When I performed at the Newark Public Library, I met a woman who had grown up in Wise County. She looked pretty smart, so I asked her, “Is there anything nearby notable enough to photograph?”
“Well,” she said. “Let me think a minute … have you seen the alien cemetery at Aurora?”
“Say whut?” I replied.
“A UFO crash landed in Aurora back in the 1800s,” she told me. “There was an alien space man who was killed in the crash, and the folks buried him in the local cemetery. They didn’t give him a marker, because they didn’t want vandals to dig him up and steal him. That just wouldn’t be respectful, you know. You might find something out there that’s worth a picture.”
It was worth a shot … so to speak.
She couldn’t remember exactly where it was, so I just started driving down country roads. It took me more than one try to find it. Off of highway 114 (between Rhome and Bridgeport), there is a green sign that says “Cemetery,” which points down “Cemetery Road.” I missed that on the first pass, because a gravel hauling truck had me in its sights. If he could, I think he would have run me down and smashed me flatter than a flitter.
When I finally could drive slowly enough to see the sign, I turned down that lane and drove past several farmhouses (thinking all the while that it’s a few years before I want to give my address as “Cemetery Road!”).
There it was:
The historical marker proclaims:
“This site is also well-known because of the legend that a spaceship crashed nearby in 1897 and the pilot, killed in the crash, was buried here. Struck by epidemic and crop failure and bypassed by the railroad, the original town of Aurora almost disappeared, but the cemetery remains in use with over 800 graves. ”
We wandered through the cemetery, and I think we looked at every single grave! IF there is an alien buried there, the townsfolk hid him very well.
It was good exercise, and it was fun taking pictures. However, I believe it was probably a hoax. Don’t y’all think those folks back in 1897 would have laid that alien out for the whole world to come and see? Don’t you think they could have taken pictures?
You can read this article about the alien at Aurora for more. Perhaps the town just made up a story to try to get more visitors, so the place could grow? If so, the plan didn’t work. Aurora is just a wide spot on a Texas highway.
I rendered these in black and white, hoping they would look more spooky and to fit with the Monochrome Weekly Photo Project. Visit that site, and you might be able to see some work by real photographers who can just post a picture without a lot of “yada yada.”