Today in Feminist History: Elinor Smith, The “Flying Flapper of Freeport” (April 24, 1929)

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April 24, 1929: A new flight endurance record for women was set today, as 17-year-old Elinor Smith stayed in the air for an incredible 26 hours, 21 minutes and 32 seconds. A new flight endurance record for women was set today, as 17-year-old Elinor Smith stayed in the air for an incredible 26 hours, 21 minutes and 32 seconds.April 24, 1929: A new flight endurance record for women was set today, as 17-year-old Elinor Smith stayed in the air for an incredible 26 hours, 21 minutes and 32 seconds.

She is the first woman to fly over 24 consecutive hours, eclipsing the old mark set by Louise McPhetridge by four hours and eighteen minutes. Not only did she set the record, she flew the last couple of hours with a faulty stabilizer control. 

Despite her age, she has a good deal of flying experience. She took her first plane ride at age six, and began taking flying lessons at ten,…

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