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The 1954 French flap:

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

October 25, 1954, Saint-Quirin, Moselle:

Reference number for this case: 25-Oct-54-Saint-Quirin. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Summary:

The regional newspaper L'Est Républicain reported on page 6 of the October 27, 1954, issue, a case heard from their correspondent:

On the evening of October 25, 1954, Mr. Marc Louis, residing at the Lhor farm, at the Métairies - Saint-Quirin in the Moselle, accompanied by his brother Yvon, was arrested "by a cylindrical object which provoked the 'stop of the engine and light.'

Mr. Louis estimated that the device measured about 6 meters in diameter and 3 meters in height. Its color was orange with many phosphorescent reflections. It was not motionless, it was flying in slow motion, almost level with the ground.

Mr. Louis and his brother followed it with the eyes for a few seconds until it disappeared on the horizon towards Bas-Bois.

Highly impressed, the two men wanted to get their vehicle back on the road, but the battery was completely empty and they had to use the crank, which they usually did not have to do.

Their mother had seen from afar the lights of the tractor go out. Believing in an accident, she came along with a lantern to meet her sons and had also noticed "the phenomenon."

In the 1970s, the two "skeptical" authors Gérard Barthel and Jacques Brucker described this case, indicating that they could not join the two witnesses, "for the obvious reason that they were dead". They say that the mayor "of the commune" told them that the two witnesses did not come back from work, but from getting wine at Saint-Quirin, Barthel and Brucker deducing that since one does not buy wine without tasting it, the two witnesses could have been drunk. They add that "it was known" that "the dynamo of their tractor did not load."

They add that the mayor explained that when the battery was discharged, "it happened what should happen" and without the intervention of the mayor of the time, the two men would have spent several days in the gendarmerie jail.

Barthel and Brucker concluded that "under these conditions", there was no need to invent a flying saucer story to justify the power loss, but that is what the two men had done. They add that they are affirmative that no case of "engine stop caused by a flying saucer has ever occurred in 1954."

Reports:

[Ref. er1:] "L'EST REPUBLICAIN" NEWSPAPER:

The "saucer" emptied the tractor's battery

Lorquin (from our correspondent). -- On can judge of the emotion of Mr. Marc Louis, who lives at the farm of Lhor, at Les Métairies Saint-Quirin (the Moselle), when, on Monday evening, accompanied by his brother Yvon, he found himself stopped by a an object of cylindrical form which caused his engine and light to stop. This apparatus, Mr. Louis estimated that it measured about 6 meters in diameter by 3 in height. It was not stopped and was flying slowly, almost to the ground. Its color was orange with many phosphorescent reflections.

Mr. Louis and his brother followed it with their eyes for a few seconds until it disappeared on the horizon towards the Bas-Bois.

Strongly impressed, the two men wanted to restart their vehicle, but the battery was completely discharged and they had to use the crank, which they usually never do.

Their mother, who from a distance had seen the tractor lights go out, thought of an accident, and came with a lantern to meet her children. She also noticed the phenomenon.

[Ref. mc1:] "MICHEL CARROUGES":

The author indicates that on October 25, 1954, in the Moselle, "Mr. Louis. Tractor. Saucer almost at ground level. Tractor stopped. (Regional newspaper in Garreau file).

[Ref. jv1:] JACQUES VALLEE:

312

Oct. 26, 1954, 08:30 P.M., Les Metairies (France).

Approximate date. At this place situated near Saint Quirin, Mrs. Louis and her sons Marc and Yvon observed an orange craft, 6 m diameter and 3 m high, fly over them as their tractor engine died. The lights also went out, and the battery was found dead after the sighting. (Personal).

[Ref. jv3:] JACQUES VALLEE:

>

26 October 1954, 08:30 p.m.. Les Métairies (France). Approximate date:

At this place situated near Saint Quirin, Mrs. Louis and her sons Marc and Yvon observed an orange craft, 6 m diameter and 3 m high, fly over them as their tractor engine died. The lights also went out, and the battery was found dead after the sighting. (Personal).

Notes: 1) The date is not approximate, the primary sources does say "Monday evening"; 2) Vallée gives a precise hour when there isn't one, it can only be assumed it was on the evening since the witnesses have headlights on; 3) The object did not "fly over them"; 4) The "personal" source only means Vallée had some source in his personal papers.

