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The 1954 French flap:

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September 27, 1954, Lemps, Ardèche:

Reference number for this case: 27-sep-54-Lemps. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Summary:

The regional newspaper Le Provençal for October 2, 1954, reported that there had been a "ballet of 'saucers'" in the sky of the Ardèche:

Mr. Joseph Habrat, a farmer in Les Perrets district, in Lemps, observed in the sky, "last night," a "ballet of flying saucers."

He first noticed a green light moving slowly towards Valence; which then began to move at full speed in different directions and finally came to a stop.

Mr. Habrat then called his daughter Yvette, who was also able to observe the luminous object; which according to their impression came to 500 meters from them.

A little later, a dozen craft joined the first, and performed with it a real ballet before disappearing towards the East.

Shortly afterwards "three craft appeared again and then disappeared in the same direction as the previous ones."

In 1958, the ufologist Aimé Michel gave other details that he said to be from the "file of the ufologist Charles Garreau." The report is similar, but Michel gave a date, September 27, 1954, and hours: from 09:40 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

He adds that Mr. Habrat was in his court, that the initial green light was motionless "on the side of Valene" - where the newspaper said it was moving slowly towards Valence.

Michel then talks about "zig-zag" movements that made it run through a tangled broken line", then the phenomenon would have gone out of sight to the northeast.

A moment later, the witnesses would have seen a luminous and elongated smoke curtain approaching to a distance that they estimated at 300 meters - instead of the 500 meters from the newspaper. They then thought they heard a kind of buzzing sound, while the luminous curtain changed course without stopping and also disappeared in the direction of the northeast.

Continuing to observe the sky, it would have been around 11 p.m. that they would have seen come from a few different places in the sky a dozen luminous objects that gathered in the south-east, on the side of Romans, then spun to the north-east crossing each other and passing each other over and over again.

Hardly had these luminous objects disappeared, that three other luminous sots had gathered near Larnage, to the east, and also went towards the northeast. Mr. Habrat continued to watch the sky but there were no other phenomena.

Reports:

[Ref. lpl1:] "LE PROVENCAL" NEWSPAPER:

A saucer above Avignon?

Avignon (C.P.).

The presence of an unidentifiable bolide was announced to us above Avignon yesterday, at the beginning of the afternoon by several people who saw it from the slope of Bellevue on the right bank of the Rhone.

We went to the site and could note that an unknown object having the shape of a refringent spheroid appeared at a constant distance from [...] and that it remained [...]

Observed with binoculars, he time after time took the apparent shape of a disc with a curvature in the center and a cone from where a reddish trail escaped by the base.

This curious phenomenon started to be observed around 01:00 p.m. and it still lasted at 04:30 p.m.

The "saucer" (since it became common to call that way any object unknown to a non-specialist observer) slowly moved from the East to the West on 45 degrees approximately.

Aircraft, weather-balloon, new satellite?

The question is opened.

A GREEN FLYING SAUCER IN VEYNES

Veynes (C.P.).

[...] Louis and Mr. Curri Baptiste, were hasting at a sharp pace on the road. They were very surprised to see, between the Saint-Luc post and the wood of the Pignon, a ball of a very apparent green color, which moved rather quickly, leaving a red trail behind. It disappeared towards Aspremont. The two witnesses, who could admire it during at least thirty seconds, are convinced that it is a flying saucer.

Ballet of "saucers" in the sky of Ardeche

Grenoble (A.C.P.).

Mr. Joseph Habrat, farmer in the district of Perrets, in Lemps, not far from Tournon (the Ardeche), observed in the sky, last night, a true ballet of "flying saucers".

He had first of all noticed a green light moving slowly in direction of Valence. Then the luminous craft started to evolve at full speed in various directions and ended up being immobilized.

The farmer then called his daughter, Yvette, who up to now had refused to believe in the flying saucers.

Like her father, Yvette managed to observe the luminous object which advanced, it seemed to them, up to 500 meters of them approximately. A little later ten machines joined the first, and outlined with it a true ballet before disappearing in the direction of the East.

Little afterward, three craft appeared again then disappeared in the same direction as the previous ones.

[Ref. non1:] "NORD-MATIN" NEWSPAPER:

Scan.

Ballet of "saucers"
in the sky of the Ardèche

M. Joseph Habrat, a farmer in the Perrets district, in Lamps [sic], not far from Tournon (Ardèche), observed, in the sky, last night, a veritable ballet of "flying saucers".

He had first noticed a green light moving slowly, towards Valence. Then the luminous craft began to move at full speed in various directions and finally came to a stop.

