Monday, November 06, 2023

New Documentation for Roswell: The Easley Letter


As anyone who has been following the Roswell case knows, we, and by we, I mean Tom Carey, Don Schmitt and I, have been searching for documentation for, literally, decades. We have, of course, all the newspaper articles, the FBI Telex, and one or two hints of something strange falling outside Roswell. We have no diaries, letters, journals or other written statements from the time of the crash that mention the crash. One of the possible exceptions is a magazine article written by Inez Wilcox, wife of the sheriff, that mentions the little men. The problem is that there is no date on it, and the article might have been written after the Roswell crash became prominent in 1978. We need something from 1947.

Don and me on the Impact Site.

We did find a diary that had been kept by Ruth Barnett. Her niece, Alice Knight told me that she had found the diary in a box of material she had received after the death of her aunt. The diary, a daily reminder book for the year 1947, was in there and Ruth used it as a diary. She made entries for the entire year of 1947 and there is no mention of any UFO crash on the Plains of San Agustin.

Stan Friedman, when I met him so that we could copy the diary, suggested that Barney Barnett had been warned about keeping quiet, so he wouldn’t have told Ruth about his adventures over on the Plains. However, according to Vern Maltais, a good friend of Barnett, said that he’d learned of the crash when Barney told him about it at Thanksgiving. That suggests that Barnett wasn’t cowed by the orders to remain quiet, and even if he hadn’t mentioned it in July, he was talking about it in November. There is no notation in the diary about this amazing story that Barney had shared with friends and family during that Thanksgiving get together. There is just nothing said about it until Bill Moore interviewed Barnett’s boss after 1978.

The other document, to surface recently was the alleged diary of Jesse Marcel. This was a standard Army “Memorandum” book that the Army handed out by the hundreds of thousands over the years. I’d had several of them during my military career. Since that book was found in Jesse Marcel’s the possessions, it might have provided a clue about the crash. Unfortunately, once again, there was nothing in it to suggest a crash. To make it worse, handwriting analysis suggested that Marcel had not made the notations in the book.

I have learned in the last several months there was another officer in the office with Marcel. Major Dalton Smith was assigned to the 509th Bomb Group in 1947, and his office number matches that of Marcel. I know nothing much about Smith, other than he was there in 1947 and had the same number. It suggests to me that Smith might be the author of the notations in the Memorandum book. And since the notations aren’t all that personal, when Smith left the 509th, he left that book behind… Or, when Marcel left, he threw it in box with other items. At any rate, there is nothing of consequence in the book.

The notable one exception to all this was a two-paragraph mention in a Saga magazine article published in the Winter 1974 issue. B. Ann Slate and Stan Friedman, in the article “UFO Battles the Air Force Couldn’t Coverup,” report that Lydia Sleppy had said that her attempt to put the story of the crash over the news wire had been interrupted.  You can read about that here:

So, we now reach the latest bit of corroboration. I believe that I’m the only researcher to have ever interviewed Major Edwin Easley, the base provost marshal in 1947. He would have been responsible for security at the crash site and on the base. In my interviews, he told me, several times that he couldn’t talk about it because he had been sworn to secrecy. He said that he had promised the president he wouldn’t talk about it.

Skeptics, of course, criticized the statement, wondering if the president would talk to a lowly major. I was of the opinion Easley certainly could have made the promise to an emissary of the president. Both Don and I had learned of several secret service agents who had been dispatched to Roswell in 1947. 

Major Edwin Easley

In a letter dated December 30, 1947, and addressed to Colonel Blanchard, the Roswell base commander, we do have some corroboration for Easley’s help. While the opening paragraph seems to be seasonal boilerplate, meaning it talks about the season and “Your efforts in our behalf repeatedly served to great advantage.”

The second paragraph is the important one. It says, “In these regards, Major Edwin D. Easley, Provost Marshal and his able staff has been particularly helpful. Their intelligent understanding of investigative problems, their devotion and their untiring diligence, regardless of circumstances, had been directly responsible for the successful conclusion of many difficult undertakings.”

The Easley Letter

While this can be viewed as a generic “atta-boy” letter, it is relevant because of the timeframe, 1947, and that I currently know of no other event in which Easley would have been involved in something with the Secret Service. It does underscore Easley’s involvement and helps establish that Easley might well have promised the president that he wouldn’t talk about it by making that promise to the Secret Service representative rather to the president directly. As I have said, this is the latest document relating to the Roswell crash and one of the few that we have.


William G. Pullin said...

The lack of a great deal of documentation concerning the Roswell case is troubling, and should be noted, but it does not invalidate, or lessen the importance of the case. The skeptical community thinks so, but their position is too close-minded to the information we do have. Sincerest thanks for your work Kevin, hope all is well on your end.

John Steiger said...

Kevin: One is left to wonder just how much July 1947 documentation actually existed directly pertaining to the crash, its recovery, and cover-up?

QUERY: Of this unknown documentation, do you believe it more likely that the military is hiding it away in some secret place OR is it more likely to have been destroyed?

Sky70 said...

This is a very important find and worthy of discussion on this topic. However, I see no reference to any UFO/UAP crash, 75 miles northwest of Roswell in July of 1947. Rather, Mr. Wildy, Supervising Agent of the U.S. Secret Service is praising both Colonel Blanchard and Major Easley for working together with his office on "...many difficult undertakings." Notice that undertakings are in the plural form indicating the many times that they had worked together. Could this include the alleged Roswell UFO/UAP crash? Maybe, but it's way too general a statement to say that this letter is connected to the well-known event.

Nitram said...

Hi Kevin

Another interesting article...
Can I ask the date of that photo with you and "the Don" please?


Northfoggy said...

Just an FYI. I believe I've come across a photo of SA E A Wildy. I won't post the link (the system will probably think it's spam), but it can be found on the Getty Images site. Like I said, just an FYI.

Leo T said...

This is an extraordinary document! Thank you, Dr. Randle!

Dr. Okuma said...

Very interesting info!
Just when you think there is nothing more to be gleaned from the Roswell incident do to the passage of time, something new comes to the fore.

Kevin, since you may have been the only person to personally interview Major Easley, and given the fact he was sworn to secrecy (by someone, if not the president), how did you view his demeanor and actions during the interview? Did he appear to be genuine with his comments, even though he was limited in what he could say?

Tad Fitch said...

This is fascinating. I would caution that more work needs to be done to ensure there isn't a more mundane reason for the Secret Service praising Easley. However, this is intriguing and it's hard to envision another explanation other than the July 1947 incident, given the date of this letter. Nice find!