Sextant box to aid Earhart search?

The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) is seeking information on pre-World War II Brandis sextants as part of their research into the disappearance of Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan on July 2, 1937. Brandis and Sons Manufacturing Company, Brooklyn, N.Y., made the instruments.

The group is endeavoring to identify a sextant box that was discovered while conducting excavations at a site on the island of Nikumaroro. The sextant box bore the stenciled number 3,500 as well as the number 1,542 which had been painted over. TIGHAR is also interested in modifications made to the original sextant cases to accommodate Brandis marine sextants that were modified with bubbles for aviation use. Also discovered during the excavation was a replacement Cat’s Paw heel for a woman’s shoe and a brass shoelace eyelet — artifacts consistent with the type of shoe Earhart wore on her flight.

TIGHAR is compiling a database relating the Brandis serial number to U.S. Navy serial numbers and U.S. Naval Observatory Certificates of inspection.

All inquires should be directed to James Thompson, Select GIS Services, P.O. Box 395, Northampton, Mass., 01061-0365 or e-mail

By Ocean Navigator