The FBI were never really worried about Erdős. One agent just really wanted to be the author of a paper with his name on it,.

I wonder about similar files being kept today…

Is there a erdos fbi number? How many files away are you from erdos file?

He wasn’t an “eccentric scientist from the Soviet sphere”, he was a mathematician. Mathematics is not a branch of science.

According to Wikipedia and the wonderful documentary about him “N is a Number”, “Erdős wrote around **1,525** mathematical articles in his lifetime”… Seems like an important clarification to make seeing as he was one of the most prolific publishers of papers in mathematical history.

A Hungarian born in the early 20th century, Paul Erdős, mathematician, was well-known and well-liked, the sort of eccentric scientist from the Soviet sphere that made Feds' ears perk up in mid-century America

Hungarian immigrants were often the most fanatical of anti-Soviet Cold Warriors, though. His fellow immigrants included Edward Teller (lead creator of the US H-bomb and impractical laser anti-missile defense dreamer) and John von Neumann (pioneering computer scientist who was the originator of the “Mutually Assured Destruction” nuclear strategy and a possible model for Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove).

Besides being a cold warrior, Von Neumann was also a “road warrior” driving accross the country with his wife numerous times every year. Must have really sucked, doing that in the 1940s and 1950s.

I think it was in a PBS documentary, but can’t find it now. He was driving between, I think DC and LANL, somewhere in the ballpark of once a month to hand deliver computational documents for the Manhattan Project.

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