presents
  The 1956 UFO Chronology

 Radar-visual. Hovering-darting objects outmaneuver Venom NF-3
 


Created: Jan. 19, 2006, updated 4 March 2020


This is a 13-page report on an on-going project involving a number of people. With the help of Rebecca Wise (Project Blue Book Archive), Dan Wilson, Jean Waskiewicz, the task became much easier. As an indication of what the Air Force was doing I have added the redacted sighting lists by month. Unredacted versions can be accessed below at the beginning of each month. Finally, there is the Sparks' catalog entries for 1956. All of the cases are listed within the chrono, many of which have case directories and supporting documents. Loren Gross' "UFO's: A History" is a good place to start.
 
  1956_01_04_History.pdf
  1956_01_04_HistorySN.pdf
  1956_05_07_History.pdf
  1956_05_07_HistorySN.pdf
  1956_08_History.pdf
  1956_08_HistorySN.pdf
  1956_09_10_History.pdf
  1956_09_10_HistorySN.pdf
  1956_11_12_History.pdf
  1956_11_12_HistorySN.pdf

Francis Ridge

NICAP Archivist & Site Coordinator


The 1956 UFO Chronology______________________________________________________

Jan. 3, 1956; over Pasadena, California
A pilot and a cameraman in a Cessna 180 saw three orange discs, each 50 feet in diameter, circle their airplane at a speed of about 1,200 mph, with no vapour trail left behind (FSR, 1956, Mar., p. 5).

Jan. 8, 1956; Robertson Island near the Antarctic Peninsula
Before 7 a.m., according to FSR (1968, Mar., p. 20), a Chilean field party of four saw the following: two cigar-shaped craft of similar sizes with their long axes vertical were hanging motionless; through binoculars the objects had smooth, polished, apparently metallic surfaces; at 9 am one of these objects almost directly above turned from a vertical to a horizontal position, changed to display a spectrum of colours, made rapid changes in direction, stops and accelerations for about 5 minutes, all silently, after which it went back to a vertical position, regaining its metallic appearance; the second object then went through a similar routine, stopping after about three minutes to resume its vertical position; a flash-type Geiger counter showed radioactivity 40 times normal background values; numerous colour and black and white photographs were taken; by 9 pm the two craft were still in the same positions; the next day, with the two objects still in the same places, a theodolite [an instrument to measure angles accurately], was used to determine that the two objects were at a height of 8 km, that their length was about 150 m, and that their maximum diameters were 25 m; one of the Chileans directed a beam of polarized light at one of the craft, which seemed to respond by moving to a lower altitude and then back up to its original position; calculations showed the speed of the objects was 40,000 km per hour and that the accelerations and decelerations appeared to be instantaneous; at 11 pm the second day, the sky clouded over and the radioactivity level dropped; Air Technical Intelligence Centre (ATIC) in the U.S. was informed of the details of this case.

Jan. 11, 1956; Wurtsmith AFB, MI (BBU)
6:40 p.m. (EST) F-89D. F-89D pilot 1/Lt. Culpepper and radar observer 1st Lt William H. Freeland. Wurtsmith AFN Control Tower operators S/Sgt Compeau, Airman/3C Kenneth James Seger, GCA radar operator S/Sgt Paul D. Porter sighted reddish light like jet aircraft exhaust from behind, not quite round, estimated at 6,500- 7,000 ft at 240° azimuth 15°-20° elevation (probably Venus at 235° az 11° elev though normally not reddish). Radar airborne tracking of UFO by F-89D at 7,000 ft heading 230° then radar lockon for 2 mins at 6:50 p.m. by Lt Freeland at 11 miles range, 5° right, level, with F-89D’s overtake speed of 50 knots (57 mph) (thus UFO at 400 knots TAS) lockon broken by UFO’s rapid 40° climb at 6:52 p.m. outclimbed pursuing F-89D which was in 450 knot TAS climb to 11,000 ft, but no visual except from the ground with 7x50 field biniculars. (Sparks; BB files; McDonald list; Saunders/FUFOR Index)

Feb., 1956; Ludhiana, India
Thousands of people saw a cigar-shaped craft fly over the city for 20 minutes, leaving a trail of smoke (FSR, 1956, May, p. 23).

Feb., 1956; Arequipa, Peru
A cigar-shaped craft was seen for 80 seconds by four Peruvians (Flying Saucer Review, 1956, May, p. 24).
Feb. 13, 1956; the Moon
Two bluish-white hazy lights were seen (FSR, 1956, July, p. 12).

Jan. 16, 1956; the western darkened side of the Moon
A light flashed constantly for an hour and a half, and eight days later, flashes were seen on the wall of the crater Cavendish (Saucers, Space and Science, 1964, no. 35, p. 5).
Jan. 17, 1956; Orangeville, Canada
Disc-shaped UFO seen at close range; rings of light visible on bottom. [UFOE, XII]

Jan. 18, 1956; Itazuke AFB, Japan (BBU)
10:00 a.m.. Air crew sighting of white round balloon-shaped object traveling at high speed, no trail. (Project 1947; FUFOR Index)

Jan. 22, 1956; Gulf of Mexico, nr. New Orleans
Pan American Airways flight engineer saw a large elongated object, emitting yellow flame or light, pass aircraft from horizon to behind a weather front. [UFOE, V]

Jan. 24, 1956; Wheelus AFB, Tripoli, Libya (BBU)
At 2:52 p.m. local time an unidentified object was picked up on radar at 99 degrees azimuth at 75 miles range. The object was tracking at 330 degrees at 75 knots at 1000 feet altitude. The target was tracked for 12 minutes at which time the object faded from the radar. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index)

