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Odd statement by Kenneth Arnold

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posted on Nov, 30 2005 @ 08:18 PM
I was reviewing the old Kenneth Arnold UFO sighting, and noticed that he referred to his aircraft as a "land ship", a rather odd turn of phrase, especially for a pilot from Idaho. I haven't found any discussion of this here or anywhere else.

The British used the term to refer to tanks in WWI, and I've seen it used by Sea Scouts for a dry-land sailing trainer; more recently, someone used it in the same sense as "land yaght". But I've never seen it used otherwise in reference to an aircraft.

Why do you think he used that particular phrase?

posted on Dec, 1 2005 @ 01:36 PM
Well, the simple answer would be it was of the time period. I don't think the term "spaceship" had been coined yet, definitely not in a way someone from 1947 Idaho would've known about.

He was probably using the best term he knew of.

posted on Dec, 1 2005 @ 01:48 PM
He was refering to his own plane when he used the term.

I fly a Callair airplane; it is a three-place single engine land ship that is designed and manufactured at Afton, Wyoming as an extremely high performance, high altitude airplane that was made for mountain work.

Bold type added.

I would guess he was refering to a short duration plane. One that could only fly within the country, over land. At that time planes flying across the ocean was relatively new. Maybe they classified planes this way at that time.

posted on Apr, 6 2011 @ 06:00 AM
reply to post by rand

-[I know this is an old thread...but I thought I'd throw in my thoughts] I've been trying to find a definition of the word that fits. I could only find two uses of the term....each of those terms have been divided into two slightly different meanings over time. The first set refers to ships. One meaning is simply of a ship that never goes out to sea....think of a house boat where someone lives in it, but never goes anywhere....only keeping it parked in the dock always. Sort of like how most motor homes never really go anywhere. A variation of this is a mock up of a ship that it used for Navel Recruitment purposes. Basically a wooden 'ship' that is not really even built to actually go out to sea, but only to sit on the shoreline as a way to drum up interest in joining whatever Navel force that is officially used in the country.

The other meaning that I found was of a tank. I guess up until the end of WWII the British used navel terms to define their tanks. I'm not sure if 'landship' was an official term, but it is what they called tanks back then. A varient, and slightly more modern usage of this term is to call a particular type of Super Heavy Tank a 'landship'.

As for Kenneth Arnold's is sort of hard to say. I imagine that he was either using the term wrongly, or the term was simply a pet-name that he used for his airplane. He may have been referring to its size.....if it was an incredibly large plane (I don't know how big his particular model of plane was myself) then he may have been using the term as a reference to the Super Heavy Tanks. Otherwise if he rarely flew the thing (this doesn't seem to be the case...but none the less) he may have been punning on the way 'landships' never left dock.

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