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The Somerton Man Case. The body of a man found on an Australian beach close to a major Atomic Testing ground, he was probably poisoned, a copy of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and an unbroken Code page found and associated to him. Set against a Cold War background in 1948, was this man a spy? We think so and this blog focuses on the evidence that was left behind and in some cases missed, the Code page, Dry Cleaning numbers, A Poem and a small, torn piece of paper bearing the words TAMAM SHUD.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

SOMERTON MN: MAJOR PAVEL IVANOVICH FEDOSIMOV, CODE NAME STEPAN



MAJOR PAVEL IVANOVICH FEDOSIMOV, KGB

Misca uncovered this man's name in her follow-up research. Clive had found a name that was not dissimilar but is now thought to be a misspelling.

The image above is of the man identified by Harry Gold as the man he met at the Earl Theater on December 26th 1946. He was employed at the Russian consulate in New York as an assistant to the consul, that is apart from his other duties which decidedly included espionage.

Of note is that that Fedosimov had a code name STEPAN and that name crops up a number of times in the Venona cables, one string, in particular, discusses the whereabouts of weapons and explosives secreted in the consulate building. One of the weapons described is a pistol disguised as a fountain pen and which held two poison bullets. That same code name was once used by another agent some years earlier.

This man was a handler for the Atom Spies following Yakovlev's departure to take up another post in Europe.

The picture was taken in April 1947, according to records, Fedosimov returned to Russia in August 1948. Clive is still chasing down some other leads on this man.

According to Harry Gold, Fedosimov was:

1. About 6'2"
2. Large build,
3. Huge hands
4. Walked on the balls of his feet, this condition can lead to highly developed calf muscles and result in wedge-shaped toes

With the aid of the photograph above, we can also see the very similar ear shape, the set of the eyes and a very similar nose shape.


The spectacles tend to hide some of the features so in the image below the specs have been digitally removed:




Whilst this photograph isn't as clear as we would like when you take into account camera angle, lighting and postmortem bloating in the SM Police image below left, you have a fair resemblance. We are not certain at this stage, more research to be done.




Take into account camera angle, lighting and postmortem bloating in the SM Police image on the left and you have a fair resemblance. We are not certain at this stage, more research to be done.

More will be added to this post over the next few days.

Many thanks to Clive and to Misca for their ongoing involvement and contributions.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

SOMERTON MAN: HARRY GOLD, ATOM SPY MET THE SOMERTON MAN?


THE INTRIGUING STORY OF
HOW HARRY GOLD MET THE SOMERTON MAN?



DECEMBER 1946, THE EARL THEATER, THE BRONX NEW YORK

In the last post, we discussed how a Soviet Agent met Harry Gold, an Atom Spy at the Earl Theatre in the Bronx on that cold Thursday December 26th. 1946. 

The man Harry met was quite large, around 6'2", huge hands and he walked on the balls of his feet. He was a classic toe walker and toe walking as we know can lead to extremely well-developed calf muscles apart from contributing to wedge-shaped toes. The agent was also described as having 'very sharp features'. This description is a seriously close match to that of the Somerton Man but there is more to the comparisons than just his appearance.

There was another, most unusual aspect that the man shared with SM, he knew exactly how to confirm the identification of the person he was intended to meet. He had one part of a torn piece of paper that, in the Earl Theater instance, had written instructions scrawled across it. Initially, one piece of that same paper was given to Gold by Anatoli Yakovlev, Gold's handler, whilst the other was given to the man who would, in fact, meet Gold that day, the 'toe walker'. If both pieces matched then the identification was confirmed by both parties.  Yakovlev was to become known as the Russian's most successful spymaster during the early Cold War years.

