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Thread: The Tamam (Taman) Shud Somerton Man Unsolved Mystery - Adelaide, Australia, 1948

  1. #26
    Senior Member blighted star's Avatar
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    continued ...

    Why has the case never been solved?

    Despite a few new pieces of information emerging over the years, the case is still a mystery.

    Most of the key witnesses are now dead.

    SA Police told the ABC it was an ?open inquiry? that remained with the Major Crime Investigation Branch.

    Genetic testing on the Somerton Man?s hair, embedded in the plaster cast, revealed the man?s mother had European ancestry, but offered no further clues.

    Jessie Thomson died in 2007, six years before her link to the investigation was made public.

    Rumours swirled that her son Robin was the biological son of the unidentified man.

    In 2013, her daughter Kate Thomson said her mother knew the identity of the man on the beach.

    ?She said to me she knew who he was, but she wasn?t going to let that out of the bag,? she told current affairs show 60 Minutes.

    Romance blossomed during investigations

    While sleuths around the world have conducted their own investigations over the years, Adelaide University professor Derek Abbott has dedicated more than 20 years to solving the case.

    He found himself more deeply involved in the story while researching the connection between Robin Thomson and the Somerton Man.

    While Robin Thomson had died by the time Professor Abbott made the connection, his daughter Rachel Egan was alive and living in Queensland.

    Professor Abbott contacted her, and before long, the two developed a relationship. They married.

    Professor Abbott said comparing the DNA of his wife and the Somerton Man ? her possible grandfather ? could prove whether or not Robin was the Somerton Man?s son and whether Mrs Thomson had been in a relationship with the mystery man.

    The only problem?

    No state government has agreed to the exhumation. Until now.

    Attorney-General Vickie Chapman told the ABC the State Government had offered its conditional support for an exhumation.

    But there?s a catch.

    ?If somebody can come up with the funds to support that, and there is sufficient supervision of this process, then I will consent to it,? she said.


    Ms Chapman has had informal talks with police about an exhumation but said they had not indicated it was a priority.

    ?We would need to have a clear plan as to what the exhumation arrangements would be, what particles of fibre or tissue might be required for forensic assessment, who would undertake that, the security of that, the reinterment,? she said.

    ?At this stage, I haven?t had any plan presented or indication that there?s finance available, but I would of course act as expeditiously as possible, if those things were in place and approved.?

    Could it be funded?

    Professor Abbott estimated the cost of an exhumation from the Somerton Man?s grave at West Terrace Cemetery would be $20,000.

    It doesn?t sound like much, especially given the level of interest in the case, but a previous crowdfunding effort came to nothing.

    ?We?ve got the mother?s side, we need the father?s side which is the Y-DNA and we also need the autosomes, which is part of the DNA,? he said.

    ?That?s what we really want because it?s from [those] that you can use that data to go on genealogical websites and find close cousins.?

    Professor Abbott told the ABC he was considering starting a new crowdfunding effort, to help find the answers to the questions he had been asking for more than two decades.

    Ms Egan, who said she was only too happy to take part in genetic testing, said she felt a little like Alice in Wonderland ? on the verge of an abyss, not knowing how deep it went.

    ?There will still be many questions that remain unanswered but hopefully it will give us far more information about who he was,? she said.

    ?In one sense it?s irrelevant if he?s genetically related or not because obviously he has a connection to my family.

    ?If we?re not his family, there?s another family out there who deserve to know what?s happened to him.?

    While the world watches to see if this mystery will ever come to a conclusion, for Ms Egan it?s personal.

    ?Is the unknown man my grandfather, or not??

    Credits
    Reporting and research: Daniel Keane
    Photography: Tony Hill, Greg Ashman, Chris Lockyer, Carl Saville
    Artwork: Ruth Stentiford
    Editor: Jessica Haynes
    Thanks to: Tim Leslie, Professor Derek Abbott, Gerry Feltus, Wayne Groom, Dr Carolyn Bilsborow, the SA Police Historical Society and the Adelaide Cemeteries Authority

  2. #27
    Moderator raisedbywolves's Avatar
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    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-...twist/11377458

    In his anonymity, his aloneness, the tantalising and obscure clues he left behind, the unsolved death of the "Somerton Man" has become one of Australia's most enduring mysteries.

    Who he was, how he died, where he came from, where he was going: these questions have never been answered. His fame has grown exponentially as every passing decade has failed to uncover his secrets, the public interest intense. Now, for the first time, the answers are within reach.

    South Australian Attorney-General Vickie Chapman, who studied the case at law school, has granted conditional approval for an exhumation, with the proviso that taxpayers don't foot the bill. It is expected to cost about $20,000. That money has yet to be raised.

    Professor Derek Abbott is the man pushing for the exhumation.

    "It is frustrating that so much time has passed and an exhumation hasn't happened yet but I think the time is now right for that. The technology is there and I think the will is there," he says.

    Professor Abbott wants Somerton Man's DNA. He suspects Somerton Man fathered a child and left a generational legacy and that Rachel Egan is the Somerton Man's granddaughter.

  3. #28
    Moderator raisedbywolves's Avatar
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    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-10-...n-man/12717590

    he mysterious Somerton Man has been given a Hollywood makeover in the hope forensic facial reconstruction will help solve the perplexing 72-year-old cold case.

    A cross-continental collaboration involving a virtual reality artist and two researchers has resulted in new images of the man whose body was found on Adelaide's Somerton beach.

    His identity and cause of death have remained unsolved ever since he was spotted by passers-by propped against the seawall on December 1, 1948.

    The case has baffled police and sparked theories about who he was, including speculation he was a Cold War spy or a jilted lover, and that he could have been poisoned.

    Images of the mystery man are scarce, with unflattering black-and-white post-mortem photographs — and a death mask of his face and upper torso — all that remain.

    But virtual reality specialist Daniel Voshart, whose credits include work on US television show Star Trek: Discovery, recently joined forces with University of Adelaide Somerton Man researcher Derek Abbott and US genealogist Colleen Fitzpatrick to fix that problem.

    The result is an animation, and several striking new images, showing what the Somerton Man could well have looked like when he was alive.

    "I drew on all of Derek Abbott's research and list of things of what to pay attention to," Canada-based Voshart told ABC News.

    "I was given a list of his hair colour, what his teeth were like, what his eye colour was, his skin tone."

    Using artificial intelligence software, Voshart combined the physical descriptions of the Somerton Man with the autopsy photos and images of the plaster bust.

  4. #29
    Moderator raisedbywolves's Avatar
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    They finally exhumed him last month, so now familial DNA is being analyzed.

    https://www.cnn.com/2021/05/31/austr...dst/index.html

    The Somerton man died alone on a beach in 1948. Now Australian scientists are close to solving the mystery

  5. #30
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    I was JUST about to update this one.

    RBW, the title should include "The Somerton Man to make it more searchable here. This case has always haunted me.
    Quote Originally Posted by Miller22 View Post
    I thought the exact same thing. Poor Brennen Tammons.
    Oh well, back to gum.
    ....or exchanging Puke's wang for spicy nuts.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nic B View Post
    That is too pretty to be shoved up an ass.

  6. #31
    Senior Member blighted star's Avatar
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    Ever since they started getting serious about exhuming him & testing his DNA, I've kinda wondered how the Somerton Man-obsessed Professor will react in the long-term if his wife isn't actually a descendent



    https://www.news.com.au/national/cri...36f3e612622d55

    Fresh hope in Somerton Man mystery as forensic researchers examine DNA


    Those closest to the Somerton Man case are hoping DNA testing of his remains will unravel the mystery of who he was.

    Catie McLeod
    2 min read
    September 7, 2021 - 12:07AM



    Bones of Somerton man found to be in good condition
    Investigators believe there is fresh hope?

    The woman who could be the Somerton Man?s granddaughter hopes DNA testing of his remains will reveal the answers to one of Australia?s most enduring mysteries.

    The body was exhumed in May to undergo forensic testing, more than 70 years after he was found slumped against a sea wall at Somerton Beach, south of Adelaide.

    When passersby stumbled upon his body in 1948, the mystery man had an unsmoked cigarette resting on his chest and a scrap of paper in his pocket.


    His hair was perfectly in place and his double-breasted jacket was pressed and in perfect condition, though all the clothing labels had been removed.

    He has never been identified, with the unsolved case capturing the imaginations of generations of Australians and others around the world.

    It?s possible he would unknowingly become the grandfather of Rachel Egan, who is among those hoping to discover the truth.

    Ms Egan appeared on the ABC?s Australian Story on Monday night in an episode about the unsolved case, as forensic researchers examine his remains.

    ?Whether or not I?m genetically connected to Mr Somerton we need to find out the truth, whatever the truth may be,? she told the program.

    ?By exhuming the body and giving Mr Somerton an identity, it will finally bring closure to this case and to the lives of a lot of people. There?s a family out there somewhere who have lost somebody.


    ?Somebody needs to own him.?


    Forensic researchers will examine the Somerton Man?s DNA and see whether any of it can be linked to Ms Egan?s.

    Her husband, Adelaide University Professor Derek Abbott, has become an expert on the case since he began investigating it in 2009.

    The couple met and fell in love that year after Professor Abbot contacted Ms Egan believing her father could have been the Somerton Man?s son.

    Professor Abbott told the ABC one of his theories about the mystery is linked to the woman who could be Ms Egan?s grandmother, Jo Thompson.

    ?One theory that was forming in my mind is that perhaps he did come to see Jo Thompson and his son and died for whatever reason there out on the beach, and perhaps it was in her interest to de-identify him,? he said.

    South Australia Attorney-General
    But others think differently.

    Dr Carolyn Bilsborow, who directed the documentary Missing Pieces about the case, told the ABC she believed the Somerton Man took his own life.

    ?I think Somerton Man did know Jo Thomson, but when he came back to visit her, she rejected him. The only way to really find out now is through DNA,? she said.

    A variety of forensic tests will be carried out on the Somerton Man?s remains over the coming months in an attempt to work out his identity.




  7. #32
    Moderator raisedbywolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blighted star View Post
    Ever since they started getting serious about exhuming him & testing his DNA, I've kinda wondered how the Somerton Man-obsessed Professor will react in the long-term if his wife isn't actually a descendent



    https://www.news.com.au/national/cri...36f3e612622d55
    Didn't he supposedly marry her just because of that?

    I can't wait for an answer on the DNA!

  8. #33
    Senior Member blighted star's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raisedbywolves View Post
    Didn't he supposedly marry her just because of that?

    I can't wait for an answer on the DNA!
    They absolutely met through his research & theories, so yeah, can't help but wonder how he'll feel about it. & yes, me too, it'll be so weird to have answers to this because it's been a mystery my entire life. I was reading stuff on this when I was in 4th grade

  9. #34
    Senior Member KimTisha's Avatar
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    I have been absolutely fascinated with this case for decades. "Somerton Man" is every bit as intriguing as "Mostly Harmless," imho.

    I collect rare books and have several Rubaiyats (but not the one they're looking for), so I find that connection very interesting. Why the Rubaiyat???

    There is no doubt in my mind this is related to the spy world in some way based on the obvious indications of tradecraft that would not have been widely known in pre-internet 1948.

    I just realized you're all gonna think they have identified the DNA because I bumped this. Sorry, but not really. I'm super excited they have exhumed his body and tested his DNA. His was actually the first case I thought of when they identified the Golden State Killer this way, hoping it could work for Somerton Man. Looks like that's going to happen.
    You are talking to a woman who has laughed in the face of death, sneered at doom and chuckled at catastrophe.
    ...Collector of Chairs. Reader of Books. Hater of Nutmeg...

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    Apologies for the bump, we don't have the results from the DNA analysis yet (as far as I'm aware). There is no doubt in my mind, Jessica "Jo" Thomson was involved with this man, and I believe Robin was their son. The fact that the Somerton Man and Robin both had hypodontia, a genetic condition that affects only 2% of the population, is very telling.

    I know the DNA work could take years, but I'm low-key hoping the delay means they're making a documentary...

  11. #36
    Moderator raisedbywolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tango View Post
    Apologies for the bump, we don't have the results from the DNA analysis yet (as far as I'm aware). There is no doubt in my mind, Jessica "Jo" Thomson was involved with this man, and I believe Robin was their son. The fact that the Somerton Man and Robin both had hypodontia, a genetic condition that affects only 2% of the population, is very telling.

    I know the DNA work could take years, but I'm low-key hoping the delay means they're making a documentary...
    Bump away! This is a case that has always fascinated me. I agree on all of your points. I don't understand though why the DNA has to take so long. They could push it through faster if they wanted to.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by tango View Post
    Apologies for the bump, we don't have the results from the DNA analysis yet (as far as I'm aware). There is no doubt in my mind, Jessica "Jo" Thomson was involved with this man, and I believe Robin was their son. The fact that the Somerton Man and Robin both had hypodontia, a genetic condition that affects only 2% of the population, is very telling.

    I know the DNA work could take years, but I'm low-key hoping the delay means they're making a documentary...
    This was also my thought. The coincidence is too much that they aren't related. The ear thing always caught me.
    Quote Originally Posted by Miller22 View Post
    I thought the exact same thing. Poor Brennen Tammons.
    Oh well, back to gum.
    ....or exchanging Puke's wang for spicy nuts.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nic B View Post
    That is too pretty to be shoved up an ass.

  13. #38
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    https://www.cnn.com/2022/07/26/austr...dst/index.html

    Somerton man mystery 'solved' as DNA points to man's identity, professor claims

    A professor who has dedicated decades to solving one of Australia's most enduring mysteries claims he has discovered the identity of the Somerton man.

    Derek Abbott, from the University of Adelaide, says the body of a man found on one of the city's beaches in 1948 belonged to Carl "Charles" Webb, an electrical engineer and instrument maker born in Melbourne in 1905.

    South Australia Police and Forensic Science South Australia have not verified the findings of Abbott, who worked with renowned American genealogist Colleen Fitzpatrick to identify Webb as the Somerton man.

    Forensic Science SA declined to comment and referred CNN to SA Police, who said there were no updates and that police would provide further comment "when results from the testing are received."

    Using DNA sequencing, Abbott says he and Fitzpatrick were able to locate the final piece of a puzzle that has captivated historians, amateur sleuths, and conspiracy theorists for more than 70 years.

    Last May, South Australia police responded to Abbott's calls to exhume the Somerton man's body and experts at Forensic Science SA started work to try to find the best way to analyze his DNA.

    But in the end, Abbott, a professor in the Adelaide University School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, claims it was strands of the man's hair trapped in a plaster "death" mask made by police in the late 1940s that provided him with what he says is proof of the man's identity.

    Police gave Abbott strands of the hair a decade ago as he continued what had become a personal quest to solve the Somerton man mystery. The hair was examined for years by a team of DNA experts at the University of Adelaide, who provided the DNA information that allowed Abbott and Fitzpatrick to further narrow the field.

    By March, Abbott said he had already established Webb's name through years of painstaking work with Fitzpatrick to build a complex family tree of around 4,000 names that led to Webb, whose date of death had not been recorded.

    "By filling out this tree, we managed to find a first cousin three times removed on his mother's side," said Abbott. And on July 23, they matched DNA obtained from the hair to DNA tests taken by Webb's distant relatives.

    "It's like one of these folklore mysteries that everybody wants to solve and we did it," said Fitzpatrick, who has investigated other cold cases including the disappearance of Amelia Earhart in 1937 and the 1948 crash of Northwest Flight 4422.

    "It just felt like I climbed and I was at the top of Mount Everest," said Abbott of the moment they made the apparent DNA match.

    While the discovery appears to close the file on the Somerton man mystery, the apparent confirmation of Webb's name raises many more questions about who he was -- and how he died.

    If verified, it also creates more questions about the strange clues around the case -- including the final words of a Persian poem found in his fob pocket and what appeared to be wartime code scribbled in a book, that for many years prompted speculation that he was a spy.

    Those clues can now be reinterpreted with information from public records, but the full truth may only emerge with time as word of the man's reported identity spreads.

  14. #39
    Moderator raisedbywolves's Avatar
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    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-07-...says/101272182

    Somerton Man identified as Melbourne electrical engineer, researcher says

    A researcher in the case of the Somerton Man says he has solved the decades-old mystery, identifying the figure as a Melbourne-born electrical engineer.
    Key points:

    Adelaide University researcher Derek Abbott believes the unknown man found slumped and lifeless at Adelaide's Somerton Beach on December 1, 1948, was Carl "Charles" Webb, a 43-year-old engineer and instrument maker.

    The case has long baffled detectives and amateur sleuths, and is regarded as one of Australia's most enduring mysteries because of strange clues linked to it, including a suspected code and a book of Persian poems.

    While the mystery man's remains were exhumed last year by SA Police, Professor Abbott has in the meantime persisted with his own independent efforts to crack the case.

    He said after using hairs from a plaster bust of the man to gather DNA evidence, researchers in Australia and America had further narrowed the search "to build out a family tree containing over 4,000 people".

    Working in conjunction with US investigator Colleen Fitzpatrick, Professor Abbott said that, in March this year, suspicions fell on Webb, who was born in 1905 but later identified "as a person with no death record".

    Professor Abbott, who last week spoke to the ABC about his work, added "the final pieces of DNA proof came into place" on Saturday, "triangulating to Charles Webb".

    Professor Abbott said evidence from Mr Webb's life showed he had lived in Footscray in Melbourne.

    He said their investigations had also found a link to the name "T. Keane" which was printed on the Somerton Man's tie.

    "It turns out that Carl Webb has a brother-in-law called Thomas Kean, who lived just 20 minutes drive away from him in Victoria.

    "So it's not it's not out of the question that these items of clothing he had with T. Keane on them were just hand me downs from his brother-in-law."

    Professor Abbott also said there was a potential explanation as to why the Melbourne resident was in Adelaide.

    "We can't say for sure, but we can speculate.

    "We have evidence that he had separated from his wife, and that she had moved to South Australia, so possibly, he had come to track her down."

    Relatives alive

    Professor Abbott said the team had used popular genealogical DNA databases, like Ancestry.com, to find Mr Webb's distant relatives.

    "The first cousin we found was on his paternal side and the second one we found was on the maternal side," he said.

    "So, it's a triangulation from two different, totally distant parts of the tree, so that's very convincing."

    He said he had tracked down and spoken to Mr Webb's living relatives.

    "I have spoken to them, except they're all of a generation well below him and so none of them knew him and have no photos in their old family albums or in their garden sheds, unfortunately.

    "I'm hoping, as his name gets out there, there will be somebody that will have an old photo album in a garden shed somewhere."

  15. #40
    Senior Member Bewitchingstorm's Avatar
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    Wow.

  16. #41
    What do you care? Boston Babe 73's Avatar
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    Insane. Sounds like they have it though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Miller22 View Post
    I thought the exact same thing. Poor Brennen Tammons.
    Oh well, back to gum.
    ....or exchanging Puke's wang for spicy nuts.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nic B View Post
    That is too pretty to be shoved up an ass.

  17. #42
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    It's never as exciting as our imagination. I'm glad that this is solved.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Queenatoo View Post
    It's never as exciting as our imagination. I'm glad that this is solved.
    Yeah, if anything I'm glad that he has his name back. Who knows? He could still have an exciting story behind him.
    Quote Originally Posted by Miller22 View Post
    I thought the exact same thing. Poor Brennen Tammons.
    Oh well, back to gum.
    ....or exchanging Puke's wang for spicy nuts.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nic B View Post
    That is too pretty to be shoved up an ass.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Babe 73 View Post
    Yeah, if anything I'm glad that he has his name back. Who knows? He could still have an exciting story behind him.
    We can certainly make up one. My made up theory is the bother in law did it. It's because he stole his tie. I know that you may think that it was petty, but that tie has brought the brother in law luck at the euchre table. BIL was on his way to creating generational wealth, until this dude stole his lucky tie! He used pure telepathy to cause this man's death. The only mistake was not keeping up with his activity, and losing track of him. Because of that, he never got his tie back.

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