Category Archives: Lee Harvey Oswald

Access to the Texas School Book Depository

 

Three years ago I found something in a police statement that has overtaken my mind and my time. This police statement was not meant to be of much, as it was the police statement of Texas School Book Depository Superintendent Roy Truly. The statement was to put more guilt onto alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald and ended up having something in it, that I have been researching ever since. Within the statement, Mr. Truly mentions that the Texas School Book Depository had a janitor service that worked overnight within the building. These individuals had keys to the building, and had access to it, in the early morning hours of Friday, November 22nd, 1963. My original post about this company was in the early stages of my research, and within this article, you are going to read about everything that I have found over the past 2 years. Graduate school took me away from the research, but now I am back into it, and finding more out about this company.

So who was Acme Building Maintenance Company, and why did the Warren Commission not look into this company any further? Let’s start at the beginning and review who owned the company and how it became in what could have been, a key part of the set up in the assassination. The company was founded in 1920 by a man named Frank C. Jones. As high rise buildings were popping up inside the city of Dallas, Mr. Jones sought to take advantage of the vast amount of cleaning that these new buildings would need. The company grew at a fast rate and by the 1940’s and 1950’s, they were cleaning over 2 million square feet of office space within the city of Dallas. With an office set up on 1901 Laws Street in Dallas, the company was in a central location to all of its primary customers. The success of the company enabled Mr. Jones to become one of Dallas’s elite businessmen, and with articles featured in the Dallas Morning News during this time, he was able to have great financial success. With this success, Mr. Jones joined the Dallas Citizens Council, a group of powerful Dallas business owners who in later years would set up the luncheon at the Trade Mart for President Kennedy upon his arrival in Dallas. In 1954, an article in the Dallas Morning News had the caption “Acme Building Maintenance, Dallas’ Industrial Janitor”.

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With over 125 employees working under him, and major businesses such as the Baker Hotel, The Dallas Morning News, Southwestern Bell, The Dallas Times Herald, and Dallas Medical and Surgical Hospital, all used the services of Acme Building Maintenance. Although the company was growing, the company was trying to stay local with its business, and it board of directors included such names as, Milt Thomas, Paul Clark, Robert Whitener, and even Mr. Jones’ wife, Eva Jones. The company would get one particular business that would change the course of not only the country’s history, but also this small company as well. In May 1963, Acme became contracted with the Texas School Book Depository. In the months before this contract was taken, another man would join the ranks of the board at Acme, and his name was William Travis. William Travis was also on the board of directors at Republic National Bank of Dallas at this time as well. This new director would play a key part in the eventual downfall of Acme in the coming months, and would later look to take control of the company away from Frank Jones.

The events surrounding the assassination have been well documented, and there is no mention of Acme Building Maintenance except in two police statements. The first was by Truly, and the second would be by the janitor of the TSBD, Eddie Piper. Following along with what Truly had mentioned in his own statement, Piper reiterated the fact that the employees at Acme had access to the building overnight. Yet again, no action was taken place to investigate this company. On November 8th, 1963, a document pertaining to the housing of William Travis, stated that his home was in the stages of foreclosure. This chain of events would lead one to believe that Mr. Travis was in need of money, and he needed it fast. The home was not taken away from him, and in fact by 1964 you would not have known Mr. Travis was in any kind of money issues. By April 1964 in documents found, the Acme Building Maintenance Company changed hands and changed names. The new owners of the company included a man by the name of William Travis, the board member who came to the Acme company in 1963. In documents obtained, the new company would be named, Acme Building Maintenance of Dallas Inc. and with it, the new board consisted of two former Acme board of directors, Travis, and CFO Milton Thomas.

This new company would not keep that new Acme name for long. In June 1964, parts of the Acme company was again sold to an acquisition company called CT Corporation (ChemTech), and the Acme name was still as late as 1966. The remaining holdings of the former Acme company were gone, and what was known as Acme Building Maintenance, a strong Dallas based company with over 200 businesses as customers, was suddenly gone within a year. What came about in the aftermath of this sale, was the founding of a new businesses by William Travis, each of which would be named “Maintenance of”. There was Maintenance of Dallas, Maintenance of Fort Worth, Maintenance of San Antonio, and finally Maintenance of Houston. Each one of these companies has a president or CEO with the last name of Travis. William Travis himself is still listed as the Chairman of the Board of Maintenance of Houston. When reached for comment about this finding, the representatives at Maintenance of Houston said they would get back to me, so far, no contact has been made.

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So where did the original owner Frank C. Jones end up? After the sale of his company, Mr. Jones went was not able to find the success he had with his first company, and by 1966 in documents obtained, he was forced to sell his original home since 1944. Mr. Jones, would go onto working at various companies over the next couple of decades, and would live off of pensions from these jobs. By the time of his death in 1991, Frank Jones was not a well-known man in Dallas anymore, and the company he had founded was broken up into many different companies by a former board member.

