Form: IAL, Investigation Activity Log
From: Francis Ridge, Investigation Coordinator, nicap@insightbb.com
Subject: The Mantell Incident Re-Investigation

Date: Fri, 10 Mar 2006
Ref: TI-5, Case Submitttal Checklist, IAL

Updated 100107 0640

On March 7, 2006, a message was found on my (phone) recorder which stated that Drew Speier of  WFIE-TV (Channel 14) at Evansville wanted to do a story on the Mantell incident in May and was seeking my help. As a result of this I sent an email to Dick Hall, Jean Waskiewicz, and Dan Wilson. In it I admitted that, "this will open up a can of worms" but I was updating the Mantell page: http://www.nicap.org/mantelldir.htm  as sort of re-evaluation that is well overdue since we now had documents on other cases found in the Project Blue Book Archives. I also mentioned that I was going to divert WFIE to a better case but will help them on Mantell. A subsequent initial computer search at PBB Archive showed four printed pages of results, 37 entriess just for the name "Mantell", many many pages of docs in the BB archives we hadn't explored nor added to our dir.
------------------------------

Prior to the 2006 Re-Investigation, the following Air Force documents were on file at the NICAP site:
2005

Nov. 9, 2005

Dan Wilson:
Report of unusual incidents over several states. In Kentucky, Ohio, Missouri.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs3.htm
USAF-SIGN1-371-373

Dan Wilson:
Mantell Incident - Jan 7, 1948, Illinois, Kentucky & Ohio - Checklist for 0720-1925 hours
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs1.htm
USAF-SIGN8-240-241

Dan Wilson:
Jan. 7, 1948, Godman Field, Fort Knox, Kentucky, "Mantell Case". (A checklist)
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs2.htm
USAF-SIGN8-226-227,230-239

Dan Wilson:
AF Form 14, Report of Major accident, Jan. 7, 1948, near Franklin, Ky, Capt. Thomas F. Mantell 0-806873, Fatal
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantellaccrepdocs.htm
USAF-SIGN1-309-312

------------------------------
The Re-Investigation Begins
2006
March 8, 2006

Fran Ridge:
Found interesting ten-page document on the Mantell Incident Report
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_668-677.htm
MAXW-PBB3-668-677

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March 10, 2006

Fran Ridge:
(Sent email to Brad Sparks and advised that WFIE TV at Evansviille, Indiana, wanted me to do an interview about Mantell for May. "Haven't spoken with Mr. speier as yet, but I plan to divert him to a better case. The Mantell incident had always bothered me. I didn't buy the explanation. Mantell should have been able to run into the damned thing at the speeds the P-51 can muster. The state police reported an object 250 feet wide, hardly the description of a distant skyhook. Buried in those many reports are some anomalous objects. Just a coincidence? And if the skyhook answer was so obvious, why did it take so long to come up with that  conclusion. People in the AF were scratching their heads years later.)

Brad Sparks:
It would require intensive analysis of the confusing mass of sighting data to disentangle it all, much like the huge mess of the Washington National case, and I'm not sure it's really worth it. (Kevin Randle has had his challenge to debate him on the Mantell case in writing up on UFO UpDates for maybe 2 ? years now and I don't think anyone has taken him up on it;  I couldn't even have tried until BB Archive first made the Mantell file available this year or late last year).  Mantell's last transmission about a tremendous metallic object doesn't have enough detail to screen it from an IFO, no angular size, no attempt to estimate size or distance or altitude, no detail of shape or structure if any.  I find the F-51 plane crash very strange.  It didn't crash nose down but pancaked flat on the ground, in fact that's a major reason there was enough remains intact even to recover the body (had it hit nose forward at high speed it would have shattered into many pieces).  But that doesn't give us a description of a UFO. What are these "newly found documents, which appear to have been conveniently left out of the official Blue Book" ??

Fran Ridge:
(I advised Sparks that this report and documents scanned were obtained by Wendy Connors and Mike Hall and the page showing these was at http://www.nicap.org/mantell4.htm [see documents mantelldoc1-7])

Fran Ridge:
(Contacted Drew Speier and committed to an interview sometime in May.)

------------------------------

March 29, 2006

Fran Ridge:
(Emailed Loren Gross to see if we could post information about Mantell from UFOH 1948.)

------------------------------

May 12, 2006

Fran Ridge:
(Sent DVD (U.F.O.) to Drew Speier to be used for b&w era footage.)

------------------------------

May 16, 2007

Drew Speier:
I have read accounts that had Mantell flying a P-51 AND an F-51.  Are they the same?  I have been going with F-51 but now I'm not so sure. Can you clear this up or do I need to contact one of the Generals I spoke with who were former commanders of the KyANG. The documentary and the newspaper articles say F-51...that must be correct.

Fran Ridge:
(I had told him 1946, which was an error, but it was in 1948, the designation P-51 (P for pursuit) was changed to F-51 (F for fighter) and the existing F designator for photographic reconnaissance aircraft was dropped because of a new designation scheme throughout the USAF.)

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May 23, 2006

(Show aired on WFIE-TV, Channel 14)

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May 25, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Maps of area located in BB files. NICAP web page at
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs5.htm
MAXW-PBB3-657-666

19-page checklist found in BB files. NICAP web page at
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs4.htm
MAXW-PBB3-678-695


Fran Ridge:
Gave Drew Speier the Top Secret report which mentions what Mantell said. See page 12, par. 2k at
http://nicap.org/docs/airintelrpt100-203-79.pdf

------------------------------

May 26, 2006

Dan Wilson:
8x10 glossy photos of remains of F-51 located in BB files. NICAPb page at
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs6.htm
MAXW-PBB3-783-799

Fran Ridge:
Better versions of crash photos previously supplied by Wendy Connors. NICAP web page at
http://www.nicap.org/mantell_crash.htm

Fran Ridge:
Brad, Ruppelt stated that no skyhook balloon launch record could be found to account for the Mantell object. This was a a few years after the incident and with the Air Force ready and willing to put an identified label on it. Question: How did Greenwood & Todd accomplish in 1990 what Blue Book would have given its eyeteeth for 40 years earlier?

Jerome Clark:
("An investigation conducted in the early 1990s by ufologists Barry Greenwood and Robert G. Todd identified the balloon as one set off from Camp Ripley, Minnesota, at 8 A.M. on January 6, 1948" ["The Mantell UFO," 1994] )

Brad Sparks:
Get RECORDS of the alleged balloon launch.  It is frustratingly difficult dealing with nebulous claims.  Which agency allegedly launched the Skyhook?  If Ruppelt and ATIC didn't check with all the agencies or the particular one launching from Camp Ripley (ONR possibly??) then they would completely miss it. Another point is that I am almost 100% certain that Ruppelt ATIC only checked THE DAY of the Mantell crash Jan 7, 1948, and DID NOT CHECK THE DAY BEFORE.  No one ever thought of records for the DAY BEFORE till Greenwood & Todd came along. Which brings up another issue:  Do the WEATHER RECORDS show that a Skyhook launched at 6 AM on Jan 6 would travel 700-800 miles away to the SE in 33+ hours, at about 20-25 mph average speed, to Ft Knox and Franklin, Kentucky?  It seems to me the prevailing winds would be E not SE and even if on some stretches you could get a wind to the SE it seems unlikely to be maintained consistently on average to the SE over 1-1/2 days effectively vectored SE.

------------------------------

May 27, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Documents found.  "At approximately 1400E, 7 January 1948, Kentucky State Police reported to Ft. Knox Military Police they had sighted an unusual aircraft or object flying through the air, circular in appearance approximately 250-300 feet in diameter, moving westward at a 'a pretty good clip'." These documents
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs8.htm
NARA-PBB2-853-855 show another version of MAXW-PBB3-710.

854 says: "We then received information from Maxwell Flight Service Center that a Dr. Seyfert, an astronomer at Vanderbilt University, had spotted an object SSE of Nashville, Tennessee that he identified as a pear shaped balloon with cables and a basket attached, moving first SSE, then W, at a speed of 10 miles per hour at 25,000 feet. This was observed between 1630C and 1645C."
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=NARA-PBB2-854

July 20, 1964 letter found in BB files, from the Civil Aeromedical Research Institute, Federal Aviation Agency to T/Sgt Moody, Foreign Technology Division, WPAFB. Similar crash in 1964.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs7.htm
MAXW-PBB3-709

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May 28, 2006

Mary Castnor:
I guess I am confused Fran, what do you mean?
Ridge says, "It always impressed me that he (Mantell) was chasing something other than a balloon, even though to this day, it would be very difficult to prove it. One thing about it though, after searching all the records and after the Air  Force claimed that it was a Skyhook Balloon, they have pretty good records on all the launches, but they never could establish a launch date for that day."
http://www.14wfie.com/global/story.asp?s=4935312

Dan Wilson:
The cover-up begins. Page 2 Part 2: Mr. Loedding a civilian investigator from Wright Field, arrived at Godman Field on January 9, 1948 and made a thorough investigation. Part 3. After obtaining statements and full information on the matter, he (Loedding) issued instructions that no report on the subject would be made until further instructions were given.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs9.htm
MAXW-PBB3 713-722

------------------------------

May 29, 2006

Brad Sparks:
I read over the posted June 1994 CAUS article on Mantell expecting to find a RECORD of a Skyhook launch on Jan 6, 1948.  I was hoping to find a THEODOLITE tracking on a MAP, since "theodolite" tracking was made much of in the article.  I was bitterly disappointed to find neither.  In fact there is an eerie deja vu here with the infamous C B Moore again involved in peddling questionable stories about balloon antics that are not documented and are flagrantly contradicted by the facts -- just like with his wholesale falsification of the Roswell MOGUL balloon fiction which Dave Rudiak and I thoroughly exploded as a tissue of lies, deceit and fabrication from start to finish (more on Moore's lies on web page from this email of which is posted at
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_may29_1.htm
and also reproduced in full on subsequent pages of this IAL.).

Fran Ridge:
This document reads in part: "About 1445 flight leader (NG 869) reported sighting object 'ahead and above still climbing'. At 15,000 ft he reported: 'Object directly ahead and above and moving about half my speed ' Again 'it appears metallic and of tremendous size.' Still later 'I''m still climbing - object is above and ahead moving about my speed or faster - I''m trying to close in for better look'. This was about 3:15 PM.  Five minutes later the other two ships turned back.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs11.htm
MAXW-PBB3-680-681

Mary Castnor:
Please tell me what makes you think this Skyhook couldn't be what Mantell saw and why a Skyhook had to be launched on 1/7 to qualify for what Mantell saw?

Fran Ridge:
Well, first of all, I was approached in March by Drew Speier of WFIE to help on a story they wanted to do on the Mantell incident. To set the record straight, I told him that there were MUCH better reports and that the Mantell incident was not an unknown. He insisted that it was a "local" story and told me that it would possibly lead to other stories if it went well. May is ratings month and that was the release period.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/whatdoyoumean.htm

Fran Ridge:
This document early on lists the case as solved but yet doesn't do an across the board balloon explanation to explain the rash of sightings in the region. Venus is the explanation for all of them.
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=NARA-PBB1-15
NARA-PBB1-15

Fran Ridge:
Yet FOUR YEARS LATER, April 7, 1952, in this article, cleared by the Air Force, Robert Gina states:
"Nevertheless in serious moments most people were a little worried by all the 'chromium hubcaps,' 'flying washtubs' and 'whirling doughnuts' in the sky. Buried in the heap of hysterical reports were some sobering cases. One was the calamity that befell Air Force Captain Thomas F. Mantell on Jan. 7, 1948. That afternoon Mantell and two other F-51 fighter pilots sighted an object that looked like "an ice-cream cone topped with red" over Godman Air Force Base and Fort Knox, Ky. Mantell followed the strange object up to 20,000 feet and disappeared. Later in the day his body was found in a nearby field, the wreckage of his plane scattered for a half mile around. It now seems possible that Mantell was one of the very few sighters who actually were deceived by a Skyhook balloon, but the incident is still listed as unsolved by the Air Force files."

Barry Greenwood:
Since you dismissed the Camp Ripley data in my Just Cause article as not worth the paper they are written on," perhaps you can explain why you continue to carry the General Mills sighting at Arrey, NM on 4-24-48 as an unknown since the main witness, Charles Moore, is not credible by your reckoning. If he lied about Roswell and lied about Mantell, why should the Arrey report hold any credence?

