A 1960s UFO case has been accorded official recognition [image for representational purposes only] Puerto Rico UFOs

An alleged UFO sighting and alien abduction case in the US has been officially recognised as the first off-world/UFO case in history.

An announcement was made by The Great Barrington Historical Society last month where they reportedly inducted the UFO case as they believed it was "historically significant and true," reports Open Minds via The Boston Globe.

The case comprises a series of UFO sightings and an encounter involving Great Barrington residents Thomas Reed and his family.

The incident, which took place on 1 September, 1969, began with UFO sightings by multiple witnesses in the area, some of which also contacted Great Barrington's WSBS radio, that reported the incident at the time.

According to The Boston Globe, Reed claimed that this UFO sighting was part of a string of strange encounters he and his family experienced beginning back in 1966. The first encounter took place on their horse farm when Reed was six years old.

He and his younger brother saw strange lights coming from the forest and strange figures in their hallway. They remember seeing a large disc-shaped craft in a clearing in the forest, and being taken aboard.

They experienced similar incidents over the next few years. In one instance, while driving with his mother, younger brother, and grandmother, Reed remembers strange lights in the sky. Soon after, they found themselves in a giant room where they met with two large ant-like creatures. Moments later, they were back in their car.

Reed reportedly shared the Great Barrington Historical Society's press release with the audience at the International UFO Congress in Arizona, which was held in mid-February 2015.

In the press release, the Great Barrington Historical Society lists some reasons why they decided to induct the case. They noted that the case was examined by US Air Force's official UFO investigation, Project Blue Book, and that the case was mentioned at the United Nations in 1992.

They also stated: "This renowned case has received international recognition due to factual and corroborated evidence as well as first hand testimony, including recent polygraph test, the Great Barrington Historical Society confirms that the Reed off-world incident is historically significant and true and warrants induction in the GBHS collection."

Debbie Opperman, the director of the Great Barrington Historical Society, reiterated her belief in the story in an interview with The Boston Globe. When asked what it means that they inducted the case, she answered, "It means that we believe it is true."

"I know we're going to get a lot of backlash. We're going to get hammered," she continued. "But we have given it an awful lot of thought, and, based on the evidence we've been given, we believe this is a significant and true event."

Opperman also believes it to be "the first time a 'mainstream' historical society or museum in the United States has declared a UFO encounter to be historical fact."

The Reed case already has its own display in the International UFO Museum and Research Centre in Roswell, New Mexico and now, it's about to get one in Great Barrington, close to where the alleged encounters took place.