UFO conspiracies are some of the most intriguing things out there. From the Roswell incident to vanishing jets, extraterrestrial life seems to pop up in our minds whenever strange things happen. But some conspiracists are so eager to discover aliens that they spiral into wishful thinking and begin to see things that aren’t really there.
When a collection of old slides found in an attic showed a disfigured body with a large, triangular skull, people began to wonder – could this be it? Could this strange-looking figure be proof of extraterrestrial life? A few avid alien researchers were determined to uncover the truth.
But things got really messy along the way. Let’s see what happened.
It all began with a man named Joseph Beason. Or, more specifically, his sister. Beason’s sister was hired to dispose of the belongings of a woman who had recently died. She rummaged through her belongings and cleaned out the house, but she didn’t have the heart to throw away the collection of old photos she found.
The pictures were historically significant. They showed Bing Crosby, Clark Gable, several European towns, and even Dwight Eisenhower. She didn’t want to throw them out, so she decided to send the photos to her brother, Joseph, who had experience in book publishing.
Beason projected the slides onto his wall and started flipping through the old pictures. He was in awe of the important figures in the photos and wondered who this woman was. And how exactly was she so close to Eisenhower? But while the walk down memory lane was enjoyable, Beason found his jaw drop over a different photo.
He came across a slide that had been tucked underneath the rest and wrapped in parchment paper. He projected it onto his wall and gasped. What he saw was a small, withered body inside a glass case. The body had withered legs and a huge head with a long triangular skull. Could it be…an alien?
Joseph Beason reported this discovery to Chicago videographer Adam Dew. “I have something to show you,” he insisted. Before the incident, Dew had never really given much thought to extraterrestrial beings or mysterious UFOs.
But the moment he laid eyes on that bizarre slide, he knew this was something huge. And he wanted to be the first to document it. He agreed to help Beason get to the bottom of it. That was the start of their investigative journey.
Beason’s sister found those slides in the garage of a woman from Arizona named Hilda Blair Ray. The amateur detectives questioned why an ordinary woman from Arizona would have pictures of a potential alien. So, they started scanning nearby states and possible territories where she could have captured the photo.
The closest place with any alleged connection to UFOs was Roswell, New Mexico, only one state away from Hilda’s home. In 1947, a UFO had supposedly crashed there, and many people across America believe that the U.S. government covered it up.
The Roswell incident was one bizarre case. Witnesses described a flying saucer that broke into two wreckage fields and contained – believe it or not – dead aliens. The military announced a flying disk crash and then changed their version to an experimental weather balloon.
The Roswell incident was kept under wraps for many years, and not many people outside New Mexico knew it happened. But the story resurfaced in 1978 after a Canadian physicist named Stanton Friedman researched the case and released a documentary called UFOs Are Real. The film turned Roswell into an extraterrestrial mecca.
Beason’s next step was to contact Tom Carey, a retired businessman who had dedicated years researching the Roswell case. When Carey first heard about the slides, he was skeptical. He had been let down hundreds of times by phony evidence and doubted Beason’s material would be any different.
Beason made things even fishier when he forced Carey to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Despite Carey’s reluctance, he agreed to sign and was then forwarded the creepy dead body slide. Just one glance at the discolored figure was enough to convince Carey that this was the real deal.
It was the mark on the figure’s head that sealed the deal for him. He had seen this dark indentation before on an insect called el niño de la Tierra (child of the earth). But what do insects have to do with aliens? Well, according to one Roswell witness, three words connect them.
Dan Dwyer, a Roswell firefighter who rushed to the crash site in 1947, claimed he had seen the aliens with his own eyes. When his kids urged him to describe how they looked like, he responded, “child of earth.” When Carey read Dan’s testimony, he tried to make sense of those three words, and they haunted him for years. But now, with Beason’s slides, he felt like he had finally found the answer.
Carey convinced himself more and more that the body was indeed an alien. “When I saw that image and saw that marking on that body lying on the slab, it jumped right out at me. That’s what Dan Dwyer was talking about,” he told The Guardian.
“Also, the body looked exactly like what had been described to me by several eyewitnesses: frail, big head, et cetera. My first thought was: This has to be one of the Roswell bodies,” Carey concluded. He felt like it was time to dig up the Roswell incident and bring it back to life.
Carey was joined by Don Schmitt, a fellow UFO researcher who jumped on the opportunity to shed light on the new evidence. The duo took the slides to professors and experts. They ran the slides through drum scans to improve the photo’s quality and hired an illustrator to make a 3D image of the body.
They even reached Kodak’s headquarters in New York to verify that the slides were indeed real and had not been tampered with. Astonishingly, Kodak told them that the slides were taken sometime between 1945 and 1950. The guys were thrilled. They were on the right track.
Now that the photo was verified and had been examined by several experts, it was time to look at the woman behind it – Hilda Blair. The boys discovered that Blair worked as an attorney for most of her life and was one of the first female graduates from the University of Minnesota’s law school.
But her connection to Eisenhower was what interested them the most. Mainly because his granddaughter, Laura, once said that he had met with aliens while he was President. Beason and Dew suspected Hilda might have known his wife, Mamie. And their connection might have exposed Hilda to top-secret data, like an alien’s body.
Carey took the photo to his old associate, Richard Doble, a professor at the University of Toronto. Doble was startled to discover that the figure lacked a collarbone, had fewer ribs than a human, and its arms were attached to the top ribs.
He grew more and more convinced that what they were dealing with was far from human. And it wasn’t only Doble who shared that view. Most people who saw the picture agreed instantly. They all felt that the more you inspect it, the more you realize it’s not from earth.
Some folks raised eyebrows. Namely, renowned scientists who nodded their heads vigorously upon hearing the word “extraterrestrial.” Carey was worried people would mock the photos, or even worse – steal them and then ship them to the military to quiet things down.
Dew agreed with Carey. Flinging the photo around like that wasn’t the smartest thing to do. Many people, especially in Roswell, asked him questions like, “Does the government know you have this?” These inquiries took a toll on the UFO investigators, and they all grew paranoid.
When people told the boys to “be safe,” they freaked out. Because seriously, is there anything more worrisome than that sentence? We don’t think so. Drew believed that influential people were after his slides, and he began to get a bit delusional.
He suspected the white van that kept parking in front of his house. He questioned certain people’s looks and gestures. Drew’s wife felt like her husband was going crazy. And she wanted nothing to do with the whole UFO pursuit.
Being a videographer, Dew knew that the smartest move he could do was create a documentary about it. So, he took the slides with him to Roswell and showed the photos to the witnesses’ relatives from the 1947 crash.
He captured their pale, startled faces and filmed their shaky voices as they described how similar the photo was to their parents’ descriptions. Dew even managed to get a hold of an air force base veteran who claimed to have seen the aliens himself. “That’s what I saw in 1947,” the veteran told Dew after seeing the photos.
The UFO community is packed with curious people. Almost every person in the community calls himself an “investigator.” Blogger and alien fanatic Kevin Randle explains, “You don’t need an advanced degree to be a UFO researcher.”
All you really need to sound believable is to post things on the Internet and back it up with “I’m a UFO researcher.” In a community full of enthusiasts from all areas of the world, it’s easy to see why opinions vary, which is why a lot of these alleged researchers end up turning on each other.
It didn’t take long for word of the slides to reach the UFO community. Carey, Dew, Beason, and Schmitt were all worried they would be mocked and attacked for coming out with such an enormous claim. But, eventually, they had to come forward. Hiding wasn’t the answer.
In November 2014, at a UFO conference at Washington D.C.’s American University, Carey came clean and informed the crowd he held a valuable piece of information. He told the audience about Hilda’s photos, her connection with Eisenhower, the Child of Earth mark, and how it all traced back to the Roswell incident.
In a matter of days, everyone in the UFO world knew about the photographed alien. But it looked like Carey spoke way too soon. Because no one had fully proved yet that the body was really an alien, so, he couldn’t flash the slides to whomever.
His secretive behavior got on people’s nerves. They insulted him on Reddit and other forums, calling him a charlatan and calling his whole claim “absolute bullsh*t.” One UFO blogger rolled his eyes in disbelief and described Carey’s act as a “carefully prepared scam.”
Both Carey and Schmitt were used to receiving criticism for their research. As a professor, those are things you must grow accustomed to, or else you’ll spend your whole career crying over other people’s words.
But even though they were used to receiving backlash, the heat they got from the UFO community hit differently. Some insults were too much to take. Carey was called a “hemorrhoid with glasses.” Despite all the hate, Carey and Schmitt sucked it up and kept their heads high.
The more people called them out, the more they felt the need to expose the slides and put everyone’s disbelief to rest. Finally, in 2015, they revealed the slides. They were approached by a UFO obsessed journalist named Jamie Maussan, who suggested they reveal it in front of a huge audience in Mexico City.
