Wednesday, August 5, 2009

UFOs One Year at a Time: 1955


Those "Little Men" On Flying Saucers? Real, Says Kilgallen

Remember the creepy stories about flying saucers and little men from outer space? Dorothy Kilgallen has run into a new one in London. Here is her dispatch to the New York Journal-American on what a British official thinks about those "little fellows."

By Dorothy Kilgallen
Distributed by International News Service

London, May 22 - British scientists and airmen, after examining the wreckage of a mysterious "flying ship," are convinced that these strange aerial objects are not optical illusions or Soviet inventions, but actually are flying saucers which originate on another planet.

The source of my information is a British official of cabinet rank who prefers to remain unidentified.

"We believe, on the basis of our inquiries thus far, that the 'saucers' were staffed by small men - probably under four feet tall," my informant told me today.

"It's frightening but there is no denying the flying saucers come from another planet."

This official quoted scientists as saying a flying ship of this type could not have been constructed on earth.

The British government, I learned, is withholding an official report on the "flying saucer" examination at this time, possibly because it does not wish to frighten the public.

When my husband, Richard Kollmer and I arrived here for a brief vacation, I had no premonition that I would be catapulting myself into the controversy over whether flying saucers are real or imaginary.

In the United States, all kinds of explanations have been advanced.

But no responsible official of the U.S. Air Force has yet intimated the mysterious flying ships had actually vaulted from outer space.

The Sutton (Kelly/Hopkinsville) Encounter
Near Kelly, Kentucky
August 21-22, 1955

Drawing of the initial sighting by Billy Ray Taylor of the object which 'landed" in the gully. The drawing was made by. A. Ledwith on the afternoon following the sighting. CUFOS


One of the best-known and best-documented CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND to come from the modern era of UFOlogy is that which allegedly took place on August 21-22, 1955, near Kelly, Kentucky. This case is distinguished by its duration and also by the number of witnesses involved. The main points of the case have been discussed by several authors, including Dr. J. Allen Hynek, who devoted six pages of his 1972 book, The UFO Experience, to it. A 1979 publication from the CENTER FOR UFO STUDIES (CUFOS), authored by Isabel Davis and Ted Bloecher, puts the Kelly/Hopkinsville case into context with other CE III cases from 1955 and contains maps, illustrations, and photographs of the site, the creatures, the UFO, and the witnesses of one of the more fascinating CE III cases ever to occur in the United States.

The scene was a small farm outside of the Kentucky town of Kelly. Inside the farmhouse were eight adults and three children. The night was dark, clear, and hot. At about 7 PM, Billy Ray Taylor (a friend of the Suttons and owner of the farmhouse) came in from the well with the "wild story's that he had seen a really bright "flying saucer," with an exhaust all the colors of the rainbow, fly across the sky and drop into a forty-foot gully near the edge of their property. However, the Suttons did not take him seriously and laughed the story off as an embellishment of his seeing a "falling star."

Half an hour later the family dog began barking violently and eventually put its tail between its legs and hid under the house. The two men, Billy Ray Taylor and Lucky Sutton, went to the back door to see what was bothering the dog and noticed a strange glow approaching the farmhouse from the fields. When the light came nearer, they resolved what caused it: a glowing three-and-a-half-foot tall creature with a round, oversized head. The eyes were large and glowed with a yellowish light; the arms were long, extended nearly to the ground, and ended in large hands with talons. The entire creature seemed made of silver metal. As the creature approached, its hands were raised over its head as if it were being held up.

Understandably startled, the two men reacted by grabbing their guns: a 20-gauge shotgun and a .22 rifle. Withdrawing slightly into the house, the men waited until the creature was within twenty feet of the back door and then fired; the entity flipped over backward and then scurried off into the darkness. After a few minutes, when it did not reappear, they returned to the living room only to see another (or the same) creature at a side window. They fired through the window screen at it, and again the creature flipped and disappeared. Sure that they had hit and disabled the creature, the two men went outside to find the body. As they started out the front door Billy Ray, who was in the lead, paused for a moment underneath an overhanging roof. Just as he was about to step into the yard, those in the hallway behind him saw one of the creatures on the roof reach down a taloned hand and touch his hair from above. The people indoors screamed and pulled him back inside. Lucky Sutton rushed out into the yard, turned and fired pointblank at the creature, knocking it off the roof. There was another creature in the maple tree close-by. Both Lucky and Billy Ray fired at this one and knocked it off the limb; it floated to the ground and then ran off quickly into the darkness. Immediately, another entity (or perhaps the one that had been knocked off the roof) came around the side of the house almost directly in front of the group. Lucky fired his shotgun at point-blank range and the result was the same: no effect. A sound was heard as the bullets struck, as if a metal bucket lead been hit, but the creature scurried off unhurt.

Understandably concerned that their guns were apparently useless, the men returned to the house to join the frightened women and children.

The creatures generally moved in a peculiar fashion. The legs appeared to be inflexible and when they ran, movement was accomplished almost totally by "hip motions." Usually totally erect, when they ran off they bent over and moved with long arms almost touching the ground. The entities' ability to float was particularly evident when one was knocked off the kitchen roof and floated a distance of about forty feet to a fence, where it was knocked off again by a shot. While they did not appear to have an aura of luminescence, their "skin" glowed in the dark with the glow becoming brighter when they were shot at or shouted at.

Mrs. Lankford, the mother of the family, counseled an end to the hostilities. Despite the fact that they had been shot at a number of times, no aggressive action was ever proffered by the creatures. However, the children were becoming hysterical and the creatures kept returning to peer in the windows at intervals; by 11 PM the family's patience had worn thin and they all got into two automobiles and headed at top speed to the nearby Hopkinsville police department

After a half hour's travel time, the police arrived back at the farmhouse with the still-frightened family. The Hopkinsville police, the state police, and a staff photographer arrived to investigate the situation. A thorough search was made of the house, the yard, and the outbuildings. Nothing was found, and the tension ran high: When someone accidentally stepped on a cat's tail and it yowled, "you never saw so many pistols unholstered so fast in your life!" The searchers checked out the woods area but found nothing. One unusual item that was found was a luminous patch where one of the creatures had been knocked off and fallen to the ground. However, when nothing really extraordinary appeared, the searchers began to leave and by 2:15 AM., the Sutton family was alone.

The family had been reassured enough to go to bed and shut off the few lights. Mrs. Lankford was lying in bed watching the window when she noticed a weird glow; the glow was one of the creatures staring inward with its hands on the window screen. Calling quietly to the rest of the family, she remained perfectly calm. Lucky Sutton, however, grabbed his gun and again shot at the creature through the screen. No effect. The creatures continued to make their appearance throughout the rest of the night, never doing anything overtly hostile and only seeming to show curiosity. The last creature was seen at half an hour before sunrise, at about 5:15 AM

The next morning, investigators came back to search the farmlands during the daytime. Nothing was found even though some even climbed to the roof of the house to look for footprints. The press got hold of the story; besides the reporter who had accompanied the police out during the night, the local radio station and many reporters from other papers in Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee arrived at the Sutton house. As the news spread, the general public began to show up and cars were backed up for a considerable distance down the road from the Sutton farmhouse. Sightseers stopped their cars, walked through the property, in and out of the house, annoyed the family with requests for pictures and, in general, created a carnival atmosphere the upshot of which was to generally ridicule the family for having seen "little green men from space."

However, on that same morning, Andrew Ledwith, an engineer with the local radio station, decided to stop into the station for a talk with the chief engineer (it was Ledwith's day off). He learned of the happenings at the Sutton farm the night before and because of his interest in UFOs and his previous experience as an artist, he decided to go out and interview the family. It is fortunate that he did. The publicity became so obnoxious to the Sutton family that they later simply avoided telling the story and refused to cooperate (one notable exception was with Isabel Davis, who prepared the Kelly report for CUFOS). The drawings that Mr. Ledwith created on the afternoon following the sighting are illustrated above.

