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The Somerton Man Q & A

(1) Who confirmed Jessica Harkness and Alf Boxall were involved in covert operations in Sydney during WW2?

Paul Lawson.

(2) What was the name of the subscriber of the number found written on the back of the Rubaiyat?

J. Thomson.

(3) Did Prosper Thomson use this number in his classified advertisements?


(4) Did he use any others?


(5) Given the amount of black-market car dealers operating in Adelaide at the time, is it likely a prospective, local client of good reputation would deal with one with a known police record?


(6) Was the vehicle chemist Freeman bought in any way ‘special?’


(7) Was the man seen alive at the bottom of the steps in the evening the same man found dead the next morning?


(8) Is there proof of that, other than the statement given to Detective O’Doherty ten years later?



Strapp’s description of the trousers being worn by the man lying near the steps in the evening

(9) What does this prove?

The body was dressed in plain trousers.

and died

Cover mockup.

(10) Did he die where he was found?


(11) Is there any proof of that?

file pic

file pic

The lividity on his body was inconsistent with the position it was found.

(12) Was the code found on the back of the Rubaiyat an acrostic?


(13) Was the code a steganographic?



(14) Has anybody been able to read the micro-writing beneath the code?


(15) Who?

Detective Brown.

(16) What did he find?

Jessica Thomson’s Moseley Street phone number.

(17) Was there a police cover-up?


(18) Was the evidence contaminated?


bryant and may

A box of Bryant and May matches was added to his possessions

(19) Did PC Moss fail to find the Tamam Shud slip?


(20) Why wasn’t Jessica formally interviewed?

Without charges, the police didn’t have the power to demand she submit to one.

(21) Were there any characteristics on the body that suggested his occupation?




header pic courtesy of the ABC




6 Comments Post a comment
  1. Ellen #

    Where was Hellmuth?

    October 24, 2018
  2. Give me a number, I’ll fit him in somewhere …

    October 26, 2018
  3. Misca #


    Show me the man and I’ll show you the crime.

    Lots of that shite going on all over the world!

    October 28, 2018
  4. I know I’m flogging it, but nobody’s hunted Otis down yet. Even if he isn’t our man, the ballet ladies would like to know where the bubbling, effervescent, boyishly-handsome young dancer disappeared to.

    October 28, 2018
  5. gordon1552 #

    Did you ever look at the pic of the two men in the Adelaide street? The shorter fair haired guy? Have to say it’s not the best quality pic 🙂

    October 28, 2018
    • Bit of a lottery win that would be …

      October 28, 2018

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