Category: Alien Photos

Koi Alien Photo 1

The first photograph in APCAT is one of the most infamous “alien” photos, sometimes referred to as the "Silverman".

This photo was been discussed in several books and publications since 1950 onwards.

Most websites which feature this photo contain few, if any, of the details known about this photo. For example, at the link below the photo appears in a section entitled "ETs, genuine : The following pictures are most likely 100% authentic". On that webpage it has a caption "1949, New Mexico. Source and story unknown, but probably authentic. It can not be excluded the small being that can be seen is not of extraterrestrial origin":

A copy of this photograph appears in UFO documents released by the FBI .One resident of Winchester, Virginia forwarded a copy of the photograph to the FBI in 1967 and a response dated 3 October 1967 sent in the name of J Edgar Hoover stated "I can assure you the photograph you mentioned does not represent employees of this Bureau" (FBI., 1967).   The same letter also states that "the investigation of Unidentified Flying Objects is not and never has been a matter that is within the investigative jurisdiction of the FBI" - a statement that was rather misleading given the FBI's prior involvement in investigating UFO reports which has been demonstrated by other documents released by the FBI.

Putting together information from various sources, this photograph appears to have been:

(1) published in the German newspaper [magazine?] Neue Illustrierte (on page 3 of the edition published on or about 1 April 1950, with the title "Der Mars-Mensch").

(2) admitted to have been a hoax / joke just a few days later. This admission has very rarely been mentioned in discussions of the photograph online or in print.

The history of the publication of this photograph in UFO books and publications tells a rather sorry tale.  Some correct information has appeared in a few publications but not been disseminated while, on the other hand, false information in popular books has been repeated.

Sections below:

1. The relevant image

2. Stories and claims relating to this image

3. The real background to this image

4. Relevant online forum discussions

5. Further references and resources

6. Other material

1. The relevant image

2. Stories and claims relating to this image

Many of the publications of this photograph online and in print are accompanied by a brief suggestion that it relates to a UFO crash near Mexico City.

Such references are sometimes coupled with statements that the  alien corpse was sent to Germany for study.

3. The real background to this image

The issue of Neue Illustrierte dated 5th April 1950 admitted that the photo was an April Fool hoax.

4. Relevant online forum discussions

This photograph frequently appears in discussions in online forums, including on the popular website in discussions at:

The photograph has also been discussed on the website of the Fortean Times in a discussion at:

5. Further references and resources


This photo was discussed by prominent ufologist Donald E Keyhoe in his “Flying Saucers from Outer Space”   (1953) at page 44 (in Chapter 3) of the Henry Holt hardback edition, page 50 of the Tandem paperback edition.  His discussion did not trace the photo back to its source in Germany, but rather to a republication of the photo in the summer of 1950 in a publication called the "Talk of the Times".

He  said:

"[In June 1950] a new story broke, to some Air Force officers the most outrageous of all.  This one, started by a small weekly bulletin, Talk of the Times, was ‘proved’ by two photographs supposed to have been taken in Arizona.  The first showed a huge disc flying at an angle.  The caption read:

‘Hit by flak rockets, the object exploded in a shower of fireworks.  About 20 silvery capsules fell to the ground.’

The second picture showed two men in trench coats, each holding an arm of a queer, shiny figure about three feet high.  Two girls standing nearby seemed to be awestruck by the little man.  The second caption ran:

‘As one silver capsule broke, the first Mars man was captured.  Eyewitness G-Man McKennerich, from Phoenix, reports ‘I was astounded by the importance of this great moment.  For the first time I was seeing a being from another world.  At the same time I was equally amazed by the desperation of this Aluminum Man. His body was covered with a shiny metal foil.  The oberservatory in Phoenix presumes this is for protection from cosmic rays ….’

How the Aluminum Man had survived this fall was not explained.

