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Investigators in decades-old case get an intriguing clue

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
June 4th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A small cosmetic jar intended to cover up freckles gives more circumstantial evidence that legendary aviator Amelia Earhart died on an uninhabited island in the southwestern Pacific republic of Kiribati. The ointment pot was collected on Nikumaroro Island by researchers of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery that has long been investigating the last, fateful flight taken by Earhart 75 years ago.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Found in five broken pieces, when reassembled the glass fragments make up a nearly complete jar identical in shape to the ones used by Dr. C. H. Berry's Freckle Ointment. The ointment was marketed in the early 20th century and was guaranteed to make freckles fade.

What can be ascribed as a vanity item, Joe Cerniglia, the TIGHAR researcher who spotted the freckle ointment as a possible match says that's "It's well documented Amelia had freckles and disliked having them."

The jar fragments were found together with other artifacts during TIGHAR's numerous archaeological expeditions to the small atoll believed to be Earhart's final resting place.

Analysis of the recovered artifacts will be presented at a three-day conference in Arlington, Virgina.

In addition, a new study of post loss radio signals and the latest forensic analysis of a photograph believed to show the landing gear of Earhart's aircraft on Nikumaroro reef three months after her disappearance, will be also discussed.

Beginning on June 1, the symposium will highlight TIGHAR's high-tech search next July to find pieces of Earhart's Lockheed Electra aircraft.

Earhart mysteriously vanished while flying over the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937 during a record attempt to fly around the world at the equator.

Many think that Earhart's twin-engine plane ran out of fuel and crashed in the Pacific Ocean, somewhere near Howland Island.

According to Ric Gillespie, executive director of TIGHAR, there is an alternative conjecture. "The navigation line Amelia described in her final in-flight radio transmission passed through not only Howland Island, her intended destination, but also Gardner Island, now called Nikumaroro," Gillespie said.

The possibility that Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan might have made an emergency landing on Nikumaroro's flat coral reef, some 300 miles southeast of their target destination, is supported by a number of artifacts that strongly point to a castaway presence on the remote island.

"Broken shards from several glass containers have been recovered from the Seven Site, the archaeological site on the southeast end of Nikumaroro that fits the description of where the partial skeleton of a castaway was discovered in 1940," Gillespie told Discovery News.

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