Saturday, August 26, 2017

Dr Michael J Duggin and Jacques Vallee

Duggin writes to Vallee

In a blog post dated 4 January 2017, I reported on the passing on, of Australian Dr Michael J Duggin. Between at least 1966 and 1973, Duggin took an active interest in UAP. Inter alia, I reported upon a meeting between Duggin and Jacques Vallee in the US, in 1966.

Dr Michael J Duggin
Recently, I was fortunate enough to come across copies of a letter from Dr Duggin to Jacques Vallee, in the digital collection of US researcher Dr. Michael Swords. There was also a copy of a response letter to Duggin from one William T Powers, an associate of both Jacques Vallee, and Dr J Allen Hynek. I will image the letters below, and provide a typed copy of their contents.

'Dept of Physics
University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh Pa 15213
16 July 1966

Dear Dr Vallee,

I am writing to you for two reasons. Firstly, I would like to say how much I have enjoyed your book "Anatomy of a Phenomena" and secondly because it has fallen to me to arrange a lecture or discussion evening on UFOs for the Samovar Club, of which I am a member. This club is principally composed of overseas visitors , like myself to Pittsburgh's various educational and research organisations. Due to the informal nature of this club and its rather restricted size, it is difficult to arrange for speakers on a formal basis. I would be grateful if you would inform me of any groups located in or near Pittsburgh whom I could approach with the object of procuring a speaker. Failing this, it would be greatly appreciated if you could advise me of how I might acquaint myself with recent unclassified data in addition to that documented in your book, so I might deliver the lecture. 

I have always been interested in UFOs and find your suggestions for the re-organisation of procedures for the evaluation of sighting reports and for the analysis of data most interesting.

I shall be returning to Australia in November where I hope to pursue projects which interest me as a metal  physicist. Before returning I should like, if possible, to meet you and discuss the subject of UFOs and learn more of your ideas.

Sincerely yours

Michael J Duggin.
Visiting Assistant Professor of Physics
and Metallurgical Engineering.'

The response from William T Powers, was as follows:

'July 26 1966

Jacques Vallee told me of your letter; as Allen Hynek's assistant in UFO matters I have had occasion to correspond with a Mr William Weitzel of Pittsburgh (in the department of Philosophy). He is very well informed in the UFO question, having investigated a number of cases personally. I have seen his reports on one case and they were excellent.

Weitzel's address is 5709 Woodmont Street, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15217. I am sure he would be interested in helping you conduct a discussion. He is a member of NICAP, of which you have heard, but as far as I can tell a responsible and intelligent member (if that doesn't sound too patronizing).

Dr Hyek has decided to put more time and energy into the investigations, and has made a proposal to the Air Force to reduce their data files to machine-readable format. In conjunction with this move, we are assembling a group of scientists from various places in the world, to correspond together and where possible to carry out field investigations, or at least evaluate investigations done on the more striking cases. This is strictly a voluntary affair, and not for the purposes of publicity. If the informal network can be set up well enough, we might circulate a small newsletter for purposes of communication  (as opposed to the profit motive). If you would be interested in corresponding with us from Australia, we would be most happy to hear from you and to keep you informed. If at the meeting of overseas visitors you find that others might be interested in joining the correspondence, I would be most please to hear from them as well.

I hope that Mr (I believe it is also Dr) Weitzel can help you.

William T Powers.'

Vallee and Duggin

In revisiting copies of Vallee's diaries, volumes one and two I found three references re Duggin. These were:

Image courtesy of Amazon Books

'Chicago. Friday 4 November 1966 (Volume one page 226.)

Also in  town is Dr Duggin an Australian scientist who is doing research privately. We all attended an interview Hynek was doing for WGN and the three of us ended up on camera, lending an international flavour to the show...Late that night I took Duggin and Fontes to their hotels...'

'Belmont. Monday 18 October 1971. (Volume two page 100.)

Mike Duggin, Australian scientist and UFO expert, came to see me at the Electronics Labs on Friday. I demonstrated my full-text landing catalogue to him. Duggin has just completed a tour of the US during which he met with the leaders of both NICAP and APRO. The last time I saw Duggin was in Chicago...'

Belmont. Friday 12 April 1974. (Volume two page 248.)

On Monday I had lunch in Menlo Park with Australian researcher Mike Duggin who gave me a well-documented picture of the UFO phenomenon there. They have a rich history of sightings, good investigations and some troubling photographs.'

These pieces of correspondence, add to our knowledge, re Duggin's interest in UAP.

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