Dr J. Allen Hynek

Dr J. Allen Hynek
started the Center for  UFO Studies


The Center for UFO Studies was started by Dr. J.
Allen Hynek, who was a professor of astronomy at
Ohio State University, and later, chairman of the
astronomy department at Northwestern University
During the 1950s and 1960s, he served as the
astronomical consultant to the United States Air  Force's Project Blue Book. Essentially, his  responsibility was 
to determine whether there was an  astronomical 
explanation for a UFO sighting. Professor Hynek
would study a UFO report and decide if its description
of the UFO suggested a known  astronomical object. 
That is, did the witness see the  planet Venus or a
eteor instead of a genuine UFO?
Center for UFO Studies Website

The 12/17/66 Hynek Saturday Evening Post article is 
a paper Dr.J. Allen Hynek wrote summating his 
approximately 18 years tenure(at that point) as
civilian scientific consultant to the AirForce concerning
FOs. It was written with hope for the newly formed
Colorado (Condon) Study, which I believe began 
in October
of that year.

Summary and Additional Articles Below




 Allen Hynek worked for US Air Force´s project Blue Book as a consultant astronomer. When he started his attitued against all who   had seen UFOs was that, with his own words, only "kooks ans Crackpots" saw UFOs. But after a couple of years he started to notice   that many of the reports wasn´t made up by kooks and crackpots, but highly credible militaries and civilians. But after dismissing   several credible witnesses at the Michigan sighting with the natural cause of swamp gas he resigned. Hynek led the investigation of   the Socorro landing case in 1964 with the FBI. He went on with the at the time young Jaques Vallee and founded the Center of UFO   Studies in Illinois in 1973. Hynek later become a member of the Robertson Panel. In 1986 Dr J. Allen Hynek died. Under his life time   Hynek wrote theese books: The Ufo Experience: A Scientific Inquiry, Night Siege: The Hudson Valley Ufo Sightings and What You   Should Know About UFOs.

Dr. Hynek has been the consultant astronomer to Projects Sign, Grudge and Blue Book. I won’t say that he’s a
“believer” but he’s darn interested. He has devoted a great deal of his valuable time to the project. He has read
amost every UFO report in the Air Force files. In the summer of 1952 he debated with Menzel at the American
Optical Society meeting in Boston and blasted Menzel right out of the hall. 

He sat on the panel in Washington in January 1952 and was very much pro-UFO.  Dr. Hynek is Head of the Ohio
State Univ. Astronomy Department, Director of the Perkins Observatory and Assistant Dean of the USU Graduate
School. He is still working for Blue Book. 

Hynek also invented the Hynek Classification System.

Nocturnal Light
        A visual sighting of a light on the sky at night. About 
        35     -   40 % of all reports are nocturnal lights. 
Daylight Disc
        A visual sighting of a UFO with distinct shape seen at 
Radar Cases
        UFOs detected on radar. 
Radar Visual Cases
        UFOs detected on radar and visually at the same 
         time. About 1 - 2 % of al reports are radar visual 
Close Encounters of the First Kind
        A UFO observed within 150 yards. 
Close Encounters of the Second Kind
        A UFO that leaves some kind of evidence like 
        burnmarks on the ground or fragments of unknown
Close Encounters of the Third Kind
        A UFO with visible occupants. 
Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind
Close Encounters of the Fifth Kind
        Communication between a human and an alien.


1)      He agrees with the Air Force for the most part but there
        were cases he could not solve.

2)      The quality of the witnesses was  high.

3)      He is hopeful concerning the new Air Force study.
        (J.C.  i.e. The Colorado [Condon] Study)

4)      Nearly all his scientific colleagues have scoffed at the
        reports of UFOs.

5)      The question of UFOs has developed into a battle of
        faiths. Something of this importance should be decided

6)     The Air Force made up its own mind about each case 
        and did not always take his recommendations.

7)      The Air Force had a tendency to upgrade its cases from
        "possible aircraft" to "probable aircraft" (without
        proper scientific review, he felt)

8)     "The Air Force has never really devoted enough money
        or attention to the problem of UFO's to get to the 
        bottom of the puzzling cases."

9)     Blue Book was headed by a captain and consisted of 
        two officers and a sergeant. Its value to the Air Force is
        plainly demonstrated by observing the low ranks of its
        assigned officers and observing their place in the Air
        Force's organizational hierarchy.

10)   In 1952 Hynek wrote a paper saying that UFOs 
        deserved more study.

11)   His paper spurred the formation of the Robertson 
        Panel in 1953.

12)   The panel studied 15 cases out of several hundreds and
        made its decision in a very short period of time.

13)   Hynek was only an observer at the hearings, but if he 
        had been asked to sign the results of the panel decision, 
        he would have refused.

14)   Hynek mentions APRO and NICAP as vigilante 
        groups formed in response to the Air Force's lack of 
        in-depth study. "These groups were often the recipients 
        of intriguing reports that never came to the official 
        attention of Project Blue Book."

15)   Hynek gradually began to accumulate cases "...that I
        really couldn't explain, cases reported by reliable,
        sincere people whom I often interviewed in person."

