Like Lindbergh, Forensics Has Now Proved Amelia Earhart Led Two Different Lives

Home Page: Amelia Earhart
Misguided Efforts To Solve The Earhart Mystery
About Tod Swindell
The Most 'Important' Amelia Earhart Disappearance Investigations From Years Gone By
Comparing Amelia Earhart To Irene O'Crowley Craigmile (Surname 'Bolam' added in 1958)
About The Irene-Amelia Forensic Analysis Results
The Reality of Amelia Earhart Versus 'Freedom of the Press'
The Amelia Earhart We Barely Knew...
What President Roosevelt Knew, What The FBI Knew, & Amelia's Sister On Her friend, 'Irene'
The Truthful Words Of Monsignor James Francis Kelley About Amelia Earhart
About The 'Original' Irene Craigmile
The Universal Truth About Amelia Earhart
Amelia Earhart: A True Story
Yellow Journalism Tried To Hide The Truth In 1982
Reality Check: The 'Missing Person Case' Of Amelia Earhart


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It took thirty years to confirm it, yet in 2004, it was finally proved that Charles Lindbergh led a double life where he was known as Careu Kent. Now, the same goes for Amelia Earhart.
 
Earhart's double life story began in 1970, when a retired Air Force major who had been deeply investigating her odd disappearance, surprisingly claimed he had located the famous pilot in 1965, living under an assumed identity. His claim was swiftly dismissed out of hand, just as the claim of Lindbergh's double life was at first, but it was never proved false. Here's the story:
 

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The retired major asserted Amelia had survived and changed her name--and she was married to a successful international businessman named Guy Bolam. The woman he claimed to be the former Amelia Earhart (shown above) was caught off guard by a 1970 book that published his assertions about her--and she swiftly refuted it--then sued for defamation. Below is how she appeared at a press conference she held to decry the book that attempted to out her; Amelia Earhart Lives.
 

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1970

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Four years later, in July of 1974, relatively unnoticed amid the Watergate scandal, this article about her still unsettled lawsuit appeared:
 

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While the above article concerned the defamation lawsuit waged by Mrs. Guy Bolam, AKA, Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, who the retired Air Force major claimed was the former Amelia Earhart, right away one notices in the first paragraph of the article--his claim of who she used to be remained undecided. (Note where the article referenced "two air force officers", one of them was the book's author, Joe Klaas. Yet it was retired major Joseph A. Gervais who actually met Mrs. Bolam in 1965, felt he recognized her, studied her background, and deduced she was the former Amelia Earhart.) 
 
To shore up their case against the claim, Mrs. Bolam and her attorney were able to cite some factual errors in Amelia Earhart Lives, that they believed were harmful to her reputation, (as shown in the middle clipping above) and they sued for $1.5 million in damages. It is worth noting, though, that Mrs. Bolam's lawsuit did not directly challenge the claim that stated she was the former Amelia Earhart.
 
The case dragged on until it was finally settled in January of 1976. A summary judgment awarded Mrs. Bolam $60k to be paid by the book's publisher, McGraw-Hill, for poor fact checking. Otherwise, she settled out of court with the retired major, Joseph A. Gervais, and the book's author, Joe Klaas, by exchanging $10 of consideration with them. She agreed to the settlement after refusing to submit her fingerprints--when Joseph A. Gervais had his attorney request them to prove her identity. Because she declined to do so, the controversy over her true life-long identity continued on. Years later, after her death was recorded in 1982, more 'questioning' headlines and articles continued to surface about her: 
 

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1987

As time continued to pass, many people, including some who knew her in her later life years, remained convinced that the Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, shown in the above photos, had previously been known as Amelia Earhart. In 1994, even best-selling Amelia Earhart author, Randall Brink, cited the still ongoing controversy in the following manner:
 
"One tantalizingly persistent account has Amelia supposedly returning to the U.S. and assuming a new identity." Randall Brink, from his 1994 book, Lost Star: The Search For Amelia Earhart.
 
 
In 1997, after realizing the ongoing controversy over Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam's lifelong identity was never actually settled, a filmmaker and Earhart researcher by the name of Tod Swindell, who had come to know Randall Brink and Joseph A. Gervais, decided it was time to forensically compare Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam to Amelia Earhart, after learning such a thing had never been done before. So he consulted with some forensic experts to see how to go about doing one, and while it took many years to complete his self-orchestrated study, the results were worth it--and startling to say the least.
 
Below is a brief introduction and a few samples from among hundreds of full body and character trait comparisons his study produced. Note the Twenty First Century advent of 'Digital Face Recognition' was used in the study:
 

FIRST AMELIA TO IRENE COMPARISON STUDY
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STUDY USED DIGITAL FACE RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY

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Photographs of Amelia Earhart are plenty but they do not
always consistently allow people to easily recognize her. In
this example, when one compares the 1937 photo of
Amelia on the left, to the 1936 photo of Amelia on
the right, it's hard to see the same person.
 

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ABOVE LEFT, AMELIA; ABOVE RIGHT, DIGITALLY COMBINED

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Above left, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam is shown in New York in 1970, ready to hold her press conference. (Her surname of 'Bolam' was added after she wed Guy Bolam of England in 1958.) Above center and to the right she is digitally combined with Amelia Earhart, who is shown at age 30. The completed study realized a full head-to-toe physical and character traits congruence.

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AMELIA EARHART

Above, Amelia Earhart in 1937. Below, see what happens when she is digitally combined with Mrs. Irene Bolam's image:

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AMELIA EARHART, 1937

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DIGITALLY COMBINED

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IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE-BOLAM, 1965

Above center, Amelia Earhart and Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam are shown digitally combined. Digital Face Recognition did not come into use until the Twenty-First Century.

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Senator Hiram Bingham
& Amelia Earhart
 
 

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1977

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In 1932, Amelia Earhart, (above) became the first woman pilot to solo a plane across the vast expanse of the Atlantic Ocean, and only the second person to do it since Charles Lindbergh. In subsequent years, she found herself listed among the most famous women in the world, a status she maintained, albeit somewhat reluctantly, until she was declared 'missing' in 1937. 

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Above, Digital Face Recognition showed Amelia Earhart and the post-war only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, to be in perfect alignment. It is worth re-emphasizing here, the Irene that aligned with Amelia was identified nowhere as 'Irene' before the end of World War Two.
 

As mentioned, before this 'Amelia to Irene' comparison analysis took place, (the subject of this website) a comprehensive 'physical beings' and 'character traits' comparison study of their beings had never been done. As it turned out a complete head-to-toe and character traits congruence was realized.

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AMELIA, ELINOR SMITH, VIOLA GENTRY 1932
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Above, a cryptic handwritten line from a 1967 note the post 
war only Irene sent to Joseph A. Gervaisis. Below, Amelia's
own 'Amelia M Earhart' signature the way it appeared on
a form she filled out in high school. The likeness of both
handwriting styles is not a coincidence because
they were written with the same hand. 

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AMELIA AND IRENE SPLIT 50/50 HEAD-TO-TOE

 

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Note: The final analysis results, that again used Digital Face Recognition technology, also revealed more than one person was attributed to the same, 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' identity. (See the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, who Amelia had known, directly below.) As well, the study results proved that the 'Irene' compared to Amelia above was seen nowhere identified as 'Irene' before the end of World War Two 
 
The original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, (below right) who Amelia Earhart had known, is shown in 1930 with her husband, Charles James Craigmile, who died in 1931:

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1931, From Charles J. Craigmile's obituary.

Charles Craigmile and the original Irene
O'Crowley Craigmile were married in 1928.
Charles was 39, Irene was 24. In September of
1931, Charles was suddenly stricken with
appendicitis while on a road trip and died a 
few days later. His obituary is further down.

CHARLES AND IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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1930 NEWSPRINT PHOTO

CONTRAST ENHANCED
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Note: Amelia Earhart had known the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile--and sometimes flew with her in 1932 and 1933. Except the Irene O'Crowley Craigmile who Amelia knew was not the one who held the press conference in 1970, even though she was supposed to have been. No matter, after years of debate over who the post-war only Irene really was, or used to be, history mistakenly left people thinking the Irene who held the 1970 press conference and the original Irene were one in the same person.

It is now known they were two different people. More on the story of how this historical anomaly came to be follows.

 

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Amelia Earhart, age 38 in 1935...

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...transitions into...

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...her future self marking the post-war
quiet return of, "the pilot in pearls."
 

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Shirley Dobson Gilroy's classic 1985, "artistic tribute
to Amelia Earhart" book, Amelia / Pilot In Pearls

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The post-war only Irene really was the former Amelia
Earhart. The above alignment was no mere coincidence.

POST-WAR ONLY IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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NEW YORK, 1977

 ~~~

"History is the unfolding of miscalculations."

Barbara Tuchman

 

"History is the expression of feelings peculiar to humanity."
 
Alfred North Whitehead
 
~~~
 
 

 
A Broader View

Incorrect Statement: The assertion of Amelia Earhart quietly surviving her disappearance, changing her name, and living to old age was proved false long ago. 

True Statement: The assertion, or 'claim' of Amelia Earhart's ongoing existence with a different name first surfaced in 1970, and contrary to the way the woman in question negated it--and how members of Amelia's family and the original Irene O'Crowley's family dismissed it out of hand--it never was proved false. As well, new evidence produced in the Twenty-First Century, that included the results of a Digital Face Recognition analysis, only appeared to enhance the truthful nature of the claim.
 

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Above: The full newspaper photo showing the
post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley
Craigmile, (surname 'Bolam' added in 1958)
identifying her as, 'Mrs. Guy Bolam' in 1970.
She held a major press conference to refute
the bold assertion that said she used to be
known as Amelia Earhart in the new and
controversial book, Amelia Earhart Lives 
by Joe Klaas, seen held in the foreground.
She denied herself to be Amelia Earhart
and called the book's contents, "a poorly
documented hoax" and "utter nonsense."
 

After the post-war Irene denied herself to be Amelia Earhart, a follow up article reported on some of the particulars she had mentioned about her past to the news-media:

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What Did Amelia's Family Say When The Story Broke?

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Muriel Earhart Morrissey (1899-1998)

Amelia's sister, Grace 'Muriel' Earhart Morrissey, shown above in the 1990s, was reticent whenever she was asked about the identity controversy over her later-life Zonta friend, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam.