[Ref. jv2:] JACQUES VALLEE:

Jacques Vallée indicates that 6 days after the "Shoubrenner" sighting, in the dense woods of Alsace, near Saint Quirin, a tractor was stopped as an object flew over at low altitude.

[Ref. pr1:] PETER ROGERSON - "INTCAT":

489 25 October 1954 2030 hrs

LES METAIRIES (FRANCE) At this place near St Guirin [sic], Mrs Louis and her sons Marc & Yvon observed an orange craft, 6m dia. and 3m. high fly over them as their tractor engine died. The lights also vent out and the battery found dead after the sighting. (M312; Carrouges S 171)

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

The two authors indicate that in Saint-Quirin in the Moselle, on October 25, 1954, at 08:30 p.m., two brothers were returning from work when they found themselves in the presence of a three height meters luminous cylindrical machine of six of diameters, of orange color with many phosphorescent reflections.

The engine of their tractor stalled. The two farmers looked at this object during several second, and it disappeared in the direction of "Bas-Bois."

The authors note that the battery of the tractor was found completely discharged and that the farmers had to start again the tractor with the crank, something which had never happened to them before.

[Ref. bb1:] GERARD BARTHEL AND JACQUES BRUCKER:

The two authors indicate that the newspaper "Les Dernières Nouvelles d'Alsace" for October 27, 1954, published the following article:

"Mr. Marc Louis and his brother, farmers, were returning from their work when they came in the the presence of a luminous phenomenon of cylindrical shape, which turned off the engine of the tractor. This strange object was approximately six meters in diameter, three meters of height and flew slowly at ground level. Its color was orange with many phosphorescent reflections."

"During a few seconds, the two men followed it with the eyes to see it disappearing in direction of the "low wood."

"The battery of the tractor was completely emptied and they were obliged to use the crank to restart the engine, something they never had to do."

The two authors indicate that whereas they failed to contact the two witnesses, "for the obvious reason that they had deceased" but the mayor "of the communnity" - the said community is not specified by the authors - told them that the two witnesses were not returning from their work but were returning from buying wine in Saint-Quirin; the authors reasoning that one does not buy wine without tasting it the two witnesses could thus have been drunk. They add that it "was known" that "the dynamo of their tractor did not charge."

They add that the mayor explained to them that when the battery was emptied, "it occurred what was to occur" and that without the intervention of the mayor of that time, the two men would have spent several days in the gendarmerie's jail.

The authors conclude that under these conditions, it was by no means necessary to invent a flying saucer story to justify the empty battery, but that it is what both men had done. The authors add that they are certain that there was not one case of motor stall caused by a flying saucer in 1954.

[Ref. mf1:] FRANCAT - MICHEL FIGUET:

In an extract of his Francat catalogue, Michel Figuet recorded that the CE0-2 case in Saint-Quirin was a hoax by the two witnesses who were drunk.

[Ref. mr1:] MARK RODEGHIER:

Oct. 26, 1954

FRANCE, near Saint-Quirin: Two farmers and their mother saw a UFO which was orange in color, six meters in diameter, and three meters high. As it flew over them, the tractor engine died, and the tractor lights went out. After the UFO departed, the tractor could not be restarted and its battery was found dead. (The Humanoids, Bowen)

[Ref. lg1] LOREN GROSS:

October 25th. Les Metairies, France. (8:30 p.m.)

A Mme. Louis and her sons, Marc and Yvon, were working their farm late in the day on October 25th. They were using a tractor. Because of the increasing darkness the farm machine's headlights were on.

According to these farm folk an orange-colored body the size of an auto suddenly streaked overhead. At the same time the tractor stopped running and its headlights went out. Afterwards, while trying to restart the tractor, the boys found that the battery was fully discharged. 205.

  • 205. Rogerson, Peter. "The Catalogue." MUFOB New Series 4. Autumn 1976. #38. p.7.

