There are more spies working in New York City today than ever before, according to H. Keith Melton, the espionage advisor on The Americans, and Robert Wallace, the former chief of the CIA’s Office of Technical Service. A new book, Spy Sites Of New York City: A Guide To The Region’s Secret History (Georgetown University Press, 2020), offers a guide to the history of espionage in New York City.
In the book, Melton and Wallace chronicle centuries of spying in the five boroughs and beyond, walking the reader through surprising meeting places, secret drop-sites, and the everyday bars, hotels, and park benches where so much shadowy history has been made.
The 200+ entries in the book, with easy-to-follow maps and photos, tell not only of the history of spycraft and the art of reconnaissance, but the story of a city growing from a small settlement in Lower Manhattan in the 1700s to the sprawling metropolis it is today. It shares the little-known stories of Ernest Hemingway, JD Salinger, Bill Blass, and their undercover intelligence work, and cloak-and-dagger deeds that took place at Tavern on the Green, The Strand and Rockefeller Center.
H. Keith Melton is an intelligence historian and author of several books, including Ultimate Spy: Inside the Secret World of Espionage. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the International Spy Museum and owns one of the largest collections of spy artifacts in the world.
Robert Wallace is the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Office of Technical Service and a member of the International Spy Museum’s Board of Advisors. He and H. Keith Melton have co-authored five previous books, including Spy Sites of Washington, DC and Spycraft: The Secret History of the CIA’s Spytechs, from Communism to Al-Qaeda.
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