- Radio logs of the Itasca.
- Itasca Radio Room Plan.
- Discussion of how long the Itasca could produce smoke.
- Last attempts of Itasca to radio the aircraft before the search was begun.
- The Itasca Search.
- Thompson Cruise Report.
- Thompson Transcripts.
- U.S. Coast Guard (uscg.mil), Itasca, (1930).
- Sent to Great Britain in 1941 under Lend-Lease and became the HMS Gorleston, Y-92.
- Commander Thompson's report (he was captain of the Itasca but his rank was Commander) to the commandant of the 14th Naval Distict is dated 29 July 1937 and he does say that he "Commenced laying heavy smoke at daylight." However, in his much more detailed report to the Commander of the Coast Guard's San Francisco Division (his own boss) he clearly gives the impression that, at the time of Earhart's presumed closest approach to Howland (between 8 and 9 a.m.) "Itasca was laying down smoke screen stretching for ten miles. Smoke remained concentrated and did not thin out greatly" (page 43 of Radio Transcripts Earhart Flight). That impression is almost certainly false and misleading.
- This press release was sent by a reporter [James Christian Kamakaiwi]on Howland Island:
RDO USCG ITASCA CK 385 PRESS COLLECT 0300 HST 3RD BT; UNIPRESS HONOLULU PRESS COLLECT JULY 2; COPYWRIGHT [SIC] STORY UNDER SIGNATURE JAMES CHRISTIAN KAMAKAIWI;
WE WERE UP BEFORE DAYBREAK THIS MORNING
THROUGHOUT THE NIGHT AMELIA WAS CLIPPING OFF THE MILES TO HOWLAND AND REPORTS SHOWED SHE WAS NEARING HOWLAND RAPIDLY
WE WERE EXCITED AND I WAS PARTICULARLY EAGER
BLACK HAD GIVEN ME THE HONOR OF WELCOMING MISS EARHART AS CHIEF RESIDENT OF THE ISLAND
BOATS PUT OFF FROM ITASCA AT DAYLIGHT MEN WERE HURRYING TO POSITIONS AND AT SEVEN THIRTY HST WE WERE READY EVERYONE SEEMED TENSE AND SORT OF BREATHLESS WE WATCHED THE SKY HOPING TO PICK THE PLANE OUT AGAINST WHITE CUMULUS CLOUDS WHICH WERE ALL AROUND THE HORIZON
THE SUN WAS HOT ON THE WHITE CORAL
ITASCA WAS LETTING A BIG STREAM OF BLACK SMOKE OUT STREAMING LOW OVER THE WATER WITH THE TRADE
WORD FROM THE SHIP AT SEVEN FORTYFIVE HST AMELIA ONE HUNDRED MILES AWAY
WE WAITED NOT TALKING VERY MUCH BIG BOOBY BIRDS AND FRIGATES SOARING HIGH UP AND FAR AWAY LOOKED LIKE PLANES
HOPES WERE RAISED SEVERAL TIMES BUT NO AMELIA
WE WERE WAITNG NEAR THE WEST END OF THE EAST WEST RUNWAY ABOUT HALF MILE FROM THE GOVERNMENT HOUSE
EIGHT THIRTY AND THE MINUTES DRAGGED
THEN WORD WIGWAGGED FROM ITASCA AMELIAS SIGNALS ON DIRECTION FINDER SHOWED SHE WAS NORTHWEST OF THE ISLAND
HAD SHE OVERSHOT
TO THE NORTHWEST WAS A BIG BANK OF CLOUDS
WHAT A GRAND BACKGROUND THAT WOULD MAKE
WHY DOESNT SHE COME THE WIGWAG MAN WAS FLASHING TO US FROM THE GOVERNMENT HOUSE
THE RECEIVER SHOUTED TO US AMELIA BELIEVED DOWN
ALL SHORE PARTIES RETURN TO SHIP
MY HEART STOPPED BEATING
IT DIDNT SEEM REAL MEN WERE RUNNING TO THE HOUSE
BOATS PUT OFF FROM ITASCA
NO ONE WAS LAUGHING
ORDERS WERE PASSED SHARPLY AND BEFORE WE REALIZED IT THE LOADED BOATS WERE BACK AT THE ITASCA
EIGHT OF US COLONISTS WERE LEFT BEHIND WE WERE ALONE AGAIN ON THE ISLAND
THE NOISE OF THE BIRDS SEEMED LOUDER WE WAITED NO VERIFICATION FROM THE ITASCA WHICH WAS LYING ABOUT HALF MILE OFF SHORE
I COULDNT MAKE MYSELF BELIEVE AMELIA HAD MISSED US WE KEPT WATCHING THE SKY
AT ELEVEN THIRTY SEVEN HST THE ITASCA STARTED OUT TO SEA TOWARDS THE NORTHWEST
SOON SHE WAS DISAPPEARING OVER THE HORIZON
I HOPE WILL ALL MY HEART THEY FIND HER
- Note that the reporter is referencing HST (Hawaiian Standard Time) which was an hour later than the time zone Itasca was using. This agrees with the ship's deck log that has the Itasca begin laying smoke at 06:14 local time. The reference to a DF bearing that put the plane northwest of Howland is interesting. The radio log makes it clear that no such bearing was taken. The ship's deck log also specifies that Itasca left its assigned station at Howland Island at 10:40 local time to begin searching to the northwest where Thompson had apparently convinced himself that the plane was down.