CAPTIVES IN SPACE
Originally printed in the Missing Link
Although in the last several years the Prince George Citizen has grown at the same rapid pace as the flourishing city it serves, its identity has always been that of a community newspaper concerned primarily with local activities. Located in north-central B.C. far from any other major centre, Prince George is concerned first of all with its own affairs. It wants, and gets, a reliable newspaper that is not trying to promote readership with sensational gimmicks.
So it may have startled readers on December 11, 1957, when they opened their paper to see an eight-column head on page one announcing that "Citizen Editor Talks to Man Who Visited Mars." Carrying the by-line of editor Ron Powell, this article in large type told the story carried verbatim below. Despite appearances, however, Powell had not flipped his lid. An experienced, down-to-earth newspaperman, he knew he had a story that must be told and his reasoning was well explained.
Today Powell's judgment has been vindicated more than he could have imagined. Abductions are becoming a recognized part of UFO activity, and a case in Wyoming came to light so similar in some respects to the case described in the Prince George Citizen that it virtually puts the stamp of truth on both. A comparison of the two cases is made following Powell's article.
It should be explained, however, that this was not planned as a matching-cases feature. We heard briefly about the Prince George story from TV cameraman Carl Speitz who remembered it from the time years before when he worked on the paper as a photographer. Thanks then to the help of present editor Tony Skae, whom we saw on a trip there, we found the story in the Citizen files. Until then we had just a slight idea of what it was about. It was only while we were preparing the Prince George article for republication that similar details of the Wyoming case came to mind. While the two cases give support to each other, each is newsworthy in its own right.
After visiting Prince George, we called on Ron Powell whom we have known for many years and who, having left the newspaper business, is now living in Oliver, B.C. While understandably after that length period of time he could not remember the name of the person he interviewed, he did remember him as a man in his 40's who obviously was not well. He also remembered the man's evident sincerity and the need he felt to speak of his experience because of his illness.
The man said he had not spoken of it before because he was afraid of what the space people might do. But now that he had a serious heart condition, he did not think there was much time left anyway.
In retrospect, the Powells use of "Mars" in the headline may seem quite questionable. The person interviewed did not claim to have visited the red planet. He said only that he wondered if that was the place because of a few details he remembered from school. Now we can almost be sure that Mars was not the place. Mariner probes have established that while there are dry river-like beds on the planet comparable to Earth's arroyos, there is no flowing water. Nor are these beds straight in a manner suggested by early drawings of Mars when it was speculated that planet was criss-crossed by canals. But Mars would have been a good guess. (Ed. Note: As you can tell this was written some time ago!)
On the other hand, the witness' description of what he thought was the Moon is strikingly on target. The "rocks and hills" he mentioned were probably known to lunar astronomers but the public generally was unaware of these details until astronauts showed them on TV. One might guess from this alone that the witness was really in space.
Here in full is the story by Ron Powell carried in the Prince George Citizen, Wednesday, December 11, 1957: This week a man came into the Citizen news office and when he had left some four hours later my ears were ringing with one of the strangest stories I had ever heard.
As you may see by the headline on this article, this man claimed that he had visited Mars in a flying saucer. At this point there may be a loud burst of laughter from all sides, but let me explain...
This man, a resident of the district, who, at his request, will remain namelss in this article, dropped into the office and said in a reasonable, sincere fashion, "I have a story I would very much like to tell you, but I'm afraid you might think me completely crazy or else laugh at me."
Such a statement, of course, only served to whet the newspaperman's appetite in me and I told him to give it a whirl and find out what my reaction would be.
He then went on to tell of being picked up in a flying mchine shaped like a saucer by a creature not of this world and of being transported through space at a tremendous rate of speed to a planet he assumed was Mars.
My initial reaction was one of complete skepticism and I was alert for any signs of violence while looking for an opening to ease him out of the building.
But, as the stranger went on with his weird tale in a calm, quiet manner, I began to relax a bit. Just a few years ago Sputniks circling the earth would have been crazy too. It was almost as if he was telling me about a trip to some foreign country.
