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UFOs in the daily Press:

The "mysterious airship" wave in the New Zealand Press, 1909:

The article below was published in the New Zealand Tablet, page 1129, July 22, 1909.


Another 'Scareship'?

The sea-serpent and Will-o'-the-Wisp and the Tantanoola tiger must, so to speak, pale their ineffectual fires before the mysterious light — supposed to be that of an airship which sundry New Zealand citizens stoutly aver that they have seen hovering, dipping, darting, swooping, and soaring over the Wangaloa Hills, near Kaitangata. 'The light carried,' said several alleged eye-witnesses in the Balclutha Free Press, 'was a strong and steady one, and whenever the ship, or whatever it was, turned, we thought we could see a dark, opaque body. Certainly we could see, without a doubt, the reflection of the light in the clouds. It was a white light with a reflector. When she was side on we thought we could see the reflection as of a black body above and below, it was a marvellously mystifying sight. After we had watched it for a good half-hour the ship moved off in an easterly direction, whence it had first come into view. I left my companions and made off home, and then a peculiar thing happened. I had been walking for ten minutes, and chanced to look skyward, and, lo and behold! there was the mysterious light, high up in the sky and moving off inland in a direction, towards the Blue Mountains, as it seemed to me.'

Is this, we wonder, the 'wraith' of the scareship that lately kept timid Britons awake o' nights with the fear of a German aerial invasion? Or is it

    'The light that never was on sea or land'?

Or is it one of those 'glorious lamps' that (according to Rowe) were made

    'To light Tom Fool to bed'?

Or have some wags down Kaitangata way been putting their heads together to hoax the Free Press, and thus emulate the tale of midnight flights pawned off upon the London Daily Mail by Long-bow Baker?

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