Jan. 28: Ruppelt's Book Published
The landmark publication by Doubleday of the revealing book by former Project Blue Book Chief, Capt. Edward J. Ruppelt, marked a new phase in understanding the inside workings of the AF on UFO's, a term Ruppelt helped popularize within the government as well as outside with this book.  With frequent references and allusions to high-level AF policy debates and numerous detailed accounts of inexplicable UFO cases many people found Ruppelt's book to make a sober and disturbing case for the existence of the UFO phenomenon by someone who officially investigated the subject for the US Government.  Ruppelt's book was an enlargement of his article in TRUE magazine of May 1954, which was in effect a first draft outline of the book which he worked on with ghost coauthor-editor and Long Beach newspaper reporter James Phelan through 1955 (see numerous notes in the unpublished Ruppelt papers). Ruppelt's Book



Feb. 1956; Nr. Fishguard, SW Wales
Evening. A man considered in some circles to be the greatest test pilot of all time, Eric "Winkle" Brown, of the Royal Navy described a disc sighting he made in February 1956 (perhaps located in the vicinity of Fishguard, in SW Wales).  He was flying a deHavilland Vampire jet fighter, and could not climb to the saucer's altitude or catch it. (Don Berliner)

Feb. 2, 9, 21, 1956; Camp Irwin, Calif. (BBU)
(McDonald list)

Feb. 7, 1956; Keesler AFB, Biloxi, Mississippi (BBU)
8 a.m. (CST). Identified as 3 tethered large plastic balloons IFO. (Basterfield; McDonald list; Saunders/FUFOR Index) FUFOR Index)

Feb. 11, 1956; S of Japan (BBU)
7:15 p.m. MATS C-124 air crew sighting of a yellow or amber object at 1,000 knots (1,150 mph). (Project 1947)

Feb. 12, 1956; Goose bay, Labrador, Canada (BBU 3969)
11:25 [10:55? 11:10?] p.m. (AST). USAF F­89D pilot Bowen and radar observer Crawford saw a green and red object rapidly circle the jet, and tracked on radar. No further details. (Berliner; FUFOR Index)


Feb. 15, 1956; Riverside, Calif. (BBU)
8:40 [12:40?] p.m. USN pilot Taylor flying aircraft saw a cigar-shaped brown object on a straight level course. (Project 1947; FUFOR Index)

Feb. 18, 1956; N of Montelimar Airdrome, France (BBU)
8:20 p.m. 3 USAF C-119 crew, 780th Troop Carrier Sq, saw a round dot change color every 30 secs from white to red to green. (Project 1947; FUFOR Index, UFOE,V)

Feb. 18, 1956; Paris, France (BBU)
10:50 [8:20?] p.m. Air France pilot De Vaux of DC-3 and radio operator saw large red blinking light flying erratically, tracked by ground radar at Orly Airport. (Project 1947; FUFOR Index)

Feb, 19, 1956; Houston, Texas (BBU 3977)
6:07 a.m. (CST). Crew of Eastern Airlines Super Constellation saw intense white light, moving 4-5 times the speed of the airplane, evaded by the pilot. (Berliner; FUFOR Index)



March 2 [5?], 1956. Spokane, Wash. (BBU)
4:40 p.m. (PST). Stoner. (Sparks; McDonald list; Saunders/FUFOR Index)

March 3, 1956; Spokane, WA (BBU)
4:40 PM PST, (04/0040Z) 1st Lt. Donald A. Stoner flying an F-86D at 22,000 feet on an air defense mission saw a target on his radar that moved up the scope rapidly and faded. The pilot later stated that this incident was peculiar and worthy of calling this incident to someone's attention "for as I say I had never before seen such rapid target movement away from an aircraft going almost 300 mph in the same general direction." The pilot also stated, "I have 560 hours in the F-86D, 930 hours total time." Types of observations listed as, Ground-Radar, and Air-Intercept Radar.

March 5, 1956; Honolulu, Hawaii
UFO formation photographed. (UFOE, VIII)

March 23, 1956; Goose Bay, Labrador (BB)
At 6:39 a.m. local time, a round bright blue object, trailing a heavy yellow-orange fire and sparks was observed for approximately 60 seconds by the pilot and co-pilot from an aircraft at 30,500 feet altitude. The object appeared to be 2-3 miles to the left of the aircraft and 2000 to 5000 feet above. Both pilots estimated the object to be traveling at 500-600 knots. The overall shape of the object was teardrop shaped. (Dan Wilson, BB files)

9:17 PM. A strange blip appeared on Westover tower radar scopes. Jets were quickly scrambled, then vectored toward the circling UFO. Flying the lead interceptor, Captain E______, closed in on a large round object, near enough to illuminate it with his landing lights. The strange machine appeared to be 100 to 150 feet in diameter, and 8 to 12 feet thick at the center. The pilot noted a green fluorescent glow around the outer edge. As he tried to get closer, the weirdly glowing disc, climbed steeply, the disappeared in the night at 30,000 feet.  The report named a tower operator and radioman, besides the jet pilot. (Reference: Donald Keyhoe, FLYING SAUCERS: Top Secret, pages 78-79.)  



April 4, 1956; McKinney, Texas (BBU 4050)
3:15 p.m. Fat, bright silver object observed from two separate locations. The local weather observer, Capt. Roy Hall, U.S. Army (Ret.), filed the report.  At the weather station, Captain Hall ran a triangulation baseline of 3 miles and the object showed a convergence of about 3 degrees, which he estimated put the object at about 100,000 feet but he admitted that it could have been much higher. With a small 4X telescope he further determined that the object itself substended about 1 minute of arc, making it over 200' in diameter. The object was about 7-degrees to the north of Venus and visible for about 6 hours until dark. An amateur astronomer there placed a 200X telescope on the object and was able to draw a picture of it. Object was oblong and had a vertical raised band of two lines that never changed position during the full time obsrved. Object never changed location in relation to Venus and disappeared at about the same time as Venus set.  Hall reported that observers a hundred miles away also saw it, but overhead. (Don Berliner, Dan Wilson)

