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Ida Mae Hampton Wassell

Ida Mae Hampton, a young woman from Northfield, New Jersey, received her pilot’s license in 1928 at 18-years-old.

She was the first female pilot to receive her license and fly solo from Bader Field in Atlantic City. In 1929, there were only 117 licensed women pilots in the United States. Hampton joined the Ninety-Nines, a group of female pilots that also included Amelia Earhart.

In 1933, she married William Stanley Wassell, a banker from Philadelphia. She continued flying and during World War II, transported people and documents between Philadelphia and Washington. After the war, Hampton had two children and committed her time to her family. She died in 2009 at age 99 in Hammonton, New Jersey.

Questions to Explore

Why did Hampton pursue a pilot’s license?

What was the Ninety-Nines for? What did they do?

What does Hampton represent for women who want to become pilots?

Additional Resources

Northfield Cultural Committee (Northfield Atlantic County N.J.) and Northfield Historical Society (Northfield Atlantic County N.J.). 2004. Northfield. Charleston SC: Arcadia Publishing. https://www.worldcat.org/title/879611544.