AUGUST 1914 — this arena-like earth, with its horizon banking high into a Coliseum, when seen from not too far above — faint, rattling sounds of the opening of boundaries — tawny formations slinking into the arena — their crouchings and seizures and crunchings. Aug. 13, 1914 — things that were gathering in the skies. They were seen by G.W. Atkins, of Elstree, Herts, and were seen again upon the 16th and the 17th (Observatory, 37-358).(1) Sept. 9, 1914 -- a host in the sky; watched several hours by W.H. Steavenson (Jour. B.A.A., 25-27).(2) There were round appearances, but some of them were shaped like dumb bells. They were not seeds, snowflakes, insects, nor anything else that they "should" have been, according to Mr. Steavenson. He says that they were large bodies.
Oct. 10, 1914 — a ship that was seen in the sky — or "an absolutely black, spindle-shaped object" crossing the sun. It was seen, at Manchester, by Albert Buss (Eng. Mec., 100-236).(3) "Its extraordinarily clear-cut outline was surrounded by a kind of halo, giving the impression of a ship, plowing her way through the sea, throwing up white-foamed waves with her prow."
Mikkelsen (Lost in the Arctic, p. 345):(4)
"During the last few days (Oct., 1914) we have been much tumbled up and down in our minds, owing to a remarkable occurrence, somewhat in the nature of Robinson Crusoe's encounter with the footprints in the sand. Our advanced load has been attacked — an empty petroleum cask is found riddled with tiny holes, such as would be made by a charge of shot! Now a charge of shot is scarcely likely to materialize out of nowhere; one is accustomed to associate the phenomenon with the presence of human beings. It is none of our doing — then whose doing is it? We hit upon the wildest theories to account for it, as we sit in the tent turning the mysterious object over and over. No [228/229] beast of our acquaintance could make all those little round holes: what animal could even open its jaws so wide? And why should anybody take the trouble to make a target of our gear? Are there Eskimos about — Eskimos with guns? There are no footprints to be seen: it could scarcely have been an animal — the whole thing is highly mysterious."
Jan. 31, 1915 — a symbolic-looking formation upon the moon — six or seven lights, in Littrow, arranged like the Greek letter Gamma (Eng. Mec., 101-47).(5)
Feb. 13, 1915 — Steep Island, Chusan Archipelago — a lighthouse-keeper complained to Capt. W.F. Tyler, R.N., that a British warship had fired a projectile at the lighthouse. But no vessel had fired a shot, and it is said that the object must have been a meteor (Nature, 97-17).(6)
In the middle of February, 1915, the planet Venus was about two months and a half past inferior conjunction.(7) If objects like navigating constructions were seen in the sky, at this time, there may be an association, but I am turning against that association, feeling that it is harmful to our wider expression that extra-mundane vessels have been seen in the sky of this earth, and that they come from regions at present unknown. New York Tribune, Feb. 15, 1915 — that, at 10 P.M., Feb. 14, three aëroplanes had been seen to cross the St. Lawrence river, near Morristown, N.Y., according to reports, but that, in the opinion of the Dominion Police, nothing but fire-balloons had been seen.(8) It is said that two "responsible residents" had seen two of the objects cross the river, between 8 and 8.30 P.M., and then return five hours later. In the Canadian Parliament, Sir Wilfred Laurier had said that, at 9 P.M., he had been called by the Mayor of Brockwell, telling him that three aëroplanes with "powerful searchlights" had crossed the St. Lawrence.(9) The story is told in the New York Herald.(10) Here it is said that, according to the Chief of Police, of Ogdensburg, N.Y., a farmer, living five miles from Ogdensburg, had reported having seen an aëroplane, upon the 12th. Then it is said that the mystery had been solved: that, while celebrating the one hundredth anniversary of peace between the United States and Canada, some young men in Morristown had sent up paper balloons, which had ex- [229/230] ploded in the sky, after 9 P.M., night of the 14th. New York Times — that the objects had been seen first at Guananoque, Ontario.(11) Here it is said that the balloon-story is absurd. According to the Dominion Observatory, the wind was, at the time, blowing from the east, and the objects had travelled toward the northeast. It is said that one of the objects had, for several minutes, turned a powerful searchlight upon the town of Brockwell.(12)
Upon December 11, 1915, Bernard Thomas, of Glenorchy, Tasmania, saw a "particularly bright spot upon the moon" (Eng. Mec., 103-10).(13) It was on the north shore of Mare Crisium, and "looked almost like a star." In Dr. Thomas' opinion, it was sunlight reflected from the rim of a small crater. The crater Picard is near the north shore of Mare Crisium, and most of the illuminations near Picard have occurred several months from an opposition of Mars.
In December, 1915, another new formation upon the moon — reported from the Observatory of Paris — something like a black wall from the center to the ramparts of Aristillus (Bull. Soc. Astro. de France, 30-383).(14)
Jan. 12, 1916 — a shock in Cincinnati, Ohio. Buildings were shaken. The quake was from an explosion in the sky. Flashes were seen in the sky. (New York Herald, Jan. 13, 1916).(15)
Feb. 9, 1916 — opposition of Mars.(16)
In the English Mechanic, 104-71, James Ferguson writes that someone had seen, at 11 o'clock, night of July 31, 1916, at Ballinasloe, Ireland, just such a moving thing, or just such a sailing, exploring thing as is now familiar in our records.(17) For fifteen minutes it moved in a northwesterly direction. For three quarters of an hour it was stationary. Then it moved back to the point where first it had been seen, remaining visible until four o'clock in the morning. Whatever this object may have been, it left the sky at about the time that Venus appeared, as a "morning star," in the sky of Ballinasloe, and resembles the occurrence of Sept. 11, 1852, reported by Lord Wrottesley. Inferior conjunction of Venus was upon July 3, 1916.(18) We have noticed that all occurrences that we somewhat reluctantly associate with nearness of Venus associate more with times of greatest bril- [230/231] liance, five weeks before and after inferior conjunction, than with dates of conjunction. Somebody may demonstrate that at these times Venus comes closest to this earth.
Oct. 10, 1916 — a reddish shadow that spread over part of the lunar crater Plato; reported from the Observatory of Florence, Italy (Sci. Amer., 121-181).(19)
Nov. 25, 1916 — about twenty-five bright flashes, in rapid succession, in the sky of Cardiff, Wales, according to Arthur Mee (Eng. Mec., 104-239).(20)
Col. Markwick writes, in the Jour. B.A.A., 27-188, that, at 6:10 P.M., April 5, 1917, he had seen, upon the sun, a solitary spot, different from all sunspots that he had seen in the experience of forty-three years.(21) Col. Markwick had written to Mr. Maunder, of the Greenwich Observatory, and had been told that, in photographs taken of the sun upon this day, one at 11.17 and another at 11.20 o'clock, there was no sign of a sunspot.
July 4, 1917 — an eclipse of the sun, and an extraordinary luminous object said to have been a meteor, in France (Bull. Soc. Astro. de France, 31-299).(22) About 6.20 P.M., this day, there was an explosion over the town of Colby, Wisconsin, and a stone fell from the sky (Science, Sept. 14, 1917).(23)
Aug. 29, 1917 — a luminous object that was seen moving upon the moon (Bull. Soc. Astro. de France, 31-439).(24)
Feb. 21, 1919 — an intensely black line extending out from the lunar crater Lexall (Eng. Mec., 109-517).(25)
Upon May 19, 1919, while Harry Hawker was at sea, untraceable messages meaningless in the languages of this earth, were picked up by wireless, according to dispatches to the newspapers. They were interpreted as the letters K U J and V K A J.
