The 1947 UFO Sighting Wave
A Comprehensive Chronological Summary of the Period
The Rhodes Photo, July 7, 1947, Phoenix, Arizona
Created December 14, 2005, updated: 11 Dec. 2012
The wave of 1947 has always intrigued me for several reasons. All the other waves had a precedent. This wave had come before all of them, had come out of nowhere, and was an entirely new phenomena. The descriptions of the objects seen over a six week period were very similar and half of the sightings involved daylight objects, many of them described as "flying discs". The wave suddenly ended with the reported crash of a strange object at Roswell, New Mexico. For what we know about the wave of 1947 today we have Ted Bloecher, and a few others, to thank. What you are about to read, not counting the BB documents and NICAP reports, encompasses well over 500 pages.
This project involves a number of people. First of all, this is an on-going project, and Ted Bloecher is helping us to constantly update his 1967 work. The entire updated version as presented today is available on the NICAP site. Over a thousand incidents, many of which are included in the chronology below, are listed in the charts from "The Report on the UFO Wave of 1947" (Reference 1). We also wish to thank Wendy Connors and Mike Hall for allowing us to post their great book, "Alfred Loedding and the Great Flying Saucer Wave of 1947". No 1947 work would be complete without the aid of Jan Aldrich of Project 1947. With the help of William Wise (Project Blue Book Archive), and Dan Wilson (digging out the cases from my checklist), the task was much easier. But without Brad Sparks' updated list, the Comprehensive Catalog of Project Blue Book Unknowns, the entire project would have been impossible. And our thanks go to Jean Waskiewicz who created the online NICAP DBase (NSID) that helped make it possible to link from the cases to the reports themselves. To view the 1947 sightings listed by Blue Book click here. Be sure to click on and read the two great books below. But first, let's let Ted Bloecher do the introduction.
Jan. 16, 1947; North Sea, 50 miles from Holland (BBU)
10:30 p.m. (GMT). RAF pilot of Mosquito pursued unidentified radar target showing efficient controlled evasive action at 22,000 ft speed equal or greater than Mosquito, headed W? towards Norfolk, Eng. (FOIA) This was five months before the Kenneth Arnold sighting and the beginning of the Wave of 1947, followed by the crash at Roswell in early July. The incident was also linked to another "X raid" tracked by radar earlier that same day. An FBI document from July of 1947 quoted the Air Ministry case summary stating that: "no explanation has been forthcoming, nor has it been repeated." This information was not entirely accurate, because a very similar incident had occurred just 24 hours after the North Sea incident. As a direct result, Fighter Command immediately extended its night radar watch. (FOIA)
Jan. 17, 1947; North Sea
In the afternoon, two Chain Home Low stations in Lincolnshire (Skendleby and Humberstone) tracked what they described as "an exceptionally good track" (U294) at 10,000 feet above the North Sea. With Eastern Sector on alert, Meteor jets from 245 Squadron were placed on standby to scramble if Charlie came within range, but the plot faded from their screens. At 1945 hours the radar station at Humberstone, near Grimsby again tracked an unidentified target over the sea for a period of 30 minutes at a speed of more than 200 mph.
Feb. 28, 1947; 6 miles south of Lima, Peru
Time not given. While driving C.A.V. saw a sand-colored & very shiny disc-shaped object hovering 6-7 feet off the ground. Three figures emerged from it. They looked like mummies. They had a humanoid profile, but their legs were fused together. The hands looked like fingers in mittens, and they had a opposable thumb. The skin was sand-colored, & they had no facial features. There was a transparent area where the eyes should have been. Source suggested reliability rating: 2. (Due to the time of year and lack of reports, this incident needs to be checked - Fran Ridge)
April 1947; Richmond, Virginia ((BBU)
11 a.m. (EST). Meteorologist Minczewski saw a silvery disc through a theodolite while tracking a pibal weather balloon, traveling E to W at less than 15,000 ft, appeared larger than the balloon. (McDonald 1968; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
May 17 [19?], 1947; Oklahoma City,
Last week of May, 1947; Near Beaufort, South Carolina
11:00 a.m. Dr. Battey, a physician in Augusta, Georgia, had been fishing ten miles off St. Helena Sound, near Beaufort, South Carolina. He noticed a formation of four disc-like objects flying overhead in a southeasterly direction at a terrific rate of speed. The discs appeared to be spinning on their axes and were at an estimated altitude of about 20,000 feet. They were silvery and appeared highly polished, and on their under-sides, Dr. Battey could see a circular rim, or projection, about one-quarter of the way from the edges. No sound was heard as they flew overhead. The formation sped out of view in less than twenty seconds. Dr. Battey's report of the sighting did not appear in print until July 6th, when the Augusta Chronicle gave it prominent front-page coverage. INS sent it out on the wires, where it was picked up by numerous newspapers around the country. (Bloecher)
There was approximately one sighting every other day for the first half of the June. These were scattered over the midwest and western United States. Then the sighting rate doubled to about 2 per day until June 20. I found 3 sightings for June 20, two for June 21, three on June 22, six on June 23..... and then the explosion: I found 20 reports on June 24!
June 2, 1947; Rehoboth Beach (near Lewes), Delaware (BBU)
Pilot Forrest Wenyon in aircraft flying N at 1,400 ft saw a silvery jar-shaped object 15 inches [?] in size cross in front of the plane at 1,000-10,000 mph heading E on a straight course at same altitude, with a silver-white fire exhaust. [Daytime meteor?] Sev secs. (Project 1947; McDonald list; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
June 12, 1947; Weiser, Idaho (BBU)
6:15 p.m. Mrs. H. Erickson saw 2 high speed round objects glistening in the sun at high altitude headed SE in trail formation moving up and down twice and leaving a vapor trail that persisted for over an hour. Sev secs. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967)
June 14, 1947; Bakersfield, Calif. (BBU)
2:15 p.m. Veteran pilot Richard Rankin and a young boy saw 10 "almost round" or Flying Flapjack-shaped objects in formation at 9,000 ft and 300-400 mph headed N on a straight level course, then 7 returned on reverse S course at 2:15 p.m. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967)
June 19, 1947; Webster, Mass.
