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The Somerton Man Case. The body of a man found on an Australian beach close to a major Atomic Testing ground, he was probably poisoned, a copy of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and an unbroken Code page found and associated to him. Set against a Cold War background in 1948, was this man a spy? We think so and this blog focuses on the evidence that was left behind and in some cases missed, the Code page, Dry Cleaning numbers, A Poem and a small, torn piece of paper bearing the words TAMAM SHUD.

Sunday, 10 December 2017


Given all of the past work that has been done on comparing the various images and the creation of numerous impressions, it struck me that we hadn't really taken a close look at the 3D render video, produced by Professor Abbot's team at Adelaide University, and the still shots taken from it.

So, here is the result of the work an artist, based in Europe, who put her talent to the test and produced what I believe to be the best artists impression I have seen.

There will be more to follow on this post, there are a number of questions to be answered as followers of this blog will know, there's one comparison that comes to mind.

1. Here's the video of the laser scan process of the bust that was taken by Adelaide University in 2012 and published in 2015 according to the notation on the video YouTube page:

2. This is the end result of the reconstruction of the head of the plaster bust:

The artist's impression is based on this second video. There appears to be no resemblance between the Somerton Man postmortem images and the appearance of this man.

The question is, just who was this man? The comments made by Mr. Lawson in his diary come to mind, '...disposal of the original body'. Is this then the second body inferred by that comment?

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Friday, 24 November 2017


The image above shows a cutting from a wiki, it is headed ICCF which I think stands for 'International Chess Federation". The numbers you see therein represent chess moves, there were many ways that these moves were described but this method was specifically for chess by correspondence and also, most interestingly, Chess played by radio.


In July 1947, the renowned Pakies Club played host to such a game of chess by radio between Australia and the UK.
It gets interesting when you realise that when playing chess in this mode, the whole of the transmission is in morse code. Even more interesting when you look at the code page:

Each of the first 4 lines begins with the letter 'M' in two distinct styles. In the Gringmuth notation/code, the letter M represents the Black and what follows in each line is a potentially a series of chess moves. But, what about the numbers? Where are they? See below, the numbers are in the ICCF code and hidden inside each letter.

Our friend Fedor Nosov a TASS journalist and spy, often played chess and was a frequent visitor to Pakies not to mention of course his 1947 visit to South Australia to talk about, amongst other things, the game of chess.

This fascinating piece of information has come to me via a long-term follower of this blog, Rowan, and many thanks to him not only for this most interesting detail but also more which we will publish in due course. This will hopefully include a very interesting article written by Rowan, just waiting for final permissions.

Before anyone gets overly excited, Rowan pointed out that he first saw information about the Gringmuth Notation in a 1949 article about the Somerton Man and the work done by a number of amateur code breakers at that time. They did not succeed in cracking the code, but then again, they were not aware of what lay hidden within each letter.

The next step from here is to connect with suitably qualified code/cypher people and see what if anything can be recovered that matches this coding method.

Whilst I have spent a good deal of time examining the page and its content, it has always puzzled me why the code was written the way it is, surely if someone wanted to write in microcode they would have hidden it within a normal letter or a poem as indeed was the case with Verse 70.

This new information now opens up the possibility that the reason why it was a series of letters is that the person who wrote it was recording a series of chess moves the details of which were coming over the radio and in morse code:

Those who have had experience at using morse code would know that when receiving a message you didn't write down the dots and dashes, you translated them on the fly into letters or numbers.

Thursday, 23 November 2017


Talking with Clive and Pete Bowes recently about a number of topics and a comment came from  Pete regarding the torn piece, in particular about when it was found. Pete has since done a very interesting post on the topic and it certainly worth a read on his blog here..

Back to this post, there does seem to be some murkiness surrounding just when the slip was found, we have Cleland saying he found it first in April 49 but nothing in the press around that month well at least as far as I have searched, it was late June before the news was really out there.

But, and it's a big but, on 23rd July 1949, there was an article in the Advertiser, it discussed the whole case and made specific mention of the torn piece and it says that when he was found on December 1st 1948..'  all he had in his pockets was a train ticket, a bus ticket and a neatly trimmed piece of paper with the printed words TAMAM SHUD. Now this of course could be a journalistic error but what a strange mistake to make, read on...

TODAY'S PICTURE of the book "Omar Khayyam" (top) found last November in the back seat of a car which had been left parked in Jetty road, Glenelg. The last line in the book has been torn out. BELOW—The fragment of paper found in the clothing of the Somerton victim which may have been torn from the book.

A copy of the "Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam" with a torn page which has been sought by police throughout Australia in the hope that it might provide the missing clue to the identity of the mystery Somerton body, has been found in Adelaide.

Last night an Adelaide businessman read of the search in "The News" and recalled that in November he had found a copy of the book which had been thrown on the back seat of his car while it was parked in Jetty road, Glenelg. The book, the last page of which is torn, has been handed to police. If scientific tests, to be con-ducted next week, show the scrap of paper found on the dead man's clothing had been taken from the book, police will have brought off a million-to-one chance. 

