Milton P. Crenchaw Collection


Milton P. Crenchaw Collection




The Milton P. Crenchaw Collection includes documents, programs, photographs, certificates and correspondence that chronicle the aviation career of the late Mr. Milton P. Crenchaw, a Little Rock, Arkansas native who was the primary flight instructor for the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II and Aviation Instructor at Philander Smith College from 1947-1952. This collection also includes papers, books and documents about the history of the Tuskegee Airmen as well as news clippings and media coverage of the many honors and awards bestowed upon Mr. Crenchaw from 1997-2012.


Crenchaw, Milton P., 1919-2015
Tuskegee Airmen
African American air pilots
Philander Smith College Aviation Program
United States. Army Air Forces. Fighter Squadron, 99th


3 boxes

Is Part Of

PSC Special Collections

Table Of Contents

Box 1

  1. Biographical info
  2. Awards/honors
  3. Interview transcripts
  4. Correspondence
  5. Speeches, presentations, papers
  6. Civil Service Commission availability statement, August 3, 1953.
  7. Photographs
  8. Programs: Arkansas Aviation Hall of Fame, Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony, AR Black Hall of Fame Induction, etc.
  9. Misc.

Box 2

  1. Tuskegee Airmen info (from various sources)
  2. Washington, G. L. (1972). The history of the military and civilian pilot training of Negroes at Tuskegee, Alabama 1939-1945. Washington, DC.
  3. Sheppard, H. A. (1998). They also paid their dues [pamphlet]. Tuskegee Airmen East Coast Chapter.
  4. University of Michigan and Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. (1995). The Tuskegee Airmen history project [questionnaire].
  5. Atlanta Chapter of Tuskegee Airment, Inc. (1985). 1985 “Lonely Eagles” calendar.
  6. UALR Fall 2001 commencement program
  7. Havron, S. (2003). Tuskegee Airmen bibliography. Retrieved from
  8. Grimm,  J. L. , Cole, V. H. and Barnes, C. M. (1997). Heroes of the 483rd: Crew histories of a much-decorated B-17 bomber group during World War II [signed edition].  Published: Author.

Box 3

  1. News clippings
  2. Excellence Through Teamwork plaque, Little Rock School District
  3. Framed cover of Mature Arkansas, March 8, 2012. “Still on a mission: Milton Crenchaw, Tuskegee Airman.”


PSC Oral History Collection: Interview with Milton P. Crenchaw. Box 2, Folder 9.





Access Rights

This collection is available for viewing at D. W. Reynolds Library, Archives and Special Collections.

Finding Aid by

L. Stacey

Accession by

L. Stacey

Accession date


Accession number


Acquisition Type


Biographical Text

Mr. Milton Crenchaw was a fighter pilot and instructor of the famed Tuskegee Airmen. He was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas. After graduating from Dunbar Junior College in 1939, he went on to attend the Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee, Alabama were he soared to new heights and became a part of African- American history. While attending the Tuskegee Institute, Mr. Crenchaw was part of the first group of ten students selected for the Tuskegee Institute Civilian Pilot Program. Because of rigid racial segregation in the United States during World War II, nearly one thousand black aviators were trained in this isolated area near Tuskegee, Alabama. Because of the special training he received from the Civilian Pilot Program, he was quickly promoted to one of the primary flight instructors for the all Black unit the 99* Fighter Squadron. From his days as a fighter pilot and flight instructor Mr. Crenchaw logged over 19,000. After leaving the Tuskegee air unit, Mr. Crenchaw returned to Arkansas as an aviation instructor at Philander Smith College. He has also worked as a civilian pilot instructor, charter pilot and a crop-duster pilot on farms in Arkansas. His final job was with the Department of Defense as an equal opportunity employment officer where he retired after 30 years of government service. Mr. Crenchaw received a Humanitarian Award from Arkansas Baptist College and was also inducted into the Arkansas Aviation Hall of Fame in 1998 and was the first African-American inducted into the IMAX Aviation Hall of Fame.


D. W. Reynolds Library, Archives and Special Collections, Philander Smith College.

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“Milton P. Crenchaw Collection,” Philander Smith College Digital Archive, accessed October 4, 2022,