March, 1997

Walter F. Rowe
Department of Forensic Sciences
George Washington University

Seeing is believing? This talk will show how photographs can be analyzed and identified as fakes. Photographs can be made in various ways. What manipulations in front of the lens (rather than computer manipulation later) are used to create fake pictures.

The talk will discuss several famous examples of forgeries, most of them you have seen in "historical" references, including: the McMinnville--Oregon flying saucer photograph, German soldiers attacking in 1944 in the Battle of the Bulge, the Cottingley fairies, motion pictures during the Battle of the Somme in 1916 showing British soldiers advancing, and casualties at the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863.

Saturday, March 22, 1997, 2:00pm -- 3:30pm
Bethesda Library,
7400 Arlington Road,
Bethesda, Maryland

Everyone Welcome -- Members and Non-members No admission charge

Call the NCAS Skeptic Line at 301-587-3827 for further info.


March, 1997 represents a milestone for NCAS -- our tenth anniversary. Stan Bigman, Sean O'Neill, Phil Klass, Grace Denman, Jamy Swiss and Chip Denman were brought together by CSICOP. Stan and Sean arranged for a mailing to the Skeptical Inquirer subscriber list for the Washington, DC area, and about 120 showed up at the first public meeting. Stan was the interim president and a number of people volunteered to serve on an interim board until bylaws and elections could be organized.


NCAS, for its April 19 meeting, will present Col. Richard Weaver, co-author of the Air Force's Roswell report, to discuss his investigation of the purported flying saucer crash at Roswell, New Mexico. He will show how many of the stories now being circulated by UFO enthusiasts regarding this crash (such as alien bodies and alien autopsies) have prosaic explanations in events associated with Air Force research programs and routine Air Force flight operations.


There will be a 2-hour A&E Special, "Scams, Schemes & Scoundrels" on Easter Sunday, March 30th. James Randi hosts a program on famous hoaxes and swindles.


The James Randi Educational Foundation is soliciting nominations for the Annual Pigasus Award. Submit items for the following categories:

1. The scientist who said or did the silliest thing related to the supernatural, paranormal or occult, in 1996.

2. The funding organization that supported the most useless study of a supernatural, paranormal or occult claim in 1996.

3. The media outlet that reported as fact the most outrageous supernatural, paranormal or occult claim in 1996.

4. The "psychic" performer who fooled the greatest number of people with the least effort in 1996. Please respond with nominations by e-mail (, post (JREF, 201 SE Davie Blvd, Ft. Lauderdale FL 33316), or fax (954-467-1660). Results will be announced on April 1, 1997.

Last Change: March 10, 1997