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ALSACAT:

ALSACAT is my comprehensive catalog of UFO sighting reports in Alsace, the region is the North-East of France, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ALSACAT catalog is made of case files with a case number, summary, quantitative information (date, location, number of witnesses...), classifications, all sources mentioning the case with their references, a discussion of the case in order to evaluate its causes, and a history of the changes made to the file. A general index and thematic sub-catalogs give access to these Alsatian case files.

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Case of Zutzendorf, in the 1800's:

Case number:

ALSACAT-1800-00-00-ZUTZENDORF-1

Summary:

In an article aimed at showing similarities between ufological material and folklore material, in the ufology magazine Lumières Dans La Nuit #237-238, of March - April 1984, Frédéric Dumerchat reported, among other stories collected by Alsatian folklorist Auguste Stoeber, the following story.

It had been told to Stoeber by a friend and relative, and by the eldest son of another friend, all also related by family relationship, one was old, the other was in his thirties when this happened.

One summer, they had been to Zutzendorf and returned to Kirrwiller in the evening. The two sons of the oldest had left earlier. They stopped to look for them near a depression called Dunzenbruch located on a hill. It was a decried place because a monk carrying a coffin from which blood was dripping appeared there sometimes, according to some.

They then saw two dark shapes, which looked like six or eight-year-olds. Arrived on the height, they heard them speaking loudly and seeming to quarrel, the words were unintelligible and the argument seemed to take place in a foreign language. They were not walking but appeared to glide in the air "one foot" above the ground. Then "... they flew off with a noise of birds of prey wings, still quarreling and circling around each other loudly." They disappeared behind bales of straw.

The two men did not exchange a word during this incident, they returned home confused and pale, agreeing with most of what they had observed.

A. Stoeber recorded that many people claimed to have met these pale, peasant-dressed children, some said they had seen two boys, others a boy and a girl. He met an old officer who had seen them on the Spitzling, a hill between Kirrwiller and Bouxwiller, where wisps were also reported, they wore red breastplates and were in shirt sleeves.

Dumerchat then explained: "Referring to the studies of E. Zurcher and J.U. Pereira, we will notice several characteristics that they had identified about humanoids: the small size, that of the elves, the movement levitating flush from the ground which is also, often, that of fairies and elves, Marian apparitions and ghosts, the disappearance while flying, the unknown and unintelligible language ".

Data:

Temporal data:

Date: The 1800's
Time: Summer evening.
Duration: ?
First known report date:
Reporting delay:

Geographical data:

Department: Haut-Rhin
City: Zutzendorf
Place:
Latitude: 48.850
Longitude: 7.539
Uncertainty ratio: 4 km.

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: ?
Number of known witnesses: ?
Number of named witnesses: ?
Witness(es) ages: ?
Witness(es) types: ?

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: ?
Type of location: ?
Visibility conditions: Night
UFO observed: Yes
UFO arrival observed: Yes
UFO departure observed: Yes
Entities: No
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: Puzzled.
Witnesses interpretation: ?

Classifications:

Hynek: RR3
ALSACAT: Inventions, not UFO-related.

Sources:

[Ref. ldl1:] UFOLOGY MAGAZINE "LUMIERES DANS LA NUIT":

Scan.

A MEETING WITH TWO CHILDREN
GHOSTS

It was related to A. Stôber by a friend, and relative, and by the eldest son of another friend. They were also related by family relationship, one was old, the other was in his thirties when this happened.

In the Summer, they had visited Zutzendorf (Bas-Rhin) (53) and returned in the evening to Kirrwiller (Bas-Rhin) (54). The two sons of the oldest had left earlier. They stopped to look for them near a depression called Dunzenbruch located on a hill. It was a decried place, a monk carrying a coffin, from which drops of blood escaped, manifested himself there, according to some.

They then saw two dark shapes, which looked like six or eight-year-olds. Arrived on the height, they heard them speaking loudly and seeming to quarrel, the words were unintelligible and the argument seemed to take place in a foreign language. They were not walking but appeared to glide in the air "at one foot" (about thirty-three cm) above the ground. Then "... they flew off with a noise of birds of prey wings, still quarreling and circling around each other loudly." They disappeared behind bales of straw.

Scan.

The two men did not exchange a word during this incident, they returned home confused and pale, agreeing with the main part of what they had observed (55).

A. Stöber reports that many people claimed to have met these pale children dressed as small peasants, some said they had seen two boys, others a boy and a girl. He met an old officer who had seen them on the Spitzling, a hill between Kirrwiller and Bouxwiller (Bas-Rhin) (56), where they also reported wisps (57), they wore red breastplates and were in shirt arm.

Referring to the studies of E. Zurcher and J.U. Pereira, one will notice several characteristics that they had identified about humanoids: the small size, that of the elves (58), the levitating displacement at ground level which is also, often, that of the fairies and elves, Marian apparitions and ghosts (59), disappearance while flying (60), unknown and unintelligible language (61).

Les notes sont données ainsi à la fin de l'article:

Discussion:

Map.

A number of ufologists have searched ancient sources for stories that would resemble those of encounters with UFO occupants found in the modern UFO corpus.

(Far be it from me to condemn the approach, nor to say that there would not be a single one of those.).

For some, it was an effort to show that there had been extraterrestrial visitors in the past, before we spoke of UFOs or flying saucers.

For others, it was meant show that modern reports are the same nonsense as those of past centuries.

Others still argue that any abnormal "fact", fairies, religious apparitions, appearances of extraterrestrials, are one and the same phenomenon, which would be the deeds of a "superior intelligence", extraterrestrial or not, who would like to "control" humanity by making us "see things", for beneficial or evil or unknown goals (depending on one or the other author).

For my part, I think there is no doubt that nonsense has always existed, and that there is nonsense in ufology. But I am not going to admit that examples of ancient or current nonsense are likely to prove that there never would have been any extraterrestrial visitors on Earth.

I am ready to consider that extraterrestrial visits in the past would have been described in terms of their time, for example that one would talk of children floating in the air for small beings from another planet, or that one would call "flying coach" what one would call "flying saucer" later.

But I totally refuse to take stories like this for reports of proven facts. Here, the context is that of a folklorist collecting all kinds of legends, oral traditions, gossip and rumors. There was never any effort for Stoeber to verify the reality of what he was being told. It seems to me that it is now impossible to say that any of these stories would be a true report of true facts.

I am all the more convinced of this since the "drawer effect" plays in the approach of F. Dumerchat and others using the same approach: only the stories which seem to plea for a connection between folklore and ufology are cited. It seems justified; but this hides from the reader that there is in reality only a tiny proportion of such stories, among an incredible amount of other stories that no one would dream of using to support any ufological theory. Here are some Alsatian examples also taken from Stoeber:

We see it even here, with the "sub-story" of the monk carrying a bloody coffin... Who would imagine that this tells us something relevant about the UFO sighting reports? And where are the "similarities"?

Evaluation:

Inventions, not UFO-related.

Sources references:

* = Source is available to me.
? = Source I am told about but could not get so far. Help needed.

File history:

Authoring:

Main author: Patrick Gross
Contributors: None
Reviewers: None
Editor: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross June 20, 2021 Creation, [ldl1].
1.0 Patrick Gross June 20, 2021 First published.

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This page was last updated on June 20, 2021.