July 2020: Earhart forgotten amid nation’s chaos

July is Amelia Earhart’s month.  She was born into a respected family of Midwestern gentry on July 24, 1897, in Atchison, Kansas, and, along with her two-years-younger sister, Muriel, or Pidge,she enjoyed a near-idyllic childhood despite a father who liked his booze so much that Amelia became a lifetime teetotaler. 

Eighty-three years ago, on July 2, 1937, Amelia disappearedwhile on an open-ocean flight to Howland Island in the central Pacific, and instead landed off Barre Island at Mili Atoll in the Japanese controlled Marshall Islands, about 830 miles to the northwest.  Soon she and Fred Noonan, her navigator, were picked up by the Japanese and taken to Saipan, where they suffered lonely, wretched deaths at the hands of the bloodthirsty prewar Japanese military. 

During her brief 40 years, Amelia Earhart became a household name in an era filled with a War to End all Warsthat would soon be eclipsed by a worse one, and more larger-than-life personalities than anyone can name anymore.  

From Teddy Roosevelt, Babe Ruth and Charles Lindbergh, to John Dillinger, Bonnie and Clyde and Al Capone, on to Adolph Hitler, “Uncle Joe” Stalin,  Winston Churchill and FDR, the times were defined by heroes and villains whose lives — even as chronicled by primitive radio and newspapers — were of a magnitude unimagined by today’s Millennials, rooted in their Internet-based virtual realities. 

Amelia Earhart with all-time greats Ruth Nichols (center) and Louise Thaden, circa 1931.  Despite her records and fame, Earhart’s star had yet to fully ascend, which would happen in May 1932 with her solo Atlantic flight.  Nichols and Thaden held three women’s world flight records at once: Nichols held speed, altitude and distance records; Thaden held speed, altitude and solo endurance records.  Nichols set out to cross the Atlantic before Amelia Earhart but crashed in Canada.  She was planning to try again when Earhart succeeded.

Though it’s impossible to compare the relative star-power of the giants of the first half of the 20th century, it’s fair to say that few if any stirred the public imagination like Amelia Earhart.  Attractive, down-to-earth, principled, courageous beyond measure, Amelia was loved and admired by everyone with a pulse, and she carved out a unique niche in history that will forever be hers alone. 

This year, as we approach the Ides of July, we pause to reflect, remember and pay our respects to this great American, regardless of the fact that nothing of significance in Amelia’s cause has happened during the past year.  For more background, I invite you to read July 2, 2018: 81 years of lies in the Earhart caseJuly 2, 2019, AE’s last flight anniversary arrives without change; and last year’s July 24 post, For Amelia Earhart, it’s Happy Birthday No. 122!

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For the past three decades everything the public sees, hears or reads are the lies of those who seek to profit on blatant falsehoods about the “Great Aviation Mystery,” while the truth has been lying in plain sight, available to all who seek it.

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Amelia’s life and legacy is rarely celebrated down here anymore, and when it is, it’s usually in some approved, sanitized version, lacking in its most important aspect.  For the past three decades everything the public sees, hears or reads are the lies of those who seek to profit on blatant falsehoods about the Great Aviation Mystery,while the truth has been lying in plain sight, available to all who seek it.  

On the banks of the Missouri River in truth-averse Atchison, Kansas, where Amy Otis Earhart brought Amelia into the world, the locals present a yearly Amelia Earhart Festival during the week commemorating her birth.  These galas are populated by herds of the ignorant, who flock to Atchison, where the “Great Aviation Mystery” is celebrated annually, as well as to the Amelia Earhart  Birthplace Museum, where the official lies are recirculated to tourists daily.

One can easily imagine that among the benighted at these Atchison shindigs, some actually imagine that, just maybe, Amelia is still flying around out there in the timeless ether, searching endlessly for a way back to 1937 Howland Island — an eternal, romantic enigma, forever lost in mystery.  This is a popular myth among the most gullible, and in Atchison, where anything but the despised Japanese Capture Theory is permissible, it’s a plausible idea.  Most of the clueless, well propagandized by the mainstream media, wonder only whether Amelia crashed and sank off Howland Island or landed on Nikumaroro, where she starved to death, along with navigator Fred Noonan, on an atoll teeming with natural food and water sources.

Famed ocean explorer Bob Ballard, who “found the Titanic” led an ill-advised expedition to Nikumaroro in August 2019, and met with the same results that Ric Gillespie and TIGHAR experienced in 12 trips to the picked-over island — precisely nothing was found that could even remotely be linked to Amelia Earhart, Fred Noonan or Electra 10E NR 16020.  

Considering our current national crises, it’s not surprising that Atchison’s 2020 Amelia Earhart festival has been cancelled, since everything else has been scratched as well.  Moreover, thanks to the politically driven insanity spawned by the national Covid-19 lockdown, as well as the Black Lives Matter and “social justice demonstrations,” better defined as riots, there’s no room in the headlines for another phony Earhart search, one good thing amid the chaos we’re enduring.  Talk about finding silver linings. 

During the past year, the only news about Amelia Earhart, as usual, was the fake kind, the pre-fabricated, shiny object that our media constantly produces.  The big difference was that ocean explorer Robert Ballard took center stage, rather than the long-discredited Ric Gillespie and TIGHAR.  Soon after this new boondoggle was announced, NatGeo, Ballard in new phony Earhart “search,’ ” my only question was why someone like Ballard would participate in such a dishonest charade, and what he thought he could gain.  I’m still wondering.

Armed with another grandiose title, the doomed search, dubbed “Expedition Amelia,” was filmed by the consistently unreliable National Geographic for airing in late October.  As always with these bogus Nikumaroro time-wasters,  you had to do a real search to find any news about Ballard’s failure.  

‘Tantalizing clue’ marks end of Amelia Earhart expedition, National Geographic timidly informed readers in its Aug. 26 eulogyWhile the location of the aviator’s plane remains elusive, an artifact re-discovered after 80 years may spark new avenues of inquiry,the subhead cunningly adds.  My post the following day, Ballard’s Earhart search fails; anyone surprised?has the details if you’re interested in revisiting another forgettable footnote of the Earhart saga.

During the run-up to the airing of “Expedition Amelia,” the New York Times, another bastion of deceit, may have been the only mainstream outlet to urge everyone to watch the Oct. 20 NatGeo two-hour special, besides NatGeo itself.  “Robert Ballard’s expedition to a remote island in the South Pacific found no evidence of the vanished aviator’s plane, but the explorer and his crew haven’t given up,” Julie Cohn wrote in the Times story,The Amelia Earhart Mystery Stays Down in the Deep.”  Of course not, especially when there’s more money to be made and ignorant sheeple to “educate” about the great Amelia Earhart “mystery.”

Finally, on Oct. 20, 2019, the over-hyped and unnecessary National Geographic Channel’s latest two-hour travelogue, “Expedition Amelia,” aired to the nation, bringing another Earhart disinformation operation to a merciful close.  For much more, including extensive reviews by William Trail and David Atchason, longtime Earhart aficionados and contributors to this blog, please see my Oct. 22, 2019 post, NatGeo’s “Expedition Amelia”: Dead on Arrival.

Josephine Blanco Akiyama, left, the first and most important of all the eyewitnesses to the presence of Amelia Earhart and Fred on Saipan in 1937, and Marie S. Castro, answer a few questions at the Amelia Earhart Memorial Committee’s reception for Josephine at the Garapan Fiesta Resort and Spa Oct. 9, 2018.  For more, please see my Oct. 16, 2018 post, Josephine Blanco Akiyama returns to Saipan.

