Wilbert Smith Background
Who was he?
Smith began UFO studies in 1950, and continued the work until his death in December 1962. He was only 52 when he died.
He was the Senior Radio Engineer at the Department of Transport 1950, when Project Magnet began. Smith worked on the communications side of the department. It later became The Department of Communications. It was the equivalent to Federal Communications Commission in the United States.
He held a Master’s Degree in Electrical engineering, and took many more courses on advanced physics and mathematics.
Smith was responsible for the engineering aspects of all matters concerning the use of radio in Canada, including equipment standards, radio relay systems (micro-wave), broadcast facilities and interference studies.
Smith read a magazine article on 'Flying Saucers' in the late 1940s and from then on he took a great interest in investigating flying saucers or UFOs.
Smith wrote two science novels.
Ran "Radio Ottawa" which was the place where Canadians spies radioed in, and where the Canadians intercepted Soviet communications. Being in charge of this put Smith in a position where he was trusted to keep the most highly classified secrets.
Smith allocated radio frequencies for AM/FM radio, and for the intelligence agencies who also used radio frequencies.
1956 -superintendent of Radio Regulations Engineering. Being promoted after the shut down of Project Magnet clearly indicated that the Canadian government held Smith in high esteem, and did not think he was crazy as some have maintained over the years.
1957 Smith sat on the coordinating committee of the international geophysical year. He therefore had contact on leading edge scientific problems with many Americans and scientists from the Soviet Union who where also a part of the IGU program.
Smith was an unusual Ufologist. Never criticized anyone. This is after reading hundreds of his letters to people. The exceptions would be the Gravity research Foundation in New Hampshire who refused to allow him to demonstrate his gravity control experiment in 1959 at their "Gravity Day" in 1959, and Donald Keyhoe who attacked the contactees asking them to resign from NICAP.
Magnet was the official flying saucer investigation by the Canadian government. It was headed up for the four years it was operational by Wilbert Smith.
The program began after Smith wrote a Top Secret memo to the Deputy Minister of Transport for Air services C.P. Edwards, and the Assistant Minister J.R. Baldwin.
The Top Secret memo described a possible new propulsion system powered by the earth’s magnetic field. Smith felt that this was the principle being demonstrated by the flying saucers.
In a series of "discreet inquiries" in the United States Smith was able to discover five key points about flying saucers, based on what he was told about the American flying saucer program.
1) The matter of UFOs was the most highly classified subject in the US, rating higher than the H-bomb
2) Flying saucers exist
3) Their modus operandi is unknown, but concentrated effort is being made by a small group headed by Dr. Vannevar Bush, (Of 'MJ12' fame)
4) The entire matter is considered by US authorities to be of tremendous significance.
5) There were a number of other things including "mental phenomena" that were being studies because of their possible link to the saucers.
Project Magnet Interim Report
Classified 1953. Not declassified till 1979. The conclusions of the report were as follows:
Based on strict statistical analysis Smith team determined that there was a 91% probability that the objects are real, and a 60% probability that they are alien vehicles.
The report sat on the Prime Minister’s desk for three months. At the end of the period Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent determined that the time for the release of such a report was not right, and Wilbert Smith apparently went along with the decision.
1959 Smith wrote to a man who was attempting to pry the Project Magnet report loose. Smith wrote "You will recall last March that I didn’t think you had the proverbial snowball’s chance of prying it loose. No minister in his right mind is going to release ANY report which in any way might prove embarrassing or give rise to questions which he or his colleagues might find difficult to answer.
Flying Saucer Observatory
Set up in spring 1953 to detect and measure simultaneously gamma radiation, radio noise, magnetic variations, and gravity variations. Also an ionospheric detector to determine if anything is overhead.
Observatory and Project magnet were both shut down on August 10, 1954 after Smith detected an object flying over the station on August 8. Smith stated that the object might have been a flying saucer. The press reports centered on the fact that an official ( Wilbert Smith) had confirmed a flying saucer over the nation’s capitol. The publicity was so bad that the Canadian government could take it no longer. They shut down the project and Smith was forced to carry on in his spare time.
He was however still given access to any government labs for his scientific work on flying saucers.
Project Second Story
Project Second Storey was a Department of defense secret project was initiated by Dr. Omond Solandt to get to see if they could find out anything about these flying saucers.
The committee of high ranking officers from various departments was chaired by Dr. Peter Millman, who was the Director of the Dominion Observatory in Ottawa.
Six meetings were held over the period 52-54. The project, often written up as some big secret effort to attain an answer to flying saucers, was actually a whitewash effort to make the whole phenomena to go away.
Of the members of the Second Storey committee, only Smith attended all of the six meetings. A quick review of the notes will show that many of the other top-ranking officers only attended one of two meetings. Moreover, the Second Storey records show that Smith is the only one who actually did any talking about what to do. The rest appeared just to sit in the meeting and listen.