Jefferson City, Missouri, Sunday Capital News and Post-Tribune
July 13, 1947, p. 1
Motorists Weather Observation Gadget Spoils
Brief Bid for 'Flying Saucer' Fame
Jefferson City's bid for "flying saucer" recognition was short-lived last night.
A strange looking gadget found on a farm along the south fringe of the Callaway hills turned out to be just another of the weather observation mechanisms released in Kansas City and St. Louis--at least that was what Troop F headquarters of the State Highway Patrol says.
H. D. Bills stumbled on to the strange-looking apparatus about 6 o'clock yesterday evening when he was going after his cows on his farm four miles northeast of the Katy North Jefferson station across the river. I had fallen there during the afternoon for he had been along that way at 11 o'clock in the morning
Stamped U.S. Army
Intricate part of the contraption was an oddly-shaped box-like affair 9 inches by 12 inches with delicate equipment enclosed in a yellow plastic case. It had its own antenna and was powered by batteries. It was stamped "U.S. Army" and labeled "Signal Corps radiosonde transmitter."
This mechanical or radio unit was suspended in a harness and a cord some eight yards below a reed hoop. Above the hoop, attached by more cord, was a red, tough tissue paper parachute about four feet in diameter. And above that was what appeared to be the remnants of a bursted, khaki-colored balloon. The parachute was also stamped "U.S. Army."
When found by Bills the hoop had dropped over a tree stump.
The contraption presented a problem to Bills--he had never seen anything like it. So he brought it to the News and Tribune news room.
Others Found in Area
After making inquiry of various public officials Trooper H. H. Wells on duty at the patrol's Troop F headquarters provide the answer. The description was identical to weather observation equipment found previously in this vicinity and turned over to the patrol. In face, he said, they had an outfit like that around the station somewhere.
What to do with it?--Trooper Wells didn't know that answer. Sometimes there is a note attached telling where to return it--but not this one. So Bills gathered it all up and delivered it to police headquarters.
But it could have been a "flying saucer"--they seem to be everywhere. And nobody is too certain just what they do look like.