On this date seventy-five years ago Amelia Earhart piloted the Lockheed Electra from Assab to Karachi, Pakistan. She and her navigator, Fred Noonan, left early in the morning and flew 1,920 miles in thirteen hours and ten minutes.
IN HER OWN WORDS -- "In no part of southern Arabia is a forced landing
desirable. The waterless, treeless desert geography is in itself pretty
hopeless, a further negative factor being the probable attitude of the sparse
nomadic population, if, as, and when encountered. In some districts the Arab
tribesmen might not be hospitable to strange interlopers, especially a woman.
Or perhaps under special circumstances too hospitable. I know the officials
concerned did not relish such possibilities, however remote. Indeed, neither
did we. But the Electra never had failed me, and I felt the engines would carry on so long as fuel lasted. Anyway, as a special precaution we
carried a letter written in Arabic, presumably addressed "To whom It May
Concern" and bespeaking for us those things which should be bespoken. At least
I think so. We had it translated by two people in New York. One linguist,
allegedly familiar with things Arabic, said it would be just too bad for us if
such an introduction was presented to the wrong local faction. His counsel
left me a trifle confused. We carried the document anyway, tucked beside me in
the cockpit, ready for emergency. We carried, too, a pretty generous supply of
water in canteens, concentrated foods, a small land compass, and very heavy
walking shoes. fortunately we did not have to walk!"
Forty years after the alleged tragic ending of this flight, Amelia Earhart will carry another letter on a very different kind of flight in But This Is Different http://butthisisdifferent.com.
The photographs shows the Lockheed Electra being serviced at Karachi.