How can such a tale be accepted at face value? one asks. After all, the family itself was considered of "low social status" by the townspeople. Two of the men had worked for a carnival; it could be argued that they were familiar with the art of the trickster.

The most telling criticism of the incident, however, is that there is absolutely no physical evidence whatsoever that the incident actually occurred. Skeptics point out that no footprints were found (the ground was extremely hard), no marks were on the roof (although the creatures seemed nearly weightless and may not have left marks), there was no blood on then, the bullets did no apparent damage), et cetera. One could thus conclude that the family "faked" the entire incident.

However, investigators who interviewed the Suttons afterward painted a picture of them that is quite different from the sort of people who could fabricate an elaborate hoax: They were uneducated, simple farm folk with no apparent interest in exploiting the rather considerable publicity that they engendered.

Did "creatures" really visit the farmhouse in Kentucky on that night of August 21, 1955? Or did the many witnesses, mostly adults, excite themselves to the point of exaggerating some lesser stimulus? The Kelly/Hopkinsville case still stands as one of the more provocative CE III events to date.

Allan Hendry
Source: UFO Encyclopedia of UFOs, by Ronald D. Story, Pages 190-192

1955 - US Senators See Flying Saucers In Soviet Russia

One of the most powerful U.S. senators in modern history actually eye-witnessed two UFO's while on a fact-finding trip through Russia in 1955-and the U.S. government kept the sightings a secret for more than three decades. The incredible encounter is detailed in 12 TOP SECRET CIA, FBI, and Air Force reports-and declassified in 1985. Those startling reports reveal that Senator Richard B. Russell, Jr. (D-GA)-then chairman of the Armed Services Committee-was on a Soviet train when he spotted a disc-shaped craft taking off near the tracks. He hurriedly called his military aide and interpreter to the window-and they saw the UFO, plus another one that appeared a minute later. The astonished trio reported the sightings to the U.S. Air Force as soon as they were out of Russia.

"The three observers were firmly convinced that they saw a genuine flying disc," says an Air Force Intelligence report, dated October 14, 1955, and classified TOP SECRET at the time. Senator Russell served 38 years in the Senate. He was its senior, and one of the most influential, senators at the time of his death in 1971. He was chairman of the Armed Services Committee from 1951 to 1969, and unsuccessfully sought the Democratic Presidential nomination in 1952. The mind-boggling documents detailing his UFO encounter were made available by the Fund for UFO Research and its chaiman, Dr. Bruce Maccabee. Several key documents were obtained by the group through the Freedom of Information Act. "These long secret documents are of major importance because they show for the first time that one of the most powerful U.S. Senators witnessed and reported a UFO," said Dr. Maccabee. The Air Force Intelligence report says Russell and his two traveling companions spotted the UFO's on October 4, 1955, while traveling by rail across Russia's Transcaucasus region. "One disc ascended almost vertically, at a relatively slow speed, with its outer surface revolving slowly to the right, to an altitude of about 6000 feet, where its speed then increased sharply as it headed north," the report states. "The second flying disc was seen performing the same actions about one minute later. The take-off area was about 1-2 miles south of the rail line.

" Russell "saw the first flying disc ascend and pass over the train," and went "rushing in to get Mr Efron (Ruben Efron, his interpreter) and Col. Hathaway (Col. E. U. Hathaway, his aide) to see it," the report said. "Col. Hathaway stated that he got to the window with the Senator in time to see the first (UFO), while Mr. Efron said that he got only a short glimpse of the first. However, all three saw the second disc and all agreed that they saw the same round, disc-shaped craftas the first." The Air Force report was written by Lieut. Col. Thomas Ryan, who interviewed Senator Russell's companions in Prague, Czechoslovakia, on October 13, after they arrived there from Russia shortly after the sighting.

