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  • Taman Shud

    A feature from todays Telegraph about 10 uncracked codes. First I have heard of this weird case.


    10. Taman Shud. An unidentified male body was found on Somerton Beach in Adelaide, Australia in 1948 wearing a sweater and coat despite the hot day, carrying no identification. There were no clues as to his identity and dental records and fingerprints matched no living person. An autopsy discovered bizarre congestion, blood in the stomach and enlarged organs but no foreign substances. A suitcase found at the train station that may have belonged to the man contained a pair of trousers with a secret hidden pocket, which held a piece of paper torn from a book imprinted with the words “Taman Shud”. The paper was matched to a very rare copy of Omar Khayyam’s ‘The Rubaiyat’ that was found in the backseat of an unlocked vehicle and on the back of the book was scrawled five lines of capital letters that seem to be a code. To this day, the entire case remains one of Australia’s most bizarre mysteries.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nnPql...eature=related

  • #2
    Jason,
    Some time ago I did make mention of the Somerton man on these boards.I live in Adelaide,and quite recently the case was aired in the local paper,'The Advertiser'.I have studied the case,and there are some avenues,if followed ,might yet produce results.One particular mistake when reproducing the code,is to suggest that all of it was written in block capitals.My impression is that the last three letters are in script,signifying that he added his signature at the end of a message.G.A.B.
    I'll email it if you are interested.I go along with the first impressions of the police that the man was a sailor.
    Regards.

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, I remember discussing this interesting case on here, possibly before crash. That occasion was the first I'd heard of it.
      This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

      Stan Reid

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      • #4
        Harry, if you could pm me further information I would appreciate it.

        Comment


        • #5
          I suppose we can start off with what we know:

          The man was an adult Caucasian male who was not Jewish.

          He was alive at or near Somerton Beach on November 30 of 1948 and was dead there December 1, the next day.

          We know many other things of course, like he was neatly dressed and in good physical condition, but those first two are the basics.
          This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

          Stan Reid

          Comment


          • #6
            Moving along to conjecture:

            Could the man have been motioning the couple for help, to which they didn't respond, when they saw him raise his arm on the beach the evening before?

            Could the man have been an athlete, like a wrestler, since he had a muscular build but bore no signs of physical labor, such as callouses?

            Torn paper is sometimes used by spies to confirm identification.

            The improvised sharp instruments remind me of something you'd see in a prison but nothing like a spy would carry.

            The man's money, luggage and clothing indicated that he was above the class of a transient, that is unless they were acquired through thievery.

            The woman's connection to the two men with the two like books is too much to be reasonably put down as coincidence. She gave one book to the known man and her phone number was in the book connected to the unknown deceased man.
            Last edited by sdreid; 02-06-2011, 11:42 PM.
            This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

            Stan Reid

            Comment


            • #7
              Jason,
              If you go through the short you tube videos,I hadn't saw those before so thanks for the information,You will see a photo of the original message.It's the last three letters that appear to me to be a signature.They are joined,the others are not,and the B has an extended finish.It could be significant,as the army officers initials were A B.Alf Boxall.
              Stan,
              The assumption has always been that the dead man wrote the message,but that may not be.One might believe that he would have simply put the pencil back in his pocket through habit,but no writing implement was found.There is no doubt the book was in the possession of the dead man up untill it was thrown into the car,but is there a possibility that there was a third copy of the book which was not disclosed by the nurse and the officer.As you say they figure in it somewhere,and in a way that was not disclosed.
              It was thought that the instruments signified a deck officer,possibly a third officer,but I would include a bosun.
              As to the cause of death,I have a theory on that.He could have been a diabetic,who suffered a 'Hypo"and with no help,lapsed into a coma and died.My wife has twice been in that condition,but luckily I have been present and noticed the symptoms.
              Jason's post has reawakened my interest,so Iwill attempt to put everything down on paper,as I see it.Will take time,there is a lot to say,but I think some of the 'Mystery" can be explained,and a way in which he might be identified.

