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Author Topic: Betty's house  (Read 72569 times)

Gary LaPook

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Betty's house
« on: July 25, 2012, 12:48:26 AM »

I have attached a recent photo of Betty's house at 2027 Auburn Street and photos of her neighborhood. The house is small, less than eleven hundred square feet. I have also attached a KMZ file that will take you to Auburn Street on Google Earth where you can use Street View to walk down her street. According to Zillow, the appraised value of her house today is about $34,000.

gl
« Last Edit: July 25, 2012, 09:05:04 PM by Gary LaPook »
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don hirth

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2012, 10:01:42 AM »

I have attached a recent photo of Betty's house at 2027 Aubern Street and photos of her neighborhood. The house is small, less than eleven hundred square feet. I have also attached a KMZ file that will take you to Aubern Street on Google Earth where you can use Street View to walk down her street. According to Zillow, the appraised value of her house today is about $34,000.

Gary L. Good digging. On the Betty subject......I've not seen it but have any of our resident specialists at any time commented on Betty's radio and antenna 'setup'? The reason I wonder about that....I've learned quite a bit about radios/antennas in the last several mos. (since joining
Tighar) So much so that as soon as finances permit, I plan on becoming a 'Ham.' Numerous books have been penned on antennas, alone so I wonder about her 'set' and the antenna type/
configuration. 'Hoping to get some input!
dlh
 
« Last Edit: July 25, 2012, 01:30:16 PM by Martin X. Moleski, SJ »
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Monte Chalmers

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2012, 07:24:51 PM »

That’s Auburn Street. I'd never heard of it (but there’s lots of streets I’ve never heard of even in my long life time - So I had a look at it out of curiosity.  I’d best describe it as “modest”.  In 1937 it was an average place - probably going on 10 years old.  My parent’s place was about the same sort of  thing at that time.  We lived on 16th Avenue South, which is about 3 miles to the East.  In St Petersburg  all streets run North/South and all avenues run East/West.
Did you have a purpose in detailing what the property is worth?
I was reading about Betty  here in the forum where she identified a picture of a Zenith Model 1000Z as the one her father owned.  (The radio that she was using to receive messages from AE.)  And immediately I questioned the worth of this house because of  my view of it .  I checked the web for the Zenith Stratosphere model 1000Z. The Model 1000Z was introduced  in 1935 and sold for $750.00! It was the state-of-the-art (and probably the reason why TIGHAR took her at her word because it enhances the possibility the reception is true.) The receiver  was so pricey that it took  Zenith 3 years to sell the 350 that were manufactured!  I checked the inflation factor on this amount  - that’s $11,969.53 in today’s  money for a radio.  The 1935 Chevrolet sold for $600.00!   It could be the truth that it was a Model 1000Z that she was using, but  in a house of this value?  Using  the inflation checker for  your  current value for the house of $34,000.00 works out to about  $4,000.00 in 1937. 
I still believe Betty’s notes, but not using a Zenith 1000Z.   .  I remember during  WW2 that I played around with my family’s  Philco radio that was similar looking to the Zenith  - had the green “magic-eye”  for fine tuning.  Not knowing any better, I thought it worked fine - but it must have been junk compared with a $750.00 Zenith  Model 1000Z!  :D 
Monte TIGHAR #3597
 
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Bruce Thomas

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2012, 08:14:37 PM »

The Model 1000Z was introduced  in 1935 and sold for $750.00! It was the state-of-the-art (and probably the reason why TIGHAR took her at her word because it enhances the possibility the reception is true.) The receiver  was so pricey that it took  Zenith 3 years to sell the 350 that were manufactured!  I checked the inflation factor on this amount  - that’s $11,969.53 in today’s  money for a radio.  The 1935 Chevrolet sold for $600.00!   It could be the truth that it was a Model 1000Z that she was using, but  in a house of this value? 
For the benefit of anyone joining in reading this thread without benefit of other postings, I'll provide a link to something I posted in another thread -- a ten year-old forum quote from Ric concerning how Betty's father, a man of modest means, came to possess such an expensive bit of 1930s technology.