The ‘little men’ story was not new; Frank Scully had started it in Variety…”

Further details of publications of the photo in 1950 in the "Talk of the Times" and elsewhere are given in a characteristically detailed article by Martin Kottmeyer (a researcher that really should get on with publishing a book).   His article entitled "Varicose Brains, Part 3: Headhunt", which was published in Magonia 44, March 2007, is available online at:


The US Air Force's Project Bluebook appears to have added a copy of this photo to its file on another hoaxed photo, Koi Alien Photo 08 (the "Shaved Monkey hoax"). It is not clear from the file whether this was done because of the similarities between the entity in both photo and whether Project Bluebook believed that the explanation of both photos was the same.

The relevant page from the Project Bluebook files is shown below:


The presence of this photo in the Project Bluebook files regarding the Shaved Monkey Hoax (Koi Alien Photo 08) may explain why some researchers appear to have confused Koi Alien Photo 01 with Koi Alien Photo 08.

There are certainly significant similarities in these two photographs. See, for example, one of the images below relating to Koi Alien Photo 08.




By 1959, reference to a crash near "Mexico City" had emerged, with W Gordon Allen including the photo in his book “Space-Craft from Beyond Three Dimensions” (1959) with the following caption:

“A ‘saucer crewman’ very much like the moon man (or spirit) described by Swedenborg in his writings about the inhabitants of different planets of the solar system with whom, he stated, he had conversations. This photograph is from Germany (note trench coats and North European types), but the ‘saucer crewman’ is from a UFO that crashed near Mexico City; the corpses were sent to Germany for study.  Was he based on Luna?”



This photo appears in the FBI's FOIA documents online at page 140 of 141 of the FBI's UFO PDF file number 14, available online at:

The relevant correspondence appears on the surrounding pages of that file and I have included relevant images below.


This is the letter from an unnamed resident of Winchester, Virginia forwarding copy of the photograph to the FBI in 1967:



The copy on the FBI website of the relevant image enclosed with that letter is rather poor:


A response dated 3 October 1967 was sent in the name of J Edgar Hoover, asserting "I can assure you the photograph you mentioned does not represent employees of this Bureau".   The same letter also states that "the investigation of Unidentified Flying Objects is not and never has been a matter that is within the investigative jurisdiction of the FBI" - a statement that was rather misleading given the FBI's prior involvement in investigating UFO reports which has been demonstrated by other documents released by the FBI.




A more prominent UFO book republished the photo in 1980. Margaret Sachs included the photo in her book “The UFO Encyclopedia” (1980) at page 75 (in an entry entitled “Crashed Flying Saucers”) of the Corgi softback edition.  The photo was accompanied by a caption which stated “The alleged victim of a rough flying saucer landing near Mexico City”.  The article states:

“During the 1950s a Cologne newspaper published a photograph depicting the alleged victim of a rough spaceship landing near Mexico City.  Two men in trenchcoats hold the arms of the twenty-eight-inch Martian corpse while two women look on. The origin of the photograph remains a mystery. Some researchers have concluded that the creature is either a wax mannequin or a shaved monkey. Two versions of the photograph are in circulation, one showing the diminutive being wearing boots and a loincloth, and one showing him without these garments”.

Another book published in 1980 also included the photo.  Robert Rickard and Richard Kelly included it in  their book “Photographs of the Unknown” (1980) at page 96 (in the unnumbered chapter entitled “Paranormal Persons”) of the NEL softcover edition. It was accompanied by the following caption:

“Not much is known about this photograph, said to show the body of a dead pilot of a UFO which came down near Mexico City in the 1950s.  The body was believed to have been sent for examination in Germany, but that was the last anyone heard of it.”


Fred Whiting’s article  “Simians in Spacesuits” at pages 22-23 of “Frontiers of Science” Jan/Feb 1982 (edited by Elizabeth Philip) also referred to the photo and included the following text (which basically summarised the information published in the "UFO Encyclopedia" by Margaret Sachs in 1980 referred to above):

Mexico City Photo Case – Mannequin or Monkey?