The farmer then called his daughter Yvette who until now "had refused to believe in flying saucers".

Like her father, Yvette was able to observe the luminous craft, which advanced, it seemed, up to about 500 meters from them. A little later, a dozen craft came to join the first and sketched with it quite a ballet, before disappearing in the direction of the East.

Shortly after, three craft appeared again, then disappeared in the same direction as the previous ones.

12 little satellite cigars

Also, two people declared to have seen a luminous craft, in the sky, in Rixheim. Using binoculars, they found that it had the shape of a long cigar, a dozen small satellites surrounded it. A night shift railway worker said he observed the same phenomenon.

A saucer in Caudry

Friday morning, around 6:45 a.m., three workers, including two masons and a carpenter, were on their way to Caudry, on their way to their work place, when they saw a original machine, oval in shape, pale pink in color, very bright, leaving behind an absolutely dazzling trail.

This "flying saucer" seemed to fly over national road 29 and was heading towards Le Cateau.

One of these workers, Mr. Victor Lebon, 43, mason, living in Quiévy, is affirmative in his statements. The other two, one of whom is domiciled in Saint-Hilaire-lez-Cambrai, preferred to remain anonymous, but concurred.

Surrounded by vertical rods

It should also be noted that two residents of the commune of Foussignargues, near Bessègues, declared that they had seen, in a meadow, near their house, in the night from Sunday to Monday, a bright red luminous craft, surrounded by vertical rods.

Many people also saw, in Pau, in the sky at very high altitude, a mysterious craft in the shape of a long and shiny balloon. The object came from the South and was heading towards the North West.

Finally, Mr. Raymond Deloire, 20, agricultural worker in Langeron (Nièvre), who was riding a bicycle, on the road to Saint-Pierre-le-Moutiers, saw in the sky a mysterious object of semi-spherical shape emitting, at the front, a bright orange glow, flames gushed from the rear. The craft moved without noise, with great speed, in direction of the North-East.

[Ref. ner1:] NEWSPAPER "NORD-ECLAIR":

Scan.

MORE AND MORE MYSTERIOUS

"Luminous objects" explore the South and the East

The round of flying saucers, luminous cigars and other mysterious craft continues across France, the country of tourism for Martians on vacation. Yesterday there was a luminous ballet in the sky of the Ardèche, a landing in a farmyard in the Jura and apparitions in all skies, night or day.

Continued on page 11
under the title:
SAUCERS

Scan.

Saucers

The most amazing story is that told by a 12-year-old boy, Romain Romand, whose parents are farmers in Prémanon, in the Jura. Thursday evening, he saw a flying saucer, two meters high, which had landed in the middle of the farmyard. He threw stones at it and approached. The saucer began to move and the movement of air lifted him from the ground.

Terrorized, he fled. Her 9-year-old sister claims to have also seen the saucer from the window. The two children claim that they had never heard about "flying saucers."

In the Ardèche, in Lemps, not far from Tournon, a farmer, Mr. Joseph Habrat, observed a bright object, brighter than a star and heading for Valence.

With astonishment, he saw it move at a very high speed and suddenly stop. Mr. Habrat called his daughter, very skeptical about the reality of flying saucers, and the two then witnessed a real luminous ballet, led by the first beam. Suddenly all disappeared towards the East. Three craft reappeared for a moment and disappeared in their turn.

At Mas de Bruzy, near Perpignan, several grape pickers said they had seen in the sky a bright object in the shape of a saucer. After moving vertically, leaving a white trail, the craft disappeared in the clouds.

In Rixheim, near Mulhouse, two people said they saw a luminous object in the sky. Using binoculars, they found that it had the shape of a long cigar, a dozen cigarillos accompanied it. A railroader on night duty claims to have observed the same phenomenon.

Two residents of the commune of Foussignargues, near Besseges, in the Gard region, declared that they had seen in a meadow, close to their house, in the night from Sunday to Monday, a bright red luminous craft surrounded by vertical rods.

Thursday morning, many residents of Pau also saw in the sky, at very high altitude, a mysterious craft in the shape of an elongated, shiny balloon coming from the South and heading to the North-West.

In Nevers, Mr. Raymond Deloire, agricultural worker in Langeron (Nièvre), who was riding a bicycle on the road to Saint-Pierre-le-Moutiers, saw in the sky a mysterious object of semi-spherical shapes and putting out a bright orange glow, while flames gushed from behind. It was moving noiselessly at high speed towards the northeast.