I tried to look for loopholes in his story and tried to catch him up on many of the small details. He couldn't be caught.
The interest for me became so great that I told him to start right at the beginning and tell his story with as many details as he could remember. The interview is recorded below in his exact words.
By the time his story had ended more than four hours had passed. We shook hands and he went away, seeming a bit relieved that someone had at least listened to him.
After giving the story full consideration I can't say whether I believe him or not. If it is a hoax, it's a good one. If it is the truth, it is certainly stranger than fiction.
For myself, I can't help but recall the quotation from Shakespeare's Hamlet: "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
The man's detailed story is as follows:
I was working for the US occupation army in Austria on May 15, 1951. I was driving for QM Col. Cousin. He commanded me to drive Mr. Haster to Linz from Salzburg. Mr. Haster was teaching evening courses to the United States soldiers in Linz, my job was to drive him from Salzburg to Linz three times a week.
This particular day I came back as usual from Linz at about 11 o'clock at night and arrived at the motor pool five miles north of Salzburg. I started for home after leaving the car ad the motor pool. I lived two miles north of the motor pool. I took a short cut and on the left hand side was brush. It was dark, no moon.
Suddenly someone came out of the brush and came close to me. I could only see the outline in the dark but he seemed to have a helmet on. He was about my height, maybe a little shorter. He had something in his hand and he pointed it at me. I thought it was his finger, but it made a click.
After the click he waved his hand quickly and I went to put my arm up in front of my face but I was paralyzed. I felt like falling down but I didn't. He put a black, square plate on my chest and strapped it around my back. I could hear a dog barking way off in the distance, but I could not hear him walking. He must have walked very easily. I could see his outline as he walked around me.
After he strapped the plate on me he walked in front of me and he pointed the thing in his hand at the plate on my chest rather than my head like before. He walked away and pulled me after him. I couldn't move or walk, but he just pulled me along after him. I wasn't actually in the air, but my full weight wasn't on the ground. It seemed as if I was light.
Behind the brush was a small field. In the field, hidden from the road was a round object about 150 feet in diameter. It was dark and I couldn't tell what it was. My first thought was that a spy had captured me for some reason.
The thing that lead me sort of rose from the ground and took me after him to the top of the object. He did something, either stepped on something or pushed some button, and a door opened and he pulled me after him down into the dark. I was plenty scared and I wondered what would happen next. I got down in the dark and I could finally feel a floor under my feet.
I knew that where I was was either glass or plastic because the stars could be seen shining up above. Then I saw the outline of what looked like a door and he pulled me through into what I later found out was a room of glass or plastic.
He kept his finger, or what I thought was his finger and later saw was some sort of pencil shaped object, pointed at me until I was inside the room. He kept it pointed at me all the time then when I was in the room he took it off me and I sank down to the floor. He went out and I could see his outline. There as a sort of shaking sensation and I knew the door to the room had been shut.
The next sensation I had was a sensation of rising up into the air. I had never flown before in my life. In a few minutes I could see the left half of the moon shining. I was so scared, but I figured I was dreaming. Then I started to feel my hands and feet again. I sat up and then I got up on my feet. By this time we were in the sunlight.
I looked across the ship and I could see the person that had brought me here. He was standing over by the wall and there were some levers on the wall. He looked like a person, like we are. A little bit shorter than me.
To me at the time he looked like a devil.
He had no hair at all, I could see through the sort of glass helmet. His head was sort of a cylinder form. A very high forehead with big eyes. You could see lots of little eyes in the two big eyes. It seemed to me it looked like the eyes of a fly. No nose at all, just two holes. He had a very small slit for the mouth. It looked like he had skin, it was sort of white. There were two holes for the ears. His skull was very large. He had no eyebrows or any hair at all. The torso was round kind of like a tin can. The legs were of proportionate length. His arms were a little bit shorter than our arms, I would say. His hands seemed to be three long fingers. I couldn't see any neck but he was dressed in material that was like silver, but it wasn't shiny. This covered all of him except the head part which had on the helmet. He didn't look at me at all.
The main part of the ship that I could see from the room I was in appeared to be round and the walls were like glass, but you couldn't see anything through them. The floor was made of glass or plastic. In the middle of the floor, under the glass, was a black plate something like I had strapped on my chest. From the corners of the plate, which looked to be about 10 feet square, black beams ran to the walls of the ship.
I could see under the black plate and there seemed to be a duplicate room on the other side of the ship. I could see the same kind of levers on the wall as the thing was standing beside.
As soon as we came into the sun I could feel a real burning heat, but he pulled a lever and a covering, like blue water, came over the roof. Then the sun was normal, but I could still see through it.
My first thought was that I was dreaming, and then my second thought was that I was dead and my soul was rising up.
The ship was not rotating or going sideways, but kind of gliding straight up. I could see the sun like a ball of fire, and the moon like a silver ball, but the rest was darkness. Suddenly, as I looked up the moon was right above us and it seemed to come down at us. Suddenly we were both standing on what had been the roof. We seemed to be about a quarter of a mile above the moon.
I could see clearly the craters on the surface of the moon. There were lots of them. The ground seemed to be a grayish color, and I could see rocks and hills. We were in the sunny part of the moon, then the ship glided to the right and into the darkness.
Then the driver stopped the ship. I could feel it sort of waiting. It was dark all around outside, but the sun seemed to shine into the ship. I saw the thing take one of the pencil things that he had pointed at me and he pointed it downwards. I thought at the time that he must be from the moon and that he was signaling someone down below.
There was no noise at all from the ship or from the signal. After about five minutes we started to move to the right.
My first thought was that I'm going back to earth. But I looked up above me and I could see the big ball that I knew was the earth. I could see the outline of America and Asia and I could see the clouds.
The earth and the moon were going away from me very fast. Then I began to think that this was from another planet.
Suddenly another planet seemed to loom up in front of us and I thought we were going to crash into it. I was sure of this, but the driver suddenly stopped it again, but there was no jerk. I realized then that we were still quite a ways from the planet and he started to glide sideways down towards the ground.
I looked out over the land and it looked like paradise.
As we went down I looked out over the land and on one side there were red fields. On the other side there were what looked like gray-green fields. Some places in the fields there were what looked like big chimneys rising from the ground. It was bright daylight and the sun was shining with no clouds in the sky.
We were approaching the red fields and I could see rivers with blue water in them. The rivers ran straight and at intervals there were bridges built across them and I could see roads. The bridges were just like our bridges.
From up high I could see no signs of life.
Then we glided up to a field that was filled with the saucers like I was in. There appeared to be hundreds of them. They were of different colors, gray, gold and silver. But there was no black or red ones.
The driver stopped the ship about a quarter of a mile above them by just pulling the lever. Then we went straight down until we were about 20 or 30 feet from the ground and he parked the ship on a high platform.
As we went down I could see that the same kind of people were in them like my driver.
When we got stopped on the platform the driver pulled a lever and the glass slid back, and he went outside. He put the pencil-like thing to his chest and slowly dropped to the ground like a falling leaf. He then started to walk very fast along to the third or fourth saucer. He pointed the pencil at his chest again and sort of jumped up inside the ship. He was inside the ship for about 10 minutes. I could see that the thing in the other ship was smaller than the driver of the ship I was on.
While he was inside the ship I looked around at the other saucers and I could see the same type of people.
Suddenly, quite a ways away I saw two ships that had people from earth in them. One ship was sort of dirty looking and there was one man, one woman and two kids in it. In another saucer nearby that was kind of golden I saw one man and one woman.
I was going to wave at them, but I felt scared. I was waiting for them to wave but they didn't wave. After I saw them I thought that I would have to stay here with them now.
Way off in the distance by the river I could see things moving. They were dark but I couldn't tell what they were. Maybe they looked like a herd of beef, but I couldn't tell for sure.
Down on the ground I could see big red flowers growing. They looked something like our sunflowers as far as the eye could see. The earth could be seen in patches too and it was just the same as our earth.