In October 1913, occurred something that may not be so very mysterious because of nearness to the sea. One supposes that if extra-mundane vessels have sometimes come close to this earth, then sailing away, terrestrial aëronauts may have occasionally left this earth, or may have been seized and carried away from this earth. Upon the morning of Oct. 13, 1913, Albert Jewel started to fly his aëroplane from Hempstead Plains, Long Island, to Staten Island. The route that he expected to take was over Jamaica Bay, Brooklyn, Coney Island, and the Narrows. [231/232] New York Times, Oct. 14, 1913 — "That was the last seen or heard of him...he has been as completely lost as if he evaporated into air."(26) But as to the disappearance of Capt. James there are circumstances that do call for especial attention. New York Times, June 2, 1919 — that Capt. Mansell R. James was lost somewhere in the Berkshire Hills, upon his flight from Boston to Atlantic City, or, rather, upon the part of his route between Lee, Mass., and Mitchel Field, Long Island.(27) He had left Lee upon May 29th. Over the Berkshires, or in the Berkshires, he had disappeared. According to later dispatches, searching parties had "scoured" the Berkshires, without finding a trace of him. Upon June 4th, army planes arrived and searched systematically. There was general excitement, in this mystery of Capt. James. Rewards were offered; all subscribers of the Southern New England Telephone Company were enlisted in a quest for news of any kind; boys scouts turned out. Up to this date of writing there had been nothing but a confusion of newspaper dispatches: that two children had seen a plane, about thirteen miles north of Long Island Sound; that two men had seen a plane fall into the Hudson River, near Poughkeepsie; that, in a gully of Mount Riga, near Millerstown, N.Y., had been found the remains of a plane; that part of a plane had been washed ashore from Long Island Sound, near Branford.(28) The latest interest in the subject that I know of was in the summer of 1921. A heavy object was known to be at the bottom of the Hudson River, near Poughkeepsie, and was thought to be Capt. James' plane. It was dredged up and found to be a log.
For an extraordinary story of windows, in Newark, N. J., that were perforated by unfindable bullets, see New York Evening Telegram, Sept. 19, 1919, and the Newark Evening News.(29) The occurrence is a counterpart of Mikkelsen's experience.
The detonations at Reading were heard seven years apart. Here it is not quite seven years later. London Times, Sept. 26, 1919 — that upon Sept. 25, a shock had been felt at Reading; that inquiries had led to information of no known explosion near Reading.(30) In the Times, Oct. 14, Mr. H.L. Hawkins writes that the shock was "quite definitely an earthquake, but its origin was superficial" and that the shock "was transmitted through the [232/233] earth more than through the air."(31) In the London Daily Chronicle, Sept. 27, Mr. Hawkins, having considered all suggestions that shock was a subterranean earthquake, had written: "However, as the whole thing terminated in a bump and a big bang, without subsequent shaking of the ground, it points more to an explosion of a natural type up in the air than to a real earthquake."(32) And, in the London Daily Mail, Mr. Hawkins is quoted: that if the detonation were local, he would believe that it was an aërial explosion ("meteoric"); but, if it were widespread, it would be considered an earthquake.(33) And in the whole series of the Reading phenomena, this violent detonation was most distinctly local to Reading.(34)
Reading Observer, Sept. 27, 1919 — "The most probable explanation of the occurrence is that there was an explosion somewhere near enough to affect the town... Officials at the Greenwich Observatory were unable to throw any light on the matter, and said that their instruments showed no signs of earth-disturbance."(35)
It is said that the sound and shock were violent, and that, in the residential parts of Reading, the streets were crowded with persons discussing the occurrence.
There was a similar shock in Michigan, Nov. 27, 1919. In many cities, persons rushed from their homes, thinking that there had been an earthquake (New York Times, Nov. 28).(36) But, in Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan, a "blinding glare" was seen in the sky. Our acceptance is that this occurrence is, upon a small scale, of the type of many catastrophes in Italy and South America, for instance, when just such "blinding glares" have been seen in the sky, data of which have been suppressed by conventional scientists, or data of which have not impressed conventional scientists.
English Mechanic, 110-257 — J.W. Scholes, of Huddersfield, writes that, upon Dec. 19, 1919, he saw, near the lunar crater Littrow, "a very conspicuous black-ink mark."(37) Upon page 282, W.J. West, of Gosport, writes that he had seen the mark upon the 7th of December.(38)
March 22, 1920 — a light in the sky of this earth, and an illumination upon the moon (Eng. Mec., 111-142).(39) That so close [233/234] to this earth is the moon that illuminations known as "auroral" often affect both this earth and the moon.