On December 1, when the body of the mystery man was found on Somerton beach, police discovered that the name tags had been cut from the clothing and all he had in his pockets was a train ticket, a bus ticket, and a neatly trimmed piece of paper with the printed words "Taman Shud." Investigators found that these words had been used by Omar Khayyam at the end of his verses and meant "the end" or "the finish." A study of the printing indicated that the words might have been torn from a copy of Fitzgerald's translation of Omar Khayyam. In the belief that if the book could be found it might show the movements of the man before his death, police through-out Australia have been looking for it. The finder of the book today handed it to Det.-Sgt. R. L. Leane. On the last page the words "Taman Shud" had been torn out. On the back of the book are several telephone numbers and a series of capital letters, written in pencil, the meaning of which have not yet been deciphered. As the scrap of paper found on the dead man had been trimmed, police were unable to identify the book merely by fitting it into the torn page. Proof will now rest with tests on the paper and the print.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017




For all interested, Rowan Holmes is giving a short presentation about his study of the Somerton Man Case.

In a message from Rowan, he makes it clear that this presentation has been considerably compressed to meet the tight time schedules of the day. As a consequence, he would like people to know that the presentation is more for the new follower of the SM story rather than those who have already amassed knowledge of the case.

Here are the details:


The time slot for this presentation is between 3.30 p.m. and 4.30 p.m. Wednesday 23rd November 2017


ROOM Number: CB05B.04.038

Here's a map of the campus for those attending

We wish Rowan well in his continued study of the case and look forward to hearing more from him.

Sunday, 19 November 2017


The Unkown Man book by ex-Detective Sergeant Gerry Feltus has now been released as an eBook, it can be accessed for direct reading or download at the following locations:

Amazon US:

Amazon Aus:

Booktopia –

Kobo –

iTunes AU –

If you haven't already bought a copy, it is seriously recommended, it's factual because it's been well written by a seasoned 'old style copper' who well deserves the respect and admiration of us all. Gerry first published his book in 2010 and since then he has sold copies not only in Australia but also 23 countries around the world. That is one huge achievement, I understand from Gerry that he'll be taking things a little easier for a while, I wish you well GF!

Sunday, 12 November 2017



A Most interesting Paper...

Recently I posted on the issue of the code page and the fact that Pakies Club had, in 1948, organised and hosted an international Chess tournament to be played on the radio. In those days they used morse code for the purpose of transmitting various moves.

The information about the Pakies Chess game came from Rowan Holmes, a quick-witted, intelligent and enthusiastic follower of all things Somerton Man and in fact many of those things that surround the case. Whilst I knew of the association with some high profile chess players, Fedor Nosov comes to mind, it was the first time I personally had heard mention of the use of radio and ipso facto, morse code.

It was Clive who found a reference to a recently published and very interesting paper on the Somerton Man, and I gratefully and yet again acknowledge Clive's invaluable input.

Clive found the paper on the website it had been written by Rowan. In it he demonstrated his extensive knowledge on the subject, he tested some of the notions in the field and put forward a number of ideas for consideration.

I contacted Rowan and we have had a number of online discussions on various topics within the range of the SM case and sometimes extending out from there.

My view is that Rowan is someone who can add a great deal to the whole SM conversation, he has an open mind and brings a fresh and engaging approach to the table.

I heartily recommend that you read Rowan's paper:

I will mention that in his paper he spoke about the use of Microcode and subsequently it became a topic of one of our conversations. I put forward some information that Rowan was not aware of at the time of his writing and he very kindly acknowledged certain aspects, here's his comment:

I have been asked to add some clarificatory remarks to my paper by Gordon Cramer, administrator of the 'Tamám Shud' blog mentioned in the text, and I am more than happy to do so.

In the first place Mr Cramer asks me to point out that his own background is that of a police detective rather than an intelligence worker.

Secondly, I would like to correct a possible misapprehension regarding the potential presence of micro-writing within the letters of the still-unsolved code found in the back cover of the Rubáiyát associated with the dead man. On p. 154 of my article I stated my opinion that claims about the existence of this writing “seem hard to sustain” given their provenance in a heavily enlarged photograph of ink tracings of the code. The tracings were derived from inscription marks made on the back page of the book as the original code passage was written above it on a page which was then torn out of the book and has never been recovered.

Mr Cramer has discussed his views with me and I think it only fair to pass them on to the audience. The particular technique of micro-writing writing which he feels was being used, the 'Ink H' method, was a known component of the repertoire of the WWII British covert operation, the Special Operations Executive (SOE). Details of this method of micro-writing can be found in the official operations manual of the SOE, recently released by the Imperial War Museum. Mr Cramer believes that the special physical properties of this method would survive the technical limitations I have mentioned, and yield themselves to analysis of the sort that he has done.

The reader will already have gathered that I respect the research of Mr Cramer in a general sense; for instance, I spend some time discussing his identification of 'Somerton Man' as Pavel Fedosimov, which my own research suggests is at least one of the best possibilities, and which should be made the subject of further research by those unfortunates taking an interest in this very strange case. I do not have the expertise to evaluate the specific claims of micro-writing, and I take note of various objections made by various parties, but at the same time it should be said that it would at least be extremely difficult to prove that there is not micro-writing present in the code and possibly in other material connected to the case, as suggested by Mr Cramer. It is still an open question which awaits further research. 

