Sunday, November 15, 2015

The Timing of the Roswell Photographs

It has long been the contention of those who worked with J. Bond Johnson on the attempt to read the Ramey memo that Johnson did not take the two photographs of Jesse Marcel holding up what looks to be debris of a weather balloon. I never really understood why that was so because the pictures seemed to be of the same quality as those that Johnson did say he took.

The Roswell Photo Interpretation Team including Ron Regehr and Neil Morris, determined by looking at the shadows and sunlight as seen through the curtains
Ron Regehr (Photo copyright
by Kevin Randle
in Ramey’s office that the pictures of Marcel were taken at 3:15 p.m. and that would have been Tuesday afternoon, July 8, 1947. Given the timing of the events, as they have reconstructed them, this means that Johnson couldn’t have taken those two pictures. And, if their estimate of the time is correct, then their assumption is also correct.

I have never understood exactly how they made this interpretation. They talked of measuring shadows seen outside of Ramey’s office, but I don’t know if they had ever been to the base to make measurements, if the building in which Ramey had his office can be identified if it is still standing and how they determined the precise angle of the sun on July 8, 1947. What it is today doesn’t necessarily match what it would have been in 1947. Or, to put it in fewer words, I believe they made many assumptions to come up with the conclusions they wanted.

Here’s what we know based on the documentation. According to the time line published in the Daily Illini on July 9, the first of the AP alerts sounded at 4:26 p.m. Central Time (Fort Worth), or 3:26 Mountain Time (Roswell). Since Johnson had said, repeatedly he learned of the debris coming to Fort Worth from his editor and it seemed that the editor had the news bulletin, that means Johnson couldn’t have received word until after the Marcel photographs were taken.

The RPIT has concluded that there was another photographer there about two hours before Johnson arrived. It was this other photographer who took the two pictures of Marcel. Johnson at one point said that another fellow who worked at the newspaper in 1947 said that Ramey owed them a favor and had called the Star – Telegram to alert them about the situation. It was this man, never identified by Johnson or anyone else, who had taken those first pictures.

The problem here is that no one has ever come forward to claim to have taken the pictures of Marcel. After all the publicity surrounding these events, after all the times the pictures have been shown on television or published in books and magazines, it would seem that the man (and since this was 1947 I’m assuming it was a man) would have appeared to tell us that. Johnson, after all, and according to his own words, had been to Fort Worth to try to find his pictures after he had seen them on a television show or two.

And then there is where the negative of Marcel was filed. It was in the same envelop at the University of Texas – Arlington Library Special Collections as those of Ramey. That means the picture came from the Fort Worth Star – Telegram and that means they were taken by a photographer from that newspaper. But, again, according to Johnson, he claimed more than once he was the only one dispatched from there and to hear him tell it, he was the only one who took photographs in Ramey’s office, overlooking or belittling the picture of Irving Newton crouched in front of the same debris in relatively the same locations as it appears in the other photographers.


There is something else in all this. Johnson said that when he returned to the newspaper office, there was a “whole barrage” of people waiting for him. These were technicians from Dallas who had brought transmitting equipment to Fort Worth so that they could send a picture over the news wires. Johnson was told to develop the film and bring out a wet print because they were in such a big hurry to see what had been found and to get it out over the wire.

But, if there had been another photographer there, who could have been from a newspaper in the area though Johnson said it was from the Star – Telegram, he would have had, at the very least, a two hour head start on Johnson. His pictures,
Jesse Marcel with a view of the opening in the
curtains. Photo copyright by the Special
Collection, UTA.
of Marcel, would have gone out over the news wire probably before Johnson could have returned to his office in Fort Worth with his pictures, though there is no evidence of this. While Johnson’s pictures would have been important because they would have been different, they wouldn’t have been so critical that his editor wanted a “wet” print. They could have waited for Johnson to dry them properly. And, there is no indication from any of the archive services that any other picture, except the one of Newton which is clearly different than those first six, were ever taken.

Johnson had to be the photographer and the estimate of the time of the photographs based on looking through a slit in the curtains of Ramey’s office seems to be an amazing bit of deduction. The documentation from the time, Johnson’s own recollections of what he had been told and then related to me in the first two interviews he had ever given (yes, I was the first to interview him… I know this because I found in my notes that I had asked him about it and he said that no one had ever interviewed him) that Ramey told him it was a weather balloon, and what was written in that very first article in the Star – Telegram, sinks much of what he said later.

I won’t even bother to go through all of that again. Much of the information gathered in those first two interviews appeared in the International UFO Reporter (March/April 1990) and (November/December 1990). These articles outline the first interviews with Johnson and our (Don Schmitt and me) attempts to make some sense out of everything. The second article outlines the alterations in Johnson’s statements after his “interviews” with Bill Moore and Jaime Shandera. The critical interviews, that is, the ones I conducted are on tape.


The trouble here is that Johnson told so many stories, modified, changed and deleted information almost at a whim. We can believe the things that are corroborated by others and documentation and we can reject nearly everything else. Johnson’s desire to become an important part of the Roswell story ended up changing him from a valuable witness into just another clamoring for his fifteen minutes of fame regardless of the facts.

68 comments:

Jeanne Ruppert said...

Is there any place online where we can see the Ramey office debris photos together in relatively large sizes? If not, can anyone here present them together somewhere online? Perhaps you can do that Kevin?

edward gehrman said...

Kevin,
Where is JBJ's hat in the Marcel photos? And the chairs are in a different position
than in the Ramey photos and the debris isn't arranged the same on the paper.
Also one thing that bothers me about the DR's timing is Robert Porter's mention, (twice)
that they went to lunch, not dinner. As I recall, lunch ended at two PM and dinner began at four PM or close to those times. I know that nobody wanted to miss lunch.
Ed

Brice said...

Kevin, you brought some quite strong points IMO for the argument that JBJ took the pictures of Marcel (all negatives in the same enveloppe, the rush for JBJ to get the photos developped upon his arrival) but there could be arguments for the negative. As finely observed by edward gehrman above, the hat of JBJ (if it's indeed his) isn't in one of the picture of Marcel and the chairs are set in a different position. I consider that the debris are arranged in a different position might be a less important argument as they may have been moved while taking the photos, though it could also be a argument for the negative if arranged in completely position between Marcel's and Ramey's photos . It could also be remarked that in your first interview of JBJ, he was not recalling taking the two pictures of Marcel and claiming taking two shots with Ramey (but as you said JBJ changed some things in his testimony with the years so one is a bit at loss to know what might be true or not). Because of this, I find the question about the time/author of Marcel's photos isn't totally answered with certainty.

The estimation of the time of Marcel's pictures with the shadow of the car bumper seems to be a fine idea and may provide a definitive answer providing it could be estimated with enough confidence/reliability (?), so that all the assumptions/calculations should be made clear. But Now David Rudiak has already found a different time than the RIPT's one!!

Jimmy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nitram Ang said...

Hello Kevin

Haven't had a chance to read your latest blog but wanted to post a short note to once again thank you for your articles on Roswell which are always interesting and instructive to read.

Regards
Nitram

Daniel Transit said...

Jimmy said:

'..Well, I looked that up and a "string test" is a test for parasites in the upper GI tract and "Linniere" is the name of an obscure French veterinarian M. Linniere who did pioneering work on parasitic diseases in livestock and the detection thereof...'

If you can find a copy, check out 'The Chesapeake Connection: An Implication Of Corporate Involvement In The Cover-Up' by Robert L. Oechsler & Debby Regimenti, published in MUFON 1989 International UFO Symposium Proceedings. It is based on an investigation carried out by The Annapolis Research and Study Group (15 members credited).

Among the main names highlighted (if not, the main one) by their groundbreaking investigation, in connection with Roswell and the corporate cover-up, was Robert O. Anderson...

'..Our oil man from Roswell, New Mexico appears as the moving force behind the Aspen Institute with whom he has served as President, now Honorary President for decades...

...This little area by the Chesapeake Bay may well be the command post for corporate America and the cover-up.

Visitors notice first the brand new split rail fencing extending the length of the road. On the vast acreage beyond, graze a genetically pure breed of "super cattle," bearing yellow tags...'

The report also shares what they found out about Edwin Nourse, one of those mentioned in the widely-published and discussed Gerald Light letter...

'...his affiliation with the Brookings Institution had to be terminated in 1946 when he took on the post of chairman of the Council on Economic Advisers for President Truman. He held the post until 1949 when he disappeared from public view. As an economic advisor, his reaction to exposure to an extraterrestrial environment might be most valuable. Nourse also had an expertise in cattle breeding. His papers on cattle breeding suggest a concerted interest in genetics, an issue all of the Institutions we researched shared....'


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edwin_Griswold_Nourse

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Orville_Anderson

KRandle said...

Ed -

I'm not sure of your point. Johnson's hat isn't visible in the Marcel pictures because Marcel is crouched in front of the chair that held the hat. Of course the chairs are in a different position... Johnson said that he posed Ramey in front of the debris, and you see Dubose sitting in one of the chairs which has been moved forward. And Johnson said that he arranged the debris as he posed Ramey.

But the overseas cap and tie remain on the radiator, though they are missing from the Newton picture.

The point is that it seems that Johnson did take all six pictures... and where did you get the idea that lunch ended at two? I've had lunch as early as 11 and as late as three or four, depending on the circumstances... and lunch could have consisted of something as mundane as a sandwich and an apple which is sort of a staple (or was) in the box lunches supplied to flight crews.

edward gehrman said...

Kevin,
There are two photos of Marcel. He is positioned in one so that if JBJ's hat were there, we'd see it. The chairs are all in a straight row for Marcel's two photos,
I'd say this indicates that they had been taken at a different time from Ramey's since the chairs are moved and the debris is moved. I don't think JBJ took the Marcel photos and think you'll have a hard tome convincing others that he was the only photographer. The question we should be asking is whether all the debris or any is from an ML307.

Yes you could eat a sandwich at any time, but would you call it lunch? Porter brought it up and mentioned it twice. I think it indicates a general time. If he had been describing a late afternoon event, he might have d3escribed it in a different way, like dinner time. "We missed our dinner" Besides they were leaving the plane so they must have been going to mess hall. Then they returned from mess
and the other debris had been transferred.

Ed

Jimmy said...
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KRandle said...

