Misha Williams

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An aunt looked after her with traditional Victorian severity. After her 
education, she returned to Ceylon and a life of privilege; the sort 
accorded to the families of high standing civil servants. 
It seems she met Fawcett at a tennis party at the British fort at Galle. She 
nicknamed him "Puggy", he called her "Cheeky". I asked Joan "Why 
Cheeky? Joan said, "Because mother always had to have the last word."  
I then said to Joan, "Brian describes your mother as 'bumptious'" 
Joan laughed out loud "Oh yes! Did he really? Well, that is so right! 
Yes she was bumptious!" Brian thought "Cheeky" an appropriate 
nickname because he says that "She was not entirely free of conceit. She  
was not only attractive but distinctly spoilt by local society in 
After Ceylon (and Jack's birth there) life was less easy. Fawcett was 
stationed at Spike Island, Ireland, working for the War Department. Brian 
was born in the bungalow there in 1906. Then, while Fawcett was away 
in Bolivia on and off for the next eight years, Nina did a wonderful job of 
running the family; renting various houses, existing on not much money. 
They never owned their own house. They lived next in Weston-Super-
Mare and then at Whiterigg Bank, Dawlish Warren,  after that at Marrick 
in Seaton and Waterside House in Uplyme. It was at Waterside where 
Joan was born in 1910 and where Brian, while still a young child, was 
first contacted by "M." 
Nina was not just a good housewife. She must have been one of the first 
women to drive a car, if photographs of the early 1900's with her at the  
wheel are anything to go by. They rented one when necessary. She also 
taught Fawcett how to use the theodolite.  
I spoke to an elderly lady at Stoke Canon where the Fawcetts had lived  
in 1924, just before the fatal expedition. She told me how she used to play 
with Joan and how Nina would "answer the door herself", often in a 
headscarf and apron. It seems then that the formal society image of a 
judge's daughter had changed to a more bohemian and laid back 
Nina was very interested in séances and astrology. When Fawcett was 
home, they organized them at their house with the children involved also. 

Jack, Brain and Joan had a very early education in the ancient wisdom 
and the psychic. Documents survive that show these séances were very 
frequent and made an impression on Nina who would make detailed notes 
from the messages of the mediums. During Fawcett's penultimate  
expedition in 1921, Nina and the children went to live in Jamaica, 
because life was rather too expensive for them in England. 
At the house that they rented there had once been some sort of massacre 
involving priests. The three children were terrified out of their minds by 
the nightly haunting. 
Nina's life was energetic, busy and active up to 1928. After that Joan got 
married, Nina was alone waiting for the message to come out of  
Amazonia that "The Great Scheme" was underway. Until 1936 she was in 
correspondence with Harold Large. They were certain that Fawcett was  
alive and being held a captive by some tribe and devised all sorts of ways 
at a rescue attempt.    
Nina then went to live in Lima, Peru where she would be near Brian (who 
was working as an engineer constructing the Peruvian railways) and also 
to await the call when it came from Puggy in the Mato Grosso. Here she 
shared a house with Everild Larson, a female explorer. Everild became a 
close companion and the two of them had séances and speculated about 
the encounter between Fawcett, Jack and Raleigh and the Great White 
Everild wrote a book that was published about their Atlantian life in 
another dimension which I have read. I would describe it as fiction, 
though Everild herself said that she compiled it from information from 
various mediums and the spirit world. 
I met Everild through Rolette's husband Patrick in the early 1990's when 
she was a very elderly invalid. She was a deep voiced practical person 
with a no nonsense outlook (quite the opposite to what I had expected). 
Kindly she told me about the Fawcett family in later years (1948 
onwards). She said they had become dysfunctional, always at odds, Nina 
pushed back and forth between Brian in England and Joan in Switzerland, 
always causing domestic turmoil, never having much money and never a 
permanent place to live. Everild described Brian as having a chip on his 
shoulder and as being very jealous of Jack." He never forgave his father 
for taking Jack to Amazonia and not him". When I asked about Brian's air  

search for Jack in the jungles Everild replied, "He was terrified of finding 
Jack! He did not want to find him. He probably went through the motions 
for the sake of his mother's memory but that's all."   
Despite Brian's preference for his mother as a good parent rather than his 
father, in later life he found her very difficult. When she stayed with him, 
she removed things secretly that she considered were rightly hers (such as 
the Buddha given to Fawcett by the three Buddhist prophets at Jack's 
At times he found her presence distasteful. As some elderly people do, 
she "sometimes smells of urine, is reckless with money which she does 
not have, she talks to complete strangers in the street, in fact she talks 
people into a stupor" confides Brian in his diary, adding "Hoping only 
that Mother's visit will leave us with some dregs of sanity."  Then she 
would be pushed off to stay with Joan's family in Switzerland. The peace 
there did not last long either. Apparently Joan hit Nina twice for being 
rude about her family and Nina called the police declaiming, "My 
daughter is trying to kill me!!" There was no restful haven for Nina now 
and her last years were spent in reduced circumstances and loneliness. 
Brian at this time felt his mother was even more self-centred than his 
father had been, "She has no other conversation other than herself. Today 
she talked herself silly and us into a stupor, boasting and bragging 
intolerably… And she gets people's attention and sympathy by feigning 
physical infirmity." 
In the Secret Papers Brian writes that his mother's karma was seriously 
damaged by her "blurting out Daddy's secret story to such people as 
Everild and others". Brian was convinced that she brought her sad end 
upon herself. After World War II, in the grey climate of austere Britain, 
Nina moved from one dismal guest house to another. She annoyed the 
other elderly ladies of reduced means and would be asked to leave. 
Finally she ended up at a dingy boarding house in Brighton where she 
died of food poisoning. Brian and the family suspected murder. The 
landlady had had several old ladies die on her premises and the police did 
Nina was Fawcett's most loyal supporter and one could say her life was 
sacrificed to him and his memory. 

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