Collection inventory

Pan Am 103 home page

Ken Dornstein Papers

An inventory of his papers at the Pan Am Flight 103/Lockerbie Air Disaster Archives at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: Vanessa L. St.Oegger-Menn
Date: Nov 2016


Ken Dornstein is an author and investigative journalist. His brother, David Dornstein (1963-1988) was among the 270 victims of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland on 21 December 1988. Ken is the author of The Boy Who Fell Out of the Sky: A True Story, a 2006 memoir about the brothers' relationship and Ken's attempts to understand David's life and death, and the bombing of Pan Am 103. Ken is also the creator of the Frontline documentary My Brother's Bomber, which first aired in the United States in 2015. This three-part piece of investigative journalism follows Ken's search for evidence and answers about the bombing.

Scope and Content Note

The Ken Dornstein Papers primarily consist of the research files of Ken Dornstein, compiled during the research and production of My Brother's Bomber. Also included are audiovisual footage of the documentary and source materials about Pan Am 103, Muammar Gaddafi, Libya, and terrorism. The Ken Dornstein Papers has been divided into the following series:

Audiovisual materials consists of two subseries, Ken Dornstein and Research. The first of these subseries contains both audio and film recordings created by or featuring Ken Dornstein. These materials include audio recordings of Dornstein's trip to Lockerbie, Scotland in 1996 as well as audio recordings of the My Brother's Bomber film crew on location. Commercial and independent films and archival news footage comprise the bulk of the Research subseries

Awards contains one item: the Keeping the Spirit Alive award presented to Ken Dornstein by the Victims of Pan Am Flight 103, Inc. on 21 December 2015.

Posters includes reward posters for Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi and Lamen Khalifah Fhimah, and a U.S. Department of State poster.

Research files comprise the majority of the collection. These files are arranged by topic, and remain in their original order. Topics include but are not limited to individual suspects and organizations; other aviation disasters; the history of Lockerbie, Scotland; trial information and notes for the trial at Kamp van Zeist, and pain and suffering hearings; government documents; and information about the 1986 La Belle Disco bombing. Also included are Dornstein's journal from is 1996 trip to Lockerbie, Scotland and a map based on Dornstein's research of locations where the victims of Pan Am 103 fell to earth.

Alternative Formats

Selected materials from this collection have been digitized. Please contact the archivist for further information on accessing these materials.


Access Restrictions:

Due to its fragility, access to the map of where Pan Am 103 victims fell is restricted.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from the Pan Am Flight 103 Archives and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Related Material

Books have been transferred to Rare Books for cataloging. Please refer to the Classic Catalog to locate these items.

The Pan Am Flight 103 Archives contains additional materials and information related to the Ken Dornstein Papers. Related collections include:

David Dornstein Family Papers

Selected Search Terms


Dornstein, Ken.
Syracuse University -- History.
Syracuse University.

Associated Titles

My brother's bomber.
The boy who fell out of the sky : a true story.


Libya -- Foreign relations--United States.
Pan Am Flight 103 Bombing Incident, 1988.
Terrorism -- Government Policy -- United States -- Case Studies.
Terrorism -- Government Policy -- United States -- History.
Terrorism -- Government Policy -- United States.
Terrorism -- History -- 20th Century.
Lockerbie (Scotland)

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Ken Dornstein Papers,
Pan Am Flight 103/Lockerbie Air Disaster Archives
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Ken Dornstein in 2016.

Processing Information

The majority of materials in the Research Files series have been removed from three-ring binders and placed in numbered, acid-free folders.


The Ken Dornstein Papers are arranged alphabetically within each series or subseries.

Table of Contents

Audiovisual materials



Research files