The Fox and the Hound: The Birth of American Spying
Most books about espionage in the American Revolutionary War tend to focus solely on General George Washington, but as noted historian Donald E. Markle explores in this fascinating account, there was an entire system of intelligence communication autonomous from his direction. General Washington and General Charles Cornwallis were engaged in a constant battle to outmaneuver each other, and Cornwallis seemed to always be one step behind Washington and his intelligence departments. As the war progressed, the Americans and British slowly learned one another's tactics, allowing the hunt between the fox (Washington) and the hound (Cornwallis). THE FOX AND THE HOUND walks readers through the early stages of the war, when gathering and distributing intelligence was a challenge without a centralized government to organize a network. Markle tells us how and why Washington created multiple intelligence-gathering departments within the colonies, which included most of the East Coast from Georgia to New Hampshire and even parts of Canada--all operating under a command structure unique to their surrounding geography. This book explores the many depths of the intelligence networks from civilian men and women who dedicated their lives to the American cause, to the introduction of code ciphers and the first spy equipment such as David Bushnell's turtle submarine and Benjamin Franklin's jet boat. Without the dedication of Washington and his innovative loyal supporters, it's quite possible that the outcome of the war may have been different. Military and American history enthusiasts will find this a valuable resource for their collections.