Native American Code Talkers received special honors today when the National Security Agency / Central Security presented a plaque to the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.
Trumbull D. Soule, NSA's Deputy Chief of Staff, presented the plaque to the NMAI's Director Kevin Gover in the museum's Potomac Atrium.
"We are privileged to be here this morning to present a plaque honoring these men to the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian," Soule said in his remarks. "We are thrilled that Mr. Gover agrees this is the perfect home for this plaque, honoring all of those Native Americans who used their language skills to advance our military missions in World Wars I and II and to protect their fellow servicemen," he added.
Every induction into the NSA/CSS Cryptologic Hall of Honor (HoH) since it was established in 1999 went to individual cryptologists who represented the best of the best in their field and made significant and enduring contributions to American cryptology. Code Talkers proved their mettle and worthiness for induction into the HoH as is evident from the plaque inscription, which read:
"Native Americans served as secure communicators on the frontlines in two world wars. In that role, they provided protection for tactical voice communications to foil enemy eavesdroppers. Their skillful manipulation of language gave U.S. forces a level of security and a speed of secure communications that otherwise would not have been possible. The actions and innovations of the Native American Code Talkers in combat saved thousands of American lives and enabled the success of many operations. The induction of Native American Code Talkers into the NSA/CSS Hall of Honor is intended to remember all code talkers, known and unknown."
Code Talkers numbered in the hundreds and came from at least 33 Native American tribes scattered across the United States.
NSA/CSS awarded the plaque to the Code Talkers in November 2013 when they became the first group inducted into the HoH. The plaque will be on permanent display at the NMAI, the museum the U.S. Congress charged to keep names of all Code Talkers who valiantly served our nation.
For more information on the HoH, click on the Cryptologic Hall of Honor tab at NSA.gov.