The Lubbock Lights
  Blue Book Microfilm


Sequence No. 30527; Page ID 16183
also         30559; Page ID 16215  

Appendix I.
Lubbock, Texas -  25 August 1951

  I. DISCUSSION OF THE INCIDENT

The first of a series of sightings related to this incident occurred the evening of 25 August 1951 at approximately 2110 CST. Four Texas Technical College professors were sitting in the backyard of one of the professor's homes observing meteorites in conjunction with a study of micrometeorites being carried out by the college. At 2110 they observed a group of lights pass overhead from N to S. The lights had about the same intensity as a bright star but were larger in area. The altitude was not determined but they traveled at a high rate of speed. The pattern of the lights was almost a perfect semi-circle containing from 20 to 30 individual lights. Later in the evening a similar incident was observed and during a period of about three weeks a total of approximately twelve (12) such flights were observed by these men.

The group of men included:

a. The Head of the Petroleum Engineering Department
b. Professor of Geology, has Ph.D.
c. Professor of Physics, has Ph.D.
d. Professor of Chemical Engineering, has Ph.D.

Besides the above four men the following have observed the incidents:

a. Professor of Mathematics, has Ph.D.
b. Graduate student working on Ph.D.

In addition, a Professor of Astronomy was consulted on the incident, but he did not observe any of these flights.

The above mentioned men took a personal interest in the phenomena and undertook a study of the objects. Attempts were made to obtain an altitude measurement by laying out a measured base line perpendicular to the usual flight path of the object and placing angle measuring devices at the end of the base line, however, all their attempts failed because the objects did not appear on the nights the observers were waiting for them.

From the series of observations, the following facts were obtained:

a. The  angular velocity of  the  object  was  very nearly 30° of arc per second.

b. There was no sound that could be attributed to the object.

c. The flight path of the object was from N to S in the majority of the flights.

d. On several nights there were two or three flights.

e. The priod between flights was about one hour and 10 minutes.



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f. The color of the lights was blue white.

g. There vere from 20 to 30 separate lights in each formation.

h. The first two fliphts observed were a semi-circle of lights but in
subsequent flights there was no orderly arrangement.

i. The object always appeared at an angle of about 50 from horizontal
in the north and disappeared at about 60 in the south. The object did
not gradually come into view as would an aircraft approaching
from a distance, neither did it gradually disappear.

j. There was no apparent change in size as the object passed overhead.

Attempts were made to obtain the relative height of the object in respect
to clouds. However,-these attempts were also unsuccessful due to the fact that
the objects passed between widely scattered clouds.

Efforts to determine whether or not there was any form between the lights
by trying to see stars between the lights were made. This also was unsuccess-
ful due to the short time the object was in view.

This phenomena was observed by at least one hundred people in and around
Lubbock, Texas. Some of these people were of the opinion that the objects
were birds.

On the evening of 31 August 195$, at about 2330 CST, a college freshman
from Texas Tech observed three flights of the object and allegedly obtained
five photographs. He obtained two photos of one flight and three of another.
These photos show single rows of light in V-formation on two photos and a
double row on the others. His description of the object is much the same as
that of the college professors, except that the college professors never ob-
served a perfect V-formation.

(See Appendix II and V for possibly related incidents.)

Status of the Investigation

Project Grudge personnel made a trip to Lubbock, Texas, on 6-9 November
1951 to obtain more details on the incident. Many sources who had seen the
object or who were involved in the sighting were interrogated. A conference
was held with the college professors and they offered to write a detailed
account of their observations and forward it to AT1C. This report should
be forthcoming.

The photographer who claims to have photographed the object was interro-
gated. Every effort was made to find a flaw in the photographer''s account of
the incident but the results were negative. The college professors did not
believe the photographs vere authentic as they had never observed a V-shaped
group of lights. They were not sure, however, whether or not they had ob-
served the same objects that were photographed. Since the interrogation, two


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discrepencies In the photos have been found and the photographer is being
reinterrogated by the O.S.I.

One school of thought of the people in the Lubbock area is that the
objects were some type of migratory birds reflecting light from the city.
Several people reported that they definitely knew the objects were ducks be-
cause they could see wings flapping. It is very possible that some of the
people who were looking for the object did see ducks as there were duck
flights passing over during the period. It is significant that those people
who saw ducks were definitely able to identify the objects as ducks, or some
type of bird, because they could see the wings or heard them make a noise,
however, other people were just as determined that they were not birds. The
possible conclusion is that some people did see birds, but others saw some
other objects.

The college professors do not believe the theory that the objects were
birds, but they are giving the possibility more thought. If they were birds,
they would have to be relatively low to give the illusion of high speed. An
occasional flight of birds might pass low over a city on a clear night but it
is highly doubtful if they would continue to do this for several nights. Mi-
gratory birds usually try to keep away from cities.

The Federal Wild Life Game Warden was visited wad although he was not
familiar with the incident he doubted if the objects were birds. He stated
that they could have been, however. The most likely suspect, if it is a bird,
is a member of the Plover family which has a pure white breast, but unless
there was a sudden influx of the birds into the Lubbock area, the game warden
doubted if there would be enough of these birds to make up as many flights as
were observed.