[Ref. lh1] LARRY HATCH - "*U* COMPUTER DATABASE":

4277: 1954/10/25 20:30 3 7:01:20 E 48:37:40 N 3333 WEU FRN MSL 7:8

METAIRIES-St QUIRIN,FR:6M SCR FLIES OVR TRACTOR:ENGINE+LITES DIE:DEAD BATTERY

Ref# 8 VALLEE,Jacques: PASSPORT TO MAGONIA. Case No. 312 : FOREST

[Ref. dj1:] DONALD JOHNSON:

October 26

1954 - Late in the day at Les Metairies, situated near Saint Quirin, Meurthe-et-Moselle, France, Mrs. Louis and her sons Marc and Yvon observed a six-meter diameter orange craft that flew over them as their tractor engine died. The headlights on the tractor also went out, and the battery was found to be dead after the sighting. (Sources: Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia: A Century of Landings, p. 239, case 312; Mark Rodeghier, UFO Reports Involving Vehicle Interference, p. 4).

[Ref. jb1:] JEROME BEAU:

Tuesday, October 26, 1954

08:30 p.m. At Les Métairies (France), in this place, located close to Saint-Quirin, Mrs. Louis and his sons, Marc and Yvon, observe an orange machine 6 m in diameter and 3 m in height which passes above them. At the same time the engine of the tractor stalls. The lights also die out and the battery is found discharged after the observation.

[Ref. jb2:] JEROME BEAU:

Jérôme Beau published the Mark Rodeghier [mr1] text in English.

[Ref. lc1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates that in St Quirin, the Moselle, October 25, 1954 at 20:30 hours, "Two brothers return from their work, when they are in the presence of a three meters high luminous cylindrical object six meters in diameters, of orange color with many phosphorescent reflections. The engine of their tractor stalls. The two farmers follow with their eyes during several second this object which disapears in the direction of the "Bas-Bois". It should be noted that the battery of the tractor was completely discharged and one needed a crank to start it again, something that had never happened."

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

[Ref. ud1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 26 October 1954 at 20:30 in "Les Metaires", France, "Woman and two sons observe orange craft, 6m diameter, fly over as tractor headlights and engine died. Batttery was dead after encounter."

And: "An object was observed. Electromagnetic effects were noted. One orange disc, about 20 feet across, was observed by three witnesses (Louis)."

The sources are indicated as Bowen, Charles, The Humanoids: FSR Special Edition No. 1, FSR, London, 1966; Vallee, Jacques, A Century of Landings (N = 923), (in JVallee04), Chicago, 1969; Schoenherr, Luis, Computerized Catalog (N = 3173); Rodeghier, Mark, UFO Reports Involving Vehicle Interference, CUFOS, Chicago, 1981; Falla, Geoffrey, Vehicle Interference Project, BUFORA, London, 1979.

[Ref. ud2:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 26 October 1954 at 20:30 in Les Metairies, France, "An orange craft, six meters diameter and three meters high" and: "Late in the day at Les Metairies, situated near Saint Quirin, France , Mrs. Louis and her sons Marc and Yvon observed a six-meter diameter orange craft that flew over them as their tractor engine died. The headlights on the tractor also went out, and the battery was found to be dead after the sighting."

And: "Approximate date. At this place situated near Saint Quirin, Mrs. Louis and her sons Marc and Yvon observed an orange craft, six meters diameter and three meters high, fly over them as their tractor engine died. The lights also went out, and the battery was found dead after the sighting."

The source is indicated as Vallee Magonia Database.

[Ref. ac1:] "MY LORRAINE" WEBSITE:

That year [1954], some witnesses even went so far as to tell how their vehicles stalled near one of these mysterious devices, such as on October 20, 1954, in Turquestein and then Saint-Quirin (the Moselle) the next day. The paralysis of witnesses is also a recurring element. In Bois-de-Champ, in the Vosges, on April 24, 1954, a woodcutter attempted to cut a saucer with his axe, which had stood before him when he was thrown back and immobilized against a rock. On October 20, 1954, on his way to work at night in Saint-Rémy (near Raon-l'Etape-Vosges), a worker of Slovak origin reported more surprisingly than a silhouette, holding what resembled a revolver, immobilized him before turning to him in an unknown language and then talking... in Russian! Funny "third kind"... When he could finally leave, the stunned man passed in front of a gray vessel with an antenna in the form of a corkscrew. This astonishing testimony of course suffered from the controversy...

