I Wanna Fly Away!
The Maundy Morning Newsletter - This Week in History May 16 - May 22.
Happy Monday, friends. Thanks for beginning your week by reading Okay History.
Welcome new subscribers!
Another thank you to everyone who joined the discussion on the inaugural Friday Discussion on age caps for elected officials. Aunt Joan, the official octogenarian of the subscriber group, sent me an email and also agreed with the idea – that we need an age cap. If you disagree, please jump in and be the only person who disagrees with Aunt Joan.
Over the weekend, Anonymous told me that she thought the idea overall was fantastic. I look forward to future discussions. If you have any topics you would like me to cover, just shoot me an email at email@example.com.
Okay. This week we celebrate flying, but back in the day when you didn't have to worry about putting on a mask or wondering why you couldn't buy a drink anymore. We are going all the way back to when flying usually meant crashing, and crashing traditionally meant death.
First up is Charles Lindberg, who began the first transcontinental flight on May 20, 1927, when he took off from Long Island, New York, and landed in Paris, France, a mere 33 hours later. He accomplished this in a single-engine, single-person plane called the Spirit of St. Louis.
Lindberg was a little-known Air Mail delivery guy who had to have investors mostly bankroll his plan for the flight, which netted him $25,000 in prize money after being successful.
A few years later, Richard Hauptmann was caught, tried, and convicted of kidnapping and murdering Lindberg's baby and extorting him. I need to read more about this Crime of the Century. Lindberg did a bunch of other stuff and died at 72.
Next, we have another famous American Aviator, Amelia Earhart, who became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic when she took off from Newfoundland, which I guess is in Canada, and landed in County Derry, which I know is in Northern Ireland, on May 20, 1932.
Earhart is by far the more exciting of the two; she endorsed Lucky Strikes, founded the Ninety-Nines, an organization that promotes female pilots, and sounds like it belongs in a Tarantino movie and other cool stuff.
Her death remains a mystery. While flying over the Pacific, Earhart and her co-pilot disappeared. They were on their way to Hawaii and most likely crashed and sank. There is a conspiracy that the Japanese captured them, but May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and we will not go there. Also, we need to write more about Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
Okay, let's highlight what else happened this week. Here's what we got:
The Bath School Disaster took place on May 18, 1927. Andrew Kehoe, a disgruntled former school board treasurer in Bath Township, Michigan, murdered his family, then blew up school children. Forty-five people, including Kehoe, died. His reason for this insanity? He lost his reelection bid for the board and disliked the increase in taxes. Goodness, Drew.
Marilyn Monroe sang Happy Birthday to President Kennedy on May 19, 1962. The most erotic and awkward birthday jingle given to anyone, ever. Just watch.
Johnny Carson hosted The Tonight Show for the last time on May 22, 1992. We wrote about this a year ago, where we also featured Charles Lindberg’s buddy, Calvin Coolidge.
Happy graduation to a few of our subscribers and birthday wishes to a few others. One day we will have consistent, nice, warm weather to enjoy before we return to complaining about how hot it is.
Working on a few more lessons; it’s just taking me longer to read up on the subject matter.
I hope you have a great week. See you on Friday with something fun!