Hoover and his FBI

J. Edgar Hoover (right)

J. Edgar Hoover (right) getting his fingerprints rolled.

"Special Agent" cover

New media such as comic books were used to showcase the superiority of the FBI, and ensure the respect from Americans and others.


    During the 30’s Hoover’s FBI was extensively used against large name criminals. The gangsters of the era were the main target of the FBI, and it entered the public consciousness through these efforts. Tales of “G-Men” taking down gangsters appeared in movies and radio shows. These efforts helped to make the FBI out to be heroes against crime and to take away the glamor of criminals in media. Hoover loved having his organization in the lime-light, and pushed throughout the decade for more arrests of high profile criminals. (Federal Bureau of Investigation 2012)


    During the Second World War anti-axis spying was becoming more and more important as evidence of German and Japanese Spying become clearer. The United States at that point didn’t really have a unified anti-espionage organization, just several smaller ones all over the country. Hoover organized the FBI as something that could handle the size of cases without being overwhelmed, and added more and more responsibilities during the War. Multiple anti-Nazi and anti-Japanese espionage operations were held during the war. The FBI was instrumental in capturing Nazi spies in the United States and preventing them and others from acts of sabotage. A major area that the FBI tried to defend itself was spying for information on troop movements and new technologies. Due to the perilous crossing of the Atlantic with German U-Boat attacks, if the Germans knew when a ship was leaving then they could spring a trap. The FBI was very active in port cities, especially in New York, to defend against this (Garn,20 ).