April 5, 1956; Almy Pond, Newport, Rhode Island (BBU)
12:30-12:35 p.m. (EST). USN Underwater Ordnance Test Station physicist Mrs. Genevieve Mathison and her 3 children from the front door of their home saw a circular silver object with no trail or sound descending from 45° elevation in the N down to 0° elevation on an approaching path, with a receding 135° maneuver [?] and disappearing by whirling into the haze. (Jan Aldrich)

April 6, 1956; 5 miles E of McKinney, Texas (BBU)
A man by the name of Mitchell and his companion (another man) were driving about 5 miles East of McKinney, Texas, when they saw a silvery object, about 5-8 feet in diameter slant down in a field 300 ft away from them. They stopped their car to investigate, but the object took off at fantastic speed. They thought it resembled a balloon. The Air Force listed this as unidentified. (Vallée Magonia379; FUFOR Index)

10:15 p.m. (EST) Capt. Raymond E. Ryan, First Officer William Neff, flight attendant Phyllis Reynolds, and passengers, took off in an airliner from Albany heading N then nearly due W (about 280° True) at 260 mph and 6,000 ft N of Schenectady when a brilliant white light about 2-3 miles away was spotted about 90° to the left appearing like an airliner heading in to land at Albany. The white light moved about 90° to dead­ ahead position about 8-10 miles away at high speed estimated at about 800-1,000 mph where it changed color to orange and seemed to block the airliner’s path or risk collision, disappeared briefly, reappeared as an orange light again but standing still ahead of the airliner to the W. Airliner contacted Griffiss AFB, Rome, NY, where controllers asked pilot to turn lights off and on to help identify aircraft and was told airliner was seen and the orange UFO to the S. Airliner was ordered to maintain course to follow the UFO to the W, skipping its scheduled landing at Syracuse after nearly 30 mins of following the object. Promised fighter jet interception was not seen. Object disappeared at high speed to the NW (or N) towards Oswego, NY. (UFOE, V, IX; McDonald list; NICAP website)

April 08, 1956; Elboeuf, near Exauroux, FRANCE
11:45 p.m. Two brothers, 18 and 20, saw a red ball to their left coming down and hovering at tree height. It then left at fantastic speed. Three additional witnesses reported it independently. The object was a disk about 7.5 m in diameter, with a red dome, and rotating fins under it. It emitted a yellow-orange glow. (380)

April 13, 1956. McKinney, Texas (BBU)
9:15 p.m. (CST). At Charles Anderson’s house, Weather Bureau observer Capt. Roy F. Hall, U.S. Army (Ret.) sighted 2 rapidly moving red lights pass low over house tops to the S disappearing in the W. Later obtained independent report from another observer, Tully B. Lucas, Jr., [about 0.57 mile to the SSW at 33°11.55’ N, 96°37.69’ W] who had sighted objects passing directly overhead, though seeing 3 pale blue lights, and Hall used the data to triangulate objects as passing over at about 150 ft height [~3° elevation?] and covering 40° of arc [~2,000 ft traveled?], thus estimating speed at about 1,800 mph [incorrect; actual speed ~700 mph if at ~3,000 ft distance]. Possible meteor IFO? 2 secs. (See April 4 and 6, 1956, sightings near McKinney, Texas.) (Sparks; CUFOS; BB files)

April 16, 1956; Henderson, North Carolina (BBU)
5:00 a.m. FBI agents Richards and another, driving on Route 1, just before dawn, saw a top-shaped object as large as the road pass over their car, no sound. (Vallée Magonia 381)

April 28, 1956; Old Bridge, NJ (BBU)
8:30 p.m. Lockheed/Curtis-Wright technical rep and JCS scientific consultant and his wife saw bright white star increase in brightness in the E for 10+ secs at “high altitude,” dim to medium dull red, then move from E to W roughly 3°/sec, dimming after 30 secs of travel to dull red, accelerating to “enormous speed,” wobbling as it disappeared. (Hynek UFO Rpt pp. 91-92)


May 1, 1956: Tokyo, Japan
TV distortion. (NICAP, 1960)

May 8, 1956; Aliquippa, Penns (BBU)
At 9:48 a.m. (EST), a flight of seven objects, silver in color, appearing the size of a baseball held at arm's length were observed moving south at an altitude of 5,000 to 15,000 feet at an estimated speed of 36 mph. An F-86D fighter was scrambled but negative sightings. The sighting was visual and electronic by TPS 1D radar. Length of observation was 10 minutes. (McDonald list, Brad Sparks, Dan Wilson) 

May. 09, 1956; Jacksonville, Florida
11:00 p.m. Two girls, Joan Frost and Gertie Wynn, while waiting for a bus, saw two pulsating lights flying horizontally and disappearing. 15 min later the lights were seen again, stopping at the zenith, merging, and diving to 50 m altitude. As the bus arrived, it seemed that the objects had separated and were about to abduct the witnesses, and they ran to the vehicle in terror. (382, APRO Mar., 59)

May 22, 1956; 58 miles NW of Monroe, Louisiana (BBU)
11:05 p.m. (CST) USAF officer Earl D. Holwadel, piloting T-33 jet, and an unnamed officer in the back seat during a night flight heading 50° at 18,000 ft, saw a bright light due E, then saw it again in the E at 11:15 p.m. Holwadel banked right to the SE somewhat behind the object now seen in the SE at great distance. Object suddenly came straight at them at high speed passing in front of the T-33 at about 225 ft away under the "nose" of the object, no jet wash, on a heading of 330° when the object flashed an intensely bright white light from a "greenhouse-shaped dome" or cockpit window at its front end that lit up the canopy of the T-33. Object about 30-40 ft long, elliptical in shape, shorter than a C-47 but wider, a small steady red running light in the center, with no wings, only stubby protrusions extending 3-4 ft and 25 ft long on each side, bottom surface like steel with ribs extending down 2-4 ft with a wave-like appearance. Object moved away then returned at high speed on a W course with "fantastic" maneuverability never changing flight attitude at any time. (NARCAP; McDonald list; Hynek-CUFOS files)



