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Author Topic: A Matter of Months  (Read 6382 times)

Brad Beeching

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A Matter of Months
« on: March 17, 2011, 03:16:00 PM »

I was just reading the reseach bulletin "A Moveable Feast" dated 11/11/03. It closes with
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Further research may establish that the castaway whose bones were found on Nikumaroro had almost certainly been dead a matter of months, not years. If so, the implications are disturbing. The island was continuously inhabited from December 1, 1938. The skull was found in late April 1940 – nearly a year and a half later. Was the castaway alive after the island was inhabited but so mentally incapacitated as to avoid contact with strangers? Such a reaction to prolonged isolation is not unheard of.

Has there been any more thought that the castaway may have been alive as late as 1940? And does that lend any credence to the report of an encounter with the "godess"? (sorry Marty, I can't find the reference)

Brad
Brad

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« Last Edit: March 17, 2011, 04:27:03 PM by Brad Beeching »
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: A Matter of Months
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2011, 04:06:59 PM »

Has there been any more thought that the castaway may have been alive as late as 1940?

Not by me.  But TIGHAR is thinking all the time and I have taken a vow against using my powers of ESP when dealing with mere mortals, so I can't speak for anyone else.   :)

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And does that lend any credence to the report of an encounter with the "goddess"?

"Nei Manganibuka" will lead you to the sources of the story.

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(sorry Marty, I can't find the reference)

No problem.  That's a toughie!  I remembered the "Nei" part, and that was enough to turn up the wiki article.
LTM,

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Brad Beeching

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Re: A Matter of Months
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2011, 10:29:11 AM »

If the skeleton found on Niku was indeed alive only months prior to discovery,http://tighar.org/Projects/Earhart/Archives/Documents/Bones_Chronology.html in 1940 was there any missing persons investigation done then?

Has there been any Tighar investigation into missing persons done for that time period that might account for skeletons in 1940?
I ask that assuming that the castaway had spent only a short time on the island before passing away. That might put the time span between the last visit and permanent settlement, say Nov '39 to Feb '40

Is it safe to assume that any Europeans that went missing during that time period would have been reported to someone? I was thinking that maybe a pleasure boat had gone down where wind and tide might have deposited the castaway on Niku. I realize that the probability of any of this being true is prob'ly way off the charts but I'm having fun thinking about it, and who knows, maybe accidently contribute something! hehehe

Brad
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: A Matter of Months
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2011, 11:40:29 AM »

... was there any missing persons investigation done then?

As with Search and Rescue, the concept of "Missing Persons Bureau" that we have today is dramatically different from that of the colonial governments.

The Western Pacific High Commission (WPHC) was the Walmart of civil services: police, military, diplomatic, education, health care, judicial, etc.  If something needed doing, the WPHC did it. 

There was no such things as a "missing persons investigation" in 1940-1941.  All the WPHC had to do was ask itself, "Have we heard anything about any missing persons?"  The inquiry was not in writing.  No forms were filled out.  All the officers had to do was investigate the inside of their own heads to get the answer, if they had been in the office long enough.

OK, this is stated categorically, but it is just my opinion after reading a few thousand pages of WPHC material.  I don't have a source that says this and I could be wrong.  When Roger and I were in Fiji, I kept asking people, "Who was the coroner?  Where are the records of the inquest?  What did the law require?"  The answer was, as far as I could tell, "The WPHC was the coroner; the bones file is the record of the inquest; there were no rules and regulations about how this was to be done."
LTM,

           Marty
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Brad Beeching

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Re: A Matter of Months
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2011, 01:24:37 PM »

Ahh I'll take that as a definite....
Brad

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