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Aztec UFO crash 1948

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1Aztec UFO crash 1948 Empty Aztec UFO crash 1948 06/08/13, 06:37 pm



True, September 1952, pp. 17-19, 102-112

The Flying Saucers and the Mysterious Little Men

by J. P. Cahn

Had flying saucers manned by crews three feet tall actually landed on Earth? That was the question. This is how TRUE and Mr. Cahn found the answer.

For four months, across 4,500 miles and five western states, I tracked down visitors from the planet Venus.

It was a fantastic assignment. The story I was to dig up if I could was the weirdest that any reporter could dream of having handed to him. If I found the Venusians, I couldn't interview them, even if I knew how to speak their language. For they were dead, those strange little beings, from unknown causes—half of their number crisped by heat to a dark brown color.

They'd come out of the sky in flying saucers. My job was to bring their story down to earth.

I got it—their full inside story. And though I didn't find the dead Venusians, I uncovered some rather fantastic living characters...

On the crest of the wave of public excitement about flying saucers in the spring of 1950 came news from the West that topped any of the hundreds of saucer reports that had been recorded up to that time. Newspapers everywhere printed and reprinted the rumor that, in Denver, several businessmen had been shown pieces of metal, small gears, and a curious little radio set. These things, it was said, had been taken from a fallen flying saucer.

The metal was an unknown stuff that defied analysis. The gears—well, they looked like ordinary gears. The tube-less radio set, however, was really something; it beeped every fifteen minutes, exactly on the quarter hours, with a single brief ethereal tone-note that was seemingly a signal from outer space.

That much was in the public prints and on the nation's broadcast channels. What I didn't know the was that two TRUE writers already investigating the matter were meeting oddly evasive resistance. In Denver, Donald Keyhoe was having no luck inducing a man named Koehler, who apparently had knowledge of the intriguing objects to produce them for inspection. In California, Richard Tregaskis was permitted by Frank Scully, columnist for the theatrical newspaper Variety, to finger for a few moments a small disk of nameless metal that was part of the same saucer loot and to listen—but no questions, please—to a tale of a fallen saucer secretly seen and examined by anonymous scientists. The information that Koehler and Scully shared—they checked on each other by telephone—belonged to them, they made clear; they would divulge only so much and no more; their sources absolutely had to remain unidentified and protected; Scully would write it his own way or not at all. In short, take it or leave it. On such arbitrary terms, the pick was obvious. Fallen-saucer stories weren't, in fact, new even at that time. Back on July 9, 1947, only two weeks after private-flier Kenneth Arnold had alerted the nation with his nine disks seen skipping "saucer-like" near Mt Rainier, Southwest newspapers headlined that a captured disk that had fallen on a New Mexico ranch was a dud. That one, when delivered to the Eighth Army Air Force, was identified as a tinfoil-covered reflector from a weather balloon.

The ravaged and its collection of parts persisted in unverified versions through the spring and summer of 1950. Then, on September 8, it came alive with a bang.

On that date, the publishing firm of Henry Holt & Company, Inc., released upon a saucer-hungry world a 230-page book by Frank Scully entitled Behind the Flying Saucers. In it, Scully, vouched for by his publisher, unburdened himself of his secret. There wasn't just a single fallen saucer, but three of them. Four, actually, if you wanted the one that got away.

Scully categorically announced—no ifs or buts or maybes—that he was in contact with personages of high standing who had not only seen the three stranded saucers, but examined them closely, and that beyond any question the craft were from a planet other that Earth, presumably Venus. They carried full crews of perfectly formed little men, about three feet tall, all dead on or shortly after arrival. The corpses were taken away by the Air Force, which appropriated the saucers; Scully implied that, after some were dissected, most of the little men received indecent unburial in jars of pickling fluid.

The first space ship landed east of Aztec, New Mexico. Having watched it in the upper atmosphere as it approached, the Air Force had been able to calculate its landing place closely and they got there pretty quick. They sent out a rush call for a group of eight scientists, specialists in secret magnetic research, headed by a top authority in that field of study, a man whom Scully could refer to only by the initial pseudonym "Dr. Gee." The excited scientists came a-flying. It was from the lips of Dr. Gee himself that Scully, much later, heard the details.

The ship was whole practically unmarred, having evidently made a gentle pancake landing. For two days, the scientists hovered around at a safe distance, testing with Geiger counters and photographing. Then they closed in. There seemed to be no visible door to the cabin-like structure in the depressed center of the saucer. Through a broken porthole window—the only apparent damage to the ship—they could count sixteen bodies of little men. Probing inside with a long pole, they hit a knob on the opposite wall, and a door flew open. The scientists entered.

They carried the little bodies out and laid them on the ground. Dressed alike in a dark-blue uniform garment, the saucerians, despite the measurements of 36 to 42 inches, were no misshapen dwarfs; they were as normal in appearance and well-proportioned as any earthling. The only thing wrong with them was that their skin seemed to be charred a very dark chocolate color, as if their bodies had been subjected to much heat.

The ship next received the scientists' attention. There was no engine or other means of propulsion. Dr. Gee deduced that it has operated with utilizing the earth's magnetism, gaining motion by crossing the magnetic lines of force. The controls appeared to be the buttons on a an instrument board. The scientists decided not to try pushing the buttons because they didn't know what would happen.

The material of the ship puzzled them. Very light—two or three men together could lift one side of the saucer which measured 99 99/100 feet in diameter—it looked like aluminum but wasn't. In the laboratory it would prove to resist 150 tests and 10,000 degrees of heat in scientific efforts to determine its composition. Dismantling the ship turned out to be a problem. There were no rivets, bolts or screws, and its structure defied $35,000 worth of diamond drills. After a long study, it was found to be assembled in segments, fitted in grooves and pinned together around the base. Disassembly disclosed a gear completely encircling the bottom of the cabin that fitted a gear around the saucer base. Evidently the saucer rim spun around the cabin—not for any aerodynamic lift or thrust, Dr. Gee surmised, but as a sort of gyroscopic balancing device.

There were other intriguing matters—little watchlike timepieces in the crew's clothing that measured off a 29-day magnetic month, food wafers that amply nourished laboratory guinea pigs, and heavy water for the crew's liquid intake. But the crucial factor—the means of magnetic propulsion—Dr. Gee was not to have to opportunity to solve, then or later.

The second saucer landed near a proving ground in Arizona. Its door stood open when it was found and its sixteen dead crewmen were not burned or browned. The scientists concluded that they had died after the door was opened, from the sudden exposure to Earth air in the cabin which was probably either vacuumed or pressurized to the atmosphere of their planet but not ours. This ship was smaller that the first, measuring 72 feet in diameter.

The third ship alighted in Arizona's Paradise Valley, right above Phoenix, and it was different from the others in being only a 36-foot two-seater and having a three-point landing gear consisting of steel balls rolling in sockets. One little man lay half out of an escape hatch; the other still sat in a bucket seat before the control board, his head slumped on his chest. Both dead. They brought the total toll to thirty-four.

Several other saucerians were more fortunate—or the lesson of their predecessors' deaths had been learned. These visitors arrived in a fourth saucer which members of Dr. Gee's research group came upon, lying empty, near a government proving ground. The scientists returned to their car for cameras and equipment and as they approached the ship again they saw several little men hop into the saucer, which instantly disappeared—not flew away, but vanished as if it had dissolved into air.

Where had the saucers come from? Operating on magnetism, which is an effect of electricity—which travels, like light, at a rate of 186,000 miles a second—they could have made short work of the trip from any of the nearer planets in our solar system. Which one? Dr. Gee decided Venus. In agreement with one school of thought among astronomical researchers, he felt there was more likelihood of human habitation on Venus than on Mars. The little men's size pointed that way, too; if they had come from Mars, they would probably be three or four times as large as people on Earth.

It was exceedingly interesting to the doctor that the diameters of the saucers were exactly 99 99/100, 72 and 36 feet, that the measurements of the large ship's cabin were 18 feet across and 72 inches high and that its top projected 45 inches above the level of the disk edge, which was elevated 27 inches from the saucer base line, and that the cabins and disk slant of the smaller ships were in relative proportion to the figures for the large ship. For all these measurements were divisible by 9. That indicated to the scientists that the Venusians used a mathematical method, not unlike ours, known as the "system of 9's."

But the doctor and hip group were to have little chance of pressing their inquiries further. The Air Force took over the ships and sent them presumably to the government laboratories at Wright Field at Dayton, Ohio—except the little ship, which rested for awhile in the doctor's laboratory and then was dismantled and sent to join the others. The doctor and his colleagues had hoped, in time, to work out a plan whereby they could make certain tests with the different push buttons on the instrument boards and so gain clues to the secret of magnetic propulsion. When he next saw the instrument board of the large ship, it had, to his amazement and chagrin, been broken up and all of the inner workings torn apart. Since Air Force souvenir hunters had already lifted a number of items, he said, he grabbed a few things himself—not as trophies, but to use for research. All he had to show for his labors on the saucers was a tubeless radio receiver about the size of a cigarette package, some gears, some small disks, and other items that could be carried in the pocket.

Shortly thereafter, in July 1949, Dr. Gee separated himself from the government service. For the tremendous work he had done as leader of a billion-dollar magnetic detection research program that, during the war had knocked out the Japanese submarine menace, he had received $7,200 a year. He quit to turn his knowledge to the use of industry where he could make a more profitable income. As a specialist in geomagnetics, he became a consultant to a wealthy oil man, himself a geophysicist, who was using instruments of his own design to make a micro-wave survey of the underlying formations of the Mojave Desert. The oil man was an old friend of Frank Scully; through him, Scully heard something of the fallen saucers and came to meet Dr. Gee on at least two occasions when the scientist talked freely of the saucers to the oil man and Scully—this was in the fall of '49—and on a later visit brought along the tiny radio, the gears, and some photographs.

Came the beginning of 1950 and, in the opinion of Scully, the reign of "error" and repression: the Air Force put its Project Saucer underground, denied everything, and by so doing set up between the people and the government a double standard of morality. Security became a dread threat. Scientists knew better than to talk. Furthermore, scientists have to have government-controlled materials for research, which might not be made available to those who refuse to cooperate.

But Scully, in possession now of the data, would have none of this bureaucratic muzzling which, he said, stifles free inquiry and breeds fear. Though "Dr. Gee's" identity had to be safe-guarded, neither Scully nor the oil man was so bound, though the latter, being involved with the government on some top-secret deals, had to tread carefully.

To test public receptivity to the saucer revelation, the oil man-geophysicist appeared as an anonymous guest lecturer before a University of Denver elementary-science class on March 8, 1950, escorted by George T. Koehler, who is a salesman for Denver radio station KMYR. The lecturer told in detail of Dr. Gee's findings and drew some blackboard diagrams. News of the lecture leaked, of course, beyond the cloistered walls, and the how-come of university sponsorship raised a local tempest that blew off the lecturer's cloak of anonymity. His name was Silas M. Newton. The important thing was that 50 percent of his listeners were convinced by his lecture—a considerably better figure than the 26 percent of the people questioned in a nation-wide public-opinion poll who believed that flying saucers were real.

Frank Scully then wrote his book, acknowledging the role of Newton but shielding Dr. Gee, and setting forth everything that these two eminent men had told him about the captured saucers and the little men from Venus.

The book sold some 60,000 copies at $2.75, was digested by a magazine of large circulation, reprinted and widely sold as a paper-bound 25-cent volume, and discussed in newspapers abroad. It affected, in some degree, one way or another, the thinking of millions of people.

The fact that it was a loudly bad book was beside the point. Reviewers' opinions ranged from amusedly tolerant to stinging, a few reaching indignation. With a pitchman's shallow glibness, Scully garbled scientific concepts, contradicted himself in details, and committed rudimentary errors that would shame a high-school freshman. Yet the impact of his staggering story and its basic implications were there.

Unless... this was a gigantic joke? Frank Scully's last previous literary prominence, aside from his weekly column of comment in the show-business Variety, was the authorship of a book called Fun in Bed, a harmless collection of anecdotes, games, and other amusing trivia for convalescents. But if Behind the Flying Saucers was tongue-in-cheek humor, it was in pretty bad taste. It accused military officials of our government of being a pack of liars and blackmailers. That wasn't funny.

Then... was it a hoax? Granting, in a chapter in his book devoted to them, that scientific hoaxes of all sorts had been pulled off in the past and present, Scully specifically stated in his earnest-sounding preface, "...I have never participated in the perpetration of a hoax on flying saucers." And his publisher, the long-established and reputable firm of Henry Holt & Company, saw fit to preface Scully's preface with a note of the own at the beginning of the book that said, "... we are as convinced as any thoughtful publisher can be that Mr. Scully has approached his subject with probity and has interpreted the facts and figures given him with care and caution." In view of the demonstrably low quality of some of Scully's facts and figures, whatever moved the editors of Henry Holt & Company to make such a statement is beyond understanding. But Webster's Dictionary defines "probity" as: "Tried virtue or integrity; moral and intellectual honesty; rectitude; uprightness." If Holt took the trouble to go on record as saying that their author approached his subject with moral and intellectual honesty, certainly there must be something to it.

The fascinating Case of the Little Men from Venus couldn't be laughed at and it couldn't be ignored. There remained the vital question, bigger than ever:

Was it true?

If it wasn't, then a great many honest people were being diddled, deceived, and deluded. If it was, then one of the greatest stories in the world was being somethered. Either way, a public service would be accomplished by finding out the truth.

A newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, and a magazine, TRUE, particularly wanted to know. And that we where I, as a special reporter, came into the picture.

Aside from Scully, there were two people dealt with in the book who could definitely clear up the question, if they wanted to or could be persuaded to.

One of them was Silas M. Newton, the oil man, from whom Scully had originally heard the story.

The other was the mysterious Dr. Gee, the superscientist who confirmed it and was forced into anonymity and silence, Scully implied, by the threat of government interference with his supply of essential research materials.

The first move, however, seemed to be to talk things over with Scully hilmself.

At first glance, Frank Scully is a reassuring person. He is a large, friendly man of striking appearance. He is keenly aware that in profile in rather resembles a Stuart portrait of George Washington. His hair is cloud-white and his complexion ruddy. His voice, particularly when he is excited, which is often, is high and harsh and loud enough to do credit to a train caller.

He lives in a middle-aged, comfortable, stucco home that grips the hillsides on one of the old residential sections above Hollywood. There is nothing particularly remarkable about the house except perhaps the fire-red color of the front door and the confusion inside. The Scully home is outstanding as being one of the world's worst place to try to conduct a calm, careful interview.

Traffic in the Scully living room usually consists of two or more of the five Scully children, ranging from college to cradle ages, their friends, two poodles, Mrs. Scully, who is necessarily a fast-moving and harried person, Scully himself, and a woman of all work. At times even Scully's piercing voice failed to carry over the bedlam.

The Scully household, if a little difficult on the interviewer, is otherwise normal and commonplace. It seemed incongruous as a center of flying-saucer knowledge.

Sitting in his easy chair and holding the baby in one arm while fended off poofles with the other, Scully told me very much the same story about the saucers that he set down in his book.

Although the oral version was not one whit clearer, it was considerably more vehement, particularly the portions dealing with government officials who deny the existence of the saucers.

As he talked, Scully gave me the impression that he had only the vaguest idea of what he was talking about but he believed every word he was saying.

With very little prompting, he supplemented his story with letters he had received in response to his book. Some of them denounced him; others praised him mightily; one asked with superb naivety, "I hear your story is a hoax. Please write and tell me if you are a hoax." Hundreds of them spilled over the desk in his cluttered study, sample proof of the impact of his book. Some of the letters contained pictures.

At one point Scully hauled out a pair of photographs supposedly taken by an amateur astronomer. Certainly they were taken by an amateur photographer. They were murky views of the sky bordered at the bottom by what seemed to be the roof of a small building. One of the prints showed a jagged streak across the sky as if someone fumbling around in the darkroom had spilled something on it by mistake. The other has a large blot on it.

Scully eyed the two photographs somberly. "There's a perfect control factor," he said pointing vaguely at something in the pictures. "Saucers, most likely, both of them. I get this sort of thing all the time."

Since nothing in either picture was comprehensible, it was a little hard to get what Scully was driving at. He said that the negatives could be produced for inspection. I thought privately that inspecting them hardly seemed worth the effort. Even if the negatives were unaltered, they wouldn't prove anything.

Nor, for that matter, would Scully.

Stoutly maintaining that he was pledged to secrecy, he refused to name his chief source of information, Dr. Gee. He had promised Dr. Gee not to reveal any more of the story than he had set down in his book, and by God, he wasn't going to break that promise. If the government cracked down on Gee, it wasn't going to be Scully's fault.

Nor would he produce any of the objects taken from the saucers—the little radio, the gears, or the disks of unknown metal. Scully claimed that all this material was now out of his hands.

As for his one other source of information named in the book, Silas M. Newton, Scully was very cagey about producing him, either. Scully had written that Newton was "one of the great geophysicists of the oil industry, with a record of successful exploratory operations that was surpassed by none... a great athlete in his college years... a golf champion... the man who rediscovered the great Rangely oil field in Colorado... a patron of the arts..." Newton had set up an independent oil company in Denver, of which he was still president. He was a very busy man. Scully told me, and was continually traveling on important, secret, government business. His Los Angeles telephone number was unlisted. Scully would not divulge it nor would he say where Newton lived.

And thus ended my first interview with the author of Behind the Flying Saucers. Getting behind the saucers would have to wait: I was going to have trouble enough, it appeared, getting behind Frank Scully.

For maybe a week of intermittent contacts, Scully and I played games, with me trying to find out where Newton was and Scully trying to keep me from it and neither of us letting on to the other what we were really doing.

While we were politely scrimmaging I tried a kind of end-run play, but it didn't work. I figured that since Newton was such a big man in the oil business I should be able to get to him by finding someone else in the oil business who knew him. I telephoned Curtis Johnson of General Petroleum; Basil Kantzer of Union Oil; Frank Morgan of Richfield and C. W. March and Harry Godde, both of Signal Oil & Gas.

None of them had ever heard of Silas Mason Newton.

What with Scully's description of the man and the trouble I was having finding him, I began to imagine Newton as a secret power, a kind of shadow man, a sort of Sir Basil Zaharoff of the oil industry.

In the face of Scully's reluctance to produce him, I might even have begun to doubt that Newton existed, if it hadn't been for one factor. That factor was Mrs. Scully.

Mrs. Scully is the kind of thoroughly likable, wholesome person of whom you have no doubts. She had joined in several of our conversations and she not only backed up everything Scully said about Newton and Dr. Gee but she talked about having discussed flying saucers with them herself. It was absolutely impossible to think that Scully could have persuaded his wife to discuss conversations with imaginary people. Mrs. Scully had definitely talked with someone. The question was, who?

Suddenly I found out. One afternoon Scully casually announced that Newton would be at Scully's home that evening after dinner. If I cared to drop over, I would be most welcome.

It was a round for Scully, and the easy way he won it made me feel like a suspicious bumpkin.

Silas Newton is short and compact in build. He looked, on the night I first met him, like a conservative businessman turned just a shade Hollywood.

His pale sharkskin slacks were not too pale, his blue suede loafers did not have 2-inch crepe soles, the hand-picking on the collar of his light sport shirt was restrained, his tweed sport coat didn't look as if it had to be curried each morning. The expensive-looking gold watch on his wrist was held there by a plain, expensive-looking leather strap.

Although he is in his sixties, Newton looks considerably younger. He has the sort of face you'd expect to find on a midle-aged elf-tanned, deep-seamed, high-browed and crackling with good humor.

It developed that, like Scully, Newton had never seen a saucer. But he retold the stories Dr. Gee had given him in a firm, convincing voice. He flung scientific terms around in a kind of barrage. Unfortunately, they were the same scientific terms Scully had used in his book, the same saucer stories, and the same little men, with nothing added. But coming from Newton himself, they sounded good.

Newton was, in general, the epitome of culture, wealth, and good breeding. He wasn't too fat off what you'd expect from the pedigree Scully had given him: graduate of Baylor University and Yale, postgraduate scholar at the University of Berlin.

Silas Newton is short and compact in build. He looked, on the night I first met him, like a conservative businessman turned just a shade Hollywood.

His pale sharkskin slacks were not too pale, his blue suede loafers did not have 2-inch crepe soles, the hand-picking on the collar of his light sport shirt was restrained, his tweed sport coat didn't look as if it had to be curried each morning. The expensive-looking gold watch on his wrist was held there by a plain, expensive-looking leather strap.

Although he is in his sixties, Newton looks considerably younger. He has the sort of face you'd expect to find on a midle-aged elf-tanned, deep-seamed, high-browed and crackling with good humor.

It developed that, like Scully, Newton had never seen a saucer. But he retold the stories Dr. Gee had given him in a firm, convincing voice. He flung scientific terms around in a kind of barrage. Unfortunately, they were the same scientific terms Scully had used in his book, the same saucer stories, and the same little men, with nothing added. But coming from Newton himself, they sounded good.

Newton was, in general, the epitome of culture, wealth, and good breeding. He wasn't too fat off what you'd expect from the pedigree Scully had given him: graduate of Baylor University and Yale, postgraduate scholar at the University of Berlin.

The scientific terms he was using so freely reminded me of something. Gingerly I brought up an error in Scully's book. In describing the preliminary examination by Dr. Gee's group of the first saucer that landed, Scully had written: "They studied the ship from a distance for... two days, bombing it with Geiger counters, cosmic rays, and other protective devices." In the more scientific reviews of his book, Scully had been severely taken to task for that description, and in particular the Geiger-counter bombardment which is about like saying that a doctor took a patient's temperature by bombarding him with thermometers. I mentioned the slip to Newton.

"You have to overlook things like that," he said. "Frank, here, is not a scientific man and he did that book in an awful hurry. If I could have checked the proofs with him I could have caught a lot of errors like that one that made him look pretty bad. But I was too busy, see, with the top-brass on these government projects to help Frank out."

After sparring with Newton for maybe a half hour I got down to the proposition I had in mind.

A fully authenticated announcement that space ships were landing on Earth should have a very healthy effect on humanity after the shock wore off. If nothing else, such an announcement would probably stop the Korean war in the interest of global solidarity and that alone would be worth any risk Newton and his scientists might be taking in breaking the story.

As a public service, then, would Newton give me the whole flying saucer story—names, photographs and everything Scully had to leave out of his book to protect Dr. Gee?

Newton thought the proposition over soberly.

Then he gave his decision: he agreed with my idea, but he wasn't sure that the time was right for such an announcement. At the moment, he and Dr. Gee would have to sacrifice too much if they told all they knew. I received the impression there was something else involved in the story of the flying saucers that Newton couldn't even hint at.

Certainly he would take up the matter with Dr. Gee. If it sounded at all reasonable to the doctor, Newton didn't see any reason why he couldn't arrange for me to see some of the things taken from the saucers while the final plans for releasing the story were being made.

Newton said he happened to be working at the moment on an oil-storage problem for the "big-brass" near San Francisco. If he got the go-ahead from Dr. Gee, he would meet me there in a week. And he would bring along some of the gears, the disks of unknown metal and maybe even the little radio if Doctor wasn't still experimenting with it.

We wet in the dignified Palm Court restaurant of the Palace Hotel in San Francisco. Scott Newhall, an old friend of mine and Sunday editor of the Chronicle, came along to see what I had dug up so far. Newhall wasn't taking the thing very seriously and by this time I couldn't blame him. Scully and Newton had begun to affect me that way. But we had to play it straight. One good laugh and Newton and whatever he had to show would be gone. And there was still just a chance that the man actually had the greatest story of all time.

The meal cost $18.20 plus tip but it was worth every cent of it. Newton was in fine form.

He nodded to the waiters, who all seemed to know him. He conferred with Adolphe, the maitre d'hotel, about an important message he was expecting. And he talked saucers.

Gleaming silver ships from the chill reaches of the heavens smoked through the Palm Court that evening to the accompaniment of the hotel's sedate string ensemble. Bureaucrats in Washington were damned for withholding the story from the public. Dr. Gee and his astonishing accomplishments with microwave equipment in the oil fields under Newton's supervision loomed across the background of the conversation.

Newton was expansive. Smiles sprang out of the deep furrows in his tanned cheeks. He was confidential. Squint lines puckered around his pale eyes. But everything he said, though fresh to Newhall, was the same thing that I'd heard before. Not once did he divulge anything that wasn't already made public in Scully's book.

As Newton talked I noticed more and more an odd little habit. He kept tossing in the word "see" when there was no point that required emphasis. Only if you considered that he might be using it as a stalling device while thought up the rest of his story did Newton's "see" habit make any sense.

"This saucer thing, see. It would keep me going twenty-four hours a day if I'd let it. I'm just swamped. I've got my own business to attend to, and this goddamned high-brass, see, they're after me all the time on these contracts for the military."

I was a strange habit for a man so attuned to the genteel splendor of the Palace Hotel.

