Sign Historical Group

Donald E. Keyhoe   william b nash 1952

Donald E. Keyhoe                         William B. Nash in 1952

OCT 19, 1953

Major Donald E. Keyhoe,
c/o Henry Holt Publishing Co.


Dear Major Keyhoe:

I enjoyed your new book as I have enjoyed all of your other articles and books on the saucers.  The first I heard of the new book was from Robert S. Allen, who sent me a UP ticker report concerning your challenge to General Smith to Court Martial you if you’d misrepresented the facts.  I got a big kick out of that.

Then Henry Holt Co. sent your book for review and I was happy to have a copy - They’re going fast down here.  (I have a friend who has given over 150 saucer lectures, an electronic Engineer - and still does so, to Rotary, etc., and he keeps the book moving - He lectures (sic) in St Louis last week, and the stores were emptied the next day).

I opened my AIR LINE PILOT Magazine 2 weeks late and saw Joe Hull's OBITUARY OF THE FLYING SAUCERS, and nearly blew a fuse.  I banged out a rebuttal, but the Editor sent it back saying that one from you was already on the presses.  I read it today, and it’s good.  I was happy to see a counter article, because of all groups of people, Air Line Pilots should be well prepared and not cynical.  Lots of pilots were waving Hull's stupid article at me - Now I’ll wave yours at them. Thanks for the reprieve!

I enjoyed the surprising amount of material you prodded out of the Air Force - Don’t know how you did it, judgeing (sic) from their previous attitude.  Just before my article was published in the October issue of TRUE of 52, I was on an ABC WJZ TV program with three University Professors on the saucer subject.  Before the program, some tall man - about 35 with dark hair and dark rimmed glasses - about 200 lbs, and with a voice like a commentator took me down the TV hall, and asked my personal opinion about the saucers.  He seemed excited.  I told him I was convinced they were interplanetary, and he said that I was right.  Not that he Thought I was.  He said he’d just returned from Washington and had a lot of inside dope (Wouldn’t give me his name) and that another reporter and a Life reporter had the info too, but were sworn not to publish it til told they could do so.  He said that the reason that the saucers were over Wash. in droves in July was because the Air Force had operated a radio found



in a cracked up saucer.  That the "Wright Field Story” was true - The Air force had several saucers.

I tipped John DuBarry, who I believe passed the info to you in Washington.  Did you ever get anywhere with that one?

Also, I have seen some damned good movies taken in distinct focus by a U.S. Marine here in Miami on July 29, 1952.  He took them with a Marine issue 16 mm camera With a telescopic lens.  They were shown once by WTVJ, local TV station, then grabbed by the army.  They were developed in the WTVJ labs and show distinct changes in light pattern as tho the ionized air immediately around the saucer varied in degree - the leading edge smooth and the light getting more rough toward the trailing edge.  There is also a distinct perspective diminishment revealed as they leave the observer.  Have you ever been able to pry those out of the Army?  They grabbed 'em here.  The Marine's name was Ralph Mayher.  (Middle initial C )  The saucer was orange in the original but was photographed in Black and White in front of 16 witnesses who watched the object too, and watched Mayher take the pictures.  I believe he shot 50 feet, but caught about 48 frames all in a row due to the difficulty in aiming the camera at night.

I enjoyed the Canadian magnetic theories.  I think from what I saw, that these people in the saucers have learned to control gravity directionally to take the turns they make.  The Univ. of Indiana Prof, Vaclav Hlavaty, who solved Einstein's Unified theory with equations did so by approaching the problem on the assumption that gravity is just another manifestation of electromagnetism.  The power must pull every molecule in the ship, including the occupants with the same force.  Gravity is the only thing we know about that does that.

I've talked to a lot of people who have seen the saucers since seeing the first one, (Eight) and have quite a collection of reports.

I'm glad to see you knock Menzel down - and I hope people will soon come out of their fog, and realize that the saucers are the biggest news since B.C. became A.D.  I think they’re friendly, but afraid to teach us their science yet.  We might turn out like the Japs - look what happened when they got hold of scientific advancement without social advancement.  After looking at us fight - who can blame them for wanting to keep our battles limited to our own planet?  There may even be a law that prevents them from teaching us this new science - and permits them to study only, until we are ready.  The whole thought that they might leave us to our feeble efforts makes me impatient to see people accept them and live in peace so that we will be accepted by them.