Fran Ridge:
Barry, it's no reflection on you or your great work, which I have always admired. It just turns out that Moore fooled us all...for a while. The more we dig; the more we find. Exactly what you would expect if there is something to all this. And the most surprising thing about it all, to me (as I told the WFIE reporter), is that the evidence is right in front of us in the Blue Book files.

Barry Greenwood:
Might we safely say that we can now dismiss the 1949 General Mills sighting as a hoax because Charles Moore was involved, based upon what we've seen here today? If he is a liar and forger, there can be no other conclusion.

Brad Sparks;
Moore wasn't the only witness on April 24, 1949, and we have the statements from the other 4 Navy witnesses obtained by AFOSI (William Akers, Richard G. Davidson, Clifford E. Fitzsimmons, Moorman).

Fran Ridge:
Remember the famous balloon at Sandy Hook that was chased by the T-33 after the Fort Monmouth incident? Everybody wanted to toss that one out, too. Ruppelt (like Moore) placed the balloon at the right place and the right time. We went from a reference in Ruppelt's book to a full report almost 2" thick that blew that one out of the water once and for all. Now listed as an unknown!!!

Jan Aldrich:
I am sorry but this is completely untrue.  I have always said that the AF's explanation was flawed here (Sandy Hook).  This is based on the AF claims that a balloon can act like a high speed aircraft and out distance the chase plane in low winds.  I am not the only one that said that and have posted on the case several time on UFO Updates. As far as the Mantle (sic) case...there were UFOs in the area?  So what!   Are the two connected?  Look at Mantel's (sic) discription. There were sightings of a big balloon in the area afterward. It is your opinion that a pilot would not go above 20,000 without oxygen. An NG pilot did the same thing in 1956 and from the same outfit as Mantell.Why?  Probably, because of lack of judgement when flying at high altitudes with lack of oxygen.   Thinking that they can just go that little extra altitude and get back down before being effected.

Fran Ridge:
Jan, You supported us when we redid that entire (Fort Monmouth) report. When I made the comment I meant that most of the UFO community was satisfied with Ruppelt's explanation by doing nothing and letting it lie. You were one of the people that helped, so when I said "everyone" I meant that, if we hadn't created the full report with all the documents, it would still be written off.

Brad Sparks:
But that's the whole point Jan -- the "Skyhook-like" sightings 4 HOURS after Mantell crashed and 2 HOURS AFTER SUNSET at high altitude, made by numerous competent Clinton County AFB tower personnel (and others elsewhere including at the Mantell crash site) with binoculars who MADE DRAWINGS.  How do you explain this????  Ice-cream cone shaped intense red light, just like red sunset light.  Gotta be a Skyhook balloon right???  How can it be otherwise???  How can you have such a "coincidence" otherwise??? See full rebuttal at
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/whole_point.htm

Bill Booth:
Thomas mantell Dies Chasing UFO is a skillful piece of writing, and the gentleman who wrote it certainly did his research. It is rare that I say this, but the video that accompanies the article is a must see. It is surely a professional creation with great facts mixed with archival footage from the U S Air Force. I must give credit where it is due. Reporter: Drew Speier, New Media Producer: Rachel Chambliss, both of you, KUDOS! A well balanced report giving both sides of the argument. Once again, we face the familiar argument of the debunkers who say that Mantell was merely chasing a top secret balloon. Where have we heard this before? The proponents of the UFO theory point out that even Project Blue Book, who were interested in the case because Mantell was a pilot, would assert that the maneuverability of the object was beyond the capabilities of a balloon. The documents with this information were originally left off of the official report. There the mystery rests.
http://ufos.about.com/b/a/256740.htm

------------------------------

May 31, 2006

Joel Carpenter:
Why doesn't anyone think he recovered consciousness in the last seconds, tried to pull out of the dive, began to, and lost the wing in up-bending -- just as the report says. In this case, the plane would not be in a screaming nosedive from 20,000 ft, but would be decelerating tumbling debris. (Note: There were certain control settings that implied that he had regained consciousness and reset things just before impact -- I don't recall exactly -- fuel pump, carb setting, something like that -- that wasn't in positions that would be expected during a high-speed climb. This is similar to the kind of thing NASA said about the Challenger astronauts -- certain switches were set to positions that they weren't in at launch, which implied that at least a couple of the astronauts had survived the explosion and tried to prepare for a crash.)
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_carpenter.htm

Dick Hall:
For heavens sakes, guys! I thought my memory problems were bad, but you all make me feel better. The whole business about oxygen in the Mantell case has been on the record all along. A quick look at the two-volume edition of Jerry Clark's Encyclopedia found at:
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell2.htm
Full version of this email can be found at:
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_oxygen_hall.htm

Don Ledger:
That's one I'd never heard before. As you say, hearsay, however. That portion of dialogue between the controllers and Mantell has never been mentioned, either to support that Mantell had the oxygen or that he did not. Frankly it has always bothered me that an experienced fighter pilot would ever climb past 12,000 feet [daytime flight] without oxygen. Excited he may have been about chasing the "object" but it would not compare with the various and heightened emotions that fighter pilots would experience when engaging an enemy.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_ledger.htm

Fran Ridge:
That part has always bothered me, and you expressed it very well. I had said that Mantell had been in stressful situations in aerial combat, yet going after an unidentified object in broad daylight shouldn't have affected his mind enough to do something life threatening. And while it was true that Mantell would have trouble reaching the balloon height (his 30,000 verses 50-100,000 ' for the balloon), the speed of the then one of the fastest airplanes we had of almost 450 mph would have overshot the higher object very quickly, not traveling faster or even "at half my speed".

Don Ledger:
Though the F-51 was capable of speeds in excess of 425 mph in straight and level flight under optimal conditions, it would have been a very rare day for it to reach 450 mph. Easy downhill mind you. In a climb it would have been struggling at its maximum climb angle of 17 degrees [the wing would stall over that angle even with engine laboring and blower at high readings in inches of manifold pressure] to get up to or over 200 mph. Even then it would have been probably mushing. The greater the altitude the less the rate-of-climb [ROC] versus forward speed. But yes, the real puzzler was Mantell's disregard for anoxia. He knew better. I can't understand why he would have gotten so excited about this object, more excited than if he had been in combat, to ignore this obvious danger.

Steven Kaeser:
Fran, has the original report on this crash been located?  Some sort of official investigation would have taken place after this incident, but haven't seen any discussion of what it says about the accident. <snip> So, a case that is probably older than most of us discussing it, has again reared its ugly head and confused us with evidence that we can either ignore or deal with.   Frustration has been expressed regarding the re-opening of this case to debate, but to my knowledge there are no major UFO cases that have been fully proven as mundane, and the Mantell crash is no different.

Rod Dyke:
The Archives for UFO Research (AUFOR), has a copy of the Official Accident Report (Inquiry # 10-480107-1) ... 125 pages long. IF anyone requires a copy, we can supply for $20 via media mail or $25 via priority mail.

Fran Ridge:
Here are some excepts from popular magazines that relate to Mantell. In  Ruppelt's TRUE article, a note by editors. In a letter to TRUE on this point,
Capt. William B. Nash, wrote:
"As a pilot, Ruppelt must know that he wrote pure deception when he said of the Mantell case, 'The propeller torque would pull it into a slow left turn, into a shallow dive, then an increasingly steeper descent under power. Somewhere during the screaming dive, the plane reached excessive speeds and began to break up in the air.' Any Dilbert knows that as the speed of an airplane increases its lift increases, and the plane's nose would come up until the speed decreased again and the nose dipped once more to pick up speed and lift, thus creating an oscillation all the way to the ground-not a 'screaming dive.' The plane could spin or spiral instead of oscillate, but a spin is a stall maneuver, and planes do not come apart in a stall. This oscillation would he especially likely to occur if the airplane had been trimmed to climb . . . and . . . Ruppelt says, 'The wreckage showed that the plane was trimmed to climb."

Ruppelt:
Re: April 7, 1952: Life Magazine article, "Have We Visitors From Space?
When newsmen began asking him whether the article was Air Force inspired, Ruppelt replied that they had furnished Life with some raw data. My answer was purposely weasel worded, he said, because I knew that the Air Force had unofficially inspired the Life article... [and also knew that the strongly implied answer that UFOs were interplanetary] was the personal opinion of several very high-ranking officers in the Pentagon - so high that their personal opinion was almost policy. (Ruppelt, p. 132.)

LIFE:
Nevertheless in serious moments most people were a little worried by all the "chromium hubcaps," "flying washtubs" and "whirling doughnuts" in the sky. Buried in the heap of hysterical reports were some sobering cases. One was the calamity that befell Air Force Captain Thomas F. Mantell on Jan. 7, 1948. That afternoon Mantell and two other F-51 fighter pilots sighted an object that looked like "an ice-cream cone topped with red" over Godman Air Force Base and Fort Knox, Ky. Mantell followed the strange object up to 20,000 feet and disappeared. Later in the day his body was found in a nearby field, the wreckage of his plane scattered for a half mile around. It now seems possible that Mantell was one of the very few sighters who actually were deceived by a Skyhook balloon, but the incident is still listed as unsolved by the Air Force files.
http://www.nicap.org/life52.htm

------------------------------

June 1, 2006

Fran Ridge:
Hi Drew, When we re-opened the Mantell investigation because of WFIE's request for the story, using more Blue Book Archive documents and help from other researchers, we discovered the SKYHOOK balloon allegedly launched that was supposed (by previous researchers) to explain Mantell's object (as you know not the others) WAS not only NOT documented but shows the person who claimed the launch lied. He is the same one who we caught lying about the MOGUL balloon launch that was supposed to explain the Roswell incident!!!!

Fran Ridge:
Hi Loren, Would you be so kind as to letting us use the first part of your 1948 UFO History which has a great deal of original information on the Mantell Incident?

Dan Wilson:
A few pages of the Accident Report is located here:
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=USAF-SIGN1-309
USAF-SIGN1-309-312

Dan Wilson:
39-page AF Report of Major Accident
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs12.htm
MAXW-PBB3-746-782

Ray Fowler
In one of my course on UFOs, I quoted from a declassified document which I not longer have but may have on a slide. "pilots Hammond NG737 and Clements NG800 climbed to 22,000 feet with Mantell in NG869, then continued on to their orignial destination because of lack of oxygen". This could imply that Mantell continued the chase because he had oxygen. I will try to find the slide of the government document. I believe the actual document is now with Barry Greenwood who purchased my non-abduction UFO files.

Fran Ridge:
Ray, since it was probably a BB doc, and we have looked at most of them recently, I did some checking. For complete documents see:
"The object was still visible, and the Flight Commander was requested to investigate and attempt to determine the nature of the UFO if his mission allowed. The Flight Commander, Captain Mantell, stated he was on a ferry mission, but would investigate. Captain Mantell then started a spiraling climb to 15,000 feet, then continued to climb on a heading of 220 degrees, the approximate direction of the UFO from Godman Field.  At 15,000 feet the wing men turned back because they were not completely outfitted for flights requiring oxygen. ("Not completely outfitted" may mean all they lacked was tanks, but implies Mantell may have been equipped. Then later they say he wasn't equipped.) <snip> (then later...) Also shown on March 8 entry.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_668-677.htm
MAXW-PBB3-668-677

""It is believed that Captain Mantell never regained consciousness.  This is borne out by the fact that the canopy lock was still in-place after the. crash, discounting any attempt to abandon the aircraft. The UFO was in no way way directly responsible for this accident. However, it is probable that the excitement caused by the object was responsible for this experienced pilot conducting a high altitude flight without the necessary oxygen equipment."

So much for a highly classified project. The author wasn't sure how Skyhook was spelled but he knew about them, and even mentioned a highly classified project in his report!!!!

(Note: On Aug. 9, 2007 I got this note from Ray)
This is anecdotal but I once talked to a pilot who knew Mantell's wingman who told him that Mantell had oxygen and that is why he remained behind to intercept the object. He and the others had no oxygen.

