Amelia Earhart has resonated in our society, ever since her death, but she was also a very prominent figure during the Great Depression.
Earhart was a very independent woman, and prided herself on this. Born on July 24th, 1897, from a very young age she embraced a sense of experimentation and physical freedom , which led to her success in woman’s rights later in her life. As a child Earhart described, “It has always seemed to me that boys and girls are educated very differently.” When Earhart got married to George Putnam she was very clear with him that “even though they were to be bound by marriage, she was still an individual woman with her own rights.” She even went as far as to say on her wedding day that she would “not hold [her husband, George Putnam] to any medieval code of faithfulness to me nor shall I consider myself to bound to you similarly.” She also would never take up her Putnam’s name ...view middle of the document...
Things that sound as simple as getting into aviation school were difficult for women during this time period. Even with many of aviation school’s throughout the US it was difficult for women to get in, and they had to pay a large fee, whereas men could get the same education, free of cost. She also found that much of the equipment used to fly was built for men, especially the parachutes, a vital piece of equipment, were nearly impossible for women to use.
At the height of her successful aviation career, Earhart also advocated for female students at Purdue University where she was able to counsel young women on their career choices and give lectures to inspire others with her love of aviation. Earhart also set many records including the women’s speed record of 181 mph in 1929, and an altitude record of 18,451 feet in 1931.
Throughout her career Earhart also gained a lot of recognition from the community. Eleanor Roosevelt praised her saying “She helped the cause of women, by giving them a feeling there was nothing they could not do.” President Herbert Hoover said “You have demonstrated not only your own dauntless courage but also the capacity of women to match the skill of men in carrying through the most difficult feats of high adventure.”
Earhart also started a participated in many successful organizations. The largest of these organizations, which still exists today, is the Ninety-Nines. The Ninety-Nines is a non-profit organization founded in 1929 , which Earhart served as the first president from 1929-1933 . Today the Ninety-Nines spans to over thirty-three countries and has over 5,000 members. Along with the Ninety-Nines she also was affiliated with the National Women’s party, and a life long supporter of the Equal Rights Amendment. She also organized the Syrian Mothers Club , which promoted women’s rights.
Earhart was encouraged by all of her life experiences, whether they are aviation, or just everyday happenings. She wanted to encourage women to succeed, and learn to work with what they have, in order to further women’s rights in the United States.