Oh, Snap! (kutsuwamushi) wrote in little_details,
Oh, Snap!

[ANON POST] Telegrams and 19th-century espionage

The short version of my question is, how would one intercept and/or obtain a copy of a telegram addressed to someone else? My story deals partially with the espionage going on in pre-WWI Europe, and one of my characters is trying to get hold of a telegram delivered to someone he knows is a spy. In my research I've been able to turn up all sorts of interesting ways that people used the telegraph system to commit fraud, but no stories of an individual simply stealing someone else's mail. I googled "19th century espionage," "victorian era espionage," "intercepting telegrams," "mail theft," "telegram theft," "espionage and the telegraph," and various combinations of those things, but couldn't seem to find what I was looking for. I looked into the Zimmermann telegram, but that was way more large-scale than what I'm hoping for - in my case it's an individual trying to sneak a look, not an entire government operation. I also looked here (http://www.oldbaileyonline.org/index.jsp), but couldn't find any mention of someone stealing a telegram. Help?
Tags: 1800s (no decades given), ~espionage

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