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The 1954 French flap:

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

October 3, 1954, Annoeuillin, Nord:

Reference number for this case: 3-Oct-54-Annoeullin. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Summary:

In the national newspaper Paris-Presse for October 6, 1954, it was reported that in Annoeullin, a worker who smoked a cigar "(a real one) in his garden had seen a luminous object in the shape of a crescent landing twenty meters from him, and that at his shouts, ten billiards players came running from a nearby cafe; the saucer had taken off, but a dozen "light points" were moving above them.

In the regional newspaper L'Alsace of the same day, the story was that in the North, a hundred people saw evolving in the sky between Annoeulin [sic] and Provins on October 3, 1954, three "flying crescents", during 25 minutes.

In the regional newspaper Le Nouveau Nord Maritime still for October 6, 1954, it was reported on page 2 among other observations all from October 3, 1954, that in Annoeuillin, Mr. Gaston Lecoeuvre, miner, saw a flying saucer land in a garden. It had the shape of a dome, three meters high, surmounted by a small dome. The object would have disappeared while Mr. Lecoeuvre was looking for neighbors.

In the Parisian magazine Radar of October 17, 1954, a photograph was published showing witnesses: Mr. Gaston Lecoeuvre, miner of Annoeuillin and, at his bar, Mrs. Parzy, as well as Mr. Bourbote who timed the observation: more than 100 people, from Bauvin, Anoeuilin, Provin, had seen the saucers. Mr. Lecouvre said: "Taking the cool on my doorstep, I see a bright spot. Suddenly it turns, then, silently, shiny like a piece of nickel seems to land, then leaves after 20 seconds". Mrs. Parzy had seen three luminous objects, and Mr. Bourbote, employee, affirmed that they had evolved for 25 minutes.

The first ufological source on the observation is the 1956 book by Jimmy Guieu, "Black-Out on the Flying Saucers"; he tells it there that on October 3, 1954, Gaston Lecoeuvre, a miner, had observed from the doorstep where he smoked in the evening a kind of star which fell slowly. He thought it was a shooting star, but he was intrigued to find that instead of disappearing, the star continued to fall and took the form of a spinning disc, which went to land in a neighbor's garden.

Mr. Lecoeuvre rushed there, and saw a metallic disc about three meters high which shone like nickel not placed on the ground but floating motionless at 10 or 15 centimeters above.

On its upper part, there was a small dome, but he saw no opening.

Mr. Lecoeuvre approached a few meters from this object, while his dog barked with rage, which Jimmy Guieu supposed to be due to ultrasounds emitted by the flying saucers.

Frightened, Mr. Lecoeuvre fled to Café Parsy 100 meters away; there were a dozen people who consumed or played billiards. He trained them after him, and finally a group of about forty men, women and children noticed that the "spacecraft" had taken off in the meantime.

But Mr. Lecoeuvre then heard a curious whistling sound, and everyone looked up and perfectly distinguished "the spacecraft" which was motionless in the sky in the direction of Provins, with two other brilliant discs which revolved around him. It was now 9:00 p.m.

Jimmy Guieu indicated that these discs presented an angle of approximately 45 ° with respect to the horizontal and flew slowly in circles, by turning in opposite direction of the other, by presenting at times only the aspect of a red dot. When they got closer, we could better distinguish their swollen appearance and their red-orange color. These maneuvers were until 9:10 p.m., also observed with binoculars which passed from hand to hand, then we saw the objects disappear behind a curtain of trees in the direction of Provins.

In the 1970s, the "skeptical" ufologist Dominique Caudron, who is from the region, will give a story similar to that of Jimmy Guieu (but of course without speaking of "spacecraft" or ultra-sounds ". given the local press sources which he had read: La Voix du Nord of October 5, 1954 on page 3; Le Nouveau Nord Maritime of October 6, 1954 on page 2; and La Bailleuloise on page 1 of October 10, 1954.

He is the first to notice that for many cases that evening in this region, the direction when it is given is that where the Moon is, that the object is often low near the horizon as is the Moon, and he therefore concluded in 1978 that this case in Annoeuillin was explained by the Moon.

Its summary of the case, its sources and its interpretation will be taken up, credited, the following year in the voluminous book "UFO, First Complete File of Close Encounters in France" by Michel Figuet and Jean-Louis Ruchon, a book widely known to ufologists, which will not prevent some from continuing to publish the case without any explanation; and this although Dominique Caudron then republished his work on the Web.

Reports:

[Ref. nnm1:] "LE NOUVEAU NORD MARITIME" bewspaper:

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And the saucers fly...

The craft that we used to call flying saucers have not stopped flying in the skies, during the last twenty-four hours. We saw them everywhere and in all shapes: saucers, cigars, discs and balls, spinning tops, pots, etc... There were red ones, green and orange ones, luminous and matt, static and others who streaked like stars.

There are many testimonies. If you put together a list of all those who have been reported for three or four years, a twelve-page journal would be insufficient to contain it.

Of course, many "visionaries" have retracted - the pranksters. Others may have been deceived by weather balloons, helicopters, planes, meteors or atmospheric phenomena. But the others?

Well for others and for those who have seen nothing, the mystery remains. Whether they come from Mars or Venus - which is doubtful - whether they are a secret weapon, developed by a foreign power, flying saucers exist.

And we would like to know why they come to taunt us like this...

Two craft reportedly landed

Lille. 5 - Sunday evening, many inhabitants of the Lille region saw one or more flying saucers flying in the sky.

In Annoeuillin, Mr. Gaston Lecoeuvre, a miner, saw one land in a garden. It had the shape of a dome, three meters high, surmounted by a small dome. The object is said to have disappeared while Mr. Lecoeuvre was looking for neighbors.

In Marcoing, all the gendarmes of the brigade saw two balls of fire, at 500 or 600 meters of altitude, sometimes motionless and sometimes moving vertically. Suddenly they took the form of cigars, then tops, before disappearing.

At La Chapelle d'Armentières, several people saw a golden half-moon marked in its center by a greenish bar.

Near Abbeville, two young men, trustworthy, one adds, saw a kind of hive placed on the road. A creature dressed in a diving suit, small in size, hid at their approach, behind the craft which disappeared.

"A barrel studded with golden nails..."

Angoulême, 5. - Sunday evening, around 11:15 p.m., on the road to Montmerceau Villebois-Lavalette (Charente), Mr. Jean Allary, 22, saw clearly, in the light of the headlight of his moped, a kind of barrel about 1 m 80 high, studded with golden nails swaying on the side of the road. When Mr. Allary had passed the mysterious object, he looked back at about 10 meters away, but saw nothing anymore.

Witnesses saw, yesterday afternoon, at the very place indicated by Mr. Allary, traces of about 7 meters in length in the grass which borders the road.

Read on the other hand: a Dunkirk resident claims to have seen a saucer above Bray-Dunes.

[Ref. ppe1:] "PARIS-PRESSE" NEWSPAPER:

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After saucers and cigars

A newcomer in the sky: the
"flying barrel"

AFTER the saucers, cigars, spheres, pots, here is the flying barrel. It was in the Charente that it was "seen" by a motorcyclist, Mr. Jean Allary. It was "studded with golden nails" and was swinging by the side of the road.

In Annoeullin, near Lille, a worker who was smoking a cigar (a real one) in his garden, saw a luminous object in the shape of a crescent landing twenty meters from him. At his shouts, ten billiards players came running from a nearby cafe; the saucer had taken off, but a dozen "luminous dots" were moving above them.

Saucers, cigars, discs, balls and other "flying" objects were spotted in Chancelade (Haute-Vienne), Willer (Haut-Rhin), Gouesnach, near Quimper, Bautignecourt, Ambazac (Haute-Vienne), Dijon, Marcoing, near Cambrai, Pommier (Indre), Rouen, Ajaccio, La Rochelle, Quimper, Cholet, Vannes, Lyon and Le Havre. A la Combe-au-Chèvres, in the Haut Jura, also, but it was just a rain gauge.

[Ref. lae1:] "L'ALSACE" NEWSPAPER:

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Flying saucers in Ivory Coast

The chief administrator of Danane submits an official report to the governor of the territory

Abidjan, 5 October

Flying saucers were seen in Ivory Coast. The news was known by an official report addressed to the governor of Ivory Coast by Mr. Vernhet, chief administrator of the subdivision of Danane, city located at 500 kilometers in the North-East of Abidjan.

The facts go back to September 19, but they were made official only yesterday following precise information and an investigation.

In addition to the population, the chief of the gendarmerie station, the chief consultant of the medical centre, Reverend Father Vyard, of the missions of Lyon, Mr. Vernhet, chief of the subdivision and his wife, joined together in the court of the residence, saw on 19 September from 08:30 p.m. to 09:05 p.m. a machine corresponding exactly to those observed in France, but which did not land.

It was a luminous point, surrounded by a halation which initially grew quickly, moving while approaching or deviating from the horizon. The witnesses saw the machine light a powerful headlight, sometimes directed up, sometimes down. The machine, of ovoid shape, was surmounted by a cupola and luminous beams seemed to move on each side.

When it disappeared, after having moved half an hour, the witnesses clearly saw two luminous halations, of oval shape, formed on the supposed place of the machine. The latter moved without any noise.

Administrator Vernhet joined to his report a detailed sketch of the various observed phases as well as of the shape of the apparatus.

The same day, in Soubre, 250 km in the North-West of Abidjan, and in the same direction, similar phenomena were observed. The chief

(Continued on page 3)

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Flying saucers

(continued from page 1)

The subdivision of Soubre confirmed the existence of the phenomenon which he witnessed.

