A 55-year-old family mystery was finally solved this week just hours after the story appeared on Canadian television, the CBC reports. In 1962, a woodsman searching for timber in the forest of Lutes Mountain in New Brunswick, Canada, found a large white box hanging from a tree by a parachute. Inside the box, David McPherson Sr. and his family found two cameras. A few days later, the Canadian military took the box away, and despite promises from the government and two access-to-information requests to the Department of Defense over the next decades, the McPhersons never saw the box again. Then the CBC reported on the so–called “thing in the woods” on Tuesday, and within hours tips began coming in from viewers, and soon the mystery was solved.
Viewers pointed the CBC to the Military Communications and Electronics Museum in Kingston, Ont., and to declassified documents on the CIA website, both of which had photographs of an AN/DMQ-1 gondola, part of American surveillance equipment used in the 1950s to conduct reconnaissance of Soviet Russia and Communist China as part an operation called Project Genetrix. The project was run alongside a “front” operation involving weather balloons. Though the discovery marks the end of a half-decade of wondering for the McPherson family, it came too late for the man who found the mystery box in the first place. David McPherson Sr. died 18 months ago.