Amelia Earhart (Dictionary of World Biography: Twentieth Century)
Article abstract: By being the first woman to fly across the Atlantic and by establishing numerous other flying records, Earhart helped to promote commercial aviation and advance the cause of women in aviation.
Amelia Earhart, the daughter of Amy Otis and Edwin Stanton Earhart, was born in the home of her maternal grandparents in Atchison, Kansas. Her grandfather was Alfred G. Otis, a pioneer Atchison settler who became a prominent lawyer, banker, and federal district court judge. Her father worked for a railroad as an attorney and claims agent.
Her early childhood was spent in Kansas City, Kansas, where she and her younger sister learned to ride horseback. When her father accepted a job in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1905, Amelia and her sister remained for a year in Atchison, where she later recalled, “There were regular games and school and mud-ball fights, picnics, and exploring raids up and down the bluffs of the Missouri River.” After joining her father in Des Moines, Amelia attended school and began reading the books that further encouraged her spirit of adventure. Sir Walter Scott, Charles Dickens, George Eliot, and William Makepeace Thackeray were her favorite authors, and she and her sister made up imaginary journeys while they played in an abandoned carriage.
When her father went to work for the Great Northern railroad, the Earharts moved to St. Paul, Minnesota, but Edwin’s...
(The entire section is 2001 words.)
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