Amelia Earhart was born on July 24, 1897 in Atchison, Kansas. Her father was a lawyer and he traveled a lot, so Amelia and her sister lived with their grandmother most of the time. She tried to teach them to have manners and be proper ladies, but Amelia was more interested in adventures and horseback riding and the idea of flying. When her grandmother died, the family began moving around a lot and had little money due to her father's alcoholism. She attended six different high schools in the course of four years. She went to college for one year and then dropped out to become a nurse's aide for the soldiers in World War I.
Amelia in the 1920s
In 1920, Amelia Earhart went on her first airplane ride ever, after dreaming about it all through her childhood. At the beginning of 1921, she started taking flying lessons and got her flying license on December 15,1921. At the time though there were not many jobs that involved flying, so Amelia just did it because she enjoyed it. She thought her true calling was being a social worker in Boston. In May 1927, after Charles Lindbergh became the first person to fly across the Atlantic Ocean by himself, an American heiress who lived in England presented the opportunity for a woman to attempt the same feat of flying of the Atlantic solo. A man named George Putnam found Amelia and recommended her to the heiress. Though, she later found out that she would only be a passenger on this flight, keeping a flight log of their travel. With a few complications, they managed to make it to Whales after an almost 21 hour flight. They then flew to London and spent a week of fame there. When they returned to the United States, Amelia became very famous just for being on the flight! She traveled all over the country giving speeches and doing interviews. She was an American hero and at the end of the decade, she flew in a national women's race across the country, of which she came in third place.
In 1931, she married her publicist and manager, George Putnam, reluctantly, though. This marriage ended up making her happier than she expected. To continue her career though, she had to do something amazing to prove her courage to the nation and to prove she was a real pilot. On May 20, 1932, she departed on her flight to cross the Atlantic Ocean by herself. With problems along the way, she managed to make it safely across to Ireland in just over 15 hours, the fastest of anyone who had ever flown the course. She became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic solo. She received many awards and acclamation. A few years later, she decided she needed to do something else big. She decided she was going to fly around the world on the Equator. At the end of the 1930s, after much planning by her and Putnam, she departed on this trip. She made it to New Guinea and now she had to get through the hardest leg of the trip and close to the last one. She did not have a telegraph to communicate with anyone, so she could receive no direction. Somewhere between New Guinea and Howland Island, Amelia became lost. They sent out a mass search party, but after 16 days of no luck, they gave up. She nor her plane were ever found.