An old newspaper report gives us a glimpse into the past. A series of UFO sightings occurred over Portland, Oregon during one of the waves of the 1940's. These reports were made by pilots, police officers, and citizens. Articles about the sightings were published in "The Oregonian" newspaper. Many of the sightings were of UFOs directly over the Oaks Amusement Park, a popular retreat for the citizens of Portland.
"All Cars" Bulletin:
When the calls began to come in to the local police department, an "all cars" bulletin was sent, and was quickly responded to by three patrolmen, who also saw the UFOs. One of these men was Earl Patterson, who was an air corps veteran. He stated that the unknown objects were traveling at a high rate of speed, and "wobbling and weaving." He told a reporter that the objects were not airplanes, in his opinion.
Policemen See UFO:
The other two patrolmen were even more sure of the objects' extraterrestrial origin. Walter Lissy and Robert Ellis, who were both pilots, stated that the UFOs they saw were "disc-shaped," and moving at great speeds through the sky. Another group of three men working at Harbor Patrol headquarters also reported seeing "discs" moving across the sky, estimating their altitude at 10,000 feet.
The fact that the objects were flashing lights repeatedly made it difficult to ascertain how many UFO were in the groups of objects. Some could see three-some as many as six. The discs seemed to continually twist and turn as they sped through the sky, and at times only a "crescent" shape could be seen. Police Captain Prehn described the UFOs as a "wobbling hubcap." Seen in the sky at the same time was a plane, which did not resemble the UFOs in the least.
Also Seen by Plane:
Although there were many reports of sightings from the ground, that would not be all. There were also reports from the air, matching well the descriptions from the ground. On July 5, at approximately the same time as the Roswell Crash, the Oregonian ran the headline, "Air Liner Crew Confirms Flying Discs Over State."
Pilot Reports Nine UFOs:
After taking off from Boise, World War II veteran Captain E.J. Smith, along with his copilot and a stewardess, saw nine of the disc-shaped objects. Making a report upon landing, Smith described the objects as "bigger than aircraft-very thin, very flat on the bottom and rough or irregular on the top." The discs had followed Smith's plane for 15 minutes, and then in a flash they vanished from view.
For a time, the entire area around Portland was in the midst of a wave of UFO sighting reports. Generally, the reports were almost identical, described as "disc-shaped" objects traveling at high speed, and performing maneuvers beyond the capabilities of the airplanes of the day. Had these sightings not occurred at the same time that the Roswell case was breaking, it would have received much more coverage than it did. The objects seen by the many witnesses were never explained.