AMAZING 1950 UFO PHOTO DETERMINED TO BE THE REAL THING
MAY 11, 1950 ….. McMINNVILLE OREGON
A classic set of impressive UFO photos was taken by Mr. and Mrs. Trent in the early part of the evening, just before sunset, on May 11, 1950, near McMinnville, Oregon. According to the Trent’s account the object, as it appeared over their farm was first seen by Ms. Trent while she was feeding the farm’s rabbits She then quickly called her husband who got the family’s camera and Mr. Trent then took two shots from positions only just a few feet apart. The pictures first appeared in a local newspaper and afterwards in Life magazine. Seventeen years later the photos were subjected to a detailed analysis for the University of Colorado UFO Project. William K. Hartmann, an astronomer from the University of Arizona, performed a meticulous photometric and photogrammetric investigation of the original negatives, and set up a scaling system to determine the approximate distance of the UFO. Hartmann used objects in the near foreground, such as a house, tree, metal water tank, and telephone pole, whose images could be compared with that of the UFO. There were also hills, trees, and buildings in the far distance whose contrast and details had been obscured by atmospheric haze. Hartmann used these known distances of various objects in the photo to calculate an approximate atmospheric attenuation factor. He then measured the relative brightnesses of various objects in the photos, and demonstrated that their distances could generally be calculated with an accuracy of about +/- 30%. In the most extreme case, he would be in error by a factor of four. He then wrote: “It is concluded that by careful consideration of the parameters involved in the case of recognizable objects in the photographs, distances can be measured within a factor-four error … If such good measure could be made for the UFO, we could distinguish between a distant extraordinary object and a hypothetical small, close model.” Hartmann then noted that his photometric measurements indicated that the UFO was intrinsically brighter than the metallic tank and the white painted surface of the house, consistent with the Trent’s description that it was a shiny object. Further, the shadowed surface of the UFO was much brighter than the shadowed region of the water tank, which was best explained by a distant object being illuminated by scattered light from the environment. “it appears significant that the simplest most direct interpretation of the photographs confirms precisely what the witnesses said they saw”
Hartmann further wrote that “to the extent that the photometric analysis is reliable, (and the measurements appear to be consistent), the photographs indicate an object with a bright shiny surface at considerable distance and on the order of tens of meters in diameter. While it would be exaggerating to say that we have positively ruled out a fabrication, it appears significant that the simplest most direct interpretation of the photographs confirms precisely what the witnesses said they saw.” In his conclusion, Hartmann reiterated this, stressing that all the factors he had investigated, both photographic and testimonial, were consistent with the claim that “an extraordinary flying object, silvery, metallic, disc-shaped, tens of meters in diameter, and evidently artificial, flew within sight of [the] two witnesses.”
Consider the lake Tiorati UFO incident. ‘Twas the week before Christmas in 1966, when twenty-three-year old Vincent and two pals decided to do a little winter fishing. The winter weather was rather temperate for December so they decided to do their fishing at a spot along the Hudson River, about 40 miles north of New York City. To the east of them, on the shore of the Hudson, was the Indian Point Nuclear Power Station. On the western shore of Hudson was Harriman State Park. The three young men were involved with the art of their fishing when suddenly something strange was spotted in the sky over or near Lake Tiorati deep in the Harriman forests. Vincent tells us, “Suddenly a rare object of bronze color appeared, making no noise and its size was approximately 6 meters” (diameter). Twenty-three-year old Vincent snapped four photos. Later the US Air Force – Project Blue Book representatives later did a scant investigation and quickly labeled the sighting photos a hoax. Later the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP) studied the photos and interviewed the three men who witnessed the UFO event. NICAP investigators found no evidence of any hoax. This photo is in the archives of the Best Photos of UFOs website. (NICAP case 661218) Lastly, it should be noted that the Indian Point Nuclear Power facility is just a mere three miles to the east of Lake Tiorati. The nuclear facility was ground zero for many high visibility Triangle and Chevron UFO sightings in the 1970s and 1980s.