And Monte: thanks for being the one to correct the spelling of the name of the street where the Klencks lived in St. Petersburg.  As a proud alumnus of the university of the same name, I was biting my tongue waiting and hoping someone else would come forth with the right spelling.  Now I can say it:  War Eagle! :)
LTM,

Bruce
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2012, 10:01:18 PM »

That’s Auburn Street. I'd never heard of it (but there’s lots of streets I’ve never heard of even in my long life time - So I had a look at it out of curiosity.  I’d best describe it as “modest”.  In 1937 it was an average place - probably going on 10 years old.  My parent’s place was about the same sort of  thing at that time.  We lived on 16th Avenue South, which is about 3 miles to the East.  In St Petersburg  all streets run North/South and all avenues run East/West.
Did you have a purpose in detailing what the property is worth?
I was reading about Betty  here in the forum where she identified a picture of a Zenith Model 1000Z as the one her father owned.  (The radio that she was using to receive messages from AE.)  And immediately I questioned the worth of this house because of  my view of it .  I checked the web for the Zenith Stratosphere model 1000Z. The Model 1000Z was introduced  in 1935 and sold for $750.00! It was the state-of-the-art (and probably the reason why TIGHAR took her at her word because it enhances the possibility the reception is true.) The receiver  was so pricey that it took  Zenith 3 years to sell the 350 that were manufactured!  I checked the inflation factor on this amount  - that’s $11,969.53 in today’s  money for a radio.  The 1935 Chevrolet sold for $600.00!   It could be the truth that it was a Model 1000Z that she was using, but  in a house of this value?  Using  the inflation checker for  your  current value for the house of $34,000.00 works out to about  $4,000.00 in 1937. 
I still believe Betty’s notes, but not using a Zenith 1000Z.   .  I remember during  WW2 that I played around with my family’s  Philco radio that was similar looking to the Zenith  - had the green “magic-eye”  for fine tuning.  Not knowing any better, I thought it worked fine - but it must have been junk compared with a $750.00 Zenith  Model 1000Z!  :D
You saw where I was going with this.

By my calculation, using the Consumer Price Index, the conversion factor for July 1937 to June 2012 is 15.8 so their house was only worth about $2,100 and maybe less due to the depression at the time.

Yep, can you imagine what Mrs. Klenck had to say to Mr. Klenck

"YOU DID WHAT!.
YOU SPENT A THIRD OF THE VALUE OF OUR HOUSE FOR A STUPID RADIO!
YOU COULD HAVE PUT TWO CARS IN OUR DRIVEWAY FOR THAT $750!
WITH THAT MONEY WE COULD HAVE MOVED INTO A MUCH NICER HOUSE!
DON'T YOU REMEMBER WE ARE IN A DEPRESSION!"


Betty didn't remember what kind of radio her father had until the TIGHAR people convinced her it was a Zenith Stratosphere. They did this because it was necessary for Brandenburg's harmonic theory which showed the only possible frequency that Betty could have heard Earhart on was 24,840 kcs and only the Stratosphere and a very few other very high priced radios covered frequencies above 20,000 kcs. The Stratosphere had "BAND 5" covering above 20,000 kcs while almost all other shortwave radios only went up to "Band 4." It took Zenith three years to sell 350 of those radios, after Rockefeller, Kennedy, J.P. Morgan, Hearst, Astor, Hughes, Gable and a few others bought their Stratospheres that market reached saturation. To put this in perspective, in 1929 4,000,000 new radios were sold and even in the depression, in 1932, they sold 2,600,000 radios. The average price for a radio in 1933 was only $47.00, you could buy 15 of them for the price of one Stratosphere.

I have attached an excerpt from the January 1938 issue of the "Radio Index." It shows that most shortwave radios only covered up to 18,000 kcs and some expensive ones went up to the 13 meter band which only goes up to 21,850 kcs which is still well below the 24,840 kcs of Brandenburg's theory.

