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Submarine Chaser Photo Archive

Grinnell (PC 1230)

Call sign:
November - Charlie - India - Golf

PC-461 Class Submarine Chaser:

  • Laid down 20 December 1942 at Leathern D. Smith Shipbuilding Co., Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
  • Launched 10 March 1943
  • Commissioned USS PC-1230, 15 July 1943
  • Reclassified as a Control Submarine Chaser, PCC-1230, 20 August 1945
  • Decommissioned in March 1946 and laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet, Columbia River Group, Astoria, WA
    Naval Vessel Register of 1 January 1949 lists plan for decommissioning and placing in reserve as January 1947
  • Named Grinnell 15 February 1956 and reclassified PC-1230
  • Sold in 1960's to the Western Milling Company
  • Resold in 1970 to the National Metals and Steel Company of Terminal Island, California
  • Sold in April 1971 to L. Ron Hubbard's Church of Scientology and renamed Bolivar
  • Renamed Grinnell
  • Fate unknown.


  • Displacement 295 t.(lt), 450 t.(fl)
  • Length 173' 8"
  • Beam 23'
  • Draft 10' 10"
  • Speed 20.2 kts.
  • Complement 65
  • Armament: One 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount, one 40mm gun mount;, three 20mm guns, two rocket launchers, four depth charge projectors, and two depth charge tracks
  • Propulsion: Two 1,440bhp General Motors 16-258S diesel engines (Serial No. 10869 and 10872), Farrel-Birmingham single reduction gear, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    PC-1230 44k 19 June 1943
    Sea trials
    Great Lakes Institute Photo by W. C. Schroeder
    Bob Daly/PC-1181
    USS PC-1230
    PC-1230 558k 16 November 1943
    National Archives photo 80-G-43559 from National Museum of the U.S. Navy
    Michael Mohl
    USS PCC-1230
    Grinnell 28k . HyperWar Website
    M/V Bolivar
    M/V Bolivar 87k Photo by George R. Schneider Bob Daly/PC-1181
    M/V Bolivar 267k 17 April 1971
    Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Photo by Walter E. Frost from City of Vancouver Archives
    Michael Mohl
    M/V Grinnell
    M/V Grinnell 159k c. 1983
    Photo by Adam Ostovich
    Bob Daly/PC-1181
    M/V Grinnell 87k
    M/V Grinnell 111k

    Commanding Officers
    01LT Carrol E. Church, USNR15 July 1943
    02LTJG L. I. Miller, USNR1945
    Courtesy of Joe Radigan

    View the Grinnell (PC-1230)
    DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command website

    The PC-1230 was launched at the Leathem D. Smith Shipbuilding Company yard in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin on Sunday, 10 March 1943. The new subchaser was commissioned in New Orleans on Thursday, 15 July 1943 with Carrol E. Church Lt., USNR in command.

    After a shakedown cruise to Florida, six weeks at the Subchaser Training Center in Miami and the Fleet Sound School in Key West, they were assigned convoy duty between Key West and Guantanamo Bay. Returning to New Orleans in November they had a few weeks availability time in preparation for duty in the South Pacific.

    Departing New Orleans, Tuesday 7 December 1943, they were underway for the Coco Solo Naval Base on the Atlantic side of Canal Zone.They were moored dock side for a few weeks at the Sub base waiting for transit orders thru the canal and another week in Balboa on the Pacific side waiting for their convoy to be made up. Their misson was to escort a commercial tug towing a floating machine shop to the Advanced Naval Base at Bora-Bora in the Society Islands. Advancing at a slow 5 knot rate, the trip seemed to take forever arriving there on Sunday, 13 February 1944.

    In the Society Islands they were assigned to a wide assortment of escort and convoy duty throughout the South Pacific. This duty took them to Espiritu Santo in the New Hebrides, Bougainville, Tulagi and Guadalcanal in the Solomon's. In the Marshall Islands they made landfall at Eniwetok and Kwajalein. In the Philippines, it was at Leyte and Manila. In the Palaus Islands, during the invasion of Peleliu, they had harbor control duties and supplied firepower for the troops ashore.

    After Peleliu was secured, attention was focused on the main island of the Palau Island Group, Babelthaup, where it was reported that over 25,000 Japanese troops were bypassed and contained for the duration of the war. For the next six months their mission was escort, Air/Sea rescue service and patrol duty around the islands and the Kossol Reef anchorage.

    Returning to Eniwetok in the Marshall Islands, they were assigned more escort duty before departing for Pearl Harbor and conversion to the PCC-1230 (Landing Control Ship). After overhaul and amphibious training in the Hawaian Islands they returned to Eniwetok arriving there on the 18 June 1945.

    Until the end of the war they continued the patrol and escort work between the Marshalls, Marianas and the Phillippines. After V-J Day they remained in the Far East where they served as a harbor control ship out of
    Toyko Bay.

    Returning to San Francisco via Pearl Harbor, she was decommissioned in March of 1946. In January of 1947, she was mothballed in the Pacific Reserve Fleet at Tongue Point, Astoria, Oregon on the Columbia River.

    The PCC-1230 was awarded one battle star for her participation in the Western Caroline Islands Operations: Capture and occupation of the southern Palau Islands - 6 September - 14 October 1944.

    While in the Reserve Fleet, she was returned to her original PC designation and on 15 February 1956 she was given the name USS Grinnell. She was sold to private interests in April of 1959.

    In the 1960's, the registered owner of the ex-USS PC-1230 was the Western Milling Company. In 1970 she was sold to the National Metals and Steel Company of Terminal Island, California. In April of 1971, the N M & S Company sold her to L. Ron Hubbard's Church of Scientology. She was renamed the Bolivar with the California license CF 3871-EM. They painted her white and had davits installed on the port side aft for a whale boat type tender. Thru 1976, she was sighted in the San Pedro/Long Beach sections of the Los Angeles Harbor.

    In the early 1980's, she was observed moored to the Indies dock on Terminal Island. She was painted gray and had been renamed the Grinnell with the California license number CF 9892-LA. No further sightings have
    been reported.



    Lafayette Ronald Hubbard, founder of the Church of Scientology was born in Nebraska in 1911 to a career Navy officer. He grew up with a gift of writing pulp science fiction. In 1942, as a Navy lieutenant, he was given the command of a converted fishing trawler, the YP-422. Armed with a 3 inch gun and two .30 cal. machine guns, she was refitted in Boston as an armed freighter. After a 27 hour shake down cruise in September of 1942, he was relieved of command. "unfit for independent command, lacking in the essential qualities of judgment, leadership and cooperation." Two other incidents marred his Naval career. A depth-charge battle with nonexistent Japanese subs off the Oregon coast and illegally firing at shore targets in Mexican territory.

    He had a lifelong affinity for the nautical life and within Scientology he created his own paramilitary version of the Navy, wearing a white uniform with ribbons and gold braid, and appointed himself commodore over thousands of his devotees. He was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and was into drug addiction, "black magic" occult practices and other fraudulent activities. Hubbard died in 1986 leaving an estate worth $640 million dollars.

    R. W. Daly/PC-1181

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    Patrol Craft Sailors Association
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