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Author Topic: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?  (Read 40302 times)

Don Dollinger

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2010, 07:56:34 AM »

Is there any other analysis other then DNA available that can conclusively determine whether its human bone or turtle bone or is it simply a matter of bone is bone period?

LTM

Don
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2010, 09:37:26 AM »

Is there any other analysis other then DNA available that can conclusively determine whether its human bone or turtle bone or is it simply a matter of bone is bone period?

There are a variety of tests that can be done short of sequencing DNA. We should at least be able to know for sure whether or not it's human.
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Tom Swearengen

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2010, 04:12:14 PM »

Well, the internet is abuzz about the bones potentially being from Amelia. This will certainly attract attention to the expeditions of TIGHAR. I certainly hope that it is worth while. Striking out in the media is pretty bad----and the credibility of TIGHAR is at stake.
Tom
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2010, 04:35:02 PM »

...the credibility of TIGHAR is at stake.

No it's not. We've made it very clear that this is only a possibility.  TIGHAR's credibility is based on our integrity and we have always shared our ups and our downs. As i've said many times, what happened to Amelia Earhart is not important from an historical perspective. What is important is the process of figuring out what happened to her and it's the process that we have alwys shared with the interested public.  Too often, science only reports successes after they have been achieved. Rarely does the public get to share in the roller-coaster of hope and disappointment that is the essence of all scientific investigation. Welcome to the angst.

The most disappointing thing that could happen would be if DNA extracted from the bones did not match either Earhart or Noonan DNA.  That would suggest that the castaway was someone other than Earhart or Noonan.  Right now we can't imagine who that would be.  No other Americans of the 1930s seem to be missing in that part of the world - but we could be wrong.
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Tom Swearengen

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2010, 05:36:54 PM »

Ric---I agree with what you are saying, believe me. But, the average person doesnt know the extent of TIGHARS involvement, or research, or man-hours. They just go by whats on the internet, and TV. The impression that I get from reading the internet reports, and from the feedback that I get, is that its solved. I really do wish that that is the case. Like I had stated earlier in a post, I can remember Mr. Goerner stricking out 4 times in the media. I certainlydo not want that to happen to you. You and TIGHAR have done way too much research, alot more than he did.
Again, not being cynical, just putting a lay-persons perspective out there. Success is around the corner---I can feel it.
Tom
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Mike Piner

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2010, 05:56:15 PM »

I thought the reporting of the info from the tigher website about tighar's find of bones earlier this year was accurate, and a great service to their readers on the Fox news website, about tighars great work.  It was honest exposure for Tighar, to which we should be appreciative.  Fox Noise (sic)  Has many people who work hard to do their job.  Mike Piner
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Mike Piner

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2010, 07:37:00 PM »

Chris, The context of the vertebrate mentioned in the artical was the possible bones found by the natives. Mike Piner
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Mark Petersen

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #22 on: December 19, 2010, 12:52:40 PM »

At least Discovery Channel and TIGHAR 'get it'; but the 'noise' will always be the noise, bless 'em.

I couldn't agree more.  It's one thing to come out publicly with a whacked theory like the "captured by the Japanese".  But all that Tighar has done is to investigate a credible theory about the AE/FN disappearance and then report the facts as accurately as possible and as scientifically as possible.  To criticize this approach essentially means criticizing the scientific method. 

Each new step in the investigation has led to compelling information that has reinforced the Niku theory.  From the LOP logic, the 1940 bones discovery, Gallagher's notebook, the post loss radio bearings, villagers reporting aircraft debris on the reef, Betty's notebook, etc.  For me personally, this constant reinforcement of the initial theory is what I find so convincing.  Theories that are wrong don't stand up to this sort of scrutiny for long.  If the Niku theory ends up getting debunked it will be the first time in my engineering career that I've seen so many positive indications point to a failed theory. 
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Bob Rainville

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #23 on: December 25, 2010, 10:51:28 AM »

Hi Folks,
I'm new here and thanks to TIGHAR's excellent web page combined with my passion for history confess my total fascination with the Amelia Earhart Putnam story. Spent hours reading evidence and concur completely with Niku theory. They indeed landed, lived a short while as castaways and perished from dehydration or poisonous fish or a combination, no doubt prior to the British team landing in October of 1937. What a sad tragic fate for this brave woman and her navigator.

