Thursday, 12 June 2014

Gould's Five Photos

I found this clipping on a recent search of online archives. It is from the Aberdeen Journal dated 31st March 1937 concerning Commander Rupert T. Gould. We remember Gould as the first person to write the first serious book on the Loch Ness Monster in 1934 and thereafter held sway as the "go to" person on the subject until his death in 1948. 




It seems he was in demand as a guest on radio and public lectures on the subject and the item below advertises an upcoming radio talk. Gould mentions in a letter that he has five photographs of the Loch Ness Monster. The question for me and you is what were these five photographs? Feel free to add your comments!




52 comments:

  1. Interesting! But the way it's phrased he could be referring to photos we know of, rather than unknown ones. Would be unlike Gould I'd have thought not to publish what he had.

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    1. Go on then, guess the five!

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    2. Gray, Wilson, Mountain team, Adams / Lee and a still from an Irvine film?

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    3. It seems we have a concensus on four, but the fifth is open to debate.

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  2. The Gray (11/12/33), the Surgeon (4/1/34), photograph by woman tourist (6/10/34); published in the Scottich Daily Express, the Mountain team (7/13/34 and the Adam's (8/24/34). Source: Roy Mackal's "The Monsters of Loch Ness", chapter 7 Still Photography. Thank You very Much!

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    1. Maybe, maybe. I have never seen that Express picture except as a drawing in Costello's book. Would Gould hold that up as evidence?

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    2. Yes, I think so GB. I would imagine Gould had at least seen the pic, rather than a drawing and somehow had a copy of it. Strange that some books only include a drawing rather than a pic. Could it be they don't have permission from the owner to publish their pics? Also, I’m sure this tourist woman made a few bucks by selling it to the Scottish Daily Express. Roy Mackal categorized it as inconclusive, but saw no “valid reason for rejecting it, and so it remains as supporting the general hypothesis of large animals in the lake” With your superb detective skills and resources, would it be possible to dredge up said copy of the Scottish Daily Express?

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    3. Not so much a matter of detective skills as sending off a cheque to the appropriate library! My local library only starts at 1950, so may be in Glasgow or it is a letter to London. It is a matter of cost, a lot of stuff you see on the Internet is from free archive, but a lot of people stop when they have to open their wallets.

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    4. Seems the comments have diverged off onto other topics - again. My take is that the Wilson, Gray and best Mountain picture are there but I am not sure Gould have accepted the "unorthodox" look of the Adams picture. The rest of the available pictures are at best inconclusive (to me). So I am not sure.

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    5. Yes, how true GB, but at least people are paying attention and giving their opinion on the subject, which shows that there is still a great deal of interest in the LNM be it by believers or skeptics. On the matter of whether Gould would have accepted the five photos as absolute proof of the existence of an unkown creature, if I remember correctly he was a staunch supporter in it’s existence, although he did vacillate as to it’s nature. So, I tend to believe that any photo showing an anomalous “something” would fit in with his belief. Also, those five pics that I mentioned are the only ones fitting within that time frame, unless you can come up with any others. That was the focus of your piece.

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  3. 1) The it could be anything, blurry mess photo; 2) The plastic wood on toy submarine photo; 3) The hay bales under tarpaulin photo; 4) The waves photo; 5) The stick photo.

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    1. At least some of those - dunno what you mean by 4), could be lots, but 3) and 5) I'm guessing are Lachlan Stuart and Cockrell - would be way later than this article, so Gould can't have been referring to them...

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    2. I know Ben, I was just making a point about how every single one of "the classics" is clearly not a photo of a monster.

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    3. "Clearly"? I beg to differ!

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    4. Haha.its Geordie.I recognized his sponsored logic,CLEARLY!!

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  4. 15 minutes from 400 yards? Wow, just imagine that in the age of the mobile phone! We'd have video to surpass anything ever captured before. So strange how Nessie seems to know not to put on such displays now we all carry phones. Psychic beastie!!! :)

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    1. Until recently, phone cameras were pretty poor, The iPhone 3GS took 640 x 480 video, which I think means that the resolution at 400 yards would be less than 1 pixel per foot.

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    2. I don't know what amazing piece of technology you're carrying around in your pocket, but my camera phone certainly wouldn't resolve anything of use at 400 yards. Even a large object would be basically a pixelated blur at that range.

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    3. 15 minutes at 400 yards is not the norm while any picture taken at that range of 1200 feet is not going to be a game changer.

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    4. Never said it would be pin sharp, irrefutable evidence, but it would be clear enough to be extremely interesting. And like I said - far better than the nothingness we currently have in the evidence archives.

      You guys should wipe the lenses on your phones. Seems to me you're not getting anything of value from them. Apart from when Glasgow Boy took that nice sharp photo of the deer in the field on his phone of course.

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    5. As sharp as a pillow, I would say.

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    6. Your deer in field iPhone photo shows that to be a fallacy GB.

      However sharp or soft it was, it would - categorically - show something we could look at and try to analyse. But these videos aren't being made. Strange huh?

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    7. Strong sense of deja vu here, like this blog has seen this topic discussed before. Perhaps you are a latecomer?

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  5. Unfortunately though it's a topic that'll keep coming up. It's the big white elephant in the room in the LNM debate, and try as we might, we're unable to come up with a satisfactory explanation for the lack of decent imagery in this age of widely available portable technology.

    It'll just keep getting brought up in the debate.

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    1. That is a matter of opinion and has been done here. I refer you to previous comments/articles.

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    2. A further point GB is that trying to locate an object in an expanse of water at a distance through the viewfinder of a mobile phone or even a camera can take a frustrating number of seconds longer than expected. It's easy enough picking out larger boats in these situations but something just breaking the surface of the Loch would be a little more of a challenge. I realised this myself when observing floating logs from a distance. Even with the use of binoculars it was a little tricky to locate what I could see with the naked eye, but with a camera or phone it was a lot harder by which time anything of genuine interest could have slipped under the surface.

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    3. Sorry this just smacks of desperation fellas. It's not a subject which has been put to bed, it's just a subject you all want to go away, because like trevorthecat says, it's the elephant in the room. GB took a lovely sharp iPhone photo of a distant deer in a field - whoops! A spectacular own goal.

      Pete's argument falls flat. It's very simple to point an iPhone at a scene an film it. The relatively standard lens length means you don't need to be laser accurate to capture an animal in a scene. Anyone who doubts this should go to a local park and see how easy it is to video dogs 400 yards away and make them stay in the frame. Very simple.

      I think you would do yourselves a favour if you were honest and admitted the lack of images is a very big problem for the monster hypothesis.

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    4. I don't know who you are, but this has been discussed in previous articles and comments. You have not said anything new and so I have nothing more to add.

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    5. There are no points of reference in an open expanse of water that can guide you to your target. Try it and you will find out exactly what I mean, although I guess that you'll probably not bother.

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    6. I've filmed loads of things on water on holiday on boat trips, it's really very easy indeed, because phone cameras have a quite wide field of view. You just point in the general direction of what you're looking at and press. Really don't need to be a marksman to capture images on an iPhone on water. Nice try though Pete.

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    7. Nightshift Skeptic,its difficult to capture on a water surface with a generic focal length and unframed reference.your beating a dead horse,characteristiclly.

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    8. Only the very brightest people frequent this blog, jabbing away at the skeptics. Who cares about grammar when you have a big monster, huh?

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    9. Burton Caruthers17 June 2014 05:24

      Here's the problem with these seemingly built-in excuses for all the poor photos and camera equipment - go back to the sighting from 1889. The boys described a creature as big as a bus frolicking astounding speed for 10 minutes or something like that? Not a very elusive creature, and something of the kind of proportions that would seemingly lend itself to being very photogenic, no?
      Further, why are modern cell phone cameras more or less completely dismissed yet eyewitness accounts taken as irrefutable gospel? It's easy as to the why; eyewitness accounts offer no tangible evidence that can be easily refuted. You can't have it both ways out of convenience to one's agenda.

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    10. First of all, Burton, you should not exaggerate to make a point.

      Nowhere does the 1889 account talk about a monster the size of a "bus" going off at an "astounding" speed for "10 minutes". That is the kind of straw man argument sceptics do not make an effort to avoid.

