SPOT Intelligence Report

1D-OSI 24-0-259

SUBJECT: (Unclassified) Reporting of Information on Unconventional Aircraft (Salem, Massachusetts).

TO: Director of Special investigations
Headquarters, USAF
Washington 25, D. C.


On 16 July 1952, at approximately 0935 hours, SHELL R. ALPERT, 292-624 SN, USCG Station Photographer, U. S. Coast Guard Air Station, Salem, Mass. observed four (4) unidentified airborne objects west of the station. A photograph of the objects was taken. No activity or condition developed that accounts for sighting.


At 1145 hours, 16 July 1952, a telephone call was received from J. F. MC CUE, Commander, USCG, Commanding Officer, U. S. Coast Guard Air Station, Salem, Mass., reporting that two of his men had observed unusual airborne objects at approximately 0935 hours, 16 July 1952, and that one of the men had taken a photograph of the objects. On 16 July 1952, Commander MC CUE was contacted by Special Agent RICHARD W. RANDALL, and the following information obtained:

  1. SHELL E. ALPERT, 292-624 SN, USCG, Station Photographer, U.S. Coast Guard Air Station, Salem, Mass., noticed a very brilliant light in the sky west of the station. ALPERT grabbed his camera and took a photograph of the brillant light. ALPERT called a THOMAS E. FLAHERTY, 273-206 HM-1, USCG, who was in the same building and also saw a bright light in the sky. ALPERT furrnished the following information.
  2. Three (3) objects glowing bright and then light and disappeared like a light being dimmed with a rheostat. Objects appeared to waver slightly and glow as a light source. ALPERT could not determine the shape nor formation, aerodynamic features, or propulsion system. ALPERT did not see any trail, exhaust, or maneuvers. ALPERT did not hear any sound and could not tell if the objects were moving, After ALPERT developed the photograph, he noted that there was a difference in numbers than what he had observed.
  3. Objects sighted by ALPERT at approximately 0935 hours, 16 July 1952 and were observed for approximately 25-30 seconds.
  4. Observed by ALPERT through a fine mesh screen window, Photograph was taken through the same window with a 4 x 5 Busoh Pressman, with an f 4.7 raptar lens, 135 mm, with settings of f 4*7 at 1/50th of a second, on Kodak Super XX film.
  5. ALPERT has been a member of the U. S, Coast Guard for one and one-half years, and previously attended the Art Center School, Los Angeles, California. FLAHERTY was a member of the U. S. Navy for two years, seven months, and U. S. Coast Guard for five years, four months. Commander MC CUE advised that ALPERT is an excellent photographer, and that both ALPERT and FLAHERTY are very stable and reliable.
  6. Weather conditions, as reported by U. S. Coast Guard Station Aerology Office for 0926 hours, 16 July 1952, are as follows: thin, broken clouds at 28,000 ft., visibility six (6) miles, wind southwest eight (8) knots, altimeter setting 3*05, temperature 84 °F.
  7. No activity or condition is known that might account for the sighting.
  8. Photograph taken of the objects is attached as an inclosure.
  9. No interceptor or identification action taken. Sighting of objects was not reported to Commander MC CUE until approximately fifteen to thirty minutes after they were observed.

THuvG &. FWHSBTC oonfimed time and place of sighting and stated he was of the opinion that the light in the sky was a reflection of a plane or light reflected off an automobile wlndehind. PLaHHKTX oould give no further account of the sighting.