"Of course I know Irene. She is a sister Zonta." "It's just foolish. There is practically no physical resemblance." The words of Muriel Earhart Morrissey, Amelia Earhart's only sibling, in response to the 1970 assertion that claimed her later life Zonta organization friend, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, was actually her survived sister sporting a different name. The assertion basically stated that unknown to the public, her sister, Amelia, had quietly survived after she went missing in 1937, and she went on to assume a new identity in order to lead a private life after World War Two. Obviously, the later conducted comparison analysis displayed a hauntingly accurate Amelia-to-Irene physical resemblance--contrary to what Muriel had tried to promote.

 

POST-WAR IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE-BOLAM 1976
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DIGITALLY COMBINED WITH AMELIA EARHART

Grace 'Muriel' Earhart Morrissey, who died in 1998, was a key part of the network that protected the reality of her sister's post-war existence as Irene.
 

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GRACE MURIEL EARHART MORRISSEY

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POST-WAR IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE-BOLAM, 1965

The above-left photograph of Muriel Earhart as a younger adult displays her own familial resemblance to her later life name-changed sister, shown in the 1965 photo next to her.
 
Three takeaway points to recognize here:
 
1.) It is unlikely that Muriel ever knew the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, shown in the panel directly below, who Muriel's sister, Amelia, had known and flew with in the 1930s.
 
2.) Again, Muriel's, "there is practically no physical resemblance" comment was proved untrue by virtue of the study results.
 
3.) At the time of Muriel's passing in 1998, it was importantly being realized that a comprehensive examination of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's full life story--combined with a comparison analysis of her person to Amelia Earhart's person--had never been done before. Thus marked the start of orchestrating one.

 

 

 

Intro to who the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was:

Below: After the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's husband died in 1931, (see his full obituary below the following images) she trained to be a pilot with encouragement from Amelia Earhart and Viola Gentry, then she briefly remarried and had a child in 1934. Her flying days lessoned after that--to a point where she did not renew her pilot's license after 1937. As Viola Gentry once described, "Irene didn't do much with her flying, 'just flew."
 

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Above, Amelia Earhart is outlined in white and the
original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, face fully shaded,
is outlined in black in this September 1, 1932 Akron
Beacon Journal news photo. Irene was not yet a pilot
when the photo was taken. She took her first flying
lessons a month later, with help from Viola Gentry,
one of Amelia's pilot friends shown to Irene's right.

 

~~~
The following obituary for Charles James Craigmile ran on September 23, 1931:

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From Charles J. Craigmile's obituary

The obituary was fairly accurate, although Charles and his wife, Irene had been married for less than three years, not 'five years' as the article implied. 

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Again, the newspaper photo dated '1930' shows
the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile next
to her husband, Charles James Craigmile,
who died the following year. Below, an
artist's touch and some contrast adjusting
helps to better see the true image of the
original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile: 
 

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It is unclear what became of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile. Today one would be hard pressed to locate a clear-image photograph of her person. The photos that were located of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's image prior to the 1940s were recklessly inconsistant and of low quality. As well, none of them matched the image of the post-war only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile. Here, the take away points from the comparison analysis revealed:
 
1.) By the time World War Two began the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was no longer evident.
 
2.) In 2006, and again in 2014, (to emphasize it in writing) the 1934 born son of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, identified an entirely different person to have been his mother than the original Irene. Ostensibly, he was imprinted and raised from his early childhood years on by a surrogate mother figure--who did not resemble the original Irene--nor did she resemble the post-World War Two only Irene. Below is the person he identified as his 'mother' the way she looked, by his estimation, "around 1940." Note: To this day no one from within the general public realm knows who this person really was or where she came from.  

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"MY MOTHER, AROUND 1940"

[Further down learn more about the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, and see more images of the person her 1934 born son identified as his mother.]
 

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Amelia Earhart, 1935
 
"God, the world hounded that woman after she became famous." A quote from famous pilot, Jackie Cochran, recalling her friend, Amelia Earhart. Jackie also mentioned that during the year Amelia was prepping for her world flight she was "closer to Amelia than anyone else, even her husband, George Putnam." Jackie's husband, Floyd Odlum, helped finance Amelia's 1937 world flight effort. Jackie Cochran was the first American woman to enter Japan after VJ Day. In a 1991 interview, Monsignor James Francis Kelley, a close later life friend of the former Amelia Earhart, affirmed that Jackie Cochran had been involved with Amelia's non-publicized return to the U.S.
 

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Again in 1970, the post-war only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, was very convincing when she denied her true past at the press conference she held. She had been pressed to respond to a sudden claim indicating she more than likely was the former Amelia Earhart, featured in a recently released book called, Amelia Earhart Lives. Her denial was accepted, until decades later, when a thorough analysis of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's background combined with a human comparison study proved that the 'Irene' above had appeared nowhere identified as 'Irene' prior to the end of World War Two. These important realizations and other forensic research findings led to a final conclusion: The post-war only Irene, most definitely had been, previously known as... Amelia Earhart.
 

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1977

The former Amelia Earhart, AKA, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, (above) took on the press in order to preserve her dignity and the legacy of who she used to be. She was determined to keep on living the private life she had grown accustomed to. She even sued the people who asserted she was Amelia Earhart. Amazingly, though, she only sued them for defamation, not for asserting she was the former Amelia Earhart. Why? The book the defendants had put out contained insinuations she felt were damaging to her reputation, and indeed they were. Again in 1974, four years into her lawsuit, the "Earhart Case Still Up in the Air" article listed a few of them:
 

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"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident." Arthur Schopenhauer
 

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"The forensic studies are very convincing. She was not an ordinary housewife as she claimed. She was influential, knew many well placed people and was well traveled." From an Associated Press article, John Bolam refers to some early-on results from Tod Swindell's analysis of Amelia Earhart's disappearance and 'missing person' case. The now late John Bolam, was a generation younger half-brother of the post-World War Two only, Irene's British husband, Guy Bolam. In the 1960s, John Bolam and his wife spent much time with Guy and Irene. He never stopped suspecting his sister-in-law to have been the 'former' Amelia Earhart.

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The post-war only Irene's in-laws from 1960s on, John and I. Elaine Bolam

 
"She was intelligent, articulate, and had a commanding presence. She knew a lot of important people including many high-ranking military officers, astronauts and flyers." "She was the epitome of a classy lady." 1997 quotes from an Amelia Earhart Society newsletter article about the post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam. The article was written by her former sister-in-law, Mrs. I. Elaine Bolam, who as well wondered if she had previously been known as, 'Amelia Earhart.'

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Astronaut Wally Schirra (1923-2007)

In the 1980s, Astronaut Wally Schirra, one of the original seven NASA astronauts, confirmed in a filmed interview that he once 'met' the former Amelia Earhart at Cape Canaveral. The post-war only Irene spent time at Cape Canaveral when she would visit her in-laws, John and I. Elaine Bolam, who lived on Merritt Island, Florida.

"All the admirals and generals seemed to know her." LPGA promoter, Peter Bussati, a later life friend of the post-war only Irene's, accompanied her to the prestigeous New York Wings Club in the 1970s and was surprised by the respect she commanded from such important individuals there.

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Amelia Earhart
 
 

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Amelia and her future 'Irene' self digitally combined.
 
 

 

Highlighting the complex nature of this story by looking at some anecdotal Amelia Earhart history, helps keep it in perspective:

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"Over the nine years spanning her first and last transoceanic flights, Amelia Earhart became one of the most famous women in the world. The private Amelia disliked that fame intensely." Amelia Earhart author-historian, Doris Rich

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"She drifted into adulthood with only vague ideas of her future. When she did become famous, she didn't like it much." Author-historian, Adam Woog on Amelia Earhart

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"One tantalizingly persistent account has Amelia supposedly returning to the U.S. and assuming a new identity." Author-Historian, Randall Brink. His 1994 book, Lost Star, is considered by many Earhart aficionados to be the most cohesive investigative account of Amelia's failed world flight attempt.

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"After all she'd been through she didn't want to be the famous Amelia Earhart anymore." Monsignor James Francis Kelley, (1902-1996) as spoken to reporter, Merrill Dean Magley. Father Kelley was a post-war years and later-life close friend of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, AKA, the former Amelia Earhart. A past president of Seton Hall College, in 1991, Father Kelley confirmed to USAF Colonel Rollin C. Reineck, that he had helped to receive Amelia back in the United States. He also confided to Helen Barber of Wayne. Pennsylvania, that he was instrumental with her identity change to Irene. Years earlier, in 1982, he was quoted in newsprint the following way about his friend, Irene:
 

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"Tod Swindell's Amelia Earhart study results let the horse out of the barn."
USAF Colonel Rollin C. Reineck (Ret.)
 
Let's play it back...
 

 
Another look; the news article lead-in from 1974:  

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Think about it... after four years the courts still had "yet to decide" whether or not Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam used to go by the name of Amelia Earhart. The public was left to assume the controversy was settled at some point, but it never was officially settled, and it remained that way going forward.
 
Trust knowing... if the U.S. court system really wished to factually determine if "Mrs. Guy Bolam" (AKA, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam) had previously been known as Amelia Earhart--it easily could have done such a thing. Evidently, the ongoing concealment of who Mrs. Bolam used to be was more important.
 
 

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Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart in 1933
 
In 2004, thirty-years after he died, it was confirmed that Charles Lindbergh had lived a double life from the 1950s-on using the alias of, Careu Kent. Under that name he twice cohabited with women in Europe and had children with them that his stateside wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, and their own progeny were left unaware of. Just as Charles Lindbergh used his alias while on intelligence assignments in Europe the last decades of his life, the former Amelia Earhart, while living as Irene, as well spent much time overseas during her extensive world travels in the 1960s and 1970s. She also served as the president of an international media consulting and market research firm--Guy Bolam Associates--whose main client was Radio Luxembourg. The company was founded in the late 1940s, by the former Amelia's later-life British husband, Guy Bolam, (who she had wed in 1958) and upon his death in 1970, Guy left the company to her. It also listed clients in Tokyo, Sydney, Paris, Bruxelles, and in London as well--where Guy, who served in both World Wars, was born and raised. Guy and Irene, together and separately, sometimes office'd at CLR London, LTD, a radio advertising company all but exclusive to Radio Luxembourg. (The couple's stateside offices were located in New York City and Princeton, New Jersey.) When she was living as Amelia, and then later as Irene, she was known to speak several languages fluently and it came in handy with her international doings. Radio Luxembourg was also known for having one of the most powerful broadcast towers in Europe--that helped introduce the music of the Beatles to listeners beyond the Iron Curtain.  
 

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Old newspaper photo of Guy
and Irene in Japan in 1963.
 

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Amelia Earhart, age 30 

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Guy Bolam and his wife, Irene, AKA 'the former Amelia Earhart' in 1965
 
 

~~~

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Note: This website was launched several years ago to track a new and innovative, 'Amelia Earhart forensic research study' privately orchestrated by Tod Swindell, a filmmaker and veteran Amelia Earhart journalist. For those who have not heard of him, his effort to assess the reality of Amelia's post-war existence in the United States began in the 1990s. He offers that his study results exhibit the work of an Earhart realist as opposed to an Earhart conspiracy theorist or false Earhart history inventor. If you find the subject matter of Amelia Earhart's old 'missing person case' interesting, keep going and decide for yourself.
 