July 20 and 21, and Sept. 13, 1920 — dull rumbling sounds and quakes at Comrie, Perthshire (London Times, July 23 and Sept. 14, 1920).(40)
According to a dispatch to the Los Angeles Times — clipping sent to me by Mr. L.A. Hopkins, of Chicago — thunder and lightning and heavy rain, at Portland, Oregon, July 21, 1920: objects falling from the sky; glistening, white fragments that looked like "bits of polished china."(41) "The explanation of the local Weather Bureau is that they may have been picked up by whirlwinds and carried to the district where they were found." The objection to this standardized explanation is the homogeneousness of the falling objects. How can one conceive of winds raging over some region covered with the usual great diversity of loose objects and substances, having a liking for little white stones, sorting over maybe a million black ones, green ones, white ones, and red ones, to make the desired selection? One supposes that a storm brought to this earth fragments of a manufactured object, made of something like china, from some other world.
In the Literary Digest, Sept. 2, 1921, is published a letter from Carl G. Gowman, of Detroit, Michigan, upon the fall from the sky, in southwest China, Nov. 17 (1920?) of a substance that resembled blood.(42) It fell upon three villages close together, and was said to have fallen somewhere else forty miles away.(43) The quantity was great: in one of the villages, the substance "covered the ground completely." Mr. Gowman accepts that this substance did fall from the sky, because it was found upon roofs as well as upon the ground. He rejects the conventional red-dust explanation, because the spots did not dissolve in several subsequent rains. He says that anything like pollen is out of the question, because at the time nothing was in bloom.
Nov. 23, 1920 — a correspondent writes, to the English Mechanic, 112-214, that he saw a shaft of light projecting from the moon, or a spot so bright that it appeared to project, from the limb of the moon, in the region of Funerius.(44)
About Jan. 1, 1921 — several irregular, black objects that crossed [234/235] the sun. To the Rev. William Ellison (Eng. Mec., 112-276) they looked like pieces of burnt paper.(45)
July 25, 1921 — a loud report, followed by a sharp tremor, and a rumbling sound, at Comrie (London Times, July 27, 1921).(46)
July 31, 1921 — a common indication of other lands from which come objects and substances to this earth — but our reluctance to bother with anything so ordinarily marvellous —
Because we have conceived of intenser times and furies of differences of potential between this earth and other worlds: torrents of dinosaurs, in broad volumes that were streaked with lesser animals, pouring from the sky, with a foam of tusks and fangs, enveloped in a bloody vapor that was falsely dramatized by the sun, with rainbow-mockery. Or, in terms of planetary emotions, such an outpouring was the serenade of some other world to this earth. If poetry is imagery, and, if a flow of images be solid poetry, such a recitation was in three-dimensional hyperbole that was probably seen, or overheard, and criticized in Mars, and condemned for its extravagance in Jupiter. Some other world, meeting this earth, ransacking his solid imagination and uttering her living metaphors: singing a flood of mastodons, purring her butterflies, bellowing an ardor of buffaloes. Sailing away — sneaking up close to the planet Venus, murmuring her antelopes, or arching his periphery and spitting horses at her —
Poor, degenerate times — nowadays something comes close to this earth and lisps little commonplaces to her —
July 31, 1921 — a shower of little frogs that fell upon Anton Wagner's farm, near Sterling, Conn. New York Evening World, Aug. 1, 1921).(47)
At sunset, Aug. 7, 1921, an unknown luminous object was seen, near the sun, at Mt. Hamilton, by an astronomer, Prof. Campbell, and by one of those who may some day go out and set foot upon regions that are supposed not to be: by an aviator, Capt. Rickenbacker.(48) In the English Mechanic, 114-211, another character in these fluttering vistas of the opening of the coming drama of Extra-geography, Col. Markwick, a conventional astronomer and also a recorder of strange things, lists other observations upon this object, the earliest upon the 6th, by Dr. Emmert, [235/236] of Detroit.(49) In the English Mechanic, 114-241, H.P. Hollis, once upon a time deliciously "exact" and positive, says something, in commenting upon these observations, that looks like a little weakness in Exclusionism, because the old sureness is turning slightly shaky — "that there are more wonderful things in the sky than we suspect, or that it is easy to be self-deceived."(50)