The epidemic goes on...

In the Territory of Belfort, Mr. Lucien Bourgeois, 58 years old, reamer at the DMC factories was Monday towards 06:45 p.m. in front of his dwelling in Grandvillars. Suddenly his attention was drawn by a sharp gleam in the sky, produced by a luminous machine of lengthened form which moved slowly towards the west. Mr. Bourgeois alerted at once several of his neighbors who managed, during half an hour, to observe this weird phenomenon.

In the Moselle a 19 year old young man, Mr. Pierre Laplace, electrician at the Kuhlmann Co in Dieuze (the Moselle), saw Sunday evening at 08:07 p.m. a large luminous disc, of green color, at the level of the wood of the Brides, between Vergaville and Kerprich (the Moselle).

The machine which emitted sharp gleams lands near Benestroff. About thirty passers by which had stopped on the road to follow the evolutions, formally confirm Mr. Laplace's statements. Several witnesses tried to go by motorbike towards the supposed landing spot of the craft, but then, the apparatus took height again and definitively disappeared at 9 p.m.

In the Nord, a hundred people saw moving in the sky between Annoeulin [sic] and Provins, Sunday evening, three "flying crescents", during 25 minutes.

In Lyon, a journalist claims to have observed using a binocular, above the Sainte-Foy hill, an orange red luminous disc, followed by other brilliant, smaller discs. The phenomenon lasted approximately 20 minutes.

A little everywhere saucers, cigars, discs, balls and other "flying" objects were seen, in particular in Chancelade (Haute-Vienne), Willer (Haut-Rhin), Gouesnach, close to Quimper, Bautignecourt, Ambazac (Haute-Vienne), Dijon, Marcoing, near Cambrai, Pommier (the Indre), Rouen, Ajaccio, La Rochelle, Quimper, Cholet and Vannes.

A "saucers manufacturer" is discovered

Lille, October 5. -- A retired miner, of Beuvry-les-Béthune, known as a prankster, did not miss the opportunity the flying saucers offered to him, to have fun at the expense of the residents of the nearby localities.

Inspired by the Montgolfier principle, the merry pensioner manufactured machines three meters in diameter. The envelope was made of strong gray paper sheets, carefully glued. At the base of the "saucer", there was a small receptacle in which a tuft of packing soaked with a flammable liquid rested. It was then enough to ignite the packing to see the machine rise and disappear with the liking to the winds, surrounded by yellowish and oranges reflections.

It is after the discovery, close to a haystack in which one of these machines had almost set fire, that the gendarmes were brought to suspect the pensioner. In addition, many models of "flying saucers" were found at his home, prototypes which the inventor was getting ready to launch in the sky of the Nord.

The mystifier claims that he already built and launched more than one thousand of these machines, but as he is a prankster he perhaps brags. As for his "saucers", they of course follow the direction and the speed of the wind and they thus cannot comparare with the usual machines which move at high speed in all the directions, stop short, etc...

Anyway, the prankster will be sentenced for dangerous fun.

[Ref. lbl1:] "LA BAILLEULOISE" NEWSPAPER:

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- There are numerous reports of "flying saucers and cigars" at Marcoing, Annoeullin, Abbeville, La Chapelle d'Armentières, etc... All the testimonies are consistent. At Marcoing the whole gerndarmerie observed the phenomenon.

- There are reports of the appearance of numerous saucers in the Rhône Valley and the Perpignan region. A woman is said to have been accosted by a small being who appeared to be dressed in a kind of cellophane. An observer reportdedly filmed a saucer and awaits the development of the photo.

[Ref. rdr1:] "RADAR" MAGAZINE:

"RADAR" reconstituted the course of a
saucer in Picardy and the Flandres

ANNOEUILIN

Mr. Gaston Lecoeuvre
At her bar, Mrs. Parzy
Bourbote clocks

More than 100 people, of Bauvin, Anoeuilin, Provin, localised at 20 km. from Lille saw "them". Mr. Gaston Lecoeuvre, a minor of Annoeuilin, tells: "Taking some fresh air on my doorstep, I see a luminous spot. Suddenly it turns, then, without noise, brilliant as a nickel coin, it seems to land, then sets out again at the end of 20 seconds." Mrs. Parzy, who holds the coffee shop of the place, sees 3 luminous objects. Mr. Bourbote, employed, states: "They evolved during 25'."

[Ref. jgu1:] JIMMY GUIEU:

The author indicates that on October 3, 1954, Gaston Lecoeuvre, a miner, observed from his doorstep where he smoking in the evening a kind of star which slowly fell.

He first thought that it was a shooting star, but he was intrigued when he noted that instead of disappearing, the star continued its fall and took the appearance of a whirling disc, which landed in a nearby garden.

Mr. Lecoeuvre rushed there and saw it was an approximately three high meters metallic disc shining like nickel. It was not posed on the ground but hovered motionless 10 or 15 centimetres above the ground.

On its higher part, there was a small cupola but he saw no opening there.

The witness approached within a few meters of this object while his dog barked with rage, possibly because ultrasounds emitted by the flying saucers according to Jimmy Guieu.

Then the witness fled, frightened, to the Parsy coffee shop a 100 meters from there, were som ten people were drinking and playing pool.

The witness took them with him, as well as other people, and a group of forty men, woman and children observed that the spacecraft had taken off meanwhile.

Whereas the witness heard an odd whistling sound, these people looked up in the air and perfectly distinguished the spacecraft which was motionless in the sky in the direction of Provins, with two other shining discs which turned around it.

It was now 09:00 p.m.

The discs were at a 45° approximately angle compared to the horizontal, and slowly moved in circles, in opposite direction one from the other, at time showing nothing more of them than red dots.

When they approached each other, the better displayed their reinflated aspect and their orange-red color.

They continued these operations up to 09:10 p.m., they were also observed with binoculars passed from hands to hands, then the objects were seen disappearing behind a curtain of trees in the direction of Provins.

Jimmy Guieu notes that in the numerous villages of the area and during 25 minutes, hundreds of people had also followed this "phenomenon."

[Ref. mcs1:] "MICHEL CARROUGES":

Michel Carrouges indicates that the Lecoeuvre observation was made at a distance of 4 meters, and that the saucer landed in the court or the garden where the witness was.

[Ref. jve5:] JACQUES VALLEE:

212 -002.92770 50.52960 03 10 1954 20 45 1 ANNOEUILLIN F 0011 I *

[Ref. cpr1:] CLAUDE POHER, UFO RESEARCH GROUP "GEPA":

In 1968-1969, before the official GEPAN ufology effort started, its future head Dr Claude Poher was a member of the unofficial GEPA ufology group, and gathered a computer coded listing of more than 700 UFO reports on which multiple factors statistical computation could be run. In the file were a number of 1954 French UFO reports, among those this one.

For readability, a decoded interpretation of the data is provided here under the original 80 character encoded string. Decoding was done according to the original indications, the code number and its generic meaning is given. Please not that the generic meaning of each code is a predefined category, not the real specific details of the case. For example, if the main witness' age was 33, the coding would result in a number "3" which corresponds to a category "Adult from 21 to 59 years."

Original code:0647550311195423101JAZ10401040201EZZZZ020020200000000000000000000000000001200000
Location:Annoeullin (Pas de Calais) - France
Case number:0647
Source code:55
Nature of the source:Reports from official French sources : Police, Gendarmerie, Army, Pilots
Day:03
Month:11
Year:54
Hours:23
Minutes:10
Type of Time:1 = local time
Number of witnesses:Z = "several, many"
Main witness named:1 = name(s) indicated
Main witness age:0 = no indication
Main witness occupation:4 = army, police, fireman, constable
Official investigation:1 = an official investigation was made
Weather:0 = no indication
Duration:4 = from 1 to 19 minutes
Minimal distance witness - phenomenon:0 = no indication
Method of observation:2 = binoculars, spyglass, theodolithe
Number of "objects" observed simultaneously:01 = 1
Shape of the "object" (terminology of witness(es)):E = crescent
Dimensions of the phenomenon:ZZZZ = no indication
Color of the observed phenomenon:02 = red
Luminosity of the phenomenon:0 = no indication
Lights or projectors on the phenomenon:0 = no indication
Moving speed of the phenomenon:2 = "very rapid"
Acceleration of the phenomenon:0 = no indication
Trajectory of the phenomenon:2 = motionless or straight line with stops
Sounds perceived during observation:0 = no indication
Maximum angular height of observation (horizon = 0°):0 = no indication
Nature of the landing place:0 = no indication
Number of contact points with ground:0 = no indication
Traces of landing:0 = no indication
Observation of "occupants":0 = no indication
Height of the occupants observed:00 = no indication
Garment of the occupants:00 = no indication
Garment:0 = no indication
General behavior of "occupants":0 = no indication
Interaction of "occupants" with witness:0 = no indication
Head, hair:0 = no indication
Voice, breathing, chin:0 = no indication
Skin:0 = no indication
Eyes:0 = no indication
Mouth:0 = no indication
Various details:0 = no indication
Thermal effects:0 = no indication
Luminous effects:0 = no indication
Magnetic effect (or electromagnetic):0 = no indication
Odor perceived by witness:0 = no indication
Physiological effects on the witness(es):0 = no indication
Psychological effect on the witness(es):0 = no indication
Effects on animals:0 = no indication
Other effects reported:0 = no indication
Nebulosity:0 = no indication
Oscillations, emission of matter:1 = "undulating" movement, oscillations "like dead leafs"
Spin, formation flight:2 = emission or absorption of "satellites"
Immediate disappearance:0 = no indication
Halo surrounding the phenomenon:0 = no indication
Interaction witness / phenomenon (complement to the other rubrics):0 = no indication
Drawing or photo:0 = no indication
Structural details observed:0 = no indication

