Second World War code breaker dies at age 91

Harriet Jackson never told her family that she was a code breaker and that she actually helped to shorten the world war. She worked at the Bletchley Park and aided in intercepting German messages.

It was not until 1990, however, that a television program revealed to her relatives details about her job during the war. Her daughter, Sandra Graham, recalls that Harriet was a very private and quiet person, and she was sure that even her father didn’t know about her mother’s secret job until 1990s.

During the war, she worked as a Wren in the Royal Navy but later moved to the Middlesbrough tax office. At Bletchley Park, she worked with a diverse set of people with more than half of the staff being women, the Express reports.

Megan Smith, Vice president of Google, thinks that the success at Bletchley Park could be attributed to diversity, as opposed to the Nazis who opposed diversity.  Another reason for the success of Bletchley Park is the innovation and research in mathematics that paved the way for modern computing.

In a recent movie, The Imitation Game, Benedict Cumberbatch plays the role of Alan Turing, a math genius who helps break the Germans Enigma code.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE