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Angleton, James Jesus (09 December 1917–11 May 1987), counterintelligence official, was born in Boise, Idaho, the son of James Hugh Angleton, a cavalry officer and later a businessman, and Carmen Mercedes Moreno. His father’s business took the family to Italy during Angleton’s teenage years, and Angleton attended preparatory school in England. In 1937 he enrolled at Yale University, where he majored in English and was regarded as a highly intelligent student, though he neglected his academic studies in favor of literary pursuits. He wrote poetry and cofounded a first-rate literary magazine, ...

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Baker, La Fayette Curry (13 October 1825–03 July 1868), head of the U.S. Secret Service, was born in Stafford, New York, the son of Remember Baker and Cynthia (maiden name unknown), farmers. Named for the French aristocrat, the marquis de Lafayette, who aided the American cause during the revolutionary war, the youth in 1839 settled in Michigan with his parents and attended local schools. As a young man he lived in over a dozen states, including Michigan, New York, and Pennsylvania, sometimes supporting himself as a mechanic. While operating a dry goods store in Philadelphia in 1852, he married Jennie C. Curry; they had no children. The next year they relocated to San Francisco, California, where Baker worked as a general laborer and belonged to the San Francisco Vigilance Committee. His work with the vigilantes helped bring order to a city known for its gambling houses, crime, and political corruption, and Baker gained valuable experience in investigation and surveillance....

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John Birch. In uniform with the rank of captain. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.

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Birch, John (28 May 1918–25 August 1945), Baptist missionary and military officer, was born John Morrison Birch in Landaur, India, the son of George S. Birch and Ethel Ellis Birch. Both parents were Methodist missionaries under the auspices of the Presbyterian Church, U.S.A. George Birch was also an agricultural professor at Ewing Christian College, Allahabad, India, while Ethel Birch tutored English there and conducted women's Bible classes nearby. In 1920 the family returned to the United States. George Birch became a fruit farmer in Vineland, New Jersey, where John Birch first went to school. In 1930 the family, by then including seven children, moved to Rome, Georgia, where Birch attended high school. After graduating at the head of his class, he entered Mercer University; there, he deepened his religious convictions and evangelical passion and graduated magna cum laude in 1939. He completed a two-year course at the Bible Baptist Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, in one year and then left in July 1940 for China, sponsored by a World's Fundamentalist Baptist Missionary Fellowship....

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Colby, William E. (04 January 1920–28 April 1996), intelligence officer, was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, the son of Elbridge Colby, an army officer and educator, and Margaret Mary Egan Colby, an ardent Catholic who guided her son in the path of that religion. William Colby was also influenced by his father's liberal views and by the family's peripatetic movements to locations as diverse as China and Vermont, where he studied at Burlington High School. He attended Princeton University, where he felt himself to be an outsider, educated as he had been at public schools and presenting, at five feet, eight inches, topped by eyeglasses, the appearance of a young man unlikely to win acceptance through athletic prowess. He graduated with an A.B. in 1940....

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Allen W. Dulles [left to right] Allen W. Dulles, Theodore F. Green, and Robert D. Murphy, 1958. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-103584 ).

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Dulles, Allen Welsh (07 April 1893–29 January 1969), author and third director of the Central Intelligence Agency (1953-1961), author and third director of the Central Intelligence Agency (1953–1961), was born in Watertown, New York, the son of Presbyterian minister Allen Macy Dulles and Edith Foster. In 1914 Dulles graduated from Princeton University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. After graduation he taught English in India for a year, circumnavigating the globe on his way back to the United States, where he returned to Princeton to complete an M.A. in international law. Joining the State Department’s Foreign Service in 1916, Dulles was assigned first to Vienna and then, when the First World War broke out, to Bern. In Bern he gained his first exposure to the world of espionage, for among his consular duties was the task of establishing contacts with Austro-Hungarian and Balkan factions known to be opposed to communism....

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Eddy, William A. (09 March 1896–03 May 1962), diplomat, intelligence agent, and military officer, was born in Sidon, a city in present-day Lebanon, to William King Eddy and Elizabeth (Nelson) Eddy, both of whom were Presbyterian missionaries. Eddy was reared in Beirut, where his father taught at the American University. He had a near-native facility with the Arabic language and could recite long passages from the Koran in several Arabic dialects. After completing his undergraduate degree at Princeton University in 1917, Eddy served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War I. For his valor as a captain in the Battle of Belleau Wood he was awarded the Navy Cross, the Distinguished Service Cross, two Silver Stars, and two Purple Hearts. As a result of his wartime injuries, Eddy walked with a limp for the rest of his life and often used a cane. In 1917 he married Mary Garvin, also the daughter of Protestant missionaries; the couple had four children....

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Felt, Mark (17 August 1913–18 December 2008), FBI official and the source (“Deep Throat”) who helped Washington Post reporters expose the Watergate scandal, was born William Mark Felt in Twin Falls, Idaho, to Mark Earl Felt, a carpenter and building contractor, and Rose Dygert Felt. At the University of Idaho, Felt was president of his fraternity, Beta Theta Phi, whose mission was “developing men of principle for a principled life.” After graduating in 1935, Felt became a correspondence clerk for the Idaho senator James P. Pope in Washington, D.C. Three years later Felt married Audrey Robinson from Gooding, Idaho. The couple had two children. Felt graduated George Washington Law School in 1940 and worked at the Federal Trade Commission before joining the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on 16 January 1942....

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Gottlieb, Sidney (03 August 1918–06 March 1999), biochemist and government official, was born in the Bronx, New York, the son of Louis Gottlieb, occupation unknown, and Fanny Beusler Gottlieb. The son of Orthodox Jewish immigrants from Hungary, he grew up without embracing Judaism but briefly dabbled in socialism. After beginning his college education at City College of New York, he attended Arkansas Polytechnic Institute (later Arkansas Tech University) in 1937–1938 before finally graduating magna cum laude from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in chemistry in 1940. Gottlieb struggled with a stuttering habit throughout his life and also had to overcome a clubfoot, which kept him out of military service during World War II. He began graduate study in biology at California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, where in 1942 he met and married Margaret Moore, the daughter of Presbyterian missionaries; the couple would have four children....