December 17, 1969: Project Blue Book Shut Down

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A Brief History

On December 17, 1969 the U.S. Air Force shut down Project Blue Book, its investigation of UFOs.

Digging Deeper

Digging deeper, we find the late 1940s spawning a spate of UFO sightings.  The U.S. Air Force conducted Project Sign in 1947 to study these reports, and Project Grudge in 1948.  In 1952, Project Blue Book became the exhaustive investigation we know of today, the brainchild of Air Force generals who demanded a more thorough approach.

Lasting until 1969 (mere months after the first moon landing), Project Blue Book had investigated over 12,000 reported incidents!  The final report claimed no evidence of extraterrestrial activity or of any sort of super technology.  Of course, with that many incidents, some did go unexplained.  All the reports are available on request from the government

The name for Project Blue Book apparently stems from the essay test booklets college students are so familiar with.

Of course, the end of the project did not mean the end of people reporting encounters, and the Air Force continues to catalog and investigate such reports without the trappings of big official project.  The closing of Blue Book and its negative conclusions also generated plenty of disagreement and conspiracy theories.  Many people and UFO oriented organizations consider the whole project to have been a white-wash, cover-up, or plain old incompetence and that the U.S. government is hiding the “real” results from us!

Whether or not you believe the official results is largely up to the individual, and certainly the lack of government credibility affects that perception.  Natural atmospheric phenomena, birds, airplanes, balloons, and secret Air Force weapons being tested are all possible explanations, as are real extraterrestrial vehicles!

Plus, even with Project Blue Book shut down, the alleged sightings by even Air Force personnel have continued long after that fateful day on December 17, 1969.

Question for students (and subscribers): Have you ever seen a UFO?  Please let us know in the comments section below this article.

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Historical Evidence

UFO buffs and scholars alike have written on this project over the past few decades.  Some of the work produced includes…

Air Force United States.  USAF Fact Sheet 95-03 Unidentified Flying Objects and Air Force Project Blue Book.  2012.

Randle, Kevin.  Project Blue Book Exposed.  Marlowe & Company, 1998.

Steiger, Brad.  Project Blue Book: The Top Secret UFO Findings Revealed!  Ballantine Books, 1976.


About Author

Major Dan is a retired veteran of the United States Marine Corps. He served during the Cold War and has traveled to many countries around the world. Prior to his military service, he graduated from Cleveland State University, having majored in sociology. Following his military service, he worked as a police officer eventually earning the rank of captain prior to his retirement.