NATIONAL ARCHIVES Washington, DC 20408 Date: July 22, 1987 Reply to attn of: Military Refe
NATIONAL ARCHIVES Washington, DC 20408
Date: July 22, 1987
attn of: Military Reference Branch
Subject: Reference Report on MJ-12
To: The Record
The National Archives has received many requests for
documentation and information about "Project MJ-12". Many of
the inquiries concern a memorandum from Robert Cutler to
General Nathan Twining, dated July 14, 1954. This particular
document poses problems for the following reasons:
1. The document was located in Record Group 341, entry
267. The series is filed by a Top Secret register number. This
document does not bear such a number.
2. The document is in the folder T4-1846. There are no
other documents in the folder regarding "NSC/MJ-12".
3. The Military Reference Branch (Edward Reese) has
conducted a search in the records of the Secretary of Defense,
the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Headquarters US Air Force, and in
other related files. No further information has been found on
4. Inquiries to the US Air Force, the Joint Chiefs of
Staff, and the National Security Council failed to produce
5. The Acting Director of the Freedom of Information
Office of the National Security Council informed us that "Top
Secret Restricted Information" is a marking which did not come
into use at the National Security Council until the Nixon
Administration. The Eisenhower Presidental Library also
confirms that this particular marking was not used during the
6. The document in question does not bear an official
government letterhead or watermark. The NARA conservation
specialist (Mary Ritzenthaler) examined the paper and
determined it was a ribbon copy prepared on "dictation
onionskin". The Eisenhower Library has examined its collection
of the Cutler papers. All documents created by Mr. Cutler while
he served on the NSC staff have an eagle watermark in the
onionskin carbon paper. Most documents sent out by the NSC were
prepared on White House letterhead paper. For the brief period
when Mr. Cutler left the NSC, his carbon copies were prepared
on "prestige onionskin".
7. The Judicial, Fiscal, and Social Branch searched the
Official Meeting Minute Files of the National Security Council
and found no record of a NSC meeting on July 16, 1954. A search
of all NSC Meeting Minutes fro July 1954 found no mention of MJ-
12 nor Majestic.
8. The Judicial, Fiscal and Social Branch (Mary Ronan)
searched the indicies [sic] of the NSC records and found no
listing for: MJ-12, Majestic, unidentified flying objects, UFO,
flying saucers, or flying discs.
9. The Judicial, Fiscal, and Social Branch (Mary Ronan)
found a memo in a folder titled "Special Meeting July 16, 1954"
which indicated that NSC members would be called to a civil
defense exercise on July 16, 1954.
10. The Eisenhower Library states, in a letter to NNMR,
dated July 16, 1987:
"President Eisenhower's Appointment Books contain no entry
for a special meeting on July 16, 1954 which might have
included a briefing on MJ-12. Even when the President had `off
the record' meetings, the Appointment Books contain entries
indicating the time of the meeting and the participants....
The Declassification Office of the National Security
Council has informed us that it has no record of any
declassification action having been taken on this memorandum or
any other documents on this alleged project....
Robert Cutler, at the direction of President Eisenhower,
was visiting overseas military installations on the day he
supposedly issued this memorandum -- July 14, 1954. The
Administration Series in Eisenhower's Papers as President
contains Cutler's memorandum and report to the President upon
his return from the trip. The memorandum is dated July 20, 1954
and refers to Cutler's visits to installations in Europe and
North Africa between July 3 and 15. Also, within the NSC Staff
Papers is a memorandum dated July 3, 1954, from Cutler to his
two subordinates, James S. Lay and J. Patrick Coyne, explaining
how they should handle NSC administrative matters during his
absence; one would assume that if the memorandum, to Twining
were genuine, Lay or Coyne would have signed it."
JO ANNE WILLIAMSON
Chief, Military Reference Branch
Military Archives Division
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank