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A Brief History

Six decades before the History Channel’s Monster Quest, A&E’s Paranormal State, late-night radio’s Coast to Coast AM, and countless websites, blogs, books, and movies began captivating audiences with true tales of the paranormal—there was FATE—a first-of-its-kind publication dedicated to in-depth coverage of mysterious and unexplained phenomena.

FATE was a true journalistic pioneer, covering issues like electronic voice phenomena, cattle mutilations, life on Mars, telepathic communication with animals, and UFOs at a time when discussing such things was neither hip nor trendy like it is today. Recently, FATE celebrated the 60th anniversary of its founding and the publication of its 700th issue, a rare feat of longevity achieved by only a select few U.S. periodicals.

FATE’s first issue, published in Spring 1948, featured as its cover story the first-hand report of pilot Kenneth Arnold on his UFO sighting of the previous year, an event widely recognized by UFO historians as the birth of the modern UFO era.

Other topics covered in this and subsequent issues included vanished civilizations, communication with spirits, synchronicity, exotic religions, monsters and giants, out-of-place artifacts, and phenomena too bizarre for categorization. This mix of subjects set a template that the magazine would follow for six decades and counting. In many ways, FATE magazine created the genre that is now known as “the paranormal.”