The Descriptive Finding Guide for the Jame Alfonte Personal Papers SDASM.SC.10004

Finding aid prepared by Jason Rogers
San Diego Air and Space Museum Library and Archives
2001 Pan American Plaza, Balboa Park
San Diego, CA, 92101
(619) 234-8291

Title: Brig. Gen. James Alfonte Personal Papers 1886-1951
Identifier/Call Number: SDASM.SC.10004
Contributing Institution: San Diego Air and Space Museum Library and Archives
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 0.4 Cubic feet one box collection measuring 12 ¼” x 10 ½” x 5”.
Date (inclusive): 1917-1919
Abstract: This collection contains the personal papers of Brig. Gen. James Alfonte. The bulk of the material relates to his aviation career during World War I.
Language of Materials note: English
creator: Alfonte, James, Brig. Gen., (James Raymond), 1886-1951

Biographical/Historical note

James Raymond Alfonte was born on Dec. 7, 1886 in Fortville, Indiana. He attended Purdue University, then was commissioned in the U.S. Army Infantry in October 1911. He participated in the Punitive Expedition to Mexico in 1916 under General Pershing. Later that year he was ordered to the newly-formed Signal Corps Aviation School on San Diego’s North Island to train as a student pilot. During his training he was involved in at least one crash on the beach at Encinitas. Upon receiving his wings in 1917 he was transferred to Camp Kelly in San Antonio to form and command the 28th Aero Squadron. This unit is still in service today as the 28th Bomb Squadron, part of the 7th Bomb Wing at Dyess Air Force Base in Texas. Following this assignment, Alfonte was made the commanding officer at Call Field in Wichita Falls. After World War I, Alfonte saw extensive duty with the Quartermaster Corps between 1921 and 1945. He graduated from the Command and General Staff School in 1930, the Army Industrial College in 1932 and the Army War College in 1938. He was Quartermaster of the Infantry School from 1938 until 1942, when he was promoted to Brigadier General. From 1943-1945 he was the Commanding General of the New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, Army Services Depot. He held the same position at the Utah Army Service Forces Depot from 1945-1946. He retired in 1946 and died on Feb. 8, 1951. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Conditions Governing Access note

The collection is open to researchers by appointment.

Conditions Governing Use note

Some copyright may be reserved. Consult with the library director for more information.

Preferred Citation note

[Item], [Filing Unit], [Series Title], [Subgroups], [Record Group Title and Number], [Repository “San Diego Air & Space Museum Library & Archives”]

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

The records were acquired by the San Diego Air & Space Museum in 2009.

Scope and Contents note

The collection contains material related to the aviation career of Brig. Gen. James Raymond Alfonte. The material begins with his assignment to Rockwell Field in San Diego in 1916 and continues through his reassignment to the Quartermaster Corps in 1919. The collection includes correspondence, orders, cap wings, flight logs, a pilot’s certificate and a large number of original photographs.

Related Archival Materials note

Alfonte Collection Flikr site ( North Island Collection (Digital Media) A History of Rockwell Field (Digital Media)

Subjects and Indexing Terms

North Island Naval Air Station


Box 01


Folder 01 – Assorted Organized Documents

Physical Description: This folder contains a variety of document types including correspondence, logs, orders, flight records, telegrams, and reports.

Folder 02 – Photographs

Physical Description: This folder contains several dozen photographs of Alfonte’s personal collection, including a 1912 monoplane, associates and friends, and a variety of soldiers with their equipment.

Folder 03 – Items

Physical Description: 1. Two US Army Airmen Wings lapel pins 2. World War II US Army - Airborne Glider Wing Badge 3. Three unknown Pendants with Latin words