untingdon County residents kept their eyes to the skies during the summer of 1950 - and they weren't sure what they were seeing.
For several days confused callers to the local newspaper reported seeing lights bouncing around their yards, ten to twenty feet off the ground. One woman described the strange lights as being about the size of an egg. A man in Trough Creek Valley described the lights as being the strength of a flashing 40 watt light bulb, a description other callers had used.
Still another caller asked if anyone else had giant lightening bugs in their backyard.
Giant lightning bugs...? Just how big is "giant"? "As big as a cup," came the reply.
Word went out asking anyone who could explain the sightings to please do so. No one responded.
But 14 years later the strange lights reappeared - this time in the northwest corner of the state in Crawford County. Three girls in the Spartansburg area saw a light bouncing up and down above their car at about two in the morning. They said it made no noise and traveled slowly. The girls didn't know if it was a UFO or a giant lightning bug but promised to investigate if they ever saw it again. 💀
February 2014: Hauntingly PENNSYLVANIA™ was contacted by a reader, Robert Leon, who provides further information about this mystery. He told us:
My wife and I saw the giant lightning bug (unlikely) or tiny UFO (also unlikely) a mile north of Bushkill [Pike County] in the fall of 1972. It was drifting down the drive late on a windless night and bobbing slightly. We saw it from separate angles at a distance of twenty to thirty feet, so [we] decided it was not some trick of light reflection.
It was a complete puzzle. Since I was a child abuse investigator working on my Masters in psychology at the time, I decided telling other people about it would not help my career, current or future, one little bit so I just stored the information away.
It was near a small creek called by the locals "Goblin Run," but that's too good to be true - even if it was.
I thought they looked like glowing eyes.
Our thanks to Robert for sharing this story. He says he's retired and his hobby is "being a deranged coot" so telling his story may now help his image. While we appreciate Robert's sense of humor, we also enjoy the fact that he has helped Hauntingly PENNSYLVANIA™ shed more light on the giant lightning bug invasion (pun intended.)
Though the true nature of these floating objects remains a mystery, it's interesting to hear from actual witnesses. Perhaps more will step forward.