When Jim Templeton took some photographs of his five-year-old daughter little did he know that he was about to garner worldwide media attention. The photograph contained a picture of his daughter and along with it what looked like a spaceman behind her. According to Mr. Templeton, there was no one else present when this photo was taken. Since then a number of theories have been formed about this photograph, but the mystery of Solway Firth Spaceman Photograph still remains unsolved.
It was the summer of 1964. On May 23, Jim Templeton, a firefighter from Carlisle, Cumberland, was getting ready for a day trip. He took his wife Annie Templeton and his daughter Elizabeth Templeton along with him to the Burgh Marsh overlooking the Solway Firth in Cumbria. After arriving, they found out that there was no one else at the Marsh except a couple of old women sitting in a car. Soon they picked a spot and sat down. Jim took out his camera and said to his daughter, “Now, I’ll get some photos of you with the new dress on.” He clicked three pictures of his daughter on Burgh Marsh.
When they got back home, Jim had the photos developed. At first glance, everything seemed normal. But then the chemist who processed the pictures pointed out that one of the shots had been spoiled by a figure behind his daughter.
When the chemist brought Mr. Templeton’s attention to the spaceman-like figure, he took it to the police. The police examined it and stated that there was nothing suspicious about it. Soon after a local newspaper featured the story, the news was all over the world. Since then, Jim has received thousands of letters citing various ideas and possibilities.
When the photograph was published in the news, it became a sensation and people started stating theories related to it. According to Jim, over the four decades the photo has been in the public domain, “I have had many thousands of letters from all over the world with various ideas or possibilities – most of which make little sense to me.”
Later, he was visited by two men who refused to show identification and claimed to be working for the government. They stated that they were only identified by number and referred to each other as “Number 9” and “Number 11”. They asked him to take them to the site where the photo had been taken. After reaching the site, he explained to them that he had not seen the figure at the time. Hearing this, the men became angry and drove away, leaving him to walk home.
Later, a Blue Streak missile launch was aborted at the Woomera Test Range in South Australia. The launch was aborted as the figures of two large men were seen on the firing range. Templeton had stated that the technicians later saw the photograph in an Australian newspaper and claimed that the figures were exactly the same.
One of the theories states that the figure is actually Annie Templeton, Jim’s wife, who had inadvertently “photobombed” the snapshot. Her husband didn’t see her due to the blind spot in Pentacon F SLR camera which allows him to see only seventy percent of what the lens is capturing. In the photo. Annie was standing with her back to the camera, and the photograph was over-exposed causing her blue dress to look white. The other photos by Jim had also captured some parts of his wife wearing a light blue dress.
But according to ufologists, this is a clear case of a “spaceman”. The spaceman had donned a white suit, a helmet and a dark visor.
There are many other theories surrounding this photo, but none of them have been proved to be true. Experts from Kodak have tested the photo for any signs of tampering, but there was none. Kodak had even offered a reward of free film for a year to anyone who could solve the mystery. Yet, the Solway Firth Spaceman Photograph still remains unexplained.
The person who took this photograph, Jim Templeton, died on the 27th of November, 2011, but his snapshot is still creating lots of buzz among mystery lovers.