Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Jerome Clark's magisterial 2 volume work "The UFO Encyclopedia"

I highly recommend Jerome Clark's massive 2 volume work - "The UFO Encyclopedia".  I am biased to a degree as I am a contributor to all 3 editions:
First edition - Volume 1 :UFOs in the 1980s - "Australian Ufology" (1990), Volume 2: "The Emergence of a Phenomenon: UFOs from the Beginning through 1959" - "UFOs in Australia and New Zealand through 1959" (1992) & Volume 3 "High Strangeness: UFOs from 1960 through 1979"
Second Edition - Volume 1: A-K 7 & Volume 2: L-Z: "Airship Sightings in New Zealand and Australia," "Cressy Sighting," "Drury Film," "Jarrold Affair," "Tully and other UFO nests," and "Valentich Disappearance." 
Third Edition - Volume 1: A-M & N-Z: "Airship Sightings in New Zealand/Australia," "Cressy Sighting," "Drury Film," "Fernvale Episode," "Jarrold Affair," "Khoury case," "Tully and other UFO nests," and "Valentich Disappearance." 
I got a contributors copy which came to Australia via Austria, courtesy of a geographically impaired mail person at the US publisher Omnigraphics. Despite its wayward trip it is well worth the wait. I recommend it to all serious UFO researchers and libraries.
Contributors to the 3rd edition only had a very short amount of time to contribute only new material, with the possibility that contributions to the previous editions might also be used. Given these constraints in what really was a very short time frame only a limited number of my contributions could be completed in the format required, which involved detailed referencing. Most of my time was spent on trying to complete a broad overview of Australian ufology, which in the end couldn't be used because much of the referencing needed to be reconciled with the total encyclopedia. So in the end, in terms of new material I managed to get in "Airship sightings in New Zealand/Australia" (which include 1868 Parramatta), "Fernvale Episode (1927), and "Khoury case" (1988 & 1992). 
While the Westall '66 case has recently risen in prominence it was not covered in this edition, but was covered in some detail in Volume 3 of the first edition ("High Strangeness" (1996). Parts of previous editions contributions that made it into the 3rd edition included "Tully and other UFO nests", "Valentich Disappearance". Other cases include Gill CE3", "Cressy Sighting", "Drury Film". These are specific entries. References to other case material appear in non specific entries. Just remember this is not an encyclopedia of Australian UFOs. 
More contributions might have made it if there was not such an insanely short period to get new material together. But still there is a lot of new material. My Brazilian friend Thiago Luis Ticchetti managed to get a lot of Brazilian representation into the 3rd edition, including a 20 page coverage of Operation Prato (Plate), Brazil had not been that well represented in previous edition. One big disappointment I have is not having enough time to get an Asian/Chinese presence in the 3rd edition. If all the contributors had been given more notice a lot more material could have made the deadline. 
To get a fuller picture of UFOs in Australia all 3 editions need to be looked at. Any reader, researcher, experiencer, witness & investigation would get a lot out of getting all 3 editions. Its been an extraordinary effort from Jerry Clark.
The Third edition has a huge amount of new material and updated entries. I have enjoyed trawling through this excellent publication. The page count for the entries alone is 1462.. While Jerome Clark has done the biggest part of the encyclopedia extensive contributions come from Dr.Thomas (Eddie) Bullard (such as the 38 paged "Abduction Phenomenon" entry which opens the huge number of entries, Brad Sparks (such as "Sensor Networks to Track UFOs in the Vietnam War" (discovered by Australian researcher & friend Paul Dean), Thiago Luiz Ticchetti (who brings a wealth of Brazilian material to the new edition, including a 20 page entry on Operation Prato (Plate), Thomas Tulien (includes a 16 page entry on the extraordinary 1968 Minot Air Force base radar/radar visual case) and myself (as stated above include detailed entries on the 1868 Birmingham affair ("Airship Sightings in New Zealand/Australia"), "Fernvale Episode" (the 1927 prophecy of the 1967 Mothman affair) and "Khoury Case" (a 4 page overview of the Khoury DNA investigations and research). Well worth your reading.
The founding editor of "Fortean Times" Bob Rickard (who escorted me on a very pleasant and enjoyable Fortean bookshop tour in London back in 2002) reviews the 3rd edition in the December 2018 issue indicating, "Few books on ufology are more valuable than this massive enterprise from ufology's foremost historian .... UFOE3 is magisterial in its scope, content, execution and trustworthiness.  It has no rivals and is unlikely to be improved upon in a long time." Bob recommended to readers they get out to their nearest library or university and "insist (nicely) that it is absolutely vital - especially in this age of fake news and conspiracy-mongering - that they have a copy and make it available to all."
There is a whole lot of UFO knowledge packed away in this cross section of UFO encyclopedias - general & specific. In the horizontal the 7 volumes contained in the 3 editions of Jerome Clark's extraordinary accomplishment - the UFO Encyclopedia series. I have had the honour and pleasure of contributing to all 3 editions. The edition with the yellow spine is the latest. 


Blogger John Steiger said...

The UFO Encyclopedia (3d ed.) is a GREAT book and eminently worthy of the purchase.

I do wish more (in fact, considerably more) attention had been given to the Rendlesham Forest UFO encounter in eastern England in 1980. This case stands out for its underreporting herein.

7:15 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home