J Edgar Hoover

This essay has a total of 1352 words and 11 pages.


J Edgar Hoover










J. Edgar Hoover

Mike Sorcic













American History

5/23/99


















For nearly half a century J. Edgar Hoover was one of
the most powerful officials in the Federal government of the
United States. As head of the Federal Bureau of
Investigation from 1924 until his death in 1972, he was the
nation’s chief law enforcement officer. His intimate
knowledge of politicians and government operations made him
a man to be feared by elected officials, and none of the
eight presidents under whom he served dared fire him.
J.Edgar Hoover was born on January 1, 1895, in
Washington D.C. He attended George Washington University
and earned a degree in 1917. In 1919 he became assistant to
Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer in the Department of
Justice. It was Palmer who instigated the post World War I
“red scare,” an anti-Communist hysteria that led to the
deportation of many aliens. Hoover was put in charge of the
deportations. When Hoover became director of the Bureau in
1924, he quickly formed an elite force of powerful law
enforcement officers. He enhanced the FBI’s fame by
capturing many gangsters, bank robbers, and other
lawbreakers. After World War II he waged a relentless fight
against internal subversion. By the 1970’s Hoover was often
criticized for his authoritarian methods. He died in
Washington, D.C., on May 2, 1972. In the rest of the paper
I will explain more in depth of how J.Edgar Hoover rose to
power and why he is considered one of the most corrupt men
to ever hold a government position.
It is not very difficult to figure out the most
outstanding characteristic of J. Edgar Hoover. Out of all
of his characteristics, the one that truly stands out is
that he was extremely powerful. J. Edgar Hoover is the most
famous law enforcement officer that the United States has
ever known. J. Edgar Hoover began his adult life at the
bottom of the ladder with a very limited amount of power.
As he grew older and became more experienced, his prestige
and power skyrocketed. At the height of his prestige and
power he was the most famous director of the Federal Bureau
of Investigation in the history of the United States. One
factor that helped J. Edgar Hoover gain more power, was that
he had many connections with many important people
(Summers 29). Another factor that aided J.Edgar Hoover in
his rise to power was the knowledge he had about people
(Kessler 449-450). This meant that he could control people,
or in other words, blackmail them (Summers 38-39). The
third reason why J. Edgar Hoover became such a powerful
individual is that he was very intelligent and shrewd
(Summers 25). These three factors all contributed to
forming one of the most powerful men the world has ever
known.
J. Edgar Hoover knew many important people that held
many important positions. Hoover received his first
government job thanks to a close family friend by the name
of Bill Hitz (Summers 29). Hitz was a judge and considered
the President and Supreme Court Justice Brandeis among his
close friends (Summers 29). Another individual who helped
Edgar along the way was his boss at the Department of
Justice, George Michaelson (Summers 29). Bruce Bielaski, a
senior official, recalled how - on the trolley to work one
day in 1917 - he found himself talking shop with his
neighbor, mail room chief George Michaelson (Summers 29).
Michaelson dropped the name of a young lawyer he had sorting
mail, “one of the brightest boys around” (Summers 29). “You
don’t need anybody with brains doing that,” said Bielaski
Continues for 6 more pages >>