On the evening of July 2nd, 1947, a flying saucer crashed on the Foster Ranch near Corona, New Mexico. This crash occurred during a severe thunderstorm. The military base nearest to the crash site is in Roswell, New Mexico; hence, Roswell is more closely associated with this event than Corona, even though Corona is closer to the crash site.
On July 3rd, 1947, William "Mac" Brazel and his neighbor, Dee Proctor (age 7 years), found the remains of a crashed flying saucer. Brazel was foreman of the Foster Ranch. The pieces of the crashed saucer were spread out over a large area, perhaps more than half a mile long. When Brazel drove Dee back home, he showed a piece of the wreckage to Dee's parents, Floyd and Loretta Proctor. They all agreed the piece was unlike anything they had ever seen.
On July 6th, 1947, Brazel showed pieces of the wreckage to Chaves County Sheriff George Wilcox. Wilcox contacted Roswell Army Air Field (AAF) and talked to Major Jesse Marcel, the intelligence officer. Marcel drove to the sheriff's office and inspected the wreckage. Marcel reported to his commanding officer, Colonel William "Butch" Blanchard. Blanchard ordered Marcel to get someone from the Counter Intelligence Corps, and to proceed to the ranch with Brazel to collect as much of the wreckage as they could load into their two vehicles.
Soon afterward, Military Police (MPs) arrived at the sheriff's office, collected the wreckage Brazel had left there, and delivered the wreckage to Blanchard's office. The wreckage was then flown to the Eighth Air Force headquarters in Fort Worth, Texas, and from there to Washington, D.C.
Meanwhile, Marcel and Sheridan Cavitt (with the Counter Intelligence Corps) drove to the Foster ranch with Mac Brazel. They arrived late in the evening and spent the night in sleeping bags in a small out-building on the ranch. They proceeded to the crash site the following morning.
On July 7th, 1947, Marcel and Cavitt collected wreckage from the crash site. After filling Cavitt's vehicle with wreckage, Marcel told Cavitt to go on ahead and that he (Marcel) would collect more wreckage and they would meet later back at Roswell AAF. Marcel filled his vehicle with wreckage. On the way back to the air field, Marcel stopped at home to show his wife and son the strange material he had found.
On July 7th, 1947, around 4:00 pm, Lydia Sleppy at Roswell radio station KSWS began transmitting a story on the teletype machine regarding a crashed flying saucer out on the Foster Ranch. Transmission was interrupted, seemingly by the FBI.
On the morning of July 8th, 1947, Marcel and Cavitt arrived back at Roswell AAF with two carloads of wreckage. Marcel accompanied this wreckage, or most it, on a flight to Fort Worth AAF.
On July 8th, 1947, around noon, Colonel Blanchard at Roswell AAF ordered Second Lieutenant Walter Haut to issue a press release telling the country that the Army had found the remains of a crashed flying saucer. Haut was the public information officer for the 509th Bomb Group at Roswell AAF. Haut delivered the press release to Frank Joyce at radio station KGFL. Joyce waited long enough for Haut to return to the base, then called Haut there to confirm the story. Joyce then sent the story on the Western Union wire to the United Press bureau.
On the afternoon of July 8th, 1947, General Clemence McMullen in Washington spoke by telephone with Colonel (later Brigadier General) Thomas DuBose in Fort Worth, chief of staff to the Eighth Air Force Commander General Roger Ramey. McMullen ordered DuBose to tell Ramey to quash the flying saucer story by creating a cover story and to send some of the crash material immediately to Washington.
On the afternoon of July 8th, 1947, General Roger Ramey held a press conference at the Eighth Air Force headquarters in Fort Worth in which he announced that what had crashed at Corona was a weather balloon, not a flying saucer. To make this story convincing, he showed the press the remains of a damaged weather balloon that he claimed was the actual wreckage from the crash site.
The only newspapers that carried the initial flying saucer version of the story were evening papers from the Midwest to the West, including the Chicago Daily News, the Los Angeles Herald Express, the San Francisco Examiner, and the Roswell Daily Record. The New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Chicago Tribune were morning papers and so carried only the cover-up story the next morning.
At some point, a large group of soldiers were sent to the debris field on the Foster Ranch, including the Military Police (MPs) whose job was to limit access to the field. A wide search was launched well beyond the limits of the debris field. Within a day or two, a few miles from the debris field, the main body of the flying saucer was found. Several bodies of small humanoid-type creatures were found a short distance from the crashed flying saucer.
The military took Mac Brazel into custody for about a week, during which time he was seen on the streets of Roswell with a military escort. His behavior aroused the curiosity of friends when he passed them without any sign of recognition. Following this period of detention, Brazel repudiated his initial story.
AN INTERVIEW WITH LORETTA PROCTOR
Loretta Proctor, Mac Brazel's nearest neighbor, was one of the first to see the pieces of wreckage Brazel had found. Loretta Proctor was interviewed in July 1990. Loretta Proctor's statements are as follows:
Mac had this piece of material that he had picked up. He wanted to show it to us and wanted us to go down and see the rest of the debris or whatever, but we didn't on account of the transportation and everything wasn't too good. He didn't get anybody to come out who was interested in it. The piece he brought looked like a kind of tan, lightbrown plastic. It was very lightweight, like balsa wood. It wasn't a large piece, maybe about four inches long, maybe just a little larger than a pencil.
We cut on it with a knife and would hold a match on it, and it wouldn't burn. We knew it wasn't wood. It was smooth like plastic, it didn't have a real sharp corners, kind of like a dowel stick. Kind of dark tan. It didn't have any grain, just smooth. I hadn't seen anything like it.
The following statement by Loretta Proctor suggests the possibility that Mac Brazel had been bribed to keep quiet.
I think that within that year, he had moved off the ranch and moved to Alamagordo or to Tularosa and he put in a locker there. That was before people had home freezers, and it was a large refrigerated building. You would buy beef and cut it up and put it in those lockers and you had a key to it and you could get your beef out when you wanted it. I think it would have been pretty expensive, and we kind of wondered how he could put it in with rancher's wages.
Loretta Proctor was also interviewed on the American television program "Unsolved Mysteries". The following is part of that interview:
Floyd (Loretta's husband) and a neighbor was in Roswell and saw Mac surrounded by some of the Air Force people. And they walked right by them and Mac wouldn't speak to them. They thought it was kind of funny, I guess, really wondered what he'd got into. And Mac, he wouldn't talk about it after he come back home. But he did say if he ever found something else he wouldn't report it.
AN INTERVIEW WITH MARIAN STRICKLAND
Marian Strickland was a neighbor of Mac Brazel. Marian Strickland was interviewed in 1990.
Mac made it plain he was not supposed to tell that there was any excitement about the material he found on the ranch. He was a man who had integrity. He definitely felt insulted, misused and disrespected. He was worse than annoyed. He was definitely under some stress, and felt that he had been kicked around.
He was threatened that if he opened his mouth, he might get thrown in the back side of the jail. He gave that impression, definitely.
A DESCRIPTION BY BESSIE BRAZEL SCHREIBER
Bessie Brazel Schreiber is Mac Brazel's daughter. What follows is her description of wreckage from the crash.
The material resembled a sort of aluminum-like foil. Some of these pieces had a sort of tape stuck to them. Even though the stuff looked like tape, it could not be peeled off or removed at all. Some of these pieces had something like numbers and lettering on them, but there were no words we were able to make out. The figures were written out like you would write numbers in columns, but they didn't look like the numbers we use at all.
There was also a piece of something made out of the same metal-like foil that looked like a pipe sleeve. About four inches across and equally long, with a flange on one end. Also, what appeared to be pieces of heavily waxed paper.
A DESCRIPTION BY WILLIAM BRAZEL, JR.
William Brazel, Jr. is Mac Brazel's son. What follows is his description of wreckage from the crash.
One of the pieces looked like something on the order of tinfoil, except that it wouldn't tear. You could wrinkle it and lay it back down and it immediately resume it's original shape... quite pliable, but you couldn't crease or bend it like ordinary metal. Almost like a plastic, but definitely metallic. Dad once said that the Army had once told him it was not anything made by us.
There was also some threadlike material. It looked like silk, but was not silk, a very strong material without strands or fibers like silk would have. This was more like a wire, all one piece or substance. There were also some wooden-like particles like balsa wood in weight, but a bit darker in color and much harder. It was pliable, but wouldn't break. Weighed nothing, but you couldn't scratch it with your fingernail. All I had was a few small bits. There was no writing or markings on the pieces I had, but Dad did say one time that there were what he called "figures" on some of the pieces he found. He often referred to the petroglyphs the ancient Indians drew on the rocks around here as "figures", too, and I think that's what he meant to compare them with.
