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The 1954 French flap:

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

October 17, 1954, Amigny-Rouy, Aisne:

Reference number for this case: 17-Oct-54-Amigny-Rouy. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Reports:

[Ref. jv5:] JACQUES VALLEE:

369 17 10 1954 22 30 1 ARMIGNY F 0011 E

[Ref. gl1:] CHARLES GARREAU AND RAYMOND LAVIER:

The two ufologists report that on October 17, 1954, at approximately 10:30 P.M., in Amigny-Rouy in the department of the Aisne, according to the report of the gendarmerie and their personal file, Mr. Gaston Desprez, adjudant of gendarmerie in retirement, circulated by car on the National Road RN 7, coming from Chauny.

While arriving at level of Amigny, where a martyrdom is, he saw a ball of fire of very large dimension, which seemed to hover above the village. The authors report his explanations:

"As I advanced, the ball seemed to back off. But after having crossed the crossroad, I see it land at the edge of a wood, at the locality Faye-de-Servais, approximately 200 meters away of the roadway. Continuing to drive, I lose sight of it. All so immediately, I make a half-turn. When I return towards the wood, I see the ball rising and disappearing in the direction of Beautort-la-Fère. This ball was approximately 4 meters in diameter. I observed it during 3 to 4 minutes."

Mr. Desprez told all this the next day in the morning to his former colleagues of the gendarmerie squad of La Fère. No trace was not found on the premises.

[Ref. fr1:] MICHEL FIGUET AND JEAN-LOUIS RUCHON:

The two authors indicate that on October 17, 1954 at 10:30 p.m., a person coming from Chauny, while arriving at height of Amigny Rouy in the department of the Aisne, where a martyrdom is, saw a ball of fire of approximately 4 meters in diameter which seemed to hover above the village:

"As far as I advanced, the ball seemed to draw back."

After having crossed a crossroads, he saw the object land at the edge of a wood, at the locality "Faye-de-Servais," at approximately 200 meters of the road. The witness lost sight of the machine, and made a half-turn.

Again at the level of the wood, he saw the luminous object rising and disappearing in the direction to Beaufort-la-Fère.

[Ref. fb1:] FABRICE BONVIN:

Fabrice Bonvin notes:

Case #023: 17/10/1954, p. 181 (Amigny-Rouy)

[Ref. fb2:] FABRICE BONVIN:

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

Case Nmbr witnesses Hours Type objects
Amigny-rouy 1 4 1

[Ref. lc1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates that in the Aisne in Amigny Rouy on October 17, 1954 at 22:30 hours, "The witness comes from Chauny, while arriving at the level of Amigny where there is a martyrdom statue, he sees a ball of fire approximately 4 meters in diameter which seems to hover above the village: 'as I advanced, the ball seemed to move back', he says."

"After having crossed a crossroads, he sees the object land at the edge of a wood, ate locality 'La Faye-de-Servais', approximately 200 meters of the road. The witness loses sight of the apparatus, and made a half-turn. Again at the level of wood, he sees the luminous object rising and disappearing in direction of Beaufort-la-Fère."

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

[Ref. br1:] "BOB REKIN":

To obtain additional information on GEIPAN UAPs to confirm whether certain assumptions regarding C [undidentified] UAPs, I just got he book OVNI : Le premier dossier complet des rencontres rapprochées en France by Michel Figuet and Jean-Louis Ruchon.

Out of curiosity, I took a look at a few cases observed in the Aisne (what a funny idea, because I live there! [Laughing]). One case in particular caught my attention, because at reading, I suspected an astronomical mistake. This is the case of Amigny-Rouy, dated October 17, 1954.

The case is described on pages 181 and 182:

"October 17, 1954 10:30 p.m. Duration: 3 to 4 minutes Amigny-Rouy N7 02700 B4.

WITNESS. Gaston D. (retired gendarmerie sergeant)

OBSERVATION. A fireball of about 4 meters in diameter, which hovers, lands and takes off.

EVENTS. The witness comes from Chauny, arriving at the height of Amigny where there is a Calvary, he sees a ball of fire that seems to hover above the village, "as I advanced, the ball seemed to recede", he said.

After crossing an intersection, he saw the object land on the edge of a wood, at a place called "La Faye de Servais", about 200 meters from the road. The witness lost sight of the craft, and makes a U turn. Back to the level of the wood, he sees the luminous object rise and disappear in the direction of Beaufort la Fere.