 

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"The time has come to drum 'false Earhart history promotions' out of the 'true Earhart history' corps. Some of the false promotions led to 'false news' that left people wondering if Amelia Earhart was eaten by giant crabs on a desert island, or if maybe she was executed by a Japanese military firing squad. News reporters should stop paying attention to these and other outlandish ideas and concentrate on the facts instead." Tod Swindell

   

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Tod Swindell being interviewed in 2017
 

Below, from 1970 to 2016, four nationally published books concluded that Amelia Earhart survived her 1937 'disappearance' and lived-on to become known as 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' in her post-World War Two years. Although official U.S. historians greeted each book with silence after they were published, the common, 'Amelia lived-on and changed her name to Irene' conclusion they each presented went unchallenged:
 

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The 1970 Joe Klaas book inspired by the investigative research of Joseph A. Gervais, cited Amelia Earhart survived and became known as, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile. During last decade of his life, (1996 to 2005) Joseph A. Gervais, who always stood by his discovery of Amelia Earhart living as 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' after the war, collaborated with Tod Swindell on his forensic research and comparison study .

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This 1985 book by Robert Myers and Barbara Wiley, also cited that Amelia Earhart survived and became known as 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' after the war in the United States, until she married Guy Bolam of England in 1958, that left her more commonly known as, Irene Bolam.

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This 2004 book by USAF Colonel Rollin C. Reineck (Ret.), was first to credit Tod Swindell's forensic verification of plural Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's. Col. Reineck also concurred how after World War Two, one of them was the 'former' Amelia Earhart.  

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In tribute to the three previous book authors and after learning of Tod Swindell's 'first ever' comparison analysis that he referenced in his book, author W.C. Jameson's 2016 effort also averred that Amelia Earhart lived to become known as 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.' 

 
In 1970, the public was swiftly conditioned not to believe it when the former Amelia Earhart was outed against her will, living privately as, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam. So much so, no one felt a comparison study was necessary--until decades later--when it was verified the dismissed claim was never proved false. At that point, Tod Swindell, who had been researching the missing person case of Amelia Earhart--that was closed when Amelia was declared "dead in absentia" in 1939--determined it was time to orchestrate one. After years of hard work the results he achieved delivered the truth in no uncertain terms: 
 

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AMELIA EARHART, 1937

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DIGITALLY COMBINED

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THE POST-WAR ONLY IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE-BOLAM, 1965

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Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, AKA 'the
former Amelia Earhart' in 1965. When it was
confirmed that she was identified nowhere 
 as 'Irene' before the end of World War Two,
the comparison study results left it clear she
was the former Amelia Earhart, who during
the World War Two era ended up acquiring
the left-over identity of a 1930s' pilot friend of
hers; the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.

 

Those who believe the person shown above in 1965 and below in 1977 was the 'original' Irene O'Crowley Craigmile are mistaken, and it isn't even close. Forensic research conducted in recent years combined with the results of a human comparison study left it obvious to observe: Before she was declared 'missing' in 1937, the name of the person shown above and below in photos taken twelve-years apart, most definitely was, Amelia Earhart.
 

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Senator Hiram Bingham
& Amelia Earhart
 
 

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1977

Above: Distinguished and proud with her
trademark wings and pearls is the post-World
War Two only, 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile'.
(Surname 'Bolam' added in 1958.) She was
identified nowhere as 'Irene' prior to the end
of World War Two. During the post-war era
she emerged from out of the blue to work at
a bank in Mineola, New York, close to the
Long Island airfield where she chartered the
99's women's flying organization seventeen
years earlier. She left her position as Vice
President of the Great Neck National Bank
in 1958, when she married Guy Bolam, and
proceeded to help him run  his company,
Guy Bolam Associates. Anymore it is
obvious she was not the original Irene
O'Crowley Craigmile. Rather, she
was the former Amelia Earhart.
~~~

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MERRILL 'DEAN' MAGLEY

"After all she had been through she didn't want to be the famous Amelia Earhart anymore." Monsignor James Francis Kelley, as spoken to news reporter, Merrill Dean Magley, in 1987.
 

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Above: Photos showing Monsignor James Francis Kelley and the former Amelia Earhart together in the late 1970s. During the last decade of his life, the well-known priest described to several trusted acquaintances of his that he had helped to receive Amelia back in the U.S. after the war. He also mentioned he aided with the process of her name change to Irene, and that he monitored her 'emotional recovery' ordeal and served as a spiritual guide for her going forward. He even referred to her as 'Amelia' to the select individuals he confided in. Some non-believers who heard about his conveyance suggested 'old-age senility' must have caused him to make it up. The later study results proved he had merely told the truth.
 
Monsignor Kelley was a past president of Seton Hall College. He held doctorate degrees in philosophy and psychology. He died in 1996 at the age of 94. As mentioned, Amelia's only sibling, Muriel Earhart Morrissey, who also knew her sister as 'Irene' in her later life years, died in 1998.
 
 

1982
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"He was quite lucid when he told us about his helping Amelia after she returned to the United States." Donald Dekoster, recalling what Monsignor Janes Francis Kelley had described to he and his wife, Ellie, about Amelia Earhart's ongoing existence as 'Irene' after World War Two.


"He did speak of knowing Amelia Earhart." Monsignor Thomas Ivory of West Orange, New Jersey, a past friend of Monsignor Kelley's who presided over his 1996 funeral.
 
 
~~~
Below, in his day Monsignor James Francis Kelley was not your everyday priest: 
 
 

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Monsignor James Francis Kelley introduces LPGA golfer, Janey Blalock to Pope Paul VI.
 

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Monsignor Kelley with then New Jersey Governor Brendan Byrne and his wife, Jean; Commissioner of Baseball Bowie Kuhn and his wife, Luisa; and the LPGA's, Sandra Palmer.

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Monsignor Kelley with First Lady Betty Ford and Marge Montana.
 

Below, find part of a September 17, 1991 tape-recorded interview with Monsignor Kelley conducted by former Air Force Colonel, Rollin C. Reineck:

COL. REINECK: We believe Jackie Cochran was sent to Japan to help bring Amelia home. Are you aware of that?

MSGR. KELLEY: Yes, I was involved with that.
 
COL. REINECK: If you have things of hers [Earhart's] I would like to see them. You are aware that she was Irene Bolam?

MSGR. KELLEY: What?
 
COL. REINECK: Amelia Earhart was Irene Bolam?
 
MSGR. KELLEY: That's right, yes.
 
 
~~~

Was Amelia's name change the result of a well orchestrated, Federal Witness Protection Program? More than likely, yes. A link to former FBI Director, J. Edgar Hoover's involvement with Amelia's well-cloaked existence in the United States from the mid-1940s on until he died in 1972, became noticeable within the forensic research portion of the analysis.
 
J. Edgar Hoover's 1980, FOIA released, 'World War Two FBI file' on Amelia Earhart featured several mentions of her still being alive during the war years. This, when combined with Hoover's war-time and post-war years alliance with Monsignor James Francis Kelley, affords insight to how and why Amelia's later-life decades of living under an assumed identity was shielded from the public
 

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Above: Monsignor James Francis Kelley and Archbishop Thomas Walsh award FBI Director, J. Edgar Hoover with an LLD degree in 1944. A few months after World War Two ended, J. Edgar Hoover awarded Monsignor Kelley a commendation for assistance he had rendered to the Department of Justice.
~~~

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Above left, the post-World War Two only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile; Above center, the post-war only Irene & Amelia superimposed; Above right, a profile photo of Amelia Earhart.

"Peter Busatti said he accompanied Mrs. Bolam to the Wings Club in New York City on one occasion. He said a full length portrait of Amelia Earhart hangs in the room dedicated in her honor. ""It was a dead ringer for Irene,"" he said. ""Sometimes I thought she was, sometimes I thought she wasn't. Once when I asked her directly she replied, "When I die you'll find out,"" Busatti said. At a Wings Club event in Washington, Busatti mentioned how, ""All the admirals and generals seemed to know her."" Excerpted from a 1982 New Jersey News Tribune article where when interviewed, Mr. Busatti openly commented about his suspicion that his 1970s & 80s friend, the post-World War Two only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, used to be known as Amelia Earhart.
 
~~~
 
 

After the war, J. Edgar Hoover awarded a commendation medal to Monsignor James Francis Kelley for his service to his country. Father Kelley's 1987 published memoirs mentioned the award but did not provide details for why he received it.
 
The answer ended up being revealed by Kelley himself. During a recorded interview conducted in 1991, Father Kelley mentioned to Earhart investigator, Rollin C. Reineck, that he had written a chapter in his memoirs about his post-war experiences with Amelia Earhart and her becoming known as 'Irene' for the remainder of her days, but it was omitted before the book was published. The explanation found in his book under its cover image below, likely explains why the decision was made to leave it out, and why any mention of Amelia or his later life close friendship with her when she was known as 'Irene' was left out as well: 

kelcol3.jpg
1987

In his 1987 published memoirs, Monsignor James Francis Kelley included the following passage in his "My Reasons For Writing This Book" chapter that begins on page 10:

"My reason for not wanting anyone else to do my story was that I knew many of my files contained some very personal and intimate stories about many people, prominent nationally and internationally. Some of these people are now dead and I felt to allow someone else to have access to these documents could result in the publication of data about people who could not defend themselves."

 

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U.S.  Navy Rear Admiral, Ernest Eugene (Gene) Tissot Jr.

"I have carefully studied your presentation. Your conclusion that there was more than one, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, has completely convinced me that this is indeed the case. You have also convinced me that one of them used to be Amelia Earhart. Incredible. You have quite an impressive package there. Keep charging - Gene."  Part of a note forwarded to Tod Swindell from retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral, Ernest Eugene (Gene) Tissot Jr. a member of the Amelia Earhart Society of Researchers. Tissot's father, Ernie Tissot served as Amelia Earhart's head plane mechanic during her 1935 Hawaii to Oakland flight. 
 
 

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Tod Swindell
Writer, Filmmaker, Amelia Earhart
Historian & Investigative Journalist

Below the following newsprint articles, in his own words read how Tod Swindell became intrinsically involved with the never disproved, 'Amelia changed her name to Irene' assertion.
~~~ 

