A new theory that Amelia Earhart survived a crash landing in the Pacific Ocean 80 years ago may have just been sunk.
A History Channel documentary that aired Sunday suggested that Earhart may have been alive in July of 1937, relying on an old photograph as key evidence. The photo appears to show Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan on a dock, and the documentary suggests Earhart may have been detained by the Japanese after a crash-landing.
However, a Japanese military history buff wrote in a blog post Tuesday that the photo in question was taken in 1935, two years before Earhart disappeared. In his post, the blogger includes the page from a photo book that features the image.
The History Channel said Tuesday that its investigators are “exploring the latest developments.”
Photo suggests Amelia Earhart may’ve survived crash-landing
“Ultimately, historical accuracy is most important to us and our viewers,” it said in a statement.
The black-and-white photo shows a group of people standing on a dock on Jaluit Atoll in the Marshall Islands. One of the people seems to be a slim woman, but she has her back to the camera.
In the documentary, the photo is subjected to a thorough examination, such as facial recognition and body measurements. Experts featured on the show claim the subjects are likely Earhart and Noonan.
A retired federal agent said he discovered the image in 2012 in the National Archives in Maryland. The blogger said he found the same image digitized in Japan’s National Diet Library.
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The disappearance of Earhart and Noonan on July 2, 1937, in the Western Pacific Ocean during her historic attempt at a round-the-world flight continues to be the subject of ongoing debate.
Many believe Earhart ran out of gas and crashed into deep ocean waters northwest of Howland Island in the South Pacific.
With News Wire Services
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