Summer, 1956; near Nellis AFB, Nevada (E-M)
Night.  As a pilot was driving in the desert at night, the engine of his car died. Then he spotted a disc-shaped UFO with a dome, about 100 feet in diameter. He saw three circular "landing gear" on its bottom. It eventually rose straight into the air and the car could then be restarted. (Rodeghier, Flying Saucer Occupants, Coral and Jim Lorenzen)

June 2, 1956; Newton, Mississippi (BBU)

10:51 p.m. Military pilot of Convair T-29 saw white-green light on parallel course at 5-7 miles [distance?]. (Project 1947)

June 6, 1956; Banning, Calif. (BBU 4127)
5:30 [4:30?] a.m. Mr. Bierman saw a thin disc with a small dome, shimmering silver, hover about 300 ft away at 100 ft height then zoom up. [Crossed  the road slowly, turned, crossed the road again behind the car and vanished suddenly. ??] (Vallée Magonia 383; FUFOR Index)

June 10, 1956; Hobsonville, New Zealand
At night. B. Lovelock saw a bluish-white domed saucer, which after a while “shot” straight up and disappeared (FSR, 1956, July, p. 24).

June 27, 1956; Trieste, Italy
Luminous object hovered, sped away. (UFOE, XII)

June 29, 1956; an area 50 miles around Melbourne, Australia
An explosion was felt (FSR, 1956, July, p. 32).

June 29, 1956; Los Angeles to San Diego, Calif. (BBU)
At 5:10 p.m. PST, a round, sometimes irregular shaped object was observed high in the sky to the east of the observers. The object was silver-white to rosy in color. Types of observations listed in the report are: Ground-Visual, Air-Visual, Ground-Radar, and Air-Intercept Radar. F3D aircraft tried to intercept the object with no success due to the extreme altitude of the object. The total length of the observation was approximately 2 hours. The radar site at Mt. Luguna (P-76) detected the object at 59,000 feet with no speed. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index)


July 6, 1956; Euclid, OH (BBU)
9:37 a.m. (EST).
One spherical object, large, white in color, appeared to be revolving at 5 to 6 thousand feet. Ground visual and ground radar sighting. AN/FPS-E radar used. Local fighters diverted to Cleveland lake shore area. No visual contact.(McDonald list; FUFOR Index)

July 12, 1956; off Wakaya Island, Fiji
While fishing, ten men saw a saucer with square portholes through which a strong light shone (FSR, 1956, Sept., p. 8).

July 17, 1956; Mastic Airport, Long Island, NY (BB)
8:55 p.m. EST. An Air Force pilot made an air-visual sighting of one green tear shaped object the size of a 10 by 5 foot door seen for 1-2 seconds. It appeared to flash off and on. Five minutes later the pilot saw three more green flashes. (BB files, Dan Wilson)

July 17, 1956; Westover AFB, Mass. (BB)
At 9:30 EST, (18/0230Z) a regular but larger than ordinary radar target was picked up on a CPN 18-A radar set.
The target had fast acceleration of speed as high as 2400 mph and was able to make a 180 degree turn in less
than 6 seconds. The target increased and decreased speed in a matter of seconds. The length of observation
was 4 minutes. (Dan Wilson)

July 17, 1956; Otis AFB, Westover, Mass. (BBU)
11:42 p.m. (EDT). USAF jet fighter pilot saw a white­yellow circular object that reversed course. (McDonald list; Weinstein; FUFOR Index)

July 19, 1956; Hutchinson, Kansas
Naval Air Station reported tracking "a moving unidentified object" on radar, observed visually by state police as "teardrop shaped" light source. (UFOE, VIII) Noticeable maneuvers of UFO "vertically and horizontally over a wide area of the sky" mapped by Wichita Eagle.

July 19, 1956; Phoenix, Ariz.
Luminous round object hovered, sped away. (UFOE, XII)

July 20, 1956; Panorama City, California
Three witnesses independently claimed that they observed a huge, ball-shaped object from which emerged three beings. They were nearly 2 m tall, had long, blond hair, and wore tight, green suits. (384, Hanlon; Humanoids 64)

July 23, 1956; England, Arkansas
Several witnesses reported shape changes of a UFO from oval to flat to diamond(Swords M. P., 2012, p. 218).

July 24, 1956; in the foothills of Drakensberg, Natal, South Africa
11:30 a.m. Elizabeth Klarer observed a dull metallic grey object, which according to FSR (1956, Sept., p. 8), was surrounded by “a sort of shimmering, heat haze.”

July 26, 1956; Rio de Janeiro
A cigar-shaped object was seen and tracked on radar. And the CIC radars said it went off the scope in two or three sweeps. That was witnessed by John C. Hau, Chief Warrant Officer." Aboard Aircraft Carrier FDR. (Carl Feindt catalog)

July 26, 1956; Atlantic 43.12N 49.30W / 500 miles SE of Gander, Newfoundland (BB)
10:12 p.m. local time. A civilian airline pilot flying a Pan American Airways DC-7 at approximately15,000 feet observed a circular blue green pulsating light the size of a golf ball with a speed greater than any aircraft. (Dan Wilson, BB files)

July 29, 1956; Pasadena, Calif.
Hovering/speeding light seen by Ground Observer Corps, tracked on radar. (UFOE, VII)


Aug. 1956; Boulder City, Nevada
Research technician observed formation of five flat, circular UFOs. (UFOE, VI)

Aug. 3, 1956; Suva, Fiji Islands
A vertical light emanating from a UFO had a tapered end that was curved and diffused (FSR, 1956, Nov., p. 6).

Aug. 4, 1956; Copenhagen, nr. Bornholm Island, Denmark
Radar case.

