By Virginia McClaughry

First – some background.

On 16 February 1946, on the West Coast of the United States,  L. Ron Hubbard was released from active duty in the US Navy. Towards the end of that month, Hubbard went on a trip to the East Coast.

In a later taped lecture of 18 October 1958, entitled The Story of Dianetics and Scientology, Hubbard lies and says that he had “sold a movie – Dive Bomber” right at the beginning of the War for 10,000 dollars, which he put in a safe deposit box. He also said his movie starred Wallace Beery. There was a movie called Dive Bomber, but it was from a story by Frank Wead – screenplay by Wead and Buckner. It starred Errol Flynn, not Wallace Beery. Apparently, the Errol Flynn archives do contain a reference to Hubbard being paid a small amount simply for the use of the title, which is not how Hubbard is spinning it – as you can see. At any rate, Dive Bomber was a propaganda film, designed to drum up support for World War II, and it turned out to be one of Warner’s biggest hits of 1941, generating a profit in excess of $1 million.

Here’s the original trailer –

Hubbard invents that convoluted explanation to cover how he had the money to buy a yacht basically.

In fact, recent evidence shows that Hubbard was only paid $250, and it was, again, just for the use of the title.

The original Dive Bomber by Hubbard shows a number of differences, as discussed at this blog.

Dive Bomber – Hubbard’s version – as currently promoted by the Church of Scientology



Note: also see my later article – Dive Bomber – Hubbard was only paid $250 for newer information concerning Hubbard’s lies about this.

– – –

In the previously mentioned lecture, Hubbard continues and says that:

So when I got out of the war ….  I took that (the 10k) and bought a yacht and went down for a cruise in the West Indies when the war was over. 

– 18 October 1958, lecture by L. Ron Hubbard entitled The Story of Dianetics and Scientology

It so happens, that Hubbard was apparently indeed in Miami, with a yacht, several months after his release from the military. The Church of Scientology official website carried images of the Miami Daily News, who did a piece on him on June 30, 1946. Hubbard’s yacht was named Blue Water II, and he said his first stop was Havana.

You can see the original article (instead of the edited Church version) at Google News.

Here’s some screen shots as well –



In the carefully excerpted Church of Scientology version – you’ll notice that just after the “West Indies…” part, it is cut just before the article mentions Hubbard’s wife, the “unacceptable” Sara – this is typical Church editing of history.

The article said that Hubbard was going on an extended, indefinite voyage, but yet somehow he manages to find his way back to Chestertown, Maryland less than 2 months later – just in time to backstab his friend Jack Parson and marry Jack’s girlfriend, Sara Northrup on 10 August 1946. But yet, the article refers to her as his wife then. Interesting.

Hubbard and Sara at the helm of the Blue Water II.


Meanwhile, in World News, Nazi SS officer Gehlen was flown back into Germany in July, where he began his intelligence work by setting up an organization of former German intelligence officers. He set up a dummy organization in Munich called the South German Industrial Development Organization to mask his undercover operation and spy ring. Gehlen handpicked 350 Nazi German intelligence agents to join him; that number eventually grew to 4,000 undercover agents. This group was named the “Gehlen Organisation” and it operated as a CIA spy ring. It was run by Gehlen until 1968.

By December of 1946, Hubbard is in New York City,staying at the Hotel Belvedere, West 48th Street.  How he came to have such an expensive (for the times) address was yet another lie by Hubbard, he said that “a friend had financed his trip back East in return for his advice on an expedition then being planned.”

Hubbard hooks up with his old friend John W. Campbell, at his office in the Street and Smith building.  Campbell’s magazine Astounding was suffering due to the huge response to Ray Palmer’s Amazing Stories mag with it’s whole Shaver mysteries fantasies and UFO angle.

Campbell had written Hubbard a year earlier, pleading for him to send contributions to the mag.

Astounding is in a mell of a hess.  I need — and but bad — stories.  Any length.
The John W. Campbell Letters, Vol.  1

Hubbard accepted an assignment to write a five thousand-word feature about the consequences of man landing on the moon for Air Trails and Science Frontiers, a new non-fiction magazine which Campbell had recently begun.

You can see that Campbell is trying to catch up to Amazing Stories with this topic choice.

