Women Explore Space 1963: First woman in Space. Vladimirovna Tereshkova, a Russian cosmonaut, became the first woman in space. She orbited the Earth 48 times in her space capsule the Sea Gull, in June 1963. 1960's: NASA picks 13 female astronauts, called the Mercury 13, who passed the same tests as the all-male Mercury 7. The Mercury 13 were never assigned to space flights. 1982: Second woman in space. USSR cosmonaut Yevgenyevna Savitskaya flies to the Russian space station Sayut 7, in August, 1982. 1983: First American woman in space. Dr. Sally Ride flies on the 7th Space Shuttle Mission on June 18, 1983. 1984: First woman to make a spacewalk. USSR cosmonaut Svetlana Yevgenyevna Savitskaya walks in space. 1984: Second American woman in space. Dr. Judith Resnick flew the shuttle Discovery in August, 1984. 1984: First American woman to take a spacewalk - Dr Kathryn Sullivan 1984: First women together in space - Kathryn Sullivan and Sally Ride flew together in the shuttle Challenger in October 1984. 1984: First mother in space - Dr. Anna Lee Tingle Fisher, M.D., flew in shuttle Discovery in November 1984. 1986: First women to die in space flight. Dr. Judith Resnick and Mrs. Christa McAuliffe die when the space shuttle Challenger exploded on lift-off, January 28, 1986. Mrs. McAuliffe was selected from 11,000 profesional educator applicants, would have been the first teacher in space. 1992: First black woman in space - U.S. astronaut Dr Mae Jemison. 1995: First woman to pilot a space shuttle - U.S. astronaut Eileen Collins. 1996: Space endurance record for women and overall U.S. space endurance record - U.S. astronaut Dr Shannon Lucid in six months aboard the Russian space station Mir. She was the first American to take a spacewalk at Mir. 1999: First woman space shuttle commander - U.S. astronaut Eileen Collins in the shuttle mission which launched the Chandra X-ray Observatory. 2001: First woman crew member of the International Space Station - U.S. astronaut Susan Jane Helms -- stayed 165 days in space.