"This photograph was published in the 1950s by a Cologne, Germany newspaper.  It is said to show the victim of a rough spacecraft landing near Mexico City.  The two men in trenchcoats are holding the arms of what was described as a twenty-eight inch ‘Martian corpse.

No one knows who took the picture.  Some UFO researchers believe the creature is either a wax mannequin or a shaved monkey.  According to Margaret Sachs’ ‘UFO Encyclopedia’ (Perigee Books, 1980), there are two versions of the photograph in circulation.  One shows the creature naked, and the other shows it more primly dressed in boots and loincloth.”

The newspaper that published photograph and its notable date of publication (i.e. the 1st April) were stated in a more information discussion in 1982.  Loren Gross stated the following his publication “UFOS : A History 1950 April – July” (1982) at page 1:

“April Fool

A curious photo of a tiny man-like creature garbed in a skin-tight suit appears in UFO literature occasionally.  In the picture the critter is being led away by two men in tench coats, the supposed diminutive ‘man’ allegedly a survivor of a crashed flying saucer shot out of the sky by an American anti-aircraft sergeant.  The origin of the photo and the story have remained obscure for decades.

What is the truth?  Well, the storyline is a recognizable variant of the hokum dreamed up by the American con artists Silas M Newton and Leo A GeBaucer.  A wirestory of the Newton and GeBaucer ‘little men from Venus’ story reached Europe, and in Germany the Cologne ‘Neue Illustrierte’ (New Illustrated) took a liking to the yarn and went to the trouble of faking a photo. Why did the ‘Neue Illustrierte’ bother? Few Americans know that the German celebrate April 1st the same way they do. [Frankfurt, Germany. 1 April 50 (AP)].  Such nonsense confused the issue but it never dispelled real concern over the UFO question.”

This publication by Loren Gross had a very limited circulation (as with most of his other publications).  The information it contains was largely overlooked in subsequent  discussions.

The Frankfurt, Germany AP article dated 1 April 1950 cited by Loren Gross appears to be that shown in image "koi_ap_01_s" entitled "Aluminum Covered Man Lands in Saucer - It Says", although this newspaper extract also appears online as being attributed to The Charleson Daily Mail on 6 April 1950 (which appears to be an incorrect attribution, since it seems that there was a relevant article in The Charleston Daily Mail on 6 April 1950 but that article was entitled "Tiny Man, No Less" - I have not yet obtained a copy of that article).




In 1990, Ole Henningsen published an article about the Silverman in the "SUFOI Newsletter", number 10, 1990.  This was followed by articles by him in various publications including an article in English in 1992 entitled "The Silver Man: Retouched Reality?" in The Skeptic (Jan/Feb 1992), translated from the Danish UFO magazine UFO-Nyt.

Ole Henningsen reported that when Claus Westh-Henrichsen, a commercial artist, saw the picture he thought it might have been created by compositing two images : "one is showing a family wheeling a pram along, the other showing a group of jugglers from a circus".   Ole Henningsen commented that it was not logical for the height of the hands of the two men in the photo would be the same "not if they were holding something alive!".

Ole Henningsen also reported that Hans-Werner Peiniger, of the German UFO organisation GEP, believed that the photo came from an April Fool's joke in an (unnamed) "German magazine sometime in the early 1950s" commenting that "alas, nobody has yet been able to trace the magazine in question".  However, Ole Henningsen does state (presumably on the basis of information supplied by Hans-Werner) that the authors of the article were G Falscht and R Logan, commenting that "If you know your German, these names becomes the words 'gefalscht' and 'erlogan' - 'forged' and 'imaginary'! In English, the authors might have been 'D Lusion' and 'M Aginary' It is said that non-German speaking reporters did not get the joke and unwittingly passed the picture on to worldwide picture bureaux".


Pier Luigi Sani wrote an article “Foto di ‘marziani’ e... pesci d'aprile” in the journal “Il Giornale dei Misteri” (GdM) #240, October 1991, pp. 60-62 which refers to the article by Ole Henningsen in the "SUFOI Newsletter", number 10, 1990.


