High Strangeness: UFOs on Film

Thursday, September 5, 2013

UFOs on Film

Once again I have neglected the blog while I work on my UFO book, but you benefit in the end because you get to read previews of the book. If you follow along closely, you may never have to buy the book at all!

Over the last several days I've been digging into a seminal UFO case of which, to be honest, I was only dimly aware (sharp readers may have noticed that this sort of thing comes up with alarming regularity). I'm glad I discovered it though, because it's a very cool case, and a real pivot point in the history of UFO research. Had things gone differently back in 1952, who knows? We might have already made contact with E.T...

When UFO people talk about the flap of 1952, they usually talk about the two weekends that July when flying saucers of all shapes and sizes were zooming back and forth in the skies above Washington, D.C. It was a great time for everyone, and made it pretty much impossible for the Air Force to keep telling the American public "It's okay, folks, we've got this" where UFOs were concerned.

But the bigger event of 1952 had already taken place on a lonely highway outside Tremonton, Utah. On July 2nd, the Newhouse family--dad Delbert, mom Norma, kids Del, Jr., 14, and Ann, 12--were driving through Utah on a cross-country trip from Washington, D.C. to Oakland California. Dad Delbert was taking a new job in California, so the family loaded up the car and made a vacation of it.

Norma saw something odd in the sky that morning and Delbert pulled over to get a look. The sky was clear and blue, visibility was excellent. Far up above the car, a dozen or so shining white circles were meandering around in the sky. Thinking quickly, Delbert unpacked his movie camera, loaded a magazine of Ektachrome, and started shooting. What he ended up with was 40 seconds of film showing a group of bright objects behaving very strangely--one might almost say purposefully. I'll leave it to you decide after you watch the film here...

Look closely and you'll see a huge missed opportunity.
Newhouse's movie may look like the sloppy work of your shutterbug uncle, but get this: Delbert Newhouse, Sr., was a Chief Warrant Officer in the U.S. Navy, he was a 21-year veteran, he had logged about 2,000 hours of flight time, and his title with the Navy was *ahem*"Chief Photographer."

The film got into the hands of military intelligence, set off alarm bells like you wouldn't believe, and was quickly sent to the two top government photographic analysis agencies in the known universe, one run by the Navy, the other by the Air Force. Their analysis, after some 1,000 hours of examining the film frame-by-frame, was this:

“It is the majority opinion of the group conducting this analysis that these images are light sources. This will explain the non-blinking and variations in luminosity—but not the velocity or acceleration factors. In either case, light source or reflective surface, it appears as if the objects are of a nature which we are not able to identify in terms of natural phenomena or commonly-known man-made objects.
“There is no indication of what kind of objects could have caused the images except that they must be of a construction, design, and material not commonly known. This is indicated by the computed acceleration rate and velocity. For the same reasons, birds, aircraft and balloons are ruled out.”
Holy fucking shit. Way bigger than Roswell, right? You'd think this would have been a 50-megaton bombshell... or at least caused a few ripples... or maybe mussed someone's hair a bit.

But no.

Even after getting the backing of a healthy portion of the intelligence community, the Tremonton Incident was listed in the official Project Blue Book case report as "Possible Pillow Balloons or Birds," but somewhere along the line, someone at a very high pay grade crossed out "Possible" and wrote in "Probable." 

And that's why nobody talks about the Tremonton Incident...


Anonymous said...

The Tremonton film was very big at the time. It, along with the 1950 Great Falls clip, figured prominently in the 1956 documentary film 'UFO' (which left a big impression on me when I was a kid).

It is impressive that the witness was a Navy photographer but, by his own admission, he chose the wrong F-stop and screwed up the exposure for some of the footage.

Not sure what these are but they do look like an eerie premonition of the Mexican UFO fleets which are, almost certainly, balloons.

Anonymous said...

Quote - If you follow along closely, you may never have to buy the book at all! -
Now this makes me buy your book, more interested you are in the topic of the book than selling books - something we need a whole of these days - thank you!

Mark UFO'Connell said...

Pillow balloons?