For many decades, the Federal Bureau of Investigative always has stated that it regards July 26, 1908 as the date of its founding as an “investigative force” within the United States Department of Justice. As well, on that date in 2008, the FBI itself marked what it considered as its 100th Anniversary.
Dedicated events were held in Washington, DC and elsewhere, articles appeared in the press, television shows were aired, and so on. It was a proud time for the FBI.
However, three major books are in print that do not all link the founding to the traditional year of 1908. Two of the books link the founding of the Bureau to events that that took place in 1924 and 1933 to 1935. And yet all three have the words “Birth of the FBI” in their titles and on their front covers. Has some added information been discovered that would alter the date when the FBI was founded? Does Bureau history need to be rewritten?
Actually, no. A reading of the books provides the answers. The books are The Birth of the FBI: Teddy Roosevelt, the Secret Service and the Fight Over America’s Premier Law Enforcement Agency, written by Willard M. Oliver and published in 2019; Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI, written by David Grann and published in 2017; and Public Enemies: America’s Greatest Crime Wave and the Birth of the FBI, 1933-34, written by Bryan Burrough and published in 2004.