M. Deschamps - Director
of Terminology and Abbreviations
Ste. Marie, Ontario, DAILY STAR, 9 July 1947, Page 1
DISC" FOUND IN N.M.
FORTH WORTH, TEX. - (AP) - An examination by the United
States army revealed last night that a mysterious object
found on a lonely New Mexico ranch was a harmless high-altitude
balloon and not a grounded flying disc.
Excitement was high in disc-conscious Texas until Brig.-Gen.
Roger M. Ramey, commander of the 8th air forces with headquarters
here, cleared up the mystery.
The bundle of tinfoil, broken wood beams and rubber remnants
of a balloon were sent here yesterday by army air transport
in the wake of reports that it was a flying disc.
But Ramey said the objects were the crushed remains of a
raywind target used to determine the direction and velocity
of winds at high altitudes.
The weather balloon was found several days ago in a desolate
section of New Mexico by a rancher, W. W. Brazel. He said
he didn't think much about it until he went into Corona,
N.M., last Saturday and heard the flying disc reports.
Bay, Ontario, DAILY NUGGET, 14 October 1947, Page 8
El Paso, Tex., Oct. 14 - (AP) - An unidentified flaming
object soared over the Texas-Mexico border Sunday, apparently
smashing into the Zamal-Ayuca mountains of Mexico with a
loud explosion and billows of smoke.
Bay, Ontario, DAILY NUGGET, 14 October 1947, Page 32
Object" Sought in Mexico
El Paso, Tex., Oct. 14 - (AP) - Mexican mounted troops today
were to ride into the sandhills and mountains near Caseta,
Mexico, seeking a mysterious flaming object which residents
claimed soared over the town Sunday to explode in billows
of smoke 10 miles away.
Brig.-Gen. Enrique Diaz Gonzales last night sent a request
that United States military reconnaissance planes assist
in the search for "the object." He suggested the
planes drop flares and otherwise guide the mounted troops
to any crater sighted.
The object was estimated to have landed about 15 miles southeast
of El Paso. Many residents of Fabens, Texas, and Colonia
Reforma said they heard two explosions as the body apparently
A captain in the Mexican reserve who first reported the
incident described the object as about two feet long and
Military officials established the object was not a military
missile like the V-2 rocket that went wild and crashed in
the same general direction south of Juarez, Mexico, May
An amateur astronomer, Oscar E. Monnig of Fort Worth, Tex.,
said yesterday it was his belief the object was "almost
certainly a fireball meteor."
Bay, Ontario, DAILY NUGGET, 24 June 1950, Page 3
OF FIRE" STARTLES THOUSANDS IN SOUTHERN U.S.
DALLAS, Tex., June 24 - (AP) - A ball of fire flashed across
the southern United States sky as the sun sank last night,
trailing a streamer of flame and startling thousands.
Or did it? Was it just a speeding plane with the sun's last
red and gold rays tricks with its vapor trail? Was it a
real ball of fire, a meteor? Or was it - could it have been
- a flying saucer?
What direction did it travel? Take your choice: East to
west or south to east.
And where did it land? If it was a jet plane, at El Paso,
Tex.; if a meteor, perhaps in the swamps of Louisiana.
Or maybe there was a meteor as well as a jet.
Here are the known facts: A brilliant light various described
as a fire ball and a fiery streak was seen from Montgomery,
Ala., to Fort Worth, Tex., at about 7:40 p.m. CST. A ship
350 miles at sea from Galveston, Tex., saw it. A similar
flash was seen an hour earlier at Natchez, Miss., and about
20 minutes later at Abilene, Tex. During this period, a
jet plane was whizzing over the south on a course from Langley
Field, Va., to El Paso.
The weather bureau at Moisant International Airport in New
Orleans said there were theories that the fire ball was
either the tail-end of a comet or the vapor trail of a high-flying
Dr. David V. Guthrie, director of the Louisiana State University
astronomical observatory, was sure it was a meteor. But
he hadn't seen it.
New Orleans weather observer E. A. Aime, who did see it,
wasn't sure what he saw. He carefully reported the aircraft
vapor trail theory, then said:
looked like something that came from outside our atmosphere
(which reaches upward about 75 miles) and burned up in our
was the most brilliant and the brightest meteor - if it
was a meteor - I've ever seen. It looked like a sky rocket."
Ste. Marie, Ontario, STAR, 4 August 1962, Page 1
Claim Evidence Of Comet Hitting Earth
By RUSSELL ELMAN
OTTAWA (CP) - Russian scientists believe they have detected
the first known case of a comet from outer space striking
The Soviet claim, now widely supported but still not proved
beyond doubt, was related Friday by Dominion astronomer
Dr. C. S. Beals following an 18-day visit to Russia.
If the comet theory is correct, it will explain a natural
phenomenon that has baffled the world's scientists for more
than half a century.
The mystery dates to 1908 when Tunguska, in a remote part
of central Siberia, was bombarded by what until recently
was considered one of only two recorded major meteorite
falls in history. The other occurred in 1947 in eastern
However, although the Tunguska fall resulted in great disturbances
in the air waves and a shock felt thousands of miles away,
no crater was ever discovered.
Dr. Beals said in an interview that Russian scientists now
think the only thing that could produce such a phenomenon
would be a massive, large body of low density.
A likely object of this description would be the head of
a comet, an apparently loosely-aggregated mass of particles
and frozen gases which rotates around the sun. From the
ground, a comet usually is seen as a slow-moving, bright
object with a tail.
By contrast, meteorites, remnants of meteors which flash
through space, have a mineral content and usually carve
a crater when they hit.
Dr. Beals said the Russians showed him aerial photographs
of the Tunguska area and, although trees were toppled and
there was other damage, there was no evidence of craters
of any kind.
More of the story is expected to be learned following the
return of new expeditions now at work in the Tunguska area.
The head of the Dominion observatories went to Russia under
an exchange agreement between the National Research Council
and the Soviet Academy of Sciences. His overseas trip, which
lasted seven weeks, also included visits to Finland, West
Germany, France and Britain.
Dr. Beals thought Russia was probably ahead of Canada in
work on meteorites. The Russians had quite a large team
of scientists devoted to this kind of work.
As a general impression, he thought individual Russian scientists
compares favorably with the best in other countries.
struck me most, however, was not the differences but the
similarities between scientists. When we get together, we
tend to forget our nationalities."
Bay, Ontario, NUGGET, 10 December 1965, Page 1
lights sky over Canada, States
(AP) - A brilliant light flashed across the sky late Thursday,
raining burning bits of matter across several mid-western
states and southwestern Ontario.
undoubtedly was a fireball," said Dr. William P. Bidelman,
an astronomer at the University of Michigan.
spokesman for the U.S. defence department said first reports
indicate it was a natural phenomenon. All aircraft, missiles
and the like are accounted for, he said.
are bits of stone or metal that rain from the sky at all
times of the year, Dr. Bidelman said. A fireball is a brilliant
meteor. Any piece or fragment that survives the flight and
impact is called a meteorite.
it was, it attracted a lot of attention. Persons in Pennsylvania,
Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and parts of Ontario said they
saw brilliant flashes of light blazing across the sky at
dusk. Some said they saw fiery objects plunge to earth.
Ontario, sightings were reported as far north as Sarnia
and as far east as London, Ont. A sighting was also reported
at Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.
began receiving reports of small fires in widely scattered
areas. Fires were put out and extensive searches were made,
but there were no reports of significant findings.
the village of Kecksburg in southwestern Pennsylvania, fireman
Roy Howard said he saw several blue flashes "like an
acetylene torch" close to the ground.
persons said they saw the flashes, too.
troopers and air force personnel tramped through the area
for hours with Geiger counters. They said they found nothing
and called off the search.
Elyria, 20 miles west of Cleveland, Ohio, firemen said they
found 10 small grass fires burning in a small area, and
they quickly put them out with no major damage.
Ralph Richards, who lives nearby, said she saw a fiery object
the size of a volley ball fall among some trees just before
the fires broke out.
U.S. Coast Guard in Detroit got a report of an airplane
down in the Detroit river that separates Detroit and Windsor.
Boats searched and found nothing.
south of Lapeer, Mich., deputies checked reports that an
unidentified object fell into a field.
Kenneth A. Parks of Lapeer County said his men found some
pieces of shiny metallic foil, each four to six inches long
and about a quarter inch wide. But he said similar material
was found in the same area about two years ago.
Ste. Marie, Ontario, STAR, 24 May 1973, Page 1
Saucer Group Asks Body Be Raised for Test
AURORA, Tex. (Reuters) - Some Texans think the pilot of
a flying saucer may have been buried here 76 years ago and
officials of a saucer-watching group want to exhume the
body to determine whether the remains are human or alien.
Officials of the International Unidentified Flying Objects
Bureau (IUFO) are seeking "legal means" by which
the body, buried in April, 1897, can be exhumed.
IUFO director Hayden Hughes says old newspaper stories report
an unidentified flying object "exploded atop a well"
on the property of Judge J. S. Proctor April 19, 1897.
pilot's dismembered body was buried that same say in the
Aurora cemetary," about 70 miles northwest of Dallas,
hope by exhuming the body we may obtain some of the same
type of unusual metal, from either his clothing or bones,
that was unearthed at the well site when we checked it with
A research scientist from a nearby aircraft company, provided
with specimens of the metal by the reporters of the Dallas
Times-Herald, said: "I've never seen any metal like
that in 25 years of experience."
An 83-year-old man who says his father saw the spaceship
crash and explode has told reporters: "My daddy watched
the silver-colored, cigar-shaped spaceship cross our pasture
very low and slowly. It had a white light on it and he watched
until it crashed and burned."
Ontario, STAR, 20 October 1976, page 18
blast likely atomic, expert say
MOSCOW (Reuters) - An explosion which devastated part of
a frozen Siberian forest almost 70 years ago probably was
nuclear in origin and may have been caused by an alien spacecraft,
a Soviet geologist was quoted Thursday as saying.
Dr. Alexei Zolotov, who for 17 years has studied the explosion
which rocked the forest in western Siberia, has just returned
from his latest expedition to the area.
investigations in the course of 17 years seem to confirm
our assumption that what took place was a nuclear explosion,"
he told Tass news agency. "So far there is not a single
fact that would contradict our nuclear hypothesis."
Another theory for the blast is that a huge meteorite crashed
into the earth. No traces have been found of the meteorite,
but some scientists say it may have vaporized on impact.
Before the explosion on June 30, 1908, witnesses reported
there was an almost blinding flash visible 500 miles away.
The Soviet encyclopedia says the crash uprooted trees, throwing
them into a 20-mile radius around the point of impact and
leaving a heavy dust cloud which lasted several hours.
Asked by Tass whether a nuclear-powered spacecraft may have
been responsible for the blast, Dr. Zolotov said the possibility
of earth being visited by intelligent beings from other
worlds was "not entirely improbable."
On his latest expedition, Dr. Zolotov collected samples
of permafrost soil dating from 1908 and traces of trees
which survived the blast.
Wood samples from the area also show that after 1908, the
layers of wood have been exhibiting a radioactive anomaly,
a higher-than-normal radioactivity level, he said.
Ontario, STAR, 11 November 1976, page 20
remain baffled by huge explosion in 1908
MOSCOW (AP) - On the morning of June 30, 1908, an explosion
lit up the already bright sky over central Siberia. The
force was strong enough to knock horses to the ground more
than 400 miles away.
Investigators later estimated that the blast was equal to
the detonation of 30 million tons of TNT or the equivalent
of 1,500 atomic bombs of the type that devastated Hiroshima.
Sixty-eight years after it happened, scientists are still
unable to agree on the cause of the Tunguska phenomenon,
named for the remote forest where the explosion took place.
The initial assumption was that a gigantic meteorite had
smashed into the earth, but this idea was ultimately rejected
when no crater and no meteor fragments could be found.
Every summer for the last 17 years, the Soviet Union has
sent expeditions to the area where thousands of charred
and flattened trees still lie over a vast expanse shaped
like a butterfly, stretching 50 miles from wing to wing.
They always come back with a little more data, as they did
this summer, but no proof of what really happened that day
The Tunguska mystery has spawned numerous theories from
both serious scientists and dreamy science fiction writers.
The theories range from an exploded comet head - the most
popular notion among Soviet scientists today - to a blown-up
spaceship, to the invasion of a "black hole" from
the far reaches of the universe. But for every theory raised,
someone has come up with a plausible rebuttal.
Continued interest in the Tunguska explosion has particular
relevance in the nuclear age. More than once, scientists
have posed the question: What if it happened today?
How, for example, would the nuclear powers react if an explosion
of the Tunguska magnitude occurred again somewhere in Russia?
In the United States? In China?
Here are the generally accepted data about the Tunguska
A space body of undetermined size penetrated the earth's
atmosphere, travelling from east to west at a speed of more
than 3,000 miles an hour. It exploded about four miles above
the earth, over the lower Tunguska River basin of Siberia.
The blast levelled trees over a 1,250-square-mile area,
presumably killing all living things. But since the area
was largely uninhabited, few human deaths were recorded.
The explosion was followed by intense radiation, which ignited
a widespread fire.
For weeks after the explosion, the night sky glowed with
extraordinary luminescence, seen as far away as Western
In addition, there were some particularly puzzling features.
Trees at "ground zero," immediately beneath the
blast, remained standing. Only their bark and branches were
Also, because of the radiation burns and the resemblance
to a nuclear explosion, scientists expected to find heavy
traces of radioactivity in the area. But they did not.
What they did find, however, was unusually lush vegetation
which had grown in the area since the explosion. And examination
of the growth rings of trees which survived outside the
devastated zone showed that the wood had increased at 10
to 12 times its normal rate since 1908.
Although no meteorite fragments were found, microscopic
particles of melted silicate, or glass, were discovered
several years ago in the peat bogs of Tunguska. These particles
did not resemble other silicate found on earth. They contained
the rare elements selenium and ytterbium, which were thought
to originate only in the depths of planets.
Ontario, STAR, 14 May 1977, page 26
try to unravel mystery of giant nuclear blast in 1908
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Soviet and Western scientists still are
puzzling over a mysterious explosion which almost 70 years
ago ripped through a Siberian forest with the force of several
The latest theory is that the explosion on the morning of
June 30, 1908 was nuclear in origin - and could even have
been caused by an alien spacecraft colliding with earth.
Soviet geologist Dr. Alexei Zolotov has for the past 17
years been collecting wood samples from the area of the
blast around the Tungus Taiga (forest) and found that they
have an unusually high radioactivity level.
Fluctuations in the earth's magnetic field, the type of
shock-wave oscillations produced by the blast and the spectrum
of seismic waves in the blast area, all tended to back up
his nuclear theory, Dr. Zolotov said in a Soviet press interview.
far there is not a single fact that would contradict our
nuclear hypothesis," he said.
But Dr. Zolotov could not explain what could have caused
a nuclear explosion before the atom had even been split.
Asked whether a nuclear-powered spacecraft could have been
responsible, Dr. Zolotov said that he and his research team
were investigating the possibility.
is from this point of view that we are exploring the possibility
of the artificial origin of the Tungus cosmic body,"
Other theories range from a comet-head to a "black
hole" on its way through the universe, but nobody has
yet come up with a conclusive explanation for what is known
here as "the Tungus Taiga mystery."
Early on the morning of the blast, according to witnesses,
there was a blinding flash which lit up the bleak Siberian
marshland around the lower Tunguska river basin.
The glow was visible 500 miles away and, according to some
reports, was even seen in Western Europe.
Trees were uprooted in a 1,250-square-mile area and tossed
into the air like matchsticks. Animals and birds were killed,
although there was no evidence of human casualties in the
sparsely populated area.
Villagers on their way to work some 400 miles from the site
of the blast were thrown to the ground, horses are said
to have dropped to their knees as the shock waves swept
the surrounding area.
Some sort of space body, some Soviet scientists calculate,
must have penetrated the earth's atmosphere, hurtling from
east to west at more than 3,000 m.p.h.
The blast itself, the experts say, occurred about four miles
above the earth's surface and had the force of several Hiroshima-type
atom bombs or a large hydrogen bomb.
The initial explanation for the blast was that it was caused
by a massive meteorite which smacked into the earth with
such force that it vaporized on impact.
But the theory was discarded after no meteorite fragments,
and no crater, were found.
The most popular theory with Soviet experts, including the
influential Academy of Sciences, is that the head of a comet
- a huge "dirty snowball" of frozen gases - exploded
when it came into contact with the earth's atmosphere.
Astro-physicists from Tomsk University who have just returned
from taking complex measurements in the area, say the body's
probable trajectory agrees with the comet theory.
This would explain the absence of a crater and the brilliant
flash before the blast, the experts say.
But these scientists have so far not been able to explain
why the comet-head exploded only four miles above the ground,
and not as soon as it entered the atmosphere. The high radiation
level of the area also remains a mystery.
The radiation burns, according to scientists at University
of Texas, could have been caused by a "black hole"
- a collapsed star of great density from another galaxy
- which hit Siberia, passed through earth and continued
its way across the universe.
But there are so few facts that almost any blackboard theory
could be made to apply.
What makes the Tungus Taiga debate more than an academic
wrangle is the prospect of a similar blast occurring again
- in a heavily populated area.
Not only would there be a great loss of life, but, if a
Soviet or United States metropolis were hit, the blast could
be interpreted as a nuclear attack.
Thus many Soviet scientists are anxious to find a final
explanation for the Tungus Taiga mystery so that they can
start to devise some sort of warning system.
is an urgent problem," said one academician, "I
dread to think what would happen if there were another Tungus
Ontario, STAR, 16 November 1978, page 14
The UFO that went 'Bang!'
Toronto Sun Syndicate
For the peasant Tungus of Siberia, the morning of June 30,
1908, must have seemed like the end of the world.
They felt the earth tremble and shake, saw their tents and
buildings tossed down, saw the forest crushed as if by a
giant invisible hand, felt a searing hot blast of air and
heard the roar of thunder. They saw fires raging and watched
a great black cloud rise miles high into the sky. Later
they were terrified when black rain fell.
In that terrifying morning, the outside world also received
evidence of some cataclysmic but unknown event. Seismographs
in Moscow, in Germany, and even in Washington were activated
by an immense earth-shudder.
Within five hours of the impact, sudden atmospheric pressure
fluctuations lasting twenty minutes were recorded by many
meteorological stations in England, leaving weather researchers
completely baffled. The air wave circled the globe twice
and during the first week of July the night skies across
Russia and Europe were aglow with "remarkable lights
and sunsets of exceptional beauty." Photographs taken
in Russia during this period show vivid atmospheric displays
created by glowing ionized air particles.
But as to the cause of all this remarkable phenomena, no
The first theory to take hold was that a huge meteorite
had collided with the earth somewhere. Eventually, in 1921,
meteorologist Leonid Kulik began collecting newspaper accounts
from the major towns of that Siberian region. One report
stated that "peasants to the North saw a body shining
very brightly, too bright for the naked eye, with a bluish
white light. It moved vertically downward for about ten
minutes and was in the form of a pipe; that is, cylindrical."
Kulik was puzzled by this; meteorites were not 'pipe-shaped.'
Another puzzling report..."when the flying object touched
the horizon a huge flame shot up that cut the sky in two..."
The scientist stuck by his meteorite theory however. At
that time, with no other frames of reference at hand, it
was the only theory possible.
Several expeditions to the area were set up and finally
in 1928 the actual centre of the explosion was located.
The devastation that met the eyes of the first explorers
was incredible. A great area of permafrost tundra had been
thawed to a depth of several feet and it was now a swamp.
Thousands of trees lay felled in a fan shaped design, charred
and black. Only one group of trees had remained upright,
at the centre of the blast area, stripped of every branch,
a veritable 'telegraph pole' forest. The scientists concluded
that the blast had taken place about two miles above the
earth, not at ground level. And as for the 'huge meteorite'
they firmly expected to find, there was absolutely no sign.
The mystery remained unsolved. Until 1946...and the atomic
bomb. On August 6th of that year, at 8:15 a.m., the Japanese
city of Hiroshima was obliterated. The uranium-235 bomb
created the greatest man-made destruction ever known, killing
and maiming multi-thousands in seconds.
Leaving aside the moral implications of this event, it was
the aftermath of the Hiroshima explosion that led to a re-evaluation
of the Russian Tunguska mystery. One didn't have to look
too hard to discern many striking similarities between the
two, and awesome though the Hiroshima devastation had been,
it was obvious that the explosion of 1908 had been many
The destroyed area in Hiroshima totalled 18 square miles,
that on the Tunguska, 200 square miles. Wood was ignited
in the Japanese city at a distance of one mile from the
blast while on the Tunguska plateau, trees had been burned
at a distance of eight to ten miles from the fall point.
Japanese naval students felt a hot breeze from the Hiroshima
blast 60 miles away! It has been estimated that the 1908
explosion was at least 100 times more powerful than the
one in 1946. But it was still a mystery as to what had caused
In the late fifties, soil samples from the Siberian blast
area were subjected to extreme magnification and laboratory
testing and small particles of extraterrestrial matter were
In 1962, a surveying team using a helicopter was able to
chart the pattern of the explosion's scattering ellipse
and more soil samples were gathered. Trees and plants were
also examined and here they found thousands of tiny brilliant
spheres imbedded in them. A detailed analysis revealed small
amounts of cobalt and nickel, and traces of copper and germanium.
The discovery of these metallic elements supported a theory
that had been put forward previously by a respected Russian
scientist, namely that what had exploded was an artificial
craft...from somewhere. The eye witness reports had mentioned
a very bright pipe-shaped object. At that time no one even
knew the term UFO but since 1946 they had become almost
common to every country in the world. And many of the descriptions
were of pipe, or cigar-shaped spacecraft. Could it really
The early reports were studied again. Discrepancies were
found regarding the direction of the object. Some reports
indicated a south-to-north trajectory while others maintained
a southeast to northwest direction. If both reports were
correct it could mean only one thing...the object had made
an in-flight manoeuvre!
All evidence now points to one conclusion. The object must
have been an intelligently controlled, atomic powered space
vehicle, which, having sustained some irreparable damage,
was deliberately steered to an area where the least devestation
(in terms of human life and property) would result.
Had the explosion occurred just 3 hours later, the great
city of Moscow would have been totally destroyed.
Ontario, STAR, 11 February 1980, page 11
(Reuter) - A mysterious object resembling a plane crashed
into the Black Sea near the Turkish and Soviet coasts last
week, arousing speculation that it may have been a U.S.
or Soviet spy plane. No crash was announced by Turkish authorities
or the official media, but the governor of the Turkish Black
Sea town of Sinep said witnesses saw a planelike shape crash
into the sea near Rize, a coastal town about 95 kilometres
from the Soviet border.
clippings courtesy of The Sault Star, The North Bay Nugget
and The Sudbury Star.