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Felix Riesenberg Papers, 1879–1940s

Identifier: AP-0019

Contents of Collection

Collection includes a scrapbook containing clippings and letters; a photo album and negatives documenting partcipation in Walter Wellman's failed expedition to the North Pole in either 1906 or 1907; notes and scrapbook on a patent for an Internal Combustion Engine created with Douglas J. Martin ; maritime regalia; papers documenting schooling and professional advacement; and collection of published works.


  • 1879 - 1949


Language of Materials

All materials are in English

Conditions Governing Access

Appointments to examine materials must be made in advance. Please e-mail for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Conditions Governing Use

Reproductions may be provided to users to support research and scholarship. However, collection use is subject to all copyright laws. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Biographical Note

Felix Riesenberg (1879-1939) was an American seaman, author, explorer, and engineer. Born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Riesenberg graduated from the New York Nautical School (now SUNY Maritime College) in 1897, and obtained an engineering degree from Columbia University in 1913. He later returned to the New York Nautical School as superintendent from 1917–1919 and 1923–1924.

After graduating from the New York Nautical School, Riesenberg was part of the Coast and Geodetic Survey and served in the Naval Reserve until 1909. In 1906-1907 he participated in two of Walter Wellman's unsuccessful attempts to reach the North Pole by air. He also went on to serve as Chief Officer of the United States Shipping Board (from approximately 1915-1920). Riesenberg authored over 25 respected works of maritime fiction and nonfiction. His autobiography, "Living Again," was published in 1937.

Riesenberg died in 1939. In 2001, he was posthumously inducted into the US Merchant Marine Academy's National Maritime Hall of Fame.


5 Linear Feet (2 small flat boxes; 1 oversize flat box; 2 document boxes; bound volumes; artifacts.)


Felix Riesenberg (1879-1939) was an American seaman, explorer, engineer, and author of fiction and nonfiction. The collection contains personal papers and items, as well as copies of his published works.


Materials are arranged in three series based on type: personal papers; three-dimensional objects; and books authored by Riesenberg.

Physical Location

Stephen B. Luce Library, SUNY Maritime College 6 Pennyfield Avenue, The Bronx, NY 10465 Telephone: (718) 409-7231

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection consists of a gift from Joan Riesenberg Barrett, donated on August 22nd, 2006, as well as a permanent loan from the Lois M. Riesenberg Living Trust, deposited on February 8, 2006.

Related Material at SUNY Maritime College

Alexander Tode Papers, 1856-1950

Related Materials in Other Repositories

Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas at Austin: Felix Riesenberg's "Notes for the production of the sea play The Second Mate," circa 1930

Felix Riesenberg Papers
Created by Andrew Goldberg; edited by Annie Tummino
February 2017
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Repository Details

Part of the Stephen B. Luce Library Repository

6 Pennyfield Avenue
Bronx NY 10465 United States
(718) 409-7231