Skip to main content

The Lone Eagle

June 2024
1min read

Being an amateur student of history like many of your readers, I enjoyed Harry Miles Muheim’s piece on Charles Lindbergh, especially his forgiving treatment of Lindbergh’s perceived political blunders and subsequent fall from public grace. Would that all historians could treat their subjects with equal compassion.

Having recently moved from the mainland to Maui, I looked forward to tracing Mr. Muheim’s steps to Lindbergh’s gravesite but was unable to find it using his directions. For those who might want to visit, there is now no Exxon station in Hana, and the grave is not 14.3 miles from any notable landmark. Instead it is a little more than 23 miles from the Puaàa Kaàa state wayside rest stop, 11 miles past the Hana Chevron station, and only about a mile past the “Pools of ÒOheòo” of Hãleakala National Park, which is noted on every tourist map. Just beyond mile marker 41, down the first paved road to the left (i.e., toward the ocean), lies Palapala Ho’omau Congregational Church (Mr. Muheim had the name of the church reversed in his article), where Lindbergh is buried. I don’t know when Mr. Muheim visited, but the road is smooth and paved the whole way, a slow but easy drive in any vehicle.

Moreover, Mr. Muheim misquoted the Scripture reference on Lindbergh’s stone. It reads there just as it does in the King James Version of the Bible, Psalm 139:9: “If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea …”

Mr. Muheim transcribes the lines as: “I shall take the wings of the morning, and fly to the uttermost ends of the sea,” making the inscription appear to be about Lindbergh’s flying career, when in reality it offers the living a much more profound message. In context the verse quoted on the grave continues: “Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall hold me.”

Enjoy our work? Help us keep going.

Now in its 75th year, American Heritage relies on contributions from readers like you to survive. You can support this magazine of trusted historical writing and the volunteers that sustain it by donating today.

Donate