of the week
10:12:13 -- PICTURES OF THE WEEK: Top picture: From 1950, Life Magazine photo of reporter Bill Powell of the McMinnville, Oregon, Telephone Register. Pictures two through five: Two snapshots and two enlargements of pictures said to have been taken on May 11, 1950 by Oregon farmer Paul Trent. Bottom picture: A similar photo said to have been taken in Rouen, France in 1957, as seen in the May-June, 1957, issue of Flying Saucer Review. The Trent pictures wouldn't come to public attention until a month after they were said to be taken, as told in the June 11, 1950 edition of the Cumberland, Maryland, Times...
Flying Saucer Photo Reveals Some Details
McMINNVILLE, Ore., June 10 -- (INS) -- A "saucer-weary" public got the needle again today. Interest picked up in two pictures taken by Paul Trent, McMinnville farmer, of a flying saucer.
Citizens including the town banker, sturdily backed the 34-year-old farmer as "a man of integrity," hard-working and sincere. One of the shots revealed some of the saucer's detail.
Outlined against an overcast sky, the saucer appeared like an inverted soup dish with a thin rim and a dome-like superstructure centered by a short straight upright.
The other picture, taken from a different angle, emphasized the disc-like appearance and absence of wings.
Trent was interviewed at a farm near Dayton, Ore., where he drives a truck.
Taken May 11
The pictures, he said, were taken May 11. Trent said he delayed talking about them because he was "scared."
"You know, you hear so much talk about those things . . . I didn't believe all that talk about flying saucers before. But now I have an idea the Army knows what they are."
According to Trent, he was in the kitchen when his wife sighted a flying disc. She was in the backyard and called to him. He immediately ran for his camera, dashed outside and took the pictures.
He estimated the "thing" was about 20 or 30 feet in diameter and it "seemed both dark and silver."
Moving Fairly Slow
"There wasn't any flame and it was moving fairly slow. Then I snapped the first picture. It moved a little to the left and I moved to the right to take another picture.
"Then it seemed to pick up speed suddenly and in no time at all it vanished out of sight."
Neither Trent nor his wife heard any sound.
The photographs first came to public attention when Trent showed them to Frank Wortman, president of the First National bank in McMinnville.
Wortman asked to keep the pictures and Trent returned to his farm.
The pictures were shown to Bill Powell, Telephone Register staff member, who went out to interview the Trents.
Powell said the Trents were unconcerned about the pictures and at first could not find the negatives. They were finally located under the davenport, where their two children had seen playing with them.
The authenticity of the Trent photos have been hotly debated ever since. The photo of the saucer said to have been taken in Rouen, France, in March, 1957, also appeared in the July, 1957, issue of Royal Air Force Flying Review. The photo has also been said to have dated from 1954. Other than its appearance in the two magazines in 1957, there is virtually no information on the photo's source or the circumstances under which it is said to have been taken.
10:19:13 -- PICTURES OF THE WEEK: Top picture: From July, 1950, cover art for the July-August issue of "Weird Science" showing flying saucers over Washington, D.C. -- two years before a similar event made headlines nationwide. Bottom pictures: A selection of panels from the story "The Flying Saucer Invasion". The comic book as printed was in full color. Both the story and the artwork were that of noted illustrator Al Feldstein -- who also became editor of "Weird Science" until, in 1956, he would become editor of Mad magazine. While there Feldstein attracted and nurtured the talents of such artists as Don Martin, Mort Drucker, and Angelo Torres.
10:26:13 -- PICTURES OF THE WEEK: Top: From October, 1950, a children's float for the Anaheim, California, Halloween Parade. Bottom: From April, 1950, three national guard members guard a "crashed flying saucer" at Alameda, California. There were six national guardsmen in all, each armed with .30 carbines. According to the Oakland Tribune, the scene appeared first thing in the morning and a crowd of hundreds gathered to see the scene, whereupon "a trap door in the center of the saucer opened and out popped an amazing-looking figure -- a veritable Superman wearing a suit of green and a silver helmet with a radio tube sticking out of each ear" with a "big red block 'M' emblazoned on his chest". The spaceman was greeted by a census taker who asked his "name, age, occupation". The reply: "I have come from Mars to see 'Life in a Swiss Cheese Factory'" -- which was "a variety show to be staged by the Alameda Junior Chamber of Commerce next Friday and Saturday". The stunt had been in the works for a month and then set up at 4:45 that morning. It had its desired effect as well, generating the desired publicity for the event not only across Bay Area newspapers but as an Associated Press newswire photo distributed nationwide.
11:02:13 -- PICTURE OF THE WEEK: Albert K. Bender. In 1952 Bender founded the "International Flying Saucer Bureau" before he was warned off by menacing figures now known as the "men in black".
11:09:13 -- PICTURES OF THE WEEK: Top, images one through four, from 1939 through 1941, showing Igor Sikorsky with his prototype VS-300 helicopter, produced in conjunction with Vought Aircraft. Image five, Sikorsky dangling from the Sikorsky R-4, the first American production helicopter. Images six through nine, the R-4 went into action from 1942 through 1944, with a total of 131 produced. Pontoons were added to provide amphibious capabilities. The hovering capability and ability to move forward, backward and sideways was seen by the public as a near-miracle in the progress of powered flight. It also added revolutionary new military capabilities in its ability to fly and land virtually at will in any clearing. Image ten shows helicopter pilots in training at Sheppard Field in Texas. The final image is a light-hearted 'certificate of completion' issued at Freeman Field in Indiana. Helicopter pilots were pulled from the corps of pilots already qualified to fly conventional aircraft.
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