Best regards - and keep up the good work,

Sincerely Bill Nash, PAA Pilot


214 Kent Road
Alexandria, Va.
March 11, 1954.

Pilot William B. Nash,
400 Ridgewood Road,
Biscayne Bay,
Miami 49, Fla.,

Dear Pilot Nash::

I am terribly embarrassed — your very interesting letter of October 19th — has just come to light, after being misfiled by a part-time secretary who helped me during the hectic days after my saucer book came out.  You’re the last person I'd keep waiting for an answer — I have often hoped we could get together and talk over not only the Norfolk sighting but the saucer subject in general.  I hope you'll accept my apology; this girl filed about 50 letters, unanswered, along with some which I'd answered by postcard.

Your very nice review of my book is greatly appreciated; I don't know why I didn't hear of this via Holt and Co., but at that time things were really popping, in regard to the book, and I still haven't seen all the reviews.

Will you please thank your electronics-engineer friend who lectures on the saucers, for his mention of my book?  Naturally, I am glad to have the book selling well — but I also am glad that people are learning the facts, from men who really know the situation.

Do you ever stop over in Washington?  If so, and you have any time free, I hope we can get together.  My phone number is SOuth 5-7323.  Unless I'm tied up on something I can't possibly postpone, I'll come into town, or meet you at the airport.

Probably you keep up on most of the developments, but in case you've missed any I might go over a few items — things that have happened since my last book came out.  You know about the court-martial invitation; the AF still hasn't answered, and when I asked them they said "No comment."  Same answer to the Times Herald here, when they ran three series on the saucers.  The reporter pinned them down with "Did Keyhoe falsify the information re: the Utah pix?  Ans: "No comment."  "Does the analysis show what he said?"  Ans: "No comment."  "Can we see the analysis?"  "No.  Because of libel laws, security etc., there are some things that can't be given out — but we're not hiding anything, anyway,"

Late in the Fall of '53, the AF put out a so-called "fact sheet" you may have seen.  It was aimed at my book.  They said that no sightings were ever classified, they were a matter of public record.  On the strength of that, I asked to go to Dayton and see all the sighting reports.  They stalled for a while; I had some reporters ask the same thing.



Finally, Intelligence ordered Bluebook closed to the press and public.  No sightings to be given out.  No questions answered in regard to specific sightings, etc.  Same for questions on pictures, the Utah analysis.  They specifically denied my request to go to Dayton.

Despite that, the legal aide to the Secretary of AF, a Gen. Joe Kelly, recently said all was wide open...It was in answer to a letter from Senator Case; one of Case's constituents had asked if I was right, was the AF holding back info.  Kelly said all sightings were available to the public.  I immediately denied it, and UP carried both Kelly's line and my answer.  Then I asked the Pentagon if they'd changed — again.  I got my answer from Lt. Col. Hugh Day, Magazine Branch of OPI, and he said no, the sightings were not available.  I said I wanted a definite explanation of why Kelly said they were, and so far I haven't got any.

The net effect is that the public is constantly told the AF is telling all, and actually they're withholding all info.  It's a deliberate deception, and dangerous.

You of course know about the new CIRVIS set-up, for pilots to radio in reports instead of waiting to report later.  And you probably know about the MARS Committee, astronomers here and abroad to watch Mars 24 hours a day as it nears us this Summer, to see if they can detect any sign of life.  Beside this, the AF, Army and Navy have tied into a project for two noted astronomers to try to locate "tiny moons" — almost invisible satellites — known to be circling the earth.  One man is Dr. Lincoln La Paz, the other Clyde Tombaugh, who discovered Pluto.  Tombaugh says such "tiny moons" are almost sure to be orbiting the earth; that they could be used by our space travelers as stepping stones to the stars (or the moon.)  What they don't say is that an unknown space race could be using them too, and that if such small bodies are practically invisible, space ships could be orbiting, unseen, in the same way.  (Which many astronomers have previously denied as impossible.)  My opinion is that the armed services are seriously concerned because such "invisible satellites" have actually been proved as existing, and they are anxious to find out just what they are, and who is using them.  Tombaugh recently told associates at White Sands to be ready for a new flurry of UFOs in the coming months, and I think we'll have some headline news by Summer.