One of the earliest cases of humanoid reports appeared about two weeks later in, I believe, a Worchester paper -- possibly the Telegram. By an older, unidentified woman who saw an occupant inside an object who looked like "a Navy officer." (Bloecher)
June 20, 1947; Hot Springs, NM
8:00 PM MST. Woman and her daughter observed three revolving groups of three discs in triangular formation, straight course, S-NE (Bloecher,17,II-9)
June 21, 1947; Spokane, Washington (BBU)
11:50 [11:55 PST?] a.m. Civilian woman [Mrs. Guy R. ?] Overman saw 8 [shiny silvery and slim-bodied?] disk-shaped objects the size of a house fly at 600 mph [or slower than a 2-engine army plane?] traveling SSW at 7,000 ft one object below an aircraft, then fall with a dead-leaf motion and land before 10 witnesses on the shore of the St. Joe River, Idaho. Sev mins. (Vallée Magonia 57; cf. FOIA; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967)
June 21, 1947; Maury Island, Washington
Cat 6. Maury Island Incident (hoax).June 23, 1947; Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Bloecher found 20 reports on June 24! These were mostly in the far northwestern states of Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Sightings were scattered throughout the day from morning to night. After the 24th, the sighting rate stayed at about 10 per day or higher, with sightings occurring not just in the west but throughout the country.
Railroad engineer saw 10 shiny disc-shaped objects, very high, fluttering along in a string toward NW. [UFOE, XII]
To many, the events of 1947 seemed to have begun on June 24th, the date of the sighting made by Kenneth Arnold, while flying a plane over the Cascade Mountains of Washington. It was the report made by this Boise, Idaho pilot and businessman, who sold fire-fighting equipment throughout the northwest, that opened the first chapter in the modern record of UFO activity. But as you can tell, this wasn't the beginning.
June 24, 1947; Mt. Rainier, Washington
At 3:00 P.M., pilot Kenneth Arnold, was flying his airplane near Mt. Rainier and noticed some flashes of light. He then saw the source of the flashes; a string of nine very bright metallic objects.
"I spent the next twenty to thirty seconds urgently searching the sky all around - to the sides and above and below me - in an attempt to determine where the flash of light had come from. The only actual plane I saw was a DC-4 far to my left and rear, apparently on its San Francisco to Seattle run. My momentary explanation to myself was that some lieutenant in a P-51 had given me a buzz job across my nose and that it was sun reflecting off his wings as he passed that had caused the flash. Before I had time to collect my thoughts or to find a close aircraft, the flash happened again. This time I caught the direction from which it had come. I observed, far to my left and to the north, a formation of very bright objects coming from the vicinity of Mt. Baker, flying very close to the mountain tops and traveling at tremendous speed.... I observed a chain of nine peculiar looking aircraft flying from north to south at approximately 9,500 ft elevation and going, seemingly, in a definite direction of about 170 degrees."
June 24, 1947; Mt. Adams, Wash. (BBU 12)
Afternoon. Just about the time that Kenneth Arnold lost sight of his objects, Fred Johnson, listed as a prospector, reported watching five or six disc-shaped craft as they flew over the Cascade Mountains. He said they were round with a slight tail and about 30 feet in diameter. They were not flying in any sort of formation and as they banked in a turn, the sunlight flashed off them. As they approached, Johnson noticed that his compass began to spin wildly. When the objects finally vanished in the distance, the compass returned to normal.
June 24, 1947; Richland, Washington
2:30 p.m. PST. L. G. Bernier, observed three flat objects that were faster that P-38's. The objects were flying on a level course to the northwest. [Note: Richland is part of the Hanford site]. (Ted Bloecher/Dan Wilson)
June 24, 1947; Pendleton, Oregon
A humanoid report on the same day Arnold had his sighting (Bloecher).
June 28, 1947; Rockfield, Wisconsin (BBU)
3:43 [3:45 CST?] p.m. Marion Beuschler and her brother a farmer saw 7-10 saucer-shaped objects fly overhead heading S at high speed. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967)
June 28, 1947; 30 miles NW of Lake Mead, Nevada (BBU)
3:15 [1:15 PST?] p.m. AAF pilot Lt. E. B. Armstrong from Brook AAF, San Antonio, Texas, flying F-51 fighter at 6,000 ft saw a tight formation of 5-6 white circular 3 ft objects off his right wing heading 120° [about ESE] at 6,000 ft at 285 mph. (Ruppelt p. 19; FOIA; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967).
