be¬sides serving on each Accident Investigation team Braniff/ALPA. Mr. Betts was well known for his conscientious attention to all information pertinent to the cases and his expert knowledge of all facets of aviation. Also, he served as a consultant assisting in many cases for the ALPA legal counsel in FAA/Pilot Hearings of violations. Mr. Betts died in Dallas in May of 1971 of leukemia, after many years of service working for air safety.


Arranged in 3 series – Series 1 (Box 1), Series 2 (Boxes 1-4) and Series 3 (Box 5). Folders are arranged chronologically.


The papers of William W. Betts were placed in the Archives of Labor History and Urban Affairs in June of 1972 by Mrs. Jessie Betts.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Guide to the William W. Betts Papers
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA