Congressional Hearings on UFOs and Blue Book
There have only ever been two official Congressional Hearings held on UFOs. The House Armed Services Committee convened the first such hearing in 1966 in response to widely publicized UFO sightings and repeated public and media criticism of the Air Force’s Project Blue Book. The hearing had the noted support of former U.S. President, Gerald Ford, the House Minority Leader. However, the only witnesses who testified were allied to Project Blue Book. As a result, the Secretary of the Air Force announced that there would be an outside, independent review of Blue Book. This was to be the genesis of the University of Colorado’s Scientific Study of UFOs –or the Condon Committee project (after Edward U. Condon), as it is popularly known. Two years later, the House Science and Astronautics Committee convened a second hearing (which occurred during the final stages of the Condon Committee project) to review the scientific evidence for UFOs. It took the form of a scientific symposium in which six scientists testified and six others submitted prepared papers
In 1969, the Condon Committee published its findings. According to the director of the project, physicist Dr. Edward U. Condon, no scientific evidence existed in support of a genuine UFO mystery for UFO. The result? It was recommended that Project Blue Book should be terminated. Critics of the Condon Report have noted, however, that no less than 30 per cent of the cases investigated by the committee defied explanation. According to the critics, such as Dr. J. Allen Hynek, Dr. Condon's conclusions were politically oriented rather than scientific: the Air Force wanted Blue Book closed at the earliest opportunity.
Nevertheless, of the six scientists who testified as part of the University of Colorado’s study, five were of the opinion that UFOs were still a valid area for investigation. Of those, the late Dr. James McDonald concluded: "My own study of the UFO problem has convinced me that we must rapidly escalate serious scientific attention to this extra- ordinarily intriguing puzzle."
Following the release of the Condon Report, Project Blue Book was set for termination, with an announcement to that effect made in March 1969. A formal directive was finalized in December of that year by Air Force Secretary Robert C. Seamans, Jr. According to Seamans: "The continuation of Project Blue Book cannot be justified either on the ground of national security or in the interest of science.”
From the commencement of Project Sign to the conclusion of Project Blue Book, 12,618 UFO reports were analyzed. Of these, 18% (701 cases) were catalogued as unidentified – and nearly half of which dated from 1952. Since the close of Blue Book, the Air Force has constantly tried to distance itself from the UFO subject – publicly, at least. The Air Force’s current fact sheet on UFOs states that "since the termination of Project Blue Book, nothing has occurred that would support a resumption of UFO investigations by the Air Force." Nevertheless, as the Freedom of Information Act has shown, official interest in the UFO subject continues - albeit at a restricted and far more covert level than that of Project Blue Book.
Documents Dated Prior to 1948
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Memo to George Marshall from FDR, 27 February 1942 (49k)
This is the memo that links the UFO crashes with the Los Angeles Air Raid of 1942, since it occurred only three days earlier. It alludes to "atomic secrets learned from study of celestial devices" and authorizes "Dr. Bush to proceed with the project without further delay." The reference to "this new wonder" is, to our knowledge, a unique phrase for the time. The writing of Source S-2 shows at the bottom of the page. Authenticity, for a retyped memo like this, is nearly hopeless to prove in court. Format details might be of some help if they are consistent with the style of the time.
George C. Marshall to Franklin D. Roosevelt, 5 March 1942 (89k)
On March 5, 1942, George C. Marshall writes a top-secret memo to the President, which states: "regarding the air raid over Los Angeles it was learned by Army G2 that Rear Admiral Andersonâ€¦ recovered an unidentified airplane off the coast of Californiaâ€¦ with no bearing on conventional explanation... This Headquarters has come to the determination that the mystery airplanes are in fact not earthly and according to secret intelligence sources they are in all probability of interplanetary origin." Marshall goes on to state: "As a consequence I have issued orders to Army G2 that a special intelligence unit be created to further investigate the phenomenon and report any significant connection between recent incidents and those collected by the director the office of Coordinator of Information." The memo bears correct Office of Chief of Staff (OCS) file numbers and has "Interplanetary Phenomenon Unit" (IPU) typed on it at a later time by a different typewriter. It is logical to believe that this is the order that sets up the IPU.