Maussan pictured renting the city’s biggest theatre, the Auditorio Nacional, and selling a live stream of the event to people all over the world. He even came up with a name for the grand evening -“BeWitness.”
At first, Beason and Dew hated Maussan’s vision. It sounded like a hyped-up event that was too grandiose for its own good. But Maussan insisted, and he even offered to fund Dew’s alien documentary. Ultimately, the pair agreed.
Dew sent the eager journalist a scan of the slides, and Maussan quickly passed them on to Mexico’s National Forensic Institute. Researchers examined the photos and came back with 20 anomalies in the figure’s body that provided evidence that he was anything but human. A massive head, four sets of ribs, and the eyes’ weird location were only a few of the bizarre things they discovered.
On the 5th of May 2015, approximately 7,000 people attended BeWitness. UFO fanatics paid between $20 to $86 for a place in the overblown spectacle that lasted a little over four hours and featured a long list of speakers.
The evening’s highlight was Carey and Schmitt’s PowerPoint presentation, which was projected on two enormous screens. Professor Richard Doble added to their slideshow by testifying that the body was 100% not human. The crowd was hooked.
The crowd was at a loss for words. They couldn’t believe their eyes and were absolutely taken by this mysterious-looking figure shown on the screen in front of them. Was this real? Was the world finally about to discover the truth about aliens?
Not everyone was happy with the event. The person who started all of this, Joseph Beason, ardently refused to take part in it because he found it too flashy and loud. He was right. It was pretty extravagant. They even had a person dress up as a huge alien and stroll the stage all night.
Carey and Schmitt believed that BeWitness would quiet down all the skeptics. But, boy, were they wrong. The photos surfaced on the Internet, and people went wild. They made remarks about suspicious things like the corner of a bench, which made the photo look like it was taken at a museum.
The image also shows what looks like a reflection of a woman’s leg. No one was 100% sure what the deal was, but many people felt like the caged little figure was part of an exhibition that had little to do with aliens.
There’s probably nothing more embarrassing than announcing something to the world, only to have people debunk your claim a second later. And tragically, that’s exactly what happened to Carey and Schmitt. A little while after the photo spread online, someone came forward with contrasting information.
The photo showed a blurred placard that none of the boys were able to decipher. But eventually, someone did. One person examined the image, deblurred it, and leaked the photo with his discovery. The mysterious placard read: Mummified Body of Two-Year-Old.
Further deblurring of the placard revealed additional information: “At the time of burial, the body was clothed in an (unreadable) cotton shirt. Burial wrappings consisted of these small cotton blankets. Loaned by Mr (unreadable) San Francisco, California.”
But the embarrassing revelation wasn’t enough to put the boys down. Carey believed the deblurring was phony. And Schmitt and Dew found it hard to believe that the placard had really been read. They accused the person who leaked the photo of messing around with the evidence.
As time went on, more information about the picture was revealed. The donor was identified as SL Palmer, and government records showed that the body was discovered in 1896 near Montezuma Castle. Further evidence was found, including photos of the burial site and pictures of the body right after it was discovered.
The records pointed that the child was Native American, and his mummified body was located at the Chapin Mesa Archeological Museum in Mesa Verde, Colorado. At this point, Dew, Beason, Carey, and Schmitt knew that their run was over.
As if Carey and Schmitt weren’t humiliated enough, the whole UFO community made sure to let them know how they felt, and they didn’t hold back one bit. UFO blogger and radio host Kevin Randle said, “The whole investigation was amateurish.”
Carey and Schmitt had no choice but to apologize to the community, especially to the Roswell Slides debunkers whom they butted heads with for months. It was humiliating but necessary. They had to swallow their pride and come to terms with their situation.
Carey and Schmitt were confused about how they could have been so sure that the figure in the photo was an alien. Immediately, thoughts about Beason and Dew came up. Did they dupe them? Did they intentionally blur the placard, making it impossible to read?
Beason and Dew had only shown them a low-resolution image. And such low quality made it easy to overlook the fact that the photo was clearly taken in a museum. Maybe that’s why Beason didn’t go to BeWitness. He was too embarrassed to see everyone all worked up about a child mummy.
After careful deliberation, Carey concluded that Dew and Beason had fooled them. “It was a “very sophisticated hoax,” he told The Guardian, “Dew manipulated the slides. The one clue we couldn’t figure out was the placard, but they played hocus pocus with the placard. We were given something that had been altered.”
