Believe it or not, there have been a half-dozen UFO sightings around Columbus and Phenix City over the past two years according to an online database.
The National UFO Reporting Center collects anonymous reports from around the country on strange and unexplainable sights. They have reports of sightings going back to the '60s, and from every state. We put together an infographic of reports from the Chattahoochee Valley over the last two years, as well as Alabama and Georgia for the previous seven.
Take all of this with a huge grain of salt. These are unconfirmed, anonymous reports about things that sound a lot like military aircraft. The CIA estimated that more than half of all UFO sightings in the '50s and '60s were actually secret U-2 and SR-71 spy planes.
One British journalist who produced "Mirage Men: An Adventure into Paranoia, Espionage, Psychological Warfare, and UFOs" said the government actually encouraged UFO theories and conspiracies to cover up experimental aircraft.
"UFO stories are used as a cover story for the flight-testing of experimental and clandestine aircraft," said author Mark Pilkington. "If you look at the places where UFO sightings are frequent, they are also the places where the military tests its experimental aircraft."
(Video is NSFW, has f-word)
The National UFO Reporting Center was founded in 1974 by UFO investigator Robert J. Gribble. The Center's primary purpose, according to its biography, is to record and document reports from individuals who have witnessed unusual or UFO-related events. Its data has been used by other outlets to create products like this US map of sightings.