(...)

NOTE. The witness recounted his adventure the next morning, to his colleagues at the police station in La Fere, but no trace was found at the scene.

(...)

SOURCES. C. and R. Garreau Lavier Face aux E.T., p. 199-200 "

The description (brief) of the phenomenon suggests a misinterpretation of the Moon, especially when it rises or sets: large luminous ball of a large diameter ("about 4 meters in diameter"), orange or red ("fireball ").

The astronomical possibility is enhanced by the classical syndrome of the follower ball: the witness approaches a wood and the UFO rises there; the witness makes a U turn, the UFO takes off again. Better still, the description given by the witness is very characteristic: "as I advanced, the ball seemed to recede." Try to chase the Moon that faces you while you're on the road: it will seem to always recede as you try to approach. [Wink]

The orientation of the phenomenon is not shown, but you can easily find it by the geographical indications. The Calvary is visible on Geoportal, which is a great help. Here is the site plan:

[Map published on ImageShack not accessible at this time.]

Seen from the Calvary, the village of Amigny-Rouy (and the UFO) is visible approximately in the north-east.

Note two geographical inaccuracies:

- It is written that the witness is on the "N7". In fact, it is the D7, a small axonaise country road, connecting the cities of Chauny and Laon, through the forest of Saint-Gobain.

- During the last phase of the phenomenon, the UFO is described as heading to "Beaufort la Fere." This is definitely a mistake, because I see no Beaufort la Fere on the available maps. However, also in the Northeast, we can find (off the map), nearby locations Beautor and La Fere (ie Beautor-La Fere).

It remains to verify the Moon minterpretation hypothesis. The UFO was seen to the northeast, and if this is a misinterpreation of the Moon, we would have here to deal with a rising Moon.

So I go to my favorite website Calsky (www.calsky.com), placing my cursor in the town of Amigny-Rouy, by setting the date to October 17, 1954, 10:30 p.m. (official time). Then I go to the Moon section ("Moon") to obtain its celestial coordinates at the time of observation ("Apparent View / Data").

The result is very eloquent:

- The Moon is at 3.56° high at 59.57° azimuth (North-East).

It got up at 9:57 p.m.. We are on the eve of the Full Moon, and it is 60% lit.

With such an angular height, no wonder the UFO (which is seen in the direction of the Moon... [Wink]) appears to hover above the village and then disappear in a wood, due to the movement of the witness. The Moon moreover appears tilted 45° on its axis. Combined with its red or orange hue (low height), the probably tired witness (it's late) and the fact that he drives (his attention is not 100% focused on the UFO), are all factors to explain that the witness was unable to recognize the moon: which was rising. [Smiley]

[Ref. dc1:] DOMINIQUE CAUDRON:

I just looked in my Garreau-Lavier. I see that I noted in the margin: astronomical object.

But it must have been 33 years ago. At that time I was working with an HP 25 calculator, and ephemeris, and that's why I did not try to learn more. The computer came next, and today we have Google maps, Google Steet and Stellarium

With Google maps, we position ourselves in Amigny-Rouy then with Google street, we move on the D7 to Amigny-Rouy until you find a Calvary

Then we go on until the horizon is no longer masked by the ground movement from the Calvary (the village is left behind the tree bouquet. Sight is oriented northeast

We reconstruct the sky with Stellarium for this place, date, hour, and orientation

And that's it, the Moon throned above the village. As the witness did not see the moon and does not locate the object relative to the moon, there was thus only one object. it was the moon

Cherry on the case, a few hundred meters further, Google Street allows us to discover the Quarouble Martian, that were not seen again for a week.

We live fantastic times.

Explanations:

Confusion, the red moon.

Keywords:

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

Amigny-Rouy, Aisne, police, gendarme, official, Gaston Deprez, retired, car, road, Faye-de-Servais, red, ball, hover, fast, landing, duration

Sources:

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

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross December 31, 2004 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross January 2, 2009 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version.
1.1 Patrick Gross December 31, 2009 Addition [lc1].
1.2 Patrick Gross June 30, 2010 Addition [jv5].
1.3 Patrick Gross July 9, 2010 Addition [fb2].
1.4 Patrick Gross October 16, 2014 Addition [br1], [dc1]. Explnations changed from "Not looked for yet" to "Confusion, the red Moon."

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This page was last updated on October 16, 2014