Aug. 6, 1956; a southern Nepalese village
A flying saucer was seen by thousands of people (Flying Saucer Review, 1956, July, p. 27).

Aug. 8, 1956; 20 miles S of Quartzsite, Ariz. (BBU 4270)
11 p.m. (MST). Attorneys W. B. Buttermore and J. W. Smith saw a blue-white pulsating light fly fast, straight and level. (Berliner; FUFOR Index)

Aug. 8-19, 1956; Connecticut. Concentration of sightings over 12-day period. Retired fire department engineer in Hartford saw an oblong UFO with halo (August 8); an egg-shaped UFO was seen over West Redding (August 11); unidentified white lights reported over West Hartford by Ground Observer Corps (August 14) (UFOE)

Aug. 9, 1956; over the Northern Rhodesia Copperbelt
A UFO was seen (FSR, 1956, Sept., p. 7).

Aug. 10-11, 1956; Duncanville AFS, near Dallas, Texas (BBU)
10:00 p.m. The first report of an unknown object came from the White Rock Lake area at  0400Z. That object disappeared. At approximately 12:05 a.m. (0605Z) an unknown object was reported to the GOC filter center in Dallas. This object was reportedly over the North Dallas area. At approximately the same time 745th ACWRON sighted an unknown aircraft on their CPS-6B radar. According to the Air Intelligence Information Report, the track that was sighted on radar was in the same vicinity that the civilian personnel reported seeing their unknown object. 12:05/12:20 p.m. (CST). (Jan Aldrich; McDonald list; FUFOR Index)

Aug. 13, 1956;  RAF Bentwaters, England, UK (BBU)
9:55 p.m. Extremely high speed radar-visual approximately 18,000 mph E-W radar track of brilliant white light, from about 30 miles E to 30 miles W passing directly over the radar site, “streaked under” C-47 at 4,000 ft near base. Radar track provides height-finding data confirming extremely low altitude, roughly 2,000 ft, also estimated by ground visual observers. (Sparks)

Aug. 13-14, 1956; RAF Lakenhearth, England, UK (BBU)
11 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Radar-visual of hovering-darting objects that outmaneuvered Venom NF-3 jet interceptor beginning at 12:01 a.m. Later attempted intercepts at about 2-3 a.m. were unsuccessful. (Sparks)

Aug. 16, 1956; Near Azores (BBU)
12:45 a.m. local time. An orange and white bobbing brilliant light was seen from a DC-4 airliner (Eastern Airlines Flight 49). The object passed within 40 feet of the aircraft coming in from above and below. The aircraft was flying at 4000 feet altitude. The figure of 6000 feet is also given as the altitude of the DC-4. Evasive action was taken by the aircraft. The light was observed for 20-30 minutes. [Time: August 17, 1956, 12:45 a.m. local time. Time given on Project 10073 Record Card is 17/0145Z. The Azores is just one hour behind G.M.T. (NARCAP; Weinstein; FUFOR Index)

Aug. 17, 1956; SSW [of] Spragueville, Maine (BBU)
10:50 a.m. EST. An object was picked up on airborne radar of an F-89D aircraft. The Radar Observer estimated that the object was moving at over 500 knots. The target gave a bright return the size of 2 aircraft on the APG-40 scope. The paint was held for 3 minutes The target crossed in front of the F-89D on a 45 degree angle. The target went off side of scope at 4000 yards and contact was lost. (McDonald list)

Aug. 19, 1956; Newington, Conn.
Fiery object made turn, dimmed, window-like markings became visible. (UFOE, XII)

Aug. 20, 1956; Citrus Heights, Calif.
Man & wife saw 25 or more bright, Saturn-like UFOs in a rough semi-circle formation. (UFOE, XII)

Aug. 20, 1956; North Bend, Oregon (BBU)
10:15 p.m. PST. An object was initially sighted on height finder radar at 320 degrees azimuth at 54,000 feet altitude at 60 miles range. The object descended to 50,000 feet and moved to 32 degrees azimuth. The radar station contacted the radar station at Nasselle, Washington and requested that they try and get a height measurement on their radar. They were able to pick up the object and verify the original radar reading. After two hours the target faded from the radar scope.  (McDonald list; FUFOR Index)

Aug, 21, 1956; near Hamilton AFB, California (BB)
At 11:35 a..m. PST, a round silver object the size of a dime held at arm's length was observed first by the radar operator, Lt. John W.Curtiss, of an F-89D aircraft at 20,000 feet. The object was observed for approximately one minute when the pilot, 2nd Lt. Robert C. Morelli went for a closer look and the object appeared to go between the F-89 and a contrail above the interceptor. This led the pliot to believe that the object was close and he initiated maximum performance of the F-89 to intercept, climbing at 250 knots IAS but the object appeared to pull away and up. Fuel became low on the F-89 and the intercept was terminated and the pilot turned toward home base at Hamilton AFB. The object was observed for approximately 10 minutes. The radar was inoperative on the F-89D. (BB files Dan Wilson)

Aug. 21, 1956; Wyoming-Montana
Dumbbell-shaped UFOs approached plane. J. Gordon Campbell observed ... objects while flying between Sheridan, Wyoming, and Billings, Montana. Mr. Campbell is president of a Minneapolis machine tool and industrial supply company. Shortly after 8:00 p.m., a dark elongated object with knobs at each end rapidly approached his plane, hovered, then sped away. Seconds later, four similar objects maneuvered near his plane). (UFOE, VII)

Aug. 22, 1956, Bornholm, Denmark (BBU)
8:50 p.m. to 11:59 p.m. Radars first reported 2-3 objects on an easterly heading at 700 knots. Approximately 2 hours later 4 objects appeared and were orbiting over the location, 53 degrees 30 minutes N - 18 degrees 00 minutes E, at 25,000 feet altitude at 700 knots. About 1 1/2 hours later the tracks faded. (Dan Wilson, Brad Sparks, McDonald list; FUFOR Index)

Aug. 24, 1956; Westerville, Ohio
A civilian reported a round, red object the apparent size of a basketball at arm’s length that shrank to the apparent size of a softball(Swords M. P., 2012, p. 218).