Your dope on the Washington sightings is very interesting.  If you ever see the unknown gent who tipped you to the story, try to put him in touch with me, will you?  Though I've never accepted the rumors that the AF had some saucers, secretly, I know it could be true.  However, I'd want some very factual proof before making any public statements on that.

Ralph Mayher, the ex-Marine you mentioned, called me one night from Cleveland, said he was dickering with LIFE about their use of his pictures.  No word since.  The AF has never admitted having the pictures, and won't answer any queries now.  I'd like to see the film some time.



I note that you have some new reports; I hope we can talk them over some time.  If you should get any authentic reports with unusual details of a UFO, or a group, and especially about any indication of living creatures aboard, I'd greatly appreciate knowing about them.  I have one such report, tied to a secret Navy sighting last Summer, but cannot use it because it isn't officially confirmed.  If it is true, it Is the biggest thing yet.

Thanks for the comment on my reply to Joe Hull.  Joe called me one day from Washington and he seems like a nice guy; he said he must have been badly misled by Menzel, and he was now starting all over again.

If you haven't read it, you might like to check on an article by Dr. Harlow Shapley, Dir. of Harvard Observatory, entitled "Life On Other Planets."  It appeared in the November Atlantic Monthly.  Even admitting the most skeptical approach, Shapley concluded there are at least 100,000,000 inhabited planets in the universe, some certainly with higher life forms than ours.  Wonder what Menzel thinks of that?

If you ever have any info you want kept confidential, I'll agree to keep it so if you pass it on.  Or if the facts could be used, with no identification of persons, locations, etc.,  I'd use it that way.  What I want mainly now is strong, authentic reports by experienced pilots; since the AF has told its pilots (and probably Navy and Marine) to keep mum, the main source would be the air line pilots.  So if you know any who could help, please tell them to write — or phone if they're in Washington any time.  I'll guard their names carefully.

Another item I'm collecting — the occasions when pilots have been pressured to keep silent.  Do you know of any instances?

After my long silence (though unintentional) I wouldn't blame you for not bothering to write me.  But I promise not to let your letter get misfiled — I'm checking each one as it comes in now, though some will have to wait a long time, because I now have about 800 unanswered ones, and they come in around 8 to 10 a day.  I'll have to get up a form postcard for most of them, and maybe a form letter for others, or I'll never get any more writing done.  I hate to do it, for I'd like to answer each letter fully, but I do want to get out some new articles or another book, some time this year.

Thanks again for your letter, and the swell review.  I hope we'll be meeting in the near future.

With kindest regards,


Donald E. Keyhoe,
Major, U.S. Marine Corps, Ret.


March 21, 1954      

Major Donald E. Keyhoe, USMC, Ret.,
214 Kent Rd., Alexandria, Va.


Dear Major Keyhoe:

It was pleasant to receive your interesting and informative letter of March 11.  Your difficulty in getting around to all of the letters you receive and filing confusion by temporary assistance is readily understandable.  I had similar difficulties in a small way just from the TRUE article.

I wish it were possible for us to have a personal meeting, and I hope sometime that we can do so.  At present all of my flights are South from Miami to the Islands and South America on DC6B type aircraft.  The ferry trips (one of which I was flying at the time of our Norfolk experience) between Miami and New York are being flown by New York crews.  There is some rumor that Miami crews may fly a New York-San Juan flight this Summer.  If so, perhaps I can get to Washington during a New York layover.  Until then, though, perhaps we can exchange information via mail.

The recent Washington developments you described in your letter do not look too encouraging for hope for any early release of information from the Air Force.  Robert S. Allen, in a letter to me, tells me that they told him, when he tried to get further information, that they fear panic, and thus justify their secrecy.  Personally, I realize that the most intelligent people in the World are not in the Pentagon, but it’s difficult for me to believe that such is their actual reason.  My guess would be that there is something to the business of the Air Force having material evidence at Wright Field, and that they think the best way to prevent Russia from learning what they have discovered to date, is to poo-poo the works.  Russia has been successful thus far in getting anything they’ve wanted, so perhaps the best way to discourage espionage is to create the illusion that there is nothing to steal.  But if they haven’t fooled me with their unintelligent propaganda, how can they fool a trained espionage agent?

