Charles August (C.A.) Lindbergh, father of the famous aviator, was born Carl Mansson on January 20, 1858, in Stockholm, Sweden.
His father, August Lindbergh, had been a member of the Swedish parliament who emigrated to the United States when C.A. was about a year old after being charged with illegal banking activities. It was at that time that his name was changed to Charles August Lindbergh. The family settled in Melrose, Minnesota.
Following his graduation from University of Michigan Law School in 1883, C.A. established a practice in Little Falls, Minnesota, and quickly became one of the town's leading citizens, serving as county attorney in 1890.
In April 1887, C.A. married Mary LaFond, the daughter of two of the town’s original settlers. C.A. and Mary had three daughters, Lillian, Edith, and Eva. Edith died as a small child and in 1898, Mary died of complications from abdominal surgery.
In the fall of 1900, C.A. met Evangeline Lodge Land and the two were married in March 1901. The newlyweds settled in a new house along the Mississippi River southwest of Little Falls. On February 4, 1902, Evangeline gave birth to their only child, a son they named Charles Augustus Lindbergh.
In 1906, C.A. Lindbergh, a Republican, was elected from Minnesota's Sixth District to the US House of Representatives, a position he held for 10 years. When the 60th Congress opened on December 2, 1907, Rep. Lindbergh was joined by his son on the floor of the first session.
At the outset of World War I, C.A. favored neutrality, and he soon became an ardent antiwar spokesman. Once the United States joined the war, Lindbergh supported the effort, but his reputation had been set. In 1916, C.A. lost a bid for the US Senate. Then in 1918, he lost a bid for governor in a very contentious race. Following his political bids, C.A. continued to speak out against the war, writing Why Is Your Country At War, a book that prompted the federal government to define his work as "seditious" and call for its destruction.
Though his career in politics was practically at an end, C.A. continued to buy and sell real estate, eventually returning to Minnesota and establishing a new law practice in the Twin Cities. In 1924, he mounted a brief campaign for governor, this time as a member of the Farmer-Labor Party. His son, by then a young aviator, flew his father to several campaign stops. But C.A. Lindbergh's return to political life was cut short by a brain tumor, and he died in Crookston, Minnesota, on May 24, 1924.
Charles Lindbergh’s mother, Evangeline Lodge Land Lindbergh, was born in 1876 in Detroit, Michigan, to Dr. Charles and Evangeline Land. She graduated from the University of Michigan in 1899 and moved to Little Falls the next fall to teach chemistry at the local high school. There she met C.A. Lindbergh and the two were married in March 1901. The newlyweds moved into a new house along the Mississippi River southwest of Little Falls. On February 4, 1902, Evangeline gave birth to her only child, Charles Augustus Lindbergh. She chose to give birth in Detroit, where she would be attended to by her uncle, who was a doctor. She and baby Charles returned to Little Falls to be joined by C.A. and his two daughters, Lillian and Eva.
By the time C.A. was elected to the US House of Representatives in 1906, conflict existed within the marriage. In the summer of 1909, Evangeline requested a divorce, but her husband refused to consider it because of his political career. The two agreed to maintain separate residences, both in Washington, D.C., where Evangeline and C.A. lived during the Congressional season, as well as in Little Falls where they spent the summer months. After C.A.'s failed Senate bid in 1917, Evangeline and young Charles made Little Falls their home year-round until 1920.
Evangeline maintained a close relationship with her son. When Charles decided to attend college at the University of Wisconsin in 1920, Evangeline moved with him, renting rooms for both of them in a boarding house in Madison. As Charles began his aviation career, Evangeline returned to teaching. She went back to school, earning a graduate degree in education at Columbia University. She spent her final years in Detroit, where she taught chemistry at Cass Technical High School until 1942. Evangeline died September 7, 1954, at age 78.