This became Fortress in the Sky, under the byline of Captain B.A. Northorp. It was the cover story in the May 1947 issue of Air Trails.

Why did Hubbard use a pseudonym? Because he wanted to promote himself and have it look like someone else praised him.

In one part of Fortress In The Sky, where the technical problems of reaching the moon by rocket were being discussed, was this:

Here and there throughout the world many men have been thinking about rockets for some time.  I recall that in 1930, L. Ron Hubbard, a writer and engineer, developed and tested — but without fanfare — a rocket motor considerably superior to the V-2 instrument of propulsion and rather less complicated.

He didn’t do any of this of course, but this type of false self-aggrandizement is very typical of Hubbard. See The End is Not Yet article – he can’t resist doing it there either, via his character Charles Martel.

Hubbard was told to promote the idea that the first moon landing would take place within five or ten years and to present supporting arguments to the idea that a lunar military base would have enormous strategic value, and so he wrote:

It is entirely within reason that the nation which demonstrates the courage, intelligence and industrial proficiency necessary to establish a base on the moon will rule the world.

L. Ron Hubbard loved to inventively backdate things and lie in the process.

For example, when trying to explain where was all this research he supposedly did which culminated in Dianetics,  and then when that was shelved, why Scientology suddenly showed up.

Scientology, being a term stolen from Nordenholz, son of the German Consular in South America. (Nazi connections).

In a lecture of 4 October 1954 entitled Introduction to the Eighth Unit, Hubbard said:

The first science, by the way, 1932, was Scientology, and it was Scientology still in 1938 when it was first really named.  And then it was Scientology some more in 1947.  And then all of a sudden it became Dianetics.

And then…it became Scientology again less than 2 years later.

Sure Hubbard – that makes NO sense whatsoever. But see, that’s what he does.

He lies.

The bit about “and then it was Scientology some more in 1947”, also shows up in a 4 year later lecture, of 4 August 1958, called Case Analysis-Question and Answer Period – where Hubbard invents him having a whole “practice” in Hollywood where he is “making Clears”.

He always tries to explain his financing I have noticed, only the numbers never add up compared to what he spends.

And then, 1947, 1 received all of my back pay from the war in one lump sum and although I was going along pretty good as a writer, I had to write the whole thing into solvency, which left very little time for research.  I set up a practice in Hollywood with this lump sum and all of a sudden had a singing, humming practice.  Every once in a while somebody writes me from 1947.  I didn’t charge people anything unless it was part of their case that I had to, and started making Clears.

As you can see, other than getting married, playing with a yacht and writing stories for John Campbell, Hubbard was not “doing massive research into the mind”.  But yet he does insist on that as his “story” – I think it’s a COVER STORY.

Another self-aggrandizing statement about this time period (1946-1947), from  a lecture in 1960:

…and I did an enormous amount of work in 46 and 47 which finally culminated in the writing of the book Dianetics: Modern Science of Mental Health, published in very early 1950-May, actually.
The Genus Of Dianetics and Scientology 31 December 1960 –

Note: The CIA and the Department of defense were both established this same year – 1947.

Alright, so that’s our backdrop for the lead-up to the next assignment for Hubbard – Dianetics, which per Hubbard, all of a sudden, “it” became Dianetics. New marching orders is a far more accurate portrayal of what happened, and on that note, Campbell comes into the picture – Again.

In the March 1950 issue of Astounding Science Fiction, editor John W. Campbell writes an interesting “teaser” and supportive editorial letting readers know that Hubbard is going to do an article on:

…a new science of human thought – dianetics.

Title page, section showing Campbell is the Editor circled:

It might be of interest of some to note, that Street and Smith, the publishing company, was incorporated in Elizabeth, New Jersey which is exactly where Hubbard will start his first Dianetics “foundation”.

OF HUMAN MEMORY, by John W. Campbell, Editor –


Join the conversation! 2 Comments

  1. […] in 1941 is here), and L. Ron Hubbard. The relationship between Campbell and Hubbard is a fascinating story. Campbell published a very early version of what would become the founding text of Scientology in […]

  2. […] in 1941 is here), and L. Ron Hubbard. The relationship between Campbell and Hubbard is a fascinating story. Campbell published a very early version of what would become the founding text of Scientology in […]


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All that Spy Stuff, Historical Research


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