Given the fact that most of the following witness accounts have been retranslated, republished and reposted so many times over the last 40-50 years, and some accounts here represent a patch-together from several different scources, I quickly gave up trying to credit all the translators and scources. The first translations of many of the following accounts can be traced back to Evgeny Krinov's book, Giant Meteorite - 1966.

Ivan Nikanorovich Kudriavtsev, Alexandrovka
   June 30th 1908 was a clear day... I was sitting opposite a window looking NW. Our village, Alexandrovka, extended along a gorge... Across from the village on the Semi ridge rose the peak of Mount Gliaden. At 7 in the morning, the Sun had already risen but not yet appeared from behind Gliaden. And then suddenly a bright sphere appeared in the sky; it rapidly grew in size and brightness. It was flying towards the NW. The flying sphere was the size of the Moon, only brighter; not dazzlingly bright, though: you could watch its flight without looking away. It flew very quickly. The sphere left behind it on its course a white smoky trail wider than the sphere itself. As soon as this sphere appeared, the whole locality was lit up by some unnatural light that light did not increase evenly, but with some sort of fluctuating wave-like flashes. There was no noise, no roar accompanying the sphere's flight, but the unnatural fluctuating light inspired some sort of fear, anxiety...

Ye. Ye. Sarychev, Kansk
Interviewed by D. F. Landsberg in Kansk, 11 October 1921:

   I was a master tanner. In the summer (it was closer to spring) around eight o’clock (in the morning), I and my workers were washing wool on the shore of the Kana river when suddenly I heard at first a noise, as from the wings of a frightened bird, coming from the south toward the east, toward the village of Antsyr’, and a wave like a ripple went up the river in the direction of the current. After that there followed one sharp crash, and after it, hollow, seemingly subterranean rumbles. The crash was so strong that one of the workers, Yegor Stepanovich Vlasov (he is now dead) fell into the water. With the noise, there appeared in the air a radiance, circular in form, with nearly half the dimensions of the moon, with a bluish hue, flying quickly in the direction from Filimonovo toward Irkutsk. After the radiance there remained behind a trace, in the form of a blue-gray streak, stretching along almost the whole way and then gradually disappearing from its end. The radiance, without breaking up, vanished behind the mountain. I didn’t notice the duration of the phenomenon, but it was very brief. The weather was completely clear and it was calm.

Alexander Adrianov, reporter, Kansk
From Sibirskay Zhizn (Siberian Life) newspaper, published in Tomsk, July 12th:
Title: A Visitor From Heavenly Space

   About 8a.m. June 30th, 1908, a huge meteor is said to have fallen in Tomsk, about 6.5 meters from a railway line near Filimonovo junction, and less than 12 kilometers from Kansk. Its fall was accompanied by a frightful roar and a deafening crash, which was heard 40 kilometers away. The passengers of a train approaching the junction at the time were struck by the unusual noise. The driver stopped to examine the fallen object, but they were unable to study the meteorite closely because it was red hot. Later, when it had cooled, various men from the junction and engineers from the railway examined it. According to these people, the meteorite was almost entirely buried in the ground, and only the top of it protruded. It was a stone block, whitish in color, and as much as 13 meters in size.

K.A. Kokorin, Kezhma
Interviewed by E. L. Krinov, 1930:

   Kokorin doesn’t remember the exact day and year of the impact, but he remembers that it was three or four days before St. Peter’s, no later than 8 or 9 in the morning. The sky was completely clear; there were no clouds. He had gone into the bathhouse (in the yard), and had just taken off his outer shirt, when suddenly he heard sounds resembling cannon fire. He immediately ran out into the yard, which opens to the southwest and west. At that point, the sounds were still continuing, and he saw in the southwest, at a height approximately half the distance between the zenith and the horizon a flying red sphere, and to its sides and behind it there were visible rainbow streamers. The sphere flew for 3 or 4 seconds, and disappeared to the northeast. The sounds were audible during the sphere’s flight, but they ceased right away when the sphere disappeared beyond the forest.