By the time the Warren Commission was pulling together witnesses, the Acme company had already been sold twice, and broken up into different companies. With that, the records of all employees went with these acquisitions. The only names that can be found are the original board of directors, and the board of directors from the new company. Was this done to keep the real killers identity a secret, was William Travis paid off and handed keys to would be assassins to set up a sniper’s perch? All of these theories are left to the unknown, but what we know, is that a company that should have been looked into more, clearly was not. If you try and find the name Acme Building Maintenance of Dallas, you will be unable to find them. Most likely, my website will come up. In various city directories they are briefly mentioned, but the State of Texas does not even have them as a business that existed in that state. Another Acme Building Maintenance Inc., existed in Austin, Texas, and they had to give permission to William Travis in order to use the name Acme Building Maintenance of Dallas Inc.

In 2013 on a visit to Dallas, I was visiting the reading room at the Sixth Floor Museum. While I was in there, the late curator of the museum Gary Mack happened to be in there at the same time. I was too afraid to talk to him about this company at the time, so I emailed him later that day in hopes that he would have some more information about them. In his response, he was not able to provide much except for the same police statements that I already had in which they were mentioned. At the end of his email, he told me to keep him informed of this company, as he found it intriguing. I kept digging, and will continue to dig into this company and those that were a part of it at the time. For they, may hold the key to some of the answers in the Kennedy assassination.

 

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What he Saw; The Version of Events from Police Chief Curry

Recently I purchased a book written by Dallas Police Chief Jesse Curry titled “JFK Assassination File”. This book was written in 1969, some 6 years after the assassination of President Kennedy and with conspiracy theories mounting around this time, this book would be an ideal way to get some monetary gain from the events in Dallas. Throughout this post I will highlight some of the parts of the book that stand out, and others that seem to be at odds of what he had said 6 years prior. This book was not on the bestseller list by no means, but it does give a viewpoint from the man that not only help set up the security surrounding the President of the United States visit, but also the security of the alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.
Throughout the beginning of the book Chief Curry explains the tension that was around Dallas at the time and the divide the city was having when it came to politics. The shooting of General Edwin Walker on April, 10th 1963 was brought up in the beginning pages of the book, and the Chief points the finger to Oswald as the shooter, although this realization comes a month after the assassination of President Kennedy. The shooting of General Walker and the treatment of Ambassador Adlai Stevenson just a month before the Presidential visit prompted Chief Curry to use an unprecedented amount of the police force for the visit of President Kennedy.

In chapter two of his book, Chief Curry squarely puts the blame of the protection of the President on the Secret Service. As he mentions, “The Secret Service was entirely in charge of arranging the route and the press announcement was to be made by the host committee comprised of leading Dallas citizens”. Not known to Chief Curry at this time, one of the leading men on that committee would be the head of the Acme Building Maintenance Company Frank C. Jones, and it was his company that had access to the TSBD the night before the assassination. To Chief Curry, the Secret Service did not do enough prep work for the motorcade route and that areas of the route were not looked at closely. Instead, the area in which the President would be giving his speech, would be heavily guarded by Dallas Policemen. The Police Chief states, “The Secret Service were much more concerned about the security problems of the Trade Mart than any other single element of the President’s stay in Dallas”. Again, the Police Chief refuses to put any of the blame of the assassination onto his police force, and puts the entire blame onto the Secret Service. Many times in the book, Police Chief Curry highlights the things that the Secret Service did wrong, and we know that they did. But at the same time, he highlights things that his department did right. It is hard to think that anything went right during this trip with a President headed back in a casket. It should be noted that Police Chief Curry was aboard Air Force One while Lyndon Johnson was taking the oath of office. Instead of getting to the scene of the crime, he was instead trying to be a part of history that he didn’t need to be at.
Another aspect of the book that is intriguing, is the treatment of Oswald within police custody and the security that was in place for the accused assassin. According to Chief Curry the Dallas police department tried very hard not to let the suspect feel harassed in any way, and he says, “We were trying to be very certain that Oswald was not being coerced or harassed in any way”. Considering that it was the department that allowed the media to see the suspect inside of police headquarters shows that Chief Curry wanted to show that it was his department that captured the assassin of the President of the United States. In the interrogation of Oswald, Curry felt that the government agencies interfered too much and that his men could have gotten Oswald to talk more. As mentioned in the book, “Because of the constant pressure from other investigative agencies, Captain Fritz was never allowed to carry out an orderly private interview with Lee Harvey Oswald”. With the years of experience that Captain Fritz had, Curry believed that information could have come out with just a one on one talk. Again, the Police Chief puts the fault at the hands of the government and does not include any wrong doing that his department had in this process. Although Chief Curry states in his book that the interrogation process was corrupt, his Warren Commission statement seems to show otherwise,

Mr. Hubert.
It’s fair to say, then, that the interrogation of Oswald with respect to either the death of Tippit or of President Kennedy was in accordance with the normal procedures of the department ?
Mr. Curry.
That’s correct.

