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Author Topic: The Gallagher Paradox  (Read 128476 times)

Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #30 on: January 13, 2013, 08:24:04 PM »

How about these things?

Attached are details from KAP photos.  The first one is a detail from the KAP photo I posted earlier.  Red arrows on the left point out pieces of shipwreck debris.  Red arrows on the right point out the features you're asking about.  The second KAP photo is a detail from the next one in the sequence.  Red arrows on the left point out the same two pieces of shipwreck debris seen in the first photo.  There are no red arrows on the left because there is nothing there. The features in the first photo a just sunlight reflections on the skim of water. (The long dark line is a crack in the reef surface.)
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Tim Mellon

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #31 on: January 13, 2013, 09:09:46 PM »

There are no red arrows on the left because there is nothing there.

No, Ric, I believe there is nothing there in the second picture because the scale has changed and the upper object pointed out would be beyond the right edge.  The lower object is there, but it does look like rock. The kite must have lost altitude.
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« Last Edit: January 13, 2013, 09:27:36 PM by Tim Mellon »
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Dan Swift

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2013, 07:10:10 PM »

Kite Aerial Photo (KAP) of Norwich City attached.  I see nothing near the reef edge north of the wreck.  We have KAP coverage all the way up to the Bevington Object location.  Nothin'.

In the period we are talking about, the first 'half' of the NC was still in tact.  So not sure of too much debris would have been 'upstream'.  And that must have some storm to move that boiler forward and place it on the reef.  Can imagine what something similar did to an aluminum aircraft. 

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Dan Swift

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #33 on: January 14, 2013, 07:17:08 PM »

Or maybe you discovered that the cocos really weren't of any use to you.  I've never met a European yet (we're "Europeans" in Pacific parlance) who can climb a coconut tree and opening a nut in such a way as to permit you to drink the contents without a sharp bush knife and the knowledge of how to do it is almost impossible.  But even if you succeed, for most people coconut milk is a great laxative.  Not exactly a desirable effect for a castaway.
[/quote]

Would Noonan have known from his travels with PanAm?
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #34 on: January 14, 2013, 07:24:42 PM »

Would Noonan have known from his travels with PanAm?

I don't know.  I've never seen a photo of him with a coconut.  His travels with Pan Am took him to Hawaii (lots of coconuts but no particular requirement to learn how to climb a tree or open a nut), Midway (no cocos there), Wake (ditto), and Manila (are there coconuts in Manila?).
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Dan Swift

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2013, 07:42:22 PM »

Is that at trick question Ric?  I.....think so.....  But....? 

And on another subject from an earlier post in this thread, what would you tie the Electra to on the reef?   Run a long rope (if you had one) to some Scaevola?  Maybe that's the rope in the video?  Even I think it's a cable....
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Alan Harris

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2013, 07:51:48 PM »

. . . Manila (are there coconuts in Manila?).

Wiki to the rescue:

Quote
Coconut production plays an important role in the national economy of the Philippines . . . it is the world's largest producer of coconuts, producing 19,500,000 tonnes in 2009 . . . According to the United Nations, coconut production in the Philippines grew at the rate of 5.3 per cent per year from 1911 to 1929.

Without boring folks further, it goes on to say that the coconut-growing regions include the island of Luzon in the district immediately south of Manila.  So, yes there are.
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Dan Swift

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2013, 08:04:47 PM »

Alan,
I think Ric was making light of my question.....which was pretty light I must admit. 
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #38 on: January 14, 2013, 08:12:07 PM »

Alan,
I think Ric was making light of my question.....which was pretty light I must admit.

I really didn't know and was too lazy to look it up.  Thanks Dan.  I don't think we have any evidence that Capt. Noonan was a skilled coconut climber and carver.
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Dan Swift

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #39 on: January 14, 2013, 08:15:22 PM »

Well, I meant my question was "pretty light".  Because who really knows unless someone was there or, as you said, you say evidence that he had knowledge of opening and using Coconuts.  I reminds me of when I lived in S. Florida and decided I was going to open some out of back yard.  I had to use a hand saw to cut those things! 
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #40 on: January 14, 2013, 08:15:37 PM »

Is that at trick question Ric?  I.....think so.....  But....? 

And on another subject from an earlier post in this thread, what would you tie the Electra to on the reef?   Run a long rope (if you had one) to some Scaevola?  Maybe that's the rope in the video?  Even I think it's a cable....

I can't imagine why they would have that much rope (at least 700 feet) aboard the plane when they were concerned about weight.  That much cable?  Fagetaboutit.
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Dan Swift

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #41 on: January 14, 2013, 09:08:29 PM »

Ric,
Do you remember the Movie "The Deep"?  Wow...showing my age now.  Basically the 'confusion' of the movie was a 'modern' shipwreck lay top of an older one.....with treasure!  Makes one wonder if we don't have a little of the same going on.  Can't wait until you can go back and maybe down really deep and find out more. 
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Greg Daspit

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #42 on: January 14, 2013, 09:14:58 PM »

From the tying up picture some cable survived on the Norwich City.
Wedging/ shimming a stake into a nearby reef crack would require much less line.
There was a possible crack in the reef in the kite picture. I'm interested to see if the crack, probably filled with stuff, coral rubble, etc, is softer than the reef surface and if it is possible to drive a stake in it or if there are natural holes in it.

Because the Bevington object is so close to the edge and in a few inches of water (so may not be connected to the plane
) it may be a possiblility that it was tied down.
I understand there is no evidence it was, but think it might be something worth looking at closer.
Looking forward to the Bevington object research paper to see the latest analysis and maybe a group can take a closer look at the cracks and larger holes and pockets just off the reef near the suspected location during the next trip.

