Area 51 Secrets and Myths

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By now, surely everyone has heard about Area 51, especially if you have any interest whatsoever in science fiction, space and the possibility of aliens and even alien encounters. However, the area that most know as Area 51 actually does exist, and it is a very remote area of the United States Airforce Facility known as the Edwards Air Force Base. This area is also a part of the Nevada Test and Training Range, which could possibly explain SOME of the possible unidentified flying objects (often referred to as UFOs), but maybe not all of them. Let’s take a look at some of the secrets and myths that surround this fascinating locale!

Its Existence Revealed

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The really cool thing about Area 51 is that it was always intended to be a secret. However, back in 1967, the director of the CIA accidentally leaked a memo making reference to the area. Of course, some people wonder if it was really all that accidental.

U2 Spy Plane Incident

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The Lockhead U2 spy plane was first tested in Area 51, and it was used for surveillance over the Soviet Union. In 1960, one of these planes even crashed right over the Soviet Union during a spying spree.

The Very First Drone Test Flight

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In 1964, the first test flight of an unmanned drone occurred right in the dessert at Area 51. During the fourth test flight, misfortune struck. The drone and its carrier plane were both destroyed, and one of the crew members was killed.

Accusations of Dumping Toxic Waste

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Due to the secrecy of the area, some people have believed that the government sometimes took advantage of this to use it as a place to dump toxic waste. There were claims that some of the workers died, and that their widows filed lawsuits, which were, of course, dismissed due to national security.

Foreign Aircraft Testing

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Airplanes that were captured from foreign countries and agencies were brought to Area 51 to be tested for new technology that could be utilized by the United States. To take this a step further, some people speculate that there are also UFOs on the property that are also being examined.

Its First Official Admittance

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In 2013, Area 51 was finally spoken into reality by the CIA. Later that year, even President Obama made a comment about Area 51, making him the very first president to ever actually bring up its existence as a fact.

Codenames

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While it was being built, Area 51 was known by a handful of different aliases. These codenames included “Groom Lake”, “Watertown”, “Paradise Ranch” and Edgar Allen Poe’s “Dreamland”.

Accidental Area 51 Photographs

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In 1974 on NASA Skylab’s flight, some inexperienced astronauts actually photographed Area 51 from space. During this time, confidential papers showed that Area 51 was the only site in the world that was banned from being photographed from space.

Life for Workers at Area 51

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It seems that back in its early days, the only entertainment at Area 51 was a tennis court and a bowling alley. However, they did receive top-rated meals, with entrees like steak and lobster on the menu.

Budget Cutbacks?

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It has been rumored that even top-security government facilities like Area 51 may even experience budget cuts. It seems that in the course of a year, approximately 200 employees were either dismissed or laid off.

Helicopter Testing

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It seems that helicopters were even tested at Area 51, but not just any helicopters. The modified Black Hawks that were flown in 2011 for the assassination of Bin Laden were speculated to have been modified there.

Unmanned Surveillance Aircraft

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Surveillance seems to provide information that there is a new project going on at Area 51. Tyler Rogoway, a defense journalist, admits that there are plans for an unmanned, long-range surveillance aircraft.

Moon Landing Hoax

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It is plain knowledge that many Americans believe that the entire moon landing was an absolute hoax. However, what you may not know is that this is thought to have taken place at Area 51.

UFO Sightings

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For some reason, there was a huge spike in UFO sightings in 1952. A large portion of these sightings were in areas close to Area 51. Was this just coincidence, or are alien aircraft really being stored and tested at Area 51.

A-12 Crash

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The A-12 was a supersonic plane that was designed for surveillance and tested at Area 51. One of these planes crashed, and pilot Ken Collins sent three civilians who rescued him in the opposite direction to deter them from figuring out what the plane was and where it had come from.

Former Employee Meetings

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Employees who once worked at Area 51 just can’t quite shake the place. In fact, many of them regularly meet to discuss only the declassified aspects of their employment in the Nevada dessert,

Super Top Secret

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Even though some things may be top secret, of course, some people do have clearance to know its deepest, darkest secrets. But Area 51 is a little different. This is all truly on a “need to know” basis, and even the president doesn’t have complete clearance.

Project Have Donut

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While this may be a rather weird title, this was actually the codename for a real-life project at Area 51. For this project, the United States would covertly acquire Russian MIG fighter planes.

Extraterrestrial Highway

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On Nevada State Route 375 is a highly unique sign. It reads “Extraterrestrial Highway”, and it was named as such by the state due to the countless UFO sightings seen in this area.

Its Real Name

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Did you know that Area 51 is only a nickname for this secret area out in the Nevada dessert? On an official level, it is called Air Force Flight Test Center, Detachment 3.

President Clinton and Area 51

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Of course, President Bill Clinton never mentioned Area 51 in public, but he did a little behind-the-scenes work where it was involved. In fact, he played a part in the executive order that kept Area 51 from being investigated or being part of any legislation.

Secret Employee Entry

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Sometimes it was so necessary to hide employees from the public eye that rather extreme methods of transportation were used. In fact, small aircraft were used to fly employees in to Area 51 from Las Vegas.

From Agency to Agency

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It is rather unclear why Area 51 has been transferred from one agency to another. However, back in 1970, Area 51 was transferred in ownership from the Central Intelligence Agency to the Air Force.

No Wi-Fi

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You would think that a place like Area 51 would have the best technological advances available. However, so as to ensure there can be no hacking, Area 51 has absolutely no Wi-Fi or internet connection whatsoever.

British Area 51

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The United Kingdom frequently works alongside the United States in many of their projects. I wouldn’t expect Area 51 to be any different, as that it has been reported that they also share the Area 51 space for their own research.

Russian Research

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Scientists also used Area 51 as a place to comb through important materials that could be vital to national security. In fact, Pytor Ufimtsev, a Russian electrical engineer and theoretical physicist, provided access to the United States for his work and research.

Area 51’s Original Purpose

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While Area 51 has been used for many things throughout the years, some of its uses may be rather ordinary. During World War II, it was used as a gun range for the Army Air Corp.

Origination of the Name

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You may wonder where the name “Area 51” actually originated from, and the answer is quite simple, with nothing at all to do with little green men. There are several Atomic Energy Commission’s Nevada Proving Grounds, and this one just happens to be the 51st.

A Near Reveal

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In 2005, during an inquiry for public records, the government was put in a position to have to reveal some information about Area 51. However, they did not call it by its name, but instead made reference to it as the Nellis Range Complex.

No Passenger Flights

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Area 51 is kept so secret that a lot of odd things occur there, and there are also a lot of restrictions. No passenger flights fly over this area at an altitude to where anything of consequence can be observed.

Jimmy Kimmel

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On Jimmy Kimmel Live, Area 51 has been brought up quite frequently. In fact, President Bill Clinton actually spoke of Area 51 on air, revealing that it is a site used for specialized, secret testing.

Sputnik 13

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At one time, the government was very afraid that the Soviet Union’s Sputnik 13 could possibly be able to gain too much information about Area 51. However, it was discovered that this was not the case.

Secret Runway

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Surely, with the top-secret projects that go on at Area 51, there is definitely need for a runway, but not just any runway. This stretch at Area 51 is almost two miles long.

Safety for Workers

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From times to time, workers have fallen ill at Area 51, just like in our information about hazardous wastes. However, this was definitely not the only time that a number of employees have fallen ill, but of course, the details are all classified.

Early Days

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In the early origins of Area 51, it was utilized for yet another reason. In 1941, it was used for a training center known as the Indian Springs Airfield Auxiliary Number One.

Tourists Photos

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Obviously, tourists taking photos and videos is sometimes an issue for Area 51. However, it is difficult to stop this from happening, and every year, thousands of tourists creep as close as they dare to escape with images as keepsakes.

Working in Darkness

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At one point, Area 51 was chosen to be the testing grounds for the A-12 Oxcart, so a longer runway had to be built. However, drawing attention just wouldn’t do, so much of the work was done at night.

Airspace Expansion

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To also further accommodate the testing area for the A-12 Oxcart, the entire grounds were expanded. Over 38,000 acres of land were added on, as that it took 186 miles just for the pilots testing the aircrafts to make a U-turn.

Space Equipment

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Area 51 was not only used for aircraft testing. An adjoining nuclear testing ground was ideal for research on the land rovers and life support systems.

UFO Sightings Data

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Research and data has shown that there is a scientific breakdown on the percentages of UFO sightings. It is said that 90% of them can actually be fairly easily debunked. However, a good 10% of them are unexplained.

The CIA’s Conclusion

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Even the CIA can’t always debate the fact that UO sightings just don’t happen. Therefore, they have actually admitted that “there is a remote possibility that they may be interplanetary aircrafts”. Wow!

We Believe!

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Now, across the globe, it seems that people just want to believe in the possibility that people or “things” from other galaxies have visited our planet. In fact, in a recent study 70% of people residing in the United States believe that aliens DO exist!

Roadside Attractions

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As you make your way as close to Area 51 as you can get, expect to see some oddities. You can find everything from the world’s largest firecracker to alien-inspired beef jerky!

Area 51 Accommodations

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Of course you need a place to stay when visiting Area! The Little Aleinn offers food, lodging and more right along the Extraterrestrial Highway.

Area 51 Alien Center

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With so much hoopla surrounding Area 51, there is a center for visiting tourists. It offers a diner and plenty of Area 51 merchandise.

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