Aug. 26, 1956; New_Brunswick, New Jersey
According to the newspaper, the second sighting where the photo was supposedly taken was Sunday August 26, 1956, hour unknown, single witness. Reference: The Central New Jersey Home News (New Brunswick, New Jersey), Thursday August 30, 1956, pages 7 and 14. Witness and photographer, 14-year-old Lazzlo Malyasovszky (6 James Street, New Brunswick). Reporter: Neil Gallagher. (Vicente-Juan Ballester Olmos)Photo.

Aug. 27, 1956; nr. Fort McCleod, Alberta, Canadian Rockies
7:20 PM, MDT (about 20 minutes before sunset). A Royal Canadian Air Force pilot was flying nearly due west over the Canadian Rockies near Ft. MacCleod, (49.5 degrees latitude, 113.5 degree longitude). He was flying at 36,000 ft (about 11 m) in the second position (far left side) of a formation of four F-86 Sabre jet aircraft. While approaching a large thunderhead (cumulonimbus) at a ground speed of about 400 kts (740 km/hr) he saw, at a much lower altitude, a "bright light which was sharply defined and disc-shaped" or "like a shiny silver dollar sitting horizontal" (Bruce Maccabee).

Aug. 27, 1956; Juniata, Penna. (BBU 4348)
9:55 p.m. Mrs. R. S. Pope saw a bright disc with a clear dome fly vertically, then N. A very cold breeze seemed to emanate from the object. (Berliner)



Sept., 1956; Cabo Frio, BRAZIL
8:30 p.m. O. Guarichi was walking on the beach with his dogs when he saw an object come from the sea and land. Two men, 1.80 m tall, wearing metallic-looking uniforms, emerged. One of them picked up objects from the beach. There was an exchange of gestures with the witness. One of the dogs turned away when the witness approached the craft, which was 20 m wide 3 m high and showed flashing lights as it left. (385, Nachrichten Mar., 61)

Sept., 1956; FRANCE, Serdon (E-M)
12:05 a.m. A man and woman, both in their early twenties, experienced car trouble. They were able to restart the car, but then saw a UFO overhead about 200 meters in altitude. The object was 100 feet in diameter and shone a light beam which was not continuous. Everything illuminated by the beam changed colors. The witnesses also experienced a tingling sensation. The UFO hovered in the area for some time while the witnesses hid. It eventually left, first vertically, then made a right-angle turn. (Rodeghier, The Crack in  the Universe, Bourret)

Sept. 3, 1956; Whenuapai, New Zealand
6:42 p.m. The commanding officer of a Transport Squadron, who was flying at an altitude of 500 feet, as well as another squadron leader, saw a glowing object with a white nose pass by at high speed (FSR, 1956, Sept., p. 4).

Sept. 4, 1956; Takutai, near Hokitika, New Zealand (just over the sea)
10 p.m. A bright cigar-shaped craft was seen hovering in a vertical position with the top end rounded off, and with the lower end tapered, accompanied by several smaller craft, all of the same shape (Flying Saucer Review, 1956, Nov., p. 8).

Sept. 4, 1956; Copenhagen, Denmark
Radar tracking of several UFOs at about 1800 mph. (UFOE, VIII)

Sept. 4, 1956; Dallas, Texas (BBU 4379)
9 p.m. USMC T/Sgt. R. D. Rogers and family saw a large star, changing to red color, remain stationary for 20 mins, then move W at 200 knots (230 mph). (Berliner)

Sept., 1956 at in Cabo Frio, Brazil
10:30 p.m. A 20-m-wide craft emerged from the sea, landed on the beach and two humanoids in metallic-like uniforms emerged, who began picking up objects on the beach (FSR, 1970, July, p. 38pdf).

Sept. 6, 1956; Pasadena, California
Western Airlines pilot reported erratically moving white lights to Air Defense Command; visual confirmation from ground. (UFOE, V)

Sept. 7, 1956; a farm near Ballyniel, The Loup, near Moneymore, Ireland
About noon. A red windowless object with four white stripes around its circumference landed on the only dry spot in an otherwise muddy field and was described as follows in Flying Saucer Review (1956, Sept., p. 2): it was pear-shaped with a pointed top, it was only about three feet six inches high and two feet in diameter; when the farmer kicked it over, it righted itself; when the farmer picked it up by its stationary base the upper part began to rotate, accelerating up to about 300 rpm for about three minutes; it weighed less than about two pounds; while held by its base it could not be turned over, and in spite of a heavy rain, it was dry; when he put it back on the ground it flew rapidly straight up, with the white stripes becoming self-luminous.

Sept. 7, 1956; Chosi City, Chiba Prefecture, Japan
7:30 p.m. The following transpired, according to FSR (1957, Nov., p. 3): a UFO dropped pieces of metal foil (10 μm thick) shortly after it accelerated away; analysis revealed that the foil consisted of aluminum, lead, silicon, iron and copper, and that it was not made in Japan.

Sept. 8, 1956; near Mars
Night. A faint point of light near Mars was seen in New Mexico by an astronomer who saw it through a telescope (Saucers, Space and Science, 1964, no. 35, p. 5).

Sept. 8-9, 1956; an Idaho ranch
Cattle rustling was reported by three witnesses when a 400 pound steer disappeared after a flying saucer 200 feet in diameter landed near it (FSR, 1956, Nov., p. 7).

