Advanced search  
Pages: 1 [2] 3   Go Down

Author Topic: Oral history as trustworthy information  (Read 24667 times)

Ron Lyons

  • T1
  • *
  • Posts: 39
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2014, 08:02:43 PM »

Robert I've often thought the same thing when trying to determine if a 'big fish' story is real; you can tell by what people claim, if they're being honest or not.  I worked with an older gentleman once who used to claim he saw the Beatles play in bars in Germany in the early 60's, and met John at the bar on several occasions after shows.  I asked him how Paul acted and he said he didn't know, he always left after the show and was never at the bar!  I've always believed the guy; if he was lying he'd just say he knew Paul too.   A similar situation with Betty; she's not claiming what you'd expect from a forgery and strikes me as authentic.

TIGHAR has ran into the same thing over and over again, nothing flat out confirms what happened, but all of it in it's entirety is almost impossible to refute.  Kudos to them for adding more and more to the huge pile of evidence that's accumulated over the past 20 years.
Logged

Robertansley

  • TIGHAR member
  • *
  • Posts: 8
  • "I suspect no one & I suspect everyone.." Clouseau
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2014, 02:03:22 AM »

I solved so many crimes over the years by carefully considering the psychological, human nature aspect of the people involved.  For the sake of this discussion I'm calling the series of radio transmissions the "event" and Betty's reporting of the event the "report."  As an investigator for each data point I would ask myself - "does this make sense? does it feel right?"

1) did this event really happen or is Betty lying?
2) if it happened, was it from AE or an imposter?

So straight away I would try to disqualify Betty by asking "does it make sense that a young girl would be using a shortwave radio as she claims?  Seems kind of "techie" and not what a girl would do...well not the girls of today.   However I'm 57 so I remember the days of only 3 tv channels which signed off at midnight with the Star Spangled Banner.  Radio back then was the main pastime - people got the news and listened to music & people like Betty were "star struck".  Dads all over America strung antennas for their radios.  It feels right.  And Betty records her routine pastime activity in a contemporaneous notebook.  Her drawings and musings feel right.  Her alibi of being home in front of the radio passes the test. 

And see how neatly her personal life weaves in and out of the "event" in her notebook?  Here she is retelling the story of not only her life but this second story of AE's life and the two are remarkably  woven together, preserved forever in her precious notebook.  Who fakes that? Then there's the event with this "open mike" where Betty is able to record the emotions and poignant struggle for survival that transpired in the cockpit in addition to words that were transmitted as a formal call for help.  AE fades away and Betty goes back to her personal star search until the material weaves its way back around and snippets of AE come through again.  Betty is our human CVR.   She couldn't be making this up, she really heard the event.

That's some of the psychological side of it.  Then the actual words in the event, although circumstantial evidence, really help to solidify the validity of the report, that Betty heard it and AE said it, not some fraudster.  "Get the suitcase in California" and the similar wording in a letter known to have been penned by AE, "New York City (sounds like) "and the eerily similar Norwhich City.  What little girl or fraudster would think "hey, Norwhich City ran aground on this little atoll, let's pretend AE landed there and let's give 'em a hint but not too obvious now so say New York City"??

What about the shortwave radio?  TIGHAR has tons of information explaining how it works.  I have empirical evidence.  When I was a young patrol officer I was assigned the southwest side of Austin, David Sector.  On the midnight shift our Motorola radio David frequency was notorious for radio skip interference coming from gulf coast shrimp trawlers hundreds of miles away in Port Aransas and Port O'Connor.  There would be routine police traffic on the radio then a blast of expletives followed by beer soaked invectives.  Around 5am the atmosphere would change and the skips would cease.  So it is possible for AE's transmissions to make it to Florida.   It feels right.  With the way harmonics act, and all the different brands of radios, different brands and lengths of antenna wires, the various skill levels of the installers and the magnitude of the local radio interference I would not expect any two radios in America or the world to hear exactly the same thing that AE said.

Now, top that off with "I'm traveling on the line" that's runs through Gardner & multiple direction finders pointing to Gardner...please. It's incomprehensible to me that either Betty or anyone else faked this.

And Ric I just want to say I am extremely impressed with your exhaustive depth of analysis on recovered artifacts, & the professional manner of your investigations.  Extremely impressed.
Robert Ansley
 
« Last Edit: November 18, 2014, 09:42:30 PM by Robert Ansley »
Logged

Ron Lyons

  • T1
  • *
  • Posts: 39
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #17 on: November 06, 2014, 11:00:34 AM »

Fantastic insight Robert, thank you!
Logged

John Klier

  • TIGHAR member
  • *
  • Posts: 33
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #18 on: November 06, 2014, 11:50:06 AM »

Wow Robert that is a fantastic analysis!

Two thumbs up from a fellow Austinite!!

John Klier
Logged

Robertansley

  • TIGHAR member
  • *
  • Posts: 8
  • "I suspect no one & I suspect everyone.." Clouseau
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #19 on: November 06, 2014, 11:55:32 AM »

By all means Ric you can quote me and if someone wants to try to drag you down a rabbit hole over what my opinion is then you may certainly simply refer them to me.
Robert
Robert Ansley
 
Logged

Ric Gillespie

  • Executive Director
  • Administrator
  • *
  • Posts: 5513
  • "Do not try. Do or do not. There is no try" Yoda
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #20 on: November 06, 2014, 01:33:58 PM »

By all means Ric you can quote me and if someone wants to try to drag you down a rabbit hole over what my opinion is then you may certainly simply refer them to me.

Perfect.  That technique is known as, "Let's you and him fight." ;)
Logged

JNev

  • T5
  • *****
  • Posts: 778
  • It's a GOOD thing to be in the cornfield...
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #21 on: November 06, 2014, 01:54:46 PM »

Good stuff.

Betty's Notebook will always be an 'eye of the beholder' thing I'm afraid, but it is the kind of observations given here that add clarity to my own sense of it.

"Let's you and him fight" kinda reminds me of the "Blue Cyclone"...  8)
- Jeff Neville

Former Member 3074R
 
Logged

Monty Fowler

  • T5
  • *****
  • Posts: 1078
  • "The real answer is always the right answer."
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #22 on: November 06, 2014, 02:17:12 PM »

I would agree, it's very nice to have an opinion from a disinterested third party - who actually has some qualifications to speak on the subject - dissect the event and come to the same conclusions that TIGHAR has.

The whole New York, New York/ Norwich, Norwich thing has, to be, been one of the clinchers. There is no way on God's green earth that the fate of the Norwich City was well known by more than a handful of people in 1937. As one of TIGHAR's expert witnesses said with regards to another matter, the chances are "vanishingly small." Is it a slam dunk? No. Does it conclusively solve the mystery once and for all? No.

But ... it is also very, very difficult to discount Betty's Notebook as anything other than what she, and TIGHAR, believe it to be - some of the last, desperate moments of two people in extraordinary peril, preserved by an amazing woman in an extraordinary bit of luck. The naysayers can whine all they want - explaining it away is just making them look more and more ridiculous.

LTM,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 ECSP

 
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
Logged

Robertansley

  • TIGHAR member
  • *
  • Posts: 8
  • "I suspect no one & I suspect everyone.." Clouseau
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #23 on: November 20, 2014, 01:50:26 PM »

In the "Post Loss Radio Signal Catalog" there is one statement that contradicts my idea -  A long duration carrier signal – in which the transmitter is keyed, i.e. β€œon the air,” but no voice modulation is present – for several minutes or more, is a strong negative factor. There was no plausible reason for such a transmission.

The "open mike" theory is the foundation to proving the veracity of the alleged transmissions.  We know she held the mike open while directing her attention to Fred.  Therefore there IS a plausible reason for a modulation without voice to occur - say if the mike was stuffed between the seat and frame while she worked on something, tended to a passed-out Fred, etc.  I fall right down the middle of it, it's not a strong negative nor a strong positive - in and of itself its not useful for proving or disproving an event.
Robert Ansley
 
Logged

James Champion

  • TIGHAR member
  • *
  • Posts: 69
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #24 on: November 20, 2014, 02:58:54 PM »

With AM modulation, when signals fade to the extreme, you may be left with nothing to detect but the carrier. Frequently the way to tune in is to turn on the BFO (beat Frequency Oscillator) in the receiver so you can still detect there is a carrier and to zero-in on the signal. The BFO is typically only used on CW signals.

Also, carbon microphones were used back then. Humidity makes the carbon particles clump. The result is under-modulation or even no modulation which again may result in just a carrier detected.
Logged

Ric Gillespie

  • Executive Director
  • Administrator
  • *
  • Posts: 5513
  • "Do not try. Do or do not. There is no try" Yoda
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #25 on: November 20, 2014, 04:13:04 PM »

Although seldom discussed, Earhart had a really weird and apparently unique radio control panel in her cockpit.  Below is our facsimile from the Harney Drawings. It's accurate.  We can see the panel in photos of Earhart's cockpit. Deciphering what the various toggle switches did is not difficult.
Top Left:  Switches between her two crystal-controlled transmitting frequencies - Day (6210 Kcs) and Night (3105 Kcs)
Top Right: Switches between code (C.W. - Constant Wave - using the sending key) and voice (Phone, using the microphone).
Lower Left: Switches the receiver on and off.
Lower Right: Switches the transmitter on and off.

But what about the Middle toggle?  What does it do?  "Mike" is obviously microphone (by someone who doesn't know that "Mic' is short for microphone) but the Upper Right toggle already switches between the key and the mic.  That middle toggle may have been a way to lock the mic open.  Why would you want to do that rather than use the push-to-talk button on the mic? 
Those early mics had stiff push-to-talk buttons and Earhart did not use her radio for back and forth conversations.  She made transmissions at quarter to and quarter past the hour and listened for message on the hour and half hour.  She may have wanted a way to just lock her mic open for transmissions.
Logged

Martin X. Moleski, SJ

  • Administrator
  • *
  • Posts: 2949
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #26 on: November 20, 2014, 04:33:25 PM »

... She may have wanted a way to just lock her mic open for transmissions.

I see the mystery.

It seems to me that it would take a lot of rewiring to provide two distinct methods of turning the microphone on (the switch on the mic itself and the mystery switch on the panel).  You'd have to run an extra wire into the microphone itself that would bypass the hand switch and power the microphone through the panel switch.

Maybe it means what it says.  "Mike" for the microphone circuit and "Phone" for the headphones? 
LTM,

           Marty
           TIGHAR #2359A
 
Logged

Bruce W Badgrow

  • T1
  • *
  • Posts: 14
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #27 on: November 20, 2014, 05:02:23 PM »

The CW-Phone switch is shown in the schematic diagram of the WE 13C modified for CW. I have not found the Mike on-off switch. It may have been wired in series with the PTT switch. Perhaps the 1937 vintage mikes had a problem with PTT switches sticking.

Bruce W Badgrow
Logged

Ric Gillespie

  • Executive Director
  • Administrator
  • *
  • Posts: 5513
  • "Do not try. Do or do not. There is no try" Yoda
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #28 on: November 20, 2014, 05:02:41 PM »


Maybe it means what it says.  "Mike" for the microphone circuit and "Phone" for the headphones?

In 1937 parlance "phone," sometimes "fone," means radiotelephone (voice) communication. Even if you're communicating in code, you're still listening on the headphones.  There is no speaker. Ambient noise in the cockpit is far too great.
Logged

James Champion

  • TIGHAR member
  • *
  • Posts: 69
Re: Oral history as trustworthy information
« Reply #29 on: November 21, 2014, 08:28:34 AM »

I believe the CW/PHONE switch function is answered in this link:
http://tighar.org/wiki/Morse_code_key_questions
Logged
Pages: 1 [2] 3   Go Up
 

Copyright 2019 by TIGHAR, a non-profit foundation. No portion of the TIGHAR Website may be reproduced by xerographic, photographic, digital or any other means for any purpose. No portion of the TIGHAR Website may be stored in a retrieval system, copied, transmitted or transferred in any form or by any means, whether electronic, mechanical, digital, photographic, magnetic or otherwise, for any purpose without the express, written permission of TIGHAR. All rights reserved.

Contact us at: info@tighar.org • Phone: 610-467-1937 • Membership formwebmaster@tighar.org

Powered by MySQL SMF 2.0.15 | SMF © 2017, Simple Machines Powered by PHP