There was nothing James Bond-like about the way Brian Kilmeade got the idea for his intriguing new book, "George Washington's Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved the American Revolution."
The co-host of "Fox & Friends" says the lightbulb went off in a very mundane way in 1989 — while he was waiting for a bus on Long Island, an eastern suburb of New York City.
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"I was waiting at [Route] 25A in Manhasset for a bus and I watched a guy on a guide rail painting a line in the street. [He said] this is to commemorate what George Washington came back in the hope of meeting his spies," Kilmeade told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"So of course I said, what are you talking about? I had no idea … Why would you bring kids to go see an organ that used to be at Radio City [Music Hall] as a field trip when you could go see where Washington trailed and slept and stayed and utilized his spy ring?"
Kilmeade learned how, during the American Revolution, General Washington recruited a secret intelligence network on Long Island to infiltrate New York City and spy on the British.
He and co-author Don Yaeger began exhaustive research which revealed the identities of the six spies involved in the ring, including a reserved Quaker merchant named Robert Townsend and a tavern keeper named Austin Roe.
"They were everyday people, five men and one woman, who simply turned around a war that we were not supposed to win," Kilmeade said.
Townsend jotted down information regarding the comings and goings of British ships and sensitive information from military officers — all the while using methods like invisible ink and encryption to hide his deeds.
Turning to current politics, Kilmeade expressed outrage over the latest cover of Time magazine, which depicted the chubby silhouette of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's face.
"Time magazine's desperate to get attention again . . . It's insulting. It's personally degrading in the case of Chris Christie," he said.
"There's a lot of overweight people in America who would like to lose weight. You've alienated every one of them."
"George Washington's Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved the American Revolution
," is published by Sentinel HC.
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