I began to notice that Newton had another strange habit for a man of his background. At this stag dinner, the more he talked, the more he swore. By the time he really got his gauge up he sounded like a mule skinner on Saturday night. It wasn't quite in keeping with what I had always expected of an old Yale man, and Newton had made quite a point of his degree from Yale. I decided that either I didn't known anything about Yale men or Newton's manner of speaking had simply been colored by his years in the oil fields—Colorado's huge Rangely, which Newton modestly noted he had discovered after it had been abandoned by the major oil companies; the rugged wastelands of Wyoming; the Mojave where his crews even now surveying hidden deposits of natural gas.

In the middle of a discussion of magnetics, Newton glanced over his shoulder furtively. Then he suddenly leaned over the table and fished a smudged and wrinkled handkerchief out of his coat pocket. Its corners were tied together and it bulged promisingly.

Newton slowly undid the knots, guarding the handkerchief with his hands and glancing around the room to be sure no one was watching.

For the first time in the evening he stopped talking, methodically working on the knots.

When he finished with them he held the corners of the handkerchief together and looked at us.

"You ever see anything like this?" he asked quietly and dumped the contents of the handkerchief on the table. The presentation couldn't have been more impressively nonchalant.

Four metal objects lay on the smooth tablecloth. Without a word from Newton they seemd to be touched with star dust.

I felt my stomach give a lurch and stop working on the roast beef I had just eaten.

Two of the objects were gears, fine-toothed and about the size of pocket watches. The other two were disks, dull-finished and about the size of a nickel. Here at last were the disks of unknown metal.

Newton scooped up his treasures quickly, as if he were afraid they might suddenly disappear, and put them back into the handkerchief. Then, one by one, he brought them out for us to examine closely.

The two disks were identical. There were no marks on them except tiny surface nicks and scratches. They felt incredibly light. The metal had a powdery-looking finish that did not come off with rubbing.

Newhall and I looked at each other. Neither of us felt much like laughing now.

The gears were not alike. One had a tiny gear fitted into the center of it. The other was solid and on a shaft. Newton held it and tapped it with his knife. A clear, faint, high-pitched tone blended with the music of the string ensemble. Surprisingly enough, holding the gear in your hand didn't have any dampening effect on the ringing note.

"It's magnetized," Newton explained. Just by way of experiment I touched the gear to the steel blade of my knife. There didn't seem to be any magnetic attraction between the two pieces of metal. Newton couldn't explain that, but he said Dr. Gee had once explained it to him.

Both of the gears were blotched and stained.

"Acid," said Newton. "We've subjected them, see, to 150 tests in our laboratories. Listen to that note." He tapped the gear again. "That's the note 'A' on the piano."

One of the gears was unmarked except for the stains. The other had a small fat arrow inscribed on it in outline. The arrow pointed toward a figure that looked very much like an ordinary 9. Newton had no explanation for these inscriptions.

He did, however, have some other things that might be interesting. They were in his room, he said confidentially right upstairs.

Newton's room, although it was one of the Palace Hotel's small accommodations, looked exactly the way you might expect the hotel room of a busy, wealthy oil executive to look.

A saddle-leather suitcase lay open on the luggage rack. Across it lay a folded geological map-expensive, authentic.

An honest-looking old-fashioned valise slouched in one corner of the room, its baggy leather sides scuffed and scarred; a veteran, no doubt, of countless trips into the rugged, dusty oil lands.

Newton began talking immediately. His story, titied up for family consumption, centered around Dr. Gee and his colleagues whose achievements apparently kept Newton in a perpetual state of wonder.

"Doctor is down there right now in our laboratories, see, along the south side of the airfield there at Phoenix. You know the place. Those buildings that used to be the big government top-secret laboratories. Our people are in there neow.

"Funny thing, I was down there only a couple of weeks ago going over some problems, see, and I run across a great big thick goddamn pile of blue prints.

"I said to Doctor, I said, 'What in the hell is all this stuff?' And he said, see, 'Why, those are the detailed prints on the air-flow system for the B-36.'

"He's been working on all that top government stuff for the big-brass and I never knew a thing about it.

"These scientific fellows, see. You can't tell what they're going to turn up with next. here he has these absolutely top-secret plans laying right there on top of the desk."

There were other top-secret items Newton's men had developed while working on his petroleum-surveying equipment.

Newhall was sitting on the bed, trying to look nonchalant. I was sitting on the edge of a big easy chair. Things were once more getting to the point where I didn't dare look at Newhall except out of the corner of my eye. As far as I could see, Newhall was making a detailed study of one of his shoes. Newton was talking, fast and steady, as if he'd just found out they were going to slap on a speech tax in the next ten minutes.

Doctor, it seems, had developed a magnetic fog, rain, and darkness-dispelling screen which, fitted to the windshiled of an airplane, literally turned night into day and enabled a pilot to see throught the sloppiest kind of weather.

Newton dropped his voice to a confidential whisper. "One of the biggest companies in the country, see. They're testing this right now. Absolutely top-secret. You'd know the name of the company in a minute if I mentioned it." He peered around the room to make sure no uninvited ears were listening. "You know Norden, the bombsight people? Well, they're testing this thing right now."

Newton hauled out a slim, clear rod.

"Looks exactly like Lucite, doesn't it? Well, it isn't. Better than Lucite. Flexible, shatterproof, and it positively will not burn.

"Doctor, see, made this revolutionary plastic stuff for the military. Made it right out of Perelite, a volcanic ash. Cheapest material in the world. There's whole hills of it. The military is using this stuff for cockpit canopies on planes because it won't burn."

And then there was the magnetic disintegrator.

Of course the big-brass was working on it. But there were problems. The disintegrator, briefly mentioned in Scully's book, was so all-destroying that split-second control of it was a vital factor.

It has taken better than a year, Newton said, just to work out the mathematics necessary to make certain the disintegrator would only operate in a one ten-thousandth-of-a-second flash.

Even so, in that brief moment, the disintegrating beams had shot out twenty miles and spread a swath of total destruction on the desert proving grounds two miles wide.

The big-brass planned to set a chain of these disintegrators around the United States and point them skyward to form an impenetrable screen of destruction through which no enemy planes could pass.

But there was a hitch in the plan. The beams of the magnetic disintegrator, if left on, would reach out and destroy the universe.

And then there was the big flying saucer Newton's men thought they had located, crashed in a swamp outside of Memphis.

"The captain, see, I can't tell you his name, was flying along one night testing this magnetic windshield screen for Norden when he saw this thing circling. It went right down into the swamp.

"My people got a fix on it and as soom as the rainy season ends down there we're going in and take a look at it. I can't tell you any more about it except, of course, it's probably one of the cigar-shaped saucers and probably a thousand feet long."

Newton fished into an expensive-looking, hand-stitched brief case and slid out a bundle of 8x10 pictures. He held them face down in his lap while he reminisced about the days in the oil fields, the beginnings of the Newton Oil Company in Denver, and the great days of rediscovering the Rangely oil fields after they had been abandoned by all the major oil companies as worthless.

The pictures were held in his lap, still face down. I know perfectly well that he was giving them the oild build-up treatment, but still it was working. It got so bad that I had a hard time keeping myself from reaching over and grabbing them away from him.

Finally he held one of them up, its back to Newhall and me, and looked at it for a long moment. Then he turned it around slowly. It was a fuzzy shot of some desert real estate.

"You see that?" said Newton, gravely. "That's where the first saucer landed."

He turned over two or three more prints of the same sort of thing.

"These will be very historical photographs someday," he said. "It's too bad I am not allowed to let you look at them closely."

Then he started to slide them back into his brief case. As he did, he paused and looked at us slyly. Then he slipped one picture up from behind the others and immediately slid it back again. From what I could see in that instant, it looked like a picture or a large beach umbrella on its side.

"You didn't see anything, did you?" Newton asked, winking. He had never been more correct, but the implication was that he had just permitted a glimpse of a photograph of a flying saucer.

Newton grew reflective. There just might be, he thought, the barest chance that he could persuade Doctor and his people to reveal the whole story. Perhaps, after all, it might be advisable, particularly if the thing that crashed in the swamp turned out to be a cigar-shaped saucer.

"You know," Newton mused dreamily, "a lot of people would pay a dollar to see a thing like that."

Then, suddenly, Newton announced that he had to whisk off to Washington for a conference with the big-brass.

Newhall and I stood up. "It's been a very interesting evening, Mr. Newton," Newhall said, his voice straining for self-control. "You'll be hearing from Cahn here. We'll talk the whole thing over and see what we can work out with you."

There were the usual polite remarks, with Newhall and me looking down at the carpet, and then we were out in the hall.

Newhall and I managed to hold it until we got down the corridor and in front of the elevator. There was non longer any question about it—the time had comme to laugh, and we let go. When we could talk again, we tried to figure out what Newton was up to. It was a safe bet that he wasn't as closely in touch with the cosmos as Frank Scully would have had his readers believe. But he was up to something. Was the whole thing, Scully's book and all, a titanic piece of ballyhoo aimed at the day when the big cigar-shaped saucer opened for business on the midway at Playland-at-the-Beach?

I decided the next move was to go to Denver, Newton's old stamping ground, look over the Newton Oil Company, and follow up a few other leads from Scully's book.


2Aztec UFO crash 1948 Empty Re: Aztec UFO crash 1948 06/08/13, 06:38 pm



In building up Silas Newton as an authority on flying saucers, Frank Scully provided a respectable academic setting by devoting the whole first chapter of his book to a description of the lecture that was given at the University of Denver on March 8, 1950. The chapter heading is "The Mystery of the University of Denver," the mystery being that the man who gave the lecture was known only as "Scientist X" until Thor Seversen, covering the event for the Denver Post, identified him, several days after the talk, as Newton. My first move in Denver was to hunt up Seversen.

Thor Seversen looks just the way he should to go with a name like that; big, well set-up, blond. He is not only a fine reporter, but he is a very understanding gem. It was snowing when I pulled into Denver. I was wearing a light gabardine suit. Seversen, taking pity on a chattering chump from California, suggested we might spend some time profitably in the nice, warm office of the Post going over the chps of the stories about the University of Denver lecture. It was a good idea. It not only kept me from shivering myself apart at the seams, but it proved that Frank Scully wasn't very much interested in doing a good reporting job in Behind the Flying Saucers.

Scully's book published six months after the Denver lecture described the event as "probably the most sensational lecture about this earth or any other planet since Galileo . . . faculty members left the room with their heads spinning."

On March 9, the day after the lecture, the Denver Post carried an interview with Francis Broman, the University of Denver instructor who arranged for "Scientist X" to address his basic science class. Questioned about the scientific value of the lecture, Broman commented. "Absolute zero." Professor Albert Recht of the university's science division noted. "It was a good yarn . . . though he gave no documentation."

If he had wanted to, Scully had plenty of time to check those clippings before his book went to press. Obviously he wasn't interested. As a matter of bet he embarked on a shifty side step to avoid the columns of the Denver papers that gave the lecture a bad press and still provide himself with friendly newspaper coverage of the e\·ent. To hope he could get away with such a stunt indicates Scully's incredible gall.

In the second chapter of his book, also devoted to the lecture. Scully wrote:

"It was not the Denver papers that gave the best report of what Scientist X said. . . . The . . . prize for the best reporting would go to the Summerside Joumal, a modest·sized publication quartered on Prime Edward Island, Canada . . . at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River."

Undisturbed by the unlikely prospect of a small Canadian paper published only three times a week having a correspondent as far away as Denver. Scully proceeds:

"This newspaper obviously got its story from a Denver correspondent, but it recapitulated what the speaker said so well that it's better than a transcript. . . ."

Scully then quotes the Summerside Joumal story. To do this he must have had a copy er dipping o£ the paper before him. Therefore he could not have missed seeing the credit line at the top of the story.

The Summerside Journal story is credited, "Denver, Colo., Post." The story is Thor Seversen's Denver Post story, word for word. It was Seversen's first story of the lecture done before anyone knew who the lecturer was and before Seversen was sure the whole thing was a farce. As a consequence, it is a straight reporting job merely repeating what the speaker said. It suited Scully's needs admirably. On the few occasions that it didn't, Scully merely rewrote it.

By removing Seversen's one fairly friendly story from the otherwise unfriendly columns of the Denver Post, and crediting it elsewhere, Scully had his necessary newspaper coverage of the lecture.

By the time Seversen and I had finished digging around in the Denver Post morgue it had stopped snowing, the sun had come out and it was fairly pleasant. We thought it would be a good idea to have a talk with Instructor Broman and see if he had revised his opinions of "Scientist X" and his flying-saucer lecture.

