Welcome to the National Cryptologic Museum Foundation. The NCMF directly supports the National Cryptologic Museum (NCM), the first public museum in the U.S. Intelligence Community.

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Polish mathematicians & code breakers made the first breakthroughs against Nazi Germany's Enigma code.......

1942: 29 Navajos Reported to Fort Defiance, AZ

Saturday, May 4, 2019
1942: 29 Navajos Reported to Fort Defiance, AZ

4 May 1942: 29 Navajos reported to Fort Defiance, Arizona, the first of roughly 400 to be trained as code talkers. Make sure to check the links at the end of the page for more articles about the Code Talkers.

Chester Nez was one of the original 29 Navajo code talkers and he lied about his age in order to enlist in the U.S. Marines Corp. Then he and the 28 other Navajo men went on to develop a code based upon their native language. That code became invaluable -- saving lives and enabling the success of many operations. This unbreakable communications system helped ensure the American defeat of the Japanese in the South Pacific.

While the U.S. had adequate cryptographic systems for written communications, the only effective scrambler for voice communications was unsuited for tactical use. The code talkers provided absolute security and speed of encryption and decryption when seconds counted on the battlefield. Their frontline service, keeping U.S. tactical communications invulnerable to enemy eavesdroppers, saved thousands of American and Allied lives.

After the war, the code talkers were instructed to keep their role in the war secret. The code was finally declassified in 1968, 23 years after the war's end. In 2013, the Native American Code Talkers were the first to be inducted as a group into the Cryptologic Hall of Honor. In December 2014, the National Cryptologic Museum updated the Native American Code Talker Exhibit. Don't miss it!

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  • Birthday of cryptologic machine designer Edward Hebern. Hebern's five-rotor cipher machine is cryptologically significant as part of the overall evolution in U.S. manufactured rotor devices. The National Cryptologic Museum has two very rare five-rotor Hebern cipher machines in its collection.

About Us

The NCMF directly supports the National Cryptologic Museum (NCM), the first public museum in the U.S. Intelligence Community. We think you will agree it is truly a "museum like no other."

Located adjacent to the National Security Agency (NSA) in Maryland, the NCM houses a priceless collection of artifacts that represent our Nation's history in code making and code breaking, as well as a world class library of cryptologic media. The NCMF acquires the best artifacts for the NCM and supports new educational and interactive exhibits.

The NCMF provides exceptional cryptologic programs throughout the year, encourages young minds to explore cryptology and innovation through valued awards, and hosts educational, cryptology-related exhibits at various community events.

As part of the Foundation's partnership with NSA to build the Cyber Center for Education and Innovation - Home of the National Cryptologic Museum (CCEI-NCM), the NCMF also serves as a leader in the field of cybersecurity - striving to provide the best in educational resources and programs.

The NCMF and NCM share a joint three-fold mission to Educate, Stimulate, and Commemorate. Learn more about our MISSION.