[Ref. gni1:] GNEOVNI:

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10/3/1954 - ANNOEUILLIN 59 Type I

Over a hundred witnesses. Around 8:45 p.m. Mr. Lecoeuvre sees a shooting star appearing which falls slowly, it turns into an object which lands in a garden a few meters away. It is a dome about three meters high and shines like a nickel coin. It does not rest on the ground: no trace. On the upper part a small dome, but no opening. The witness is petrified, his dog barks with rage. The object left after 16 to 20 seconds with a hissing sound. Other numerous witnesses then saw in the direction of Provin two or three other objects that make a dance. This until 9:10 p.m.

(Archives GNEOVNI)

[Ref. dcn6:] DOMINIQUE CAUDRON:

The weekend of October 2-3 appears on all graphs as the maximum-maximorum of the 1954 wave. Although the work of counting the press of the time is not yet finished, the 118 various issues of newspapers and magazines I have been able to analyze for this period gives us an almost complete overview, in any case very broadly representative of the regional observations which were reported in the press for Sunday, October 3. I included the observations of the Somme which seemed to me inseparable from those of Nord - Pas-de-Calais and which also appear in the chapter entitled "Zigzag on the mining country" of the book by A. Michel: "Mystérieux Objets Célestes."

I count, as one case, each observation made by an independent group of witnesses. The astonishing quantity of observations reported below, shows once again the interest of thoroughly searching the newspaper archives.

OCTOBER 3, 1954:

22) 8:45 p.m. to 9:10 p.m., ANNOEULIN _59_ Mr Gaston Lecoueuve [sic] saw a luminous stain fall from the sky to turn into a luminous object turning slowly on itself, without noise, seeming to land in a garden a few meters away. It was a sort of Dome about 3 meters high, about as shiny as nickel, with a small dome without an opening. The witness's dog barked in rage. The witness, panicked, fled to the nearby cafe, shouting: "Come... A saucer!". He heard a hissins sound while running. Consumers went out and saw 3 shiny objects towards Provin, two of them circling the 3rd. Mr Bourbotte, who joined them around 9 p.m., saw only 2 objects making an angle of 45° with the horizontal, moving in circles, sometimes only appearing in the form of a red dot and then coming closer to reveal their swollen shape and heavy red-orange color. The witnesses passed on binoculars from hand to hand. Finally, the objects disappeared behind a row of trees towards Provin. (5/10, VdN, p.3 - 6/10, Nouveau Nord Maritime, p.2 - 10/10, La Bailleuloise, p.1)

Expressing more than reservations about the numrous cases of this evening, he adds for the case of Annoeuillin...

... sometimes it's three, sometimes two, sometimes just one [object].

He says:

The object is often described as a crescent [...]

When we have directions where the object is seen, it is always to the Southwest [...]

He mentions the possibility of the Chinese lanterns built in Beuvry-les-Béthunes, but for another case:

But the retiree from Beuvry-les-Béthune who had fun launching hot air balloons may have something to do with it.

He concludes:

Several witnesses describe the disappearance of the object as if it were falling on the horizon, on or below.

Now we know that that evening, at 9:30 p.m. the crescent Moon was setting in the Southwest [...]

Disaster! This collection of suspicions casts a total discredit on this magnificent series of observations, one of the most beautiful that we have ever found. We will have to check certain data, the direction of certain observations, the weather conditions but already the doubts are too big, so that we cannot classify these observations as UFO.

The cases of Ablain, of Liévin, Marcoing, Chéreng and Annoeulin are probably of the same phenomenon: an outer space and extraterrestrial object (yes, yes!) 3400 km in diameter! In other words the MOON!

[Ref. fru1:] MICHEL FIGUET AND JEAN-LOUIS RUCHON:

These ufologists published in their book the findings and arguments given by Dominique Caudron one year earlier [dcn6], crediting him, in a section devoted to the misinterpretations caused by the Moon on October 3, 1954 in France.

For the case of Annoeuillin, they write:

In Annoeuillin, sometimes one, sometimes two, sometimes three objects are observed.

They document the Annoeuillin case:

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Zigzag on the mining country or close encounters with the Moon

03 10 1954 9:10 p.m. Annoeullin 59112 D4.

WITNESSES. Mr. Gaston Lecoeuvre, miner, and around forty people. Mr. Bourbotte, Mr. Louis Deleflie, his wife, his cousin Mr. Clotaire Loyer.

OBSERVATION. A disc with a dome that lands and takes off.

