The following crypto tutorial is an updated extraction from the American Cryptogram Association’s Cryptogram Tyro Grams column (initially titled Kiddee Korner) from 2000 to present. The column and these extractions have been inspired by one of the ACA’s foremost crypto mentors and educators, Gerhard Linz (LEDGE).

The American Cryptogram Association (ACA) is a non-profit organization, founded in 1929, devoted to the cultivation of cryptologic knowledge with members all over the world. It publishes a bimonthly magazine, The Cryptogram, full of hundreds of cipher types contributed by members for members’ solving pleasure. ACA cryptologist members (Krewe) mirror an image of all walks of life, representing ages from five to ninety and all trades, professions and educational levels. Nom de Plumes (Noms) bring a degree of anonymity to all members. It is fun and cryptology that counts. The Kiddee Krewe/ Young Tyros is a division of the ACA that provides a cryptology learning experience for cipher solving aspirants and has no age limitations. More information and membership details can be found at ACA’s Web site
The Kiddee Korner had its Cryptogram (Cm) journal inception in January of 2000, changing its name to Tyro Grams in the Cm JF edition of 2003. Its intention was to provide an opening to those interested in pursuing the solving of codes and ciphers and was written to serve the Young at Heart Tyros of all ages.

Webster defines “tyro” as one who is in “the preliminary stage or rudiments of any study or occupation.” As we watched our Kiddee Krewe grow in number and skill, observe its work in solving, constructing, authoring of articles in the Cm, and watched it take part in all phases of ACA conventions, we realized that these young achievers were far removed from Kiddee Land. (Two finished with scores in the top ten at our Chicago Cipher Contest.)

We felt that we performed an injustice by labeling these youngsters and “Young at Heart” adults, eager to work at mastering the principles of cryptology as “Kiddees.”  We discouraged the young and the mature to peer at what lies beyond the Kiddee label. We also discouraged the interest of youthful membership ACA recruitment.

All of these reasons prompted us to elevate our Kiddee Krewe name to Young Tyros (tip of the hat to QUIPOGAM and Grandson, QUAZAR for their suggestion) and Kiddee Korner column to Tyro Grams. Our column objective will remain the same, that of reducing cryptology principles to their simplest terms thru a most understandable format. Appendices, cipher solution pages and an Index follow the body of this material.

LIONEL – 2015 (Lee Melair)