Musings, leadership tidbits and quotes posted by a retired Navy Captain (really just a high performing 2nd Class Petty Officer) who hung up his uniform a bit too early. He still wears his Navy service on his sleeve. He needs to get over that. "ADVANCE WARNING - NO ORIGINAL THOUGHT!" A "self-appointed" lead EVANGELIST for the "cryptologic community". Keeping CRYPTOLOGY alive-one day and Sailor at a time. 2015 is 80th Anniversary of the Naval Security Group.
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
The Importance Of Letter Writing - Captain Laurance Safford: Father of Naval Cryptology
Captain Laurance Safford is often referred to as the “father of U.S.
naval cryptology”. His contributions during WW II were numerous and
Much of what we know about Captain Safford's contributions to naval cryptology come from his own writing.
number of his personal letters provide insight into events surrounding
the congressional investigation into the attack on Pearl Harbor. One
letter refers specifically to the “Winds Message” reportedly intercepted
by the U.S. days before the 7 December surprise attack. This infamous
message reportedly gave clear indications of the planned Japanese
the actual intercept mysteriously disappeared shortly after the
surprise attack and the "Winds Message's" very existence is only
supported by the testimony of Safford and perhaps one or two others who
reportedly also were aware of the intercept.
His personal papers also included a four page letter to
Vice Admiral C.E. Rosendahl responding to two pages of questions from
Rosendahl about the number, distribution, disposition and construction
of PURPLE machines prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor. Other documents
included a petition to the Congress and supporting testimony to award
Capt. Safford remuneration for his many secret cryptologic inventions,
some of which were cited as among the most important and secure
communication systems used by the U.S. during WW II.
As Admiral Stavridis is so fond of saying: "Think, read, write and publish." If you don't tell your story - who will know it?