National Cryptologic Museum, Baltimore, MD - Baltimore, Maryland - NSA Spy Museum Free to the Public

The National Cryptologic Museum, Baltimore, MD, is located at 9900 Colony Seven Road, just off of the Baltimore Washington Parkway at the Route 32/Fort Meade exit at Annapois Junction, just south of Baltimore. It is open Monday through Friday from 9AM - 4PM as well as from 10AM - 2PM on two Saturdays every month.

It is found just off of the Ft. Meade base where the National Security Agency is headquartered.

The museum opened in 1993 and since that date has been giving visitors a look into the encryption world and the role that codes have played in the history of national security.

Among the thousands of artifacts on display at this museum are the German Enigma encoder used by the Nazi regime during WWII and the enormous Cray supercomputer. At the museum the Enigma can be used to send a secret message as one of the few interactive displays at this attraction.

Information on codes used from the Civil War onwards is explored without risking any current national security protocols.

Museum admission is free of charge and parking is available adjacent to the museum facility.

The National Cryptologic Museum, Baltimore, MD, is the main public relations outlet for the National Security Agency of the US Government. The site was originally habilitated to give NSA employees a glimpse into the agencies past and the heritage of code breakers and code breaking.

This is the only public museum on intelligence gathering in the United States. It is visited by 50,000 people annually.

A large reference library of unclassified and declassified material is housed at the museum for public research purposes. Photocopying of library resources is permitted as original copies do not circulate off of the premises. A gift shop with NSA memorabilia and cryptology reference materials is also located here.

Tours can be organized for classrooms and home school groups as well as other youth groups such as Scouts. The tour lasts between one and two hours depending on group preference. A longer learning game of 3 hours for small groups is also among the educational options for visiting groups that can be arranged with the museum staff. Pre-visit packages for these groups are available upon request. Sign interpretation can also be arranged with prior notice.

Although food is generally not permitted in the museum, there is a vending machine as well as permission for organized youth visits to eat brown bagged lunches in the museum's classroom space.

Right outside of the he National Cryptologic Museum, Baltimore, MD is the National Vigilance Park where 3 spy planes are on display for visitors to examine as well.

A good deal of reading is required at the museum, which may make it less than ideal for younger children who are likely to be less captivated by the world of cryptology than older kids.

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