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NORWAY ISDAL WOMAN: Female found burned in Isdalen valley of Norway - Nov 1970

Discussion in 'Europe: Missing & Unidentified' started by Ladyslug, May 13, 2017.

  1. Ladyslug

    Ladyslug Bronze Member

    It's a mystery that has intrigued Norway for nearly 50 years.

    In November 1970, the badly burnt body of a woman was found in a remote spot in Norway's Isdalen valley.

    Someone had cut the labels off her clothes, and scraped distinctive marks off her belongings - as if to stop her from being identified.

    And as police started investigating her death, they uncovered a trail of coded messages, disguises, and fake identities - but never cracked the case.

    Forty-six years later, Norwegian police and NRK journalists have decided to reopen the investigation.

    This is the story of the Isdal Woman - and the perplexing trail of clues she left behind.


    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 12, 2018
    spike, Whatsnext, SophiaR.C. and 4 others like this.
  2. Dobrev

    Dobrev Former Member


    The Isdal Woman was multilingual, she spoke German, English, Belgian and French with an unknown accent.

    All aliases: Genevieve Lancier; Claudia Tielt; Alexia Zerner-Merches; Vera Jarle; Fenella Lorch; Elisabeth Leenhower

    Doe Network have a great time line that is so vital to this case:

    What is known about her travels:

    March 20, 1970 - she travels from Geneva to Oslo

    March 21-24, 1970 - she lives at Hotel Viking in Oslo using the name "Genevieve Lancier".

    March 24 - flies from Oslo to Stavanger, takes the boat to Bergen, stays the night at Hotel Bristol using the name "Claudia Tielt".

    March 25 - April 1- stays at hotel Scandia in Bergen, still as "C. Tielt"

    April 1 - travels from Bergen to Stavanger, and on to Kristiansand, Hirtshals, Hamburg and Basel. Thats the last trace of her in Norway until she returns six months later.

    October 3 - travels from Stockholm to Oslo, and on to Oppdal, stays the night at the hotel there together with Italian photographer Giovanni Trimboli

    October 22 - stays at hotel Altona in Paris

    October 23 - 29 - stays at Hotel de Calais in Paris

    October 29 - 30 - goes from Paris to Stavanger and on to Bergen

    October 30 - November 5 - checks in to hotel Neptun using the name "Alexia Zerner-Merches"; she meets an unknown man at the hotel.

    November 6 - 9 - she travels to Trondheim, lives at hotel Bristol using the name "Vera Jarle".

    November 9 - goes to Oslo and on to Stavanger where she stays at Hotel St. Svitun using the name "Fenella Lorch".

    November 18 - goes with the boat Vingtor to Bergen where she stays at hotel Rosenkrantz using the name "Elisabeth Leenhower" from Belgium.

    November 19- 23 - stays at hotel Hordaheimen, stays in the room a lot and seems watchful.

    November 23 - leaves the hotel in the morning, pays in cash and goes to the railway station where she places 2 pieces of luggage in a depository box.

    November 29 - she is located dead in Isdalen.


    I like to hope that this one is solveable, but I definitely feel like this is being covered up by an organization. Whoever she was spying for (imo). I definitely don't think this was suicide... the poor woman set herself on fire.

    Calling on friends to see if this one peaks their interest... maybe new eyes can find something missed: @ima.grandma @Lorelei2017 @alethea @Whatsnext @MrsS @Skitt
  3. Dobrev

    Dobrev Former Member

    In 2005, a Bergen resident who was 26 in 1970 told a local newspaper that after seeing the sketch circulated, he had suspected that the dead woman was the woman he had seen five days before the body was found, when he was hiking on the hillside at Fløyen. She was dressed lightly, for the city rather than a hike, and was with two men wearing coats who looked "southern". She seemed about to say something but they stopped her. He went to someone he knew at the police to report this, but was told to forget about it.[24] Therefore neither his name nor his alleged sighting was recorded anywhere back then.

    One witness said that she overheard the woman talking to a man in a Bergen hotel. According to the witness, the woman said, German: Ich komme bald (German: "I am coming soon").

    I wonder if her speaking that in German means she was German and that was her native language or, she was speaking to someone who understood German and chose to speak it for ease.

  4. Whatsnext

    Whatsnext Well-Known Member

    I have come across this many times reading books about unsolved cases, but til now I never took a closer look. Found a quite new podcast series by the BBC about it. Haven't listened yet, but it maybe could help to get a 'feeling' about this mysterious case.

  5. Dobrev

    Dobrev Former Member

    Oh thanks for posting! I haven't listed to that either, so will check it out.
  6. KareBear

    KareBear Well-Known Member

    I started the Podcast a few days ago. I am glad to see a thread on it! It's a very interesting case! So far I have learned that German was most probably not her native language because although she spoke it well, she misspelled words in German that a native speaker would not have misspelled. So far things that have stood out to me are: 1) To state the obvious, her multiple identities along with the assortment of wigs and her successful attempts to mask any identifying information. 2) Her watch was set on a standard setting that is used for displays at 10:10, indicating that it was either new or not activated with batteries or otherwise. 3) She used multiple addresses and Belgium seemed to be a common theme among them. 4) One of the addresses were made up and a reader on Reddit username gymnosophistism caught something interesting in one of the addresses she provides. Although it is not a real location, ""Rue Sainte-Hildegarde" [is found] in the middle of [Marcel] Proust's novel, 'In Search of Lost Time'" (reddit link below). He was a French author, active from 1909-1922. Perhaps there is more to the watch than meets the eye? Is there a clue surrounding the idea of time? The watch? Maybe the book itself?
    ... I get a feeling that she has layed out clues for us but we just haven't caught on yet..

    Reddit.com https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.re...es/comments/5akks0/isdal_womans_dna_isolated/

    Link to podcast: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0646dbd
    Dobrev and Kimster like this.
  7. Dobrev

    Dobrev Former Member

    v. interesting theories that are coming from reddit. :thankyou: for posting @KareBear
    i am a member of reddit but have only recently signed up and need some cases to follow over there. are you on reddit too? or just reading there?

    i agree with you on the clues. the answer to this womans identity is in the mix there somewhere.
    KareBear likes this.
  8. Dobrev

    Dobrev Former Member

    this was also posted down thread regarding the address from the novel:

    In another form she wrote "Rue de la Madeleine". It's a street in Brussels indeed but the ["madelaine](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madeleine_(cake)" cake is strongly associated with Proust.
    KareBear and Kimster like this.
  9. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Death in Ice Valley: New clues in Isdal Woman mystery

    Modern science has shed new light on this most cryptic unsolved case. Last year, we worked with forensic police to carry out isotope tests on her teeth and jawbone, the only parts of her body not buried after the case was closed in 1971. They connected the woman tentatively with Nuremberg in Germany. And the woman’s likely age was revised – closer to 40 than 30.

    Podcast - https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p060ms2h

    Facebook group - https://www.facebook.com/groups/deathinicevalley

    KareBear likes this.

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