At the prescribed time, Harry met up with the Soviet agent in the upstairs foyer of the Earl Theater. A question was asked by the agent, "Do you know how to get to Paul Street?" and Harry responded with his part, "Yes I am going there myself a little later". This short exchange was to be the initial identifier without which, nothing further would have happened. But in this instance, the two parts were spoken correctly and Harry dutifully produced his torn part of the scrawled message and so did the agent. Both parts matched and the identification routine was successfully completed. A short discussion followed in which the agent told Harry that his contact "John' would be going on a trip the next day but he was to immediately go to a location where he could meet John for the final time.

The purpose of the meeting between the Soviet agent and Harry was ostensibly to organise the handover of the handlers role from "John" ( Yakovlev) to the new toe walking, huge handed agent. In a later post we will show how things did not exactly go with Yakovlev's plan but for our purposes in this post, the meeting at least went ahead.

SOMERTON PARK. ADELAIDE, TUESDAY NOVEMBER 30th. 1948

Followers will recall that the Somerton Man had with him a small torn piece of paper that was found at the autopsy hidden deep inside a hard to find waistband 'fob' pocket. The paper had been rolled up tightly and pushed down to the seam of that pocket, presumably, this was done to fool any cursory searcher into thinking that, from the outside at leat, the paper was part of the seam.

You will also know that this paper was identified as having come from a small poetry book, The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam a Fitzgerald 1st edition published by Whitcome & Tombs of New Zealand around 1942. The book was described by Gerry Feltus as being a 'pocket' sized version. This book was later handed into the SA Police by a man referred to as Mr Francis. He had apparently found it in the glove box of his car where it had been placed by his brother in law who had in turn originally found it behind the front seats of the car and moved it to the glove box believing it to belong to the owner of the car. The story is that the brother in law found the book around the time of the Parafield Air Show in late November 1948. The real name of Mr Francis has never been released publicly although I understand it is known by a small number of people.

How can we explain the purpose of this torn piece of paper found on the Somerton Man and which had been rolled up so tightly as to almost have been missed at the autopsy? Given the nature of spy meeting spy and their identification procedures, what was the scenario that played out at Somerton on November 30th. 1948? A fateful day for the Somerton Man, it was a warmish day with a low of 16 degrees and a high of 26. The overnight temperature fell just a little to 20 degrees.

Quite a stark contrast to the Bronx in December 1946 when layers of warm clothes would have been needed. Interestingly the Somerton Man was dressed for much cooler weather although wearing a 'jersey' beneath your coat was considered acceptable fashion at the time.

More to follow...


Saturday, 7 January 2017

SOMERTON MAN: HOW TALL WAS THE SOMERTON MAN? HAVE WE FOUND HIM? UPDATED: 0530 9/01/17

HOW TALL WAS THE SOMERTON MAN?

...AND YOU MIGHT ASK HOW DOES THAT HELP?


According to the autopsy report, SM when measured in the morgue, was 5 feet and 11 inches in height. That's fairly straightforward, they laid him out, grabbed the ever handy tape measure and arrived at a fairly conclusive result. But was that the reality of his height?

If I can explain, the measurements were of a dead person, all muscles would have been fully relaxed, he would have been shorter than when he was alive, let's say by at least 1 inch, that would make him ^ 6 foot tall.

Next, when alive he wore decent shoes, that would add say another 1 inch to his apparent height. That would make him around 6'1" tall.

Now consider what happens to us all if we make an effort to stretch to our full height, we can pick up another 1 inch approximately. This makes our man 6'2"  in height

Now let's look at the question of his wedge shaped toes, these toes occur in a few people, ballet dancers and maybe horse riders as has been often discussed. They also occur in people who have a particular condition known as 'toe walking' there is a medical term but I am not sure that it would help that much. Two things happen when people walk on their toes or more precisely, on the balls of their feet. Firstly, they have highly developed calf muscles and secondly they appear to be taller.

Following this logic, then the Somerton Man in real life could have stood at 6'2" or even 6'3" in height.

So, what does that mean in this case? One thing it means is that as Clive and I and Misca and Byron plus others carry out our searches, we come across various forms that include height measurements, very often a search on the same person can have two or even 3 different results. One benefit for those who research is that we could now extend our search to include people up to 6'3" in height.


The Soviet Agent

There is one other thing, here is an image of a clipping from a book, The Atom Spies:

This image taken in 1941
The meeting referred to in the book took place in this Movie theatre in the Bronx, NY. in December 1946.



















If nothing else, this 6'3" fair haired man, a Soviet Agent, with huge hands, sharp features and who walked on his toes, needs to be followed up, let's see if we can get a name. FYI, because he was a Soviet Agent does not necessarily mean that he was Russian, it could well mean that he had previously been in Australia and just may be he returned again sometime between January 1947 and November 1948. There is a real possibility that we may have our man, let's get on with the chase.



These pics have been added following a comment from Pete Bowes, they show, in my view, a man with sharp features,

Thursday, 29 December 2016

SOMERTON MAN: THE CODE PAGE DECRYPT, PERMISSION GRANTED THANKS TO GERRY FELTUS. UPDATED 13.55 30/12/16



PERMISSION GRANTED


I was able to contact Gerry Feltus in the last day or so and he has very kindly given his permission to use the copy of the code page decrypt that he has in his book, The Unknown Man.

The decrypt is found on pages 121 to 130 inclusive in the book and below is a set of images comprising of each page in sequence.

As Gerry points out, this is complex and, from my perspective, it does appear to have been done by someone wth some very specific experience.

I would point out that there are a few names that crop up in these images, bear in mind that at the time of original letter to the SA Police, Tibor Kaldor's name/ initials were not known and Jessica Harkness's name/initials were not released to the public. A reference to Mr. Lyons is interesting but I have no more to add to that.

I hope to get the name of the man who prepared this work, it is apparent that his first language is not English and is in fact, very structured which makes me think that he could be European and that leads to the possibility that he either was an ex-internee or knew of them. You can download a PDF of the following images for convenience. 


UPDATE, 13.55, 30/12/16:

The relevant words/initials found thus far are:


T,K. as potentially in Tibor Kaldor
JT as potentially in Jessica Thompson
Lyons as in the Jeweller
And thanks to a very observant commenter, we have POWs as in Prisoners of War
Lowe as in a German surname
Lowy as in a German surname (There is more than one person named Lowy amongst the internees, there is also a John Lowy whose file is restricted on NAA)

It does seem that our cryptologist has been very 'lucky' in getting so many hits, I feel sure there will be more.

An honourable mention! I would like to restate that without Clive finding the newspaper article regarding the apparent suicide of Tibor Kaldor in a Hindley Street, Adelaide hotel just two weeks to the day following the death of SM, none of what you read here would have been seen of particular value to the case. His ongoing enthusiasm and support in moving the case along is well worthy of recognition. Thanks Clive.

Last point, if you are skilled in this area, would you please look at the supposed 'crossed out' line, line 2, of the code page and include that in any further work you may do on this decrypt. This should keep you busy Misca :)

Page 121:




Page 122:


Page 123:  



Page 124:



Page 125:




Page 126:




Page 127:




Page 128:




Page 129:




Page 130:




You are able to purchase copy of The Unknown Man by Gerry Feltus here. It is an excellent resource book and gives a very detailed account of the events surrounding the finding of the body of the Somerton Man and subsequent investigations, highly recommended.

I trust that you will find this information of value. In the meantime, we are working hard at relating some of this information to our work on the Internees.

Just in time to wish all of our followers and readers a Very Happy and Successful 2017!










Saturday, 24 December 2016

SOMERTON MAN: TIBOR KALDOR, JESSICA THOMPSON STRONGLY LINKED TO THE CODE PAGE, GOVERNMENT SOURCE, UPDATED 27th DECEMBER 2016



TIBOR KALDOR LINKED TO CODE PAGE


Senator Cavanagh
Some months back, a friend of mine, JR,, sent me a link to an item in the Australian Government's 1970 Hansard. It detailed the findings of a senator, James L. Cavanagh, who had been contacted by an unnamed man who claimed to have partially solved the SM code. Here's the  first Hansard link  and here's the second, more detailed link

Just last week Clive messaged me and was excited about this same code which appears in Gerry Feltus's book, The Unknown Man. Clive pointed out the use of a set of initials T.K. in a partially decoded version of the SM code.





