Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/362

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�Mechanics of the Secret Service

Protecting the Nation's money-bags By M. McGuire Telford

��Spying on the men in the sub-treasury as the money-bags are being counted

��THE officers at the United States sub- treasury located in Chicago found that there was a small but persistent shortage in the money- bags delivered in truck-' load lots from the banks of the city. Careful watching showed that the full amount was sealed in the

��bags at the

banks, but the count was invariably short in the sub- treasury, the difference usually being two, three, or four dollars per bag.

The Secret Service men were called in to solve the mystery. Captain Porter, in charge of the investi- gation, was convinced that the stealing was occurring in the s u b - treasury it-


����Carrying the money-bags sent by the banks of the city by truck-loads to the sub-treasury where they are counted

���a n d not

in the banks or on the trucks during transporta- tion. To make sure, he had a small chamber built in the top of a toilet room opening from tfhe room where the

��bags were received and counted. A tiny crack was made near the molding so that a man might secrete himself in the chamber and keep the workers in the room under observation.

Captain Porter posted himself in these cramped quarters before the beginning of the day's work. As they came in, the money bags were counted by a young man of twenty-five whose work was supervised by an older and highly trusted employee. Captain Porter saw that as the young man counted the bags he tested the tightness of the fastening on each. Most of the bags were quickly passed along, but a few were set aside in a row on the table. When all were counted and tested the young man turned to those on the table. With marvelous quick- ness he pulled down one of the folds on the first bag through the cords loosely fastening it, thrust in his fingers, withdrew two or three silver dollars, and in a jiffy pulled the fold back into place. Each of the other bags was treated in the same fashion, the older man in the mean- time scrupulously keeping his back turned so as to see nothing. On the third day of the investigation, Captain


��The mouth of the bag is drawn into accordion-like folds



���A cord is run through a lead seal and a steel pin is run through each separate fold

��The new sealing device for the m o n e y-b a gs

�� �