June 28, 1947; Maxwell AFB, Montgomery, Alabama (BBU)
9:20-9:45 p.m. 4 AAF officers including 2 pilots and 2 intelligence officers, Capt. W. H. Kayko, Capt. J. H. Cantrell, Capt. Redman, 1st Lt. T. Dwwey, saw a bright light just above the SW horizon travel towards them in a zigzag with bursts of high speed, when directly overhead it made a sharp 90° turn and lost to view in the S [SW?]. 25-mins. (Ruppelt p.19; FOIA; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967)
June 29, 1947; Des Moines, Iowa (BBU)
3:45 [4:45 CST?] p.m. Bus driver Dale Bays saw a single file line of 4 [18 ?] "dirty white" round objects between circular and oval in shape, inverted saucer shape about 175-250 ft diameter 12 ft thick, at about 1,200 ft height traveling about 300 mph to the SSE, sound of electric motor or dynamo. Another group of 13 objects seen heading SSE to NNW [later?]. Few mins. (Battelle/BBSR14 ?; Mary Castner/CUFOS; FUFOR Index; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
About June 29, 1947; Jacksonville, Oregon
About 1:00 p.m.. A V-formation of UFOs seen by a group of people on a Sunday either at the end of June or early in July. The date, believed to be June 29, had not been definitely established. A group of people west of Medford, just above the California border. The formation was traveling northwest toward Medford, east of the observers. There were nine objects. According to one witness, when first seen the objects were "as white as snow geese"; as they came closer they became blue-white, "like a fluorescent-bulb light." They were sharply outlined and seemed to be solid; "also translucent, like a light, pebbled, frosted bulb." The size of the individual objects was estimated as more than twice the diameter of the full moon -- presumably when the objects were nearest to the witnesses, although this is not stated definitely. (Reference 1, Section II, Page 3)
June 29, 1947; About 20 [15?] miles ENE of Las Cruces, New Mexico (BBU)
About 1:15 [1:20?] p.m. Rocket scientist-engineer Dr. Carl J. Zohn, Admin Asst., Rocket Sonde Section, USN Naval Research Lab (NRL) temporarily assigned to White Sands Proving Ground (WSPG), NRL scientist Curtis C. Rockwood and his wife, and WSPG technician John R. Kauke, were driving in a car from Las Cruces to WSPG headed NE when they saw to their right front [E] a rotating silvery or shiny disc or sphere with no appendages, wings, tail, propellers, reflecting sunlight [pulsating?], crossing the sky at high speed heading N at about 8,000-10,000 ft which suddenly disappeared in mid-air in a clear cloudless sky. Kauke had stopped the car and briefly saw a short vapor trail at one point not reported by the others. Zohn on the passenger side rolled the window for an unobstructed view. Nearly 60-secs. (FOIA; cf. Ruppelt, p. 20; FUFOR Index; Randle-Schmitt; Bloecher 1967; etc.)
June 30, 1947; Near S rim of Grand Canyon, Ariz. (BBU)
9:10 a.m. (MST?). Navy Lt. William G. McGinty flying P-80 from Williams AAF at 30,000 ft heading S saw 2 gray, circular objects about 8 or 10 ft diameter, diving at "unconceivable" speed from about 25,000 ft, which appeared to land 25 miles S of the Grand Canyon. (Vallée Magonia 59; cf. Project 1947; FOIA; FUFOR Index; Bloecher 1967)
Few of the thirty-nine reports for this period received headline attention when they were printed, and by June 30th, newspaper coverage was not quite as widespread as it had been several days earlier. But UFO sightings would very shortly pick again as the July 4th holiday approached.
In early July the sighting rate climbed beyond 20 per day to 88 sightings on July 4, 76 on July 5, 156 on July 6, 159 on July 7, and a whopping 189 on July 8. After that it dropped quickly back to 20 per day and then only a few per day.
Early July, 1947; Nashville, Tennessee
Area of a sighting of a landed disc and two occupants. (Bloecher)
July, 1947; Near Malta,
1947, Chitose, Hokkaido,
July 2, 1947. Roswell, New Mexico (BBU)9:50 p.m. (MST). Pharmacist Dan Wilmot, wife, and son Paul, at home in downtown Roswell. Fireball came from SE directly or almost directly overhead, heading towards and disappearing over Sixmile Mtn at about azimuth 306° (about NW). (Sparks; Roswell Daily Record, July 8.1947)
July 3, Roswell, New Mexico
Cat 6 (physical evidence). The Roswell Crash.
July 3, 1947; South Brooksville-Harborside, Maine (BBU 27)
2:30 p.m. (EDT). Astronomer John F. Cole alerted by a roaring noise overhead saw about 10 very light colored 50-100 ft wide objects to the N at about 50° elevation in a formation initially about 1.5° wide, with 2 dark forms to their left or 2 objects had darker projections somewhat like wings, moving like a swarm of bees to the NW at about 600-1,200 mph through about 30° arc [at about 4-20 miles distance?]. 10-15 secs. (Berliner; McDonald 1968; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
July 3, Northern Idaho
This interesting report describes the landing, seen by a family of ten in Northern Idaho, of eight huge objects. This report should have been among those in the Air Force files because it had been reported to intelligence officers from the Spokane Army Air Base, and an intensive air search was carried out by two missions of the National Guards 116th Fighter Group. Local sheriffs deputies also made a ground search, but since no apparent trace of the objects was found, a report was probably never forwarded to Wright Field in Dayton. (Bloecher)
According to these (AMC) spokesmen, the investigation at Wright Field was continuing, in spite of what spokesmen in Washington were telling the press. Within twenty four hours after the release of these official statements, events would begin to take place that would leave everybody, civilians and military personnel alike, in a state closely approximating Ruppelt's description of a flap. Reports of sightings, coming almost simultaneously from hundreds of bewildered citizens, were made to newspapers and police stations all over the country, and adjacent areas as well, from Southern California to New Brunswick, and from Louisiana to North Dakota. People everywhere were experiencing the beginning of one of the most massive waves of UFO sightings on record. Reports came from all kinds of observers: from picnickers and holiday crowds, from policemen and public officials, and from pilots, farmers, professional men, housewives and bus drivers.