Jenny Randles and Peter Hough in their “Looking for the Aliens” (1991) at pages 173-174 (in Chapter 19) of the Blandford softcover edition.

"A photograph similar to the Wiesbaden hoax stems from about 1952 and shows two 'security men' in trench coats leading off a tiny figure, some 2 or 3 feet (nearly 1 metre) tall. It is completely naked and weirder looking than the one from Germany. There has been speculation that this is a monkey with all its hair shaved off, although the face looks chillingly human. Until very recently nothing was known about the origin of this dubious image. Now, thanks to the Scandinavian UFO Information team and their publication UFO-Nyt, we have some possible answers."

" Ole Henningsen reports various enquiries into the so-called 'silver-man' photograph. For example, commercial artist Claus Westh-Henrichsen had studied it in great detail and found many problems. For instance, he notes that the hand positions of the 'security men' indicate that they were gripping a rigid object. After carrying out tests, he proposes that they were actually pushing a pram!"

"Similarly, it appears that by examining the feet of the two security men and the alien (not fully visible on the print), it transpires that the alien would have to be floating above the ground."

"For these and a host of other reasons, Westh-Henrichsen is certain that the picture is another hoax, formed from an amalgam of a shot of the two men and the 'pram', with the 'alien' superimposed over it."

"Meanwhile Han-Werner Peiniger from a West German UFO group alleges that it is yet another April Fool's joke and notes that the authors are G Falscht and R Logen, which in English is similar to D Bunker and A Fraud (in fact, literal translations would be 'forged' and 'make-believe'). So another classic photograph appears to bite the dust".


James Moseley's book "UFO Crash Secrets" was published by Inner Light, including Koi Alien Photo 01 with the caption "This photo of alleged flying saucer occupant, published originally in a German newspaper in the 1950's, has never been authenticated. The two men leading the "little man" were purported to be FBI agents".



Reuben Stone in his “UFO Investigation” (1993) at page 28 (in the unnumbered chapter entitled “Encounters with the Unknown”) of the Blitz Editions hardback edition.

Photo appears, with the following caption: “Proof of alien contact and government cover-up - this picture, taken in Germany in the 1950s, shows a tiny alien corpse from a saucer that had crashed near Mexico City and had been sent to Europe for analysis.  That, at least, was what many UFO buffs believed, until assiduous research showed that the picture was first seen in an April Fools’ edition of a German student magazine in the early 1970s”.



A German researcher, Klaus Webner, discussed this photo in his book “Wesen Aus Dem Weltraum” (1993) at pages 14-19 (in the unnumbered chapter entitled “Der Mann Vom Mars”) of the Originalausgabe softcover edition.

The photo appears with several pages of discussion in German, which quotes the various statements made about this photograph in several books and magazines during previous decades.  I have not obtained a translation of the entirety of that chapter, but a member of the AboveTopSecret discussion forum (WalterRatlos) generously assisted me by translating the concluding paragraphs of that chapter as follows:


"Upon request, the Federal Bureau of Investigation answered that it had no knowledge and assured me that the persons depicted were not FBI special agents.

In the 70s, the Central Research Net for Unusual Sky Phenomena in Mannheim received a crop of the Mars alien photo in slides positive format. The sender, Ron Smotek from America, commented on it only: "1 April 1950, Cologne". Mr. Smotek did not answer requests for clarification.

In 1981, the American magazine "True UFOs and Outer Space Quarterly Magazine" wrote: "This mysterious and absolutely clever picture was taken in April 1950 and is attributed to a photographer named Adolf Schneider. According to available information it was taken in Cologne, a city in West Germany, and shows two policeman who escort a 2 ½ feet big alien astronaut, dressed in silver clothes. According to the report, the creature was captured in a field outside Cologne, after it was cornered by a group of farmers. (Photograph: Kal Korff)".

There is a ufologist and author named Adolf Schneider. However, he was astonished by my request and assured me that he had nothing to do with the case. Mr Kal Korff in America did not answer my questions in regards to his source.

