Concord AFS, Vermont & Pease AFB, New Hampshire
September 19 & 20, 1961

Source: Excerpted from the following report posted on the CUFON site:

REPORT NO. 0450-74

Pages 52-71
There is no indication that the Hills were ever contacted by the Air Force after this report was filed.  This is particularly strange since Project Blue Book files show that a UFO was spotted and tracked by Air Force radar operators at nearby Concord AFS, Vermont less that seven hours prior to the Hills' sighting.  Another UFO was sighted by Pease AFB precision approach radar only two hours following the Hill visual sighting.  The report of the first radar sighting was not wired to the Project Blue Book staff at Wright-Patterson AFB until nearly three days after the actual sighting took place. Personnel at the N. Concord AFS, Vermont sent their TWX on 22 September 1961 at 0234Z. The radar sighting took place on 19 September at 2122Z.(26:file)

    The report of the Barney and Betty Hill sighting containing an additional comment regarding the UFO spotted and tracked by the Pease AFB radar was not wired to Project Blue Book headquarters, despite the fact that it was normal USAF policy to do so.  Instead, the Directorate of Administrative Services at Pease AFB mailed the information to Project Blue Book on September  29, 1961 - eight days after the original Hill report was filed, An accompanying memo sent by Pease AFB


explained that "Non-availability of observers for early interrogation precluded electrical transmission of report."(26:file) This is a particularly puzzling statement, since the Hills were readily available for interrogation at any time. Conversations with the Hills were concluded on September 21, 1961.

    On September 25, 1961, Project Blue Book's Director sent the information regarding the N. Concord AFS radar sighting to the Electronics Branch of the USAF's Foreign Technology Division requesting comment. The Deputy for Science and Components answered Project Blue Book's request on September 28, 1961 with the following memo:

    Memo, TD-E (Major Friend), 25 Sep 61, (U) Request for Review

    1st Ind (TD-Ela/Mr. V.D. Bryant/74201 28 September 1961

    TO: TD-E (Major Friend)

    1. The relatively low speed and high altitude of the subject UFO, coupled with an erratic course (including hovering), appear to rule out a normal aircraft target and favor some target as a weather balloon.

    2. It is suggested that if it is desired to pursue the investigation further, a check might be made of activities in the area responsible for launching and tracking weather balloons.


    PAUL J. SLOCUM                                                   1 Atch
    Colonel, USAF                                                           n/c
    Chief, Electronics Division
    Deputy for Science and Components (26:file)



    There is no indication that Project Blue Book ever checked activities in the area responsible for launching and tracking weather balloons. The Director of Project Blue Book apparently accepted the Foreign Technology Division's explanation.

    The official Project Blue Book Project 10073 Record Card regarding the N. Concord AFS radar sighting reads as follows:

1.  Date: 19 Sept 61
2.  Location: N. Concord AFS, Vermont
3.  Date: Time Group-GMT 19 2122Z (September 19, 1722 Eastern Time)
4.  Type of observation:   Ground-Radar
5.  Photos; No
6.  Source: Military
7.  Length of Observation:   18 min.
8.  Number of objects: 1
9.  Course: S
10. Brief summary of sighting: Return on H/F (height-finder) radar size of a/c (aircraft) appearing as normal target at 62,000 appeared 196 deg. at 84 mi, lost on contact 199 deg. at 80 mi, going NW then S and gradually S on scope 18 min. (The original TWX not reproduced here but on file with original Blue Book material describes the UFO sighted as "a large aircraft").
11. Comments: Relative low speed and high altitude coupled with erratic course including weather balloon.
12. Conclusion: Probably balloon.


Page number one of the Form 112 reporting the UFO sighting of Betty and Barney Hill included the following radar sighting as an additional item. The subtlety of its mention, as a mere afterthought, certainly belies its


significance.  The additional item reads as follows:

        During a casual conversation on 22 Sept 61 between Major Gardiner B. Reynolds, 100th B W DCOI and Captain Robert O. Daughaday, Commander 1917-2 AACS DIT, Pease AFB, NH it was revealed that a strange incident occurred at 0214 local on 20 Sept. No importance was attached to the incident at the time. Subsequent interrogation failed to bring out any information in addition to the extract of the "Daily Report to the Controller". Copy of this extract is attached. It is not possible to determine any relationship between these two observations, as the radar observation provides no description. Time and distance between the events could hint of a possible relationship.  (Underlining ours)

    The extract referred to in the above memo read:


0614Z (0214 a.m.) OBSERVED UNIDENTIFIED A/C COME ON PAR (Precision approach radar) 4 MILES OUT.


