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Classic Wings Magazine WWII Naval Aviation Research Pacific Luftwaffe Resource Center
When Hollywood Ruled The Skies - Volumes 1 through 4 by Bruce Oriss


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 01, 2015 1:00 pm 
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quemerford wrote:
Mods: can all these TIGHAR etc threads be merged please? Too much BS on the 'unread posts page'

It's also beginning to look like a carefully concocted attempt by TIGHAR to create more publicity. As if a group ever needed more.

Ta.


There is no reason to merge them as they are different subjects. You can seriously trust that this is not, nor has not had anything to do with TIGHAR to create more publicity.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 01, 2015 2:50 pm 
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I'm with you EagleFlight, there's enough differences to leave them separate and if you don't like the topic, don't read it. That's what a Mod told me.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:20 pm 
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EagleFlight wrote:
Jeffrey Neville wrote:
Bottom line is, as time wears on I grow to believe more every day that this mystery may remain just that for all time: she may never be found - whether on the ocean floor, in the crags and grooves of a seamount slope or under the mud in ENB. That may be the razor's meanest cut of all.

And maybe, just maybe, that is the way it should be.


You've said that before as I recall, Bob, and you may have a great point. Someone at NASM AIRSPACE BLOG seems to think so -

Quote:
On the significance of the disappearance, Doris Rich, one of Earhart’s biographers, believes that “nothing she might have said or done, no scheme George Palmer Putnam might have designed, could so enhance Earhart’s renown as the mystery of her disappearance. She had been famous. By vanishing she became legendary.” By the same token, her disappearance ironically seems to have overtaken her life’s accomplishments as an aviator and advocate for women’s rights. Susan Ware, author of Still Missing: Amelia Earhart and the Search for Modern Feminism, points out that “with all the mythology surrounding Amelia Earhart’s last flight in 1937, it is hard to assess her career separately from the ongoing mystery of her disappearance.Ware suggests that it is Earhart’s life, not the disappearance and presumed death that matters.


The ladies have a real point, and people and airplanes do sometimes just disappear; isn't it who they were that got us interested in the first place?

Thinking of that, now I wonder - have we allowed the 'faucet of Earhart's fame' to intoxicate us?

What are we doing??? :)

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2015 6:55 pm 
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Jeffrey Neville wrote:

On the significance of the disappearance, Doris Rich, one of Earhart’s biographers, believes that “nothing she might have said or done, no scheme George Palmer Putnam might have designed, could so enhance Earhart’s renown as the mystery of her disappearance. She had been famous. By vanishing she became legendary.” By the same token, her disappearance ironically seems to have overtaken her life’s accomplishments as an aviator and advocate for women’s rights. Susan Ware, author of Still Missing: Amelia Earhart and the Search for Modern Feminism, points out that “with all the mythology surrounding Amelia Earhart’s last flight in 1937, it is hard to assess her career separately from the ongoing mystery of her disappearance.Ware suggests that it is Earhart’s life, not the disappearance and presumed death that matters.


Jeffrey Neville wrote:
The ladies have a real point, and people and airplanes do sometimes just disappear; isn't it who they were that got us interested in the first place?

Thinking of that, now I wonder - have we allowed the 'faucet of Earhart's fame' to intoxicate us?


First let me say that it was not the infamous author of the paraphrased quote "faucet of Earhart's fame" that intoxicated me about this mystery. I remember when we got our first Zenith TV around 64 or so years ago, watching newsreels like A Tragedy of The Pacific about Amelia Earhart. And no Jeff, I wasn't 'intoxicated' then, (too young at the time) but nonetheless captivated.

Did Celebrity Kill Amelia Earhart?

"The mystery is more in her life than in her disappearance," says co-producer Jane Feinberg. "I was very interested in her motivations--what made her do what she did." The more she learned about Earheart, the more Feinberg came to view the story of the aviator's life as "a tragedy."

"I'm really left with sadness about her story more than anything else."

"I think she kind of lost her way in the job of being a hero," says producer-writer-director Nancy Porter. "It's hard work being a hero."

"I think this is a woman who in childhood never got the genuine article--the genuine love and affection and appreciation that a child needs," Feinberg says. "The adulation of hordes of people, of a whole country, didn't make up for it. I think Amelia liked being in the limelight for a time. But I think she got really tired of it. She was a product. It was Amelia Earhart, Inc." More in the article link.

Hubby Helped Earhart Fly Into History

"Putnam scoured the country for an all-American-looking woman, the perfect package: a beautiful, well-bred girl and fearless flier to represent American womanhood."

"His search didn't take long. In 1928, he heard through contacts of Amelia Earhart, a licensed pilot and "social worker who flies for sport" and who did indeed look like a tomboyish version of Lindbergh."

"Putnam arranged for her to fly across the Atlantic like Lindbergh did. The catch was that she was not yet licensed for instrument flying, and so Putnam fudged: Earhart was not at the controls."

"Putnam also worked on film proposals about her life. He remained in the public eye and retained public sympathy as Earhart's widower until he tried one stunt too many, and then his unabashed ability to make news soon became his downfall."

"In 1939, with Europe at war, he published a novel called "The Man Who Killed Hitler." To boost sales, he contacted the Los Angeles district attorney's office and reported that he had received a letter threatening his life unless he stopped publication of the book. The next day the letter appeared in the newspapers."

"Three weeks later, after receiving more allegedly threatening letters, phone calls and a bullet-riddled copy of the book, lawmen somehow discovered Putnam, unharmed, bound and gagged in a half-built house in Bakersfield. He got the headlines he wanted: "Putnam Kidnapped. Anti-Hitler Book Seen as Link."

"Reporters suspected a scam, and published their suspicions. Chagrined, Putnam moved to Lone Pine and remarried, a marriage that would end in divorce." More in the article link.

To me the back story of these two enigmatic characters in history is as compelling as her disappearance. For many years, I have said that Putnam created a circus act with his wife as its Star; and ultimately sacrificed his Star for the benefit of his pocketbook. An interesting corollary there, if one thinks about it.

Amelia Earhart 1897-1937

George Palmer Putnam 1887-1950
Jeffrey Neville wrote:
What are we doing??? :)

Darned if I know Jeff, but there is always something that keeps us coming back.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2015 7:46 am 
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As usual, Bob, you've provided some terrific insight.

Putnam was foremost a publicist and promoter. I had not known of the Hitler book fiasco but am not surprised as no stunt seems to have been beyond his willingness to exploit for gain.

By 'faucet of fame' I didn't mean literally he who apparently coined that term so much as the fountain of Earhart's legendary disappearance, but the distinction is worthy since you mention it. By and large it seems it is the aviators who are most vocal, so perhaps the loss piques more than a sense of cause célèbre and is, perhaps importantly, infused with a sense of unacceptably unfinished business. "If only this, that or another thing had been done" may lie at the core, while the personality made the whole thing hard to miss. Hard to say, but smitten we seem to be.

Earhart was definitely exploited by Putnam's ambitious plotting - but in fairness, she was no man's slave and was self-exploited in large degree. She was not a child, either, and knew her way around - and had the ego to push there, I believe.

But in the end I'd agree Putnam was an enabler and encourager who may have helped Earhart set aside those basic cautions that might have attended her better. They seem to have been codependent people, and Putnam's later stunts and failed third marriage suggest he never gave up the addiction and failed at finding another mule for his ambitions.

Well, drawn we are, and Amelia, wherever you are, we just can't seem to rest until we know where you rest. Why did you make such a simple mistake and yet make this so hard?

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