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Medical Institute NEW. The legend Although stories of the light vary, the most popular legend involves the death of a railroad brakeman. The valley once contained railroad tracks and the legend states that the light is the lantern of the brakeman who was killed while attempting to stop an oncoming train from colliding with railway cars stopped on the tracks.
According to legend, the first sighting of the light came in when a group of teenagers reported the light to a local sheriff. Since then, a number of other individuals have reported seeing the mysterious light that is said to appear nearly every night near the alleged accident site. There are other stories, dating back since the turn of the century, that suggest the light had appeared long before the train accident.
One says the light is the ghost of a slain mail courier, another says that it is the ghost of an Indian dancing on the power lines that now run through the valley. Explanations Reports of the light have appeared since the lumber days in Michigan's upper peninsula, with accompanying explanations such as geologic activity see Earthquake light , swamp gas and refracted car lights from the nearby roads.
The light is also the subject of popular folklore connected with hauntings and UFO sightings. The investigators were depicted trying several experiments in an attempt to recreate the light including using car headlights from a nearby road and a flyover by an airplane with a spotlight, saying they could not produce the effect of the light exactly or conclude what was causing the light to appear.
Other sequences depicted them conducting an EVP session in the area and testing for methane gas, and abnormal electromagnetic fields — all of which were inconclusive. The episode showed the light being observed by one person from a distance while another two, supposedly standing right under it, couldn't see it — conclusions they felt were consistent with legends and reports that the light seems to vanish when observers get close to it.
The Brown Mountain Lights and the Mesozoic Phoenix
Chemists Luigi Garlaschelli and Paolo Boschetti say the oxidation of phosphine and methane, produced by organic decay, can cause glowing light. Garlaschelli and Boschetti replicated "ghost lights" by adding chemicals to gases found in rotting compounds and found that combustion can be sustained at lower temperatures than those found in traditional fires.. Canadian neuro-psychologist Michael Persinger and American geologist John Derr propose that "ghost lights" are piezoelectrically generated under tectonic strains that move faults, heat up rock, and vaporize water contained in it.
They also hypothesize that rock or soil containing piezoelectric material such as quartz, silicon or arsenic can produce electricity, be channeled through soil via a column of vaporized water and appear as lights that create an appearance of erratic or intelligent behavior. Forty years ago today, for a brief but interesting time, Washtenaw County became the flying saucer capital of the Midwest.
It started when a Dexter farmer named Frank Mannor and his year-old son, Ronald, told the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Department that a strange flying object appeared and landed in a swampy area at Quigley and Brand roads. Frank Mannor, 46, told authorities that night that the two went out in search of the object moments after they saw it touch ground.
He said it appeared to be brown, with a "quilted'' effect on the surface. It was flat on the bottom and cone-shaped toward the top, with two small lights on the outer edges emitting a glowing blue-green color that intensified and turned red at times. When it became brightly lit, the entire object was light yellow, with the light running horizontally between the two outer running lights.
According to the police report, Mannor said: "We then heard the sound of a whistle - something like a rifle bullet makes when it ricochets off something. Then this object went up in the air, passed directly over us and disappeared. Patrolman Robert Hunawill of the Dexter Village Police Department reported then that he saw what appeared to be the same object after he parked his car near the area. He said it suddenly appeared over his patrol car at a height of about 1, feet, that it had white and red lights on it that at times had a bluish tinge, and that it hovered over the car before continuing sweeps over the swamp.
Hunawill reported that he watched the object for a few minutes before it was joined by three others that flew in formation, with one set of two flying high above the other two.
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They then disappeared into the sky. Professor J. Allen Hynek, a Northwestern University astrophysicist who consulted with the military, came to Dexter to investigate, and then reported his findings at the Detroit Press Club. Treml is convinced the Mannors and Hunawill saw something that night. He was just telling what he saw. I'm sure he didn't dream it up.
He died thinking that was some kind of UFO, either Air Force-connected or from another planet or something.