Schmitt agreed, “These guys would tell you they were being upfront and honest, but they were controlling the slides.” But why would they do that? Well… why do people do anything these days? MONEY.
Understandably, Dew denied it all. He was offended by Carey’s baseless accusations and insisted that he had always done his best to remain neutral about the images. He never claimed that the figure was an alien. He simply suggested it.
But that’s a pretty unfair response if you ask me. Dew encouraged the wacky conspiracies, from Hilda’s connection to the President to the Child of Earth speculations. Ultimately, he admitted in an interview, “I’m definitely guilty of not discouraging the talk [of it being alien]. It was good for the project.”
Of all the UFO stories people have cooked up through the years, the Roswell incident remains one of the most intriguing and memorable ones. It continues to inspire much speculation and is talked about in various UFO forums and conferences.
But what exactly happened in the summer of 1947? Did aliens really crash into the earth? Some people say yes. It was definitely a saucer from outer space. Others say no. It was a secret aircraft the military used to spy on the Soviet Union.
With so many disparate opinions, it’s best to gather the points that are generally agreed on. In the Roswell case, people agree on the time of the crash (sometime between mid-June and early July 1947). And they agree on the location (Lincoln County, New Mexico, about 75 miles north of Roswell).
People even agreed on the wreckage found (tinfoil, thick paper, and rubber strips). But when the government changed their statement from “flying saucer” to “weather balloon,” that’s when things started to get complicated.
When the government restated their opinion, UFO researchers came forward with their doubts and speculations. “Weather balloon” sounded like a bunch of BS. According to initial U.S. air force reports, the wreckage pointed to a spying device created purposely for a project called Project Mogul.
The device was designed to float above the U.S.S.R. and detect sound waves so the military could follow the Soviet government’s every move. Because project Mogul was classified, the government had to come up with an excuse for the crash, and “weather balloon” was their best bet.
Eyewitnesses from the Roswell incident stressed that they saw alien bodies being carried away from the site. The government responded to those claims by explaining that the alleged bodies were actually fallen parachute test-dummies.
Did that answer satisfy the witnesses? Not so much. Did it satisfy the UFO community? Not at all. People still believe that alien bodies were dragged from the site, and the government made up a bogus story to cover it all up.
Theory number three: The broken-down saucer was neither a spying device nor extraterrestrial. It was an intentional crashing sent to the U.S. by Joseph Stalin to create absolute chaos and panic among Americans.
This theory was suggested in the book Area 51: An Uncensored History of America’s Top Secret Military Base. This kooky theory (which I really hope is wrong) includes Soviet soldiers deforming children to look like aliens, loading them on a flying saucer, and sending them over to crash in New Mexico.
Historian Roger Launius is skeptical of that hideous theory. “There’s no evidence in any Soviet archives that there were such experiments as this,” Launius told History. “And if the intent was to generate panic, it failed utterly miserably.”
It’s hard to understand what exactly happened that fateful summer of 1947. Most of the time, people believe what they want to believe. We view the world from a very biased perspective and mostly collect the data that works best for us.
Area 51 is the name used for the remote and highly classified United States Air Force facility in the Mojave Desert of Southern Nevada. All that secrecy has given rise to many theories and speculations about alien abduction, UFOs, and other mysterious activities.
A concerning fact about Area 51 is that we’re not allowed to fly above it (although there are satellite images available online). So, is there any truth in it? We don’t know. But according to the U.S. military, Area 51 is “a flexible, realistic and multidimensional battle-space to conduct testing tactics development and advanced training.”
On November 23, 1953, the U.S. Air Defense Command spotted a strange blip on the radar. This unidentified object was flying in a restricted area above Lake Superior. The military instantly sent a jet to investigate.
Ground control guided the officers to the unidentified spot on the radar, but the pilots struggled to locate it. It kept swerving around and changing its course. Ultimately, the two radar blips (military jet and unidentified object) vanished from the screen. The pilots vanished and never came back. No wreckage was found either.
So, why are we all so desperate for aliens to be true? Aren’t human beings and the thousands of species around us enough? Why do we quickly mistake mummified children for extraterrestrial beings? The reason is this – they’re the ultimate escapist fantasy.
The creepy thought of aliens existing is exciting, thrilling, and adds spice to our ordinary lives. And when you look at the universe and its infinite number of galaxies, it really feels like a no-brainer. We can’t possibly be the only intelligent life that exists.