Hawaii museum to open Amelia Earhart photo show

Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger

Amelia Earhart, the wispy aviation pioneer who disappeared more than 70 years ago while attempting to fly around the world, would have turned 114 on Sunday. On her birthday, the Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor in Honolulu will kick off an exhibition of newly discovered photos of the renowned aviator’s stay in Hawaii.

“These photographs show Amelia both at work and at play,” museum curator Jim Goodall said.

Earhart came to Hawaii to relax and to prepare for what would become a record-making solo flight from Honolulu to Oakland in 1935, he said. Goodall credited her with helping to put Hawaii on the tourist map.

“She was able to make the world see that there’s a piece of paradise out there,” he says.


The “Amelia Earhart in Hawaii Photo Exhibit,” which will be on permanent display at the museum, was created from negatives recently found in the archives of shipping giant Matson Navigation Co. The company, which transported Earhart’s plane from L.A. to Hawaii in 1934 in preparation for her Hawaii-California solo flight, had commissioned a photo essay of the aviator’s travels in Hawaii, Goodall said

The exhibition includes eight large canvas prints made from large-format camera negatives and 20 photos presented as collages taken from 1934 to 1937. In one (shown above), Earhart gets a lesson on how to peel a pineapple from surfing legend Duke Kahanamoku.

The museum has another Earhart connection. Its Ford Island site fronts Luke Field, where Earhart “ground-looped” and damaged her plane in March 1937 during her first attempt at a round-the-world journey.

Soon after, she and her navigator Fred Noonan started anew from Miami but later disappeared over thePacific Ocean. How they died and what happened to the plane remains a mystery.


The museum plans refreshments and entertainment from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday to open the photo exhibition.

Contact: Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor, (808) 441-1000. Museum admission is $20 for adults and $10 for children ages 4 to 12.