Jimmy -

Did you actually read the Davis interpretation of the memo? He changes words that are nearly universally accepted such as Fort Worth, Tex. There is nothing of value here and there is no reason that the Eighth Air Force would be concerned with wasps and the like. This did nothing to help us understand what is on the paper. It just unnecessarily confuses the issue... and now I'll hear from all those who believe my ETH bias has gotten in the way. To them I say, "Take a look at that interpretation of the memo and decide if it merits any further discussion."

Jimmy said...
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Stephen Jackson said...

Kevin -

Looking at the image of marcel you posted, something struck me. There looks to be a lot of small and seemingly fragile items in the photo. Do you know what the weather was like from the debris being found until its retrieval?

I ask because the back of the foil seems clean and white, so must have been no rain or dirt. The size and seemingly fragile state of the items must mean no winds otherwise most would have blown all over. Dies the state and size of the debris match the weather of the day? Weird question I know

Jimmy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paul Young said...

Edward wrote...
"There are two photos of Marcel. He is positioned in one so that if JBJ's hat were there, we'd see it. The chairs are all in a straight row for Marcel's two photos,
I'd say this indicates that they had been taken at a different time from Ramey's since the chairs are moved and the debris is moved. I don't think JBJ took the Marcel photos and think you'll have a hard tome convincing others that he was the only photographer."


I'm struggling to understand why the movement of a few chairs, and this extremely lightweight junk, disqualifies JB Johnson from taking the Marcel photos?

You don't need to have the strength of Samson to move that stuff around. It could have been re-arrangement by anyone in about 30 seconds!

''''''''''''


Stephen Jackson wrote... " Kevin - Do you know what the weather was like from the debris being found until its retrieval?

I ask because the back of the foil seems clean and white, so must have been no rain or dirt. The size and seemingly fragile state of the items must mean no winds otherwise most would have blown all over. Dies the state and size of the debris match the weather of the day? Weird question I know"

Exactly! It looks like pristine material that has been deliberately scrunched up by hand.
Hence my comments, on the previous thread, that this stuff was probably brought, in its box, to Rameys office before the "real McCoy" had even left Roswell AFB.

Paul Young said...

Just going through the office rearrangement, in my mind, to see if it was possible to do it in 30 seconds...

JB Johnson has his camera and tripod in position.
Walks over to the chairs...moves that one from there to there. Moves another one from there to there.
Kicks some scrunched up weather balloon bits from there to there...and kicks another pile from there to there.

Asks Marcel..."Are you that moron who thought this was a flying saucer?"

JM..."Errr...Yep! That's me!"

"Good" Then kneel next to that stuff...wipe the drool off your chin and say "cheese"..."

OK... I've recalculated the rearrangement! 30 seconds was a bit ambitious. It maybe took up to 90 seconds to do all that.

Don Maor said...
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Don Maor said...

Well, in Marcel's photo, he seems to be posing for another direction, for another photographer?

David Rudiak said...

Kevin wrote:
According to the time line published in the Daily Illini on July 9, the first of the AP alerts sounded at 4:26 p.m. Central Time (Fort Worth), or 3:26 Mountain Time (Roswell). Since Johnson had said, repeatedly he learned of the debris coming to Fort Worth from his editor and it seemed that the editor had the news bulletin, that means Johnson couldn’t have received word until after the Marcel photographs were taken.

The Daily Illini AP chronology is based on Eastern Standard Time. Thus the first AP bulletin giving the Roswell base press release was at 4:26 pm EST, 3:26 pm CST (Fort Worth), and 2:26 pm MST.

http://www.roswellproof.com/AP_Chronology.html

This is pinned down by two sources: 1) Roswell radio reporter Frank Joyces collection of UP teletypes, giving local 2:41 pm (Roswell time or MST) or 4:41 EST for the first UP bulletin in his collection, the UP version of the press release, and 2) The Boston Herald story which stated explicitly that Haut's announcement came out at about 5:30 EDT (or 4:30) EST, etc.)

http://www.roswellproof.com/Boston_Herald_July9.html
http://www.roswellproof.com/United_Press_Telexes.html

The first UP bulletin indicating Marcel had been sent to Fort Worth ("higher headquarters") was at 4:42 pm CST. The first AP bulletin mentioning Ramey was ten minutes later or 4:53 pm CST, the likely time. Johnson said his editor was following the AP wire when he told him Ramey had the disc and ordered him out to the base. But whether it was UP or AP as the source of the new destination of the "disc", these are the earliest times when the Star-Telegram would have known this from the newswires. Add approximately 30 minutes to these times (Johnson's estimate of travel time), and Johnson didn't get to Ramey's until about 5:15 pm (CST) at the earliest.

As for the photo order, Marcel was clearly photographed closer in time to weather officer Newton, therefore AFTER the four Ramey and Ramey/Dubose photos. This can be determined by:

1) The round paper package is against the radiator in the Marcel and Newton photos, but behind the central chair in the Ramey and Ramey/Dubose photos.

2) The central chair is pulled out in the R & R/D photos, but back against the wall in the M & N photos.

3) The tie on the radiator is visible in various R, R/D, and M photos, but missing in the Newton photo

4) Small bits of stick and foil debris on the ground have been moved between the R & R/D photos, but match up in the M & N photos. Interestingly, one small stick in one Marcel photo matches the orientation in the R/D photos, but is rotated to the same position as the Newton photo in the second Marcel photo (meaning it was taken after the other Marcel photo).

Newton was a late addition to the story. Various newspaper stories had Ramey starting to change the story on the phone starting about an hour after the AP bulletin with the press release (thus starting about 4:30 p.m. CST), saying in some stories he thought it was a weather balloon/radar target, but would LATER bring in a weather officer to make sure. It wasn't until about 6:30 p.m. CST that AP announced the definitive weather officer ID. (Though Ramey's intel officer Kirton was telling the Dallas Morning News this at about 5:30 p.m., thus Newton must have come in at about that time.)

All of this proves that Marcel's photos could not possibly have been taken clear back at 3:15 p.m. CST They were taken AFTER Ramey and BEFORE Newton. Besides, the photo with the outside shadow that RPIT placed at 3:15 was NOT visible in either of the Marcel photos, but the Ramey memo photo with Ramey and Dubose posing, which they claim was taken later. So a totally self-contradictory timeline and story.

Brice said...

@David Rudiak :

"As for the photo order, Marcel was clearly photographed closer in time to weather officer Newton, therefore AFTER the four Ramey and Ramey/Dubose photos. This can be determined by:

1) The round paper package is against the radiator in the Marcel and Newton photos, but behind the central chair in the Ramey and Ramey/Dubose photos.

2) The central chair is pulled out in the R & R/D photos, but back against the wall in the M & N photos.

3) The tie on the radiator is visible in various R, R/D, and M photos, but missing in the Newton photo

4) Small bits of stick and foil debris on the ground have been moved between the R & R/D photos, but match up in the M & N photos. Interestingly, one small stick in one Marcel photo matches the orientation in the R/D photos, but is rotated to the same position as the Newton photo in the second Marcel photo (meaning it was taken after the other Marcel photo)."

Interesting, that could well be so... How about the hat of JBJ? he's not present in one of the Marcel photos nor the Newton's one but in a R/D photo (meaning it may be possible that JBJ didn't take the photos of Marcel?). BTW do you know (or Kevin) if there's a place on internet that all the photos can be seen in plain sight, not cropped?

" Besides, the photo with the outside shadow that RPIT placed at 3:15 was NOT visible in either of the Marcel photos, but the Ramey memo photo with Ramey and Dubose posing, which they claim was taken later. So a totally self-contradictory timeline and story."

Thanks for making that clear. I got it wrong and thought the shadow could be seen in Marcel's photos.

@Don Maor :

"Well, in Marcel's photo, he seems to be posing for another direction, for another photographer?"

That's what I was thinking too. One photo is taken from the left of Marcel while he's looking up and in front of him as if posing to someone else (a photographer?) in front of him. And the second photo is taken from this direction (front of him) while he's looking to his left as if posing for the photographer of the first photo. This seem to suggest there might be two photographers (or at least one other personn with Marcel but then the posing of Marcel is strange because he never looks at the camera, which might better be explained if there were two photographers, though I reckon quite speculative at this point)

Neil said...

Our timing of the 4 JBJ FW photos is based on the shadow cast by a Buick 60 saloon car seen through Ramey's office window. This model of car has a "unique" front fender(seen in the photo) used only on that model. The fender/shadow creates a "sundial". An original Buick 60 was used along with manufacturers specs to get ground clearances and other measurements and sun angles were obtained for FW on the date in question from the US Navy archives. The sun angle in the photo indicates 3.15pm with a marjin of error of aprox +-10mins. The sun angle analysis was produced by Canadian RPIT member and engineer Andrew Lavoie. We also did some lens analysis which indicated the Marcel photographs were not taken by the same camera lens as the Ramey photos also if you check the full negative of one of the Marcel shots and note it's frame "notches" IF it was taken in a Speedgraphic camera of the type Bond owned he would have had to have taken it with the camera upside down! another point saying he didn't take it. The hand written numbers on the Marcel negatives are also in a different hand from the Ramey's indicating they were processed at a different time.

cda said...

Kevin:

Are you now saying Johnson took all six (or is it seven?) photos? In the IUR article I referred to and which you also mentioned, you say two of them were taken by Charles Cashon, the PIO. What has caused you to change your mind?

For the record, the sun's elevation & azimuth on July 8, 1947 at a given time would be the same, with a very slight deviation, as they were on July 8, 2015 at the same time, or indeed on July 8 at the same location in any future year. Barring a change in the calendar, of course.

I suspect the RPIT analysis of the sun's position is subject to a very wide error, not just 10 minutes. The curtains are opened a few inches. This gives them the make and model of the car! They then go to US Navy Archives to get the sun angles at various times of the day, then measure the shadows in the photos. Absolutely amazing. This surpasses the details allegedly obtained from the Ramey memo.

It also beats anything done by Sherlock Holmes. A case of too many detectives!

Brian Bell said...

@ Neil

Thanks for the explanation. Now do you believe that material in the photos is the actual alien crash mayerial?

edward gehrman said...

All,
There's also the "lost Ramey" photo which has Ramey in a different chair,
the one that had held JBJ's hat so JBJ hadn't arrived yet, or had already been there. The chairs are in a straight line, as they were for the Marcel photos which leads me to believe it was photographed by the same person who took the Marcel photos. Or there was a fourth photographer.
Ed

Jeanne Ruppert said...

Brice wrote:

"BTW do you know (or Kevin) if there's a place on internet that all the photos can be seen in plain sight, not cropped?"

Or even several sites that, together, provide all of the known photos. There must be someone reading these threads that knows of such links and can post them for us??





Jeanne Ruppert said...

Brice also wrote in response to Don Maor's observation:

"@Don Maor :

"Well, in Marcel's photo, he seems to be posing for another direction, for another photographer?"

"That's what I was thinking too. One photo is taken from the left of Marcel while he's looking up and in front of him as if posing to someone else (a photographer?) in front of him. And the second photo is taken from this direction (front of him) while he's looking to his left as if posing for the photographer of the first photo. This seem to suggest there might be two photographers (or at least one other person with Marcel but then the posing of Marcel is strange because he never looks at the camera, which might better be explained if there were two photographers, though I reckon quite speculative at this point)"


A very good question. And it makes sense that Ramey's staff would also be photographing this debris for AAF records rather than relying on the newspapers to do that for them.

Jeanne Ruppert said...

cda said:

"A case of too many detectives!"

Au contraire. This case needs as many detectives as are willing and able to pursue it.

Jeanne Ruppert said...

Neil said...

Our timing of the 4 JBJ FW photos is based on the shadow cast by a Buick 60 saloon car seen through Ramey's office window. This model of car has a "unique" front fender(seen in the photo) used only on that model. The fender/shadow creates a "sundial". An original Buick 60 was used along with manufacturers specs to get ground clearances and other measurements and sun angles were obtained for FW on the date in question from the US Navy archives. . ."

Hello Neil. Do you and Ron now have an estimated publication date? If your publisher works closely with amazon we can have an opportunity to pre-order the book at some point.

David Rudiak said...

Neal wrote: (1 of 2)
Our timing of the 4 JBJ FW photos is based on the shadow cast by a Buick 60 saloon car seen through Ramey's office window.

Specifically it is the photo with Ramey/Dubose where Ramey is holding the memo with the front showing. So RPIT is claiming JBJ (not another photographer) took THESE series of photos (2 of Ramey alone and 2 of Ramey/Dubose) at ~3:15 p.m. CST, or BEFORE there was even a story (which broke on the AP wire at 3:26 p.m. CST). Further, you have to factor in the time to get from the newspaper to Ramey's office (about 1/2 hour, according to JBJ). Therefore JBJ would have had to be dispatched at ~2:45 p.m.

This is after JBJ repeatedly stated his editor sent him out to Ramey's because he was following the story on the AP wire. But there was no story to follow yet, not for another 45' or so. AP didn't mention Ramey until 4:53 p.m. (with Ramey saying he was forwarding the disc on to Wright Field). Don't you see RPIT's timeline is absolutely impossible?

Factor in further impossibilities, such as newspapers indicating that Ramey began changing the story about an hour after the press release from the base, or around 4:30 CST. The Washington Post and other papers said Gen. Vandenberg dropped into the Pentagon AAF press office (with Vandenberg out of his office from about 4:15-5:15 CST). From there, Vandenberg directed calls to Roswell and Ramey. Many of the quotes attributed to Ramey stem from those Pentagon calls.

The Post reported about these calls: "Ramey said he hadn't actually seen it himself as yet. He went to take a look, and called back that it was about 25 feet in diameter. He said he was shipping it on to Wright Field, Ohio, but would have one of the meteorological officers look at it first..."

Critical information from this one quote from roughly 4:30 CST:
1) Ramey claiming he hadn't seen it yet! But what about RPITs alleged 3:15 CST photo with JBJ? Wouldn't he have seen it then?
2) Ramey very clearly stating he thinks it is weather balloon/radar target (the SINGULAR balloon/target story, which indeed exactly what he showed in the photos)
3) Ramey's bizarre 25 feet in diameter statement, a good indication there was still nothing in his office to see (real radar target only 4' across)
4) His announcement that he was shipping it to Wright Field, the source of the 4:53 AP bulletin of same, the first AP mention of Ramey, which would have been the actual impetus for JBJ's editor to send him to Ramey's.
5) Weather officer Newton hadn't entered the scene yet.

UP reported Ramey saying "...he couldn't let anybody LOOK AT THE THING or PHOTOGRAPH IT because Washington had clamped a 'security lid' on all but the sketchiest details. 'The object... is in my office right now and as far as I can see there is nothing to get excited about. It looks to me like the remnant of a weather balloon and a radar reflector."

So again, the singular balloon/target story, Ramey stating the matter was highly classified, but most important here, Ramey declaring he alone had seen the object, NOBODY else, and certainly had not let anybody photograph it yet. Again a direct contradiction to RPIT's alleged 3:15 JBJ photoshoot.

Regarding the Marcel photos, photo details previously discussed indicate they were sandwiched between Ramey/Dubose and Newton photos. I’ll have to examine Neil’s negative notch argument more carefully to see whether it supports a second FWST photographer/camera. Our two photo experts last May, also examined the notches and thought it was the same camera (as I vaguely recall), but I’ll have to query them again.

David Rudiak said...

This model of car has a "unique" front fender(seen in the photo) used only on that model. The fender/shadow creates a "sundial". An original Buick 60 was used along with manufacturers specs to get ground clearances and other measurements and sun angles were obtained for FW on the date in question from the US Navy archives. The sun angle in the photo indicates 3.15pm with a marjin of error of aprox +-10mins. The sun angle analysis was produced by Canadian RPIT member and engineer Andrew Lavoie.

I think noticing that outside shadow and using it to try to calculate the photo time was brilliant, but flawed in the execution. I had a LOT of arguments with Lavoie in email and on UFO Updates over his various assumptions on a variety of matters. But specifically here he made the following bad assumptions and mistakes:

1) The sun was coming directly from the left, ignoring that the shadow is SLANTED DIAGONALLY upward to the right. Thus the sun was really to the left and BEHIND the camera, meaning Ramey's office was NOT aligned East-West but diagonally to that, from NW to SE. E.g., go to Google maps, type in "Carswell AFB", and you will immediately see the diagonally oriented roads and most of the buildings just East (right) of the flight line. This is probably where 8th AAF HQ was located and Ramey's office.

2) Ignored the rest of the car behind the bumper, which would have blocked the front of the bumper from casting a shadow if sun due left. Instead there would have been the much larger shadow of the front end of the car rising well above the bumper.

Assuming such a diagonal orientation to Ramey's office, and doing a 3D ray-trace reconstruction of the,office and the possible car with bumper, placing the real sun light source behind and left of the camera (close to due West in the afternoon), the best match time reproducing all the details of the slanted shadow moved forward 2 hours to about 5:15 p.m. (CST) +/- 15 min., or right in line with other evidence, such as the 4:53 AP bulletin first mentioning Ramey's involvement.

In a previous post, I erroneously said the shadow was cast by the right front tire—wrong! (bad memory) It was indeed cast by the bumper, but not the front of the bumper but by the right edge of the bumper on the shadow left, with a bump in the shadow on the right produced by the protruding license plate holder in the bumper middle .

The sun angles came from a planetarium program and are the following at various times (270 deg. azimuth would be due West):

Fort Worth sun angles, July 8, 1947 (CST)
.........Azim.....Alt.
3:00....261.7....56.3
3:15....264.3....53.2
3:30....266.6....50.0
3:45....268.8....46.9
4:00....270.8....43.7
4:15....272.8....40.6
4:30....274.6....37.4
4:45....276.4....34.3
5:00....278.2....31.2
5:15....280.0....28.0
5:30....281.7....24.9
5:45....283.4....21.9
6:00....285.2....18.8

Using these, 5:15 was the best ray-trace model match to the actual shadow, but time depends somewhat on modeling accuracy and true building orientation (and assumptions about what is really casting the shadow). I think other evidence suggests time was probably between 5:15 and 5:30. (E.g., when JBJ could first get to Ramey's office and Dallas Morning News story which gave the Newton "6-pointed star" "rawin" description at about 5:30, but Newton was photographed AFTER Ramey/Dubose and Marcel.)

KRandle said...

All -

First David is right and I miscalculated the times. The Daily Illini is in the Central Time Zone and calculated everything from there. From the documentation, it is clear that George Walsh and Frank Joyce put out the news release around 2:30 Mountain Time, not 3:30 as I suggested. It really doesn't change the point because Johnson was in Ramey's office (or someone was) before the news hit the wire if we accept the 3:15 time for the photographs.

Ed -

I don't understand why you get so hung up on trivia. The picture with Johnson's hat in it was published in the IUR for November/December 1990 on page eight. Ramey and Dubose are in the picture, with Ramey in a Class A uniform as opposed to a dress uniform.

All, again -

Here is something interesting... in one of the Marcel pictures, there is some brown paper up against the radiator. A tie and overseas cap are on top of it. I think they belong to Ramey (though some have suggested Marcel... but I can't see him tossing his cap and tie on the radiator in the general's office). I note this because in the picture of Newton, you can see the same wad of brown paper (or whatever it is) but the cap and tie are gone.

The cap and tie are on the radiator in the pictures of Ramey and Dubose but Ramey is crouched down so that the brown paper can't be seen.

CDA -

Yes, we did say that Cashon (or someone from the PIO office) took the pictures of Marcel because Johnson had denied taking them and Johnson denied that there was anyone else in the office at the time. I now believe, apparently by myself, that Johnson took those pictures but only because they have not surfaced anywhere with a credit for the photographer.

edward gehrman said...


Kevin wrote:
Ed I don't understand why you get so hung up on trivia. The picture with Johnson's hat in it was published in the IUR for November/December 1990 on page eight. Ramey and Dubose are in the picture, with Ramey in a Class A uniform as opposed to a dress uniform.
Ed answers:
I don't have the slightest idea what you're referring to. I was describing the
photo known as the "lost Ramey". It was printed in the Star-Telegram and attributed to a "staff photo". No other prints have been found. In it the chairs are all lined up and Ramey is partially squatting, sitting on the chair that had
JBJ's hat. You must not have seen it. Have you? There are four photos of Ramey and the debris. You can't understand the sequence of the photos unless you understand this simple but not well know fact. And even then we might not be able to know for sure. Those of you who want copies of the photos should be real nice to Neil Morris. I'd be glad to send what I have, but don't know if that's possible.