You could buy almost two cars for the price of one Stratosphere. Some examples:

1936 Nash four-door sedan -- $475
1937 Studebaker Cruising sedan -- $475
1937 Ford sedan, two-door -- $395
1936 Plymouth two-door -- $375
1936 Dodge 2-door touring sedan -- $365
1936 Ford "Fordor" sedan -- $359


"Last week the Social Security Board announced that for 30,165,694 U. S. wage earners on its rolls during 1937 average pay was $890 a year."   Time Magazine, April 17, 1939.

It would take almost a full year's wages of an average worker in 1937 to buy the radio that TIGHAR claims that Betty had! The Klenck house and the neighborhood were not that of a wealthy family so even if Mr. Klenck earned a bit more than the average worker (and we have no reason to believe that) it would still have taken almost all of his year's income to buy that radio and TIGHAR expects us to believe this bunk! As my kid would say, "I don't think so."


I think is was quite clever of Ric to come up with his story, that Mr. Klenck's employer, the electric company, subsidised the purchase of electric appliances for their employees so that those employees would use more electricity. Let's try that business model. Should the electric company buy one radio for Mr. Klenck who will then use one unit of electric power or should the company buy 15 radios for the same price and reward 15 different employees who will then use 15 units of electricity? Boy, what a tough business decision? O.K. as the president of the electric company my decision is that we go with the second plan.

So, it appears that facts and logic lead to the reasonable conclusion that Betty did not have a radio that could receive 24,840 kcs so it was impossible for her to have heard Earhart as Brandenburg claims.

gl
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 04:06:58 AM by Gary LaPook »
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2012, 10:56:37 PM »

I have attached a recent photo of Betty's house at 2027 Aubern Street and photos of her neighborhood. The house is small, less than eleven hundred square feet. I have also attached a KMZ file that will take you to Aubern Street on Google Earth where you can use Street View to walk down her street. According to Zillow, the appraised value of her house today is about $34,000.

Gary L. Good digging. On the Betty subject......I've not seen it but have any of our resident specialists at any time commented on Betty's radio and antenna 'setup'? The reason I wonder about that....I've learned quite a bit about radios/antennas in the last several mos. (since joining
Tighar) So much so that as soon as finances permit, I plan on becoming a 'Ham.' Numerous books have been penned on antennas, alone so I wonder about her 'set' and the antenna type/
configuration. 'Hoping to get some input!
Here is a link to a diagram of her antenna.

gl
KA9UHH
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Adam Marsland

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2012, 02:23:16 AM »

Well, yeah, if you order your facts and interpretations specifically to reach the conclusion you are trying to reach, then sure.  It's a fun game, that.  But I think you're guilty of what you accuse TIGHAR of -- thinking that you've proved something when you've really just raised some good questions.  You kinda jumped the shark, there, in my opinion.

Now, taken objectively, you've raised a good question:  did Ric just pull that thing about Betty's dad out of his butt?  What's your basis for making this assertion?  You're basically saying that Ric planted the idea of Betty having this particular radio and made up the rationale for them owning such an expensive radio.  OK, what's your evidence for this?  Or is just a situation where you find the whole tale unbelievable, and you think the whole thing is a crock, and are looking to put forth a scenario that marginally fits the facts that supports that view?

If the latter, then how is that different from what you suggest Ric and TIGHAR are doing?  I honestly don't see the difference.  It doesn't make you wrong, by the way.  It just means I don't think you've really proved anything other than that you have a preconceived opinion that you are looking for evidence to support.
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2012, 03:25:19 AM »


Now, taken objectively, you've raised a good question:  did Ric just pull that thing about Betty's dad out of his butt?  What's your basis for making this assertion?  You're basically saying that Ric planted the idea of Betty having this particular radio and made up the rationale for them owning such an expensive radio.  OK, what's your evidence for this? 

"It was important to know the make and model of Betty’s radio, because receiver sensitivity and tuning range are important factors in evaluating whether she could have heard signals on a harmonic. Betty did not recall the make and model of her radio, but she provided information that led to a determination that it probably was a Zenith model 1000Z “Stratosphere.”4 When shown a color photograph of a Zenith 1000Z that had been restored to new condition, Betty positively identified it as the model she had used."

