Elizabeth Peet McIntosh

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Elizabeth Peet McIntosh
Born Elizabeth Sebree Peet
(1915-03-01)March 1, 1915
Washington, D.C., United States
Died June 8, 2015(2015-06-08) (aged 100)
Lake Ridge, Virginia, United States
Cause of death Heart attack
Spouse(s) Alexander MacDonald
(m. 19??–19??; divorced)
Richard Heppner
(m. 19??–1958; his death)
Frederick McIntosh
(m. 1962–2004; his death)
Parent(s) William Peet and Jessie Lydia Sebree

Elizabeth "Betty" Peet McIntosh (March 1, 1915 – June 8, 2015) was known for her undercover work during World War II for the OSS (forerunner of the CIA).

She was the daughter of two reporters and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. While in Hawaii, McIntosh studied and learned to speak Japanese. Just like her parents, she also became a reporter and returned to the Washington, D.C. area once World War II had begun in order to cover Eleanor Roosevelt and other government activities. In January 1943, she was asked to join the Office of Strategic Services because she had become fluent in Japanese. She was then sent to India where her main job was to intervene in the postcard communication that troops would send home to India while stationed in Japan. She became one of the few women assigned to Morale Operations where she created "disinformation," or fake reports, documents and postcards which would "undermine Japanese morale."

After her time with the OSS, McIntosh published her memoir titled "Undercover Girl" in 1947. She wrote two children's books as well: "Inki" (later republished as "Inky") and "Palace Under the Sea". In 1958, McIntosh began working for the CIA and worked there until she retired in 1973. She also wrote Sisterhood of Spies: The Women of the OSS, first published in 1998. In 2012, McIntosh was honored as one of the Library of Virginia's "Virginia Women in History".[1]

McIntosh died on June 8, 2015, in Lake Ridge, Virginia after a heart attack. She was 100 years old.[2]


  1. ^ "Virginia Women in History: Elizabeth Peet McIntosh". Library of Virginia. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  2. ^ Staff (2015-06-09). "Elizabeth McIntosh, spy whose lies helped win a war, dies at 100". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2015-06-09. 
  • Beebe, and Masterson. "Beebe & Masterson's Communicating in Small Groups: Chapter Two." Beebe & Masterson's Communicating in Small Groups: Chapter Two. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Apr. 2014.
  • "Elizabeth Peet '31 McIntosh." Punahou School:. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2014.
  • "Female Spies in World War I and World War II." About.com Women's History. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2014.
  • "Jennifer Niven : Everything Books." Jennifer Niven : Everything Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2014.
  • Shapira, Ian. "Decades after Duty in the OSS and CIA, “spy Girls” Find Each Other in Retirement." Washington Post. The Washington Post, 2 July 2011. Accessed online 20 Apr. 2014.
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  • Westlake, Donald E. "The Ladies Who Lied." The New York Times. The New York Times, 30 May 1998. Accessed online 20 Apr. 2014.

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