"Flying Saucers Have Landed"
George Adamski (April 17, 1891—April 23, 1965) founder of the Royal Order of Tibet, was the first person that claimed to have been taken on a ride in an UFO. Be it via an earlier piece he admitted to be "fiction" involving the Theosophical Mahatmas, and rewritten some years later as "fact," now involving flying saucers, Venusians, and so on.
Adamski thus became a major flying saucer celebrity after the release of his 1953 book, Flying Saucers Have Landed, where he told the story of encountering and communicating with Orthon, the pilot of a landed extraterrestrial spaceship. Better still, he had an abundance of evidence: multiple witnesses, physical traces and photographs! He later took movies of the saucer and continued to have contact and adventures with the visitors from space and share their message of peace and love with the people of Earth. As we will see below, his claims were an elaborate hoax.
Adamski's stories led other people to come forward with their own claims of contact and interplanetary travels with friendly "Space Brothers", including such figures as Howard Menger, Daniel Fry, George Van Tassel, and Truman Bethurum. The message of Adamski and his fellow contactees was one in which the other planets of Earth's solar system were all "inhabited by physically handsome, spiritually evolved beings who have moved beyond the problems of Earth people..the reader of Inside the Space Ships enters a perfect world, the kind we can create here on Earth if we behave ourselves." Through books, lectures, and conventions - particularly the annual Giant Rock UFO convention in California - the contactee movement would grow throughout the 1950s. However, Adamski would remain the most prominent, and most influential, of the contactees.
Already H.P. Blavatsky in the "Secret Doctrine" mentions beings that supposed to come from outside our solar system and flying saucers called Vimanas driven by the force of Vril.
Many UFO groups and alleged contactees have therefore borrowed heavily from both spiritualism and Theosophy. They have incorporated in their ideology the concepts of cosmic wisdom and cosmic masters who exist on other planets. Their leaders often channel, or communicate with, these masters through some psychic means (such as telepathy) or by entering into a trance like state. Probably the main difference between UFO cults and the neo-I AM movement is that the former hold that the Masters not only live on other planets, but also visit the Earth periodically in spaceships. For neo-I AM groups channeling the messages of the Masters from other planets is an important activity. But these Masters, unlike those of UFO groups, do not visit the Earth in flying saucers. The Church Universal and Triumphant (the Summit Lighthouse) is a good example of this type of neo-I AM movement, since it teaches that there are cosmic masters whose messages are channeled through Elizabeth Claire Prophet.' Jesus, according to the Summit Lighthouse, is a highly evolved Venusian who came on Earth to assist humankind. But there is little interest in flying saucers as such and members are not encouraged to pursue the topic. Essential to any UFO cult or religion is the belief that one or several individuals are in touch with beings in flying saucers and regularly fulfill the role of mediums who transmit prophetic messages, religious teaching, and moral instructions.
It is not easy to pinpoint the distinguishing features of the various types of psychic (religious) UFO groups, because the several names of the space masters or UFO people appear with astounding regularity and the religious messages and spiritual instructions are very similar in content.
The period from Theosophy to the New Age has seen a proliferation of sources from which revealed wisdom is said to come. Whereas Theosophy and the earlier post-Theosophical positions primarily acknowledged two types of sources-the Masters and the Akashic record-the boom of channeling since the inception of the New Age has introduced a host of new beings.
Tibetan Masters still have a place in esoteric lore, greater prominence is now given to invisible spiritual guides whose messages are received telepathically. Messages from aliens and modernized versions of pseudo-Dionysius’s angelic hierarchy precede both the rise of the Masters mythology and the current wave of interest.
Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) claimed to have spoken with spirits from other planets. Swedenborg informs his readers that the inhabitants of Jupiter walk with an extremely peculiar gait, bending sideways at every third step: ("Arcana Caelestia" #8541) that Saturnians quite unceremoniously dispose of their dead by dumping them in the nearest forest: (AC #8947) and that beings who live on the Moon speak by making belching sounds at each other (AC #10159). Besides these peculiar details, however there is one facet of Swedeborg’s teachings that many contemporary UFO enthusiasts would recognize. The denizens of space resemble us, but are spiritually more advanced.
The shift from the Masters back to the extraterrestrial intelligences was largely the effect of the influence of George Adamski. He first founded an organization called the Royal Order of Tibet, to disseminate the messages of the Masters. In the 1940’s he wrote a short story revolving around spiritual contacts with mysterious, highly evolved beings. A decade later, the same claims would once again be presented, but this time as biographical facts of Adamski’s own life. Other texts from the period of this involvement with the Royal Order of Tibet were reworked and the Oriental Mahatmas were replaced with aliens. And started the boom for UFO related religiosity.