If the photos are authentic, the objects very probably are not ducks
because an experienced photographer from the Lubbock Avalanche Newspaper
attempted to get photos of ducks using both natural light and flash, but
failed.

The investigation of this incident is continuing. It is probably the most
unique incident in the history of Project Grudge in that it was observed so
many times by a scientifically trained group of observers. These people are
continuing to attempt to arrive at a solution for the phenomena. They had
previously lost interest after several weeks of observations because they
believed that the object was some new Air Force aircraft or missile.

The photographs are now at the Photographic Reconnaissance Laboratory
at Wright Air Development Center for analysis.



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Appendix II

ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO - 25 August 1951

On the evening of 25 August 1951, at 2158 ET, a Sandia Base Security
Guard and his wife observed what they described to be a flying wing type
aircraft similar to the Northrop Fly Wing Bomber (B-4-9) pass over the back-
yard of their trailer home in the east part of Albuquerque. They judged the
wing span of the aircraft to be about one and one half times the wing span
of a B-36, with which they were familiar. The object was flying low, the
altitude was thought to be about 800 ft. - 1000 ft., and there was no sound
that could be attributed to the object. The color of the object was not
apparent due to the twilight but dark chordwise stripes were noticed under
the wings. Six to eight pairs of soft glowing lights were noticed on the
trailing edge of the wing. The speed was judged to be about 300 - 400 mph
and the object was on a heading of approximately 160 degrees.

(See Appendix I for possible related incident.)

Weather

Broken clouds at 17,000 ft., visibility five miles, wind S at 5 mph.

Status of Investigation

The possibility of this being a known aircraft was checked with negative
results. The AC and W Radar Station at Kirtland AFB did not observe any un-
usual or unidentified aircraft.

The guard's background was checked and since he has a "Q" clearance,
it has been assumed that he is mentally stable.

The photos taken of the V-shaped object at Lubbock, Texas, (see Appendix
I) were sent to Albuquerque. They were shown to the sources by the O.S.I, and
sources stated that arrangement of lights on the object they saw was similar
to the photo. They sketched in the wing as they saw it.

An investigation was made to determine whether or not any one else had
seen the object but only negative results were obtained.

Further evaluation of this incident depends on the outcome of attempts
to establish the authenticity of the Lubbock photos.



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LARSON AFB. WASHINGTON - 26 August 1951

On 26 August 1951 at O836 PST, an unidentified flying object was detected
by an AN/CPS-4 and AN/CPS-l radar sets. The object was tracked continuously
for a period of six minutes and made a timed ground speed of 950 mph. The
object was on a course of 340 degrees with only slight deviations enroute.
An altitude reading of 13,000 feet was obtained but the accuracy of the measurement is questionable due to brief length of time the object was detected.

The F-86 aircraft were scrambled but radar contact with the object was
lost before the aircraft were airborne, A visual search was conducted from
17,000 to 25,000 feet with negative results.

The operator of the radar set, an Air Force Captain, is considered to
be an expert operator.

Weather

Weather conditions at the time of sighting were not favorable for ano-
malous microwave propogation.

Status of Investigation

Review of this incident by the Electronics Section of ATIC concludes
that the return was possibly due to interference. This was concluded be-
cause of the apparent path of the object, directly approaching the station,
and the fact tbat the target was observed on only the low beam of the AN/CPS-l
radar set.


Sequence 30561; Page ID 16217

The photographer was interrogated, in conjunction with OSI, in regard
to the photographs of the objects. His account of the incident seemed logical,
and there were no obvious indications of a hoax. The photographer had previously
been interrogated by the Lubbock newspaper and the photos inspected by Associated
Press and Life Magazine representatives. It was their opinion that the photos
were not obviously a hoax. The college professors were doubtful as to whether
or not the photographs were of the same objects that they had observed because:

1.  They had never observed a V-shaped formation of lights. This is
not too significant, however, as the arrangement of the lights that they observed
varied and since there were several flights the college professors possibly did
not see the flights that were photographed. In addition, the photographer states
that the .object appeared to be U-shaped but when he developed the negatives, the
object was V-shaped.

2.  The objects that the professors observed were, in their opinion,
not bright enough to be photographed. This is, however, an estimate and could
be in error.

It was found that one school of thought of the people in the Lubbock
area was that the objects were some type of migratory birds reflecting light
from the city. Several people reported that they definitely knew the objects
were birds because they could see wings "flapping". It is very possible that
some of the people who were looking for the object did see ducks as there were
duck flights passing over during the period.

The college professors do not believe the theory that the objects were
birds, but they are giving the possibility more thought.  If they were birds,
they would have to be relatively low to give the illusion of high soeed. An
occasional flight of birds might pass low over a city on a clear night but it is
highly doubtful if they would continue to do this for several nights. Migratory
birds usually try to keep away from cities.

The Federal Wild Life Game Warden was visited and although he was not
familiar with the incident he doubted if the objects were birds. He stated
that they could have been, however. The most likely suspect, if it is a bird,
is a member of the Plover family which has a pure white breast, but unless there
was a sudden influx of the birds fhto the Lubbock area, the game warden doubted
if there would be enough of these birds to make up as many flights as were
observed.

If the photos are authentic, the objects very probably are not ducks
because an experienced photographer from the Lubbock Avalanche Newspaper attempted to get photos of ducks using both natural lipht and flash, but failed.

B. Analysis of ?hotos by Wright Air Development Center

The Photographic Reconnaissance Laboratory of WALC made a preliminary
analysis of the photographs. The analysis was made by inspecting the negatives
in a comparator microscope. Their conclusions were:


<>Sequence 30562; Page ID 16218

1. The images on the negatives were caused by light striking unexposed fllm (i.e., the negatives were not retouched).

2. The individual lights in the "formation" varied in intensity.

3. The intensity was greater than any surrounding stars as the stars did not register. (The photos were taken under CAVU conditions.)

4. The individual lights changed position in the "formation."

C. Reinterrogation of the Photographer

The OSI was requested to reinterrogate the photographer in another
attempt to determine the authenticity of the photographs. The details of this
reinterrogation have not been received but a preliminary report stated that
there were no indications that the photographs were not authentic.

Future Investigations

A trip to Lubbock, Texas, will be made during January. Arrangements are being made to have a Project Grudge consultant and a physicist accompany Project Grudge personnel. If the photographs are authentic, they are important in that:

1. They will give an accurate measurement of the "angular span."

2. The light source, although it appeared to be of low intensity to the eye, was highly actinic.

3. The movement of the individual lights in the formation can be studied further.

4. Density comparison tests can be made.


Sequence 30563; Page ID 16219

Appendix II

ALBUQUERQUE. HEW-MEXICO - 25 August 1951

I.  DISCUSSION OF INCIDENT                                             .
On the evening of 25 August 1951, at 2158 MST, a Sandia Base Security Guard
and his wife observed what they described to be a flying wing type aircraft
similar to the Northrop Fly-Wing Bomber (B-49) pass over the backyard of their
trailer home in the east part of Albuquerque. They judged the wing span of the
aircraft to be about one and one half times the wing span of a B-36, with which
they were familiar. The object was flying low, the altitude was thought to be
about 800 ft. - 1000 ft., and there was no sound that could be attributed to
the object. The color of the object was not apparent due to the twilight but
dark chordwise stripes were noticed under the wings. Six to eight pairs of soft
flowing lights were noticed on the trailing: edge of the wing. The speed was
judged to be about 300 - 400 mph and the object was on a heading of approximately
160 degrees.

(See Appendix I for possible related incident.)

II. Weather                                                                   

Broken clouds at 17,000 ft., visibility five miles, wind S at 5 mph.

III. STATUS OF INVESTIGATION
                                                                
The possibility of this being a known aircraft was checked with negative
results. The AC and W Radar Station at Kirtland AFB did not observe any unusual
or unidentified aircraft.

The guard''s background was checked and since he has a "Q clearance, it
has been assumed that he apparently is mentally stable.

An investigation was made to determine whether or not any one else had seen
the object but only negative results were obtained.

The photographs referred to in Appendix I were sent to the OSI at Kirtland
AFB. These photos were shown to the sources and they stated that the photos
resembled the exhaust or light pattern of the object. A sketch, drawn by
the observers, is shown in this Appendix.

It is interesting to note that a very similar sighting took place in Lubbock,
Texas. The exact time and date of the sighting could not be deternined due to
the fact that the observer believed she had seen an illusion of some type and
did not report the incident. The only date that could be given was "late in
August or early September".

IV. CONCLUSIONS

None. The investigation will be continued until the authenticity of the
photos in Appendix I can be determined.



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drawing



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Appendix III
MATAUOR. TEXAS - 31 August 1951

I.  DISCUSSION OF THU INCIDENT
On 31 August 1951 at approximately 1245 CST two ladies were "driving in an
automobile several miles north of Matador, Texas. The object was described as
a pear-shaped object about the length of a B-29 fuselage, aluminum or silver in
color, which readily reflected the sunlight. The object had a port or some type
of aperture in the side and moved through the air with the small end forward.
There was no sign of any exhaust and no noise was heard.

As the two ladies were driving north from Matador, Texas, the driver of
the automobile first noticed the object about 150 yards ahead of the automobile.
They stopped and both ladies pot out to observe the object. It was drifting
slowly in an eastward direction at a speed they judged to be less than the
speed required to take off in a Cub aircraft and an altitude of about 120 ft.
Seconds later the object began to ascend rapidly and moved out of sight into
the wind in a circular ascent. (The wind at this time was from NE at about
knots.)

A background investigation showed that both women were of excellent
character.

This incident is of interest because it was observed during the same
period as the objects over Lubbock, Texas (See Appendix I).