Don Ledger:
I have heard this story (holes in fuselage) as well a few times over the years, but I'd  be surprised if there weren't hundreds of holes in the aircraft's skin. It was held together with thousands of countersunk rivets, many of which could have pulled through from the stress of the spiral dive and the impact. I wonder if  pulled through rivets holes is where the story.

Dan Wilson:
36 pages from Accident Report that might have something in there:
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs12.htm
MAXW-PBB3-746-782

Don Ledger:
I noticed two discrepancies in the Mantell incident as compared to the AAF report. First is mentions that the weather was CAVU-Ceiling And Visibility Unlimited which doesn't square with the mention of clouds in some reports. Also it states that Mantell "Violated AAF Reg. 60-16 Par. 45. However, Capt. Mantell was requested by Godman Field Control Tower to investigate objects in the sky causing this officer to go above limits of AAF Reg. 60-16." Note that (objects) was mentioned. Not object, indicating more than one bogey might have been seen in the sky by Godman Tower controllers.

Brad Sparks:
Mary and Joel have obtained the map from Barry who got it from C B Moore. The shocker is that Moore apparently even lied about Camp Ripley as the Skyhook launch site.  It was NOT launched from Camp Ripley but from Milaca, Minn., almost 50 MILES from Camp Ripley!!!  This guy can't tell the truth about ANYTHING especially when he alone has the documentation in front of him.

Brad Sparks:
Re: Maps Just to clarify:  Barry G had it in his files all along since 1994, which is when he got it from Moore, not that he recently got it from Moore.  However Mary pried it out of Barry who had to scan it in several sheet segments then email it and then Mary got Joel to stitch the scans together, which he should be done with soon.  Also they are highlighting the 1-6-48 launch in red otherwise it is hard to tell which one is it.

Brad Sparks:
(Joel's working on the map) Nashville Int'l Airport/Berry Field has Winds Aloft / Upper Air twice a day in Jan 1948 up to an average height of about the 257 mb level or 33,000 ft.  Louisville should have similar. Maybe you can navigate to see if the data is actually online or whether NCDC in Asheville NC has to be called by phone to get it.
http://www4.ncdc.noaa.gov/cgi-win/wwcgi.dll?wwDI~StnSrch~StnID~20018355

Fran Ridge:
Transcript of WFIE-TV Show
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell480107_WFIE.htm

-----------------------------

June 2

Fran Ridge:
Jean, Please send that file on Mantell from Loren's UFO History to Brad ASAP.

Fran Ridge:
What about the State Police report of an object 250' in diameter moving at a good clip? This is how it all started and they called Godman

Brad Sparks:
All those initial reports are confused in my mind.  We need solid BB (Sign) reports to sort them out and I didn't find them in the BB files (yet).  Obviously size estimates like that 250-ft are notoriously unreliable -- could have been ten times closer and only 25 ft in size, etc.

Fran Ridge:
Has the news accounts (BB doc text) from Gross BEFORE Mantell in Ky; plus the actual BB Docs of accounts AFTER in Ohio. Still looking for news accounts of incidents around Madisonville.
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/ky_ohio_cases480107dir.htm
NARA-PBB85-429-430

Brad Sparks:
Col. Hix report discussion.

Kevin Randle:
Thomas Mantell died in a tragic mistake of misidentification complicated by his violation of regulations. It's a sad tale but it is time to retire this from the UFO lore.

Fran Ridge:
Mantell didn't violate any regs. He was ordered to pursue this object. When the military asks you to do something, that's an order.

Kevin Randle:
While the skyhook balloons might not have been classified, the project  was and Mantell and those with him and those in the tower were unfamiliar with the skyhook balloons. The evidence available today suggests that Mantell was attempting to intercept a skyhook that was at 80 to 100,000 feet, or something like 10 to 12 miles above him. ......... weather balloons of fifteen or twenty five in diameter, a skyhook that was four of five times as large and made of shiny material, seen at such a distance would certainly fool them. If you look at the drawings of the object made by the men in the tower, it is clear what they were describing.

Brad Sparks:
I believe the NY Times had a big article on Skyhook balloons in Sept 1947 when they were first launched and I think the article was reprinted in papers across the country.  I know of no way that an eyewitness observer can "see" a "project" whether secret or not, a "project" is an intangible and invisible structuring of human organization.  A person can only "see" a balloon, a physical object (and only if big enough and close enough).

Fran Ridge:
There were about 100 launchings of Skyhooks per year, about two a week. Skyhooks were written about (highly publicized) and discussed in unclassified documents. But, there is no launch date and location that even comes close to producing a Skyhook over Godman at that time. There WAS, but that has been changed twice and apparently turns out to be completely wrong. I'm open to new evidence and won't be upset if it indeed turns out to be a balloon explanation, but now is the time to place these events where they properly belong for the record.

Joel Carpenter:
This is the famous statement "declassifying" the research applications of the Skyhook balloon system. "SKYHOOK BALLOONS PUBLICLY REVEALED, This article was published in the daily newspaper The Evening Telegraph, of Dixon, Illinois, USA, on February 13, 1951.
"The physicist (Liddel) said 2.000 reports of 'flying saucers' were checked, and those considered 'whimsical' were eliminated. Of the 'reliable' reports, he said,'"there is not a single observation which is not attributable to the cosmic balloons.'  "
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_publiclyannounced.htm

Fran Ridge:
That's interesting, Joel. We'll make that part of the record that it was officially announced in 1951, a little over three years after the Mantell incident. The part about the physicist checking 2,000 "flying saucer" reports, and after eliminating the "whimsical" ones there wasn't a single case that could not be attributed to "cosmic balloons" (Skyhooks) reminds me of the report about the U-2 years back. Same old bull shit. The piece was obviously released as a debunking ploy, not as accurate information.

Brad Sparks:
This is secrecy revelation-mongering where the alleged secrecy has to be played so that the revelation seems all the more sensational.  What about NY Times news stories in Sept 1947 when the Skyhooks were first launched?  Kinda deflates the whole supersecrecy aspect.

Brad Sparks:
Response to Mary Castner's balloon/wind data.

Jean:
Attached pages from Loren's 1948 UFO History to Fran & Brad. (later posted to list)
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/Mantell_Gross1948.pdf

Brad:
(Gives OK to post analysis).
I would only add one more comment:  Maximum possible range to see a 100 ft Skyhook is 50-60 miles, otherwise it is smaller than the MAR subtended angle of about 1 arcminute.  And that 50-60 miles is assuming very generously that ALL 100 feet of the Skyhook is lit up by sunlight in the daytime of course (NOT visible at all at NIGHT) which I doubt very much.  Looking at the 1994 CAUS article photos of the Jan 6, 1948, launch NOT from Camp Ripley (Moore lied even about that) but launched from 50 miles away at Milaca, Minn., it looks like maybe the 100 foot length includes about 50 feet of cabling to the instrument package and about 50 feet of balloon.

Dan Wilson:
Incident 30 & 32 at Columbus, Ohio
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/ohio_480107docs.htm
MAXW-PBB3-379- 386, 389 - 402

------------------------------

June 3

Dan Wilson:
Between 7:20 and 7:55 P.M., Control Tower operators and four members of the alert crew at Clinton County Air Base, observed a bright object leaving a gaseous green mist. The object gained and lost altitude at terrific bursts of speed.
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/clinton480107dir.htm
MAXW-PBB3-408-429

Brad Sparks:
I know some docs _say_ that but I read all of the actual witness statements from Clinton County AAF/AFB and some report they saw it beginning at 7:00 PM rather than 7:20 and some say it disappeared at 8:00 PM rather than 7:55 (they all reported in EST so the CST times for consistency whould be given as 6:00 to 7:00 PM CST), and they have drawings showing a cone shaped object, as they describe. 

Vladimir Rubtsov, RIAP:
Dear Mr. Thouanel, (you said Mantell case is a mystery, a real one. Nobody knows what happened. Even today) Completely agree! As far back as the late 1970 I happened to discuss this case with some competent people in the Borisoglebsk Air Force Flight School (Russia) and all of them believed that Mantell case could not be easily "explained away".

Brad Spark:
Mantell chased the object for 90 miles at up to 360 mph (he specifically radioed that was his speed before the final climb). Secondly how come he didn't catch up with it going 6 miles a minute, it would take less than 5 minutes???  Instead he chases it for 1/2 HOUR?? I would only add one more comment:  Maximum possible range to see a 100 ft Skyhook is 50-60 miles otherwise it is smaller than the MAR subtended angle of about 1 arcminute.  And that 50-60 miles is assuming very generously that ALL 100 feet of the Skyhook is lit up by sunlight in the daytime of course (NOT visible at all at NIGHT) which I doubt very much.  Looking at the 1994 CAUS article photos of the Jan 6, 1948, launch NOT from Camp Ripley (Moore lied even about that) but launched from 50 miles away at Milaca, Minn., it looks like maybe the 100 foot length includes about 50 feet of cabling to the instrument package and about 50 feet of balloon. IF that is correct (it needs to be checked out) and the Skyhook balloon envelope was only about 50 feet in size then it could not have been seen farther than 25-30 miles away.

Fran Ridge:
That's been the whole haunting part of the incident to me all along. Steve Curtiss is a friend of mine, a local pilot. F-51's can really cruise.

Brad Sparks;
It is now a serious question in my mind as to how anyone could have even seen the alleged Skyhook and perceive shape details unless it was within about 10 MILES of the observer.  It looks like the balloon sac was only half of the 100 feet cited, or only 50 feet in size.  Mantell could not have seen such a Skyhook from 90 miles away, couldn't chase it for 1/2 hour at speeds of 200-360 mph (3-6 miles per minute).

Mary Castnor:
The one thing I do see is on the 7th in Nashville we have a wind speed of 20 and then 10, 10...not sure how this relates to altitude or if it does, but it does pick up faster later (or higher?) so this may account for that apparent STATIONARY report for a time so in two hours it would have covered 20 miles. If spotted first in Maysville then Ft. Knox area..., but again I get temp, direction, spd, but geo_hgt and press_mb I am lost and don't know how it interrelated.

Brad Sparks:
Since the soundings from Nashville at 3 PM on Jan 7, 1948, cut off at 11,000 ft I looked at 3 PM on the days before and after to see what the general pattern was and to see if they got higher altitude readings.  (I should not have to explain why 3 AM soundings are IRRELEVANT to what was going on with the winds around Mantell's crash at 3 PM on Jna 7, as night weather is different from late afternoon for meteorology reasons I don't need to go into.  Of course 3 AM soundings will be relevant farther back up a Skyhook path to Minn. but not at NASHVILLE where Seyfert sighted a balloon-like object at 4:30-4:45 PM.)
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/winds_aloft.htm

Jean Waskiewicz:
Brad,  I have attached the pages from Loren's 1948 History that pertain to this incident.

Brad Sparks:
So there were 1:00 and 1:10 PM sightings then at 1:20.  Godman/Ft Knox itself had sightings reported to Godman Tower from MP's. Obviously Loren's notes show he got all this from BB files so they must be in there somewhere.  Also he has LOTS of errors including MISQUOTING Seyfert to drop out the "first" seen moving SSE and omits "then W."

Dick Hall:
These are some of the reports (I saw a few that turned up in Allen  Hynek's personal files several years ago) that convince me something more than a Skyhook ballon was there. Skyhooks simply don't zoom up and down at high speed. Maybe there was a Skyhook present that caused some of the sightings (even that has not been clearly established, I don't think), but if so, Brad Sparks has done a pretty good analysis disputing that interpreation for the Mantell object. It is quite possible that a Skyhook intermittently visible could have been present and caused some sightings. Wouldn't be  the first time in UFO history that witnesses confused two separate objects. I recall a MUFON case where police had a legitimate UFO sighting, then began to confuse a distant USAF aircraft for the UFO they had seen earlier. Those things happen.
 
Joel Carpenter:
Document shows concern over similar crash in 1964 (Oregon).
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=MAXW-PBB3-707

Brad Sparks:
Yes indeed.  And I suspect, my inference reading between the lines, that the FAA was bothered that in the Oregon case the body was a mess but with Mantell it was mostly intact.  Also the Mantell Accident Summary says there was no evidence of any sliding along the ground.  It came down absolutely 90 degrees vertically.  That's surprising.

