A Systematization of the Cases Published by Dr. Ardy Sixkiller Clarke (part one)

[paper incomplete and in development]

Part One: cases from Book # 1

A selected portion from the whole body of around 150 cases of close encounters of the third and fourth kind published in 4 books by Dr. Ardy Clarke, Professor Emeritus from Montana State University, will be systemized in an attempt to discern overall patterns in 3 basic categories:

Entity Description

Craft Description

Activity Observed/Experienced

The concluding part 5 paper will chart the data for each category. Before that, some cases will be described in great detail, others with sparse details noting just basic information for the categories above. Profiles of selected cases from each of her 4 books will be divided into 4 papers and a 5th part will show a charting that displays features and patterns evident in the total body of her work.


Encounters With Star People: Untold Stories of American Indians

2012~~Anomalist Books

28 chapters (27 cases)


Sky People: Untold Stories of Alien Encounters in Mesoamerica

2015~~New Page Books (The Career Press, Inc)

4 sections with 46 chapters and cases


More Encounters With Star People: Urban American Indians Tell Their Stories

2016~~Anomalist Books

39 chapters and cases


Space Age Indians: Their Encounters With Blue Men, Reptilians, and Other Star People

2019~~Anomalist Books

3 sections with total of 45 chapters and 42 cases

A page at the Montana State University website describes Clarke’s career:

Ardy SixKiller Clarke

Alumna, professor emeritus of education, founding director of the Center for Bilingual and Multicultural Education 

As founder and director of the Center for Bilingual and Multicultural Education, Ardy SixKiller Clarke secured $27 million in grants to support outreach and fund scholarships for Native Americans and for women. She provided over 450 scholarships to Native American students and women and worked with 27 tribal groups in the Northwest. Clarke received numerous research grants to study high risk youth and families which took her off campus to work with American Indian school districts, Alaska Native village schools and Native Hawaiian Charter Schools. She wrote a well-known book, Sisters in the Blood: Education of Women in Native America, which became a best-seller and is used nationwide in women’s studies. Her research has also examined PTSD, trauma, depression and its impact on learning among Native youth. She is the co-founder of the Native Nations Education Foundation that works for the rights of indigenous women and children in the America and South Pacific. Using personal funds to establish a scholarship program, Clarke continues to support the education of Native students by contributing 10 percent of the profits from her books to the scholarship fund. Clarke earned her Ph.D. from Monana State University in 1981.Ardy SixKiller Clarke established the first Center for Bilingual and Multicultural Education at MSU, providing over 450 scholarships to Native American students and women.


BOOK # 1


She references stories told to her by her grandmother of ancestors in relationship with extraterrestrials as one inspiration to collect stories later in life. She became an associate professor at Montana State University in 1980 and after a collegue there took her out skywatching she became interested in a “search for individuals willing to share their experiences”. [I will note another source of inspiration in a sidebar note after summarizing points in the preface.]

“Over the next 20 years [1980 to 2000], I collected almost 1,000 stories from indigenous people in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, Australia, New Zealand, and South America. The majority of the stories were stored on tapes along with copious notes from the interviews. After my retirement, I transcribed the tapes and organized my notes.”

The privacy of reporting experiencers and witnesses was protected by her using pseudonyms and disguising locations. She says that most incidents in this volume happened between 1990 and 2010 with some earlier (one from 1944).

She reports that she was trained in both qualitative and quantitative research methodology and in using a qualitative approach, she took care to “not impact or influence the individuals who related their accounts” by avoiding leading questions and making inferences. She chose the “emic” or insider’s approach, presenting the stories “the way members of the culture envision their world”, and not the “etic” or outsider’s perspective which presents an “outsider’s interpretation of the experience of that culture”.

No case in this volume was based on dreams or memories recalled via hypnosis.

