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Cryptologic Pioneers the African American Experience

James Pryde

James Pryde

James Pryde was a former radio operator with the Tuskegee airmen. He joined the Agency in 1950 and was initially assigned to "the snake pit," an all-black Russian plaintext office, and then to the mailroom. Eventually, however, it was discovered that he could read automatic Morse tapes and he was transferred to a signals analysis section. A brilliant career in Soviet exploitation followed, first as an analyst, then as a manager becoming the chief of a Soviet analysis office in 1965. In March 1978 Mr. Pryde was named the Director of the Defense Special Missile and Astronautic Center (DEFSMAC). He retired from this position in 1980.


Historical Document | Date Posted: Jan 15, 2009