Alois P. Swoboda
Alois P. Swoboda (1873–1938) was a Physical Culture mail-order instructor. His course did not use apparatus or exercise equipment. Claims in Swoboda's courses included the ability to regrow lost limbs and heal a heart damaged by a heart attack.
Swoboda was born in Vienna on March 8, 1873, and immigrated to the U.S. in 1881 with his father, Adolf Swoboda. They settled in Omaha, Nebraska where he quickly found work in the local bathhouses. Mr. Swoboda subsequently worked in Omaha meatpacking factories but did not receive medical training, etc., despite insinuations of a formal education.
Oil Stocks and Religion
From an article in TIME Magazine
Alois P. Swoboda, mass-advertising "culture rhythm" man, was enjoined in Brooklyn from selling oil stock to members of his cult by a letter describing one "Dahlgran," alleged oil well locater. Eighteen months ago, Dr. Swoboda took in $70,000 for the stock; no oil has yet appeared. Said the letter: "This man Dahlgran through his power is to serve Swoboda and Swobodians. Dahlgran has located for me what he considers a very extensive oil pool ... and is positive that the first well will be an enormous gusher. ... I personally do not care for wealth for my own sake, but merely to aid Swobodians."
No oil was found.
One of Swoboda's most enthusiastic backers was Elbert Hubbard, relative of L. Ron Hubbard, who turned many of Swoboda's teachings into what is now Scientology.
- TIME magazine article, July 7, 1930 Accessed March 18, 2009