II. WEATHER
                                                                  .
A.  1230 CST - Reese APB - 31 August 1951
Estimated ceiling 6,000 ft., broken clouds, with thin scattered
clouds at 25,000 ft. Visibility 15 miles. Wind ENE at 3 knots.

B.  1230 CST - Childress, Texas - 31 August 1951
Estimated ceiling 25,000 ft., overcast. Visibility 15 miles.
Wind NNE at 7 knots. Towering cumulus clouds in SE quadrant.

III, STATUS OF INVESTIGATION
                       
It has been reported that a road repair crew saw the same object later on
the same day. Attempts will be made by Project Grudge personnel to contact
members of this road crew and obtain their statements. There were also reports
of crop dusting activity in the area, so attempts will be made to determine
whether or not the ladies could have seen this activity.


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A Visit with the Photographer

Mr. ———— was interviewed on the evening of 7 November 1951 at his home by Lt. Ruppelt and Mr. H. N. Bossartt of the Reese AFB OSI detachment (A description of Mr. ———— is given in OSI report.)

The purpose of the visit was to obtain further data on the photos taken by Mr. ____ and to attempt to determine the authenticity of the photos. Mr. ____ was again questioned as to the events leading up to taking the photos and how he took them. [. . .]

In addition several other facts were obtained. Upon seeing the objects ____ rushed into the house and got his camera. He had experience in taking pictures at night as he had experimented with star shots. He realized that he would have to give the objects as much light as possible so he "opened it up", f3.5 at 1/10th of a second, the "fastest" combination for a Kodak 35.

The object appeared at about 30° from the horizontal. ____ stated that they appeared just over a tree top, and the angle was measured to be very close to 30°. The direction was NNE. The objects went a little to his right and disappeared at about 30° from the horizontal at SSE. This gives an arc of very close to 120°. During this time he "panned" his camera (i.e. followed the object with the camera.) During this process he took two pictures during each flight. The procedure was duplicated by Mr. ____ and timed. It took 4 seconds, timed by the sweep second hand on a wrist watch. This comes out to be 30° per second.

(Note: This is the same time obtained by Prof.______.)

The interrogating officer, Lt. Ruppelt, has been an amateur photographer for 14 years and all the data and procedures given by ____ were accurate and very logical.

No progress was made in attempting to determine whether or not the photos were faked. ____ 's story could not be "picked apart" because it was entirely logical. He was questioned on why he did certain things and his answers were all logical, concise, and without hesitation. He was visibly nervous but this could be due to the fact that he knew Mr. Bossartt was from OSI and Lt. Ruppelt from W-P AFB. This nervousness at no tine caused him to falter in his story.

____ stated that the object appeared to be about brighter than the brightest star in the sky. He compared it to Venus in the early evening.

Additional info on ____ in the interview with the newspaper people and college professors.



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Mr. Jay Harris, Managing Editor of the Lubbock Morning Avalanche and William Hans, Photographer

Mr. Bossartt of the RAFB Detachment of the OSI and Lt. Ruppelt interviewed the Managing Editor of the Lubbock Morning Avalanche, Mr. Harris, on the evening of 7 November 1951.

Mr. Harris gave the following information before the interrogation began:

On the evening of 25 September 1951 he was at the news desk of the paper when a Prof. ____ of Texas Tech College called him on the phone. ____ reported he had just seen an aerial phenomena that would be worth a story. He continued to tell about the "string of beads" that he and two other college professors had seen in the sky. Harris at first was not interested. ____ then said he felt it was important and that by running the story they might be able to contact others who had seen the phenomena. Harris said o.k. if he could use ____'s name. ____ said he wasn't sure about this and ended the conversation. A few minutes later he called again and said that it would be o.k. to use his name and the names of Prof. ____ and ____ who were with him at the time and also saw it. It would first, however, have to be o.k'd by the college public relations people. This was done and the story was printed on 26 August 1951. No further reports came in until a few days later.

On Friday, 31 August 1951, a photographer who does work for the paper and is highly regarded by Mr. ____ called and said a young man (Mr. ____) had just developed some negatives in his studio and he thought the paper might be interested in them. They advised ____ to bring them over which he did. Mr. ____ and his head photographer, Mr. ____ looked them over and were dubious about using them because of the possibility of a hoax. They examined the negatives very carefully, however, and decided to use them. Mr. Harris then called ____ on the phone and again asked them if it were a hoax which he denied. Harris then in his approximate words "raised hell with him" and told him all the consequences if it were a hoax. He threatened to "run him out of town" if it were. This did not faze ____ and his only reply was that the pictures were of something flying over Lubbock and that if they were afraid to use them o.k., he didn't care. As far as payment was concerned anything would be all tight. (He finally received $7.50-$10.00 for them.) Prior to this, ———— had taken a few photos for the paper and was regarded as an honest, conscientious person trying to pick up a little extra money on photos. He was not obnoxious as a lot of amateurs are, always trying to sell photos, but would occasionally take a good photo and attempt to sell it.