Marie S. Castro and the Amelia Earhart Memorial Monument

As you can see, 2019 was not a good year for the Earhart truth.  We must return to early 2018 to find anything positive, with the announcement that appeared in the Feb. 7 Marianas Variety, “Group to build Amelia Earhart monument on Saipan” (no longer available in the Marianas Variety archives that now only go back to 2019).  You can refresh yourself on the details by reading my March 2, 2018 post,Finally, some good Earhart news from Saipan.”

The group is the Amelia Earhart Memorial Monument Inc. (AEMMI).  Its founder and burning light, President Marie S. Castro, 87, is the sole reason for the AEMMI’s existence.  Marie is the last living link to Amelia Earhart’s presence and death on Saipan, having known and interviewed eyewitnesses Matilde Arriola and Joaquina Cabrera.  For more details or just to catch up, see my April 2, 2018 post, Marie Castro: Iron link to Saipan’s forgotten history and Marie Castro, a treasure chest of Saipan history, Reveals previously unpublished witness accounts, published May 18. 

Some of the most compelling evidence attesting to the presence and deaths of Earhart and Noonan on Saipan can be found in Marie’s moving 2013 autobiography, WITHOUT A PENNY IN MY POCKET: My Bittersweet Memories Before and After World War IIIn Without a Penny Marie also describes her family’s terrifying ordeal during the American shelling and bombing of Saipan, which resulted in many tragic and civilian casualties, as well as traumatic memories for the survivors.

“After we were liberated by the American Marines in 1944 . . . we were so thankful to the Americans,” Marie wrote in an email.  “I was 11 years old then and I thought someday I will do something on my own to thank the Americans.” 

She was a professed Catholic nun in Kansas City from 1954 until her resignation in 1971. It was the time when I really examined what was I meant to be in this world,” Marie wrote.  I wanted to do more.  I prayed hard to God to lead me in my decision.  I believed it was the right thing to do.  I resigned from religious life.  I will commit my life in education to thank the American Marines  in 1944.” 

Artist’s rendition of the proposed Amelia Earhart Memorial Monument on Saipan, with a location yet to be definitively determined.  In fact, this beautiful and fitting tribute to Amelia Earhart will remain just an architect’s vision without some kind of serious change in the situation on Saipan, where the opposition to the memorial is nearly overwhelming, thanks to decades of disinformation and miseducation of the local people. 

She remained in Kansas City, teaching in the public schools, retired in 1989 and became involved in other community service organizations, finally returning to Saipan in October 2016.  “Considering the 50 years in Kansas City,” Marie wrote in an email, “I felt that I have given a productive life for 50 years.  Now I am involved with a challenging undertaking with the Amelia Earhart project, to erect an AE Memorial Monument.”

Unlike most of us, who take on the toughest fights of our lives when we’re young, strong and in our prime, Marie is spending her Golden Years engaged in the most daunting challenge of her already overly-productive existence — erecting a monument to Amelia Earhart on the island where she met her tragic, untimely end. 

Most of the opposition to the monument has come from Saipan’s younger generations.  Like most Americans under 50, they’re ignorant about their own past and have been subjected to constant historical revisionism and U.S. establishment propaganda about the facts surrounding Amelia Earhart’s presence on the island in the pre-war years.  The politics on Saipan are overwhelmingly stacked against the Earhart truth — even worse than in the United States, if that’s even possible — and it appears only a miracle will save the Earhart Memorial Monument projectUnsurprisingly, not a word about Marie or the AEMMI has been uttered by a single American media organization. 

“Saipan, a little speck on the map, became the resting place for an American first woman heroine, Amelia Earhart,” Marie wrote in a July 4 email.  “We formed an Organization called the Amelia Earhart Memorial Monument on Feb. 2017, to place a statue of Amelia Earhart commemorating her presence and tragic end on Saipan in 1937.  Finally, President Trump, the 45th president acknowledges the greatest woman of the 20th century [in his recent announcement that he will establish a National Gardenof heroes that will include Earhart].  Mike, we are desperate to finance this project; we need . . . support from the U.S.  Maybe this is the time to get some help.”

Here this fine soul displays her penchant for serious understatement.  We greatly appreciate the support of the kind few who’ve stepped up to help, but it’s a small fraction of what’s needed to make this monument a reality.  The financial problems are one thing, but the politics are equally bad, with Saipan and Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas officials constantly avoiding a final decision about the location of the monument, which is a moot point without the money to pay for it.

As I said, a miracle is needed.  Are you listening Up There, Amelia?

61 responses

  1. Robert Grant Wealleans | Reply

    In my book Amelia Earhart Final Days I present photo evidence of the Electra on reef at Nikumaroro next to the SS Norwich City. Three aerial photos 1938 to 1942 show that this Electra made an incredible journey along the reef of approximately 600 meters to reach & go around the shipwreck & carry on toward lagoon entrance per position in ‘42 photo. That is where what is left of her plane may be found. I posted links in your media portion of your website. You want truth even if it counters your beliefs? The June ‘41 aerial photo enlargement presents the foreard fusrlagefrom nose to wings’ trailing edges.

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    1. Your claim is absurd, and this is the last time I’m going to put anything like this up. Go away and peddle your fish wrapper somewhere else.
      MC

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks, Mike. I don’t see anything which looks like a major part of an L-10 Electra. Robert Ballard said that the guts of the S.S. Norwich City litter the sea floor in that area, but no aircraft parts. Anything seen in the surf line or shallow water in those photos would be ship parts drifting offshore.

        T.I.G.H.A.R. found several pieces on Nikumororo which are consistent with parts of a PBY. It’s possible that a PBY made a forced landing at or near Gardner Island and was recovered (mostly) by the U.S. Navy.

        As I’ve written before, Bilimon’s statement about the plane on the afterdeck of Koshu in Jabor Harbor c. 10 Jul 1937 is rock solid.

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      2. Don’t forget also that there was a Coast Guard Loran station on Niku during the war, and that PBYs regularly serviced them.
        MC

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      3. I had forgotten about the Loran station. The PBY parts could be from an accident or field repair.

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    2. Couldn’t find the links on Mike’s site or anywhere on the www with a reasonable amount of searching. Please post the links here.

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      1. Whatever it is, it’s certainly not identifiable as anything specific. Not sure if it’s an anomaly or actually an old plane wreck. Not even Gillespie tried to make anything of this, as he is much more cunning in his deceit.

        MC

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      2. I don’t see the Electra, but in the June 1941 photo the Loch Ness monster is clearly visible.

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  2. Bravo Mike! But a beautiful tribute to Amelia- congratulations!

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  3. David Atchason | Reply

    Greetings Amameliaholics:

    I am about halfway through Wealleans Book and Mike you are meaner to Robert than Ric was. I was the subject of Ric’s wrath a couple times so I know the feeling. However, that being said, he raises some very good points. I haven’t finished the book yet, but I am itching to supply some input where I think Robert has made erroneous assumptions, but my corrections will reinforce his theories, not undermine them. I have noted some points I want to make, it’s possible that Ric and Robert are in the “right church but wrong pew.”