Welcome aboard Mr. Holmes, I am sure that your contributions will be very welcome, I am sure that Clive and  Pete Bowes over at the TomsByTwo blog will join me in acknowledging your work and in stating that we all look forward to hearing more from you.

Tuesday, 7 November 2017




For those who enjoy the stories of the Bohemian set in Sydney, a book, 15 years in the writing was launched on November 2nd in Melbourne.

A story of two political idealist families, the book is a mine of information about the years between the wars with the use of ASIO files, talk of spies, Pakies and what book about idealists would be complete without Bob Wake?

My copy's been ordered and delighted to see that 'Clive Knows Best' :)

Read on here...

Sunday, 29 October 2017



This new information is from the work of Clive, it has involved a great deal of research and effort for which he is congratulated and thanked.

We have already published accounts of how the same name turns up at the IAEA meetings through until the early 1960s as an advisor on Nuclear Energy matters. However, no photographs have been found to prove that it is the same man.

A note for followers, we have Fedosimov's date of birth as being 1904.


In this latest information set we have found that another similar name exists, FEDOSOV who was also a Russian Diplomat at the relative times.

Searches have found that there was no record of Vera, Pavel's wife, until after 1948.

1949, P. Fdosimov is documented as a second secretary for the USSR at the UN in September 1949, no records other than that and no photographs found. Unusual that a man with Fedosimov's known involvement with espionage against the US would have been allowed back into the coop. Whether that was because of the protective attitude of the US towards the top-secret nature of Venona is, of course, a possible contributing factor.

We do have a photograph of the Russian Representative to the UN in September 1949, Andrey Vyshinsky, this was a man of great influence within the Communist Party at the time and led Stalin's Purges:

Read more on Vishinsky here. And here's a link to the UN photo archives... You can register for access to the archives and get High-Resolution images, they also have a film archive but the procedures are a little more complex.

1956, P. Fedosimov is recorded as being a 1st Secretary at the USSR Embassy in Tripoli. Tenure appears to be March to August 1956. No photographs nor other records found.

1957, P.Fedosimov is recorded as the 1st Secretary at the USSR Embassy in Mexico, with the commencement date of April 1957. On this occasion, the man is accompanied by Vera, his wife. Once again no photographs nor other records found.

Without photographic evidence we cannot, therefore, confirm that this is the same man, he is for the most part 'invisible' and that is possibly deliberately so.

The information above came from the CIA archives and is readily available, google:
"Checklist of Soviet Officials Abroad"

We have more to publish on Fedosimov in the coming week.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017


A private moment for Bob Wake and family, his good lady wife and two sons, one of whom was Val Wake, an author but more on Val in a later post.

In August 2016, in this blog, here, you can read how Bob Wake had been amongst the founding Directors of the newly formed ASIO. In more recent times more has been written about the man by others on the Cipher Mysteries blog. Whilst I found that information interesting, in my view and with great respect, so much more could have been included that would have provided a fuller and more accurate description of this man and his contributions to the War effort, specifically the field of intelligence.

But how does the Colonel link to the Somerton Man case?


In March 1942, it was Bob Wake in his role as deputy DMI, who made a tour of the top end and produced a report that shook more than the odd politician. That report, which today would have been regarded as racist in the extreme, made a number of recommendations amongst which was the formation of a rapid deployment force which went on to become the North Australia Observer Unit, The Nackeroos. Pete Bowes in his blog has often covered aspects of this unit's history as it pertains to Alf Boxall. That's one albeit tenuous link.

But it is this next link that should arouse more interest on followers of the SM case. Around about the same time as his top end trip, Bob was involved in the arrest and internment of one Dr. Arthur John 'Jappy' Ross, and the place of his internment? Loveday, South Australia.



A good title for a book as indeed it was, you can find out more about the book and the author here on the Facebook page. It deals with the 1938 disappearance of a public servant, the social secretary to the wife of the then Premier of Queensland.

A relatively recent and informative article in the Courier Mail is online, if I link to it it will ask you to subscribe, better to google it using the search term: Marjorie Norval book.

There isn't time nor space for me to write the full account which is more than adequately covered by Ken Blanch within his book. What I will say is that the case of Marjorie Norval is one that contains political and military intrique at the highest levels of the then Queensland and Federal Governments.
Within its pages, you will read of how one witness to the disappearance of Marjorie Norval was arrested and interned right at the time when he was needed to give evidence in the case. The man who ordered the internment was Lieutenant Colonel Bob Wake.

Well planned and executed was it a conspiracy? A cover-up? Who knows but Marjorie's body has not been found to this day.

What intrigued me most were the mechanisms, the apparent use of the political, legal and military apparatus which swung into action following Marjorie's disappearance and the later suicide of a senior Government Minister associated with the case.

For my friend, JS, when you see a stone, turn it over, look underneath it, over it from every direction and in every light, study it carefully and don't be tempted to hurry on to the next lead until the one in hand has been thoroughly examined and documented. I learnt that from two very experienced Detectives with whom, many years ago, I had the privilege of working. You see JS, I was just your normal copper, trained as such with an emphasis on observation. Was I trained in investigation techniques? Yes. Was I in CID? Yes. Did I arrest people for various crimes from petty theft to murder? Yes. Was I involved in a number of investigations? Yes. Do I use my real name? Yes.

