J. Edgar Hoover & How He Manipulated Information

In other words, “all that can go wrong when the principles of librarianship are used to combat public good.” Hoover’s first job in Washington was as a clerk at the Library of Congress in 1913; in this role he learned how to index and categorize information, knowledge he would later use to index people. When he assumed the role of head of the Radical Division he created a card catalog system of all things ‘subversive.’ But beyond cataloging people, Hoover also used knowledge gleaned from his clerking days to hide information – he would deliberately misclassify information so that no other agency would be able to discover it. The author, Alana Mohamed, goes on to note that many of the happenings of the era (Palmer raids, McCarthyism) could just as easily been named after Hoover as he played such an enormous backstage role in their implementation. Fascinating read and highlights that fifty years after his death, his methods of cataloging information are still being used to hide the historical record.

How J. Edgar Hoover Used the Power of Libraries for Evil

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