Here's a Transcript of some of the information in the document that was submitted to the SA Police in 1970:

1. VOWS JT/JM TAKEN T.K.LAST WAS MB I MISS MOST                                   SIGNED AMM


2. VOWS JT/JM TAKEN T.K. LAST WAS MB I MISS AMM MOST


IN ABOVE MESSAGES T.K MIGHT MEAN T.KEANN(E)
IN ABOVE MESSAGES  HB MIGHT MEAN HENLEY BEACH
IN ABOVE MESSAGES AMM MAY BE DECEASED SIGNATURE


INFERENCES TO BE DRAWN FROM ABOVE MESSAGES:-


1. T.K. MAY HAVE BEEN A BIGAMIST


2. HB MAY AVE BEEN AN EARLIER WIFE
OR
AMM


3. T.K. MAY HAVE BEEN AN ALIAS. THEREFORE AMM MAY HAVE BEEN THE CORRECT NAME


4. ORGINAL MARRIAGE MAY HAVE BEEN H.B. TO AMM

TO THE ABOVE LIST I WILL ADD JESSICA THOMSON, THE INITIALS JT IGHT JUST BE HERS.

The above is only a small part of the decryption offered by the, as yet unknown contributor who sent the information to SAPOL. It is available in Gerry Feltus's book, THE UNKOWN MAN. I will ask Gerry for permission to publish a full copy of the pages involved.

As we now know, T.K. were the initials not only of T. Keane but also of TIBOR KALDOR, a person whom we have shown has a connection to the case and have recently released even more information on the man. To add to that information we can say that, having contacted Vienna University, there was no record of TIBOR KALDOR having attended there. Further research is taking place but that is how it stands at the moment.

UPDATE:

Just heard from Clive, Vienna University confirms that they have no record of a Tibor Kaldor in the Philosophical faculty between 1922 and 1937, the years when Tibor should have been there. It seems highly likely that, whoever this man was, his name was not Tibor Kaldor. We seem to have a false identity which fits with the code decrypt information above. We will check further against his mother's first husband's name, Schoen. (Thanks Misca!)


The decrypt did not take into account what is commonly known as the 'crossed out' line.' My view is that because the SA Police are said to have written over indentations on the book then it would be very difficult to know whether the line was put in place first or the letters, hence we should really try to replicate the work of the contributor and include the real second line in the effort.

What does this mean to the existence of micro-writing, simply put, it changes nothing, the micro-writing is definitely there as has now been proven. How it relates to the actual letters, I am not at all sure. It could well be that what we have is two codes in one. That is, we have the letters as seen on the code page with one meaning and we have the micro code with another meaning.

We suggest that, given the full circumstances and the finding of Tibor Kaldor's body two weeks to the day following SM's death also in Adelaide, that those initials were for Tibor Kaldor. A major piece of the puzzle has emerged.

In the last few months, more progress has been made in this case than in the previous 67 years. All it took was Clive to spot the article in the Adelaide press regarding Tibor Kaldor's death and the SM case has moved on significantly since that time.

There's more work to be done but I believe we are n the right track and the end of this story may well be closer than many would have thought possible.

More will be posted on this breakthrough next week. If this works out well, we may have yet another set of initials and in that case we have a list of some 3000 +  internees against which we can run a comparison.

UPDATE: 26th December 2016

A first cut of the names of the Dunera Boys and other German Internees have given us 5 names that get close to matching the AMM initials. Some of these men have photographs and two in particular look to be very interesting, too early to say more at this time. The pics and information will be published in the next few days.

Enough leads for the sleuths out there to jump in and start searching!