In reference to the bones found by Mr Gerald B. Gallagher: After reading all the "bone" material, one hypothesis not mentioned is that any one of the players in the chain of custody could have just passed the remains to a local native friend for burial or disposal per local custom thinking them to be of some lost native relative and not made much note of, thereby neglecting and by passing normal procedures. Sadly, with the Pacific war raging, the allies temporally donning their a$$ for a hat and priorities re-focused accordingly, the fate of a box of bones, believed to be of some unknown Polynesian male, was of no significance and sadly fell through the cracks.

It is my fervent prayer that TIGHAR's daunting persistence will find them so Amelia can be laid to rest next to her loving husband and of course hopefully locate Mr. Noonan's remains as well.

Oh Ric, please, it is FOX NEWS (not noise) as in rated number One (1) well ahead of CNN and lowest MSNBC... and rated number One (1) well ahead for a reason! Most folks prefer fair and balanced to the liberal manure and obvious bias put forth by all the others. That being said, lets all leave our politics in another "box' and stay focused on Amelia and Fred here so they will be brought home. It is my sincere hope and firm belief TIGHAR efforts will do just that!

                                                     MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL


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Ric Gillespie

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #24 on: December 25, 2010, 11:32:53 AM »

After reading all the "bone" material, one hypothesis not mentioned is that any one of the players in the chain of custody could have just passed the remains to a local native friend for burial or disposal per local custom thinking them to be of some lost native relative and not made much note of, thereby neglecting and by passing normal procedures. Sadly, with the Pacific war raging, the allies temporally donning their a$$ for a hat and priorities re-focused accordingly, the fate of a box of bones, believed to be of some unknown Polynesian male, was of no significance and sadly fell through the cracks.

What is odd about the the Western Pacific High Commission file titled "Skeleton, Human, finding of, on Gardner Island" is that it ends with no resolution about what was to become of the bones and artifacts. You don't have to spend long perusing the archives of the WPHC to understand that the British colonial administrators were fanatical about documenting every detail of everything that happened short of when the High Commissioner visited the loo.  That Dr. Hoodless at the Central Medical School might have casually disposed of the bones without permission after having been instructed by His Excellency himself to "retain the remains until further notice" is almost unthinkable.  If a successor to Hoodless in later years got rid of the bones he might not have been aware of the "Skeleton" file at WPHC but it seems like there should still be some record.  If so, we haven't found it yet.

lets all leave our politics in another "box' and stay focused on Amelia and Fred here so they will be brought home.

Yes, indeed. In these deeply divided times it's easy for our personal biases, left or right, to creep into our discussions.  On occasion, I have been as guilty as any but it's always a mistake. 
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #25 on: December 25, 2010, 01:21:59 PM »

In reference to the bones found by Mr Gerald B. Gallagher: After reading all the "bone" material, one hypothesis not mentioned is that any one of the players in the chain of custody could have just passed the remains to a local native friend for burial or disposal per local custom thinking them to be of some lost native relative and not made much note of, thereby neglecting and by passing normal procedures. Sadly, with the Pacific war raging, the allies temporally donning their a$$ for a hat and priorities re-focused accordingly, the fate of a box of bones, believed to be of some unknown Polynesian male, was of no significance and sadly fell through the cracks.

You haven't quite mastered the data: "I am not prepared to give an opinion on the race or nationality of this skeleton, except to state that it is probably not that of a pure South Sea Islander--Micronesian or Polynesian. It could be that of a short, stocky, muscular European, or even a half-caste, or person of mixed European descent."

Your guess about another alternative method of disposal, of course, is as good as mine in this instance.  We're playing the coulda, woulda, shoulda game. 

I concede that it could have happened.

Knowing the characters involved (Hoodless, Vaskess), I personally doubt it would have happened.  YMMV.

From the standpoint of the bureacracy--as I imagine the mindset of a bureaucracy--it should not have happened without a note to a file somewhere.

If that is, in fact, what happened, then we'll almost certainly never be able to prove that that is what happened, barring a fortunate find of a letter or diary entry.
LTM,

           Marty
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Monty Fowler

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #26 on: December 25, 2010, 07:38:43 PM »

I have to side with Ric as far as the WPHC bones file and the fact that something seems to be ... missing. Bureaucrats are nothing if not thorough and loveeeeeeeee to push paper around no matter what kind of hell may be breaking out around them (don't ask me how I know, just accept it as fact) and to leave something like an issue of this magnitude hanging - especially when they already had their suspicions of whose bones they might be - just doesn't ring true. Remember, people, these guys had nothing better to do with their time.

I could chalk the whole thing up to a little dust-up called WW II getting in the way, but if I remember correctly, there was typically an index attached to the front of each WPHC file that showed who it had been to last, actions taken, etc.  That said, the war might have served as enough of a distraction to some of the principal players that the bones file was shelved "for the duration" and then when the war was over, it had slipped from the consciousness of the bureaucrat who "owned" that file.

And that said - do we know enough about the High Commissioner, Hoodless, etc. whereabouts immediately after WW II? Did any of them leave for England? My memory says No but that's not a good thing to rely on these days  :)
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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Bob Rainville

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #27 on: December 25, 2010, 09:48:31 PM »

Quote
That Dr. Hoodless at the Central Medical School might have casually disposed of the bones without permission after having been instructed by His Excellency himself to "retain the remains until further notice" is almost unthinkable.  If a successor to Hoodless in later years got rid of the bones ...


Yes Ric, I do agree that Dr. Hoodless no doubt followed his orders and suspect some successor disposed of the artifacts, perhaps for reasons as I suggested and the file relating to that became lost. Thanks everyone for your great reply's to my first post on the forum. Looking forward to joining, keeping me politics in another box  ;) and being a positive contributor.

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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #28 on: December 25, 2010, 10:19:35 PM »

I could chalk the whole thing up to a little dust-up called WW II getting in the way, but if I remember correctly, there was typically an index attached to the front of each WPHC file that showed who it had been to last, actions taken, etc.  That said, the war might have served as enough of a distraction to some of the principal players that the bones file was shelved "for the duration" and then when the war was over, it had slipped from the consciousness of the bureaucrat who "owned" that file.

I believe that I have read more files from the WPHC and Fiji School of Medicine (FSM) than any other practicing TIGHAR (I haven't ever heard from the original discoverer of the Bones File.  He probably has me beat for all-time bragging rights.

The entire investigation of the bones took place during war time.

The first entry is April 1940.

The last entry is, as I understand it, "Put away," which means "case closed; file and forget,"  dated 19 August 1941.

Neither in the bones file nor in any of the hundreds of outgoing letters I've read for the WPHC and FSM do I find the least bit of panic or bureaucratic disarray.  It is true that the shipment of Gallagher's trunks was delayed, but not because the bureaucrats stopped being bureaucrats; I believe it was because the ships available in the Pacific to carry cargo towards England were busy carrying military cargo elsewhere.

I feel rather strongly about this.  I grant you that I'm just matching my coulda-woulda-shouldas against yours, but, in this case, I have many volumes of correspondence that I've read which suggest that the war just wasn't that disruptive at WPHC headquarters.

Quote
And that said - do we know enough about the High Commissioner, Hoodless, etc. whereabouts immediately after WW II? Did any of them leave for England? My memory says No but that's not a good thing to rely on these days  :)

Hoodless.

Sir Harry.

If you get curious about other players, I've got an article what I think we know about each suspect.
LTM,

           Marty
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Monty Fowler

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Re: FAQ: FOUND Bones, them bones! AE's or Turtle Bones?
« Reply #29 on: December 26, 2010, 12:00:59 PM »

Marty, my apologies, I should have known with your trips to Fiji that you would have been down this road, and reading that article reinforces my suspicision, and it is only that, but thinking like a bureaucrat ... try this one on for size:

The "bones file" is investigated and "closed" for all intents and purposes by the end of 1941. As far as a true bureaucrat is concerned, once something is marked closed, it might as well not exist anymore. WW II ramps up in earnest. While it doesn't disturb the vast bureaucratic machine that is the WPHC, it sure does give them al lot of other things to think about.

Meanwhile, a "new and improved" file numbering system is instigated by Vaskess, whom Tofinga once called "the Prince of bureaucrats." The bones file is part of the old system. It has already been marked P.A. (Put Away), which is a polite way of saying, "Not MY problem any more, buddy!" Vaskess is trying to keep up with the daily crush of running things during a war, when there is never enough of anything and every day brings the crisis du jour. In his mind, the bones file is over and done with, it has been marked P.A., it is Sir Harry's problem now, not his.

Which leaves the bones file where? Adrift ... without an "owner," so to speak. When it does surface again, say in a few years, maybe during a periodic consolidation or housecleaning, I can totally see it getting slapped with a new number under the new system and getting lost in the shuffle. NONE of which answers the question of where the bones are now, but I offer it as one plausible guess as to the resolution of the bones file. I will now return to shoveling snow. Oh the joy.
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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