(Blogger's Note: In the last couple of days I have received a number inquiries about the Hoover Memo and how it relates to Roswell or UFO crashes. Although this was posted in 2011, I thought the easiest course of action was to reprint it with a couple of updates. This is the best information and the best interpretation of the memo and is based, not only on the handwritten note, but a typewritten copy that appears in the FBI files.)
Over the decades, a few documents relating to the Roswell UFO crash (or the Roswell events if you wish to remove UFO from the discussion) have been found. One of those developed after Army Brigadier General George F. Schulgen asked for FBI help “...in locating and questioning individuals who first sighted the so-called flying discs...”
On July 10, 1947, an FBI memo was created by D. M. Ladd for E. G. Fitch, outlining the Army request. That request was forward to Clyde Tolson, the number two man in the FBI at the time. Tolson endorsed the memo, writing on July 15, “I think we should do this.”
Hoover then endorsed the endorsement (seen here). He wrote, “I would do this but before agreeing to it we must insist upon full access to discs recovered. For instance, in the La. case the Army grabbed it and would not let us have it for cursory examination.”
But Hoover’s handwriting was sloppy and the crucial point, the location, as “in the La case” has been disputed for years. It seems that it can also be read as Sw or Sov or 2a. Of course, if it said, “Sw” then that could refer to the Roswell case.
Tom Carey and I have been discussing this through email for a couple of weeks. I am of the opinion that Hoover wrote “La” and this refers to a case from Shreveport, Louisiana. It is clear that the Shreveport report is a hoax, given that the disc was recovered and examined and wasn't particularly alien in nature.
According to information from the Project Blue Book files, the Headquarters, Air Training Command, the office of the AC of S, A-2 [Assistant Chief of Staff, Air Intelligence] Barksdale Field, LA, had received a report that a “Flying Disc [had been] found in Shreveport, Louisiana [on] 7 July 1947.”
In the course of their investigation, they found that the disc was small (seen here), there was an electronic starter attached to it that came from a fluorescent light and two condensers from electric fans. The man who built it, and whose name had been removed from the file, also said that he had used a torch to put soot on the edges so that it looked as if the disc had been spinning.
In other words, the evidence of a hoax is well established.
But there is more.
According to the documentation available, the FBI was alerted to the Shreveport case and FBI agents did interview one of the sources. The FBI memo on the case also said that the Army had taken the disc into their possession.
This case seems to fit facts and it is an “La.”
There is another piece to this. On July 24, 1947, there is another FBI memo. This one mentions the Hoover note but now it is typewritten. It says the same thing but the term has been identified. The crucial sentence says, “For instance, in the La. case the Army grabbed it and would not let us have it for cursory examination.”
That seems to end the discussion. We have found a case that fits the facts, we have a typewritten version of the note, and we have nothing to support much of the speculation. This is something that should be eliminated from UFO research, other than as a footnote to the history of UFOs. Oh, and don't overlook the period after La, suggesting it is an abbreviation.
This renewed discussion is the result of others not doing original research. It is very easy to read a couple of books and consolidate that information and quite another thing to chase the information to the original sources. Sometimes, when you attempt to find the original source, the story changes from everything that has been published in the past to what it actually is. This is another example of not using original sources and of not searching out the latest information on a specific case.