    Captain, USAF
    Commander (26:file)



The official Project Blue Book Project 10073 Record Card concerning Barney and Betty Hill's visual sighting of a UFO and the UFO sighted on the Pease AFB radar reads as follows :

1. Date: 20 Sep 61
2. Location; Lincoln, NH


  3. Date-Time Group: Local 0001-0100 GMT:  20 0401-05002
4. Type of observation: Ground-visual Air intercept radar.
5. Photos: No
6. Source: Military
7. Length of observation: 30 min.
8. No. of objects: 1
9. Course: N
10. Brief summary of sighting: Continuous band of lights. Cigar-shaped at all times despite changes of direction. Wings seemed to appear fm main body. Described as V-shaped with red lights on tips: later wings appeared to extend further. Appeared about 45 deg.  Varied direction abruptly and disappeared to north.
11. Comments: Both radar and visual sighting are probably due to conditions resulting from strong inversion which prevailed in area on morning of sighting. Actual source of light viewed is not known but it has all the characteristics of an advertising searchlight.  Radar probably was looking at some ground target due to strong inversion (a temperature inversion can take place in a perfectly clear sky). No evidence indicating objects were due to other than natural causes.
12. Conclusions: Optical condition (later changed to "inversion", and still later changed to "insufficient data".)(26:file)



It is interesting to note that the Project 10073 Record Card was typewritten except for a ball-point checkmark in the air-intercept radar box in item number four. The official Form 112 submitted to Project Blue Book by Pease AFB officials indicated the radar sighting was made on precision-approach radar. Since there was no indication of an air intercept having taken place, it might be assumed that the air-intercept radar box was marked incorrectly. It is important to note, however


that this is merely an assumption of this writer. It is also interesting to note the comment made in item 11 regarding the UFO as having all the characteristics of an advertising searchlight. This possible explanation raises the question of what an advertising searchlight would have been used for in Lincoln, N.H. between midnight and 1 a.m. in the morning. There is no indication that Project Blue Book ever followed the searchlight hypothesis although it would have been relatively simple to discover whether or not a searchlight was actually in use in Lincoln, N.H. on the date in question.

    Project Blue Book certainly can not be blamed for the time delay regarding the TWX sent by the N. Concord AFS and letter sent by Pease AFB. They must be given credit for at least following through, to some extent, on the N. Concord AFS sighting. It is this writer's opinion, however, that Project Blue Book's explanation regarding the searchlight was an example of mere speculation with no attempt at follow-up.  Although a correlation between the UFO reported by the Hills and the UFO tracked on the Pease AFB radar was indicated as a possibility by Pease AFB officials, Project Blue Book officials make no further mention of it.


    On November 15, 1961, almost two months after the Barney and Betty Hill sighting, a Project Blue Book official telephoned the Air Weather Service at Ashville North Carolina requesting copies of Rawinsonde (graphic adiabatic weather charts) observations of the Lincoln, N.H. area for 17-22 September 1961. This was an apparent attempt to support Project Blue Book's former "inversion" explanation. Since Lincoln, N.H. does not take Rawinsonde observations, and Portland, Maine was the closest station to do so, Project Blue Book's hypothesis could not be validated.

    Project Blue Book ended their investigation of the Barney and Betty Hill sighting and the corresponding radar sightings at this point without ever recontacting the Hills. This is a particularly disturbing aspect of this sighting. The Hill file is much larger than many of the other Project Blue Book files, but this is due primarily to the thickness of news clipping, and magazine articles that were later included. Project Blue Book officials made meager attempts at "solving" the case by asking information of two other USAF offices, No attempt was made, however, to recontact the Hills or to interview them in person. No attempt was made to visit the reported UFO landing sight. No attempt was


made at drawing a possible correlation between the visual and radar UFO reports even though former Project Blue Book Director, Captain E.J. Ruppelt admitted as early as January 24, 1953, that visual reports that supposedly correlate with erratic radar tracks warrant a detailed investigation.(24:file)

    The official Air Force explanation regarding the Hills' UFO sighting turned out to be almost as erratic as the radar and visual sightings themselves. The official explanations in this particular case included "weather inversion", "the Planet Jupiter", "optical condition", and finally "insufficient data". If one counts the explanation given for the N. Concord AFS UFO sighting, the explanation of "weather balloon" can also be added. "Weather inversion" became a favorite "catch-all" explanation at Project Blue Book, according to Dr. J. Allen Hynek.  A 3 deg. inversion existing at 6000 feet has been used to explain a sighting made by an aircraft at 15,000 feet. The Air Force maintains excellent scientific facilities at its Cambridge laboratories but Project Blue Book officials never once contacted this facility to calculate whether the inversions to which a sighting was attributed were actually sufficient, quantitatively, to account for the UFO



