Charles Lindbergh Biography
Want to know Charles Lindbergh's biography? Charles Lindbergh was one of the most famous men of his age. He was a ground breaking adventurer, pilot, and even an inventor. Few men would garner more accolades than Charles Lindbergh while still alive.
Charles Lindbergh was born in Detroit Michigan on Feb. 4, 1902. He was born into a relatively famous family as his father served as a U.S. congressman for Minnesota. As a young man, he became infatuated with the new field of aviation and eventually become a barnstormer who performed stunts at fairs and other gatherings. His formal training in aviation was gained in the U.S. Army's Air Service Reserve. After his service he got a job with the Robertson Aircraft Corp. flying mail between Chicago and St. Louis.
In 1927 Charles Lindbergh became the first person to fly non-stop from New York to Paris. He took off in an airplane, the Spirit of St. Louis, on May 20th 1927, and landed in Paris on May 21st. The 3600 mile flight took 33 1/2 hours. This feat garnered him accolades world wide. He was given the Congressional Medal of Honor and the Distinguished Flying Cross by the U.S. government and a prize of $25,000 called the Orteig Prize put up by a New York hotel owner.
The rest of 1927 was spent on writing a book about his flight called "We", and a successful set of whirlwind world and United States speaking tours. The U.S.A. tour was sponsored by Harry Guggenheim a north shore millionaire. This relationship was to prove very influential in the development of aviation. These tours brought him world wide celebrity, which would last him the rest of his life, and furthered the cause of general aviation. As a result airmail use soared and the public started to see flight as a viable means of transportation.
It was on his tours that he met the daughter of the American ambassador to Mexico, Anne Spencer Morrow. They were married in 1929 and they started their family. The years between 1931 and 1935 were filled with happiness, creativity and great loss for Charles Lindbergh. He invented an "artificial heart" for a French scientist. His invention helped in keeping fluids pumped to organs as they were kept alive outside of the body. He was also blessed during this period with the birth of two sons. But it was short lived happiness, because in what would turn out to be one of the biggest stories worldwide, the kidnapping and murder of one of his sons occurred in March of 1932. Bruno Hauptmann was captured, tried and later executed for the kidnapping in what would be a media circus. Some good did come from this, as Congress passed the "Lindbergh Law". This law made kidnapping, if it crosses state lines, or using the mail to deliver ransom a federal crime.
The controversy Lindbergh would be embroiled in occurred in 1938 when Nazi Germany awarded, and he accepted, Charles Lindbergh a German medal of honor. Great furor erupted over this, including criticism by Franklin D. Roosevelt. When the United States entered WWII however, Lindbergh served as an aviation advisor to the army and navy. Even though he was a civilian he flew over fifty combat missions.
After the war years, Charles Lindbergh withdrew from public life. He served as an advisor to the Air Force and was eventually given the rank of brigadier general in the Air Force. He wrote a book in 1953, The "Spirit of St. Louis", which was an expanded account of his flight. It won the Pulitzer Prize in 1954. Later in life he was very active in conservation movements, especially the conservation of whales. Charles Lindbergh died of cancer on Aug. 26, 1974 in his Hawaiian home. He was buried in cemetery of Palapala Ho'omau Church.