Note: Mr. Kokorin’s description of rainbow streamers suggests the possibility of the sun’s rays refracting off water vapor or ice crystals. At the time of Mr. Kokorin’s sighting, the sun was 27 degrees above the eastern horizon at Kezhma. For the refraction of the sun’s rays to have caused the rainbow colors, it would require the streamers to be only about 15 degrees above the western horizon and running south to north as Mr. Kokorin describes. However, he also describes the object as flying about 45 degrees above the horizon, which would eliminate refracted sunlight as being responsible for the rainbow colors. | And so, we have a witness who hears something before watching it pass, which suggests a comparatively slow-moving object; the object was reportedly moving southwest to northeast--utterly contradictory to the other witness accounts and physical evidence; and the object left rainbow colored streamers, which could not have been caused by refracted sunlight, a strange account, indeed. –DC

A.K. Kokorin, Kezhma, observer for the Khezma meteorological station.
From Mr. Kokorin’s observational register:

   At 7 a.m. two giant fiery circles appeared on the north. They persisted for 4 minutes and then disappeared. Soon after, noise, like a wind was heard. It came from the north to the south and its duration was 5 minutes. Then other sounds, resembling large cannon shots and crackling appeared. Windows trembled. These shots continued for 2 minutes, then a crackling like a gunshot appeared and persisted for 2 minutes. The sky was clear.

T. N. Naumenko, Kezhma
Correspondence with L. A. Kulik, 1935-36:

   I don’t remember exactly, it was the 30th or 31st of June 1908, around 8 o’clock in the morning that comrade Grabovskii and I were planing boards with a “two-hander.” The day was uncommonly sunny and so clear that we didn’t notice a single cloud on the horizon, no breeze was stirring, absolute silence.
   ...I was sitting with my back to the Angara river, to the south, while Grabovskii was facing me... And then around 8 in the morning (the sun had already risen rather high) suddenly there was heard a distant, barely audible sound of thunder. It made us look around on all sides involuntarily. The thunder sounded as if it were coming from the Angara, so right away I had to turn abruptly in the direction that I’d had my back to, but in the sky around us not one stormcloud was visible anywhere, all the way to the horizon. Assuming that the thunderstorm was still somewhere far away, we went back to planing boards again. But the sound of thunder began strengthening so rapidly that we didn’t manage to plane more than three or four strokes before we had to throw down our planes and no longer sit, but rise up from the boards, since the sound of thunder already seemed to us to be something unusual, inasmuch as no stormclouds were visible on the horizon.
   At the moment when I arose from the boards, amid the rapidly intensifying sound of thunder, there resounded the first, comparatively small crash. It made me quickly turn halfway around to the right, that is, to the southeast, from whence there fell on me the beams of a bright sun, and I had to raise my eyes a little upwards in the direction of the crash of thunder I’d heard, in precisely that direction from which the sunbeams were shining on me.
   This somewhat hindered my observation of that phenomenon which, all the same, showed itself visible to the eye the moment after the first peal of thunder - namely, when I quickly turned in the direction of the crash, the sunbeams were cut through by a wide, white-hot streamer from the right side of the beams, while from the left in the direction of the north (or, as seen from the Angara, beyond the Kezhma field) there went flying erratically into the taiga an even more white-hot (paler than the sun, but almost the same as the sunbeams) somewhat elongated mass in the form of a cloud, with a diameter far bigger than the moon....without any regularly defined edges.
   After the first faint crash, in about two or three seconds, or maybe more (we had no watches, but the interval was on that order), there resounded a second, rather loud thunderclap. If you compared it with a normal thunderclap, then it would be as loud as the ones that happen during a thunderstorm. After that second crash... the mass was no longer visible, but its tail, or more correctly its streamer, now found itself all on the left side of the sunbeams, having cut through them, and having become many times broader than it had been on the right side. And right then, in a shorter interval of time than between the first and the second crashes, there followed a third thunderclap, one so strong it was as if it had several crashes mingled together inside of it, with such a crash that the ground shook, and throughout the taiga there reverberated such an echo, and not even an echo, but some sort of deafening solid roar. It seemed that that roar enveloped the whole taiga of unencompassable Siberia.
   It should be mentioned that, after the first and second thunderclaps, the carpenters working on the construction of the barn crossed themselves in total amazement (there were six or seven of them, all local peasants...), and when the third crash resounded, the carpenters fell off the building backwards onto some woodchips (not too far, about a meter and a half), and it was necessary to bring them to their senses and calm them, saying that everything was already over. But they expected a continuation and said that probably the end of the world had already come and there would be a terrible judgment and so forth.

Note: Mr. Naumenko made a sketch of the object he saw, which was scanned and posted on the web some time ago by Andrei Olkhovatov. –DC

Note 2: All indications are that the object that exploded passed over the Lower Tunguska River no farther south than the town of Kondrashino. Meteors begin to glow at an altitude of about 60 miles or 100 kilometers, so the meteor could not have been any higher than that when it was sighted approaching from the southeast of Kirensk. Therefore the streamers described by Mr. Naumenko should have been considerably lower on the horizon than the sun if they were indeed produced by the object that exploded. The object would have been even lower on the horizon at N. Ilimsk, yet it seems the witnesses there had no problem ascertaining its trajectory—southeast to northwest. It’s hard to determine with absolute certainty if Mr. Naumenko is describing streamers cutting directly in front of the sun or simply cutting through the sun’s rays. But given the size of the object he describes and the N. Ilimsk accounts, I think it is very possible that Mr. Naumenko is describing a different meteor than the one that exploded. –DC

A.K. Briukhanov, Kezhma
   I was dressing after a bath and suddenly heard a loud noise. Half dressed, I dashed to the street and immediately looked at the sky, since the noise was coming from above. And what I saw were blue, red, and orange bands running in the sky, as broad a the street. After some time, the bands faded, the rumble rang out anew, and the earth quaked. Then the colored bands appeared again and again, after which they went to the north.

Krasnoyaretz (Krasnoyarsk) newspaper, July 13, 1908
Kezhemskoe village (Kezhma):

   On June 30th at 7 am, a noise was heard as if a strong wind was blowing. Immediately afterwards there was a terrible bang, accompanied by an earth tremor that caused the buildings to literally shake as if delivered a powerful blow by some huge log or heavy stone. The first blow was followed by a second, equally strong, then a third. During the interval between the first and second, there was an unusual subterranean rumbling, like the sound rails might make if 10 trains were running on them at once. Then for 5–6 minutes there was something exactly like artillery fire: some 50–60 explosions at short, almost identical, intervals, which became progressively weaker. One and a half or two minutes after the end of the continuous "firing," six more bangs were heard, one after another, resembling distant cannon-shots, but still distinctly audible and tangible by the shaking of the ground. The sky, at the first sight, appeared to be clear. There was no wind and no clouds. However, upon closer inspection to the north (i.e. where most of the thumps were heard), a kind of an ashen cloud could be seen near the horizon, which kept getting smaller and more transparent until, by about 2-3 p.m., it had completely disappeared.