    The official Air Force release regarding the Barney and Betty Hill UFO sighting reads as follows:

  Information on Barney Hill sighting, 20 September 1961, Lincoln, New Hampshire.  The Barney Hill sighting was investigated by officials from Pease AFB. The case is carried as insufficient data in the Air Force files. No direction (azimuth) was reported and there are inconsistencies in the report.  The sighting occurred about midnight and the object was observed for at least one hour. No specific details on maneuverability were given.  The Planet Jupiter was in the South West, at about 20 degrees elevation and would have set at the approximate time that the object disappeared. Without positional data the case could not be evaluated as Jupiter. There was a strong inversion in the area. The actual light source is not known.  As no lateral or vertical movement was noted, the object was in all probability Jupiter. No evidence was presented to indicate that the object was due to other than natural causes.(26:file)  

This official release is confusing since directions of flight (azimuth) were supplied by the Hills.  The official release also mentions inconsistencies in the Hill report, but none of the inconsistencies are mentioned, and this writer has been unable to uncover any. The Planet Jupiter is mentioned in the official release as the probable sighting observed by the Hills but Barney and Betty Hill mentioned the fact that the object passed in front of the moon at one point and contained colored lights. The official Project Blue


Book release states that the Hill sighting was observed for at least one hour, yet the sighting time listed on the official report was "3O minutes". The Air Force release also claims that no lateral or vertical movement was noted yet the official Air Force report mentions descending, ascending, and swooping movements.(26:file)   The official Air Force release concludes by stating that no evidence was presented to indicate that the object was due to other than natural causes but makes no mention of the radar tracking. All in all, the official investigation of this sighting appears, at best, to be shallow and incomplete.

               Further Developments in the Barney and Betty Hill Case

    In the week following their initial UFO report, Betty Hill was plagued by nightmares that she and Barney had encountered a strange roadblock on a lonely New Hampshire road. She dreamed that a group of men forced her and Barney to board a spacecraft where they were both made to submit to a physical examination.(10:48)  During the ensuing months, both Barney and Betty were increasingly bothered by anxiety and by the disturbing fact that two hours of the morning of September 20, 1961, remained unaccounted for. Finally, on February 22, 1964,


Barney agreed to undergo questioning under hypnosis by Dr. Benjamin Simon, the distinguished Boston psychiatrist and neurologist. Betty Hill was questioned under hypnosis by Dr. Simon the following week.(11:11)  The tape recorded sessions proved to be fascinating and uncovered some startling information.

    Under hypnosis, Barney and Betty Hill told of humanoid (human-like) creatures forcing them to board a spacecraft. The crew of the spacecraft conversed in a manner described by Barney as "humming", although Betty was able to converse with the leader in English and was able to understand the leader's speech in a manner not clearly describable by Betty Hill. Barney and Betty were taken into different rooms for a physical examination. During the course of the examination, a needle was inserted into Betty's navel and was explained as a pregnancy test. After Betty's examination was concluded, she inquired about what appeared to be a star map on the wall of the spacecraft. The leader explained that the map was actually a map of exploratory and trade routes (This star map incident was to play an extremely important role many years later.) Both Barney and Betty Hill were told that they would remember nothing of the time they had spent aboard the spacecraft and were then



    The time that the Hills spent aboard the spacecraft could very well explain the two hours of their trip which were previously unaccounted for. Assuming the examinations did take two hours, and the UFO left shortly after releasing the Hills, an eerie time correlation can be drawn between the Hills' reported midnight sighting and the UFO tracked by Pease AFB radar at 2:L4 a.m.

    The Barney and Betty Hill story was first printed in a series of six newspaper articles in the "Boston Traveler" in October 1965. Almost a year later, "Look Magazine" ran articles describing the Hills' experience and their testimony under hypnosis. The actual information revealed under hypnosis was published as a book by John Fuller entitled, "Interrupted Journey."

    The notoriety surrounding the Hill experience apparently had little effect on Project Blue Book's investigation of the case. In fact, Project Blue Book now considered the Hill case closed with "zero priority".  The only evidence that the new Project Blue Book staff paid any attention to the renewed notoriety of the Hill case was the fact that the two "Look Magazine" articles and copies of the "Boston Traveler" articles regarding the Hills' experience were included in Project


Blue Book's official file on the Barney and Betty Hill case.

    On November 9, 1965, ten days after the last Hill article appeared in the "Boston Traveler", Project Blue Book's Deputy Director of Information mailed copies of the articles to the Pentagon's UFO spokesman.  The articles were later returned to Project Blue Book's files with a page attached which contained a combination of sixteen questions or statements in an attempt to discredit the information contained in the "Boston Traveler" articles.  The note was unsigned and it is not known whether the questions and statements were written by the Pentagon's UFO spokesman or the Director of Project Blue Book.  Regardless of who wrote the note, it remains an excellent example of the attitude prevalent through out the Project Blue Book organization and how little information the author of the note possessed regarding a UFO case as extraordinary as the Hills'.

    This writer will list all of the statements and questions contained in the aforementioned attachment in the order originally listed.(24:file)  Immediately following each statement or question, this writer will supply an answer or comment.

    1. (Statement) The Hill case is closed, and has


    zero priority.  Apparently no consideration was given to reopen this case, even though startling additional revelations under hypnosis seemed to warrant further investigation.

    2. (Statement) "Foreign" does not mean foreign to the United States.  
    This statement was made to correct a statement published in the first Boston Traveler article regarding the Hills which appeared on Monday, October 25, 1965.  The article stated that "foreign" (in Foreign Technology Division) means foreign to this earth and not simply alien to this country.(18:B-7)

    3. (First Statement) FTD (Foreign Technology Division) is directed by AFSC (Air Force Systems Command) at Andrews AFB, not the CIA.
    The "Boston Traveler" stated that the FTD was directed by the CIA which takes over and investigates UFO reports the Air Force itself cannot explain.(18:B-7)

    3. (Second Statement) The CIA does not investigate the unidentifieds.
    This was not a completely accurate statement since the Robertson Panel of 1953 was held under the auspices of the CIA and investigated UFOs and the findings of Project Blue Book to date.(29:file)

    4. (Statement) Name one scientist of "astrophysicist" studying this case.
    This writer can name one excellent example: Dr. J.


Allen Hynek, Chairman of the Department of Astronomy at Northwestern University and the Air Force's Scientific consultant on Project Blue Book.(14:156)

    5. (Statement) NICAP (The National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomenon) is not a "scientific" agency.
    This involves a question of semantics. What exactly is a "scientific agency"?   NICAP is a non-profit worldwide organization incorporated in the District of Columbia.  Its main purpose is the scientific investigation and research of reported UFOs, and encouragement of full reporting to the public by responsible authorities of all information that the Government has accumulated on the subject.(10:46) Many astronomers, professional pilots, and scientists are members of NICAP.

    6. (Question) Walter Webb astronomer? Yes, No?
    Walter Webb was an astronomer and a lecturer on the staff of Hayden Planetarium.(10:47)

    7. (Question) Is Hill (Barney Hill) emotionally mature?
    Dr. Simon, the psychiatrist who questioned Barney Hill under hypnosis never gave any indication that Mr. Hill was immature.(10:45) In fact, Barney Hill was reluctant to report the UFO incident in the first place.(26:file)

    8. (Statement) Note that they withheld infor-


mation and waited two days (before reporting the sighting to Pease AFB). They reported only that there appeared a bright star moving toward them in a northerly direction.
    The Hills did not wait two days before reporting the incident. The UFO was spotted in the early minutes of January 20, 1961.  Barney and Betty Hill didn't arrive home until 5 a.m. on January 20, 1961, and slept until after 3 p.m.  Betty Hill's sister convinced Betty and Barney later that same afternoon that their UFO sighting should be reported to Pease AFB. Since it was most likely early evening by that time, it does not seem unusual for the Hills to wait until the following day, September 21, 1961, to report the incident.(10:47)  The Hills relayed much more information than simply stating that they had seen a bright star moving toward them in a northerly direction as was quite evident from reading their original report included earlier in this paper.(26:file)

    9. (Question and Statement) Two years later?...   Evaluated in 1961 (info supplied to Herbert S.  Taylor in 1963).
    This writer has not determined specifically what the above question and statement mean. A regular Project Blue Book press release was forwarded to Herbert S. Taylor as requested by Taylor in his letter of August 27, 1963, but the gist of question and state-


ment number nine remains unclear.(26:file)

    10. (Question and Statement) Records? Indicate an intensive? Come now. We did not even bother to contact the Hills personally.
    This item was in reference to a statement made in the third "Boston Traveler" article regarding the Hills' UFO sighting. The article reported as follows: "What the Air Force wasn't saying, however, is that its Foreign Technology Division in Ohio has quietly assumed charge of a new - intensive investigation..." (17:B-2)   It is particularly interesting to note that whoever typed the list of sixteen questions and statements admitted that Project Blue Book did not bother to contact the Hills personally. This is hardly a statement to boast about and once again conveys the shallowness of their "investigation".