July 4, 1947; Redmond (near) , OR (BBU)
11 a.m. C. J. Bogne of Tigard, Ore., and other witnesses in a car near Redmond saw 4 discs flying past Mt. Jefferson on a straight course at high speed. (McDonald list; FOIA; Ruppelt p. 20; Bloecher 1967)
July 4, 1947; Portland and Milwaukee, Oregon, and Vancouver, Wash. (BBU)
1:05 p.m. Radio newsman Frank Cooley of station KOIN, INS wire service employees in the Portland Oregon Journal Building, Clark County Sheriff's Deputy Fred Krives, Deputy Clarence McKay, Sgt. John Sullivan, Portland Police Officer Kenneth A. McDowell, Harbor Patrol Capt. K. A. Prahn, Harbor Patrolmen A. T. Austad and K. C. Hoff, Portland Police Officers Earl J. Patterson [Paterson?], Walter A. Lissy and Robert Ellis, Oregon Highway Patrol Sgt. Claude Cross, and many others over a wide area saw 5 large discs moving at high speed to the E, 2 flying S and 3 to the E, with oscillating or wobbling motion, sudden 90° turns or zigzagging, radio reports alerted other officers who saw the objects, aluminum or chromium color, disc or hubcap or pie-pan or half-moon shape flashing in the sun, no vapor trail, no noise (except possible humming), some at 10,000-40,000 ft others at about 1,000 ft. McDowell noticed pigeons reacted. Sullivan, McKay and Krives noted low humming sound and reported 20-30 objects. Cooley reported 12 discs at about 20,000 ft. [Further sightings at 2, 4:30, 5 p.m.] Patterson, Lissy and Ellis were pilots. 30-90 secs. (Hynek UFO Rpt pp. 1002; McDonald 1968; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
July 4, 1947; Seattle, Washington
Photo by Frank Ryman. Coast Guard yeoman took first known photograph of UFO, a circular object which moved across the wind. Photo shows round dot of light. [UFOE, VII, XII]
July 4, 1947; Portland, Oregon (BBU)
2 p.m. E. A. Evans saw 3 metallic discs glinting sunlight, 1 moving W to E, followed by 2 others heading N. [Other sightings at 1:05, 4:30, 5 p.m.] (Hynek UFO Rpt pp. 100-2; McDonald 1968; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
July 4, 1947; Portland, Oregon (BBU)
4:30 p.m. Mrs. L. J. Hayward saw a silvery disc-shaped object looking like a new dime flipping in an erratic path moving slowly. [Other sightings at 1:05, 2, 5 p.m.] (Hynek UFO Rpt pp. 100-2; McDonald 1968; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
July 4, 1947; Portland and Milwaukee, Oregon, and Vancouver, Wash (BBU).
5 p.m. [Other sightings at 1:05, 2, 4:30 p.m.] (Hynek UFO Rpt pp. 100-2; McDonald 1968; FOIA; Bloecher 1967)
July 4, 1947; Near Emmett, Idaho (BBU 34)
9:12 [8:17? 8:12?] p.m. (MST). United Air Lines Flight 105 Capt. Emil J. Smith, First Officer Ralph Stevens, Stewardess Marty Morrow who was called in by Smith as a confirming witness, flying NW on heading 300° from Boise to Seattle at about 7,000 ft, saw 5 disc-shaped objects with flat bottoms and rough tops (possibly 100+ ft size) move at varying speeds, in loose formation [or evenly spaced?] roughly 1,000 ft higher in altitude about 10° left of their heading [or at 290°], with one high and to the right of the others in the distance, all disappearing to the W [NW?] in a gradual climb at about 9:20 p.m. as 5 [4?] additional similar objects came into view slightly higher heading W [or took off to the NW; 3 objects in a line with 1 off to the side]. Smith tried to close on the objects at 185 mph as he climbed from 7,000 to 8,000 ft but could not. 12-15-mins. (Berliner; cf. McDonald 1968; Bloecher 1967; FBI..)
July 5,1947; Albuquerque, NM
9:00 AM. Five discs flew toward the east over the city; one circled back over the city. In the afternoon five witnesses saw a sphere maneuver in-and-out of clouds. (Source: Jan Aldrich, Project 1947: A Preliminary Report on the 1947 UFO Sighting Wave; Albuquerque Journal, July 6, 1947).
July 6, 1947; S. Central Wyoming
Aviation engineer saw oval UFO. [UFOE, VI]
July 6, 1947; Fairfield-Suisan AFB, California (BBU 36)
Daytime. AAF Capt. and Mrs. James H. Burniston saw a highly reflective round flat object having no wings or tail, the size of a C-54 transport (118 ft) roll from side-to-side 3 times then fly away very fast from NW to the SE [SW?] at 10,000 ft. (Berliner; Bloecher 1967)
July 7, 1947; 7 miles N of Shreveport, Louisiana (BBU)
Morning. Military aircraft pilot Harston saw a bright silver object about the angular size of the moon.
(Project 1947; McDonald list)
July 7, 1947; Hickam Field, Hawaii (BBU)
9 a.m. Civil Service employee Saito saw a large silver balloon-like object with silvery disc [attached?] immediately beneath it without attaching cables slowly ascending to the NW at 6,000 ft. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
July 7, 1947; Muroc Army Air Field, Calif. (BBU)
10:10 a.m. AAF experimental test pilot Major Jowell C. Wise while powering up an XP-84 jet on the runway looked up where others were looking and saw to the N a yellowish-white sphere about 5 10 ft diameter oscillating in a "forward whirling" motion without losing altitude at about 10,00012,000 ft altitude moving W to E at about 200-225 mph. [Sightings at Muroc next day.] (FOIA)
July 7, 1947; Willow Springs, Illinois
A very notable incident occurred around noon, when Robert Meegan and his 14 year old son John heard a buzzing noise overhead. They were working in the fields on their farm near the Des Plains River not far from the Argonne National Laboratories. Looking up they saw "13 round objects all going east, single file in a straight line." They described the objects as round with flat bottoms estimated about as big as a house and bluish-grey in color. They stated that the craft flew on a straight and level course toward the east. (Ref 2 page 73)
July 7, 1947; Lakeland, Florida (BBU)
Bet. [?] 1-2 p.m. (EST). Sign painter saw 5 round shiny objects in the NE climbing at 7,500 ft; shrill noise heard. (Battelle/BBSR14 ?; Mary Castner/CUFOS)
July 7, 1947; Arlington, Virginia (BBU)
Bet. 10:30 and 11 p.m. (EDT). AAF Lt. Col. Cobb saw a "blob," the size of a small airplane, reflecting white light flying at less than 500 ft above ground to the SE at about 1,350 mph. (FOIA; FUFOR Index)
July 7, 1947; Phoenix, Arizona (BBU)
Sighting and photograph of a gray, elliptical object about 20-30 feet in diameter with a visible canopy; object moving at an estimated 400-600 m.p.h., spiraled down from about 2,000 feet, then went upward at a 45 degree angle, making no sound while within view. Analysis based on camera data indicated a diagonal size of about 40-50 feet. (Rhodes phtotos, Project SIGN "Initial Report," chart, Incident No. 40)
July 7, 1947; Tacoma, Washington
Bloecher's case 547, from his book, is a humanoid report.