Francis Broman is a slight, dark-complexioned man of agreeable manner. His pleasantries with us had a kind of nervous quality to them which, considering the corner into which the "Scientist X" lecture had wedged him, is understandable enough.

While working at the university as an instructor, Broman was also studying for his doctorate there. To do a bang-up job as an instructor, Broman had. on his own hook, invited "Scientist X" to give the flying-saucer talk.

When the event got out of hand in the public prints and the university regents found the name o£ their school firmly lashed up with a lecturer who insisted little men from Ven'us were dropping like flies on the Earth, an icy academic breeze.began blowing in Broman's direction. For awhile, Broman could see his diploma wafting away in the williwaw.

Having weathered that storm, Broman came to the interview with us prepared to make it very clear that Newton or "Scientist X" and his Ven·usians were about as welcome at the university as a case of pyorrhea at a kissing game.

Broman showed us a copy of the introductory statement he had made to his class before the lecture began. In it he had pointed out that the whole purpose of the lecture was to give his class an exercise in evaluating material presented by a speaker. Broman had even given his students a summary of the scientific method of evaluation they had been studying and asked them to see if the saucer lecture stood up under it.

Naturally. in view of the spectacular nature of the talk, a little thing like Broman's introduction was overlooked in the following news stories, and certainly there was no mention of it in Scully s book. There were, however, a couple of carefully thought out devices used by Scully to make the lecture sound like a weighty scholastic event.

One of them was Scully's sentence, "On that day at 12:30 p. m., 350 students of the University of Denver skipped lunch to hear a confidential scientific discourse. . . ."

I had been impressed when I read it. It takes a pretty good event to get a bunch of healthy students to skip lunch in order to take it in. I questioned Broman about it and asked if maybe the lecture wasn't given a much bigger build-up than he was letting on. Instead of answering, he shoved. over the typed copy of his introduction to the lecture and, with a smile, held his finger on the second sentence. It read, "You folks are guests and members of the basic science class that meets at 12:40 each day."

"Nobody missed any lunch that day -or any other day as far as I know," said Broman. "It was a regular class held at the regular time."

Scully's other builder-upper also turned out to be, an invention of somebody's soaring imagination.

As proof that the saucer lecture was so important that the University of Denver wanted to save any possible memento for posterity, Scully said on page 26 of his book, concerning the blackboard diagrams:

"After his lecture had caused such a stir, the chalked designs were preserved in lacquer . . . ."

Broman's comment: "The lecturer's drawings were not lacquered over. It would have been ridiculous to preserve them. They were just a couple of circles labeled 'Earth' and 'Venus,' a crude sketch of what the saucers were supposed to have looked like, and a diagram showing how combinations of digits can be added up to total nine which was supposed to illustrate something to do with the measurements of the saucers."

After talking with Broman I was more convinced than ever that Frank Scully's little men were about as miserable a hoax as the two-headed baby in a 10-cent side show. Proving it and finding out what was behind them, however, was something else again.

The next Denver lead on my list was George T. Koehler, the advertising salesman for Denver radio station KMYR who had escorted Newton to the lecture. Koehler is a fleshy individual, a breezy, back-slapping sort who looks younger than the 41 years he claims. Scully described him as "an old professional football player with the Chicago Bears." In Denver, Koehler admitted this statement was correct.

On the strength of Scully's apparent indifference to reporting the truth I sent the following wire to Ralph Brizzolara, manager of the Chicago Bears:



From that point on I wasn't counting heavily on anything Koehler offered.

He was correct, however, in claiming that he was pretty close to Newton, for be and his wife, who was once Newton's nurse, live in a house that turned out to be rented by Newton and is filled with Newton's golfing trophies and other memorabilia, and he drives a Cadillac that is registered in the name of Newton Oil Company. ·

Koehler played a tape recording of the University of Denver lecture which was interesting only because it didn't include Broman's telltale introduction. Koehler, not knowing I had spoken to Broman, glossed over the importance of the missing introduction, although he never could satisfactorily explain why it wasn't on the tape. As far as the talk itself went, it was pretty much the same thing I bad beard in the Palace Hotel from the lips of the master himself.

Koehler had some pretty interesting yarns to spin about the great Dr. Gee. In the middle of one of them be fished out a brown rod about a quarter of arl inch in diameter and perhaps ten inches long. This, he claimed, was some of Doctor's Perelite, made up as an arrow shaft for Howard Hill, the noted archer.

"Hill used one of Doctor's arrows,'' Koehler remarked, "to kill an elephant on his last trip to Africa. That will give you an idea of how tough this stuff is." ·

That was an easy one to check.

I happened to know that Hill was engaged in selling a motion picture of the trip. Whenever a deal like that is in the making, you can bet your bottom dollar there'll be a publicity man eager to tell you anything you want to know and a lot of things you don't.

It didn't take long to get Mr. Hill's man on the phone. According to him the only arrows used on the Hill expedition were designed by Hill himself and made of tubular steel and Duralumin. Certainly, if Hill had used some revolutionary new material for arrow shafts his publicity man would have been beating the drum about it. But he wasn't. In fact, he'd never even beard of Perelite.

Since Koehler was apparently no more committed to telling the truth than Newton or Scully and wasn't half as entertaining, there didn't seem to be any advantage in investing any more time in him. Also, the more time I spent with Koehler the more chance there was of flushing my birds prematurely. So far I had been playing it straight, going right along with all the tall tales the boys had to offer. Because in the back of my mind I was working up a little plan.

First, I wanted to meet Dr. Gee—that is, if such a man existed. Second, I wanted to get my hands on one of those disks of unknown metal again and once I did I wasn't planning to let go of it until I got it into a good commercial laboratory for a chemical analysis. With that in mind it would have been absolutely fatal if Newton had any idea that I wasn't 100 percent sold on his story.

I thanked Koehler for all the inside dope he had given me and reserved my plane seat back to San Francisco. But before I left Denver I checked out two more leads that turned up in Scully's book and Newton's conversation.

I looked up the Newton Oil Company in the phone book, half expecting that it wouldn't be there at all. But it was. And the offices listed actually existed. They didn't however, exactly jibe with the picture of roaring activity conjured up by Scully when he wrote, "Silas Mason Newton, president ol the Newton Oil Company . . . a man who never made more than $25,000,000 nor lost more than $20,000,000 . . . ."

As far as I could see, the whole Newton Oil Company consisted of two offices connected by a little waiting room. When I dropped in saying that I was a friend of Mr. Newton's and just thought I'd look him up, the only activity in the place was a mild conversation going on between a man who introduced himself as the secretary of the company and the receptionist. For an organization that had, as both Scully and Newton claimed, rediscovered the mighty Rangely oil field, the operation seemed a little puny. My next move was to check on the Rangely story.

Richard D. WVhite, exploration superintendent for the California Company, a subsidiary of Standard Oil of California, gave me a complete fill-in on Rangely. Mr. White is in a good position to know what he is talking about, for the California Company controls a vast majority of the leases at Rangely.

The offices of the California Company were the real thing. You could have lost the whole Newton Oil Company in the reception room. ·

I got out a copy of Scully's book and showed White this sentence that appears on page 33: "He (Newton) hunted for oil with instruments which had cost a fortune and were a closely guarded secret. With them he had rediscovered the Rangely oil field years after the major oil companies had written it off as a failure."

White grinned and shook his head. "Sure, I remember old Newton,'' he said. "He used to come out to Rangely with some kind of doodlebug outfit-one of those black boxes with a lot of dials on it nobody ever gets to look inside of. He tried to tell everybody we were way off on the geology. He even picked up some leases down where his doodlebug said the oil was supposed to be and did some drilling. Turned out he was the one that was way off on the geology. He used to bring a lot of people out here in those big cars of his. But as far as rediscovering Rangely, that's a lot of baloney.

"Here's the story on Rangely. Standard of California rediscovered the field in 1902 but for a long time there wasn't much activity out there. The reason for that's simple. Crude oil was selling for ten cents a barrel. Rangely was a long way from the refineries; and the roads, if you could call them that, were terrible.

"When World War II came along there was a big demand for oil and the price shot up to the point where it was worth while taking it out. The government came along with some help on the road situation and a private pipe line went in. Then Rangely really opened up. That's all there was to the rediscovering of Rangely."

There wasn't any doubt in my mind about whom to believe on the Rangely story. The past performance of the Newton· Scully team didn't leave me anY. choice.

As I was leaving White's office he offered a suggestion. "If you really want to get an idea of how Newton operates, get hold of some back issues of a magazine called the Petroleum Review. You'll find some articles in there by Newton himself that will give you a pretty good line on him.

Just before I got on the plane, I called Thor Seversen at the Denver Post and asked him if he'd try to find the articles White mentioned. Then I headed back for San Francisco.

All the way back I tried to think of a way to get possession of one of those disks of unknown metal without Newton knowing I had it. Of course I could have just grabbed one and stuck it in my pocket, but with all the trouble Newton and Scully had gone to in building the story up, it was a dead cinch that they wouldn't stand hitched for a move like that. And I didn't see any point in winding up in a fist fight or a lawsuit or both if I could help it.

By the time I got back to San Francisco I thought I had a pretty good plan for getting one of the disks. I hadn't figured out yet how I was going to smoke out Dr. Gee, but I decided to let that wait until I got to it.

Laying hold of one of Newton's specimens of unknown metal turned out to be about as easy as getting a passkey to Fort Knox, but I didn't know it when I started.

My first move was to hunt up a good reliable laboratory that would cooperate on such a project. Stanford Research Institute, in Menlo Park. California, is one of the best commercial labs in the area and perhaps in the country. Dr. J. E. Hobson, director of the institute, agreed to go along with me. Dr. Hobson not only thought the whole project was pretty funny, but he also saw the value of knocking o\'er what certainly was shaping up as a full-scale national scientific hoax. All I needed to do now was get one of the disks and SRI would do the rest.

My first move was flat-footedly to ask Newton if he'd permit an analysis of a disk. He laughed it off. His stand was that his own laboratories had already submitted the disks to 150 tests, discovered that they would withstand 10,000 degrees of heat, presumably Fahrenheit, although he didn't quite remember, and he didn't see any point in further testing. As far as Newton was concerned the stuff was unknown to Earth and what was the use of doing any more tests when you didn't know what you were testing for? It was a tricky piece of logic, but I had to go along with it for fear of tipping my hand.

My next suggestion, that no one would really believe his story unless he submitted the disks to an impartial laboratory almost ended in disaster.

Newton puckered up his eyes and began spewing at me. "You've been chasing me down here for two months. I'm a busy man. I haven't got a goddamned bit of time to spend on this thing. Now I've been courteous as hell to you, see. And I'm just not interested in bothering with the damn thing any longer. Now how does that suit you?"

Newton carried on along those lines for quite awhile. What he was getting at was that apparently plenty of people had believed him without his having to submit anything to anybody; witness the number of copies Scully's book had sold. And what had he, Newton, got out of it? Nothing. Nothing but abuse and persecution. What had started out as a favor on Newton's part to Scully had boomeranged and Newton was getting tired of it. Looking at him as he stood there bristling, he was the picture of the injured philanthropist.

Then, almost without my realizing it, Newton's manner began to change and the point of the whole floor show swung into focus.

"I've talked with my people," Newton was saying in a calm, matter-of-fact voice, "and their statement to me was, see, that Scully made twenty-five or thirty thousand out of his book on what little information we've furnished him. They said to me, 'Now if we lay all this stuff on the line, it's going to take a lot of time and we want to know what there is in it for us.' "

Commerce had entered the picture.

The only thing to do was to declare open season on Newton's disks and start working on the plan I had figured out.

What I had in mind was to make a copy of Newton's disks and then, if I could get him to haul out the originals again, switch mine for one of his.

I had been counting on getting at least another look at the disks before creating the copy, but the way Newton was acting I realized I'd be lucky if I could get him to produce them even once more so I could switch on him. That meant I had to make the copies from memory. It had been some time since I had seen the disks and then, even though I'd handled them, the light hadn't been good for the sort of thing I had in mind.

I got hold of Newhall. the only other person who had been along when Newton produced his trophies, and we compared notes. We were agreed the disks were about the size of a nickel, plain-surfaced and silver-colored.

The weight was the only tricky problem. A piece of aluminum that looked about the right size didn't seem to weigh enough. Magnesium felt too light. Monel metal felt too heavy. Steel, although it felt a little too slippery, seemed to be the best bet for this job.

Among his other talents, Newhall is a pretty fair machinist. He has a well-equipped shop in his garage and one afternoon we set up to do a little counterfeiting.

