The Codebreaker

Based on the book The Woman Who Smashed Codes: A True Story of Love, Spies, and the Unlikely Heroine Who Outwitted America's Enemies, The Codebreaker reveals the fascinating story of Elizebeth Smith Friedman, the groundbreaking cryptanalyst whose painstaking work to decode thousands of messages for the U.S. government.

American Experience, TV's most-watched history series, brings to life the compelling stories from our past that inform our understanding of the world today.

American Experience Episodes

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The Codebreaker

S33 Ep1 | 52m 49s

The fascinating story of Elizebeth Smith Friedman, the groundbreaking cryptanalyst.

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Part 2 | Clinton

S24 Ep4 | 1h 48m 56s

Watch part two of Clinton.

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The Murder of Emmett Till

S15 Ep12 | 53m 1s

Emmett Till's murder and the acquittal of his killers mobilized the Civil Rights Movement.

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Part 2 | The Vote | American Experience

S32 Ep10 | 1h 52m 58s

Part Two examines the mounting dispute over strategies and reveals the pervasive racism.

American Experience Extras

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Greenwood

S33 Ep0 | 1m 19s

Greenwood in Tulsa became a thriving business district known as “Black Wall Street.”

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Chapter 1 | The Codebreaker

S33 Ep1 | 7m 25s

Watch a preview of The Codebreaker.

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Elizebeth Friedman: Cryptanalyst Pioneer

S33 Ep1 | 1m 6s

Friedman’s codebreaking in WWII enabled the US to win the “Battle of the Atlantic”.

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William Friedman: Cryptologist

S33 Ep1 | 1m 14s

A Jewish immigrant from Russia, William F. Friedman became a codebreaker for the U.S.

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