EVENTS. Mr. Lecoeuvre, who smokes on his doorstep, sees a kind of star coming down from the sky which lands in a garden, he rushes over and sees a metallic dome of about 3 m high, shiny like aluminum. It hovers at 15 centimeters from the ground, a small dome occupies its upper part.

The witness's dog barks furiously against the object.

The miner fled, screaming, to a cafe 100 meters away. Come ... A saucer!" At his calls, several consumers rush after him. They are accompanied by other witnesses.

They form a group of around 40 men, women and children. The machine is no longer on the ground but in the air; while fleeing to give the alert, Gaston Leceuvre heard behind him a curious whistling sound. The Annoullin residents distinguish three brilliant objects in the direction of Provin. Two objects revolve around the third. Mr. Bourbotte, who joins the group of witnesses around 9 p.m., sees only two objects making an angle of 45° with the horizontal, flying in circles, sometimes only appearing under

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the shape of a red dot then approaching to reveal their swollen shape and their red-orange color. Witnesses pass binoculars from hand to hand. Finally, the objects disappear behind a curtain of trees towards Provin.

At the other end of the same street, Mr. Louis Deleflie hears the sound of an airplane engine and sees a luminous object rise above a millstone, 300 m away. He goes to get his wife, his cousin and Mr. Clotaire Loyer, his neighbor. It is soon about forty people who can observe this fiery red object which does not light up but which oscillates sometimes and moves away slowly then disappears behind a curtain of trees in the direction of Provin.

TO NOTE. These two groups of witnesses saw the same object which was lowering on the horizon towards the southwest. Now we know that a crescent moon deformed by low stratus clouds was setting in the southwest at 9:30 p.m.

IN REALITY. It was indeed the Moon. And the barking of Mr. Leceuvre's dog you tell us! Well, he just yelled at the moon. And the noise of the plane! It was certainly not produced by the Moon but by a passing airplane.

SOURCES. Black-out sur les soucoupes volantes, Jimmy Guieu, p. 182. - Quincy. - La Voix du Nord of 10/5/1954, p. 3. Nouveau Nord maritime of 10/6/1954, p. 2. - Journal du Centre of 10/6/1954. - La Bailleuloise of 10/10/1954, p. 1.

[Ref. goe1:] GODELIEVE VAN OVERMEIRE:

Godelieve van Overmeire indicates that in 1954, on October 3, in France, in Annoeullin (Nord), Gaston Lecoeuvre smoking outside saw what he mistook for a shooting star, fall into the close garden. Amazed he rushed and saw a 3 m height metal dome shining like nickel, posed on the ground, motionless. His dog barked with rage against this thing. Gaston Lecoeuvre flees, shouting, to the Parsy Coffee where consumers rushed after him. Much too late. The craft had already taken off with a whistling sound. It was not alone in the sky: two other brilliant discs whirled slowly around the first. It was then 21 hours.

Godelieve van Overmeire indicates that the source is Jimmy Guieu: Black-out sur les S.V." - Fleuve Noir 1956 - p. 183.

She adds that another version is: "IN REALITY: At 21. 30 the Moon lay down in crescent in the south-west. Optical illusion caused by a stratus layer", version which source is indicated as M. Figuet / J.L. Ruchon: "Ovni, Premier dossier complet..." Alain Lefeuvre 1979, pub. p. 657 to 660.

[Ref. lcn1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates that in the Nord in Annoeullin on November 3, 1954 at 23:10 "Several witnesses undoubtedly gendarmes, observed during several minutes with the naked eye and with binoculars, an object in the shape of a red crescent which moved in straight line with stops while undulating. It could be very fast. Ther was emission of a satellite object."

The source is indicated as "Les Universons by Poher Claude ** http://www.premiumwanadoo.com/universons/".

[Ref. uda1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on November 3, 1954 at 23:10 in Annoeullin, France, "one object was observed for over four minutes (Boistelle)."

The source is indicated as "Poher, Claude, Etudes Statistiques Portant sur 1000 Temoignag, Author, undated."

[Ref. gni2:] "GNEOVNI" UFOLOGY GROUP:

In "Special notes" of their catalogue, the GNEOVNI group indicates that there exists in several books, such as Aimé Michel's "M.O.C.", Planète publishers in 1966, in which there is a number of observation cases in the Nord and Pas-de-Calais which are not included in their catalogue because there "remains much doubts as to their credibility." One of them is noted "3-10-54 Annoeulin nord".

Note: actually, the Annoeuillin case in not mentioned in Aimé Michel's book.

[Ref. dcn1] DOMINIQUE CAUDRON:

Dominique Caudron indicates that the catalogue of 800 cases published in 1970 by Maurice Santos, is a good example of what one should not do; he indicates to extract from it the list of the cases of October 3, 1954; which he knows well as he had investigated into these cases of his area of Nord. For each case, below the text of the Santos catalogue, he states what should have been written, and the explanation after analysis, when there is one.

