THE WILD WILD WEST  @ wildwildwest.org
THE WILD WILD WEST @ wildwildwest.org
Home | Profile | Active Topics | Members | Search | FAQ
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your Password?

 All Forums
 Wild Wild West - Chat and Play
 Wild Wild West General Discussion Board
 The Secret Service
 New Topic  Topic Locked
 Printer Friendly
Author Previous Topic Topic Next Topic  

MonkeeMaven
SS 1st assignment - desk job

393 Posts

Posted - 11/03/2003 :  19:37:21  Show Profile  Visit MonkeeMaven's Homepage
I'm reading a book on the Secret Service... "The Secret Service: the Hidden History of an Enigmatic Agency". (Boy, how many times can I say Secret Service in the same breath? )

Anyway. I'm still in the first chapter (I just checked it out today ), but it's pretty interesting.

quote:
During the first four years of operation, 1865-1869, the Service's so-called "operatives" stalked and nabbed over two hundred counterfeiters. The director demanded much from himself and his men - ex-soldiers, police officers, or detectives - as he established the agency's headquarters, in Washington, D.C., and set up field offices in eleven cities across the United States. Wood demanded that every operative was on call to the Secret Service twenty-four hours a day, ready to rush to any location at any time. Pait once a month on a daily scale, operatives were required to itemize all their expenses for everything from travel to personal needs. There were no days off, and any "vacation" time was unpaid. Wood required that each operative maintain peak phyical fitness and swear utter, unquestioning obedience to his directives. In short, the early operatives' jobs were their lives.

AdorableBlue
SS novice field agent

948 Posts

Posted - 11/03/2003 :  20:30:39  Show Profile  Visit AdorableBlue's Homepage
quote:
Pait once a month on a daily scale, operatives were required to itemize all their expenses for everything from travel to personal needs. There were no days off, and any "vacation" time was unpaid. Wood required that each operative maintain peak phyical fitness and swear utter, unquestioning obedience to his directives. In short, the early operatives' jobs were their lives.
Wow, that certainly sounds like Jim and Artie throughout WWW! No wonder they never seemed to worry about their own lives! (other than one worrying for the other).

AdorableBlue
Go to Top of Page

MonkeeMaven
SS 1st assignment - desk job

393 Posts

Posted - 11/04/2003 :  08:26:54  Show Profile  Visit MonkeeMaven's Homepage
quote:
In 1867, when Wood was still at the helm of the Secret Service, Congress has expanded the agency's mission to include "detectice persons perpetrating frauds against the government." Wood had stuck more or less to battling counterfeiters and their associates, but under Whitley's hand, the Service began to branch out into other types of investigation, among them swindling, fraud involving veteran's pensions, revenue, and the New York Customs House, smuggling, mail robberies, and illegal voting schemes. As the congressional mandate "to detect persons perpetrating frauds" against the federal government led the Secret Service into a widening array of cases, Whitley told his agents that the act's "ramifications extend everywhere throughout the country, its officers taking cognizance, not only of counterfeiting and other frauds upon the Treasury, but of all crimes coming within the jurisdiction of the Department of Justice."


So that's why Jim & Artie didn't stick to counterfeiting and presedential protection!

According to the book, the first time that Secret Service agents were officially assigned to protect the president was in 1894. When James Garfield was assassinated in 1881, a Secret Service agent saw it and wrote about it in his daily report, but he had nothing to do with the arrest.

Speaking of the reports - remember Jim and Jeremy's gripes about the reports in TNOT Camera, and how they had Cranston do them?

quote:
Whitley continued Wood's practice of demanding that field agents submit weekly reports to the director. But unlike his predecessor, Whitley ordered that agents' longhand reports account for their actions and expenses every hour of every day. In a typical 1870's report, an agent wrote: "I got up at 5:30 A.M. , ate my breakfast, let home at 7:00 , arrived at the office at 8:00. At 8:30 I went to the First National Bank... I returned home at 10:00 P.M., and at 11:30 I went to bed.