July 7. 1947. Lakeland. Florida (BBU)
Bet. [?] 1-2 p.m. (EST). Sign painter Griffin saw 5 round shiny objects in the NE climbing at 7.500 ft; shrill noise heard. (Sparks; Battelle/BBSR14 ?: Mary Castner/CUFOS; Saunders/FUFOR Index)
July 8, 1947698, outside of Houston, Texas
Case 698, from Bloechers' book, is another humanoid report.
July 8, 1947; Los Angeles (near), California
Cat 11, F-51 pilot (M)
According to Captain Edward Ruppelt, the top secret "Estimate of the Situation", which was... that the UFOs were interplanetary, listed the following case as one which suggested that conclusion.
July 8, 1947; Muroc Army Air Field, Calif. (BBU)
9:45 a.m. (PDT). AAF 1st Lt. Joseph C. McHenry, T/Sgt Joseph Ruvolo, S/Sgt Gerald E. Nauman, and Miss Jannette Marie Scotte at 10:00 a.m., saw two saucer or disc shaped objects, silver and apparently metallic, fly a wide circular pattern [?] at about 7500-8000 ft at 350-400 mph heading 320° (about NW) toward Mojave, Calif. Before the first 2 objects disappeared a 3rd similar disc or spherical silver object reflecting sunlight was seen, with additional 5 witnesses, to the N flying tight circles at about 7,000-8,000 ft beyond capability of known aircraft, maintaining altitude. No sound or trails. 3-4 mins. [See sightings at Muroc later in the day and previous day.]
July 8, 1947; Muroc Army Air Field, Calif. (BBU)
11:50 a.m.-12 noon. AAF experimental test pilot Capt. John Paul Strapp, Mr. Lenz from Wright Field and 2 others in an observation truck at Area 3 of Rogers Dry Lake for a P-82 ejection seat test saw a round silver or aluminum-white object at first thought to be a parachute, about 25 ft wide, falling from a height below the 20,000 ft of the test aircraft at 3x the rate for an ejection seat test, drifting horizontally toward Mt. Wilson (to the S) at less than 50-80 mph, which when close to horizon appeared to have an oval outline with 2 thick fins or knobs on the upper surface which seemed to rotate or oscillate, no propellers, slowly disappearing below the mountain tops in the distance after 90 secs.
July 8, 1947, Muroc Army Air Field, Calif. (BBU)
Noon. Others witnesses independently, including Muroc CO Col. Signa A. Gilkey and engineer Major Richard R. Shoop and wife saw from a different location 5-8 miles away to the N [?] the apparently same falling object, thin metallic aluminum colored and the size of a pursuit aircraft [50 ft?], reflecting sunlight and oscillating, descend to ground level, then rise again and move slowly off in the distance for a total of 8 mins. No sound or trail. [See sightings at Muroc earlier and later in the day and previous day.] 8-mins. (FOIA; Vallée Magonia 60)
July 8, 1947; 40 miles S of Muroc Army Air Field (BBU)
4 p.m. Exactly four hours later the pilot of an F-51 was flying at 20,000 feet about 40 miles south of Muroc Air Base when he sighted a "flat object of a light reflecting nature." He reported that it had no vertical fin or wings. When he first saw it, the object was above him and he tried to climb up to it, but his F-51 would not climb high enough. All air bases in the area were contacted but they had no aircraft in the area. [See previous Muroc sightings.] (Exact and complete quote from Ruppelt p. 22)
12:17 p.m. (PDT). Idaho Statesman aviation editor and former (AAF) B-29 pilot Dave Johnson flying in an Idaho Air National Guard AT-6 saw a black disc, standing out against the clouds, make a half-roll then a stair-step climb. Object the size of a 25-cent coin [at arm's length?]. (Berliner, Sparks, Wilson)July 10, 1947; Harmon Field, Newfoundland, Canada (BBU)
July 9, 1947; Grand Falls, Newfoundland (BB)
11:30 p.m. Eric Kearsay, a Newfoundland Constable, arrived home and was asked by his wife it he saw the "flying saucers." Just minutes earlier, his wife, his mother-in-law, and Mr. John Jackman saw four round shaped objects flying in an easterly direction. Mr Jackman said that the objects were flying side by side at a terrific rate of speed. As Eric Kearsay looked skyward, he, his wife and Mr. Jackman saw a round object like a huge jellyfish with a phosphorous glow flash across the sky in a rocking motion. The direction of this object was not stated. (Dan Wilson)
Bet. 3 and 5 p.m. [or 5:30 p.m. (ADT)]. Cat. 8. Three ground crewmen, A. R. Leidy, J. N. Mehrman, and J. E. Woodruff, of Pan American Airways, briefly saw a translucent disc or silvery wheel-shaped object the size of a C-54 transport fly very fast at 10,000 ft, leaving a dark bluish-black trail, then ascend and cut a path through the clouds. Photo. (Berliner; FOIA)
July 10, 1947; Near Ft. Sumner, New Mexico (BBU)
4:47 p.m. Dr. Lincoln LaPaz with wife and 2 teenage daughters were driving W on Hwy 60 when they saw a sharply outlined, white ellipsoidal seemingly luminous 200 ft object (±40 ft, major/minor axis ratio 2.45) wobbling in the distance to the W [probably 272° azimuth initially] about 25 miles away (±5 miles; distance from triangulation of the cloud bank by driving around it by about 90° over 50 miles along Hwy 84 and weather data). Object about 30 secs almost motionless at a low speed of about 150 mph (±30 mph) then disappeared behind a cloud at 273° azimuth elevation 1° but reappeared 5 secs later further to the right, or N, and higher at 275° azimuth 2° elevation, about 1 mile distance traveled thus an average speed of roughly 600-900 mph [peak velocity about 1,400 mph at about 13 gs], but no sound, no trail. Object continued to slowly drift N about 2 mins [in level flight] until disappearing in the cloud bank [at about 287° azimuth]. 2.5 mins. (LIFE Incident 2; Hynek astronomer survey Aug. 1952; etc.)