      Neither does one statistical point make a trend. The creature surfaces very rarely - period! It also surfaces very rarely near a witness - period! Very rarely times very rarely = extremely rarely.

      Then ask yourself a question, if those boys had a camera in 1889, would they have taken a picture during this rarest of opportunities?

      To quote: "My brother and I rowed desperately ashore and went home in a fright bordering on the hysterical".

      Shock and awe? Looks like it.

      Would they have waited to take a picture? Not bloody likely!

      Meanwhile, the sceptics take it as "irrefutable gospel" that not one sighting can possibly be a large creature and then trot out some tired story about birds and waves. Care to refute some of their approaches to eyewitness stories?

      Who is dismissing the mobile phone camera pictures? Some are rubbish due to the distances involved. That's all been done, the creature needs to be close up.

      Some look quite intriguing such as the Jon Rowe picture. What you are trying to impose here is an 1889 scenario as the norm. It is not, and these are the sightings which I am not inclined to dismiss as a line of birds. The sceptics dismiss everything with the flimsiest of excuses. Nowhere do I or anyone into the Loch Ness Monster say that all sightings are of monsters. Another straw man.

      So what was that about agendas?






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    11. "Not a very elusive creature"
      But it could choose to make itself elusive in an environment of perceived threats and discomfort. Other people are correlating the decline in sightings with particular changes in technology and leisure habits, so I'll correlate the decline with changes in vessel technology and leisure cruising. (Loch Ness would have been pretty Sleepy Hollow in 1889, don't you think?) Other people will repeat themselves and I'll repeat myself. And so the board will become the Dead Sea Mystery.
      *AnonStg*

      P.S. I just discovered that there's a "retro" report in the letters pages of the 1957 "Scotsman" of the writer encountering an old man in 1910 who had seen a huge monster while searching for birds' nests on the loch shore in his boyhood. That must make it one of the earliest reported sightings, even if it is unfortunately devalued by being written down well after the event.

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    12. There would have been some steamers going up and down the loch before the lorries turned up.

      I'll check out that Scotsman reference, thanks.

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    13. Typical believer lack of evolutionary knowledge here. A bold species will only morph into a timid one if there are natural selection forces at work. If humans or some other predatory or dangerous force was causing injury or death to the monsters, they would evolve to avoid the surface due to the ones surfacing less frequently surviving to reproduce, while the frequent surfacers perished.

      However, no boat has ever been reported to have collided with a hump and killed the animal, nor has a human ever attacked one. Therefore if they used to surface they still would now. Another point against the monster hypothesis.

      As for those boys, rowing frantically is NOT freezing in shock and awe, it's actually showing the ability to take action and not freeze. Another own goal GB.

      Finally, has it occurred to you that boys sometimes make up stories for fun?

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    14. Habits can be learned without animals having to die. Kick a dog and he is unlikely to to go near you as often.

      As a matter of interest, how frequently do you think these creature(s) are supposed to surface?

      Who said anything about "freezing"? Not me. No time for photos, get out of here as quickly as possible! Shock and awe.

      Finally, has it occured to you that our "boy" in this story was nearer 70 years of age when he penned the letter?

      It is clear to me that you haven't read the article properly and are just looking for point scoring opportunities.

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    15. "A bold species will only morph into a timid one if there are natural selection forces at work."

      Just picked up a copy of "The Times" in the cafe this morning and there was a short article about how crabs became worried and stopped feeding when played the sounds of fish.
      And there is at least one report of an RN motor launch colliding with the LNM. What you make of it is another matter.

      *AnonStg*

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    16. Burton Caruthers18 June 2014 05:46

      Apologies for mixing up who said exactly what, but my point was that within that post witnesses compared the size of what they saw to buses on the opposite shore and said it moved with great speed. Please explain how it's an exaggeration and straw man when it clearly says those exact things in the article?

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    17. Burton Caruthers18 June 2014 05:54

      By the way, Roland, you assume too much of those who don't agree with everything you believe. I'm not a sceptic here to disprove the cresture's existence. I've followed the legend since I was a kid and would love nothing more than something being discovered in the Loch. I simply don't believe every account or photo or video that comes down the pike. One legitimate bit of evidence is worth more than a million sketchy ones, but view me as you will.