It would appear that Chief Curry thought the interrogation of Oswald was within standard procedure, but 6 years later he changed his mind.
The protection of Lee Oswald was something that did fall squarely into the hands of the Dallas Police Department and Police Chief Curry. The transfer of Oswald from Police Headquarters to the County Jail is something that will be looked at for a long time. How could the prime suspect in the murder of the President of the United States be killed while being transferred? The protection of Oswald has been questioned for years and Curry points out many times that he wanted to give Oswald space and rest so that he would be more willing to talk. During the planning process for the transfer it was determined that an armored truck would be taking Oswald to the county jail and that the media would be able to film the transfer. In actuality the armored truck was going to be used as a decoy and Oswald would be in a squad car. It would appear in the reading that the scope of the moment in history may have gotten to Curry because he felt the need to showcase this suspect. Not having been in a situation like this, and feeling the pressure of the national media, Curry decided to let the media into the basement for the transfer of Oswald. In true form as to the rest of this book, Curry states that his department is fully prepared for this event and says, “The security plans for the basement were entirely adequate”. History would prove otherwise to this statement, and Curry refuses to believe that his men let Ruby into the basement. If the security was well placed, then no one other than those from the national media would have been in that basement.
In the book, Curry states that the media was designated an area within the basement away from where Oswald was to be. An area that the media could set up and film the transfer without them seeing the police use the decoy vehicle. As Oswald came out from the elevator and headed into the basement, the media seemed to be right on top of him. This so-called designated area was so close to Oswald that each of them could reach out and touch him. It is Curry that states that he believed that the media made a mad rush to Oswald as he came out of the elevator and this enabled Ruby to get as close as he did within the commotion, he states, “In the enthusiasm of the moment, newsmen spilled across the drive toward the police elevator”. In all of the television broadcasts, it is apparent that all of them were able to set up their cameras in the locations that they were filming from and that they did not move. In the coverage from NBC, the camera is stationary and did not move. This book is a good informative inside look at the details that surrounded the security plans for the President’s visit to Dallas and the aftermath. The details in this book come from a Police Chief that believed his police force did everything they could to protect the President of the United States, and when it did not, he put the blame on others involved. Although the Secret Service was in charge of protecting the President, it was Curry’s police department that was in charge of protecting the truth and it failed when Oswald was killed inside of police headquarters. I recommend this book to those that have followed the assassination so that they can get a look from the view of Jesse Curry.

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The Shooting of Lee Harvey Oswald

The video that shows Lee Harvey Oswald being shot and killed in the basement of Dallas Police Headquarters. Dallas Police Chief Jesse Curry stated in his book that the television crews were not in their assigned area and that they rushed towards Oswald as he was coming out. Clearly the video shows that camera crews were set up waiting for Oswald and their was no rush to the suspect.

Connecting The Dots…

As the years and months go by since the assassination of President Kennedy, we as researchers find ourselves looking at the same material over and over again. Was there something that we missed? Could I have overlooked something? Questions like this will continue to linger on for years and decades to come, but there might be some truth in the overlooking aspect. There has been many research topics available for people to read about regarding the assassination and some point in either a direction of a lone gunman or a conspiracy. As my development into a historian continues, I am trying to make it an effort to show both sides of the story. I want to provide pieces of material for people to read and to make observations based on these findings. The latest finding that I was able to uncover centers around a man named Robert Taylor.
Many people may not even be aware of Mr. Taylor’s story and how he is linked to the assassination. In March or April of 1963, Mr. Taylor, who was a service mechanic at a Shell gas station in Irving, Texas, purchased a gun from an individual who came to the station. The story goes, that two men came to the station to get their 1959 Chevy looked at because of battery problems. When Mr. Taylor informed the men that the price would be $11.50 to fix the generator, the men offered to sell Mr. Taylor a rifle instead. They did not have the money to cover the cost of the repairs and the passenger in the car offered the gun for $12.00 to Mr. Taylor. The driver according to Mr. Taylor said, “You’re not going to let it go for that. You paid $35.00 for it”. It is important to note that Mr. Taylor believed that the person in the passenger seat was Lee Harvey Oswald. The man in the driver’s seat was described by Mr. Taylor as a white male, about 20 years of age and with a thin face. The man that Mr. Taylor was describing was Buell Wesley Frazier, although it is never mentioned in any of the F.B.I reports or even in the Warren Commission testimony that Mr. Taylor gives, no mention of the driver is ever mentioned again, besides in the original statement given to police. It is worth noting that Buell Frazier owned and still owns the 1959 Chevy Bel Air that he was driving when he would take Oswald back and forth to work each morning.

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The mechanics story is much more than about purchasing a rifle from Oswald, it shows that others could have been with him as well. The car that Frazier drove each day, also had battery problems and he states this in both written and oral presentations about the activities before the assassination. As Frazier describes how he had to stay in the car to keep the battery charging while Oswald reached into the back seat and retrieved the “curtain rods”, we should think back to that gas station incident in March. Everything in this world can be looked at as a coincidence, but when you have two individuals matching the descriptions of both Oswald and Frazier months before they say they actually met, shows us there is more out there to look at.

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Another man at this same gas station, Mr. G.E Smith, was not working at the station at the time of the rifle purchase but had heard about it. In his statement to police and the Warren Commission, he tells of a story involving a woman who drove a 1957 station wagon. Mr. Smith says that this woman would come to the station on several occasion to get her car looked at. There was a time when he fixed this lady’s car and offered to take it home for her, and he even helped bring her groceries inside of the house. The woman who had children inside of the house, mentioned that the children in the house spoke better Russian than they did English. The address of this house was 2515 West Fifth Street, and we know that Ruth Paine lived at this address. Mr. Smith did not know the name of the woman, only that she had come there several times before. So, we have evidence that shows that Ruth Paine would go to this station to get her car fixed and even had the serviceman bring it home for her. It is very possible that having the car trouble that Mr. Frazier had with his own car at that time and he admits it several times, Mrs. Paine told him about the Shell gas station.
The Warren Commission did do an interview with Mr. Smith regarding the situation with Mrs. Paine, but in typical form, failed to address or even go into further detail about her being at the station. They also did not put Mr. Taylor’s statements into the finding because they believed that he was misidentifying Oswald in the car. The dots are there if they wanted to connect them and yet they failed to push it further. More indication that the investigation did not fully cover everything to uncover the truth. Although we get the opportunity to look back at things and see it from a distance, it is not hard to connect that Ruth Paine visited this same gas station on multiple occasions that Oswald and a man that fit the description of Frazier were at. The issues with the car that Mr. Taylor serviced that day, were in fact the same problem that Frazier had with his own car. It is all about showing the people information, and every day the research community looks for things like this story.

References

National Archives. Accessed January 29, 2015. http://media.nara.gov/dc-metro/rg-272/605417-key-persons/taylor_robert/taylor_robert-0006.jpg.

National Archives. http://media.nara.gov/dc-metro/rg-272/605417-key-persons/taylor_robert/taylor_robert-0007.jpg.

National Archives. http://media.nara.gov/dc-metro/rg-272/605417-key-persons/smith_glenn_emmett/smith_glenn_emmett-0002.jpg
http://www.c-span.org/video/?287933-1/kennedy-assassination-buell-wesley-frazier-part-1
http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/garage.htm
http://jfkassassination.net/russ/testimony/smith_g.htm

The truth remains out there!!

As the anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy approaches, we are reminded of the day that changed the United States in so many ways. Ever since that day in Dallas, we have a tendency to speak of the “what if” aspect of the Kennedy administration and the policies that would have followed had he survived that day in Dallas. As researchers of the Kennedy assassination we follow that “what if” term as if it is our rallying cry as to finding out the truth. So many “what ifs” exists today about the presidency of John F. Kennedy, that it can be sometimes overwhelming as to the landscape of this country had he lived. The term “what if” will continue on, until the actual truth is revealed and as researchers we are committed to finding out the truth. Each of us has taken on a particular segment of the assassination that interests us, and by coming together with our research, we will one day find that ultimate truth.

