The Mercury 13: The True Story of Thirteen Women and the

10 thoughts on “The Mercury 13: The True Story of Thirteen Women and the Dream of Space Flight

  1. J.M. Hushour J.M. Hushour says:

    Dicks in tin cans was how one wag described the early decades of NASA Okay I just made that up But have you ever wondered why there wasn't a female American astronaut until Sally Ride's ride in 1983 a full twenty years after the Soviets sent up an amateur parachutist with no flight experience whatsoever?Was it because American women were sorely lacking in experience too? No There were tons of badass women flying around all over the placeWas it because they just weren't up to the training physically? No The women discussed here all passed with some exceedinglet's write that a little biggerEXCEEDING their dick having counterpartsTrouble was NASA would conveniently only take test pilots and women because America is actually not as perfect as you think it is couldn't be test pilots Well there was one And she's the villain of this amazing storyThe book centers on Jerrie Cobb aviator and badass extraordinaire and the tests she and other female pilots did in New Mexico to prove they were up for being trained as astronauts too despite their lack of dicks Interesting sidenote the phrase bag of dicks originated with an episode in which the Mercury 13 stormed NASA headuarters slinging potato sacks full of sausages at the glass doors Okay I made that up tooThe story doesn't end well see above and we all know it But it's great to read about how close they came and how they launched the drive that eventually led to women going into space There is villainy too in the form of other famed aviator Jackie Cochrane who perhaps out of sheer jealousy scuttled the whole enterprise because she wasn't consultedWhateverWhy this isn't a movie or miniseries is beyond me

  2. Aletha Aletha says:

    Probably the most heart breaking and depressing book I have ever read I was either in tears totally depressed frustrated or enraged every chapter That being said I think it's a must read People who advocated for women to have the same opportunities as men should not be forgotten I had no idea about the Mercury 13 before I read this book There were so many amazing women to read about The emotional distress was worth it

  3. Sara Sara says:

    Infuriating And sadly no surprise that the nail in the program’s coffin was a woman expert at undermining other women while promoting herself to men A scene that repeats itself on scales large and small Also f#ck you von Braun

  4. Peter Tillman Peter Tillman says:

    The book is awkwardly written and overlong but makes its point women were fine aviators from the start were the euals if not superior to the men NASA picked for the first astronauts and were pushed back by plain blatant sexism 3 starsThere was going on than this the US was feeling the pressure of being #2 in the space race what with Sputnik lofted into orbit by a repurposed ICBM launcher and Yuri Gagarin orbiting the Earth a few years later So expedience led the new NASA to pick experienced military test pilots as the first astronauts and that was a defensible choice given the politics of the time But they didn't need to be such dicks about it or take 20 years to send the first American woman Sally Ride into spaceAnd here’s Wernher von Braun on women in space “We’re reserving 110 pounds of payload for recreational euipment”A memorable moment The Mercury 7 watching an Atlas launch their ride to be It blows up A sobering moment I read this at the recommendation of the Mary Robinette Kowal whose new novel The Calculating Stars opens with the destruction of Washington DC by a giant meteor circa 1963 Let's hope Wernher von Braun was in town Here she is really should read her comments

  5. Lizabeth Tucker Lizabeth Tucker says:

    Back when the American Space Program was just beginning a few farsighted men began testing women pilots for possible astronaut positions One of the first chosen for testing was Jerrie Cobb an Oklahoman who held various world records as a pilot Other women who made the initial cut includedJan Marion Dietrich identical twins from CaliforniaMary Wallace Wally Funk the baby at 22 from TaosBernice B Steadman flight operation owner from MichiganJean Hixson Air Forces Reserves officer from Akron OhioMyrtle Cagle Georgia flight instructorSarah Gorelick engineer in Kansas CityRhea Hurrle executive pilot from HoustonIrene Leverton forest service pilot from ChicagoGene Nora Stumbough University of Oklahoma aviation instructorGeraldine Jerri Sloan Dallas air race competitorJane Janey Hart US Senator's wife from MichiganUnfortunately these progressive men and adventurous women were up against a cultural and military mindset that not only couldn't but wouldn't entertain the idea that women should go into space In addition aviation pioneer Jackie Cochran was actively trying to stop Cobb from being successful either as a potential astronaut or as unofficial spokeswoman for the groupAlthough the House agreed to hold hearings regarding the possible discrimation of women in the Program they were a joke With one member disliked by his fellow politicians a newbie woman who was only there to fill her deceased husband's spot and others who still didn't understand how women could possibly do the job without help there wasn't a real effort to do than try and save face with the world The comments from those in a position of power within the program ranged from condescending to insulting to vulgar Von Braun supposedly uoted another high ranking scientist when he referred to women as recreational euipment NASA itself over the years tried to deny their very existence It was almost 20 years later that the first American woman Sally Ride went into space Longer until a woman Eileen Collins was the pilot of the shuttle Even today some still uestion a woman's fitness in holding such an important positionAs a child of the program whose father worked from pre Mercury to Apollo 12 I can remember rumors of women being tested for the position of astronaut but that was all it was rumors The newspapers of my area didn't carry much about this women so I was surprised and astounded by what this book revealed I had met some of the people discussed in this book and frankly wasn't too surprised at their attitudes I might have been very young but I was a space supporter who had a strong interest in science I shot my own rockets off with a group of boys who also looked to the stars During the various visits to Cape Canaveral later called Kennedy Space Center during employee days as well as the infamous Cape parties I watched and listened to the men who spoke of their jobs Men The few women I met who worked at the Cape were secretaries and clerks I never actually met one of the few women engineers They were rarely invited to the parties that these men would have every few monthsI found this book interesting both from an insider and outsider viewpoint If you want to know about what it was like for the women who aspired to the stars try this book as a start Then go on to the Notes section and jot down the names of the various biographies and autobiographies of these remarkable women

