Maritime transportation entrepreneur Thea Foss was born in the hamlet of Eidsberg in Norway in 1857. She immigrated to the United States in the early 1880s. Not long after arriving in her new homeland, she married fellow Norwegian immigrant Andreas Oleson in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (The couple subsequently changed their last name to Fossen to distinguish themselves... Continue Reading →

Canadian aviation pioneer Lorna de Blicquy was born in 1931 near the town of Goderich in the province of Ontario. De Blicquy, who developed a strong interest in aviation after a cousin took her for a flight over the Canadian capital of Ottawa, started to take flying lessons when she was only 14. At the... Continue Reading →

In 1896, a book entitled The Common Sense of Bicycling: Bicycling for Ladies was published by Brentano’s, Inc. The book’s author was New York resident Maria E. Ward, a dedicated bicyclist and active member of the Staten Island Bicycle Club. At a time when bicycling had become a favorite activity throughout the United States, there... Continue Reading →

Ida Lewis, who helped her invalid father Captain Hosea Lewis of the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service operate Lime Rock Lighthouse in Rhode Island’s Newport Harbor, achieved national renown in 1869 when she rescued two soldiers from icy waters.   The soldiers, Sergeant James Adams and Private John McLaughlin, were traveling through Newport Harbor in a... Continue Reading →

Janet Guthrie, who blazed new trails for women as a professional race car driver, was born in Iowa City, Iowa, in 1938. Initially, her transportation-oriented aspirations were focused on airborne travel. Guthrie earned a pilot’s license when she was only 17. After graduating from the University of Michigan, she worked for several years as a... Continue Reading →

African-American motorcycle pioneer Bessie Stringfield was born sometime around 1911 in Kingston, Jamaica. (She was originally called Betsy Leonora Ellis, but she eventually became known as “Bessie” instead of “Betsy”; “Stringfield” was the last name of her third husband.) While born on foreign soil, she became a U.S. citizen after immigrating at a young age to Boston,... Continue Reading →

February 19, 1866 Mary Anderson, a multifaceted entrepreneur who made a major contribution to transportation by inventing the first practical windshield wiper, was born in Greene County, Alabama. Anderson was inspired to create her version of a windshield wiper during a trip to New York City in the winter of 1902. While traveling on one... Continue Reading →

January 9, 1996 At the age of 71, aviation pioneer Berta Zerón de García – with more than 10,000 flight hours to her credit – took to the skies as a pilot for the last time. The airplane that she flew for her final trip was a Cessna 206. Born in the city of Pachuca in... Continue Reading →

September 26, 1944 With the United States still fighting the Axis powers during World War II, the U.S. Navy cargo ship USS Beltrami was launched. Beltrami, which had been named after a county in northwestern Minnesota, was built by the Kaiser Shipbuilding Company at its shipyards in Richmond, California. The launch of Beltrami at Richmond... Continue Reading →

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