Looking through my UFO material dating back to the time of Adamski, I found a document that clearly exposes Adamski and is from "Saucer News" Oct. 1957.
Since this article is very rare now I will place it in full:
Jerrold Baker is a young saucer researcher who, after his discharge from the Army a few years ago, became personally acquainted with Frank Scully (author of "Behind the Flying Saucers") and George Adamski. From November 12th 1952 until January 12th, 1953, Baker lived and worked with Mr. Adamski at Palomar Gardens, earning his board and keep by working as a secretary, chauffeur, and general handyman.
Thus Baker was present during the critical period covered in "Flying Saucers Have Landed" Adamski’s book. The reader will recall that November 20th and December 13th are the two important dates in Adamski's narrative.
In a letter dated September 11th, 1954, Baker writes me the following startling facts:
1. I did not take the Brownie snapshot accredited to me.
2. This was not the only Browni -Picture taken.
3. George Adamski was the photographer, and the other Brownie pictures were destroyed at his request by Lucy McGinnis.
4. The photograph was not taken on the date indicated (i.e., not on December 13th).
5. The desert contact was pre-planned and Adamski related the details to me of what was to take place there previous to the venture....
6. Lucy (McGinnis) purchased the plaster of paris in Escondito (Calif.) with me, and it was Adamski who carried it (on November 20th), not Williamson.
Comment: (1) That I have offered Baker no money or other inducement; (2) That by admitting that he was duped by the Adamski hoax he is gaining nothing, as far as I can sea, except the knowledge that through his efforts and mine, the truth on the Adamski matter is at last coming to light; (3) That much of his evidence corresponds with information I have received from other reliable sources, and which I therefore readily accept as true; (4) That no one, other than Adsmski and his six witnesses, has as great a first-hand knowledge of the incidents described in "Flying Saucers Have Landed' as does Mr. Baker.
Baker's information is contained in a number of letters and other documents. Therefore, rather than run the risk of coloring Baker's information by putting it into my own words, I will tell his story mainly by quoting from these various documents.
First, here, in part, is a sworn statement made by Mr. Baker on June 29th, 1954:
To whom it may concern: In a recent book, "Flying Saucers Have Landed": an alleged photograph of a flying saucer was credited to Sargeant Jerrold E. Baker. I the undersigned, am the said party.... I make this statement in hopes of separating facts from fiction, truth from lies, and the real from the unreal. I did not take the alleged photograph accredited to me. The alleged photograph was taken with the Brownie camera, along with three or four similar photos by Mr. George Adamski, on the morning of December 12th, 1952, and not on December 13th, 1952p as indicated (in the book)
In a letter dated November 18th, 1954, Baker states: "Shortly after beginning work at Palomar Gardens, I had a long discussion with George Adamski, in which I tried to point out his slipshod manner of publishing what saucer photographs he had to-ken during the five years previous. In the discussion, I suggested that he not be the only photographer present during a flight of saucers over Mount Palomar."
It was my suggestion that he be located at one spot with his telescope and camera while I or any other individual be located at another spot on the property with a different type of camera.
Much to my amazement, within a week after this suggestion, George Adamski early one morning disclosed the fact that he had taken pictures with the Brownie camera, adjacent to his cabin. The date of the photography was December 12th.
I chauffeured Alice Wells to Escondito to purchase the week's supply of restaurant articles. On our return, there was a fire on the slopes of Mount Palomar, and we stopped at the ranger station to ascertain its location.... I insert this to perhaps give you some means of substantiating my whereabouts. Alice Wells liked me very much and if anyone would reveal the truth, she would be the one, but her admiration for George Adamaki proves the greater, and I feel she would be likely to protect him.
However, there are two other people who can provide you with the necessary proof of my claims regarding the photographs. They are: (1) Mr. Detwiler, the professional photographer who processes Adamskils work. He must fully recall the dates on which the photographs were presented to him. Secondly, he also developed the additional negatives to substantiate the erroneous fact of merely one Brownie photo. (2) Mr. Hal Nelson, who was and is presently an investigator for the United States Civil Service.
Hal was present the morning Mr. Detwiler and his wife delivered said photographs to Palomar Cardona, and can verify seeing more than one Brownie snapshot.
