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The Kenneth Arnold sighting, June 24, 1947:

Kenneth Arnold's 1950 pamphlet:

This part of my file about Kenneth Arnold's observation on June 24, 1947, in the USA, is the booklet Arnold wrote, published at his own expense in 1950, and distributed around. It does not tell about his own sighting, it tells of the early days of the flying saucer reports. Arnold can be considered to have been the first ufologist.


VIEWING the first photograph ever taken of a flying disc in Seattle on July 5, 1947, are Captain E. J. Smith (left) United Airlines pilot, Kenneth Arnold, and United Airlines co-pilot, Ralph Stevens.

On July 4, Captain Smith took off from Boise, Idaho, on trip 105 at 9:04 p. m. with the words, "I'll believe the flying saucers when I see them." Nine minutes later over Emmett, Idaho, Captain Smith, his co-pilot and stewardess viewed nine huge flat circular objects. The strange objects were under observation more than ten minutes.

Notes about this page:

Press articles about the sighting of Capt. Smith, pilot, Ralph Stevens, co-pilot, and Marty Morrow, stewardess, can be found in the section with the Press articles related to Kenneth Arnold's 1947 sighting.

The "first photograph ever taken of a flying disc":

In the afternoon of July 4, 1947, Frank Ryman, an off-duty U.S. Coast Guard Yeoman, saw a "flying saucer" and snapped a photograph from the yard of his home in Lake City, north of Seattle.

The photo showed a small bright disc or tiny dot against a dark sky. It was first published by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer the following morning. It then made the front page news amid the rash of "flying disks" sightings triggered by press reports of Kenneth Arnold's sighting. Later, it was estimated by analysts that Ryman had photographed a weather balloon.

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This page was last updated on March 1, 2018.