George Washington’s Secret Spy War: The Making of America’s First Spymaster

George Washington's Secret Spy War - The Making of America's First Spymaster (Paperback)
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He even had them write some of their reports in invisible ink that could only be read after being brushed with a chemical compound. One of their most significant achievements came during the summer of , when they informed Washington of a British plan to ambush French forces gathered at Newport, Rhode Island. In , the Connecticut-born shoemaker was making his way to a Continental Army camp in New York when he was confused for a British sympathizer and invited to a meeting of loyalist militiamen.

The job required Crosby to work deep undercover. To help sell his new identity, his handlers arranged for him to be arrested as a loyalist before staging his escape to the Hudson River Valley.

Peggy Shinner

George Washington was America's first spymaster, and his skill as a spymaster won the war for independence. George Washington's Secret Spy War is the. Editorial Reviews. Review. "One intriguing, little-known facet of the first general of the George Washington was America's first spymaster, and his skill as a.

Crosby then reunited with the British sympathizers and began reporting on their movements. Thanks to the intelligence he gathered, the entire gang was rounded up in a Continental raid a few days later.

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In the months that followed, Crosby infiltrated British loyalist groups on at least four more occasions. The young spy carried a special pass that would identify him as an American agent in a pinch—he once had to use it to avoid being picked up by Continental sentries—but outside of Jay and a few others, no one knew he was actually working for the colonials. Not only did Lieutenant Lewis Costigin supply valuable intelligence from behind British lines, he did it while openly wearing a Continental Army uniform.

His bizarre career in espionage began in early , when George Washington sent him to New Brunswick, New Jersey to report on British movements after the Battle of Trenton. Published by St.

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Copyright In this phase of the Deception Battle Plan, the planning was over and everything was in play and the game was live. Washington would now find out if all his efforts at deception had worked. The big risk was that the British saw through the deception and were running their own counter-deception. If so, Washington and the Continental and French armies would be heading into a trap.

5 Patriot Spies of the American Revolution - HISTORY

During the American Revolution, Washington was getting his troops prepared for the long arduous march to Virginia. A commissioned officer was posted at each of the places who was to give a specific short ticket to such persons as he permitted to pass into camp. The general lack of horses and bad condition of the horses in the French army were part of the reason for the delay in the departure until August By keeping the real destination a secret even from most of the officers and all of the enlisted men, Washington believed it would reduce the chance of an accidental leak or intentional divulging of the real objective to British spies who were always about.

In keeping the men from discovering what was happening, he did not issue General Orders between August 20 and 27 except for baggage concerns on the 22nd and a position assignment on the 24th.

  • George Washington as America’s First Spymaster!
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  • George Washington's Secret Spy War | John A. Nagy | Macmillan.

Espionage was a skill he honed during the French and Indian war and upon which he heavily depended during the Revolutionary War. He used espionage to level the playing field and then exploited it on to final victory. Filled with thrilling and never-before-told stories from the battlefield and behind enemy lines, this is the story of how Washington out-spied the British. For the first time, readers will discover how espionage played a major part in the American Revolution and why Washington was a master at orchestrating it.


If you're looking for someone's thesis, look elsewhere. If you're looking for an easily understood, highly readable book on a particular aspect of Washington's work during the war, you're in the right place.

Customer Reviews

There seems to always be something more to learn about him. In this case, it shows that he took the hard lessons he learned in the French and Indian War and kept working with them to provide the best intelligence to his generals.

He did not always do the same for himself, and that led to his bad rap as a field commander despite his reckless bravery. This book describes quite well how Washington developed his network and utilized it, and demonstrates the effectiveness of this aspect of the war.

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As a former reenactor, I was delighted that NetGalley gave me the opportunity to read this book pre publication. This was a very informative and interesting read. The author obviously knows his stuff about the time period and has a lot of detail written in the narrative of the book. I would have liked to give the book a higher rating but I found some of the information repetitive and the writing style was dry. But informative all the same. Here at Walmart. Your email address will never be sold or distributed to a third party for any reason. Due to the high volume of feedback, we are unable to respond to individual comments.

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Spies of The Revolutionary War (Documentary)

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