I was annoyed from the start by the attitude of doubt by the spectators that I would never really make the flight. This attitude made me more determined than ever to succeed.
Harriet Quimby, just prior to her flight across the English Channel, 1912.
The aeroplane should open a fruitful occupation for women. I see no reason they cannot realize handsome incomes by carrying passengers between adjacent towns, from parcel delivery, taking photographs or conducting schools of flying.
Harriet Quimby, June 1912.
There is a world-old controversy that crops up whenever women attempt to enter a new field. Is a woman fit for that work? It would seem that a woman's success in any particular field would prove her fitness for that work, without regard to theories to the contrary.
Ruth Law, 1920
So many men now have lost their lives in airplane accidents that individual addition [sic] to the long list of their names have ceased to cause any really deep emotions except in the minds of their relatives and friends. When a woman is the victim however the feeling of pity and horror is as strong as was that produced by the first of these disasters to men and though there is at present no expectation that aviation should be abandoned by men because of the recognized dangers, the death of Miss Bromwell is almost sure to raise in many minds at least the question if it would not be well to exclude women from a field of activity in which there [sic] presence certainly is unnecessary from any point of view.
New York Times, editorial, 1921.
Had I been a man I might have explored the Poles or climbed Mount Everest, but as it was my spirit found outlet in the air. . . .
Amy Johnson, Essay in 'Myself When Young,' Margot Asquith, 1938.
So I accept these awards on behalf of the cake bakers and all of those other women who can do some things quite as important, if not more important, than flying, as well as in the name of women flying today.
Please know I am quite aware of the hazards. I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail their failure must be but a challenge to others.
Amelia Earhart, in her last letter to her husband, 1937.
No it was not the novelty, and it was not the danger and the adventure (although these had their charm). It was certainly not a passing whim (if it had been the hard work would have dispelled it in a very short time!). I think there were three chief reasons for my choice of career: First, a real love for, and interest in aviation Secondly, a determination to earn my own money and to make my career a paying proposition. Thirdly, a conviction that aviation was a profession of the future and therefore had room to welcome its new followers.
Pauline Gower (1910-1947)
There is a decided prejudice on the part of the general public against being piloted by a woman, and as great an aversion, partially because of this, by executives of those companies whose activities require employing pilots.
Louise Thaden, (1905-1979) co-founder of the Ninty-Nines.
Too often little attention is paid to individual talent. instead, education goes on dividing people according to their sex, and putting them in little feminine or masculine pigeonholes . . . Girls are shielded and sometimes helped so much that they lose initiative and begin to believe the signs 'Girls don't' and 'Girls can't' which mark their paths. . . Consequently, it seems almost necessary to evolve different methods of instruction for them when they later take up the same subjects. For example, those courses which involve mechanical work may have to be explained somewhat differently to girls not because girls are inherently not mechanical, but because normally they have learned little about such things in the course of their education.
Amelia Earhart, 'The Fun of It,' 1932.
Women must pay for everything. . . . They do get more glory than men for comparable feats, But, also, women get more notoriety when they crash.
I didn't know a lot about Amelia before I started [flying]. And as a woman and a pilot, I should have known more.
Linda Finch, prior to starting out on a flight retracing Amelia Earhart last journey, 1997.
Flying is a man's job and its worries are a man's worries.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery, 'Wind, Sand, and Stars,' 1939.
We realized what a spot we were in. We had to deliver the goods, or else there wouldn't ever be another chance for women pilots in any part of the service.
Cornelia Fort, WASP, 1942.
In the early days they said I was trying to make a statement, but I was just trying to make a living.
Captain Bonnie Tiburzi, American Airlines, first woman hired by a major airline.
It is now possible for a flight attendant to get a pilot pregnant.
Richard J. Ferris, President, United Airlines.
Have confidence in yourself and tell yourself 'you can' twice for every time you are told 'you can't.' Confidence that you can succeed is everything. Take every negative remark as a challenge to achieve more and progress to newer heights. You are able to do anything you believe you can do. You might even surprise yourself.
Alinda Wikert, first female owner and CEO of an airline.
If you can't see any opportunities where you are now, don't waste your time criticizing the darkness. . . . Light a candle to find your way out.
Arlene Feldman. Regional Director FAA.
Aviation is still considered a man's world by many. The time to reach young ladies is during their first years of school. Research has shown that although children may change their minds several times about their eventual careers, the possibilities of them selecting a non-traditional role must be nurtured at an early age.
Dr. Peggy Baty, founder of Women In Aviation International
To a psychoanalyst, a woman pilot, particularly a married one with children, must prove an interesting as well as an inexhaustible subject. Torn between two loves, emotionally confused, the desire to fly an incurable disease eating out your life in the slow torture of frustration -- she cannot be a simple, natural personality.
She's decisive, she's aggressive, she's proven she's capable with high-performance jets. We look for people with the capability to think on their feet and to be able to lead a team of people. We look for the best pilots out there, and if they happen to be women, great, but we're just looking for the best.
David Leestma, director of flight crew operations, Johnson Space Center. Regarding Astronaut Susan Still, 1997.
I'm honored to be the first woman to have the opportunity to command the shuttle. I don't really think about that on a day-to-day basis because I really don't need to.
Air Force Col. Eileen Collins, first female Space Shuttle commander, 24 June 1999.
My daughter just thinks that all moms fly the space shuttle
Air Force Col. Eileen Collins, first female Space Shuttle commander, 1999.