If is funny to read of an "earthquake," described in technical lingo, and to have a datum that indicates that it was no earthquake at all, in the usual seismologic sense, but a concussion from an explosion in the sky. Aug. 7, 1921 — a severe shock at New Canton, Virginia. See Bull. Seis. Soc. Amer., 11- 197 — Prof. Stephen Taber's explanation that the shock probably originated in the slate belt of Buckingham County, intensity about V on the R.-F. scale.(51) But then it is said that, according to the "authorities" of the McCormick Observatory, the concussion was from an explosion in the sky. The time is coming when nothing funny will be seen in this subject, if some day be accepted at least parts of the masses of data that I am now holding back, until I can more fully develop them — that some of the greatest catastrophes that have devastated the face of this earth have been concussions from explosions in the sky, so repeating in a local sky weeks at a time, months sometimes, or intermittently for centuries, that fixed origins above the ravaged areas are indicated.
New York Tribune, Sept. 2, 1921:(52)
"J.C.H. Macbeth, London Manager of the Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company, Ltd., told several hundred men, at a luncheon of the Rotary Club, of New York, yesterday, that Signor Marconi believed he had intercepted messages from Mars, during recent atmospheric experiments with wireless on board his yacht Electra, in the Mediterranean. Mr. Macbeth said that Signor Marconi had been unable to conceive of any other explanation of the fact that, during his experiments he had picked up magnetic wavelengths of 150,000 metres, whereas the maximum length of wave-production in the world today is 14,000 metres. The regularity of the signals, Mr. Macbeth declared, disposed of any assumption that the waves might have been caused by electrical disturbance. The signals were unintelligible, con- [236/237] sisting of a code, the speaker said, and the only signal recognized was one resembling the letter V in the Marconi code." See datum of May 19, 1919.
But, in the summer of 1921, the planet Mars was far from opposition.(53) The magnetic vibrations may have come from some other world. They may have had the origin of the sounds that have been heard at regular intervals —
The San Salvadors of the sky —
And we return to the principle that has been our re-enforcement throughout: that existence is infinite serialization, and that, except in particulars, it repeats —
That the dot that spread upon the western horizon of Lisbon, March 4, 1493, cannot be the only ship that comes back from the unknown, cargoed with news —(54)
And it may be Sept. this, nineteen hundred and twenty or thirty something, or Feb. that, nineteen hundred and twenty or thirty something else — and, later, see record of it in Eng. Mec., or Sci. Amer., vol. and p. something or another — a speck in the sky of this earth — the return of somebody from a San Salvador of the sky — and the denial by the heavens themselves, which may answer with explosions the vociferations below them, of false calculations upon their remotenesses. If the heavens do not participate with snow, the skyscrapers will precipitate torn up papers and shirts and skirts, too, when the papers give out.
There will be a procession. Somebody will throw little black pebbles to the crowds. Over his procession will fly blue-fringed cupids. Later he will be insulted and abused and finally hounded to his death. But, in that procession, he will lead by the nose an outrageous thing that should not be: about ten feet long, short-winged, waddling on webbed feet.(55) Insult and abuse and death — he will snap his fingers under the nose of the outrageous thing. It will be worth a great deal to lead that by the nose and demonstrate that such things had been seen in the sky, though they had been supposed to be angels. It will be a great moment for somebody. He will come back to New York, and march up Broadway with his angel.
Some now unheard-of De Soto, of this earth, will see for himself the Father of Cloudbursts.
A Balboa of greatness now known only to himself will stand on a ridge in the sky between two auroral seas.
Fountains of Everlasting Challenge.
Argosies in parallel lines and rabbles of individual adventurers. Well enough may it be said that
they are seeds in the sky. Of such are the germs of colonies.