16)  He found "...that the persons making these reports 
       were often not acquainted with UFO's before their 
       experience, which baffled and thoroughly frightened 

17)     They were often reluctant to report their sightings.

18)  In the public eye he was becoming known as a 
       debunker yet privately he was becoming concerned 
       about good reports from reputable people.

19)     *** "I feel it is my responsibility to point out that
        enough puzzling sightings have been reported by
        intelligent and often technically competent people to
        warrant closer attention than Project Blue Book can
        possibly encompass at the present time." ***

20)   Hynek explains, in detail, what happened with the 
        "Swamp Gas" Michigan case. (and shows us how the 
        Condon Study came into being.)

21)     He gives 4 possible explanations for UFOs.

        a.  Nonsense, Hoaxes, Hallucinations?   Enough 
            evidence has accumulated to prove they are _not
            _ all utter nonsense, the result of hoaxes or 

        b.  military weapons?  They are usually tested in very
            limited geographical areas. Why would anyone test
            them in scores of nations? You couldn't prevent a
            security leak.

        c.  Outer space?        He agrees with the Air Force but
            feels we should keep an open mind. If other beings
            have a greater life span than humans, travel these
            vast distances might be possible.

        d.  Some kind of natural phenomenon we have yet to
            understand?    This is another reason for studying
            this more carefully.

21)     Hynek wanted to computerize the reports from all over
        the world.

22)     Hynek wanted "good" photographs of UFOs

23)     He concludes by saying he doesn't think the Pentagon
        thinks they are anything novel, and it still doesn't.
        (J.C. This was his view in December 1966)

This is the 12/17/66 Saturday Evening Post article that fully
ignited the controversy that still exists today.

Dr. J. Allen Hynek
Speaking at the United Nations

From Bruce Maccabee
Jerry Cohen
Thanks for reporting this long forgotten article.

The following was provided by
Jerry Cohen


>But I cannot explain them all. Of the 15,000 cases that have
>come to my attention, several hundred are puzzling, and some of
>the puzzling incidents, perhaps one in 25, are bewildering. I
>have wanted to learn much more about these cases than I have
>been able to get from either the reports or the witnesses.

Hynek refers to 1/25 or 4% as "bewildering." This was written in
1966. Now consider what Air Force Intelligence told the FBI in
1952. Note that General John Samford was the Director of Air
Force Intelligence at the time and that the below statement was
made on the SAME DAY that the he (and Roger Ramey!) held a press
conference to explain the mass of summer 1952 sightings,
including the Washington, DC sightings. Date: July 29, 1952

FROM: FBI "X file"
(Commander Boyd told the FBI agent that a third class of
sightings is) "those sightings which are reported by pilots and
for which there is additional corroboration, such as recorded by
radar or sighting from the ground. Commander Boyd advised that
this latter classification constitutes two to three percent of
the total number of sightings, but they were te most diffiult to

The bottom line is that they couldn't explain the 2-3% without
straining the physics beyond credibility....and Hynek knew it...
but he didn't admit it until 1966.

>Recently I had dinner with several members of the Condon
>committee. What a pleasure it was to sit down with men who were
>open-minded about UFO's, who did not look at me as though I were
>a Martian myself. For the first time other scientists, who
>apparently have been wondering all along, have openly talked
>about the reports. One leading scientist wrote me the other day:
>"For some time now I have been convinced of the reality of this
>phenomenon based on reports in the general news media. It has
>seemed to me that even with a heavy discount there is a core of
>reliable observations which we cannot shrug off. Twice in recent
>weeks I have stated my views on the subject in small
>conversational groups of respectable, scholarly friends, and
>found that they were amazed that I should take these matters
>seriously. So I know that it took some courage for you to speak


I thank Jerry Cohen for recalling these halcyon days of ufology
for those of us who lived through them....and for providing the
new comers with information they would not likely search out for
themselves. Yes, it was a "whole 'nother world" back then. Or
was it?


the information in this paper by Hynek wasalready ancient
history and long forgotten when I first communicated with him in
1973 or 4(?). By that time he had founded the Center for UFO
Studies and had given a lecture at my place of empoyment (former
Naval Ordnance Laboratory). I had not been able to attend his
lecture (out of town) so I wrote him a letter. In his response
he invited me t become a member of the Center for UFO Studies.
At that time I still viewed him wth some suspicion, thinking
that he probably knew a lot more than he was saying. When I last
saw him in 1985 I still believed he knew more than he was
saying. However, I never got the impression that he was part of
an orchestrated cover up. And, of course, he portrayed himself
as being on the outside if there was any orchestrated cover up.

Thanks to the FOIPA and the continuous efforts of many people
(Robert Todd being one pre-eminent in this) we now have
documentation that shows what the Air Force was '"thinking" 50
years ago. It is clear that Air Force Intelligence did NOT level
with the American people, irrespective of Roswell undercurrents.
Throw away Roswell. One is still left with sightings as
convincing as those cited by Hynek which occurred within th
first 5 year.... including photographic/movie proof of 30
objects capable of flight at 150,000ft.

CONNECTION/ the REAL X-files; contact brumac@compuserve.com if

So perhaps Hynek was telling the truth after all. He really
didn't know much more than he was saying..... and he did argue