women in aviation and space history

Jean Harman

America By Air (102)

Jean Harman became TWA's first air hostess in 1934. She joined TWA after graduating from Bethany Hospital School of Nursing and teaching government classes in home hygiene and care of the sick. Harman was hired by TWA to design a hostess program. She assisted in interviewing the first registered nurses who became the first class of TWA hostesses, and she aided in the selection of the first uniforms. Prior to hostesses, copilots performed double duty: flying in the cockpit and assisting the passengers in the cabin. Hiring women as stewardesses not only freed copilots for the regular duties, it also soothed passengers' fear of flying. Harman later became a regional chief hostess and flight instructor. She was a founder and vice-president of Clipped Wings International, an organization for former TWA hostesses. Harman's career began in a 14-seat Douglas DC-2 and finished in the jets of the 1960s.

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