When we got through we had an assortment of steel disks, some a little bigger than a nickel, some a little smaller. Our idea was that by making the fakes in slightly varying sizes we would surely have one that was a good enough match. For some reason or other we turned out one fake disk made of monel metal. Monel metal is heavier than steel to begin with and we made our monel disk about twice as thick as the ones made of steel. It was ridiculously heavy by comparison, but we added it to our collection anyway.

For the next few days I earned all the fakes around m my pockets to "age" them. The process worked pretty well. The only trouble was I jingled.

The problem now was to get Newton to produce his disks again so I could switch on him. But Newton wouldn't produce.

In a series of attempts to get Newton to haul out his disks, meetings with a whole new, tempting cast of characters were suggested to him: people of influence who could guarantee him protection in case "the military" turned against him and Dr. Gee; a man who would happily part with a sizable chunk of money for just a glimpse ot the mysterious disks from Venus; kindred souls with reports of saucer sightings who begged for a peek at Newton's treasures. Still Newton wouldn't bite.

Finally another dinner was set .up in the Palm Court, the place Newton had first produced the disks. This time Hal McIntyre, a professional magician who now uses his magic act to help him fit hearing aids to children, came along in the role of a friend who had a saucer sighting to report. Hal was loaded with the fake disks. Just before Newton appeared, I tried to give Hal a last minute fill-in on which one of the fakes. I thought would be the best match for a Newton disk. Hal, who had been kept informed of the story, was about as exasperated as I was. He said, "I don't care what Newton's disks look like. Even if he pulls out a square one I'm going to switch on him."

But it was no go. Newton just kept playing his role of a science-fiction Scheherazade regaling Ui with more stories about Dr. Gee and his fabulous laboratories. Every time we worked around to the subject of the disks, Newton had an excuse for not producing them.

After about a week of trying I began to think the disks had sailed back to Venus on their own and my sanity was about to follow.

Then Newton's business with the "big-brass" took him to Washington. 'While he was away I decided to use the time to check up further on Newton's background and to start scouting out leads to Dr. Gee.

From Scully's book I knew that Newton had lived in New York City—in the winter of 1929-30, he had housed distinguished visitors in "his Park Avenue residence." I was to find that shortly after that time, Newton was embroiled in some activity in New York, which Scully either knew nothing about or didn't bother to mention.

It's not in the glamorous Dick Tracy detective tradition to mole through old newspaper files, but sometimes it pays off. The New York Times publishes an index that amply justifies its famous slogan, "All the news that's fit to print." I discovered in the public library that in 1931 the Times reported that Silas M. Newton, "reputed wealthy oil man and golfer," had been arrested by New York police, charged with grand larceny on the complaint of an elderly retired New Jersey real-estate dealer who claimed that Newton had rigged a $25,000 sale to him of worthless stock in a gas and utilities company. Newton denied any fraud, claimed it was all a misunderstanding, and was released in $2,500 bail. The next day the Times noted that New York State authorities expected to arrange Newton's extradition to New Jersey within a week. Evidently Newton beat the rap. for no further news of the case appeared, and from checking records I learned that some five years later, in September 1936, his bail was discharged.

Another item I came across, which appeared this time not in the New York Times but, oddly enough, in the files of the San Francisco Chronicle a continent-width away, conveyed news from New York on January 15, 1932, that a Brooklyn man had asked the New York State Bureau of Securities for a Supreme Court examination order to determine if Newton was engaged in fraudulent stock practices. The man felt he had been bilked by Newton in the amount of $28,000. No outcome was recorded in the public prints, so presumably nothing came of it.

Then there were two up-state New York incidents. In September 1934, at Oneida, Newton got involved with the state police in a matter concerning false stock statements. In July 1935, at Elmira, he was arrested on a judge's bench warrant, charged with two violations of the law relating to false statements or advertisements on securities, and was released in $2,500 bail; a year and a half later the indictments were dismissed and the case closed.

It was plain that in his financial dealings, Newton had a tendency to get into trouble, and a knack for.getting out of it.

I got to wondering if, what with his various oil enterprises, Newton might not have tried to sell a little stock in California. The rules on such matters are very strict in California, so strict that the office of the Corporation Commissioner keeps very careful records to insure that those rules are enforced. I found that the Commissioner's office was not unaware of Silas Newton, though nothing was pending against him.

Uncovering such a background for Scully's "Scientist X," the University of Denver lecturer, the great geophysicist of the oil industry, obviously called for some intensive digging into the man's current activities.

'What came up unexpectedly in the first spadeful was a clear clue at last to Dr. Gee.

I won't go into the method of delving here. Let's say simply that the telephone is a great invention, and Newton is a great telephoner. A checkup revealed that he phoned often to Phoenix, Arizona. He spoke there with a Leo GeBauer.

Phoenix was the locale of Dr. Gee, according to Scully's book and to the statements of Newton himself. The pseudonym "Gee" and the name "GeBauer" certainly seemed to be kin.

Furthermore, the place and name were not the only significant similarities. Though he didn't appear, from a distance, to be a Newton-Scully grade of superscientist, GeBauer did have some technical knowledge of electronics. He was proprietor of the Western Radio & Engineering Company, a radio and television parts supply house.

It wouldn't do to call up GeBauer and ask him bluntly if he was Dr. Gee. My next step was laid out for me-to go to Phoenix and size up GeBauer in person.

I was set to take off when Newton turned up in San Francisco again. Apparently he was ready to talk business about the disks.

He started off by announcing over the telephone, "Now my people are not trying to sell anything. They haven't got anything to sell. But you certainly, see, should be in a position to know how far you want to go to get to the bottom of this deal."

If a cash offer was what was required to make Newton produce his disks again, there was only one thing to do.

The trouble was that making Newton an offer was kind of like trailing your foot in the water to lure a shark within gaffing distance. The stakes had to be high to make any sense and Newton could be counted on to take care of himself in a fast shuffle.

A very solemn conference was set up and Newton was authorized to tell "his people" that $10,000 would be put in escrow as soon as some reasonable proof of the story's authenticity was produced. An additional .$25,000 was to he turned over to Newton prior to publication.

Newton was in great form that day. He was wearing a very pale gray flannel suit and somewhere in his .travels he had picked up a deep tan. The way he handed himself I got to feeling that $35.000 was really a pretty chintzy offer.

There was the usual amount ol hacking and filling. Newton mulled the proposition over and gravely considered what his people would think. Occasionally, he digressed. long enough to spin some colorful bit of saucerian information, but by and large he was strictly the business man negotiating. It was a shock, then, when he rummaged around in a coat pocket, hauled out the grimy handkerchief, spread the gears and disks on the desk and said, "I suppose you wanted to see these again."

It was a bad moment. One look at Newton's disks and it was a cinch that the substitutes were at best pretty unreasonable facsimilies. But it could have been a lot worse—- could have been caught diskless. Luckily, I did have the fake disks with me, bad as they were. I was still carrying them around, aging them in my pockets.

The most obvious thing wrong with my fakes was that they were much too thin—all but the one made of monel metal. It was about halfway thick enough, but if it had seemed too heavy when it was made up, now, by secretly sorting it out and hefting it in my pocket, it seemed hopeless. .

While I was wondering what to do, Newton was talking about a saucer that had been sighted over Africa. As swept away as he was by his new story he never once lost sight of the disks, handing over first one and then the other and placing them on his open handkerchief as they were returned.

I didn't dare stall any longer. Not only was the.re the chance that any minute Newton would wrap up the disks and tuck them awav, but I was beginning to get the shakes.

I palmed the monel fake by gripping it with the fourth finger between the palm and second joint, and tried to remember what my friend McIntyre, the magician, had told me.

"Let me see one of those disks again, Mr. Newton," I said. I guess I'm not cut out for this sort of thing because my voice sounded like I was going to be sick and when I took my hands from my pocket I could see the skin creases shine where the sweat was forming. .

I took Newton's disk between my thumb and forefinger, held it up to look at it, and then let it drop into my cupped hand. I gave a kind of feeble cough wtth the idea that if It clinked against the fake, the sound would be covered. There wasn't any clink.

I went through the motions of hefting the disk in my hand although actually I was holding the two of them tightly palmed to keep them from getting mixed up. Big, single drops of icy sweat were slithering down my sides.

I just sat there for a second or two hefting away and trying to look as if I were pondering some deep interplanetary problem. Then, looking Newton right in the eye as McIntyre had told me, I let the monel fake slide into my other hand and passed it hack to him. Keeping my eyes from flicking down at that fake disk as I handed it over was the hardest thing I've ever done.

Newton took it, plunked it down on the handkerchief without even glancing at it, and went right on with his story. All l had to do now was get his disk back into my pocket without his noticing the move. Mclntyre had warned me not to do it too soon and above all, not to look at my hand while I put it into my pocket. I didn't, but it was a struggle. Then l tried to sit there and listen to Newton with that disk of his burning a hole right through the side of my suit. . .

As hard as I tried not to sneak a look at the fake sitting there in the handkerchief alongside of Newton's disk, I couldn't stop it. When I saw the two of them together I almost passed out. The fake was so bad it stuck out like an Eskimo at a Boston social tea party. .

Newton never noticed it. When he was through with his African saucer story he wrapped up the disks and gears, stuck them in his pocket and announced that he would take up the offer with Doctor. It might take a little time. Newton warned. The last Newton had heard, the doctor had disappeared into the scientific wilds of Pasadena so thoroughly that even his wife couldn't find him. But Newton would get in touch with me.

Five minutes after he was gone, I was on my way to the Stanford Research Institute with the disk of unknown metal.

Dr. Hobson and his men gave the disk the full treatment. They clipped off a tiny piece and checked its melting point. They did a simple gravimetric analysis. They mounted it in plastic, polished a portion of it to a mirror finish and examined its structure microscopically. They sent another piece of the disk over to Stanford University for a spectrochemical analysis.

It seemed a shame to go to all that trouble. The disk wasn't made of anything that a 12·year-old with a $4 Chem-Craft outfit couldn't have analyzed in twenty minutes.

Newton's precious unknown metal that Dr. Gee had supposedly taken from a crashed flying saucer, the same that had refused to melt in Dr. Gee's laboratory at 10,000 degrees, melted quite nicely at Stanford Research Institute at just 657 degrees, Fahrenheit.

It was plain old aluminum, 99.5 percent pure. a quality commercially described as grade 2S and used m the manufacture of nothing more cosmic than pots and pans.

With that piece of intelligence in hand, I gathered up my notes and headed for Hollywood and Frank Scully. The problem now was to find out whether Scully had known about this state of affairs or, if he had simply been gulled by Newton and Dr. Gee, whether he would be man enough to admit it and help me run down the rest of the story.

Just to be on the safe side, though, I decided to see if I couldn't first get him to identify Dr. Gee as GeBauer. It would be something of a bluff, but, pending my trip to Phoenix, I was pretty sure I had the right man.

The Scully living room hadn't changed. It was still the same cheery bedlam of dogs and children with Scully holding forth as usual on a saucer case flashed to him by an ardent fan who had read his book.

In the relative calm of Scully's cluttered workroom I brought out the laboratory reports on the disk—the film from the spectrochemical analysis, the terse report on the gravimetric, the bleak notes on the microscopic examination.

When Scully got through with them he looked as a man might who had been riding in a flying saucer when the center fell out. After awhile he called in his wife. For Mrs. Scully's benefit the whole file on Newton was hauled out.

When she was through, Mrs. Scully just sat there saying over and over, "How can it possibly be true?" The propitious moment seemed to be at hand to hazard the matter of Dr. Gee.

The first move was to see if Scully still contended. as he had in his book, that he had actually met Dr. Gee. Scully not only said that he had, but that considering the high scientific tone of Dr. Gee's conversation it didn't seem possible that he could be anything but what Newton claimed.

I made Scully a proposition. If he would voluntarily admit who Dr. Gee was, I offered to let him join forces with me publicly in the final stages of smoking out Newton's real motives in perpetrating a national hoax.

Scully refused. He had given his word, he said, not to reveal who Dr. Gee was, and he didn't intend to break his promise. Mrs. Scully tried to convince him that he had been taken in by Newton and was thus no longer obligated to him. Scully wouldn't budge.

I decided to play it the way they do in the movies. With the most indifferent attitude I could muster. I hinted that it didn't make any difference to me because I knew who Gee was anyway.

I guess I must have sounded pretty indifferent because it worked. Scully promised that if I could prove to him that I knew who Dr. Gee was, he would admit the identification was correct.

It was kind of a lopsided arrangement hanging completely on Scully's word, but at the moment his word seemed like a very rugged institution.

I told Scully the Phoenix address I had for GeBauer.

"You've got the man, all right," Scully said.

"GeBauer, isn't it?" I asked.

"Yes. Dr. GeBauer," he said.

I couldn't have felt better if I had pulled off a merger between Scars Roebuck and Montgomery Ward.

Right away I wanted Scully to go to Phoenix with me and confront GeBauer. Scully couldn't make it. It was early summer and Scully didn't think he could stand the heat. Nor was Scully sure that he wanted to admit publicly that his book was a hoax. Scully didn't know what he wanted to do.

Finally we made a deal. I would go to Phoenix and talk with GeBauer. If GeBauer should refuse to admit that he was Dr. Gee and would assert this denial in writing, Scully would join forces with me and find out what Newton, who was plainly the moving spirit behind the little-men story, was really up to.

It was a strange. backward kind of arrangement, but it was the best I could do. And I did have Scully's solemn promise made in front of his wife.

When I got to Phoenix I hunted up Lloyd Clark of the Phoenix Gazette and recruited him for a little advance work. I wanted to get some photos of GeBauer in his natural habitat and Lloyd thought he knew how it could be done.

Under the pretext of getting a story for the business section of the Gazette, Clark took a photographer and moved in on GeBauer at his Western Radio &: Engineering Company.

They got the photos all right, but Clark had a strange report to make about GeBauer's reaction to having his picture taken.

Most businessmen will crowd aside a herd of elephants to get their picture in the paper. Not GeBauer. He didn't know if it were really the right thing for him to be photographed or not. He spent quite a little time trying to convince Clark and the photographer that they ought to make their pictures of his shop and his staff but they should leave him out. Very modest gent, this GeBauer.

But newspaper photographers have a way about them, a little harsh sometimes, but effective. Clark and his man came away with a very nice mug shot of GeBauer.

Clark hadn't been able to pry much information out of GeBauer about his past, but he had a pretty good idea of how to get what we wanted.

As soon as the business-news story and the photo of GeBauer ran in the Gazelle, Clark made a deal with the local Better Business Bureau to do a follow-up.

The Bureau came away with a very interesting notarized report.

Instead of holding degrees from Armour Institute, Creighton University. and the University of Berlin, as Scully wrote, GeBauer only claimed a degree in electrical engineering from the Louis Institute of Technology in Chicago around 1931 or 1932, he couldn't remember which.

From 1943 to 1945, while he was supposed to have been heading up 1.700 scientists doing 35,000 experiments on the land, in the sea and the air and spending one billion dollars in a top-secret government magnetic-research program, GeBauer allowed he was merely chief of laboratories at the AiResearch Company in Phoenix and Los Angeles.

A check on that claim showed that GeBauer had been with AiResearch all right, and had done a most competent job—keeping their laboratory machinery running as a kind of maintenance man.

The Better Business Bureau wound up its report with a quote by GeBauer that ranks as probably one of the world's most heroic efforts at obfuscation. The last paragraph of the report reads: "When asked about further details of his business here and elsewhere he said we could quote him as saying, 'I believe in life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness without the interference of man!' "

The time had come to visit Dr. Gee in person.

It was dead-hot in Phoenix. GeBauer's shop, a modest enough establishment despite Newton's glowing descriptions of Dr. Gee's sprawling laboratories, turned out to be a flat-roofed, one-story building in a treeless section of town.

GeBauer is a stocky, middle-aged man with pale, deep-set eyes. I had made arrangements with a photographer from the Gazette to park his car across the street from GeBauer's place, leave his camera in it and stroll around GeBauer's showroom posing as a customer, and I was glad there were reinforcements within hailing distance.

We talked in GeBauer's office. While he talked, he toyed with a steel bearing, rolling it back and forth across the glass top in his desk.

I told him who I was and that I knew he was the Dr. Gee in Scully's book.

GeBauer gave me those eyes.

"You're mistaken there, my boy,'' he said, rolling the hearing around. "I know Newton and I've read Scully's book, but whoever told you I was Dr. Gee is away off base."

Sweat was running down his jaws and making quick little detours around his chin.

I asked GeBauer for a written statement that he wasn't Dr. Gee.

No go.

My line was, "Look, as long as you say you aren't Gee. what harm is there in giving me a statement that you aren't?"

His line was, "I don't want to put anything down in writing until I talk it over with my attorney." He had run into trouble with Newton before. Seems as though Newton owed him some money for some equipment GeBauer had built for him. He didn't know if he should sign my statement or not.

GeBauer wanted to talk the deal over with his wife, who was in the shop. I left them talking and made a little tour of the place. In a room that was a combination storeroom, workshop and wrapping room, there was a box of brown rods exactly like the one George Koehler had showed me m Denver claiming it was a Perelite arrow shaft.

I was feeling kind of reckless. Maybe it was the heat. I broke off a piece of rod and took it over to GeBauer. "'What's this stuff?" I asked.

"Television antenna separators," he said. He didn't look too happy. Maybe he was sore because I broke that piece off.

I began to push GeBauer about the statement, since he still stuck to his story, and finally he started dictating to his wife. It took several false starts but he eventually produced what I needed as a lever on Scully. It was on his letterhead and it read:
To Whom It May Concern: I have been asked by J. P. Cahn of the San Francisco Chronicle if I were the Dr. Gee in Scully's book. I am making this statement to all concerned: I am not the Dr. Gee mentioned in the book Behind The Flying Saucer. I have no knowledge of the flying saucer other than what I have read . . . .

I have in no way any connection with Frank Scully, his books or statements. nor did I at any time give Frank Scully authority to infer that I might be Dr. Gee. The scientific duties and qualifications mentioned in his book in no way describe my activities during the war period.
(signed) L. A. GeBauer.
All Scully had asked me to get was a statement from GeBauer denying the identity by which Scully had admitted to me that he knew him. I had it, and on GeBauer's own letterhead. I certainly figured that would do the trick of unlocking Scully. But it didn't.

Maybe Scully had his fingers crossed when he promised me that if I got such a statement he would admit Newton and GeBauer had chumped him and help me run down the reason they went to all that trouble. Or maybe he only keeps his promises on odd days of the week. It's hard to tell. But Scully knows what he promised and so does his wife. She was there at the time.

First I called him on the telephone and told him what had happened. Scully wouldn't even listen to me.

I had the GeBauer statement photostated and I mailed him a copy by registered mail.

His only reply to that was a violent letter and a phone call that should have short-circuited the entire Bell System. Scully maintained that I was persecuting him, just as everyone else connected with the saucer story was being persecuted, and that he would probably sue someone. To date no one has showed up to serve any papers.

omething else showed up, however, that makes for some interesting speculation. Thor Seversen, digging around in Denver. finally found copies of the publication called the Petroleum Review that R. D. White of the California Company had suggested I read. It was a good suggestion.

In the 1946-47 Petroleum Review you will find three long articles written by Silas M. Newton. In all of them Newton expounded the merits of his geological theories about Rangely and denounced the United States Geological Survey and "bureaucratic Washington."

Newton further distinguished himself by introducing to his Petroleum Review readers none other than the noted author Frank Scully whom he incorrectly claimed "served several times (as a) member of the California legislature."

Scully's contribution to that issue of the Petroleum Review was an article entitled "Notes on Building a City" that was certainly helpful to Newton's promotional pitch. The article predicted that the town of Rangely "can become a city of 50,000 in the next five years." That would be in 1952. Scully's prediction is a little high unless something unusual happens in Rangely in the next few months. The latest population figures gathered in 1950 and printed in the Rand McNalh, Road Atlas shows Rangely's population hovering at the 5.000 mark.

There is other remarkable cooperation between Newton and Scully. In the subsequent Petroleum Review, for 1947-48. Newton blossomed into print again with "a new exploration method ... (a) revolutionary new technique (that) may end the specter of 'dry holes.' " Some phrases from the article and the magazine's explanatory squib will ring familiar to readers of Scully's book. For example:

Petroleum Review: "Certain it is that petroleum in place radiates energy ... microwaves can be caught and measured."

Behind the Flying Saucers, page 36: "Petroleum in place . . . radiates magnetic energy and this is measurable."

Petroleum Review: "Microwaves being broadcast constantly by petroleum deposits hidden deep in the earth. . ."

Behind the Flying Saucers, page 36: "Petroleum deposits hidden deep in the earth were constantly broadcasting . . . magnetic microwaves."

Scully could have checked the worth of such claims as easily as I did by querying any authority in the subject. Dr. Thomas Poulter of the Stanford Research Institute examined Newton's statements and told me, "As far as I know. petroleum in place doesn't radiate anything. If it did, all the world's oil fields would have been discovered long ago."

The practical value of Newton's theories was already on record. The same Petroleum Review issue of 1946-47 that carried Newton's articles contained, on page 88, a resume by the editors of the year's drilling operations that noted. "One hundred and forty . . . wells . . . were added to the forty wells producing on January 1, 1946, in Rangely Field, and its first duster was drilled—the Newton Oil Company's Government D-1 on the southern edge of the field . . . . " Perhaps it was this dry hole, which is not the best of recommendations for an oil promoter, that made necessary Newton's "revolutionary new technique" which he proclaimed the following year and the theory of which Scully glowingly quoted.

Only the ultimate question remained to be answered. Why did Frank Scully write Behind the Flying Saucers—a book now proved to be, in effect, one of the greatest scientific hoaxes to hit the country since the old Cardiff Giant was rooted out of the soil of the Onondaga Valley in 1869.

I'm sorry that I don't know the answer. I don't know it because I think there is no single answer. Beyond the immediate and obvious one that the book was highly profitable lies a tangle of intangibles—the motives of the various individuals who were involved in fostering the story.

I believe that Frank Scully allowed himself to trust sincerely what was told him by others, although I'll agree that that takes some believing about Scully. "I have tried to the best of my ability to find Haws in their stories," he wrote in his preface. You can charitably form a low opinion of his ability, or you can generously suppose that he may have been blinded by his long friendship with the man who emerges most impressively from the book-that wizard among ore and oil explorers. the scientist whose geophysical acumen as described by author Scully would certainly merit any investor's interest, Silas Mason Newton.

I'd give a good deal to know what led Newton to concoct the Little-Men-in-Flying-Saucers-from-Venus yarn and get other people to go along with it. I've been meaning to ask him, but he hasn't come around lately.

I've been meaning to ask him, too, if he has figured out a magnetic story to explain the fact that one of those disks of unknown metal in his handkerchief is so much heavier than the other one.

If I know Newton, I'll bet that he has.—J. P. Cahn


3Aztec UFO crash 1948 Empty Re: Aztec UFO crash 1948 06/08/13, 06:57 pm



Moi je dis que c'est de la dizinformation du Gouvernement pour cacher la véritude vraie du crash alien...

4Aztec UFO crash 1948 Empty Re: Aztec UFO crash 1948 06/08/13, 07:14 pm



Gilles F. a écrit:http://vault.fbi.gov/silas-newton
Moi je dis que c'est de la dizinformation du Gouvernement pour cacher la véritude vraie du crash alien...
Toutafé. Les suites judiciaires dans le prochain épisode.

Les articles de J.P. Cahn n'ont jamais été OCRisés complètement à ma connaissance, je suis en train de finir de corriger le second et puis je le posterai ici. Ça peut servir, parce que les PDF d'origine ne sont pas cherchables ni Google-traduisibles.

En plus c'est une zolie histoire de débunkiste comme on aimerait en lire plus souvent. Laughing


5Aztec UFO crash 1948 Empty Re: Aztec UFO crash 1948 06/08/13, 10:16 pm



True, August 1956, pp. 36, 37, 69-72

"Doodlebuggers" deluxe, Silas M. Newton (left) and partner Leo A. GeBauer, conned an amazing flock of suckers into buying non-producing oil leases. Maybe these con men didn't know a flying saucer from a hole in the ground. But they used both to sucker their victims. They were almost $400,000 ahead, when TRUE's reporter broke the amazing case of the . . .

Flying Saucers Swindlers


Back in 1952, the September issue of TRUE ran a story of mine titled The Flying Saucers and the Mysterious Little Men. It was an exposé of a best-selling book that maintained flying saucers from Venus, manned by 3-foot characters in blue suits, had landed on earth. Despite solemn prefaces by both the author and publisher, the book was a complete hoax, I rounded up proof that the little-men-from-Venus yarn was as phony as a headwaiter's bow and smile

Digging into the story of the bogus flying saucers, I learned that two men—Silas M. Newton and Leo A. GeBauer—had manufactured the hoax and fobbed it off on a gullible author. When we broke the story, TRUE and I had some pretty good ideas why Newton and GeBauer had dreamed up their yarn, but we couldn't prove our suspicions. And what you can't prove you don't print. So we said what we could, and hoped for the rest. Thanks to TRUE's vast readership, we got the new leads we were hoping for, and now we can give you the wrap-up story on as slippery a pair of swindlers as ever came down the pike.