As far as AFIO is concerned, you'll read all you need on every page of this blog, it's an organisation which anyone can join provided they complete the application forms and meet the approval of the organisation. Many members I understand are Professors and academics, ex-intelligence officers and yes ex-police officers. Even you could join. They have a regular newsletter filled with current and historical information which might otherwise be difficult to find. They also have a website.

So, there's mine JS, where's yours? And why not Milongal's?

With regards to the Note on the top of the pages, it's a matter of respect for our indigenous peoples, nothing more nor less, I'm surprised you asked that.

Once a copper always a copper is a very true adage, it gets in the blood, ask any ex-copper they'll tell you the same.

Monday, 23 October 2017



Situated in the Riverland of South Australia, Loveday Camp was home to internees and POWs. during and after WW2.

Civilians of Japanese, German and Italian origin and who lived in Australia were held there as well as German Civilians who were arrested in Iran and others who were transferred from Tatura, more detail on that in earlier posts on Internment camps and their association with the Somerton Man case.

In what can only be described as a stunning piece of information, when Clive last visited Mr. Paul Lawson just over a week ago and after had asked him a series of questions, Paul said 'Now I have a question for you, About the micro-writing, I want this put right, it was Loveday and not the CIB who found/did it (the miniature writing.)'

Clive stresses that Paul's statement was entirely spontaneous and he was not asked or prompted in any way.
Major Woolrych of SOE, an example of an agents
micro written flimsy.

In that one sentence, the last remaining man who was deeply involved in the case has confirmed that micro writing was found. Given its significance, Clive and I discussed the matter at length and Clive even contacted Paul again and had his statement re-affirmed and also confirmed that it was Loveday camp and not a person of that name.(For the record, there was a well known British intelligence operative in Singapore and Malaysia during WW2 by the name of John Loveday)

We have consistently shown on this blog that the use of microcode hidden in normal writing was described in an SOE manual dated 1943, that there are examples of micro-writing in the British Military Intelligence Museum, we have shown it in the Hay Banknotes, we have shown it in the code page and in Jestyn's verse 70, it has been shown to be present in the letter Q and the letter T and others of the code page as well as in the so-called 'crossed lines' and 'crossed out' line, we have even replicated the exact way in which it was done.

We now have three people directly associated with the case that have confirmed the presence of micro-writing, those who follow this blog will recall that Detective Brown in an interview with Professor Abbott stated that Jestyn's phone number was found on the back of the book and it had been written in 'tiny handwriting', Gerry Feltus saying 'I see what you see but I have no explanation for thee..' and now Paul Lawson's statement.

The presence of microcode has been well and truly proven. It is an established fact.

Where to from here? The investigations by this blog and by others can now focus clearly on Loveday camp and the internees who were held there. My instincts tell me that there are two good places to start, the Red Book of internee interrogations of those German civilians captured in Iran and those Internees who were transferred from Tatura to Loveday.

This is a real, evidence-based challenge for you my friend. Are you up to it?

Sunday, 22 October 2017



This is an advisory post, I have been fortunate in that I have been given a 1941 W & T ROK book to examine. It was found by a personal friend and I have undertaken to take a close look and then scan the entire book. It has the name 'Williamson' handwritten on a flyleaf of the book.

If you have an interest in a copy, please let me know via the feedback message function on this blog.

Thanks, Ali!

More posts coming this week, stay tuned :)

Wednesday, 18 October 2017



OCTOBER 17th 2017

Two days ago, Clive had another meeting with Paul Lawson. As usual, Clive was prepared with a series of questions that we had brought together with each seeking clarification on previous matters raised or hopefully, adding more in the way of new information. Clive was successful on both counts as you will read.


Clive asked Paul what he recalled about the SM body and the response was:

1. There were no marks of a ring or a watch left on the body. In case there was any doubt, we can mark those issues as being dealt with.

2. There were no signs of vaccination or other scars on the arms. This conflicts with the records of the autopsy where a scar was described inside the elbow area of the left arm and something akin to a vaccination mark on the upper left arm. Paul made no mention of the scratches between the fingers.

3. There was no 'mole' near to the right of the mouth. It has been suggested by Professor Abbott that there was a mole above the right corner of the mouth, this looks now to be more likely to have been blood spattering from the autopsy.

4. Whilst Paul did not measure the body he believed that when he saw it, the man's height was about 6 feet. Sadly we can't be more specific than this, does it mean 6' 1" or 5' 11" ? It is therefore still open to question.


Paul made some interesting comments regarding Professor Cleland, specifically, he spoke about the requests that he, Paul, had received just a day or so prior to the burial of SM. Paul confirmed that he had been asked to take a cast of both the skull and the hands. There was insufficient time to do the additional work as the Police had intervened saying that the man was to be buried the next day; as it happens, it was a further 6 days before the burial took place.

The above confirms the account already published by the Adelaide University.

Paul emphasised that the man did not just have large hands, they were extremely large.


