Sunday, February 2, 2020

"Flying saucer writer dies of thirst in desert" or was it murder?

Possibly the strangest article I've ever written...Check out the title...

"Flying saucer writer dies of thirst in desert or was it murder" 

And here's how the article begins:

The words above in quotes are the headline of the July 11, 1954 edition of the Statesman Journal, which is published in Salem, Oregon. The story that accompanies the headline is a genuinely strange and barely-known one. Certainly, I had never heard of it until today. It’s made even stranger by the fact that – as the Freedom of Information Act has shown – the FBI was informed of what went down shortly after the news surfaced. Before I get to the story itself, however, I should explain how I came across the weird saga. As some of you may know, one of my big interests is the Contactee movement of the 1950s. Without a doubt, the most famous of all the Contactees was George Adamski. Others included Daniel Fry, Orfeo Angelucci, George Van Tassel, Truman Bethurum and George Hunt Williamson. While the stories of the Contactees sometimes differed, they had one thing in common: they were all the subjects of FBI surveillance files. The fact that at least some of the Contactees suggested their alien friends had communist-like societies led J. Edgar Hoover and his Special Agents to keep watches on them. The FBI file on George Van Tassel is no less than 319 pages in length. It’s filled with FBI memos, background checks on Van Tassel, copies of his saucer-based publications, and much more. And, it’s in the Van Tassel file that the tale of the unusual death referred to above can be found.

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