Note sidebar

Another likely source of inspiration to collect stories of encounters was revealed by Clarke in a June 2015 news feature article by David Lewis for the Montana Pioneer (https://montanapioneer.com):

“The daunting premise she conveys in Encounters With Star People began in her own childhood, and is representative of many of the accounts told in her book. Clarke told us that, when she was quite young, she came upon a man and woman not of this world, who told her they were ‘her ancestors’. The incident (not conveyed in her book) occurred late at night, Clarke said, as she made her way to an outdoor privy, continued for hours, and involved advanced technology, a craft that she entered. She went on to say that her contact with the man and woman was not an isolated event, but continued later in her life.” Lewis further reported that “her mother readily accepted her account she told as a child–yet she was instructed not to speak of it to others because they would not understand. Clarke said she had heard no reaction from MSU or academia…”

In Book #3, published later, she does (in a 3rd person referencing) mention this in describing being part of a campfire circle of people sharing paranormal stories:

“When it came my turn, I told them about the night a young girl [in a podcast interview she notes she was 7], on her way to an outhouse, encountered an alien spacecraft and was invited onboard by an elderly woman who called her ‘grandchild’..”

Chapter One

Witnesses: A couple, Tim and Sarah, interviewed spring of 2007. Referred by a mutual friend. Tim a tribal police officer and Sarah tribal high school teacher.

Entity Description: None. Couple have no memory of 4 hours.

Craft Description: First seen as “dim light” moving behind distant trees. Then lastly like a “large cylindrical propane tank” and “the length of a football field at least”. Blinding shining lights.

Activity Observed/Experienced: Event on November 26, 2006. Couple’s 20th wedding anniversary. They head to Billings MT to spend a couple of days at a Holiday Inn, leaving after work on a Friday at 5:30 pm, with ETA at the hotel 11 pm.

A half hour after departing for Billimgs, while on a two lane highway preceding the interstate, they rounded a corner and “came upon some dead cattle along the side of the road”. They stop with Tim taking his gun and portable spotlight to check this out.

Air smelled “metallic”. They see 3 dead cattle in tall grass (which shows no sign of disturbance around this scene). Cattle exhibit precision cuts: eyes and ears missing; skin shaved from skin of the legs of 2 cows; one of cows had all 4 legs missing; head missing from one of the cows. No footorints nor blood evident.

Returning to the truck with plans to report this, they see a dim light moving behind trees. It starts moving towards them and Tim tries to start the truck without success and Sarah finds no signal on her cell phone. Closer now, they see a cylindrical shaped craft (estimated to be at least the size of a football field) “moving full circle around the vehicle as if studying us”.

Continued attempts to start the truck fail as the craft settles right over their truck. And then, as Sarah relates to Ardy, that with the “shining lights so bright that it blinded us, I reached for Tim’s hand and that is the last thing I remember, until we found ourselves sitting in the truck, on the opposite side of the highway from where we originally parked”.

Tim gets out with his spotlight, sees no cattle, and then returns to his truck which now starts okay. They resume their trip and arrive at the Holiday Inn at 3 am, 4 hours late and too late for the planned room service.

Sarah has them undress in the room to check for marks on their bodies. I will explain that in the “Comments and Analysis” section.

Unpacking, Tim finds his gun is missing (a .357 Magnum) and in a panic they check out and return to the scene, where Sarah finds it a ways off the road. The barrel of the gun has completely melted closed.

Comments and Analysis: The witnesses take Clarke to the scene. Tim shows Ardy the gun (fortunately not police-issued for his job) and she sees that the barrel has completely closed.

Sarah tells Clarke that a student some years ago had brought an old book about Barney and Betty Hill to class and asked her about it. She says she later read it and dismissed the claims as a money-making bit of entertainment. But because of the craft they saw and their 4 hours of missing time, she had her husband and herself check each others bodies at the hotel for signs of marks and incisions. Based on her reading the books about the Hills. They still had no memory flashbacks and did not plan on hypnosis.

Tim: “People need to be aware something strange is happening”.

Chapter Two

Witnesses: Harrison shared his story with Clarke after 25 years of working with her addressing his community’s youth social issues and her college recruitment work. Harrison at the age of 12 directly witnessed the exterior and interior of a damaged and abandoned alien craft in the summer of 1945. Harrison relates the extensive info his grandfather related to him at that time.

Entity Descriptions: Over 7 feet tall and white, “so white that you could see inside them”, ie skin very thin. Hair white. Eyes changed color with changing light conditions. Long slender fingers, “much longer than humans”. Hair length varied, some longer than others. They “looked like they were all related”, as if brothers and cousins. Harrison’s grandfather also told him there were 14 of them and he thought all were males. They wore one-piece light-green outfit which remained dry when wading in the river. When Harrison’s grandfather reportedly first enountered them after the crash, “they vanished before his eyes”. Beings reportedly crashed late November 1944 and rescued April 17, 1945.

