Busy time for Project Amelia Earhart flyer

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by G4TUT, Jul 3, 2017.

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  1. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page


    The script column you point out on the image of the page is recognized as follows and clearly shows a date, probably the "publishing" date,


    This roughly translates as "October 5, 1955 Printing".

    This is in addition to the Showa era date some interpret as 1935 referenced for the era of the start of the log,


    Other data, title, names, locations, etc, interpreted from that block of Japanese text in the same manner is consistent.

    Note that the back of some pages, which at first appear blank, actually contain faint remnants of other circular ink stamps, like watermarks, impossible to clearly make out online. However, that points to the probability that pages were added to the scrapbook during the journey.

    73 de John - WØPV
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
  2. W1YW

    W1YW Ham Member QRZ Page

    So this book was published

    18 years after Amelia Earhart's Capture in the Marshall Islands...
  3. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Glad to read on FB that Brian finally got a replacement Micom3 HF radio, thanks to Bonnie's intervention! Hope this one doesn't crap out too.

    Perhaps a QSO with WB6RQN/AM will still be possible on his way to Oshkosh, if he doesn't just do ALE.

    But first, the treacherous crossing of the Pacific.

    Aviate ... navigate ... communicate.

    73 de John - WØPV
  4. AK1M

    AK1M Ham Member QRZ Page

    We need someone who can read Japanese to confirm. I copied and pasted those characters into the online translator, Babelfish, and got "Print 10/5/1935," not 1955. Try it, here: https://www.babelfish.com/
  5. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes, there are discrepancies in interpretation by different online translators. Google and a version of Babylon (not Babelfish) say 1955.

    However, it is pretty obvious that the Kanji characters in the box at the end are different then those in the circular ink stamp in the front. Obviously there is a cultural factor involved as well, and I am not an expert in that or the language. So I would defer to Bonnie in respect of her experience, or others, in that regard.

    As long as they appear objective. The blogger who brought this out, a Japanese "military historian", unintentionally or otherwise, may have at least a cognitive bias toward interpreting and presenting the finding in the most positive nationalistic way.

    But even if the correct translation of these characters indicate a date of 1935, it still doesn't defeat the question of their meaning, nor necessarily date the images contained in the binder. Again, as Chip pointed out too, it could just be the beginning date of the diary, or the general era of the subject matter.

    If this was actually a published work for sale, there ought to be other surviving copies of it as well, not just the one in the Diet. Those who may possess them could offer further insight about the history of the book(s).

    73 de John - WØPV
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2017
  6. KQ6XA

    KQ6XA Ham Member QRZ Page

    To W0PV, sorry, but you read the back page printing notice wrong.

    I'll break down the kanji for you here:

    昭和 = Showa
    十 = ten
    年= year

    十 = ten
    月 = month

    五 = 5
    日 = day

    印 = mark
    刷 = printing

    Showa 10 is 1935 not 1955.

    The rule for computing Showa date is: "add the number 1925 to the Showa date, to find the Gregorian calendar date".
    (Gregorian calendar is the common western calendar we all use)

    10 + 1925 = 1935 A.D.

    As for the red front page hand ink stamp, it shows "one zero".
    The hand stamp date uses a different numbering form from the back page.

    The number for 10 can be written as either
    一 O = one zero
    十 = ten

    This form of "one zero" instead of "ten" is typical of an old mechanical date changing hand stamp, with number inserts or rotary wheels.

    As for the Japanese national library, on their official digital achive website portal, they list their copy of this book as published, printed, and sold to the public in 1935. The publishing company was based in Palau. It was an actual printed and published work with multiple copies printed. It is not someone's home scrapbook. The so-called "kimono-tassel" binding method was typical of that era for a small printing company, and this method was utilized by many published books by small printing houses. The binding method was considered traditionally elegant, and suitable for what we in the west might call a "coffee table book" these days. For those who can read Japanese and take the time to flip through the pages, one gets the feeling that it was intended to attract Japanese tourists to the South Sea islands steamship tours, and to show off the author as a cultured traveler.
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2017
    N0TZU, AG5DB and W0PV like this.
  7. KQ6XA

    KQ6XA Ham Member QRZ Page

    The 1935 copyright publishing notice at the back of the book is factual evidence that it was published in 1935.
    The US Government's National Archives never listed the photo as 1937.
    The american researcher Les Kinney is the one who promoted the 1937 date for it.
    He found an undated photocopy of the page from the book in the National Archives in a folder from pre-1937.
    Les Kinney said his personal opinion was "the National Archives must have mis-categorized it pre-1937, they should have put it in 1937".
    History Channel TV ran with that, using his personal opinion as gospel truth.

    Facts are really much better evidence than personal opinion.
    N0TZU, AG5DB and W0PV like this.
  8. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thanks Bonnie for taking the time and effort to expand on it for us.

    73, John
    KD8YQC likes this.
  9. AK1M

    AK1M Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hi Bonnie: Thanks for the detailed explanation of "coffee table books" circa 1935 -- especially that the book was published and bound, and not akin to a looseleaf lab notebook.

    That said, it seems that the photo still confronts us with what appears to be two Caucasian persons on the pier, and something on the barge being towed by the freighter that appears to be a twin engine airplane missing its left wing. Even more surrreal is that, even though this photo appears in Japan's national library website, Les Kinney found a copy in previously classified Naval intelligence records in the US.
  10. N7XGR

    N7XGR Ham Member QRZ Page

    There is something glaringly missing in the photo. If in fact they were captured by the Japanese military
    then where are the guards? I see none there. There appears to be several smaller sail boats which could be used
    to escape in. Everybody is in plain clothes.

    Bruce N7XGR

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