CDR William F. Gresham’s Biography follow:
Commander William Fuller Gresham
United State Navy
1883 – 1935
A native of Jonesboro, Tennessee, William F. Gresham was born about 1883. He entered the academy in 1905 and graduated with the class of 1908. His nickname while at the Academy (and after) was “Pop.” In a span of 11 years he was promoted from Ensign to Lieutenant Commander.
In early 1919, LCDR Gresham transferred to the West Coast in connection with the construction of the USS CRANE (DD 109), which had been launched July 4, 1918 by Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corp., San
Francisco, California. The ship was commissioned on April 18, 1919 with LCDR Gresham in command.
Clearing San Francisco on April 21, 1919 the USS CRANE arrived at Newport, Rhode Island on May 13. She sailed for duty in European waters on June 5, visiting ports in England and France and joining the escort for George Washington carrying President Woodrow Wilson to the peace conference. Returning to New York on July 27, the USS CRANE was assigned to the Pacific Fleet, and arrived at San Francisco on September 1. Here she participated in the Naval Review, during which she was visited by Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels on September 4. After operations off the coast of Washington state the USS CRANE was placed in reserve at San Diego on January 26, 1920.
In June 1921, LCDR Gresham reported to the Navy Department, Washington, D.C., and on July 1, 1921, where he relieved CDR M.F. Draemel as the Officer-in-Charge, Code and Signal Section of Naval Communications System, (OP-18). He remained in that position until he was relieved on July, 1 1922 by LCDR D.C. Godwin. Commander Gresham died in 1935.
A clipping from the Manila Daily Bulletin of Tuesday, June 8, 1937, datelined Washington (by airmail) quotes Senator David L. Walsh, Chairman of Senate Naval Affairs Committee that, “the Navy now possesses a device which prevents decoding of its secret radio communications. It was developed by the late Navy Commander William F. Gresham and Mrs. Agnes M. Driscoll. This decoding device came to the U.S. Senate when it passed a bill to pay Gresham’s widow and Mrs. Driscoll $15,000.”
According to Captain Safford, in an interview with Captain Roy Schmidt, the Gresham-Driscoll device, called the “CM,” was used up until about 1930.
Source: Echoes of Our Past NCVA