Second World War: Local Police Officer Recruits Girl to FBI

During the second World War, police officers recruited local women to help the FBI with many clerical tasks.

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One day during the second World War, a representative of the FBI came to our little town, looking for girls interested in working for the FBI in Washington, D.C. I was asked by our local town police officer if I'd be interested in this opportunity. Listening to the FBI man tell of the employment, wages and a chance to help in the war effort, I knew this was what I wanted to do. I was fingerprinted, investigated and cleared for FBI employment. 

Working for the FBI, I was trained to be a fingerprint classifier. We were to help classify the huge stacks of fingerprints of military and defense workers. There were rooms filled with fingerprint cards waiting to be classified.

The FBI building was heavily guarded, and we could only enter by showing our identification pins. All government buildings were guarded.

The streets of Washington were crowded on weekends with servicemen from nearby training bases. The men were lonely and passing time by seeing the nation's capital.

Most government buildings did allow servicemen to tour the building during set hours. Government workers like us could only tour these buildings when accompanied by a serviceman. We would ask a serviceman standing on the street to take the tour with us. After the tour, we often found a doughnut shop where we would talk more, before leaving the serviceman to continue his lonesome day.

Myrtle May Duin
George, Iowa

Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then Capper’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from Capper’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.