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Roswell 1947 - newspapers in 1947

The Las Vegas Review-Journal, July 9, 1947:

FLYING DISC TALES DECLINE
AS ARMY, NAVY CRACK DOWN

By United Press

(UP) -- Reports of flying saucers whizzing through the sky fell off sharply today as the army and navy began a concentrated campaign to stop the rumors.

One by one, persons who thought they had their hands on the $3,000 offered for a genuine flying saucer found their hands full of nothing.

Headquarters of the 8th army at Fort Worth, Texas, announced that the wreckage of a tin-foil covered object found on a New Mexico ranch was nothing more than the remnants of a weather balloon. AAF headquarters in Washington reportedly delivered a "blistering" rebuke to officers at the Roswell, New Mexico, base for suggesting that it was a "flying disc."

A 16 inch aluminum disc equiped with two radio condensers, a fluorescent light switch and copper tubing found by F.G. Harston near the Shreveport, Louisiana, business district was declared by police to be "obviously the work of a prankster." Police believed the prankster hurled it over a sign board and watched it land at Harston's feet. It was turned over to officials at Barksdale army air field.

U.S. naval intelligence officers at Pearl Harbor investigated claims by 100 navy men that they saw a mysterious object "silvery colored, like aluminum, with no wings or tail," sail over Honolulu at a rapid clip late yesterday. The description fit a weather balloon but 5 of the men, familiar with weather observation devices, swore that it was not a balloon.

"It moved extremely fast for a short period, seemed to slow down, then disappeared high in the air," said Yeoman 1/C Douglas Kacherle of New Bedford, Massachusetts. His story was corroborated by Seaman 1/C Donald Ferguson, Indianapolis; Yeoman 3/C Morris Kzamme, La. Crosse, Wisconsin, Seaman 1/C Albert Delancey, Salem, West Virginia, and Yeoman 2/C Ted Pardue, McClain, Texas.

Admiral William H. Blandy, commander-in-chief of the Atlantic fleet, said like everyone else he was curious about the reported flying saucers "but I do not believe they exist."

Lloyd Bennett, Oelwein, Iowa, salesman, was stubborn about the shiny 6 1/2-inch steel disc he found yesterday. Authorities said it was not a "flying saucer" but Bennett said he would claim the reward offered for the mysterious discs.

There were other discards. Not all the principles were satisfied with the announcement that the wreckage found on the New Mexico ranch was that of a weather balloon.

The excitement ran through this cycle:

1. Lieut. Warren Haught [sic, Walter Haut], public relations officer at the Roswell Base released a statement in the name of Col. William Blanchard, base commander. It said that an object described as a "flying disk" was found on the nearby Foster ranch three weeks ago by W.W. Brazel and had been sent to "higher officials" for examination.

2. Brig. Gen. Roger B. Ramey, commander of the 8th Air Force said at Fort Worth that he believed the object was the "remnant of a weather balloon and a radar reflector," and was "nothing to be excited about." He allowed photographers to take a picture of it. It was announced that the object would be sent to Wright Field, Dayton, OH.

3. Later, Warrant Officer Irving Newton, Stetsonville, Wisconsin, weather officer at Fort Worth, examined the object and said definitely that it was nothing but a badly smashed target used to determine the direction and velocity of high altitude winds.

4. Lt. Haught [sic, Walter Haut] reportedly told reporters that he had been "shut up by two blistering phone calls from Washington."

5. Efforts to contact Col. Blanchard brought the information that "he is now on leave."

6. Maj. Jesse A. Marcel, intelligence officer of the 509th bombardment group, reportedly told Brazel, the finder of the object, that "it has nothing to do with army or navy so far as I can tell."

7. Brazel told reporters that he has found weather balloon equipment before, but had seen nothing that had resembled his latest find.

8. Those men who saw the object said it had a flowered paper tape around it bearing the initials "D.P."

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