Charles Lindbergh Flies Solo Across the Atlantic Ocean on May 21, 1927

On May 21, 1927, Charles Augustus Lindbergh landed at Le
Bourget Air Field in Paris, France after a grueling 33.5 hour solo journey
across the Atlantic Ocean. Lindbergh took off in his single engine airplane,
the Spirit of Saint Louis, at Roosevelt Field in New York. Although his
feat was impressive, it wasn’t the first Trans-Atlantic flight. In 1919 a
hydroplane crossed the expanse via Newfoundland, the Azores Islands, and
Lisbon. However, this was the first non-stop flight across the ocean.

Lindberg was rewarded greatly, a sum of $25,000. Raymond
Orteig had offered prize money to the first aviator to make the flight
non-stop. When several years passed with no aviators attempting the flight, the
offer was made again. Lindbergh went to the St. Louis Chamber of Commerce and
negotiated a $15,000 budget to attempt the flight. Ryan Airlines helped
Lindberg build a plane to his specifications. There was no navigator or
co-pilot, no forward vision due to the fuel tank, no parachute, no lights, and
no equipment. All of this was left out in an attempt to make the plane as light
as possible.

On the night of May 19, Lindbergh wasn’t able to sleep. But
in the morning, the skies were perfect and he lifted off at 7:52 AM After four
hours of flying north, he felt tired and came dangerously close to crashing in
an attempt to spur himself awake. After twenty-four hours he finally saw land.
He was passing over Ireland and by 3 PM he was nearing France. As he closed in
on Paris, around 8 PM the skies were getting darker. Finally, at around 10 PM
he landed on the runway to the excitement of the large crowd that had gathered.

Stack’s Bowers Galleries has sold many medals
that commemorate Lindbergh’s accomplishments. On October 20, 2010 we sold a Society of Medalists
1931 bronze gold-plated medal
depicting winds, storms, and death on the
front, and Lindbergh on the back. Later, in 2012, we sold one of the 250
silver versions
struck of the same design. In the January 2013 NYINC sale,
we sold a gold Samoa 100
, a Proof from a mintage of 1,000
pieces. Finally, in our 2013 Americana sale, we offered a nearly Mint State art deco designed bronze medal
from 1927
commemorating the famous flight.​

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