My research in all relevant archives in Cologne were fruitless. Nobody knew the photo or had ever of it before.

The "Koelner Stadtanzeiger" had published around April 1, 1950 a series of articles titled: "Flying Saucers – An astonishing phaenomenon that causes a stir to the public worldwide".

However, this a general, critical essay; Photos were not included.

At least, I managed to contact the author of this article, Mr. Gunter Doebel. He stated on the whole affair: "I cannot say anything about the picture attached as a photocopy except that it is obviously a forgery. It is highly unlikely that this picture was published in the area of Cologne. As you stated, that it was allegedly published on April 1, it stands to reason that it's publication was intended as an April fools joke.

I learned from the Society for Research of the UFO Phenomenon in Luedenscheid that the photograph in question was published around 1952 in a German magazine. The name of the photographer was reported to be a certain "G Falscht" [note: a play on words, implying the German word gefaelscht, which means faked or forged]. The report was signed by the gentleman "R. Dacht" [note: implies the word erdacht = made up, imagined] and "G. Logen" [note: implies gelogen = lied]."

???? sometime after 1993


Bob Rickard in his Fortean Times article entitled “Shooting Aliens”, Fortean Times 80, pages 22-26

Discussion of this photo on page 22:

“1950 – This widely circulated photograph claimed to show the dead pilot of a craft from Mars that crashed near Mexico City.  The winged or caped body was sent to Germany for study.  The earliest accounts of this picture claim it was taken in Cologne and run in that city’s newspaper and most probably in an April Fool’s type article.  Later variations imply the photo was taken in America and the alien was held up by secret service agents.  Don’t waste time puzzling out why such a sensational secret is depicted on public display – no other details are known.

A study in the Danish UFO journal UFO-Nyt pointed to inconsistencies in the photo suggesting it was a montage of two photographs: one showing two men holding something jointly, probably the handle of a pram, and the other probably of a circus act.  Whatever their origins, it appears that the ‘Silver Man’ was patched over the airbrushed-out pram.  Subsequent claims that the ‘Silver Man’ was a shaved monkey have served to confuse this artifcact with the real ‘Shaved Monkey’ hoax perpetrated in 1953 by Edward Watters. [5,9]”

[5] Ole Henningsen: “The Silver Man: Retouched Reality?”, The Skeptic (Jan/Feb 1992), translated from UFO-Nyt by Helle Nielsen.

[9] Margaret Sachs: The UFO Encyclopedia (Corgi, 1981).

The "real 'Shaved Monkey' hoax perpetrated in 1953 by Edward Watters" mentioned by Bob Rickard is a reference to another photograph which can be found in documents disclosed by the United States Air Force. It is discussed in the entry for Koi Alien Photo 07 in the "Alien" Photograph Catalogue ("APCAT").



Jenny Randles included this photo in her book “Alien Contact – The First Fifty Years” (1997) at page 26 (in the chapter entitled “1954”) of the Collins and Brown hardback edition, with a caption stating:

“Take me to your leader : An alien captured and in the hands of security guards.  This is widely believed to be an April fools hoax”.


The photo was also included by Kevin D Randle and Russ Estes in their book “Faces of the Visitors” (1997) at pages 240-241 (in Part 4) of the Fireside softcover edition.

“Reliability: 0

Narrative: Information about this picture is sketchy at best, and more than one version is available.  It seems that several discs were seen in the Monument Valley on March 21, 1949.  Not long after that, similar craft were seen discharging small cylinders over Mexico City.  A small creature was inside one of them.  He was captured and turned over to the proper authorities.

Although it is claimed that the picture was taken in Mexico, the human subjects’ clothing looks to be European. The picture has never been authenticated.”

No mention was made in this book of the actual source of the photograph.


Alan Baker in his “The Encyclopaedia of Alien Encounters” (1999) at page 188 (in an entry entitled “Photographs of Aliens”) of the Virgin hardback edition.

