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Today I wanted to say a few words about who I am and why I have started these efforts.

I am Jack E. Churchward, born 1957 in Clearwater, Florida. My father was Jack Churchward, born 1894 in Brooklyn, New York. His father was Alexander James Churchward, born 1872 in Sri Lanka, the only acknowledged son of James Churchward, born in Bridestow, Devonshire, England in 1851. Thanks to Brian Churchward in Wales, that ancestry is further traced back to Thamsen, son of Thomas Churchward, baptized in the year 1539 as recorded in the first record of the Stoke Gabriel parish registry. I am aware that I have one sister, two half-sisters and one half-brother.

As a youth, I read a lot, was active with the Boy Scouts of America and a member of the Suncoast Archeology Society. I participated in two salvage digs, one that lasted an entire summer. In 1974, I earned my Eagle badge and joined the United States Navy. After almost two years of technical training, three years at Tactical Support Center Bermuda, and a year at Commander Fleet Air Keflavik, Iceland, I joined the civilian workforce. I recently completed 25 years with the same firm. In 1991, after ten years of night school, I was awarded a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of South Florida. I have been married to the same lovely lady for 28 years and we have three children and three grandchildren. During the day, I fulfill the duties of a Senior Design and Development Engineer and in the evenings I spend some time cavorting on the World Wide Web.

As the direct lineal descendant of James Churchward, author of the books about the Lost Continent of Mu, I find it necessary to set the record straight about his life and legacy. Whether or not his theories about Lost Continents and/or Civilizations are true, I do not dismiss them out of hand. Although others have indicated otherwise I can only assume some miscommunication. I am not prepared to discuss his theories point by point at this time, however at a later date I hope to perform a thorough examination of the evidence. Particular points, when thoroughly investigated, will be addressed.

So now that you know a little about me, let me relate why I am starting this now. From childhood, I have been made aware of my famous ancestor. I could not count the number of times I have been asked about his theories and my opinion of the same. I have never really sat down and read his works; the family always dismissed the idea, so much so that we didn't even have a single copy of any of his books in our home library. A story that my mother related to me after my father's death is a clear example:

"Back in the mid 50s, the local fashionable folks had found out that my father was James' grandson and lived year round on Clearwater Beach, Florida. They had an obvious interest in the Lost Continent and James' theories and expected his grandson Jack to be witty, entertaining and provide a keen insight into his works. So the mega social event was scheduled for a Sunday afternoon, the setting was an enormous waterfront home on the Gulf of Mexico with a lawn surrounded by a stone fence. Guests arrived from miles away in their chauffeured rides and fancy dress to attend the event of the season. The food had been catered; lawn chairs and tables were set up across the lawn and everyone was gleefully anticipating the guest of honor. After the appointed hour, my father (Princeton class of 1914 and veteran of both World Wars) walked up wearing a Hawaiian shirt, shorts and sandals. Of course, the initial impression was a letdown to the host and the invited guests, but they probably imagined him as eccentric and the host started the introductions as they went through the assembled crowd. The introductions continued politely until the obvious and eventual question was asked, "So Jack, what are your thoughts concerning Colonel James?"

Those nearby quieted down to listen in rapt attention to the expected gem of wisdom about to be presented to them when my father, true to form, announced in a loud and clear voice that he thought his grandfather's theories on a lost continent were so much hog-wash and that he had made it all up. Needless to say, my father did not live up to their expectations and didn't stick around to socialize further. Neither was he invited to any further social events.

Having been raised in a household where his grandmother was present at least part of the time, my father's exposure had been decidedly negative. Further anecdotes passed down indicate that Mary Julia did not have a high opinion of her husband James and her comments on his radio broadcasts indicated that she had heard the same stories on voyages to and from Sri Lanka and England. I must assure the listener at this point that I have no such prejudices and that although there is some obvious stretching of the truth at certain points, the underlying hypothesis put forward by James would be intriguing if true. If he chose to manufacture credentials or evidence to only bolster his theory, then I can forgive him and continue to search for the underlying truth. On the other hand, if there is no basis in fact, plausible extrapolation to known facts, or is a complete fabrication, then it deserves to be rejected. I have no conflicts of interest if my findings disagree with his printed works as I receive no compensation for their publication.

I have over the years picked up his books and perused them; however, I have not made a serious study to date. A few years ago I was able to obtain some of James' scrapbooks of newspaper clippings and correspondence concerning his books. Through the family, I have correspondence, some in his own handwriting. A few years ago, I was fortunate to receive a copy of the original typewritten biography of James by Percy Tate Griffith from his daughter that was written shortly after James' death in 1936. While there are probably other materials out there that would assist in my investigation, I will have to wait to see what the future holds.

Brining this all to a head, earlier this year (2005), an edited (and rewritten) version of James' biography was published and while the publisher was in the area, my wife and I sat down and had lunch with him. Last year saw the translation and publication of at least one of his books into the Uyghur language. With these materials on hand and the numerous emails that I receive with new information (or requests for information,) I decided that now is the time to get involved, answer the questions, and satisfy my own curiosity. I invite those interested to share the journey with me, learn more about James Churchward for what he did in the seventy years before he wrote "The Lost Continent of Mu" and settle some of the rumors, half-truths, and silliness that cloud the memory of my great-grandfather. As I mentioned earlier, I have no financial interest in the publication of his works. Likewise, I have no agenda for character assassination. The bottom line is that I am interested in the truth and will proceed along that path until my questions have been answered.

These podcasts will be created on an irregular basis and address the state of the research, host interviews with knowledgeable people, and challenge the status quo to arrive at a more complete understanding of James Churchward and his theories of a lost Pacific Ocean continent. Please check back frequently at my dash mu dot com or join our email lists to keep up to date on our progress and join the discussion.

Thank you for listening and have a great day.

2005 Churchward & Company, Inc.