Brad Sparks:
Great maps! <snip>Right off the bat I can see  that Flight B on 1-6-48 went slightly W of S at about a heading of 190 degs, reaching its maximum altitude of 80,000 ft in 3 hours -- thus we can forget about the Skyhook being at 100,000 ft over Kentucky.  Its MAXIMUM height was only 80,000 ft.  I don't know where the 100,000 ft came from but the actual tracking shows it is WRONG.
http://nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_maps.htm

------------------------------

June 4, 2006

Tom DeMary:
Venus was not simply in the sky; it set at 19:58 EST in the WSW as seen from Wilmington on 7 Jan 1948, about as close in time and space to the disappearance of the UFO over the horizon as might ever be reported.

Loren Gross::
You may put my version of the Mantell case on the web site. It may help sort things out. Include all footnotes.

Brad Sparks:
Mantell cover-up. 8-page response to DeMary's Venus explanation.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_cover-up.htm

Dan Wilson:
After the fantastic ball made a high speed, six mile circle of the entire airbase, it returned to its original position over the runway where it drifted around awhile and then dipped down touching a grass strip that was a cleared extension of the runway. Pickering was warned not to discuss the UFO incident with anyone.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/lockbourne480107dir.htm
USAF-SIGN8-217-218

Brad Sparks:
I can't even digest all of this!!!  Wow wow WOWWWW!!!  Where is the part about how the UFO "dipped down touching a grass strip that was a cleared extension of the runway"???  And Pickering being warned not to talk?  I am on overload and can't find things. Too much data. Three turns of 360 degs each 30-40 secs in a diameter of about 2 miles is 600-700 mph at 7 g's centripetal acceleration!!!!  (Pickering had estimated 500+ mph.)  And almost landed at one point!  If more distant than the 3-5 miles estimated then all these velocity and acceleration figures scale up accordingly.

Fran Ridge:
See Loedding "issued instructions that no report...would be made until further instructions were given." (Our findings May 28, 2006)
Comments: Stated on page 2 Part 2: Mr. Loedding a civilian investigator from Wright Field, arrived at Godman Field on January 9, 1948 and made a thorough investigation. Part 3. After obtaining statements and full information on the matter, he (Loedding) issued instructions that no report on the subject would be made until further instructions were given.

-------------------------------

June 5, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Pickering re-interviewed by Bill Jones, April 12, 1977. Taken from UFO's: A History 1948 - Loren Gross
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/pickerings_interview_jones.htm.

Brad Sparks:
Where is the part about how the UFO "dipped down touching a grass strip that was a cleared extension of the runway"?

Fran Ridge:
The UFOH 1948 is where that came from, but two docs I found say "came very near:
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/lockbourne480107dir.htm

In fact, this is one Wendy found a long time ago
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantdoc4aorig.htm

Brad Sparks:
I thought your other postings already answered this, it was a 1977 APRO interview of Pickering. That Jan 14, 1948, doc states it "appeared to touch the ground or was very close to touching it," which confirms the 1977 interview.

Fran Ridge:
I don't know (without looking) about the interview, but FTR we will have to go with the two docs that say "very near the ground". Don't you think?

Brad Sparks:
No. I wasn't challenging it, just wondering.  The Jan 14, 1948, report fully confirms it, that it "appeared to touch the ground" or came very close (an apparent caution about saying too much that would sound too unbelievable). 

Fran Ridge:
Dan, Since earlier documents (two of them) say "very near the ground" it would seem that the 1977 interview might reflect either Pickering's thoughts that year or an error in the interview notes. But as Brad pointed out, Pickering probably was afraid to put into the 1948 report (remember landing cases were rare in 1948) what he really saw, especially when was warned not to even talk about the incident.

Brad Sparks:
Yes but .... the Jan 14, 1948, report DOES say it "appeared to touch the ground" or come close to it, so the impression was not invented only decades later in 1977 for APRO, it was reported all along just not elaborated on because of understandable sensitivities.

Tom DeMary:
The "Wendy" document is at at the Blue Book site. In the 1977 interview Pickering also claims that the object made a circle around the entire air base, something not claimed in anyone's (including Pickering's) 1948 Blue Book statements. That seems more than "a little off" to me. The 1977 interview is included in K. Randle's Mantell article at UFO updates.
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=USAF-SIGN1-263

Brad Sparks:
Well I beg to differ.  Pickering's 1948 account specifically places the object maneuvering over Commercial Point 3-5 miles to the WSW of Lockbourne and disappearing into the high overcast at 120 degs (ESE) at the end of 20 minutes of maneuvers which had included a landing or near-landing.  This makes a circling of the base consistent with appearing on both sides of Lockbourne, east and west.  Can't make it out to be in one direction only so as to make it Venus -- which was not in the ESE at 120 degs azimuth. Thanks for locating the BB Archive doc refs as it led me to the unsanitized name of the Lockbourne amateur astronomer Control Tower operator I previously discussed who turns out to be Frank M. Eisele. This is now bringing to memory that maybe McDonald investigated this case and maybe interviewed Eisele and others (it's a vague memory, not sure). 

Fran Ridge:
I won't put this (transcript) on CE and SHG yet. Want you to read it first, then I'll post it. Be ready to respond to
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107_WFIE.htm

Brad Sparks;
Well in a way it's laughable.  Mantell chased the object for 90 miles from Godman to Franklin.  A 100-foot Skyhook isn't even visible to the naked eye from 90 miles distance.  That's an angular size of 0.7 arcminute and Minimum Angle of Resolution is about 1 arcminute.  Sorry doesn't wash, it's a violation of the laws of physics and physiological optics. Kevin seems to think that Mantell could climb vertically straight up to a Skyhook at 100,000 ft (notice even Moore does not say the Skyhook went that high).  Does he not realize that the F-51D had a maximum climb angle of only 17 degrees?  It couldn't go straight up like some later jets could. Also the 10 minutes at 20,000 ft without oxygen reminds me of a comment that was reported of Mantell's radio conversation in AF files where Mantell said he would fly that way for 10 minutes then break off.  That could mean Mantell knew exactly how long he had and was well aware of what he was doing.  Also the oxygen mask blocking the clear reception of voice reminds me that the last transmission was garbled and could not be understood.

Drew Speier:
I may do a follow-up report on the Mnatell case in July.

Kevin Randle:
Read the transcript and I think there are a couple of points that need to be made for the sake of accuracy. Thomas Mantell was not an "ace." He was a transport pilot who received the Distinguished Flying Cross for action during the Normandy Invasion, but he did not shoot down five enemy aircraft (the requirement to be an ace). That is not to say he wasn't brave, as the DFC proves, just that he didn't fly fighters during the war.

Fran Ridge:
Hi Kevin, I wasn't aware of that, so when WFIE did the story I didn't make any comments. I was more concerned about the fact that they wanted to use the story because it was somewhat "local", and I did strongly suggest that we had about 1500 unknowns and that the Mantell case was not listed AS an unknown. It still isn't, but there are far too many problems with the evidence gleaned from BB docs recently to write it off as a Skyhook. I suspect that it will remain a mystery, if nothing else.

Fran Ridge:
There were about 100 launchings of Skyhooks per year, about two a week. Skyhooks were written about (highly publicized) and discussed in unclassified documents. But, there is no launch date and location that even comes close to producing a Skyhook over Godman at that time. There WAS, but that has been changed twice and apparently turns out to be completely wrong. I'm open to new evidence and won't be upset if it indeed turns out to be a balloon explanation, but now is the time to place these events where they properly belong for the record.

Kevin Randle:
Thomas Mantell died in a tragic mistake of misidentification complicated by his violation of regulations. It is a sad tale but it is time to retire this from the UFO lore.

Mary Castnor:
Boy did I stir up a mess. Just a FYI we will be posting the Skyhook tracking chart as well as some other data by the weekend I hope. So stay tuned.

Fran Ridge:
Mary, by the time this is all over we will have the case presented where it rightfully belongs, Skyhook or no Skyhook. Too many loose ends and problems as Brad has skillfully pointed out. But not for long. Then on to bigger and better things. I thing you are doing all of us a favor. Anxious to see your report.

----------------------------

June 6, 2006

Dan Wilson: 
Prof. Shapley, Director of Harvard Observatory said that a new comet should be visible in the northern hemisphere on the southwestern horizon on about January 1, 1948. Information pertaining to the appearance of a flaming red cone in the skies of Wilmington, Ohio, on January 7, 1948, at between 7:20 and 7:55 P.M.
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/wilmington480107pr.htm
USAF-SIGN1-530-533

Brad Sparks:
Without the centralized directories you put on NICAP and the BB Archive access to scattered BB docs this would be hopeless and nothing could be accomplished.

Dan Wilson:
Corporal Hudson at Clinton AFB monitors Godman Control Tower theodolite tracking. Page II. The following infomation came over Plan 62. This observation was made at Godman control tower in Kentucky with an 8" telescope, cone-shaped object 43 feet by 100 feet, red with green tail, height, 4 miles. Observation made at Godman Field from 1854 to 1906 CST with a theodolite of a triangle-shaped object at 2.4 elevation, 254.6 Azimuth. Object last seen at 1.2 elevation, 253.0 Azimuth.
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/godman480107tscope.htm
USAF-SIGN1-526-527

------------------------------

June 7

Fran Ridge:
Brad, first of all, what is Plan 62?

Brad Sparks:
I think it is the intercom system between Godman, Standiford, Lockbourne, Clinton County, etc., which was patched together the afternoon of Jan 7, 1948, to keep everyone up to the minute on events.  People mention hearing about sightings at the other bases as it happened. Here are the figures based on US Naval Observatory calculations. <snip>  The problem with this being Venus is that the azimuths are off by 7-8 degs and the elevation by 7 degs at first, but more troubling is that the object WENT SOUTH from 6:54 to 7:02 PM, instead of Venus which WENT NORTH.  A setting celestial body cannot do this.  However the nearly simultaneous disappearance of Venus and the object is troubling too. <snip> And of course it could not possibly be a Skyhook balloon which would be invisible in the darkness.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_venus.htm

Tom DeMary:
What about visibility, brightness? Note latest Airways Op report.

Brad Sparks:
We are all still compiling data.  One place that had Orner's report was incomplete.  Some of the rest of his data was recorded at another air base listening in on Godman's reporting of it, heard by Cpl Hudson on the "Plan 62" intercom/interphone system though he was at Clinton Co. AFB. 

Fran Ridge:
This is not new, Brad, I know, but I keep going back to it. And it is one of the reasons I never "bought" the skyhook explanation in the first place, let alone alone Venus.
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=MAXW-PBB3-710

Brad Sparks:
Well we don't seem to have direct witness names and statements from Ky St Police.  No one else reports "250-300 ft" or "pretty rapid clip."  We need that corroborated from others if we can't get names and statements from Ky St Police.  Everyone else talks about slow moving until Pickering at Lockbourne that night. This is not a tight case. It's a lot of loose ends which have to be put together. The fact that private pilots tried to chase some object besides Mantell is a surprising new turn of events to be finding out about only in 2006.

Dan Wilson:
Cpl. James Hudson At Godman Tower, Jan. 7, 1948
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=USAF-SIGN1-526
USAF-SIGN1-526

Brad Sparks:
This caption by Dan is wrong, he misreads Hudson's account as Hudson being at Godman and doesn't understand that Hudson was in Ohio at Clinton Co. AFB listening in one Godman reporting its theodolite readings. Hudson wasn't at Godman.

Fran Ridge:
Tom caught that, but hell I wasn't sure what the doc said either. So Hudson wasn't a witnesss, just heard reports

Brad Sparks:
Hudson WAS a witness AT Clinton Co. AFB, Wilmington, Ohio, along with at least 5 others at CC AFB, I think.  He HEARD over the intercom the details of Godman's theodolite trackings done by Lt Orner.  If it wasn't for Hudson we wouldn't have all those exact figures (or else Orner's numbers are all somewhere we haven't found yet).  There is one place with a few of Orner's theodolite numbers but not all of them

Jean Waskiewicz:
I just checked and this reference is on page 34 in the published version. In the copy of the manuscript that I have this section is on pages 8 & 9 and Boggs is not lined through. I have attached both original scans in jpg format to show Boggs has not been lined out. Is it possible that there may be a different version of the manuscript out there somewhere? (Page 8 & 9)
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/Chapter_Three_Final.pdf

Fran Ridge:
Here is the 19-page manuscript version of the Mantell incident, highlighted for pertinent lines.
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/RuppManusCh3hlight.htm
Normal version with no highlighting
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/RuppManusCh3.htm
Let's digest this BEFORE we post!

