The authorities were still sorting out the evidence of these initial incidents when, at 3:20 p.m. on Oct. 16, AEC troopers John Isabell, Lendelle Clark and Hank Briggs, and two other witnesses observed “objects hovering over the K-25 plant at Oak Ridge, Tenn.”
A shorter description is given by AEC troopers Lendelle Clark and Hank Briggs, who were stopped by Isabell at the Blair Gate to show them “an object in the north that was traveling toward the northwest.” Their description stated that the UFO “looked to be at about 2,000 feet in the air and a white-silverish looking color, rotating in a counterclockwise manner. It was round in shape and going up in a rather fast motion.” The witnesses also noticed that the round object “looked the size of a ball” and “seemed to come in sight and then disappear.”
Trooper Isabell phoned headquarters immediately, and he reported that “fifteen minutes after the object disappeared into the northeast, an F-82 Fighter plane showed up in the area where the object was last seen, but appeared to be thousands of feet lower than the object which troopers Clark, Briggs and the undersigned saw and reported.” This third Air Force “scramble” with F-82s with one or two days difference between them is confirmed by another document, an Army Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC) evaluation of the UFO sightings over Oak Ridge. The document states that “a fighter aircraft from the 5th Fighter Sqd. was sent to identify an object which was reported to be hovering over K-25,” but that “the radar equipment aboard the aircraft got an image on its scope” that the pilot finally “identified as a light-type aircraft.” Yet the Army evaluation also indicates that “ground observers state that the fighter plane passed beneath the object which they were observing.” The report finally states that “the Security Division, Atomic Energy Commission, will attempt to have the observers, make the same statements while undergoing a polygraph test.”
John Hendrix, a mystic who roamed the East Tennessee woods around the turn of the 20th century, more than 40 years before Y-12 or Oak Ridge existed, told the future regarding Bear Creek valley that lay between two East Tennessee ridges and Black Oak Ridge just north of that valley.
He first predicted that soon a railroad would be built running from Knoxville through the central part of Anderson County. This prediction proved accurate and caused Hendrix to consider himself capable of even more amazing prophecies. He was told by a voice, he said, to sleep on the ground for 40 nights and he would learn about the future. He did as he was told and on the 41st day he emerged from the woods and beginning at the local crossroads general store he told everyone who would listen about the amazing things he had seen in his visions while sleeping on the ground.
“Bear Creek Valley some day will be filled with great buildings and factories and they will help toward winning the greatest war that will ever be.”
“There will be a city on Black Oak Ridge and the center of authority will be on a spot middle-way between Sevier Tadlock’s farm and Joe Pyatt’s Place.”
“A railroad spur will branch off the main L&N line, run down toward Robertsville and then branch off and turn toward Scarbrough.”
“Big engines will dig big ditches and thousands of people will be running to and fro. They will be building things and there will be great noise and confusion and the earth will shake.”
“I’ve seen it. It’s coming.”
A billboard at the Oak Ridge Facility, in Oak Ridge, Tenn., which warned workers there to maintain silence and secrecy about what they were working on: the development of the atomic bomb as part of the Manhattan Project. The photograph was taken in August 1945.
Y-12 National Security Complex, Oak Ridge, Tennessee,
Manhattan Project Security Billboards
Oak Ridge, Tennessee, 1943.
Every single time I go to Oak Ridge, I always say “How the fuck did I end up in Oak Ridge?”
Billboard posted in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, on December 31, 1943. Oak Ridge was a secret town that housed workers and their families for the Manhattan Project. The town was entirely fenced in, with armed guards posted at all entries (The Atlantic)