The 6 Best Documentaries About Bessie Coleman

Aug 16, 2023 | Best Of, People, Personal Triumphs

The world of documentary films can open up a fascinating insight into the lives of extraordinary people. Bessie Coleman, the first African-American woman to become an international aviator, is one such individual whose life story is particularly compelling and inspiring. With that in mind, we have compiled a list of some of the best documentaries about Bessie Coleman that you can watch to gain a deeper understanding of her life and legacy. From biographical depictions of her incredible achievements to documentaries that explore the racism she faced, these films provide an insightful look into the life and times of Bessie Coleman.


1. Bessie Coleman: The Centennial of a Pioneering Pilot

In the early 1900s, Bessie Coleman achieved an incredible feat – she earned her pilot’s license and became the first African American woman to do so. Faced with substantial racial and gender discrimination, Bessie pushed past barriers to pursue her dreams of flight. She toured the United States as a barnstormer, dazzling audiences with her aerial acrobatic performances. Her courage and ambition inspired many other aspiring aviators, some of whom went on to achieve success in their own right.


2. Bessie Coleman: Civil Avaitor (Official Documentary Film)

Head over to Kool To The Foolas YouTube channel and get ready for a riveting documentary about the life of Bessie Coleman, Civil Aviator! This remarkable feature-length film explores the incredible story of Bessie’s rise to aviation greatness. From her humble beginnings in rural Texas to being the first African American woman pilot in the world, you will be inspired by her courage, passion, and dedication.Follow Bessie as she takes on a journey of self-discovery from the Old West to Europe and beyond. See how she overcame personal struggles, sexism, racism, and more to become an international icon for all aspiring aviators.



3. CAS Presents “The Life & Times of Bessie Coleman” – 3/30/2019

In celebration of Women’s History Month and to recognize the profound contributions of women in the arts, we must pay homage to the First Lady of Flight: Dr. Bessie Coleman. As an African-American aviator, she broke boundaries and defied expectations with her daring stunts and ambition. To commemorate her legacy, here are some amazing documentaries about Dr. Coleman that will leave you inspired and ready to take on the world.


4. Bessie Coleman – American Aviation Hero

This episode of Fun With Aviation is a presentation by Garry, Jim, and John, the museum’s lead docent. They discuss how Bessie Coleman made history as an American aviation hero and Texan trailblazer. It took tremendous courage for her to pursue her goal of flight despite the racism she encountered, but that didn’t stop her from achieving it. And her legacy of inspiration has endured from when she met Eugene Bullard, an American pilot who flew for France during World War II. Together, Bessie Coleman and Eugene Bullard showed the world what could be accomplished with grit and determination. Today their stories still inspire generations to come to take flight.


5. #4 Bessie Coleman – Your Gal Friday (full episode)

Bessie Coleman was a fierce, brave woman who refused to be held back by boundaries. Despite the fact that women, African-Americans and Native Americans were denied learning opportunities in aviation at the time, she persevered and managed to make her dreams come true. With incredibly daring aerial stunts, she kept audiences on their toes. Bessie served as an inspiration to many, including astronauts, and used her airplane as a platform for civil and equal rights. Her courage and determination earned her the well-deserved title of “Queen Bess”. Get ready to be inspired by the incredible story of Bessie Coleman!


6. Bessie Coleman

Coleman was an extraordinary woman who defied her family’s expectations and beliefs to become the first African American and Native American aviatrix. She turned her dreams into a reality, teaching herself to fly in just six months after being denied from flight school due to her race. With dedication and grit, Coleman soared across the sky, becoming one of the most famous pilots of her time. Her story is one of ambition and will-power, inspiring generations to come. Her ambitions and achievements helped pave the way for other women in aviation, which is why today she continues to be remembered as a true pioneer.

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David B