Brad Sparks:
There are some errors here.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_ruppmanuscript.htm

Dan Wilson:
SUBJECT: Report of Unusual Circumstance, 1940 hours, January 7, 1948
Observation of strange light to the Southwest of Lockbourne. The object was 15 degrees above the horizon. It then descended to the horizon and then ascended to its original position. Its course was eliptical, counter clock wise. The witness was Airways Operator CAF-7. (Brad Sparks:  This is the Lockbourne Control Tower operator who was an amateur astronomer, Frank M. Eisele, whose unsanitized report is elsewhere on BB Archives.)
http://nicap.org/docs/mantell/lockbourne480107Bdir.htm
NARA-PBB2-511

----------------------------------------

June 8, 2006

Mary Castner:
Still working on the Mantell files for uploading. I am sure everyone will argue about that too. Was Venus involved or wasn't it...seems a mute point as people definitely saw a unusual balloon bulb shaped/cone/parachute/pear, with rope and payload or without probably depending on distance away. Just for the record a Skyhook automatically dropped it's payload by parachute if it descended to 30,000 ft. Then again I suppose everyone will argue about that too:)) There is enough errors in the reports that there is no 100% certainty that a direction or other reading is accurate. I personally go by the visual discription which is clearly that of a Skyhook and one was definitely launched from Camp Ripley, MN launching site, 1/6/48.

---------------------------------------

June 9

Tom DeMary:
I look forward to more documents. The Sign/Blue Book documents do have errors, and seem to lack any precise information about the relative position in the sky of the object that Mantell pursued. Articles from local Kentucky newspapers might sort out some of the confusion. The visual descriptions of the Godman Field personnel and those of the Elizabethtown police (Elizabethtown was the flight corridor) point to "Skyhook" - I agree. All of the reports of the night time sightings (from 1948) are consistent with misperceptions of Venus. (I consider the 1977 base-circling revision of Pickering dubious, in conflict with his own 1948 testimony,  and in conflict with that of the three other witnesses at Lockbourne).

Brad Sparks:
Pickering's 1977 testimony does not conflict with his 1948 testimony -- in Jan 1948 he reported the object disappeared to the EAST at 120 degs azimuth (about ESE).  Venus was to the WSW (about 240 degs) at that time in the early evening.  We've been over this before.

I could have jumped on this sooner if my computer had not crashed, but you can go back over my postings with the 215 degree azimuth determined by Godman Tower and used to send Mantell and his two wingmen after it.  Complete with Godman Tower CORRECTING Mantell's heading slightly, by 5 degs to get him exactly onto the 215 heading.  Sounds to me like a lot of very "precise" positional data from Godman Field.

The BB files thus do have "precise" info on the position in the sky of the object that Mantell pursued.  Godman base commander Col Guy F. Hix stated that it was at azimuth 215 degs (about SSW), and as I said the BB files show that Godman Tower even corrected Mantell's flight heading with it.  News clips report that Col. Hix used a bracket to align his sighting of the object, which helped him determine that the object did not move for a long time, over an 1 hour.  Even Venus moved 17 degs in 1 hour and the Skyhook balloon was moving at about 20-30 mph supposedly to the SE, so at 100+ miles away (when it was too far away to be visible from Godman), when it was south of Nashville, it would have moved about 10 degs in 1 hour.  If it was close enough to be visible, like within 50 miles depending on the size of its visible sunlit area (parts not brightly sunlit are not visible at great distances) then this movement in 1 hour is about 20 degs.

Venus was at 33-35 degs elevation from 2:15 to 3 PM CST that day, from Godman Tower's location (37 54.4 N, 85 58.0 W).  The Skyhook balloon at 80,000 ft (15 miles high) when south of Nashville, would have been extremely low on the horizon from Godman Tower (and from Mantell's plane too at first) at about 6 degs elevation.  If the UFO was at 45 degs elevation, no matter how much reasonable witness error by Col Hix you postulate, you are not going to be able to make the Skyhook fit.  Venus is not even visible in bright sunlight to the naked eye, and if it was just barely visible it is absurd that anyone would take it seriously.

Brad Sparks:
Yes the map records the 1-6-48 Skyhook launch among a dozen Skyhooks from late 1947 to early 1949.  But they were NOT launched from Camp Ripley, that's another Moore lie, but launched from Milaca, Minn., 43 miles away.  Moore was NOT personally present contrary to his phony-baloney "strong memories" of launching the 1-6-48 Skyhook.  The Skyhook went straight SOUTH on almost a straight line, to azimuth 190 degs (slightly W of S), which is NOT the SE heading needed to get to Kentucky.  But since the tracking was lost after only 3 hours when it got to max altitude 80,000 ft, 63 miles from launch, it could have been blown by winds almost anywhere at some time after 3 hours and we would only know by reported visual sightings in newspapers since no one was getting weather data from higher than about 30,000 ft on a routine daily basis so we can't just check the upper winds.

The news reports from Nashville, Tenn., are pretty clearly that of a large Skyhook-like balloon headed SE, and many people sighted it with telescopes, including a 100x telescope from a radio station, descriptions include a "glassy" look which is like the translucent plastic used, "pear" shape with a "lumpy" cable (the photos of the 1-6-48 launch show NO "basket" below but a long cable with "lumps" for instruments).  The clincher is the amateur astronomer in or near Nashville who reported the exact times the balloon changed color from white sunlight to yellow at 4:50 PM to red sunset lighting at 5:05 PM to disappearance in earth's shadow at 5:12 PM.  This fits a balloon at 80,000 ft, and not 60,000 or 100,000 ft.  And that was the 1-6-48 Skyhook's altitude -- 80,000 ft.  That would mean astronomer Seyfert was wrong in estimating the balloon was at 25,000 ft (also when the Skyhook descended below 30,000 ft the cable would detach the instruments but that did not happen so it must not have gotten below 30,000 ft yet).

However everyone sighted the balloon to the SOUTH of Nashville at about 4:30 PM heading SE, "directly above the sun" (or higher than about 15 degs elevation) while observers in Columbia, Tenn., sighted the balloon to their NORTH at about 4 PM thus bracketing its location as between Nashville and Columbia, and thus about 150 miles away from Godman Field at the closest.  At Columbia a local Navy spokesman saw and identified the balloon as a special high-altitude "Naval weather balloon" that tended to disintegrate at high altitudes.  So much for Skyhook being a top secret in 1948.  ("Skyhook" itself was not a classified codename but was the PR nickname used in publicity releases.)

It simply defies the laws of physics for a 70-foot Skyhook only partially lit by the sun to be visible by the naked eye from 150 miles away from Godman Field.  Even Ruppelt admitted that a 100 ft Skyhook was visible only about 50-60 miles (one of the few bits of technical data Ruppelt actually got right, among the laughable blunders, probably because someone else did the research not him).  A 70 ft Skyhook could not have been visible farther than about 45 miles away.

----------------------------------------

June 10

Brad Sparks:
As I said at the start of the present controversy I don't know if this is a UFO or an IFO.  But if it is a Skyhook balloon it is not very well documented. If it is a UFO it is not very well documented. But a little more background on Mantell might be pertinent from his "closest friend" Capt Richard L. Tyler, Operations Officer at Standiford Field, Louisville, who was also the official Accident Investigator.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_june10.htm

Tom DeMary:
Certainly the Godman Field observers could not tell what they were looking at 100 miles+ range (unaided vision), but they *might* see the reflected sunlight from what is effectively a very large mirror.

Brad Sparks:
The Skyhook balloons were made of transparent plastic like household Saran wrap or dry cleaning bags only tougher.  They were not mirrors!  The sun would barely have a fractional percentage of sheen off the plastic. There is simply no way that a 70-foot transparent balloon which looked transparent to witnesses could be visible at all beyond about 45 miles, which is 1 arcminute angular size. No one ever reported seeing any "mirror" like flashes of reflected sunlight off the Skyhook.  The only light ever described was steady, not flickering, not shimmering, not flashing.  The fact that Lt Clements could not see the Skyhook when he came back to look and was about 40 miles away proves that 40-45 miles was about the limit of visibility of the Skyhook.  (Many years later mammoth Skyhooks 250-feet in size were launched but obviously don't count because 3-4 times larger.) 

Dick Hall:
After reading Brad Sparks's analysis today, I think it is time for me to recount my sighting of a Moby Dick balloon about 1956 in New Orleans. I made lots of notes at the time, but am not sure where they are now. So this is based on memory alone.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_hall_june10.htm

------------------------------

June 11, 2006

Tom DeMary:
OK, I surrender.  I probably can't see a 5 foot [wide] car 1 mile away. This means that I also can't see a 15 x 5 ft object 15 x 1 miles away; that is, a 75 foot object 15 miles away. Furthermore, cars aren't even translucent; they reflect light, unlike Skyhook balloons, so I have been told, which should make the balloons even harder to see. The altitude of the 73 ft balloon over Nashville has been proven to be 80,000 ft or 15 miles, so this same argument also proves that nobody on the ground would have spotted the 73 ft balloon over Nashville, because nobody on the ground was closer than 15 miles to the balloon.

Brad Sparks:
The original figures I gave for 20/20 vision are that a 70-foot object is at the limit of visual acuity at about 45 miles, it is 1 arcminute.  Do you dispute that?  Nitpicking at the boundary lines don't cut it.  Prove that the nearly transparent Skyhook balloon could be seen from 140 miles away don't quibble about 15 miles vs. 20 miles.  Prove that many people are capable of noticing and reporting a 0.3 arcminute object in the sky.  Some people certainly could not have seen it at 15-20 miles, but others could and did.  I contend that NO ONE can see a 70-foot object like the Skyhook at 140 miles. 

Joel Carpenter:
Come on, Brad - the 100 foot diameter Echo balloon satellites were in a _900 mile+_ high orbit and could easily be seen from the ground.

Brad Sparks:
Come on Joel, the Echo satellites were MIRROR REFLECTORS made of aluminized (METAL) mylar plastic and brightly reflected sunlight so that they were "brighter than stars."  The Skyhooks were NOT made of reflective MIRROR-like material but of TRANSPARENT dry-cleaner bag type plastic.
http://www.astronautix.com/craft/echo.htm
http://lws.gsfc.nasa.gov/news/solar_sails_conf/Muller.pdf

Fran Ridge:
Since there were about two launches of Skyhooks per week (about a hundred a year) one would think there would be many UFO reports attributable to them.
http://ufologie.net/press2/eveningtelegraph13feb1951.htm
Besides just launchings, even more important would be how long they are airborne, meaning many would be floating around at one time. WHY, why did this particular Skyhook (which I also contend was not) spark so much attention? Not so much because a man was killed and eveybody knew it and was out looking, because the State Police at Madisonville were getting reports of an object 250' in diameter BEFORE they called the tower and BEFORE Mantell knew anything about anything. As Brad mentioned to me, we need to find out the source and content of THOSE reports, the ones that occurred before everybody was perked up to listen about something going on after a pilot was killed chasing a strange object.

Now, concerning what Mantell reportedly saw, if he couldn't have, and didn't see a Skyhook, whether this was a UFO situation or not, what DID he see? What would a pilot of Mantell's caliber be describing that appeared to him to be "large and metallic, tremendous in size"? Even if he COULD see the Skyhook, he wouldn't have described it as "tremendous in size" or "large and mentallic". He did see an object "above and ahead of me". If he would have been close enough to actually SEE the object (which he was) a Skyhook would have then been described as a bright object which he couldn't identify, at best. The incidents occurring at the time of the Mantell incident are part of the Mantell report, but next we need to document even more so the two incident we consider to be potential UFO incidents: at least Lockbourne & Columbus.

Fran Ridge:
Joel, I saw and photographed Echo several times, but seriously doubt any reflection would cause any object to be described by a pilot as large and metallic, tremendous in size. I can see a pilot mystified by an object like that, but I can't fathom anyone using those words unless they meant it. Besides, this wasn't at night for gosh sakes. This was broad daylight.