And that "positive identification" took place more than sixty years after the event!

Gee, I wonder how that photo identification was done? When asking a witness to identify a suspect with photographs there is a certain method that you must  use to avoid false positives. If you don't follow the right procedure the court will throw out the identification. You don't show just one photo and ask "is this the guy that robbed you"?

"Is this the radio you had"?
"Well, I don't know."
"Could this have been the radio"?
"I suppose so."

To do a proper photo lineup you give the witness the photos one at a time and ask him if he can identify the person each time. The stack of photos has many dummy photos at the end so that the witness doesn't know how many photos he will be seeing, he doesn't know he is coming to the end of the stack. If he doesn't identify a person he doesn't get a second chance to see the photos because a second time he knows how many photos there are and will be tempted to pick one prior to running out of photos. Also, you do not spread out a group of photos because the witness will be tempted to pick one of them, maybe the one that looks the most like the person to be identified but not necessarily the right person. Witnesses are notorious for making false identifications unless these procedures are carefully followed.

So, how many photos were shown to Betty? I'm going to go way out on a limb here but I bet she wasn't shown any photos of common  shortwave radios that didn't cover 24,840 kcs.

But the basic point is that if she didn't have a radio that covered 24,840 kcs then no matter how much tap dancing Brandeburg does, Betty didn't hear Earhart. And do you really believe her father spent his year's wages on the radio? Do you think his wife let him? Come on, put the Kool-Aid down and step away from the pitcher!

gl
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 10:42:04 AM by Gary LaPook »
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Dave McDaniel

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2012, 08:48:34 AM »

We assume that Betty's dad bought the radio. We don't know that as fact unless someone can provide a reciept for it. He may have bartered for it. This was common during the Great Depression, just as it is in todays recession. Check out the local pawn shops and you'll see a lot of high end electronics for cheap. It may have been a gift. He may have stole it for all we know.

My dad was a Sargent in the Army in the 50's, and probably made less than Betty's dad did, yet we had two high end Zenith radios that were capable of short wave reception. It was really the only entertainment we had. Didn't have a T.V. until the mid 60's.

It seems obvious to me that Mr. Klecht was really "into" electronics judging from the long wire antennae aray that he built. I doubt I would go through that trouble and expense for a lesser radio. Just sayin'.

LTM,
Dave
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Tom Swearengen

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2012, 09:28:07 AM »

Hum----looking objectively at Gary's thoughts here for a second------not disputing or siding with him, but if her radio was NOT capable of reaching the frequency harmonic to hear Amelia, then how did she do it? Gary does bring up a valid question, guys. From what is known, the 'high end' radios that would reach that frequency were rather expensive. Ok, fine. How Betty's father acquired it is not the relevent point. That the radio in question 'could' reach that frequency is. So----knowing the model in question IS relevant. I'm quite certain that information is here somewhere. Showing someone a picture may not be the best way. ( Some people think a G150 Gulfstream is a Lear).
Too bad we dont have the radio.
Tom Swearengen TIGHAR # 3297
 
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2012, 10:40:56 AM »

We assume that Betty's dad bought the radio. We don't know that as fact unless someone can provide a reciept for it. He may have bartered for it. This was common during the Great Depression, just as it is in todays recession. Check out the local pawn shops and you'll see a lot of high end electronics for cheap. It may have been a gift. He may have stole it for all we know.

My dad was a Sargent in the Army in the 50's, and probably made less than Betty's dad did, yet we had two high end Zenith radios that were capable of short wave reception. It was really the only entertainment we had. Didn't have a T.V. until the mid 60's.

It seems obvious to me that Mr. Klecht was really "into" electronics judging from the long wire antennae aray that he built. I doubt I would go through that trouble and expense for a lesser radio. Just sayin'.

