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The 1954 French flap:

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

October 27, 1954, Menton, Alpes-Maritimes:

Reference number for this case: 27-Oct-54-Menton. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.


In the minutes of the session of November 7, 1954 of the Astronomical Society of France, we learn that on October 27, 1954, at 08:40 p.m., a meteor was seen by Mr. H. Barbier for three seconds, from Menton in the Alpes-Maritimes.

It traveled about 10° of the sky between Pegasus and Capricorn.



I point out that the minutes of the meeting of the Société Astronomique de France give in their report of the sessions of November 7th, 1954, published in L'Astronomie, Volume 68, page 469, the indication that a meteor was observed on October 27, 1954, at 08:40p.m.

The report gives a duration of visibility of only three seconds, and the place is in the south of France, in Menton, in the Alpes-Maritimes


In my catalog, the following observations take place at this date and about this time:


08:30 p.m.; recent catalogs tell that an unidentified object "that had an unusual appearance or performance" would have been observed "by several witnesses for 30 minutes." The duration excludes any meteor, but the catalog in question is unreliable, giving "rounded" durations, sometimes very fanciful.

Between Effiat and Vichy:

Figuet and Ruchon indicate that according to the newspaper La Montagne a motorist driving between Effiat in the Puy-de-Dôme and Vichy in the Allier saw at 08:45 p.m., "a yellowish disc having three luminous points on its periphery, which rose and took a reddish color."

Near Vichy:

The press reports that a scooterist on Vichy, sees towards 09:00 p.m. in a field, "at 40 meters on his left, a strange object having the shape of an egg rising slowly and without noise."

"The craft left behind a bright, yellowish trail with three greenish dots." This case may be the same as the previous one, of course.

According to his statements as he approached the craft, the headlight of his scooter went out and the engine began to stall before stalling. It was only after the disappearance of the machine towards the north, that he was able to restart his engine.

Note the similarity of the description with the three luminous points, with the previous case.

Other cases do not really have the right time, but is an error impossible?


Jean Sider found in the newspaper Le Haut Marnais Républicain that at 07:30 p.m. in Maranville and Longchamps-sur-Aujon in the Haute-Marne, anonymous people saw "an unknown machine that flew at ground level before landing in a field. When it passed, some of the witnesses felt a kind of numbness."

Pierres Plates:

At 06:15 p.m. at "Pierres Plates", according to an unreliable and undetailed catalog, a UFO was seen by "several witnesses", "but with an appearance and behavior that most likely would have a conventional explanation."

These sighting took place on this date but do not have an indicated hour:


Aimé Michel indicates "a case particularly well proven" in the Pas-de-Calais when many inhabitants of Bouin "saw an extremely luminous sphere flying over the forest of Hesdin from west to east." Neither time nor duration are given.


Same summary as the previous one, but seen from Huby-Saint-Leu.


Two men are "blinded by a bright disk," they stop and observe 100 meters from their vehicle a "luminous boat-shaped craft posed on the road", they dare not approach, and "the craft took off almost immediately."


In the previous case, sources added that in Tréglamus in Cote d'Armor, 50 km, "several people saw a similar craft."

For none of these cases, is it certain that it was the meteor reported at Menton, or even that it was a meteor; but I think it was in good order to provide the Société d'Astronomie report of a meteor, or to consider a meteor.


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

Menton, Alpes-Maritimes, meteor, night, negative, astronomer


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

Document history:

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1.0 Patrick Gross December 19, 2018 First published.

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This page was last updated on December 19, 2018.