Dr. Andrew Hammond

Dr. Andrew Hammond is Historian & Curator at the International Spy Museum. His interest in intelligence came from a period of service in the Royal Air Force, with secondments to the British Army and the Royal Navy. He specializes in military and intelligence history and is fascinated by how the artifacts at the Museum – whether an Enigma Machine, a Stinger Missile or the Jester’s Laptop – help tell personal stories and larger historical narratives. He is the author of a forthcoming book entitled, Struggles for Freedom: Afghanistan and US Foreign Policy Since 1979 and is working on another book that tells the story of 9/11 and the post-9/11 wars through the voices of military and intelligence veterans. He has taught at a number of institutions on both sides of the Atlantic and has held fellowships at the British Library, the Library of Congress, New York University and the University of Warwick. He was formerly a Mellon Public Humanities Fellow at the 9/11 Memorial Museum and is currently a Public Policy Fellow at the Wilson Center. He hosts SpyCast, the Museum’s podcast, and has taken acting and public speaking courses in London, New York, Birmingham and Washington, DC. 

Presentation Topics

Sport & Spies: There’s More in Common Than You Think!

From the World Cup to the World Series, from World War II to the Olympics – spying and intelligence gathering have been a feature of professional sports. Presidents and prime ministers have wanted to know what opponents are up to: so have players and coaches!

Andrew will talk about the links between sport and spying using the world’s greatest collection of intelligence and espionage related artifacts. Among other stories, hear about the baseball player who was tasked with assassinating the Nobel Prize winning physicist on Germany’s nuclear project! Oh, and his last words were, “How are the Mets doing today?”

“The Second Oldest Profession”: Spy History from Ancient Egypt to Outer Space 

Ok, we all know what the oldest profession is, but how much do you know about the second oldest? Sit back, relax, and enjoy a rollicking tour across the ages – from Ancient Egypt to Medieval Scotland, and from contemporary Washington DC to Outer Space. Spying, quite simply, is as old as the human race. 

“Why Spy?”: Traitors, Turncoats and Double Agents

Let’s be honest, espionage and intelligence are fascinating. Within that world, traitors, turncoats and double agents are more fascinating still. This talk will look at some of the twentieth century’s most famous, one American, one British and one Russian: Aldrich Ames (CIA), Kim Philby (MI6) and Oleg Gordievsky (KGB). Why did they do what they did? What could motivate someone to spy on their friends, colleagues, comrades or country? Money, ideology, revenge, or something else?

“Action This Day”: Winston Churchill, Secret Intelligence & Leadership

Winston Churchill was arguably the greatest user of secret intelligence in the twentieth century and perhaps its greatest leader. Learn how these two worlds collide and how we might draw twenty-first lessons from Churchill as a user of secret intelligence and as a leader. Whether as a cavalryman on the Northwest Frontier, a journalist in South Africa, chief of the Royal Navy in WWI, or Prime Minister in WWII, Churchill was a lover of secrets, spies, swashbucklers and saboteurs. Sir Winston was much more than this of course, he is the leader other leaders turn to when the chips are down. 

Spy Rings in American History: From the Culper Ring to the Illegals Program 

Spy rings. There is something about that phrase that captures the imagination. Think about it: “a ring of spies.” They are as much a feature of American history, however, as grandma’s apple pie: the Culper Ring helped win the Revolutionary War and the Richmond Spy Ring helped pick the pocket of the Confederacy; the Nazis had a spy ring in America prior to WWII while the “Illegals Program” was a network of Russian sleeper agents who were arrested in 2010 in raids from Boston to Westchester County, and from New Jersey to Northern Virginia. Is there a spy ring in your neighborhood?

James Bond: One Part Fiction, Two Parts Fantasy, Shaken Over Facts – Voila! 

“The name’s Bond, James Bond.” With these five words Sean Connery launched a cultural phenomenon. The Bond franchise went on to become the most successful in the history of cinema and many people get their knowledge about espionage and intelligence from movies and pop culture. Does Bond inform or misinform, illuminate or darken our understanding of the secret world? This talk breaks down the Bond cocktail into its constituent parts and then employs some mixology to reconstitute it: sip, savor and prepare to be enlightened – Sláinte!

Dr. Andrew Hammond is available to speak at your event virtually or in-person. Contact our sales team for more information.