David Rudiak said...

Kevin wrote, (1 of 2)

Here is something interesting... in one of the Marcel pictures, there is some brown paper up against the radiator. A tie and overseas cap are on top of it. I think they belong to Ramey (though some have suggested Marcel... but I can't see him tossing his cap and tie on the radiator in the general's office). I note this because in the picture of Newton, you can see the same wad of brown paper (or whatever it is) but the cap and tie are gone.

The cap and tie are on the radiator in the pictures of Ramey and Dubose but Ramey is crouched down so that the brown paper can't be seen.


In the photos showing the roundish paper package up against the right side of the radiator (Newton photo and Marcel facing left), the package extends about 7 radiator pipe widths to the left, covering almost the bottom half of the radiator (15 pipe widths, or 30"—thus paper package about 14” across).

In the Ramey/Dubose photo with the Ramey memo showing almost the entire radiator (except for part of the rightmost pipe), there is no package there. What can be seen in all of the Ramey and Ramey Dubose photos is that there is packaging (perhaps the same roundish package) behind the central chair that has been pulled away from the wall. There is clearly no such paper packaging in the Marcel and Newton photos, where the chair is back against the wall.

(On a side note, the bottom of the roundish package appears to have been opened in hires images of the Ramey memo photo. I would speculate this is the package that held the display weather balloon that is very close by. If the ~14” across flattish package was 4” thick, it would have about the same volume I calculated for the balloon on the floor based on 3D ray-tracing reconstruction, or about .4 ft^3, about the size of a large shoe box.)

The roundish package is one indication that Marcel's photos were taken inbetween Ramey/Dubose and Newton. Another clear marker is a short stick fragment that is close and parallel to a longer more intact stick in the Ramey/Dubose smiling and surviving Ramey alone photos/negatives. The same short fragment can be seen in the two surviving Marcel photos and the Newton photo. It is parallel to the other stick (and maybe a little further away) in the Marcel looking right photo, but rotated CCW in the Marcel looking left photo. The same rotation is seen in the Newton photo. Thus photo sequence is four Ramey/Dubose photos, then Marcel looking right, Marcel looking left, Newton.

As for the RPIT/Andrew LeVoie argument that different photographers and cameras were involved in the Ramey/Dubose photos and Marcel photos, I have reviewed his arguments from UFO Updates and photos of the four surviving negatives taken last May when I and two photo experts visited the Univ. Texas Arlington Special Collections Division that has the negatives. LaVoie claims the film stock is different and the notches different. However, the notch system is clearly exactly the SAME (2 identical rectangular notches), meaning ALL photos could have been taken in same camera. At least 3 of the 4 show the "ANSCO Safety Film" label (missing high-def photo of the edge of the Ramey alone photo where this label would be).

The ONLY clear difference is that one of the photos (Marcel looking left) has the photo "upside down", with the notches at the bottom right of the photo instead of the upper left as in the other negatives. LaVoie said this could have happened if the camera was rotated 180 degrees (correct), but then argues cameramen are creatures of habit and this wouldn't have happened, therefore different photographer (incredibly feeble argument IMHO).

Steve Sawyer said...

@KR:

"Jeanne Ruppert said...

"Is there any place online where we can see the Ramey office debris photos together in relatively large sizes? If not, can anyone here present them together somewhere online? Perhaps you can do that Kevin?"

The idea of someone hosting the larger size images has now been brought up several times in the past couple of weeks. Isaac Koi offered to host these images, for all to examine if interested, at least twice in prior comment threads. There was no direct reply to his offers to host the images.

What seems to be responsible for the ongoing delay? Image hosting isn't rocket science.

David Rudiak said...

(2 of 2)
It should be noted that in all photos, the camera was tipped 90 deg. from horizontal so that the photos are all vertically orientated. So it wasn't a matter of tipping the camera upside down, but sideways in one direction and sideways in the other direction, hardly difficult to do. This may have been done to give a different angle on the flash (which is on top of the camera), which can also be seen in the photos, with shadows cast to the photo right in the Marcel looking right photo (meaning camera rotated 90 deg. CCW placing flash to left of camera facing scene), and to the photo left in the Marcel looking left photo. (camera rotated 90 deg. CW).

LaVoie's other bad argument concerns the angle flare of Ramey's rug stripes, another interesting idea badly executed. Because the rug flare angle is different where the stripes are visible in the Ramey/Dubose photos from the Marcel photos, LaVoie (and RPIT) argue two different cameras with two different focal lengths. What they DON'T take into account is the photographer is crouching in the Marcel photos and standing up in the Ramey/Dubose photos, changing the perspective and rug angles.

The final argument is JB Johnson's hat on the photo leftmost chair visible in the Ramey/Dubose "grim" photo (at Bettman Archive). The hat clearly is NOT there in the Newton photo, but in the other photos that chair is entirely or mostly covered up. However, examining the Marcel LL photo, in which we took a high-res photo version direct off the negative, what appears to be a hat brim can be seen sticking out to the left of Marcel on the chair. I can't say it's the same hat or maybe even something else, but could also argue that how likely would some other photographer also place his hat there?

So clearly ALL photos (except Newton's) could have been taken by the same photographer with the same camera and likely were. I also had photographed another FWST negative of a weather balloon/rawin demonstration held at FWAAF 2 days later. Completely DIFFERNT notch code and labeled "Kodak Safety" film, not "ANSCO", so DIFFERENT film stock, camera, and photographer.

Another weaker argument against different photographers for the Ramey/Dubose and Marcel photos is that all six photos plus the Newton photo would have been taken in a very short period of time, somewhere between about 5:15 p.m.--about the earliest JBJ could have gotten there after AP announced Ramey’s involvement at 4:53 p.m.--and about 5:30 (when the Dallas Morning News said they were told by Ramey spokesperson, intel officer Major Kirton, that the object had been finally identified as a “rawin” and that it resembled a “six-pointed star” (all wording attributed to Newton in other stories), plus Ramey announcing the special flight to Wright Field had been cancelled (what both Newton and Dubose remember Ramey stating once Newton had Ided the debris).

It seems unlikely two different FWST photographers could take different sets of photos in such a short period without seeing or bumping into one another.

David Rudiak said...

Steve Sawyer wrote:
The idea of someone hosting the larger size images has now been brought up several times in the past couple of weeks. Isaac Koi offered to host these images, for all to examine if interested, at least twice in prior comment threads. There was no direct reply to his offers to host the images.

What seems to be responsible for the ongoing delay? Image hosting isn't rocket science.


But copyright issues ARE rocket science. There is no argument for "fair use" for the entire photos as there is for using a tiny percentage of the photo showing the Ramey memo alone. Copyright STILL belongs to either the Univ. of Texas Arlington, which had the FWST historical photo collection donated by the FWST for archiving, or maybe copyright is still held by the FWST. Even UTA is unsure of the legal status. Thus copyright and Net display limbo.

July 8 2022 will be when the 75 year copyright expires.

Jeanne Ruppert said...

David Rudiak wrote:

"But copyright issues ARE rocket science. There is no argument for "fair use" for the entire photos as there is for using a tiny percentage of the photo showing the Ramey memo alone. Copyright STILL belongs to either the Univ. of Texas Arlington, which had the FWST historical photo collection donated by the FWST for archiving, or maybe copyright is still held by the FWST. Even UTA is unsure of the legal status. Thus copyright and Net display limbo.

July 8 2022 will be when the 75 year copyright expires."


This is quite absurd. Both the newspaper and the archive can be sent duplicate requests for permission to share the photographs online for research purposes. Preserving and sharing information and documentation is what archives (academic and newspaper archives) exist to do. Requesting such permissions is not rocket science either. There are forms available in the Chicago Manual of Style for anyone who's willing to spend 15 minutes doing this.

Who is it that considers these photographs to be their private intellectual property? Certainly not JBJ. Who else then, and why? Especially why.

David Rudiak said...

Ed Gehrman wrote:
I don't have the slightest idea what you're referring to. I was describing the
photo known as the "lost Ramey". It was printed in the Star-Telegram and attributed to a "staff photo". No other prints have been found. In it the chairs are all lined up and Ramey is partially squatting, sitting on the chair that had
JBJ's hat. You must not have seen it. Have you? There are four photos of Ramey and the debris. You can't understand the sequence of the photos unless you understand this simple but not well know fact. And even then we might not be able to know for sure. Those of you who want copies of the photos should be real nice to Neil Morris. I'd be glad to send what I have, but don't know if that's possible.


Multiple mistakes here. I have the "lost Ramey" direct off the microfilm from the Univ. of Texas Arlington, so about as clear a copy as readily available (other than maybe a surviving original newspaper). Ramey is CLEARLY crouching on the ground in front of the chair, just like in the other 3 Ramey photos. He is NOT sitting on the chair! (or Johnson's hat). The center chair is pulled away from the wall as in the other Ramey alone photo, also the two Ramey/Dubose photos (except chair rotated to accommodate Dubose, who IS sitting in the chair.

As to photo sequence, best guess as to Ramey & Ramey Dubose photo sequence based on the way Ramey is crouching (3 in same crouch position, Ramey memo photo in opposite crouch) and how memo paper is curled (or not curled):

1) "Ramey missing" with memo seeming to have straight edges
2) "Ramey alone", crouched the same, but with memo scrunched up in his hand, curling paper
3) "Ramey/Dubose grim", same Ramey crouch, but memo now curled
4) "Ramey/Dubose smiling" or Ramey memo photo, same memo curling as "R/D grim" but Ramey crouched opposite to first three photos.

Then:
5) "Marcel facing right"
6) "Marcel facing left" (details matching next Newton photo)

Then:
7) Newton photo

Don said...

Kevin: "The Roswell Photo Interpretation Team including Ron Regehr and Neil Morris, determined by looking at the shadows and sunlight as seen through the curtains Ron Regehr in Ramey’s office that the pictures of Marcel were taken at 3:15 p.m. and that would have been Tuesday afternoon, July 8, 1947."

UP story in the Billings Gazette, 7/9/47, morning, page 1:

"The weather device was flown to Fort Worth army air field by a B-29 from Roswell army air field at 10 a.m. Tuesday, at the command of...Ramey."

