How a Canadian history buff (may have) solved a Second World War ‘pigeon-code mystery’
A Canadian history buff has attracted international attention for proposing a possible solution to the so-called “pigeon-code mystery” that emerged last month in Britain after the remains of a Second World War carrier pigeon — along with the secret message it was transporting from a European battlefield nearly 70 years ago — were found in the chimney of a home in the London-area village of Bletchingley.
Canadian retiree Gord Young, a historical researcher from Peterborough, Ont., claims to have deciphered much of the message using a First World War codebook inherited from his great-uncle.
And he suspects he’s also identified the British paratrooper believed to have released the pigeon following the invasion of Normandy in June 1944, an attempt to send details about enemy positions and movements to Britain’s intelligence headquarters before the soldier was killed a few weeks later in northern France during the successful Allied advance against German forces. (AP/Royal Pigeon Racing Association)