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On This Day… The First Solo Flight Across The Atlantic

Written by: George Chittenden : 17 May 2019

It was on this day, 21st May back in 1927 when Charles Lindbergh became the first person to fly across the Atlantic solo, in his monoplane, The Spirit of St. Louis. Only a year earlier whilst working as a mail pilot he’d heard of the $25,000 prize money for the first flight between New York and Paris. Confident that he could make the flight he sought backing from a group of businessmen from St. Louis, and then he supervised the construction of his specially designed plane. He took off from a dirt runway at Roosevelt Field, Long Island, and barely cleared the telephone wires at the field's edge as his plane was so heavy with fuel. Lindbergh had made preparations for the flight too and had packed four sandwiches and two canteens of water.

When he finally spotted the coast of France, he followed the Seine River to Paris and landed at Le Bourget Field. A huge crowd of 100,000 rushed the plane and the world record holding pilot was seriously concerned that his propeller would kill someone. Thankfully ‘The Spirit of St. Louis’ came to a stop without the loss of life. Charles Lindbergh had crossed the Atlantic, a distance of 3,500 miles in 33.5 hours. He became an instant star and was given a huge parade in New York as well as an award from the President, the Distinguished Flying Cross.

Are you already curious to discover what happened tomorrow? Have a great day.

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