The Journal of San Diego History
SAN DIEGO HISTORICAL SOCIETY QUARTERLY
Summer 1978, Volume 24, Number 3
Thomas L. Scharf, Managing Editor
By Dick Carlson
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In an age when women were encouraged to do no more than sit around and look pretty, a chapter of aviation history was being written in San Diego—and by women.
Ruth Alexander (above) was the holder of the world’s altitude record for light power planes. She was also the first female glider instructor in the country.
In 1930 the “Anne Lindbergh Gliders” were formed by Charles Lindbergh’s famous wife (seen to the right, above, in white coveralls striding behind her husband and a companion). That was the year Mrs. Lindbergh received her glider license for a breath-taking flight from Mount Soledad.
San Diego’s own “Tiny” Broadwick (right, center), a pioneer balloonist, made the first recorded parachute jump from an airplane on June 20, 1913. Tiny’s leap of faith caused her to become the United States’ first parachute demonstrator. She made hundreds of jumps, always without a reserve chute.