Talk:Intelligence in the American Revolutionary War

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Military history (Rated Start-Class)
MILHIST This article is within the scope of the Military history WikiProject. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the project and see a list of open tasks. To use this banner, please see the full instructions.
Start This article has been rated as Start-Class on the quality assessment scale.

2004/2005 comments about article[edit]

I noticed the fact that the article ws taken verbatim from the webpage on spies during the revolutionary war. I was concerned, as that would usually be considered plagerism, but realized I shouldn't be because of the comment below. THanks to whoever made that comment. ~~

The initial version is a verbatim copy of "Intelligence in the War of Independence" a work of the Unites States Government, CIA. As such, it is in the public domain worldwide.

Original source:

Probably needs some NPOV'ing particularly at the end: "Famous Agents" used to be "Martyrs & Heroes". Also needs wikifying. Wolfman 04:39, 17 Oct 2004 (UTC)

There are some nice drawings linked in the CIA book, which could be uploaded, if someone is interested in doing so. I already grabbed the nathan hale and joseph warren ones. Wolfman 05:00, 17 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Someone's GOT to get the old intelligence seal ( ) ! Thanx 05:33, 9 May 2005 (UTC)


I'm going though this article and making some changes, which I'll talk about here. I was going to just submit it all but then oDC crashed my machine up and I have to start over, so now I'll be submitting it piecemeal so if I screw something up it will be less major. Thanx 05:26, 9 May 2005 (UTC)



  • Should the links to the states after the congressmen link to the general article (New York), or the one that relates more to the state that they knew (New York) (Click it)?


  • I tried to severely cut down on the use of the term "Patriot" to refer to those siding with the revolution as it sounds a bit POV and gets annoying after awhile.
  • I moved out the whole section as it was very long, could stand on itself, and makes it alot shorter and easier to read (IMO the last one).

I feel I should note that the term "Patriot" in reference to American colonial rebels is a widely accepted and non-biased term, like the term "Loyalist" to refer to American supporters of the Crown.-- (talk) 06:53, 6 October 2008 (UTC)


  • Wayy too many people from Pennsylvania in the Secret Committee, and for that matter probably in the Congress itself!
  • The 2nd paragraph of "Covert Action" sounds just like something the CIAd say, although it may be true.


Having read incidental comments on some of the things mentioned here (From reasonable reputable sources), the difference and emphasis shifts are so strong I feel someone should check this over (I tried and evidently didn't do so well). Also, the source is not the most uninvolved either. 03:52, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

This article needs to be massively overhauled and divided up into sections by country. It seems to imply that Intelligence in the American Revolutionary War was only used on one side. I know this is clearly wrong - there were British agents active in pre-war Massachuetas, and the British continued to be active throughout the war both in America and across the globe. It is commonmly stated that the British had agents in the rebel American high command. Major John Andre was a leading British spymaster and persuaded Benedict Arnold to defect back to the British. Benjamin Franklin has been widely reported as selling information to British spies in Paris. The British made extensive use of African American servents and slaves to overhear their masters conversations. The article is missing all these things but I suspect it is an oversight rather than bias. I will try and write more on the British perespective (and possibly French, Spanish and Dutch if I can find the sources) and perhaps cut the American entrys a little bit. Lord Cornwallis (talk) 04:19, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

Incorrect edit in Committee on Spies section[edit]

In this text: It was resolved further that the act "be printed at the end of the rules and articles of war." On February 27, 1778, the law was broadened to include any "inhabitants of these states" whose intelligence activities aided the enemy in capturing or killing British forces.

Shouldn't "killing British forces" be "killing American forces?" This would make more sense since we wouldn't have been as concerned of British deaths during the Revolutionary War. I didn't want to edit it since I don't have a source. Do the editors agree? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:24, 27 April 2014 (UTC)

You are quite correct. Thanks for catching this. A vandal changed "revolutionary" to "British" in October 2011 and got away with it until you caught it. I have changed the word back to the earlier version of "revolutionary." Donner60 (talk) 22:08, 28 April 2014 (UTC)