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N.H.'s Bernice Blake: A Local Trailblazer for Women in Aviation

Saturday, March 9 at 11 a.m.

Celebrating 90 years since she became the Granite State's first licensed female pilot

Her father started Blake's Restaurants in Manchester, which are still going strong. But growing up in the 1920s, daughter Bernice Blake wasn't eager to enter the food business. An adventurous spirit, she instead took flying lessons at then-new Manchester Airport --- and in 1929 became the state's first licensed female pilot!

Blake would go on be a founding member of the Ninety-Nines, the national advocacy group for women in aviation. She combined aviation with her love of photography, for many years taking aerial photos for architects, developers, and other clients. Throughout her long life, she devoted considerable energy to good works in her beloved home state of New Hampshire. On the 90th anniversary of Blake receiving her pilot's license, join us as we celebrate Women's Aviation Month with a "Second Saturday" program on Saturday, March 9 honoring her achievements and legacy. Led by local historian Ed Brouder, co-author of "Manchester's Airport: Flying Through Time," Brouder will recount Blake's unique life story and her many contributions to women in aviation. Brouder, a well-known local broadcaster, is currently chairman of the board of the Manchester (N.H.) Historical Society. The program is being presented with help of the Milford (N.H.) Historical Society. More details to come, but the program honoring Bernice Blake and Women's Aviation History month will take place on Saturday, March 9 at 11 a.m at the Aviation Museum of N.H., 27 Navigator Road, Londonderry, N.H. The program is open to the public and free with museum admission. For more information, visit

Bernice Blake Perry died in 1996 at age 91. Her collection of more than 43,000 photo negatives is at the Milford Historical Society. The Aviation Museum has copies of her voluminous career scrapbooks on CD-ROM.

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Mention the Aviation Museum of NH when you book your stay at The Sleep Inn, Londonderry, NH. We are pleased to refer the Sleep Inn as a prerferred hotel. 


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