    Let me begin with Betty Klenck’s report: (I assume we all know the characters I name w/o further explanation) He says Betty notated South 39 1065 Z or E. He claims this should be South 4 degrees 39 minutes 1065 seconds. The Nikumaroro latitude of course. , no. She didn’t say 4 degrees. What she says is correct. 39 minutes S. which is approx. the latitude of Howland. However what it is exactly is the latitude of Nonouti. depending on where you are, it is a relatively big atoll. Robert points out that the Itasca may not have jeard everything she said as she changed her frequencies and anyway she couldn’t hear the itasca but even though the Itasca didn’t hear, the signal could skip and someone in Florida could hear.

    Coincidentally a week ago I happened on a Youtube video where someone was trying to restore a 1945 military radio with a dynamotor. Wow, those dynamotors made a racket. She may have had to use her headphones as it would be very hard to hear through a speaker. What got me on the Nonouti bandwagon was that Betty thought she heard NY, NY which some interpret as New York City which must have meant “Norwich City” the shipwreck. So I looked for an atoll in the Gilberts that sounded similar and I came up with Nonouti. So, you see wher I am going with this. (Even though it is pronounced NONOOSH).

    Just for kicks 4 years ago or more I looked at Nonouti on Google Earth and lo and behold there is a twin engine plane in the water with just the right dimensions to be a 10E Electra and it is STILL THERE. I put this on Ric’s forum and several agreed with me. Ric ignored me of course. I was contemplating a trip there but then I read TTAL and I was sidetracked. There are some people living there but it is for tourists a bonefish fishing estination. I will continue this in my next post.

    All Best,
    Dave

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    1. I can’t believe you take Betty Klenck’s “report” seriously! Come on, Man!
      MC

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      1. David Atchason

        For today at least I am taking Betty’s report seriously. What if she was hearing Nonouti as Amelia woud have pronounced it? How come the latitufe is correct for Howland (or Nonouti) as she transcribed it? Where did she get that?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You disappoint me, but I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. I refuse to grant any currency to this thread or your previous. You really should know much, much better than this. You are much too easily led.

        Mike

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  4. David Atchason | Reply

    I hope Robert Wealleans is still reading this. He seems to be hung up on Ric’s favorite scenario where the plane runs the engine to run the generator to run the radio. Not at all necessary. I think my high school physics calculation show that the radio would function for about an hour total transmission time on battery power alone until it ran down. Also, from what I have read here in past posts, the plane was made to transmit even though it was in the water where it would float indefinitely. With empty gas tanks it would easily float,in fact you couldn’t sink it unless the tanks were ruptured to allow water in. Betty thinks they were alarmed at the water coming into the plane, but I am not sure what ths means as the tides are only 2 feet, I believe. Maybe they were in the surf. If they were on a reef on Nikumaroro the plane would have eventually drifted away in a storm, but they weren’t there, I don’t think. Or, the plane could have drfted away before the search fliers got there. Maybe the plane on Nonouti is not hers, but it would be interesting to go there and look. If it were hers, maybe the Japs were tracking her and quickly picked her up on Nonouti. As for surviving on Nikumaroro, my take is that to get water you would have to dig a deep hole and be lucky to hit water in the water lens. Getting coconuts is next to impossible unless you are young and/or very athletic. So, some points in favor of Nikumaroro,and/or Nonouti. They could have decided to flly due West from Howland vicinity if they couldn’t sight it and woud have hit Nonouti. Robert does raise the interesting point that taking off from Howland would be very difficult as they had barely taken off from Lae. Agrees with Calvin. I don’t know the length of the runways,Robert doesn’t say. So I will keep on reading and comment some more. I may be talking through my hat, but today I am talking through my MASK. Hehehe

    Dave

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  5. David Atchason | Reply

    Weallean’s book to me is a well thought out speculation and makes quite a few points I hadn’t thought of. I am frustrated that either in the Kindle or in your link Ican’t find any pictures that I could even begin to see anything clear enough to see anything resembling a plane. I can see why Ric would reject this view. My trouble with his theory is the same as with Ric’s, that is where was the plane on July 9 when the search planes arrived? The plane did not sink between July 7,her last purported message and July 9. The plane. empty of gas, would float. Maybe not high in the water, but it would not sink out of sight, either. The cabin would probably fill with water, but some of the plane would srick out of the water. Those big extra gas tanks would almost hold the plane up by themselves. However, without a real world test, I can’t be totally sure of this. I notice the plane had a gross weight pf 10,500 # so with all that gas it was grossly overloaded, Almost 13,500# no wonder it was hard to control on takeoff. I don’t know where he gets his reports that the natives would see the plane at low tide. There was a Ric story that the natives knew there was a wreck out there and the natives thought it was bad vibes so said an 11 yo girl who was possibly coached. THe only radio message rhat mentions their poition is the one Betty supposedly heard, and it is not the latitude of Nikumaroro unless you put wordsin her mouth. It ia tempting for me to believe Wealleans book, but I can’y quite do that.

    Davw

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    1. Robert Wealleans | Reply

      By the way, Nina Paxton heard Earhart and spoke of hearing the flyer say 173 longitude and 5 latitude which most think of as close to Mili Atoll. but if you make that 5 degrees South latitude, it’s Nikumaroro which is at 4.38 South latitude and 174.32 longitude – a Fred Noonasn reading after they landed that morning? What are the odds of Betty Klenck writing down random numbers heard on a radio that coincide with the minutes and seconds of a latitude line that runs right through Nikumaroro’s north reef? She added them for Ric’s benefit? I can kid, too. I hope for photo analysis. I’m 70, retired, and cannot afford the costs. won’t someone explore this lead further? RGW

      On Sat, Jul 11, 2020 at 8:21 PM Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last wrote:

      > David Atchason commented: “Weallean’s book to me is a well thought out > speculation and makes quite a few points I hadn’t thought of. I am > frustrated that either in the Kindle or in your link Ican’t find any > pictures that I could even begin to see anything clear enough to see anyth” >

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    2. The post-loss messages heard by Nina Paxton specifically stated the Marshall Islands (and I believe at some point included the word “Mili”).

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  6. William H. Trail | Reply

    Mr. Wealleans,

    Let me state for the record that I am firmly and unshakably of the belief that Amelia Earhart landed the Electra on Barre Island, Mili Atoll in the Imperial Japanese Mandated Marshall Islands on Friday, 2 July 1937. And, from that place she and her navigator, Fred Noonan were taken into custody by the Japanese and conveyed via Jaluit, and possibly Truk, to Saipan where they eventually died very badly as prisoners. There’s just too much credible evidence, to include documented eyewitness testimony, for any intelligent, rational, reasonable, thoughtful person of sound mind who has done their research to believe otherwise. People saw AE and FN there. People not only saw them on Saipan in 1937, but people also saw and physically handled evidence of their presence found on Saipan in 1944.

    However, let’s assume for the sake of polite, informed discussion that AE and FN actually did land on Gardner Island (now Nikumororo), and that a Japanese vessel sailed there and picked them up from that place as you posit on your website. What possible purpose would it serve the Japanese to launch a mission approximately 1,200 statute miles from the nearest point of the Mandates to Gardner, through an ocean area under increasingly intense search by aircraft and surface vessels of the U.S. Navy, to pick up AE and FN, secretly convey them back to the Japanese Mandates, and NOT return them to U.S. authorities?

    What possible purpose could that have served? What possible benefit could Imperial Japan have derived from such a bold, brazen, risk-filled, and extremely provocative action? What was the clearly defined, decisive, and attainable objective (“Objective” being the first of the Nine Principles of War and other Military Operations at the strategic, operational, and tactical levels) for the Japanese to launch such an operation?

    Respectfully,

    William

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Robert Wealleans | Reply

      Since I believe that is her plane in the photos I presented, I had to get her and Noonan off Gardner island to allow your Japanese scenario – out of fairness. Cordell Hull officially thanked Japan for their part in the search for Earhart on or about July 19, 1937 – National Archives. And the mystery Japanese fishing boat reported in Japanese newspapers at the time which had picked up the duo is a possibility. I maintained objectivity and merely set out my position but the hostility that is returned is not academic or science. Too bad. I’m asked to leave with insults hurled. Fine. Such incredible anger! That is what is absurd here. The future will see further truth revealed. Robert Grant Wealleans

      On Sun, Jul 12, 2020 at 11:23 AM Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last wrote:

      > William H. Trail commented: “Mr. Wealleans, Let me state for the record > that I am firmly and unshakably of the belief that Amelia Earhart landed > the Electra on Barre Island, Mili Atoll in the Imperial Japanese Mandated > Marshall Islands on Friday, 2 July 1937. And, from that place” >

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      1. Your problem is that you are simply delusional. Where you think you see an Electra, there’s nothing that can be identified at all. Nobody who isn’t also delusional takes you seriously, and for good reason.
        MC

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      2. Regarding Japan’s offer of assistance in the AE search; The Chief of Bureau of Military Affairs (IJN) sent a telegram July 5, 1937 to the Naval Attache of the Japanese Embassy in Washington which stated (in part) “Since it is believed that she went down in the vicinity of the MARSHALL ISLANDS area, the Government of the South Sea Islands has ordered all ships, (lookouts?) and communication facilities to cooperate in the discovering of her”, and went on to say “This offer was made not only as an expression of good will, but for the purpose of preventing the United States merchant and fighting vessels which are searching for Miss Earhart, from coming too close to the Marshall Islands.” I would say their offer to help was disingenuous at best.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. William H. Trail

        Mr. Wealleans,

        You see what you believe is Amelia Earhart’s Lockheed Electra in the photos you presented? I looked very closely at the photos you presented. Like Washington, my eyes too have grown dim in the service of my country. However, I’m far from blind! And, I see absolutely nothing in any of those photos that is distinguishable, or could in any way be interpreted as part of any recognizable object, much less an aircraft, and certainly not a Lockheed Electra 10-E Special.

        Now, you write in your reply to me, “Since I believe that is her plane in the photos I presented, I had to get her and Noonan off Gardner island to allow your Japanese scenario – out of fairness.” Sir, “fairness” has nothing to do with this. I find your words most disconcerting because those are not the words a researcher of any topic would use. Those are the words of a novelist, a writer of fiction, a storyteller who has taken some historical facts, along with some controversial photos, and a lot of imagination to craft a work of historical fiction. I ask you, sir, did you write “Amelia Earhart: Final Days” as a work of historical fiction? I believe you did. You tell us so on your website. I refer you to sentence four of the “Welcome” paragraph in which you wrote these exact words [Bold and Italics mine]: In addition to “Amelia Earhart: Final Days” I have written sixteen other novels….

        Other novels? Thank you, by your very own words you have established for us that “Amelia Earhart: Final Days” is indeed a novel. And those questions I politely and respectfully asked you previously:

        What possible purpose would it serve the Japanese to launch a mission approximately 1,200 statute miles from the nearest point of the Mandates to Gardner, through an ocean area under increasingly intense search by aircraft and surface vessels of the U.S. Navy, to pick up AE and FN, secretly convey them back to the Japanese Mandates, and NOT return them to U.S. authorities?

        What possible benefit could Imperial Japan have derived from such a bold, brazen, risk-filled, and extremely provocative action?

        What was the clearly defined, decisive, and attainable objective (“Objective” being the first of the Nine Principles of War and other Military Operations at the strategic, operational, and tactical levels) for the Japanese to launch such an operation?

        Those are the plot holes.

        William

        Liked by 1 person

      4. William,

        Thanks for taking the time to fill in the blanks, which I’m not wont to do. As I wrote you in a previous email, I have far less patience with these types, having endured them for about the last 20 years on a regular basis. Further, I don’t feel I have to constantly justify myself to people who exhibit zero respect for me or my body of work. I also gave Wealleans the benefit of the doubt when I called him “delusional” in my last comment, and left out the other strong possibility — that he could also well be blatantly dishonest, and so he is.

        A work of fiction should be clearly labeled as such, and not passed off as non-fiction. This is especially true when the Earhart case is the subject, when we already have thousands of novels, fantasies and propaganda books cluttering the shelves, all avoiding the sad, tragic truth about Amelia’s demise on Saipan.

        I hope that he indeed goes away and finds some other site to haunt. He adds nothing to the discussion here, nothing except confusion, that is.

        Mike

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      5. William H. Trail

        Tom,

        The Imperial Japanese offer of help was disingenuous. No less than Rear Admiral Edwin T. Layton, U.S.N. (Ret.), who was serving as a Naval Attache in Tokyo at the time, says as much in his book, “And I Was There: Pearl Harbor and Midway — Breaking the Secrets.” On page 62 is his observation vis-a-vis the search for Amelia Earhart from July 1937. Adm. Layton wrote, “We worked closely with Yamamoto’s office during the July 1937 search for Amelia Earhart, a matter in which they cooperated politely, but only halfheartedly.”

        All best,

        William

        Liked by 1 person

      6. David Atchason

        William,
        Does LAyton’s book explain how the Americans, knowing the JAp Code, learned their attack was going to be at Midway? Or does he skip this? In other words, was Weallean’s account of that incident real? It sounds like it was. Having been bombarded with the “conventional” account of the war with Japan all my life, all those “Victory at Sea” TV programs, I don’t recall ever hearing of the critical role the breaking of the Jap code played in the war. Especially the fact that FDR knew the Jap fleet had sailed and then curtailed all American observation systems so that it would be seen as a “sneak attck.” So, publicizing the fact that we knew what the Japs were doing from 1937 or earlier, it would look bad if the public learned of this and that FDR let the attack happen anyway,
        Going back to my calculations, as I explained earlier, my previous vision of her plane floating high in the water seems to have been a hallucination on my part. Now, I can’t picture a scenario other than the plane filling with water rendering the radio inoperative in a short time and barely leaving enough headroom for them to survive sitting in the plane. So I don’t think a water landing where they wait to be picked up is realistic and I would think that AE was aware of that. Maybe that’s why she picked a landing on Mili Atoll, there was no other realistic choice if she was out of gas which she probably would have been had she flown almost to Howland and then turned north towards the MArshalls. AS usual, one question answered just leads to two more new questions.

        Best,
        Dave

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      7. Commander Joe Rochefort is generally recognized as the Midway codebreaker while he was assigned to Pearl Harbor. He worked closely with Adm. Layton. See the book:
        Joe Rochefort’s War: The Odyssey of the Codebreaker Who Outwitted Yamamoto at Midway

        Mike

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      8. William,

        I agree; and when AE & Fred were in their custody, there would be NO reason to search; the only reason to even “halfheartedly” search would be to give the appearance they were making an effort.

        Tom

        Like

      9. Adm. Layton certainly had every opportunity to have learned the truth about Amelia and Fred and yet, if so, chose to remain silent unlike Captain Safford who was equivocal, thus casting doubt on the official account.

        Like

  7. David Atchason | Reply

    I redid my calculations last night and I still conclude that the plane would float unless her gas tanks were ruptured. Not as much flotation as I thought a year ago but she would not sink. Low in the water, yes. If she landed on Mili it didn’t matter if she could run an engine or not. The battery would run the radio for quite a while like an hour continuously , She might have had an auxiliary battery, too. I don’t know if her fuselage gas tanks had a dump valve but the wing tanks certainly did, I saw them on the L10 at the Bradley Air Museum. I i magine they dumped ALL the fuel when she had to ditch the plane, not kept 500 gallons to run the engines.
    Speaking of Ric, I think I recall TIGHAR did extensive SCUBA diving in that lagoon and in that surrounding reef didn’t they? They found nothing whatsoever on Niku. Then,when I gave Ric the idea that the plane floated he decided in order to keep juggling the balls in the air he would contend the plane floated away (I agree, I’m sure it would have, if the Japs didn’t grab it first), and then conveniently it would sink at the edge of the reef so he began his deep sea (very expensive and inconclusive deep water expeditions) dives.
    I’m going to try to get my best views of Weallean’s photos on a good computer, but my heart isn’t in it. Yes, one photo I saw sure does look like a (her?) plane in the water, but didn’t almost all those twin engine planes have a nose door? I bet they all did, the Twin Otter s I have flown in certainly have that kind of door in the nose. David Billings would know.
    I do like Weallean’s idea that her briefcase may have tipped off the JAps that she was up to no good. It probably took them a while to study the contents and it’s possible at first they were relatively nice to her. I think he mentions the ruse the USN used to find out where the Japs were going to attack after Pearl without giving away we had their code broken. Once we knew it was Midway we ambushed them, virtually winning the war right there. And the Japs never knew. A masterpiece. So William’s idea that we were stirring up the Japs with AE’s flight in order to learn more Jap code becomes even more compelling. Could they tell Amelia that? Noooo!. Did the Japs suspect she knew stuff? You bet they did. Did the Japs suspect something was going on with her fight that wasn’t what it seemed? Yes. Did they ever figure it out. Nope. It must have been miserable for Amelia. Now I see why they kept her. Obviously she didn’t talk or the Midway plan never would have succeeded. This was all planned in 1937. When I was a kid I heard several people say that the Pearl Harbor attack was a plot by FDR. You don’t hear that any more. In 60 years the same with 9/11 the “New Parl Harbor”. It will become part of our furniture. I have heard that history is a set of lies that everyone believes.Yup.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. David Atchason | Reply

    Today I’d like to go off on a new tangent. The last couple days I have been getting little stories on FB about shipwrecks on desrted Islands and how this inspired “The Lord of the Rings” (which I have never read) and there is some movie will be made blah, blah. Anyway upon awakening this morning I gazed at my smartphone to see if the world had ended, and FB came up with a continuation of the shipwreck story and some guy said his Great-great grandfather had been shipwrecked on Baker Island for many months in the American ship “Asterion.” They ALL survived but they got scurvy. So, apparently it’s not a big problem to survive there especially if you have access to your shipwreck.

    To come to the point after my coffee and muffin I got on FB to look up the story again and found NOTHING. Where did it go? Did anybody else see the stories? So, naturally I looked up Baker Island/Asterion and found nothing about the Asterion. It must have been a whale ship. I do recall years ago in my interest in Gardner Island that some adventurer had written a book about purposely surviving on one of these atolls. Lost that now. So Baker had a colonization attempt in 1935 and some of the structures are still evident. It had a LORAN station. The colonists were dropped off by the Itasca.

    Somewhere around 1870 the American Guano Co. mined the guano on Baker, also Gardner. It seems these atolls were busy places off and on. Baker I. was bombed by the Japs (I think). So, the idea that FDR suddenly took over these atolls in contemplation of war is a little sketchy they had been declared U.S. possessions back in 1869 or sometime like that. But the 1935 colonization by Americans I have never heard about. So, evidently if AE and FN had found water and survived at all they should have been alive for months. So if they were there at some point where did they disappear to? You could buy into the theory that the Japs picked them and their plane up quickly, but even Gillespie didn’t propose that, I don’t think. Or did he? I’m not sure, but didn’t no one actually land on and search Gardner until Bevington in 1938? Or late 1937?

    Since I purposely put anti-establishment posts on FB I am not surprised that they mess with my account, it happens to people I know, too. Sometimes with direct WARNINGS. But why a shipwreck story would disappear, I don’t know. I wonder where the story of the American whaleship Asterion could be found?

    All Best,

    Dave

    Like

  9. The colonists on Baker island were high school kids from HI. It was organized by Richard Black. The purpose of the colony was to preserve the U.S. claim to the island. There were two Chinese radio operators at the colony at least one of whom was a woman. That led to some speculation on the old T.I.G.H.A.R. forum that some of the post loss messages may have been spoofed by them. The RDF lines of bearing which are claimed to cluster around Gardner Island are about equally likely to have been indicating transmissions originating on Baker. Interestingly, a bio of Richard Black states that he had two Chinese radio operators with him on Howland on the morning of July 2, 1937.

    Like

    1. William H. Trail | Reply

      CDA,

      That is interesting. What bio of Richard Black contained information that he had two Chinese radio operators with him on Howland? Thanks!

      All best,

      William

      Like

  10. It was one I found Googling a few months ago. I’ll look for it and post the link if I can find it again.

    Like

    1. Couldn’t find it easily. Typical Google. The hypothesis is that RBB had one of the first gen. Navy HF-DF units on Howland as a navaid. The first gen. units would have been replaced at HYPO with second gen. by June/July 1937. The Chinese operators would have been familiar with the operation of the first gen. units from working in China or Guam.

      Will keep looking. It’s a challenge now.

      Like

      1. If you have Dave Horner’s The Earhart Enigma, you can read all about the whole confusing affair with RM2 Frank Cipriani and the Howland Island Radio logs, which includes the roles of Yau Fai Lum, Ah Kin Leong and Henry Lau, three radio operators who were also assigned to Howland Island. See pages 143-168 in Horner’s book if you wish to become disoriented. At least that’s the effect this story had on me, and why I still haven’t posted Paul Rafford Jr.’s piece, from January 1998 called “The Cipriani/Howland Island Radio Log: Fact or Fiction,” which appeared in the March 1998 edition of Bill Prymak’s AES Newsletters. Much of Horner’s information comes from Rafford’s article.

        I suppose I’ll get to it eventually, but it’s not something I look forward to doing, as it’s all a dead end leading nowhere, at least as I see it.

        MIke

        Like

      2. Thanks Mike. There is no doubt on my part that there is a lot if disinformation and misdirection regarding U.S. SIGINT/COMINT activity in the Pacific at the time.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. William H. Trail

        CDA,

        Thanks for looking. Much appreciated. I was really hoping you’d found a book — even a privately published one — about RBB. You’re right about all the disinformation and misdirection. Although, in fairness, some people such as Itasca’s captain, Commander Warner K. Thompson, USCG most likely would not have been “read on” to anything concerning what I believe to be AE and FN’s real reason (SIGINT/COMINT) for not landing at Howland Island. He did not have a “need-to-know.” And, as a result, CDR Thompson’s report, based on what he knew to be the facts, only served to support the Navy’s official “lost, splashed, and sank” cover story.

        All best,

        William

        Like

  11. David Atchason | Reply

    In the interest of following up dead ends, I noted some additional factoids in Wikipedia. First, Howland Island is a little bit bigger than Baker. If it’s true that B-24s could use the field on Baker to take off, why couldn’t they have also used Howland? One would think that AE needed less runway to take off than a B-24 although that may not be true. What I mean is that it would seem pointless to build a runway for AE that she couldn’t utilize, but we would need to know what length AE would need with a full load of fuel. Maybe I’ll call up LOckheed and ask. Also, the seabird problem sometimes cited apparently was not a problem on the similar Island, Baker. So why choose the bigger island and then not construct the runway long enough? I thought I was clever discovering on FB that a ship Asterion wrecked on Baker in the 19th century, but Wikipedia says several shipwrecks occurred on Howland I. and it (and probably all the Phoenix Islands) was a known navigation hazard. So it would seem that Gardner must have been the same and perhaps several ships were wrecked there before the Norwich City and it would not seem unusual for 80 year old skeletons to still be there which Gallagher apparently found.

    I think RBB refers to Richard Black, and I suppose what is curious is that Chinese men were stationed on the Islands is that what the point is? WE also don’t know if AE had a 2nd radio which she used to keep in touch with maybe Black on Howland. Wasn’t there a story that on her flight day his batteries on Howland were dead? What was that about?

    So I’m just musing on all these points solving nothing as usual. What I find even more of a mystery is the Pacific Islands in general, there are many inexplicable ruins on them (even Howland has some signs of habitation) and the mystery of somewhere like Nan Madol has more bearing on early civilizations than AE’s flight does, of course.
    All Best,

    David Atchason

    Like

    1. William H. Trail | Reply

      David,

      Good afternoon, sir. Don’t bother calling Lockheed. I think I have all you’ll need. These statistics are taken directly from, “Earhart What Really Happened at Howland” by George Carson Carrington.

      Fuel System:

      Wing Tanks — 16 gallon, left and right.
      — 81 gallon, left and right.
      — 102 gallon, left and right.

      Fuselage Tanks — 188 gallon forward, left and right.
      — 149 gallon mid-cabin, three each.
      — 70 gallon, rear cabin.

      Total Fuel Capacity (Tankage) — 1151 gallons.

      Oil System:

      Standard — 9 gallons in each nacelle.

      Auxiliary — 28 gallons aft of beam outboard of wheel well , 2 1/2″ connecting line to
      to above, containing one (1) gallon.

      Please note: AvGas weighs 6.0 lbs. per gallon. Oil weighs 1.875 lbs. per quart, or 7.5
      lbs. per gallon.
      (These statistics come from “Biennial Flight Review” by Art Parma) Also note that Biennial Flight Reviews (BFR) are now simply called, “Flight Reviews.”

      Lockheed Electra 10-E Performance:

      Empty Weight — 7817 lbs.
      Maximum takeoff weight — 15,700 lbs.
      Best runway used — 3000 feet, under ideal conditions, with 100 octane fuel.

      Fuel Consumption — (preliminary) 87 octane, all cylinder head temperatures under 365
      degrees Celsius
      1900 rpm @ 29″ Hg = 51.5 gal/hr
      1800 rpm @ 28″ Hg = 52.4 gal/hr
      1800 rpm @ 26″ Hg = 43.0 gal/hr
      1700 rpm @ 26″ Hg = 36.0 gal/hr
      1550 rpm @ 24″ Hg = 38.6 gal/hr

      In closing let me just say that the composition and condition of the runway surface is every bit as important as runway length. For example, all other factors ( Wind Direction/Speed, Density Altitude, and Mechanical Turbulence) aside, you’re takeoff roll on a smooth, concrete, or asphalt runway will be shorter than on a grass, or other less improved, or poorly maintained surface.

      If memory serves me correctly, our Captain Pitts, doyen of all things aviation, clearly and unequivocally proved beyond a reasonable doubt right here in Mike’s blog sometime ago that AE and FN never intended to land on Howland Island.

      All best,

      William

      Like

      1. Nice, William! Thanks much.

        Mike

        Like

  12. David Atchason | Reply

    Thanks, William, for the statistics. I suppose the heavy load of gas AE had would be no different than an equal weight of cargo. I remember Captain Pitts contended that she could not have taken off from Howland. I seem to remember that, to me, it was not an open & shut case, I did not feel completely satisfied with his explanation.

    But he should know, at least to you, his case was good. Probably Lockheed did not have tables showing the minimum runway length for near maximum takeoff weight on hard coral runway at sea level at a hot temperature with almost calm winds. Or did they? What would be informative would be the length of runway that AE used at Lae because the conditions were similar or even worse actually, and compare it to the runway on Howland. If AE used 4,000 ft. to accomplish her Lae takeoff and the runway at Howland was 3.000 ft. then it would be an open & shut case that she could not have taken off from Howland. I never saw Captain Pitts use this comparison, to my recollection.

    But even if Captain Pitts is 100% right, what would that mean? Wouldn’t some other experts have raised this issue over the 83 years?
    As for her plane floating in a water landing, there are so many variables one would have to run actual experiments to see what would happen to her plane in the water just as automobiles are subjected to actual experimental crashes to see what would happen to them because the calculations can be misleading. All I can say is that if her plane landed on a dry reef in one piece, and the tide came in gently, it would certainly have to float. Of course the tides on Gardner Island are only 2 feet, so that’s not going to happen. Another thought I have is what’s with the construction of the airfield on Baker I. for B-24s when there already was infrastructure on Howland I. which is a bit bigger?
    AllBest,

    Dave

    Like

    1. William H. Trail | Reply

      David,

      You’re welcome. I’m glad I could help. As far as the heavy load of AvGas being no different from an equal weight of cargo well, not exactly. I know what you’re trying to say, but we need to be specific about what we’re talking about. We need to look at several different weights.

      Empty Weight — That’s the total weight of the aircraft, to include all fixed ballast, unusable fuel, undrainable oil, total quantity of engine coolant (if applicable — it’s not, the Electra’s Pratt & Whitney Type S3H-1 radial engines were air cooled), and total quantity of hydraulic fluid. This excludes the aircrew, any payload, usable fuel, and drainable oil.

      Fuel Load — This is usable fuel only, not the fuel remaining in the fuel lines, or trapped in the sumps.

      Useful Load — this is the weight of the aircrew, any passengers, baggage, usable fuel and drainable oil. Useful Load is the Empty Weight subtracted from the Maximum Allowable Takeoff Weight.

      Maximum Allowable Takeoff Weight — Maximum Allowable Takeoff Weight will be specified in the Aircraft Manual, and also in the Pilot’s Operating Handbook. It is just what it says: it’s the maximum weight allowable for takeoff. It may be limited to a lesser weight due to a host of variables to include, but not limited to, runway length/condition, runway slope, density altitude, etc. Maximum Allowable Takeoff Weights are calculated by the aircraft manufacturer and are based on ideal conditions. Maximum Allowable Takeoff Weights are not absolute. There is some limited “wiggle room.” That’s why you can occasionally pack a Lockheed C-130 Hercules SRO with South Vietnamese refugees and get away with it.

      Stall Speed vs Weight — As the weight of the airplane increases, the stall speed also increases. Due to the greater weight, a higher angle of attack must be maintained to produce the additional lift to support additional weight in flight. Needless to say, a heavier aircraft will require a longer runway to attain flying speed.

      Regarding your not being satisfied by Calvin’s explanation, all I can offer is that Calvin is a retired Captain who holds an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) rating. That’s a PhD in Aviation. Given his lifetime of experience, and level of professional knowledge, he’s probably forgotten more about aviation than most than most pilots, including me, could ever hope to know. Calvin knows what he’s talking about, and doesn’t speak lightly. When he says that AE could not have taken off from Howland with a full fuel load, I believe him. You too should heed Calvin’s words on this. Even though the North/South runway at Howland was 5200′ in length, it was not aligned with the prevailing winds. Using the North/South runway would have meant a crosswind takeoff with all it’s inherent problems and considerations. Bottom line: It would have been a very dodgy proposition at best.

      Now, why did it take 83 years to figure out that AE could not have taken off from Howland with a full fuel load? Because, no one really gave it much thought. Everyone took it for granted. It’s what we’d all been told repeatedly, over and over again — AE was supposed to land at Howland, refuel, and take off for Honolulu — home to Oakland and G.P. for the Fourth of July. We all fell for it. As for what it all means? It means that, for AE and FN, Howland Island was simply a navigational checkpoint they never intended to land on. From Howland on, AE and FN were flying for Uncle Sam.

      Dave, I highly encourage you to continue your research into the Electra’s prospects for flotation. I believe it is very important to the overall effort. By my own calculations, the empty fuel tanks by themselves would have constituted just short of 150 cubic feet of air-filled space providing buoyancy. My personal belief is that with the wings and fuselage remaining intact after a successful ditching, the Electra may have remained floating on the surface for a very long time. It may even have stayed afloat long enough to become a “hazard to navigation” in need of being sunk by naval gunfire. It just depends on how watertight the wings and fuselage were. If we were able to accurately determine the total volume of the Electra, it would contribute significantly to determining it’s capability to float.

      All best,

      William

      Like

      1. David Atchason

        William,
        Thanks for your response, at least someone on the blog takes me seriously, whether that’s advisable or not. Sometimes answers come surprisingly easy, maybe this one does. I just discovered a TIGHAR post. https://tighar.org/Projects/Earhart/Archives/Research/Bulletins/27_LaeGallery/27_LaeGallery.html#:~:text=description%2C%20the%20Guinea%20Airways%20hangar%20probably%20once%20stood,has%20been%20said%20to%20show%20the%20Earhart%20aircraft

        Unless I am hallucinating, it says the Lae runway was 3,000 ft. You just said the runway at Howland was 5,200 ft. On its face it appears that AE should have had plenty of runway to take off as conditions were similar, don’t know about the crosswind, I thought the winds at that time were steady from the East. And didn’t Anne Pellegrino duplicate her flight? Didn’t Anne take off from Lae and also take off from Howland? I don’t know, I haven’t read the book, maybe I will. I know Mike seems to not like her book for some reason, although I may be mistaken about that.

        Seeing as how I’m not a pilot although I had my chance to be and probably would have been a good one, too late now, I have no first hand knowledge of all the parameters found in pilot’s handbook.
        https://tighar.org/Projects/Earhart/Archives/Research/Bulletins/27_LaeGallery/27_LaeGallery.html#:~:text=description%2C%20the%20Guinea%20Airways%20hangar%20probably%20once%20stood,has%20been%20said%20to%20show%20the%20Earhart%20aircraft

        I think the dialogue in the post says “desperately overloaded.” Sorry to jump around, sometimes I have lost a lengthy post of mine going to different sites. But back to the flotation, there is no need for pilot’s handbook at all. By Archimedes principal the flotation of the EMPTY tanks would have been sufficient in theory to keep the plane afloat. I doubt very much that the flotation of the fuselage like the airspace at the top when the plane was sinking would have been much of a factor. I doubt that the fuselage was watertight at all. But any watertightness at all would only have helped the flotation. However the Provincetown-Boston flight in 1963? that crashed and sank took 7 minutes which shows that it had little or no effect. I don’t know how much fuel that plane was carrying, the info seems elusive.

        But anyway, with all due respect to Calvin, my above assertions seem to show that Calvin was wrong. Seeing as how I am only an armchair aviator, I will welcome any counter arguement, I may be seriously missing important point(s).
        All Best,

        Dave

        Like

  13. William;

    Was a full load of fuel specified for the Howland stop? As the Howland to Hawaii leg was shorter than the Lae to Howland leg, technically a full load wouldn’t be necessary, but of course you want as much reserve as possible flying over open ocean.

    Tom

    Like

    1. William H. Trail | Reply

      Tom,

      To be honest, I don’t know what amount of fuel was specified for the Howland to Honolulu leg, but according to Laurance Safford’s book “Earhart’s Flight Into Yesterday” (page 27), the USCGC Shoshone delivered 31 drums of aviation fuel to Howland Island on 15 March 1937; 31 drums at 55 gallons per drum works out to 1,705 gallons. That’s 10,230 pounds. It was still there, waiting for AE, on 2 July. Yes, I’d want some fuel reserve, too.

      All best,

      William

      Like

      1. Re: runway at Howland https://tighar.org/wiki/Radio_traffic_about_the_Howland_Island_runways
        Here I find a wealth of info much more nuanced about runway length and possibility of takeoff. I see why, in his opinion, Calvin doubted Amelia could have taken off from Howland. Nowhere in this link discussing what length runway she needed and what had been measured for her takeoff from other fields is there any mention of how much fuel she had on board. With the full 1150 gallons and using the east-west runway.

        I can see why Calvin didn’t think it could be done. Certainly, if she was headed for Howland she would need all the fuel she could hold. But if she were headed for Hawaii, she might not need a full load of fuel which would enable her to use the east-west runway. So her flying from west to east would enable her to load less fuel headed to Hawaii and just for this reason alone would advise her doing west to east. But they didn’t use that excuse. So Calvin was not wrong but it was not black and white it was in his experienced opinion, that’s why I felt his reasoning was not clear cut. So I’m learning new things while piloting my armchair.
        All Best,
        David

        Like

  14. TIGHAR is monopolizing the bulk of sponsorship and donor resources to flog a theoretical horse that was dead mere weeks after Earhart and Noonan disappeared: The “Niku Notion”, I call it. Not only did the naval aerial search of Gardner–conducted shortly after the plane went missing–fail to locate the Lockheed or the crew, but subsequent inhabitants of the island didn’t find any trace of Earhart, the plane or her navigator.

    Perhaps ONE Niku expedition by TIGHAR was warranted to check certain portions of the atoll for evidence, but after that effort, TIGHAR should have simply turned their attention to other theories, including my own; The plane was ditched after running out of fuel. I would guess about 50 to 80 nautical miles northwest of Howland Island.

    Like

    1. William H. Trail | Reply

      David,

      Attributed to Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, and Albert Einstein, it is said that “the definition of insanity is repeating the same action or actions over and over again and expecting different results.” However, Mr. Gillespie and his TIGHAR cohorts are not “insane.” Far from it. Agenda driven, yes, but not insane. I’m in full agreement with you in that one Niku Expedition was warranted. After all, a good investigator runs out all the leads — if for no other reason than to rule out any remote possibilities and tie up any loose ends. Close-the-loop: leave no stone unturned, no question unasked, or Source uninterviewed. That said, this is where we part company as it were.

      I don’t subscribe to the “Splashed and Sank” theories as it ignores a plethora of evidence that, after landing on Mili Atol, Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan were taken into Japanese custody and died very badly on Saipan. Have you read Mike’s book, “Amelia Earhart: The Truth At Last?” If not, I highly recommend it to you. Still, in a spirit of collegial exchange I would very much like to hear your reasons for believing as you do, and see any fuel consumption calculations that support your theory.

      All best,

      William

      Like

      1. By the way, I’ve been corresponding with Dorothy Cochrane, who is the curator of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, concerning Dr. Ballard’s Expedition to Nikumaroro. Rather than affirming Gillespie’s assertions, his thorough search of the island and surrounding reefs and ocean bottoms– employing top notch technicians and ocean research hardware–REFUTED TIGHAR’s claims. You’ll notice how Mr. Gillespie has shifted his attention to Glenn Miller and his untimely demise.

        Like

      2. First you say “all theories have merit,” and now you tell us you’re corresponding with Dorothy Cochrane, who has taken over for the odious Tom Crouch as the Smithsonian’s chief mouthpiece and Earhart propagandist. How did you even find this blog, with such weak ideas and associations?

        No real “theories” exist in the Earhart disappearance, as that word is properly defined. We have the truth, supported by dozens of eyewitnesses and witnesses, documents, letters and other evidence that Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan crash-landed in the Marshalls, were picked up and taken to Saipan by the Japanese, and died there at some unknown date before the American invasion in June 1944, possibly as many as six years before the Battle of Saipan. Several small details remain unknown, most importantly the how and why behind the Earhart Electra’s Mili Atoll landing — but the big picture is lying in plain sight, as clear as the nose on Fred Noonan’s face, obvious to all but the blind and the agenda driven.

        And we have enormous, transparent lies. First came the original crashed-and-sank myth born in 1937 with the Navy-Coast Guard’s search findings — briefly logical until quickly overcome by the facts — which finally became so ludicrous and unacceptable by the late 1980s that a new deception to distract the public was needed. Thus was born the current Nikumaroro virus, which continues to be the media’s default position, infecting virtually everything Earhart. Most are no longer fooled, but that doesn’t stop the media from continually trying to force this lie down our collective throats.

        Both of these lies have been glorified and raised to the status of “theories” by a deep-state establishment determined to protect the checkered legacy of Franklin D. Roosevelt, America’s president at the time of Earhart and Noonan’s deaths.

        The above has been extracted from my Position Statement, which you can easily access on the top of this blog’s front page. There’s much more there that you need to read, if not absorb, which of course will not go down easily for a correspondent of Ms. Cochrane.

        You can find much more on Cochrane by doing a simple word search on this blog. Of course she’s not a “correspondent” with this blog, and has never even seen fit to write a single word of rebuttal to anything that’s been written about her. I don’t wonder why.

        Mike

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  15. Every theory has merit (Unless someone claims Elvis hijacked the plane…) and until the aircraft and/or the crew are located, we can only conjecture what happened. TIGHAR’s insistence that their particular notion warrants multiple expeditions to check out intermittent, questionable appearances of the plane, or to promote reevaluations of bone measurements betrays a form of insanity. I wouldn’t donate a wooden nickel to TIGHAR for any of their “Projects”, “Operations” or to view any of their “Smoking Gun” exhibits. Gillespie is flogging that expired pony for personal gain, and he’s been quite successful at convincing his flock to keep the faith.

    Like

  16. David Atchason | Reply

    To reply to my own post above, to me, it seems RBB and crew were very concerned about Amelia’s takeoff distance at Howland and did the best they could, nothing jumps out at me as a civilian that says they knew she did not have enough room, but she sure had a lot of nerve taking off from Lae and then you would think she would know how sketchy the field was at Howland, but she never mentions it. So I don’t think the Howland field was deliberately made impossible and I don’t think this is a factor in what caused her disappearance.

    Like

    1. You load a plane up to the gunnels with fuel, supplies, people, etc, and you’ll be rolling the dice on the takeoff run. Their pre-attempt calculations should have factored in all the variables, so the crew would have some assurance that the available runways were sufficient…perhaps on the ragged edge of being sufficient, though. Earhart had some of the finest aviators, technicians and planners of that era helping her with this trip. I don’t believe they would overlook runway length requirements.

      Like

  17. EarhartTruth,

    That’s exactly what I said. The “Niku Notion” had merit, which is why the Navy sent planes to Gardner Island to investigate the possibility of the Lockheed landing there. The “Niku Notion” had no merit after that search was completed. Indeed, if you realize people who lived on the island after 1937 didn’t find the aircraft or crew, and X numbers of TIGHAR Expeditions haven’t turned up evidence to prove the theory, then you’ve got a debunked theory. Ballard’s junket should have driven the final nail in the “Niku Notion” coffin.

    Like

    1. Actually you didn’t exactly say the Niku Notion HAD merit, you said every theory HAS merit…two completely different meanings. And as William Trail asked, what is your reasoning for believing the “splashed and sank” theory?

      Like

      1. The Niku Notion still has merit, or Ballard/National Geographic wouldn’t have detailed their crews and considerable resources to search the island and adjacent reefs/ocean cliffs and bottoms. Until that plane or the crew are located, no one theory has any more validity that the other, though some theories are quite outlandish. You’re defining a truth, not a theory.

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      2. Actually, the “Niku Notion” drew my attention to TIGHAR way back when they published their initial ‘findings’. Though the possibility was remote that the Lockheed could have flown the distance between the LOP Intercept Point and Gardner, due mainly to their Low Fuel State transmission, depending upon where that intercept occurred, she may have had sufficient fuel to cover that distance. I’ve participated in searches for downed aircraft. I and my family and friends embarked on expeditions to locate crash sites, and comb through the wreckage. (I wish they’d clean that stuff up. We found human brains plastered on the instrument panels of a mangled T-34 during one of those searches. A femur bone was also present.) The key term here is “Wreckage”. If the crew punched (ejected) from the plane, then you’ll see remnants of the seats, canopy, and chute along the wreckage path. If they rode the bird in, or they didn’t know what him ’em, you’ll find remnants of them.

        Gillespie’s team unearths the remains of bottles, part of a shoe, or a piece of a zipper, and THOSE constitute “Wreckage”. His “patch” can be heaped upon the piles of refuse as one more unidentifiable, inconclusive artifact. Try to discuss these disparities with Ric–particularly in the TIGHAR Online Forum–and you’ll soon be digitally dropped from the conversation.

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  18. David,

    Obviously you have not read Mike’s book, and you haven’t even read his Position Statement as he suggested; if you had you would know that the Earhart airplane WAS found/located at Aslito Field on Saipan in July 1944. Now you know the truth.

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    1. Does Elvis talk to you? People don’t mount million dollar expeditions to desolate atolls in the middle of the Pacific Ocean to locate a plane that was found on Saipan in 1944. (When I was stationed on Guam during the late 1980s/early 1990s, I flew aboard a T-39 NavAid-Checker aircraft to Saipan/Tinian/Rota Island. No one mentioned AE, though.) The “TRUTH” is that your assertion has no concrete evidence. Sorry.

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      1. William H. Trail

        David,

        So, you don’t think people mount million dollar expeditions to desolate atolls in the middle of the Pacific Ocean to locate an airplane that was found on Saipan in 1944? If I haven’t lost count, I believe Ric Gillespie and friends have done that very thing at least eleven times. Could be that’s who Elvis is talking to.

        Now, I will ask you again. Have you read “Amelia Earhart: The Truth At Last”? It’s a simple, straight-forward question. Yes or no?

        William

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  19. The “Truth” will “At Last” be revealed when the remains of the crew, or identifiable portions of the Lockheed are displayed to the public. Until then, every notion, rumor and theory generated by this mystery can be compared to belly buttons: Everybody’s got one.

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