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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1999 > Feb > Feb 1

-=[For The Record]=- Roswell UFO Museum and

From: Wendy Connors <ProjectSign@EMAIL.MSN.COM>
Date: Mon, 1 Feb 1999 10:49:31 -0700
Fwd Date: Mon, 01 Feb 1999 13:25:11 -0500
Subject: -=[For The Record]=- Roswell UFO Museum and

Greetings to the List:

As the discussion regarding the International UFO Museum and
Research Center is taking place on various Lists and Websites, I
would like to take this opportunity to give clarification as to
what I know to be true regarding my visits to the IUFOMRC.

In early July of last year (1998), I and two other historical
researchers received from George Fawcett a letter of
authorization granting unrestricted access to the materials he
and Elmer Robert Sabo donated to the IUFOMRC. Each of us
received a personal, signed copy of this letter. This letter was
also sent to Deon Crosby, former Director of the IUFOMRC,
telling the museum that we researchers would soon be visiting
the museum in order to assist in reviewing the collection and to
give any and all assistance the museum would need as to
archiving and displaying Mr. Fawcett's and Mr. Sabo's
collection.

Upon arriving at the museum we were warmly and graciously
welcomed by Deon Crosby, Laura Stephey, Dennis Balthaser, Max
Littel, Walter Haut and others. We were allowed full access to
the library and consequently spent four + days reviewing the
collections of Mr. Fawcett and Mr. Sabo. During this time Ms.
Crosby, Ms. Stephey and Mr. Balthaser went out of thier way to
ensure our comfort and that any needs we had were met. Since our
time was limited we did not have an opportunity to go through
every wonderful file in the collection, but almost 20,000 pages
were copied to add to other various UFO historical archives.
Many of these documents were shared with other researchers when
we returned to our respective homes following our visit to the
IUFOMRC.

Many items of rare and great ufological historical interest were
discovered. These items were identified and the information
about these items were given to the librarian in order to assist
the IUFOMRC in ensuring that they be preserved in archival
quality plastic sheet protectors, etc. Other items, such as
books, were identified and pulled so that the museum could
prepare them for appropriate archiving. We contacted Bob Girard
at Arcturus books seeking assistance, which he graciously gave,
for the IUFOMRC to determine their monetary value. At the same
time we sat down with Ms. Crosby, Ms. Stephey and Mr. Balthaser
and offered the following suggestions that we felt would benefit
the research library:

A. All rare books should be separated from the general library
shelves, but made available to researchers upon request. This
should include a sign-out/in procedure to ensure that such items
not develop legs and leave the library.

B. UFO periodicals such as newsletters, magazines, etc. be sent
to a bindery where they could be hardbound by volume for easier
storage and to prevent wear and tear by pulling them from file
cabinets which would quickly cause their deterioration.

C. The original personal letters of George Fawcett, to and from
early UFO researchers, should be archived in plastic sheet
protectors and placed in binders. These too should require a
sign-out/in requirement and not removed from the library proper
and made available to select historical researchers. At the same
time we recommended that a xeroxed hard copy of these letters be
made, bound and available to researchers to use when the
orginals would not be necessary.

D. All audio recordings on reel to reel tape should be dubbed to
cassette for availability to researchers and the reel to reel
tapes be archived in inert plastic boxes and preserved.

E. Photographic slides should be sent to a reputable
photographic developer and prints made of them. These prints
should be housed in archival quality photo binders and the
orginal slides archived.

F. The Fawcett/Sabo UFO investigation case files should be
xeroxed, placed in binders and available to persons visiting the
library. However, the orginals should be placed in archival
quality sheet protectors and archived.

G. Display of items from the Fawcett/Sabo collection should be
rotated on a yearly basis. These items should be placed in
archival quality display frames/fixtures/etc.

There were many other suggestions offered. As we were ready to
leave the museum, a sizeable monetary donation was given to the
museum library. Although nothing was ever suggested or implied
by Ms. Crosby, etc., and the fact that two of us used our own
personal copiers, toner and paper, this donation was given
freely to cover the cost of duplication in which the museum
normally would have charged 10 cents a copy and received a
profit for the library coffers. We felt that this was only fair
and proper to do. Ms. Crosby, etc. were pleased to receive this
monetary windfall without having to use it to replace paper,
toner, etc.

At the time of our visit to the IUFORMRC library, Ms. Crosby
told us that the museum sincerely appreciated our efforts and
expertise in sharing ufological knowledge in which many of them
at the museum were unaware of and that we were welcome to return
at any time. She also said that the museum would honor Mr.
Fawcett's desire that we have complete and unrestricted access
to his materials in the future. Since our time was limited and I
was only four hours from Roswell, I would continue to visit the
library and review all new additions Mr. Fawcett would be
sending over the course of the next several years. I would also
make copies of those items that are of an historical nature with
the other two researchers.