In an earlier interview, Paul had confirmed that he had used the photographs to complete the bust as the face of the body was dissimilar to that shown on those Police photographs.

In this latest interview, he went further and was emphatic that there were quite a number of photographs including some taken immediately after the man's death was discovered and before the autopsy. This could mean that photographs were taken at the beach or at the mortuary, we will seek further clarification on that point. As it stands, there is a likelihood that more photographs of SM could still be in existence. It would also explain the difference between the facial appearance of the bust and both the post-autopsy and pre-burial images. We first pointed this out some  3 years ago with comparisons being shown.

With this information, it seems only natural to post the comparison image between the Bust and Fedosimov with apologies for the colouring of the bust:

The image to the left is a colourised version of the photograph of the bust...

We have one more post to come in relation to this latest interview, it promises to add a significant and hitherto unknown fact and a name to the case.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017



The Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney is where Jestyn trained as a nurse, and although the place was getting on in years in 1945, it was in the process of being renovated and a new 'nurses home' was planned.

It did have some attractive aspects though, not the least of which were the gardens not that dissimilar to the one shown above.

Why the interest in the garden? Simple, according to Paul Lawson, that is where Alf Boxall and Jestyn used to meet up, that's in addition to the Clifton Gardens Hotel of course.

Followers will recall that in an earlier post,  Mr Lawson told of how Alf used to pass information to Jestyn on Allied ship movements.

One wonders whether that information was passed across in a coded poem or even written on the back page of an innocuous book of poetry whilst walking together in the gardens of the hospital where Jestyn worked.

Thanks once again to Clive for his great work on the interviews with Paul, we now have even more information that we can share. There will be more posts with some extraordinarily interesting details shortly.

Sunday, 15 October 2017



The sketch above shows a row of huts, but in particular, we are looking at Hut 10 at Tatura.

Let me explain, followers will have read through the PDF's of Senator Cavanagh's speech to the Senate, in them, he talks of matters that were related to the Somerton Man case. In one instance he refers directly to a man with the initials 'NL'.

NL it appears, put forward a credible explanation for the code. But who was NL?

Clive has been his usual thorough self and has found a possible fit, a man who, coincidentally, was an internee and who, for a short while at least, was a resident in hut 10 at Tatura camp.

This man was to later change his name yet hold on to his initials, shades of T Keane perhaps?

The man in question is a NORBERT LEICHT, a former internee who changed his name to Norman Lester. He returned to the UK in later years and became a British citizen.

Is it possible that this man knew enough about the code used in the Hay Banknotes to put forward a solution to the SM code?

Isn't it interesting how the Internment camp links turn up? 

To be fair, of course, we do not know for sure that the initials NL belonged to the same man.

Thursday, 12 October 2017




Amongst the contents of the pockets of the Somerton man when found was a single coin, the humble 'tanner', sixpence to those that no better and a silver coin for those who think a little laterally.

The question being asked here is simply this:

Was the sixpence that was found, the only money the man had left in his possession or was it a symbolic gesture? If you are familiar with the work of Virgil, the silver coin, silver because of its purity, was the cost of the ferry across from this life to the next, the journey across the River Styx.

Charon, the ferryman of Hades, had his fee for the task, a single silver coin. According to legend, the silver coin was to be placed beneath the tongue of the departed soul but a pocket? Maybe.

Is it possible that amongst the Academic Royalty that deigns to grace this blog, (anonymously of course), and others with their presence, could somehow have missed this prize piece of information?  Let's not prejudge them, it is highly likely that they would simply have had the thought cross their complex and superior minds but immediately dismissed it because it was so obviously outside the 'broad canon' of what is and isn't acceptable in the SM case, at least that, I imagine, would be the reason given their track records.

For me, well quite honestly, it was bugging me, why only sixpence? What else did he spend on that day? How much in total? A quick calculation gave me around 3 shillings, and what was left was a humble tanner. There has to be a logical reason albeit abstract. 

What are your thoughts?


Tuesday, 3 October 2017



Above is a photograph of President Eisenhower addressing the UN, 8th December 1953. This was his 'ATOMS FOR PEACE' speech which led to the creation of the IAEA. 

Almost 4 years later, led by this man, Stirling Cole, one-time US Diplomat and UN Official, the IAEA was formed. The first IAEA General Conference was held in October 1957 and was coincidentally formed with diplomats and scientists from 57 Nations.

First IAEA General Conference October 1957

On the Soviet team was a man named Pavel Ivanovich Fedosimov. The same name as the man who has been put forward on this blog as being the most likely candidate for being the Somerton Man.

Much discussion and criticism has ensued since that post but the position remains the same, I still believe that Pavel Fedosimov as pictured below on the right in a comparison image of the Adelaide University's artists impression of the Somerton Man, is, in fact, the Somerton Man.:

But what of the man with the same name who turned up almost 10 years, and for some years later as a diplomat at the IAEA conferences?

Followers would be aware that Clive and I have spent quite some time patiently following up with the IAEA to see if we could get confirmation or otherwise that the Diplomat was the same man as the SM candidate. This would, of course, mean that the suggestion that he was our man was wrong. The only way we could hope to clarify the position was to obtain a photograph of the Diplomat whilst at the IAEA, a positive link would then be established. Without such a photograph, there would be no evidence which in itself would be another kind of evidence.