In his report, Col. Ryan called the sightings "an eyewitness account of the ascent and flight of an unconventional craftby three highly reliable United States observers. He added that Col. Hathaway led off his account of the sightings by saying: "I doubt if your going to believe this, but we all saw it. Senator Russell was the first to see this flying disc we've been told for years that there isn't such a thing, but all of us saw it." CIA documents show that the agency later interviewed the three eyewitnesses in the Russell party-and also a fourth person, unidentified in the reports, who had seen the UFO's. An eyewitness-whose name was blacked out on the CIA report prior to its declassification-said one of the UFO's "had a slight dome on top" and also a "white light on top." The edge of the disc was glowing pinkish-white, he added. The UFO rose "vertically with the glow moving slowly around the perimeter in a clockwise direction, giving the appearance of a pinwheel."

Interpreter Ruben Efron told the CIA that visibility was excellent. As one UFO approached the train, he said, "the object gave the impression of gliding. No noise was heard and no exhaust was heard, and no exhaust glow or trail was seen by me." After the encounter, Senator Russell told the men with him: "We saw a flying disc. I wanted you boys to see it so that I would have witnesses," according to the CIA documents. And an FBI memo, dated November 4, 1955, also discusses the sighting-and admitted Col. Hathaway's testimony "would support existence of a flying disc" Dr. Maccabee, of the Fund for UFO Research, believes that Senator Russell and his group never publicly revealed their incredible sightings "because they were no doubt advised not to talk. These documents provide startling new evidence that UFO's exist."

Mr. Tom Towers, in his January 20, 1957, column, "Aviation News," for the Los Angeles, CA, Examiner, printed the contents of a letter from Senator Russell, which was in response to a request for information about the sightings in Russia. Mr. Towers had originally contacted Senator Russell's office by letter with the request that he be given permission to "break" the story. The Senator wrote: "Permit me to acknowledge your letters relative to reports that have come to you regarding aerial objects seen in Europe last year. I received your letter, but I have discussed this matter with the affected agencies of the government, and they are of the opinion that it is not wise to publicize this matter at this time. I regret very much that I am unable to be of assistance to you." The letter was dated 17 January, 1956.

(Source: )

Namur, Belgium, 1955

Three photographs were taken on June 5, 1955 at about 07:30 P.M. near Namur. The witness indicated that he has visually seen a sharp gleam moving high in the sky without any noise and at high speed. He indicated that the gleam accompanied an object of discoidal shape leaving a white trail behind it. Namur, Belgium, 1955. The witness continued by indicating that the object lost altitude, made a turn, and then went upwards to reach its own trail. See larger image to see dimension of the clouds, and get perspective of the object's size. An excellent photo. Namur, Belgium, 1955. The witness continues by explaining that when the object joined its trail, the trail was disspating, the UFO then accelerated and left, while luminous particles were ejected behind it.

January 5, 1955
Deccan Herald (India)
Bangalore Scientist Seek Data On Flying Saucers


From the past few years, reports have come from all over the world of strange objects being sighted in the sky which are generally known as Flying Saucers. Opinions regarding these strange objects vary from complete disbelief to the firm conviction that these are the spaceships from another planet, said Dr. P. S. V. Setty of Vijnana Kendra of Bangalore to Hindusthan Samachar.

Dr. Setty, who himself is a physicist, is the President of the small group of scientists meeting in Vijnana Kendra. Dr. Setty said that Vijnana Kendra collects data as to the sightings of these strange objects til June 30, 1955, and afterwards wish to make a comprehensive study of these.

SOURCE: PROJECT 1947 website

(No further information was found about this investigations. PROJECT 1947 would welcome information on this and other items concerning scientific investigations of UFOs in India or elsewhere.)

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