It happened like this:

As we had suspected, while chasing the flying saucer story to earth, Newton and GeBauer were more than a couple of fun-loving pranksters. Newton had a record that went back to 1931. It started with an arrest for conspiracy in Montclair, New Jersey, and worked its way through grand larceny, false stock statements, and interstate transportation of stolen property. He had never been brought to trial on any of these charges, but he hadn't been bucking for Eagle Scout for the last 20 years either. Newton happened to be a man with a flair for getting off the hook.

GeBauer had a suspended sentence for violation of the Federal Housing Act.

It was a pretty safe bet that this pair wouldn't have taken time and trouble to pull off the flying saucer bit-complete with "pieces of the saucers" -if there hadn't been a pay-off for them. The· pay-off was simple, we found.

Newton and GeBauer were ''doodlebuggers," a term used in the oil industry for men with mysterious devices of one sort or another that are supposed to locate oil.

Newton, the front man for the team, was a doodlebugger deluxe. He set up the Newton Oil Company with offices in Denver, traveled in the right circles, maintained a lavish suite at the Brown Palace Hotel, and drove only a Cadillac. His golf game was good; at one time he was amateur champion of Colorado.

Newton's contribution to the art of doodlebugging was based on the principle that people are inclined to believe what they see in print. As president of the Newton Oil Company, he would persuade petroleum trade publications to print articles he wrote. These inevitably contained one of Newton's own geophysical theories couched in elaborate, pseudo-scientific double talk.

Newton used the articles as convincers. He would line up a prospect, treat him to the floor show of the Cadillacs, the offices of the Newton Oil Company, the suite at the Brown Palace and at some point casually hand him the most recent article by. that renowned authority on geophysics, Silas M. Newton.

After that, when Newton's doodlebug indicated the presence of oil on a piece of property, it wasn't hard to believe there was a fortune underfoot. Newton conned an amazing number of suckers into buying oil leases on some of the nicest scenery in the country.

But the technique had its limitations. The only magazines that would print Newton's articles were trade publications. Oil men who thumbed through them shrugged off Newton's weird geophysical double talk as the scribblings of an eccentric.

What Newton needed was some method of presenting his theories to large numbers of people who knew nothing about oil. If he could manage that, he'd have his prospects coming to him.

The book about the flying saucers was the answer.

Si Newton is the kind of salesman who could peddle a steam calliope to a funeral parlor. The story he palmed off on the man who actually wrote the book set Newton up as a world-famous geophysicist and multimillionaire. It gave him a perfect background to operate from.

The flying saucer yarn was bait. When you got through reading the book, you might still have your doubts about the saucers, but you believed Newton was a genius when it came to locating oil-unless you happened to know something about the subject. And Newton wasn't interested in people who knew anything about oil.

GeBauer, Newton's side-kick, appeared in the book merely as "Dr. Gee," the mysterious and anonymous electronic wizard who had masterminded submarine locating devices for the government. He was now supposed to be on Newton's payroll, developing oil-locating instruments.

The book was just fantastic enough to become a best seller. With access to the letters that came in to the author, Newton was able to build up a sucker list that was a con man's dream.

Officially, the law couldn't do anything about Newton until someone filed a complaint. And there were no complaints. It takes a lot of character to admit publicly you've been taken for a sucker—and that's the best protection a con man has.

What I needed was someone who had been clipped by Newton and GeBauer and wasn't afraid to admit it. With the help of the editors of TRUE, I put as much of Newton and GeBauer's background as I could prove into The Flying Saucers and the Mysterious Little Men, hoping some reader would turn up the lead we needed.

We hit the jackpot with the first letter that came in.

It was from a Mr. A. J. C. Bernard who enclosed a want ad dipped from a Los Angeles newspaper. The ad read:

"URGENT NOTICE-All persons having dealings with SILAS M. NEWTON, NEWTON OIL CO., formerly of Denver, Colorado. New York, Illinois, Wyoming, Calif., Ariz., etc. relative to oil investments, 'Cosmic Rays,' and for 'Flying Saucers,' kindly contact Box M5743 by letter or wire. THIS IS MOST URGENT."
I wired.

While I sweated out the answer the mail poured in from all over the country, confirming what we already knew about Newton and GeBauer: that individually, or as a team, they had been hawking phony stock and fake machines in a dozen states for the last 25 years. But in all the letters, there wasn't one that looked like it might turn into a valid complaint.

I was still waiting for an answer lo my wire when I got two phone calls. One was from a man named Flader in Denver. The other was from a Herman Corsun in Phoenix, Arizona. Both men had had Newton-GeBauer trouble. The answer to my wire, when it came, was also from Denver, surprisingly enough. A Dr. Kleyhauer there had been placing the ads in newspapers all over the country. He wondered if I could come and see him immediately.

Since it appeared that it was going to be a Denver story. I made arrangements with the Denver Post to work on it for them on special assignment.

Dr. Kleyhauer turned out to be a meek-looking optometrist who had been clipped by Newton for $9,000 on the strength of an oil-locating machine Newton had. It was exactly what I wanted—except for one thing. There is a legal time limit on filing complaints. It's fixed by a law called the statute of limitations, and in a case like this one, if you're going to file a complaint, you've got to do it within three years of the date of the last transaction. Thanks to Newton's glib tongue, the statute had run out on any case Dr. Kleyhauer might have had.

The doctor knew it, but he had kept right on running those ads in the hope he could keep Newton from clipping somebody else. Kleyhauer knew FIader, my other Denver lead; Flader had answered one of the doctor's ads.

"You ought to talk to him," Kleyhauer said. "I understand he lost quite a piece of money to Newton, some of it as recently as the fall of 1949."

It was now September 12, 1952. If Flader had a case, the three-year statute might run out any minute—if it hadn't lapsed already, I had to get busy last.

I went out to see Herman Flader at his Stayput Clamp and Coupling factory, an impressive two-story glass brick and tile structure on the edge of Denver. Meeting him was quite a shock. From the research I'd done on Flader—a millionaire who'd invented and now manufactured a wire clamp used to attach hose to pipe—I expected the man to look something like the Hollywood version of a tycoon. Instead I found a man wearing baggy, oil-stained suntans, a work shirt and a pair of shoes the Salvation Army would have thought twice about accepting. Flader is in his late 60's; his gray hair is cropped close. Only in the thrust of his jaw was there anything to indicate that this man was the boss.

Herman Flader arrived in this country before World War I. His assets consisted of a mechanical talent bordering on genius and a pair of hands with all uncanny facility with machinery. He calls his hands his "mallets."

The mallets kept clenching and unclenching while he told me about Newton and GeBauer. Flader's story was a classic example of the old con game known as "the cross fire." Early in 1949 he met GeBauer through some smalltime oil operators. They gave him the old ron· tine about GeBauer being a topflight ex· government scientist who had developed a fabulous electronic device lor locating oil.

When GeBauer turned up at Flader's, he had his machine with him, a metal box about 18 inches square with antennae protruding from either end. The antennae were tipped with small metal balls about the size of marbles. These, GeBauer confided, were plutonium and worth $3,800 apiece. One side of the box was covered with dials, knobs and small lights.

GeBauer didn't tell Flader what the box could do. He showed him. Flader had recently dug five water wells on one of his ranches. Just by twirling the machine's dials until the lights lit, GeBauer located each well and read its exact depth. A couple of times a red light on the machine flared and GeBauer announced they were over oil, reeling off the precise depth of the deposit. It was an impressive demonstration.

Flader wasn't one to be taken iu so easily. Having: memorized the readings, he zigged and zagged so he managed to drive GeBauer over the same spot a couple of times. Each time the reading was exactly the same.

"Old Betsy," GeBauer's pet name for his machine, was apparently infallible. It never occurred to Flader that Gebauer could have found out the depths of his water wells in advance.

When Flader tried to buy "Old Betsy," it was not for sale. The machine, according to GeBauer, was a version of a submarine detector he had developed for the government and was, in fact. U.S. Government property. However, GeBauer would be glad to do some extensive surveys of FIader's land as soon as he got the chance.

By coincidence, the next fascinating character to enter Herman FIader's life was Silas Newton, the president of the Newton Oil Company. When Newton turned up. oil was apparently the furthest thing from his mind; he wanted a few treatments for his arthritis. Flader had rigged up an electrical gadget in his shop that he felt was beneficial to a number of ailments including arthritis. He didn't charge anything for the use of the machine, nor did he solicit any business.

Newton and Flader's conversation led from one thing to another and finally wound up with—you guessed it—oil.

When Flader told Newton about GeBauer and his miraculous machine, Newton laughed. In his years in the oil fields, he'd seen thousands of oil-divining machines. All of them, with one notable exception, were worthless doodlebugs. The exception was a machine Newton now had, a device built for him by a great physicist at a cost of $800,000.

It wasn't long before Flader and Newton were out testing Newton's machine, a great gleaming dial-studded affair in a handsome mahogany box. When GeBauer and "Old Betsy" also turned up one day, considerable technical discussion led to a field test between the two machines.

In the course of the tests, GeBauer revealed—confidentially, of course—that "Old Betsy" operated on the same magnetic principles as the flying saucers. As a matter of fact, he added casually, when the first saucer had landed on earth, he had been called into consultation by the government because of his outstanding work in the field of magnetics.

The result of the battle of the doodlebugs was that Silas Newton, president of the Newton Oil Company, had to admit humbly that Flader had found a scientist with an oil-locating device far superior to the one he had paid $800.000 for. And not only could "Old Betsy" locate oil, gas and water; by taking a firm grip on her plutonium-tipped antennae, GeBauer could give you a reading on the state of your health.

Caught in the cross fire between Newton and GeBauer, Flader was sold.

He bought a sister machine to "Old Betsy" for $4,000 and then set up the Colorado Geophysical and Development Company, Inc., so he and GeBauer could realize the full financial advantages of GeBauer's equipment.

Ultimately, Flader paid GeBauer $28,552.30 for one-half interest in three more machines. One of them, in the hands of the master, GeBauer, could take what GeBauer liked to call an underground photograph—a chart-like affair that showed exactly where the oil was. The only hitch was that every time GeBauer made one of these photographs, one of the tubes in the machine had to be exploded—at a replacement cost of $517.

GeBauer was a little leary of letting Flader have the machines. He told Flader that their circuits were so secret the government had insisted he put demolition charges in each machine. GeBauer was concerned about his new friend and business associate. If Flader so much as tried to peek inside the machines, he would be blown to bits.

Flader promised not to peek.

He insisted, however, that GeBauer show him how to operate the machines. GeBauer obliged with a set of instructions that might have been lifted out of the cabala.

The Colorado Geophysical and Development Company was an interesting business venture. With a few exceptions, all its clients for whom GeBauer did geophysical surveys were friends of Flader's who had known and trusted him for years. Flader also supplied all the capital in the company.

All the income, however, was immediately drawn out by GeBauer who was always a little short on his plutonium payments or something equally as important.

Newton wasn't part of the Colorado Geophysical Company—except as a kind of non-paying client. He had some property up on Dutton Creek in Wyoming that he felt was practically oozing oil. GeBauer zipped up there with his machines and tuned in more oil than even Newton had dreamed existed.

Flader was allowed to put up some capital and provide drilling equipment. Dutton Creek eventually cost him $152,000.

In the middle of the Dutton Creek operation, Newton sold Flader an oil lease near Newhall, California, for a piddling $1,500 and began hinting that GeBauer and "Old Betsy" had tuned in on one of the most tremendous oil fields on earth just outside Mojave, California. When GeBauer was sure of his data, Flader was cut in. It ultimately cost him $49,400.

All told, Newton and GeBauer drained $231,452.30 out of Flader before they were through with him, and they didn't produce as much oil as you can wipe off the mainspring of your wristwatch.

When Flader began to show signs of being disillusioned, Newton and GeBauer poured on the double talk and got out of range. The Newton Oil Company in Denver closed its doors. Herman Flader decided all he could do was write it off to experience.

For a minute right after he finished his story, Flader looked like a tired, old man. "How could a man who knows as much about machinery as you do, fall for a deal that was built on phony machines that didn't work?" I asked.

"When I build a man a machine," he snapped, "it works. I never thought that the other fellow wouldn't do the same!"

