Earhart's Plane Found?!

Discussion in 'News' started by FLYBOYJ, May 30, 2013.

  1. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Because that's where Elvis was busy burying crates full of Spitfires at the time? :evil4:
     
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  2. Tom Maxwell

    Tom Maxwell New Member

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    The criticisms of the Orona theory posted on this thread are justified. It will take time for the idea to gather support. The Nikumaroro theory will be tested once again this coming mid-2017 and I can confidently predict that this test will also fail. I say so because the missing fliers were very capable people and would have left substantial evidence of their presence on Nikumaroro if the theory were correct. Investigators will turn to new avenues of research after 2017. The Orona theory may be among those chosen. Supported by the GE image and the relative ease of testing, the Orona theory may become more popular given the very expensive crash and sink search.
     
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  3. Peter Gunn

    Peter Gunn Active Member

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    Let me start by saying I think Tom has done a pretty good job presenting his ideas/theories and responding to posts. I love a good mystery and AE's disappearance captured my attention as a kid when I met Ann Pellegreno after her re-enactment of the round the world flight in 1967 (grew up very near her home town). Something that seems a bit forgotten by history, but such is life.

    Anyway, Tom's theory has a lot of merit if you believe in large intricate conspiracies ( I don't ), but much like many other conspiracy theories, it doesn't stand up well to documented facts. I must admit though, even if I can't really see the outline of an Electra in the images of Orono lagoon, considering how shallow and accessible it is, I'd really like to see divers check it out. IF there is a plane there my money is on it being a B-25 but I'd be eager to know whatever it is down there ( if anything ).

    So Tom, I've re-read your theory, I don't think it holds water, but you seem to be an intelligent and amiable fellow, I think if you found a more plausible theory you'd probably take it an run with it quite a way. I wish you luck in your endeavors and I hope you'll keep us posted on any developments that crop up.
     
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  4. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    #224 FLYBOYJ, Nov 22, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2016
    Tom - appreciate your discussions. On this forum you're dealing with a "tough crowd" (as Rodney Dangerfield used to say), a lot of knowledge and experience in aviation and history.

    As far as "the missing fliers were very capable people," I take that with some skepticism. AE WAS NOT a super experienced pilot, (at least by today's standards) had maybe 1500 hours and crashed 6 planes (including her last flight). She also had an additional four incidents where she was forced to land an aircraft off field due to mechanical issues or damaged the aircraft on landing. Of course I will state that aircraft reliability and maintenance practices during that period were a shadow of what they are today.

    IMO AE was a "celebrity pilot" who had people with deep pockets backing her. (the term today is "more money than brains) I remember reading somewhere that some of her colleagues worried about her staying current and proficient.

    This is a paragraph from Wiki taken from Fred Noonan's bio. IMO it provides some good technical explanations;

    Many researchers including navigator and aeronautical engineer Elgen Long believe that the Electra ran out of fuel and that Earhart and Noonan ditched at sea. The "crash and sink" theory is often the most widely accepted explanation of Earhart’s and Noonan’s fate.

    In her last message received at Howland Island, Earhart reported that they were flying a standard position line (or sun line), a routine procedure for an experienced navigator like Noonan. This line passed within sight of Gardner Island (now called Nikumaroro) in the Phoenix Island Group to the southeast, and there is a range of documented, archaeological, and anecdotal evidence supporting the hypothesis that Earhart and Noonan found Gardner Island, uninhabited at the time, landed the Electra on a flat reef near the wreck of a freighter, and sent sporadic radio messages from there. It has been surmised that Earhart and Noonan might have survived on Nikumaroro for several weeks before dying as castaways. In 1940, Gerald Gallagher, a British colonial officer and a licensed pilot, radioed his superiors to tell them that he believed he had found Earhart's skeleton, along with a sextant box, under a tree on the island's southeast corner. In a 1998 report to the American Anthropological Association, researchers, including a forensic anthropologist and an archaeologist, concluded, "What we can be certain of is that bones were found on the island in 1939–40, associated with what were observed to be women’s shoes and a navigator’s sextant box, and that the morphology of the recovered bones, insofar as we can tell by applying contemporary forensic methods to measurements taken at the time, appears consistent with a female of Earhart’s height and ethnic origin.