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My research has been focused on an organization called the Acme Building Maintenance Company. This company provided the overnight cleaning of the Texas School Book Depository (TSBD), and they were present the night before the assassination of the President. Like I mentioned in previous posts about this company, there were two employee each night that had keys to the TSBD, so that they could gain access to the building once of the employees of the building had left for the day. In other words, these an all access to the building the night before the assassination, and could set up a potential snipers nest, or a staged snipers nest for that matter. In digging deeper about this company, the Warren Commission decided very early on that this company did not matter and throughout the entire report, there is not one mention about this company. Only in a report about TSBS supervisor Roy Truly, is the Acme Building Maintenance Company mentioned, and it is one line, on his report. So who really was this company that no one decided to look further into?
The owner of the company was a man named Frank C. Jones, a prominent Dallas businessman, who over the previous 40 years had built up Acme Maintenance into one of Dallas’s largest maintenance companies. Throughout the city and especially the high rise buildings of downtown, Acme Maintenance was there, with the keys in hand. So what role could this company have played in the assassination of President Kennedy? For one, the luncheon at the Dallas Trade Mart was put together by the Dallas Citizens Council. This council consisted of the leading businessmen inside of Dallas, and to this day remains a force within the Dallas community. So, here we have the leading business people inside of Dallas putting together the event for the President and his wife, and yet it would seem that none of them truly expected him to arrive or at least one of them knew he wouldn’t arrive. When inquiring about Frank C. Jones with the Dallas Citizens Council, they acknowledged to me that the name was in their registry of people who have been part of the organization, but were unwilling to provide with me any documents that I may use. This is an organization that is made up today of some of the leading companies in the United States and to protect themselves, they would not let me know any more then I needed to know.
Everything about the Acme Building Maintenance Company is sketchy at best. Through documents obtained through the Secretary of State of Texas, the company was sold to ARA Building Services in early 1964 and was quickly blended in with this organization. The listing for Acme Building Maintenance went to an individual by the name of Edwin Hudson who formed a new Acme Building Maintenance in the summer of 1963, and once the merger between Acme and ARA went through, he applied for an incorporation listing through the Secretary of State. However, this new Acme Building Maintenance Company was never truly a real company, as the address that was listed as the headquarters of this company was and still is, in a residential area of Austin, Texas. It is my belief that the Dallas Citizens Council used Frank C. Jones and his real Acme Building Maintenance as a means to find the best possible shooting angle for the eventual assassination. Once the job was finished, they already had in place a company to buy him out, and hide his company for good. Although I am still in the early stages of research with this company, I believe that there many people in the Dallas Trade Mart at the time of the assassination, knew that the President would never be arriving at his destination that day.
We must continue to research the JFK assassination until the truth is finally told to us, whether it be 5 years from now, or 50 years from now. Our country changed that day in Dallas, and it left us with too many “what ifs” about a man who had the vision of what he wanted to accomplish with his time in office.

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Why we still care..

It has been nearly two months since I wrote my last post on this website due to many reasons. The main reason for the lack of posts, is because I have now entered into my graduate program with a focus on American history. I am hoping that by being able to get a better understanding of how history was written and talked about generations ago, I will in turn, be a better writer and researcher myself. My goals are to be able to find research and tell it in a way that shows people, things they may have not known before. The purpose of this site is not to try and figure out exactly who killed John F. Kennedy, but it is to inform those who may be new to the research. Along the way, I have found some new research that I have shared and I have repeated some of the research by others. The assassination is a moment in time where everything stopped for a moment, and it is up to the research community to tell the story of what happened. We may all have different opinions as to what happened that day in Dallas, but we can agree that it changed our history forever. I myself, is continuing to push forward and looking for material that others may have overlooked or their voice was just not heard loud enough. Below is a sample of what I have been writing in my class, and of course the focus is on John F. Kennedy. It is not the typical assassination research, instead it is about learning the history of the research itself.

Throughout time, there have been many moments that have been cast as life-changing, but few of them can compare to the events that transpired on November 22nd, 1963. For the people that remember the day that President John F. Kennedy was assassinated it was not only a day that changed the course of history but also a day they would never forget. The assassination of the President of the United States had occurred 3 times prior to 1963 and yet the void the nation felt from this assassination had not been felt since the assassination of President Lincoln in 1865. The assassination of President Kennedy was one of the biggest moments of the 20th century and yet today it still remains an unsolved crime to some. The historiography of the assassination has taken many different turns in the 50 years that have past and many historians have taken their shot at figuring out the unofficial “Crime of the Century”. Although the authorities singled out the man they thought was the assassin, the general public seems to think that a larger plot was involved in the assassination. History has shown us over time just how the nations opinion on this manner has changed.

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For the young readers of today’s generation, it is important for them to understand that the assassination of President Kennedy changed the shape and course of our nation. The Vietnam War was not a war yet, man had not been on the moon, and African-Americans were not given the freedoms and equality in the Civil Rights Act. These specific events were all things that were on the agenda of President Kennedy before that day in Dallas and our history as a nation changed from that day on. Many Americans look back to the Kennedy assassination as a turning point in our nation and that is why after all of these years it is still a topic that is mentioned and talked about today. Learning about what actually happened during those last few moments on Elm St. in Dallas has evolved over time and each author brings their own version to it.

The official story of the events that day are that one lone gunman named Lee Harvey Oswald was able to assassinate the President of the United States with a high powered rifle from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository. In December of 1963, President Lyndon Johnson appointed a commission to look into the details of the assassination and to come up with a conclusion. The report, named The Warren Report (based on the commission’s leader, Earl Warren) concluded that in fact Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. Since the day, the Warren Report was released the history of the Kennedy assassination began to take on a life of its own. Many authors and researchers were giving their opinion on the manner and over the years countless books have been written about the assassination, whether they believe the Warren Report or whether they believe someone else committed the crime.

