Charles A. Lindbergh and his wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, flew in their Lockheed Sirius aircraft on two significant missions, one in 1931 and the other in 1933. The first flight in 1931 was to the Orient. This flight successfully proved the viability of using the great circle to navigate from the West to the East via the North. In 1933 the Lindberghs again flew the Sirius across the Atlantic, this time on survey flights to gather valuable information for planning commercial air transport routes for the North and South Atlantic.
Upon returning in late 1933, Charles Lindbergh donated the aircraft and the material support items to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City where they were displayed in the Hall of Ocean Life. When the museum deaccessioned the collection it was sent to the United States Air Force Museum. In 1959 it was decided that the aircraft did not represent the Air Force and the collection was then transferred to the Smithsonian Institution's Air Museum. Every possible space of the aircraft was utilized to carry supplies during the flights.
The objects in this collection are representative of these mission support and personal items carried. These objects serve to illustrate the essential equipment that would have been taken on international exploratory flights during the 1920s and 1930s.
Transferred from the USAF Museum
Mill for General Electric Magnetic Compass to drive magneto compass. Placed on top of the fuselage behind rear cockpit. Taken with Lindbergh on his Orient flight. Black round wheel with paddle like fins.