Sept. 11,1956; Baltic Sea. Radar sightings of "mysterious objects": flying at speeds of 2,000 to 2,500 mph., in a curved course, during previous three weeks. (Altus (Okla.) Times-Democrat; 7-11-56.) (UFOE)

Sept. 13, 1956; S Calif., near Santa Barbara (BBU)
9:35 [9:34?] p.m. United Airlines Flight 459 crew saw a star-like object stationary then moving. (Project 1947; FUFOR Index)

Sept. 14, 1956; Highland, North Carolina (BBU 4399)
1 a.m. Scaly, N. Car., policeman O. S. Gryman saw 14 yellow-to-red round objects with tremendous exhaust fly in a vague formation from SW to E to NE and back again, while swooping up and down. (Berliner)

Sept. 21, 1956; Birchleigh, Transvaal, Africa
11:30 a.m. A spinning shiny silvery-grey saucer, three to four times larger than an airliner, left a vapour trail as it accelerated rapidly upwards, after which something resembling lightning, but without thunder, shot back along the vapour trail, almost hitting the ground (FSR, 1956, Nov., p. 6).

Sept. 22, 1956; Cleethorpes, Linconshire, England
Afternoon. A spherical object about 80 feet in diameter at a height of 54,000 feet was detected on radar was seen hovering in spite of a 40 mph wind at that altitude and left the area when two fighter aircraft were sent up to investigate (FSR, 1956, Sept., p. 4).

Sept. 25, 1956; Grand Rapids, Mich. (BBU)
4 p.m. Cessna pilot Marcus saw 2 delta-shaped objects flying S under the right wing. (Weinstein; CUFOS files; FUFOR Index)


Oct. 1956; Oslo, Norway
Driver in auto felt “prickly sensation,” wristwatch magnetized (according to jeweler). UFO flew in front of car and hovered over road. (NICAP, 1960)

Oct. 6, 1956; Wetherford, Essex, England (BBU)
6:55 p.m. (GMT). USAF witness Pollock. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index). Numerous GCA radar observations which included targets the size of B-36's on October 6 and more numerous targets the size of an L-20 on October 6 and 7. No unusual weather on either night. (Dan Wilson)

Oct. 7, 1956. Castle AFB area, Calif. (BBU)
10:45 p.m. (PST). 2-3 USAF F-86D pilots, Lt Jerry Owen Robinett, Lt Alvin A. Akins, and possibly Lt. Donata Correa, Intelligence Officer, [on ground?] from 456th FIS, Castle AFB, were scrambled or redirected already in air about 11:10 p.m. to intercept a UFO reported by ground witnesses [Thomas Salazar and police officers in Merced, and another in Merced]. Football-shaped or dome-shaped UFO estimated at 100-120 ft diameter and 50-60 ft high, dipped up and down vertically into an overcast cloud bank layer at 11,000 to 21,000 ft, playing “cat and mouse” with F-86 pilots stationed above and below cloud layer to catch the object. Akins got brief airborne radar contacts that immediately terminated as if the UFO was monitoring the radar beam (by ELINT). (Sparks; Jan Aldrich; Loren Gross Sept-Oct 1956, Nov-Dec 1956 Supp.; McDonald papers; BB files)

Oct. 9, 1956. Little Easton, Essex, England (BBU)
6:55 p.m. (GMT). USAF witness Pollock. (Sparks; McDonald list; Saunders/FUFOR Index)

Oct. 17, 1956; Wheelus AFB, Tripoli, Libya (BBU)
11:17 p.m. local time, two different tracks of unidentified slow flying objects were carried on radar by the 663rd AC&W Squadron. F-86D aircraft made radar contact with the objects and made repeated intercepts with the E-4 weapons system through all phases to Splash without any visual contact being made by the pilots. Both objects gave a bright return on ground and airborne radar. At around 1:46 a.m., Oct.18,  F/Blue 2 F-86D got a radar contact at two miles from the target. This was 29 degrees and 28 nautical miles from the ground radar. F/Blue got a Splash on this target at 1:48 a.m. This was the last radar contact by any type of radar. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index)x

Oct. 23, 1956; Washington Daily News
" 'Project Skylight', New Group Setting Sights on Saucers."
T. Townsend Brown announces the formation of NICAP.


Oct. 28, 1956; Minot, N. Dakota
Cat 3, 8, 9. Photos by missile crew, radar. (Listed here for the record only, this is a 1966 incident and NOT 1956, a typo in Hynek's UFO Report).


Early Nov. 1956; Malibu, Calif.
Flat oval object with three window-like markings on underside flew low, through searchlight beam. (UFOE, XII)

Nov. 1, 1956; 60 miles E of  St. Louis, Missouri, near Mt. Vernon and Sandoval, Illinois (BBU 4489)
5:30 p.m. CST. A light yellow round light was observed flying across the sky at an estimated speed of 1200 knots by Lt. Col Walter A. Rosenfield, Pilot, and Captain Orville H. Daniel, Aerial Weather Reconnaissance Officer flying in a T-33 aircraft at 35,000 feet.  (Berliner; FUFOR Index; etc.)

Nov. 4, 1956; Point Arena, California (BBU)
8:22 p.m. PST. Two objects, slightly larger than DC-7 aircraft, were located by ground radar at 178 degrees, 175 miles, at 21,000 feet, and 183 degrees, 185 miles, at 21,000 feet. The objects moved at 6 to 10 knots on an erratic course. The objects were observed for 99 minutes for the first object and 61 minutes for the second. (McDonald list; FUFOR Index)

Nov. 8, 1956; Miami, Florida
Pan American Airways radar tracked a UFO at 4000 mph. (UFOE, VIII)

Nov. 9 [?], 1956; Destin, Florida (BBU)
7 p.m. (EST). USAF pilot flying RF-84F with 3242nd Test Group saw a long narrow object with a series of bright orange lights. (Project 1947; FUFOR Index)

