Page 18 : Beale Ciphers Analyses
The Beale Cypher Association
The BCA had its origins in a group formed by Dr. Carl Hammer in 1968 to study the Beale codes. These beginnings are described in Hammer's paper, Signature Simulation and Certain Cryptographic Codes.
Sometime in the 1970's, the group was transformed into The Beale Cypher Association which was open for public membership. For an annual fee of $25.00, members received a quarterly newsletter and were invited to attend periodical seminars and symposiums. Members were also solicited for articles and theories on the codes. Members included academics, cryptologists, and other interested parties.
Following the retirement of Dr. Hammer, Mr. Per Holst became C.E.O. of the Association, and he was succeeded by Mr. Robert Caldwell.. The BCA ceased to exist after his retirement in 1996. All documents of the BCA now exist only in the private collections of its past members.
The BCA Newsletter
The newsletter was published from the fall of 1979 until December, 1996. An interesting example of the newsletter, with three decryption theories, is the issue of March, 1992. Download now (.pdf format 3.53Mb).
Here, for example, was the program for one such symposium:
THE FOURTH BEALE CIPHER SYMPOSIUM, Saturday, September 27, 1986
The Westpark Hotel - Dogwood Room
1900 N. Fort Myers Dr., Arlington, VA
Per A. Holst, Symposium Chairman
8:30 - 9:00 REGISTRATION: Meet Old and New Friends
9:00 - 9:15 WELCOME: Agenda, Information, Program Changes, Per A. Holst
9:15 - 10:15 KEYNOTE: In search of Beale's key, Dr. Stephen M. Matyas
10:15 - 10:30 BREAK: Refreshments
10:30 - 11:00 PAPER: Historical Facts in Support of Beale, Frank Aaron
11:00 - 11:30 PAPER: The Madison-Beale-Hite Connection, Jacques S. Boegli
11:30 - 12:00 PAPER: Jean Laffite - St. Louis, Dr. Eugene Newsom
12:00 - 1:00 LUNCH BREAK: Local Restaurants (On Your Own)
1:00 - 2:30 FORUM: The Beale Cipher Letters, Wayne C. Martens
- Application of Neural Nets to Coding, Norman White
- Inductive Geodetic Reasoning (Or, Where Would You Bury a Treasure?), Robert E. Weedfall
- Beale Cipher Analysis with the Commodore-64 Computer, James N. McNally, Jr.
- Computer Assisted Direct Substitution Method of Resolution for Cipher No. 2, Alan S. Miskin
2:30 - 2:45 BREAK: Refreshments
2:45 - 3:15 PAPER: Second Order Homophonic Ciphers, Dr. Carl Hammer
3:15 - 4:00 PAPER: Methodologies, Theories, and Reflections on the Beale Ciphers, Rev. Stephen Cowart, Marilyn Cowart
4:00 - 4:45 GENERAL DISCUSSION AND OPEN FORUM, Speakers and Attendees
4:45 - 5:00 CLOSING REMARKS: Summary, Polls, Information, Per A. Holst
BCA Research Library
The Association also maintained a library of "Research Information and Reports about the Beale ciphers, the Beale Story, and efforts to find the Beale treasure". Copies of this material was offered for sale to the members. One of the later library listings contained 101 titles, including books, studies, newspaper and magazine articles, and aids to the decryption.
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