G. K. Kulesh, Head of the Kirensk Meteorological Station
Letter of July 5th 1908:

   On June 30th to the NW of Kirensk a phenomenon was observed which lasted approximately from 7:15 to 8 a.m. I did not get to observe it, since, after recording [the readings of] the meteorological instruments, I had sat down to work. I heard hollow sounds, but took them for salvos of weapons fire on the military field beyond the Kirenga river. Having finished work, I glanced at the barograph tape and to my surprise I noticed line after line recorded at 7 a.m. It surprised me because throughout my work I did not get up from my place, the whole family slept, and no one entered the room.
   Here is what happened (I pass along the essence of the eyewitnesses’ stories). At 7:15 a.m. there appeared in the northwest a fiery column with a diameter of about 28 feet, in the form of a spear. When the column disappeared, there were heard five strong, abrupt bangs, like from a cannon, following quickly and distinctly one after another; then there appeared in that place a dense cloud. After about 15 minutes the same sort of bangs were heard again, and after another 15 minutes it repeated as well. The ferryman, a former soldier and in general an experienced and knowledgeable person, counted 14 bangs. In keeping with the duties of his job he was on the shore and observed the whole phenomenon from beginning to end. The fiery column was visible to many, but the bangs were heard by an even larger number of people. The peasants form the village nearest the city drive into the city and ask: “What was that? Doesn’t it mean war?” In the city there were also peasants from the village of Karelina, lying 20 versts from Kirensk on the nearer Tunguska river; they pass on that there had been a strong shaking of the ground, such that the [window]glass was broken in the houses.
   From other sources it has been passed on that in the mountains seven versts from the village of Karelina a lake formed. According to the peasants’ stories there was a flat place there, a marshy one. Out of that swamp there rose up summer and winter some sort of vapors. And this swamp became a lake. These stories have not been verified.
   Now this phenomenon has engendered in the people a mass of the most fantastic stories and suppositions ... It is probably established that a meteor of very enormous dimensions fell, because, in completely clear sunny weather, the column seemed to be of a diameter of four sazhens. There was seen a cloud of gray color, which then turned dark; crashes were heard, 14 in number in three stages; there was a vibration of the ground - the lines on the barograph tape serve as proof of this. Besides this, in the neighborhood of the junior high school there lives the contractor Yashin. He was outside when a board leaning against the fence fell, even though it was completely calm outside. Or, perhaps, there took place a strong shaking of the air, because the last bangs were the most powerful.
   According to the story of one inhabitant of Kirensk, he had gone to get something out of a steamer trunk. He had just opened it when crashes resounded and shoved him into the side of the trunk, as if from a strong wind.

Undated supplementary note:
   I have received new information about the meteor from students. Two students reported to me that peasants from the village of Bur (on the Pepe river, a tributary of the Tunguska) got the following picture from the Tunguses who were eyewitnesses to the fall of the meteor: When the meteor fell, a dense smoke arose, bangs resounded, the peat and the forest caught fire such that it took the Tunguses three days to put out the blaze.

Note appended to undated questionnaire:
   Much has been reported to the Observatory about the former earthquake, although many eyewitnesses along the Lena [river] paid no attention to the earthquake and did not notice it, being astonished by the unusually powerful crashes. Now it has become clear that the crashes were heard in localities far removed from one another; there is fully trustworthy information that there were bangs [heard] in Bodaibo, in Vitim and upstream on the Lena as far as Ust’-Kut, and in Nizhne-Ilimsk. In Nizhne-Ilimsk, the bangs were in the direction of the village of Tub on the Ilim river. The fiery column was seen by many, its shape in the form of a spear has also been established. The smoke or gray cloud which thereafter turned into a dark one was also noted by many. I could not establish when the shaking of glass in the houses made itself felt - before, during, or after the crashes. The most powerful bangs were the last ones, the vibrations of the air were strong. The stories that a lake had formed on the nearer Tunguska and the village of Korelina turned out to be untrue. The peasants of that village were so stunned by the bangs that they sent a deputation to town to the local archpriest to ask if the end of the world wasn’t beginning, [and] how they were preparing for it in Kirensk. That there was a shaking of the ground I was able to conclude from the fact that the barograph marked lines on the tape, and I firmly remember that no one else entered the room and I did not rise from my place, and could not have jarred the instrument. I heard the bangs, but because the windows were closed on the NW and open only on the S, I took the bangs for salvos of weapons fire on the military field.

S. Kulesh, Kirensk, north of Kirensk
From the Irkutsk newspaper Sibir, July 15th 1908:

   On the morning of June 30th, just after 9 a.m., some sort of unusual natural phenomenon was observed in our area. In the settlement of Nizhne-Karelinsk (about 200 versts to the north of Kirensk) the peasants saw in the northwest, quite high above the horizon, some sort of body glowing with an extraordinarily intense (such that you couldn’t look at it) blue-white light, moving downwards from above over the course of 10 minutes. The body took the form of a “pipe,” i.e., cylindrical. The sky was cloudless, only low on the horizon on the same side on which the luminous body was observed, there was noted a small dark cloud. It was hot, dry.
   Nearing the ground (the forest), it was as if the shining body spread out, in its place there formed an enormous puff of black smoke and there was heard an extraordinarily powerful rumble (not thunder), as if from large falling stones or cannon fire. All the structures shook. At the same time a flame of undetermined form began to break out of the cloud. All the inhabitants of the settlement ran into the street in a panicky fear, old women cried, everyone thought that the end of the world had come...

Note: Most translations read: A forked tongue of flame burst from the cloud. Nizhne-Karelinsk and Nizhne (North) -Karelina are the same village, I believe. –DC 

   The writer of these lines was at that time in the forest, about 6 versts to the north of Kirensk and heard to the northwest something like cannon fire, which repeated (with interruptions) no fewer than 10 times over the course of 15 minutes. In several homes in Kirensk, the glass tinkled in the walls facing the northwest. These sounds, as has now become clear, were heard in northern Pokamennii, Chechuisk, Zavakomnii, and even in Mutinskii station, about 180 versts north of Kirensk.
   In Kirensk at that time, several people observed in the northwest something like a fiery-red sphere, moving, according to the testimony of some, horizontally, but according to the testimony of others, at a steep incline.
   Near Chechuisk, a peasant, driving through the fields, observed the same thing in the northwest.
   Near Kirensk, in the village of Voronina, the peasants saw a fiery sphere falling to the southeast of them (i.e., to the side opposite the one where Nizhne-Karelinsk is situated).
   The phenomenon has aroused a mass of interpretations. Some say that it was an enormous meteorite, others, that it was ball lightning (or a whole series of them).
   At 2 in the afternoon of the same day there was between Kirensk and Nizhne-Karelinsk (on the side nearer to Kirensk) a normal thunderstorm with pouring rain and hail.

V.K. Penigin, Kondrashino, born 1893
   “Then I was a boy and helped to bring manure to the fields. We were upstream from the village. The fiery flying body was well seen. It resembled an airplane without wings, or a flying sheaf. The body was red as fire or a tomato. It was flying horizontally, not descending, and passed in front of the cliff of Tsimbaly, at about two-thirds of its height. Then the body covered some 2 km more and made a sharp turn to the right, at a very acute angle.”

Note: I have a couple suggestions for this one that do not involve the object that exploded making some radical maneuver: 1 Mr. Penigin witnessed two objects, the one that would go on to explode northwest of Vanavara, and one that passed over the Lower Tunguska River farther north. Then, to make some sense of what he has seen, imagined the radical course maneuver. Or 2: He witnessed the first object shed a chunk of material that flew off to his right, looking westward. –DC

