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The 1954 French flap:

The index page for the 1954 French flap section of this website is here.

October 12, 1954, Toulouse, Midi-Pyrénées:

Reference number for this case: 12-oct-54-Toulouse. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.




The saucers chronicle

LOUVIERS. -- A craftsman and his apprentice claimed to have seen on the railway from Evreux to Louviers, as they drove a motorcycle, at about 3 a.m., a craft shaped like a bell, 2 m. 60 to 3 meters high, which was at one meter above the ground. The craft emitted sparks shimmering in greenish and reddish. First it rose a good 10 to 12 meters, while gushing from its base an orange glow.

The lower part of the apparatus had the shape of a ring.

A farm worker joined the two men to observe the phenomenon. All three state that the "bell" remained visible for about an hour. Then the orange glow became brighter, and the object rose very fast vertically, taking the direction of the east.

Lisieux. -- Mr. Bon, professor of mathematics at Lisieux, saw early in the afternoon in Saint-Germain-de-Livet, 2 or 300 meters from the road, over a wooden area, a silver disc with a diameter of 7 to 8 meters, which rose suddenly in the sky, without noise.

The disc was animated of a rapid movement of rotation. After diving to the ground from an altitude of about 800 meters it suddenly left horizontally at a tremendous speed.

LA ROCHE-SUR-YON. -- Mrs. Drouilard, residing in La Roche-sur-Yon, said she saw in the sky Monday night around 11:30 p.m., a luminous machine resembling a mushroom, moving silently and rapidly.

Nevers. -- Two residents of Clamecy (Nièvre), MM. Henry Gallois and Louis Vigneron, stallholders, stated to have seen in a meadow near Corbigny, a cylindrical craft.

They say that while they were about fifty meters from the object, they felt an electrical shock, while the engine of their truck stopped and the headlights went out. When the craft was gone the headlights came on again but they had to restart the engine.

LYON. -- Dr. Durand, general counsellor of the Township of Belleville-sur-Saône and Mr. Bourgeois, cafe owner in Saint-Georges de Reneins saw over the chapel of Brouilly, a flying saucer.

On the other hand, around 7:30 p.m. Monday night, MM. Dubois, rugby player and Coulon, swimming champion, saw, flying at low altitude, in the direction of Montgelas, a ball of fire that changed color several times.

TOULOUSE. -- Two residents in the Toulouse suburb, Mr. Pierre Vidal and his nephew Angel Hurle, saw yesterday morning at dawn, a hundred meters from their house, a giant rocket, fly away from a field and disappearing into the sky while producing a clarity of rare intensity.

The two men then went to the place where they thought the starting point of the mysterious craft was located. There, they found that the grass had been trampled on a circular area with a diameter of 6 meters. In the center of the area they found in the ground, four prints appearing to have been left by the feet of a heavy machine.

The grass was covered with droplets of fat steam condensation and smelled of oil.

The police went to the scene.

CHATEAUBRIANT. -- A 13-year-old boy, young Gilbert Lelay, said he saw on Tuesday night around 10:30 p.m., a mysterious craft in a field some 600 meters from his parents' home in the village of Sainte-Marie en Erbray near Chateaubriant.

The child claims to have spent ten minutes looking at ten meters this craft that was shaped like a phosphorescent cigar.

A passenger, a man wearing a suit and a gray hat, wearing boots, reportedly told him in French, "Look but do not touch." He put the hand on his shoulder, while with the other he held a ball launching purple lights. He climbed into the craft through a door that slammed. On what could have been a dashboard, there were several colored buttons.

Still according to the child, the machine rose slowly vertically, throwing light in all directions, flew two rounds in the air and suddenly disappeared.


VIENNA. -- Harald Kreutzberg, the Austrian Serge Lifar, living in Seefeld in Tirol, observed while he was in his garden, a flying saucer that flew over the small town for a few seconds before heading north and disappearing behind mountains.