    Contradictory research has recently been advanced; it is possible to set course for and see Gardner from a point on the over Howland sunline (passing seven miles east of), but one does not simply reach Gardner by following such line. A position line is part of a circle circumference and may be considered a straight line, only for limited distances. The Sun's azimuth change per hour is about 15 arcdegrees, whereas the Howland-to-Gardner flight (409 statue miles) would have taken 2 hours 55 minutes (at 140 mph). As a result the aircraft, when having followed the LOP by astronavigation, would have passed far northward of Gardner when reaching its meridian. The "Gardner" hypothesis originates from a 1980s book, where navigator Paul Rafford, Jr. "fell off his chair when seeing that the position line points in the direction of Gardner Island". Apart from such supposition, it was with the available fuel reserves (45 gallons) impossible to reach Gardner from the Howland region: the route would have taken 120 U.S. gallons at least.

    The author of an article in Journal of Navigation, Vol. 9, No. 3, December 2011, avers that due to insufficient fuel reserves from 1912 GMT, no land other than Howland itself and Baker at 45 miles could be reached. With a maximum ferry range of 2,740 statute miles even the closest islands Winslow Reef and McKean Island at 210 and 350 miles away respectively, were unreachable.
     
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  5. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    On the way to war.

    As of January 14, 1938, Japanese Consulate General in Sydney Torao Wakamatsu reports Tokyo.
    " Requested by Your Excellency(Foreign Minister Kohki Hirota)'s mail dated last December 6, we made best efforts to obtain the original copy of Australian "Smith's Weekly" dated October 16 but were unable to obtain to send. Therefore, we enclose typed copies in duplicate herewith".

    Smiths_Weekly_00.JPG Smiths_Weekly_01.JPG Smiths_Weekly_02.JPG Smiths_Weekly_03.JPG
     
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  6. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    The same copy was sent to Colonel Masao Nishida in the navy by the ministry of foreign affairs on February 7, 1938.
    He is famous as an active leader for Tripartite Pact.
     
  7. Peter Gunn

    Peter Gunn Active Member

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    From the Wiki article:

    "In October 1937, Eric Bevington and Henry E. Maude visited Gardner with some potential settlers. A group walked all the way around the island, but did not find a plane or other evidence.[151]

    In December 1938, laborers landed on the island and started constructing the settlement.[152] Around April 1940, a skull is discovered and buried, but British colonial officer Gerald Gallagher does not learn of it until September 1940.[153] In September 1940, Gallagher, a licensed pilot, instituted a search and then radioed his superiors that he had found a "skeleton... possibly that of a woman," along with an old-fashioned sextant box, under a tree on the island's southeast corner. He was ordered to send the remains to Fiji. Gallagher believed there was a small chance that the skeleton was Earhart's. In 1941, British colonial authorities took detailed measurements of the bones and concluded they were from a male about 5 ft 5 in tall (165 cm).[154] These bones were misplaced in Fiji long ago, so they cannot be reexamined.[155] In 1998, an analysis of the measurement data by forensic anthropologists did not confirm the original findings, concluding instead that the skeleton had belonged to a "tall white female of northern European ancestry."

    During World War II, US Coast Guard LORAN Unit 92, a radio navigation station built in the summer and fall of 1944, and operational from mid-November 1944 until mid-May 1945, was located on Gardner Island's southeast end. Dozens of U.S. Coast Guard personnel were involved in its construction and operation, but were mostly forbidden from leaving the small base or having contact with the Gilbertese colonists then on the island, and found no artifacts known to relate to Earhart"

    To me, that pretty much shoots the Gardner Island theory in the head. But combined with FBJ's post above, I don't see how the Electra could have made it to Orono either. Also, I've long held the opinion that she wasn't the most proficient pilot, as FBJ says, more of a celebrity pilot, even her buddy Paul Mantz said the crash in Honolulu on her first round the world attempt was due to pilot error. When thinking of a good female pilot my first thoughts always go to Jackie Cochran.
     
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  8. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    Or Amy Johnson. :)
     
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  9. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    #229 GrauGeist, Nov 22, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2016
    How does that kill the Gardner theory?

    They did conclude in 1998, that the skeletal remains were a female of European ancestry. Add to that, the artifacts that were found, dating before the colonists (1938) and later than the shipwreck (1929). Of these artifacts found were a broken jar of freckle ointment, which was a unique shaped trademark design of Dr. C.H. Berry Company. They found fragments of a glass bottle that has been identified as being manufactured by Owens-Corning, New Jersey plant in 1933 for the Compana Corporation, used for their Italian Balm skin softener product line.