“Another German hoax, also produced in 1950, involved the supposed capture of a diminutive man from Mars, who is shown in the photograph between two trenchcoated ‘secret service agents’.  According to the story circulated at the time, the UFO pilot, whose craft had crashed near Mexico City, was sent to Germany for study (why he should have been sent to Germany was never made clear).  The Danish journal UFO-Nyt carefully examined the photograph, and concluded that it was fraudulent, drawing attention to the way in which the alien’s tiny hands were held in the agents’ closed fists, rather than their thumbs and fingers, as would have been expected.  According to UFO-Nyt, the two men were actually holding a pram, which had then been painted out of the photograph, to be replaced by the image of the small alien.”


Achim Martin (the individual that provided Loren Gross with copies of the relevant newspaper articles, referred to below) appears to have written a relevant article himself : "Das Geheimnis des Silbermannes", 'CENAP-Report'  #276, Jan-Feb 2002, pp. 3-10 + cover.

I have not yet obtained a copy of this article, which hopefully reproduces both relevant Neue Illustrierte articles (particularly the 5 April 1950 admission of the hoax).


Loren Gross “UFOS : A History 1947 – 59” (2003), pages 29-31 (with image of original Neue Illustrierte article at pages 30-31)


“1 April.  The Cologne, Germany, Neue Illustrierte

Achim Martin has provided a hard to find photocopy of the German newspaper Neue Illustrierte, which has the ‘Silverman’ April Fool article.  (See article on pages 30-31) (See note below from Martin).

‘Dear Mr Gross

Enclosed the article about ‘Silverman’.

In the following issue dated 5th April 1950 it was mentioned, that it was a April Hoax.  The ‘Silverman’ photographed was an artiste of a ice-skater group called ‘The Lidstones’.  Unfortunately, no names of any editors has been mentioned, so that I don’t know exactly how the photo has been produced.  After these long years it is very improbable, that any parties concerned does living today.


Achim Martin.’

(See the monograph ‘UFOs : A History 1950 April – July’, page 1.  Also, see Supplemental Notes 1950 April-July, pp. 4, 56-63).”

My copy of the images of the original Neue Illustrierte article at pages 30-31 of this publication by Loren Gross are very poor.  It is possible to make out the relevant images, but much of the text unreadable. I have included relevant images below:


Here is an enlarged image of the text that from the above extract:


A member of the AboveTopSecret discussion forum (WalterRatlos) kindly translating the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_h" as follows:

"March 21, 1950, 21:45 o' clock, over the famous Monument Valley in Arizona, USA: The first photograph of a “flying saucer”. For weeks, American jet aircraft had been chasing these mysterious sky objects. They were able to take some photographs, but those only showed the light streak of the “flying saucer” as a white streak in the night sky. These machines are able to change their direction suddenly. They rise and evade when they encounter other sky objects. At the moment of direction changing, as the “saucer” was seemingly standing still in the air, anti aircraft Sergeant D. Ussel (13th Airborn Division) “shot” with his remote camera at the flying projectile. Seconds later, hit by air and anti-aircraft rockets, the strange disk exploded in a strange giant firework: about 20 silver glowing capsules fell like heavy rain down to earth."


Being a bit suspicious of the name "D. Ussel", I put the word "dussel" into Google's online translation tool and was offered the following translations from German into English :

1. silly

2. boob

3. dope

4. goof

5. muddler

6. twerp

7. twit

8. goon

9. lemon

10. sucker

11. ninny

While the word "fool" does not appear in the translations suggested by Google, it seems to me that the word "fool" (as in "April fool") would be an appropriate translation of Mr D. Ussel's name...


Again, here are some enlarged images of the text in the above extract:




WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_j" for me as follows:

"22:10 o' clock: report from “Death Valley”: Observing [next 3 or 4 words are unreadable; the first two could be: ghostlike apparition, thus: Observing ghostlike apparition] … in a 150 km radius from the shot down point of the sky object, the population had been alerted. Only one report was received by the War Department. It read: “Saw at first blue-white lights, then clearly body shapes, which were seemingly moving about helplessly and were gliding strangely unencumbered, like divers under water. The apparition did not last. The body shapes dissolved using some trick.”




WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_k" for me as follows:

"When the silver capsule exploded: The first Mars-being “captured”. Eyewitness McKerenich, a G-man from Phoenix, Arizona, reports: “I was aware how special this moment was: for the first time, an inhabitant of Earth saw a visitor from space. But, at the same time, I was shaken. This [unreadable word] being seemed to be filled with an immense desperation. His body was dressed in a jumpsuit made of metal foil. The observatory in Phoenix speculates: [the rest of the sentence is unreadable]"


WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_l" for me as follows:

"The big surprise: the Mars-being is … only 70 cm tall. He was transferred to a special low pressure chamber. The War Department stated explicitly: It is in no way certain whether the planet of origin of these beings is Mars. It is only certain that they are of a planetary origin, i.e. they come from a planet within our own planetary system or from that of a neighboring star. “Our pictures”, continues the War Department, “are the only real photographs. We are warning that there are cheap forgeries circulating, which currently have even found their way into the world press.”"


WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_m" for me as follows:

"Science confronted with new enigmas: The “Mars” writing. Cypher specialists and code inventors are working to find out whether it is a regular Abc or even a mirror writing."

Achim Martin wrote an article about Koi Alien Photo 01 in a publication of CENAP (a German UFO group) and I presume that that CENAP article includes images of the relevant Neue Illustrierte articles - including the 5 April 1950 issue which appears to have admitted the hoax.

It probably goes without saying that I am extremely keen to see the relevant article in that CENAP publication, i.e. Achim Martin, "Das Geheimnis des Silbermannes", 'CENAP-Report' #276, Jan-Feb 2002, pp. 3-10 + cover.




WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_j" for me as follows:


WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_j" for me as follows:


WalterRatlos (a member of the AboveTopSecret forum) kindly translated the text in the image labelled "koi_ap_01_j" for me as follows:

Achim Martin wrote an article about Koi Alien Photo 01 in a publication of CENAP (a German UFO group) and I presume that that CENAP article includes images of the relevant Neue Illustrierte articles - including the 5 April 1950 issue which appears to have admitted the hoax.

It probably goes without saying that I am extremely keen to see the relevant article in that CENAP publication, i.e. Achim Martin, "Das Geheimnis des Silbermannes", 'CENAP-Report' #276, Jan-Feb 2002, pp. 3-10 + cover.

I have repeatedly emailed CENAP to request a copy of the CENAP article by Achim Martin, but have not had any response as yet.

I also note that a (hopefully better) copy of the article from the 1 April 1950 issue of Neue Illustrierte (but NOT the more interesting article dated 5 April 1950 admitting and explaining the hoax) is mentioned as being in file 6 of 9 "n" files held by Barry Greenwood. See:


As for Achim Martin's reference to the Silverman being an artiste of the ice-skating group "The Lidstones", I wonder if the image at the bottom of Koi_AP_01_g is simply a multiple exposure image of an ice skater and Achim Martin's remark in fact has nothing to do with the more famous image in Koi_AP_01_a.

Incidentally, here is a photo of "The Lidstones":



There is a relatively lengthy article in Spanish at the first link below about this photo. Unfortunately, it does not include much of the information that is included in Ole's articles. At the second link below is a (poor) Babelfish translation into English of that article.

A blog article at the link below cites a comment by J Allen Hynek in a magazine called Contactos Extraterrestres that the photo showed a shaved monkey.  The author concludes that he is pretty convinced that the aliens is in fact a monkey.



Greg Bishop, in an article entitled “Alien Photos” on his blog

“I’ve seen this in books and old magazines for years. It’s been proven as a hoax, since the original photo (without the small figure) was located and exposed. It never looked authentic anyway, and the only people who believed it were those who wanted to. It constituted a meme that spread for years, until it was replaced by new ones like the alien in the foil suit”


An article which includes pictures of a model based on the photo is available at.


Jenny Randles discussed this photo again in an article entitled “Alien Photography”, published in Fortean Times magazine in May 2006.  The text available is online at the link below:

After discussing the Wiesbadener Tagblatt alien hoax (Koi Photo 4a), this article states

“A better April Fool was played by another German paper in 1952. This time the alien was much smaller and naked, resembling a hairless monkey. Again, it contained clues pointing to a hoax – not least that the original authors of the accompanying piece translated roughly into English as ‘Mr Fraud’ and ‘Mr Make Believe’!”


The website at the link below featured this photograph in a section entitled  “ETs, genuine : The following pictures are most likely 100% authentic”.


This website included the photo with a caption "1949, New Mexico." and stated "Source and story unknown, but probably authentic. It can not be excluded the small being that can be seen is not of extraterrestrial origin".


A relatively lengthy article by Kentaro Mori in 2009 discussed this photograph's history. It is available at the link below:

Kentaro Mori comments stated that this photo is "one of the most impressive photos of an alleged extraterrestrial creature recovered from crashed UFOs" and included the following:


“For many years it was thought the photo originated from a crash in the USA, but recently it was found it was captured in Germany, shortly before the Second World War. The officers who hold the being are high-ranking members of the SS” [Brazilian UFO mag, n.18, p.18, dec 1991]

It’s one of the most iconic alien images. The men in trenchcoats are described as agents from the FBI, KGB or even SS. None of these is true.


I produced this quick and dirty montage to show how indeed the two men’s hands are aligned, and in a position that suggests they were holding a rigid object. A baby carriage is a very good guess


If any German reader is able to search for Cologne newspapers, particularly around April 1, 1950, they may finally put to a much due rest to this photo".

It is a notable effect of the difficulty of searching the various forms of UFO literature that even considerable efforts by a very able researcher such as Kentaro Mori did not find the various references to the source of this photograph nor (more importantly) the admission of a hoax.



Kevin Randle discussed this photograph again in a book published in mid-2010 - "Crash : When UFOs Fall From the Sky" (2010) at pages 32 and 33.  In the relevant brief discussion he commented that "... two military men [are] holding the long arms of what is supposed to be an alien creature, but what is clearly a monkey.  It is an obvious and well-known hoax".

6. Other Material

Bruno Mancusi has provided the following additional references:


- Jacques Lob and Robert Gigi, 'Ceux venus d'ailleurs', Dargaud, Neuilly-sur-Seine (France) 1973, p. 54. New ed. (3 vol. in 1) : 'Les apparitions OVNI', Dargaud, Neuilly-sur-Seine (France) 1979, p. 126.

- Umberto Telarico (foreword and abstract by Pier Luigi Sani), "I"Marzianino" contestato", 'Il Giornale dei Misteri' #254, December 1992, pp. 58-60 (for Telarico, the photo is genuine)..

- Bruno Mancusi, "Polémique autour de la photo de "l'homme d'aluminium"", 'Ovni-Présence' #50, Mar-Apr 1993, p. 37 (following Sani and Telarico articles).


Achim Martin, "Das Geheimnis des Silbermannes", 'CENAP-Report' #276, Jan-Feb 2002, pp. 3-10 + cover.

Ulrich Magin provided the following additional references  (Magin, 2008):

Klaus Webner: Wesen aus dem Weltraum? Verlag Klaus Webner Produktionen, Wiesbaden 1993, on pp. 14-19.

Anon. (1987): Die retouchierte Wahrheit. CENAP Report 136, June 1987, pp. 34-37 (on Westh-Henrichsen's reconstruction of the original photo as showing a pram, not a silvery man)

T.M. (= Thomas Mehner) (1987): Kinderwagen verkehrt herum. CENAP Report 139, September 1987, p. 43 (letter-to-the-editor suggesting the women in the background, not the men at the front pushed the pram)



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