Jan Aldrich:
I agree with Dick Hall's posting. The arguments surrounding balloon appearance and behavoir in recent postings are becoming more and more ridiculous and silly. I have some sixteen years experience in meteorology that involves thousands of balloon observations of all types.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_aldrich_june11.htm

Brad Sparks:
Fran while this is great it is an unintelligible listing.  All I see is a mass of numbers and letters.  It needs a more reader-freindly format.
http://www.nicap.org/mantelldir.htm

Brad Sparks:
By the way grazing angle reflection requires angles of less than 1 degree between trhe surface and the light source -- in this case the Skyhook would have had to be within 1 degree of the sun thus blindingly masked in glare and not visible.  Furthermore, the areal dimensions of a partial "sheen" of sun reflection off a 70-foot Skyhook is MUCH LESS than 70 feet and is nowhere near sunlight brilliance. Furthermore, naked eye witnesses in the Godman Field region sighted the object with extended dimensions much larger than a pinpoint of light.  Godman commander Col Hix estimated 1/4 Full Moon by the naked eye (NO he didn't confuse the binocular view and was very clear about that in his statement

Jan Aldrich:
Where did you get 70 feet, same place you got all the information on Mogul #4?  Out of the air.  I don't believe you can tell how big the skyhook was unless you have met data for that day and know the exact altitude and then it would only be guessimates  Quanatitive information my foot!

Brad Sparks:
If you had been paying attention instead of pontificating you would have known that the 70 foot size of the 1-6-48 launch AS PREVIOUSLY POSTED NUMEROUS TIMES (take note Mary) this past week came from the tracking data.  When Mary can post Joel's patching-up of the multiple scans of the drafting-paper-sized map you'll see the balloon size or model type is recorded.  And the plastic doesn't stretch in the stratosphere -- it breaks in the extreme cold.

Joel Carpenter:
Fran, there was an internal history of the Air Force balloon program  published in 1959 that included this paragraph. "A further advantage, or disadvantage, of plastic balloons is that from a distance they look remarkably like flying saucers." 

Fran Ridge:
Same thing the CIA said about U-2's. Joel, I believe balloons have fooled people. I saw one (I think) moving rapidly E-W one day and it looked like a flying disc. It could have been either one because it was going the wrong way, normally, but I only logged the date and time FTR just in case. Never took it seriously.

Has anyone wondered why Mantell didn't describe more than he did? Did he pass out that fast? Or is it possible that his radio acted up like the F-86 did over Albuquerque in 1952. Also, he would have caught up with that Skyhook real fast. He would have passed under it (because it was much higher), but it should not have outdistanced him. He said it was moving about "half my speed". Ever wonder how an experienced pilot could say that about a distant balloon of any kind?

Don Ledger:
Hi Joel, I'm guessing the first row of photos and second from the left had the Sun directly behind it. The 4th from the left would be more like what I would have envisioned that Mantell was chasing if it was a balloon. But in the second row, the 4h from the left is more like what the witnesses were reporting parachute shaped, ice-cream cone shaped etc. Sorry if this is silly and ridiculous.

------------------------------

June 12, 2006

Brad Sparks:
This is cute but it's not science. One of the balloons depicted, as Don points out, has the SUN DIRECTLY BEHIND IT!!!  Gimme a break!  Another one shown is obviously a mylar metallized mirror-reflective balloon which was not invented yet for Skyhooks in 1948. So, no one is willing to defend the fraud Charles B. Moore the so-called "balloon expert" who cannot correctly calculate balloon ascent rates with simple grade-school math????  Whose fabricated figures just happen to agree with his anti-Roswell slander scenario??? No one wants to assert that 2 + 2 = 5 ? Or 100 / 12 = 350 as Moore claims??? <>I will give $1,000 to anyone who can prove that Moore's figures of 100 ft /12 mins = 350 ft/min.  Is that enough of an incentive?  Or will you all just put up or shut up? 

By the way, I happen to know that the 1-6-48 Skyhook DID include MIRROR-like REFLECTORS that NO ONE DOGGONE SAW in Tennessee or Kentucky.  Yet the TRANSPARENT dry-cleaner-bag-like plastic is supposed to have brilliantly reflected sunlight like a mirror according to people on this List -- yet the actual MIRROR reflectors did not!  But I can't talk about how I know, you'll have to ask Mary to let me talk about it. 

Tom DeMary:
I originally said that people at Godman Field *might* have seen a balloon at Nashville because it was such a large reflector, and that I did not know how to calculate the apparent brightness. It turns out that the math involved is pretty simple, at least to calculate an upper limit.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_demary_june12.htm

Brad Sparks:
Thanks for the calculation. I also consulted the formula in the Condon Report. (See detail)
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_june12.htm

------------------------------

June 13, 2006

Brad Sparks:
Response to Tom DeMary (June 4) comments.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_june13.htm

Joel Carpenter:
Ah, yes. The money shot. It was worth the wait. The UFO was mimicking the balloon and Venus.  It's a fact that there were several interesting sightings of anomalous objects by Skyhook technicians while they were tracking their own balloon.

Jean Waskiewicz:
I have received a copy of this report (AccRep) from Rod Dyke. It is 127 pages long.

Brad Sparks:
Wow it keeps getting smaller and smaller. I think it was first described as 400+ pages, then the next figure I saw was like 250 pages and now we find out it's only 127 pages. I wonder what's going on here?

Dan Wilson:
Fran Ridge: The documents below were found by researcher, Dan Wilson. Page three of this restricted routing slip had something we all had missed. Venus, we knew, had been ruled out a long time ago. But Brad Sparks brought to the attention of the UFO community, the statement by A. Deyarmond, made in November of 1948 (11 months after the incident), that the case was considered unexplained.
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=USAF-SIGN7-26
USAF-SIGN7-26-28
NARA-PBB2-848

Dick Hall:
Col Garrison Wood wrote a letter to Keyhoe in 1960 about the case, and said that as he recalled it, "Patterson Field" had contacted Godman _before_ their sightings that morning and told them to report any. It would be interesting to see whether this was documented at the time.

Brad Sparks:
As you mentioned to me offline Wood has serious credibility issues to say nothing of whether to rely on 1960 memories of exact timing -- did Wright-Pat contact Godman BEFORE or AFTER the first sightings???  Wood was forced out of the AF for corruption charges.

Dick Hall:
If the 1960 letter to Keyhoe survives, it will be in the NICAP files at CUFOS, probably in the Mantell files.
I have just discovered some relevant news clippings about the Mantell case, transcribed by Ted Bloecher, and will scan them for you.

Mark Rodeghier:
Because of all the recent discussion about this case, Mary C. borrowed the CUFOS Mantell and is reviewing them at home. So you can contact her about looking for this document.

Fran Ridge:
Mark, This may be real important. I'd love to see this posted with a CUFOS credit on the dir. Can you check into this for us?

------------------------------

June 14, 2006

Joel Carpenter:
Greenwood/Carpenter Map overlay (1.5 GB)
http://www.ufocentral.org/greenwood/mantell/Mantell%202%20sightings_overlay2.jpg

Mary Castner:
Newsclips, map, skyhook launch charts
http://www.ufocentral.org/greenwood/mantell/

-------------------------------

June 15, 2006

Brad Sparks:
To Everyone:  Notice my subject line:  "MANTELL CASE COVERUP."  Well no one has commented on 58-year-delayed revelation of the AF COVERUP in the Mantell case -- the AF's stunning "unexplained" conclusion after "conclusively" ruling out Venus, in secret Nov 1948 documents including one by Albert Deyarmond at AMC Intelligence.  No one ever heard of or knew about this before I discovered it recently, we're finding out only after 58 years.  It rivals the AMC TOP SECRET Estimate of the Situation and at least we have copies of the relevant documents. 

Joel Carpenter:
Your points are all valid, even taking the hyperbole into account. I am sure this subject is trying the patience of the list, so I won't prolong it except to note that I agree with you in general. Obviously, if this case was straightforward, it would have been buttoned up by the emeritus ufologists decades ago. It's not straighforward. The evidence is internally contradictory. Which data you choose to accept, and which you choose to discard, either way it says something about where you stand relative to the whole phenomenon,

Richard Hall:
I second Joel's sentiment. The new discoveries are quite fascinating and a thorough re-analysis certainly is called for. However, I am not particularly troubled by some internal inconsistencies. That is virtually always the case in human testimony. Further, I am now thoroughly convinced that a Skyhook balloon (or equivalent) definitely was observed from Nashville, Tennessee. We need to pin down the tracks of all such balloons in the area about that time.

------------------------------

June 16, 2006

Tom DeMary:
The Blue Book papers report "Seyfert's balloon" as SSE of Nashville, moving SSE, then West at 10 mph. I suggest that might should have been "moving SSE, west of Nashville at 10 mph."

Brad Sparks:
The problem with this theory is that the AF document actually says Seyfert said it was "moving FIRST SSE, then W" so it's much more alteration required to force-fit it into your suggested emendation.  It's an extended discussion of MOVEMENT.

-----------------------------

June 19, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Don't think that we have this document yet. 12 April 1948 letter states:
"Capt. James F. Duesler is no longer a member of this Organization, therefore status of investigation promised Mr. A. C. Loedding by subject officer can not be determined."
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=USAF-SIGN1-367
USAF-SIGN1-367

------------------------------

June 21, 2006

Tom DeMary:
Loedding clamps down on UFO reports.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs17.htm
USAF-SIGN1-376-377

Dick Hall:
Fran, The data I submitted had to do with sunrise and sunset, not Venus setting times. I was comparing the sunset times to the changing colors seen on the "UFO" in that one story. That and the Seyfert observationand a couple of others show pretty definitely that a Skyhook-like balloon was in the area. They reflect sunlight very brightly, as my own 1956 or so sighting indicates. Also, Venus as you know doesn't sit still for 1-1/2 hours as Hix reported. Venus has practically nothing to do with the Mantell case, I agree.If a Skyhook weren't brightly illuminated by sunlight no doubt his calculations about how far the human eye can see something would be close to the mark. The light reflection changes that altogether.

Drew Speier:
Fran, Would you be available next week, say after Wednesday, to do another interview? We want to run our follow-up piece to the Mantell story the second week of July.  You will probably be the only person we interview for this one. We want to talk about how the investigation was reopened because of our stories.  I think we can mention how you are looking at Blue Book files now, etc., as well.

Fran Ridge:
Depends on my analysts' final comments. The re-investigation is ongoing and we are going over the skyhook path charts. No question a skyhook was in the region, but not everybody could have seen it. We think we can prove Mantell could not have seen it at all, let alone risk his life going after it. Also found evidence of a cover-up. But we have to get this right, ftr, and everybody caught the interview we had.  And who knows, somebody reading it might be another key witness. We found another F-51 crash; pilot killed. BEDFORD, Indiana. UFO involved, and radar. And no records in Blue Book files as yet, but we are only up to mid-1952 on those.

------------------------------

June 22, 2006

Fran Ridge:
Brad, I want to do this (interview), but I don't want to go out on a limb. What do you think we have at this point?

Brad Sparks:
You can say that we still don't know it was a UFO rather than an IFO.  But the 70-foot Skyhook balloon that is now known to have been in the area was south of Nashville, Tenn., and at about 160 miles distance was too small or far away to be seen from Godman Field at Fort Knox, Kentucky.  The balloon would have had to be something like 1,000 feet in size to be both visible and prominent enough for anyone to pay attention to it. The AF secretly concluded the Mantell case was "unexplained," a fact that was not discovered until this renewed investigation, after almost 58 years.  The AF had always dismissed it as either a Skyhook balloon or the planet Venus, neither of which were visible, apparently. Other sightings that day are still being investigated, but some may be actual UFO's.  The Mantell Accident Report is still to be analyzed (by the way what is the progress on that???). 

------------------------------

June 25, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Jean, Thanks for the crash report. Looking it over carefully. Perhaps I am a bit too suspicious but page 14 of 76 (Richard L Tylers's report) and page 20 of 76 ( Glenn T. Mayes's report) sound very much alike. Both talk of the plane doing three circles and then go into a power dive and slowly rotating, and did not burn on impact. A power dive? That is okay for Tyler of the ANG but for a civilian (Mayes) to say a power dive, that sounds like he was being coached--told what to say--get your stories straight , etc. Great job!

