On September 19, 1961 in the White Mountains area of New Hampshire, the Hills saw an object that looked like a star getting closer. Looking at the object through binoculars, Barney saw humanoids looking at them through the windows of a disk-shaped craft. Frightened, they got in their car and drove away, and a few miles down the road become unaware of what happens. The next they remember, a great deal of time is unaccounted for and they find themselves driving past Ashland sixty miles south of where they were. Under hypnosis, the couple recounted an experience with black-clad dwarves and a medical examination inside the flying saucer.
Barney Hill died not very long after the incident at the age of 46. Betty Hill became a UFO celebrity. According to Jaques Vallee writing in 1979, she has done more than any other UFO witness in the last ten years to spread among the American public a belief in space visitors.”(Messengers, 38)
Their experience with a flying saucer could be said to mark a transition in the modern UFO mythos from contactees to abductees.