This Thursday, November 20th, will be the 62nd anniversary of what some have claimed is one of the most significant dates in history. November 20th, 1952 is the day that George Adamski got the impression that he should head out to the desert, because there was something waiting for him there.
So he, with a group of friends, soon found themselves on the highway toward Parker, Arizona, outside of a town on the edge of Joshua Tree called Desert Center. Suddenly, George’s impression that he should go out to the desert became an impression that he had arrived. They pulled over, and the six friends remained by the car as George walked alone into the desert with his camera and telescope, with which he took pictures of a cigar-shaped mothership hovering over the area. The pictures he he took that day have not survived, and Adamski claimed the photographic plates were damaged by what transpired next.
As a side note, there is an entry in the Project Bluebook archives indicating that on November 20th, 1952, a B-29 encountered a large cigar-shaped UFO in the vicinity of Desert Center, California. In other words, at the same time that George and his friends claimed to have seen one. This report was not published until years later.
Seeing a man in the distance waving at him, Adamski walked that way, thinking the man possibly needed help. After all, who would be out in the middle of nowhere in November? Aside from, of course, Adamski and his friends.
As he approached, he noticed that the man was not from around here:
After some sign language and trial and error, Adamski established that the man was from the planet Venus. In later contacts, this man revealed his name to be Orthon. This contact formed the basis for George’s fame, and the explosion in popularity of the Contactees. Though even George himself would not claim this was “first contact” with an alien race, it was one of particular significance in that flying saucers suddenly took on a life beyond the pages of pulp magazines and scattered newspaper reports and into the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the years to follow.
George then walked with Orthon back to the saucer craft that was hovering silently in a small cove in the mountains. There was an energy emanating from the craft, and this energy, George said, fogged all the photographs on the plates he exposed that day. Then George himself got a little too close to the craft, and his arm was caught in the powerful magnetic field that threw him down to the ground, pulled him up, and back again. Orthon pulled him out of the field, and George said that from then on, every so often, his left arm would go numb and useless.
Whatever the cause of Adamski’s impairment, it is worth noting that thirteen years later, in 1965, a pain and numbness in his arm indicated the heart attack that would take his life.
Did Adamski really meet a man from Venus in the California desert 62 years ago? There were six eyewitnesses who signed affadavits attesting to the fact. One of them, Alice K. Wells, even drew a picture of the man they saw George speaking to in the distance:
Were these six eyewitnesses part of a conspiracy of a non-sinister nature to spread news of alien contact, or did they really see George talking to a man in the desert? And if so, who was that man? What if Orthon really was from Venus?
In that case, November 20th really is a significant date in human history. But even if it was the imagination of a group of over-excited people listening rapt to one man’s wild story, November 20th still marks the beginning of an under-appreciated movement in American history. I, for one, plan on heading out to Desert Center this weekend to commemorate the occasion and to get some shots for the film.