  6. Catherine Edmundson Catherine Edmundson says:

    Amazing story about amazing trailblazing womenMakes me somewhat ashamed for how little I pushed myself throughout my working life I could have done to make the working world a better place However this book did inspire me to figure out how to better use my retirement time to make of a positive impact on the lives of others

  7. Alison Alison says:

    When the Soviets launched Valentina Tereshkova into space in 1963 Celebrated writer Clare Boothe Luce wrote a scathing article in Life magazine reminding readers that a year earlier thirteen American women had asked Congress to send an American woman into space Where are those thirteen women now? Luce asked 'The US Team Is Still Warming Up the Bench' the Life headline answered Luce called the missed opportunity a costly Cold War blunder and excoriated American men for their sexist views of women And the women warmed the bench for another 20 years until Sally Ride finally went up in 1983 This book outlines the forgotten story of how 13 women passed similar tests that the first astronauts went through Mercury 7 readying for a chance to be among the first to explore space Some scientists hypothesized that women might be even suitable for space exploration for various reasons weight size ability to function in isolated environments and perform repetitive tasks were some factors and they wanted to gather data on women and get them into space but most would not even consider the prospectcertainly not NASA the Presidential administration Congress nor the military due to systematic discrimination and blatant sexism These women though were trailblazers and their story should be toldHere's another favorite uote included in the book This was written from one sister to another who were both asked to be test volunteersYour hesitating to go to Lovelace the scientist in charge of the testing absolutely shocks me she declared Jan we are poised on the edge of the most exciting and important adventure man has ever known Most must watch A few are privileged to record Only a handful may participate and feel above all others attuned with their time To take part in this adventure no matter how small I consider the most important thing we have ever done To be ASKED to participate the greatest honor To accept an absolute duty So go Jan go And take your part even as a statistic in man's great adventure And it was MAN'S great adventure for many long years

  8. Carrie Carrie says:

    Discrimination has nothing to do with chivalry Ruth Nichols pilot contemporary and friendly rival of Amelia Earhart

  9. Rachel Rachel says:

    I want to thank the Mercury 13 for proving that women are capable and can do anything they put their minds to do

  10. Lauren Stoolfire Lauren Stoolfire says:

    Depressing and absolutely infuriating but a must read if you're interested in the history of women in space NASA and aviation You know this doesn't end well but it shows just how strong these badass ladies of the Mercury 13 were and how they helped pave the way for the Sally Ride and all women involved in the space program today

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The Mercury 13: The True Story of Thirteen Women and the Dream of Space Flight ➶ [Read] ➲ The Mercury 13: The True Story of Thirteen Women and the Dream of Space Flight By Martha Ackmann ➾ – For readers of  The Astronaut Wives Club The Mercury 13 reveals the little known true story of the remarkable women who trained for NASA space flightIn 1961 just as NASA launched its first man int For readers of  The Astronaut Wives Club 13: The ePUB ☆ The Mercury  reveals the little known true story of the remarkable women who trained for NASA space flightIn just as NASA launched its first man into space a group of women underwent secret testing in the hopes of becoming America’s first female astronauts They passed the same battery of tests at the legendary Lovelace Foundation as did the Mercury astronauts but they were summarily dismissed by the boys’ club at NASA and on Capitol Hill The USSR sent its first woman into space The Mercury ePUB ´ in ; the United States did not follow suit for another twenty years For the first time Martha Ackmann tells the story of the dramatic events surrounding these thirteen remarkable women all crackerjack pilots and patriots who sometimes sacrificed jobs and marriages for a chance to participate in America’s space race against the Soviet Union In addition to talking extensively to these women Ackmann interviewed Chuck Yeager John Glenn Scott Carpenter and others at NASA and in the White House with firsthand knowledge of the program and includes here never before Mercury 13: The PDF/EPUB ã seen photographs of the Mercury passing their Lovelace tests Despite the crushing disappointment of watching their dreams being derailed the Mercury went on to extraordinary achievement in their lives Jerrie Cobb who began flying when she was so small she had to sit on pillows to see out of the cockpit dedicated her life to flying solo missions to the rain forest; Wally Funk who Mercury 13: The True Story PDF/EPUB ² talked her way into the Lovelace trials went on to become one of the first female FAA investigators; Janey Hart mother of eight and Mercury 13: The True Story PDF/EPUB ² at age forty the oldest astronaut candidate had the political savvy to steer the women through congressional hearings and later helped found the National Organization for Women A provocative tribute to these extraordinary women The Mercury is an unforgettable story of determination resilience and inextinguishable hope From the Hardcover edition.

  • Paperback
  • 280 pages
  • The Mercury 13: The True Story of Thirteen Women and the Dream of Space Flight
  • Martha Ackmann
  • English
  • 12 May 2016
  • 9780375758935

About the Author: Martha Ackmann

Martha Ackmann author of These Fevered Days 13: The ePUB ☆ Curveball and The Mercury writes about women who have changed America The recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship Ackmann taught a popular seminar on Dickinson at Mount Holyoke College and lives in western Massachusetts.