How did It Started? It happened on Tuesday, 24 June 1947. Arnold, a businessman, was piloting his own aircraft. He had overheard someone comment that there was a $5000 reward for any one locating the wreckage of a US Marine Corps C-46 transport, lost somewhere in the Mount Rainier area. He decided to make a short detour into the search area.
Sighting of UFOs
As he cruised along at 9,000 feet, a sudden flash of light caught his attention. At first, he thought that another aircraft must be in the vicinity, perhaps also involved in the search for the missing transport. He scanned the sky, but could see no sign of it. Then as he looked to the north of Mount Rainier he saw something unusual: nine odd-looking aircraft, flying in line astern at 9,500 feet and following a heading of 170 degrees. Every few seconds, two or three of them would dip or change their course slightly, just enough for the sun to catch their reflective surfaces.
The strange craft appeared to be crescent-shaped, with no sign of any tail surfaces. Arnold assumed that they were some new types of jet aircraft. He saw their shape in greater detail as they passed in front of snow-covered Mount Rainier, and now an even bigger surprise was in store. They were not crescent-shaped, but round. They were a long way off- bout 25 miles, according to his estimate - and so had to be fairly large, perhaps about the size of a DC-4 airliner, in order to be visible. They were also fast. Using the second hand of his watch, Arnold timed the passage of the discs over a known distance between Mount Rainier and another mountain peak. His initial calculations indicated that the craft were flying at 2,373km/h and unheard-of speed for any aircraft in 1947. Even later, when more precise calculations were made, their speed could not be reduced below 2,092km/h.
What He Did?
On landing, Arnold decided to report what he had seen o the FBI, but the local office was closed.
Instead, he told the media, and the story went out to the world over the wires of the Associated Press. Within hours of its appearance, reports were coming in from all sides from people who claimed to have witnessed similar craft. Arnold himself, besieged by reporters, commented ironically, "From then on, if l was to go by the number of reports that came in of other sightings, I though it wouldnt be long before there would be one of these things in every garage. In order to stop what I thought was a lot of foolishness and since I couldnt get any work done, I went o the airport, cranked up my plane, and flew home to Boise." But the damage had been done. The newspapers now had a blizzard of UFO sightings on their hands, and exploited them to the full. Reporter Bill Begrette coined the term "Flying Saucers".