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As its name suggests, ALSACAT is my comprehensive catalog of UFO sighting reports in Alsace, the region is the North-East of France, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ALSACAT catalog is made of case files with a case number, summary, quantitative information (date, location, number of witnesses...), classifications, all sources mentioning the case with their references, a discussion of the case in order to evaluate its causes, and a history of the changes made to the file. A general index and thematic sub-catalogs give access to these Alsatian case files.

Case of the Pont d'Aspach, on July 29, 1965:

Case number:



André Fissier, reporter at the O.R.T.F. national radio and television of Belfort had conducted and broadcast an interview on Radio France III Strasbourg, on August 3, 1965, of one Mr. A. P., salesman living in Belfort.

He and friends had made an observation on the national road 83, in the area of the bridge of Aspach, about 8 km south of Cernay.

At 07:20 a.m., they were going by car towards Mulhouse. A. P. he was driving.

Arriving at the bridge of Aspach, as they were chatting, he suddenly saw something unusual in the sky:

"First of all, I was not sure, I saw something very bright, an orange color and rather vague shape, for starters."

On interrogation, he said that the thing was hidden behind the clouds, and that he expected them to be "dissipated, but..."

He was pretty excited to see one of these flying saucers that had long intrigued him. He alerted his friends, telling them: "I saw a flying saucer, here's a flying saucer!"

His friends immediately looked and were astounded to see a very sparkling bright flying saucer in the sky. Its shape was "pretty flat, but... a saucer with a cupola on top."

He was not able to give the distance the reporter asked for, explaining that it might have been around 2 or 7 km perhaps. He said he did not want to give a distance because "in space, one cannot judge exactly at glance but it was not very, very high anyway, nor very low, but still it was high enough anyway."

He said that in his opinion the craft was heading toward Germany, going down gently. He told:

"Unfortunately, I say unfortunately because I wanted to stop to have the opportunity to see this thing without being in the car, though, in the car, the vision was very, very clear. The glass was clear and it was not an optical illusion. My friends and I were planning to stop, yet at this very moment, I could not stop. They kept telling me every moment: "But stop! Stop right now!" And I said, "But I'll stop, I'll stop!" Ultimately, something pushed me to not stop: something very, very strong in me, preventing me to stop. I do not know if there was something, a magnetic field that could possibly prevent me to stop; a hypothesis like any other, but finally it seems to me that it makes sense, because I was not conscious of myself at that moment."

The craft then took the shape of a cigar, changing from the horizontal position to a vertical position, without substantially changing color, remaining of an orange color, very shining.

The witness said he saw a curious and very brilliant shape on the top and on the edge, very sparkling, while still orange colored, but making a cigar-shape; He even wondered if it was an "another craft", "but certainly it was a new shape or another craft... This thing had changed its shape."

When the reporter asked him if he was sure it was not a helicopter or a plane, or the moon, he ensured to be very certain that it was not the Moon "or any eclipse" and said:

"It was not... if you want, for it would have been something like... Anyway, I'm sure I saw the flying saucer, that it was not an optical illusion. My friends think the same, I asked them: "You do agree with me, this thing is what that I described?" They said, "Yes, we are ready to testify, besides, if the opportunity arises, to certify that we have seen it."

He added that this is the first time he spoke about it to anyone "because, you see, with these flying saucers stories, you b get the feeling that you are, how shall I say..."


Temporal data:

Date: July 29, 1965
Time: 07:20 a.m.
Duration: ?
First known report date: August 3, 1965 or earlier.
Reporting delay: Days.

Geographical data:

Department: Haut-Rhin
City: Burnhaupt-le-Bas
Place: Witness in car driving on RN83 road near the Aspach bridge, UFO in the sky.
Latitude: 47.728
Longitude: 7.164
Uncertainty ratio: 2 km

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: 3 to 4
Number of known witnesses: 1
Number of named witnesses: ?
Witness(es) ages: Adult or aged.
Witness(es) types: Salesman of Belfort and friends.

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: Radio interview.
Type of location: From the car driving on country road, UFO in the sky.
Visibility conditions: Day.
UFO observed: Yes
UFO arrival observed: No
UFO departure observed: ?
Entities: No
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: Happy.
Witnesses interpretation: Flying saucer.


Hynek: DD
ALSACAT: Probable red moon.



Former journalist Christian Valentin published in 2012 a very interesting book telling the story of UFO sightings, flying saucers sightings, in Alsace, from the beginning to 1980.

In this book, he reports that the following case of July 29, 1965 in the Haut-Rhin in Pont d'Aspach was reported as follows in Phénomènes Spatiaux N° 70 of December 1966.

