Happy National Aviation Day! Established in 1939 by Franklin Roosevelt, this holiday is all about the developments made in everything airplanes. But what are airplanes without a pilot or two? With that, we at Bookstr have gathered a list of biographies on the world’s most known aviators to ever fly the sky. So put your gloves and goggles on because here we go!
Amelia Earhart by Doris L. Rich
She set record after record—among them, the first trans-Atlantic solo flight by a woman, a flight that launched Earhart on a double career as a fighter for women’s rights and a tireless crusader for commercial air travel. Doris L. Rich’s exhaustively researched biography downplays the “What Happened to Amelia Earhart?” myth by disclosing who Amelia Earhart really was: a woman of three centuries, born in the nineteenth, pioneering in the twentieth, and advocating ideals and dreams relevant to the twenty-first.
Howard Hughes: His Life and Madness by Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele
The life that inspired the major motion picture The Aviator, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and directed by Martin Scorsese. Howard Hughes has always fascinated the public with his mixture of secrecy, dashing lifestyle, and reclusiveness. This is the book that breaks through the image to get at the man.
The Life of Bessie Coleman by Connie Plantz
From an early age, Bessie Coleman dreamed of flying, but racial bigotry and gender bias threatened to keep her grounded. Denied entrance to flight training school in the United States, Coleman went to Europe. She returned, triumphant, with a pilot’s license and hopes of opening a flight school for African Americans. Raising funds as a stunt pilot, “Brave Bessie” thrilled her audiences with aerial tricks. Coleman’s life ended in a tragic accident, but not before her dream of flying made aviation history.
The Wright Brothers: The Dramatic Story-Behind-the-Story by David McCullough
In this thrilling book, historian David McCullough draws on the immense riches of the Wright Papers—including private diaries, notebooks, scrapbooks, and more than a thousand letters from private family correspondence—to tell the human side of the Wright Brothers’ story. Little-known contributions from their sister Katharine help set this story apart because, without her, things may have gone very differently.
Jackie Cochran: An Autobiography by Jacqueline Cochran
This book traces Cochran’s life from her childhood in poverty to her experiences creating a cosmetic empire. It follows her becoming a pilot and setting airspeed records to winning races and becoming involved in politics and government.