It has been almost 8 months now and despite a number of emails sent by Clive, we had received nothing in response. Trawling through the IAEA information, we found a new email address and it was from this address that we received the long-awaited response.

Here's the content of the email:

Dear Mr Turner,

You sent a similar request in February. I assume that my colleague sent you the information that I sent her then:

I regret to inform you that after an exhaustive search, I was not able to locate any images of P. Fedosimov. Mr Fedosimov was part of the Permanent Mission of the USSR, and he was one of the alternates for the Governor from the USSR on the Board of Governors. Although he attended several General Conferences, I could not find a photo of him. I am sorry that we could not be of more assistance.

You can trace his attendance of the General Conference by looking at documents in the General Conference Archives on the IAEA website: Otherwise, as previously stated, we have no images of Mr Fedosimov.

Best regards,
Elizabeth Kata

Ms Elizabeth KATA | Archives Assistant |
Archives and Records Management Section | Division of General Services| Department of Management |
International Atomic Energy Agency | Vienna International Centre, PO Box 100, 1400 Vienna, Austria |
Email: or T: (+43-1) 2600-21192

And there we have the result, no images of Pavel Ivanovich Fedosimov were found. 

Considering the fact that the first appointed Director General of the IAEA was an ex-US Diplomat, you would have to think that the structures that he would have put in place including the credentials committee, would have been designed to ensure that not only unwelcome countries were barred but also unwelcome individuals.

The Pavel Ivanovich Fedosimov we have put forward was a KGB Major, he was a known spymaster, he ran amongst others, Harry Gold and perhaps the most well-known of all Atom spies, Klaus Fuchs. The man had orchestrated all of the espionage activities and networks that resulted in the theft of the US's most secret weapons development documents. This was no ordinary spy, this was a man of the highest level in the US during the years 1941 to 1948.

You would have to believe that had this particular man been put forward as a USSR diplomat and representative, Mr Cole would have been well aware of his history. Do you honestly think that such a man would be allowed to be involved in the world governing body, the IAEA?

Would it be possible? In those days there was much wheeling and dealing and whilst it may be possible, it is in my view, highly unlikely.

The bottom line is that there is absolutely no photographic evidence that the diplomat and the spy were one and the same person.

We will continue to search for and examine any relevant photographs from other sources and will update if, as and when such images are found.

With thanks to Clive for his ongoing enthusiasm and superb contributions.


In response to a comment, the following charts may shed some light on the enormity of the espionage tasks facing the Soviets in the US at the relevant time.

First off, the Manhattan Project Orgnisation Chart:

And secondly, a typical organisation chart for a Soviet Espionage cell, the Soviet Controller position was, I believe, a Moscow based role.:

Sunday, 1 October 2017


For some years now I haven't deviated from the position that the Somerton Man code page was initially written using the SOE's INK H technique. I can honestly say that I have examined and re-examined the images many times but each time with the same results.

Found in an SOE Manual from WW2, the Ink H technique was amongst other methods used by intelligence services of all persuasions to conceal clandestine communications.

The method is simple and I have previously posted step by step images of the process. Essentially, larger letters are written out in ink, probably a blue/black colour. These letters could be stand-alone block capitals or cursive writing as in a poem or a standard letter. Think 'code page' and Jestyn's Verse 70 and there are now thought to be other examples.

The next step is to use a sharpened hard pencil, a 5H or 6H in today's standards, and insert micro letters and/or numbers into the shape of the already written letters.

Next, the inked letters with their microcode are written over again in the same blue/black ink. To the naked eye, the pencilled microcode would be hard to see and thus would be missed.

The recipient of the letters or poem etc, knowing the true nature of the communication would immerse the paper containing the writing into a strong bleach solution. This would develop' the hidden code by removing the ink but leaving the pencilled micro-message.

Immediately you will have noticed one small problem and that is once the code has been developed there is nothing to show as the bleach continues to act after the message has been removed, the full message disappears unless of course, you were to take a photograph of each stage of the process.

But, moving on...


Having said that the message eventually disappears, there is something else left behind and that is the indentations left on the paper that was used as a rest for the original set of letters or words.

This post is all about how the microcode was written and how the indentations were left. A separate post will cover off the recovery method.

Indentations were a perennial problem for field agents, it was something they were always aware of and were, in fact, taught ways in which to remove them from pages beneath the one on which secret ink messages had been written. One method is to use a flat iron on the offending pages and another was to use steam. 

In the case of the Somerton Man, however, the indentations remained and that fact was pointed out to me by ex-Detective Sergeant Gerry Feltus, author of the Unkown Man book, Gerry also told me that part of the process was to turn the initial image of the indentations on the code page negative.


In a recent post regarding the Tibor Kaldor letter, Clive mentioned the nature of the paper that TK ad used, it was almost transparent as used to be the standard for airmail letters because of the lightweight yet tough nature of the paper which was referred to as 'Onion Skin' paper. 

Interestingly Yatskov/Yakovlev handed Harry Gold a sheet of onion skin paper containing a list of instructions during their meeting  ( See 'DARK SUN' The making of the Hydrogen Bomb.)