When published in 1967, Rush to Judgment by Mark Lane was received with mixed reviews. Our trust in government was fading through the events that were happening in the decade, and the full truth about the Kennedy assassination was still a topic of discussion. When the Warren Report was released in 1964 many Americans believed that version of what happened that day in Dallas. It was very common to believe what the government was telling you was nothing but the truth, and with the assassination of a President you would hope the truth would be told. In his book, Lane examines countless witness testimony that was left out of the final report by the commission and determines that someone other than Lee Harvey Oswald was the true assassin of the President that day. By describing the other key witnesses to the crime, he is able to break down a timeline of events that shows that Oswald was not alone in this plot.
The book has become a cornerstone for future researchers to look back upon. The research done by Mr. Lane was groundbreaking at the time and to go against what the government had said about the assassination was even bigger. The book has led to many more researchers to give their own version of the assassination. To this day the Kennedy assassination is still a highly debated topic with more Americans believing that more than one person was involved in the assassination plot. For once was a strong opinion of a lone gunman, has turned to a “whodunit” mind frame. The conspiracy theories have carried on over the years and Mr. Lane is still right in the middle of all of them because of the work he did back then.

This is just a sample of some of the papers that I have written in my class and I hope to continue to write about the assassination in future classes. Although some of the information is repeated, their is still plenty of materials that have yet to be looked at. In the coming months I will continue into the research of the Acme Building Maintenance Company and its owner Frank C. Jones and to get a more clearer answer as to what happened to the company that had keys to the Texas School Book Depository the night before the assassination.

Sources

Bugliosi, Vincent. Reclaiming history: the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 2007.

Company, Inc. The official Warren Commission report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Company, 1964.

Lane, Mark. Rush to judgement: a critique of the Warren Commission’s inquiry …. Greenwich, Conn.: Fawcett Publications, 1967.

Salinger, Pierre, and Sander Vanocur. A tribute to John F. Kennedy,. Chicago: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1964.

Photo Courtesy of rgs6 via flickr.
HDR Photo of Texas Book Depository

Assassination Attempt That Went Unnoticed..

Throughout history there have been many different assassination attempts on the life of the President of the United States. Some attempts have been successful and others go unnoticed. But when a President of the United States is assassinated and a commission is set up to investigate the assassination, why are they not looking at the other attempts on the President’s life. President Kennedy was the victim of several different assassination attempts, including one that was one month after his election. However, there was an attempt that the government never wanted the public to hear about. To no surprise it was also excluded from the final Warren Commission report delivered to President Johnson. It is important to learn about the back story of how this information got out and who leaked the information. The story titled “JFK Secret Service Guard Stepped Up” was published on October 5th, 1961 in newspapers throughout the country by syndicated columnists Robert S. Allen and Paul Scott. These two men would write about the in and outs of politics in Washington D.C. The accuracy of their stories would go unmatched for years because of the sources that these two men would use.

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Their articles were becoming so accurate that Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy ordered a wiretap at the homes of these two men. Because the information they were writing about was so classified he wanted to know who was giving them the information. The operation which fell under Project Mockingbird, in which it was discovered that the conversations that these two writers were having was with several key members inside the government. Some of these sources included 12 Senators, 6 members of Congress, staff member at the White House, Assistant Attorney General, and a member of the Vice President’s office. This also does not include the several well placed individuals the report mentions as sources for these two writers. A CIA memo that was released in 2007 describes how the Attorney General wanted this wiretap and the results of the wiretap. I have included a link to the memo at the end of this article.

So know that we know that the sources of the two writers are of value, then we can look at their articles with full confidence that they are speaking the truth. Back to the article about the failed assassination attempt on President Kennedy, this occurred sometime in late Sept. 1961 and the article was written in early October. In the article it states that before the President was getting ready to board Marine One ( Presidential Helicopter) the secret service noticed a .22 caliber bullet hole in the seat in which the President normally occupies. The secret service was trying to figure out if their was a ” mysterious sniper” according to the article. As of the printing of the article no arrests were made and they were trying to determine where the bullet came from. How can a piece of information like this go unnoticed by the Warren Commission? I know how, they never wanted to look further into the events that lead up to the assassination and only wanted to fuel their own fire. But an attempt like this should have been looked at more closely. This attempt could have been done from someone on the inside and the finding of the investigation covered up. I tried looking up more about this assassination attempt and was unable to find anything else about it. The writers of this story never go back to it in later years and it is pretty much off the radar. Considering that JFK was assassinated by a sniper, this kind of information could have helped the Warren Commission out. This story is just one of many that are out their to find, if we spend the time looking for them. The writers of this article would spend the rest of their lives under the assumption that they were being watched and finally in 1981 Robert S. Allen took his own life. Paul Scott would go on to live a long life, but not without worrying about the government watching him and his family. The people that knew too much and were trying to tell us the stories inside of Washington D.C, somehow found themselves in a situation they could not get out of, and along the line they were finding out information they should not have known in the first place.