[Ref. ni1:] "THE NICAP WEBSITE":

*Oct. 26, 1954 - Late in the day at Les Metairies, situated near Saint Quirin, Meurthe-et-Moselle, France, Mrs. Louis and her sons Marc and Yvon observed a six-meter diameter orange craft that flew over them as their tractor engine died. The headlights on the tractor also went out, and the battery was found to be dead after the sighting. (Sources: Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia: A Century of Landings, p. 239, case 312; Mark Rodeghier, UFO Reports Involving Vehicle Interference, p. 4).

[Ref. ub1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

This database entered the case 7 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
19540000 00.00.1954 St. Quirin France
19541020 20.10.1954 St. Quirin France 18.30 CE II
19541025 25.10.1954 St. Quirin France 20.30 CE II
19541026 26.10.1954 St. Quirin France 20.30
19541026 26.10.1954 Les Metaires France 20.30 CE II
19541026 26.10.1954 Les Metaires France 20.30 CE II
19541026 26.10.1954 Les Metaires France 20.30 CE II

[Ref. bl1:] "BLL ARCHIVES" WEBSITE:

UFO wave in Metz and its region

Comments »0

Spheres, luminous cones or cigars, discharging of batteries, dancing colors, etc., between the 1st and the 21st of October 1954, some twenty testimonies and observations of UFOs (Unidentified Flying Objects) were collected in the Moselle, the more particularly in the communes of Vergaville, Bidestroff, Kerprich, Guébling, Morsbach, Moncourt, Saint-Avold, Saint-Quirin and Jouy-aux-Arches. In Pournoy-la-Chétive, near Metz, two children declared that they had seen an alien with a hairy face come down from his flying saucer to come and speak to them in an incomprehensible language.

[Ref. pr2:] PETER ROGERSON - "INTCAT":

October 25 1954. 2030hrs.

LES METAIRIES (CHARENTE : FRANCE)

Mrs Louis and sons, Marc and Yvon, observed an orange object 6m diameter, 3m high fly over them as their tractor engine failed. The lights also went out and the battery was found dead after the sighting.

Vallee Case 312

Richard Heiden citing Carrouges 1967 p171)

Explanations:

What a mess! As often with Barthel and Brucker, the "explanations" they give are so confusing that one can really wonder what they are worth. However, there are cases where their laborious and imprecise explanations were nevertheless correct (see for example the case in Bélesta).

Here, there is firstly the deduction that since they had bought wine, they could have been drunk. It is possible, but on the one hand it is just a guess, on the other hand, we can assume the drunkenness of any witness even if he has not just bought wine, and finally, contrary to a tenacious legend, being drunk does not produce flying saucers, unless you are in a state of delirium tremens, an extreme state in which it is then hardly possible to begin to start a vehicle with the crank; not to mention that the alcoholic "vision" is unlikely to be the same for three people with only two of them drunk.

There is the question of an invention: Barthel and Brucker begin by explaining that there was no reason to invent a flying saucer story (and indeed, what would be the reason?), but then assure that it was an invention. But where does it come from? And why should these two farmers have to spend several days in prison for drunkenness? How is it that the press reports absolutely no intervention of gendarmes? All this seems very confusing...

Even worse, the "craft" seems to have been seen only a few seconds, it is "cylindrical", "orange with many phosphorescent reflections", it "disappears" behind the horizon; so it could have been a meteor, quite simply.

The case therefore remains for me an "unidentified" of low quality, low strangeness, which may have been a meteor observation, or, perhaps, an invention.

Keywords:

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

Saint-Quirin, Moselle, craft, object, cylinder, luminous, orange, phosphorescent, failure, effect, tractor, power, electric, battery, alcohol. Les Métairies, Louis, Marc Louis, Yvon Louis, engine, motor, stall, headlights

Sources:

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

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross October 1, 2005 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross February 20, 2010 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Additions [mc1], [jb1], [ud1], [ud2].
1.1 Patrick Gross November 15, 2014 Addition [ni1].
1.2 Patrick Gross December 6, 2016 Additions [er1], [ub1].
1.3 Patrick Gross December 14, 2016 Addition [lg1].
1.4 Patrick Gross January 26, 2017 Addition [ac1].
1.5 Patrick Gross Fabruary 11, 2017 Additions [bl1].
1.6 Patrick Gross December 18, 2018 Additions [pr1], [lh1], [pr2], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."

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This page was last updated on December 18, 2018.