              Comment


              • #8
                With all the internal bleeding, I wonder if the man could have been poisoned with the anticoagulant warfarin which was an ingredient in rat poison in 1948.
                This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

                Stan Reid

                Comment


                • #9
                  Stan,Jason,
                  I had a phone conversation today with the author of"The unknown man".He is a former state police detective who had some association with investigations at a latter date.I hope to soon receive his book.One thing he told me.It was not a secret pocket.It is what some know as a fob pocket,common at that time,and still in use today in certain makes of trousers.Situated near the waist band,and just to the right of the fly.It was overlooked but not hidden.
                  I'll hold further opinion till I have read the book ,but just this one observation.Why keep those two words?Possibly because he didn't know their meaning,and being curious,just detached and kept that small piece of paper with the idea of learning the meaning when a suitable occassion arose.If I am correct,that might imply that he was not,at the time of detaching the paper,considering suicide.
                  Regards,
                  Harry.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by sdreid View Post
                    With all the internal bleeding, I wonder if the man could have been poisoned with the anticoagulant warfarin which was an ingredient in rat poison in 1948.
                    I think that the poison was suggested as digitalis. Warfarin would have taken a few days to work, and have produced bleeding from the nose and gums.

                    I was fascinated to read that the man had incredibly unusual ears -and was it teeth (I can't remember !) ? Supposedly the woman's son had the same
                    particularities, after photographs..

                    What a shame that we can't judge for ourselves whether the last is true !
                    I'll take that bit with a pinch of salt.

                    The man has a look of my Hungarian friend...
                    http://youtu.be/GcBr3rosvNQ

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                    • #11
                      I believe that pocket is generally called a watch pocket in America and I have some pants that have this compartment and I have a watch to wear in it on rare occasions.

                      Curare has also been mentioned as a possible poison.
                      This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

                      Stan Reid

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A weird aspect of the case for me was the removal of tags from the deceased's clothing, or the removal of most of them anyway. The tie had the nameof Keane written on it i think.

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                        • #13
                          This case is incredibly fascinating.

                          One thing that gave me a shiver, for some reason, was the copy of The Rubaiyat from which the cut-out words came being found by a man in the back of his unlocked car - and another uncut copy found on the same day, by another man in the back of his unlocked car. Curiouser and curiouser!

                          A dead man, an unsolvable code, a mystery woman, a bastard child, a book of poems... It's like a Dan Brown novel. Only - not that badly written.

                          I had to blink at a footnote in the Wikipedia article on the case:

                          The taxidermist who made the plaster cast testified at the inquest that he assumed the Somerton man had been in the habit of wearing high-heeled pointed shoes as both physical traits were found predominantly in women. Police had earlier investigated if he had been a stockman in Queensland based on the same traits.

                          I imagined a bunch of drovers mincing about in stiletto heels, a la Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.

                          Have any of you who were looking into this found/surmised anything?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Earlier this year I purchased a copy of the book,'The unknown man',from the ex detective who wrote it.I also,at his suggestion,emailed my views to him after I had read the book.Although the top toxicologists could find no evidence of poison,the view that he was poisoned still prevails.It is not my view.As to the code written on the page of the Tamun Shud book,it is revealed in the book that the pencilled words had faded considerably,and my suggeston is that it was too old to have any relation to the man's presence at Somerton.I still have the conviction that the man was or had been a sailor.I have put out one or two messages on the internet as to missing sailors from ships off the eastern states of Australian ports during late 1948,but so far no luck.To anyone who may be interested,I believe an exhaustive search through Australian Customs and Immigration authorities,and also British shipping companies and shipping unions might produce a list of missing seamen.Health and age prevents my doing any worthwhile research.The book 'The unknown man'can be puschased from the author.It is written by a person who knew his job,gives valuable information not available from any other source,and is well worth the price of purchase

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                            • #15
                              Thank you, Harry. I'll try to hunt up a copy.

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