Aurora Texas – What Happens When You’re Writing Science Fiction?
Picking up on a blog thread I’d been working on before, I’m going to document some of the strangest unexplained mysteries and technologies the world has to offer.
One of the first lessons in writing is that budding writers should ‘write what they know.’ Draw from personal experience. Pour your heart and soul into the writing. Great advice but what happens when you’re writing Science Fiction? It becomes harder to have personal experiences with the unknown and futuristic, but that doesn’t mean a writer can’t find something to influence their work. Picking up on a blog thread I’d been working on before, I’m going to document some of the strangest unexplained mysteries and technologies the world has to offer. Maybe something will spark your imagination for writing. Today, we’re going to travel to Aurora Texas where, according to local legend, an unidentified flying object crashed more than a hundred years ago and the occupant of that UFO might still be around today.
In the spring of 1897, before television, before radio even, an incident occurred that rattled the town of Aurora Texas and still has researchers asking questions today. Around 6am local time in April 1897, a UFO allegedly hit a windmill on the farm property of one Judge J.S. Proctor. The pilot of the craft, who was described as ‘not of this world,’ by an army officer from nearby Fort Worth, died in the crash.
The body, which no photographs have ever surfaced of, was given a Christian burial in the nearby Aurora Cemetery. A small marker was placed on the grave. The wreckage of the crash had been reportedly dumped into a nearby well under the damaged windmill while some of the other debris ended up in the grave with the body. According to subsequent reports, when the land was sold to a Mr. Brawley Oates around 1935, he started clearing out the well but developed a severe case of arthritis. Oates claimed the arthritis was the results of contaminated water from the wreckage that had been dumped in the well. Around 1945, the well was sealed with a concrete slab and a building erected on the slab.
The incident would have passed without notice except for a news article that appeared in April 17th, 1897 edition of the Dallas Morning News. The article, written by Aurora resident S.E. Haydon, gives an account of the movement of the ship through the air and the subsequent crash. The article gives the name of the serviceman who inspected the body, Mr. T.J. Weems, United States Signal Service Officer, an authority on Astronomy, who gave his opinion that the body was not of this world.
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Included in the article was information about a travel log the alien had with, written in an undecipherable form of hieroglyphic and specs about the wrecked ship. According to the article, the ship was built from an unknown metal, resembling a mixture of aluminum and silver, weighing several tons. The article concluded by mentioning the town being full of people looking at the crash and that the funeral would be held the following day.
A fantastical story to be sure, but is there any proof or corroboration of the story? Throughout the years, a number of investigations have been done into the Aurora Texas incident and witnesses have stepped forward. Mary Evans, who was 15 at the time of the incident, claimed her parents forbad her from going to the crash site but that they saw the alien body. Charlie Stephens, 10 at the time of the incident, spoke of an airship with a trail of smoke flying through the sky. Charlie said his father went to town the next day to see the wreckage.
The Texas state director for the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), Bill Case, led an investigation into the events in 1973. Case investigated the Aurora Cemetery where the body was believed to be buried. A grave marker was discovered among the markers from the older sections of the cemetery that had what appeared to be a flying saucer on it. The grave also registered readings from a metal detector. An appeal to the cemetery association to exhume and examine the body was denied. Later, it was found that the gravestone marker was removed and the grave no longer registered on a metal detector.
In another investigation, Tim Oates, grandson of Brawley Oates and now owner of the property with the sealed well, gave permission to open the well and examine the contents. No major wreckage or debris was found, but the water tested for unusual amounts of aluminum present. Subsequent petitions to exhume the body have been denied but using ground-penetrating radar an unmarked grave has been found near other 1890’s graves.
Many people quickly dismiss the Aurora Incident as a hoax, saying the town of Aurora was dying at that time as the railroad didn’t come close enough to keep the town supported. Others say that the story is too fantastic, and therefore, couldn’t be true. Before dismissing it outright, look at the evidence around it. The grave and the metal that is no longer there and the odd aluminum readings from the well. Eyewitnesses and documented accounts.
At the time of this incident, many reports came in of cigar-shaped objects flying in the sky. Dirigibles were flying at the time, but they are slow airships with a distinct look. Fixed wing, heavier than air flights hadn’t taken place yet. Fifty years before the famous Roswell New Mexico incident, Aurora Texas has its place in unexplained history and, while we may never know what happened that morning in Texas, the legend of Aurora will forever haunt the imagination of us all.
Stay tuned in my upcoming blogs where I take a look at Alien encounters and some of the most cutting-edge research on the subject. Many of the events I’ll be covering have directly influenced my science fiction writing. To see more of my blogs, or to buy some of my science fiction books today, head over to my website, www.leifericksonwriting.com today and see where your imagination can take you. Thank you.
The Aurora Encounter. UFO Crashes in early morning hours April, 1897“. UFO.WHIPNET.ORG. Archived from the original on 2008-04-21
“Close Encounters of a Kind“. Time. 1979-03-12
About Leif J. Erickson
Leif J. Erickson is a science fiction and fantasy author from a small farming community in west central Minnesota. Using his time wisely when he was a farmer, Leif developed many ideas, characters, and storylines to create over fifty unique first drafts and outlines for stories. From his start in a small town school, to college at North Dakota State University, back to his family farm, then to the bright lights of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and back to his small farming town, Leif has always had a love of writing.
When Leif isn’t writing he can be found with his wife hiking in state parks, canoeing local lakes and rivers, exploring local and regional ghost towns, experiencing museums, or simply reading or hanging out with friends and family. Leif draws on the local nature and ecology to find inspiration for his writing while he also asks what’s possible for technology and the human race, weaving them together for amazing stories that will stay with the reader for years to come. Leif looks forward to having many novel and story releases in the years to come.
You can see all of Leif’s Books here: Leif’s Amazon Author Page