The badge for Secret Service agents wasn't designed until August of 1873, and it was first issued to agents in March of 1875.

Because of various scandals in D.C.'s Board of Public Works, the second head of the Secret Service, Hiram Whitley, resigned in 1874. (though the book says he wasn't actually implicated in the scandal.)

quote:
The final report of the investigation recommended that the Service be totally reconstructed and that most of its investigative work be turned over to federal marshals and the U.S. attorney's office. The number of Secret Service operatives was cut in half (from twenty to ten), which was barely enough to provide one operative for each field office.


Okay, so there's tons more that I find fascinating just in the first chapter, but I should be doing my Science right now! Anything you want me to look for specifically?
Go to Top of Page

n/a
deleted

14 Posts

Posted - 11/04/2003 :  08:27:32  Show Profile
Very cool. I may have to try and get it! Thanks for the heads up! BC
Go to Top of Page

Redhead1617
SS novice field agent

USA
1393 Posts

Posted - 11/04/2003 :  10:42:21  Show Profile  Visit Redhead1617's Homepage
keep it coming Mave, this is getting interresting for me I really could use some ideas right now if anyone wants another fic piece , what you have above gave me an idea, but keep anything interresting that you find coming!

~Redhead 'Red'
Dean of Launguages & Literature

*sigh...where's MY Ross Martin?
Go to Top of Page

couldron
SS novice field agent

1438 Posts

Posted - 11/04/2003 :  11:24:04  Show Profile
quote:
what you have above gave me an idea


YEAH
Go to Top of Page

MonkeeMaven
SS 1st assignment - desk job

393 Posts

Posted - 11/05/2003 :  08:56:33  Show Profile  Visit MonkeeMaven's Homepage
Red- if there's anything specifically you want me to look for in the book, just say so.

(I'm having fun typing this for my own entertainment! I almost wish that I need to do a report on something or other in school sometime soon so I can write about this. ;) )

While working on a criminal case in Baltimore in 1861, Allan Pinkerton thwarted a plot to assassinate Lincoln. With the blessing of the commander of the U.S. Army, George McClellan, Pinkerton formed a spy agency called the Secret Service. Later Lincoln sacked the McClellan , and Pinkerton lost his job at the same time, but the Secret Service remained. Lafayette Baker took over.

quote:
Soon the swashbuckling Baker was running the Secret Service as if it, too, were a vigilante organization. His agents became notorious for disregarding constitutional rights, making arrests without due process, and conducting searches without warrants. According to biographer Jacob Mogelever, Baker's "name struck terror in the hearts of the embattled, divided countrymen, He was red-bearded, ferret-eyed... the man who [unofficially] created the Secret Service, a frightening, opressive organization under his drumming, drooling fingers... Woe to spies, contraband smugglers, theiving contractors, bounty jumpers, streetwalkers, and madams, Copperheads, and deserters! Woe to the civil rights of every American!


The Secretary of War funded Baker's organization. Also, apparently Lafayette Baker created "America's first police dossier and criminal photo file".

quote:
On the afternoon of April 14, 1865, with Baker still in charge of the anti-counterfeiting campaign, Abraham Lincoln met with Secretary of the Treasury William P. McCullough, who described the ongoing severity of the counterfeiting problem to the president. McCullough suggested; "We should have a regular permanent force whose job it will be to put these counterfeiters out of business." Lincoln agreed.

John Wilkes Booth assassinated the president at Ford's Theatre that night, and in the weeks that followed, the formation of the official Secret Service was delayed by political chaos and intrigue that climaxed in the dismantement of Baker's apparatus by Lincoln's successor, Andrew Johnson. Johnson had discovered that Director Baker had established his own espionage network inside the Johnson White House. Outraged, Johnson stripped Baker of his post and shut down the agency. During Johnson's impeachment trial in 1868, Baker returned to render testimony against his foe - and was accused of forging letters to incriminate the beleaguered president.



When the Secret Service was officially formed as part of the Department of the Treasury, William Wood was appointed in charge.


