One of the several photographs taken by the Jaroslaw brothers over Lake St. Clair, Michigan, 1967.
Another photograph in the series taken by the Jarowslaw brothers. (credit: UFO*BC)
Dan Jaroslaw (left) and his brother, Grant. (source: TRUE Flying Saucers and UFO Quarterly, 1967)
On January 9, 1967, two teen-age brothers, Dan and Grant Jaroslaw, made some photos of a domed object with an apparent tower on one side over Lake St. Clair, Michigan. They photographed it from the backyard of their Mt. Clemens home, about a mile from Selfridge Air Force Base. The object was moving slowly at a very low altitude - proably too low to be picked up on radar at the Base. It remained in view about 10 minutes -- ample time for the boys to take their pictures with a small Polaroid. When they released them to a wire service, the Air Force requested the originals for analysis. Evidently the brothers were wary of lending out their original prints, for they kept them under lock and key in a bank -- but they did give the UFO officer at Selfridge a set of copies. This officer was quoted as saying they were "the best I've ever seen." Nevertheless Blue Book, seizing on the fact that they'd been denied the originals, slapped an "insufficient data" tag on the case. Dr. Hynek, however, was impressed with the photos and thought the chance of a hoax having been perpretrated was "unlikely."
ARTICLE DISCUSSING POSSIBLE HOAX/FAKE:
"The Mount Clemens Photos - A Likely Fake?" by Mark Cashman.
ARTICLE FROM 1967 in TRUE MAGAZINE:
"Capturing UFOs on Film", TRUE Flying Saucers and UFO Quarterly page 8, Vol 1., Spring 1967
Monday, January 9th, was a cold wintry day on the shores of Lake St. Clair about 15 miles due north of Detroit, but the weather didn't keep 17-year-old Daniel Jaroslaw and his 15-year-old brother, Grant, from having some outdoor fun with their Polaroid camera. True, it was cold enough to numb their fingers a bit, but they still could click the lens shutter as they stood in the backyard of their Harrison Township home, looking for something to photograph. And little did they realize they were about to make a sensational picture record of what appeared to be the best, and clearest, UFO sighting of the New Year.
The time was about 2:30 P.M., when Dan looked out across the ice-clogged lake and suddenly saw something that caused him to grab his brother's arm.
"Look !" he fairly shouted, pointing to a dark object in the sky about a quarter of a mile offshore. There, hovering over the ice but near open water, was a hamburger-shaped aerial craft with an "antenna" clearly visible on its tail. From that distance, the object seemed to be about the size of a helicopter, but Dan and Grant had no way or determining its exact measurements.
Quickly, they brought their camera into action and made four pictures in rapid succession, pulling out the prints and examining them as they shot the photos, one by one. The UFO proved to be an obliging camera subject and continued to hover over the icy lake for a full ten minutes before speeding off to disappear in the southeast without making a sound.
Then, a new object came on the scene to hover above the same spot, but this was clearly identifiable. It was a helicopter on a training mission from nearby Selfridge Air Force Base. The two brothers made a picture of the copter, too, but it bore no resemblance to the strange craft recorded on the other four prints.
The following day, the Detroit News published a picture of the UFO along with the story of how the Jaroslaw brothers happened to have their camera in the right place at the right time. The photo immediately came under intensive investigation by officials of Project Blue Book, the Air Force's highly active UFO study unit. And they had to admit that the Jaroslaw brothers had snapped one of the most realistic UFO pictures on record.
Although the radarscope at Selfridge Air Force Base, only a mile from the scene, had picked up nothing unusual, and the helicopter pilot said he had seen nothing hovering in the area, the Jaroslaw prints were called "pictures of a believable UFO." Among the first to comment was Dr. J. Allen Hynek, chairman of Northwestern University's Astronomy Department, who for years has been consultant to the-Air Force on UFOs. After viewing the pictures, the bearded, bespectacled Dr. Hynek made several important points at a news conference in Detroit.
"The striking thing to me is the similarity these pictures have to other photos t have seen. Also to the verbal descriptions taken from ostensibly reliable people. To the best of my recollection, even the antenna shown on the tail has been previously reported. Being a Polaroid print offers less chance for darkroom chicanery. Adding to the credibility is the, fact that a series of pictures were taken, rather than just one shot."
Dr. Hynek went on to say that "in all honesty, at this moment, I have no knowledge of whether the pictures are authentic, but I cannot call them a hoax. Most of the pictures we get require just one look to say they are a hoax, but this case is a little different. If it's a hoax, it will be a little more difficult to establish."
An assistant to Dr. Hynek at Northwestern University, Dr. William T. Powers, said that "right now we can't even say how big the Thing was. It may have been anything from three inches to five feet wide that was on front of the Jaroslaw brothers' camera." Dr. Powers explained that the opaqueness or resistance to light in various parts of the negatives, and the relation to various sites in the background, would have to be examined.
(credit: Michigan MUFON)
A PRESS REPORT FROM 1967:
"UFO Pictures Look Factual," The Edmonton Journal, January 17, 1967
DETROIT (AP) - A leading expert on unidentified flying objects said Monday that photographs of a “flying saucer” taken near here last week are apparently authentic.
Dr. J. Allen Hynek, chairman of the astronomy department at Northwestern University, also said the pictures are strikingly similar to other pictures of UFOs he has investigated.
Dr. Hynek, a scientific adviser to the U.S. Air Force’s Project Blue Book, which co-ordinates all UFO reports for the military, commented in an interview with the Detroit News.
Dr. Hynek had examined negatives copied by The News from the original prints taken last week near the Detroit suburb of Mount Clemens.
“Analysis so far does not show any indication of an obvious hoax,” he said.
“To the best of my recollection even the ‘antenna’ shown on the back has been previously reported, as has the tail structure,” he said.
The pictures were taken around 2:30 p.m. January 9 by two Harrison Township youths, Grant Jaroslaw, 15, and his brother, Dan, 17.
The youths said the object hovered over Lake St. Clair behind their home before speeding off to the southeast.
The boys’ mother, Betty Jaroslaw so far has refused to let the U.S. Air Force or other experts examine the original prints.
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