I got to thinking that I must be on Mars. I remembered what I had learned in school about it being red with canals and it seemed to me that this must be Mars, although I wasn't 100 percent sure because I kind of lost location of things when we had left the moon.
Then the driver of the ship came back from the other ship. We got back inside and closed the door again. Then we took off the same way we had come.
We went up and up into the darkness and then I could see a moon that looked like a tin ball. We came quite close to it and I could see that it was smooth and silvery without any signs of craters on it.
I didn't know where we were going then. I thought we might be going farther yet.
After about another 10 minutes I could see what looked like half our moon and I realized that we were approaching the sunny side of earth.
I was very glad to see that it was the earth. But we came at it with such a terrible speed that I thought for sure we would crash.
The driver stopped the ship again when it seemed we hit the atmosphere and he glided down towards earth. I seemed to know he was going to take me back where he found me, but I had the impression he was going to kill me because he would want to keep it secret.
We came into the darkness and then went down to the ground and I knew we were back at the same place he picked me up.
I was really afraid that he would kill me. He opened the door. He took the pencil-thing and pulled me out the door the way he brought me in. He guided me right back to the road.
At that that time I could walk, but I was very light and he was just pulling me.
He took the pencil from my chest and pointed it at my head. At that moment a dog started to bark at us from about a quarter of a mile up the road and it seemed to have startled him because the pencil-thing clicked and nothing happened to me.
I knew from the first experience I should be paralyzed, so I just pretended I was so that he wouldn't know. He took the plate off my chest and went back to the ship.
I stayed the way I was until I saw the outline of the saucer going off into the distance. Then I ran home.
My wife was still up and she saw me all excited. She asked me what happened and I told her, "Nothing. I'm just sick."
I couldn't tell her about the experience because she would have thought I was completely crazy.
I noticed the time when I got home and it was 12:20 a.m. The whole trip had taken about an hour.
I think when the thing pointed the pencil at my head it was to make me forget what had happened or else to kill me, I didn't know which.
I have never told anyone else about this for two reasons. First - no one would believe me and would probably want to lock me up as a crazy man; and second - I am sure that those people on Mars know everything that is happening here and if I told people about it they would have taken me away again or killed me.
I'm telling this now in order to help people to know what is going on in space. My heart is bothering me now and I feel I won't be living much longer so I have nothing to fear from those people.
From this experience I have had I feel those people's culture and scientific knowledge is much ahead of ours.
They don't need satellites to launch their spaceships and have conquered many of the problems of space that we are still trying to conquer. They seem to power their ships with rays, maybe light rays, but it's not with motors like ours.
My experience and seeing those other earth people on that planet show me those people have a great knowledge of the people here and are much ahead of us. This creature treated me only as an animal.
After that incident I couldn't stay in that country and in October of that year I came out to Canada. I have finally felt I want to make the story public.
With two satellites (!) up circling the globe now maybe a few people will believe my story. Anyway I have told you it just as I remember it happening -- and it is just as clear as yesterday.
The Wyoming case mentioned in introducing the Prince George article was first reported in "The Rawlins (Wyoming) Daily Times of Oct. 29, 1974. It was then investigated by the Aerial Phenomena Research Organization of Tucson, Arizona, which carried a comprehensive account of the incident in the APRO Bulletin (March 1975). In an article by Timothy Green Beckley, the case was then featured in the Fall 1975 issue of UFO Report published in Brooklyn, NY. Our information on the case is drawn from these two publications.
In summary, the incident involved Carl Higdon, 41, of Rawlins who said that during the afternoon of Oct. 25, 1975, he was hunting in the woods south of town at Elk Mountain when he saw five elk huddled together and fired at one of them. Unaccountably, there was no kick from his magnum rifle. Instead, as if in slow motion, the bullet floated noiselessly "like a butterfly" from the gun and fell to the ground about 50 feet away. Stunned, he had walked over and retrieved the bullet, when he saw a tall humanoid figure dressed in black standing in the shadow of the trees.
According to Higdon, the "man" had small eyes, no eyebrows, no detectable ears and a small slit for a mouth. He was bowlegged, had a slanted head and no chin. His hair stuck straight up like "straw growing out of his head." In English the humanoid asked Higdon if he were hungry, then floated a little packet toward him by pointing at it with a small rod where his right hand should have been. The packet contained four pills, one of which Higdon swallowed without knowing why.
At that point the witness saw nearby a transparent cube-shaped object about 7-by-7 feet at which the stranger, who called himself Ausso, pointed his small rod. Instantly Higdon found himself strapped to a seat inside the object with a helmet over his head. Behind a transparent partition, reflected in a mirror, he saw the five elk he had just been hunting. All stood as if paralyzed. Higdon could not understand how everything was squeezed into such a small space.
On a panel opposite his seat were three levers which Ausso operated by pointing his appendage. In this way the cubicle abruptly took off.
Looking through the transparent walls, Hidgon said that after takeoff he fleetingly saw a sphere drifting behind which he assumed was Earth. Then he was conscious of bright lights and was looking at what he supposed was another world. He saw a towering platform that reminded him of the Seattle Space Needle. Later under hypnosis he recalled that, as Ausso moved his pointer, he was projected into the tower where he went by elevator into an "office" and placed before a "shield." Ausso then told him he was not what they needed and he was returned to the space cubicle, all by means of the pointer. (Editor's Note: Higdon had a vasectomy, for which he was very glad!)
Higdon remembered seeing five human-appearing persons standing outside the tower -- two girls, a young man and woman and a middle-aged man. They were dressed in ordinary clothing and were talking among themselves. He also remembered Ausso saying his people were exploring to find animals for food, and there were places on the planet to breed them. They are also after fish, which they could not keep on their world "so they have to keep coming here after them -- out in the ocean."
Then suddenly the trip was over. Higdon found himself looking down from the cubicle at his parked truck. Ausso pointed his rod at the truck which promptly disappeared, later he found it five miles away in a spot where driving was obviously impossible. Next Ausso pointed at one of the levers and Higdon was left stumbling down a slope, totally confused. Somehow he found the truck and used its citizen's band radio to call for help, which eventually came.
It will be noticed at once there are seemingly major differences between this case and that of the man interviewed at Prince George, principally in the appearance of the space craft and the occupants. In the Higdon incident the craft was small and square, while in the other it was large and circular. The humanoid encountered by Higdon had noticeably small eyes, to pick out one detail, while the other's eyes were particularly large as containing many little ones (though neither had eyebrows). But these differences may be more apparent than real. A technically advanced world would, of course, have different types of craft in operation (and it will be noted in these cases each was made of a glass like material) and some sort of seeing device might have been worn by the humanoid who captured the Prince George man.
We can quickly find other differences but more to the point are the similarities. Here we have two men, well separated in time and place, telling strange stories of almost instant abduction to another world. If these bizarre stories agreed in any single respect, it would be worth a thought, but these two agree in several remarkable ways.
A significant point is that both men said they were quickly put in a trance, though apparently by different means, and forced into a craft which immediately took off. But the means by which this was done we already have another similarity. Each witness spoke of a pointer in his captor's hand, or in place of the hand, which could levitate at will.
Next, their experiences inside the craft were quite alike. Both saw levers and both were aware of being shot into space. One saw the Sun and Moon while the other saw what looked like earth. When both were landed on what appeared to be an alien world and here again (though noting Higdon was examined, while the other man was not) they had strikingly similar experiences. Each saw a high platform and each saw fellow humans! The chances that two men could have made up stories that agreed so perfectly on that climatic point must be zero. Then both were returned precisely to the place of takeoff. There is one other detail in both stories which, though small, has great significance in view of our visitors' interest in animals as discussed in this article.
Way off in the distance by the River, the Prince George witness said, "I could see things moving. They were dark but I couldn't tell what they were. Maybe they looked like a herd of beef...."
Twent-three years later (the first case occurred in 1951) Higdon landed on a strange world with a shipment of elk and there was told his captors explored for animals and could breed them.