Elizabeth Smith

Managing Real Estate Broker with Fathom Realty PB00068179

Elizabeth Smith was born in Huntington, Indiana back in 1892 to John and Sopha. From 1911 to 1913 she attended the University of Wooster in Ohio, but left due to her mother’s illness. Once she got back home she attended Hillsdale College in Michigan graduating with a major in English literature. She studied Latin, Greek and German languages.

After graduation, she was hired as a substitute principal at a public high school in Wabash, Indiana resigning with less than one year at that position. She found work at the Riverbank Laboratories in Geneva, Illinois. With the outbreak of WWI, she worked with the United States Army’s Cipher Bureau MI8. It was there that she met and married William and for the next four years they worked together. In 1921, they moved to Washington, D.C. working for the War Department.

After the war, she worked for the U.S. Treasury Department breaking the codes that bootleggers used to prevent smuggling of drugs and bootleg liquor. During the rest of her career she helped the U.S. Navy, the Canadian Government break the codes of smugglers. Her team remained the primary code breakers during WWII.

What you may not know about Elizabeth Smith Friedman is that she is known as the first female cryptanalyst..

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Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team

Good morning, James Dray I didn't know what a cryptanalyst was....not I do... not many have that job!!!

Jan 28, 2020 02:54 AM #1
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning James. She would have been worthy of a cup of coffee and conversation. She would have talked while I listened! Enjoy your day!

Jan 28, 2020 03:43 AM #2
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Well, who knew, James? I sure didn't, but I do now. I love reading about women like this. The story reminded me of the movie Hidden Figures about black women working on the first space program.

Jan 28, 2020 03:57 AM #3
Donald Urschalitz
Lubeck Realty Group - Jupiter, FL
P.A. Realtor ABR RSPS North Palm Beach County

All I can say she was one smart woman. Have a great week.

Jan 28, 2020 04:17 AM #4
Barbara Tattersall
Keller Williams Realty Metropolitan (Keene,NH) - Keene, NH

She sounds like one briliant woman! The public high school in Wabash was interesting.  Hiring a new graduate for an assistant prinicpal position and having her stay less than a year!  It was either some desperate school or Miss Elizabeth knew exactly what she wanted.

Jan 28, 2020 04:28 AM #5
Raymond E. Camp
Howard Hanna Real Estate Services - Ontario, NY
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester

Good morning James,

Maybe if I learned to be a cryptanalyst, I might better understand the complexities of women!

Make yourself an astonishing day.

Jan 28, 2020 05:20 AM #6
Doug Dawes
Keller Williams Realty - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

When I was in Air Force training at Sheperd AFB one of my friends was being trained in cryptology James Dray his was a 2-year training

Jan 28, 2020 05:39 AM #7
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

If she were alive today, she would likely be running a huge cybersecurity firm, haha.

Jan 28, 2020 05:50 AM #8
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

If I was her husband I would have been careful about what I said and did.

Jan 28, 2020 05:58 AM #9
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello James - obviously Elizabeth was a very intelligent woman.  Thanks for sharing her story.  

Jan 28, 2020 06:02 AM #10
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning again James. What a won derful and incredible woman. Great read today. TY

Jan 28, 2020 06:51 AM #11
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


What an amazing story!  This amazing women was an asset to finding the smugglers.  A

Jan 28, 2020 08:04 AM #12
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Realty - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi James Dray,

This sounds like a very exciting job and she was at the top of her game!

Jan 28, 2020 09:02 AM #13
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi James- proof again that women can do what they set out to do!!

Jan 28, 2020 09:27 AM #14
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Hi James Dray - she did get work along with the British during WWII.

Jan 28, 2020 01:04 PM #15
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi James:

Well I had never heard of a cryptanalyst, and now I can say I know of a famous one!


Jan 29, 2020 05:49 PM #16
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

What an amazing career Elizabeth Smith had…and in a field that was male dominated until she came along. Quite a lady!

Feb 16, 2020 03:49 PM #17
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