Details: Low tech but high fun! While serving as President George Washington’s secretary of state (1790-1793), Thomas Jefferson devised an ingenious and secure method to encode and decode messages: the wheel cypher. During the American Revolution, Jefferson had relied primarily on messengers to hand-carry sensitive letters, but codes became an essential part of his correspondence when he was America’s minister to France (1784-1789) since European postmasters opened and read all letters passing through their command. Jefferson’s wheel cypher consisted of twenty-six cylindrical wooden pieces, each threaded onto an iron spindle. The letters of the alphabet were inscribed on the edge of each wheel in a random order. By turning these wheels, words could be scrambled and unscrambled. 6 1/4"l x 2 1/2" dia.
- Adaptation of the wheel cypher device Thomas Jefferson devised to encode and decode messages during the American Revolutionary War.
- Made of rubber wood.
- Recommended for ages 5 and up.
- 6 1/4"l x 2 1/2" dia.
- Buy two decoders so recipients can quickly decipher secret messages!
Package Dimensions: 6.9 x 2.6 x 2.6 inches