History’s Greatest Mysteries – Roswell: The First Witness – The Journal

The History’s Greatest Mysteries series is for me a mixed bag, with some episodes being captivating, and others less so unless you have a riveting personal interest in the topic under consideration such as D.B. Cooper or John Wilkes Booth.  The individual episodes are all rather expanded by most television standards for similar fare, clocking in at a movie-length two hours. Still, when the topic gets around to possibly new information on Roswell, the mother of all UFO sagas, my interest is definitely piqued, and I’m along for the ride.  That ride began with the Season 1, Episode 5 episode of History’s Greatest Mysteries titled, Roswell:  The First Witness – The Journal.

While what happened that July morning in 1947 in New Mexico will likely always be controversial and probably unknowable, we are left with the fact of rancher Bill Brazel finding his field littered with a massive amount of strange and unusual wreckage.  He wondered whose responsibility it would be to clean the wreckage up, and noted that his livestock avoided the debris field.  We animals have instincts about such things, ‘ya know! The rancher presented some of the wreckage to sheriff George Wilcox, who suggested reporting it to the military.

The first official military man on the crash scene was Jesse A. Marcel, an intelligence officer, who privately is reported to have thought that the debris was not of this world, and showed pieces of it to his wife and son, apparently retaining some.  The metal pieces were light but strong, and had shape-retaining characteristics when efforts were made to crush them.  Fiber optic-type filaments were also recovered that were unknown at the time, as were I-beam items with strange, hieroglyphic-type inscriptions on them. While the local authorities initially leaked stories that the military had a “disc” in its possession, the story was soon recanted and replaced by a government military version that the wreckage was nothing more than fragments of a weather balloon.  Jesse Marcel was reportedly sworn to secrecy by the military, and forced to participate in a cover-up.  Local residents were also reportedly warned to keep quiet about the incident or be charged with treason; surviving locals of the time continue to be tight-lipped, but generally convey that there’s more to the incident than the official account; they won’t talk, but will give you under the table a name of someone who will.  Mac Brazel, the son of the rancher, was said to have been forced to give up what crash debris he possessed, and to keep quiet or face imprisonment.  Agents appearing for retained debris reportedly said they wouldn’t take it from the family, but wouldn’t leave without it.  

Now Jesse Marcel kept a private handwritten journal which was cryptic, with speculation made that it may have held coded clues as to what actually transpired in the Roswell investigation.  The History Channel investigative team led by Ben Smith, a former CIA operative, consulted a forensic document examiner, who found that the document was genuine, and entirely written by Marcel. 

Using a magnetometer and ground-penetrating radar, team geophysicists investigated the Roswell debris field scene, finding a patch of ground with a high magnetic reading, a distinct anomaly. In a future upcoming episode, possible hidden clues in the journal and other questions regarding the Roswell incident will be further considered.  The History Channel investigation is hampered by incident details being strewn over three generations of people, with many key players being deceased and hard evidence not available. Whatever beliefs one may have about the veracity of the government’s account of Roswell, the eyes of Jesse Marcel as he poses with the “weather balloon wreckage” in the vintage photograph below appear to speak volumes…


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8 Comments on “History’s Greatest Mysteries – Roswell: The First Witness – The Journal”

  1. carycomic Says:

    So true. I refer to such an upward-looking gaze of apparent skepticism as the “Oh,Brother!” Look.*

    *The politest euphemism I can think of.

    Liked by 1 person

    • vulpesffb Says:

      The eyes, it is said, are the windows of the soul. And his eyes, I think, are saying, “Do you believe this s*#%?” 😸

      Liked by 1 person

      • carycomic Says:

        Well, it’s your website. So, you’re _allowed_ to imply comments alluding to organic fertilizer of male bovine origin! 🙂

        Speaking of which: here’s another Far Side cartoon I wish Garry Larson could have thought of before his retirement. Entitled “The ‘In’ Crowd,” it would have shown Emperor Palpatine (aka Darth Sidious) introducing his protege to some new fellow Sith Lords.

        “Darth Vader? Meet Darth Vincible, Darth Tolerable, Darth Satiable, and Darth Kjet-printer! Darth Continence would’ve been here, too. But, he’s currently…Darth Disposed.”

        Liked by 1 person

  2. carycomic Says:

    There are so many words that can be prefixed with “in,” there will never be a dearth of Darth-jokes.*

    *One might even say such words are”Darth Numerable.” 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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