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« Last Edit: January 14, 2013, 10:40:46 PM by Gregory Lee Daspit »
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Bob Lanz

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #43 on: January 15, 2013, 10:17:50 AM »

From the tying up picture some cable survived on the Norwich City.
Wedging/ shimming a stake into a nearby reef crack would require much less line.
There was a possible crack in the reef in the kite picture. I'm interested to see if the crack, probably filled with stuff, coral rubble, etc, is softer than the reef surface and if it is possible to drive a stake in it or if there are natural holes in it.

Because the Bevington object is so close to the edge and in a few inches of water (so may not be connected to the plane
) it may be a possiblility that it was tied down.
I understand there is no evidence it was, but think it might be something worth looking at closer.
Looking forward to the Bevington object research paper to see the latest analysis and maybe a group can take a closer look at the cracks and larger holes and pockets just off the reef near the suspected location during the next trip.

Gregory

The Luke Field Inventory included  Item 40 - 1 Kit containing: 3 Mooring rods, 1 driving rod, and 6 mooring arrows.  Above that it says "line", presumably to tie down the aircraft.  It is not known however if these items reached Burbank and were with the Electra when it left Miami.  I have not seen an inventory list from when the plane reached Miami if there is one.  Ric may know.  Assuming they knew the wind and weather conditions on Gardner Island, they as pilot and navigator would have instinctively tried to tie down the aircraft.  I doubt at this late date whether that will ever be known unless someone finds a wing or stake with a tie down rope or line still attached to a tie down loop.  I never failed to tie down my aircraft unless it was in my hanger.
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JNev

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Re: The Gallagher Paradox
« Reply #44 on: January 15, 2013, 02:31:26 PM »

There's an odd paradox in the historical record. 
•  British administrator Gerald Gallagher suspected that the castaway whose partial skeleton he found on Gardner Island in 1940 might be Amelia Earhart.
•  Gallagher, a licensed pilot himself, certainly knew that Earhart had disappeared in an airplane.

But, in all of his correspondence about the bones there is no mention of a search for - or even curiosity about - possible aircraft wreckage.

•  At least some of the Pacific Islanders who lived on the island knew about the discovery of the bones and the suspicion that they were Earhart's.
•  There was clearly a tradition among the islanders during and after WWII that there had been an airplane wreck somewhere on the island in the early days of the settlement.

But, none of the stories about "the downed plane" connect it with the stories about the bones that were said to be Earhart's.

How could two legends - to us so obviously related - exist independently and simultaneously on the same island without being connected to each other?

I think it a paradox if looking for a tie in of the two events, bones and wreckage.
I would imagine if Gallagher reported bones, he would have also reported wreckage. Yet he did not, and one simple explanation is the wreckage memories and stories happened AFTER Gallagher was dead.

We have Gallagher's writings that don't mention wreckage at all. I believe the reason is the fore mentioned theory that Gallagher thought the castaway had floated ashore or otherwise arrived without plane.
Then years later, after Gallagher had passed, the stories came out from the islanders and Navy men remembering at least partial aircraft wreckage. As mentioned numerous times, memories are shaky, and years get confused.
Are these later reports any more or less valid than the "saipan" memories?
I take them all with a grain of salt, years melt memories into shapes that only vaguely resemble reality.

The truth is there is not one letter or memo dated when Gallagher is alive, from anyone military or civilian, that mentions aircraft wreckage being found or reported found on Gardner. This complete lack of historical papers or letters mentioning aircraft wreckage, likely means there was no visible aircraft wreckage.

Therefore there is no paradox if the two events (bones/wreckage) were disassociated entirely in time.

Good points I think.  As much as I'd like to claim the paradox as such, whatever wreckage may have been around at the time of the bones discovery must have not been evident to Gallagher - whether unfound or simply not present.  Maybe if it even occurred to Gallagher to wonder about it, and it was not in evidence, he simply dismissed the notion as if "who knows, perhaps gone into the sea".  The apparent paradox therefore seems to me to be merely a reflection of what Gallagher could directly observe and report, with little speculation.

We know that aircraft stuff did turn up - at least some of it not of an Electra; we also know the PB4Y stuff likely didn't fly in and crash or land there, but must have been imported.  We also know by TIGHAR's own experience with them that islanders own expression of things isn't always as straightforward as we think - whether innocently wanting to please the listener, or simply connecting the dots slightly differently out of a language/comprehension gap.  Emily's story can be compelling; so can the story of wreckage as a source for the fishing tackle, etc. - but how can we know that an "airplane wreck" wasn't just some junk brought to the island from another place for the raw material, happening to arrive early in the colonization of Gardner?

I'd like to make more of those accounts as having to do with the Electra and wonder more at the "paradox", but objectively I don't think I can.  Of what I've seen of all this to-date I think the airplane wreckage remains elusive and still demanding of Electra wreckage if the airplane, or stories thereof, are to serve as a smoking gun.

Personally, I can look at the body of things found to date and assign some notion of probability of Earhart having been there (subjectively by perusal - YMMV).  But with the intriguing exceptions of the artifact 2-3-V-2 curved plexiglass and artifact 2-2-V-1 'skin' I don't see a lot of hope for proof via airframe, short of finding major wreckage.  I don't think Gallagher was able to get us closer to it simply because it was probably not on the island to be seen or reported credibly at the time.
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