Happy Birthday, Amelia!
July 19, 2012
What do you think about when you hear the name Amelia Earhart? We usually think that she was a great aviator and that her plane was lost somewhere over the Pacific Ocean.
But Amelia Earhart was much more than that.
Amelia was born on July 24, 1897 in Atchison, Kansas. She learned to fly from another female pilot named Neta Snook in 1921, and went on to set the women’s altitude record the following year.
In 1928, Amelia was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean and also wrote a book titled 20 hrs. 40 min.
Amelia Earhart set the women’s speed record of 181.18 mph in 1930 and married George Putman the following year.
In 1932, she became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean and was voted Outstanding American Woman of the Year.
Amelia Earhart had a lot of "firsts" in 1935. She was the first person to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean; the first person to fly solo from Los Angeles to Mexico City; and the first woman to compete in the National Air Races in Cleveland, Ohio.
In 1937, Amelia began her first attempt at an around-the-world flight in Oakland, California, and set a record for east-west (Oakland to Hawaii) travel in 15 hours, 47 minutes. Her second attempt began in Miami, and her plane disappeared somewhere near the Howland Island in the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937.
In honor of the 75th anniversary of her disappearance, a group called The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) is starting a search for the missing plane around the island of Nikumaroro and the western Pacific Ocean. The TIGHAR group will use advanced technology to search underwater for signs of man-made objects. You can follow along with their progress here.
The St. Joseph News-Press paper reported that visitors have been flocking to Atchison, Kansas where there is the birthplace museum of Amelia Earhart.
Maybe after 75 years, we will be able to put all the theories of her disappearance to rest.
Happy Birthday, Amelia Earhart!
North Oak Branch