On May 22, 1919, a New York hotel owner named Raymond Orteig announced a prize.
The Orteig Prize, as it came to be known, was the whopping sum of $25,000 (about $340,000 in 2015). It was to be given to the first allied aviators who flew nonstop from New York to Paris or vice versa.
Six aviators died in the pursuit of that prize.
Then an American air mail pilot named Charles Lindbergh took up the challenge. On May 20, 1927, he took off from Roosevelt Field in New York and landed in Paris 33.5 hours later. Many before him had tried to fly the route in stages. Lindbergh’s feat was that he did it alone and without stopping.