Franklin D. Roosevelt Memo on Non-Terrestrial Science and Technology, 22 February 1944 (117k)
On February 22, 1944 Franklin D. Roosevelt writes a DOUBLE TOP SECRET memo on White House stationary for "The special committee on non-terrestrial science and technology." Both the title and the content clearly allude to extraterrestrial life, the former using the word "non-terrestrial" and the latter talks about "coming to grips with the reality that our planet is not the only one harboring intelligent life the universe." Remarkably, the last four words are exactly the title of Sagan's book co-authored with the Soviet scientist Shklovsky. Clearly the situation was that we had recovered at least one craft by then, probably the Cape Girardeau crash of 1941, and came to realize the wealth of technology that lay there for the pickings. Apparently the "Special Committee on Non-terrestrial Science and Technology" had been working some time in order to define a clear action. Dr. Bush had presumably presented a proposal from the Committee for an aggressive separate program to apply "non-terrestrial know how" to the war effort, but FDR thought that it would threaten the atomic bomb program. Thus, he carefully avoids saying "no," but says that we will "take every advantage of such wonders that have come to us" after we have won the war. Very gracious letter. The classification "double top secret" was a legitimate one. We are currently (May 2000) requesting copies of similar correspondence from the Roosevelt Library for format and typography comparison. The signature, although not a strong discriminant, is consistent with other authentic signatures.
Oppenheimer-Einstein Draft, June 1947 (494k)
This six-page document titled, "Relationships with Inhabitants of Celestial Bodies", is the first document to use the phrase Extraterrestrial Biological Entities, or EBEs. It says the presence of unidentified spacecraft is accepted as de facto by the military - and this is dated June 1947. It deals with the subjects that you would expect competent scientists to deal with - i.e., where do they come from, what does the law say about it, what should we do in the event of colonization and/or integration of peoples, and why are they here? The document suggests that in the event that EBE's desire to settle here on earth there will be "profound change in traditional concepts" of law and the possible need for a new "Law Among Planetary Peoples." There is also propositions concerning the necessary creation of a "Cosmic International law" that would protect the rights of all celestial states to lay claim on otherwise unclaimed solar territories. Finally, the document addresses the presence of celestial astroplanes in our atmosphere as a result of actions of military experiments with fission and fusion devices of warfare. The authors of this document encourage consideration of our potential future situation and safety due to our present and past actions in space. How can we avoid a perilous fate?
General Eisenhower Memo to Col. K. W. Ireland, 30 June 1947 (34k)
In this one-page unclassified memo dated 30 June 1947, Eisenhower orders Col. K. W. Ireland to take good care of Archbishop Francis J. Spellman on his tour through New Mexico. What seems unusual is President Truman's personal involvement in this matter. The memo states: "By personal direction of the President of the United States, Archbishop Francis J. Spellman in his capacity as Military Vicar of the Armed Forces of the Army, Army Air Forces and the Navy, is making a tour of military bases in New Mexico, afterwards is making a trip over the routes of the Air Transport Command." It is strange that this is a classified trip, as evidenced by the following statement: "General Webster has assured me that the Archbishop will have complete security at all times and that his presence at any air field will not be disclosed as his flight schedule is considered classified by order of AC/AS General Vandenberg."
Interplanetary Phenomenon Unit Field Order, 4 July 1947 (43k)
This one page order directs the officer in charge (OIC) to take a counter intelligence team to the UFO crash site and report to the G2 (intelligence) at Condron Field, New Mexico, which, of course, is Roswell. OIC is to take along a non-commissioned OIC, an aeronautical engineer, a scientist, a security officer and a medical doctor, and to provide a report by the 28th of July.
