The British captured New York City from the Continental Army in July 1776.
George Washington wanted the city back and he wanted to know where the British Army would march next.
In need of actionable intelligence, Washington charged Benjamin Tallmadge with forming a network of spies on Long Island and in New York City.
Today, we explore espionage during the American Revolution and the origins and operations of the Culper Spy Ring with Alexander Rose, author of Washington's Spies: The Story of America's First Spy Ring and a historian, writer, and producer for AMC’s television drama TURN.
About the Show
Ben Franklin’s World is a podcast about early American history.
It is a show for people who love history and for those who want to know more about the historical people and events that have impacted and shaped our present-day world.
Each episode features a conversation with a historian who helps us shed light on important people and events in early American history.
In this episode, we explore spy craft during the American Revolution with Alexander Rose, author of Washington's Spies: The Story of America's First Spy Ring.
During our exploration, Alex reveals information about the origins and participants of the Culper Spy Ring; How the Culper Ring worked; And, how his book, Washington’s Spies, became the basis for AMC’s television drama TURN.
What You’ll Discover
- How Alex became interested in spy craft during the American Revolution
- Benedict Arnold
- How Alex researched the Culper Spy Ring
- How Culper Ring members communicated with George Washington
- Evolution of the Culper Ring communication codes and techniques
- The people who participated in spy networks during the American War for Independence
- Origins and participants of the Culper Spy Ring
- How the Culper Ring worked
- What it was like to live in British-held areas of New York during the Revolution
- The American War for Independence as a civil war
- Dangers involved in working as a spy during the revolutionary period
- Nathan Hale
- Benjamin Tallmadge
- Origins of the Culper Spy Ring name
- Abraham Woodhull
- Caleb Brewster
- The success of the Culper Ring
- How American spy networks compared with British spy networks
- How Washington’s Spies became the basis for AMC’s television show TURN
- Aspects of TURN that have been embellished for television
Links to People, Places, and Publications
- Alex Rose
- Alex’s Twitter Handle: @AlexRoseWriter
- Alex’s Facebook Page
- Washington's Spies: The Story of America's First Spy Ring
- AMC TURN
Time Warp Question
In your opinion what might have happened if the Culper Ring had not formed? How would its absence have affected the American war effort?
Questions, Comments, Suggestions
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