Stunt pilot Katherine Stinson captivates adoring crowds with her youthful appearance and daring aerial feats. “She looks and smiles like a runaway schoolgirl on a lark and weighs only 103 pounds, but she can slide down a sky bank and do an air loop in a way that makes your hair curl,” reports the June 13, 1915 The Sunday Telegram. One of the nation’s early outstanding pilots! Read more about it!
The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.
The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.
|Becomes fourth woman to earn international pilot’s license.
|Founds the Stinson Aviation Company.
|Becomes first woman to fly U.S. airmail.
|Opens the Stinson School of Flying in San Antonio, TX.
|Plans trip from New York to the Panama Exposition in San Francisco.
|Becomes first woman to perform a loop-the-loop at Cicero Field in Chicago, IL.
|Performs the dippy twist loop, a stunt she invented.
|Becomes the first pilot to perform skywriting over the skies of Los Angeles.
|December 1916 - May 1917
|Travels through Asia on an exhibition tour. Becomes first woman to fly to Japan and China.
|Raises over two million dollars in pledges for Red Cross.
|Sets nonstop speed record flying from San Diego, CA to San Francisco, CA.
|Sets duration record flying from Chicago, IL to Binghamton, NY.
|Becomes first woman to fly Canadian airmail.
|1918 - 1920
|Becomes an ambulance driver for the Red Cross in France after being denied to fly for the U.S. military.
|Forced to retire from aviation after contracting influenza and tuberculosis.