This article was published in the daily newspaper Le Provenšal, Marseille, France, on September 9, 1954.
Note: it was, in my opinion, a balloon. Explanation here.
The day before Yesterday, from 8 p.m. to 8:07 p.m., three people saw a sphere of light stop for 30 seconds and then draw an elegant loop in the sky
[Drawings:] The flying saucer as the residents of Franklin-Roosevelt court saw it.
Will Marseilles become the international capital for the flying saucers?
For more than two months, the "visions" have followed one another with a rare intensity. Tens of correspondents lengthily wrote us to tell us that there is indeed "saucers in the air".
Each week, with a comendable obstinacy, a photo hobbyist brings photographs to us - of a stunning veracity - of the supra-celestial phenomenon.
One could even, soon, organize a French championship of of the saucers "lookers".
In such a competition, the residents of Marseilles could have their chances...
But let us drop the easy mockery and try to keep a neutral attitude in the rough controversy which has established between the "visionaries" and the others, those who, fiercely, have their feet... and their eyes on the ground.
Like a fantasy star
It is thus in the most possible objective manner that we want to report a serious testimony, of a serious personality. A man who, up to now, is not classified among the jokers saw, Tuesday evening, from 8 p.m. to 8:07 p.m., a flying saucer evolve above the city, slowly as in a walk, stopping for 30 seconds and tracing on the "ceiling" a luminous loop, as a star which would have inclinations for coquettery. It is Mr. Guibert, administrative secretary of the Colonial Institute, domiciled 45, Franklin-Roosevelt court, formerly Devilliers court.
We chattered nearly one hour yesterday with Mr. Guibert. We can attest the sincerity of his talk. He really saw what he will describe for us. So let us hear his words:
Thirty seconds stop and a nice loop
"I live in Franklin-Roosevelt court, in a building whose frontages are respectively directed South-South-East and North-North-East.
"A 20 hours precise, whereas I read my newspaper in my room, my wife who was closing the shutters called me. She was then on the terrace of the northern frontage. She stated me to see, with the naked eye, a kind of abnormally large star, of vermillion red color, shining of light and moving slowly.
"I approached the window too and saw the phenomenon myself, at 45 degrees approximately halfway between the horizon and the zenith. Indeed, the luminous ball advanced. I could locate its altitude exactly. Not believing my eyes, I took some binoculars.
"I distinctly the object, obviously more distinctly. It had started in the full North and it moved slowly, marked a thirty seconds pause, and continued its course. Suddenly, it drew an outer loop in the sky (see the plan) and set out again in the same direction to disappear at the top of a pack of fog, direction Nord-Nord-Est this time, at high altitude it seems.
"My wife, myself, and my twelve years old son Francis, observed the travel of the machine during exactly seven minutes, stopwatch in hand.
The sphere of light stumbled on its axis
"I drew my vision", as it passed in my visual field.
"I saw it, thanks to my binoculars, to grow bigger little by little, rock on his axis. Lastly, I saw only a sphere of light, becoming increasingly intense.
"Even the core of the saucer - if this is a saucer - scintillated extraordinarily.
"I lengthily studied the art of ceramics and I am obviously interested in the colors. The red became more intense, vermilion red. At this time I evaluated this red bright vermilion as correspondent to an industrial temperature from 700 to 800 degrees.
"In a flash's time , the phenomenon took a white, incandescent color, equivalent to a temperature of 1200 to 1800 degrees. This evening there, if you remember, the fog was rather thick. And the released light pierced through this fog! My wife, my son and me remained amazed. Did we witness the passage of a meteor? In the affirmative, why this slowness of evolution, this thirty seconds stop and this outer elegant loop described in the sky?
"Have we been the victims of a collective vision?
"I do not think so. My wife saw it first. I then scanned the sky with the binoculars and observed the same characteristics.
"We make our observation available to the experts of the matter."
September 7, 1954, from 8 p.m. to 8:07 p.m., a luminous object appeared in the Northern sector of the sky of Marseilles... Saucer or odd meteor?
The testimony that we have just quoted adds to those, duly authorized, of many scientists and aviators of all countries.
The skeptics still have the right to doubt, but nobody can deny anymore the fact that there is something unexplained, if not abnormal, in the air.
[Diagram on the right:] Mr. Guibert had time to make a sketch of the trajectory of the luminous ball.