 
"Twenty-two years ago I wrote a review of Susan Butler's new Amelia Earhart biography, East to the Dawn. Her book had commemorated Amelia's 100th birthday and the 60th anniversay of her disappearance. Note the last paragraph of the article. The time has arrived." Tod Swindell

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1998
 

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1999                                                                 2002
 

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"In 2002, after I lectured about Amelia Earhart to a
crowd at the Oakland Air and Space museum, the
Associated Press ran a story that was picked up
by newswire services nationwide, in which I was
misquoted by its reporter, Ron Staton. I never told
him I believed Amelia was 'captured by Japan'
and later became 'a New Jersey housewife.' What
I said was I believed Amelia somehow survived
and changed her name to Irene. I always accepted
that Amelia ended up quietly existing under Japan's
stewardship as World War Two heated up, yet after
this was discovered by private sleuths in the 1960s,
reporters failed to accurately report on the facts
that surrounded her rescue by Japan, and the facts
surrounding the later learned,  'Amelia later became
known as Irene' reality. They consistently made
light of it instead, by hoodwinking that Amelia
became a New Jersey housewife." Tod Swindell

 
2007
 

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2009
Tod Swindell is featured in:
 

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"In 2009, the National Geographic Society issued its DVD program, 'Where's Amelia Earhart.' The show's producers had heard about my Amelia Earhart Forensic Research Study and asked me to appear in its program with some of my material. I agreed to accommodate them, but later regretted doing so. The reason was I had shipped twelve large panels (several shown above on the Nat Geo film set) to its filming location, and soon regretted doing so. For after digesting the 'truths' the panels displayed, the producers of the show felt they were too controversial for them to include--and asked me to remove the panels from the set before filming commenced. They did interview me on camera for two hours, but my contribution was trimmed to a couple of minutes of air-time only--and in the final edit they made light of the 'Amelia to Irene' part of the Earhart mystery. My experience in dealing with the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum was no better. The Smithsonian did well in sweeping the unsettled 'Amelia to Irene' assertion under its 'Earhart history' rug. It's worth noting both Nat Geo's and the Smithsonian's headquarters are located in Washington DC, where a sway to leave 'the mystery of Amelia Earhart's disappearance' firmly in place as a 'mystery' only, has long existed."  Tod Swindell
 

 
1937:

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Still Ongoing In 1982:

"Numerous investigations foundered on official silence in Washington and Tokyo, leaving the true fate of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan an everlasting mystery." Aviation historians, Marylin Bender and Selig Altschul on the 1937 disappearance and subsequent missing person case of Amelia Earhart, quoted from their 1982 book, The Chosen Instrument.
 

Below, a 1987 commemorative Marshall Islands 'Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan rescued by Japan' postage stamp and another 2002 AP Article lead-in:

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Above, Amelia Earhart at age 26, five
years before she became famous. Below,
she's digitally combined with her future
self as Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam.
 

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USAF Colonel, Rollin C. Reineck in 1944 

"Your work relating to Amelia Earhart and Irene O'Crowley Craigmile is absolutely outstanding. There is no other way to describe it." Author-historian, Colonel Rollin C. Reineck, USAF (Ret.) in response to Tod Swindell's Amelia Earhart investigative forensic research and comparison analysis.

 

"Foudray calls the investigative research of Joe Gervais and Tod Swindell, ""Just the tip of the Iceberg."" "All the evidence all put together, I feel like she [Amelia] did survive. I think she survived and came back to the United States, but that she wanted her privacy." Lou Foudray, former caretaker of the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum is quoted from interviews conducted by Lara Moritz of KMBC TV, Kansas City, and by The Topeka Kansas Capital-Journal's, Jan Biles.
 
Below, Joseph A. Gervais in 2001, receiving his research achievement
commendation from Amelia Earhart Society President, Bill Prymak:

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Above, a 2016 photograph of Lou Foudray, Earhart historian and former caretaker of the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum on the front porch of the home where Amelia Earhart was born in Atchison, Kansas. Lou was never shy to share her belief that Amelia changed her name to 'Irene' for the sake of her future privacy.
 
 

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USAF Colonel Rollin C. Reineck in 1944 

"Special recognition goes to Tod Swindell, who undertook an extensive, in-depth forensic analysis of the post-war only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile Bolam as compared to Amelia Earhart, to show the world they were one in the same person." USAF Colonel, Rollin C. Reineck (Ret.), reprinted from his book, Amelia Earhart Survived.
 

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TRUTH AND REALITY
GO HAND IN HAND
 

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Tod Swindell, 2019

"In 1996, when I first met renowned Amelia Earhart 'world flight' investigator, Joseph A. Gervais, I was amazed to find out that a forensic study dedicated to comparing the person of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam to Amelia Earhart had never been done before. So I learned how to orchestrate one from experts and began my journey to get it done.

It seemed logical enough; the unsettled controversy over the enigmatic Irene's past was three decades old by then and Joseph A. Gervais was still insisting she was the former Amelia Earhart; an insistence he would maintain to his dying day in 2005.

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Tod Swindell and Joseph A. Gervais in 2002
 

Joseph A. Gervais initially began investigating Amelia's odd disappearance circumstances in the 1950s. Several years into his investigation, in 1965, he met the woman known as 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' at a gathering of retired senior pilots in New York, and he couldn't help but notice her air of self-importance and the respect she commanded from others. As well, he felt she looked just like what an older version of Amelia Earhart would have looked like. When they conversed and he asked if she had known Amelia, she told him she 'had known' Amelia and 'used to fly' with her when she was simply known as, Irene Craigmile.

He found that odd because he'd never heard of an 'Irene Craigmile' before.

Later, after thoroughly looking into who Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was, or had been, Joseph A. Gervais learned the woman he met could not possibly have been the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile. Rather, he realized hands-down that she could only have been the former Amelia Earhart... in the flesh.

He later realized as well, what he had figured out was something the general public was never supposed to know. This happened after the former Amelia Earhart refuted the 1970 book, Amelia Earhart Lives, that was inspired by his realization of who she used to be--yet had been published without her cooperation or endorsement.

Since Irene, AKA 'the former Amelia Earhart' did not participate in the writing of the book, she was able to cite factual errors in it she felt were damaging to her reputation--and thus decided to sue Joseph A. Gervais and the book's author, Joe Klaas--and its publisher, McGraw-Hill, for defamation.

Her strong rejection of the best-selling book led to it being removed from the marketplace, but not before 40,000 copies had already made it into circulation, along with it garnering a Pulitzer Prize nomination. It is interesting to note here as well, while challenging the controversy over her identity, she never proved she was not the former Amelia Earhart at any time and no one else did either.

 

Today the Irene-Amelia controversy is five-decades old--and while the incredible discovery Joseph A. Gervais made all those years ago is now an obvious reality to observe--the obfuscation that diverts it continues." Tod Swindell

 

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Above: The best selling 1970 book, Amelia Earhart Lives by Joe Klaas, exposed the truth about Amelia Earhart's ongoing post-war existence as, 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam.' It was inspired by the Joseph A. Gervais investigation and his bold assertion of who the post-war only Irene used to be, although it was published without her cooperation.

Soon enough, the book was removed from the stores after the former Amelia Earhart hired a lawyer to sue for defamation. While it was true she had been living her life privately as 'Irene' since the mid-1940s, she wasn't about to go back to being the famous Amelia Earhart again for her own good reasons, that importantly included the preference of the U.S. federal government.

