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The 1954 French flap:

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

September 22, 1954, Dole, Jura:

Reference number for this case: 22-Sep-54-Dole. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Reports:

[Ref. le1:] "L'EST REPUBLICAIN" NEWSPAPER:

Scan

Are these "Top acrobats"...

Six "flying cigars" reportedly flew over the Pays-Haut...

JOEUF. (From our newsroom). -- The area of the East will end up invaded by beings coming from one does not know where, if one believes all the witnesses who, for a few days, have claimed to have seen here and there, cigars and flying saucers, unless they are craft used during the air army manoeuvres which are currently going on.

Anyway, yesterday morning again, several tens of workmen of Sidelor, living in the area of Lantéfontaine-les-Baroches (the Meurthe-et-Moselle), claim to have seen six "flying cigars" in the sky.

"Between 4 hours 30 and 5 hours 30, one of them told us, we were about to take the bus to reach the factory of Homecourt, when we first saw in the sky two cigar-shaped craft. It was dark, and yet we clearly saw the gleams changing from the red to the orange, whose dimensions grew and decreased alternatively.

"A little later four other craft came to join the two first, and all remained perfectly motionless one moment, to finally disappear instantaneously.

These statements are confirmed by several people. We pour them into the file of the unexplained and extraordinary appearances, which must swell prodigiously in this moment.

Yesterday morning, also around 5 hours, witnesses worthy of faith saw in Homecourt, above the district of the Petite-fin, at high altitude, what they took for a "flying cigar".

Nevertheless, it could be, as some people think they can say it, a phenomenon of reverberation of a pocket casting on the mining dump of Sainte-Marie. The luminous reflections, projected on a cloud, could have produced the image of a "cigar".

... and a "saucer", Dole

DOLE (from our correspondent). -- Wednesday evening, two young people from Dole who were on the walk of the Philippe garden, were witnesses of a strange phenomenon.

We went to interview one of them. It is Mr. Jackie Chapoutot, aged 17, domiciled street of the Dame-d'Ounan, and working at the Delbost factory in Dole.

He gave us the following statement: "I walked in the Philippe garden Wednesday around 08:30 p.m., in company of a comrade, Mr. André Lacour, aged 15, pupil at the modern technical college of Dôle.

Suddenly, our attention was drawn by a strange noise, similar to a whistling sound, much less loud however than that of the jet planes. We then saw, in the sky, a sharp gleam of green color, which came from the North-East and moved to the South-west.

This appearance which would have the size of a soccer ball was followed of an incandescent trail. The object passed at sharp pace and disappeared in the direction of the Idéal-Standard factory.

We had hardly recovered from our surprise when the craft appeared again above Dôle. It remained motionless at the level of the grand-pont for approximately 4 seconds, during which we clearly distinguished its spherical form, then it set out again suddenly on the "side by which it had come".

Other people reportedly also witnessed this phenomenon which left these two young people very perplexed.

[Ref. pr1:] UNKNOWN FRENCH NEWSPAPER FOR OCTOBER 5, 1954:

Still and always flying saucers!

Perpignan. -- A truck driver who was collecting milk yesterday morning in the vicinity of Cabestany (Pyrénées-Orientales) said he saw in front of his vehicle a "bluish globe", bluish in color, "which evolved at an altitude of 'About 180 meters producing a very soft hum."

Having stopped his truck, the driver was able to observe the evolutions of the craft for almost a quarter of an hour and then, suddenly, it would have risen in the sky and disappeared in direction of the sea.

La Rochelle. -- A flying saucer would have been seen in Auge (Deux-Sèvres).

Also, Mr. Picaud, the manager of a brewery in Sainte-Pozenne, said he had seen for a few minutes while on the road to Fontenay-le-Comte a curious yellow disc.

Brest. - The inhabitants of Landeda and the Aberwrac'h (Finistère) saw last night at high altitude a machine of circular shape and resembling a "flying saucer".

Melun. -- Several inhabitants of the commune of Rebais declared to have seen a strange, very brilliant machine, circulating at night fall in the sky, above Rebais.

The witnesses specified that the craft, which was traveling very slowly, had then moved towards Coulommiers, having increased its speed, and had disappeared.

The day before yesterday morning, the CRS, also saw a bright disc in the sky, above Vaudoy.

Montpellier. -- Mrs Picot de la Baume, a resident of Montpellier, stated that at an altitude of about 1,500 meters she saw a cigar-shaped device, which was shiny and appeared to be surrounded by a halo. The machine, which she could observe for a minute or so, suddenly disappeared in an easterly direction, without making a sound or leaving a trace.

