women in aviation and space history

Mary Haizlip

Mary Haizlip
NASM-91-227
National Air and Space Museum Archives, Smithsonian Institution

Mary Haizlip

Golden Age of Flight (105)

Mary Haizlip had her first opportunity to fly after meeting her husband-to-be, James. He had returned from France after WWI as a senior pilot and was running a flying school while attending the University of Oklahoma. She took flying lessons from him and when she qualified for a FAI license, she had already logged 230 flying hours. She was also the second woman in the United States to receive her commercial pilot's license, and for seven years held the world's speed record for women. In 1930 she flew a Cessna racer, finishing second in a race and posting the fastest pylon time for the Cessna racer. In ten days at the 1931 Cleveland National Air Races, she competed in six different high-performance aircraft. Haizlip was the second highest money winner, man or woman, at the 1931 National Air Races. She was also a test pilot for Spartan Aircraft, American Eagle, and Buhl Aircraft. Haizlip was the first woman pilot inducted in the Oklahoma Aviation and Space Hall of Fame on December 17, 1982.

(information compiled by D. Cochrane and P. Ramirez)