Closeup of a piece of mysterious ‘slag’ found on a nearby beach. Could it be from the Maury Island incident some 65 years ago?

Story & Photos by Scott Schaefer

At a gathering on a Woodmont beach in Des Moines late last week, members of the ‘Maury Island Incident Historical Society™’ (MIIHS), claim that the world’s most famous UFO event – the alleged 1947 crash of an alien ship near Roswell, New Mexico – may have been a US government disinformation campaign to distract attention from two Washington UFO sightings.

MIIHS Organizer Steve Edmiston points towards Maury Island, where an alleged UFO incident occurred some 65 years ago.

Vowing to “always remembering never to forget,” MIIHS Organizer Steve Edmiston (wearing dark sunglasses of course) spoke to the group of around 30 people on the 65th anniversary of the crash (June 21), and explained his theory in the manner only an experienced lawyer-turned-filmmaker could.

If you’re not familiar with it, the ‘Maury Island Incident’ occurred on June 21, 1947. It is alleged that six flying saucers were sighted off the East Bay of Maury Island by a man named Harold Dahl, who also had what’s considered to be history’s first ‘Man in Black’ experience, complete with threats to safety, on the very next day.

Then, just three days later – on June 24, 1947 – pilot Kenneth Arnold spotted nine UFOs near Mt. Rainier.

Both of these sightings were followed by tragedy – the fatal crash of a B-25 piloted by the two military intelligence officers who had just investigated the incidents, and were carrying secret cargo – a box of the evidence dropped from one of the Maury Island UFOs.

MIIHS contends that after the Washington sightings, the US government was faced with one of two alternatives:

  1. One or both of the Washington sightings were hoaxes.
  2. One or both of the Washington sightings were real.

“We believe the US government chose to eclipse attention from and to discredit the Maury Island Incident by employing a brilliantly conceived disinformation campaign that re-focused the country’s attention from Washington State to the desert Southwest,” Edmiston said. “This was accomplished through the government’s own actions, including press releases, press leaks, denials, and ultimately, operations at the top secret base at Area 51 in Nevada.”

Edmiston adds that the campaign began less than three weeks after Maury Island, on July 8, 1947, when the Roswell Army Air Field (RAAF) public information officer issued a press release stating that personnel from the 509th Bomb Group had recovered a crashed “flying disk” from a ranch near Roswell, sparking intense media interest and launching the legend of the Roswell aliens.

“We have no official position on whether the Maury Island UFO sightings were real,” Edmiston emphasized. “However, the group views attempts to relegate the events to an historical footnote are an injustice to the tragic circumstances surrounding the sighting and the investigation.”

A piece of mysterious ‘slag’ found on a nearby beach is presented to MIIHS Organizer Steve Edmiston, left, by longtime area resident Kurt Grande.
Two human attendees point at the sky for no apparent reason other than this photo opp.
MIIHS Bonfire Attendees pose for a Photographer at the event.
Two rather mysterious Men In Black pose with a customized MIIHS™ Cake.

Here are some videos (some more over the top than others!) that may help you better understand this incident:




The Maury Island Incident Historical Society is a neighborhood association in Des Moines, Washington, dedicated to always remembering never to forget™ the Maury Island Incident by holding a community bonfire on the anniversary of Harold Dahl’s famous UFO sighting.

To learn more about them, visit their Facebook Page here.

3 replies on “‘Maury Island Incident Historical Society’ Posits New Theory About UFO Incident”

  1. Could that piece of slag be associated with the Asarco Smelter which operated across the bay since 1912. The slag pile from the smelter remains, and is often referred to in local fishing reports.

  2. The Maury Island incident was a hoax perpetrated by a fellow names Chrisman. He was one of the publishers of a tabloid that exploited events of the day. He later bacame involved in the Kennedy assination with Garrison in New Orleans. The story was admitted as a hoax by the family members. However, the Kenneth Arnold and Roswell incidents were probably real events. The UFO sightings during the early months of 1947 were widespread and not isolated to Washington State. Chrisman and Dahl probably saw the opportunity to create a hoax as within the context of the larger issue of the day.

    1. Tom –

      First off, thanks for your Comment and interest in our film.

      Secondly, a few notes of clarification:

      – Fred Crisman was not a tabloid Publisher. I believe you’re thinking of Ray Palmer of Chicago, who bought the rights to this story, then hired Kenneth Arnold to investigate it.

      – The Maury Island Incident story we’ve based the film on comes directly from declassified FBI documents that led all the way up J. Edgar Hoover. From what we’ve researched, Hoover took personal interest in this case, which we found very interesting considering how busy he was.

      – We have not investigated the wild claims that Crisman was somehow involved with the JFK assassination but we are skeptical of that one.

      Scott Schaefer

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