New York Skies (Cheryl Costa)

A 19th-Century New York City UFO Sighting

Columnist Cheryl Costa shares the account of a 19th-century UFO sighting in New York City.

It was March of 1861. President Abraham Lincoln had just been inaugurated and the Confederacy was two months removed from seceding from the Union.

Around midnight in a Five Points slum house on Baxter Street in Manhattan, Mrs. T. Richard Kinder was looking eastward out of an upstairs window toward the Church of Transfiguration. In the clear moonless sky she saw a cross-like object with a flaming luminosity move across the sky. She woke her husband and he too saw the radiant cross.

This story comes to us from an obscure entry into a Baptismal record from St. Peters Church in Jersey City, NJ. Perhaps the woman thought this was a sign from God and shared it with a priest. Confessions of seeing strange objects in the sky are still being heard by priests to this day. This short account was scribbled into a cramped space at the bottom of an 1858 Baptismal book of St. Peter’s church.

A 2013 researcher dug through some newspaper archives probing for additional accounts. What he found was eye opening. There weren’t any accounts of the sighting, but there was a significant story about a Canal Street fire, six blocks from Mrs. Kinder’s house. The newspaper stated that a warehouse, a book bindery, and a laboratory went up in a huge fire, effectively leveling an entire block. Maybe the only reason the cross-shaped craft was seen at all was because the light of the huge fire illuminated its reflective hull.

Let’s look at some recent UFO sightings in New York Skies:

March 8, 2016: At 4:35 p.m., a resident of Farmingdale, NY saw a large UFO hovering over the city.

March 13, 2016: At 9:30 p.m., a resident of Ravena, NY observed a large bright object hovering stationary in the local sky.

March 17, 2016: At 4:00 a.m., a resident of LaGrange, NY observed UFOs flying in the formation of a constellation.

March 19, 2016: At 7:45 p.m., a resident of Bronx, NY witnessed six or seven multi-colored objects flying in formation. He claimed each vanished one at a time.

If you are interested in joining a monthly UFO discussion group in the Onondaga County area, drop Cheryl an email [email protected]. If you have a UFO sighting to report, you can use either one of the two national database services: or Both services respect confidentiality.

Cheryl Costa would love to hear the when, where and what of your New York sighting. Email it to [email protected]. The names of witnesses will be omitted to protect their privacy.

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