Nov.11, 1956; El Toro Marine Corps Air Station, Calif. (BBU)
9:30 p.m. (PST) and continuing for up to 8 hours many targets were tracked on radar at speeds of 50 knots to 15,000 mph. At times lights were seen in the area where the radar targets were being detected.  At times smaller objects appeared to join larger object and merge with it to form a larger blip. A few seconds later the smaller objects would depart and dash all over the screen leaving the larger blip in its original size. ( (Weinstein; FUFOR Index, .Dan Wilson, Brad Sparks)

Nov. 14, 1956; SE of Jackson, Alabama (BBU)
10:10-10:12 p.m. Capital Airlines Flight 77 pilot Capt. W. J. Hull with 3 million miles and 17 years' flight experience and author of anti-UFO skeptical article "The Obituary of the Flying Saucer" in The Airline Pilot magazine (Sept. 1953), with copilot FO Peter MacIntosh were flying from New York to Mobile, Ala., in a Viscount airliner at 300 mph descending at 10,000 ft, when they saw a brilliant bluish-white light (mag. -7) descend in a steep downward angle diagonally (about 45°?) from left to right from WSW at azimuth 315° to dead ahead SSW at 205° azimuth 30°-40° elevation where it stopped at the same or slightly higher altitude. Hull radioed Bates tower near Mobile to look for object, then at that moment the object began a series of maneuvers for 30 secs, rising and falling, darting back and forth, instant 90° turns, then hovered motionless again at same/slightly higher level. When Bates field radioed again the object began another series of  "crazy gyrations, lazy 8's, square chandelles" with undulating motion, then shot out to the S over the Gulf of Mexico in a steep climb at "fantastic speed" until it disappeared. (Condon Committee Unexplained case, CR pp. 127-9; Hynek-CUFOS­ Willy Smith files; NARCAP; UFOE, I)

Nov. 16, 1956; Mobridge (Lemon), S. Dakota
Railroad phones, automatic block system "mysteriously dead" as UFO passed over railroad yards. (NICAP/Rob Swiatek)

Nov. 19, 1956; Frankfurt, Germany
V-formation of blue-white, elliptical UFOs. (UFOE, X)

Nov. 20, 1956; Norway
6:20 p.m. Two UFOs flashed differently coloured lights, including red, white, and green, which might have been an instance of optical communication between the two craft (FSR, 1957, Jan., p. 9).

Nov. 24/25, 1956; Nr. Pierre, South Dakota
Two employees of the South Dakota State Highway Patrol took two photographs of an egg-shaped craft they had chased on a highway (Flying Saucer Review, 1957, Jan., p. 7).  Ground/air/visual. Widespread UFO sightings for several days. Air Force jets scrambled. (UFOE, VII)

Nov. 30, 1956; Charleston AFB, South Carolina (BBU 4543)
12:48 p.m. USAF aerial navigator Maj. D. D. Grimes saw an unspecified object fly at an estimated 100 ft altitude over water. No further details. (Berliner)


1956; near Cold Lake, Alberta
During a navigation exercise at night, a crew member of an RCAF airplane saw a bright light that was also detected on radar and which moved away at 2,000 mph (Saucers, Space and Science, 1971, no. 62, p. 12).

Late 1956; Castle AFB, nr. Modesto, Calif.
Cat.9/11. Luminous elliptical object and two F-86's, radar.

Late 1956; Bt. North & South Dakota
Cats. 8/9/11. UFO filmed by AF crew. Radar.

Dec. 1956; South Florida
A large egg-shaped object was spotted on radar 65 miles SW of Miami at an altitude of 7,000 to 8,000 feet going about 4,000 mph. The observation was made by Donald Freestone, a radar expert for Pan American Airways. Six other Pan American radar experts confirmed his observation. Case was independently reported to CIA by or on behalf of a John P. Andersen. (Dan Wilson)

12:20 AM. One round object, red to orange in color, was observed at approximately 1000 foot altitude. The object had rapid movements movements up and down, sideways, and hovered. As a police car approached the object the police car lost radio contact with station at Valley City. Valley City also lost contact with Jamestown, South Dakota. All radio contact was regained after the object left the area. (BB files, Dan Wilson)

Dec. 13, 1956; off the coast of Venezuela
Crew members on a Swedish ship reported that a cone-shaped object fell vertically into the sea, making the sound of an explosion upon impacting the water, after which the sea seemed to boil for some time (FSR, 1964, Sept., pp. 7 & 24).

Dec. 17, 1956; Nr. Itazuke AFB, Japan (BBU)
3:20 p.m. local time. Air Force pilot tracked UFO on his radar, radar jammed by strong interference.. Observed visually as a "large round object", the object was picked up on airborne radar of an F-86D aircraft at 20 nautical miles. The aircraft had a lock-on at 15 nautical miles on a steady overtake on a course of 270 degrees at 600 to 700 knots. The object and the observing aircraft were heading 270 degrees through the entire chase. A visual contact was made at 8 nautical miles and the F-86 closed to within 5 nautical miles and could not close any further. The object then started to pull away from the F-86 and at 12 nautical miles all indications on radar disappeared. The pilot estimated the speed of the object upon radar disappearance at 1500 to 1800 knots. Observation times were, radar: 7-8 minutes, visual: 3-4 minutes. The object was described as tan in color and round on top. Interference resembling ECM was experienced by both the observing aircraft and wingman. Pilot switched frequency, eliminated interference for 10 seconds; then weaker interference on second frequency.The general area of observation was 34-00N, 131-00E, slightly east of the Japanese island of Tsushima.  (NICAP, UFOE, Weinstein; FUFOR Index)

Dec. 27, 1956; Los Angeles, Calif.
Real estate investor saw three spherical UFOs reflecting sunlight. (UFOE, VII)

Dec. 31, 1956 [Jan. 1, 1957?]; Guam (BBU 4577)
2:10 a.m. USAF 1st Lt. Ted Brunson, flying an F-86D jet interceptor, saw a round, white object fly under the jet, which was unable to turn as sharply as the object. (Berliner; FUFOR)


Back to NICAP Home