Santos wrote that for this case #538, of landing, of October 3, 1954, in Annoeullin forty people and a dog observe a brilliant disc, posed during a few minutes in a garden.

Dominique Caudron says that to 20:45, Annoeullin, 59, a witness and his dog (which barked) saw an object in the shape of dome seeming to be posed in a garden. Caudron indicates that it was in fact the Moon.

Dominique Caudron says that to 20:45, about fifty people saw a luminous object rising with the top of a grinding stone. Caudron indicates that it was in fact the Moon.

He notes that the numbering of the cases by Santos seemed a good idea, but that it prevents the evolution of the catalogue, whose numbering becomes incoherent at the first update: "For example, this catalogue contains only 10 cases for the area of the Nord, whereas we know 48 of them. How to place the 38 others?"

He notes that it should have been said it was an apparent landing, or else we have to admit that the Moon landed twice (in Ablain St Nazaire and Annoeullin), and that it followed two cars (in Rue and Hérissart).

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

This database recorded the case 6 times:

Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
19541003 03.10.1954 Annoeullin France 20.45 NL
19541003 03.10.1954 Annoeullin France 20.45 NL
19541003 03.10.1954 Annoeullin France 20.45 NL
19541003 03.10.1954 Annoeullin France 20.00 CE I
19541003 03.10.1954 Annoeullin France 21.00 NL
19541103 03.11.1954 Annoeullin France

[Ref. dcn3:] DOMINIQUE CAUDRON:

Dominique Caudron drew up an inventory of observations in the Nord on October 3, 1954, containing 51 reports, including this one:

The Fabulous day of October 3, 1954

[...]

Chronology of the observations of October 3.

We give here only a summary of what was published in the press of the time, for the nord region, regardless of what the ufologists could later say. We have numbered all these observations, the first of which have nothing to do with the setting of the moon, in order to be able to study them globally in a table. Some are already the subject of a special file.

[... other cases...]

22) 08:45 p.m. to 09:10 p.m., ANNOEULIN (59)

- Mr Gaston Lecoeuvre saw a luminous spot fall from the sky to transform into a luminous object turning slowly on itself, without noise, seeming to land in a garden a few meters away. It was a sort of dome about 3 meters high, shiny like nickel with a small dome without opening. The witness's dog barked in rage. The witness, panicked, fled to the nearby cafe, shouting: Come... A saucer!". He heard a whistling while running. The consumers went out and saw 3 shiny objects towards Provin, two of them turning around the 3rd M. Bourbotte, who joined them around 9 p.m., saw only 2 objects making an angle of 45 ° with the horizontal, describing circles, sometimes only appearing in the form of a red dot then approaching to reveal their swollen shape and red-orange color. Witnesses passed binoculars from hand to hand. Finally, the objects disappeared behind a curtain of trees towards Provin.

(La Voix du Nord 5/10 page 3, La Voix du Nord-ed. Lille+++ 5/10 page 7, Le Nouveau Nord maritime 6/10 page 2, La Bailleuloise 10/10 page 1)

(the analysis of the data shows that it was quite simply the moon)

23) 08:45 p.m., ANNOEULIN (59)

- At the other end of the same street, Mr. Louis Deleflie, heard the noise of an airplane engine and saw a luminous object rise above a millstone, 300 m away. He went to get his wife, their cousin and Mr. Loyer, their neighbor, and soon 45 to 50 nersonnes could observe this silent fire red object, but not lighting, which oscillated sometimes and moved away slowly then disappeared behind trees towards Provin.

(La Voix du Nord 5/10 page 3, La Voix du Nord-ed. Lille+++ 5/10 page 7)

[... other cases...]

All this is only a compilation of the information given by all newspapers of the time, including local editions, and of which ufologists only used a part.

We will see that the analysis of this information makes it possible to eliminate the hypothesis of a flying saucer, in favor of those of multiple observations of the moon, whose image was reddened and deformed by clouds, which also gave it a illusory apparent movement.

[Ref. dcn4:] DOMINIQUE CAUDRON:

Analysis of the observations of October 3, 1954

[... other cases...]

22) 8:45 p.m. to 9:10 p.m., ANNOEULIN (59)

Same direction as the moon, same apparent behavior as the moon, same mode of disappearance, proximity to the other identifiable case of Annoeullin.

23) 8:45 p.m., ANNOEULIN (59)

Same direction as the moon, same apparent behavior as the moon, same mode of disappearance, proximity to the other identifiable case of Annoeullin.

[... other cases...]

Explanations:

Scan

About the Moon:

From Annoeuillin on October 3, 1954, the Moon is in the direction 222° (South-West) and at the low elevation of 3° 26, quite suitable for misinterpretation.

As we can deduce by some of the color descriptions in this case and almost all the others in the region that evening, the object was "orange" or "yellow orange" or "red" or "color of fire"; this corresponds to a "Red Moon", which happens very easily when the Moon is very low.

