by Raymond H Rich and Gil Trevizo
P Division, or the Parapsychology, Paranormal and Psychic Phenomena Division, was a section of the Office of Naval Intelligence responsible for investigating supernatural events and occult methods that might endanger the safety of the United States, particularly those involving naval matters. P Division (which is sometimes known as P4 Division in Delta Green literature) was established in 1917 to look into certain bizarre occurrences in central Europe during WWI. It was under the command of Lieutenant Edward Brookstone sometime in the 1920's, but came under the command of Marine Corps Colonel James Whelan by the time P Division participated in the federal raid on Innsmouth in February 1928. This raid, codenamed Project Covenant by P Division, was the true beginning of the organization of what would later become known as Delta Green.
During this raid on Innsmouth, several texts, including a set of mysterious stone tablets, were captured. The stone tablets were turned over to the Black Chamber signals intelligence and cryptography unit in April, 1928. By November, 1929, the translation was completed as the Book of Dagon. The Office of Naval Investigation moved their Project COVENANT veterans and artifacts to the ONI’s P Division.
Marine Colonel James Whelan headed up P Division and quickly recruited the Black Chamber cryptographers who worked on translating the Book of Dagon. The captured hybrids were moved to a prison facility in southeastern Arizona disguised as a Naval air station. From 1929 to 1942, P Division acquired:
- An Investigation into the Myth-Patterns of Latter-Day Primitives, with Especial Reference to the R’lyeh Text by Dr. Laban Shrewsbury (1913)
- Cthulhu in the Necronomicon by Dr. Laban Shrewsbury (1938)
- Polynesian Mythology by Prof. Harold Hadley Copeland (1906)
- The Prehistoric Pacific in the Light of the Ponape Scripture by Prof. Harold Hadley Copleand (1911)
- The Zanthu Tablets by Prof. Harold Hadley Copleand (1916)
P Division successfully disrupted a pair of Deep One colonies. In 1930, depth charges were dropped on a coral reef near a small island in the Philippine archipelago infested with hybrids. Captured cultists and hybrids were taken to the secret Arizona containment facility. In 1933, the Pacific coast of Nicaragua was found to contain a fishing village with a growing Esoteric Order of Dagon. The village was destroyed, along with all the villagers and artifacts. Along with the requisite dropping of depth charges on nearby reefs, P Division used an invocation found in the Ponape Scripture to lure Deep Ones into deadly ambushes.
The invocation was then attempted near the ruins of Innsmouth to capture Deep Ones for study and to learn the locations of other colonies. While the former goal was achieved, the latter was not. The Deep One threat appeared to have been neutralized.
P Division was transferred from the Navy to the Office of the Coordinator for Information on February 12, 1942, where it was set up as a psychological warfare unit reporting directly to the head of COI, William J. Donovan. Within the same order transferring P Division, Donovan created a security clearance for all material concerning the covert unit, called "Delta Green". When COI was re-established as the Office of Strategic Services on June 13, 1942, P Division remained a unit of the new OSS, and gradually became better known as OSS/Delta Green. After the OSS was disbanded in October 1945, OSS/Delta Green was itself disbanded until it was resurrected in 1947, now simply known as Delta Green.