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Author Topic: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City  (Read 27109 times)

Don Dollinger

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #15 on: May 24, 2012, 03:35:34 PM »

Everyone is talking about setting up SOS markers that would be seen by search planes.  As far as she knew she was the only plane in the area.  Hell, they had to build a runway specifically for her.  In the situation she was in a signal fire would be the wise choice as she didn't expect the search to come from the sky, she expected it to come from the sea.

LTM, 

Don
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Greg Daspit

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2012, 05:48:31 PM »

I think in the daytime they would want a signal that works for both land and sea.

The horizonal surface good to mark is mostly the beach which could get covered by water.

The only clear vertical surface away from trees is the ship.

So thats why I think they marked the ship. It works for both.

I think Fred knew there were sea planes in the area, civil and naval.
From Wiki -"Frederick Joseph "Fred" Noonan (April 4, 1893 – missing July 2, 1937, declared dead June 20, 1938)[1] was an American flight navigator, sea captain and aviation pioneer who first charted many commercial airline routes across the Pacific Ocean during the 1930s"
However, I do think they would expect rescue to come first from the Itasca, via the sea.

A fire would be difficult to count on to get going quick if you ran out of matches or your lighter ran out.
Even if you have a lighter, you have to stay near it, ready to light it in time. So you sacrifice time looking for water and food. Plus you have to be near the open to see what you want to signal and not out of the wind and sun.
Or you spend alot of time and energy keeping one going.
At night a fire may be the only way to go and a ship would be what your trying to signal at that time.
3971R
 
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Rich Ramsey

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2012, 11:40:51 AM »

Thank you for the replies. I guess I didn't think about them needing food and the direction they were flying in from. When you put it that way i can see the 7 site as a location. But what did they have with the camp from the NC crew and was there anything left on the ship she could of used. It will be hard to prove giving the camp of the NC crew and the location of the village but I am sure they spent a bunch of time in the area of the NC. Might of even slept on it at night (in between high tides).

I also didn't think about the objects from the NC showing up at say the 7 site would be a clear sign of someone (Yes I am implying AE) was castaway on the island before the village. The NC crew didn't go over there, and why would the coasties take anything from the NC to begin with. They would be good items to look for.

I'll give you shiny objects and banners of any kind to hang from the NC. But I just don't think painting an SOS on the side would be a good use of her time. The Deck maybe for sure, but then again I was never stranded so I don't know what I would really do.

Respectfully submitted

Rich
"Hang Tough"
Rich
 
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Don Dollinger

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2012, 03:13:55 PM »

Quote
A fire would be difficult to count on to get going quick if you ran out of matches or your lighter ran out.  Even if you have a lighter, you have to stay near it, ready to light it in time. So you sacrifice time looking for water and food. Plus you have to be near the open to see what you want to signal and not out of the wind and sun.  Or you spend alot of time and energy keeping one going.

Bingo, you are right on the mark.  Discussed in previous posts.  The smart thing would be to use a flare gun http://tighar.org/wiki/Flare_gun.   OOPS, its almost as if they were cutting off their noses to spite their face, if they had any problems, which they did.  Only a couple of legs to go, get in that rush too get it over with and get home.  I know that they had to trim weight but come on now how much weight is saved dumping your flare gun the one most useful signaling device you have.

If they were still alive during the flyover, no need to get to the beach immediately and even then not being seen, find a break in the canopy and shoot a flare.  The planes see that and they know they got someone that needs assistance.

LTM,

Don
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Greg Daspit

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #19 on: May 25, 2012, 04:13:22 PM »

It may have taken the castaway/ castaways a while to work their way up to the forecastle/ crew area, exploring for resources along the way. If you look at the debris from the collision with the bridge you will see all sorts of stuff. Pulleys, cables, steel ladders, winches.  A big gash was in the hull to pass in and out thru. From the NZ  pictures, the forecastle area still looks intact though.

Maybe they started at low tide and got trapped for 12 hours during high tide.  They could have slept for a while. Though it may have been difficult to do with loose steel and debris getting pounded by waves. Then they likely had extra time to paint while waiting for low tide to return to the beach. They had flashlights to work at night, and probably bought them to explore the ship even in daylight. The paint and brushes could have simply been in a locker near the bulwark ready to use.

If they did decide to make camp on the shipwreck, It may be a 12 hour cycle you had to work around. They would have lots of extra time during high tide.

 One good thing about the ship as a camp, is the fish are easy to catch. Eric  Bevington said “I boarded the wreck and found the hold to be teeming with mullet; they were so thick that more fish were visible than bottom. The natives easily speared them”  In fact the food on the island seems really easy to catch anywhere, it crawls right up to you. The problem is the cooking. Maybe during the day they collected fire wood, then return to the ship before nightfall and high tide. There your fresh food awaits.

You could spend the rest of the time sleeping or looking for help from a very high point. Your stash of fire wood ready to light. Maybe a fire set in a bucket ready to run up the mast at night.

They could also rig a gutter or simple rain diverter at the bottom of the forecastle deck where it changes height, and could catch a lot of fresh rain water running down the forecastle deck. This could take very little effort. Place a board or 2 at the bottom of the deck and put a bucket next to where the rain is diverted. Maybe the ship already had holes for water to run off the deck at the bulwark. Just hang a bucket under one.

Water, food, shelter, high point for signaling and viewing. Maybe the shipwreck is not a bad site after all. I just think it would be hard to get in and out of on a regular basis.

Did they have a raft for getting around the lagoon and reef?
3971R
 
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #20 on: May 25, 2012, 07:17:07 PM »

Quote
A fire would be difficult to count on to get going quick if you ran out of matches or your lighter ran out.  Even if you have a lighter, you have to stay near it, ready to light it in time. So you sacrifice time looking for water and food. Plus you have to be near the open to see what you want to signal and not out of the wind and sun.  Or you spend alot of time and energy keeping one going.

Bingo, you are right on the mark.  Discussed in previous posts.  The smart thing would be to use a flare gun http://tighar.org/wiki/Flare_gun.   OOPS, its almost as if they were cutting off their noses to spite their face, if they had any problems, which they did.  Only a couple of legs to go, get in that rush too get it over with and get home.  I know that they had to trim weight but come on now how much weight is saved dumping your flare gun the one most useful signaling device you have.

If they were still alive during the flyover, no need to get to the beach immediately and even then not being seen, find a break in the canopy and shoot a flare.  The planes see that and they know they got someone that needs assistance.

LTM,

Don
There is no reason to believe that they did not have a flare gun with them and we have discussed this extensively before.
https://tighar.org/smf/index.php/topic,592.msg10561.html#msg10561
https://tighar.org/smf/index.php/topic,592.msg10648.html#msg10648
https://tighar.org/smf/index.php/topic,592.msg10686.html#msg10686
https://tighar.org/smf/index.php/topic,555.msg8280.html#msg8280
https://tighar.org/smf/index.php/topic,592.msg10561.html#msg10561

I also remember now where I read that Earhart had a Colt pocket pistol, I read it a long time ago in a firearms publication.  I read it in a gun magazine article and it caught my eye because it is same type of pistol that I have so I have a clear memory of reading the article and it had photos. This was before I became interested in the Earhart disappearance so I didn't think to keep that issue.

gl
« Last Edit: May 25, 2012, 07:23:50 PM by Gary LaPook »
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Greg Daspit

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #21 on: May 25, 2012, 09:33:42 PM »

Does anyone know of any other pictures taken of the Norwich City's starboard side? Specifically any taken in the survey done at Gardner 3 months after AE went missing?

I'm interested to see what the markings look like near the starboard anchor and when they may have been made or if natural, what made them.

Right now I beleive someone made an SOS at some time after the NC accident, 1929 to 1938, or fire/ smoke thru the open seam in 1929 somehow made the marks.

Also, does anyone know how difficult it was to walk into the opening in the port hull from the reef?

Thanks,
3971R
 
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John Ousterhout

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #22 on: May 25, 2012, 10:02:23 PM »

Am I the only one who thinks that a big shiny Electra on the reef would have been enough of a signal?
Cheers,
JohnO
 
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Bruce Thomas

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #23 on: May 26, 2012, 06:50:31 AM »

Does anyone know of any other pictures taken of the Norwich City's starboard side? Specifically any taken in the survey done at Gardner 3 months after AE went missing?
Have you seen these photos from the NZ expedition of late 1938?
LTM,

Bruce
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Greg Daspit

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #24 on: May 30, 2012, 06:07:52 PM »

Thanks Bruce, I'm glad you gave the link. I had seen them but was looking for them agian and could not remember where they were. I really want to see the Maude -Bevington survey pictures if they exist?

While looking elswhere I found this interesting picture with the kite she was going to fly as a signal.
There is a spec in the upper right in the Lambrecht picture. Likely a scratch on the photo.

The kite may be the kind of thing she could have hung next to the SOS so it looks fresh, of course likely to be blown away pretty quickly too.

If it was laying on the ground it could be described as a "marker"
3971R
 
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Don Dollinger

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Re: Possible S.O.S on Norwich City
« Reply #25 on: August 06, 2012, 12:32:11 PM »

Quote
I just can't understand why they would leave the ship. Unless they (or just whomever was left) did it to survey the area and intended to return but didn't have the strength or will power to do so.

One compelling reason I can think of this.  They obvious flew over to look for the best place to land the Electra.  They would have seen the waterhole near the Coastie site and if they were desperate for water may have thought that water was not brackish so they hiked down to the site.  Alas, it would not have been a savior for them but that could explain them settling at the 7 site.  Perhaps because of location or lack of ability to make it back to the NC....
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