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Image / Pilot Bessie Coleman

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Pilot Bessie Coleman
Alternative Title
Security Pacific National Bank Photo Collection
Date Created and/or Issued
Circa 1922
Contributing Institution
Los Angeles Public Library
Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection
Rights Information
Images available for reproduction and use. Please see the Ordering & Use page at for additional information.
Title supplied by cataloger.; Information provided with the image indicates that this portrait was used for her aviation license in 1923.
Bessie Coleman (1896-1926) was the first African American woman to earn an aviator's license. Originally from Atlanta, Texas, Coleman moved to Chicago in 1915, where she first learned about flying from pilots returning from World War I. Gender and racial prejudice in the United States prevented Coleman for studying aviation, so she traveled to France, where she optained an international aviation license from the Fe´de´ration Ae´ronautique Internationale. To make a living as a pilot, Coleman did barnstorming, or performed in airshows as a stunt pilot. Coleman was killed when her plane malfunctioned.
Portrait of pilot Bessie Coleman in her complete aviation outfit.
1 photographic print :b&w ;26 x 21 cm.
Photographic prints
Security Pacific National Bank Collection
Transportation-Aviation-Personalities-Coleman, Bessie.; S-001-062.4 4x5
Coleman, Bessie,--1892-1926
Women air pilots--United States
Air pilots--United States
Portrait photographs
Time Period

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