July 10, 1947; Morristown, New Jersey
Cat 8. Six daylight discs observed from aircraft.
July 11, 1947; Elmendorf Air Base, Anchorage, Alaska (BBU)
6:30 p.m. AHST. AAF Colonel Perry (?) plus another witness Guyer, saw a round 3 ft aluminum object travel at great speed to the S. [July 12?] AAF Major Graham saw a balloon-like grayish 10 ft object headed NW at 100 mph at 1,500 ft. [Same incident?] (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
July 28, 1947; Bt. Mountain Home & Boise, Idaho
8:34 p.m. Crew of a Seattle-bound United Airlines Mainliner DC-3 reported disc-like object in the sky at estimated 9,010 feet as twin-engine liner was flying at 7,500 feet. CAA said no other planes in the area where pilot Givian said he saw the disc. (Newsclipping, Dan Wilson)
July 29, 1947; Canyon Ferry, Montana (Helena?) (BBU)
12:05 p.m. Observer Madden and two others saw hovering and fluttering, rising and descending 3 ft gleaming and shimmering object heading NE at 3,000 ft height at tremendous speed. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index)
July 29, 1947; Hamilton Field, Calif. (BBU 69)
2:50 p.m. (local). Assistant Base Operations Officer Capt. William H. Ryherd and ex-Air B-29 pilot 1st Lt. Ward Stewart saw for unknown length of time two round, shiny, white objects with estimated 15-25 foot diameters, fly 3-4 times the apparent speed of a P-80, also in sight, (or at 750 mph), at 6,000-10,000 ft heading S or SE at 120°. One object flew straight and level; the other weaved from side-to-side like an escort fighter. (Berliner; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
By the end of July the sighting rate was about one per day and by August it was down to several per week. (Newspapers reported a few sightings in other countries as well.)
Capt. Edward J Ruppelt:
"By the end of July (1947) The UFO security lid was down tight. The few members of the press who did inquire about what the Air Force was doing got the same treatment that you would get today if you inquired about the number of thermonuclear weapons stock-piled in the U.S. atomic arsenal. . . (At ATIC there was) confusion almost to the point of panic." (Report on Unidentified Flying Objects, p.39)
As July wore on into August, (Lt. Col. George D.) Garrett, (General) Schulgen, and (FBI's liaison officer to the AAF/AF) S. Wesley Reynolds became confused by a lack of interest and pressure emanating from the high echelons of the Pentagon. The previous year they had gone through an investigative furor about a subject that they considered to be similar to the flying discs, when hundreds of ghost rocket reports came out of Sweden and other European countries. In 1946, the top brass had exerted continuous pressure to find an answer, but now it had gone completely quiet. This puzzling void has been termed the silence from topside. It was very peculiar to Garrett and the FBI. Their mutual suspicion was that the very highest officials knew what this phenomenon was already (Swords, 1991).
The following pages are a portion of Colonel Garrett's Estimate Report. This is a rough draft of the report. The finalized version has not been located. Page 8 mentions "lack of topside inquiries, when compared to the prompt and demanding inquiries that have originated topside upon former events, give more than ordinary weight to the possibility that this is a domestic project, about which the President, etc. know." Page three text is known but the actual doc page is still being sought.
August, 1947; Media, PA
Cat 11, Boyce Case, (M)
Sometime in August, 1947; Danforth, IL
Labeled a hoax by Col. McCoy, this object found on Illinois farm was neither a crashed disc nor a portion of a Mogul balloon.
Aug. 4, 1947; NW of Bethel, Alaska (BBU)
Sunset. Pilot Capt. Jack Peck and copilot Vince Daly flying a DC-3 saw a smooth surfaced black object larger than a DC-3 with no visible means of propulsion cross their flight path at 500-1,000 ft height. They averted collision, then turned in pursuit at 170 mph but the object flew out of sight [to the NW at about 500 mph]. [Additional witness Johnston??] (FOIA; Project 1947; FUFOR Index)
Aug. 4, Everett 1947; (or 10 miles NW of Boston), Mass. (BBU)
4 p.m. Pan Am airliner pilot Powell and navigator White saw a bright orange or deep-gold colored cigarette-shaped (or elliptical) object 15 ft long 2-3 ft wide flying at 150 (or 175) mph at 7,000 ft to the E at about 110° magnetic. (Project 1947; McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
Aug. 13, 1947; 40 miles SW of Twin Falls [at Salman Dam]. Idaho (BBU)
9:30 a.m. County Commissioner L. W. Hawkins and Mr. Brown while fishing saw 2 disc-shaped objects 6 ft diameter reflecting light and making the echo of a motor, at 4,000-6,000 ft flying at high speed. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
1:00 p.m. Snake River 6 miles W of Blue Lake Ranch, 9 miles NW of Twin Falls, Idaho. A. C. Urie on land and 2 sons Billy and Keith 300 ft away in a boat, all on the S side of the river or river bank looking to the N, saw a squeezed or elongated straw-hat shaped sky-blue object about 10 x 10 x 20 feet, with pods on the side emitting flames, about 1/2 mile away fly towards them down the canyon at 1,000 mph E-W at 75 ft height, with a contour following motion up and down over uneven terrain, trees swaying underneath with a circular motion, disappearing with a swish sound. Urie was about 300 ft from the object which was about level with him about 75 ft above the river, and silhouetted against the canyon wall 1,200 ft away, disappearing behind a hill about 1 mile away. Object was at about 45° elevation to the boys on the river below him, disappearing behind trees. 5-secs? (Battelle Unknown No. 9)
Aug. 14, 1947; Harmon Field, Newfoundland, Canada (BBU)
