Using Metadata to Find Paul Revere

Rest assured that we only collected metadata on these people, and no actual conversations were recorded or meetings transcribed. All I know is whether someone was a member of an organization or not. Surely this is but a small encroachment on the freedom of the Crown’s subjects. I have been asked, on the basis of this poor information, to present some names for our field agents in the Colonies to work with. It seems an unlikely task.

In relation to an earlier post on why metadata matters, here's an amusing in-character post by an "historical figure" that goes into the details of what you can do with even very coarse metadata and a basic statistical analysis.