This film is part of Free

G-Men Combat Saboteurs

Meet the men responsible for protecting America from spies, saboteurs and Fifth Columnists: the agents of J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI.

1941 21 mins


Communicating simultaneously to all 53 of the FBI’s field offices from his headquarters in the Department of Justice, this issue puts J. Edgar Hoover right at the heart of America’s fight against internal espionage during the war. Featuring footage from the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia, the film follows the progress of a new officer, dramatically depicting the investigation of a murder case involving the theft of top secret materials from a gas mask factory.

March of Time’s mission to inform and educate is seen here in the emphasis on the importance of the latest scientific techniques as the most potent weapon against the ‘enemy within’. Scenes from the Bureau’s crime detection laboratories show how forensic methods, once used to trap kidnappers and extortionists were being adapted to investigate acts of sabotage and espionage. Bloodstain and dust analysis, fingerprinting, ballistics, cryptography and spectrographic testing are seen as being at least as important as the firearms, martial arts and surveillance training which formed the bedrock of an agent’s induction to the Bureau.