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Josephine Baker, the first pilot at the Pantheon

The remains of France’s most outstanding citizens are found at the Pantheon in Paris. Only 81 persons have received the country’s highest honour since 1791, including Victor Hugo and Marie Curie. On November 30, 2021, Josephine Baker became the sixth French woman, the first black person and the first pilot elevated to the Pantheon. American-born Baker got her last name at age 15 when she married her second husband. She had dropped out of school …

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3 female military pilots of WWI you should know

At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, World War I (WWI) formerly ended. It was one of the most brutal war the world has ever known but also the cradle of military aviation. Most female pilots were grounded and restricted to support efforts, but a few did participate in air operations. Evgeniya M. Shakhovskaya, Russia – World’s first female air force pilot Evgeniya M. Shakhovskaya was the 3rd …

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The women who told pilots where to go 80 years ago

In 1910, authorities established pilot test procedures and began to require a pilot licence for certain commercial operations like participating in airshows. Post WWI, commercial air traffic had grown enough in some areas to require the diffusion of basic aeronautical information such as weather, facilities availability, and air traffic to ensure safety. The world’s first control tower opened in 1920 at the Croydon Airport in the greater London area, U.K. Two years later, G.J.H “Jimmy” …

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Lilian Bland airplane designer, builder, and pilot

New Irish exhibition celebrates Lillian Bland, first woman to design, build, and pilot a plane

Lilian Bland is taking her rightful place among Irish innovators who had a global impact in a new National Museums NI exhibition at the Ulster Transport Museum in Cultra, Belfast. At 4:41 AM on July 25, 1909, Louis Blériot took off from a farm between Calais and Sangatte, France, and soared northbound above the English Channel. 36 minutes and 30 seconds later, Blériot landed in England and became the first pilot to fly an airplane …

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First flight across the Andes

100 years ago, this female pilot flew where no men had flown before

On April 1, 1921, Adrienne Bolland became the first woman to successfully fly across the highest section of the Andes mountain range – a section that killed five pilots who tried before her. Her trailblazing path through the peaks, the shortest, became the route that famous Aéropostale pilots like Jean Mermoz and Henri Guillaumet would follow. The turbulent last born of seven children, Bolland was known in the family as the “little terror”. “No one …

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