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National Cryptologic Museum

National Cryptologic Museum

The National Cryptologic Museum (NCM) is an interactive museum showcasing the history of cryptology. It is located at 8290 Colony Seven Rd, Annapolis Junction, MD 20701, on Fort Monmouth. Tours are offered to the public from May through October and admission fees vary by time. The current exhibit at the NCM was opened in 2012 and features artifacts, video, interactive technology displays, and a 3-D laser theater where visitors can see virtual views of Fort Meade and its mission sites around the world. The main focus of the NCM is to showcase how modern day code breaking has aided military operations and national security strategy. There are three specific galleries that encompass this theme; one for Signal Intelligence (SIGINT), one for Communications Security (COMSEC), and one for Cryptology. Additional Info

Signal Intelligence Gallery

The SIGINT Gallery focuses on the collection of information, either electronic or human, through different means. The first gallery focuses on the collection of wireless communications, which was the main focus of World War II, and the second gallery is dedicated to the collection of telephone and telegraph communications. These were the main means of communication during World War I. The third gallery follows satellite and spacecraft collection, as well as information about underwater collection. Each gallery ends with a section about information sharing and how advances in technology have changed how information is collected and shared.

Communications Security Gallery

The second gallery focuses on communications security and the evolution of techniques that were used to secure communications over time. The first gallery focuses on the evolution of encryption and how the ability to send secret messages was essential during World War I. As the tech advanced, more secure ways to send encrypted messages was developed. The second gallery follows with the development of secure communications, such as the use of pigeons carrying secret messages for the military. This was the first use of encryption for communications between two parties. Secure voice and data encryption were also developed with the first voice encryption device being created in 1917. The final gallery follows with the use of secure communications between military personnel, such as encrypted messages on typewriters.

Cryptography Gallery

The final gallery is dedicated to the science of Cryptology and how the National Security Agency (NSA) has used it to protect national security. The gallery begins by showing how early civilizations were able to use simple puzzles to send secret messages to each other. Then, how the Greeks first began using symbols to encode messages. These symbols were created by using combinations of letters and numbers in different ways. Finally, how today’s advanced computers have helped create more complex and secure ways to encode and decode messages.

Final Thoughts

The National Cryptologic Museum is a must-see while in Maryland. For anyone interested in the history of code breaking and how it has changed society, this museum is a must see. The first two galleries focus on the collection of wireless communications, which was the main focus of World War II, and the collection of telephone and telegraph communications. These were the main means of communication during World War I. The third gallery follows satellite and spacecraft collection, as well as information about underwater collection. Each gallery ends with a section about information sharing and how advances in technology have changed how information is collected and shared. The final gallery is dedicated to the science of Cryptology and how the National Security Agency (NSA) has used it to protect national security. The National Cryptologic Museum is a must-see while in Maryland. For anyone interested in the history of code breaking and how it has changed society, this museum is a must see. The first two galleries focus on the collection of wireless communications, which was the main focus of World War II, and the collection of telephone and telegraph communications. These were the main means of communication during World War I. The third gallery follows satellite and spacecraft collection, as well as information about underwater collection. Each gallery ends with a section about information sharing and how advances in technology have changed how information is collected and shared. The final gallery is dedicated to the science of Cryptology and how the National Security Agency (NSA) has used it to protect national security. This Article

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