10:40 a.m. 3 AAF airmen with the 147th AACS Sq. saw 2 small crescent-shaped objects pass over them on a zigzag path at 2x jet speed [1,200 mph?] heading W at about 1,200 ft disappearing into clouds, a few secs later a same or similar object emerged from the clouds and continued to the W. (FOIA)
Aug. 14, 1947; 5 miles S of Placerville, Calif. (BBU)
4 p.m. Insurance adjuster Switzer saw a metallic highly-polished chromium surface object 4-6 ft wide 10-14 inches thick, rounded slightly on top larger in the front, leaving a white trail, at 500-1,000 ft height traveling at high speed. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
Aug. 14, 1947; Friuli, Italy
Time not given. Professor R. L. Johannis was on a rock-hunting expedition in the mountains in the extreme NW part of Italy. He emerged from a stand of trees & saw, on a rocky riverbank, a large red object that seemed to be shaped like a lens. The witness & the creatures approached one another, but when they were a few paces apart, they stopped. Witness felt paralyzed. Two creatures, about 3 feet tall, heads larger than normal human. No hair. Tight-fitting brown caps. Noses straight & long. Eyes large, protuberant, & round; yellow-green in color with a vertical pupil like a cat. Hands had 8 fingers & seemed to be opposed. Randle/Estes reliability rating: 6
Aug. 15-20 (approx.), 1947; Rapid City Air Base [Weaver?], South Dakota (BBU)
Major Hammer sitting in the parking lot near the flight line shortly after dark saw to the NW about 12 elliptical objects about the span of a B-29 (140 ft) with a yellow-white luminous glow in a tight diamond formation, approaching in a shallow descent, level off at about 5,000 ft altitude [height?] at 300-400 mph, make a gentle 110° turn to its right about 4 miles away climbing to the SW, accelerating rapidly. No sound or trail. 1 min? (FOIA; FUFOR Index)
Aug. 18, 1947; Near Mountain Home, Idaho (BBU)
12 p.m. United Airlines Flight 147 pilot and copilot saw 2 "skeet target" shaped objects flying under the plane. (Project 1947)
Aug. 19, 1947; Twin Falls, Idaho (BBU)
9:30 p.m. Housing Authority Executive Director Hedstrom saw 55 [?] [luminous?] objects in horizontal flight looking like electric lights headed NE at tremendous speed. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
Aug. 28, 1947; Fukuoka, Japan
Time not given. MEW Radar Station. A target was picked up in orbit at a range of 26-30 nautical miles on a bearing of.20 to 30 degrees. Target then took a heading of 023 degrees and vvas tracked to a range of 54 nautical miles where it faded.The target was in a climb on this outbound course and the weather at the time was such that the climb would have to be made on instruments. Speed: 390-415 knots; altitude: 1500 feet. (Item "b" from SECRET letter, Fran Ridge, Jan Aldrich)
Late Aug. 1947?; Alamogordo [Holloman] Army Air Field, New Mexico.
AMC Watson Labs Project MOGUL engineer Rosmovski and communications officer Lt. H. G. Markley tracked a stationary target at 200 miles altitude using a modified CPS-4 radar aimed at 70° elevation. (FOIA; Loren Gross Aug-Dec 1947 SUPP p. 28)
Late Aug. 1947; Alamogordo [Holloman] Army Air Field, New Mexico (BBU 83)
AMC Watson Labs Project MOGUL communications officer Lt. H. G. Markley while watching 2 balloons with radar reflector to the SE in 10x binoculars saw traveling at "unprecedented rate of speed" a round white object in horizontal light S to N several thousand feet over the tops of Sacramento Mtns. [Case falsely explained by AF as false radar targets when no radar observation was involved.] (FOIA; Mary Castner/CUFOS; Loren Gross Aug-Dec 1947 SUPP p. 28; July-Dec 1949 orig
Sept. 3, 1947; Lake Oswego, Oregon. (BBU 85)
12:15 p.m. (PDT). Housewife Mrs. Raymond Dupui saw 12-15 round, silver objects fly an unstated pattern for unknown length of time. (Berliner; FOIA)
Sept. 8, 1947; Logan [Salt Lake City?], Utah (BBU)
10:30 or 11 p.m Anderson and Hall saw 5 groups of a total of 12 [?] white or yellowish objects traveling at high speed to the N at 2,0003,000 ft height, faster than birds, size of pigeons [?] (Battelle/BBSR14 ?; Mary Castner/CUFOS; FUFOR Index)
6:58 p.m. Pan Am airliner crew [military air flight?] saw a bright light with no blue or red tinge split in 2 move towards the plane then disappear [first heading 350° then 109° at 9,50010,000 ft traveling at 1,000 knots or about 1,200 mph]. [Possible meteor?] (McDonald list; Project 1947; FOIA; FUFOR Index; Mary Castner/CUFOS)
Sept. 16, 1947; Fukuoka, Japan
Time not given. MEW radar station. A target was picked up at a range of 89 miles on a bearing of 040 degrees (Point C). Target was tracked on an incoming course to a range of 19 miles and a bearing of 045 degrees at which point it faded out. The nearest known operational U.S.S.R. air bases are on the east coast of Korea at 39° 10' North Latitude and 127 degrees 29' East Longitude and Haeju on west coast of Korea at 38° 02' North Latitude and 125 degrees East Longtude. The range to these oases from Fukuoka is 360 nautical miles. Genzan is classified as having permanent runways of 4500-6000 foot length, and was highly operational by the Japanese. Haeju has one runway of approximtely 4000 foot length, probably surfaced. It is therefore reasonable, to assume that the U.S.S.R. is utilizing the facilities at these bases to the utmost, since the location is strategically between Vladivostok to the north and the U.S. occupied areas of Korea to the south. A recent report from the U.S. XXIV Corps, evaluated F-3, states "a new type aircraft on Haeju airstrip North Korea. "'This aircraft emitted black smoke on take-off, but was not identified as jet propelled." Speed: 840 - 900 mph (730-780 knots); altitude: 10,000 - 20,000 feet. (Item "c." from SECRET AAF letter, Fran Ridge, Jan Aldrich.