My dad found this thing and he told me a little bit about it, not much, because the Air Force asked him to take an oath that he wouldn't tell anybody in detail about it. He went to his grave and he never told anybody. He was an old-time Western cowboy, and they didn't do a lot of talking. My brother and I had just went through World War II (him in the Army and me in the Navy) and needless to say, my dad was proud. Like he told me, "When you guys went in the service, you took an oath, and I took an oath not to tell." The only thing he said was, "Well, there's a big bunch of stuff, and there's some tinfoil, some wood, and on some of that wood there was Japanese or Chinese figures."
At the time of the crash, William Brazel, Jr. had been living and working in Albuquerque, but returned when his father was taken into custody. Thus, there was no one to run the ranch.
I rode out there (the field where the wreckage was found) on the average of once a week, and I was riding through that area, I was looking. That's why I found those little pieces. Not over a dozen pieces. I'd say maybe eight different pieces. But there was only three different items involved; something on the order of balsa wood, something on the order of heavy-gauge monofilament fishing line, and a little piece of -- it wasn't tinfoil, it wasn't lead foil -- a piece about the size of my finger. Some of it was like balsa wood, real light and kind of neutral color, more of a tan. To the best of my memory, there wasn't any grain in it. Couldn't break it, it'd flex a little. I couldn't whittle it with my pocket knife.
The "string", I couldn't break it. The only reason I noticed the tinfoil (I'm gonna call it tinfoil), I picked this stuff up and put it in my chaps pocket. Might be two or three days or a week before I took it out and put it in a cigar box. I happened to notice when I put that piece of foil in that box, and the damn thing just started unfolding and just flattened out. Then I got to playing with it. I'd fold it, crease it, lay it down and it'd unfold. It's kinda wierd. I couldn't tear it. The color was in between tinfoil and lead foil, about the thickness of lead foil.
I was in Corona, in the bar, the pool hall. Sort of the meeting place, domino parlor. That's where everybody got together. Everybody was asking, they'd seen the papers (this was about a month after the crash) and I said, "Oh, I picked up a few little bits and pieces and fragments." So, what are they? "I dunno."
Then lo and behold, here comes the military out to the ranch, a day or two later. I'm almost positive that the officer in charge, his name was Armstrong, a real nice guy. He had a black sergeant with him that was real nice. I think there was two other enlisted men. They said, "We understand your father found this weather balloon." I said, "Well yeah." "And we understand you found some bits and pieces." I said, "Yeah, I've got a cigar box that's got a few of them in there, down at the saddle shed."
And this guy (I think he was a captain), said, "Well, we would like to take it with us." I said, "Well..." And he smiled and he said, "Your father turned the rest of it over to us, and you know he's under an oath not to tell. Well," he said, "we came after those bits and pieces." And I kind of smiled and said, "OK, you can have the stuff, I have no use for it at all." He said, "Well, have you examined it?" And I said, "Well, enough to know that I don't know what the hell it is." And he said, "We would rather you didn't talk very much about it."
AN INTERVIEW WITH GLENN DENNIS
Glenn Dennis was a mortician in Roswell in 1947. His employer provided mortuary services for Roswell Army Air Field. Glenn Dennis drove a combination hearse and ambulance for both civilian and military assignments. On July 9th or 10th, 1947, Glenn Dennis received several phone calls from the Roswell AAF mortuary officer, who was more of an administrator than a mortuary technician. The officer wanted to know about hermetically sealed caskets (what was the smallest one they could get), and about chemical solutions.
Glenn Dennis was interviewed in August of 1989 by Stanton Friedman.
This is what was so interesting. See, this is why I feel like there was really something involved in this, because they didn't want to do anything that was going to make an imbalance. They kept saying, "OK, what's this going to do to the blood system, what's this going to do to the tissue?" Then when they informed me that these bodies had laid out in the middle of July, in the middle of the prairie, I mean that body's going to be as dark as your blue blazer there, and it's going to be in bad shape. I was the one who suggested dry ice. I'd done that a time or two.
I talked to them four or five times in the afternoon. They would keep calling back and asking me different questions involving the body. What they were really after was how to move those bodies. They didn't give me any indication they even had the bodies, or where they were. But they kept talking about these bodies, and I said, "What do the bodies look like?" And they said, "I don't know, but I'll tell you one thing, this happened some time ago." The only thing that was mentioned was that they were exposed to the elements for several days.
I understand these bodies weren't in the same location as where they found some of the others. They said the bodies weren't in the vehicle itself and that the bodies were separated by two or three miles from it. They talked about three different bodies, two of them mangled and one that was in pretty good shape.