    They have also found aircraft grade aluminum pieces as well as clearly identifiable aircraft parts, none of which would be found on a ship AND no other known aircraft wrecks are known to have occurred on Gardner before or during WWII.

    They say that the "expedition" that landed in 1937 "walked around" the island, but I might make a few observations about this: First, they weren't looking for Earhart. AT that point in time, the assumption had been made that she was lost to sea, most likely to the north-east or north-west of Howland. Secondly, they were scouting for a place on the island for a suitable location for building, not looking for any signs of castaways - this was a deserted island with the last known human presence (although temporary) being 1929 - so a small campsite in a remote area could have easily been overlooked, especially if it had been made in a sheltered spot away from the elements. Otherwise, they would have found a corpse, not a skeleton, as was found a few years later.

    The location they selected for the "village" was just south of the SS Norwich wreck, on the west coast, which is a broad area, unlike the far south-eastern area of the island, which is very narrow and unsuitable for any sort of building - which happens to be where the campsite and human remains were found.

    Add to this, that all of the aircraft debris (aluminum, plexiglass, etc.) has been found on the western shore, in the area directly around the reef where the SS Norwich is located (and the anomaly in the 1937 photograph was sighted) and no where else on the island. All of the bottles, sextant case, shoes, animal bones and skeleton were found on the south-eastern shore at the campsite.

    So as far as I can see...there is a fair amount of evidence that an aircraft did put down there and that someone was castaway. If it's not Earhart, then who was it?
     
  10. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    By the way, that was a good post about the search, Shinpachi. :thumbleft:

    The Allies did use the opportunity to find Earhart as a reason to "look" near Japanese held islands.

    Like I've said in the past, the Japanese weren't stupid. They could have accomplished huge propaganda by returning Amelia safe to the U.S. AND stopped the "searching" of their island locations immediately by doing so...
     
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  11. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    Agreed, Dave.

    IJN also used the chance to investigate the U.S. Navy operation system and sent dozens of reports back to homeland.
    I have no guts to translate them all but these docs show Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan were not captured by Japanese.
     
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  12. fnqvmuch

    fnqvmuch Member

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    #232 fnqvmuch, Nov 22, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2016
    Great, Shinpachi - It is very interesting for the big picture of geopolitics and I'ld never have found it ; Smith's Weekly was not really 'mainstream' press ( provocative and disrespectful, best cartoons though ). O>T> but there is reference to a '... Japanese naval base and arsenal at Borrin ...
    opposite the British Singapore ...' can anyone give me a clue as to name now? thanks, Steven
     
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  13. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your information about Smith's Weekly, fnqvmuch.
    Japanese government had known the article through a news in London on December 3, 1937 when British magazine "Cavalcade" quoted it.
     
  14. fnqvmuch

    fnqvmuch Member

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    Yampi Sound was probably of interest to the pearling trade; Thursday Island on the east had had a large Japanese
    element due to it but the modern industry is all north-west coast
     
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  15. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, fnqvmuch.
     
  16. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    #236 Shinpachi, Nov 23, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2016
    Intercept information of the U.S. domestic radio broadcasting (middle-wave)

    Is Woman Flyer in Japanese Prison ?( Sacramento 20:00 April 13, 1943)
    .. Husband of prominent woman flyer Amelia Earhart, Hutchinson, says it is ridiculous to believe Ms Earhart is currently a prisoner of Japanese military ..

    *********************
    I have no idea who Hutchinson is.

    US_radio_1943.JPG
     
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  17. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    i just caught the last couple minutes of a travel chanel show called expedition unknown. tonights show was about AE...and the host of the show found bones under a house in Fiji he is pretty certain are hers....but he couldnt stick around for the DNA tests.
     
  18. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    lmao..now she's in Fiji??

    Maybe they should check Antarctica too, just in case! :lol:
     
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  19. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Actually the bones were from Gardner, brought there and then lost
     
  20. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Ahh yes, you're right, Joe!

    The British that found the remains took them there and they became lost. With all these sightings and speculations, I completely forgot.

    But I still think they should look near the secret Nazi airbase in Antarctica...just in case! :lol:
     
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