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Monday, April 14, 2014

The Valensole Incident

Stories of humanoid encounters are easily a guilty pleasure of mine. I have written on a number of occasions on this blog about the variety of strange tales of human interactions with non-human, apparently “extraterrestrial” creatures. As I was flipping back through the various bookmarks I’ve made over the years, I came across a particular incident which I wasn’t familiar with and don’t remember seeing it being discussed very often. I thought I’d take a moment today and share with you the story of the Valensole Incident.


Early on the morning of July 1, 1965 at around 5:45 A.M., farmer Maurice Masse was smoking a cigarette before he began working outside his home which is located near the French village of Valensole. As Masse was smoking his cigarette he heard a strange, whistling sound coming from overhead. Masse was apparently standing beside the ruins of a tall wall located on his fields, next to a vineyard, and had to step around the wall in order to find the source of the noise. Lon Strickler, at phantomsandmonsters.com tells us a version of the events which came next:


At the time, he was positioned next to a 7-foot-tall rubble pile at the edge of a vineyard, so he had to step out from around this to view the source of the sound. It was then that he saw something shaped rather like a rugby ball and about the size of a Dauphine automobile, resting on four legs some 200 feet away in his lavender field. Close to the curious looking object were two figures resembling “boys of about eight years.”

masse2.jpg


Masse was apparently more curious than frightened by this whole encounter and began to make his approach towards the entities. As he came near the creatures Masse could see they were hard at work collecting lavender from his lavender fields. When he got to about 15 or 20 ft away the creatures apparently noticed Masse and immediately stood up from their “work”. Masse described the entities as such:


less than 4 feet tall, as dressed in gray-green overalls with smooth, bald, pumpkinlike heads, large slanted eyes, and with little holes for their mouths. They made grunting sounds between them, although their mouths did not change appearance, and Masse was not sure where on their bodies the noise was coming from. (source)

masse5.JPG


Apparently upset or annoyed by the interruption to their flower picking, one of the creatures raised up a long, thin, pencil-like object and pointed it at Masse. This brings to mind the countless similar reports that Jacques Vallee discussed of entities waving pencil-like wands at witnesses in order to paralyze them. Here to, Masse found himself completely stricken and unable to move. At this point, the creatures entered their craft and flew away into the morning sky. One can infer that they were “frightened” by Masse’s interruption of their flower picking and had to flee the scene immediately. Personally this whole thing reeks of the “staged event” vibe. This idea was speculated on by researchers like the late Mac Tonnies, in his writings and in his posthumously published work, The Cryptoterrestrials.


Once Masse found himself able to move again, he went to the spot where the craft had landed. The landing spot had impressions in the ground from the craft and some kind of material which allegedly hardened into something like concrete days later. It was said that nothing would grow in the spot for some time. Many researchers, including Jacques Vallee, conducted interviews and investigated this case. They all came to the same conclusion; that the witness was reliable and was reporting what he believed to be a real event. An interesting little note to end this tale on is that Masse would later report to investigators that he had had some kind of communication with the entities, though he would never reveal the details of this communication. Strickler notes that:


Though he hinted that there had been some sort of communication between himself and the beings, he never revealed the particulars to investigators. He told Vallee that one was best off not sharing such encounters with anyone, even family. “One always says too much,” he added.


What are we to make of this incident? Assuming that the witness is telling the truth, and I see no reason to doubt him, why would these creatures go through so much hassle to obtain lavender? Is there more to the flower than we know? Somehow I doubt it. In my mind, this incident seems to lend credence to the idea that someone is staging these events in order to perpetuate a meme. Of course, that’s only how I feel about the case today. Who knows what tomorrow might bring? I’d love to hear your opinions on this case. Was it an expedition from some distant planet to gain specimens? Did Masse have a weird hallucination? Let me know in the comments below!


Further reading/sources:


Lon Stricklers’ write up




ATS thread Started by Kandinsky

7 comments:

purrlgurrl said...

I'll admit I'm strongly skeptical of events reported by a single, uncorroborated witness.

In stories such as this, one always wishes for more background information about the witness. After all, the story springs solely from him. For example, was he someone already inclined to believe in flying saucers and alien visitation? Did he have other "encounters"? After all, France underwent a major UFO flap in the md-1950s so these memes were already part of the popular culture there.

Was the substance purportedly left behind by the craft ever collected and tested? I'll bet it wasn't.

Yes, the event appears staged (why travel light years to collect lavender?), but was it staged outside or inside the mind of witness? We'll never know.

Steve Sawyer said...

"Was the substance purportedly left behind by the craft ever collected and tested? I'll bet it wasn't"

Actually, 'purrlgurrl,' it seems it was.

Apparently both vegetation and soil samples were collected at the site of the landing, and some tests were conducted, although no details of who did the testing, how, or of any detailed results or findings are noted online.

The only reference I could find to any test results was a greater concentration of calcium, of all things, at the spot where the alleged "egg-shaped" vehicle, if that's what it was (yes, single-witness reports are problematic), than sample areas outside of the area where Maurice Masse, the lavender farmer involved in this incident, said the object landed.

Which, without further details, doesn't mean a whole lot. The test results do not appear anywhere online I could find, unfortunately.

Calcium. Sort of curious.

I wonder if it could have been related to a fairly common fertilizer, bone meal, that was used at the time and still used?

"Yes, the event appears staged...?

By "staged," are you suggesting hoax, purrlgurrl? Based on what?

Or is that simply a conjecture?

purrlgurrl said...

Nothing can be proved. It could have been a delusion, hallucination, hoax, or real event. There's absolutely nothing to validate any of those scenarios. Even the trace element isn't anything exotic or unusual. This is and always will remain just a curious story.

Anonymous said...

Single witness events are less than desirable true. But considering the MANY encounters similar to this man's by multiple witnesses, it does make it likely, to me, he was not delusional and was telling the truth. For individuals who come at this from a skeptical place, it gives ample reason to say that it's probably something rational like a delusion. But when you weigh everything together in this field and approach it with a healthy measure of objectivity and knowledge, the picture is a bit different. Many use the "skeptic" label as a shield to hide behind the fact that this whole idea really scares them. Perhaps because it's something they cannot control or because it didn't happen to them...and they are special enough that if it were real then it would have happened to them. AKA unhealthy ego issues. But most disconcerting of all is that most skeptics lack much knowledge of this phenomenon only offering ill educated opinions on the subject.

Anonymous said...

Single witness events are less than desirable true. But considering the MANY encounters similar to this man's by multiple witnesses, it does make it likely, to me, he was not delusional and was telling the truth. For individuals who come at this from a skeptical place, it gives ample reason to say that it's probably something rational like a delusion. But when you weigh everything together in this field and approach it with a healthy measure of objectivity and knowledge, the picture is a bit different. Many use the "skeptic" label as a shield to hide behind the fact that this whole idea really scares them. Perhaps because it's something they cannot control or because it didn't happen to them...and they are special enough that if it were real then it would have happened to them. AKA unhealthy ego issues. But most disconcerting of all is that most skeptics lack much knowledge of this phenomenon only offering ill educated opinions on the subject.

ww_blanka said...

I would say that the nature of the encounter can only be understood through the alleged messages he got. His unwillingness to share them suggest that they are of a more malevolent kind; but it's hard to anywhere from that without being too speculative.

Anonymous said...

Most messages are usually related to earth changes. If the message was dire and the relaying of it would only serve to discourage people from having hope, I could see why he said nothing.

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