Bessie Coleman

About Bessie Coleman

  • Biography
  • Fast Facts

Born January 26, 1892, Bessie Coleman was an American aviator and the first woman of both African American and Native American descent to possess a pilot license. Saving up money to travel to France to become a pilot, she earned her international license in 1921 and later became a show pilot in the United States. Sadly, her career ended abruptly in 1926 when she perished in a plane crash. She was 34 years old.

1st woman of African-American descent, and the 1st of Native-American descent, to hold a pilot’s license

10th of 13 children in her family

2 months spent in France completing an advanced course in aviation

12 years old when she was accepted into the Missionary Baptist Church School on scholarship

Learned to fly in a Nieuport 82 biplane

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