Vannevar Bush Letter to President Truman, 5 July 1947 (206k)
On July 5, 1947, possibly as a result of the New Mexico events, Vannevar Bush writes a memo to Truman recapping the status of the earlier investigations. As an apparent follow up by FDR to Bush, FDR wrote another letter (which we don't have) in April 1944 requesting recommendations on four specific points. This letter is Bush's answer. It is presumed that the Top Secret/Eyes Only Operation Majestic-12 classification was added at a later date. The letter also shows an "OK" and a Harry Truman signature. This letter is stamped with the known authentic "original" stamp, and was probably produced by a typewriter because of the uniformity of letter spacing. We expect to show, of course, that this format was commonly used by OSRD typewriters of the era. Bush restates the FDR questions for Truman's benefit, mentions the assistance of distinguished committees, alludes to the "many meetings since the events of this summer," transmits the full reports as appendices, and proposes a "single mechanism for implementing the recommendations of the several committees." Could this be one hugely classified program called "Majestic Twelve" at the end of the summer? The date of the letter, 5 July, was, of course, coincident with the recoveries going on in New Mexico at that very time. Harry Truman's "OK" may have been prophetic.
Directive to General Twining by Eisenhower, 8 July 1947 (86k)
On the 8th of July, Eisenhower got around to signing the authorization for General Nathan Twining, the head of the Air Materiel Command, to go to White Sands to "...make an appraisal of the reported unidentified objects being kept there." With a team of experts, technicians, scientists and assistants, Twining was directed to not only appraise the unidentified object, but also to deal with the military, political, and psychological situation surrounding its existence in New Mexico.
Directive to General Twining by President Truman, 9 July 1947 (324k)
On the 9th of July, Harry Truman signed a virtually identical letter authorizing Twining to re-visit White Sands to make another appraisal of the object being kept. It was desired that he "proceed with detachment from any opinions or feelings expressed by personnel involved which do not conform to sound reasoning with regard to possible outcome". Someone apparently thought it was so important that the Commander-in-Chief put his name on the spot without "passing the buck." Alternatively, Ike himself may have requested a "back-up" memo.
Air Accident Report by Twining to Headquarters, 16 July 1947 (570k)
This three page bureaucratic report provides the first glimpses of Lt. General Nathan F. Twinning's Air Accident Report originally published in Leonard Stringfield's (now deceased) Status Report VII, in 1994. Twining apparently describes in first order detail the inside of a "flying disc", everything from the typewriter-like keys that control the propulsion system to a thirty-five foot doughnut shaped one-inch tube inside the craft filled with a clear substance and a coil of copper-like material. Twining, engineers from Engineering Division T-3, scientific personnel from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and other educated experts report that the object was not manufactured by the US, Germany, or Russia for a variety of reasons including; lack of any known design resemblance, lack of external propulsion system and power plant, and the lack of Identifying markings and/or numbers. The experts theorized about how the craft is powered, how it moves, and how and where it is controlled from, but there is no real knowledge beyond the theories. The inability for the experts to prove the object to be made in any of the advanced technological societies on earth is intriguing and thought provoking. The significance and consistency of the technical content has not been evaluated, although it is clear that the writing is consistent with 1947 state of the art, not modern.
Metallurgical Lab Personnel (49k)
Interesting list of metallurgical lab personnel as of July 17, 1947, that may have been unwittingly involved in analyzing and reverse engineering crashed wreckage.
Lt. Gen. Nathan Twining to Curtis LeMay: Meteorological R & D Memo, 18 July 1947 (403k)
This two page memo from Lt General Nathan Twining to Curtis LeMay activates a new laboratory to conduct meteorological research and development and upper air research with the Electronics Subdivision of the Engineering Division of the AMC. It states in part, "In view of the close relationship and interdependence of research in meteorology and research in electromagnetic compressional wave propagation, action is being taken to reorganize the present Applied Propagation Laboratory of Watson laboratories in the Atmospheric Laboratory, and expand its functions to include research and development in meteorology and related geophysical fields." Later the memo goes on to state that "funds requested for F.Y. 1949 Project 680-11, Atmospheric Research and applied scientific research of the upper atmosphere, a total sum of $6,000,000 has been specifiedâ€¦" What a huge sum of money in 1949 to study the "upper atmosphere;" a more logical interpretation is that we are analyzing flying saucers, their technology, why they are here, and what are we going to do about it.
Counter Intelligence Corps/Interplanetary Phenomenon Unit Report, 22 July 1947 (415k)
This seven page document by the Interplanetary Phenomenon Unit begins by saying "...the extraordinary recovery of fallen airborne objects in the State of New Mexico between 4 July and 6 July 1947." That's the subject, and it goes on to state what the coordinates are, and other fascinating details of the recovery operations and discoveries. The most interesting being the discovery and basic detailed appearance of several bodies that were taken to the hospital at Roswell AAF and other near by hospitals (listed, but not disclosed for security reasons). The conclusion arrived at by the team of experts was unclear because of the limitations of contemporary science and appropriate budgets for future investigation, but leans to the possibility of a very well orchestrated Hoax by US societal outsiders or that "our country has played host to beings from another planet."
CWO Marcrau Memo to Commanding General Army Air Forces, 12 August 1947 (80k)
This one page memo discusses the control of Restricted Data, which was used for both atomic activities and alien activities stemming from the New Mexico events. Cantwheel, the alleged source of much of these new documents, typed on the bottom of the document, "SAC wanted to keep certain AAF personnel from accessing the out-going messages from Roswell AAF to SAC headquarters that would identify AAF personnel responsible for the transport of classified material to Wright Field, and the personnel who were responsible for disposition of the wreckage and bodies found near Socorro and Corona, New Mexico."
Flying Saucer Analytical Report, 2 September 1947 (90k)
This two-page Top Secret MAJIC Eyes Only report to General C. P. Cabell and commanding General of the Air Materiel Command from the Research and Development Laboratory is dated 2 September 1947. It provides a credible glimpse into the problems that faced the first analytical team to examine real crashed extraterrestrial hardware. Here are some quotes: "some nation has reached a stage of flight development in which the present ideas are entirely obsolete" and "the absence of riveting and surface over-lapping indicates a "'simplistic' concept that confronts our technology to match the "'careful and well-considered compromises in respect to weight, aerodynamic refinement and design.'" A general description of the flying saucer craft is presented including a host of historically accurate AISI metallurgical tests. The research team did have success in identifying some control surfaces and exhaust ports and concluded the spherical reactor (hydrogen isotope type) was connected to propulsion motors.
Hillenkoetter Memo to Joint Intelligence Committee, 19 September 1947 (324k)
The title of this document is "Memorandum for the Military Assessment of the Joint Intelligence Committee." And for those of you paying special attention, you'll notice that the acronym is MAJIC, which in fact turned out to be the code word selected. The four paragraphs say we need a classified intelligence project; we recovered one craft, captured one. It says no coordinated scientific examination is possible until we get a clear directive from the president. It also says Wright Field has a new biological laboratory, the Joint Research and Development Board and the FBI, MI5, MI6 are helping.
Twining's "White Hot" Report: Mission Assessment of Recovered Lenticular Aerodyne Objects, 19 September 1947 (1.3 MB*)
*please note this file may take up to 20 min. to download on a slow connection
"No one, without express permission from the President, may disseminate the information contained in this report or communicate it to any unauthorized person not possessing MAJIC SECURITY CLEARANCE." The White Hot report is a 19-page document, dated 19 September 1947 and signed by an appropriate cadre of military leaders on 24 September 1947. Several accounts of individual pilots were reported in 1947 with varying details that make each encounter a unique piece in a puzzle of phenomenon. In this particular year, sightings were reported "not only in the United States, but also in Sweden, Germany, Holland, Paraguay, Scandinavia, Greece, and by ships at sea." Studied by classified teams of experts, many interesting and provocative details were recorded in this report of unidentifiable crash remains. The document is broken down into various sections that address concerns specifically: Preliminary Intelligence Estimate, Technical Evaluation, Scientific Probabilities, Political Considerations, and National Security Structure. In the preliminary estimate, experts of the AMC and ONR speculate that "the unidentified lenticular-shaped aerodyneâ€¦lacking conventional wing, fuselage, nacelle, control, and fuel systems" is not only foreign to United States technology, but is also unlikely to be of Russian origin, or for that matter, unlikely to have been designed to operate within the earth's atmosphere. Several bodies were discovered along with the material of the crash, their existence and death just as mysterious as the cause of the crash itself. More interesting than these basic facts is the evidence that suggests "a symbionic relationship between operator and the functions of the aerodyne's operation." This particular leaked governmental document has a plethora of factual information linked to the retrieval and appraisal of the evidence collected from the recovered exhibits that "AMC, ASP, NEAP, ACE, ONR, NACKA, JED, RAND, USAF, SAG, and MIT, are deemed extraterrestrial in nature." The White Hot report not only covers the factual evidence of the retrieval, but also sheds light on a number of conceptual concerns surrounding politics, National Security, nuclear weaponry, and the reasons behind keeping knowledge of this nature out of the public's grasp indefinitely. It concludes, for the well being of the public, of course, and the protection of national security, that "the US must be perceived as being the top of the heap, and every effort must be made to insure that there is, and never has been, a threat to the country."
Malcolm Grow to Lt. Gen. Twining - Aero Medical Laboratory, 20 September 1947 (86k)
Brig. Gen. Malcolm C. Grow writes a two page memo for General Twining describing the preliminary results of the post-mortem examination of the Air Accident Report filed 17 July 1947 (see above). Note the wide-ranging distribution list from people like Dr. Detlev Bronk and Dr. Randolph Lovelace to the AAF Scientific Advisory Group and Intelligence Departments. This perfunctory preliminary report is clear in its references to a UFO: "Collision in full flight with object other than conventional aircraft," "Artifacts collected and assembled indicate that the unidentified aircraftâ€¦," "The functions of the instruments found in the cockpit area are unknown at present; so there is no way to determine if the craft was manned or remotely controlled."
Lt. Col. Tucker Memo to Office of Air Surgeon, 22 September 1947 (120k)
A bureaucratic memo with excellent checkable references discusses an Analysis of Factors Contributing to "Pilot-Error" Experiences in Operating Experimental Aircraft Controls written by Lt. Col. Tucker. Tucker and his correct period phone extension, memo format, and writing style have been verified in the National Archives. Tucker was part of the Aero Medical Laboratory, Psychological Branch. It discusses two incidents on 25 March and 4 July 1947 about S-Aircraft (PF) and interactions with symbolic instrumentation with tactile manipulation of flight controls.
Secretary of State Marshall, Memo to The President, 24 September 1947 (55k)
Marshall writes a memo to the President concerning the "Presentation of Report to the President Re; ULAT" dated September 24, 1947 that expresses concern about the timing of the internal release of this report. "It would be better to discuss the report during the meeting (National Security Council). This would give the members a better picture of the situation rather than having it released piecemeal." Marshall goes on to say, "I further suggest that Twining present the findings of the Majestic-12 briefing to be given be the Director of Central Intelligence with a detailed showing of visual as well as written materials." File references, format, and signatures suggest authenticity.
President Truman to Secretary of Defense James Forrestal, 24 September 1947 (35k)
So, five days later, President Truman, in that busy week of the 24th of September, 1947, decided that he would sign this document, which says, "Hereafter this matter shall be referred to only as Operation Majestic Twelve." Unfortunately, researcher Stanton Friedman found another memo, with a nearly identical signature in this same week signed by Truman to Dr. Bush. How can that be? See the Authentication section for a possible answer.
Memo to General Spaatz, 25 September 1947 (with Cantwheel commentsl; retyped copy) (39k)
This one page unclassified memo dated 25 September 1947 is directed to General Spaatz. It voices concern about the quality of the briefing given that day and wants the presentation package improved for the National Security Council (NSC) meeting the following day. Cantwheel's comments typed in capital letters at the bottom sum up the sentiment, "The Secretary of Defense was unhappy with briefing of the AMC and R&D briefing officers and Symington wanted Bush and Twining to meet with Truman before NSC meeting on the 26th so that a more concise and explainable report of the discovery would be made."
