First Solo Transatlantic Flight

Maggie ONeal

Background

In 1919 Raymond Orteig offered a prize of 25,000 dollars to any pilot who could fly nonstop from New York to Paris. In 1927, nine men had attempted, four of them had been killed, three had been seriously injured, and two had gone missing entirely. It still had not been done.

The Beginning

Charles Lindbergh was born just a year before the Wright Brothers historic flight in 1903, and trained at the US Army flying school in 1924 graduating at the top of his class. At 25, Lindbergh convinced nine businessmen to sponsor his flight across the Atlantic, where he used their funding to create a plane named The Spirit of St. Louis in honor of his sponsors. The Spirit of St. Louis was a single engine plane which differed from all the other mufti-engined aircraft that had previously attempted. In order to store more gasoline, Lindbergh got rid of the radio, gas gauges, navigation lights, and the parachute, making reporters call him "the flying fool."

The Flight

When the plane took off from a field in New York, it barely cleared the telephone wires. The flight took a total of 33 and a half hours from take off in New York to landing in Paris. When Lindbergh took off, only 500 people were watching, when he landed however, almost 100,000 people were there.

After The Journey

After Lindbergh's notorious flight, he went on several tours and received many metals. He married Anne Morrow, whom he taught how to fly, and they flew around the world together.