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What if nearly everybody is wrong about Carl Webb being the Somerton Man?

“The man’s identification will ultimately be determined by the coroner.

He could be any one of Carl’s siblings.

Carl is the only one with no documented death.

“My concern is that we may never be able to categorically say that we know this man’s identity.” 

Quotes taken from Colleen Fitzpatrick and Xanthe Mallet, both forensic anthropologists.

Carl’s siblings being Russell, Freda, Gladys, Doris and Roy – all eliminated either by their sex or having a documented date of death.

However …

Close to 200,000 children have been documented as being adopted since the first Australian legislation facilitating adoption was enacted in 1896. ( 2012) – undocumented adoptions are an unknown factor.

“I was an accidental conception, and they didn’t have the means to keep me, so I was adopted out.”

Rachel Egan, the daughter of the Robin Thomson and Roma Egan.


Dr Colleen Fitzpatrick is absolutely certain Carl Webb is the Somerton Man, as is Professor Derek Abbott and practically everyone who reads the newspapers, contributes to forums or watched TV as the mystery unfolded   ..

But to be that sure they would have to know whether Richard August Webb and his wife Eliza Amelia hadn’t done what Robin Thomson and Roma Egan did with their daughter – had an accidental conception, a son, and adopted him out.

Nobody knows.

So nobody can be certain.

“It could be any one of Carl’s siblings.”

Header pic is of a group of orphans at The Melbourne Orphanage, a facility that dated back to the 1850’s

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. I agree with the discussion in your post. In my experience, to give over a child “officially” up till recently meant that child was lost to you forever. The usual practice in those times was to just have a relative or friend take parental type care of the child knowing that one day the child might return to your family. The majority of cases were unofficial placement.

    May 25, 2023
  2. John Sanders #

    A bit like what happened in both the Thomson families you reckon Peteb?
    For the same case scenario to work for the Webbs, the give away child would almost have to have come after Carl or alternately be his twin. Now there’s a thought, might explain some doubts re his nomination for Somerton Man.

    May 25, 2023
    • Carl was such a mixed up individual he may have jumped off a cliff and into the ocean or gone bush and died in a cave, hence no death documentation. And adoption wasn’t that uncommon back in the day – my family has had first hand experience in dealing with unwanted children and given the number of abortions that take place these days, interpreting that number into adoptions when abortion wasn’t such an easy option gives an idea of the number of children placed in those orphanages.

      May 25, 2023
  3. Clive #

    Do we know where Robin was actually born? Hospital? Town? His birthdate/location is another mystery it would seem.

    May 29, 2023

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