The book made national news after it was released, causing the former Amelia Earhart to hold a press conference where she lashed out at its contents.

~~~  


 

A handwriting comparison sample from the 'Character Traits' section of the comparison analysis:

 

Below, a 1967 handwritten line excerpted from a note to Joseph A. Gervais, penned by the post-World War Two only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, describes two pilot friends she had known when she was Amelia Earhart, and who she knew again in her later-life years when she was known as, 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam.' The line is cryptically phrased but alludes to how she recognized herself as a different person after the war years.

The two pilot friends she referred to were Viola Gentry and Elmo Pickerill, and both indeed had known her as 'Amelia' in the 1930s, and then again as 'Irene' in her later years.

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Below is Amelia's own 'Amelia M Earhart' signature
the way it appeared on a form she filled out in high school.
The likeness of both handwriting styles is not a coincidence
because they were scribed by the same individual. 

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Below, from the Character Traits comparison study, some of the post-World War Two only Irene Craigmile's cursive letters are shown on the left, and some cursive letter samples from when she was known as Amelia Earhart are shown on the right:

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Note: The above comparisons are part of the extensive
Document Examination portion of the analysis. 
 
A Quick Review:

 
The Swindell Study marked the first objective analysis of Amelia Earhart's 1937 'disappearance' and 'missing person case' to compare Amelia to the once aspiring pilot she had flown with in the 1930s, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.
 
In 1970, the person known as 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' (surname 'Bolam' added by marriage in 1958) found herself thrust into the national-news spotlight as a subject of controversy. Within the Swindell Study results, it was forensically determined she was not the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile. It turned out the left over identity of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was made available for Amelia Earhart to use for herself going forward after World War Two.

Note: During the past decade, the now completed study came to be recognized among Earhart scholars as the most comprehensive evaluation of Amelia Earhart's failed world-flight attempt to date and by far, the most truthful.

 

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The above May 13, 1938 White House transcript exchange (abreviated) took place between Henry P. Morgenthau Jr., then Secretary of the Treasury and a 'right hand man' and confidant of President Franklin Roosevelt, and Malvina Scheider, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt's personal secretary. To this day no one knows the extent of the information the White House withheld about Amelia's world flight outcome, although it is clear it withheld something important that it chose not to publicly divulge. The "Amelia Earhart absolutely disregarded all orders" comment of Morgenthau's referred to Amelia's decision to head for the no-fly zone of the Marshall Islands--as opposed to her announced alternate emergency landing spot of the Gilbert Islands just south of them. Below was Malvina Scheider's response to the First Lady on behalf of Mr. Morgenthau: 

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Above: The reply note to Eleanor Roosevelt written by her secretary, Malvina Scheider, nine months after Amelia Earhart was declared 'missing'. On behalf of two of Amelia's friends, Jackie Cochran and Paul Mantz, who believed Amelia survived her disappearance and was still alive overseas, the First Lady forwarded a letter from Mantz to Henry P. Morgenthau Jr., asking about the possibility of additional search efforts for Amelia. Soon after that she learned of the silent treatment the White House was adhering to toward Amelia's ongoing 'missing person' case. Several more months then passed, until early 1939, as World War Two heated up, that Amelia Earhart was legally declared, 'dead in absentia'.

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Above, Eleanor Roosevelt and Amelia Earhart, 1933. The two were fast friends after they first met. Below, the 'Amelia' image from above is digitally combined with her future 'Irene' self:

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"The public has been misled about the fate of Amelia Earhart ever since the event of her so-called 'disappearance' took place. With the new information the research study unearthed, it is time for people to recognize the obfuscation and dishonesty that long-plagued Amelia Earhart's 'world flight outcome' story." Amelia Earhart investigative journalist, Tod Swindell

 

Intro: Comparing the original Irene 
O'Crowley Craigmile to Amelia Earhart

Irene O'Crowley Craigmile,
at age nineteen.

IRENE NEE-O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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AGE NINETEEN, 1923

 
Below: Irene O'Crowley
Craigmile, age twenty-eight.

IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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AGE TWENTY-EIGHT, 1932

Amelia Earhart,
at age twenty.

AMELIA EARHART
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AGE TWENTY, 1917

 
Below: Amelia Earhart,
age thirty-one.

AMELIA EARHART
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AGE THIRTY-ONE, 1928

 
In the above display, it is easy to see Irene O'Crowley Craigmile and Amelia Earhart were two different people.

Keep going to learn how their lives ended up so curiously intertwined--and the incredible reason for it that managed to briefly surface in 1970--until Irene O'Crowley Craigmile herself and Amelia Earhart's family steered the press and the public away from it.

 

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Pilot, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.
She sometimes flew with Amelia
Earhart in 1932 and 1933.
 

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Amelia Earhart in 1921. After she became
famous several years later, she met
Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.
 

 
Before continuing with the 'Study Review', once again, as demonstrated above, it is essential to recognize how long-ago pilot friends, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile and Amelia Earhart were entirely different human beings who did not resemble each other--and were separated age wise by seven years; Amelia being the older of the two.
 
 
 
Therefore, the digital comparison results below would defy logic, unless in her later-life years, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile somehow ended up looking just like her 1930s' pilot friend, Amelia Earhart, who had gone missing in 1937, and was purportedly never seen again:

 

Below left, Amelia Earhart at the age of thirty; below right, she is digitally combined with a 1970 photo-image of the post-war only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam:

AMELIA & IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE + AMELIA
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Below left, Amelia Earhart in 1937; Below right, she is digitally combined with her future, 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' self.

 

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AMELIA

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AMELIA & AMELIA + IRENE O"CROWLEY CRAIGMILE

 
 
Below: Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam in 1965

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Below: Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam in 1970

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The forensic research study learned that the 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' in the above 1965 and 1970 photographs was identified nowhere as 'Irene' prior to the end of World War Two. In other words, after the war it was as if she emerged from out of the blue identified that way. Should anyone still find it difficult to recognize the older version of 'Amelia' in the above photographs, consider the following quote by philosopher Uell Stanley Andersen: 

 

"If we think of ourselves as bodies, our changing self becomes apparent. It is nearly impossible even for families to recognize a loved one after thirty years of absence, so greatly has the self altered. And a little reflection upon the changing quality of consciousness is sure to give us some insight into the numberless selves our surface minds and egos have become since first appearing in the world." Uell Stanley Andersen

~~~

Why is this so important to know, understand, and ultimately embrace anymore? There are a lot of reasons.

First, though, here is a review of how the 1970s' cover-up of the discovery of Amelia's post-loss existence as Irene came into being:

When the former Amelia Earhart was first publicly recognized in 1965, and then after the attempt was made to nationally 'out her' for who she used to be against her will in 1970, the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation Director, J. Edgar Hoover, resorted to a 'politburo' kind of control and influence over the matter--that obfuscated it to the national news media.

This left it where by the time J. Edgar Hoover died in 1972, every national news media figurehead understood the quiet edict laid down by the United States Federal government originated by Hoover himself, to never regard the 'Amelia became Irene assertion' in a serious manner. This is why we have never witnessed the national news media do its own investigation of the 'Amelia became Irene' assertion. What we have seen instead, is news reports about different people or clubs from within the private sector that offered a variety of ideas when it came to what happened to Amelia in 1937, that systematically steered clear of--or was sure to make light of the 'Amelia became Irene' claim if it ever came up. 

Additionally, the powerful level of control the federal government has over the U.S. court system, engaged by the former Amelia Earhart herself to enable her to continue leading the same private-life existence she had led since the post-war years was clearly evident--as is the reality that states her post-war private life existence came about by way of a carefully orchestrated Federal Witness Protection Program. There is absolutely no doubt this happened and there is absolutely no doubt the U.S. federal government was intent on never divulging it happened.

There is solace in knowing that J. Edgar Hoover is long gone now, as is the former Amelia Earhart, who, depending on whom one chooses to believe, either died in Edison, New Jersey in 1982, or in Mclean, Virginia in 1994. The reason the ambiguity over when the former Amelia Earhart actually died exists, is due to the learned reality of there having been more than one person in the post-war years attributed to the same 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' identity. The one featured on the memorial dinner program cover below was not the former Amelia Earhart. She was the surrogate mother of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's 1934 born son. Although Irene's death was recorded in 1982, it remains uncertain which 'Irene' actually died then; the surrogate mother Irene or the former Amelia Earhart Irene. Relevant to this quandary, check out the news article clippings below the memorial dinner program image, followed by the positive ID placement made by the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's son, Clarence 'Larry' Heller:  

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The mixed bag of information in the above article was typical of the malarkey that kept the general public from recognizing Amelia's post-war existence as, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile. 

 

Positive ID Placement Made By The Original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's Son:

Below is a 2014 written exchange between Clarence Alvin 'Larry' Heller, the 1934 born son of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, and investigative journalist, Tod Swindell. The two first met at Mr. Heller's attorney's office in New York, at which time Mr. Heller positively identified his 'mother' in younger and older forms, before he was asked to put it in writing. The person Mr. Heller identified as his mother, however, was not the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, nor was she the post-World War Two only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile: 

 

From Tod Swindell: Thursday, February 20, 2014
Subject: Identity Verification

 

Hi Larry,

I want you to know that I am in full agreement with you that Amelia Earhart was not your mother. Your mother, as you identified her to me in these younger and older photo versions, led a very different life than Amelia and bore little resemblance to her physically. Our agreement on this matter is pertinent to the correct presentation of the facts.  

My conveyance is that you have positively identified these images as those of your late mother, and that she absolutely was not, and never possibly could have been Amelia Earhart. I agree with this 100%, and understand that you do too. If you could you send back a simple ‘I agree’ for written verification, I’d appreciate it.

Thanks,

Tod

 

From Clarence Alvin 'Larry' Heller: Friday, February 21, 2014
Subject: Re: Identity Verification

The attached pictures are of my mother and she was not Amelia Earhart. Proof is available. C. Heller

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"AROUND 1940"

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"1970s"

Below, when the above images were digitally combined in the analysis, they did equate the same person in younger and older forms:

IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
origjunior.jpg
"AROUND 1940"

IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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"1970s"

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DIGITALLY COMBINED

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"My Mother around 1940," verified in
2014 by Clarence Alvin 'Larry' Heller, the 1934
born son of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.

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The post-war only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile
in 1946, FKA "Amelia Earhart," not recognized
by the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile 's son.

0000IACB3.jpg

Her once famous look had changed. Nine years
had passed, a world war was fought and had
ended, after which  she no longer wished
  to be recognized for who she used to be.
 

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Digitally combined photos from the left (1946-1965)
showing the same person, the former Amelia Earhart,
with close to twenty-years of age difference.  

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Amelia, 1937

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AMELIA AND HER FUTURE IRENE SELF

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The post-war only, Irene O'Crowley
Craigmile-Bolam, FKA 'Earhart' in 1965

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Amelia Earhart, age 38 in 1935...

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...transitions into...

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...her future self marking the post-war
quiet return of, "the pilot in pearls."
 

Below: The Human Being Plurality Of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile; Three Twentieth Century Women Who Ended Up Being Attributed To The Same 'Irene' Identity In Order To Obfuscate The Ongoing Existence Of The Former Amelia Earhart...  

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Above, Amelia's long-ago acquaintance, the original Irene Craigmile (1932-1933) next to one of the plane's she learned to fly in.
 
 

origjunior.jpg

Above, the second, Irene
O'Crowley Craigmile
 

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Above, a "1970s" dated photo of the Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, on the cover of her 1982 Memorial Dinner program. Below, the younger and older photo versions from above are digitally combined, displaying the same human being in younger and older forms. She was not the same Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam who Joseph A. Gervais met and photographed in 1965, even though according to history she should have been:

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Above, the third post-war 'new' Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, FKA 'Amelia Earhart' in 1946. Below, she is digitally combined with her former 'Amelia' self.

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AMELIA & AMELIA + IRENE O"CROWLEY CRAIGMILE

Above, the 1965 Gervais photo of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam digitally combined with Amelia. 

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Above: The curiously obsessed with Amelia Earhart, and
self appointed anti-Irene campaigner, Dr. Alex Mandel. This
fellow should be drummed out of the 'True Earhart History
Corps' with all other 'false Earhart history' promoters:

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As part of the Study Review, the following should be pointed out:

Many people automatically log-on to wikipedia to quickly learn what they can about topics of historical interest. It is important to recognize, though, the public provided information in wikipedia is not always accurate. This includes the information in a wikipedia page self-built by an oddly motivated Irene truth dissenter, Dr. Alex Mandel, a Ukrainian nuclear physicist:  

[Note: The false, 'Irene Craigmile Bolam' wikipedia page that was launched in 2008, was a deceptive ploy created by an individual known as 'Dr. Alex Mandel' of Ukraine, after he learned of the new investigative research study being conducted. He knows what is real and what isn't real Irene-Amelia wise, yet his motive for building the page was specific: To renew the persuasion people that once again was intended to make them believe there was nothing to the Irene-Amelia controversy, this, even though the assertion that Amelia lived-on and became known as 'Irene' was never disproved.
 
