Black Wings: Courageous Stories of African Americans in Aviation and Space History

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9780061261381: Black Wings: Courageous Stories of African Americans in Aviation and Space History

Colin Powell once observed that "a dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work." This sentiment is mirrored dramatically in the story of African Americans in aerospace history.

The invention of the airplane in the first decade of the twentieth century sparked a revolution in modern technology. Aviation in the popular mind became associated with adventure and heroism. For African Americans, however, this new realm of human flight remained off-limits, a consequence of racial discrimination. Many African Americans displayed a keen interest in the new air age, but found themselves routinely barred from gaining training as pilots or mechanics. Beginning in the 1920s, a small and widely scattered group of black air enthusiasts challenged this prevailing pattern of racial discrimination. With no small amount of effort—and against formidable odds—they gained their pilot licenses and acquired the technical skills to become aircraft mechanics.

Over the course of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first, African Americans have expanded their participation in both military and civilian aviation and space flight, from the early pioneers and barnstormers through the Tuskegee airmen to Shuttle astronauts.

Featuring approximately two hundred historic and contemporary photographs and a lively narrative that spans eight decades of U.S. history, Black Wings offers a compelling overview of this extraordinary and inspiring saga.

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About the Author:

Von Hardesty is currently a curator in the Division of Aeronautics at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. He has written a number of books, including Red Phoenix: The Rise of Soviet Air Power, 1941–1945; Lindbergh: Flight's Enigmatic Hero; Air Force One: The Aircraft that Shaped the Modern Presidency; Great Aviators and Epic Flights; and Epic Rivalry: The Inside Story of the Soviet and American Space Race. He lives in the metropolitan D.C. area.

From School Library Journal:

Adult/High School—Black Wings is a well-written, copiously illustrated book with sharp photographs (mainly in black and white) and colorful posters of the record of American blacks in aviation—from fabric-winged biplanes to outer space. Readers learn about pioneers like Bessie Coleman, the first black woman with a pilot's license; Eugene Jacques Bullard, the first black American to fly in combat (during World War I, for the French); and C. Alfred Anderson, the first to earn a Commercial Pilot License. About one-third of the book deals with the Tuskegee Airmen. These members of the first black combat flying organizations fought on two fronts during World War II: against the Luftwaffe in the skies over North Africa, Sicily, Italy, and Germany, and against racism at home. Because of their phenomenal success, the units were continued into the postwar period, despite a sharp drawdown that drove the Air Force from 2.4 million people in 1945 to 303,000 two years later. The Airmen's record was a seminal reason for Air Force racial integration—and it was the first service to integrate. The book ends with the space era, highlighting such astronaut heroes as Fred Gregory, Guy Bluford, and Charles Bolden. An inspiring volume.—Alan Gropman, National Defense University, Washington, DC
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2008. Microfilm. Book Condition: New. 257 x 211 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Colin Powell once observed that a dream doesn t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work. This sentiment is mirrored dramatically in the story of African Americans in aerospace history. The invention of the airplane in the first decade of the twentieth century sparked a revolution in modern technology. Aviation in the popular mind became associated with adventure and heroism. For African Americans, however, this new realm of human flight remained off-limits, a consequence of racial discrimination. Many African Americans displayed a keen interest in the new air age, but found themselves routinely barred from gaining training as pilots or mechanics. Beginning in the 1920s, a small and widely scattered group of black air enthusiasts challenged this prevailing pattern of racial discrimination. With no small amount of effort--and against formidable odds--they gained their pilot licenses and acquired the technical skills to become aircraft mechanics. Over the course of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first, African Americans have expanded their participation in both military and civilian aviation and space flight, from the early pioneers and barnstormers through the Tuskegee airmen to Shuttle astronauts. Featuring approximately two hundred historic and contemporary photographs and a lively narrative that spans eight decades of U.S. history, Black Wings offers a compelling overview of this extraordinary and inspiring saga. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780061261381

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2008. Microfilm. Book Condition: New. 257 x 211 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Colin Powell once observed that a dream doesn t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work. This sentiment is mirrored dramatically in the story of African Americans in aerospace history. The invention of the airplane in the first decade of the twentieth century sparked a revolution in modern technology. Aviation in the popular mind became associated with adventure and heroism. For African Americans, however, this new realm of human flight remained off-limits, a consequence of racial discrimination. Many African Americans displayed a keen interest in the new air age, but found themselves routinely barred from gaining training as pilots or mechanics. Beginning in the 1920s, a small and widely scattered group of black air enthusiasts challenged this prevailing pattern of racial discrimination. With no small amount of effort--and against formidable odds--they gained their pilot licenses and acquired the technical skills to become aircraft mechanics. Over the course of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first, African Americans have expanded their participation in both military and civilian aviation and space flight, from the early pioneers and barnstormers through the Tuskegee airmen to Shuttle astronauts. Featuring approximately two hundred historic and contemporary photographs and a lively narrative that spans eight decades of U.S. history, Black Wings offers a compelling overview of this extraordinary and inspiring saga. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780061261381

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2008. Microfilm. Book Condition: New. 257 x 211 mm. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Colin Powell once observed that a dream doesn t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work. This sentiment is mirrored dramatically in the story of African Americans in aerospace history. The invention of the airplane in the first decade of the twentieth century sparked a revolution in modern technology. Aviation in the popular mind became associated with adventure and heroism. For African Americans, however, this new realm of human flight remained off-limits, a consequence of racial discrimination. Many African Americans displayed a keen interest in the new air age, but found themselves routinely barred from gaining training as pilots or mechanics. Beginning in the 1920s, a small and widely scattered group of black air enthusiasts challenged this prevailing pattern of racial discrimination. With no small amount of effort--and against formidable odds--they gained their pilot licenses and acquired the technical skills to become aircraft mechanics. Over the course of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first, African Americans have expanded their participation in both military and civilian aviation and space flight, from the early pioneers and barnstormers through the Tuskegee airmen to Shuttle astronauts. Featuring approximately two hundred historic and contemporary photographs and a lively narrative that spans eight decades of U.S. history, Black Wings offers a compelling overview of this extraordinary and inspiring saga. Bookseller Inventory # BZE9780061261381

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