André Fissier, reporter at the O.R.T.F. [French state TV and radio] of Belfort had the kindness, which we are grateful for, to send to the GEPA a valuable document, a tape recording of an interview broadcast on Radio-France Strasbourg III, on August 3, 1965, interview that he had made of Mr. P., sales representative at Belfort. Mr. P. and friends had seen on the N83 between Belfort and Cernay in the region of Pont d'Aspach (about 8 km south of Cernay), an unusual object. Here is the faithful transcription of the interview:

"- Mr. A. R, Belfort you live, you are a salesperson, you recently experienced an extraordinary moment. Would you tell us about it?

"- I was on the 83, last Thursday, towards Mulhouse."

"- You were driving by car?"

"- Yes I was."

"- What time was it then?"

"- 7:20 in the morning. I was with friends, and at one point, arriving at the Pont d'Aspach we talked about this and that, and suddenly I saw something unusual in the sky. First thing, I was not sure I saw something very shiny, of an orange and somewhat blurred color in the beginning."

"- And hidden behind the clouds?"

"- Hidden behind the clouds at the same time, I expected they would dissipate, and..."

"- Your impression?"

"- I was pretty excited to see one of these flying saucers that have long intrigued me, like many other people at this time, I called my friends, I told them "I saw a flying saucer, here is a flying saucer!" Immediately my friends watched, stunned. At the same time, we saw a very sparkly but very clear flying saucer in the sky."

"- What shape was it?"

"- A shape quite ... quite flat, but ... a saucer with a dome on top."

"- Was it far from you?"

"- I cannot give you precisely the exact distance, but I think around 7 km or 2 maybe. I do not want to give an eyesight measure, because in the space, one cannot accurately judge by looking but it was neither very, very high anyway, nor very low, but still it was high enough anyway."

"- In relation to your route you drove from Belfort to Mulhouse, in which direction was the craft located?"

"- I think this thing was heading towards Germany."

"- And then what happened to the craft?"

"- At the same time, the machine went down gently. Unfortunately, I say unfortunately because I wanted to stop to have the opportunity to see this thing without being in the car, although in the car, the view was very, very clear, the glass was clear and it was not an optical illusion. My friends and I had planned to stop... at this very moment, I could not stop: I am repeating at every moment: "But stand thou stand still!!! stand still" And I said: "But I'll stop, and I'll stop", at the end of account, something urged me not to stop: Something very, very strong in me, prevented me to stop I do not know if there is something, some magnetic field that could, possibly prevent me to stop, a hypothesis like any other, but finally it seems to me it makes sense, because I was not aware of myself at that time."

"- On the contrary, you were very aware of yourself."

"- I was very aware but, I mean, I could not stop, and if I had really been aware I would have stopped."

"- That's it."

"- You know what I mean?"

"- Yes I do."

"- Or..."

"- What happened to the craft, what shape did it take then?"

"- The shape of a cigar."

"- In other words, from the horizontal position, it took a vertical position."

"- That's it."

"- Did it change color?"

"- No, it almost always remained of an orange color, very sparkly.""

"- Did it keep the same shape down to the ground?"

"- No, this thing was the shape of a cigar when it went down at a certain time, width, and it is curious... it's strange, I saw, always a form quite curious and very shiny on top and on the edge, very sparkly, while remaining orange... but that gave the shape of a cigar, I cannot be certain that this is really a device other than this when I saw this very moment, but certainly it was a new form or another device .. this thing has changed in appearance."

"- It passed from the horizontal plane to the vertical plane?"

"- That is correct."

"- It was not a helicopter or vehicle such as an aircraft, it was not the moon, that's for sure7"

"- That I am very sure it was not the moon or an eclipse It was not any... if you want, for it would have been something similar ... anyway, I. 'm sure I saw this flying saucer that is not an optical illusion."

"- My friends think the same as me, I asked them:" You do agree with me, this thing is the one I described 7. "They said: "Yes, we are willing to testify, moreover, if the opportunity arises, to certify that we have seen."

"- You have not made this statement to any person other than the ORTF?"

"- No, until now I did not want to tell anyone because, you know, with these stories of flying saucers, it seems sometimes to be, how shall I say...""

"- Ridiculous.""

"- Ridiculous, right. But I came to tell you about it because I trust you."

"- Thank you, Mr. P."

"- I learned the other hand, people worthy of faith, but who want to remain anonymous, the craft would have landed somewhere near Thann that night, and perhaps another night. I ask listeners who would entrust me with their testimony send me a postcard at the ORTF studio of Belfort, 36, faubourg des Ancêtres, I repeat, Belfort studio, 36, faubourg des Ancêtres."