I again visited the IUFOMRC a couple of weeks later with my
fellow researcher/collaborator and friend, who came to visit and
to assist in the second Loedding interview. We arrived at the
library several days following the Loedding interview. He is a
very professional ufologist and has worked many years as the
Director of an Historical Society. Highly educated and versant
in grant writing and funding procedures, he applied for the
position of director for the IUFOMRC. I introduced him to Mr.
Glenn Dennis and Mr. Max Littell. Mr. Dennis accepted his
resume, looked at it and said, "All this educated people's
resume stuff is way over my head," as he waved his arms over his
head; the resume in his hands. He then said he would review it
and get together with me and my friend after lunch. Mr. Dennis
did not return the rest of the day to talk to my friend even
though Mr. Dennis knew that we would be spending only one day at
the museum. My friend had traveled at great personal expense to
visit the IUFOMRC and to submit his resume. Later, Mr. Bathaser
and myself apologized to him at dinner for the unprofessional
behavior of Mr. Dennis.

Ms. Crosby had left the IUFOMRC quite suddenly. She had taken a
job in Texas as a director of a Ronald McDonald House. This was
very sad since she was a very gracious and astute director of
the IUFOMRC while there. She made everyone who visited feel
welcomed and comfortable and went out of her way to ensure that
researchers where given any and all assistance necessary during
their stay. The same graciousness and cordiality was given by
Ms. Stephey and the former Investigator for the IUFOMRC, Dennis
Balthaser. They were not only people who gave of their time to
the museum, but made a constant attempt to keep up on what
researchers were involved in, what new developments within the
UFO community were and asked a billion questions in their
attempt to be adequately informed in the field of Ufology. They
gave honest and concise answers, to not only visitors to the
museum, but to researchers questions as well.

At the time of my third visit to the IUFOMRC just two weeks
later, I found the situation 180 degrees from just a month
earlier. When I visited the library to review the new materials
and to continue reviewing areas not completed on the prior visit
by the three of us a month earlier, I was warmly welcomed by Ms.
Stephey and Mr. Balthaser. However, they were both very taciturn
and nervous. I inquired as to how things were going at the
IUFOMRC. They both remained tight-lipped, but the feeling of
uneasiness was there. Discussions between us were made in
generalities instead of the prior openness and cordiality when
Ms. Crosby was the director. I did find out that Ms. Stephey had
been injured in an automobile accident a week earlier and was in
constant pain. She was under the care of several doctors.

While sitting in the library going through the Fawcett materials
the new office manager, Glenda Schaffer came in. I smiled, but
she gave no response other than to look at me. Gone was the
friendliness and good will given by Ms. Crosby and the others
from just a month before. Later, I asked Ms. Stephey what was
going on and who the woman was that came into the library. She
said that she was the new office manager and was filling in for
the directors position until a new director could be hired. I
stated to Ms. Stephey that Ms. Schaffer didn't appear to be very
friendly or cordial. Later, Ms. Stephey told me that Ms. Shaffer
had wanted to know who I was and why I was in the library. I
immediately went to Ms. Schaffer's office and introduced myself
and to explain why I was there. She did not appear interested
when I told her that I was one of the researchers Mr. Fawcett
allowed access to his materials and that the museum could use as
a resource for displaying his materials and archiving of his
collection. She told me that she had made some changes and that
researchers would be required to check with her office prior to
using the library. I was, to put it mildly, dumbstruck. I
certainly didn't object to her "new requirements," but I
certainly could understand the new attitude pervading the
museum. She told me that she had never seen Mr. Fawcett's letter
and would not adhere to his wishes even if she found such a
letter from Mr. Fawcett.

Before leaving the museum I was approached by Mr. Dennis and
asked what changes I felt the museum should do in order to be
more professional. I answered that the museum would benefit
greatly by hiring a qualified director who was well versed, not
only in ufology, but in grant writing and funding scenarios. I
again recommended my friend. Mr. Dennis asked me what my friend
would desire as to a salary. I replied I didn't know, but I
would check on this. Mr. Dennis also asked me what I thought
should be done with the library. I gave him suggestions. Then,
Mr. Dennis, Ms. Stephey, Mr. Balthaser, myself and a few others
visited next door to the offices that would be converted to the
new library facility.

These last few months have been surreal. I have seen the IUFOMRC
go from a warm, charming place with caring and knowledgable
people attempting to bring professionalism to its rank, to what
can only be described as another tourist trap. Gone are the few
knowledgable ufologists and people who kept the museum running
well on a day to day basis. It is really sad.

Wendy Connors

Project SIGN Research Center
InterLink Site Directory
http://www.evansville.net/~slk/InterLink.html

Wendy Connors

Project SIGN Research Center
InterLink Site Directory
http://www.evansville.net/~slk/InterLink.html

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