May 26, 2022

Acquisitions: Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Acquires Large Collection of Material From Sir Arthur C. Clarke Trust

From the Smithsonian Institution:

The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum has acquired a large collection from the Sir Arthur C. Clarke Trust. The collection consists of 87 cubic feet of material representing the life’s work of one of the 20th-century’s foremost science fiction writers and futurists.

The collection will be made available to researchers in the museum’s archives after being processed and cataloged.

“Arthur C. Clarke’s papers are a signature acquisition for the Smithsonian and the National Air and Space Museum,” said Martin Collins, curator of civilian applications satellites at the museum. “We have the honor of preserving and making available to researchers Clarke’s prominent place in the cultural history of spaceflight. Not least, the collection will enable the museum to tell a richer story of how science fiction and futurism interacted with contemporaneous space achievements, shaping our ideas about exploration beyond the Earth.”


The Arthur C. Clarke collection contain correspondence with notable contemporaries, including Cronkite, cosmologist Carl Sagan, aerospace engineer Werner von Braun and Smithsonian astronomer Fred Whipple. Other material in the collection includes video tapes, 16 mm films, audio tapes, personal items and early drafts of the screenplay for 2001: A Space Odyssey.”

Curator Martin Collins and Archivist Patti Williams traveled to Clarke’s home in Colombo, Sri Lanka, to catalog, pack and ship the collection to the museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va. Support for the team’s travel and shipment of the collection were provided by FedEx.

Read the Complete Announcement

Learn More About the Udvar-Hazy Center (Located Adjacent to Dulles International Airport)


About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.