Students pose for camera at Bessie Coleman's flight school

African American Pioneers in Aviation and Space

African Americans have made, and continue to make, significant contributions to flight and space exploration, often despite overwhelming obstacles. Learn about the inspiring people who stood in the face of adversity and paved the way for all people to fly.

Notable Figures in Aerospace

Mae Jemison

Astronaut Mae Jemison

Black and white portrait.

Pilot Dale White

Patricia Cowings

Researcher Patricia Cowings

Vance H. Marchbanks Jr.

Flight Doctor Vance Marchbank

Online Exhibition

"Black Wings"

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"The Air is the only place free from prejudices."

"I decided blacks should not have to experience the difficulties I had faced, so I decided to open a flying school and teach other black women to fly." - Bessie Coleman

Pilot Barrington Irving

Barrington Irving set the world record as the youngest person to fly around the world solo. Learn how he has gotten to where he is as he shares his path.

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