Mary Riddle, also known as Kus-da-cha or Kingfisher, was born on April 22, 1902. She felt that public opinion was that women would never be successful pilots—she knew that she wanted to prove them wrong. She made her first solo flight on May 10, 1930 then earned her commercial pilot’s license in 1933.
Ever since journalist and screenwriter Harriet Quimby became the first American woman licensed as a pilot in 1911, many women have been breaking barriers to find their place in the sky. Ruth Elder was determined to become the female Charles Lindbergh, and the first woman to cross the Atlantic. She was a charter member of The Ninety-Nines, starred in Moran of the Marines (1928) and The Winged Horseman (1929), and took part in the Women's Air Derby which took place on August 18, 1929, along with twenty other women.
Pancho Barnes was born Florence Leontine Lowe on July 22, 1901. She went on to become Hollywood’s first female stunt pilot and was Lockheed’s first female test pilot. In 1930, she broke Amelia Earhart's air speed record and assumed the title of World’s Fastest Woman.
In the late 1920s through mid-1930s, Ruth Rowland Nichols was one of the best-known American women in aviation. She knew from a young age that her interests were not in the classroom but outdoors. Over the course of her aviation career, Nichols held more than 35 women's aviation records.
Olive Ann Beech was born on September 25, 1903 in Waverly, Kansas to Franklin Benjamin Mellor and Susannah Miller Mellor. She was the youngest of four girls and would become the co-founder, president, and chairwoman of Beech Aircraft Corporation. Her career spanned 50 years prior to her retirement in September 1982, she was the first woman to head a major aircraft company.