IN NORTH AFRICA

Casablanca. -- Reliable witnesses saw in the sky of Kourigra, about 130 kilometers from Casablanca, a circular, red-colored machine, evolving at high altitude and at high speed, which seemed to be spitting green blue flames [as a meteor would do].

Safi [Morocco]. -- An elongated craft was seen last night around 8:30 pm, in the sky of Safi, by credible witnesses. The "cigar" was moving at a high speed, from east to northwest. He was surrounded by a bluish light and left behind a luminous trail. Witnesses testified that the aircraft was unrelated to a jet plane [but may have had a "relationship" with a meteor.]

Saint Brieuc. -- Several people said they saw 300 or 400 meters from them last night, around 8 pm. 45, a "flying cigar" at an altitude of about 50 meters. The machine, they said, could be 13 meters in length and lit up intermittently with pink gleams. He moved noiselessly.

Brest. -- Mrs Henry, a farmer in Gouesnou (Finistère) said she had seen a mauve cylindrical craft moving noiselessly from west to east on Thursday and Friday in the evening at the same time.

Lille. -- Anicet Corneille, an agricultural worker, said he saw a cigar-shaped device in Comines last night, 8 to 10 meters long by 3 meters wide, which was about 40 meters Height and exuded a lively violet glow. After flying over the city for a few seconds, the craft would have disappeared into the sky.

Mr. Corneille's statements were confirmed by a Touring engineer passing through Comines.

Montceau-les-Mines. -- Two bricklayers, MM. Romain Sebastiani and Buratto, both cyclists, said they saw a craft take off with a shrill whistle along the road from Blanzy to Montceau. The apparatus had, they said, the shape of a very dark yellow cigar, a length of three meters and a diameter of about 50 to 80 centimeters.

A saucer near Seurre?...

An inhabitant of the Meix, a village near Seurre, Mr. Lucien Minet, 19 years old, has in turn found a strange appearance. He was standing by the doorway at about 9 o'clock in the evening, when he saw in the sky a green glow moving slowly. A whistling accompanied this apparition which lasted fifteen seconds. The young man had time to call his mother, who could also see the phenomenon.

Two young Dolois have seen twice "saucers"

Dole (C.P.). -- The two young Dolois, Jacky Chapoutot and André Lacour, who "saw a flying saucer" last week in Dole, noticed the same phenomenon Wednesday, around 8 pm, while they were at two different points of the city.

"I did not believe in flying saucers," Jacky Chapoutot told us, "but this time I'm sure of what I saw, and I'm particularly interested in aviation and what was going on in the sky of Dole was moving at a speed that certainly is not yet achieved in the machines we know. I must add to be complete, that last week, as this time I heard, when this saucer appeared, an airplane hum that seemed to evolve without navigation lights."

In the Nièvre: An orange disc

Nevers (C.P.) -- An agricultural worker, Raymond Delovre, 20 years old, saw between Saint-Pierre-le-Moutier and Langeron a kind of disk moving towards the N.-E. This celestial body emitted a Bright orange light while a yellow light gushed to the rear. The appearance was maintained on a horizontal plane and was noticed for a few seconds."

[Ref. bb1] GERARD BARTHEL AND JACQUES BRUCKER:

The two authors indicates that they talked to the witness of the observation of September 22, 1954 in Dôle. He told them to have seen towards 08:30 p.m., a fugitive gleam, very luminous which crossed the sky without stopping with a rectilinear trajectory.

The authors then quote an article of the newspaper "Le Bien Public" for September 25, 1954, which according to them does not respect the description of this witness, by describing the observation "with a plethora of details":

"Two young people of Dôle who were in the Philippe garden were witnesses of a strange phenomenon. Here is what one of them, Jacky Chapoutot, 17 years, resident with Dôle, stated: "I walked in the Philippe garden, accompanied by a comrade, André Lacour, aged 21, pupil at the modern technical college of Dôle. Suddenly our attention was drawn by a strange noise similar to a whistle. Looking up, we saw a sharp gleam of green color in the sky, coming from the North-East, moving towards the South-west. This appearance which had the size of a soccer ball was followed of an incandescent trail. The object went at sharp pace and disappeared. Hardly did we recover from our surprise that the craft again appeared above Dôle. It remained motionless at the height of the large bridge approximately 4 seconds during which we distinguished its spherical shape clearly, then it set out again suddenly on the side from where it came."

