Fugo Story Hits Close to Home

By The History Detectives Team
2 February 2010
Category: Viewer Mailbag

Our story about a swatch of the incendiary WWII Japanese “Fugo” balloon premiered in season 6, but it continues to air due to its popularity. 

Berwyn Jones recently caught a rerun and wrote about his own blast from the past:

I saw the story on the Fugo balloons, and when you showed the map of locations where they were found, I think you validated my Uncle’s story about one falling on his farm in northeastern Kansas, possibly the easternmost of the landfalls. My uncle, Amwel (A.E.) Jones, was Director of Operations for the ASCS (a USDA Agency), and kept a farm he had bought in the 1930s, near Frankfort, Kansas. He told us the story of finding the balloon when a grass fire was started in his pasture. The Sheriff and army officers cautioned him to tell no one, or the Japanese might flood the country with these balloons. I always wondered if he was making it up. He was a great storyteller, being a Welshman, and he never let the facts interfere with a good story, but this time I guess he was telling it as it was. Of course I heard this many years after WW II, when it was OK to talk about it.

Thanks for the story Berwyn; here’s that map again. It was sourced from: Mikesh, Bob C, Japan’s World War II Balloon Bomb Attacks on North America Smithsonian Annals of Flight #9. Smithsonian Institution Press, City of Washington, 1973. Page 67,68.

Do you recall a Fugo-related incident occurring in or near your hometown? Tell us about it.

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