Treml said he thinks that something was manmade. Douglas Harvey, Washtenaw County sheriff from to , agrees with Treml that the Mannors clearly saw something. And he's never believed the government's official stance on what that something was. Hynek was sent in from the U. He came into my office. We went out to the site where supposedly this object came down on the ground.
Hynek in the car said, 'There is something. We just can't put our finger on it. We've been investigating this for quite a while. They returned to Harvey's office, where Hynek asked to use the telephone in private. What do you think? And then he makes one phone call to Washington and comes out and gives a statement that it's swamp gas. Very strange.
He said soon after that, a man who was out running in Brighton reported a sighting. Harvey doesn't know what to think about it. Somebody has kept something quiet, and nothing more ever materialized. So we don't know if it was the government experimenting, or was it really a UFO. I don't know. Willnus has a copy of the police report from that night, and said there's no way that it was swamp gas. It only goes off the ground a few feet.
It mentioned when it took off, it sounded like a rifle shot in a canyon. Again, swamp gas doesn't do that. And I'm starting to use the word multiverse rather than universe Some kind of one-dimensional craft, perhaps, that came into our realm and then left. We still don't know the answer, and yet it still continues to occur, with sightings every day around the world.
Jo Collins Mathis can be reached at jmathis annarbornews. Source and References:. The Spooklight. Despite the fact that it is named after a small, unincorporated community in Missouri from which it is most commonly accessed, the light is most commonly described as being visible from inside the Oklahoma border looking to the west.
The Spooklight is commonly described as a single ball of light or a tight grouping of lights that is said to appear in the area regularly, usually at night. Although the description of the light is similar to that of other visual phenomena witnessed throughout the world, the term "Spooklight" when standing alone generally refers to this specific case. Numerous legends exist that attempt to describe the origin of the Spooklight, one of which involves the ghosts of two young Native American lovers looking for each other.
History According to most accounts, it has appeared continually since the late 19th Century, although it was generally not well-known to anyone but locals until after World War II. Some date the first encounters with the light back to the Trail of Tears in the s. However, the first documented sighting is generally accepted to have occurred in , although some report sightings as far back as The earliest published report dates back to in the Kansas City Star.
In the U. Army Corps of Engineers supposedly studied the "Hornet Light", but could not find a cause for it.
B4IN Test: Couple Attacked By UFO While Observing Brown Mountain Lights
In their words, it was a "mysterious light of unknown origin". Early residents of the area reported seeing lights in the forest, over their land, or even in their yards. During the s, there was a general store in Hornet that gave out information about the light to sightseers. It included a "Spooklight museum". There have also been various establishments along the Missouri-Oklahoma state line that served a similar function, but they have since closed.
During the s and s the roads where the Spooklight usually appears were often packed with parked vehicles and people hoping to get a glimpse of the mysterious light. Appearance Aficionados say the best chances for spotting the light occur after dark when parked on Oklahoma East 50 Road, four miles south of the three state junction of Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma in Ottawa County, Oklahoma and looking to the west.
You must sit very silent. The light has been seen in backyards of the area and has been spotted both near to and far away from sightseers. Its color is also not consistent: some eyewitnesses report a greenish glow while others describe it as orange, red, yellow, or even blue. It is almost always said to be in the shape of a ball, although some say it more resembles a camping lantern travelling a couple of feet off the ground. The light is also very bright even when it appears to be far away from the observer.
Some watch the Spooklight through binoculars or even telescopes. Most sightings of the Spooklight occur from some distance away, but there exist many accounts of the light invading the car of a sightseer or of the light giving chase to those looking for it. In these cases the eyewitnesses generally report an intense heat emanating from the light at close range.
Explanations Explanations for the lights appearance vary widely from the extraordinary to the mundane. The area of Oklahoma in which the light is seen is very hilly and forested and out to the west of where the light is seen lies Interstate It has been suggested that the headlights of cars seen over the hills explain the light's appearance, which is sometimes said to bob up and down, dance, or even split into multiple globules of light.
In William Least Heat-Moon's book Roads to Quoz , the author suggests that the lights seen at the end of E 50 are explained perfectly by the fact that the road aligns directly with Route 66 across the interstate and the river valley, some three miles distant.