I asked Flader if he could prove the story he told me. He produced a pack of canceled checks, every one of them endorsed by Newton or GeBauer. Then he dragged out a pair of black boxes with dials on them.

"These are GeBauer's machines. . . Look here."

Inside one of the boxes was a small battery.

"There's the joker that worked the lights. It wasn't plutonium—just this little battery. I got tired of waiting and pried the damn thing open one day. That business about dynamite was just more of GeBauer's lies. This is what I found, a little 20-cent battery that cost me all that money."

The machines turned out to be the tuning units of U.S. Army radio transmitters. They still had the Signal Corps identification plates on them.

I checked through the dates on the canceled checks. Flader's case was just within the three-year statute—just.

There was just one more question but it was the big one. "Would you file a complaint, Mr. Flader, even if it meant admitting publicly you'd been taken for a sucker?"

The mallets began working again. "I'll do anything if it helps stop Newton and GeBauer."

We went to see the Denver D.A.—Bert Keating. He listened to Flader's story, and charted a plan of action. Witnesses had to be located and the actual site of Flader's leases in the Mojave had to be pinned down. Flader had never seen the operation that had cost him nearly $50,000 and the D.A.'s office wanted to know what really happened out there. Since I was going to check in both Phoenix and Mojave, I agreed to do a little unofficial leg work. The assignment was to gather as much information as possible without tipping Newton or GeBauer that an investigation was under way.

Herman Corsun, the man who had telephoned me in San Francisco, met me at the Phoenix airport. Corsun, the proprietor of a delicatessen, apparently was given to sampling his wares. He stands 6' 3" and weighs 285. At his place, between mouthfuls of four-layer pastrami sandwiches, he told me his story.

It was the same old routine—flying saucers and super-secret government instruments converted to locate oil. The only difference was that GeBauer had conducted this little foray on his own. Corsun had only seen Newton once when GeBauer had introduced him as a multimillionaire oil associate.

Corsun paid GeBauer $3,350 for a nebulous oil lease near Casper, Wyoming. For this investment, GeBauer gave him a couple of jugs of oil, supposedly samples from the well, one of his $517 underground photographs, (valued for Corsun's benefit at $1,500) and a trip to Casper during which GeBauer waved a lordly hand at an oil storage tank and announced grandly, "That tank is yours, Herman!"

Corsun never did find out who owned the tank. The only thing he's sure of now is that it wasn't his, or GeBauer's either.

Corsun was boiling mad and ready to have his attorney take action against GeBauer. Which was exactly what the Denver D.A. was afraid of. The Denver case, if it worked out, stood a good chance of putting two con men out of circulation. Corsun's case only involved one. The Denver case involved enough money so it would be almost impossible for Newton and GeBauer to raise the cash to repay Flader and quash the suit. Corsun's case involved only $3,350.

One rumble out of Corsun would set Newton and GeBauer to inspecting all their fences. They would certainly find out what was going on in Denver. If that happened before Keating and his office had all the information they needed, there was a good chance Newton and GeBauer could so thoroughly cover up their tracks the Denver case never would come to trial.

I asked Corsun if he was willing to postpone his complaint until the Denver case was set.

It was a tough decision for him. If he hit GeBauer right then, his $3,350 was as good as back in his pocket. If he waited, there was no telling when he'd collect.

Finally Herman Corsun nodded. He agreed to wait.

Two days later I was in California, checking at the Mojave lease sites. I located a Slim Appleby who had worked as a driller for Newton. Appleby—a tall, windburned man—has a reputation for being on the level. Although he only worked for Newton for wages, he regrets the association.

"This country's been surveyed by experts," Slim said. "It's full of test holes. Old ones. Anybody who knows anything about this desert knows that a few hundred feet down there's a layer of granite that runs for miles. And here we were drilling right into the middle of it. That's what I couldn't understand about those fellows."

Appleby had heard the flying-saucer story, too, the identical story Flader had been told. He had seen Dr. GeBauer and his machines, and hadn't thought much of them; he'd been around oil fields too long.

Appleby wasn't impressed with Newton's drilling either. Under Newton's supervision, they lost their drilling tools down the hole, and occasionally, thanks to cave-ins, lost the hole itself. As Appleby put it, "At one time or another, we had everything down that hole but the rig itself. Everything, that is, but oil."

At least I knew Newton had actually done some drilling. I had scout reports, so I knew when and how deep. I knew where the holes were and I knew how to get in touch with Slim if he were needed for a witness.

That night I was back in Phoenix on my way to Denver. I checked to see how Herman Corsun was holding up. He was still sitting tight, but I could see the strain was awful.

Our time was running pretty short. On Friday, October 10, charges were quietly filed in Denver's Justice of the Peace Court instead of the District Court where they would normally have been filed. Warrants were issued for the arrest of Newton and GeBauer. By filing in an out-of-the-way court there was a chance the charges wouldn't be spotted before Newton and GeBauer could be picked up.

For three days investigators from the D.A.'s office quietly checked with police departments all over the West, trying to locate Newton and GeBauer without alarming them. It was a tough assignment.

About 9:30 on the morning of the 14th, an attorney strolled into the District Court and asked if there were any charges filed against Newton. Obviously, someone had got wind of what was up. But a few minutes later the FBI, up to this point not very enthusiastic about the Newton-GeBauer case, had received authorization from the U.S. Attorney's office to file charges.

"Denverite 'Saucer Scientist' Charged in $50,000 Fraud," was the headline on the Denver Post for all editions.

With no more need for secrecy, an all-points bulletin went out for Newton and GeBauer. That night—October 14, 1952—FBI agents in Phoenix grabbed GeBauer. Newton was picked up the same evening in Hollywood.

The trial date was set for June 9, 1953. But before the case actually got into court. the trial was postponed more times than the wedding of the bearded lady. Newton and GeBauer, out on bail, were cooling off as many irate citizens as they could by returning their loot. Herman Corsun. for example, wound up by getting $2,300 and a couple of 17-inch TV sets. The boys paid off with anything they could get their hands on.

The day after the story broke there were 11 civil suits against Newton totaling over $137,700. They included everything from failure to pay for drilling equipment to a claim for a year's back rent from his landlady.

By now l had been able to figure out why Newton and GeBauer had gone to all the expense of drilling a pair of holes into solid granite. All the leases Newton and GeBauer peddled in the Mojave were dutifully described by section, township and range. But out in the desert itself, it's pretty hard to pin-point any given location unless you know exactly what you're about. None of the Newton-GeBauer clientele did.

If a sucker who had already felt the gaff needed assurance his money was actually being spent for drilling, he could be calmed by the sight of the rig chugging away out in the sage brush. If the location described on his lease happened to be five miles away, how could he tell?

For two years Newton and GeBauer used that pair of tired holes in the granite as window trimming. And a good thing they were in granite too. If they had ever struck oil and all the lease holders who thought they owned a piece of those wells turned up at once, the doodlebuggers would have been tromped to death in the rush.

Once a sucker had been taken, Newton and GeBauer cooled his fervor with sad stories of collapsed casings, expensive cement jobs and any number of costly mechanical horrors. If that didn't work and a client showed signs of becoming belligerent, he was promised an interest in a sure-fire field in another part of the country, Kansas or Wyoming, anywhere sufficiently inaccessible. And then the cooling-off process started all over again until the sucker finally gave up in despair.

On November 10, 1953, a year and a month after they were arrested, Newton and GeBauer were brought to trial in the District Court in Denver. The charges: conducting a confidence game and conspiracy to commit a confidence game.

Herman Flader, the state's first witness, was on the stand for almost a week. He told the court the same story he had told me, flying saucers and all. And he stuck to it through four solid days of rugged cross-examination.

The slugging began in earnest when Howard Hill, the professional archer who was brought to Denver as a witness for the state, was snagged by the defense through a legal maneuver. Hill wound up testifying that GeBauer's doodlebug had unerringly located a tank of fuel oil in his back yard.

District Attorney Keating evened it up when the defense produced a photostatic copy of an agreement between Flader and GeBauer bearing a date that would put the case outside the three-year statute. Keating produced the original document. stated that the date on the photostat had been altered and called in a handwriting expert who flatly testified the defense photostat was, "just a plain forgery."

An electronics expert appeared for the state. 'With the help of a new battery he got GeBauer's apparatus to indicate oil under the court room. Under oath, he then identified the machine as a surplus radio-transmitting tuning unit that "couldn't indicate the presence of anything."

The district attorney produced a doodlebug of his own, identical to one GeBauer sold Flader for $18,500. Only Keating got his at a more reasonable rate—$3.50 at a local surplus store.

The trial was delayed a week when GeBauer, genuinely ill, was unable to appear. When he returned in a wheel chair, he was accompanied by a nurse who spooned medicine into him so regularly that the judge was moved to suggest GeBauer receive his medication in the hallway, out of the jury's sight. He took his medicine in the hall all right, but at the exact moment the jury was filing by.

Newton distinguished himself in testimony by being unable to recall whether he owned five or seven Cadillacs between 1945 and 1949 and then got into a corner where he had to admit he hadn't paid an income tax in 12 years. The next day a gentleman from the Bureau of Internal Revenue quietly joined the spectators at the trial.

GeBauer took the stand and explained he had spent six months in the arctic regions studying the northern lights and that his oil-divining instruments were powered by the same magnetic energy that causes the aurora borealis. But when GeBauer tried to explain his scientific theories and the defense wheeled in a huge doodlebug to substantiate his statements, the trial turned into a complete rout.

District Attorney Keating produced a scholarly geophysicist from the Colorado School of Mines who calmly dismantled GeBauer's machines and his theories along with them.

The jury arrived at its verdict in less than five hours. They found both defendants guilty on both charges. Newton and GeBauer faced maximum sentences of 30 years in prison.

On April 12, 1954, their motion for a new trial was denied, whereupon both Newton and GeBauer applied for probation. It was granted June 20, the terms being that Newton and GeBauer make restitution to Flader and pay court costs.

In all, the con men were to get up $82,186.77, starting with an immediate cash payment of $3,000 and a percentage of their incomes thereafter until the full amount was paid.

Newton claimed he didn't have a cent. GeBauer scraped up the $3,000 cash for both of them and dutifully began making small payments to Flader. Not Newton.

On February 7, 1955, less than a year after he was put on probation, Newton made the front pages in Denver again—this time for hawking $14,900 worth of stock certificates in a Utah uranium claim known as the Tennessee Queen. Eight residents of Denver charged the Queen wasn't the bountiful lady Newton claimed.

A summons was issued for Newton but attorneys who tried to have it served ran into a snag. Although Newton is required to report to Denver's probation officers each month, the process servers were somehow unable to locate Newton to hand him the summons.

It was found that Newton was permitted to report by mail instead of making a monthly trip from Utah to Denver, on the theory that the more time Newton could spend at the Queen the more chance he had of making some money and thus repaying what he conned out of Herman Flader.

But, two years after his conviction, Newton had as yet to make his first payment. His excuse was that he had no income. He claims all he got for promoting the Queen was an expense account, Since the terms of his probation only require him to pay a percentage of his income—no income; no payments.

At least Newton is consistent. Although it is possible he may have filed elsewhere, the records of the Department of Internal Revenue office in Denver fail to show any income-tax returns filed in 1954 by Newton, the Newton Oil Company or the Tennessee Queen either, for that matter.

As one probation officer succinctly put it, "Newton isn't an ordinary con man. I've been hoping the SEC would grab him. I told them all about his new stock deal a long time ago. I figure now it's up to them."

The Securities and Exchange Commission whose function, among other things, is to scan the sales of new securities for possible violation of the federal law, is conveniently inscrutable behind a lattice of red tape, Silas Newton is at least listed in the securities-violation files of the SEC district office in Denver. However, the most recent entry on his card is dated June 15, 1935. A placid SEC official assured me that any time his office wanted to spring into action he could apply to Washington for more current violations. Aside from that, no information is available to the public. The SEC may be taking some action against Newton and again they may not.

The fact is that since he was convicted no one has done anything to stop Si Newton in what at least eight people in Denver consider to be a one-man crusade to prove Barnum was right.—J. P. Cahn


6Aztec UFO crash 1948 Empty Re: Aztec UFO crash 1948 06/03/22, 12:10 am

PhD Smith

PhD Smith

Ovni-Paris a fait une conférence sur Aztec avec J. Libero:

Je ne sais pas ce que ça vaut.

Aztec UFO crash 1948 BraseroPraedicator veredicus, inquisitor intrepidus, doctor egregiusAztec UFO crash 1948 Brasero

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