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The 1954 French flap:

The index page for the 1954 French flap section of this website is here.

September 27, 1954, Buttes-Chaumont, Paris:

Reference for this case: 27-sep-54-Buttes-Chaumont.
Please cite this reference in any correspondence with me regarding this case.


The newspaper Le Parisien for September 28, 1954, reported they received three phone calls the evening before at about 10 p.m., reporting the passage of a luminous disk on Paris.

Mr. Ilias, 18 rue David-d'Angers, was the first to call, and told to the newspaper:

"I was making a little tour with my wife, when we saw a luminous craft, a bit like a neon-lit disk passing over the Buttes-Chaumont. It stopped for five or six seconds, then it set off again at full speed in the east-north direction."





Several of our readers took the trouble to call us last night, around 10 o'clock, to tell us about an observation that had moved them deeply.

It was Mr. Ilias, 18 rue David-d'Angers, who first informed us:

"I was making a little tour with my wife," he told us, when we saw a luminous craft, a bit like a neon-lit disk passing over the Buttes-Chaumont. It stopped for five or six seconds, then it set off again at full speed in the east-north direction."

Moments later, Mr. Thibaut, who lives at 78, avenue Secrétan, confirmed to us the words of Mr. Ilias:

- Is it a flying saucer? I would not swear it, but it was a luminous disc which, after a short stop above the Buttes-Chaumont, sped towards Montmartre.

And, in Montmartre, Mr. Georges Chapty, who lives at 36, rue Jouffroy, saw, too, luminous "craft".

- I saw it arrive from the east of Paris, it stopped a short moment above the Sacré-Coeur, then it left again at full speed without changing course - that is to say in the direction north northwest.

It should be noted that our volunteer correspondents are careful not to say that they saw a flying saucer. But they agree on the direction, the speed and the luminosity of the mysterious craft.

[Ref. aml1:] AIME MICHEL:

Aimé Michel reports what Mr. Ilias, of 18, rue David-d'Angers in Paris, communicated to him by letter: on September 27, 1954, at about 10 P.M., he was walking in the city with his wife when they saw a luminous machine similar to a neon-lit dis which came in the sky from the East at a fast speed.

The witness reports that when the luminous disc arrived above Buttes-Chaumont it suddenly stopped during five or six seconds, after that it went in the direction of the North.

According to the context noted by Aimé Michel, the witness and his wife were in the districts close to Buttes-Chaumont and Montmartre during the observation.

(Note: in the reprints of 1977 and later, Mr. Ilias is spelled Mr. Illias.)

[Ref. lgs2:] LOREN GROSS:

Paris. September 27th.

[... other Paris area...]

Another witness to a UFO in the area was a M. Ilias of 18 Rue David d'Angers:

"I was taking a little stroll with my wife when we noticed in the sky something like a neon-lighted disk, coming from the east at high speed. When it reached the Buttes Chaumont, it suddenly stopped above them for five or six seconds, then went off toward the north." 141.

The source "141" is detailed as: "Michel, Aime. Flying saucers and the Straight-Line Mystery. p.86."


The author indicates that on September 27, 1954, a disc hovers on Montmartre and the Buttes-Chaumont.

[Ref. lgs1:] LOREN GROSS:

This US ufologist said nothing of the case but reproduced the article of Le Parisien ([lpn1]).

[Ref. uda1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 27 September 1954 at 22:00 in "Buttes Chaumont", France, "Hovered." And: "A hovering object was observed. Multiple independent witnesses. One object, about 5 feet across, was observed by three witnesses for a few minutes (Ilias; Lapergue)."

The sources are indicated as "Michel, Aime, Flying Saucers and the Straight-Line Mystery, S. G. Phillips, New York, 1958; Poher, Claude, Etudes Statistiques Portant sur 1000 Temoignag, Author, undated; Vallee, Jacques, Computerized Catalog (N = 3073)".

[Ref. ubk1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
19540927 27.09.1954 Buttes Chaumont France 22.00 NL



We have reports from three apparently independent people in Paris:

  1. Mr. Ilias, 18, rue David-d'Angers.
  2. Mr. Thibaut, 78, avenue Secrétan.
  3. Mr. Chapty (Chappuis?), 36, rue Jouffroy.

("Montmartre" is at the same position than the "Sacré-Coeur").

The distance between Mr. Thibaut and Mr. Ilias home is 1.17 km in a straight line. Mr. Chapty is 5.10 km from Mr. Thibaut.

Unfortunately we do not know exactly where Mr. Ilias was, because he was doing "a little tour". The positions of the other two witnesses are not certain either, maybe they were at home, maybe not.

One can only say that there is no apparent contradiction as to the position they attributed to the "disk".

I obviously thought of a meteor; but I have big doubts:

- Three witnesses, and not one of them mentions any trail.

- Three witnesses and all speak of a stop. I know there may be an illusion of a stop when one follows a meteor with one's eyes, but it depends a lot on the viewing angle. This happens when the meteor seems to "rise" when coming from behind the horizon, and then seems to "accelerate" when approaching.

Here we have Mr. Chapty well in the West of the Buttes-Chaumont, seeing the "disc" arrive from the East of Paris, seeing it stop in the direction of the Sacré-Coeur, which is almost that of Buttes-Chaumont where both other witnesses see it and one of them says it stops; then, says Mr. Chapty, it goes to the north-northwest. He thus has the trajectory of the "disc" parading before his eyes from his right to his left, with perhaps a turn, an angle of view certainly different from that of the two other witnesses. This does not seem to me at all conducive to an illusion of stopping.

This is all very puzzling. But alas, no investigation, no total duration, no elevation angle...

So, if a trivial explanation is needed at all costs, it would be a meteor; but I am hardly convinced.


(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Buttes-Chaumont, Paris, Illias, Ilias, disc, luminous, neon, fast, stop


[----] indicates sources that are not yet available to me.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross April 13, 2004 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross January 29, 2010 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Addition [uda1].
1.1 Patrick Gross February 11, 2010 Addition [jca1].
1.2 Patrick Gross February 9, 2017 Addition [ubk1].
1.3 Patrick Gross July 29, 2019 Additions [lpn1], [lgs1], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."
1.4 Patrick Gross April 15, 2022 Addition [lgs2].

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This page was last updated on April 15, 2022.