This very ordinary looking house in Norfolk, Virginia–I won’t give the address so as not to violate the privacy of the current owners–was once the home of John Walker, a career U.S. Navy officer and later private investigator who ran the most extensive, successful and damaging espionage ring in Cold War history. Walker began spying for the Soviet Union in 1967, bringing them code books and classified information from the ships on which he was stationed. Later, Walker successfully recruited various others into the ring, including his son Michael. Until he and his fellow spies were caught in 1985, Walker and his operatives leaked hundreds of secrets and documents to the Russians, receiving perhaps as much as a million dollars in compensation and risking countless U.S. lives.

Walker lived in this house in the 1960s and possibly again later on. He certainly ran his spy operation from here at some point in the past.

The 1990 television miniseries Family of Spies was based on the Walker case, starring Powers Boothe as John Walker.