Dr. Mandel, who has long demonstrated a curious obsession with Amelia Earhart, fabricated in his page (that he alone strictly moderates) how research, "eliminated any possibility the two were one in the same." He also added, "in 2006, the National Geographic Society hired a criminal forensic expert who studied photographs and concluded the two were not one in the same." These are outright falsehoods and sadly, Dr. Mandel knows they are. Basically, though, his effort once again demonstrates the depth of dishonesty that has long restricted the public from embracing the true story of Amelia's post-war existence as 'Irene'. Incidentally, the photograph on his wikipedia page displays the former Amelia Earhart as 'Irene' at a Detroit Zonta gathering in 1977. The study includes other photos of her taken at the same event.]
 

 

CONTINUE STUDY REVIEW

POST-WAR ONLY IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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OAHU, HAWAII, 1952

POST-WAR ONLY IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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JAMAICA, 1976

POST-WAR ONLY IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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NEW YORK, 1977

Above & digitally combined
with Amelia Earhart below:
The post-World War Two only,
Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.

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AMELIA

Whether people choose to believe it or not
is of little consequence anymore. The study
results left it obvious that the post-war only,
Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, did used
to be known as Amelia Earhart. 
 

CHARLES AND IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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1930 NEWSPRINT PHOTO

Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, the
once aspiring pilot who flew with
Amelia Earhart, is shown above in
1930 with her civil engineer husband,
'Charles James Craigmile.'

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00001ACJcraigAAAA.jpg
From Charles J. Craigmile's obituary

 
Briefly, in 1928, Irene O'Crowley
married Charles Craigmile, that
left her further known as, Irene
O'Crowley Craigmile. Sadly, Charles
died in 1931. A year later, his widow,
Irene, began taking flying lessons. She
then married a pilot by the name of
Al Heller in 1933, after realizing she
was pregnant with his child. A son
was born to them in early 1934, except
their brief marriage was annuled after
Irene learned Al Heller was still married
to another woman he had children with.
History then has it that two decades later,
in 1958, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile wed
Guy Bolam of England--although history
is not correct there because the Irene
O'Crowley Craigmile who had been
married to Charles J. Craigmile and
Al Heller in the 1930s, and who gave
birth to a son in 1934, never married
Guy Bolam. She had known the person
who did, though, shown on the left,
who further used her identity after
World War Two; a person who as it
turned out, had previously been
known as, Amelia Earhart.
 

0000B.jpg

Irene O'Crowley Craigmile in 1934
with her son, Clarence Alvin Heller.
 

 
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POST-WAR ONLY IRENE O'CROWLEY CRAIGMILE
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YUGOSLAVIA, 1976

Above: The post-war only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile digitally combined with her former Amelia Earhart self, using a 1976 photo taken in Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia. (Dubrovnik is now part of Croatia.)

 
After 1970, the post-war only 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam' remained evasive to people who questioned her past. Her obscured existence also featured the ploy of her name being shared with a woman who died in 1982. Through such muddied waters the controversy over who the post-war only Irene really was, or used to be, became obscured. It would take decades to pass before she was actually compared to Amelia Earhart by way of the Twenty First Century analysis, that also surfaced more detailed information about the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.
 

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IRENE BOLAM

Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam
1965

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The surrogate mother, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam,
who died in 1982. [Program cover photo dated, '1970s']

 

What Reality Now Tells Us

 

Before the surname of 'Bolam' was added to it in 1958, (the year the post-war only 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' married Guy Bolam of England) prior to World War Two the name 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' had belonged to a once aspiring pilot who had flown with Amelia Earhart.

By the time World War Two began, however, the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile no longer appeared in plain view. The results of the completed 'forensic research and comparison analysis' revealed this truth in no uncertain terms. It also revealed that a total of three different Twentieth Century woman ended up having the same 'Irene' identity applied to them:

 
Forgeries Were Used To Obscure
The Discovered Human Plurality
of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile:

0000001IOC1923B.jpg
AGE NINETEEN, 1923

Irene O'Crowley, who wed Charles Craigmile in 1928, is the person identified here in '1923' when she would have been 19. The original Irene's son didn't recognize this photo and did not know of its origin. It turned out to be a forgery that was built to match the later-life image of the surrogate mother to the original Irene's son. In other words; 'a fraud':

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052.JPG

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AGE TWENTY-SIX, 1930

Mrs. Irene O'Crowley Craigmile in 1930, the year before her husband, Charles J. Craigmile, (shown above with her) died.

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From Charles J. Craigmile's obituary

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"My mother, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, around 1940" as identified in 2014 for the analysis by the original Irene's 1934 born son. She was not his biological mother. He thought she was, but she had served as a surrogate mother to him.
 

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The post-World War Two only 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' in 1946, also not recognized by the original Irene's son. She was not identified anywhere as 'Irene' before the end of World War Two. Below, she is digitally combined with her former self, Amelia Earhart:

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It may be hard to believe and for decades it proved hard to explain as well, yet those who do not recognize the human plurality the analysis discovered about Irene O'Crowley Craigmile--and how Amelia Earhart herself played into it by becoming further known as, 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' after World War Two, either have not reviewed the analysis results; had grown to believe something else happened to Amelia; or perhaps they chose (and still choose) to simply turn a blind-eye toward the true, life-long physical history of Amelia Earhart's person that included her name change in the 1940s.
 

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Above, Lord Admiral Nelson turns his blind eye
toward a reality he'd rather not have to address.
 
 
REALITY
 
"People who have digested the material presented in this website up to this point--and who remain unable to comprehend the natural truth it displays, have been blinded by the false history of Amelia Earhart.
 
The spoon-fed to the public, 'false history of Amelia Earhart' has long been this: Amelia's physical being vanished without a trace on July 2, 1937, and it was never seen again. This, plain and simple, is the false history of Amelia Earhart.
 
According to reality, however, Amelia survived her disappearance and changed her name, and she lived-on that way for many years." Tod Swindell 
 

 

 The Negation Expressed By Amelia Earhart's Family:

 

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Above, Amelia's only
sibling, her sister,
Muriel Earhart
Morrissey. Below,
Muriel's daughter,
(Amelia's niece)
Amy Kleppner.

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1982

In the 1980s, when the controversy over Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's true identity resurfaced, Amelia's sister, Muriel, who knew the post-war only Irene through the Zonta organization, was again asked about the, 'did Amelia become known as Irene?' identity controversy. She had quickly rejected the assertion after it first surfaced in 1970, and the above newspaper clipping expressed the opinion she still held toward the matter in the 1980s. It's worth noting here as well; Muriel did not become a Zonta member until after the war years--and the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was never a Zonta member. Any further it is also easy enough to see, Muriel's later life friend, the post-war only Irene, actually DID resemble her sister, Amelia, to a 'T', contradicting her above quote, "It's just foolish. There is practically no physical resemblance."
 
Muriel was a key part of the protection effort that allowed her sister to keep on living a private life after she was nearly outed in 1970. After Muriel died in 1998, he daughter, Amy Kleppner, continued on with the same 'protective' tradition that remained intent on never endorsing the reality of her aunt Amelia's post-loss existence as Irene, along with the Smithsonian Institution and the National Geographic Society. All saw no other choice but to toe-the-line, of course, with the executive branch of the U.S. federal government, that during the pre-World War Two era originally created the enduring cover-up pertaining to Amelia Earhart's so-called, 'disappearance'.
 

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Above: Amelia Earhart's family in a March of 1937 publicity photo, a few months before Amelia went missing. Left to right are Amelia's sister, Muriel; Amelia's niece, Amy; Amelia's mother, Amy Otis Earhart; and Amelia's nephew, David. Amelia's father, Edwin, who her mother had separated from in 1924, died in 1929.
 

Ever since the surprise assertion of Amelia's ongoing survival as 'Irene' surfaced in 1970, Amelia's survived family members unanimously decried it.
 
Granted, Amelia's mother, Amy Otis Earhart, died in 1962, so she never had to contend with it. She always maintained, though, that her daughter, Amelia, ended up existing under Japan's stewardship after she was declared 'missing' in 1937, and throughout the war years she spoke of 'expecting to see' her daughter again. It wasn't until a few years after the war ended, and only when she was asked by a reporter, that she said she had 'given up hope' there. Of course, by then her daughter was safely back in the U.S. living as 'Irene.'
 
Amelia's sister, Muriel Earhart Morrissey, (her only sibling) did know her sister as 'Irene' through the Zonta's in her later life years, but she repudiated anyone who said she was actually her survived sister, Amelia, living with a different name.
 
Muriel's defiance never backed down there and it continued on after she died in 1998, through her daughter, Amy Kleppner, Amelia's niece. Amy Kleppner continues to carry on her late mother's tradition of insisting there was never anything to the identity controversy, even though reality clearly states otherwise.
 
Dorothy Cochrane, of the Smithsonian Institution's Air and Space Museum, in recent years communicated with Amy Kleppner about the Amelia became Irene matter, and on February 2, 2018, she conveyed the following that solidly expressed Amy's and her mother's opinion toward the never disproved, 'Amelia survived and changed her identity' claim:
 
"Both Amy Kleppner and her mother, Muriel Earhart Morrissey, repeatedly and strongly dismissed and rejected this story line."
 
To this day, to anyone who asks her about it, Dorothy Cochrane will refer to the 'Amelia became Irene contoversy' as "a baseless story" that investigator, Joseph A. Gervais, "created" back in the 1960s. (Thus insinuating that Gervais, a retired USAF Major and World War Two flying hero had, 'made it all up.')
 
It is unfortunate that Dorothy Cochrane's purposeful disregard for the truth defaults people into thinking it potentials a worthwhile endeavor to donate money to misguided expeditions intent on locating Amelia Earhart's plane, when reality says looking for Amelia's plane is a frivolous waste of time, money, and resources.
 
Due to the powerful sway long maintained by Amelia's family, the Smithsonian Institution, and the National Geographic Society when it came to the Earhart disappearance matter, it is significant to realize how news reporters have never been able to accept the veracity of Amelia's name-changed survival in consideration of such combined negative influences. National newspaper and magazine publishers learned to side with their expressed viewpoints, or to avoid the 'Amelia became Irene' assertion altogether. This is why there never before was a 'Woodward and Bernstein' like investigative reporters team intent on getting to the bottom of the, 'Amelia became known as  Irene' assertion. 
  
