Library and Archives Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Institutional links

The Public

Thematic Guides

Unidentified Flying Objects

Political cartoon entitled I REPEAT, WE SEE NO SIGNS OF INTELLIGENT LIFE
Source

This guide consists of specific references to government sources on Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs).

The National Research Council (NRC) started collecting reports of sightings of UFOs in 1968. It took over this responsibility from the Department of National Defence, which transferred extant sighting reports (dating from 1965) to the NRC. The records consist of index cards on which is entered information on each sighting, and also reports containing more detailed accounts of each sighting. The reports and sightings are arranged in chronological order. Most of the sighting reports were sent to the National Research Council by the Department of National Defence, the Department of Transport and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The NRC ceased to collect reports of sightings in August 1995.

This guide was revised in September 2000.

Government Records

Records of the Department of Transport (RG 12)

The Department of Transport kept reports on UFO sightings between 1976 and 1978.

Transportation; general; Unidentified Flying Objects, 1976-1978
(RG 12, vol. 3930, file 2-1-33, pt. 1)

Records of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RG 18)

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police kept reports of UFO sightings from 1959 and 1987.

National research; Radio and Electrical Engineering Division; Unidentified Flying Objects (sighting of), 1959-1987
(RG 18, vol. 3779, file HQ 400-Q-5, pts. 1-7)

Records of the Department of National Defence (RG 24)

The Department of National Defence kept numerous reports on the possible security risk UFOs could pose.

Intelligence sightings of unknown objects, 1947-1964
(RG 24, vol. 17984, file S-940-5, pts. 1 and 2; on reel T-3291) (1)
Intelligence sightings of unknown objects, 1950-1964
(RG 24, vol. 17988, file C-940-105, pts. 1 and 2; on reel T-3291), (1)
Intelligence sightings of unknown objects outside Canada, 1950-1952
(RG 24, vol. 17988, file S-940-105-3; on reel T-3291) (1)
Counter intelligence; flying saucers, 1952-1957
(RG 24, vol. 22349, file 9150-4)
Target detection; search; flying saucers; general, 1950-1967
(RG 24, acc. 83-84/167, box 7523, file DRBS 3800-10-1, pt. 1)
Target detection; search; flying saucers; general, 1968-1973
(RG 24, vol. 24031, file 3800-10-1, pt. 2, 1968-1971 and pt. 3, 1971-1973)

Records of the National Research Council (RG 77)

The National Research Council has looked into the scientific validity of UFO claims.

UFO sightings, 1965-1981
(RG 77, reels T-1741 to T-1744)
UFO sightings
(RG 77, acc. 1985-86/179, box 1 (1981-1984);)
(RG 77, acc. 1986-87/377, box 1 (1986);)
(RG 77, acc. 1989-90/005, box 1 (1987);)
(RG 77, acc. 1989-90/016, box 1 (1988);)
(RG 77, acc. 1990-91/073, box 1 (1989);)
(RG 77, acc. 1991-92/022, box 1 (1990);)
(RG 77, acc. 1992-93/016, box 1 (1991);)
(RG 77, acc. 1992-93/308, box 1 (1992);)
(RG 77, acc. 1995-96/008, box 1 (1993);)
(RG 77, acc. 1995-96/096, box 1 (1994);)
(RG 77, acc. 1997-98/046, box 1 (1995).)

For contextual information on the NRC's collecting of UFO sightings please refer to the correspondence included on microfilm reel T-1744, as well as:

Proceedings of the meetings of the Associate Committee on Meteorites
(RG 77, acc. 1997-98/094, box 34), 11th meeting, 1967 and 12th meeting, 1968

Records of the Department of Communications (RG 97)

Air services; sightings of unidentified aerial objects; Project Second Story, 1952-1953
(RG 97, vol. 115, file 5010-4)
Space research and satellites, UFO's, 1953-1966
(RG 97, vol. 182, file 5010-4, pts. 1 and 2)
Space research and technology, 1959-1964
(RG 97, vol. 104, file 5010-1, pts. 1-3)

(1) Available in part for research purposes at Library and Archives Canada only. This file has been reviewed in accordance with Access to Information and Privacy legislation. Some documents have been removed from the file; deletions are indicated on file.

Thematic Guides