The following images show clearly step by step, just how the INK H method was used on the Somerton Man Code Page and more to the point for this blog post, how the indentations were left behind by the person who wrote them and then how they were discovered

Step 1. The Materials. Lightweight paper, 50gsm. Semi-translucent, white stock paper 120 gsm, 5H Pencil, Charcoal pencil, Fountain pen with blue/black ink. 

Step 2. Insert the white stock paper beneath the translucent paper

Step 3. Using a 5H pencil, the word SECRET is written on the upper, translucent paper and photograph:

Step 4. Remove the translucent paper and rub over the surface of the white paper where it was seated beneath the translucent paper using, in this case, a charcoal pencil:

Step 5. The indentations show up perfectly in white, a photograph is taken. These nor anything like these markings exists on the Somerton Man code page.

Step 6. The photograph is turned negative and the word SECRET now turns to black and quite bold:

Step 7. Next, write in the Letter 'E' in ink on the translucent paper and Insert microcode letters/numbers into the inked space of the letter using a 5H pencil and photograph:

Step 8. Once again, remove the top translucent paper and then rub over the location beneath to reveal the indentations left by the microcode and photograph:

Step 9. Next, the photograph of the 'rubbed' letter 'E' containing microcode is turned negative, the white coloured microcode is turned black and the pencil rubbed area is turned white:

It was these markings that the Police or whichever agency wrote over.

In the next post, we'll look at the method used to recover the microcode from the code page.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017



This waiting business can be a little tedious but very much part of the task of investigation, we are right now are still waiting for further information that may or may not provide some vital links.

In the meantime here is yet another method of 'Clandestine Communications', the concealment of a message in what could be at first glance a totally innocent letter. It actually hides another code which is exactly what was found on the code page, a hidden code within the letters found on the code page. That method was known as 'INK H' which was, as is the Innocent Letter found in a WW2 SOE Manual.

I find the lateral thinking skills of these intelligence agents and the people who developed these various methods to be fascinating, to say the least. There is literally nothing that couldn't be used in Tradecraft of the day.


In the next post, we'll look at the vast array of 'Secret Inks' that is, various liquids that can, were and probably still are used to conceal messages and commonly, instructions.

Saturday, 23 September 2017


Special Operations Executive

Whilst we are waiting for results from a couple of organisations, I thought I would continue with the release of various code and cypher information from a collection I have built over the years. I am doing this as a direct result of the very positive feedback received from the members of our private list and so I thought I would share more of these examples.

In this post we are looking at an excerpt from an SOE manual for field operatives, it shows how a Double Transposition message is created and deciphered, I hope you enjoy the following:

In the coming days we will post an 'Innocent Letter' example plus a fairly comprehensive list of Secret Inks with development techniques. In all I have perhaps 16 different examples that were in active use in WW2 and probably thereafter.

Friday, 22 September 2017



Once he was young and brave and fair,
Free from the strain of guilt and care; His mind was pure, his heart was clean,
His face bore marks of happy mien;
His teacher looked with hopeful pride
Upon the joys that thrift betide;
And often said, "Life well begun,
Assures the laurels will be won."

He grew to manhood tall and fair,
With manly strength and shoulders square;
He stood six feet, and every inch
Was borne to work and not to flinch;
When others fainted by the way,
He did his part without dismay;
With all his mind and all his heart
He ever strove to do his part.

Then came the tempter and he fell Before the vile, seducing spell;
He learned to fetch and feint and lie, Which fitted him to be a spy;
Although oftimes he was dismayed,
From day to day he plied his trade,
But proved a traitor to his cause And wronged the mandates of the laws. 

He shrank from man. His silent mood
Made him but fit for solitude;
He hid his face and breathed a sigh,
When he met others eye to eye;
And when a sound came to his ear He trembled much with deadly fear;
And, as his dubious course he ran, He palled beneath the curse of man...

Sunday, 17 September 2017



This is the second in our series of WW1 and WW2 codes that were in use by British intelligence services, in fact this particular one was used with great effect by Leo Marks of SOE. An example of his work follows the first few paragraphs.


This is how a poem code works. Start with a poem which you have memorized: it needn’t be especially long, nor complete. For example, this fragment from Ulysses will do: “for my purpose holds to sail beyond the sunset, and the baths of all the western stars until I die.” Select five words as a key from this: say, “for”, “sail”, “all”, “stars”, “die.” String them together and then number the letters, starting with “a” as 1, the second “a” as 2, etc.; or if there is no second “a”, then “b” is numbered 2; if no “b” then “c” gets labelled 2, and so on until we have numbered all letters. The result:

Now suppose we want to encrypt the message, “We have run out of cigars, situation desperate.” Incidentally, encoding must not be confused with encrypting—our message, for example, may be encoded, “Nothing left for Mark Twain to do, dammit” (where we hope the person hearing this is clever enough to figure it out). Since there are 18 letters in our poem selection, we write out the message in groups of 18 letters, padding the end with nonsense letters, like this:

Note the first letter from our poem snippet, an “f”; under it is a 6: the second letter is an “o” and under it is a 12. In our (padded, grouped message) the 6th column of letters is “eud”, and under the 12th is “tdk”. It was more or less standard practice to send the encrypted message in groups of five letters, which reduced (but of course did not eliminate) transmission errors. So the first part of our message would be:  eudtd koekc pmwrt.

