United States Army M-209-A.

This is a US Army M-209-A cipher machine in complete and working condition. Included is the original canvas case, all accessories, two different versions of the original operator’s manual, and a copy of the book “Inside Enigma” by Dr. Thomas Perera.

This is a very fine, museum-quality, working example of an M-209-A from World War II. This machine is in exceptional condition. The ID tag on the top of the metal case indicates that it was manufactured in Syracuse, New York under license from the Hagelin Cryptograph Company of New Milford, Connecticut, USA. 

The M-209 is a portable hand-operated mechanical cipher machine initially developed in the late 1930s by the entrepreneur and inventor, Boris Hagelin. Hagelin fled Sweden for the United States at the outbreak of WWII and worked with the US Military to refine his cipher machine design. The M-209 was the result of this collaboration and the machine would be used by the US during WWII as well as many other countries for decades after the end of the war. The relationship between Hagelin and the US goes much deeper than the collaborations during WWII. A February 2020 article in the Washington Post details the many decades long secret relationship Hagelin had with the CIA and German Intelligence services. See details below.

This rotor-based cipher machine does not require electricity and is lightweight and durable. Therefore, it was perfectly suited for tactical front line use. While the code generated by the M-209 was not as cryptographically strong as the German Enigma code, and could occasionally be read in as few as 4 hours by the Germans, it was considered secure enough for tactical messages that were of no value after that length of time. The US military used the M-209-A in both Europe and the Pacific during World War II. The M-209 cipher machines were easy to use and produce and were used by the US Army throughout the Korean War and into the early 1960s.

M-209-A cipher machines were manufactured under license from Hagelin by LC Smith Corona Typewriters, Inc., in Syracuse, New York. The machines were supplied with a canvas carrying case, paper tape, and an operator’s manual. Inside the metal case lid were an ink reservoir, a lubricant reservoir, an adjustment screwdriver, and a pair of tweezers for feeding the paper tape through the machine.

This M-209-A is available for sale and located in the United States. Price does not include shipping.

Complete M-209-A cipher machines are rare. The M-209-A machines were produced in a more limited quantity than the M-209-B variant which replaced the M-209-A during WWII. We do occasionally have other variants of the M-209 cipher machine available for sale. Please feel free to contact us directly for more information and pricing.

Price – $ 6,900 USD

See Pictures Below.



Details of the secret relationship between the CIA and German Intelligence services and Boris Hagelin.

In February 2020, the Washington Post published an article detailing the relationship between Boris Hagelin’s company, Crypto AG, and the intelligence services of the US and Germany. Following Hagelin’s collaboration with the US military to develop and manufacture the M-209 during WWII, Hagelin returned to Europe after the war and established Crypto AG in Switzerland to manufacture advanced cipher machines for sale worldwide. The US, fearing that Hagelin’s advanced cipher machine technologies would hinder the US in its intelligence gathering, struck a secret deal with Crypto AG in 1952. This initial arrangement limited Crypto AG from selling its most advanced technology to certain countries. This allowed the CIA to more easily read encrypted messages from these countries. The arrangement exchanged cash from the CIA for technical design and sales restrictions over Crypto AG’s products and customers. This arrangement expanded in 1970 when the CIA and Germany’s BND Intelligence agency secretly bought Crypto AG from Boris Hagelin. The joint ownership of Crypto AG lasted for decades and allowed the US and Germany unprecedented access to secret communications from more than 62 countries around the world and the United Nations. The arrangement lasted from 1970 through 2017 when the Crypto AG assets were sold off. The Washington Post article was compiled with assistance from Marc Simons and Paul Reuvers (www.cryptomuseum.com).

Link to Washington Post Article ‘The intelligence coup of the century’



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General and technical introductions to the Enigma.

INSIDE ENIGMA (Book) – The Secrets of the Enigma Machine and Other Historic Cipher Machines with 206 pages and 500 pictures. Email us to order a copy of the book.



Info@EnigmaMuseum.com or call  (802) 431-5158