Friday, 19 October, 2018

Anthropologist: Bones Found in 1940 on Pacific Island Are Likely Amelia Earhart's

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Melinda Barton | 08 March, 2018, 10:30

A 1998 review of the evidence concluded that the bones most likely belonged to a tall female of European ancestry, which fit Earhart's profile, while a 2015 study concluded that the bones were probably male.

Three years later, bones believed to be Earhart's were found on Nikumaroro Island 560 kilometers (350 miles) southeast of her Howland Island destination.

The pendulum swings back in favor of the bones being female in a study published this week in the journal Forensic Anthropology. One of the most tantalizing clues involves skeletal remains found on Nikumaroro Island in 1940.

A University of Tennessee researcher says he has concluded that bones found on a remote South Pacific island are nearly definitely those of famed American pilot Amelia Earhart. - "What I can say scientifically is that they [the recent Pacific island remains] are 99% likely to be her [Earhart]", Jantz said, according to the site.

The famous aviator disappeared somewhere over the Pacific Ocean during an attempted round-the-world flight in 1937.

"There was suspicion at the time that the bones could be the remains of Amelia Earhart", Jantz wrote in his study.

Richard Jantz, an emeritus anthropology professor at the University of Tennessee, used photographs that had a scalable object and clothing measurements of Earhart's to estimate the lengths of her humerus, radius, and tibia.

Earhart's measurements - her height, weight, body build, limb lengths and proportions - were reconstructed by using information by her pilot's and driver's licenses, as well as numerous photos. This analysis reveals that Earhart is more similar to the Nikumaroro bones than 99% of individuals in a large reference sample.

"The match does not, of course, prove that the castaway was Amelia Earhart, but it is a significant new data point that tips the scales further in that direction", Tighar said at the time.

The bones were initially studied in 1941 by Dr David Hoodless, from the Central Medical School in Fiji.

He said his re-examination of the bone measurements, coupled with the fact that the bones were found along with part of what was judged to be a woman's shoe and other artifacts linked to Earhart, bolsters an existing hypothesis that the remains were hers.

Other theories about the bones include that they belong to one of 11 men presumed killed in the 1929 wreck of the Norwich City or the bones of a Pacific islander.