LTM,
Dave
Yep, he traded his first born son for it (somebody should ask Betty if she remembers her older brother suddenly disappearing around this time)  :D And there is a big difference between twenty-five cents worth of wire strung across the back of his yard and a radio that cost one-third the price of his house. That wire most likely was connected to a $47.00 common radio. And while we are looking for the receipt for Mr. Klenck's radio, how about Ric coming up with some documentation for his assertion that his employer bought twelve thousand dollar (2012 dollars) radios and appliances for its employees.

gl
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 02:05:35 PM by Gary LaPook »
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Rich Ramsey

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2012, 10:52:03 AM »

Putting Gary's attitude and outbursts aside. I mean I don't agree with the "attack" sounding comments I have to say he does bring up some good questions here. One's that I don't think can be just brushed off.  I want to believe she can be found (She = AE), I want to think that Betty is not full of fantasy. But these are valid points that are here and can't be brushed off. 

If she didn't have the radio required to hear these things isn't it possible she thought she heard something? I mean paranormal investigators hear things all the time on their recordings when they do ghost hunts. Could she of picked up a show crossed up with a news report about AE? I know it is a bit out there but so is Betty, in South Florida, hearing AE, in the Central Pacific. I know it is possible, I have myself listened to Mexican and Central American broadcasts from my upstate New York home. But I don't about this one...

I am not an expert, and I will not pretend to know enough about this to formulate a valid answer. But it all makes you wonder.
"Hang Tough"
Rich
 
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Tom Swearengen

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2012, 11:34:01 AM »

kinda what i was thinking. Gary has a legimate question, in my view. I dont know the answer. But if the radio wasnt capable of getting to the harmonic frequency, it would be interesting to find out how she heard what she did. The radio guys will have to figure that one out.
Tom Swearengen TIGHAR # 3297
 
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Jeff Victor Hayden

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2012, 01:03:24 PM »

I still have confidence in the Pan Am professional communications staff and their equipment, experience and abilities. It would be a bonus if it could be shown that Betty was able to pick up AE transmissions but, Gary does have a pretty good point based on the known facts.
This must be the place
 
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Betty's house
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2012, 02:03:33 PM »

We assume that Betty's dad bought the radio. We don't know that as fact unless someone can provide a reciept for it. He may have bartered for it.
LTM,
Dave
As to bartering, there is a big difference between,

"Hey Joe, I'll trade you my push lawn mower that you like if you will help me install a new clutch in my Chevy."

And,

"Hey Joe, I'll trade you the back bedroom and the kitchen of my house for that radio of yours."

And how would this work? First Mr. Klenck had to find someone who had a Stratosphere radio and, since it took from the end of 1935 through 1938 to unload the 350 units, there were probably only about 150 such radios in the whole United States in July of 1937 so it is quite likely that there was not even one of them in St. Petersberg. From the looks of the neighborhood nobody else on his block could have afforded one, so who did Klenck barter it from? What did he have to trade that was worth that much money? And there was no Ebay to allow searching a wider market. Also, there were no credit cards so people couldn't just go out and buy things that they couldn't afford, things that they didn't have the cash to pay for. Remember the old saying, "cash on the barrel head"? Especially during the Depression.

"In early 1933, Commander Eugene F. McDonald, the President of Zenith Corporation, directed his engineers to design and build one of the world's most sophisticated radios. In late 1935, the Zenith Stratosphere model 1000Z would start rolling off the assembly lines."

These radios were not made until 1935, when the U.S. was already in the bottom of the Depression so very few, only the very wealthy, could have afforded one. It is NOT as though some well-to-do had purchased one prior to the 1929 stock market crash, lost his shirt in that crash, and was then forced to part with the radio at a distressed price at some pawnshop. By 1935 those who had survived the crash with their wealth intact were the only ones who could buy the Stratosphere.

It is also possible that Betty simply mistook the photo of the Stratosphere shown to her by TIGHAR for another, less expensive and less capable, Zenith radio. Zenith made over 40 models with prices from $20.00 to $750.00 and they incorporated similar visual features.

"In 1936, Zenith would take key features from the 1000Z and transfer them to their newest line of radios. The standout feature used on most of Zenith's 1936 radios was the large, easy to read, black "Magnavision" dial."

gl

« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 02:12:09 PM by Gary LaPook »
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