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Sources:

Shapira, I. (2013, March 2). Long ago wire tap inspires a battle with the cia for more information. Washington Post. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/long-ago-wiretap-inspires-a-battle-with-the-cia-for-more-information/2013/03/02/8ebaa924-77b0-11e2-aa12-e6cf1d31106b_story.html

Project Mockingbird- http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/607427/cia-report-on-project-mockingbird.pdf

Flickr- https://www.flickr.com/photos/giarc80/11003895165/in/set-72157637958103875

Digging Deeper into the JFK Assassination.

Well, it has been a while since my last posting because of a much needed job promotion and now that I am finally settled in, its time to get back to the research. In the last post I wrote, I mentioned a company by the name of Acme Building Maintenance. This company was a janitorial company that specialized in cleaning the high rises of downtown Dallas. The company was well known in the city, and over 200 companies in downtown Dallas used them as their primary cleaning service. The company the was founded in 1920 by Frank C. Jones was also the  cleaning service provider of The Texas School Book Depository.

In early Secret Service reports, the company is mentioned a few times. In his statement Roy Truly mentions that a cleaning service comes in after everyone has left the building and they have keys to the building for that reason. Seems odd that I was only able to find this company mentioned only a few times and none of which seems to be investigated really well. I have spent a few months looking into this company and learning more about their history and how they simply just disappeared.

The founder of the company Frank C. Jones wanted to start a company that would be able to not only clean buildings but also the streets of downtown Dallas. A resident himself of the city, the company followed his vision of a cleaner Dallas throughout the next several decades. In articles published in the Dallas Morning News, the company is featured several times about how they go about their business and how they are able to maintain low costs. The names of the top executives are mentioned which include Milt Thomas, Paul Clark, Robert Whitener, and Buck Butler. The company was located at 1901 Laws Street, Dallas Texas ( It has since been demolished).

What has troubled me while doing research on this company, is the fact that it simply disappeared. A company that had been around for 40 years suddenly went away, and any files on the company seemed to have gone with them. During my research, the Secretary of State of Texas, informed me that it seems that this company never existed because they had no information on it. I had sent several letters to the secretary of state, and they thought I had the name wrong. I emailed pictures of news articles that I had, and they told me to contact different organizations. The next step to finding out more about the company would be the Historical Society of both the State of Texas and the Dallas County Historical Society. Nothing to be found was what I was told. Again, I showed them the articles and they had nothing in their files.  The company was featured in a Dallas Chamber of Commerce pamphlet in the early 1960’s and yet when I tried to get information about the company, they had nothing.

Since these organizations claim that this company did not exist, I just kept digging away. I found an article from Sept 1969 that showed the company was bought out by CT (Chemtech) Corporation of Dallas. I keep finding articles about this company, but when I want to get more information about them, I am stopped dead in my tracks. When I was able to get a phone number of the business ( RI 2-7660), I went back to the Chamber of Commerce to see if that would help with providing me more information. Nothing. Trying to find out information about Frank C. Jones is just as hard as to finding out how much money is kept at Fort Knox. No one wants to tell you, but there are people that know something. A company that existed and was successful as the Acme Building Maintenance Company would leave behind some sort of trail, and yet this company seems to have been taken off the grid.

The keys to the Texas School Book Depository were in the hands of the employees of the Acme Building Maintenance Company and yet not one employee was interviewed by either the Dallas Police, or the Warren Commission. The company is only mentioned in a few reports that seem to show just how easy it was to get into the building before the assassination. As I mentioned before, I believe that employees of this company were able to get into the building the night before the assassination and set up the snipers perch. We do know that workers on the sixth floor were installing new flooring, but yet no of them mention about moving those boxes by the southeast corner window. There was no need, these boxes were set up the night before with Oswald’s gun tucked away, awaiting for the police to find it.

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Who Had Keys to The Texas School Book Depository..

For many JFK assassination researchers, the daunting task of going through the many files that are available to them can be very challenging  at times. However, their comes a time when you find that one thing in the files that makes you just go “all in” on it. I came across that file about two months ago, and over the course of the next few posts I will go more in depth with it. The file that I found was only in a couple of reports that I have seen in the many hours of looking through them. It involved a company named the Acme Building & Maintenance Company. Not familiar with it? Neither was I, and in the report I found some key things that should have been investigated further by the Warren Commission.

The report which was in the file of Roy Truly ( TSBD Supervisor), showed in one of the paragraphs about a cleaning company that would come in each and every night and work inside of The Texas School Book Depository. The cleaning company which is named in the file as Acme Building & Maintenance would have 2 employees come into the building after hours and work inside of the building alone until about 12:00 in the morning.  The most alarming part about the paragraph was that the Acme Building & Maintenance Company had two employees who had a key to the Texas School Book Depository.