It was then decided by Mr. Harris to put the photos "on the wire service" with a story. _____ was called in on this discussion and again "read the riot act" on any possible fraud. This time it was stronger because the photo was going out all over the U.S. Again he stuck to his story, and the photo went out.

The negatives were sent to AP in Ft. Worth to be checked. Life magazine also looked at the photos but rejected them because they claimed to have many photos of "flying saucers." The photos and story went out on the wire service. It is unknown which papers used it but some did.

At this point in the interview Mr. Hans, head photographer and Asst. Managing Editor, was called in and gave this information. When the story of V-shaped lights came out some people immediately branded them as ducks or some type of migratory fowl. Later when ____'s photos were printed, the argument as to whether or not they were migratory fowl came up. Mr. Hans decided to try to get a picture himself so he stationed himself on top of the Lubbock Avalanche Building with a 4 x 5 Speed Graphic loaded with a tungsten ASA 80 film and a GE #22 flashbulb in a concentrating reflector. He normally uses this same equipment to photograph night football games. He can get a normal negative by shooting f!6, at %oo of a second and developing twice the normal time in DK-60 a developer. This night he sat on the roof and had his camera set at f4.7 at %0 of a second. He waited some time and a flock of some type of birds flew over. They were visible in the light of the sodium vapor street lights used in Lubbock. He shot as the flock was overhead. He also stated that he knew they were birds before he took the pictures because he could see them dimly outlined. They were in a ragged V-formation and silent, which is unusual for ducks or geese, if they were ducks or geese. He developed his negatives and found the image so weak he could not print them. On the next night he attempted the same thing using a Kodak Reflex at f3.5 at %Q with Super XX film, a #22 bulb and the concentrating reflector; the results were the same. Mr. Hans assumed that with his experience he should know that he was in a position in the city to get a maximum of light on any birds flying over him. From this, he is convinced that whatever ———— took a picture of was many tunes as bright as the birds he unsuccessfully attempted to photograph.

Mr. Hans added that some time back he had attempted to photograph an eclipse of the moon. He ran into difficulty getting enough exposure, further indicating that ____'s shots were of a bright object. (This was later disproved by taking test photos of the moon. It is possible his statement was misinterpreted. )

Mr. Harris impressed the interviewers as a typical newspaper editor. He made it very plain that he was not one to have someone use his paper to perpetrate a hoax. He has thoroughly checked both the photos and reports and believes the people have seen something and the photos are not faked (i.e. something flying over Lubbock.) Other sources confirmed this fact and stated that he has a reputation of making very sure what he prints is true. He stated he purposely played down the articles because he felt that the object was possibly some Air Force project, he was more sure when the AF did not investigate. (We knew nothing about it for several weeks.)

He believes the people who saw this object were not seeing birds. Some people did see birds because there was some bird flight activity in the area. His observation on a great many reports was that the people who saw ducks knew they were ducks because they could see them. The people who saw V lights knew they couldn't be ducks. At least one experienced duck hunter who saw them threw out the duck idea. Therefore, his idea was that a lot of people were conscious of the lights, were looking, and saw ducks and knew they were ducks. Others saw the real thing and knew they weren't ducks.

Harris' statement on ____ was that he has seen a lot of fakes in his tune and if ____ is a fake he is the best hi the business and wasting his time in college.
In answer to a query about sightings hi areas without a large concentration of lights such as larger cities, Mr. Harris stated that they had received calls from many people in small towns and in the country. All reports were about the same as those reported in the newspapers.

a. The objects were migratory birds.

b. The objects were a group or string of light traveling from N to S at a high speed.

Another instance mentioned by Mr. Harris occurred several nights after, 25 August 1951. An Air Force Capt. from Reese AFB called to tell of the object he had seen. He stated he had read about the objects hi the newspaper and did not believe it. However, a few minutes before he had called, he had seen the same phenomena as was mentioned in the newspaper and was now convinced it was true. He stated that he had flown jets and had been around them and that this object was much faster than a jet. He said he couldn't give his name but would be glad to clear the story through the base PIO. This was never done, however, as the editor was not running any more stories on the incident and all records of the captain's name were gone.

Mr. Harris had been in the newspaper business about 20 years. Some of this tune was spent as a PIO during WW II. He has a reputation of being very honest and will print nothing unless he is personally sure it is accurate. This is brought out by his very complete investigation of the authenticity of the "string of beads" stories.

Mr. Hans is considered one of the best photographers in Lubbock. He has had a studio for many years before coming to the newspaper. All the time he had a studio, he worked for the newspaper on a part-time basis.



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Federal Wild Life Game Warden
On the afternoon of 8 November 1951 Lt. Ruppelt and Capt. Parker contacted the Federal Wildlife Game Warden at the Post Office Building in Lubbock. The purpose was to determine the habits and description of Plover.

It was determined that there are several kinds of Plover. Several types have white breasts and are found in West Texas. The bird is about 8" long and has a wing span of about 1'. It will fly at night and in groups but the groups are usually not larger than 5 or 6 birds. They are known to migrate south from late August till the middle of November. Also they have been seen in the Lubbock locality recently although not in great numbers. They fly at about 1,000' or lower at a maximum of 50 mph.

The game warden had not read the articles about the "objects" in the paper so was unfamiliar with the description of the objects, but tended to doubt if they were Plover. He added that they might be ducks but not geese because geese continually "honk" as they fly over populated areas.



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Meeting with Texas Technical College Professors

On the evening of 8 November 1951 Lt. Ruppelt and Capt. Parker met with four professors of the Texas Technical College to discuss the aerial phenomena they observed over a period of time from 25 August 1951 until about 15 October 1951. Those present were:

a. ____, Ph.D. in Geology but also well versed in all fields of science. The meeting was at his home.

b. ———, Ph.D., Professor of Chemical Engineering

c. ____, Ph.D. in Physics, presently head of the Texas Tech Seismograph Station and has previously spent several years at The University of Alaska studying the aurora.

d. Prof. ____, Head of the Petroleum Engineering Department.

On the evening of 25 August 1951,   ____, and _____ were sitting in Dr. ______'s
yard discussing a project on micro-meteorites that ____ is conducting at Texas Tech. They were counting meteors when the first object passed over the yard. They stated they were surprised at the sight and began discussing it. They agreed that if another object came over they would attempt to find out some of its characteristics and about an hour later one did come over, one man listened while the other two timed it. This object, and the first one, was a semi-circle, about 160° arc, of lights. There was no discernible noise and the angular velocity was very close to 30° per second. The direction was about N to S, and they passed 15°-20° west of the Zenith. The men could not agree on the color except that it was yellowish to white. It varied in intensity and was somewhat larger in area than a star. All men agreed it appeared to have its own light source. Since 25 August 1951 these men and several others have seen more flights, approximately twelve. They all were of the same nature as the first except there was no regular arrangement or formation. Others who have seen the objects well in the presence of the original three men are:

a. ____, Ph.D. in Geology.

b. ____, Mathematics Professor.

c. ____, Studying for Ph.D.

Dr. ————, Astronomer from Texas Tech., has not observed the phenomena but has been present at all the investigations.

Several characteristics of the object have been noticed by the observers. The lights always appear at about 50° in the S or SW. They never gradually come into view or gradually disappear. Its "span angle" from the ground was about 7°-8°. They follow a rough schedule beginning about 2120 and appearing every hour and 10 minutes until three flights pass overhead. The men have attempted to determine whether or not there is any form between the lights by trying to observe stars between the lights. They have been unsuccessful, however, due to the great speed of the object. Once they thought they observed stars between the objects but could not be sure.

The group is confident of the angular velocity of the object of 30°/second from measurements of several flights. Stop watches and protractors were used to measure time and angles. Several attempts have been made to measure the altitude. On only one occasion has there been any clouds and these were widely scattered. The objects appeared but did not pass close enough to a cloud to obtain a relative altitude.

Several other attempts to determine the altitude were made by using triangulation from a measured base line. On the first occasion an eleven mile base line was used with home-made angle measuring devices set up at each end of the base. Radios were used for communication from one end of the base line to the other. Another night a shorter base line was used. On the first night, neither party observed the flights although two of their wives saw them from the city. On the second night only one party thought they saw the object but they were not able to get a measurement. The object appeared to be very low over the city of Lubbock.
A third attempt was made by Dr. _____, the astronomer. He questioned three people who saw the object as to their position and the angle of observation. This technique is used in plotting the path of meteors. He arrived at an altitude of between 2,000 and 3,000 feet. However, one of the observers was doubtful as to the time she made observation so it could have been another object she saw, consequently, they are not putting any reliability on this altitude measurement.

Two other incidents took place which the group would not mention at first but finally did. They qualified the incidents with the statement that they are so absurd they have never mentioned them. The first incident happened to Mrs. ____, who according to several people is a very calm woman. Prof. ____ stated that she came running into the house one evening just at dusk very excited. Due to her usually calm manner, the excitement was very apparent. She said she had seen a very large wing type aircraft, making no sound, go over the house. She could offer no more description. Prof. ____ could not remember exactly when it took place as he had passed it off as being too fantastic. (Note: Nearly identical to 25 August 1951 sighting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.)

The next incident was observed by Prof. ____ and Dr.__________ and has been titled "____'s Horror." The men were sitting in the yard waiting for the "9:20," a term coined for the first object of the evening to pass over the observers. (Strangely enough, there was a remarkable amount of regularity to the flights of the objects.) All of a sudden a group of yellowish lights came across the yard very low, and according to Prof. ____ they had a "wiggling" motion. It upset Dr. ____ considerably, consequently the name "____'s Horror." Again the instance was dropped because no one else in the neighborhood saw it and it was very low.

At this point in the conversation the unusual meteor activity in the SW United States was brought up. The group, with Dr. ____, the astronomer, has already attempted to associate the formation of lights with this activity, however, they could find no association between the two. Dr. ______ mentioned the fact that
the series of events terminating with the large meteor that fall in Oklahoma on the morning of 7 November

1951 was very odd. They did not follow the general pattern of meteors. An expedition from several Southwestern Colleges is now being formed to attempt to find the one that is supposed to have fallen in Oklahoma.

