U.S. Navy Codebreakers, Linguists, and Intelligence Officers against Japan, 1910-1941: A Biographical Dictionary

U.S. Navy Codebreakers, Linguists, and Intelligence Officers against Japan, 1910-1941: A Biographical Dictionary

by Steven E. Capt. Maffeo


View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details


This unique reference presents 59 biographies of people who were key to the sea services being reasonably prepared to fight the Japanese Empire when the Second World War broke out, and whose advanced work proved crucial. These intelligence pioneers invented techniques, procedures, and equipment from scratch, not only allowing the United States to hold its own in the Pacific despite the loss of most of its Fleet at Pearl Harbor, but also laying the foundation of today’s intelligence methods and agencies.

One-hundred years ago, in what was clearly an unsophisticated pre-information era, naval intelligence (and foreign intelligence in general) existed in rudimentary forms almost incomprehensible to us today. Founded in 1882, the U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI)—the modern world’s “oldest continuously operating intelligence agency”—functioned for at least its first forty years with low manning, small budgets, low priority, and no prestige. The navy’s early steps into communications intelligence (COMINT), which included activities such as radio interception, radio traffic analysis, and cryptology, came with the 1916 establishment of the Code and Signals Section within the navy’s Division of Communications and with the 1924 creation of the “Research Desk” as part of the Section. Like ONI, this COMINT organization suffered from low budgets, manning, priority, and prestige.

The dictionary focuses on these pioneers, many of whom went on, even after World War II, to important positions in the Navy, the State Department, the Armed Forces Security Agency, the National Security Agency, and the Central Intelligence Agency. It reveals the work and innovations of well and lesser-known individuals who created the foundations of today’s intelligence apparatus and analysis.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781442255630
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 11/30/2015
Pages: 574
Sales rank: 1,002,924
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 2.00(d)

About the Author

Capt. Steven E. Maffeo, U.S.N.R., Ret. formerly associate director, McDermott Library, U.S. Air Force Academy.

Table of Contents

Foreword: Vice Admiral John M. Poindexter, USN, Ret.
Author’s Foreword

The Scanners
(radio direction-finders and radio traffic analysts)
Captain Thomas Averill Huckins, U.S. Navy (1901-1982)
Captain John Alton Williams, U.S. Navy (1905-1962)

The Book-breakers
(cryptographers and codebreakers)
Rear Admiral Bern Anderson, U.S. Navy (1900-1963)
Commander Henry M. Anthony, U.S. Coast Guard (1902-1991)
Captain Prescott Hunt Currier, U.S. Navy (1912-1994)
Rear Admiral Jefferson Rice Dennis, U.S. Navy (1909-1958)
Mrs. Agnes May Meyer Driscoll, U.S. Navy Civilian (1889-1971)
Captain Thomas “Tommy” Harold Dyer, U.S. Navy (1902-1985)
Captain Rudolph Joseph Fabian, U.S. Navy (1908-1984)
Rear Admiral William Bernard Goggins, U.S. Navy (1904-1995)
Captain Ernest Sidney Lewis Goodwin, U.S. Navy (1904-1992)

Captain John Sylvester Harper, U.S. Navy (1900-1975)
Captain Jack Sebastian Holtwick, Jr., U.S. Navy (1907-1987)
Captain Linwood Sylvester Howeth, U.S. Navy (1902-1972)
Rear Admiral Raymond Starr Lamb, U.S. Navy (1902-1957)
Captain John Marion Lietwiler, U.S. Navy (1908-1978)
Chief Radioman Walter Joseph McGregor, U.S. Navy (1906-1941)
Captain Lee Wood Parke, U.S. Naval Reserve (1904-1986)
Lieutenant James Warren Pearson, U.S. Navy (1910-1992)
Captain Albert Joseph Pelletier, Jr., U.S. Navy (1914-1999)
Vice Admiral Bernard Franklin Roeder, U.S. Navy (1911-1971)
Captain Laurance Frye Safford, U.S. Navy (1890-1973)
Rear Admiral Earl Everett Stone, U.S. Navy (1895-1989)
Admiral Arthur Dewey Struble, U.S. Navy (1894-1983)
Rear Admiral Robert Harper Weeks, U.S. Navy (1909-2003)
Rear Admiral Joseph Numa Wenger, U.S. Navy (1901-1970)
Captain Duane Lewis Whitlock, U.S. Navy (1917-2007)
Vice Admiral Russell Willson, U.S. Navy (1883-1948)
Captain Wesley Arnold “Ham” Wright, U.S. Navy (1902-1986)
Rear Admiral Richard Dewey Zern, U.S. Navy (1905-1958)

The Blue Sky Merchants
(linguists, translators, and intelligence officers)
Captain Forrest Rosecrans “Tex” Biard, U.S. Navy (1912-2009)
Captain Henri de Balathier Claiborne, U.S. Navy (1903-1969)
Rear Admiral Cecil Hengy Coggins, M.C., U.S. Navy (1902-1987)
Captain Joseph Francis Finnegan, U.S. Navy (1905-1980)
Rear Admiral Ranson Fullinwider, U.S. Navy (1905-1969)
Brigadier General Bankson Taylor Holcomb, Jr., U.S. Marine Corps (1908-2000)
Captain Wilfred Jay “Jasper” Holmes, U.S. Navy (1900-1986)
Captain Stephen Jurika, Jr., U.S. Navy (1910-1993)
Colonel Alva Bryan “Red” Lasswell, U.S. Marine Corps (1905–1988)
Rear Admiral Edwin Thomas Layton, U.S. Navy (1903-1984)
Rear Admiral Arthur Howard McCollum, U.S. Navy (1898-1976)Rear Admiral Kenneth Duval Ringle, U.S. Navy (1900-1963)
Captain Fred Fremont Rogers, U.S. Navy (1884-1952)
Lieutenant Commander Durwood Garland “Tex” Rorie, U.S. Navy (1909-1987)
Captain William Joseph Sebald, U.S. Naval Reserve (1901-1980)
Captain Gilven Max Slonim, U.S. Navy (1901-1977)
Captain Henri Harold Smith-Hutton, U.S. Navy (1901-1977)
Vice Admiral Rufus Lackland Taylor, Jr., U.S. Navy (1910-1978)
Captain Edward Howe Watson, U.S. Navy (1874-1942)
Rear Admiral Ethelbert Watts, U.S. Navy (1902-1966)
Rear Admiral Ellis Mark Zacharias, Sr., U.S. Navy (1890-1961)

The “Hybrids”
(multi-skilled and multi-proficient)
Captain Thomas Butler Birtley, Jr., U.S. Navy (1899-1956)
Vice Admiral Howard Fithian Kingman, U.S. Navy (1890-1968)
Captain Alwin Dalton Kramer, U.S. Navy (1903-1972)
Rear Admiral Redfield Barnard Mason, U.S. Navy (1904-1995)
Rear Admiral John Walter McClaran, U.S. Navy (1887-1948)
Rear Admiral Gill MacDonald Richardson, U.S. Navy (1905-1988)
Captain Joseph John Rochefort, U.S. Navy (1900-1976)
Captain John George Roenigk, U.S. Navy (1912-1993)

A. What’s a Code, and What’s a Cipher
B. Chronology of Select Highlights, U.S. Navy Radio Intelligence,
Pacific Area of Operations 1916–1941
C. Directors of U.S. Naval Intelligence, 1909-1942
D. Directors of U.S. Naval Communications, 1912-1942
E. U.S. Naval Attachés in Tokyo, 1914-1941
F. U.S. Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Office of Naval Communications, Section “OP-20-G” and its Antecedents
G. Officers-in-Charge, Office of Naval Communications, Code and Signal Section, “Research Desk,” OP-20-GX
H. Officers-in-Charge, Office of Naval Communications, Code and Signal Section, Translation Section, OP-20-GZ
I. Growth of U.S. Naval Radio Intelligence
J. U.S. Naval Radio Intelligence, Primarily Focused upon Japan, as of December 1941
K. Station HYPO, Territory of Hawaii
L. U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps Japanese Language/Culture Officers Immersed in Japan, 1910-1941
M. The “On the Roof Gang”
N. Operation “Vengeance”
Suggested Reading

Customer Reviews