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Several years ago, Ms. Egan had her DNA analyzed …

Several years ago, Ms. Egan had her DNA analyzed, and links were found to people in the United States (including relatives of Thomas Jefferson). More recently, links were also found to the grandparents of the man that Jo Thomson eventually married.” (Prosper Thomson)

NYT 21 May 2021.


We almost know these words by heart, particularly those in the Abbott family who might be wishing it all went away. Nevertheless, given the years the Professor and his wife Rachel have spent publicly declaring she and their children may be related to the Somerton Man it’s only natural that we continue his quest, though in a completely different direction now that Dr. Colleen Fitzpatrick has upset the Abbott applecart.

Rachel and Derek at the gravesite.

Jessica (Jo) Harkness became pregnant in late 1946. She was also known to be in Mentone and staying at her parent’s home in October 1946, whether for a visit or something more permanent isn’t known so it’s conceivable she fell pregnant whilst there and not prior to leaving Sydney.

Prosper Thomson moved from Blacktown in NSW to Melbourne in 1936 where he lived in Mentone with his wife Queenie. Within weeks of Jessica finding she was pregnant, Thomson left his wife and accompanied her to Adelaide where they both settled as man and wife with Jessica passing herself off as a Thomson and where she gave birth to a son, Robin, future father of Rachel, the lady whose DNA links were ‘found to the grandparents of the man Jo Thomson eventually married.

A man doesn’t have to be Einstein.


7 Comments Post a comment
  1. Siegfried Haussner #

    Sorry if I’m late to the party, but in what way is this surprising to anyone (except, it would seem, The Prof.)?
    I’m not that hot on genealogy, but doesn’t it just seem that the story of Nurse Harkness is exactly what it says on the tin? Prosper knocked her up, they eloped.
    But the only thing that falls apart here is that Keane was the actual daddy. He might have wanted to say hello to either of the ‘Thomsons’ for any reason under the sun, including that he thought the wee bairn might be the fruit of his very loins.

    It’s still all to play for in Somerton Land.

    May 27, 2022
  2. Keane is the actual daddy you say, based on his ears or teeth? And it’s splendid to see you back, Siggers, been far to long.

    May 27, 2022
    • Siegfried Haussner #

      Had to lie low for a while, old chap.

      I think what I’m saying is: Abbott’s DNA tidbit suggests that Prosper is the father, right?
      At least superficially. But when you put that together with the circumstantial evidence of Mentone concurrency and a joint and sharpish exit… well, it’s quite compelling.

      But hang on: there’s no denying that Robin had some characteristics that seemed to be shared with Keane.

      All a bit million-to-one.

      Except if Keane and Prosper are related.

      May 28, 2022
      • Nik #

        Very new to the whole SM party, but I had the same thought — that Keane and Prosper are related. My theory (straight from a spy soap-opera) that Keane is Prosper’s brother, who faked his death in Europe, traveled back with HC Reynold’s stolen card, had an affair with Jo (both spies, of course) and is the father of her son. She went to his brother for assistance, he gracefully took her as his wife etc. Far-fetched, I know.

        June 29, 2022
  3. Michele #

    Well DNA doesn’t lie, the only thing that did throw me off is the comparisons between the man on the beach and Robin and the odds of those physical characteristics like the ears and the teeth. I never found the ballet thing anything special with Rachel because her father Robin was a ballet dancer. A man can have strong calves for other reasons. Plus there is no way of knowing if his surname was Keane.

    May 28, 2022
  4. Siegfried Haussner #

    Is it possible that Prosper whisked Nurse Jo away because she had been mistreated by someone who was related to him? Something he might have witnessed.

    An idiot (half?-) brother. A dirty uncle. That sort of thing? Are there any odd looking elisions in the Thomson family tree?

    May 29, 2022
    • Can of worms, Siegfried, fingers dipped in at own peril. Perhaps mother Roma passed the Thomson DNA to daughter Rachel. Slippery stuff this DNA speculation … untidy.

      May 29, 2022

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