Museum Orientation Lectures

The Navy's Black Astronauts


The Navy's Black Admirals     NASA's Black Astronauts       Blacks in Aviation


The "Black Wings" exhibit at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum in Washington, DC.

This exhibit profiles the lives of the nation's first black pilots and today's astronauts including General Charlie Bolden and Dr. Mae Jemison.

Black Wings Exhibit photo

"The content of the exhibition is based on the book of the same title by National Air and Space Museum curator, Von Hardesty. The show covers significant figures, events, and themes associated with African Americans in aviation and aerospace history. It documents the struggles of those individuals who were systematically barred from the ranks of military and civil aviation, and highlight the parallels between the struggles of these aviation pioneers and those of the civil rights movement. Among other topics, the exhibition explores black aviation firsts, barnstormers, aerobatics, long distance flights, the Tuskegee Airmen, integration of the U.S. Armed Services, Vietnam and Korean conflicts, commercial aviation, and the involvement of African Americans in the space program." Content excerpt from the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.


The "Space Shuttle Discovery" exhibit at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum, Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center near Dulles Airport in Virgina.

Discovery has earned a place of honor in the collection of national treasures preserved by the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. The longest-serving orbiter, Discovery flew 39 times from 1984 through 2011 – more missions than any of its sister ships – spending altogether 365 days in space. Discovery also flew every type of mission during the space shuttle era and has a record of distinctions. Discovery well represents the full scope of human spaceflight in the period 1981-2011. Content excerpt from the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum Website.

Space Shuttle Discovery


The Navy’s Black Admirals
NASA’s Black Astronauts
Blacks in Aviation


Commander Jim Jackson U.S. Navy (Ret.) 1103 Riverboat Ct., Annapolis, MD 21409 410.279.5853