This week on The Micah Hanks Program, we lead off with a story of odd magic and the strange disappearance of the famous “Wizard Rock” bolder in Arizona, and the even more unusual reappearance of the massive stone several days later. We also touch on the “secret” society known as Freemasonry, and why they aren’t actually as mysterious (anymore) as many would think.

Then getting to the heart of our conversation, we turn our attention back to a familiar topic, but with new questions: a flap of sightings in the skies over America between 1896 and 1897 of odd “airships” of unexplained origin. What was the source of lights that were being reported in various parts of the country, first in Sacramento, California, and later further East and in other locales? Many alleged inventors were appearing in the popular press of that era, some of whom had actually published designs for flying vehicles with the U.S. Patent Office.

Is it possible that some of the strange reports of lights, and even large cigar-shaped aircraft resembling dirigibles, could have been the result of intrepid inventors who were ahead of the aviation innovation game over America by a few years? If so, what can we learn about the broader UFO phenomenon from taking a historic approach to the study of odd things seen in the skies over time?

Below are links to stories featured in this week’s episode: 


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Author: Micah Hanks

Micah Hanks is a writer, researcher, and podcaster. His interests include areas of history, science, archaeology, philosophy, and the study of anomalous phenomena in nature. He can be reached at

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