Did Charles Lindbergh Kill His Own Son?

Daily Mail (London), December 29, 1999 | Go to article overview

Did Charles Lindbergh Kill His Own Son?


Byline: CHRISTOPHER HUDSON

CHARLES LINDBERGH, the Duke of Windsor, John Bodkin Adams and Lady Delamere were all embroiled in the most sensational unsolved crimes of the 20th century. Yesterday, in the first part of this groundbreaking series which investigates each murder mystery and considers new evidence - some of which has never before been published in Britain - CHRISTOPHER HUDSON examined the killing of Lord Errol, a scandal which rocked the loose-living Happy Valley set in colonial Kenya.

Today, he analyses the events surrounding the kidnapping of world-famous aviator Charles Lindbergh's 20-month-old son. The child was found dead in a wood two weeks later. An immigrant carpenter was eventually charged and executed. But was he innocent? Was the murderer someone nobody could ever have suspected . . .

CHARLES A. LINDBERGH was twice the most famous man in the world: in 1927, after he completed the first-ever solo flight across the Atlantic, and again in 1932, when headlines across the globe announced the kidnapping of his 20-month-old son Charles Jnr.

Next year his name will once again be in the news when Steven Spielberg films Scott Berg's prize-winning 1998 biography of Lindbergh, with Brad Pitt in line to play the aviator.

Will Spielberg's movie remind us about Lindbergh's later role as a racist and an admirer of Hitler who strove to keep the U.S. out of the war against the Nazis? That remains to be seen.

Might it further touch upon the possibility that Lindbergh was himself implicated in the disappearance of his son? Not the faintest chance.

For millions of his countrymen, Colonel Lindbergh is still a prototype of the all-American hero, and to suggest such a thing would be blasphemy.

Tall, fair-haired, handsome, modest and self-assured, the Lone Eagle was perfectly cast for the heroic age of aviation. His 33-and-a-half-hour flight from New York to Paris in the tiny Spirit of St Louis, sitting in a wicker basket chair to save weight and taking five sandwiches for the journey, brought the Old and the New Worlds together in celebration.

In 1929, aged 27, Lindbergh married the enchanting Anne Spencer Morrow, daughter of the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico. The next ten years, during which Anne flew with Lindbergh as his co-pilot across five continents, were to be one long royal progress by a couple who eclipsed even the glamour of movie stars.

The birth of their first son, in June 1930, elicited telegrams, letters, flowers, presents and headlines from all over the world. The director of the Florentine Choir of Italy composed a special lullaby. Newspaper astrologers published their predictions - but none of them had time to come true.

DURING the evening of Tuesday, March 1, 1932, a night of howling winds, baby Charlie was taken from his cot in the Lindberghs' newly built stone house in Hopewell, New Jersey.

He was never seen alive again.

The empty crib was discovered by the Lindberghs' Scottish nurse, Betty Gow, when she went in to check on Charlie at 10pm. After alerting Anne Lindbergh and then the Colonel, all three then hurried into the nursery.

Lindbergh turned to his wife and said in a calm voice: 'Anne, they have stolen our baby.' Instructing the butler, Ollie Whately, to telephone the local police, Lindbergh took his rifle and disappeared into the night, while Anne and Betty searched the house.

After making the call, Whately joined Lindbergh in his car and they drove up and down the drive, shining headlights on either side.

Returning to the nursery, Lindbergh called attention to an envelope on the radiator under the entry window. He told nobody to touch it, and telephoned his lawyer and the New Jersey State Police.

When the police arrived, Lindbergh took charge of the operation, showing them the letter and spots of yellow clay which led from the window to the crib. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Did Charles Lindbergh Kill His Own Son?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.