NPR

'A Woman Of No Importance' Finally Gets Her Due

Virginia Hall was an American spy who worked for Britain and the U.S. and played a key role in undermining the Nazi occupation of France during World War II. Her story was rarely told — until now.

Virginia Hall is one of the most important American spies most people have never heard of.

Her story is on display at the CIA Museum inside the spy agency headquarters in Langley, Va. — but this is off-limits to the public.

"She was the most highly decorated female civilian during World War II," said
Janelle Neises, the museum's deputy director, who's providing a tour.

So why haven't more people heard about Hall? A quote from Hall on the agency display offers an explanation: "Many of my friends were killed for talking too much."

But now — more than 70 years after her wartime exploits in France, and almost 40 years after her death — Virginia Hall is having a moment. Three books have just come out. Two movies are in the works.

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