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Of course we talk about their courtship, marriage and life as a family like we do with a lot of our subjects. And, like a lot of our subjects, young Amelia was a bit of a tomboy and another leader of her baby gang. Oh sure, we tell stories. Lots of stories. First the family had to bounce around a bit. The combination of the two resulted in job losses and steps down the ladder of success.

The family did, eventually and we tell you the whole story reunite, they had a slight financial windfall and Edwin did get his act together.

Amelia got sent off to finishing school in Pennsylvania and Muriel to Toronto. Amelia perked up a bit- she played sports, got good grades, spoke up against injustice…and over Christmas break she visited her sister. While in Toronto she was exposed to soldiers coming back from WWI. She felt led to help out in some manner and wanted to stay, but her mother convinced her to go back to school.

Which she did. For a few months but the pull was too strong and she was soon working as a nurse in a military hospital. It was here where some Royal Canadian Air Force pilots took her to an airfield and she was finally bitten by the flying bug. Here she took the first paying job of her life, saved her money and paid for as many flying lessons, and time in planes as she could.

Celebrating the 90th anniversary of the first national women's air derby

Within a year she was flying her own plane and beginning to set aviation records. She assimilated herself into the aviation subculture in a big way- girl looked gooood! Long pants, high boots, leather coat customized by sleeping in it and sloooowly she began to cut her long tresses to the shorter style that we know- flyer hair.

Listen to the podcast, it will all make sense. Life back on the East coast was rougher than on the West. Finally with money in her pocket again, Amelia was able to take to the skies in her free time.

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In Charles Lindbergh made the first solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic, five years later- Amelia was given the same opportunity as the commander of a plane. Oh sure, she saw herself as a passenger, but she did it and as soon as her feet hit European soil- her life was changed- she was the face of female aviation.


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Nevertheless, she still became an international celebrity as three pilots had died within the year trying to be that first women to fly across the Atlantic. On 24th August , Earhart became the first woman to fly solo across the North American continent and back. In , she became the first woman to pilot an autogyro , a form of aircraft with freely rotating horizontal blades and a propeller.

On April 8, , Amelia Earhart set an altitude record for autogyros of 18, feet. Ninety-Nines: International Organization of Women Pilots was founded on November 2, in New York for mutual support and advancement of women pilots.

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Amelia Earhart was a founding member of Ninety-Nines and she was the one who suggested naming the organization after the 99 licensed women pilots who were its charter members. In , Earhart was elected the first President of the organization and she remained a leading supporter of women pilots through her life. Today, Ninety-Nines has thousands of members from 44 countries. After a flight lasting 14 hours, 56 minutes during which she contended with strong northerly winds, icy conditions and mechanical problems, Earhart landed in a pasture at Culmore, north of Derry, Northern Ireland.

She thus became the first female aviator and the second person to fly solo nonstop across the Atlantic Ocean. She also became the first person to fly the Atlantic twice. She flew 2, On July 7—8, , Earhart broke her previous transcontinental speed record by making the same flight in 17hrs 7min. On March 17, , Earhart flew from Oakland, California to Honolulu, Hawaii in 15 hours and 47 minutes , setting a speed record for east-to-west flight.

In , Earhart also became the first person to fly solo from the Red Sea to Karachi in British India during her doomed circumnavigation of the earth in the course of which she disappeared and was never seen again. Amelia Earhart was a successful writer who wrote best-selling books about her flying experiences. Two books written by her were published during her lifetime: 20 Hrs.

A third book titled Last Flight was complied and published by her husband George Putnam after her disappearance in July It contained journal entries she sent back to US during her world flight attempt. He lit his corncob pipe and resumed his spiel. It was now early August The TIGHAR expedition was set to leave later in the month for a four-week trip, but at the moment, Kammerer lamented, major media outlets were unimpressed, seeing only visions of Geraldo Rivera opening Al Capone's empty vault.

National Geographic lost interest when I couldn't guarantee that we would bring something back. Where's the adventure in that? We may get a network deal this week. We have interest from CBS, but it all may go away.

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She had already achieved celebrity status as the first woman to fly solo across North America and the Atlantic Ocean, and had set the female altitude record at the time of 18, feet. America, in the depths of the Great Depression and in denial about the coming world war, badly needed a diversion and happily followed every detail of her circumnavigation with rapt attention.

Earhart was attempting a feat of admirable strength and derring-do, and when she vanished off the screen before the newsreel ended, her legend only grew—and spawned a cottage industry that is thriving still.

A host of Internet sites are devoted to her saga as well, including her estate's site www. This perpetual buzz eggs on the news media, which keeps the dream alive by covering any blip that appears on the "Where's Amelia? Just last summer, TIGHAR got a flurry of attention—coverage in The Washington Post , an interview on Today —when they announced that "anomalous pixels" in satellite images they had commissioned for their upcoming expedition seemed to indicate that something may be rusting away on that coral reef in the Pacific.


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  • The intrigue, and the Pavlovian reaction it produces in daily-deadline newsrooms, is precisely what Kammerer hopes to turn into a larger triumph. There are incredibly mysterious characters involved, and mysterious events. All this kind of stuff is more dramatic and interesting to me than just a piece of metal. Whether they find the plane or not is really incidental. Everybody wants credit for the damn thing. I don't give a shit—I just want to make money and have a good time. A more forthright exhibition of obsession, hokum, and blunt honesty you could not hope for in a sales pitch.

    But Kammerer has a point: As mysteries go, Amelia Earhart is not a bad investment. The puzzle surrounding her disappearance ranks up there with the Kennedy assassination and the kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby. The one indisputable fact in a goulash of circumstantial findings is that she took off from Lae, New Guinea, at 10 a. The rest is a riddle. Documentation uncovered by TIGHAR reveals that human bones, a woman's shoe, and a sextant box were, in fact, discovered on Nikumaroro in by a British civil servant, with the bones later determined by a doctor on Fiji to belong to a short, stocky male of European descent.

    No one knows where those bones or the sextant box are today. Another popular though flawed theory is that Earhart was captured by the Japanese and later executed as a spy during World War II. Even Star Trek producers chimed in with an episode of the Voyager series in which Amelia is found in cryonic suspension on a distant planet.

    10 Major Accomplishments of Amelia Earhart

    But the two best hypotheses, the ones with the fewest unanswered questions and simplest conclusions, begin with the theory that the Lockheed ran out of gas while Earhart and Noonan frantically searched for their mid-Pacific pit stop. Hypothesis No. No matter which hypothesis serious Amelia-heads subscribe to, looking for her ends up being the relatively easy part. The hard part—Kammerer's part—is making it seem relevant and exciting to everyone else.

    In other words, salable. If TIGHAR were to find the plane, Kammerer says, he would syndicate photos of it being exhumed from its watery grave to every news organization on earth. Of course, finding the plane difficult and then safely recovering it more difficult still is expensive. It's a question of doing what it takes to intelligently pursue a goal. Some people think there is one; some don't. But putting a value on something as esoteric as Earhart is nearly impossible.

    He can sound a tad unhinged when he rants about the lack of vision and bravado he's encountered in TV-land. But when asked why he's even bothered getting involved in this three-ring circus of legend, mystery, and discovery, his tone changes to that of a kid—albeit a very rich kid—showing off the coolest new toy on his block. If kammerer has a polar opposite, it's Ric Gillespie.

    Five-foot-ten with graying blond hair and a beefy build, Gillespie, 54, cuts a swashbuckling figure in the geeky realm of airplane buffs. Since Gillespie has made six trips to Nikumaroro to search for artifacts. So far he has recovered a load of curious stuff, ranging from parts of a woman's size nine-narrow shoe to pieces of Plexiglas that "are consistent with that of Earhart's Lockheed Electra.

    But to put an icon like Earhart to rest, we have to find definitive evidence. We need the Any Idiot Artifact. After various shots of Gillespie pointing at maps of Nikumaroro and indicating hot spots, he displays a satellite photo, taken in April , that shows a rust-colored speck clinging to a reef on the western edge of the island. Gillespie speculates we may be looking at rusting plane parts lodged in coral crevices.