[Ref. ud1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 22 September 1954 at 20:30 in Dole, France "An unidentified object was sighted, but with appearance and behavior that most likely would have a conventional explanation. One object was observed by two witnesses."

The source is indicated as Vallee, Jacques, Computerized Catalog (N = 3073).

  • [ub1] Base de données en ligne UFO-datenbank, Allemagne, trouvé en 2016, à ufodatenbank.de
  • [ub1] Online database UFO-Datenbank, Germany, found in 2016, at ufodatenbank.de
  • [Ref. ub1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

    Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
    19540922 22.09.1954 Dole France 20.30 NL

    Brief discussion:

    Barthel and Brucker are as usual very puzzling and not very eager apparently not to add confusions in this account which might have been simply explained if indeed they spoke to the witness and if they had taken the trouble to properly conduct a formal investigation, something completely absent in their book.

    They suggest that the account in the newspaper does not match to that of the witness. Actually, it is apparent that the first observed phenomenon is described in the same manner in the newspaper and in the remarks that they allot to the witness: on the one hand "a fugitive gleam, very luminous which crossed the sky without stopping with a rectilinear trajectory" and on the other hand "a sharp gleam of green color coming from the North-East, moving towards the South-west, which had the size of a soccer ball and was followed of an incandescent trail", "passed at a sharp pace and disappeared." In both cases we have the identical description of a meteor, it is simply more complete in the newspaper, including trail, color and direction.

    They accuse the newspaper of addition of "a plethora of details" (whereas they accuse the lack of details of other Press reports). But in fact, the first "added" detail is that of the strange sound. It is actually quite possible that if the witness really observed the entry of a large meteorite in the atmosphere, they could as well hear a strange noise. Sometimes, meteors experts still tend to think that it is impossible to hear a meteorite travel through the air because the speed of sound in the air is incredibly slower than that of the meteor. However, there are many cases of meteor witnesses who say that they first heard a strange sound or strange sounds, and only looked at in the sky precisely because of these sounds, and then saw the meteor there. It is the Australian specialist Colin Keay who solved the enigma: the meteor ionizes the air and this creates low frequency radio waves, which arrive at the witnesses quasi instantaneously since they travel at the speed of light. The only problem was that in theory, you cannot hear radio waves with your ears. But Keay set up all kinds of experiments to solve this mystery and in 2001, he noticed that such radio waves make all kinds of materials vibrate and emit sound, such aluminum foil, pine needles, frizzy hair etc. These are the sounds, often eerie, even varying from one person to another, that the witnesses can perceive with their ears.

    The other detail that the newspaper "added" is that of the trail. It is obvious that they probably saw a trail, if it was a meteor, and that Barthel and Brucker perhaps simply omitted to question this witness seriously.

    In addition, the witnesses say that the object appeared again. But this time, it had a spherical shape, no more trail, and sets out again "on the side where it had come from." Obviously that cannot be a meteor, nor the meteor which they had just seen. It was something else, which remains unidentified. It is possible that it was an embellishment by the newspaper, but the lack of Barthel and Brucker to indicate exactly what they did ask or did not ask is the reason for which one can hardly know what occurred exactly. Possibly, after seeing a meteor, they saw a plane.

    And finally, it seems that neither the witnesses nor the newspaper explicitly said this was a flying saucer, and this case is completely missing in the ufological casuistry, Barthel and Brucker being the only ones to introduce it there as far as I know. Is it once again an example of the good old UFO-skeptics trick, which consists in adding IFOs to the UFOs file for better convincing their readers than any UFO is a commonplace natural phenomenon when not a hoax?

    As a matter of fact, they do write this case shows that all the other cases for September 22, 1954, are explained as this same meteor. I quote the authors: "We had on September 22, 1954, 10 "UFOs" sighting; we are left with nothing. A simple investigation identified the flying objects that weren't!"

    Explanations:

    Possible meteor, and then maybe plane.

    Keywords:

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

    Dôle, Jura, Jacky Chapoutot, André Lacour, fast, luminous, green, trail, sound

    Sources:

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

    Document history:

    Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
    0.1 Patrick Gross July 5, 2007 First published.
    1.0 Patrick Gross January 17, 2010 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Addition [ud1].
    1.1 Patrick Gross June 1, 2010 Addition [le1].
    1.2 Patrick Gross December 22, 2016 Addition [pr1].
    1.3 Patrick Gross January 31, 2017 Addition [ub1].

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    This page was last updated on January 31, 2017.