Near the French village of Valensole, a farmer named Maurice Masse was smoking a cigarette just before starting work at 5:45 A.M. on July 1, 1965, when an object came out of the sky and landed in a lavender field 200 feet away. Annoyed and assuming that a helicopter had made an unauthorized landing, he walked toward it.
However, he soon saw it was no helicopter but an oval-shaped structure resting on four legs. In front of it stood two figures, not quite four feet tall, dressed in tight gray-green clothes.
Their heads were oversize and with sharp chins, their eyes were large and slanted, and they were making a "grumbling" noise. At the time, he was positioned next to a 7-foot-tall rubble pile at the edge of a vineyard, so he had to step out from around this to view the source of the sound.
It was then that he saw something shaped rather like a rugby ball and about the size of a Dauphine automobile, resting on four legs some 200 feet away in his lavender field.
Close to the curious looking object were two figures resembling "boys of about eight years."One of the beings pointed a pencillike device at Masse, paralyzing him in his tracks.
Masse was apparently more curious than frightened by this whole encounter and began to make his approach towards the entities.
As he came near the creatures Masse could see they were hard at work collecting lavender from his lavender fields. When he got to about 15 or 20 ft away the creatures apparently noticed Masse and immediately stood up from their "work".
Masse described the entities as such, less than 4 feet tall, as dressed in gray-green overalls with smooth, bald, pumpkinlike heads, large slanted eyes, and with little holes for their mouths.
They made grunting sounds between them, although their mouths did not change appearance, and Masse was not sure where on their bodies the noise was coming from. figures entered the UFO and flew away, and the witness needed 20 minutes to recover his mobility.
In its wake the object left a deep hole and a moist area that soon hardened like concrete. Plants in the vicinity decayed, and analysis found a higher amount of calcium at the landing site than elsewhere.
The Valensole case is considered one of the classic UFO reports. Investigations by official and civilian agencies confirmed Masse's sincerity and good character.
Laboratory study of the affected soil and plants confirmed the occurrence of an unusual event. Subsequently, Masse confided that in the course of the encounter he experienced some sort of communication with the entities.