Dan Wilson:
Mantell Incident Crash Report 
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/MantellAccRptPages65-97.pdf
Frame (15 of 33) says only one pilot in the flight (the element leader) had an oxygen mask. Mantell was the Flight Leader.

------------------------------

June 26, 2006

Jean Waskiewicz:
I have created a PDF file of all the pages in the package I received leaving out the duplicate pages for now. It is 22.17MB and I loaded it onto my site at:
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_accrep.htm

Brad Sparks:
I'm already seeing that the Accident Report has more complete versions of the seemingly same statements of the same witnesses than what appears in the Sign/BB files.  The editing has been done smoothgly enough that wou would never know you are reading an edited version if you didn't have the complete version to compare with. 

------------------------------

June 27, 2006

Fran Ridge:
Did we ever run into any of these documents on Mantell?
Ruppelt: "I dug out the file. In 1949 all of the original material on the incident had been microfilmed, but something had been spilled on the film. Many sections were so badly faded they were illegible. As I had to do with many of the older sightings that were now history, I collected what I could from the file, filling in the blanks by talking to people who had been at ATIC during the early UFO era. Many of these people were still around, "Red" Honnacker, George Towles, Al Deyarmond, Nick Post, and many others. Most of them were civilians, the military had been transferred out by this time."

Fran Ridge:
In 1956 a former head of Project Blue Book (Capt. Ed Ruppelt) stated in his book ("The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects", page 41):
"According to the old timers at ATIC, this report (Chiles-Whitted case) shook them worse than the Mantell Incident. This was the first time two reliable sources had been really close enough to anything resembling a UFO to get a good look and live to tell about it." When I mentioned the AF being shook up on the original TV interview, somebody asked me where I got that. Well, two places: Lewis Blevis in 1960 and Ruppelt in 1956.

------------------------------

June 28, 2006

Dan Wilson:
The 9 Oct. 1961 letter mentions the Mantell Case, saying that there was no radioactivity connected with the remains of Capt. Mantel's aircraft, a P-51. 
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=MAXW-PBB9-515


Dan Wilson:
Clingerman Request for Transcription of a recording made 7 January regarding an unidentified flying object and the discussion that took place between the three P-51 National Guard aircraft and the tower operator at Godman Field. During an investigation 9 January 1948 at Godman Field it was learned that such a recording was made. Maj. Matthews says his office has no record and refers to Detachment Commander, 733 AFBU, Godman AFB.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs18.htm
USAF-SIGN1-295

Fran Ridge:
Mantell update on WFIE was 'filmed".

Brad Sparks:
I would like to verify Mantell's WWII service.  Doesn't seem likely that a mere troop transport pilot would come to the attention of brass like Gen Garland. Capt Tyler's statement says that Mantell flew "transition in B-24's" in WWII (not sure what "transition" means unless he was training for B-24 flight duty).  B-24's were bombers not troop transports, and flew much higher (to 32,000 ft), where oxygen was necessary and thus Mantell had to be familiar with oxygen requirements from personal experience.  The excuse that he only flew low-altitude transports doesn't cut it. 

------------------------------

June 29, 2006

Dan Wilson:
During January 1948, Police Officer Joe Walker conducted an investigation of an aircraft accident whick crashed into the yard of Mrs.Carrie Phillips, Route 3, Lake Spring Road, 5 miles southwest of Franklin, Kentucky. (W J Phillips farm)
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs19.htm
MAXW-PBB3-707

Brad Sparks:
Then later Godman Field denied there was a recording ever made.  It took months, Major Duesler who was supposed to have gotten the tape transcribed was himself transferred out. But there is another "trick" possibly involved here.  There was something called a Plan 62 Interphone System linking several CAA (and presumably AACS) control towers in the region.  One guy at Lockbourne (if I recall which base correctly) actually listened in on Godman's Tower conversation and wrote down the Godman base theodolite trackings of azimuth and elevation for an unidentified object later that evening, which he heard over this interphone system hundreds of miles away from Godman.  Without his record we wouldn't have most of those readings from Godman itself. Thus it is possible ANOTHER BASE recorded the Godman Tower communications rather than Godman itself.  Later Godman could weasel-wordedly say that they at Godman didn't record anything.

Jean Waskiewicz:
The base was Lockbourne and the person was Pickering, also from Kevin Randle's analysis of the case:
"Richard Miller, (1953) in a privately circulated "Prologue," reported that he had been in the Air Force in January 1948 and that he had been stationed at Scott Air Force Base near Belleville, Illinois. Like Albert Pickering, he had been listening to the intercept over the closed communications link. Miller reproduced the inter-plane and the communications with the tower accurately, suggesting, "At 3:15 P.M., ... Mantell called in again and said, 'It's still above me making my speed or better. I am going to 20,000 feet. If I'm no closer then, I'll abandon the chase.'" Miller than added, "This is where the official Air Force account ends. However, there was on further radio transmission from Mantell at 3:18 that afternoon. His last statement has been stricken from all of the official records. He said, 'My god (sic). I see people in this thing.'" There is, of course, no corroborated record of Mantell ever having said anything like either of these two statements. The official record, now available to UFO researchers, was originally classified, and had Mantell uttered anything like that, it would have been included in that file. Air Force investigators would have expected the file to remain classified and would have had no reason to censor themselves. These sorts of quotes, and stories, created without proper foundation, while interesting, add nothing to the understanding of the case. They should now be expunged from the record." Whether this is true or not, could someone at Scott AFB have recorded the transmissions?

Brad Sparks:
Thanks Jean. Yes you've refreshed my memory.  That's exactly what I mean, some other base such as Scott AFB or Lockbourne or Wright Field, whatever, might have recorded Godman's communications over their interphone system.  Maybe Maj Duesler knew which base had the recording but was transferred before he could get it and didn't bother to tell anyone.

Fran Ridge:
This thing about Duesler not being available for Loedding's question about the status of the investigation:
"Capt. James F. Duesler is no longer a member of this Organization, therefore his status of investigation promised Mr. A. C. Loedding by subject officer cannot be determined." Didn't Duesler make out a report? Any why couldn't he be summoned or written to?

Brad Sparks:
I am in the process of exposing a coverup of the complicity of Mantell's wingmen in the crash.  More than just a possible UFO coverup is involved here but also ordinary corruption and deceit.  Lt Clements' statement is riddled with falsehoods from start to finish evidently designed to minimize or omit his role in supporting Mantell's chase without oxygen (he Clements was the only one with oxygen and he used it) in violation of AF Regs, above 14,000 ft.  Apparently, as I infer, Clements saw the object for a substantial portion of the approximately 15-minute chase contrary to his statements that he only saw something at the very end.  Thus he was puzzled or entranced with the object and went along with Mantell's ill-advised pursuit for a very long time without warning him not to.  Clements has falsely compressed all this into a "few minutes" drama.  If in fact they flew for roughly 15 minutes above 14,000 ft without Mantell having oxygen (or Hammond either) then why didn't Clements warn him again and again and again?  It cries out for explanation.  The Accident Investigating Board was also complicit in this coverup, which pinned the entire blame on Mantell -- who was conveniently dead and unable to respond to charges and unable to be punished -- and thus absolved Clements and Hammond of any responsibility whatsoever.  They saw "something" too and that's why they, like Mantell, went on for so long at too high an altitude. 

Brad Sparks:
I spent too many hours yesterday working out the Mantell timeline but drafted up most of it.  I just need to finish it.  It's the timeline that sinks Clements.  He and the Board claimed that Mantell was gunning it into a maximum climb at full power right from the start just above Godman Field.  I found out that's an absolute impossibility, they made it up to make Mantell look bad.  It turns out that at max climb rate of about 2,000 ft/min at 15,000-20,000 ft it would have taken only 4 MINUTES to have gotten from 14,000 to 22,500 ft where the last contact with Mantell was made -- if that was true they would have barely gotten out of the vicinity of Godman!!!!  At max climb the P-51's speed drops to only 180 mph and in 4 minutes they would only have gotten about 12 miles away from Godman Field!  Mantell's crash site was 92 miles away and the Bowling Green area the Mantell flight flew over was 67 miles

Fran Ridge:
Check this out:
http://www.arnold-air.org/roster/new_roster.php?var=06
Tommy Mantell Squadron, AFROTC Det. 295, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY
http://www.afa.org/contact_links.asp?searchby=state&stabbr=KY&ent=chapter Local AFA Chapters
Still hoping to find his service record. He wasn't an "ace". We knew that, but WFIE thought he was. They got an email that corrected that. But he was highly regarded and I would like to know what they say about him.

Fran Ridge:
This is unverified information, 1996, with no supporting evidence for the unusual claims.
http://ufoinfo.com/roundup/v01/rnd01_02.shtml
...... "Sightings" had an interview with former Army sergeant Quinton A. Blackwell, who was in the tower at Godman Field, Fort Knox, Kentucky the afternoon of January 7, 1948, when Captain Thomas F. Mantell had his fatal encounter with a UFO. During his meeting with Capt. Mantell's two sons and sister, Blackwell made a startling statement. He said that once Capt. Mantell had the large metallic saucer in sight, the pilot remarked, "We're going to need hot guns."

Brad Sparks:
Capt Richard Tyler's statement says Mantell flew in B-24 bombers during WWII not just troop transports.  B-24's flew as high as 32,000 feet.  Thus Mantell did have personal experinece with high-altitude oxygen requirements.  The troop-carrier story doesn't wash (they said he didn't know about oxygen requirements because he had only flown low-altitude troop transports). Also, Mantell had 67 hours of flight time in the P-51D, which had a service ceiling of 41,000 feet or so.  Did he not fly it with oxygen sometime during those 67 hours? 

Dan Wilson:
Statements by Quinton Blackwell, Gary Carter, James Deusler, etc.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_wilson_statements.htm
NARA-PBB2-860-862

------------------------------

June 30, 2006

Fran Ridge:
Apparently Mantell was pretty sharp. Jean read somewhere where it describes his service activity pretty well with some hair-raising hollywood type
incidents. But Wendy's account says Mantell told the tower they were not the planes from Standiford but were returning from a ferry flight from Atlanta to Standiford. He agreed to seek out and investigate the object but wanted the aircraft from Standiford to be aborted. (Apparently to avoid congestion while they investigated. Found a page in the accident report signed by LEE MERKEL

Brad Sparks:
Yes I noticed that Merkel had signed the accident reports, as KNG Commander.  I don't have any reliable report that any general was in the Godman Tower but there were Colonels, Majors, Captains, etc.  Godman expected 2 planes from Standiford scrambled but they did not show up. Godman Tower personnel all saw the object apparently.  I am unsure if Mantell's other wingman Hammond saw anything -- he was suffering from hypoxia.

Fran Ridge:
(Did not show up) That's because Mantell had them abort the flight

Fran Ridge:
Be interesting if we could find a coronor's report that DIDN'T support anoxia for the cause of death. I assume that's how he died, but WHAT IF he
didn't die that way? The plane crashed funny, just like you always said. Bet we don't have a coronor's report

Brad Sparks:
Yes we do have a coroner's report (it's in the Accident Report and states the wristwatch stopped at 3:18 PM) but what we don't have is an AUTOPSY exam as it seems it was not done.

Brad Sparks:
The Accident Report is based only on what the reporting station (Standiford) had and does not use any Godman Tower witnesses.  I am in the process maybe today of comparing Godman witnesses' accounts of radio transmissions with Clements' false account.  I believe he lied about almost everything. 
------------------------------

July 1, 2006

Jean Waskiewicz:
Accident Report Documents
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_accrep_excerpts.htm

-------------------------------

July 3, 2006

Fran Ridge:
Brad, Didn't Clements claim Mantell violated protocol by not switching to "B" channel when gave him hand signals? And what channel did the pilots use when they were in flight from Georgia?
http://www.bluebookarchive.org/page.aspx?PageCode=MAXW-PBB3-754
says B channel was out, A was weak. I thought the accident report showed a maint doc saying B was out BEFORE the ferry mission. Not sure they fixed it. And what channel did he talk to the Godman Tower on?

