Born in Milan into a wealthy bourgeois family, Rosina Ferrario (1888 – 1959) showed an early interest in sports, and especially mountain climbing. She learned to drive a car, and pedaled to her flying lessons on a bicycle. She got her licence on the 3rd of January 1913 and became the first Italian woman to be licensed.
During World War I, she attempted to organize a ‘Women Aviators Volunteer Squadron” to retrieve wounded soldiers from the front by air, but the idea was summarily rejected by the Italian High Command, which could not conceive placing women so close to the shooting. She was therefore obliged to restrict her activities to organizing and participating in flying clubs and did much to encourage other women to pursue aviation.