Matilde Moisant: Second licensed woman pilot Aug. 13, 1912; Early Bird - Past Pres. W.I.A.A.
Matilde E. Moisant (September 13, 1878 – February 5, 1964) was an American pioneer aviator. She was the second woman in the country to get a pilot's license.
Moisant was born in Earl Park, Indiana to Médore Moisant and Joséphine Fortier. Both parents were French Canadians. Her siblings include George Moisant, John Moisant, Annie M. Moisant, Alfred Moisant, Louisa J. Moisant and Eunice Moisant. John and Alfred were also aviators. In 1880 the family was living in Manteno, Illinois and her father was working as a farmer.
Moisant learned to fly at Alfred's Moisant Aviation School on Long Island, New York. In 1911, a few weeks after her friend Harriet Quimby received her pilot's certificate, Matilde Moisant became the second woman pilot certified by the Aero Club of America. She pursued a career in exhibition flying. In September 1911 she flew in the air show at Nassau Boulevard airfield in Garden City, New York and, while competing against Hélène Dutrieu, Moisant broke the women's altitude world record and won the Rodman-Wanamaker trophy by flying to 1,200 feet.
Retirement from flying
Moisant stopped flying on April 14, 1912 in Wichita Falls, Texas when her plane crashed (the same day that the Titanic sank). Less than two months later her friend Harriet Quimby was killed when she fell from her plane. Although Moisant recovered from her injuries, she gave up flying, and moved to the family plantation in San Salvador.
Matilde Moisant died in 1964 in Glendale, California, aged 85, and was interred in the Portal of Folded Wings Shrine to Aviation in Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery, North Hollywood, Los Angeles, California.
1878 Birth in Indiana
1880 Living in Manteno, Kankakee, Illinois
1880 US Census in Manteno, Illinois
1900 US Census in California
1910 Death of John B. Moisant, her brother
1911 Received pilot's certificate
1911 Won Rodman-Wanamaker altitude trophy
1912 Crash in Texas on April 14
1920 Living in Los Angeles, California
1920 US Census in Los Angeles, California
1930 US Census in La Crescenta, California
1964 Death in California
1964 Burial In Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery
Source: Wikipedia 19 June 2012