Ruth Nichols Speeds Ahead

April 13, 1931 Ruth Nichols set a women’s speed record of 610.69 miles per hour in her Lockheed Vega. She is the only woman who hold simultaneous records for speed, altitude, and distance. The propeller from Nichols’ plane is on display at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. Her hopes to be the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic were dashed when her plane crashed in New Brunswick and she was severely injured. She went on to found ReliefWings, a humanitarian air service, and to fly for UNICEF, directing their Save The Children fund.