"- This was André Fissier talking to you from Belfort... Back to you, Strasbourg."

Christian Valentin comments this is a lively informative though confused report: Mr. A. P. was obviously impressed by his experience. He wonders whether it was panic that urged him to act against his will and continue on his way despite repeated contrary demands of his friends.

He suggests to compare the progress of this observation with the phenomenon in March 1955 in Wolfgantzen in which one of the three occupants of the vehicle was panicked. He note that in both cases it was the person who noticed the phenomenon that did not want to stop.


About Christian Valentin's book:

It is not at all my habit to "advertise" a book or anything, and I have no interested relationship with the author, but I wanted to say a word on the book by Christian Valentin, "Mythes et Réalités des Phénomènes Aériens Non Identifiés" (i.e. "Myths and Realities of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena" (cover on the left) , ref. [cv2]; which, as its subtitle indicates, is about Alsatian UFO sighting reports and the saucer lore in Alsace.

I think Alsatian ufologist and generally people interested in the UFO question, or in the history of Alsace, my region, would probably like this book.

The 144 pages book is sober but well presented, unbiased, richly documented and illustrated. It is the first work in print specifically about UFO sightings in Alsace. (There was another one a few years ago, but it was partly made by copying - pasting without mention of the sources, portions of my website, especially the Alsatians cases I almost exhaustively documented in my catalog of UFO sightings in France in 1954, and copies from another websites; the trivial explanations I proposed or gave there being almost always stripped off!)

The author does not want to prove or disprove the possibility of extraterrestrial visitors or some other so-called "extraordinary" explanation, he rather offers a chronologically ordered review of Alsatian UFO reports, starting from the origin and stopping in 1980, based on known sources ufology, on the articles of the regional Press, and cases less known or even unreleased so far that he collected directly with the witnesses. His own comments are printed in a different color, references to the sources are always given. A very nice work in my opinion!

The author currently has a blog where he shows what libraries in Alsace have the book available, see:

The first explanation to think about is obviously that of the Moon.

Even if the interviewer evokes it and the witness denies this explanation, all ufologist must know that the Moon can be mistaken for a UFO when circumstances permit. Certainly, no one would look at a nice crescent moon detached in a clear sky, claiming that it is an alien spacecraft, but when, essentially:

...then the misinterpretation of the moon is possible and even likely.

What do we have in this case?

We have a total lack of indication of viewing direction, duration, apparent size and nothing reliable about the height in the sky. However, this does not prevent some findings.

That July 29, 1965, at 07:20 a.m. from the bridge of Aspach, about 7 km south of Cernay, it is already daylight, and the moon is at the azimuth of 74° and the low elevation of 12°28.

It is present in the sky, and low, which of course helps the phenomenon of "red moon", also favored by the early hour with possibly fog and ice crystal layers.

The moon rises, so it cannot "go down" as reported. But it is imperceptible: 10 minutes after the beginning of the observation, it is only 2° higher. And on that road there is a slight rise that might have caused the impression of a "descent" of the "flying saucer".

The witness did not see it immediately at the exit of Cernay, he noticed it when arriving at the bridge of Aspach.

At the exit of Cernay, the road goes straight on for 5 kilometers. At the bridge of Aspach, the road makes a small turn to the right and a long turn to his left (he was driving "in the direction of Mulhouse.")

The average angle of the road is 191 degrees, but in the left turn it changes from passes from 216 to 181 to 138 degrees.

So they had to see it to their left in the beginning of the long curve to the left; earlier, it was behind them slightly on their left, so they logically did not see it on the 5 km straight road portion from the exit of Cernay, and noticed it only when at the turn at the bridge Aspach.

The moon was in its new moon phase with only 1.1% of its visible surface illuminated. The sun was a little above on its right. This low July sun could have impeded their vision.

The witness said there were clouds. Better, he said the "flying saucer" was "hidden behind the clouds."

It is not clear a priori whether these clouds were moving, but we know that the witness was moving. The change in shape thus has an explanation.

He stated that it was orange in color. So we also have a "red moon."

Red moon at daybreak.

Now, all the criteria I gave above are fulfilled.


Probable red moon.

Sources references:

* = Source is available to me.
? = Source I am told about but could not get so far. Help needed.

File history:


Main author: Patrick Gross
Contributors: None
Reviewers: None
Editeur: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross July 16, 2015 Creation, [cv2].
1.0 Patrick Gross July 16, 2015 First published.

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This page was last updated on July 16, 2015