Follow me down this rabbit hole for a minute if you will. A few months ago I stumbled on information about how Gordon, Wisconsin was the epicenter of a flurry of UFO sightings and encounters in the early 1970s. Eugene Lundholm was a librarian at the University of Wisconsin-Superior who also became a UFO investigator. He was the guy in the Northland that you would want to see at the time to talk about UFOS.

UFO Author Bob Pratt Visited Twin Ports

Author & journalist Bob Pratt visited Lundholm in 1975 to look into some of these UFO stories. Pratt says that he wasn't a believer before this trip, but after talking with Lunholm's witnesses he started to change his mind. A recount of a 1974 UFO sighting was just the beginning.

"Soda Pop" Factor

In the '60s and '70s, there was a thing called the "Soda Pop" factor when it came to UFO witness credibility. Investigators would get the knack after a while on how to tell if someone was telling the truth. As the story goes, a witness at one point described how they just off the cuff started their story with, "I went across the road to get a soda pop. That's when I looked up and saw the thing." These small details like the soda pop are not at all important to the story, except that the little nuances add credibility. Why would someone add a little detail like that unless they were telling a real story?

For Bob, he describes his "soda pop" moment with a witness first happening in 1975 in Two Harbors.

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The Two Harbors UFO Sighting From Retired Dock Worker

I found details of this interview in a document from MUFON and the Black Vault. Lundholm and Pratt visited a UFO witness at his residence near Two Harbors in 1975. The man's name was Adolph Birkland, and he was an old man who once worked on the Lake Superior ore docks and railroad. He lived just a few miles outside of town in a small white house at the end of a dirt road. He couldn't remember the exact date of the UFO sighting but said it had happened in September of 1974.

Birkland said that he had gone to bed, but before he fell asleep the whole house lit up. He thought a car was coming down the road. The light became stronger and it lit up the house like it was daylight outside. Then, an object came sailing slowly in from the woods, cross the Knife River, and then floated across his garden.

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The object came within about 60 feet of his house. He described it as six feet long and not quite a foot thick. It had lights on the top and bottom and had six or seven little red lights shaped like teardrops pointed back on the sides.

It didn't make any noise according to Birkman. He continued to watch it crawl along and then passed behind his woodshed. The lights then disappeared and that's the last he saw of it.

Why it was deemed a credible sighting

As Birkman told his story he was very matter of fact. He didn't exhibit a lot of emotion. He just told the story. Then he finished and stared at the floor for a few moments. Then he quietly said, "It was really nice to see, though. It was pretty... prettiest thing I've ever seen in my life." This old man looked up at the gentlemen and his face lit up and he had a sweet smile. As Pratt describes, he seemed to be lost in the memory. That's when Pratt had the "soda pop" moment. He knew he was telling the truth.

A similar object was sighted in Wisconsin

Pratt & Lundholm visited other witnesses for the next several days. A very similar object was described form a witness. Once again a 6-foot long, 1-foot thick object with lights was seen by a woman near Gordon, Wisconsin. Once again, something strange about that area.

Oh, the stories Lundholm could tell

I've been searching for more stories from Lundholm. I think it's fascinating that a World War II veteran, educated librarian, and religious man investigated UFOs right here in the Northland. I found records that show he died in 1999. If you happen to know any surviving relatives, please reach out to me. I'd love to speak with them.

In the meantime, keep those tin foil hats handy.

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