Most of us are aware of the existence of the Secret Service—the government agency best known for providing security detail for the President of the United States. For that reason, it may seem silly to call it a “secret” when it’s so well-publicized.
Yet, in reality, there are decades’ worth of secrets hidden amongst its history. There’s a lot going on behind the scenes at the Secret Service that the average citizen doesn’t know. After reading these facts, you’ll understand why the organization’s title is actually pretty fitting…
1. Abraham Lincoln was assassinated on the same day that he founded the Secret Service: This certainly seems like a bit of cruel irony, though the Secret Service wasn’t created to protect the president. It took another 36 years before Congress added that to the agency’s duties!
2. The Secret Service was originally responsible for preventing counterfeit currency: The agency was initially part of the Treasury Department, largely because as much as one third of American currency following the Civil War was counterfeit.
3. The Secret Service paved the way for the FBI: In 1908, among the first crop of “Bureau of Investigation” (as the FBI was originally known) recruits, were nine agents who had simply been pulled directly from the Secret Service.
4. The Secret Service isn’t only located in Washington D.C.: In fact, every state has its own Secret Service field office (there are nine in California alone). The Secret Service is located in territories like Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as a few foreign nations, such as Russia, too.
5. Franklin D. Roosevelt managed to keep his disability a secret for years thanks to the Secret Service: Polio caused him to spend his terms in a wheelchair, but he didn’t want the world to view him differently because of it. Unseen to the public, agents went to great lengths to abide by this request, even going so far as to destroy paparazzi cameras.
One of the most amazing things about the Secret Service is that there’s still so much more to learn about the agency. Who knows what other “secrets” they have?
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