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Underground Alien Bases:
The Return of The Shaver Mystery!
by Chris Tannlund
Reprinted from The Golden Age of Flying Saucers Newsletter
Volume 1, Number 3, October/November, 1997

Earth-Shaking Revelations:

While investigating UFO sightings over Pine Bush, New York, researcher Ellen Crystall made a startling discovery. In her 1991 Paragon House release Silent Invasion she writes:

During the summer of 1985, people accompanying me to Pine Bush and I sometimes saw flashes of light from various fields for hours on end. We didn't pay much attention to them for some weeks. After all, we were there to see lights in the sky, not on the ground. Moreover, at ground level we couldn't see the source of the distant flashes through the vegetation. In time, however, we were staggered by the realization that the aliens were constructing underground installations. (Crystall, p.86.)

Recent decades have seen an explosion of reports of strange underground activity, from Bob Lazar's revelations of human-alien cooperation at S4 and Area 51, to Ellen Crystall's remarkable Pine Bush discoveries and photographs, to claims by remote viewers Maj. Ed Dames and Courtney Brown that ancient Martians lie in cryogenic suspension under the New Mexico desert. Do these subterranean phenomena represent a new wrinkle in the unfolding contact drama? Or has there been a non-human presence beneath our planet's crust since time immemorial?

Just ask Richard Shaver.

The Mystery Revealed:

In the early 1940s -- years before Kenneth Arnold would site a formation of "flying disks" over Mt. Rainier, Washington, and fully decades in advance of the 1961 Betty and Barney Hill abduction, the subsequent outbreak of "Grey" alien encounters, and modern speculations concerning secret underground facilities, both Black Budget and ET -- a science fiction pulp magazine was already sounding the alarm that something very real, and very strange, indeed, was going on around us, not only above us, in the skies, but under our feet as well.

December, 1943: Television writer and associate editor of Amazing Stories magazine Howard Browne was handed a letter for consideration by his boss, editor Raymond A. Palmer. The letter was from one Richard Shaver, an Amazing Stories reader, and it claimed to reveal the hidden truth that a race of degenerate mutant beings called "Deros" existed far below the Earth's surface in a vast and ancient network of caverns, tunnels and subterranean cities. From these underground strongholds, the Deros used various advanced mechanical devices, which Shaver termed "Mechs," to scan the Earth's surface, project both thoughts and 3-D images into the minds of unsuspecting humans by way of highly specialized "rays," to extract thoughts and images by means of these same rays, to kill or destroy at will, and to protect the secret of their subterranean existence from surface-dwellers at any cost. Browne, presuming the letter's author to be either a prankster or a madman, tossed the letter into the trash. Editor Palmer, however, recognized the extraordinary nature of Shaver's missive and not only retrieved the letter from oblivion, but published it soon after in Amazing Stories. Thousands of letters poured in from readers supporting Shaver's claims with their own stories of Dero encounters. Palmer traveled to Pennsylvania to meet the author in person, and procured reams of material Shaver had compiled on the Deros and their activities. He worked day and night to transform Shavers rambling exegesis into readable prose, and released his first revised installment, I Remember Lemuria, in March, 1945.

Presaging such "ancient astronaut" theorists as Zechariah Sitchin, Shaver revealed that early in Earth's development a race of near-immortal, technologically advanced extraterrestrials came to our world, where they were worshiped as gods by our ancestors. These "Elder Gods," as Shaver labeled them, ruled the globe in antiquity, and stories of their exploits form the basis of all our ancient myths, legends and religious beliefs. But a time came when changes in our sun brought a devastating new radiation to the Earth, dramatically shortening lifespans and causing great physical and mental degeneration among their kind. The Elder Gods abandoned the Earth's surface, creating great underground cities 4 to 20 miles beneath the radiation-bathed crust. When they eventually found this subterranean quarantine too confining, they decided to leave the Earth altogether. Due to time and transport-space limitations, they left much of their "Mech" behind, sealed away in the deep caverns. They also left behind many of their own people, who subsequently degenerated under the negative radiation, as well as through intensive in-breeding in their underground lairs, into crazed and twisted dwarves, completely lacking conscience or the capacity for compassion. These "degenerate robots," or "Deros," have inhabited the abandoned caverns for millennia. Driven by their mental degeneration, which developed into a kind of hereditary insanity, they have waged a never-ending war against human surface-dwellers, using their "Mech" rays to drive individuals insane, stir up war between nations, and to kill, intimidate or lead astray researchers seeking to expose their dark existence and purpose. Fortunately for we surface-dwellers, another faction of this same race, labeled "Teros" by Shaver (short for "integrative robots"), managed to avoid their fellows' degeneration by having built their cities much deeper underground, where the effects of the bad radiation were negligible. Sane and conscientious, though fewer in number, these "Teros" have taken up arms on our behalf, using their own "Mech" devices to counter, wherever possible, the destructive activities of their crazed brethren.

Issue after issue, Shaver (with ample assistance from editor Palmer) expanded his expose' of the underground world, detailing its structure, the location of entrances, the bizarre ways of its inhabitants, etc. As would Eric Von Daniken more than a generation later, Shaver built his case for the Deros referencing classical mythology, contemporary Native religions, and even Christian history, hinting that at the root of the Western concept of Hell lay ancestral memories of very real and terrifying abductions to underground Dero torture facilities -- an eerie precursor to today's CE4, UFO/alien abduction lore.

The Shaver Mystery soon caught the public imagination, and Amazing Stories' circulation grew fourfold almost overnight. Shaver's warning reached millions when he appeared on the Long John Nebel radio show.  A university roundtable held to determine the scientific validity of his claims ruled that nothing Shaver reported was, at least technically, impossible and, as no evidence of a hoax had ever been presented, his story deserved serious consideration.

But the June 24, 1947 Kenneth Arnold saucer sighting over Mt. Rainier, Washington shifted popular attention to the skies, and the Shaver Mystery soon vanished from both the public mind, and, with the exit of editor Ray Palmer, from the pages of Amazing Stories as well. In the 1950s, Palmer, then editor of Flying Saucers from Other Worlds magazine, attempted to breathe new life into the Shaver Mystery by shortening the publication's title to simply Flying Saucers, and declaring that UFOs originated from deep inside our own world. He emphasized the fact that Shaver had described disk-shaped Dero flying machines as early as 1945, well in advance of the Arnold sighting. But the man in the street was looking up, and his attention would not be drawn earthward again until long after Richard Shaver and his Mystery had faded to little more than footnotes in paranormal history.

The Mystery Continues:

Did the Shaver Mystery end with its expulsion from Amazing Stories? Were the crazed Deros merely figments of Richard Shaver's imagination? Consider the following:

Haunting Questions:

Did the Deros begin a new "Mech" offensive in the 1980's? Are they behind modern UFO abduction phenomena? Are there still Teros or other benevolent ET races we can turn to for help?

Over the decades, the names may change, but the questions remain hauntingly familiar. As we enter the 21st Century, the Shaver Mystery remains very much alive and well, and living on -- make that in -- Planet Earth.


Silent Invasion: The Shocking Discoveries of a UFO Researcher, by Ellen Crystall, Paragon House, 1991.

The Shaver Mystery & the Inner Earth , by Timothy Green Beckley, Health Research, 1985.

Secret Cipher of the UFOnauts, by Allen H. Greenfield, Illuminati Press, 1994.

The Fringes of Reason: A Whole Earth Catalog, Ted Schultz, Editor, Harmony Books, 1989.

Extra-Terrestrial Friends and Foes , by George C. Andrews, Illuminet Press, 1993.

Copyright (C) 1997, by Chris Tannlund

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