Several residents of Seefeld also observed the phenomenon and tried unsuccessfully to photograph the mysterious craft.



A GIANT ROCKET, taking off from a field, was seen by M. Pierre Vidal, cook, residing at Croix Daurade, near Toulouse, and his nephew, Ange Hurle. It disappeared in a bright orange and pale green wake. At the presumed location of the rocket, the grass was covered with a fatty vapor with an oil smell.

A professor of mathematics from Lisieux, Mr. Bon, saw in Saint-Germain-de-Livet, above a wood, a silvery disk seven or eight meters; which rose silently in the sky, rotating on itself. After diving to the ground from an altitude of about 800 meters, it left again at the horizontal at a dizzying pace.

A GENERAL COUNCILMAN, a coffee-maker, a rugby player and a swimming champion, saw above the chapel of Romilly in the direction of Montgelas (Rhone) a flying saucer looking like a ball of fire.

A three meters high bell, moving with twelve meters jumps in an orange glow and emitting greenish sparks, was seen for an hour on the Evreux Louviers railway by an artisan, his apprentice and a farm worker.

A LUMINOUS MUSHROOM, which moved quickly and silently, was seen Monday evening around 9:30 p.m., by Mrs. Drouillard, at La Roche-sur-Yon.

A FLYING CIGAR, of metallic appearance, from which three red balls detached, was seen by Messrs. Roger Thévenin and Albert Daury, guardians of the peace of the urban body of Riom (Puy-de-Dôme).

ANOTHER CIGAR, surrounded by iridescent lights was observed in Bompas (Pyrénées-Orientales) by the baker M. Sebelli.

AN OBLONG-SHAPED ENGINE, moving in the sky as in a big "S" and making a sound of steam under pressure was seen by three young hunters above Gaillac (Aveyron). The same machine was reportedly observed in Pont-de-Salars.


The author indicates that there is a testimony by Vidal and Hurle, on October 12, 1954, with the immediate accesses of Toulouse, at the wake of day, but the account of the pranksters journalists of Samedi-Soire does not mention that they performed their joke in Toulouse at such a time, and the testimony is vague.

He adds elsewhere that the sighting was made at a 100 meters distance.

[Ref. jve5:] JACQUES VALLEE:

313 12 10 1954 LA CROIX-DAURADE F 00122 A


The authors say that an object which left some familiar evidence was seen taking off from a field at La Croix Daurade, France, at 4 a.m. on Otober 12, 1954. It was luminous, and it left the grass flattened in a 50-foot area.

[Ref. jve1:] JACQUES VALLEE:

The author indicates that on October 12, 1954, at 4 o'clock in the morning at La Croix-Daurade, two men saw a luminous object rising from a field and projecting a strong light, leaving flattened grass on a surface of 5 meters.


The two ufologists indicate that on October 12, 1954, at about 4 o'clock, when the day rose, in the suburbs of Toulouse, Pierre Vidal and his nephew Ange Hurle see at a hundred meters of their home a giant rocket take off emitting an intense luminosity.

The two men walk to the place from where the craft took off. The grass is flattened there, on a circular surface of 5 meters of diameter. At the center 4 inprints seemed to have been left by the feet of a heavy craft.

The authors indicate that their sources are newspaper articles and personal files and that the Air Police investigated.


The two authors quote the following text:

"Tuesday October 12, towards 4 o'clock Mr Pierre vidal, cook, remaining 76, chemin de Lanusse (northern suburbs of Toulouse, district Croix Daurade) had just waken up and was at the water closet, when he heard a whistling sound coming from outside. Rushing on the terrace, while calling his nephew Mr Angel Hurle, who slept in a nearby room, the two men managed to see a kind of giant rocket, so luminous that one did not see its contours, taking off, and disappearing in the night, in the time of a flash. The owner of the field is Mr Gérard Gichaoua, domiciled 78, chemin de Lanusse. The 'rocket' emitted an orange and dirty green light."

