William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

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Brooksie

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William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 02, 2014 1:39 pm

William Mann is the latest author who claims to have solved the William Desmond Taylor mystery via long-forgotten FBI files. Not quite sure why the FBI would concern itself with a domestic murder case that isn't generally under its jurisdiction, but what do I know.

If my tone comes across as a tiny bit cynical, I can assure you that you're imagining things.

The full interview is at http://courantblogs.com/java/celebrity-biographer-william-mann-coming-back-to-ccsu/

Q: Tell me about the new book.

A: The new book is one I have wanted to do for years and years and years. I have a new publisher who is very excited. The cover looks fantastic. It is a book about Hollywood in 1920s, before all the rules had been set down and the studio system was just coming together. Moviemakers were just making out the process and in this midst of figuring out and building these new structures, there were a series of scandals that unraveled, especially a murder of a popular director, William Desmond Taylor. A murder that has stumped historians for 100 years now and I think I found the answer by going through some old FBI records that t no one ever thought to look at. The answer is in there. I am telling two stories, the murder and hunt for a killer and how Hollywood came to be, how they made movies and sold them and turned it all into a huge industry.

Q: So you can tell me who did kill Taylor?

A: I am not going to tell. You can get the answer around page 400.
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missdupont

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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 02, 2014 2:30 pm

The FBI didn't even exist at the time, and wouldn't for a long time. Why would they investigate a case that happened more than 10-15 years before they even existed?
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 02, 2014 2:39 pm

The precursor of the FBI was founded in 1908.......
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Derek Gee

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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 02, 2014 10:40 pm

Brooksie wrote:Q: So you can tell me who did kill Taylor?

A: I am not going to tell. You can get the answer around page 400.


The butler did it! ;)

Derek
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 2:19 am

missdupont wrote:The FBI didn't even exist at the time, and wouldn't for a long time. Why would they investigate a case that happened more than 10-15 years before they even existed?


Perhaps not yet in name, but they effectively got their start with the Palmer raids of 1919-20. "On August 1, 1919, Palmer put 24-year-old J. Edgar Hoover in charge of a new division of the Justice Department's Bureau of Investigation, the General Intelligence Division. It would investigate the programs of radical groups and identify their members." And Hoover had a thing for Hollywood very early on. I have no idea what the GID may or may not have found relating to the Taylor case, but there is little doubt that they were investigating Hollywood goings-on by 1922.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 3:37 am

And Vintage Hollywood FBI files, of course, known universally for their total accuracy and complete excision of any malicious chit-chat...... :roll:
I could use some digital restoration myself...
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The Blackbird

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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 1:24 pm

I did it.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 1:44 pm

Q: Tell me about the new book.

A: The cover looks fantastic.


That'll sell over a million copies alone.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 5:04 pm

Brooksie wrote:William Mann is the latest author who claims to have solved the William Desmond Taylor mystery via long-forgotten FBI files. Not quite sure why the FBI would concern itself with a domestic murder case that isn't generally under its jurisdiction, but what do I know.

If my tone comes across as a tiny bit cynical, I can assure you that you're imagining things.



There's nothing on the FBI's FOIA site, but there is for Jesse James, Princess Diana, and Jack the Ripper, so I suppose WDT isn't out of the ballpark for them. They were probably being peppered with letters/requests from crackpots with convictions for years afterward.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 7:03 pm

Derek Gee wrote:
Brooksie wrote:Q: So you can tell me who did kill Taylor?

A: I am not going to tell. You can get the answer around page 400.


The butler did it! ;)

Derek


No Colonel Mustard did it using a candlestick

Please give me a spoiler so I don't have to sit though 400 pages to find out.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 03, 2014 7:52 pm

A: I am not going to tell. You can get the answer around page 400.


Hmm...the pre-order info at B & N says the book only has 384 pages.

From an earlier interview:
"The book will contain a huge payoff, artistically and historically, Mann tells me: "I’ve been able, through old court records, to figure out who did it," the author reveals. "And it’s not any of the usual suspects."

That’s thrilling news; but to what degree is he certain? "I’ve examined every other possible, previously suggested solution, and they all fall apart," Mann states. "Although the material evidence is long gone. My theory is the only solution that holds up and fits all the evidence. "

http://www.edgeseattle.com/index.php?ch ... &id=136636" target="_blank
CURSES!
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 04, 2014 6:53 am

Where was Baby Peggy at the time?
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 04, 2014 6:57 am

westegg wrote:Where was Baby Peggy at the time?


She was on Hearst's yacht, shooting Thomas Ince to death in defence of her own lover, Charlie Chaplin.

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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 04, 2014 8:38 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostWed Mar 05, 2014 7:14 pm

I suspect Kevin Brownlow.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 09, 2014 10:43 am

I think I know gang member back in my old high school did it LOL!
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 09, 2014 5:50 pm

It is sssoooooo tempting to make jokes about this new book that once again "solves" the WDT murder. I've read much though not all of the literature through the years and the event is certainly perplexing. WDT seems to have left a shadowy (and perhaps a shady) past back east and there seems to be no shortage of people who had a reason to bump him off. If we ever found a truly definitive solution that ID-ed the killer, I suspect it would be some no-name that was never on anybody's suspect list. Let's face it, the reason this mystery continues to interest us is the expectation that some big name was the killer. Shifting through a bunch of no-names would be of little interest.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostSun Mar 09, 2014 9:05 pm

bobfells wrote:It is sssoooooo tempting to make jokes about this new book that once again "solves" the WDT murder. I've read much though not all of the literature through the years and the event is certainly perplexing. WDT seems to have left a shadowy (and perhaps a shady) past back east and there seems to be no shortage of people who had a reason to bump him off. If we ever found a truly definitive solution that ID-ed the killer, I suspect it would be some no-name that was never on anybody's suspect list. Let's face it, the reason this mystery continues to interest us is the expectation that some big name was the killer. Shifting through a bunch of no-names would be of little interest.


There seems a tendency to link well known persons with highly publicised unsolved murders or mysterious deaths. The Duke of Clarence, Lewis Carroll and others come to mind with the Jack the Ripper murders. From a Hollywood perspective aside from WDT we have W R Hearst/Tom Ince, Wallace Beery/Ted Healy and Arthur Lake/ Black Dahlia, Monroe/Kennedy's to name a few. Perhaps worth a thread on its own. It could be a long list. Any other notable nominees?
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 10, 2014 6:36 am

Changsham wrote:
bobfells wrote:It is sssoooooo tempting to make jokes about this new book that once again "solves" the WDT murder. I've read much though not all of the literature through the years and the event is certainly perplexing. WDT seems to have left a shadowy (and perhaps a shady) past back east and there seems to be no shortage of people who had a reason to bump him off. If we ever found a truly definitive solution that ID-ed the killer, I suspect it would be some no-name that was never on anybody's suspect list. Let's face it, the reason this mystery continues to interest us is the expectation that some big name was the killer. Shifting through a bunch of no-names would be of little interest.


There seems a tendency to link well known persons with highly publicised unsolved murders or mysterious deaths. The Duke of Clarence, Lewis Carroll and others come to mind with the Jack the Ripper murders. From a Hollywood perspective aside from WDT we have W R Hearst/Tom Ince, Wallace Beery/Ted Healy and Arthur Lake/ Black Dahlia, Monroe/Kennedy's to name a few. Perhaps worth a thread on its own. It could be a long list. Any other notable nominees?


Yes i agree...Great observation..i always thought that too!...probably made them sell more papers and of course peaked the publics interest. Being somewhat of a amateur Ripperologist..its much more interesting to think of a member of the Royal family being Jack The Ripper than someone i have never heard of... I remember reading once that Woody Guthrie was The Black Dahlia killer and thinking Wow this is crazy stuff! but my interest was peaked! I used to buy into every new theory on all these mysteries ... now i really just take all of them with a grain of salt, because before you know it,theres a whole new theory! The Taylor mystery is terribly fascinating .....but will we ever know who did it? probably not

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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 10, 2014 7:02 am

I do think it's a terrible injustice to just accuse people the way some of these books do...Even though i don't think The Duke of Clarence was no more Jack The Ripper than Woody Guthrie was The Black Dahlia Killer...it still pops in my head when i hear their names and that's a terrible shame.

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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 10, 2014 5:47 pm

Changsham wrote: Arthur Lake/ Black Dahlia?


Thanks. Now I'll never be able to watch a Blondie movie without imagining Dagwood sawing through a woman's torso.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 10, 2014 7:58 pm

We see this same ploy used for other types of unsolved mysteries besides murders. For example, nobody writes a book about the disappearance of Amelia Earhart to advance the theory that her plane simply ran out of gas and under the Pacific it went. But I've seen books on this subject with the theory that she was working as a spy for the federal govt, that the Japanese captured her and she was regarded as a spy by them, etc. But just try to write a book saying she ran out of gas, which remains a likely scenario, and you won't make a dime.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostMon Mar 10, 2014 10:05 pm

bobfells wrote:We see this same ploy used for other types of unsolved mysteries besides murders. For example, nobody writes a book about the disappearance of Amelia Earhart to advance the theory that her plane simply ran out of gas and under the Pacific it went. But I've seen books on this subject with the theory that she was working as a spy for the federal govt, that the Japanese captured her and she was regarded as a spy by them, etc. But just try to write a book saying she ran out of gas, which remains a likely scenario, and you won't make a dime.


Micheal Rockefeller most likely drowned when trying to swim a very long way to shore when his boat was swamped in New Guinea. Popular myth was that he was eaten by canibals. Harold Holt Australian prime minister most likely drowned when swimming at a very dangerous surf beach. A myth going around was that he was a Chinese spy and spirited away to China by submarine.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 11, 2014 5:02 am

Rob Farr wrote:
Changsham wrote: Arthur Lake/ Black Dahlia?


Thanks. Now I'll never be able to watch a Blondie movie without imagining Dagwood sawing through a woman's torso.


Hey, don't knock it. Blondie on a Budget is a lot more interesting when we regard Dagwood not as a whiny simpleton, but as a diabolically clever disguise.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 11, 2014 2:03 pm

One of Erroyl Flynn kids was shot by Vietcong or something like that when he was war reporter for one of newspaper I think I hear that story or Africa somewhere
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 11, 2014 2:10 pm

Kelly wrote:One of Erroyl Flynn kids was shot by Vietcong or something like that when he was war reporter for one of newspaper I think I hear that story or Africa somewhere


I don't think they know exactly what happened to Sean Flynn, but he certainly disappeared while on assignment in Cambodia.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostTue Mar 11, 2014 3:00 pm

Frederica wrote:
Kelly wrote:One of Erroyl Flynn kids was shot by Vietcong or something like that when he was war reporter for one of newspaper I think I hear that story or Africa somewhere


I don't think they know exactly what happened to Sean Flynn, but he certainly disappeared while on assignment in Cambodia.

Naw, someone said they saw him recently with Roy Orbison and Elvis in Detroit, all of them eating burgers at a well known drive through. Just goes to show you.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostThu Mar 20, 2014 7:26 am

One of the reasons that unsolved murders are generally assumed to be by the rich,famous and/or powerful is that the general public does not believe that a nobody has the intelligence to pull off a high profile crime without being caught. However, if is pulled off by someone of note, they believe that those people have the ability to pull it off without trace or at least possess the power to have it covered up.
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostThu Mar 20, 2014 10:25 am

T0m M wrote:One of the reasons that unsolved murders are generally assumed to be by the rich,famous and/or powerful is that the general public does not believe that a nobody has the intelligence to pull off a high profile crime without being caught. However, if is pulled off by someone of note, they believe that those people have the ability to pull it off without trace or at least possess the power to have it covered up.


We also like our unsolved murders to resemble fictional murders. The narrative must follow murder-mystery rules, the biggest being that you don't define your cast of suspicious characters, then fling in a complete unknown as the real murderer in the last paragraph.
Fred
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Re: William Desmond Taylor mystery solved (again ...)

PostThu Mar 20, 2014 11:18 am

Frederica wrote:
T0m M wrote:One of the reasons that unsolved murders are generally assumed to be by the rich,famous and/or powerful is that the general public does not believe that a nobody has the intelligence to pull off a high profile crime without being caught. However, if is pulled off by someone of note, they believe that those people have the ability to pull it off without trace or at least possess the power to have it covered up.


We also like our unsolved murders to resemble fictional murders. The narrative must follow murder-mystery rules, the biggest being that you don't define your cast of suspicious characters, then fling in a complete unknown as the real murderer in the last paragraph.


True, and another murder mystery rule, the killer must be somebody well known in the story but that nobody ever suspected. In other words, the killer must not only be somebody prominent but there needs to be an element of surprise. This is why shifty looking characters in murder mystery movies never turn out to be the killer because then there would be no surprise.
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