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Allan Hendry: The Unsung Hero of UFOlogy

The UFO Handbook

The realm of UFOlogy, the study of unidentified flying objects, is rich with notable researchers and enthusiasts. However, among these individuals, some remain relatively unsung despite their significant contributions to the field. Allan Hendry is one such figure. As a researcher, investigator, and writer, Hendry has played a pivotal role in UFOlogy’s development. This article aims to explore the life and work of Allan Hendry, shedding light on his crucial impact on the study of UFOs.

Early Life and Education

Born in Detroit, Michigan in 1947, Allan Hendry grew up fascinated by the stars and the universe. He pursued this passion by obtaining a Bachelor of Science degree in astronomy from the University of Michigan. Hendry’s interest in UFOs began in college, where he found that the phenomenon represented a fascinating intersection between astronomy, psychology, and sociology.


Upon graduating, Hendry began working as an investigator for the Center for UFO Studies (CUFOS), an organization founded by the renowned astrophysicist Dr. J. Allen Hynek. As Hynek’s principal investigator, Hendry was responsible for investigating and analyzing UFO reports from around the world.

In 1979, Hendry published his seminal book, “The UFO Handbook: A Guide to Investigating, Evaluating, and Reporting UFO Sightings.” The book served as a comprehensive guide for UFO investigators, delving into the methodologies and techniques required to separate genuine sightings from misidentifications and hoaxes.

Hendry’s approach to UFO investigations has been widely praised for its scientific rigor and objectivity. He advocated for a thorough, methodical, and unbiased analysis of each case, avoiding speculation and sensationalism. His work has been credited with elevating the credibility and legitimacy of UFO studies.

Notable Contributions

  1. The International UFO Reporter (IUR): As a contributing editor and writer for the IUR, Hendry shared his research findings and case studies with a wider audience. His articles and investigations helped establish IUR as a respected publication in the field of UFOlogy.
  2. The Hendry Classification System: In his quest to make UFO investigations more systematic, Hendry developed a classification system to categorize UFO sightings. This system, which includes categories such as nocturnal lights, daylight discs, and close encounters, has become a widely used tool in the field.
  3. Project Identification: Hendry’s participation in Project Identification, a two-year study funded by CUFOS, allowed him to investigate UFO sightings in the Missouri area in the late 1970s. The project’s results demonstrated that many sightings could be attributed to misidentifications of natural and man-made objects.


Allan Hendry’s dedication to UFOlogy has left a lasting impression on the field. His insistence on rigorous, scientific methodology has influenced a new generation of researchers who continue to build upon his work. As a result, Hendry’s contributions have played a significant role in shaping our understanding of UFOs and the broader universe.

Despite the passage of time, Allan Hendry’s work remains relevant and influential in the ever-evolving field of UFOlogy. His commitment to bringing a scientific approach to UFO investigations has helped establish a framework for researchers to follow, creating a more credible and respected field of study.

Beyond his published works, Hendry has also been a mentor and inspiration to many in the UFO community. His guidance and encouragement have fostered a spirit of curiosity, critical thinking, and open-mindedness among both seasoned researchers and newcomers alike.

In an age of increasing fascination with the mysteries of the cosmos and the potential existence of extraterrestrial life, Allan Hendry’s work serves as a reminder of the importance of intellectual honesty and rigor when exploring the unknown. His legacy is a testament to the power of curiosity and the pursuit of knowledge, inspiring future generations to continue seeking answers to the enigmatic phenomenon of UFOs.

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