An exhibit dedicated to the Polish cryptologists who broke the Enigma on display in the Elihu Burritt Library until November 15, 2016
The exhibit tells the story of the contribution that Polish mathematicians made to braking the Enigma code, Germany’s highly sophisticated cipher used for sending classified messages. Their names are: Jerzy Rozycki, Henryk Zygalski and Marian Rejewski. The Enigma code was generated by a machine invented by a German scientist at the end of WWI. Several countries had teams working to try to break the code, but they had met with little success. It wasn’t until the three Polish mathematicians joined the Polish General Staff’s Cipher Bureau in Warsaw in the early 1920’s that progress was made. Later, in early 1939, two British codebreakers from Bletchley Park, Alastair Denniston and Dilly Knox, met with members of the Polish Cipher Bureau at a secret facility near Warsaw to share information about the Enigma code. In addition, theoretical mathematician Alan Turing, also from Bletchley Park, met with the Polish codebreakers. Their collaboration led to the development of a machine capable of breaking the more complex codes used by Germans during WWII.
To read more about the Enigma please check:
Breaking the code by Hugh Whitemore
Enigma : how the Poles broke the Nazi code by Władysław Kozaczuk & Jerzy Straszak
Codebreakers : the inside story of Bletchley Park by F.H. Hinsley, Alan Stripp