Secretary of State Marshall to President Truman, 25 September 1947 (116k)
This memo was signed top secret, MAJIC eyes only. It says "cryptographic (misspelled in original) security does not apply," thereby revealing that this subject would normally be encrypted, but to expedite it they did not. The memo says that no indication of its contents is to be divulged to the public, referring to Twinning's White Hot report discussed earlier. So this is Marshall telling Humelsine, the secretary to President Truman, to make sure that Truman realizes that he's not going to let anything out to the public, and even suggests a "cover story." The similarity of the handwriting to that in other documents poses an authentication challenge.
Twining's Report to The President, Parts I-V, 26 September 1947 (70k)
General Nathan Twining writes to the President on 26 September 1947 and respectfully submits his report on Flying Saucers. This is "In accordance with your instructions, advisors from State, Treasury, War, and Navy departments assisted me in a two month exploratory mission concerning the reality of other-world visitation." The memo is impressive for its authentic looking pentagon Joint Chiefs of Staff and Combined Chiefs of Staff filing references along with clear older sized paper markings.
Secretary of State George C. Marshall to Carl Humelsine, 27 September 1947 (154k)
On 27 September 1947 George C. Marshall writes to his Executive secretary Carl Humelsine about the tragic consequences if the present rumors about New Mexico events are disclosed to the public. Humelsine is resistant to sign an agreement to remain quiet concerning these events because he has already heard about them through other sources. The memo states in part, "â€¦(a) you are unwilling to commit yourself to any agreement regarding not communicating its contents to any other person in view of the fact that you felt you already knew certain of the things probably referred to in the memo, as suggested to you by seeing the security reference â€˜MAJIC' and b) you could not feel that such a letter as this could have been addressed to you without the knowledge of the Presidentâ€¦." This ozalid (early carbon duplication) printing process memo is authentic for the era and would be difficult to fake.
"Unidentified Aircraft Sightings Over the United States," Top Secret Eyes Only Intelligence Estimate, 30 September 1947 (844k)
This presidential briefing document is an intelligence estimate dated September 30, 1947 titled "Unidentified Aircraft Sighting Over the United States." Prepared by the Special Studies and Evaluation State-War-Navy Coordinating Committee and the Office of National Estimates Central Intelligence Agency. It references both a TS Control No. 7300405, NSA authority and a NSCID (National Security Council Intelligence Directive) 6 Authority, NIA Directive.
The six page Top Secret Eyes Only covers essential elements of information, however, no discussion of wreckage, alien bodies etc., after all the briefing is about unidentified aircraft sightings. Main headings are: estimates of Soviet capabilities, domestic capabilities, estimate of the situation, estimates of interplanetary capabilities, and conclusions. The estimate of the situation and interplanetary capabilities make for very interesting reading.
The document is retyped and Source S-2 has handwritten at the bottom this is the best version available. It is allegedly annotated by Harry Truman "I want the Director of NSA to have this for future reference. October 24, 1952"
General Vandenberg to Chief of Staff, 17 December 1947 (14k)
This memo from Vandenberg to the Army Chief of Staff does not clearly relate to UFOs. However, it is clear that the decision process at White Sands and Alamogordo was in turmoil and that clarification was needed. Possibly as a result of the UFO wreckage being stored there and different access requests and priorities. The addition of a senior Army Ordnance Officer being permanently assigned to work with the joint committee for range coordination was the resolution to improve local decision making. What could be so important that would involve top generals to clarify decision making? The leaked version (page 1), is nearly identical to a document we found at the National Archives, RG 341, Entry 174, Box 141 (page 2), showing the same language in Paragraph 1 but an additional clarifying paragraph has been added which states: "This agreement concerns only decisions on joint range problems and does not extend into command and administration matters at Alamogordo Air Base." It is possible that either Vandenberg or the Army Chief of Staff upon seeing or reviewing the first memo might say "we need to clarify this so that no one misconstrues our intent and screws up the basic functions of Alamogordo Air Base."
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