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Classification 61: Treason

Established prior to 1924, this classification covers investigations of persons or organizations engaged in treasonous activities or concealing knowledge of such activities. Specific statues, which include U.S. Code Title 18, Sections 238-82, 2389-90, and 756-57, also cite as treasonous service in or recruitment of others to serve in armed hostility against the United States and aiding or procuring the escape of interned enemy aliens.

The 00 file contains no documentation prior to 1938. In late 1939 and early 1940 Field Offices were instructed to file complaints in the category separately and prepare Nationalistic Tendency Cards of subjects in this classification. Prior to World War II the major focus of concern was alleged Communist Party activities. During World War II the Bureau focused on America's wartime enemies and in late 1944 turned attention to treasonous activities committed by Americans in foreign theaters of operation. In addition, the FBI investigated allegations that persons aided in the escape of prisoners of war from U.S. internment camps. The Korean War again focused Bureau attention on this classification, involving the investigation of cases of collaboration between U.S. POW's and Chinese Communists.

NARA online catalog descriptions of holdings for Classification 61: Treason

Record GroupNARA IdentifierSeries Title
65567567Classification 61 (Treason) Released Under The Nazi War Crimes and Japanese Imperial Government Disclosure Acts
65631379Classification 61 (Treason) Released Under The Nazi War Crimes and Japanese Imperial Government Disclosure Acts

Some records under Classification 61: Treason are not yet described in the National Archives Catalog. Please contact NARA’s Special Access Program at with your reference request.

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