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George Silverman

An economist and government employee whose early experiences with Whittaker Chambers were similar to Alger Hiss's version of events. In the early 1930s, Silverman was working for the Railroad Retirement Board in Washington D.C., when he met a freelance writer named "David Chambers" (Whittaker Chambers). Chambers told him he wanted to write about Silverman's government work. Chambers was a charming companion, but at a series of lunch meetings he began borrowing money from Silverman and failed to pay it back. 

Silverman told this story to the grand jury (he and Hiss were unaware of each other's testimony). He also pointed to inconsistencies in Chambers' story regarding the gift of the rugs to Hiss, Harry Dexter White and Silverman himself. Click here to learn more about the rugs.

Several deciphered "Venona" cables suggest that during World War II, Silverman, then working for the Army Air Force, may have cooperated with Russian intelligence agents in some fashion. The truth of these charges has not been established. For more on the Venona cables, click here.