No timezone is mentioned for the "10 a.m." No matter, if accurate, it means Marcel left Roswell before the noon announcement, and may have arrived in Fort Worth before the story went national at 2:26pm MT.

Regards,

Don

Jeanne Ruppert said...

David Rudiak wrote:

"It seems unlikely two different FWST photographers could take different sets of photos in such a short period without seeing or bumping into one another."


There seems to be a camera on the window sill just above the radiator, visible in several photos of Ramey. It does suggest another photographer on the scene, if in fact it is a camera. It's hard to tell in the four photos of Ramey that KR put up in his blog following this one.

Steve Sawyer said...

@ DR:

"But copyright issues ARE rocket science. There is no argument for "fair use" for the entire photos as there is for using a tiny percentage of the photo showing the Ramey memo alone."

Let me clarify: almost the entire discussion over the last few "Ramey memo" blog posts here has primarily been on those small portions of the few photos that show the memo. That's what I, and several others here, would like to see. The full photo scans of all 7 photos can wait until the nebulous copyright issue is resolved, hopefully soon.

"Fair use" law and precedent do allow at least those small segments of a couple photos (the portions of the new scans of the memo itself, only) to be posted online without any legitimate concerns over whomever retains the copyright, although hosting such small excerpts in full resolution of the photos concerned should still be accompanied by proper copyright notice.

I still don't see the problem, unless the current efforts by those who do have all the high-rez scans is that they are waiting for someone else to do something, or a lack of coordination and contact, which means no one is doing what needs to be done.

Can or will someone who has the scans take the responsibility to either do it themselves or delegate that to someone who is willing to simply provide Isaac Koi those sections of the scans that include only the memo? If not, why not?

"Copyright STILL belongs to either the Univ. of Texas Arlington, which had the FWST historical photo collection donated by the FWST for archiving, or maybe copyright is still held by the FWST. Even UTA is unsure of the legal status. Thus copyright and Net display limbo."

And are still in "limbo"? Kevin says, in his latest blog post, "I will note, for those interested, that the copyright is the University of Texas - Arlington Special Collections..." -- doesn't that establish the copyright holder? Have they been asked for permission for online posting of the memo excerpts or not as yet?

This is obviously something that can and should have already been resolved, given that the effort has been going on for over 7 months, since April, an article was written for prospective publication, and thus getting the copyright and permission issues straightened out has also been long delayed, strangely, because one has to assume prior to publication of any findings, the copyright and print or online publication permissions "problem" could, would and should have been resolved.

But, it hasn't been? That speaks to inertia and some inexplicable reluctance to complete the research effort on the part of the individuals who have the full-rez scans, doesn't it?

Who's in charge of making these kinds of decisions? Anybody? Are there one or more "team leaders" who can take action rather than debate further how and why it hasn't been done yet? And, again, if not, why not?

KRandle said...

Don -

I've been aware of this for a long time but the sentence is somewhat confusing. What exactly does it mean "flown to Fort Worth army air field by a B-29 from Roswell army air field at 10 a.m. Tuesday, at the command of...Ramey"

Did it leave Roswell at ten mountain time or ten central time (which changes the departure to eleven central time... Or was that when the order was issued, meaning ten mountain time? What about time for the preflight which wasn't something accomplished quickly? And if it left at ten mountain time, or eleven central, it would be about a two hour flight at normal cruising speed for the B-29 which means it arrived at one central time... which is somewhat consistent with Porter's suggestion they were told to go eat lunch.

But, if the order was issued at ten, then it is not inconceivable that the aircraft landed later than one... And there might have been delays getting into the air.

And there has been other testimony that suggested the flight didn't leave Roswell until long after ten in the morning.

The information gathered from other sources including the testimony of those involved suggest that the flight didn't leave at ten contrary to what the newspapers claimed.

This is one of those points that I can't see how we could resolve unless the flight records could be recovered and the 509th (which I think is now at Whiteman AFB in Missouri had retained them and there would be no reason for them to do so. If we could find the flight records of the individuals involved (and they might not have kept them... I know in my own case I relied on the operations clerks to keep track of the flight time but it doesn't supply us with take off or landing times, just the date, flight time and if it was local or cross country) so that might not be helpful.

So, if the flight left at ten, then Marcel could have been in Ramey's office by one at the earliest, but if it was central time, then he got there about two, if everything worked out, and probably a little later than that...

And then there is the possibility that the reporters were told one thing but the Army did something else.

KRandle said...

Steve -

Unless you happen to be a lawyer trained in copyright law, then your speculations are simply that... speculations.

I have not resolved the copyright problem but am using what UTA told me 25 years ago about publishing these photographs. I will note that the scans were created at UTA with their assistance and were done by David Rudiak and two forensic photo-analysts over several days so that copyright of these specific images are copyrighted but the legal ownership or the approval authority for them is somewhat cloudy. I have taken a risk here, publishing them and if any of the parties involved demand that I remove them, I will do so immediately.

Don said...

Kevin, I agree with your caveats. The news stories are like cement or paint that doesn't fully dry but crawls around, changing shape. However, the 10am is a contemporary text, rather than a recollection.

For all we know the 10am came from Marcel.

A departure before any public notice means it was not motivated by publicity, but was in response to AAF policy re the discs, and thus its destination was Wright Field. If so, how did it end up in Fort Worth? Three publicity events were arranged: local radio interview, photo-op, national broadcast. If the first, then the second follows, because radio news and the press were highly competitive, and 'political' figures, such as Ramey, snubbed one at their peril. It would be standard practice for any PIO, including Haut. The three are obviously 'counter-publicity' events for a purpose: to get the press of its back.

At some point during the flight, the publicity begins. Perhaps the noon announcement heard at the RAAF and travelled upstream, or perhaps it was the 2:26 wire stories, and the flight is diverted to Fort Worth.

I don't know what really happened, but the above seems a reasonable scenario, but like the others, unprovable.

Best Regards,

Don

David Rudiak said...

Kevin wrote: Did it leave Roswell at ten mountain time or ten central... Or was that when the order was issued, meaning ten mountain time? What about time for the preflight which wasn't something accomplished quickly? ... And there has been other testimony that suggested the flight didn't leave Roswell until long after ten in the morning.

Yes, exactly. Preflight can take several hours. Robert Porter getting “lunch” once they arrived could have meant they missed lunch during preflight and finally got to eat once they arrived in Forth Worth, but at dinner time. Asst. Op Officer Robert Shirkey said the B-29 didn’t pull up to the loading dock until shortly after he had gotten back from lunch. Then it took further time to load the plane (which included boxes of metallic debris and much more than a measley radar target and weather balloon). Shirkey placed the departture time at about 2:00, not 10:00 (Roswell time)

It also wasn’t exactly clear, about the flight time in the newspapers. E.g., AP likewise reported (including FW Star-Telgram): "The weather device was flown to Fort Worth army airfield by a B-29 from Roswell army airfield at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the command of Brig. Gen. Roger Ramey..."

But then later in the SAME story contradicted itself saying: "After Col. William H. Blanchard... reported the incident to Gen. Ramey, he was ordered to dispatch the object to Fort Worth Army Air Field immediately. About that time word broke from Roswell that a flying disc finally had been found.

Well word “broke from Roswell” at 2:26 MST (3:36 CST in Fort Worth) when AP first put the base press release out on the wire. That would agree with Shirkey’s estimate that the plane left at about 2:00, which would be “about that time word broke”. And that would leave several hours for preflight checks and fueling. A plane like a B-29 would unlikely just be ready to go “immediately”. (Even if you instead consider the time at which “word broke” to be around noon when Haut first delivered the press release to the local media by everyone’s recollection—what Don calls the “noon announcement”—that could give 2 hours for pre-flight and still fit into Shirkey’s recollection of a 2:00 departure.)

Thus Marcel could have been ORDERED at 10:00, but left at 2:00 (MST). He would have arrived at Ramey's office around 5:00(CST).

NOTE to Don: According to Marcel’s testimony, Blanchard ordered him to fly debris to Wright Field, but FIRST stopping in Fort Worth to see Ramey. The FW flight was always part of Marcel’s orders, not diverted because of the press release. Marcel said Ramey pulled him from the flight to Wright. Robert Porter added he learned after “lunch” that the loaded debis had been transferred to another plane bound for Wright. AP announced at 4:53 CST that Ramey was forwarding the “disc” to Wright because higher ups had so ordered. This was the likely time when Marcel’s flight would have arrived if it left a 2:00.

The 10:00 departure also disagrees with Ramey being quoted ~4:30 CST by the Washington Post, that the object was in his office but he hadn't seen it yet. If Marcel left at 10:00 MST (or 11:00 CST), the object would have been in his office for over 3 hours MINIMUM with Ramey never taking a look. Ramey then added a description of the object apearing to be 25 feet across, which was absurd, suggesting to me he was improvising awaiting Marcel's plane arrival and there was really nothing in his office yet. Once Marcel arrived, they could proceed with the balloon photo op, which took place probably between 5:15 and 5:30 (giving Johnson the time he needed to get there after being dispatched because of the 4:53 AP bulletin about Ramey). The Dallas M. News was being told of Newton’s definitive ID by 5:30, the last guy kneeling in the photo sequence.

Neal Foy said...

David,

Was all the film used Ansco? That seems a bit odd because Kodak was by far the market leader.

One possible explanation for the orientation of the notches is that some of the film was loaded into the holders in a non traditional way. Usually the film goes into the holder notch end last. It's physically possible to load it notch end first. That is a very strange way to load film. I've loaded thousands of sheets of 4x5 film into holders and never loaded notch end first. But this is Roswell after all.

One thing that might point to more than one photographer is the difference in exposures. The one on this blog absolutely sucks. The photographer failed to match the ambient light with his flash. Marcel is underexposed by at least a half a stop. While some of the other pictures I've seen look properly exposed. I suppose it's possible that the flashbulb failed to burn properly, that can happen if the batteries in the flashgun are weak. Or just a defective bulb.

Just to add, I cut my teeth as a pro photographer on the Graphic camera and still own a few of those flash guns and probably somewhere have some flashbulbs for them. I may know something about that camera that the Neil doesn't.

Nitram Ang said...

Steve wrote:

"Can or will someone who has the scans take the responsibility to either do it themselves or delegate that to someone who is willing to simply provide Isaac Koi those sections of the scans that include only the memo? If not, why not?

This is obviously something that can and should have already been resolved, given that the effort has been going on for over 7 months, since April, an article was written for prospective publication, and thus getting the copyright and permission issues straightened out has also been long delayed, strangely, because one has to assume prior to publication of any findings, the copyright and print or online publication permissions "problem" could, would and should have been resolved.

But, it hasn't been? That speaks to inertia and some inexplicable reluctance to complete the research effort on the part of the individuals who have the full-rez scans, doesn't it?

Who's in charge of making these kinds of decisions? Anybody? Are there one or more "team leaders" who can take action rather than debate further how and why it hasn't been done yet? And, again, if not, why not?"

Well yes, it is rather frustrating and Kevin has already sent you a response.

Steve, can you provide me with an email address please?
Kevin - thank you for allowing me to request this on your blog.

Regards
Nitram.

Don said...

Neal: "Was all the film used Ansco? That seems a bit odd because Kodak was by far the market leader."

A few years ago the was a show of a local news photographer's photos, Charles (Teenie) "one shot" Harris. Stacked on a table were his film boxes. Included were Kodak and Ansco films, and probably others. Photographers are into their kit.

Regards,

Don

Don said...

David, I'm not an Roswell ET advocate, but I agree with you and others that there was an aaf cover-up and a suppression of the press re the flying saucers (which is my interest in Roswell and the 47 Wave). This makes me cautious about the statements made by aaf persons, in 1947, or 30, or 45 years later.

The obvious intent of the 10am statement is to state the time the plane left the RAAF. I don't know what other meaning could have been intended. It may not be true (the informant lied). But, since Ramey is involved in a cover-up, why should I believe what he said is true? Is Marcel involved, too? This extends to the later military witnesses, as well. You see the problem they pose for me?

So, I look at the marginal items, like the 10am, the bits and pieces that don't fit what the skeptics call the Roswell Mythos. I take the marginal and bring them together at the center and see what story they tell.

Best Regards,

Don

David Rudiak said...

Neal Foy said:

Was all the film used Ansco? That seems a bit odd because Kodak was by far the market leader.

3 of the 4 negatives at UTA are definitely Ansco (Ramey/Dubose and both Marcels). I have photos of those. I/we didn't get a photo showing what was on the other (Ramey alone) and I don't remember, but I presume also Ansco, considering the 2 Ramey/Dubose and 2 Ramey alone photos were by the same photographer, same camera, and probably same film company.

All 4 negatives have the same rectangular double notches. The ONLY clear difference is that the position of the notches is reversed in the second Marcel photo, being at the bottom right instead of the top left as in the other 3 negatives.

Since all 4 negatives are vertically oriented, the camera had to be tilted sideways, but tilted in opposite directions in the two Marcel photos. This would also have reversed the flash direction, creating opposite shadows in the two photos (to right or left of shadowed objects).

I have also compared the two Ramey alone photos, which have the same reversal of shadows, which might weakly suggest the same photographer using same technique as in the Marcel photos.

In contrast, negatives of a balloon/radar target demonstration at Fort Worth base two days later, also from the FW Star-Telegram, WERE Kodak film with completely different system of notches.

One possible explanation for the orientation of the notches is that some of the film was loaded into the holders in a non traditional way. Usually the film goes into the holder notch end last. It's physically possible to load it notch end first. That is a very strange way to load film. I've loaded thousands of sheets of 4x5 film into holders and never loaded notch end first. But this is Roswell after all.

Don't follow here (not a camera or film expert). I thought there is only one way the film could be inserted into the camera because of the notches. Thus if the notches were rotated 180 on the negative, that meant the camera had to be rotated 180 as well.

Neal Foy said...

David,

If the notches are the same then yes, it would all be Ansco. The reason I asked is that there was a saying among the old timers I knew when I started out in 1970. "We believe in Kodak and God and in that order". It would be strange for two different photographers to be using Ansco film. Especially if one was military. I remember reading about the volume of film that Kodak produced for the military during WWII, I believe they used only Kodak film. I'll add that I know practically nothing about Ansco film, maybe it was cheaper.

You're right about the camera orientation, I missed the part about the shadows being different. It's possible to detach the flashgun from the camera but extremely awkward to shoot a Graphic camera with one hand in the vertical position. Usually we want the flash above the lens but there could be a reason he shot the other way.

The thing that strikes me as most odd about the picture on this blog is that the light is so strong on Marcel's shirt sleeves. It indicates a source stronger than the flash coming from both sides of Marcel. Here's where it get's strange, the most commonly used flashbulb was the GE #5 aka Press 5. It's guide number was about 200. At ten feet that would indicate an f-stop of between f/16 and f/22. Assuming asa 100 film. Light coming trough a window obeys the inverse square law, meaning that it falls off inversely proportional to the square of the distance from the window. Also the light falls only on the sleeve and not his face, possibly because the curtains were in a similar position as the ones we see in the photo. The sunny 16 rule says that the exposure in direct sunlight would be f/16 at 100th of a second for asa 100 film. So the light coming from the window is very strong, possibly facing west with a low sun angle. Probably would be a shutter speed less than 100th of a second because of the inverse square law. It's very early in the morning while I'm writing this so I hope it makes some sense.

Neal Foy said...

To add to the confusion it was possible to use a smaller, weaker flashbulb in the Graphic flash with an adapter. Or as I said before the bulb could have misfired.

Some have said that in another picture Marcel is facing away from the camera, possibly posing for another photographer. That might be true but he could also be facing someone he is talking to or talking to him. If I'm taking pictures of someone with other people in the room I ask them to stand behind me for that reason. It's natural to face someone who has your attention in some way.


David Rudiak said...

Don wrote:
The obvious intent of the 10am statement is to state the time the plane left the RAAF. I don't know what other meaning could have been intended. It may not be true (the informant lied). But, since Ramey is involved in a cover-up, why should I believe what he said is true? Is Marcel involved, too? This extends to the later military witnesses, as well. You see the problem they pose for me?

Don, the problem is the stated 10 a.m. flight time doesn't agree with anything else, including another contradictory AP newspaper statement in the same article that the flight didn't happen until about the same time that the "story broke", which would have been the afternoon. THAT does agree with other information, such as op officer Robert Shirkey saying the flight left after lunch around 2:00 (Roswell time), which agrees with Ramey by 4:53 (Fort Worth time) saying he was forwarding the object to Wright Field, which agrees with Ramey a little earlier saying the object was in his office but he hadn't seen it yet, which agrees with Ramey then giving a ridiculous description (25 feet across) suggesting there was nothing really there yet.

B-29's usually aren't just waiting around ready to go at a moments notice. If a flight is ordered, several hours preflight are normally required. It makes the most sense to me that first Roswell base had the morning staff meeting with Marcel and Haut there. By 9:30 Haut said Blachard was beginning to dictate the flying disc story to him and by 10:00 Marcel was ORDERED by Blanchard to fly to Wright Field, first stopping in Fort Worth to see Ramey, but didn't/couldn't leave "immediately" (word in news story). Then several hours preflight, with Marcel finally leaving around 2:00, as per Shirkey and second news flight time (about when story broke).

Can't say who was responsible for the 10:00 am flight time. Could have been someone trying to be deliberately misleading ("Yeah, many hours ago, we're not that concerned about it"). Or it could have been simple reporter misunderstanding, really being told Marcel was ORDERED to fly the wreckage at 10:00, not that the flight necessarily left at that time. I think the latter scenario makes the most sense. Probably this part of the story came from someone out of Fort Worth (Ramey? Marcel? PIO?), since most of the story was about what was said and done in FW. (JB Johnson's story) Or it could have been the Pentagon press room, or less likely, someone at Roswell base.

We see something like this in the different versions of the press release. UP has the recovered "disc" being "flown" by B-29 to "higher headquarters" by "intelligence officers" (correct). But AP has it being "loaned" by Marcel to "higher headquarters", which is preposterous. (Was he going to demand "higher headquarters" give it back to him afterward?) The Los Angeles Herald-Express is the only newspaper I've found that changed AP's "loaned" to the correct "flown". The "disc" was flown by Marcel to higher headquarters. Since AP's version was dictated over the phone from Roswell to AP Albuquerque HQ, could have been a simple transcription error over the phone.

Thus maybe the sentence should have read "it was ORDERED flown... at 10:00" with ORDERED getting accidentally dropped by someone down the line. This makes the chronology of events internally consistent and logical, whereas an actual 10 a.m. flight with Marcel and the "disc" twiddling their collective thumbs for several hours waiting for Ramey to get around to them makes it inconsistent and illogical.

David Rudiak said...

Neal,

Since I know diddly about Speedgraphic press cameras, I'm guessing that there wasn't one Speedgraphic for Ansco film and another for Kodak film. You could use both in the same camera, but would need different film plate holders to accommodate the different notch systems for Ansco and Kodak?

If Ansco was cheaper than Kodak, then maybe JB Johnson, then a starving student and not a permanent employee of the Star-Telegram, would have preferred it for that reason. I believe he was a freelancer at the time, buying his own Speedgraphic camera. On the other hand, the photos were the property of the Star-Telegram, so maybe their own film stock, some Ansco, some Kodak depending on photographer preference. (This is all minutia that isn't really that important.)

Neal Foy said...

David,

Your guess is correct except that any 4x5 film would fit in any 4x5 film holder and those holders would fit any 4x5 camera. It's a good thing the Brits didn't invent the format, they were famous for making everything complicated.

I can't say for sure that Ansco film was cheaper but I've never heard it called a premium brand either. It's very likely that Johnson would have signed a contract with the newspaper giving copyright to all photos shot on assignment. That's certainly how it's done today and for decades. Copyright can only be transferred in writing. With few exceptions.

It is minutia but it does point to Johnson as the one who took the pictures in question. Frankly if I had taken the picture Kevin put in the blog I wouldn't claim it either. One part of Fair Use allows publication for the purpose of critique. My critique is that it sucks. lol

David Rudiak said...

Neal wrote:
"Your guess is correct except that any 4x5 film would fit in any 4x5 film holder and those holders would fit any 4x5 camera. It's a good thing the Brits didn't invent the format, they were famous for making everything complicated."

Neal,

So to eddikate me further, the notches are solely for identification of a brand's film stock and not for alignment of the film in the plate holder? If that's the case, why can you only insert the plate in one way and not the other (which might be another explanation for why the notches are 180 deg. reversed on the two Marcel pictures).

Paul Young said...

Neal Foy wrote..."Your guess is correct except that any 4x5 film would fit in any 4x5 film holder and those holders would fit any 4x5 camera. It's a good thing the Brits didn't invent the format, they were famous for making everything complicated."


Not "everything"! At least we work to ONE time zone over here. :-)

Reading David's various timelines and trying, in my mind, to convert "mountain time" (strewth...never heard that one before!) into "central time", etc, is taxing! It's a shame that in July 1947, you didn't all work in GMT to make it easier for me!

Neal Foy said...

Yes the notches are for identification, they also indicate emulsion side. When the notches are located lower right on the film it is emulsion side up. That is the way it is then inserted into the holder. There are guides in the holder that keep the film in place. To load the holder a right handed person would have the holder in his left hand with forefinger and thumb resting lightly on the ends of the guides. The film is inserted under the fingers into the guides and slides all the way into the holder. Then there is a flap on the end of the holder that is flipped closed and the dark slide is pushed in sealing the film from light. Rinse and repeat for the other side of the holder.

The average commercial photographer might have four or five different types of film in his dark room. Although you do your best to get organized before turning the lights off it's possible to become a little disoriented and open the wrong box of film in the dark. If you feel the notches you have a double check to make sure you're loading the right film. And yes you can turn the film around and load with the notches on the upper left, still emulsion side up but IMO kind of goofy because it would make the double check more difficult.That's what I was trying to explain in a previous post. In the Marcel photos with the shadows reversed you are probably right that the camera was inverted. Kinda weird IMO but probably true.

Photographers who use labs to develop their film usually unload the holders into an empty film box. The lab uses the notch code to insure that the box is not somehow mislabeled. Even different B&W film requires different development. So the notches have multiple uses but they don't serve to register the film in the holder. There were special pin registered holders or the down and dirty way was to use a small piece of tape to keep the film from moving when making multiple exposures on the same sheet of film.

Hope this helps and Kevin allows it, I did mention Marcel once.

Neal Foy said...

Paul

I was referring to some of the crazy camera systems the Brits invented in the 1930's to compete with the Leica 35mm format which was ingenious.

The US military did use GMT on a 24 hour clock, they called it Zulu time. The name has changed I think but it's the same system. A great system but confusing to civilians.

Don said...

US news photographers used 4x5 cameras, Speed Graphic usually, I would say exclusively or nearly so as to make no difference, in this era. The reason was speed and efficiency on the printing end. The 4x5 print was large enough that an enlarger wasn't needed, and a good news photographer could frame the shot so that, due to the size, it could be easily cropped to fit the space available on the page and still 'tell the tale'. It avoided waste (unexposed shots on a roll), and didn't require tank development, and then perhaps enlarging. So, it was fast and efficient.

The two things which no news photographer or editor cared about was resolution/detail and archival process.

The reasons should be obvious. Detail resolution doesn't matter because newsprint and halftoning meant extremely low resolution on the page. As for longevity...it's the news, here today, and gone before tomorrow. The archive was the morgue. Dead stuff.

About the only film they wouldn't shoot would be a very slow film. A sheet of 4x5 is a sheet of 4x5 whether made by Ansco or Kodak or anyone else.

Regards,

Don

David Rudiak said...

Paul Young wrote:
"Reading David's various timelines and trying, in my mind, to convert "mountain time" (strewth...never heard that one before!) into "central time", etc, is taxing! It's a shame that in July 1947, you didn't all work in GMT to make it easier for me!"

Definitely confusing, not only time zones but also whether standard time or daylight savings time is being used. Also different groups use different conventions for their marked times (examples below).

For my chronologies, I use standard time. Mostly only 3 locations and 3 time zones to consider: Washington (EST), Fort Worth (CST), and Roswell (MST).

The only time I have seen the newspapers back then reporting daylight savings time was the Boston Globe in their (otherwise atrocious) Roswell story. They said AP announced the Roswell base press release at about 5:30 daylight savings time (thus 2:30 MST in Roswell, 3:30 CST in Fort Worth, and 4:30 EST in Washington). But if you go to Roswell radio announcer Frank Joyce's saved collection of UP telexes on Roswell, they start at about 2:40 with UP's PR announcement, thus all times here in these telexes are local or MST.

The Dallas FBI telex on Roswell (where they were told it was a radar target and balloon, but with Wright Field disagreeing) has a 6:17 time stamp. What time zone was that--Fort Worth/Dallas? Washington?

I actually called the FBI public information office in Washington and asked what convention they used back in 1947 (innocent question I thought), only to be told that the FBI doesn't disclose any information on their communications.

I finally figured out from another period telex to FBI HQ (don't remember which telex) with a different time zone than Washington giving their time of transmittal, with the time of reception in Washington being stamped a minute or two later. Thus the FBI standardizes their transmittal times to EST in Washington no matter which time zone or time of year. The FBI Roswell telex was transmitted at 6:17 EST or 5:17 CST in Dallas/Fort Worth, just about the same time as JB Johnson showed up in Ramey's office to take pictures. Weather officer Newton hadn't been brought in yet (about 5:30 CST), thus no definitive ID (only Ramey saying he suspected it was a radar target/balloon and would later bring in a weather officer to make sure).

The FBI telex has similar information to early Reuters stories, both using the same source (Ramey's intel officer Major Kirton), thus both giving the weird "hexagonal" description to the Roswell "disc", but with the telex being a little more definitive than Reuters stories about what the disc was supposed to be (RESEMBLED a radar target and balloon, not WAS a target/balloon after Newton's ID).

Don said...

David: "Don, the problem is the stated 10 a.m. flight time doesn't agree with anything else, including another contradictory AP newspaper statement in the same article that the flight didn't happen until about the same time that the "story broke", which would have been the afternoon. "

"About that time word broke from Roswell that a flying disc finally had been found."

"from Roswell", which, according to the Daily Record, was at noon. And "word broke" -- 'word', not 'story'. I don't know where the Shirkey quotation comes from (it's not in his affidavit). I've got a video interview of him (one of Porter, too). Maybe it is there. I'll have a look this weekend.

As for Ramey, he lied about the 25 foot disk and he lied about the rawin and balloon. What grounds do I have for determining whether anything else he said about Roswell is true?

"B-29's usually aren't just waiting around ready to go at a moments notice."

This was especially true at that time. According to the Amarillo Globe, July 2, 27 B-29s from the 509th would be flying over Amarillo at 2:58pm on the 4th, on their return from Independence Day celebrations in Vicksburg Miss (Gen Eisenhower was there). I don't know how many B-29s the 509th had, but 27 of them needed maintenance. And anyway, if there was a morning meeting, it wouldn't be at a moments notice.

The problems of chronology bedevil historians. Roswell is unusual because it is about minutes and hours, not months and years. My chronology doesn't break your (and Kevin's) position. It would I think strengthen it.

Best Regards,

Don

cda said...

Paul Young wrote:

"Not "everything"! At least we work to ONE time zone over here. :-)"

It was in the year 1947 (as well as the years 1941-45, but NOT 1946, that the UK not only had 'summer time', but had DOUBLE summer time for a period in the summer months. Yes the clocks were 2 HOURS fast on GMT from April 13 to Aug 9 of that year.

I often wonder if astrologers made any mistakes in writing horoscopes for children born during that period.

cda said...

Don:

"As for Ramey, he lied about the 25 foot disk and he lied about the rawin and balloon. What grounds do I have for determining whether anything else he said about Roswell is true?"

What grounds do YOU have for thinking Ramey lied? These reports of a 20-25 foot object look to me clearly like newspaper errors, not lies by Ramey. They originate because, in the rush to get everything out in time, the reporters got confused and quoted figures for the estimated balloon diameter, not the radar target. Use of the word "diameter" usually refers to something spherical, not hexagonal or kite-shaped. (See the FBI teletype).

If DR quotes this figure as coming from Ramey he is wrong, in my view. The botched figure may have come from another informant, or it may, as I say, be simply be due to 'rush to print' reporter mixups.

If you insist Ramey told lies, you'll have to provide better evidence than this. Of course there are some who insist the whole setup at Ft Worth (and Roswell also) was a staged affair, but that is another matter.

Don said...

CDA: "What grounds do YOU have for thinking Ramey lied?"

Back atcha...what grounds do YOU have for thinking Ramey was truthful?

"These reports of a 20-25 foot object look to me clearly like newspaper errors, not lies by Ramey. They originate because, in the rush to get everything out in time, the reporters got confused and quoted figures for the estimated balloon diameter, not the radar target. Use of the word "diameter" usually refers to something spherical, not hexagonal or kite-shaped. (See the FBI teletype)"

That's nice, CDA. Everyone has an opinion. Ramey was just telling the story he was told to tell. Whoever approved the rawin story couldn't imagine how difficult it would be to describe in words, so all "witnesses" to it have their own peculiar interpretation.

The UP doesn't attribute it to Ramey but to AAF spokesmen, but attributed to Ramey is that "it was too lightly constructed to have carried anyone" and that there was "no evidence that it had had a power plant of any sort".

Well, yeah, true. It is just a little kite. Alas, Ramey and AAF spokesmen never mention the obvious it is just too damn small. It's a frickin' kite, not a 25 ft disk, however lightly constructed. Perhaps, to you, it is obvious, that the reporters were in error and Ramey really did say it was too small.

I'm one of those people who think the evidence points to the whole setup being staged.

Regards,

Don

Brice said...

David Rudiak said :

"The final argument is JB Johnson's hat on the photo leftmost chair visible in the Ramey/Dubose "grim" photo (at Bettman Archive). The hat clearly is NOT there in the Newton photo, but in the other photos that chair is entirely or mostly covered up. However, examining the Marcel LL photo, in which we took a high-res photo version direct off the negative, what appears to be a hat brim can be seen sticking out to the left of Marcel on the chair. I can't say it's the same hat or maybe even something else, but could also argue that how likely would some other photographer also place his hat there? "

IMHO I'm really not sure about this, JBJ's hat is white and covers most of the chair as can be seen in the R/D photo. It indeed seems to be some darkish little thing sticking out on the chair's rim on the LL Marcel photo but it really doesn't look like JBJ's hat that would have been white and would have been partly visible on the rest of the chair that can be seen behind marcel IMO.

"The 10:00 departure also disagrees with Ramey being quoted ~4:30 CST by the Washington Post, that the object was in his office but he hadn't seen it yet. If Marcel left at 10:00 MST (or 11:00 CST), the object would have been in his office for over 3 hours MINIMUM with Ramey never taking a look. Ramey then added a description of the object apearing to be 25 feet across, which was absurd, suggesting to me he was improvising awaiting Marcel's plane arrival and there was really nothing in his office yet. Once Marcel arrived, they could proceed with the balloon photo op, which took place probably between 5:15 and 5:30 (giving Johnson the time he needed to get there after being dispatched because of the 4:53 AP bulletin about Ramey). The Dallas M. News was being told of Newton’s definitive ID by 5:30, the last guy kneeling in the photo sequence. "

The problem I see in this timeline is that there's too little time between Marcel's plane arrival for Ramey checking the material, coming with an idea of switching the material for a weather balloon, finding one to bring in his office and staging everything for JBJ to take the photos around 5:30. What do you think? Or did Ramey began changing the story for a weather balloon before Marcel's plane arrived? but then why if he haven't seen the debris yet and not have stated right at the beginning (PR) it was some sort of a weather balloon? To me there's some kind of "logical disconnection" here. Or maybe this is where one could hypothesize about the learning (of Ramey) of this second site, before Marcel's plane arrival, which would have shed a very different light on the matter?

David Rudiak said...

Brice wrote:
The problem I see in this timeline is that there's too little time between Marcel's plane arrival for Ramey checking the material, coming with an idea of switching the material for a weather balloon, finding one to bring in his office and staging everything for JBJ to take the photos around 5:30. What do you think? Or did Ramey began changing the story for a weather balloon before Marcel's plane arrived?

The short answer is that the balloon story was planned out well in advance, long before Marcel arrived in FW.

Note, all times CST in FW:
Ramey began changing the story to weather balloon about an hour (~4:30 pm) after the press release in Roswell went out on the AP wire (~3:30). Multiple people were said to be speaking to Ramey on the phone (UP, SF Examiner, Pentagon AAF press room) while he was spinning the story and a Ramey duty officer/intel officer Major Edwin Kirton was also speaking with Reuters and the FBI at this time. Kirton also spoke with the Dallas Morning News at about 5:30 and gave Newton's balloon/target ID. The FBI telex saying they had been told by Kirton it was a balloon/target went out at 5:17.

AP first reported Ramey's involvement at 4:53, in which Ramey said he was forwarding the disc to Wright Field because he had been ordered to. This would be about the likely time Marcel's B-29 would have arrived from Roswell (had it left at 3:00 CST according op officer Robert Shirkey's memory) and when JB Johnson's editor would have dispatched him to Ramey's upon learning of his involvement from the AP bulletin, probably not getting to Ramey's until ~5:15.

About 5:15 (+/- 15 min) also matches an outside shadow that can be seen through the gap in Ramey's curtain in the Ramey memo photo. Marcel was photographed between Ramey/Dubose and Newton according to various details in the 7 photos taken (such as paper package up against radiator in Marcel and Newton photos).

There is other minutia, such as Kirton, in the name of Ramey, saying the disc was "hexagonal" in shape, a near-impossible description for the torn-up and flattened radar target that Ramey soon displayed. ONLY an intact, assembled radar target might be so described, then only as a profile shape seen directly from above or below.

The point is, the weather balloon story had to have been pre-planned well before Marcel even got to Fort Worth. This would have given them the time to procure a shill balloon and radar target, both being too pristine to have been out in the elements for weeks.

but then why if he haven't seen the debris yet and not have stated right at the beginning (PR) it was some sort of a weather balloon? To me there's some kind of "logical disconnection" here. Or maybe this is where one could hypothesize about the learning (of Ramey) of this second site, before Marcel's plane arrival, which would have shed a very different light on the matter?

Haut said the point of the first "flying disc" press release from a ranch was to divert attention away from the more important and closer second site, acknowledge to locals who already knew something that something had indeed been found, while getting principle Marcel and the disc "out of Dodge" and to Ramey and Fort Worth, where he could control the story. The Roswell PR was vague in its details about what the "disc" looked like or what it was, with Ramey and Kirton about an hour later providing some details like "hexagonal" and opining that it was like a "boxkite" or he thought it a radar target and balloon but would bring in a weather officer later to make sure.

Psychologically as a counterintel strategem, the dramatic switch in story built up high expectations, only to have them quickly dashed and ridiculed with Ramey's weather balloon debunking. People don't like being played for suckers. Most would likely not take flying saucer reports seriously after that if they had before, not wanting to be burned again.

Brice said...

@David Rudiak :

Thanks for answering so precisely, I didn't know if you saw my post since a lot has been posted recently on JBJ/Marcel's photos.

you wrote :

"Ramey began changing the story to weather balloon about an hour (~4:30 pm) after the press release in Roswell went out on the AP wire (~3:30)"

"The point is, the weather balloon story had to have been pre-planned well before Marcel even got to Fort Worth. This would have given them the time to procure a shill balloon and radar target, both being too pristine to have been out in the elements for weeks."

" Haut said the point of the first "flying disc" press release from a ranch was to divert attention away from the more important and closer second site, acknowledge to locals who already knew something that something had indeed been found, while getting principle Marcel and the disc "out of Dodge" and to Ramey and Fort Worth, where he could control the story."

" Psychologically as a counterintel strategem, the dramatic switch in story built up high expectations, only to have them quickly dashed and ridiculed with Ramey's weather balloon debunking . People don't like being played for suckers. Most would likely not take flying saucer reports seriously after that if they had before, not wanting to be burned again."

The latter point makes some sense to me (Haut saying the PR was meant to divert attention from another site), but looking at what actually happened I see some contradictions : If all these developements were planned right from the beginning (1st PR of a flying disc then changing of the story for a weather balloon), I have a hard time understanding the reason why would Ramey started to change the story just 1 hour after the 1st PR went out. Even if the reason was to divert attention from another site, I really don't see the point of giving this false information just one hour time duration for any valuable reason, apart from the one you lastly mentionned about a counterintel stratagem - as there's really too little time left (only 1 hour!) for doing anything/purpose , and there was no need to announce anything or even so, a story of WB could have been issued right from the beginning to kill any undesired interest.

Now I find that such a counterintel stratagem would have been extremely well planned for such an event (assuming an ET spaceship crash) which would have taken RAAF/FWAF officers by complete surprise even if some investigations on the ufo phenomenom have already been going on at some level and for some time. I don't consider it impossible but if that so, it would be baffling for me that they could have managed all this so precisely right from the beginning. It also means that the second site was also known at the time of the 1st PR ad raises a lot of questions (one being the degree of Marcel's involvement as he was supposed to be at this staff meeting on the morning of july 8th, but later said he didn't see bodies - though I don't recall if he said he didn't hear anything about a 2nd site and bodies, but he was still witholding some informations, which can have one speculate about what it is about)

David Rudiak said...

Brice, addressing your various points:

1. Time of second site discovery: According to the Haut affidavit, he learned of it the afternoon of Monday, July 7. Marcel was still investigating the Foster Ranch debris field and wouldn't return until late that night.

Afternoon July 7 is also when Gen. Vandenberg began acting oddly, taking on jobs normally handled by underlings. First he was fielding phone calls trying to kill another crashed disc story from a Houston newspaper, an obvious hoax. Then around 2:00, he cancelled a dentist appointment and personally went out to the airport to pick up AAF Secretary Stuart Symington and bring him back to the Pentagon. The latter in particular could have been done by an aide or Symington could have taken a cab. It strikes me something of GREAT urgency had just come up that couldn't wait, hence Vandenberg's trip to the airport to see Symington ASAP. Of course I'm just speculating here, but he urgent matter might have been the discovery of the second site with craft and bodies that had filtered up to Washington by early afternoon.

2. What did Marcel know and when did he know it? Marcel probably would not have had time to visit the 2nd site, but he would have learned details at the staff meeting the morning of July 8. Some witnesses have said Marcel did know something about bodies, but spoke only briefly about them (like comparing them to Caspar the ghost). In his last interview with Linda Corley, Marcel DID indicate that he knew more and was withholding critical information "for the sake of my country". Again, we are left speculating, but given all else he said about debris beyond our capabilities to manufacture, "not of this earth", and a cover-up, the most likely thing would be knowledge of the "victims" recovered. However, I asked Jesse Marcel Jr. about this before he died, and he told me his father never mentioned anything about bodies with him.

3. Why the first press release saying the object was a "flying disc" and not just a weather balloon? To be or not to be, that is the question. Here's what I propose. Haut affidavit indicated too many locals had already knew something and rumors were flying. Calling it a "flying disc" acknowledged the local rumors that SOMETHING had been found, but gave out absolutely no details about what this mysterious "flying disc" might be. The mysterious nature would justify why it was necessary for the AAF to have a flight "out of Dodge" to "higher headquarters" and also Wright Field, taking the focus off Roswell and transferring it elsewhere. It also got Marcel out of Roswell, where he lived in town with his family, thus away from local reporters, and essentially made him incommunicado until the ruckus had died down by the next day after Ramey's weather balloon debunkery. Blanchard similarly got out of Dodge and became incommunicado. Reporters calling the base right after the press release were told Blanchard was on leave. Haut said Blanchard told him to hide out for a while until the furor abated, so now Haut, the main press villain blamed for the press release (other than Blanchard) became incommunicado as well.

Mostly left holding the bag in Roswell was Sheriff Wilcox, who when pressed for details about Brazel's disc refused to answer, explaining he was "working with those fellows at the base." Wilcox was flooded with phone calls from all over and couldn't seem to tell a straight story about details of what had happened, contradicting Brazel to some extent and even himself. Wilcox began putting out a weather balloon story even before Ramey, quoted by UP perhaps only a half hour after the press release, claiming Brazel came in saying that maybe he had found a "weather meter". (Whereas Brazel's story was that he told Wilcox that maybe he had found a "flying disc" and denied that what he found resembled a weather balloon "in any way".)