[Ref. aml1:] AIME MICHEL:

French ufologist Aimé Michel provides the following description for a series of observations in Lemps, near Tournon, on September 27 between 09:40 P.M. and 11:00 P.M.

Whereas he was in his yard, Mr. Joseph Habrat, farmer in Lemps in the district of les Perrets, looked towards the sky and saw in the direction of Valence a motionless green luminous spot. He called his daughter Yvette who became the second witness of what follows. Puzzled, he stared at this green spot and was surprised to suddenly see it quit immobility to make a series of zig-zagging movements which made it follow a tangled up broken line, and then become motionless again. Joseph and Yvette Habrat then saw the phenomenon going out of sight towards the North-East.

One moment later, both saw what they described as a luminous and elongated smoke screen approaching up to a distance that they evaluated as of 300 meters. They then felt they heard a sort of buzzing sound, while the luminous smokescreen changed course without stopping and also disappeared in the direction of the North-East.

Still intrigued, the two witnesses continued to observe the sky, and around 11:00 P.M., they saw ten luminous object arriving from various places of the sky, and gathering in the south-east, on the side of Romans, then dart away towards the North-East while crossing their paths and getting one in front of the other randomly unceasingly.

Hardly had these luminous objects disappeared, that three other luminous points gathered on the side of Larnage, in the East, to also go towards the North-East.

Mr. Habrat kept on watching the sky but there were no other phenomena.

He indicates that the source are the file of ufologist Charles Garreau.

[Ref. aml6:] AIME MICHEL:

For the localizations made by the witnesses on the ground in the directions of the lines, well-established examples are numerous too: see for example in Lemps, on September 27, or the series between Poligny and the Chazey wood on October 14.

[Ref. cln1:] JIM LORENZEN:

On September 27th, 1954, sightings were made at Perpignan near Foussignorgues [sic], at Lemps, Premanon and Rixheim. Once again these sightings fall on a straight line, the Rixheim sighting was of a stationary cigar-shape, Rixheim lies at one end of the line. Two other sightings of September 27th line up with Rixheim one in Eastern Paris and one at Francles [sic] - though not in the same line as the others.

[Ref. jve5:] JACQUES VALLEE:

153 -004.77171 45.10980 27 09 1954 22 15 145 LEMPS F 11 644 C** 141

[Ref. fru1:] MICHEL FIGUET AND JEAN-LOUIS RUCHON:

The two ufologists and authors indicate that in Lemps in the Ardèche, on September 27, 1954, a green light and a craft have been seen.

[Ref. lhh1:] LARRY HATCH - "*U* COMPUTER DATABASE":

3855: 1954/09/27 22:20 35 4:46:20 E 45:06:40 N 3333 WEU FRN ADC 6:9

LEMPS,ARDECHE,FR:SVRL OBS:1 THEN 10 LUM SCRS ZIGZAG/SKY:>>NE:/IFS#27

Ref# 49 MICHEL,Aime: FS & STRAIGHT LINE TH: Page No. 88 : FARMLANDS

[Ref. goe1:] GODELIEVE VAN OVERMEIRE:

The Belgian ufologist indicates that in 1954, on September 27, in France, in Lemps, "Witness: Joseph Habrat, who observes the phenomenon at 22:15 from the yard of his dwelling. The light gave up its immobility, achieves at very high speed a series of movements, in zigzag, thus crossing a tangled up broken line, then became again motionless."

The source is noted as "Henry DURRANT: 'Premières enquêtes sur les Humanoïdes ET' - Laffont 1977 - p. 199."

[Ref. uin1:] "UFO INFORMATIONS" UFOLOGY BULLETIN:

DATE: September 27, 1954

PLACE: LEMPS - 26 (24 km in staight line from the north-northwest of Valence)

HOUR: at approximately 10:15 p.m.

OBSERVATION: Mr. Joseph Habrat, a farmer in the Perrets district, was in his yard when, looking up to the sky, he perceived on the side of Valence a luminous spot, green and motionless. Intrigued by this light, he stared at it for a moment, and great was his surprise when he suddenly saw it abandon its immobility, perform at a very high speed a series of zig-zag movements, thus traversing a broken line, intertwined, then become motionless again. In the meantime, Mr. Habrat had called his daughter Yvette, who was also a witness to the phenomenon. Both saw the object disappear to the northeast.

A moment later, an object that the two witnesses described as a long, luminous smoke curtain came in and approached at a distance they estimated at 300m. One seemed to hear a kind of buzzing sound. Without stopping, the curtain of luminous smoke "changed course and disappeared in its turn in the same direction as the preceding one, that is, towards the north-east. Fascinated, the two witnesses continued to scrutinize the sky.

Around 11 p.m., they saw come from different places of the sky a dozen luminous objects that gathered in the south-east, on the side of Romans, and then fled to the northeast, crossing and overspeeding each other non-stop. They had just disappeared than three other luminous dots agthered on the side of Larnage, to the east, and took the same direction as the preceding ones. Mr. Habrat looked at the sky for a long time, but in vain: the extraordinary carousel was over.

SOURCES: Aimé MICHEL "Mystérieux objets célestes"

[Ref. lgs1] LOREN GROSS:

A front page story.

October 3rd. London's Sunday Dispatch.

So much was happening in France the English press was forced to take note. Actually the story was too big. The London Sunday Dispatch could only print a summary on its front page. With the situation unclear, errors and the lack of detail was inevitable in the reporting. The Dispatch informed its readers:

"Near Grenoble farmer Joseph Habrat saw a luminous engine moving at great speed.

"His daughter, Yvette, said it came to within 600 yards with a gentle snoring sound.

"A little later two thousand people saw a dozen of them 'dancing a ballet' in the sky.

"Two people at Rixheim, near Mulhouse, watched a cigar-shaped luminous engine surrounded by twelve smaller satellite cigars.

"Three holiday-makers on Carry-le-Rouet beach saw a half-cigar over the port. Three women who saw it described it as leaving a trail of smoke.

"A flying mushroom was reported by a lorry-driver and his friend at Faremontiers. It was in a field and had three tripod-like legs.

"'I tried to approach it,' he said, 'but about four hundred feet away I was stopped by a ray. I felt little prickings. My head swam. I had a cold sweat. I could not move.'

"The mushroom then rose slowly and flew off.

"Dr. Martinet, skin disease specialist at Chambery, watched a flying saucer manoeuvring in the sky for four minutes.

"In the gulf of Gascony the mate and two seamen of a cargo boat saw a moving disc with a greenish glow.

"Actress Michele Morgan saw a luminous disc over the Invalides air terminal in Paris.

"There have been three reports of men from another planet landing in France.

"At Vienne a farmer said the visitor, who wore a kind of diving suit, caressed his arm.

"A woman at Drome saw a being about the size of a child and with a human face. He seemed to be wrapped in a transparent sack.'

"Both visitors to France returned to their saucers and took off vertically.

"A little helmeted and booted man with a revolver firing 'luminous and paralysing rays' was seen by the foreman of a quarry at Marcilly-sur-Vienne and six of his workmen.

"A whistling sound drew the attention of two men at Blanzy to a cigar-shaped machine in a freshly ploughed field.

"The men said the machine was about six feet in length. The pointed tip was yellow, the rest of the cigar brown.

"As they approached the machine it rose vertically.

"A policeman, a grocer, and eight other people saw an incandescent 'cigar' at Agen.

"A brilliant ball appeared to a stallkeeper at Belesta. He said it left a trail of grey smoke as it shot through the sky."

The author of the aforementioned account noted that at the same time that day (October 3, 1954) 40 miles away an amazing "sky display" was taking place above a wooded area near the village of Marcoign, France, before 20 witnesses. That so many people at the same moment at different locations should have a similar hallucination boggled the writer's mind, so much so he consulted a psychiatrist assigned to the Law Courts of the Seine, a Dr. Gouriou.

"Is mass "delusion upon this scale possible?"

The above question was put to the mental health expert who replied he had never known a flying saucer to play a role in any of his patient's hallucinations, and that hallucinations were usually sounds rather than visual images. Moreover, when on rare occasions visual disorders did occur, such problems were nearly always due to toxemia or cerebral lesions which would certainly help to rule out the possibility of a "mass visual delusion." 24.

Dr. Gouriou then wisely ended the interview with: "...I for one think that those who maintain that they have seen saucers do so in good faith, unless of course they are trying to hoax us. But we must never forget that whatever a normal human being sees, he, to a considerable extent interprets, and this fact alone renders all human evidence fallible." 25.

[Ref. amn1:] AUGUSTE MEESSEN:

Auguste Meessen indicates that on September 27, 1954 at 22:15, a farmer saw a green, stationary light in the sky, but to his great surprise, it gave up its immobility "to achieve at a very high speed a series of movements in zigzag, thus crossing a tangled up broken line, to then become again motionless." The farmer's daughter was also witness of this strange behavior and both saw the departure of the object.

The source is indicated as "A. Michel: Mystérieux Objets Célestes, 1977, p. 124, 226 et 84."