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    18. "It's clear to me you haven't read the article" is a stock GB response to an awkward skeptical post.

      The boys enjoyed the attention their story gave them. They continued enjoying it throughout their lives.

      Rowing away requires significantly more effort than raising a camera or phone and pressing a button. Call it what you will, but this action supports the skeptical position that witnesses are not unable to do anything when faced with a monster. This all looks like baloney to me, this monster story.

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    19. Anonstg, that is evolution right there. They are reacting like that because some fish eat crabs, and therefore they have evolved to fear fish sounds via the process of natural selection. . That example supports my point rather than refutes it.

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    20. Believe me, I do not find your response awkward in the slightest. You seem to know more about these boys lives than anyone here. Please enlighten us as to how you came by this information.

      You set up another straw man argument by stating that I believe that witnesses are "unable to do anything when faced with a monster". Clearly, witnesses "do" things, but the closer you get to the creature, the more the self preservation instinct kicks in and the less other things do.

      If you continue to ignore what I say and misrepresent the views of myself and others, I can only assume you are a troll.

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    21. Okay, Burton, so you are actually referring to the Forbes case and not the 1889 case and I take on board that you are being sceptical on a case by case basis rather than a full blown sceptic.

      The "average" monster has always been seen as bus sized by pro-monster people. I assume the Forbes took perspective into account when they made that estimate else they would have to downgrade a bit (as a rough and ready calculation, if the monster was halfway between the witnesses and the reference buses, it may have been half the size.

      I have already stated the problems with estimating speed. It is the most difficult parameter to estimate in my opinion. The water shearing off the sides of the creature can also give an exagerrated sense of speed as it adds that dramatic effect.

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    22. "Anonstg, that is evolution right there. They are reacting like that because some fish eat crabs, and therefore they have evolved to fear fish sounds via the process of natural selection. . That example supports my point rather than refutes it."

      Well, it seems to me that you're using a rigid "it could not be otherwise" argument whereas I'd argue that a creature could have a range of potential behaviours in its toolbox. When a cat sits in the window and considers how to react to the metal monsters trundling along their well-beaten path where does that behaviour come from? Or when the first cats were stranded in places like Kerguelen Island did they need to have prior experience with all the species they encountered – or did they just "use their initiative" and get on with exterminating them? (And that's before you get on to things like Steve Plambeck's point about amphibians being able to prolong the juvenile stage in response to certain stimuli.)

      *AnonStg*

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  6. OK playing Devil's advocate again here - where's the anecdotal evidence to back this 'difficulty capturing the image' theory?

    As with the 'shock and awe' theory - if it's to hold water we should be hearing reports of sightings that haven't been captured; "i was too spellbound to get the camera out", "i tried to film it but couldn't get the iphone to focus", etc, etc. Or we should be seeing some grainy, out of focus, blurry attempts at least?

    I'm not hearing of any such reports.

    I'm open-minded on the idea of something animate in the loch worthy of investigation, so while i'm sceptical about aspects of the phenomenon, i wouldn't describe myself as a sceptic per se. However, there's just no getting away from the elephant in the room!

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    1. Check previous comments on the blog made by others on similar statements.

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    2. The internet template software doesn't lend itself to meaningful interchange.perhaps AI or a better software engineer maby?well GB?

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    3. You mean how these comments are structured? Yes, a true forum based website would be better, but at the end of the day this is just a blog.

      I toyed with the idea of a proper website with more structure, but must admit I couldn't be bothered!

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    4. Your format on this Website/Blog is just fine the way it is. It appeals to the average Nessie enthusiast who just wants the latest news and happenings on the LNM in an informative and entertaining manner (Nessie News Magazine). If you think the comments can get pretty contentious and a lot of bickering going on, imagine what a forum type format would be like. On a forum based website you’d have endless arguments and threads by skeptics (in the pretense of being erudite and knowing all) blowing off steam and believers pontificating, possibly leading to personal attacks, with you right in the middle refereeing. It could get rather nasty, don’t waste your time, save your sanity! And, I am sure you have a large following with some people just visiting for the latest information and entertainment value, not wishing to comment. No, leave well enough alone, Thank you.

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  7. The Loch Ness Monster is simply a straw man covered in tarpaulin.

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