Last year, my family relocated to Michigan. before that, we had lived in the small farming town of Circleville, Ohio for about 7 years. It is known in
the tri-state area as being famous for the annual Pumpkin Show. Only recently did I discover that it had it's own history of UFO lore.
The first was the Sherman Campbell story in which a farmer discovered a six point star shaped object. This object was later found to be wreckage of a
On Saturday, July 5, 1947 a farmer Sherman Campbell discovered a six pointed star shaped object which was 50 inches high, 48 inches wide and
weighed about 2 pounds. It appeared to have silver foil around it. Later two other strange objects were found in various parts of Pickaway County,
Ohio. Mr. Campbell took the object he found to the office of the Herald newspaper and announced it was his opinion that this was one of the famed
flying discs (also known as saucers) that had been making news throughout the nation. (This was only two weeks after Kenneth Arnold's June 24, 1947
sighting of several unusual saucer shaped objects over Washington State that ushered the modern era of UFO sightings.)
The July 5, 1947 headlines of the Herald read "Flying Disc Believed Found on Pickaway Farm." This news eventually spread nationwide. One or more
of the mysterious flying objects had finally crash-landed or so the papers claimed. The remaining parts of the "disc" was exhibited for a while at the
Herald office. However, the discs found on the Pickaway County farms had a down to earth explanation. They were obviously parts of at least one or
possibly more than one weather balloon. Because on close examination the letters and serial numbers of the balloon were visible. (Weather balloons in
that era had a metallic segment attached to it so that radar could track them.) Thus the story that the famous crashed discs were in reality nothing
more than Army weather balloons was also picked up by the media and made headlines throughout the nation.
On July 9 a few days after the story of the Pickaway County crashed discs the Circleville Herald told of another crashed disc story. However, this
one was out west in Roswell, New Mexico. The article linked the Pickaway County crashed discs with the disc found in Roswell. The front page headlines
announced "Device like local discs found in West." Circleville was proud to have the first crashed discs and they viewed the Roswell case as an exact
Both the Roswell and Circleville cases share the same initial explanation that they were crashed discs only to be later explained that they were in
fact weather balloons. Here are two possible scenarios in which they are connected.
The first possible scenario is that the weather balloons were purposely released after the Kenneth Arnold sighting but before the announcement of
the Roswell incident. The public was excited with stories of flying saucers. Perhaps military or intelligence officials hoped to debunk the subject of
flying discs by stating that they were merely weather balloons. They could point to the Pickaway County incidents as proof that eyewitness reports
were not accurate thus in effect debunking any further flying saucer stories that the public might read.
The second possible scenario is slightly different. In this scenario the Army learns of the Pickaway County crashed disc story and the resulting
explanation for the disc that it was a weather balloon from the teletype or from the newspapers since it was a nationally reported story. Then comes
knowledge of the Roswell incident. Initially it was reported by the military that a disc had indeed crashed. But shortly after this story was
"killed" and the report was changed to the simple explanation of a weather balloon. Did the military think that the public would accept this
explanation because the Circleville incident had set the precedent? After all weather balloons had been the real solution to the Circleville
The second story I found is about another local farmer, Bruce Stevenson. Bruce kept his story whithin his close circle of friends for several years
out of fear of ridicule. Obviously in those days, people would have thought you were crazy if you reported seeing a flying saucer. Bruce finally gave
an interview to the Circleville Herald in 1952.
He felt so deeply on the subject that he still offered to "...swear on the Bible that I saw what I say I did." He felt this way: "They can believe
whatever they want to believe, and I know what I saw on my farm that night."
"That night" happened to be a bitterly cold one in February 1948. Glancing out a window while taking a drink of water about 2 a.m., Stevenson
noted a bright glow all over the vicinity of his farm buildings and hurried outside expecting to find them afire. Instead, he relates, he saw a large
"flying saucer" gliding very slowly over the vicinity of his hog house and tool barn. "It was so close to the roof of the tool house that I was afraid
it was going to knock off the forge flue." Stevenson said. "From where I watched it, it moved without a sound along the roof of the tool house. I'd
say I was only about 100 feet from it. The moon was very bright and the ground was covered with snow, making it seem all the brighter."
He says he remembers very clearly how: (a) the strange disc maintained its very slow speed and low altitude until it faded from sight far off to
the farmer's left, while he stood in frank amazement, too startled in the brief interval to run and awaken other members of the household. (b) the
dazzling orange-amber glow which originally attracted his attention was suddenly reduced to a dull amber glow inside the dome of the saucer just a
moment after he came outside and began watching the eerie visitor. (c) the whole object was shaped much like a broad dinner plate turned upside down,
with a deep sauce dish or cup - also inverted - as its dome. (d) the dome was of something that looked like plexiglass and the broad edge - which was
pretty wide - was of shiny silver, blinking or flashing all around the edge as though a silent propeller or something was whirling. (e) the diameter
of the base of the saucer looked about 60 feet, the silver edge about 12 feet wide, and the dome about eight feet, rising pretty steep from the shiny
silver part. (f) the position of the saucer did not permit a view of the under-section. (g) a wide silvery brim section had little holes of some kind
along the edge. (h) and lastly, how within a mile or two of the Stevenson farm, there have been apparently authentic reports or saucers or strange
lights in the sky at least twice since Stevenson had the experience "I'll never forget as long as I live".
Bruce was a highly successful farmer in the area and was respected for his integrity. It is reported that Bruce stuck to his story until his death in
It's funny, after I had discovered this story, I realized that I had been driving by the Stevenson farm every day for years to and from work. The farm
appears to be unchanged from the 50's as you can still see the "hog house" where Bruce had reported seeing the disc.
A found a majority of this information from The Roundtown UFO Society roundtownufosociety.com...
edit on 12-12-2012 by jtrenthacker
because: (no reason given)