Jeffrey Duff saw a UFO over Duluth, Minnesota in 1965, at age 9. Unidentified Flying Objects and aliens have fascinated him ever since.
1947: The Modern UFO Phenomena is Born
The modern UFO phenomena is said to have started in 1947, but the reality is that Unidentified Flying Objects had been noticed by military pilots during World War 2 (1939 to 1945). American pilots noted and nicknamed strange flying lights, orbs and objects during the war, calling them 'Foo Fighters' ('Foo' being the American slang for the French word 'faux', as in fake or false).
But, the American media picked up the term, "Flying Saucers" from American businessman Kenneth Arnold in 1947. The highly publicized sighting by Arnold, while flying a small private aircraft over Oregon, resulted in the popularization of the term "flying saucer" by U.S. newspapers. Flying saucers have generally been renamed to the U.S. Air Force's term for all shapes and types of unknown aerial phenomena: Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs). Although Arnold never specifically used the term "flying saucer", he was quoted at the time as saying the shape of the objects he saw was like a "saucer", "disc", or "pie-plate". Arnold later gave a description to an artist, in 1950, that looked more sickle-shaped than saucer-shaped (see above image).
Many people describe the UFO sightings as beginning during World War 2 or in 1947 with Kenneth Arnold's eyewitness report to the American media. But, in reality, mankind has been viewing UFO-type aerial activity for many thousands of years into the past - and all around the world.
In addition, science fiction magazines and books had been referring to extraterrestrial flying craft, space ships and alien beings since at least the 1890s. For a popular example, find and read H. G. Wells, the British writer and futurist who penned the bestselling book, "War of the Worlds", way back in 1898. (Yes, the "War of the Worlds" that was turned into two excellent movies, the latter one from 2005 starring Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning.
UFO-type Objects were Painted into Numerous Old Paintings
The earliest known photograph of any kind - a very grainy image of city rooftops -dates back to 1826. Cameras were not particularly sharp or common until the 1850s and 1860s. Before the 1820s, the only method for capturing any type of images - of any subject - was provided by drawings, paintings and sculptures by visual artists. So, before the mid-1800s, images of witnessed strange or unidentified flying objects simply had to be painted or drawn, with no photography available.
Painters Sometimes Used Subtle Tricks to Show Controversial Images
For example, there are several paintings where the artists used 'empty' background space to display controversial subjects, even ones that were otherwise unrelated to the primary subjects or objects. For example, UFO-type machines or sexualized human images that could not be painted as the subject of a painting could often be discretely captured in the paintings' background. Sometimes, bolder artists would have anonymous background figures pointing or looking at these subtle-but-controversial background subjects.
The other reason that the old painters had to display interesting or unusual objects and people in the background: they were not going to get paid to paint Unidentified Flying Objects or strange creatures in the foreground. The subject of the painting was what the artist was getting paid to put to on canvas, but painters could sometimes let their imaginations soar - or display strange things they had seen or heard about - in the background of paintings. (In many paintings, the background images are sometimes considered more interesting than the foreground subjects that the artist was actually being paid to produce!)
There Are Many More Informational and Image Sources on this Topic
The internet and some public libraries should have much more information on the subject of ancient, medieval and renaissance UFOs and alien beings. Whenever someone tells you that UFOs and extraterrestrial aliens are a recent phenomenon imagined by insane or alcohol-addled people, you can now inform them that there are many 10,000-year old cave paintings - from around the world - of alien beings and Unidentified Fly Aircraft. (By the way, 10,000 years' ago is long before humans knew how to ferment alcohol.)
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on October 15, 2021:
I have always found this topic interesting.
The carvings from so long ago seem like they have been around for sone time.
Maybe part of them are spiritual. Like when Elijah went to the sky.
I do think governments know way more than they let us know.
Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on October 15, 2021:
Interesting presentation, thanks for sharing.
John Hansen from Gondwana Land on October 15, 2021:
I have seen so many ancient paintings and sculptures that seem to depict images of UFOs that, if they do exist, are certainly not a recent phenomena. This is an interesting article however. Thanks for sharing, Jeffrey.