SOE Poem Code

The 'Slideshare' presentation below is courtesy of Derek Buff, it discusses a Leo Marks Poem, in fact it is the one he gave to an SOE operative, Violet Szabo, you may recall her name, a film was made of her work and her sad passing, CARVE HER NAME WITH PRIDE. It is an excellent presentation and one I hope you will enjoy.

We have a number of upcoming posts in this same vein and all related to various war time codes including the Cold War and agents such as the Somerton Man, Pavel Ivanovich Fedosimov..

Friday, 15 September 2017



It seems to me that there are only two blogs who seriously pursue the Somerton Man case, being this blog and Pete Bowes over at Toms By Two, there is a difference between what we write and what we actively pursue. Pete has always been upfront about his style and content which is meant to be part truth and part fiction and it does make interesting reading. This blog has at its focus just the actual evidence, the pursuit of factual information, the hard evidence that was left behind and still exists. That includes the code page, Alf Boxalls book and various documents and images.

As regular followers of this blog will know, we have for some time been pursuing the case of the man TIBOR KALDOR whose story was discovered by Clive almost 12 months ago. The work has been ongoing and laborious and has yielded some most interesting additional facts that have a bearing on the Somerton Man case. Right at this moment we are awaiting responses from a number of organisations regarding Tibor and his possible links to other known players in the case. It takes time.

My thought is that it would be interesting to examine examples of some of the codes that were in use during WW1 and WW2 as well as perhaps some more recent ones, below is the first of them:


Way back when, I posted some documents that had relatively recently been released by the CIA. Amongst them were some notes about the use of 'Secret Writing' , how to create it and where and how to find it and hide it.

One particular aspect I found fascinating not because it was clever, which it undoubtedly was, but because it referred to micro writing over the top of a stamp, an orange stamp in this case to be precise. The method was to use a red coloured ink to write in miniature across shaded areas of the stamp.

This where the story starts to evolve a little, amongst the items found in the suitcase that was recovered from Adelaide Railway Station was a suitcase and in amongst the many items there were some pre paid airmail letter cards. These letter cards had orange coloured stamps. That was an interesting item but nothing conclusive about it, purely that there were some cards with orange stamps and the CIA many years later released some notes that discussed how they could be used to communicate with little chance of being discovered. Nothing had been found on those cards, they were unused.

That was that until quite recently when I came across a postcard that dated back to 1943. This was one was from Spain in fact and it to bore an orange coloured stamp of General Franco. What was also interesting was that the postcard with its stamp was headed for a destination in Melbourne and its colour was red. I managed to chase down the addressee, James Roberts, he was apparently a labourer at the time.

Nothing wrong with that except that he had never been outside of Australia and there is no sign of the writer: Luis Santasulagna, ever having visited Australia and yet the writing clearly suggests otherwise. You can also see that the censor has been at work which was very common in those times. You might also look at the censored lines, the felt or paint brush used leaves an effect not that dissimilar to that used on the Somerton Man code page. In addition you can see the handwriting and it is quite normal even under magnification, the franking though, well we'll leave that for another time.

Here's the grey scale version:

And now the negative version:

And finally, this version has been turned negative and to grey scale:

Two questions for those interested, if you were involved in espionage where and how would you hide a message in this postcard?

After some chasing around I found another Franco stamp from the same era, in fact the stamps were the same but they bore different colours and different values.

I am posting two of the stamps here because there is something more than a little amiss about the Orange Franco stamp and I thought it might be a good exercise to have the site visitors take a look at them and see if they can spot the differences between what are essentially the same stamp apart from the colour and value issues.

This is the Orange stamp dating back to 1943 and which was affixed to a postcard heading for Melbourne from Spain. The franking, no pun intended, that you see is from two sources, in fact on the postcard there are a total of four. One is the normal circular frank and the others are all censor franking.

Take a good close look at this stamp and bear in mind the CIA suggested method of writing in red ink and in shaded areas across the face of orange or red coloured stamps.
 Now on to the second, control, stamp. It is from the same era and as you can see the colour and values are the only differences, well at least on the face of it they are.

On this stamp look closely at the forehead, there are some other areas worth inspecting but for now, take a good look at the forehead in particular.

To help a little, we also have a side by side, in colour, comparison.

Here's a negative shot of the red stamp, there are some quite distinctive 
markings to be seen here.

 Now here's a negative image of the grey stamp. Again the markings are quite clear

And now here's a side by side comparison of the negative images of both stamps:

Now the differences that you may see could be accounted for by the variations in colour and the way the stamps were printed no doubt in different batches but using the same plates I would have thought.

Now here's some good news, I have been able to track down other examples of this 45 CTS stamp and here it is. This as you can see is unused and quite a lot of detail can be seen.

See if you can spot the differences between these two stamps could be a raised eyebrow and maybe more?

Similar techniques are being used here as were used in the Hay Bank notes.