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Roswell 1947 - newspapers in 1947

The W. W. Brazel debris discovery story:

The article below was published in the newspaper Pampa Daily News, Pampa, Texas, USA, pages 1,8, on July 9, 1947.

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'Flying Disc' Proves to Be Weather Balloon

FORT WORTH -- UP -- An examination by the Army revealed last night that a mysterious object found on a lonely New Mexico ranch was a harmless high-altitude weather balloon - not a grounded flying disc.

Excitement was high in disc-conscious Texas until Brig. Gen. Roger Ramey, commander of the Eighth Air Force with headquarters here, cleared up the mystery.

The bundle of tinfoil, broken wood beams and rubber remnants of a balloon was sent here yesterday by Army Air transport in the wake of reports that it was a flying disc.

But the general said the objects were the crushed remains of a ray wind target used to determine the direction and the velocity of winds at high altitude.

Warrant Officer Irving Newton, forecaster at the Army Air Forces weather station here, said "we use them because they go much higher than the eye can see."

The weather balloon was found several days ago in a desolate section of New Mexico by a rancher, W. W. Brazel. He said he didn't think much about it until he went into Corona, N. M., last Saturday and heard the flying discs reports.

He returned to his ranch, 85 miles northwest of Roswell, and recovered the wreckage of the balloon, which he had placed under some brush.

Brazel hurried back to Roswell, where he reported his find to the sheriff's office.

The sheriff called the Roswell Air Field and Maj. Jesse A. Marcel, 509th Bomb Group Intelligence Officer, was assigned to the case.

Col. William N. Blanchard, commanding officer of the bomb group, reported the find to General Ramey and the object was flown immediately to the Army air field here.

Ramey went on to the air here last night to announce the New Mexico

See page 8 FLYING DISCS

Rancher Going to Stay Clear of Discs, Etc.

ROSWELL, N. M. -- UP -- W. W. Brazel, the rancher credited for a time with finding the nation's first flying disc, is sorry he said anything about it.

The 48-year-old New Mexican said he was amazed at the fuss made over his discovery.

"If I find anything else short of a bomb it's going to be hard to get me to talk," he told the Associated Press here early this morning.

Brazel's discovery was reported late yesterday by Lt. Walter Haut, Roswell Army Air Field Public Relations officer. as being one of the flying saucers that have puzzled and worried residents f 44 states the past several weeks.

Later, however, Brig. Gen. Roger Ramey, commanding general of the Eighth Air Force of which the Roswell field is a component, said Brazel's find was merely a weather radar target.

Brazel related this story:

While riding the range on his ranch 30 miles southeast of Corona, N. M., on June 14 he sighted some shiny objects. He picked up a iece of the stuff and took it to the ranch house seven miles away.

On July 4, he returned to the site with his wife and two of their children, Vernon, 8, and Bessie, 14. They gathered all the pieces they could find. The largest was about three feet across.

Brazel hadn't heard of the flying discs at the time. Several days later, his brother-in-law, Hollis Wilson, told him of the discs reports and suggested it might be one.

"When I went to Roswell, I told Sheriff George Wilcox about it," he continued. "I was a little ashamed to mention it. Because I didn't know what it was."

"Asked the sheriff to keep it kinda quiet," he added with a chuckle. "I thought folks would kid me about it."

Sheriff Wilcox referred the discovery to intelligence officers at the Roswell field. Maj. Jesse A. Marcel and a man in civilian clothes whom Brazel was unable to identify went to the ranch and brought the pieces of material to the air field.

"I didn't hear anymore about it until things started popping," said Brazel. "Lord, how that story has traveled."

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Flying Discs

(Continued from page 1)

discovery was not a flying disc.

Newton said that when rigged up, the instrument "looks like a six-pointed star, is silvery in appearance and rises in the air like a kite."

In Roswell, the discovery set off a flurry of excitement.

Sheriff George Wilcox's telephone lines were clogged. Three calls came from England, one of them from the London Daily Mail, he said.

A public relations officer here said the balloon was in his office "and it'll probably stay right there."

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