Several meteors were reported to have fallen in the Lubbock area during the period Lt. Ruppelt was there. In two instances people reported crashed aircraft, and Lt. Ruppelt was present when B-25s were sent out to search. Later the locations where these "crashes" were reported were examined by Texas Tech people. They picked up some material that allegedly came from the object. A piece of this material has been obtained and will be analyzed. It may be ash from the many cotton gins located in the Lubbock area. According to Texas Tech chemists, if it is, the potassium content will be high.

The above named men together with Dr. ____, an astronomer at Texas Tech, have developed a very great interest in their objects. Their genuine interest is brought out by the fact that they devoted an entire evening discussing the matter with Lt. Ruppelt and Capt. Parker, and they previously have had many meetings between themselves. They refuse to recognize any sightings not witnessed by at least two of the group although they admit many other reputable people have seen the objects. Thus the figure of twelve sightings is conservative. Their term is twelve "official sightings." They have made every effort to investigate all possibilities as to what the objects might be. It is apparent after listening to them review what they have done that they are deeply interested in the phenomena.

They had dropped their investigation by the time Lt. Ruppert arrived because they had come to the conclusion that the object was some kind of a new weapon belonging to the U.S. and that they would only be prying into something that was none of their business. They also reasoned that if such an aircraft was far enough along to be flight tested they would probably hear something about it soon anyway. It is very apparent that their interest is again aroused and that they will attempt more research on the incident.

They are rather firmly convinced that the object is not a flock of birds. This is due to the great speed at which they travel. If the birds did have an apparently great speed, they would have to be very low. The lights these people saw gave the appearance of being very high, except for "____'s Horror." Another doubtful point is the nearly perfect geometric pattern of the first two formations. Birds could not do that. The men did state that now that they know that the Air Force is interested, they will thoroughly discuss the possibility of birds in hopes that it is birds or some other such thing that can be explained. It is apparent that they were concerned when they found out it wasn't an Air Force project, which they had assumed when no Air Force personnel came to investigate the incident.

The professors were asked why they and their friends were the only ones who had seen so many while most people only saw them on one or two nights just after the newspaper articles came out. They said that they had thought of that and their explanation was that the other people had lost interest. They and their friends were interested in the objects and continued to look for them. They stressed the fact that they were not readily apparent unless you were looking for them. (This can be borne up by the fact that on the morning of 7 November the very bright meteor mentioned above was visible from Reese AFB. Lt. Ruppelt was in front of the Officer's Club with several other people. Only those of the group who were looking directly at the meteor saw it, and it was considered to be extremely bright.)



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Report on Night Flying Objects

The first observations of these objects were made by Messrs. ____, ____ and ____ at about 9:20 P.M. on August 25, 1951. Two nights were observed and were about five minutes apart. These observers have agreed that:

(1) The objects were traveling from northeast to southwest and passing slightly southeast of overhead of the City of Lubbock.

(2) Each flight consisted of a series of lights in an arcuate formation which covered about 10° in the sky.

(3) It was apparent that the arcs were not continuous. Individual objects could not be clearly distinguished, but rather they appeared as scintillating points of bluish-green color, clearly and plainly visible but not brilliant, and having approximately the same illumination as high cirrus clouds on a clear moonlight night.

(4) Immediately after the flights it was estimated that the velocities of the flights were thirty degrees per second through an arc of ninety degrees beginning forty-five degrees below the zenith to forty-five degrees beyond the zenith.

(5) Both flights were identical in size, shape, velocity, and course.

(6) No sound was associated with the flights.

During the following week the same observers witnessed five flights between the hours of 9 and 12 P.M., each passing through the sky from north to south. Additional details are:

(1) On September first (Saturday) the above three were joined by Messrs. ____ and ____. On that night two flights were seen similar to those previously seen but not in the clean arcuate form above described, but rather more irregularly grouped, and with definite and individual objects present in the formation.

(2) The apparent number of objects in these succeeding flights has been variously estimated as being from fifteen to thirty.

(3) The most unusual flight was observed at 12:17 A.M. on September second by the five people who had met for the purpose of making observations. This flight passed directly overhead in the general direction of north to south, and was seen by each member of the group.

Mr. ———— observed that in the case of this flight, an irregularly shaped yellow light appeared in the rear. The formation included dark diffuse areas, and the arc itself quivered or pulsated in the direction of its travel.

Mr. ____ first sighted this flight, and described it as a group of individually distinct yellow flames, approximately twelve or fifteen in number, traveling at an extremely high velocity, each with an angular magnitude that would be the equivalent of twelve inches across at a distance of thirty or forty feet and in violent agitation.

Mr. _____ described this flight as having the appearance of a group of from twelve to fifteen pale objects in the shape of a quadrant of a circle, producing a pale yellow blinking light, and moving noiselessly.

The two other observers, Mr. ____ and Mr. ____, agreed to the above descriptions in their essential details.

The startling characteristics of this one flight made calm observation difficult to impossible.

The members of this group have seen a total of ten or twelve flights of these objects between August 25 and about November 1, 1951.

Submitted by
Professor and Head of Department of Petroleum Engineering
Professor of Geology Department of Geology
Professor of Chem. Eng.
Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Professor and Director Seismological Observatory



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Test Report No. WCEFP-2-4, Physics Branch,
Sensitometry Unit 29 Nov 1951
Subject: Evaluation of 35 mm. Negatives

FACTUAL DATA

1. Four negative frames were submitted from the Air Technical Intelligence Center for photographic evaluation by the Sensitometry Unit. These negatives were exposed at approximately 2330 CST, 30 Aug. 1951, at Lubbock, Texas. The camera was the familiar Kodak 35 with coupled range-finder and a 50 mm (2 inch) f/3.5 Anastor Kodak lens. The Plus X film was exposed for 1/10th sec with lens aperture wide open, presumably with the camera hand-held and the film was processed in Panthermic 777 developer for 15 min. An interpretation of the configuration of spots was requested, in addition to general sensitometric notes.

2. A preliminary microscopic examination of the negatives disclosed the presence of patterns of spots, the patterns on the four frames being generally similar. Roughly 20 spots were visible on each negative in a flat "V" formation. In 3 negatives the formation consists of two rows, while the fourth shows all spots lined up in a single row. All negatives show evidence of camera motion during exposure, since the spots all are similarly blurred on the same negative, and the blur shape is different for each negative.

3. To resolve the formations and detect internal motion of the spots, each negative was examined on a large comparator microscope. The rectangular coordinates of each spot, relative to a convenient origin of coordinates, were read and then plotted on coordinate paper. It is emphasized here that the resulting plot is erect, but a mirror image, from left to right, of the actual object photographed.

4. Little significance, other than brightness variations, can be found from the negatives separately. When the charts were superimposed, however, it was readily apparent that the two rows of spots behaved differently. One row shows only slight variation from a precise "V" formation throughout, whereas the other row appears to pass from above the first row, through it to a position below. The spacings of this second row vary irregularly in the 3 frames plotted, while the first row holds a fairly precise formation. The first frame, No. 4, was not plotted because of extreme blurring, but frames 5, 7 and 8 were plotted as Charts I, II and III respectively. Chart IV is a composite of Charts I, II and III. In it the spots from the previous charts, that appear relatively fixed in the formation, are shown as heavy black ink spots. The relatively moving spots are shown in light pencil — the first position of these shifting spots is light red, as in Chart I; the second position, spaced between the heavy spots, is in black pencil, as from Chart II; and the final position is shown in light green.

5. According to the microscopic examination, spot brightness range could be expressed as weak, average, and bright, corresponding to faint, average, or heavy spot densities. The faint spots in the moving row are underscored, while the bright spots are circled. Only those spots in the fixed row that are alike in all three negatives are indicated in the same way.

6. There is the appearance of two extra spots, outside the regular rows. One spot is to the lower right in all three charts, while the spot shows only faintly in the No. 7 negative and was missed in plotting Chart II; it appears in position at the left end of the moving row in Chart III.

CONCLUSIONS

7. There is relative movement within the formation of spots, so that they are not lights on a fixed object. The relative motion is such that it appears unlikely that they are co-planar and photographed from different angles. Furthermore, it is unlikely that the moving spots are in any kind of straight line.

8. The angular size of the formation, at the camera lens, is very nearly the same in all cases. The formation is, however, slightly larger in Chart II, or Frame 7, than in the others. The angular size corresponds to an object size of 310 ± 30 ft., seen by the camera 1 mile away. The actual size of the formation may be calculated from this ratio, if the actual distance from the camera can be determined. This image size is actually 0.12", formed by a 2" focal length lens in the camera used.

9. Although the image size in Frame 8 is about 2% less than in Frame 7, suggesting that the objects are receding from the camera, the aspect of the "V" formation does not correspond to a horizontal "V", travelling parallel to the earth's surface unless at an enormous altitude. Such motion at conventional altitudes would require the "V" to flatten, eventually becoming a straight line, but the "V" in Frame 8 is a slightly smaller angle than in Frame 7.

10. The orientation of the "V" formation is the same on all negatives. If the formation did actually pass directly over the camera station, all photographs were taken either before or after, but not both. It is obvious that the image would be inverted on two successive negatives if they were taken on an approaching and then a receding slant angle.

11. The pattern of spot brightness is such as to prove conclusively that all 3 frames —5, 7 and 8—were exposed to the same object pattern of spots. However, the relative positions of these spots varies, as described above.

RECOMMENDATIONS

12. In the event that further assistance is required of this Laboratory, exposure tests should be made under identical conditions to determine the spot nature required to produce the observed densities, and to determine the amount of camera blur produced by an experienced photographer in "panning", to track a moving target at night.


 
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