Charles Lindbergh

by Desiree Berry

        Charles Lindbergh was the greatest hero of the 1920s. His name was known by almost everyone. He was called "Lucky Lindy" and " The Lone Eagle." This was because he completed the first solo nonstop fight across the Atlantic Ocean. His famous flight would tragically not be the only time Lingbergh would be in the spot light, however.
        Charles Lindbergh was born in Detroit, Michagen. He grew up on a farm in Little Falls, Minnesota. He attended the University of Wisconsin, but he did not graduate. He left school to follow his interest in flying. Before he left school he was near the top of his class.

        For the next few years he flew mail planes and dreamed of greater things. He decided he wanted to be the first person to fly across the Altantic Ocean. A factor in Lindbergh’s decision to fly across the Atlantic Ocean was a prize of $25.000 offered by a Franco-American philanthropist Raymond B. Orteig of New York City. Lindburgh found financial backers, and a company to built a custom plane for him to do the job. His plane was called the Spirit of St. Louis. He departed from New York and landed in Paris on May 21, 1927. His was the first solo nonstop fight across the Atlantic Ocean. His successful flight would make Lindbergh an icon not only for the nation, but the world.
        After the flight across the Atlantic he married his wife Anne Marrow. Anne would also become famous for her poetry. Another contribution to Lindbergh’s fame was his invention of the artificial heart. Anne and Lindbergh’s first child was Charles Jr. His media nickname was "Little Eagle." Lindbergh believed that all the media attention led to the tragic kidnapping of his son.

Charles Jr. Lindbergh

        Charles Lindbergh Jr. was kidnapped on March 1, 1932. This shocked the world. Charles Jr. was only 20 months old. He was taken from his bedroom. Charles Jr. had a cold and the Lindbergh’s had decided that it would be better to wait until little Charles got over his cold before traveling to Anne’s parents for a visit. If the Lindberghs had decided to go to Anne’s parent’s home the unfortunate kidnapping might not of happened. But it did. When the word of the kidnapping was out, everyone wanted to help find the baby, even the notorious Al Capone. Tragically, even though the Lindbergh’s paid the ransom, the baby’s body was found only a few miles away from the Lindbergh’s home.

Posters like this one failed to save Charles Jr.

        The man who was charged with Charles Jr. kidnapping was a German immigrant name Bruno Richard Hauptmann. Hauptmann entered the home through the nursery window by a homemade ladder. The theory is that the ladder broke when he was escaping the house. Huaptmann and the child fell. The result was the Child’s death from a blow to the head. Lindbergh had given the ransom money to the villain not knowing his son was already dead. Hauptmann was caught with the ransom money, tried, and eventually executed for the crime. This tragedy led the Congress of the United States to pass the "Lindbergh Law." This law makes kidnapping a Federal offense if the victim is taken across a state line, or if the mail service is used for ransom demands.

Bruno Huaptmann

"Gander Academy: Charles Lindbergh," (online) @, 1/5/00

"Two Legends of Aviation," (online) @, 1/5/00

"The Lindbergh Case: The crime of the Century" (online) @, 1/5/00

Picture Credits:

Picture #1 – "Charles Linbergh" from:

Picture #2 – "Charles Lindbergh and Plane" from:

Picture #3 - "Charles Lindbergh Jr." from:

Picture #4 – "Wanted poster " from:

Picture #5 – "Bruno Hauptmann" from: