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Author Topic: Adler, "Will the Search for Amelia Earhart Ever End?" (Smithsonian, Jan 2015)  (Read 17223 times)

Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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There is a new article on various theories about Amelia on the Smithsonian Magazine website.

The author clearly favors crashed and sank.  He treats as "facts" the very technical "points" that are in dispute:

"Some of the technical points are in dispute. Skeptics point out that the nominal flying time for the Electra on full tanks was 24 hours, not 20. But Earhart had faced head winds of 26.5 miles an hour, roughly twice as strong as forecast. Early in the flight a storm required a fuel-wasting climb to 10,000 feet. In 1999, an analysis by Caltech’s Jet Propulsion Center concluded that her tanks were almost certainly empty as she approached Howland. “She probably should have turned back to Lae at the halfway point,” says David Jourdan, the president of Nauticos, an undersea exploration company, which has sent two expeditions to look for the wreckage. “She knew she was going in,” Long says. “She couldn’t find the island and was running out of fuel. Her voice showed that.”

If he is not endorsing those three "points"--headwinds, early forced climb, and fuel exhaustion near Howland--he ought to have attributed them to his sources.

Oh, well.  There is no bad publicity, I suppose.
LTM,

           Marty
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JNev

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Well written; not very flattering to Niku.

We know how desireable it is to have input from major expert agencies and Caltech's JP Center of course carries weight where aircraft range is concerned, for one thing.

Crouch... Blunt, ain't he?
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Andrew M McKenna

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We'll, if they think they have it all right, they should check the reference to the second photo captioned " Earhart and her husband, George Putnam" when it is clearly not George by her side. 
Picky I know, but I would have expected some Editor at Smithsonian to have caught that.

Amck
« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 08:28:32 PM by Andrew M McKenna »
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Bruce Thomas

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We'll, if they think they have it all right, they should check the reference to the second photo captioned " Earhart and her husband, George Putnam" when it is clearly not George by her side. 
Picky I know, but I would have expected some Editor at Smithsonian to have caught that.

Amck
The dapper man shown beside AE in that picture is very recognizable as Jimmy Walker, Mayor of New York City. A PBS special about AE has a website where that picture is so captioned, and identified with the Library of Congress as the source.
LTM,

Bruce
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Daniel Paul Cotts

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Seems they transposed the captions for two pics. A picture of AE with a man sitting on the floor of a hanger (toolboxes on floor) says the man is mayor of NY. Oops. Blame the web layout person.

There are a good number of photos accompanying the web article. Many show items supporting the Niku hypothesis - such as newspaper reports of distress calls, Betty Klenck, the patch, ointment pot, plexiglass piece, bottle pieces. Let's see how many pics accompany the print article.

I expect the print article will have more detail than the web version.

Presently my major complaint is they let stand Mr. Long's assertion Artifact 2-2-V-1 came from a PBY.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 10:51:01 PM by Daniel Paul Cotts »
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Mark Appel

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I don't see this article as "Anti-Niku."

It accurately describes alternate interpretations of known or speculative phenomenon. Look, this is a near 80-year old mystery devoted to an event that no one witnessed--in a remote part of the world--in the middle of a vast ocean. Of course there are conflicting data, conflicting evidence. But at the end of the day even the "top, top, experts" are working with scant deterministic data.

JPL offered their good faith but speculative opinion. So does TIGHAR. And from where I sit, the preponderance of evidence is still on the Niku side of the scale.

To be sure. It does underscore the imperative for TIGHAR to adhere as close as practical to the Scientific Method. As you know, I do believe "Credibility is Everything."

Embrace the ambiguity but seize the opportunity. This is just another perfect moment for TIGHAR to separate itself from the conspiracy crowd. Crouch embarrasses himself with his completely unprofessional (and unscientific) ad hominem rhetoric. Pathetic.

Lesson for TIGHAR: Don't be Crouch.
"Credibility is Everything"
 
« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 11:29:16 PM by Mark Appel »
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Chris Johnson

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Anybody shed any light on this?

Quote
“It’s nonstop,” marvels Dorothy Cochrane, a curator at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, who was recently contacted by a researcher trying to track down a piece of carved driftwood found 70 years ago that he thinks holds a clue to Earhart’s fate.


Read more: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/will-search-for-amelia-earhart-ever-end-180953646/#HOXwiloQTo8t7D9I.99
Give the gift of Smithsonian magazine for only $12! http://bit.ly/1cGUiGv
Follow us: @SmithsonianMag on Twitter
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JNev

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Last I heard the driftwood was stored in a basement closet along with 12,374 splinters from the true cross...
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Bill Mangus

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In Paul Briand, Jr's book "Daughter of the Sky -- The Story of Amelia Earhart" (Duell, Sloan and Pearce, New York, 1960) there is a photograph of a flat stick, sort of like a paint stirring stick or a yard stick without printing, with some words on both sides.  "To My Husband-I have crashed 250 miles from Hawaii N.W. Our motor ___ into flames - sharks are about" Reverse side says "Mrs. A.E." and half the stick appears to be burned on that side.

Photo caption:

"Fragment of wood about 23 inches long, possibly associated with AE's last flight, 1937, found by Robert D. Weishaupt at Baranof Island, Alaska, in 1942.  (Courtesy The Smithsonian Institution)"

I'll see if I can get the picture scanned and add it later.

Not the greatest scan but usable. :-\
Bill Mangus
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« Last Edit: December 18, 2014, 08:58:24 AM by Bill Mangus »
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JNev

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In Paul Briand, Jr's book "Daughter of the Sky -- The Story of Amelia Earhart" (Duell, Sloan and Pearce, New York, 1960) there is a photograph of a flat stick, sort of like a paint stirring stick or a yard stick without printing, with some words on both sides.  "To My Husband-I have crashed 250 miles from Hawaii N.W. Our motor ___ into flames - sharks are about" Reverse side says "Mrs. A.E." and half the stick appears to be burned on that side.

Photo caption:

"Fragment of wood about 23 inches long, possibly associated with AE's last flight, 1937, found by Robert D. Weishaupt at Baranof Island, Alaska, in 1942.  (Courtesy The Smithsonian Institution)"

I'll see if I can get the picture scanned and add it later.

Sounds like a fascinating hoax (like so many splinters). 

Earhart would have known better than "250 miles from HAWAII N.W." And as I've come to understand would (OOPS, that word again...) not have identified herself as "MRS. A.E." - being styled variously as "A.E.", "Miss Earhart" or "Mrs. Putnam", apparently. 

She was definitely not "Mrs. Amelia Earhart" unless there was a secret marriage to someone of that same name...
- Jeff Neville

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Chris Johnson

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Thnaks Bill for the reply and Jeff for the  ::) :P
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Daniel Paul Cotts

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My print copy of Smithsonian Magazine arrived. The text of the online version and the print version is the same. The magazine cover has a photo of AE with bold copy stating "New Clues, New Controversy." A photo of Artifact 2-2-V-1 has a page to itself. A grouping of photos has a newspaper at the top with the headline "Radio Men hear Earhart's Voice Faintly Asking for Aid." Below that is a pic of Ric plus a pic of Betty Klenck Brown, then others.

An introduction to the author, Jerry Adler, on the "Contributors" page mentions he was a teenage ham radio operator. He does not dismiss post loss radio messages - saying "Obviously, if genuine, these would disprove the crashed-and-sank theory." He then relates the story of Betty Klenck.

Those who wish can comment on the article via e-mail LettersEd@si.edu ;or via Facebook.com/smithsonianmagazine

See also:  @SmithsonianMag on Twitter
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Ric Gillespie

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The Smithsonian article is a shallow and transparently biased reaction to TIGHAR's success.  We'll respond appropriately.
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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The Smithsonian article is a shallow and transparently biased reaction to TIGHAR's success.  We'll respond appropriately.

That certainly describes Crouch's contribution.

He didn't bother to go look at a PBY himself or ask one of his minions at the Museum to do so.

"I read a book that says 2-2-V-1 fits a PBY.  That proves that Gillespie is just an exotic tour guide."

Yuck.
LTM,

           Marty
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Ric Gillespie

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He didn't bother to go look at a PBY himself or ask one of his minions at the Museum to do so.

It's worse than that.  Just before deadline, I gave Adler a copy of the letter from Prof. Eagar.  He replied, "It would be stronger, I think, if he reached this conclusion after also hearing and weighing Elgen's PBY case.  But no question, it's a win for your side.

Now I just have to figure out how to work this into my story. "

I replied, "Elgen doesn't have a PBY case.  It’s laughable.  I didn’t want to waste time and insult their intelligence.  I’ll have a report titled “Is 2-2-V-1 from a PBY?” ready later today. I’ll send you the link. If you like, I can ask Prof. Eagar to review it and comment."

I did send Adler the link and I did have Eagar review it and comment.  Prof. Eagar wrote, "I have reviewed your email attachment concerning the PBY. It appears you have excellent responses to Mr. Long's “perfect match” for the upper PBY wing hypothesis." 

So Adler knew full well that Long's PBY claim had crashed and sunk.  Adler is a good journalist but he had to dance to the editor's tune and that tune was "It Ain't Necessarily So."  Make no mistake, this article was conceived in the wake of the burst of publicity we received in late October and it's purpose, from the start, was to discredit TIGHAR.  Unable to counter the message, they decided to shoot the messenger.
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