I have seen a copy of the "fact sheet" and in it the Air Force does not hesitate to actually lie to the public.  I saw personally Ralph Mayher’s movies, and I recently received a letter from Ralph in which he states that he stopped at the Pentagon, and Lt. White of A.F.I. told him he would get his movies back!  Hence the simple theorem, they printed that they didn’t have movies yet admit they’ll give ’em back — so they lied.  That’s going pretty far.



Incidentally, Ralph Mayher's story will appear in the June issue of PIC, and will be featured, he says.  His address is 3472 W. 136th St., Cleveland, Ohio.

At present, I don't know of any occasions where Air Line pilots have been quieted, will let you know if I hear of any.  All they asked us, after a two hour interrogation in separate rooms, then 45 minutes in the same room, was to play down their obviously intense interest.  I asked specifically if there was any security on the incident and that was all they asked — but the story had already leaked out via PAA radio operators, so that didn't mean anything.  A Major Sharp or Sharpe, was in charge of the interrogation.  The rest were dressed in civvies, and carried a wallet with a card and badge identifying them as "Special Investigator, U.S. Air Force".

On the little man occupant theory, I have a clipping from Oroville Murcury (sic), by reporter Basil Benedict, which convinces me the miners at Brush Creek had a genuine experience.  The date of the clipping is June 25, 1953. A friend of mine, George Wolfer spent two weeks with the miners after the sighting hoping to get photos of the saucer, and living with them, he is convinced that they told the truth.  They had nothing to gain except an unwelcome crowd.  By accident George discovered that a Colonal (sic) in Civilian dress was checking on the incident.  A man at a gas station said a Colonal who used a credit card at the gas station asked for directions to the miner’s camp.  Recently a Lt. has been questioning the miners according to a phone call by George Wolfer to the miners in Cal.  Is the Navy incident involving occupants which you mention this miner story?  That sounds interesting.

The Clyde Tombaugh theories are extremely interesting.  George Wolfer, while in California, also visited Palomar, and was unable to see any pictures taken of the planets.  That's strange — I haven’t seen any published either.  I should think that the planets would be the first things they'd photograph or observe with the 200 incher.  In line with the small satellite stuff, I recall seeing around 1948 in the N.Y. Times, a brief article that said that the Harvard observatory had discovered three astteroids (sic) rotating in our own orbit, two abot (sic) 800,000 miles ahead of Earth and one trailing us at 500,000 miles.  They were reported to be under a mile in diameter, and staying with us.  That's not satellite behavior but its (sic) mighty strange — haven’t seen any news on it since.  All of Palomar's stuff has to be cleared through Harvard too.  Everybody's clammed up!  It’s frustrating!

About the man who tipped me about the Washington sightings theory — I still don’t know who he is.  But here are some clues that might help you if you get to N.Y. at any time.  I was about to go on the program at 8 p.m. and left the studio (TV-2) for a drink of water.  This man had been looking into the studio, and spoke to me when I came out.



He started the conversation.  I believe he was a member of the studio staff because he knew who I was, though he remained unidentified even though I asked his name.  He knew the studio well.  I asked him to direct me to a water fountain, and he took me to one.  The way was long and complicated.  He had a voice like a commentator.  He was at least 6 feet and over 200 lbs. but not soft.  Brown suit at the time and dark hair and, I believe, dark-rimmed glasses.  The studio was at 7 West 6th St, N.Y. ABC TV Center.  Perhaps you can track him down from that sometime if you're near there.

I read Dr. Shapely's [Shapley's] deductive reasoning on inhabited planets, and can't imagine both Shapely and Menzel working side by side in the same University on the same subject!

I'm enclosing copies of some of the notes I make on sightings which I file in my records.  These are recent, and therefore might interest you.  There had been a flurry of sightings here recently.

The paper ATLANTIC CITY REPORTER carried another recent sighting by teen-agers and a guard from the Ventnor Pier in Atlantic City.  The date of the paper is 2-26-54.  Harry Ireland of 123 N. Troy Ave., Ventnor N.J was the guard.

If anything unusual comes up before I hear from you, I'll drop a note.

I enjoyed your letter, and hope you'll write again when you find time.


Best wishes and good luck on
             the prodding!


            William B. Nash,
            Pilot, PAA,
            Lt.jg, USNR

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