 

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Dorothy Cochrane
 
Dorothy Cochrane, of the Smithsoniain's National Air and Space Museum, purposefully disregards the truth in favor of the false-history that says Amelia Earhart vanished without a trace in 1937, and her body evidence was never found. Even though Joseph A. Gervais was correct in 1965, when he first identified the 'body evidence' of Amelia Earhart in the form of the post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, Dorothy Cochrane's expressed opinion that says his claim was "baseless" exclusively supports the Earhart family wishes, yet she is clearly biased in doing so, although she is not alone. The same opinion is shared by others at the Smithsonian Institution and the National Geographic Society. Thus, whether people choose to accept it or not, Dorothy Cochrane and her constituents are living proof of the active and strongly influential, ongoing cover-up that prevents the public from embracing the reality of what became of Amelia Earhart... after she was declared 'missing' in 1937.
 
This is how the saying, "The mystery of Amelia Earhart's disappearance exists because it is supposed to exist" came to be. 
 

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Above: Lonnie G. Bunch III, the new head of the Smithsonian Institution who took over for Dr. David J. Skorton in 2019, will need to appeal to his own truthful conscience where the obvious forensic reality of what became of Amelia Earhart is now in play.

 


About truth:
 
"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident." Arthur Schopenhauer
~~~

On preventing the discovery of truth:
 
"The discovery of truth is prevented most effectively by preconcieved opinion and prejudice." Arthur Schopenhauer
 

 

How The Original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile And Amelia Earhart Came To Know Each Other:

"O'Crowley" had been her maiden name and it was through her aunt, a prominent attorney by the name of 'Irene Rutherford O'Crowley', that the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile and Amelia Earhart came to know each other. Amelia had befriended 'Attorney Irene' through the national Zonta organization they both belonged to. (The original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was never a Zonta member.)

 
The story about the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's identity being reapplied to the former Amelia Earhart, first began to surface in the mid-1960s. It was the result of a decade-long investigation when it finally made news headlines in 1970--until it was swiftly removed from the public mindset--something propelled by the quick denial issued from the woman in question, the post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, AKA "Mrs. Guy Bolam" or "Irene Bolam" as she was identified in the 1970s news article photos. 
 

 
Why The Former Amelia Refused To Comply
 
To account for why the former Amelia Earhart refused to admit her past identity, after avoiding direct interaction with the investigator, Joseph A. Gervais, who first realized and then became intent on outing who she used to be--the post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, (FKA 'AE') chose to lay-low. In the meantime she also prepared a press conference she would hold as soon as the book inspired by the Gervais' investigation, Amelia Earhart Lives by Joe Klaas, was published.
 
True to her objective, when the book was released into the marketplace, during the short but forceful press conference she held at the Time-Life Building in New York City, the post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, sternly denounced its contents, most specifically where it asserted that she was the survived Amelia Earhart living under an assumed identity. Then after fielding no questions she left the room. Not long after that, she retained a powerful attorney and sued Gervais and Klaas, and the book's publisher, McGraw-Hill, for defamation.
 
It should be clarified that the post-war only Irene did not sue over the claim of who she used to be, rather, she felt the book's insinuation of it was chocked with reckless and misleading assumptions. She is quoted here above some of the complaints her 'lengthy' defamation suit mentioned as it continued on in 1974:
 

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The former Amelia Earhart was greatly angered with the manner the book used in its attempt to reveal who she used to be... and she remained upset about it long afterward.
 
Who could blame her? No one knew what she went through before she became known as 'Irene' and she was not about to start explaining it to anybody. Conversely, had she admitted her former identity then, such an explanation with endless requests for details about where she was and what she was doing from the late 1930s-on, especially during the World War Two years, would have been demanded of her.
 
Absolutely, she was not about to go back to being Amelia Earhart again. She had no desire to reclaim the mantle of the world famous person she used to be. That would have only caused her duress for the remainder of her days.
 
Joseph A. Gervais having pegged her as the former Amelia Earhart wasn't a hoax at all, but the ongoing concealment of her former identity after he did that, was definitely essential. 
 

 
To reemphasize, within the overall forensic analysis results the now obvious to observe, 'Amelia to Irene' congruence does not simply mark, 'a mere coincidence'.
 

 
On Coincidence
 
"Coincidence could never account for the kind of head-to-toe physical & character traits congruence the 'Amelia compared to Irene' analysis results display. Especially where the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile; an early 1930s socialite, a member of the League of Women Voters, and a once aspiring pilot who Amelia had known--did not at all resemble Amelia.
 
Anymore, the plain truth about Amelia Earhart's 1937 disappearance is that the wool was necessarily pulled over the eyes of the general public when it came to what really happened to her during the tenuous pre-World War Two era. Note:
 
"I Hope that I've just got to never make it public." 1938 quote from FDR right-hand man, Henry P. Morgenthau Jr., concerning information the White House withheld about Amelia's disappearance the previous year. (See more about this further down.)
 
The same 'not make it public' White House credo about Amelia's fate continued during the war years--and a noticeable 'official silence' toward the matter continued even more-so after the war ended.
 
Today it is clear the historical preference from the post-war era on, that the former Amelia Earhart herself fully understood and endorsed, was for the general public never to know that she actually survived beyond 1937, and in time assumed the name of 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' after it was made available to her. This is why people continued to be rerouted in other directions when it came to what really happened to Amelia--after the reality of her ongoing existence with a different name awkwardly surfaced in 1970." Tod Swindell 
 

Was Amelia's name change the result of a well orchestrated, Federal Witness Protection Program? More than likely, yes. A link to former FBI Director, J. Edgar Hoover's involvement with Amelia's well-cloaked existence in the United States from the mid-1940s on until he died in 1972, became too noticeable within the forensic research portion of the analysis.
 
J. Edgar Hoover's 1980, FOIA released, 'World War Two FBI file' on Amelia Earhart featured several mentions of her still being alive during the war years. This, when combined with his war-time and post-war years alliance with Monsignor James Francis Kelley, affords insight to how and why Amelia's post-war decades of living under an assumed identity was shielded from the public
 

 

Balloon Rides Anyone?

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The above 'hot air balloon' newspaper photo taken in 1980, features the post-World War Two only, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile-Bolam, accompanied by famous golfer, Kathy Whitworth. Especially in the 1970s, after taking over as a division head for Radio Luxembourg, when she was simply known as 'Irene' to friends and associates of hers, by then the former Amelia Earhart had grown to be respected and admired by important people not only in the United States--but globally as well. Those who were aware of who she used to be, of course, never spoke much about her.

 

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Tod Swindell

 
A brief retreat: The original, Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.

023OI.JPG

1932

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News-clip mention, May-1933

"After her husband, Charles Craigmile, tragically died in 1931, the newly-widowed original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, shown above next to her plane and mentioned in the 1933 article, began learning to be a pilot in October of 1932. She did well and earned her license in May of 1933, but realized she was pregnant around the same time. She hardly flew again after that, having endured a 'shotgun marriage' that quickly failed and was annulled after she gave birth to a son in 1934, and she did not renew her pilot's license after 1936. Compared to Amelia and Viola Gentry, two 'celebrity pilots' who were both acquainted with her, she was hardly heard of as a pilot back then as well.
 
That's not to say the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was a complete unknown. She hailed from a highly respected family and led a fairly idyllic life after she married Charles Craigmile in 1928, a successful civil engineer. Influenced by her prominent attorney aunt, as mentioned she was a member of the Women's League of Voters before she married Charles, and in 1930 she hosted a luncheon featuring a live radio broadcast to celebrate the League's ten year anniversary.
 
After Charles Craigmile died in late 1931, her life changed dramatically. When she took up flying she proved to be good at it, but she never became a 99's member, the women's flier's club her pilot friends, Amelia Earhart and Viola Gentry, had famously chartered in 1929. No doubt she would have joined the 99's, though, had her pregnancy not brought a sudden end to her brief piloting adventure.
 
With her limited hours of flying, it would have been unrealistic for the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile to later become a member of the affluent New York Wings Club referenced above, let alone be so recognized there among its most lofty members.
 
Conversely, the people who knew the post-World War Two only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile as the former Amelia Earhart, and indeed there were some who did, were always mindfully discreet of who she used to be. Recall as well, until the name made national news in 1970, hardly a soul had ever heard of an 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile' before, as was the intention. By then as well, the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile was long gone." Tod Swindell
 
 

 

Looking Back: Then and Now 
 
Since 1970, and still to this day, the Smithsonian Institution has continued to field the question of whether or not Amelia Earhart quietly survived her 1937 disappearance and eventually changed her name. While it has always managed to fend off the curious with negative sounding replies, it is worth noting the Smithsonian never examined the claim itself, nor was the claim ever disproved.
 
This is because the controversy over Amelia's ongoing existence with a different name managed to avoid being forensically evaluated back then and therefore was never falsified. Rather, the public was conditioned to believe it was a false claim by news media sources, Amelia Earhart's family, and the family of the original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile.
 
Hindsight shows it is hard to blame the Smithsonian for never taking the lead here. As a ward of the U.S. federal government it is obliged to honor 'governmental protocol' where certain controversial subject matters are concerned. Amelia Earhart's 1937 disappearance was one of them. As Dr. Tom Crouch of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum once put it, "We do not favor any particular Earhart mystery solving theory." If one looks at the past track record of the Smithsonian's expressed viewpoints toward it, this is easy to discern.  

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Beyond the restriction placed on the Smithsonian that has long prevented it from independently investigating the claim of Amelia Earhart's post-loss existence with a different name, in the interim it was ascertained that the U.S. federal government had covered-up an unreported 'different version' of Amelia Earhart's 1937 world flight ending by way of its executive branch.
 
Note: "What that woman [Earhart], happened to her the last few minutes, I hope I've just got to never make it public."
 
These were the words of FDR right hand man, Henry P. Morgenthau Jr., concerning something else that took place during Amelia Earhart's world flight ending and outcome the White House withheld from the public. Other revealing quotes appeared adjacent to it in a 1938 dated, official White House transcript that surfaced four decades after Amelia Earhart's famous world flight took place.
 