"After the end of the lunch, the uncle and the nephew went to the site. In the center of a surface circular from 4 to 5 meters in diameter, and marked by fatty vapor condensations covering the grass, they noted the existence of 4 prints, delimiting a trapezoid whose great base measures 1.40 m, the small base 1.20 m, and the sides 1.20 m. An odor resembling oil emerged from the grasses which did not present any trace of burn. Investigation of police force and military safety. No radioactivity was detected."

The authors indicate that this report comes from La Dépêche for October the 13th and 14th.

The authors explain that "the saucer is the work of Mr Vidal, (note by the way that being a cook, crockery is familiar to him!)


The two authors indicate that in Toulouse in Haute-Garonne, on Tuesday October 12, 1954, at 04:00 a.m., two inhabitants of the suburbs could see a machine in the shape of giant rocket which rose from a field at a hundred meters of their house. It disappeared quickly in the sky, generating a light of much intensity.

The two witnesses went to the place where they located the starting point of the mysterious machine. They found that the grass had been packed on a circular surface of five meters in diameter.

In the center of this area they discovered four prints appearing to have been made in the ground by the heavy apparatus. The grass was covered with droplets of some fatty vapor condensation, which released an oil odor.

The authors note that there was an investigation by the Air Police and wonder whether it was "a UFO or a terrestrial craft?"

The sources are indicated as La Croix, October 14, 1954; Le Figaro, October 14, 1954; Garreau and Lavier in "Face aux ET" page 108; Charles Bowen in "En Quête des Humanoïdes".

[Ref. pls1:] PIER LUIGI SANI:

This Italian ufologist wrote an article to refute the claims by ufologists Gérard Barthel and Jacques Brucker in their book "La Grande Peur Martienne" on the French wave of 1954, and provides examples of what he denounces as fraudulent or unjustified explanations they gave for cases, such as:

6. The Case at Toulouse

A cook and his grandson see a gigantic spindle take off and vanish into the sky. Traces on the ground. Investigation by Police and Military. Conclusion by B. and B.:

The saucer was the handiwork of the cook, clearly a man well acquainted with plates and saucers.

[Ref. lgs1:] LOREN GROSS:

October 12th. Toulouse, France. (4:00 a.m.)

Another early morning case was recorded at the Croix Durade [sic] section of Toulouse when a luminous craft was seen taking off from a field. A check of the site discovered a 50-foot area of flatten grass. 109.

[Ref. jsr1:] JEAN SIDER:

The author notes that on October 12, 1954 at 4 o'clock in Toulouse in the Haute-Garonne, Pierre Vidal and Angel Hurle saw a "giant rocket" taking off at 100 meters of their home to disappear in the night by diffusing an intense gleam. On the site the grass was flattened on a perimeter 5 meters in diameter, there were 4 prints in the center, and the grass was covered with droplets of a fatty condensation vapor which released an oil odor.

The author does not provide a source.

[Ref. cir1:] "THE CIRCULAR":

The magazine says threre was a 5 meters crop circle in grass at La Croix Daurade in France in 1954.


The Belgian ufologist indicates that in 1954, on October 12 in France in the suburbs of Toulouse, "In the begining of the day, 04 hours approximately, Ange Hurle and Pierre Vidal see taking off at a hundred meters of their house, a giant rocket which releases an intense luminosity. The two men go to the place where the apparatus took off. The grass there is flattened on a circular surface 5 meters in diameter. In the center four prints appearing to be left by the feet of a heavy apparatus. Investigation by the Air police force."

She indicates that the source is: "GARREAU et LAVIER: 'Face aux extra-terrestres' - DELARGE 1975 - J'ai Lu, p. 112".

And notes: "IN REALITY : it is again a journalistic hoax – Larry Hatch Dec. 2003)".

