|On this date at about
1:10 p. m. local time, James W. Stokes, a high altitude research
engineer, reported he saw an elliptical UFO sweep twice across the
highway. The car radio and the engine failed. Stokes claimed that
other drivers were also on the road, and their engines had also failed.
Stokes reported a wave of heat and, later, his face appeared
"sunburned." This case was explained by the Air Force as a hoax. None
of the supporting witnesses were ever located. Stokes had told some
individuals that he wanted to "get even with the Air Force".
Additional information could probably be obtained from an interview
with Stokes (if he's still alive) and Terry Clarke, the radio announcer
who interviewed Stokes and talked to Gen Davis, the White Sands
commander. Clarke said little about his interview with Gen Davis. The
importance of this case is not so much the report content, but
the official handling. With this caveat, please now read the complete
The reporter for the Alamogordo radio station
KALG, Terry Clark, who was responsible for sending out the James
Stokes story on the national newswire, wondered like everyone else if
Stokes was telling the truth.
The morning of November 7th, something occurred that
convinced Clark that Stokes' account was not a fabrication. A similar
sighting was made close to the same location. What's more, the
witnesses, the Lindsey family, were known to Clark as people to be
trusted without any reservations.
[ footnote (9): Clark,Terry. "The day all roads
let so Alamogordo." WRITERS DIGEST. December 1957.
( Also note that Bryan Lindsey was a former employee of
the Daily News, the local Alamogordo newspaper.)
Byron Lindsey, a former employee of the Daily News editorial department
and a recent graduate of the University of Texas journalism department
tells Al Wegemer of the Daily News of the unidentified flying object
sighted by Lindsey and his parents north of Orogrande yesterday.
[ Handwritten note: Daily News - Alamogordo, NM
[ Loren Gross booklet, page 7 and 8, reproduce the full
Daily News article of 8 NOV 1957 -LH ]
RUNAWAY SPEEDOMETER HERALDS UFO SIGHTING [
Lindseys Sight High-Flying 'Thing' [ first
' DEFINITELY UNCONVENTIONAL
' [ second byline ]
By Al Wegemer
A runaway speedometer and a "high flying silvery oval
object" sighted by three Alamogordo residents,
constituted today's chapter in the unfolding "Unidentified Flying
What was labeled as "definitely an unconventional flying
machine" was spotted yesterday morning by Trent Lindsey, Alamogordo
insurance man; his wife Jewel; and his son Byron, 22.
The mysterious object was sighted at a point between
Escondida and Orogrande, about 35 miles from Alamogordo on [US] Highway
54 while the Lindseys were traveling by car to El Paso.
Prior to the sighting, the speedometer on the Lindsey
auto began to register in erratic fashion, and continued to operate in
"a wild way" until after the flying object disappeared from view.
DIDN'T STOP MOTOR
Since the latest rash of "flying saucer" reports began circulating in
the Southwest (and elsewhere), several motorists have complained that
flying objects have stopped car motors, and cut off or dimmed
But, the object sighted by the Lindseys failed to affect
the Lindsey car in such fashion.
Indeed, the senior Mr. Lindsey expressed the view that
the erratic functioning of the car speedometer possibly could be traced
to natural causes.
As to the speedy high-flying object sighted by the
Lindseys, Mr. Lindsey is sure of only one thing: It did not appear to
be "a conventional flying machine."
The object, Mr. Lindsey said, lacked the definable lines
and angles of a conventional aircraft, and on that point the three
Lindseys are in complete agreement.
Beyond that point, however, Mr. Lindsey is highly
skeptical about the significance, if any, of the sighting.
He explained: "There are lots of things flying around in
the sky these days, particularly in this part of the country.
Probably most, if not all, are explainable. "
The younger Lindsey, who leaves within a week for
Argentina where he will take advantage of a scholarship at the
University of Buenos Aires, and a former employee of the Daily News,
attached more importance to the sighting, saying:
"When the speedometer needle suddenly jumped over
110 [MPH] ( as far as the needle could go), mother said
that we had better stop the car and see if we could see anything that
might be causing the strange action..
"The needle kept skipping back and forth between 60 and
110 and making a clattering sound.
"While the needle was jumping around, dad pointed upward
to the southwest and said 'I suppose you think that is
something'. And it was something. It was cylindrical
in shape, silvery, and moving toward the southwest.
"It appeared to be very high up, I would guess about
10,000 feet, and traveling at high speed.
"It was a clear day (the hour of the sighting was 9:20
a.m.) and the object appeared to be made of metal rather than gaseous
"The object seemed to be following the curvature of the
earth instead of moving in a straight line as would an airplane.
"Also, the object seemingly did not have the definite
lines and angles of conventional aircraft.
"We saw the object for only about three minutes.
It disappeared over the Organ Mountains.
"When the speedometer needle first bounced over to the
110 mark, the flying object was probably nearer to us - maybe directly
overhead - but we didn't see the object until it was at least 30 miles
away from us."
NEEDLE LEANED TO OBJECT
"We traveled some 15 miles before the speedometer corrected itself, and
we had no trouble during the rest of the trip or on the way back from
El Paso. Strangely, the needle kept wavering to the side where
the object was instead of toward the zero mark on the speedometer."
[ end quote. Reporter Wegemer resumes
story.. -LH ]
The senior Mr. Lindsey checked with an Alamogordo garage
mechanic and was advised that the speedometer's erratic action could
have been caused by "lack of proper lubrication."
Mr. Lindsey said that he experienced no previous trouble
with the speedometer on his car, a 1954 Mercury.
Oddly, the object sighted by the Lindseys apparently was
traveling in practically the same same orbit followed by a mysterious
object sighted Monday by James Stokes of Alamogordo, retired U.S. Navy
man employed at Holloman.
Stokes described the object as "egg shaped" and said its
color was on the order of mother of pearl.
Stokes sighted the object about 10 miles South of
Orogrande on Highway 54. The object, he said, came in "from the
northeast" and caused his car engine to stall and the car headlights to
Stokes reported that he received a slight sunburn from
On Same General Course
The object sighted by the Lindseys seemingly followed the same general
course as that traversed by the UFO sighted by Stokes; and in a general
way, the descriptions of the two objects coincided.
Even so, the senior Mr. Lindsey inclines to the view
that the action of the speedometer and the sighting of the flying
object were coincidental, rather than related. Mrs. Lindsey and son
Byron, however, aren't so sure about that.
[ Daily News Alamogordo 11-8-57 ]
[ Hats off to Al Wegemer for a detailed, factual and unbiased
report! Contrast that with the below.. -LH ]
That the Lindsey report seemed to
substantiate Stokes, was not lost on the military either.
According to an United Press dispatch out of Alamogordo the Air Force
was "very interested" in the case. (10)
[Footnote (10) = Las Vegas,NM Daily Optic, 7 Nov.
[ The Optic printed a lengthy Associated Press article on the front
page titled: "Seeing Objects almost fad..". containing the following
brief reference to Stokes: -LH ]
At the Air Force Missile Development Center, Alamogordo,
authorities branded as untrue a published report that James Stokes,
45-year-old engineer who has reported sighting a "brilliant colored
egg-shaped object" along US-54, had undergone radiation tests.
Stokes has maintained his account basically unchanged
under questioning by air force officials. Officials said no
radiation tests were given to him. He [Stokes] had told of having
his face slightly burned when the object [ garble ] fl
Source: " The Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse ..
UFOs: A History 1957 November 7th -
12th" by Loren Gross. The first reports of the Stokes case
are no doubt in the Loren Gross booklet which precedes this one.
Indented are newspaper accounts.