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Above: Henry P. Morgenthau Jr. (left) and President Franklin Roosevelt (right) were aware of a different version of Amelia Earhart's world flight ending they never made public.
 

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The above excerpt came from the aforementioned 'official White House transcript' dated May 13, 1938, nine months after Amelia Earhart went missing. Amelia was still considered a 'missing person' at the time. The top paragraph features the end of a conversation between Henry P. Morgenthau Jr. and Eleanor Roosevelt's secretary, Malvina Scheider. Miss Scheider had contacted Mr. Morgenthau about a letter sent to him by the First Lady expressing the interest of individuals who were convinced Amelia survived her world flight outcome in Japan's mandate islands--and they felt another search and rescue attempt on Amelia's behalf was in order.
 
There were eight people present at a White House meeting Morgenthau was holding at the time the above conversation took place, that was recorded by Dictaphone. After his conversation with Miss Scheider ended, Morgenthau, who was FDR's Secretary of the Treasury and a long time personal friend and confidant, turned to his Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, Stephen Gibbons, to help him qualify to the others why the White House believed further searching for Amelia Earhart was pointless. Gibbons' "We have evidence that the thing is all over, sure, terrible, it would be awful to make it public" response closed the door on further hope that Amelia Earhart might still be found to those in attendance that day--even though whatever 'evidence' the White House had, it was not Amelia Earhart's body.
 
The main scuttlebutt had been that the 'last few minutes of Earhart's flight' Morgenthau referred to concerned a relay suggesting Earhart and Noonan were intercepted and fired upon as they entered Japan's Marshall Islands air space. The hushed White House understanding was the two had perished that way, even though there was no absolute certainty such a thing was true.
 
In any case, based on her conversation with Morgenthau, below was Malvina Scheider's reply she forwarded to the First Lady:
 

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Below, Malvina "Tommy" Scheider on the left and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt on the right in 1936. Malvina Scheider's duties were many; she was a close friend, personal advisor, gatekeeper, press secretary, and image protector for Mrs. Roosevelt. She made her mark in the White House as the first, 'First Lady' staffer whose role was not limited to that of a social secretary.  

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A note from Tod Swindell: The original response Malvina Scheider forwarded to Eleanor Roosevelt included words that suggested Amelia's reputation would be 'ruined' if the White House disclosed all it knew to the public about what happened during the time of her disappearance. [Morgenthau had mentioned this in front of the eight people in attendance when his May 13, 1938 conversation with Malvina Scheider took place.] In the above version I took the liberty to omit those words. It was my feeling it was added fodder, or 'negative flavoring' that was included by Morgenthau to Malvina that he knew would better persuade the First Lady to demur--should more inquiries about Amelia Earhart's disappearance come her way. And it worked. Mrs. Roosevelt immediately adapted the policy. My feeling remains, though, nothing Amelia did then could or would have 'ruined' her reputation. Just the same, for the record here is the full version:
 

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A curious side note that relates to the same year of 1938, the subsequent time period of 1938 to 1941, and Henry P. Morgenthau Jr.; in his 1987 published memoirs on page 367, Monsignor James Francis Kelley wrote of his having received the following: "July 11, 1941, received a citation and medal from the Secretary of the Treasury, Henry Morgenthau, for 'three years of patriotic service with integrity and dilligence for the Treasury Department of the United States of America.'" Again, Father Kelley's memoirs failed to explain what he was doing for the treasury department those three years that led to his citation award. Today it is hard to overlook the fact, given what is now known about his post-war involvement with the former Amelia Earhart, that from 1938 to 1945, Father Kelley ended up being held in high esteem by both Henry P. Morgenthau Jr. and J. Edgar Hoover, two top players from the executive branch and department of justice housed by the U.S. federal government. 

 
 
Cut To The 1960s
 
The same high-government-level attitude toward Amelia Earhart's loss remained in place decades later. For instance, in 1966, when CBS radio journalist, Fred Goerner, disclosed U.S. Navy Admiral Chester Nimitz' admission of how it was "known and documented in Washington" that "Earhart and Noonan went down in the Marshall Islands and were picked up by Japan", coupled with retired U.S. Navy Commander, John Pillsbury's 1962 comment to Goerner where he intimated what really happened to Earhart and Noonan would, "stagger the imagination", the federal government's executive branch and its Federal Bureau of Investigation, (the FBI) remained ominously silent.

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Above, CBS radio journalist, Fred Goerner's 1966 groundbreaking book about Amelia Earhart's disappearance that virtually exposed an ongoing cover-up in Washington, was a top-ten New York Times "best seller" for several weeks after it was published. As detailed and revealing as it was, however, the U.S. federal government offered no opinion about its contents.
 
 
Cut To The 1970s
 
Four years later, in 1970, after the claim of Amelia Earhart's ongoing survival with a different name surfaced, when he was asked about it President Nixon dryly replied, "We don't discuss that subject around here." [That 'subject' being 'Earhart' and  'around here' being 'the White House'.]
 
Below: President Richard Nixon in 1970

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Where President Nixon's legacy associates his name with the Watergate scandal, it is worth recalling he served as Vice President under the famous World War Two General-turned-President, Dwight D. Eisenhower, from 1953 to 1961. It can be said, eight years after World War Two ended when Eisenhower took office, he stood to inherit an unresolved issue or two left behind by the Truman and FDR administrations. No doubt one of them was the pre-World War Two debacle of Earhart's loss--and the ongoing war-time controversy over what actually happened to her--that featured a tightly-sealed lid.
 
Richard Nixon may not have known what was in that 'sealed' Earhart container, but he certainly knew not to touch it. It was no surprise then, how as rumblings about Earhart continued to grow into the mid-1970s, to be repeated in quiet circles on Capitol Hill, the case of Amelia Earhart's 1937 disappearance grew to casually be referred to as, "FDR's Watergate."
  

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In a 1999 interview with Bill Prymak, the founding president of the Amelia Earhart Society of Researchers, he referenced an AES newsletter that described the war-time account of one James Golden, (shown above) that surfaced in 1978. Golden had served in the Pacific during World War Two and later ended up working for the U.S. justice department.
 
James Golden had learned of Amelia Earhart's and her navigator, Fred Noonan's post-loss survival under Japan's stewardship after they were picked up in the Marshall Islands--and were first taken to Jaluit--then on to Maloelap--and then on to Kwajalein there. He did not know what became of them after that, (he suspected they died while in Japan's custody) but his information came from a classified report he described--that was assembled after the U.S. occupied the Marshall Islands in 1944, then sent by a Marine division to U.S. Naval Intelligence. Golden felt that FDR, who was known for his proclivity for secrecy, would surely have been made aware of it, and there is little doubt he was correct.
 
James Golden later cited how back in May of 1938, when Henry P. Morgenthau Jr. was forwarded the query letter by Eleanor Roosevelt that asked if the idea of conducting more searches for Amelia Earhart was possible for the White House to consider, the request was denied based on this and other information the White House had--that led it to determine more search efforts were not practical at the time.
 
Recall in 1938, the advent of the Sino-Japanese War--a war the U.S. was newly (and secretly) supporting China's fight against Japan with its Flying Tigers effort, left FDR's hands tied when it came to further challenging Japan about Earhart. As well, beyond FDR appearing to firmly adhere to isolationism, the U.S. military was not yet ready for war and therefore not about to provoke Japan.
 
According to Henry P. Morgenthau Jr.'s response to Malvina Scheider, neither he nor the president had disclosed the post-loss Earhart information they shared to the First Lady prior to her May of 1938 query. As noted, he did however, mention to her that he was willing to discuss the matter with Mrs. Roosevelt later if she wanted to hear the, "not very nice story" the White House claimed to know about what really happened to her friend, Amelia, after she was declared missing. [This is all documented and part of the public record of Amelia Earhart's world flight ending.]
 

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Above, friends Eleanor Roosevelt and Amelia Earhart. Below,
the post-World War Two only Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's 1965
photo image is digitally combined with her former self above.
 
 

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Continued from above: To rebuff suspicion from within its own inner circle, via Morgenthau and Gibbons, the White House claimed it held 'evidence' that 'it was all over' as far as any further hope in finding Amelia Earhart was concerned. Yet, that simply wasn't true. The executive branch had only pieced together intelligence reports it was calling 'evidence.'
 
In the meantime, any suggestion that the duo might still be alive in Japan's custody was all-but eliminated within the executive branch constituency at that time, even though it is a sure bet FDR himself still considered it in the realm of possibilities, if he didn't outright know such a thing.
 
Here, consider the following archived sentence from J. Edgar Hoover's World War Two FBI file on Amelia Earhart. Within it, a U.S. soldier recovering at Walter Reed Hospital who had escaped from being held as a Japanese POW, relayed to an FBI agent how in 1944, while being held captive and having heard that Amelia Earhart remained in Japan's custody, he was told the following by a Japanese officer who he had asked about Amelia: "Don't worry about her well being, she is perfectly alright." (See the file excerpt directly below and more details about J. Edgar Hoover's interest further down.) This was just one among several accounts the FBI collected that described Amelia Earhart's ongoing war-time existence under Japan's stewardship, and it is at least probable that not only J. Edgar Hoover, who personally commandeered the Earhart file, but FDR as well was privy to them. Note the standard 'blackout' of the soldier's name and the FBI agent's name:

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History revealed that FDR kept some of his inner circle at arm's length from what he actually knew much of the time. With the Earhart case it was best, he felt, and surely Morgenthau agreed with him, to impress upon most executive branch constituents that the dark inner knowledge [or White House theory, really...] of Amelia Earhart's demise was to remain hidden from the public. The translation of this left the public to assume Earhart and Noonan simply missed Howland Island and ended up perishing in the vast Pacific Ocean.
 
That worked for awhile, and Earhart and Noonan were both declared 'dead in absentia' by the time 1939 arrived. Except after the Pearl Harbor attack, from different sources, soldiers stationed in the Pacific began hearing that Earhart and Noonan had survived a Marshall Islands ditching and ended up in Japan's custody or stewardship in one way or another. Then after the war ended, many individuals from the region Earhart went missing in came forward with first or second hand accounts. [Note: FDR died a few months before the war ended leaving him to take what he knew to his grave.] The accounts commonly stated that Earhart and Noonan, even if they had been fired upon, did manage to ditch their plane on a reef in the lower Marshalls where days later, as the Marco Polo Bridge incident occurred that triggered the start of the Sino-Japanese War, the two were picked-up by Japan's Imperial Navy.
 
This version of Amelia Earhart's world flight ending continues to be repeated in the Marshall Islands by its general population and government officials today.  
 
Below left is a 1987 '50th anniversary' commemorative stamp issued by the Republic of the Marshall Islands, depicting Earhart and Noonan's July of 1937 rescue by Japan's Imperial Navy and the recovery of Amelia's Lockheed Electra. Below right is a 2002 Associate Press clipping featuring the expressed opinion of Alfred Capelle, the U.N. Ambassador to the Marshall Islands.           

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