The Press before 1940 -> Documents -> Homeclick!

Cette page en franšaisCliquez!

UFOs in the daily Press:

The airship stories in the 1896 US Press:

This article was published in the daily newspaper Stockton Daily Independent, Stockton, California, page 2, on November 26, 1896.

Warning: the airship stories must not be taken at face value as "UFO sightings." Evaluation of such stories is under way here.


San Francisco Has No Monopoly on the Airship.
Everybody is Expected to See It, but Up to Date the Reporters Are Conflicting.

The muffled rumble of the wheels which have been throwing off the air ship excitement in San Francisco seems to have fairly reached this community and even those who disclaim the presence of any machinery just behind the frontal bone are vieing with each other in seeing just how near they can approach the dreams of Verne. The mysterious light which some with bland-like innocence assert they have witnessed peregrinating over this valley, has smothered out all explanations as to how the result of the 3rd of November was brought about, and the evident sincerity of some in describing the aerial visitor has won doubting Thomases over as far as the skeptical stage at least.

The last report came from Lathrop last evening when Mr. Sanguinetti telephoned to this city that even while he talked he saw a bright light, some darker than a star, approaching Lathrop from the east and continually growing brighter and more plain. He announced that if signalling would bring the thing down the people out that way would land it when it arrived. There was no late report to show whether or not the people of that place had captured the evasive illusion.

A steamboat captain, who claimed that he had steered entirely clear of schooners [sailships often carrying alsohol], also came in yesterday and before a justice of the peace prepared to make affidavit to the strange sight he saw while twelve miles up the river Tuesday night. He said he was sleeping the sleep of the just and was sure there was no opium aboard. About 12 o'clock he was called out of his bunk by his frightened Chinese cook, who called his attention to the rapid flight of a large light and the outlines of a cigar-shaped frame. It was moving north by south. The captain declared that there was a continual shifting of light in the vicinity of the object and he thought he heard an occasional dull thud in the heavens like the sound of some explosive. The Chinaman refused to be quieted and left the boat when it stuck in the next mudbank.

One citizen interested in the cause of science was yesterday trying to raise a fund to employ a sober and reliable man to ascend the court house dome and after climbing out, take his place on the arm of Miss Liberty and put in the night with his eyes in the heavens and his hand on his heart.

Nightwatchman McKee's word on a mooted subject like this might be questioned by some owing to his location at the State Asylum, but he nevertheless comes forward with a clearer description of the mysterious monster than has yet been given by the most professional. Last evening at forty-five minutes and thirty-five seconds past 9 o'clock, he saw the ship pass nor'west just back of the asylum grounds and it swung down to within 210 feet of the ground. At the same time there were three loud reports followed by great gusts of wind, which evidently came from the flapping of the pinions of the ship. He thinks it was dynamite that was discharged and that it had something to do with the motive power of the monster. The ship was cigar shaped, but was smoking at both ends.

Billie Martin, the swift messenger at the Western Union was among those who were on the look out for the ship. Incidentally he started for the northern part of the city on his wheel to deliver a message just after Lodi called up to say that the air ship was coming south. In this part of the city there are mud puddles large and deep, and on this occasion they were veiled in darkness. With his eyes on the heavens Martin rode off the sidewalk and was soon trying to use his wheel for a life preserver. He considers it a sacrifice to the cause of investigation, and while not sure that he had the ship located, he has no doubts about the location and actual existence of the mud puddle.

Notwithstanding that every one laughs at the idea of there being such a thing as an air ship at large, there were many who had stiff necks this morning caused by their positions of observation during the night in the hope of catching a glimpse at the often heard of but seldom if ever seen "strange light."

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict

 Feedback  |  Top  |  Back  |  Forward  |  Map  |  List |  Home
This page was last updated on September 5, 2014.