The Moon set behind the horizon at 09:18 p.m.. It was in its latest crescent, with 36.5% of its visible surface illuminated by the sun.

Mars:

There is another orange object in the sky that evening: the planet Mars, at 198° and the elevation of 12°, that is "to the left and a bit higher" than the Moon, seen from the ground. Its surface is well lit (84.93%), but it will only set at 11:13 pm; one would then think that the witnesses who would have mistaken Mars for a saucer should therefore have seen it much longer - we are told that everything disappeared from view at 09:10 p.m.

But we are also told that in the end the phenomenon "disappears behind a curtain of trees", which puts Mars back on the table, since this curtain of trees may have been close enough to mask Mars long before it set below the horizon.

Finally, the direction of disappearance that we get, "towards Provin", does not allow to decide, since it is the Southwest, direction where the Moon is, and Mars which is 204 ° and 11 ° elevation is not excluded, since "the direction of Provin" is a very imprecise indication, in the median it is the southwest, but taking into account the uncertainty of the position of the witnesses and the visible width of Provin, this direction actually goes from 283° to 181°, thus including both the Moon and Mars.

Plane(s), helicopter(s):

On the one hand we have Mr. Lecouevre who hears a "weird whistling sound" when he ran towards the cafe, and Mr. Deleflie, independently, who heard "the noise of an airplane engine".

It is therefore likely that there were one or more planes or helicopters in the sky that evening near Annoeuillin. This may account for what was veiwed as "unreliability" of testimonies when it was said that the number of objects, one or two or three, is not clear. In this context, there may well have been several misintepretations with several different causes.

Chinese lanterns:

Dominique Caudron mentioned this possibility, but for another case of that evening. I documented the case of the Beuvry-les-Béthunes retired miner who built Chinese lanterns (paper hot air balloons), until being "caught" by the police because one of his lanterns had almost set on fire to a haystack, and denounced in the press - worldwide - from October 5, 1954 on - as if by chance one or two days after this famous evening of the 3rd - and found that this could explain some of the cases in the region.

Beuvry-les-Béthunes is located 17 km West of Annoeuillin. It seems a bit distant, the current Chinese lanterns most often traveling a few kilometers at best before running out of fuel. But we cannot formally exclude that those built by Mr. Victor Oliveira, the retiree from Beuvry-les-Béthunes, were more efficient. A clue is their very large size, visible in the press of the time (Tintin Actualités for October 21, 1954):

Start it all from the beginning...

Whereas for most cases of that October 3, 1954 evening in this region, I agree that the explanation by the Moon by Dominique Caudron is quite the right one, or sometimes just probably the right one, for this case, I have very big doubts. Here is why:

I can therefore concoct at least one scenario without the Moon: a helicopter lands and leaves, the witness launches the alert, people come to check and spot a saraband of Chinese lanterns flying in from Beuvry...

Let's just read again:

"The consumers went out and saw 3 shiny objects towards Provin, two of them turning around the 3rd. Mr Bourbotte, who joined them around 9 p.m., saw only 2 objects making an angle of 45° with the horizontal, flying in circles, sometimes appearing only in the form of a red dot and then coming closer to reveal their swollen shape and their red-orange color."

"45° with the horizontal" and three then more than two objects that dance in the sky, it was certainly not the Moon either. But Chinese lanterns fit.

Keywords:

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

Annoeuilin, Nord, Bauvin, Provin, Gaston Lecoeuvre, Parzy, Bourbote, Clotaire Loyer, luminous, manoeuver, turn, stop, three, dog, multiple, red, orange

Sources:

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

Document history:

Version: Créé/changé par: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross March 17, 2007 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross January 9, 2009 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Additions [goe1], [uda1].
1.1 Patrick Gross March 8, 2010 Addition [lcn1].
1.2 Patrick Gross March 14, 2010 Addition [mcs1].
1.3 Patrick Gross June 3, 2010 Addition [lae1].
1.4 Patrick Gross June 21, 2010 Addition [jve5].
1.5 Patrick Gross July 7, 2010 Addition [gni2].
1.6 Patrick Gross October 14, 2016 Addition [dcn1].
1.7 Patrick Gross February 2, 2017 Addition [ubk1].
1.8 Patrick Gross June 29, 2019 Department changed, was "Pas-de-Calais"; "Annoeuilin" changed to "Annoeullin"; error reported by a reader.
1.9 Patrick Gross January 19, 2020 Additions [ppe1], [dcn6], [gni1], [fru1], [dcn3], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."
2.0 Patrick Gross February 10, 2020 Addition [nmm1]. In the Summary, addition of the paragraph "In the regional newspaper Le Nouveau Nord Maritime..."
2.1 Patrick Gross March 13, 2020 Addition [lbl1].

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