Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 19
…One of the few AT&T employees with the expertise to research telephone records happens to be of the Jewish faith…
Once the big yellow Checker cab is nestled in for a long winter’s nap, next to his wife’s 4 year old Studebaker in their alley-facing garage, a gunmetal gray 1950 Packard rolls down Garfield Boulevard toward Chicago’s famed Loop with two men in the front seat and two women in the back.
Their scheme hits pothole #1 once they reach the Illinois Bell Building. It is deserted… a communications wasteland void of operators, technicians or even a single janitor. Holidays assuredly interfere with the course of normal business, as normal people would expect, but this intrepid group of snoops is the exception to that tradition.
Fortunately for the CCPI clan, the providence-factor plays the wild-card role here today; among the 1% not observing Christmas Day is American Telephone & Telegraph technician Herman Weinstein.
One of the few AT&T employees with the expertise to research telephone records happens to be of the Jewish faith. While his family is over in Chinatown enjoying dim sum, he is busy updating the coaxial system at the central office.
Pothole #2: “We are a year away from direct-dial transcontinental communication, so we won’t find anything to or from Europe,” Weinstein explains. “However, we still hold the C band microwave air network used in conventional telegraphic traffic, so you aren’t completely out of luck.”
He works his infrastructure magic, extracting a list of messages sent to Willard Libby and hands them the results.
“Argonne 7-2000 is the switchboard, 2427 is the extension,” one of the three visitors states.
“That is a government number. You need security clearance for that.”
“I believe this will do,” Martin flashes his Argonne N.L. identification card.
“I figured that you worked for the F.B.I, like the guys who were looking for almost the identical records two weeks ago.”
“F.B.I.?” Constance is startled by this revelation.