-------------------------------

July 5, 2006

Brad Sparks:
I can't really find anything I need when I need it, hence nothing is getting done.  Can someone reorganize the Mantell Directory so that there is a simple list of Witness Statements with BB Archive links to the Statements, with only Witness last names, NOTHING ELSE (no long-winded doc titles which are irrelevant), except maybe ranks, something like this (BUT COMPLETE): (samples given0

Fran Ridge:
We're working on that, too, the statements by each. But the rest will stay up because it shows who found what documents and when.

----------------------------------

July 6, 2006

Brad Sparks:
I got the full PDF from Jean so that's fine.  It's the rest that is so scattered I can't spend time right now to finish my report on Mantell.

Fran Ridge:
Here's where we are on the acc rep transcripts
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_accrep_excerpts.htm

Brad Sparks:
This is extremely helpful except for 2 things: 1.  I was never told about this transcription until just now. 2.  These are PDF's instead of text so they are not searchable on the Web and when I laboriously copy the text into a Word doc I lose all the spacings between paragraphs so the text looks cramped and difficult to read. Can Jean or you provide a Word doc with this text with all the spacings? Is it possible to get a list of all BB docs with Godman Tower conversations with Mantell and crew and then Word document transcripts of those reports?  These are like Blackwell's report and include Godman Commander Col. Hix, Lt Orner, Lt Col Wood, and others.  Also there is a document that compares Tower / P-51 flight conversations. 

Jean Waskiewicz:
Brad,  I have just started doing some transcriptions in the last couple of days. I have attached the Word versions of those already finished and I will
continue to send the Word versions to you as I finish them. I am in the process of going through PBB3  657-799 which I have downloaded and looking for more documents that relate to each personality involved in this incident. I will start looking for the specific documents you need. If there are any others you need transcribed, just give me the page/link and I will get it done for you.

Brad Sparks:
Fran, Previously you said there is no rush.  As you know I'm under the gun on a major project this week.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_sparks_july6.htm

Fran Ridge:
There isn't. Take your time. Drew can wait on phase three and I'll just give him our status. This is for US, not for THEM.

Jean Waskiewicz:
Brad and Fran, I have created a complete cross-reference of the 127 pages in the Accident Report. This shows which pages are in the package more than once; includes a description of what is on each page and if the page has a signature on it. I hope this helps in our efforts. I have cross-referenced a number of the pages to the Maxwell Roll 3 entries. I will go back and try to find the pages I did not do yet to see if they have a pages in the BB rolls.

---------------------------------

July 7, 2006

Brad:
Thanks Jean. Great work!  So it looks like there is no witness statement from Hammond, very suspicious. Does this look like all of the Mantell files in the BB Archive or do you know of others you have to get to?  I think there is a whole file on Mantell in the Other/SIGN microfilm rolls. Also there seems to be Mantell material mixed in with Lockbourne (and maybe Clinton Co. AFB) cases.

Jean Waskiewicz:
That is my next step in this process. I have started going through the rolls available online to find other documents relating to this case. I will finish the Maxwell roll and then I will go to the Sign roll 1 which I had already had a cursory look at last week. I will examine the pages already on the Mantell dir page and include those in the index as appropriate. I know there are more and I will move on as I finish each roll. As I go through this process, I will be creating an index like the one I just sent. I did not come across any new pages with conversations between Godman and the pilots when I finished the index, but I will keep this in mind as I go forward. I understand that the Mantell dir page is getting difficult to follow as it gets larger. Do you think we need some type of index or maybe some type of TOC that would make it easier to just find what a person is interested in rather than just looking at all of the entries as they are on the page currently?

Brad Sparks:
What would help most is to reduce the doc titles to a couple words each and organize them by category. (Examples sent to Jean)

Dan Wilson:
Statement of Lt. Paul I. Orner. Following is an account of the sighting of unknown objects from the Control Tower on January 7, 1948 at Godman Field.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs21.htm
USAF-SIGN1-379-380

Dan Wilson:
Statement by Captain Cary Carter, USAF, on duty at Godman Field on January 7, 1948, as an Operation Officer
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs20.htm
USAF-SIGN1-378

------------------------------

July 10, 2006

Dan Wilson:
"There are no further theodolite readings available at this base. Briefs of daily weather requested as follows": Signed John W. Mitchell, Colonel, USAF
Commanding.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs23.htm
MAXW-PBB3-700-702

Dan Wilson:
Transcript of Long Distance Telephone Conversation, 13 January 1948, 0920, Mr. Loedding, Air Intelligence, Wright Field <>Called, Col. R. O. Davis Jr., Commanding Officer 332 Fighter Wing, LAAB
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs22.htm
MAXW-PBB3-696

Dan Wilson:
Fran Ridge: Shows as of Oct 1948 they were still trying to find out what Mantell was chasing. We have better docs KOing Venus (Deyarmond) so this is just ftr.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs24.htm
MAXW-PBB3-697-698 

------------------------------

July 11, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Request for complete theodolite readings and resume of qualifications of individual who made the readings. Request for further briefs on daily weather at Godman from 1 January to 15 January 1948
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs25.htm
MAXW-PBB3-699
 
----------------------------

July 22, 2006

Brad Sparks:
Popular Science, May 1948, "Are Secret Balloons the Flying Saucers?"
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_sparks_PopScience.htm

----------------------------

July 23, 2006

Dan Wilson:
"Pilots Chase Disc", Ky. State Highway Patrol Officer Sgt. John T. Worful / 1948
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107press1.htm

----------------------------

July 24, 2006

Dan Wilson:
Statement by Colonel Guy F. Hix, USAF, Commanding, Godman Field, Fort Knox, Kentucky. 9 January 1948. At approximately 1300 hours a call came to this Headquarters from State Police, reporting a flying object near Elizabethtown, south of Godman Field.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs33.htm
USAF-SIGN1-381

----------------------------

July 25, 2006

Jean Waskiecicz:
As I was working on Blackwell's statement, I came across this that you should check for more mention of Police and Very large object
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs31.htm
USAF-SIGN1-280

Dan Wilson:
Report of an observation of an Unidentified Object in the skies above Godman Field on Jan 8, hundreds of feet in diameter, and which could not have been the Skyhook now placed by researchers at 150 miles away over Nashville, again confirms what state police and other callers also reported. The following report is dated 9 January 1948.-  E. GARRISON WOOD
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell480107docs30.htm
USAF-SIGN1-376

----------------------------

July 26, 2006

Jean Waskiewicz:
This is one of the many articles I transcribed. This one also states that only one flier had oxygen. http://www.ufocentral.org/greenwood/mantell/1948_1_9_CourierJournal._2.jpg

Fran Ridge:
Mantell update filmed June 28 aired this date.
------------------------------

July 27, 2006

Dan Wilson:
This is weird.  I was just thinking about a program I saw once (I think it was a Sightings Program) where some investigators went to the crash scene and they found higher than normal radiation readings there. This was years after the crash. Fran wrote: The AF NEVER went to the Mantell family. They found out from the neighbors! That is suspicious in itself. Are they hiding something?

Jean Waskiewicz:
Dan,  I used to tape the Sightings show in the 1990s when it first aired and I just happened to have both episodes they did on Mantell. The VHS tapes are very old now but I was able to extract the episode and burn them to CD. The sound quality is very bad but if you use earphones to listen you can hear what is being said. I can mail you a copy of them if you want. I cant upload them to the website because they are too large. This is how we know that the AF never spoke to the Mantell family. It is on these recordings. If you dont have speakers for your PC yet you can plug earphones into it and listen that way. There should be a headphone jack on the actual box somewhere.

Jean Waskiewicz:
I have used the signteam list of people and a couple of others I've added to enlist their aid in finding information regarding possible radar detection in the Mantell incident. The document Brad has cited was of interest to me earlier but I didn't quite make the connection. I think we might all have missed the potential here. Brad has some suggestions on how we might go into this. We're open. The page we started is, at this time, unlisted and confidential, and a first draft.
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_radar_sparks.htm

------------------------------

July 28, 2006

Jean Waskiewicz:
I came across this as I was looking for more articles at the Newspaper Archive site and just thought it was interesting and also curious as to why this would come out when it did. I have attached the article. It is from the Lima, Ohio News from Aug 21, 1952.
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/limanews082152.jpg

------------------------------

July 29, 2006

Brad Sparks:
Mighty interesting!  Someone got a copy of the Mantell Accident Report released in some form in Aug 1952.  I don't think anyone in UFOlogy knew about it.  How did you find it?  There are some confusions in it but overall most of it looks like straight out of the witness statements (except the stringing together of one long quote from Mantell, etc.).

-------------------------------

Aug. 1, 2006

Jean Waskiewicz:
Here is the list of newspaper articles I transcribed: The Press Transcripts:

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/WeatherBalloonObservedHere.htm
Jan. 7, 1948 - Weather Balloon Observed Here - Edwardsville (IL) Intelligencer

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/BalloonFlyingSaucerCelestialBodyAnybodysGuess.htm
Jan. 8, 1948 - Balloon? Flying Saucer? Celestial Body? Well It's Anybody's Guess - Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/CometOverCityIsJustBalloon.htm
Jan. 8, 1948 - Comet Over City Is Just Balloon - Nashville (TN) Tennessean

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/StrangePhenomenaSeenInSkyHere.htm
Jan. 8, 1948 - Strange Phenomena Seen In Sky HereWilmington (OH) News-Journal

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/KentuckyFlierKilledChasingSaucer.htm
Jan. 8, 1948 - Kentucky Flier Killed Chasing 'Saucer' - Nashville (TN) Banner

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/ChaseForFlyingDiskBlamedInCrashDeath.htm
Jan.9, 1948 - Chase For Flying Disk Blamed In Crash Death - Louisville Courier-Journal

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/GreatWhatWasItKeepsOutOfSight.htm
Jan. 9, 1948 - Spyglasses Search Through the SW Sky But Great What-Was-It Keeps Out of Sight - Wilson

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/OneTouchOfVenusPilotsChaseDisk.htm
Jan. 9, 1948 - One Touch of Venus: Pilots Chase 'Disk' (Or Planet) - Louisville (KY) Courier-Journal

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/NewFlyingSaucersExciteKyNeighoringStates.htm
Jan. 9, 1948 - New 'Flying Saucers' Excite Kentucky Neighboring States - Lexington (KY) Herald

http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/mantell_publiclyannounced.htm
Feb. 13, 1951 - Skyhook Balloons "Publicly Revealed", 1951 (2 pages) - New York (AP)

---------------------------

Aug. 10, 2006

Jean Waskiecicz:
The Mantell Incident - Events on 7 Jan 1948 - Official Statements by Incident Number
http://www.nicap.org/docs/mantell/Mantell_Incident_Statements.htm

------------------------------

2007

Aug. 21, 2007

Robert Swiatek:
Not another controversy??  I'll give you a call tonight or tomorrow to discuss this.  The report at issue is yours since you are the prime writer and force behind it (on behalf of the Fund, I asked you if it were something you could do, as you recall).  You're right:  if others contribute, yes, they should be given due credit, but principal authorship resides in yourself.  Obviously, others can write their own reports over their own names if they so choose and market them accordingly.

------------------------------

Sept. 6, 2007

Dan Wilson:
Further request status of investigation promised by A. C. Loedding, Technical Assistant, Technical Intelligence Division by Captain James Duesler. 
http://www.nicap.org/mantell/mantell_wilson_loedding.htm
NARA-PBB2-870

-------------------------------

Sept. 14, 2007

Fran Ridge:
FTR, I have posted this information that was never noted to my recollection.
Ruppelt:
In early 1952 I got a telephone call on ATIC's direct line to the Pentagon. It was a colonel in the Director of Intelligence's office. The Office of Public Information had been getting a number of queries about all of the confusion over the Mantell Incident. What was the answer? I dug out the file. In 1949 all of the original material on the incident had been microfilmed, but something had been spilled on the film. Many sections were so badly faded they were illegible. As I had to do with many of the older sightings that were now history, I collected what I could from the file, filling in the blanks by talking to people who had been at ATIC during the early UFO era. Many of these people were still around, "Red" Honnacker, George Towles, Al Deyarmond, Nick Post, and many others. Most of them were civilians, the military had been transferred out by this time.