Handwritten Note, Octant, Lockheed Sirius "Tingmissartoq" (Lindbergh)

Display Status:

This object is on display in the Time and Navigation exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

This Pioneer aircraft octant was among the navigation equipment Charles Lindbergh and his wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, took on their 1931 flight to the Orient and 1933 survey flights across the North and South Atlantic. Radio and navigation equipment was extremely important to the Lindberghs on their trans-global flights. Because they were flying over vast stretches of unchartered territory in Canada, Alaska, and Siberia during their 1931 flight and Greenland, Africa, and Brazil during their 1933 flight, they relied on radio and navigation equipment to help them find their remote destinations. They used this octant to measure the relative position of celestial objects, helping them keep track of their position on the map.

Anne did most of the navigating and operated all of the radio equipment during the Lindberghs' two trans-global flights. Prior to the 1931 flight she worked hard to learn aviation skills and Morse code in order to earn her pilot license and radio operator's license. She thus felt slightly insulted when women reporters seemed most interested in her clothes or where she packed the lunch boxes on the airplane. Charles, however, always recognized Anne's importance to their success and called her "the crew," a term that made her proud.