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2023 marks the 75th anniversary of the Hiss-Chambers espionage case, which gripped America in 1948 and still provokes controversy. Take a deep factual dive into the story of two brilliant, fascinating men, sensational Congressional hearings, spy documents hidden in a dumbwaiter shaft and a pumpkin, the trial of the century, and the launch of Richard Nixon’s career. Comments and politely phrased corrections or criticism are welcome by the writer and narrator, at john_berresford@comcast.net.

Feb 24, 2022

 
Several people have told me that, of my 38 episodes, this is their favorite.  See if you agree.
 
It is all about the question Hiss could never answer:  how, if Hiss is innocent, did the 64 Typed Spy Documents get typed on his home typewriter.  You may recall that Hiss first told The Grand Jury that Chambers broke...


Feb 17, 2022

Alger Hiss is taken to prison
 
Alger Hiss’s conviction — technically for perjury, but effectively for treason — was a major event.  It was a disaster for The Establishment, especially liberal Democrats, and vindication for Republicans and populist Democrats.  The 18 month labyrinth of HUAC hearings, depositions...


Feb 10, 2022

Prosecutor Thomas F. Murphy 

In this Podcast, we hear the closing speeches, and the verdict of the second jury.  In a mirror image of the first trial, this time it was Hiss’s lawyer Claude Cross who was quiet, even plodding, and it was Prosecutor Murphy (like Hiss’s barrister Stryker at the first trial) who...


Feb 3, 2022

Edith Murray

 

This is a short podcast, describing a last-minute rebuttal witness for The Prosecution.  Into court came a black woman named Edith Murray.  Alistair Cooke (at 299) found her “lively.”  She testified that, at times in 1935 and 1936, she had been the household servant (cleaning and cooking) for...