Sept. 17, 1947; Ft. Richardson, Alaska (BBU)
[Army officer saw a 2-3 ft silver sphere traveling S at tremendous speed below the 10,000 ft cloud cover.] (McDonald list; Mary Castner/CUFOS)
On September 23, 1947, the chief of the Air Technical Intelligence Center, one of the Air Force's most highly specialized intelligence units, sent a letter to the Commanding General of the then Army Air Forces. The letter was in answer to the Commanding General's verbal request to make a preliminary study of the reports of unidentified flying objects. The letter said that after a preliminary study of UFO reports, ATIC concluded that, to quote from the letter, "the reported phenomena were real." The letter strongly urged that a permanent project be established at ATIC to investigate and analyze future UFO reports. It requested a priority for the project, a registered code name, and an over-all security classification. ATIC's request was granted and Project Sign, the forerunner of Project Grudge and Project Blue Book, was launched. It was given a 2A priority, A being the highest priority an Air Force project could have. (Ruppelt)
An interesting 3-page SECRET letter from HQ AAF 26 Sept 1947 regarding three radar incidents lsted on this chrono..
Oct., 1947; Dodgeville, Wisc. (BBU 91)
11:00 p.m. A civilian observed a "saucer" moving slowly to the south at an altitude of about 2 miles. All at once the object in a sudden burst of speed (faster than a plane) circled from right to left in a huge circle. Observation lasted about one hour. (Berliner, Dan Wilson)
Oct. 8/9, 1947; Las Vegas, Nevada (BBU)
[AAF reserve Capt. Moore saw an object traveling at 700 mph leave an almost white smoke/vapor trail and change direction from SE to W.] (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
Oct. 12, 1947. Guadalupe, Mexico (BBU)
9:30 a.m. (CST). Numerous witnesses saw a cigar-shaped, blue and silver color fireball trailing blue flame heading E to W plunge to earth resembling an errant V-2 rocket and appearing to head for impact in the Zamalayuca Mtns. with a billow of smoke and loud explosion. Mexican Army reserve Capt. Aranda saw the fireball from the Hernandez Torres filling station near Caseta and saw it disappear over the sandhills near Colonia Reforma. No meteorites or other remains found in searches. (Sparks; Loren Gross, Jul-Dec 1947 p. 38; 1947 pp. 69-71; SUPP Aug-Dec 1947 pp. 44-45; Mary Castner/CUFOS; Saunders/FUFOR index)
Oct. 14 [12?], 1947; 11 miles NNE of Cave Creek, Ariz. (BBU 95)
12 noon (MDT). Ex-AAF fighter pilot J. L. Clark, civilian pilot Anderson, third man saw 3-foot "flying wing," black against the white clouds and red against the blue sky, flying straight at an estimated 380 m.p.h., at 8,000-10,000 ft, from NW to SE. 45-60 secs. (Berliner)
Oct. 20, 1947; Xenia, Ohio (BBU)
11 a.m. Atkinson saw a round 1 ft object at 1,500 ft heading SW on a straight course. (McDonald list; FOIA; Mary Castner/CUFOS)
Oct. 20, 1947; Dayton, Ohio (BBU)
1:20 p.m. Farmer Britton saw 2 cigar-shaped objects reflecting brilliant sunlight traveling W to E on a straight course at high speed about 1 mile height in trail formation about a city block apart emitting a slight vapor trail, disappearing suddenly. (McDonald list; FOIA; Mary Castner/CUFOS)
Nov. 2, 1947; Anderson Rd., Houston, Texas (BBU)
Daybreak. Immigration Service [agent?] Brimberry saw an almost round or oval or saucer-shaped object with bright light [?] about 100 ft [?] diameter spinning in its descent. (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)Nov. 12, 1947; 40 miles N [S?] of Cape Blanco, Oregon, 20 miles off coast (BBU)
Nov. 3 (or 4), 1947; Vaughn (near), New Mexico
Approx 8:00 pm. Basketball-Sized object explodes near colonel.
Early morning. USS Ticonderoga USN 2nd Officer Williamson saw 2 balls of fire with a fiery trail headed NW at 700-900 mph. [Probable meteors.] (McDonald list; FOIA; FUFOR Index)
Nov. 15, 1947; Wichita, Kansas (BBU 2224)
7:02 a.m. USAF Maj. R. L. Wallander, Capt. Belleman, A/3c Phipps saw an orange object (a blue streak?) varied in shape, as it made jerky upward sweeps with 10-15 sec pauses. 3-5 mins. (Berliner)
Nov. 15, 1947; Wichita, Texas (BBU)
8:25 p.m. USAF B47 crew and passengers saw an elliptical blue-white object with orange or red tail, moving erratically. (BB Status Rpt?) [Same case as above??]
Dec. 8, 1947; Las Vegas, Nevada
Moving reddish UFO emitted flash of light, shot upwards out of sight. [XII]
Dec. 30, 1947; 1 mile W of Pilot Hill, Calif. (BBU)
7:25 p.m. (PST). Crew of McClellan Field C-47 saw a high speed low altitude object trailing red, green and other colored flames headed E over hills. At 7:58 the crew found a growing ground fire about 7 miles E of Pilot Hill, at 38°50' N, 120°53' W, another C-47 crew sent to investigate found a triangular fire area with 2 points emitting bright blue-green flames, going out at 9:55 p.m. (FOIA)
Dec. 30, 1947; Sawtooth Nat. Forest, Idaho (BBU)
7:26 p.m. (PST). Pilot AAF Lt. Col. W. W. Jones, Hq EPW [Enemy Prisoners of War?], and copilot Major A. A. Andrae, flying a C-54 from Great Falls to Fairfield-Suisun Field at 13,000 ft saw a high speed object trailing green and blue flames descending vertically at their 2:30 o'clock position, but slowing just above the ground. 2-secs. (FOIA)
1. Report on the UFO Wave of 1947, Ted Bloecher