Letter from Baker to Frank Scully, dated January 31 at, 1954:
Case "A": He (Adamski ) has taken hundreds of photographs. Here are the most astounding photographs obtained thus far on the elusive saucers. This man claims he has spent untold hours watching and waiting, both day and night, to obtain the pictures. (See Page 2, next to last paragraph.) This is not true. I know that he knows exactly when a (space) ship is coming, and is there at the precise instant to snap the picture. It is a planned, purposeful action, not the mare chance which he implies. Why the necessity of the deception? Is it as he claims? Perhaps yes; but more likely, NO.
Case "B": Contact with space man on the desert: Here again, misleading, untruth stories are concocted to have the public accept what is supposed to be a fact.... It is too purposeful, planned, and with peculiar motives. I was with Lucy when the plaster of paris was bought prior to the trip. I purchased the photographic plates myself. And, I accidentally heard a tape recorded account of what was to transpire on the desert, who was to go, etc. 9 several days before the party left Palomar Gardens. Though this recording was a 'communication through psychic means', the account as presented (in the book) is entirely untrue. Regardless of the reasons presented to you or me, the witnesses, or the reading public, its manner of presentation to the public has bean misleading and false.
In another letter, Baker expands on this point "The tape recording I heard was a metaphysical discourse received through Professor Adamski approximately one week before the desert contact. I had heard about ton minutes of the tape-recorded talk when Lucy came to the office and advised me not to play the tape recorder. From this brief behind-the-scenes listening, I was able to determine that the desert contact was not a mere stab in the dark or a picnic on the desert, but a planned operation."
Case "C" (again quoting from Baker's letter to Scully): The Brownie Snapshott You are presently familiar with this episode so I will not have to go into it again. Howevert in talking with this man (Adamski) when we met in town last week he urged me to continue using my name on the picture because, "You-have to enter the back door sometimes to get the truth across. What kind of a fool does he think we are, Frank? And actually, what kind of imbeciles are we to pledge our support to such stories? Is not all this a corruption of the truth? I say it is I know it is I will not condone it or support it any longer."
The above letter was written on January 31st, 1954. On November 2nd, 1953, Adamski’s in an obvious effort to induced Baker to "stay in line," had written Baker as follows: "Now you know that the picture connected with your name is in the book, too - the one taken by the well with the Brownie. And with people knowing that you are interested in flying saucers as you have been, and buying the book as they are you could do yourself a lot of good.
For you have plenty of knowledge about these things (i. a., saucers), whereby you could give lectures in the evenings. There is a demand for this You could support yourself by the picture in the book with your name. Remember that you are as much publicized in the book as I am, as far as the picture is concerned. And having the knowledge you have of these things, you have your break right here."
Notice that Adamski does not say "the picture in the book which you took", but rather, "the picture in the book with your name." Has not Baker proved his contention right here? Furthermore, if the blurred affect in the Baker photo is due to the saucer being out of focus rather than, as Adamski claims, in motion - then the "saucer" muss-be less than ten feet from the camera as anything beyond ten feet is in focus with a Brownie.
Yes, Adamski attempted to bring Baker back in line, as noted above, but the present state of the controversy can be summarized by the following letter from Baker to Desmond Leslie dated August 4th, 1954. After reiterating that he did not take the Brownie photograph, Baker states: "I am fully cognizant that words and accusations that prove unfounded are vain. So with such an awareness and knowledge - I am proceeding to take whatever action I deem congruent with the nature of the Adamski fabrications, being confident that sufficient evidence to substantiate my claims is in my possession at this time. I readily admit that I fell victim to a hoax. I sustained the blow, and condoned the erroneous stories. But I have not supported them in any way, shape or form. And presently, under existing conditions, I will no longer continue to condone the erroneous stories or fabrications of any party connected with flying saucers...."
Finally, here is one more extract from a personal letter written by Baker to a friend of his: "Shortly before his disappearance, Karl Hunrath called a number of people. Among these were Frank Scully, Manon Darlaine, and Mrs. Wilkinson."
He denied Adamaki's pictures as being real. He even told Mrs. Darlaine he saw the model. This I cannot confirm or deny. However, I can truthfully state that both Karl and I did see something one morning on our way down to the Palomar Gardens Cafe from our cabin, that closely resembled a skeleton for a saucer mock-up. It was a piece of wooden frame in a circular shape with strips of copper, about one inch in width, strung in circles on this wooden frame .... We both questioned George Adamski about this paraphernalia behind his cabin, at which he grew somewhat uneasy (italics mine), and assured us that what we saw was his own television antenna. I cannot say one way or the other, that it was or that it wasn't. But it is interesting and important considering the mathematical analysis made by several astronomers, who claim the photos couldn't be of anything but a small model.
The parade of evidence in regard to "Flying Saucers Have Landed" could go on almost indefinitely.