Legendary female pilot Amelia Earhart may have lived a life omitted from history books, a recent study suggests.
In 1937, Earhart — the first woman pilot to fly across the Atlantic ocean alone– attempted to circle the world. Unfortunately, she never completed her journey.
Ever since, there have been theories as to what may have happened to her, from being held prisoner as a suspected spy, to crashing and surviving after losing her memory. But the most popular theory has been that she simply crashed in the Pacific Ocean, her body lost to the sea.
According to the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR), a skeleton of a castaway found on a Pacific Island, Nikumaroro, back in 1940 may actually be Earhart. Not only do the skeleton’s forearms, which were abnormally large for a European female, match the measurements of Earhart, the TIGHAR team revealed Earhart made more than 100 radio transmissions calling for help between July 2 and July 6 of 1937, which rules out the possibility of her believed death on July 2nd, 1937. Remarkably, their search of the island has even turned up records of bonfires as well as fish and bird bones in the area.
TIGHAR now suggests that Earhart survived the plane crash that was believed to result in her death and survived as a castaway on the island for weeks, maybe even months. Earhart — an American female icon — was full of the drive and determination needed to live in such circumstances. Here are 5 books that demonstrate how these traits made her a badass woman and achieved greatness.
1. Amelia Earhart: A Biography by Doris L. Rich
Earhart started out as an unconventional tomboy and rose to fame, becoming the best-known female aviator in the world. This biography focuses on Earhart’s career as an activist for women’s rights and commercial air travel while focuses on the ideals relevant to the 21st century, proving that Earhart accomplished much in her short life.
2. The Sound of Wings: The Life Of Amelia Earhart by Mary S. Lovell
Using original documents, letters, log books of both Earhart and her contemporaries, and personal interviews with Earhart’s family, this in-depth biography uses brilliant research to demonstrate the drive and determination that made Earhart so famous. Experience Earhart’s journey as she becomes fascinated with planes, (unconventionally) marries G.P. Putnam, and watch her dreams take flight.
3. Hidden Latitudes by Alison Anderson
Published in 1997, this story is a fictional account of Earhart’s legendary life,that takes place on an uncharted island, where Earhart has been surviving for over 40 years after her plane crash. That is, until a couple sailing around the world land on the island to take refuge from a storm. Sound familiar?
4. East To The Dawn: The Life of Amelia Earhart by Susan Butler
Displaying Earhart’s extraordinary career and personal life, this biography draws on Earhart’s letters, interviews, journals, and diaries to fully portray this remarkable woman. It begins with her early years living with her grandparents and covers her experiences as a nurse and social worker, her famous marriage to Putnam, her secret affair with Gene Vidal, head of the Bureau of Air Commerce, and so much more.
5. Letters From Amelia: An Intimate Portrait Of Amelia Earhart by Jean L. Backus
What better way to get in the head of a woman that made history than to read her words? Through Earhart’s letters, this book was created from the contents of four neglected cardboard cartons in an attic in Berkeley, California. Inside lie photographs and personal letters between Earhart and her mother beginning when Earhart was 3-years-old until her disappearance, showing that no matter how revolutionary she was, Earhart remained down-to-earth enough to write her mother.
Which theory do you think is true?
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Featured image via Pacific Aviation Museum
h/t Fox 4 News