Stiopia, Moga
   I remember that time well—I was eleven then. I got up quite early… It was clear and cloudless… Our house was here, where it still stands, on a hill. I was hammering the scythe. There I was hitting the scythe, but the sound seemed to come from elsewhere. I froze and as I listened, a real din started. The sky was clear as can be, not a cloud in sight. There were no planes or helicopters back then, of course. It was only later we became familiar with them. But there was this din. It wasn't like a thunderstorm. And it kept building up, rumbling louder…
   Suddenly a second sun rolled into the sky. "Ours", that's to say, was beating down on the back of my head, and this one was in my eyes. I couldn't look; everything went black. I shot into the house and that new sun shone in through this window here and moved across the stove like this…
   The house stood, like the majority of Russian houses on the northern rivers, with its windows looking east and south. One little window faced northwest and this "sun" was shining through it, coloring the white wall of the big Russian stove crimson. This glow moved from right to left, towards the east. And there was ordinary sunlight coming through the other windows and onto the other wall of the stove.
   I looked at the sun blazing down on the stove through that window and my jaw dropped. I had never seen anything like it. And the noise kept on rumbling. There was no relief. My grandfather sat on the stove and began chanting a prayer out loud. He chanted and told me, "Stiopa, let's pray! All of you pray! It's happened… It's come…" [The shamans had warned people about the end of the world.]
   What praying? I wanted to run somewhere and there was nowhere. The noise was all around. And a fiery ball was coming at us. It kept creeping across the stove… And then it stopped…
   The fiery sphere that appeared in a clear, cloudless sky approached the earth with a growing rumble. It grew as you watched, blazed and became so full of powerful fiery light that it was impossible to look at it. At some elusive instant, the terrible rumbling turned into an incessant roar and the sphere stopped moving, hanging above the ground, like the Sun hangs above the horizon just before sunset. It is hard to establish the length of time it stopped, but the fiery sphere stayed motionless long enough for its immobility to impress itself upon an astounded human mind.
   I was afraid to look out of the window, but on the stove I could see that it had stopped. Then suddenly it gave such a burst of speed, flashed across the stove and was gone. The thundering noise was awful. The earth shook. I was knocked to the floor and the glass from the little window was scattered about as if someone had pushed it in… I wasn't down on the floor for long. I jumped up, thinking, "Where's Grandpa? Don't say he's been knocked off!" He was lying on his stomach on the very edge of the stove and kept asking me, "Stiopa, what is it? Stiopa, what is it?" He was wet and white, white… I think the ground was still shaking, the floor shifted under my feet, or perhaps my legs were trembling. It was dreadful!
   Nobody could understand where it had got to, that sun. It had been shining just a moment before. And so strong that the shadows disappeared instantly. And the light, clashing with light, stripped the world of its familiar, pleasant shapes. Everything, from the smallest blade of grass to the cedar tree, suddenly seemed different from how it had always been. Colours vanished; so did the usual three-dimensionality of the world, warmth, tenderness. Our world had gone…

N. Ponomaryov, Nizhne-Ilimsk
From the Irkutsk newspaper Sibir, July 15th, 1908:

   The population of Nizhne-Ilimsk and surrounding villages was alarmed on June 30th by an unusual phenomenon. At 7:20 in the morning, all around Nizhne-Ilimsk there was heard a powerful noise, going over into the rumble of thunder. Meanwhile, the sky was cloudless. Several houses began to sway to and fro from the crashes, above the earth “some sort of fiery body resembling a beam” rushed headlong from the south to the northwest. Immediately after that a crash resounded, and in that place where the fiery body had vanished there appeared a “fire,” and then “smoke.”

Undated correspondence cited by A. V. Voznesenskii:
   The population of Nizhne-Ilimsk and surrounding villages was alarmed today (June 30th) by an unusual phenomenon. At 7:20 in the morning, above Nizhne-Ilimsk, by very good weather conditions (the sky was covered with cloudlets here and there), there was heard approaching the village an out-of-the-ordinary noise, which went over into the rumble of thunder as it drew nearer. After the rumbles, throughout the whole district there resounded a most powerful crash, evoking a near-panic in the population.
   I was sleeping. When the rumbles of thunder were heard, I woke up and, at the moment of the crash, felt how my house began to sway; in the kitchen, the dishes came crashing down, and the chair standing close by the wall was moved a couple of inches toward the middle [of the room] by the vibration of the wall; a servant who happened to be standing on a bench nearly fell from the shaking.
   Quickly getting dressed, I run out on the street, I read great alarm on the faces there, here and there the population have climbed on the roofs of houses and are looking in the direction where the crash resounded. One approaches me and reports that he saw, before the thunder rumbles appeared, that some sort of fiery body resembling a beam rushed headlong over the earth and vanished; all at once the crash resounded. Some other muzhiks reported the same thing, having seen it together with a contractor. A fellow rides up astride a horse and reports that he also saw some sort of fiery body, saw how in that place where it fell there appeared at first a fire, and then, when the crash resounded, instead of the fire there appeared smoke.
   My father and two brothers were about 6 versts away from Nizhne-Ilimsk on a fishing trip and distinctly heard how before the powerful crash there were two thunderclaps, not as strong, while after the crash there were heard very many less strong crashes - up to 100 and in different places in three directions. One of [my] brothers, having been to war, compares what happened to that moment when the enemy opens fire and the big military weapons roar ...
   A muzhik who rode up to us from a village 7 versts away also saw the fiery body. The body rushed from the south to the northwest, and everyone who saw it unanimously confirms that, indicating the direction exactly.

M. R. Romanov, peasant, Nizhne-Ilimsk
Note appended to an undated questionnaire:

   At the beginning of the ninth hour of the morning, local time, there appeared a fiery sphere which flew in a direction from the southeast to the northwest. This sphere, as it neared the earth, took on the form above and below of a flattened sphere (as was visible to the naked eye); approaching even nearer to the earth, this sphere had the look of two fiery columns. As that enormous mass fell to earth, there occurred two strong crashes, like thunder, but the fact that the sky was completely cloudless may serve as proof that it was not thunder, then later there was heard a noise as if from a strong wind; the duration of this phenomenon was around 15 minutes.

Agronomist Kokoulin, Nizhne-Ilimsk
Letter to A. V. Voznesenskii, 25 July 1908:

   On June 30th at approximately 7:15 in the morning, the workers building a bell tower saw a fiery block, flying, it seems, from the southeast to the northwest. At first, two bangs resounded (not unlike gunfire), then an extremely strong bang accompanied by shaking. More bangs were heard. They noticed a shaking of the earth. One girl (the priest’s maid-servant) fell off a bench. The populace became frightened. They saw that fiery sphere [there is an unclear word in the original, something like “meteor”] in Karapchanskii, and heard the bangs. The day was clear, and for that reason the thunder put the public in a state of bewilderment. In Nizhne-Ilimsk two Tunguses recounted that the meteor had, in falling, formed a lake, which boiled for two full days. The Tunguses were prepared to show people that lake, but no one believed their story.

Supplementary report to A. V. Voznesenskii, 14 September 1908
   Succeeded in more exactly delineating the region over which the sounds accompanying the phenomenon were spread. It turns out that the din was audible near Verkholensk (in the village of Chelpanovaya) on the one side, and in Mukhtuye on the other - i.e., for a distance of nearly 1,300 versts along the Lena [river]. On the side away from the Lena, the phenomenon was more or less basically observed in Nizhne-Ilimsk. The eyewitnesses say that at the place where the body fell (or, what is perhaps more precise, at the place where it went behind the horizon) there arose puffs of black smoke like a column.
   The Tunguses who wander beyond the Nizhne-Karelinsk settlement (to the west-northwest of Kirensk) say that the thunder was horrible, but the reindeer did not show even the slightest agitation, as they would during a normal thunderstorm. No earthquake in the usual sense was observed; only a quivering of structures from the din was noticed well (here and there all too well). The meteor moved from the east-southeast to the west-northwest.

N. N. Polyuzhinskii, Observer, Ilimsk Meteorological Station
July 4th 1908:

   On June 30th 1908, at 8 hours and 30 minutes in the morning, there was heard a powerful noise and a sound resembling strong thunder and cannon shots, following one after another (like small shot), probably from the meteor (aerolite) flying through.

Supplementary report to A. V. Voznesenskii, one month later:
   On Tuesday June 30th, around 8 o’clock in the morning, with 10 degrees of cloud cover in the air, thunder was heard from the south-southeast, not unlike rapid-fire pistol shots, then the thunder grew stronger and stronger, not unlike powerful gunpowder explosions and cannon shots, which in nearing Ilimsk went over into a horrible crashing, just as there came a small earthquake (swaying of the icon-lamps and jolts felt by people who were sitting peaceably). After the crashing (in the air) there rushed a noise (a roar), and the thunder began to move off in a north-northwesterly direction; the thunder continued around 20 minutes, during which time there was no lightning.
   During the thunder one Ilimsk petty bourgeois was 4 versts outside of Ilimsk up the Ilim river and saw “a flying star with a fiery tail,” which fell into the water, but its tail disappeared into thin air.
   In the village of Yarskaya (about 60 versts--40 miles--downstream from Ilimsk on the Ilim river) three women saw a “fiery sphere” (a flying one); where it disappeared to is unknown, since the women became frightened of it and ran home from the field. In my first report on this, the time of the thunder’s appearance was indicated incorrectly, by mistake.

Yegor Ankudinov, Berezovo, Nizhne-Ilimsk district
   Yegor was with his father and uncle at the time, felling pines in the forest to make a house. He recalled: “It was a beautiful day. We had just had breakfast and begun cutting wood. Suddenly there was a bang from somewhere close by. The ground started shaking and dry branches fell off the trees. Then, a little later, there was another thunderclap: the same, only far, far away, somewhere off to the north...”

Vakulin, head of the Nizhne-Ilimsk postal department
Reported in a letter dated July 28, 1908:

   On Tuesday June 30thyt, around 8 am (clocks not checked), according to a large number of local inhabitants they first noticed to the northwest a fireball descending at an angle to the horizon from east to west, which as it approached the ground turned into a pillar of fire and instantly vanished. After its disappearance, a cloud of smoke could be seen rising from the ground in that direction.
   After a few minutes, there was a loud noise in the air with distant dull reports like peals of thunder. These bangs were followed by eight loud bangs, like artillery shots. The very last bang was accompanied by a whistling and was especially powerful, causing the ground and buildings to shake...

Innokentii Farkov, Os'kino
   Innokentii said a gradually rising boom coming from afar was heard since morning hours. The old men, thinking their dying hours had come, were changing into clean shirts, and one of them even washed in the bath house to meet the death clean. The ground trembled as a black body flew past, trailing a fiery tail.

A. Bulaev, Verkhne-Pashinskoe (about 10km from Yeniseysk)
In a letter to the USSR’s Academy of Sciences, October 17th 1962:

   On June 30th, my aunt and I visited my grandma, who lived nearby. Two windows of her house faced south. While my aunt and grandma were talking, I was looking out of a window. Suddenly I saw a red ball with a fiery broom behind it. The ball was twice as large as the sun, and the broom emitted sparks. They were not that bright and swiftly dispersed into the air. I cried out: “Look here! Little sun is falling!” All dashed to the window. The fiery red ball was already going down behind the local graveyard and then both the ball and the broom vanished.

Feofan Farkan, Yerbogachen
   I heard a rumble and looked southward. There was flying in the sky a fiery sheaf. I noticed it when it was already to the southwest of Yerbogachen. The fiery sheaf flew from left to right—that is, to the west. Although it was flying swiftly, I had time to make out that the body was elongated, its head darker, and behind the head there was a flame and then a bundle of sparks. After its flight, there remained in the sky no trace. Windows in Yerbogachen were rattling. All the people were so frightened and the said, “Armageddon has come!”

The object’s trajectory must have passed between the settlements of Znamenka and Malyshevka - TTM page 224.

Victor Konekin determined the body flew directly over Preobrazhenka - TTM page 218-19.


mysteries, commentary, sci-fi

1-23-15, last rev = 2-16-17
notes = 2015 Dave Conklin