    11. (Question) No one else saw the same object the Hills did, who are the others???
    Barney Hill insisted that Pease AFB officials informed him that they had received other reports similar to his.(26:file) These reports do not appear in the Project Blue Book files. Of course, two radar sightings took place which supported the Hills' report, but who ever composed this list of questions did not refer to them.

    12. Sought psychiatric help. Does this indicate


emotional maturity? What are the conclusions of the psychiatrist ?

    Seeking psychiatric help does not necessarily indicate immaturity. The conclusions of Dr. Simon are as follows:

     Some aspects of the experience are unanswered, and, perhaps, unanswerable at this time. Nothing is finally settled. Nothing is absolutely proved to me regarding the alleged "abduction". Neither patient is psychotic, and both consciously and under hypnosis told what they believed to be absolute truth. The charisma of hypnosis has tended to foster the belief that it is the magical road to truth. In one sense, this is so, but it must be understood that hypnosis is a pathway to the truth as it is felt and understood by the patient.  The truth is what he believes to be the truth, and this may not be consonant with the ultimate and nonpersonal truth. Most frequently it is.(10:45)  

l3. (Question) Who was the accredited scientific investigator who heard the tapes?
    If a representative of Project Blue Book or the Air Force asked this question, it is rather embarrassing since their own scientific consultant, Dr. J. Allen Hynek actually participated in hypnotic sessions between Dr. Simon and the Hills.   Hynek was not acting on behalf of the Air Force at the time.

    14. (Statement) Final evaluation is made at Wright-Patterson on the data submitted from Pease AFB and other information from their own investigation into the matter.  (Under lining ours.)
    What other information?  This writer hopes this is


not a reference to Project Blue Book's request for Rawinsonde observations, which proved futile.

    15. (Statement) The time motion sequence is missing in all reports. Such directions as "to the right" "up" etc. have no validity.
    Only directions reported in azimuth and evaluation have value.

    The Hills indicated the UFOs elevation when first sighted and also gave information pertaining to direction in their report to Pease AFB.(26:file)   The angle of elevation when the UFO disappeared was not available but no further information regarding azimuth or elevation was asked by Pease AFB officials.  Further information of this nature was revealed by the Hills while under hypnosis, however, and was readily available to Project Blue Book in 1966 if they had listened to Dr. Simon's tapes or had bothered to ask the Hills.(26:file)

    16. (Statement) The files are maintained at Wright-Patterson, not Pease AFB.
    This is a true, but relatively unimportant, statement.

    Prior to the publication of their series of articles on the Hills, the "Boston Traveler" requested a copy of the original Air Force Information Report 100-1-61 originally prepared by Major Paul Henderson at Pease AFB. A "copy" of the report was furnished


by Project Blue Book one month later. The sixth article printed by the "Boston Traveler" reported that "It was actually a typewritten copy, not a reproduction. It was mistakenly dated September 1963, instead of 1961 when the report was compiled.  It made not mention of radar shimmerings..."(19:B-1)  The statement regarding shimmerings was in reference to an earlier remark by Pease AFB officials that the UFO appeared on its radar as a "shimmering" - an air mass phenomena that reflects light from the ground. (18:B-7)  The truth is that the information that Project Blue Book released to the "Boston Traveler" was an incomplete typewritten copy of the original Air Force Information Report 100-1-61. Project Blue Book had failed to include the additional item from the report which referred to a "strange incident (that) occurred at 0214 local on 20 Sept (1961)." The "strange incident", of course, was the report of a radar sighting by Pease AFB precision approach radar.  The radar "shimmering" originally reported to the press was much more than a shimmer indicating an air mass. It was a bonafide sighting (see page 55). It is not clear why Project Blue Book purposely withheld information to the press regarding the Pease AFB radar sighting, but it


certainly supported the Government's attitude that UFOs did not exist. This was an example of the way Project Blue Book's final director protected the Government's attitude.  This was also perhaps an example of why this director remained in his position longer than any of his predecessors. To paraphrase former Project Blue Book Director Captain Edward Ruppelt, "the Hill case was dead - just when the information was getting better." (29:85)  Not only was the Hill case dead, but Project Blue Book was now mortally ill itself.

Source: Pages 52-71

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