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Barron (John) papers
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  • Title: John Barron papers
    Date (inclusive): 1927-1996
    Collection Number: 98020
    Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Library and Archives
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 2 manuscript boxes, 1 oversize box (2.3 Linear Feet)
    Abstract: Correspondence, reports, notes, speeches and writings, and photographs, relating to Morris Childs, Federal Bureau of Investigation informant within the Communist Party of the United States; Federal Bureau of Investigation surveillance of the Communist Party; and the relationship between the Communist Party of the United States and the Soviet communist party and government. Includes some papers of Morris Childs. Used as research material for the book by John Barron, Operation Solo: The FBI's Man in the Kremlin (Washington, D.C., 1996).
    Creator: Barron, John, 1930-2005
    Creator: Childs, Morris, 1902-1991


    The collection is open for research; materials must be requested in advance via our reservation system. If there are audiovisual or digital media material in the collection, they must be reformatted before providing access.


    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Library & Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], John Barron papers, [Box no., Folder no. or title], Hoover Institution Library & Archives.

    Alternative Form Available

    Also available on microfilm (2 reels).

    Scope and Content

    The documents of this collection were selected by JOHN BARRON (b. 1930), American journalist and author, to be used as research material for his book Operation SOLO: The FBI Man in the Kremlin (Washington, D.C.: Regnery Pub., 1996). The book describes an operation (later called SOLO) conducted by the FBI in 1954-1982. The main character in the operation was Morris Childs (1902-1991), a prominent member of the Communist Party USA (CPUSA), who enjoyed absolute trust of communist leaders both in the United States and the Soviet Union.
    Morris Childs, along with his brother Jack Childs and wife Eva Childs, made fifty-seven trips (called by the FBI "missions") to the Soviet Union and other countries of the socialist camp. Morris Childs often accompanied Gus Hall, General Secretary of the CPUSA; sometimes he traveled alone or with his wife. Morris had conferences with party leaders in the countries he visited and was shown confidential and secret documents.
    Within Operation SOLO the FBI supported a clandestine communication system designed and built by the Soviet KGB (Committee for State Security). Through this system the FBI regularly received messages from the Kremlin and, in the name of Jack or Morris, sent back information the United States wanted the Soviets to get. The FBI also handled millions of dollars smuggled from the Soviet Union to New York, either by Jack or Morris or by KGB agents, for the CPUSA.
    The collection is divided into four series. Of most interest is the SUBJECT FILE series, which reflects the activities of Gus Hall, General Secretary of the CPUSA, and gives an insight into Operation SOLO and how it was handled by the KGB. It also includes descriptions of communication devices, decoding tables, pictures of KGB agents in New-York, etc. The WRITINGS and CORRESPONDENCE series document John Barron's work on the book.

    Related Collection

    Morris Childs, Hoover Institution Library & Archives

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Communism -- United States
    Internal security -- United States
    Kommunisticheskai͡a partii͡a Sovetskogo Soi͡uza
    Communist Party of the United States of America
    United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation