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How was charles lindbergh important to American history?
How did he make an impact on american history? where would we be without him?
- staisilLv 78 years agoFavorite Answer
Charles Lindbergh II was a pioneering United States aviator famous for piloting the first solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean in 1927.
Lindbergh gained sudden great international fame as the first pilot to fly solo and non-stop across the Atlantic Ocean, flying from Roosevelt Airfield (Nassau County, Long Island), New York City to Paris on May 20-May 21, 1927 in his single-engined airplane The Spirit of St. Louis which had been custom built by Ryan Airlines of San Diego, California. He needed 33.5 hours for the trip. His grandson Erik Lindbergh repeated this trip 75 years later in 2002. Although Lindbergh was the first to fly from New York to Paris nonstop, he was not the first to make a non stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean. That had been done first by Alcock and Brown in 1919 in a twin engined World War 1 bomber.
This accomplishment won him the Orteig Prize of $25,000. A ticker-tape parade was held for him down 5th Avenue in New York City on June 13, 1927. His public stature following this flight was such that he became an important voice on behalf of aviation activities until his death. He served on a variety of national and international boards and committees, including the central committee of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics in the United States. On March 21, 1928 he was presented the Medal of Honor for his historic trans-Atlantic flight.
Lindbergh is recognized in aviation for demonstrating and charting polar air-routes, high altitude flying techniques, and increasing aircraft flying range by decreasing fuel consumption. These innovations are the basis of modern intercontinental air travel.
In Europe during the rise of fascism, Lindbergh traveled to Germany several times at the behest of the U.S. military, where he reported on the Luftwaffe (air force). In 1938, Hermann Göring offered him a German medal of honor, and Lindbergh's acceptance caused an outcry in the United States when Lindbergh's closeness to the Nazis was criticized. Lindbergh declined to return the medal to the Germans because he claimed that to do so would be "an unnecessary insult" to the Nazi leadership. Lindbergh's letters and diaries of the time indicate that he approved of Nazi policies and of Hitler's leadership.
As Nazi Germany began World War II, Lindbergh became a prominent speaker in favor of isolationist and pro-German policies. On January 23, 1941, Lindbergh testified before Congress and recommended that the United States negotiate a neutrality pact with Adolf Hitler. Lindbergh was also major spokesman for America First, and at a rally in Des Moines, Iowa, on September 11, 1941, he accused "the Jewish race" of being behind the drive to have America enter World War II on the side of Allies. In the same speech, Lindbergh clearly communicated that he considers Jewish-Americans to not be patriotic when he says; "we cannot blame them for looking out for what they believe to be their own interests, but we also must look out for ours. We cannot allow the natural passions and prejudices of other people to lead our country to destruction." Although Lindbergh never returned his Nazi medal, he resigned his commission in the U.S. Army Air Corps when President Franklin D. Roosevelt openly questioned his loyalty.
However, after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, he attempted to return to the Army Air Corps, but was denied when several of Roosevelt's cabinet secretaries registered objections. He went on to assist with the war effort by serving as a civilian consultant to aviation companies and the government, as well as flying about 50 combat missions (again as a civilian) in 1944 in the Pacific. His contributions include engine-leaning techniques that Lindbergh showed P-38 Lightning pilots. This improved fuel usage in cruise, and allowed aircraft to latter fly longer range missions such as the one that killed Admiral Yamamoto. He also showed Marine F4U pilots how to take off with twice the bomb load that the aircraft was rated for.
- 8 years ago
Charles Lindbergh, the great aviator who made the first solo nonstop flight across the Atlantic, was hailed by many as a great hero. Lindbergh was an isolationist, happy with U.S. foreign policy during the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression. When President Roosevelt began considering U.S. action as World War II broke out, Lindbergh was the leading figure of the opponents to American involvement. He, like many others, reasoned that Europe's problems were its own, and that U.S. intervention in World War I produced very little of value for the United States. However, with Hitler threatening to destroy Great Britain and the Soviet Union, the opposition weakened. Once America was attacked in Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, isolationists lost the battle to patriotic supporters of President Roosevelt and war.
Still, Lindbergh pioneered an age in which the airplane would be a viable means of commercial and military use. HIs achievements increased the drive, and later the results, that led to commercial flight still used today and military planes that were of great importance during World War II. He provided a rallying point for isolationism, though it soon became a lost cause. He is certainly a figure you should be familiar with in American history, though perhaps not quite the most important.Source(s): U.S. History II
- Anonymous8 years ago
Correction in what the previous poster wrote: Lindbergh DID NOT make the first nonstop flight across the Atlantic. That happened in 1919 by 2 British pilots. Lindbergh did the first solo flight.
- 8 years ago
He was an aviator,inventor, and explorer amongst other things. He flew the first solo transatlantic flight(From Garden City, Long Island N.Y. to Paris, France) I had to add that being a Long Island Girl. :) He had many other achievements which you can find out by using wikipedia or a website www.space.com. Just as a side note, sadly in what was called The Crime Of the Century, his 20 month old son was abducted out of his crib and even though a $50,000 reward was offered for his return, his body was found about a week later in woods nearby their home. ($50,000 in 1932 is the equivalent of approximately $786,000 in 2013)Source(s): Wikipedia and WWW.SPACE.COM