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Talbert "Ted" Abrams

Talbert Abrams


Talbert "Ted" Abrams was born in Tekonsha, Michigan on August 17, 1895. His lifelong interests in aviation centered on experimental aircraft, commercial airline services and aerial photography.

Abrams served in the Aviation Section, United States Marine Corps, and the United States Air Corps from 1917-1919 during and after World War I. He married and started the ABC Airline (Always Be Carful) in 1922. He left the airline industry and founded Abrams Aerial Survey Corporation in 1923. He made his first aerial survey for the Michigan State Highway Department in September of 1925 using aerial cameras that he himself developed.

Since its start in 1923, the company annually completes precision aerial surveys and remote sensing for thousands of highways, transmission and pipe lines miles for states, counties, cities, and industry. Abrams himself has lived, worked, and traveled in 96 countries.

Abrams has received many honors, one of which was his initiation into the OX-5 Aviation Hall of Fame. He is especially proud of the fact he has Federation Aeronautique International Pilot License No. 282, signed by Orville Wright, and the United States Transport Pilot License No. 599. Abrams also received three honorary degrees for his contributions to aviation and to society.

Abrams was enshrined on December 17, 1987 for his long and illustrious career in developing the state-of-the-art aerial photography adopted and used around the world today. He is very proud and pleased to have had the wonderful lifelong experience of being able to make the contributions he made for a great country like the United States.

Smithsonian Institution Affiliations Program