While tending to the sheep on the family farm in Delphos, Kansas, sixteen year old Ronnie Johnson replied to his mother’s call to come in for dinner, assuring he would be home very shortly. It was just before 7pm on a quiet evening on 2nd November 1971.
A low rumbling sound suddenly burst out of the dark night sky, followed by an intense display of bright, multi-coloured lights. They were emanating from a mushroom shaped object that was slowly making its way over the Johnson’s land, only several feet from the ground.
The craft measured approximately nine feet in width and ten feet in height. Ronnie would later remember that the low rumbling sound reminded him of a washing machine. He also stated that although the entire object shone, it was the bottom of the craft that was by far the brightest, completely illuminating the ground below him.
Ronnie watched the object for what he thought was five minutes before the light intensified so much that it caused him physical pain in his eyes. It grew brighter still before it suddenly moved away from the teenager and shot off into the air at great speed. Now, effectively blind due to being plunged back into the darkness of night, Ronnie slowly made his way back to the family home to inform his parents of what he had witnessed.
The night’s events would not only prove to be one of the most credible UFO encounters in history, but one of the few sightings (relatively speaking) that left behind physical evidence of its visit.
Subsequent Events And Observations In Delphos
With him throughout the ordeal, was Ronnie’s dog, who had been performing his duties helping tend to the flock. Following the events that evening, the usually eager and scare-free canine became withdrawn and refused to go outside after dark. The family flock also appeared to have been effected. Their behaviour became erratic and confused, with some of them even jumping from their pens and running in any direction they could as if looking for cover.
An Aerial Phenomena Research Organisation (ARPO) investigator, Clancey Tull, took an interest in the incident and met with the family in the days following. He soon discovered that Ronnie appeared to have “lost” thirty minutes of time during the episode.
Ronnie had claimed to Tull that the whole incident, from his mother calling him to dinner, to him witnessing the UFO and then returning home to inform his parents had taken no more than five minutes. However, according to Ronnie’s mother, after she had called her son from the house, she and her husband had sat down to eat and had finished their meal before Ronnie returned. In her estimates it was at least half-an-hour from her calling Ronnie to him returning to the house.
At the site of the encounter itself, a number of trees had been badly damaged, with several large branches having been “snapped” off. It appeared as if something heavy and powerful had inflicted the damage on them from above. There were no markings on the ground around the trees to suggest that vandals were responsible for the damage.
Perhaps the most interesting sight though – certainly the most researched aspect of this case – was the strange marking left on the ground directly below where the craft had hovered over Ronnie.
The Delphos Ring
In the dirt and mud where Ronnie had been standing observing the object that evening, was a strange ring that glowed brightly, even in broad daylight. When she had first seen it, Mrs Johnson had reached down to touch the glowing ring, and had instantly felt a numbing feeling in her hand. This caused her to panic, and she instinctively brushed her hand on her leg to remove whatever was on her fingertips. She instantly felt the strange numb feeling in the top of her leg too – a numbness that would last for several days.
Although the ground itself felt cold to touch, it glowed so much that it appeared to be ablaze, and while all around the ring the ground was soft and muddy, the ring and the soil directly underneath it was bone dry.
The ring itself remained visible for some time after the incident, and numerous soil samples of it were taken for initial analysis, as well as to store as evidence of the presumed visitation. A strange white substance was found within the soil – a substance that appeared to be the result of an intense and unnatural reaction.
This white substance was later analysed by respected UFO researcher Jacques Vallee, who, in his book Dimensions: A Casebook Of Alien Contact offered his theory on what it might be. He stated that biological tests he had had done on it, showed that the white substance contained Actinomycetales – an organic organism similar to bacteria or a fungus.
It was suggested that intense heat or some other form of energy had greatly accelerated these Actinomycetales to grow. The fact that they were in a ring suggested that the heat or energy source came from the underside of the strange craft that Ronnie had witnessed. Remember he particularly stated that the underside was by far the brightest emission of light.
For their part, the Johnsons were regarded as very credible witnesses, who were not prone to giving false information. The Sheriff of Delphos, Sheriff Enlow, stated at the time that they were “well known and well respected” by the community, and that he did not believe the incident to be a hoax.
You can check out the video below that looks at the Delphos case in a little more detail.
Other Little Known UFO Encounters That Left Their Mark
Perhaps remarkably, given that these encounters never seem to make “mainstream news”, there have been several other UFO sightings that have left a clear, physical reminder of their presence.
In Stephen, Minnesota in 1979, a policeman on standard patrol shortly before 2am – Val Johnson – suddenly noticed a bright light coming out of the sky and heading towards his patrol car. By the time the light had completely enveloped him, he had blacked out. When he was discovered some time later, he was free from his vehicle and had sustained substantial injuries, including injuries to his eyes that were more akin to those seen by metal welders. The vehicle itself was completely destroyed, as if it had been bent and mashed as though it were made of foil.
Another incident occurred the following year in September 1980, this time on the other side of the planet on a farm in Australia. Farmer, George Blackwell, was awoken in the early hours by the sound of his animals reacting badly to something outside. He left his house and witnessed a strange object with orange and blue lights, seemingly draining the contents of his water tank – nearly 40,000 litres. It then shot into the air and disappeared from his sight. When he inspected the water tank, he saw that where the craft had landed, there was now a strange dark ring. Not only did Blackwell feel unwell for some time after inspecting this close up, none of his animals would go anywhere near the dark ring,
The Intriguing Maurice Masse Case
In 1965, another farmer, Maurice Masse, from Valensole in France had a similar experience to Blackwell. A strange object calmly landed in his lavender fields and two pale white, thin humanoid figures exited it. Masse estimated these figures to be around four feet tall and they appeared to be dressed in strange one piece clothing. They began to inspect the lavender around them, at this stage seemingly unware of the farmer’s presence.
When Masse began to approach them, one of the figures pointed a stick-like object at him which instantly paralysed him where he stood. The figures soon got back into the craft and it took off, but Masse remained forcibly motionless for around fifteen minutes before the effects of whatever had frozen him wore off.
When he was finally able to move, he noticed a huge wet circle on the ground where the craft had landed – a circle that set as hard as concrete within hours. It would be over a decade before anything would grow on that spot.
The short video below looks into the Masse case in a little more detail.
Proof Of “Unknown” Energy?
Whatever these sightings are, it would appear that the markings are connected to an intense heat or energy source that they have been exposed to. Most markings seem to appear where the UFO in question was sighted, but they also appear to be amazingly concentrated.
For example if you watch a rocket launch, the fire that is spewed out is destructive, uncontrolled and widespread. Certainly anyone in the vicinity would be incinerated. However, despite the apparent increase in energy used, if the speed at which these objects have been observed is accurate, the outpouring of this energy seems to be much more controlled and in one particular spot only.
A strange case in South Africa in September 1965 appears to lend a little more credence to this theory. As Police Constables Koos De Klerk and John Lockern were on patrol on the Pretoria-Bronkhorstspruit highway at just after midnight, they both witnessed a strange copper disk shaped craft sat on the road in front of them.
Almost as soon as they had noticed it, the craft shot off at speed, taking off into the sky, but leaving a path of fire in its wake. The heat was so intense that the gravel on the road began to separate from the tar. If the policemen’s account is to be believed – and there is nothing to suggest their story is false – then the flames were likely produced as a result of some kind of energy thrust that propelled the craft rapidly into the air.
The following two videos are worth checking out. They look at some of these cases as well as other UFO incidents that left behind more than just a wild story – part one and part two.