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.

  • ...The nation’s brightest young minds to consider careers in STEM and cyber related fields

  • ...Robust dialog with the American public on cyber policy, technology, and privacy

  • ...Those who “served in silence” with valor and distinction, especially those who gave their lives in service

Did you know?

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

1946: Elizebeth Friedman departs the U.S. Coast Guard.

Thursday, September 12, 2019
1946: Elizebeth Friedman departs the U.S. Coast Guard.

12 September 1946: Cryptologic pioneer Elizebeth Friedman departs the U.S. Coast Guard. Read a full accounting of Elizebeth Friedman's career in her Cryptologic Hall of Honor entry via the link at the bottom of the page.

Excerpt from article by Sally J. Ling - Florida's History Detective about Famous Women of Prohibition - see the original article via the link at the bottom of the page.

In the early days of the war on liquor, the Coast Guard located smuggling vessels by cruising until they were sighted. But things quickly changed when the syndicates entered the picture bringing with them money to install larger engines and radio communication.

In 1924, the Coast Guard set up shore radio stations along the east coast of the U.S. from Nahant, Massachusetts to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to better communicate with ships at sea. To counter this, more rum ships became radio-equipped. This resulted in the necessary establishment of clandestine radio stations on shore by the rummies. Both organizations communicated to their respective organizations by code.

Lt. Frank M. Meals, a telegraph operator and radioman, was given the task of preparing a suitable code for use strictly by the Coast Guard. Teamed up with Robert T. Brown and the Army’s Chief Cryptanalyst, Maj. William F. Friedman and his wife, Elizebeth, they produced the Coast Guard’s first official code book. William Friedman, the leading cryptologist of his time, became known as the father of modern Army cryptology. Elizebeth went on to establish quite a reputation in her own right.

Elizebeth’s first paid position was at Riverbank, the only facility in the U.S. seriously capable of solving enciphered messages. In 1923, the U.S. Navy employed her as a cryptanalyst where she led the cryptanalytic effort against international smuggling and drug-running radio and encoded messages, which the runners began to use extensively to conduct their operations.

While working for the Coast Guard during the Prohibition era, she decoded over 12,000 rum-runners’ messages. In 1933 her efforts resulted in convictions against thirty-five bootlegging ringleaders found to have violated the Volstead Act. These ringleaders were later linked directly to suspected vessels as a result of the information arising out of her analysis.

Return To List

THIS MONTH on the

On This Day In History

Calendar

  • In July 1993, the National Cryptologic Museum was first opened to NSA employees and their families, and to other members of the Intelligence Community. This photo is of the main exhibit room as it appeared in July 1993 - courtesy of former curator Jack Ingram.

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.