Craft Description: 30 feet wide and 60 foot long cylinder. Harrison told Clarke that he paced off the craft to measure it. It had embedded inside a butte close to the river’s water level and when Harrison’s grandfather showed him the craft during his summer of 1945 visit that “it was well camouflaged. You can’t see the butte now; it was covered by water when the Corps of Engineers flooded the valley creating the reservoir”. [The Army Corp of Engineer project began in 1947; I will identify the project in “Comments and Analysis”.] “When they crashed, the spaceship was damaged severly, but it made itself appear as part of the landscape. I do not know how to explain it…Gramps said that when he first saw the spaceship there were dents and scrapes all over the backside and a big hole in it. The spacecraft shape-shifted and looked like a big boulder…..He also said that they tunneled further into the butte to conceal the craft so that only a part of the boulder could be seen with the naked eye. It matched the landscape. I actually saw that myself. The spaceship itself was silver, but there was a section where the doorway was and the back end of the craft looked like the desert soil of the butte.” Harrison tells Clarke that the survivors told his grandfather “they could not control the guidance”.

Harrison’s own observations from the summer of 1945: smooth and dull metallic surface; interior “dull, grey metal” completely, including the 17 seats; first time Harrison in a seat he panicked when it melted around him, but easefully released him as he started to struggle. Otherwise, after that, “it enveloped me like a warm hug, and then released me when I wanted to get up…”. Because the seats were metal, he had expected seats would be cold and hard, but they felt “soft and soothing”.

Surface inside craft was smooth and the setting austere. He noted screens and buttons with some having markings unfamiliar to his 12 year-old eyes (as an adult he said they were hieroglyphic-like).

Another room behind the chairs, a smaller area, “contained a huge round cylinder encased in a glass-like ball”.

Harrison’s grandfather felt the aliens had packed up the contents when they were picked up by comrades. Only clear containers along one wall were evident. Harrison picked one up (which seemed to involve magnetic resistance in him doing that). It contained a “thick, slimy substance, like honey” and “reeked like a compost pile”. His grandfather wouldnt let him take it with him, saying it was likely their medicine and not suitable for us.

Activity Observed/Experienced: Setting is Indian land with very low population density. Harrison’s grandfather’s nearest neighbor was 10 miles away and that person had moved out of state before this incident.

In late November 1944 he felt intense shaking of the ground that cracked the foundation to his log cabin and frightened his horses. Running outside he “saw a huge dust cloud blocking the western sky”. After the dust settled he could see a small section of the craft sticking out of the butte. He watched that scene for several days before going there.

He saw the beings described above and when they saw him they vanished in an instant. That would be their response for awhile until it must have been clear he meant no harm. What he observed them doing frequently was “picking up rocks and plants”.

The grandfather, said Harrison in recounting to Ardy what his grandpa had shared, had at the beginning “went huntimg and took them food but he said they told him they did not eat flesh”.

Harrison’s grandfather apparently passed on a wealth of information to him (which he would share with Ardy 55 years when driving her to the scene):

1) The aliens pointed to the Taurus constellation for the location of their solar system (no specific star specified).

2) They are “voyagers and traveled the universe observing life on other worlds. They had been coming to earth for thousands of years observing, collecting data and noting changes”.

3) The aliens took him onboard and showed him “flashing pictures” on a “picture machine” of their home world. Which fascinated him to the degree that he returned several times to view the film on some sort of screen. “It reminded him of the Badlands, but with no vegetation. Their houses were underground…..On their world, water was underground: nothing on the surface…”

4) They seemed especially focused on plant life and expressed openly their love for the “green of Earth” and the “Red Willow that grew along the banks of the river” (just below their crash site).

5) Harrison’s grandfather often collected geodes for them, which would dazzle them when he would break them open “to reveal the crystallized cities inside”. “Gramps also taught them the medicinal uses of the red willow and how to propagate it from a small sample…”

6) Their craft was one of 4 exploring Earth and these came from a bigger craft orbiting Earth.

On April 17, 1945 “the rescue craft landed to the west of the house. It was exactly like the one that crashed. He watched as they prepared to leave. Each of the stranded star travelers came to him and bowed before they left. He understood they appreciated his discretion.”

In “Comments and Analysis”, I will relate what happened in 1947.

Comments and Analysis: a couple of years after the departure of the aliens the Army Corp of Engineers began a project building a dam and a reservoir and they closed off a large section of the grandfather’s ranch property. Harrison was there too and the events of Indian displacement and Corp activity is described by him in detail of this 1947 to 1953 project. It was not hard, when researching online the history of these types of projects in that time period and region, to identify this particular one: Garrison Dam, North Dakota. Of course, upon doing so, I had a good laugh over Ardy’s choice of pseudonyms for her witness: Harrison.

Harrison told Clarke that his grandfather strongly suspected the Corps found the craft. An engineer with the project visited and questioned his grandfather, asking “if he ever saw anything strange.” Harrison reported that “Gramps said he played dumb to his questioning but he understood the implications of the inquisition”.

Chapter Three

Witness: Luther, referred to Ardy by Harrison (previous story witness) who described his reclusive friend as gruff. As is often her custom, she shows up with food, which Luther asks her to cook as he first does a little hunting before sharing his story. Related summer of 2007.

Craft Description: Huge object, “size of a battleship”.

Entity Description: Seen in dark, with some ambient light, revealing two 5′ 7 to 8″ tall beings “dressed in light colored uniforms that glistened when the light from the craft hit them”. They were “shaped like humans”.

Activities Observed/Experienced: This appears to have had the same general area setting of the previous case. This event was reportedly experienced in the early 1950s.

Shortly after the dam was built, Luther was at the edge of the lake with his horses, who were drinking from there, when he felt “the hair on my body [stand up] like an electric shock”. He then saw a “huge object [come] in over the butte to the north of the property”. He noted it moved slowly and was the size of a battleship. His horses ran away as the craft moved to the center of the lake and hovered.

Luther reports that as he started to walk back to his cabin, he was apparently noticed as a bright light from the craft (“like a searchlight”) settled on him. He continued to his cabin and went into his dark bedroom to look out his window.

He was surprised to see the two figures in his dark bedroom, described above in “Entity Description”. The beings also seemed initially startled and, as Luther started backing up to the door, they reassured him that they meant no harm and that they were looking for something. Luther didnt understand what they said it was they were looking for.

He saw that they held a device in their gloved hands and were pointing it in a scanning of the room. It was “stick-like” with blinking lights. They did this without apparent concern that Luther was there. They finally seemed satisfied the sought-for object wasnt there and they “disappeared into the darkness”.

Going back outside, he saw that “the spaceship was moving again, but this time to the west. They stopped and hovered over the spot where the missing family once lived. Their cabin was submerged in water after the lake was built by the government. I watched for maybe 30 or 40 minutes. The spaceship just hung there. No movement, no sound, and then suddenly it moved upward and was gone…”

Luther had included in his story a speculative link to a 1946 incident (several years before his encounter) that happened not long after he had returned from the war. A family of 7 had suddenly and, without a trace, disappeared. Never to be seen again. Luther recounted a ceremony held for the family where “the Holy man said that they were taken to live with the Star People”.

Comments and Analysis: Luther afterwards checked with his closest neighbors, a couple, to see if they had seen the craft. They hadnt and they would tease him over his inquiry. Otherwise, Luther had only shared this with his friend Harrison.

This is the first case of many to be profiled that is suggestive of the voluntary relocation of people to exoplanetary locales. In other cases, yet-to-profiled, there seems to be alien projects of “seeding” developing planets with plants, animals and, where there is no dominant civilized species, humans.

Chapter Four

Witness: student sees X Files “I Believe” poster in Clarke’s university office and tells Clarke that her grandfather had an encounter and that he would love the poster. Clarke gives the student the poster to pass on to her grandfather. The grandfather eventually gets interviewed by by Clarke at his very isolated 2 room cabin. He was 88 at the time.

Entity Description: Described as “the slightest man I ever saw in my life. He looked like a ghost….”. He wore a jumpsuit with dark fabric which, when he moved, “gave off a funny light”. Patch on shoulder, wore a wide belt with a “circular contraption of some sort.”

Craft Description: “It was a small thing. Not big enough to travel among the stars. When I told him that, he said it was a small craft for exploring. There was a big one up there some place. It was his base.” [“Base” was term used by the alien.]

Activities Observed/Experienced: One full -moon night Chauncey heard his dog whining outside and he checks on him. He sees a figure bent over his dog in the garden and fires a warning shot. The figure stands up in the light of the full moon and they briefly stare at each other before the figure approaches. “Somehow explained to me that he was from the stars. I understood he meant no harm and that he was curious about Blue Son, but would never harm him. He had never seen a dog before.”

Chauncey and his dog accompany the being to his craft, landed 50 yards from his house behind a butte. The alien is very intrigued when he sees the dog responding to commands from Chauncey. “When we reached the small craft he pointed to Blue Son and his craft. That’s when I realized he wanted my dog. I shook my head and rested my gun across my arms. He understood.”

Comments and Analysis: Communication likely telepathic (“Somehow he explained to me…”)

Chapter Five

Witness: Alaskan native Ross approaches Clarke at a diner after being told by the superintendent of the local school district that she collects UFO stories. He is a snow plow driver.

Entity Description: Small, size of a 10 year old. Large dark eyes evident behind protective gear. Four-digited hands.

Craft Description: Disk shaped, bright orange lights around bottom. Blinding bright white light when departing. Covered 2 lanes of highway (covered in snow).

Activity Observed/Experienced: The snow plow driver was clearing a highway buried in the midst of a blizzard when “about an hour into the shift that night, I got a call from Bill, the other driver [working in the opposite direction], that there was a strange glow up ahead of Lucky Gil’s. He asked if I saw it. Before I had a chance to respond, I came upon a disk setting in the middle of the highway. It covered the full two lanes. It was round with bright orange lights at the bottom. I stopped within 20 feet of it. I flipped my lights up and down. I tried calling Bill, but my radio was dead. Suddenly, blinding white lights came on and the craft moved upward and was gone. I watched until it was gone, but that was not long because the storm cut visibility that night to nearly zero.”

After the craft departed, he found that his vehicle engine was off, but he restarted it ok. Starting to drive, he felt a bump and stopped to check it out. At that point, he saw first one hand (each with 4 digits), then another on the side window, and finally a face: “It wore some kind protective gear on its face, but I saw the eyes, big dark eyes staring at me. Suddenly, it turned and ran across the road to a stand of trees and disappeared”.

The driver thought that was the end of it, but in an instant the being “reappeared in the middle of the road ahead of me. Somehow I understood that it was cold and needed a place of shelter. I offered him to come inside my snow plow but he wanted nothing to do with that”.

Ardy asked how they were communicating and the driver really didnt know. But, he noted also the being (who he sensed was male) had conveyed his predictament was the driver’s fault. As he would learn, there had been a craft malfunction which the being had gone out to check on. His comrades had evacuated quickly.“I invited him inside again. I told him I had to clear the roads and I could not leave him outside in the cold. Reluctantly he came inside, but not like you and I would climb inside. HE JUST APPEARED…. [My emphasis].

They communicated very little during the time the entity sat in the cab but a few things were conveyed. The alien had gone outside during the repair work being done from inside to do “some testing of the snow”. This unexpected contact with Ross was by a young crew of explorers whose rules of the road included avoiding contact with humans, so this incident was problematic.

Also, Ross tells Clarke that the alien “was fascinated with the snowplow and how it worked. He considered it a rather primitive machine but one that he was curious about. He told me that humans put too much reliance on oil-based machines. He said they should spend their energy on studying the use of magnetic propulsion for travel…”

Since a heavy snow blizzard was their current circumstance, the alien had also noted that “he had never experienced snow before or extreme cold.” He reported the weather didnt vary much on his home planet.

And, Ross for his part on this mostly quiet ride, asked about the capacity to appear and disappear like the alien had done: “He said everyone from his world could come and go like that. He said I could do it too. I just had to learn to use my brain in the right way. I didnt understand what he meant.”

Eventually the craft returned and the alien left.

Comments and Analysis: The entity description actually seems to possibly point to the “short gray” species, given the noted large dark eyes (evident behind the protective gear the alien donned for going out into the snow), 4 digited hands, and the small height and stature.

Telepathy appears to be the mode of communication.

Ross told only Ardy about this case. He never told the other snow plow driver (who had alerted him to a strange light). Two men in military uniform showed up where he worked and asked his boss if any drivers had seen strange lights. They were told no such reports were made.