One counterfeiter, Wiliam Brockway, made a lead impression of some bank plates, to start his career in that field. In the mid 1860's he "crafted $1,000 U.S. Treasury bonds so authentic that the Treasury itself redeemed some $75,000 of them. Secretary McCullough ordered Wood to examine the bonds, and he immediately recognized the near-perfect notes as the work of Brockway." The Treasury Department offered a $20,000 reward for the capture of Brockway, and McCullough told Wood that he as a federal employee could still collect the reward. Wood himself tracked down Brockway and arrested him in New York. The Department of the Treasury only paid $5,000, though, which is why he resigned in 1869.

quote:
After serving a stint in jail, Brockway gained his release in 1885. He resumed his illicit trade until 1890, frequently shuttling in and out of prisons throughout the eastern United States. Finally, after receiving parole in 1904, the "King of the Counterfeiters" put down his engraving tools for good; he lived out his days as a law-abiding sort and passed away in December 1920 at the age of ninety-eight.


Kinda reminds me of one of the counterfeiters from www.
Go to Top of Page

JimPhelps
SS 1st assignment - desk job

USA
417 Posts

Posted - 11/05/2003 :  09:40:34  Show Profile


Kinda reminds me of one of the counterfeiters from www.

Are you thinking about the old man who everybody thought was dead but was still secretly making counterfeit plates in some basement? I canít remember the characterís name but I think it was an alliteration.


Mr. Phelps
Go to Top of Page

MonkeeMaven
SS 1st assignment - desk job

393 Posts

Posted - 11/05/2003 :  10:13:03  Show Profile  Visit MonkeeMaven's Homepage
I can't recall exactly who it was right now, either, but I was thinkin' of the guy who thought he was making toy money but whose daughter was working with her boyfriend to pass it off as real.
Go to Top of Page

AdorableBlue
SS novice field agent

948 Posts

Posted - 11/05/2003 :  16:25:41  Show Profile  Visit AdorableBlue's Homepage
quote:
Are you thinking about the old man who everybody thought was dead but was still secretly making counterfeit plates in some basement? I canít remember the characterís name but I think it was an alliteration.
Harry Holmes - but I forgot the eps name!!!

Secret Service part of Treasury? It brought to mine TNOT Janus - the mint was in the same building as the SS Academy. Anything stated there, MMaven?

AdorableBlue
Go to Top of Page

orrin cobb
SS novice field agent

USA
959 Posts

Posted - 11/05/2003 :  21:27:40  Show Profile  Visit orrin cobb's Homepage
Coincidentally, I just finished reading John Jake's novel "On Secret Service" which follows a fictional secret operative for the U.S. Army through the Civil War, starting with his early days as a Pinkerton Agent before the war and through the final days after Lincoln's assasination when he was in service under Baker. It weaves fictional characters with the real participants of the war and actual events. The main character even serves as Lincoln's bodyguard for a time.
Also, there was a movie made in the late 1950s titled "Tall Target" that was a fictional account of the attempt to assasinate Lincoln on his way through Baltimore to Washington for his first inaugural. The plot concerned a New York police detective who uncovers a thread of the conspiracy and takes a train down to Washington in an attempt to thwart the assasins, little knowing the conspirators are on board... A nice dramatization and who-dunnit (or should it be who's-gonna-do-it?)
Incidentally, the train in the flick is pulled by ex-Virginia & Truckee RR #8 owned at the time by MGM, which later pulled the Wanderer in "Wild Wild West Revisited" and "More Wild Wild West" while filming at Old Tucson in Arizona.
P.S. The NY Detective in "Tall Target" trying to prevent Lincoln's assasination was named- John Kennedy!
Go to Top of Page
  Previous Topic Topic Next Topic  
 New Topic  Topic Locked
 Printer Friendly
Jump To:
THE WILD WILD WEST @ wildwildwest.org © WildWildWest.org - Third Side of the Coin Go To Top Of Page
Snitz Forums 2000