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Women in Air & Space


Women in Air & Space

Explore a panorama of women’s contributions to and achievements in aviation and space flight with the Air Zoo’s Women in Air & Space exhibition. Displayed throughout our Flight Innovation and Discovery Centers, the exhibit tells diverse women’s stories from the early days of flight through today’s record breakers and history makers.

About the Exhibits

Get to know the great pioneers, learn more about women who sought aviation-based careers, and see stars with the women of NASA. Experience our interactive timeline teeming with stories, images, videos, and activities that help illustrate the major impacts made by these extraordinary women.

NEW Exhibit!

Women in Air & Space Interactive Timeline

Come and explore an engaging panorama of stories, images, graphics, videos, and hands-on activities as you explore more than 100 years of contributions made by more than 50 accomplished women in the fields of aviation and space exploration. We are delighted to enhance these stories with items from our collection, images from our archives, as well as affiliate organizations like the Smithsonian and several featured assets from the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) IF/THEN an Initiative of Lyda Hill Philanthropies, which enriches U.S. projects like ours that highlight women and minorities in STEM.  Learn more!



The Great Pioneers

This suite of exhibit components embraces some of the earliest stories of women in aviation. Meet the Wright brothers’ younger sister and silent partner, Katharine Wright, first female licensed pilot, Harriet Quimby, and the courageous woman the press called “the only race aviatrix,” Bessie Coleman, known as the first black and Native American female pilot. See a few highlights below! More to come!

Among the Women In Air & Space exhibit’s anchors, Amelia: Adventurous Aviatrix  highlights the three key eras of the iconic pilot’s life. Discover Amelia Earhart’s first passion (it wasn’t flight!), find out what she thought about comparisons to Charles Lindbergh, and note her numerous achievements. We’ve recreated a charming photograph of Amelia as she demonstrated flight basics to pint-size future pilots. The scene features a handmade 1930s demonstration model reproduction.




In We Did It: The Riveting Real Rosies of WWII, you’ll meet some of the women who answered America’s call to fill defense plant positions in the 1940s. Learn about the recruitment process, the art of the famous Rosie poster, and the many kinds of jobs these women took in service to their country. See an authentic rivet gun, rivet manual, and paystub on loan from Yankee Air Museum, which sits on the former site of the Willow Run plant where women manufactured one B-24 bomber an hour. Watch video interviews from the children of real Rosies. Take a picture with our “We Can Do It!” poster cutout.



Sue Parish

Air Zoo co-founder Suzanne U.D. Parish lived a remarkable life, both on earth and in the sky. 

This exhibit celebrates just a few of her many achievements from her early horse-riding days to serving with the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP), raising a family, earning honors such as the Congressional Medal of Honor and Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame, and co-founding the Air Zoo. 



Lois Phillips

During WWII, Corporal Lois Phillips served as a Link Trainer Instructor at the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) Air Station in Mojave, California, 85 miles north of Los Angeles. In what Lois called “the Link room” in the air station’s Synthetic Training Building, the Three Oaks, Michigan native used Link Trainer flight simulators to provide instrument training to pilots through sets of courses and wind and weather conditions.  



More Women in Air & Space you will find featured on the exhibition floor at the Air Zoo!




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