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UFOs in the Press:

The French 1954 saucer flap in the daily Press:

The article below was published in the daily newspaper The Star Press, Muncie, Indiana, USA, on page 15, on October 26, 1954.

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France, Too, 'Invaded' By Martians

Paris (UP) -- A flying saucer epidemic has Frenchmen seeing men from Mars.

The other evening in the Lorraine village of Walscheid a terrified band of youngsters stampeded homeward to report that the men from Mars had landed in a villager's garden. Womenfolk dashed into the village church, hoping for Divine sanctuary.

The men grabbed scythes, clubs, and the few available guns and marched against the Martians. They marched to the garden. There stood the invaders, half human size, heads glowing motionless. Turned out they were big-blossomed chrysanthemums the resident had covered with brilliant cloth against the frost.

The Standard Model

When the big scale visitation from the outer reaches began, the flying saucer was the standard model. Since then luminous cigars, frying pans, discs, melone and even bells have hurtled through the French skies in increasing numbers.

Within the week the villagers of Momy (Basses-Pyrenees) took to the fields with makeshift weapons to deal with a flying saucer freshly arrived. They found a hollow pumpkin with a candle burning inside.

Two nights earlier a farmer in the Bordeaux area stopped to repair his car on a lonely road, and narrowly missed death when a resident mistook him for a celestial invader and fired both barrels of his shotgun at him.

Ten days ago Gilbert Lelay told his parents at Chateaubriant that a little Martian stepped from a flying cigar and readily gave him permission to look at it, but warned him not to touch it.

Near Toulouse, a mechanic, Jean Marty, 43, informed police he saw an orange saucer land near his home. It soon zoomed away into the night, but Marty found two sheets of paper on the ground, covered with cryptic markings which none could deny might be Martian literature.

The weekly magazine Express offered a reward of 10,000,000 Francs ($28.570) to the first person bringing a real live Martian to its office.

The more scholarly newspaper Le Monde, lamenting on the rash of flying saucers, mourned in print for "the days of our well beloved sea serpent."

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