[Ref. fbn1:] FABRICE BONVIN:

Fabrice Bonvin notes:

Case #002: 10/12/1954, p. 152 (Toulouse, Croix Daurade)

[Ref. fbn2:] FABRICE BONVIN:

In a table, Fabrice Bonvin notes selected cases of the 1954 Frnech flap, including this one:

Case Nmbr witnesses Hours Type objects
Toulouse 2 1 3

[Ref. amr1:] ANDREAS MULLER:

Andreas Müller indicates that in La Croix Daurade, France, on October 12, 1954, there was "A single circle approx 15' dia.". The creation and report dates are given as October 12, 1954. No source is given.

[Ref. amo1:] ANNE MORO:

Anne Moro indicates in English that in "La Croix Durande" [sic] on n October 12, 1954, "a single circle of flattened grass was found near La Criox Durnade. [sic]" The circle is said to have a 5 m diameter.

Anne Moro indicates that the source is the database by Andréas Müller "ICCA-The international Crop Circle Archive".

Elsewhere she indicates:

1954 October 12 31
La Croix Daurade A circle of 5 m in diameter A single circle of flattened gras
Extract of the magazine "The Circular" page 13

This is said to be a translation of "Andréas Müller's data compared to the magazine 'The Circular' #41 - Spring 2001."

[Ref. lcn1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates that in the Haute Garonne in Toulouse on October 12, 1954 at 4:00 hours, "Two residents of the Toulouse suburbs managed to see, this Tuesday, a craft in the shape of giant rocket which rose from a field at a hundred meters of their house. It quickly disappeared in the sky while generating a luminosity of exceptional intensity."

"The two witnesses went to the place where they located the starting spot of the mysterious machine. They found that the grass had been flattened on a circular surface, five meters in diameter. In the center of this area they discovered four prints appearing to be left by the heavy apparatus in the ground. The grass was covered with droplets coming from a fatty vapor condensation and it released an oil odor. Investigation of the Air police force."

The source is indicated as "Ovni, Premier dossier complet... by Figuet M./ Ruchon J.L. ** éd. Alain Lefeuvre 1979".

[Ref. ubk1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

This database recorded the case 9 times instead of one:

Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
19541012 12.10.1954 Toulouse France
19541012 12.10.1954 Croix Daurade France 00.40 CE II
19541012 12.10.1954 Croix Daurade France 00.40 CE I
19541012 12.10.1954 La Croix Daurade France CE II
19541012 12.10.1954 La Croix Daurade France 04.00 CE II
19541012 12.10.1954 La Croix Daurade France 04.00
19541012 12.10.1954 La Croix Durade France 04.00 CE II
19541012 12.10.1954 La Croix Durade France 04.00 CE II
19541012 12.10.1954 La Croix Durade France 04.00 CE II


Newspaper's hoax.


(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Toulouse, Midi-Pyrénées, Ange Hurle, Pierre Vidal, rocket, landing, close, near, luminous, light, grass, trace, circular, gear, foot, feet, heavy, police, investigation


[----] indicates sources which I have not yet checked.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross April 11, 2004 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross March 11, 2009 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Additions [jsr1], [lcn1].
1.1 Patrick Gross April 24, 2009 Addition [bbr1].
1.2 Patrick Gross January 11, 2010 Additions [amr1], [amo1].
1.3 Patrick Gross June 29, 2010 Addition [jve5].
1.4 Patrick Gross July 9, 2010 Addition [fbn2].
1.5 Patrick Gross October 20, 2011 Additions [cln1], [cir1].
1.6 Patrick Gross September 26, 2014 Addition [ads1].
1.7 Patrick Gross December 6, 2016 Addition [ubk1].
1.8 Patrick Gross December 8, 2016 Addition [pls1].
1.9 Patrick Gross December 21, 2016 Addition [lgs1].
2.0 Patrick Gross December 30, 2016 Addition [fso1].

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This page was last updated on December 30, 2016.