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Lindbergh Monocoupe Exhibit Ending its Run at STL Airport

Posted on June 07, 2018 in Media Releases

It’s been a favorite and treasured piece of aviation history that has welcomed millions of passengers annually at St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL). The 1934 Model D-127 Monocoupe was once owned by famed aviator Charles Lindbergh. Next week, the iconic plane will be ending its exhibition run over the C Concourse Checkpoint in Terminal 1 with de-installation set for late evening of Tuesday, June 12. 

The Monocoupe has been on loan from the Missouri Historical Society since 1979 and has been suspended for all but two years in that span, when it was taken down during an airport renovation project between 2011 and 2013. 

The Missouri Historical Society will be giving the plane a much needed rest from the public eye, which will help preserve the aviation artifact for decades to come after its long run at the Airport. 

“The 1934 Lindbergh Monocoupe is an exceedingly rare aircraft in that it still retains its original fabric covering,” said Katherine Van Allen, managing director of museum services for the Missouri Historical Society. “Historic materials and the passage of time create unique challenges for preservation and conservation of this important artifact. In order to ensure that this unique piece of history is preserved for future generations, the Missouri Historical Society is removing the plane to a humidity and climate-controlled storage facility in accordance with present-day best practices in collections care.” 

“We were very fortunate to have this iconic plane on display for more than 35 years and we are thankful for our enduring partnership with the Missouri Historical Society and its mission to share our region’s impressive links to aviation history,” said STL Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. 

Built by Lambert Aircraft Corporation in August 1934, Lindbergh’s Monocoupe was one of the first three planes built completely in St. Louis by the company. It was personalized extensively at Lindbergh’s direct request.                      ­

He flew it regularly and, according to various written records, seemed to have always had in mind to eventually donate it to the Missouri Historical Society, which he did in 1940. 

The Airport will continue to display another plane owned by the Museum, a 1933 Red Monocoupe 110 Special, which is suspended over a checkpoint in Terminal 2.