First Women to Solo the Atlantic Ocean
Amelia Mary Earhart Putnam’s career as a world-famous flier spanned only a few years. She achieved instant acclaim as the first woman to fly the Atlantic in 1928: she disappeared while on the last leg of a round-the-world flight in 1937. Still her fame has endured in a remarkable fashion for more than sixty years, assuring her a permanent place in history. Books, magazine articles, films, televised biographies, symposia, memorials, schools and other public buildings named in her honor˜all testify to the lasting impression that she made as one who truly embodied the spirit of adventure and the desire to advance human knowledge.
In the words of her sister, Muriel Earhart Morrissey, “Amelia was a person who wanted things accomplished. She was interested in so many things — flying, horses, poetry, sports, reading — almost everything. . . She was filled with curiosity and a sense of adventure. . .”
Amelia received her first aviation instruction from another woman, Neta Snook Southern, on January 2, 1921. She worked hard earning money to purchase her first airplane, a Kinner Airster on her 24th birthday.
In 1928, Amelia received a great deal of attention as the first woman to fly the Atlantic. She didn‚t feel she deserved this honor because she never actually flew the plane. On May 20-21, 1932, Amelia flew solo across the Atlantic. Three years later she took pride in becoming the first person, man or woman, to fly from Hawaii to the mainland. Amelia‚s numerous records speak for themselves.
Amelia Earhart displayed some very important values, many of which we see in exceptional role models today. Among these were loyalty, sincerity, moral character, honesty, and ethics. She was always for helping the underdog. She was also persistent and never gave up on a goal.
More than a half-century after Amelia Earhart‚s final flight, people are still trying to explain the mystery. Read about Amelia‚s preparation, flight and the circumstances surrounding her 1937 disappearance, in the book, Amelia, My Courageous Sister, by Muriel Earhart Morrissey and aviation historian, Carol L. Osborne, or visit web site www.womeninaviation.com to read selected excerpts.