That evening, Glenn Dennis took a GI accident victim to the base infirmary, which was in the same building as the hospital and the mortuary. Glenn Dennis walked the injured GI inside. Afterward, Glenn Dennis drove around to the back of the base infirmary to see an attractive young Army Air Force nurse he had recently met.
There were two MPs standing right there, and I got out and started to go in. I wouldn't have gotten as far as I did if I hadn't parked in the emergency area. They probably thought I was coming after somebody. The doors were open to the military ambulances and that's where some wreckage was, and there was an MP on each side. I saw all the wreckage. I don't know what it was, but I knew there was something going on, and that's when I first got an inclination that something was happening. What was so curious about it, was that in two of those ambulances was a deal that looked like the bottom half of a canoe. It didn't look like aluminum. You know what stainless steel looks like when you put heat on it? How it'll turn kinda purplish, with kind of a blue hue to it? I just glanced in and kept going.
When I got inside, I noticed there was quite a bit of activity. When I went back into the lounge, there were "big birds" (high-ranking officers) he didn't recognize, though he was familiar with all the local medical people everywhere. They were really shook up. So I went down the hall where I usually go, and I got down the hall just a little way and an MP met me right there. He wanted to know who the hell I was and where I was from, and what business did I have there? I explained who I was. Evidently he was under the impression that they called me to come out.
Anyway, I got past that and I went on in and then this is where I met the nurse. She was involved in this thing, she was on duty. She told me, "How in the hell did you get in here?" I said, "I just walked in." She said, "My God, you are going to get killed." And I said, "They didn't stop me." I was going to the Coke machine to get us a Coke, and this big red-headed colonel said, "What's that son of a bitch doing here?"
He hollered at the MPs and that's when it hit the fan. These two MPs grabbed me by the arms and carried me clear outside. They carried me to the ambulance. I didn't walk, they carried me. And they told me to get my ass out of there. (They followed him back to the funeral home.)
About two or three hours later, they called and told me, "You open your mouth and you'll be so far back in the jug they'll have to shoot pinto beans into you with a bean shooter." I just laughed and said, "Go to hell."
Glenn Dennis spoke with the same attractive nurse again the following day.
She said there were three little bodies. Two of them were just mangled beyond everything, but there was one of them that was really in pretty good condition. And she said, "Let me show you the difference between our anatomy and theirs. Really, what they looked like was ancient Chinese: small, fragile, no hair." She said their noses didn't protrude, the eyes were set pretty deep, and the ears were just little indentations. She said the anatomy of the arms was different, the upper arm was longer than the lower. They didn't have thumbs, they had four different, she called them "tentacles", I think. Didn't have any fingernails. She then described how they had little things like suction cups on their fingertips.
I asked her were these men or women? Were their sex organs the same as ours? She said, "No, some were missing." The first thing that decomposes on a body would be the brain, next the sex organs, especially in women. But she thought there had probably been something, some animals. Some of these bodies were badly mutilated. She said they got the bodies out of those containers (the ones he had seen in the backs of the ambulances, on the way into the hospital). See, they weren't at the crash site, they were about a mile or two from the crash site. She said they looked like they had their own little cabins. She said the lower portion, the abdomen and legs, was crushed, but the upper portion wasn't that bad. She told me the head was larger and it was kind of like, the eyes were different.
A few weeks later, Glenn Dennis heard from his father.
"What the hell'd you get into? What kind of trouble are you in?" I said, "I'm not in any trouble." And he said, "The hell you're not. The sheriff (an old friend of the elder Dennis) said that the base personnel have been in and they want to know all about your background."
AN INTERVIEW WITH BARBARA DUGGER
Barbara Dugger is the granddaughter of George and Inez Wilcox. George Wilcox was the sheriff who Mac Brazel contacted after discovering the crashed flying saucer. Barbara Dugger was interviewed in 1991 by Kevin Randle.
My grandmother said "Don't tell anybody. When the incident happened, the military police came to the jailhouse and told George and I that if we ever told anything about the incident, not only would we be killed, but our entire family would be killed."
They called my grandfather and someone came and told him about this incident. He went out there to the site. There was a big burned area and he saw debris. It was in the evening. There were four space beings. Their heads were large. They wore suits like silk. One of the little men was alive. If she (Inez Wilcox) said it happened, it happened. "They meant it, Barbara. They were not kidding (regarding the death threat)". She said the event shocked him. He never wanted to be sheriff again after that. Grandmother ran for sheriff and was defeated. My grandmother was a very loyal citizen of the United States and she thought it was in the best interest of the country not to talk about it.