[Ref. lcn1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates in his database that in the Ardeche (07) in Lemps on September 27, 1954, "Between 21:40 to 23:00, whereas he was in his yard, a farmer in the district of Perrets looked towards the sky and saw on the side of Valence a motionless green luminous spot. He called his daughter Yvette who will be the second witness of what follows. Puzzled, he stares at this green spot and was then surprised to see it suddenly leaving its immobility, to make a series of zigzag movements which made it cross a tangled up broken line, then become again motionless. The two witnesses then see the phenomenon leaving out of sight towards the North-East. One moment later, both see what they will describe as a luminous and lengthened smoke screen approaching until a distance that they evaluated as 300 meters. They then seem to hear a kind of buzzing sound, while the luminous curtain changes course without stopping and also disappears in the direction of the North-East. Still puzzled, the two witnesses continue to observe the sky, and around 23 hours they see arriving from various places of the sky ten luminous objects which gather in the south-east, on the side of Romans, then slip by towards the North-East while crossing and while passing in front of each other unceasingly. Hardly had these luminous objects disappeared, that three other luminous spots gathered on the side of Larnage, in the east, to also go towards the North-East. The father continued to observe the sky but there were not other phenomena."

The sources are indicated as: "Ovni, Premier dossier complet... by Figuet M./ Ruchon J.L. ** éd. Alain Lefeuvre 1979" and "M.O.C. by Michel Aimé ** Arthaud 1958".

[Ref. uda1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 27 September 1954 at 22:15 in Tournon, France, "Procession of objects. Unidentified objects were sighted, but with appearance and behavior that most likely would have a conventional explanation. Many objects were observed."

The source is indicated as "Vallee, Jacques, Computerized Catalog (N = 3073)".

[Ref. uda2:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 27 September 1954 at 22:15 in Lemps Perrets, France, "One cigar, then 10 luminous saucers zig-zag through the sky, heading rapidly to the northeast. Explanation: Planet."

And: "Cigar-shaped objects were observed. They zig-zagged through the air. More than 10 cigar-shaped objects were observed by two witnesses on a farm for 45 minutes (Habrat; Henard)."

The sources are indicated as "Michel, Aime, Flying Saucers and the Straight-Line Mystery, S. G. Phillips, New York, 1958; Vallee, Jacques, Computerized Catalog (N = 3073); Vallee, Jacques, Challenge to Science: The UFO Enigma, Henry Regnery, Chicago, 1966; Vallee, Jacques, Preliminary Catalog (N = 500), (in JVallee01); Hatch, Larry, *U* computer database, Author, Redwood City, 2002".

[Ref. ubk1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

This database recorded this case 4 times:

Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
19540927 27.09.1954 Lemps Perrets France 22.15 NL
19540927 27.09.1954 Lemps France 22.15
19540927 27.09.1954 Lemps France 22.15 NL
19540927 27.09.1954 Tournon France 22.15 NL

Explanations:

The date is quite uncertain; a newspaper of October 2, 1954 said "last night"; thus October 1, 1954, or September 30, 1954, or before, as newspapers often just copied what was in an earlier local newspaper; as often, Aimé Michel does not explain why this would have occurred on September 27, 1954.

The observation could be explained by military maneuvers: the luminous curtain would be a helicopter headlight or a searchlight, the fast craft would be distant jet fighter planes. The witnesses evoke a buzzing sound.

Map.

Keywords:

(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Lemps, Ardèche, Joseph Habrat, Yvette Habrat, objects, points, luminous, smoke, green, spots, fast, manoeuvre, duration, formation, sound, zig-zag

Sources:

[----] indicates sources that are not yet available to me.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross March 23, 2006 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross January 29, 2010 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Additions [goe1], [lcn1], [uda1], [uda2].
1.1 Patrick Gross June 18, 2010 Addition [jve5].
1.2 Patrick Gross February 9, 2017 Addition [ubk1].
1.3 Patrick Gross March 23, 2017 Addition [cln1].
1.4 Patrick Gross March 23, 2017 Addition [cln1].
1.5 Patrick Gross July 28, 2019 Additions [aml6], [lhh1], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."
1.5 Patrick Gross August 7, 2019 Addition [uin1].
1.6 Patrick Gross March 30, 2020 Addition [non1]. In the Summary, "The regional newspaper Le Provençal" changed to "The regional newspapers Nord-Matin and Le Provençal".
1.7 Patrick Gross June 3, 2020 Addition [ner1].
1.8 Patrick Gross March 16, 2021 Addition [lgs1].

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