Acme Building and Maintenance Roy TrulyAcme Building and Maintenance

So here we have a company that has access to the TSBD after every employee of the warehouse is gone for the day. In looking through various files I can not find anywhere that the Warren Commission looked into this matter. We know that the Warren Commission refused to look at anything other than what would benefit their own version of what happened that day. The company which was located at 1901 Laws Street in Dallas, was one of the leading cleaning companies in the city. The Texas School Book Depository was a fairly new account and to be able to have access to the building at this time would benefit any potential assassin. The names of the employees who has keys are not listed in the report, and this should have been of some concern to law enforcement looking into the assassination. At no time did any of the officials look  into this matter.

At any time during the night someone could have planted the gun that was found on the sixth floor. This would have given the conspirators plenty of time to set up the boxes without the worry about anyone seeing them up there. At no time does anyone see Oswald stacking boxes on the sixth floor near the southeast corner. Some of the fingerprints found on the cartons of boxes did not match those that were employees of the Texas School Book Depository. The employees who would have had access to those particular cartons were not found anywhere on them. The fingerprints that were found were not matched up to anyone who may have worked for the Acme Building & Maintenance Company during this time.

What I found in this file about the Acme Building & Maintenance Company may not be new to some, but for me it was something that I was not aware of. It sparked a new interest as to who else might have had keys and who were the ones handing out the keys to the building. A simple paragraph that seems to have been forgotten about in the many pages of the JFK assassination files. In the coming weeks I will be posting about the owner of the Acme Building & Maintenance Company and how the company completely went away and the location of the company is now a parking lot.

Sources:

Roy truly. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://research.archives.gov/description/7461227

Oswald Seen at Rifle Range By Many Witnesses..

In a post that I put together a few weeks ago, I talked briefly about a rifle range that Lee Harvey Oswald was seen at. During the course of November, Lee Harvey Oswald is seen by witnesses at the SportsDome Rifle Range in Irving.  As many as 9 witnesses are able to place Oswald at this location on several different dates in the month of November. To some people this may not seem too important because they believe that Oswald did not shoot the rifle on November 22nd, 1963. There is evidence that points to the paraffin tests that conclude that Oswald only had residue from a pistol on his hands that day and that he did not fire that rifle. I am with the opinion that he may not have shot the rifle on that day but he did shoot it on other days in that month. The witnesses not only saw Oswald, but they saw him with other people as well. These other individuals that were seen with Oswald could have been key witnesses had the Warren Commission not left them out.

The story of the SportsDome Rifle Range, which is owned and operated by Floyd Davis and his wife , could be a link to other individuals involved in the assassination. The Warren Commission in their report put the rifle range story into their “rumors and speculation” part of the report. They only mention Oswald practicing with the rifle with his brother during a hunting trip. So why would they want to leave the rifle range out? It would seem to fit their intention of putting Oswald behind the trigger on November 22nd, but yet they choose to leave out these witnesses. It is simple, the witnesses at the rifle range saw Lee Harvey Oswald, but he was not alone. The rifle range was opened to the public towards the end of October 1963, and during the time before the assassination, Oswald is seen at least 3 different times at this rifle range.

On November 16th, 1963, Dr. Homer Wood and his 12-year-old son Sterling were at the SportsDome Rifle range when they noticed an individual firing a rifle in the booth next to them. It seemed to them that he was acting strange. The individual in the booth next to them was firing his weapon and catching the shell casings as they were being ejected from the weapon. This caught the attention of the son, who then started to watch this individual more. According to the son, the individual who looked identical to Oswald according to their statements, was firing his weapon and the weapon would have a spark come from the rifle after each shot. An important clue, because no one in Dealey Plaza who looked up at the sixth floor window of the Texas School Book Depository  noticed any sparks coming from the window. So, if this was Oswald using his gun at the rifle range, then the gun seen by others during the assassination would have noticed these sparks. No sparks were reported by any of the witnesses in Dealey Plaza. These two witnesses noticed someone was with Oswald at the time he was at the rifle range, and they describe this person to be about 6 ft. tall, weighing anywhere from about 220-240 pounds. There is no indication that the Dallas Police ever tried looking for this man. This same description of the individual with Oswald was given by others who also saw both of these men at the rifle range together.

Another witness to Lee Harvey Oswald being at the SportsDome Rifle range was Garland Slack. This individual is interesting because of not only him seeing Oswald at the rifle range, he was also present in Dealey Plaza when the motorcade came by. According to the statement given by Mr. Slack, he had an incident with the man he later identified as Lee Harvey Oswald. According to Mr. Slack, he got into a slight argument with Oswald because of him shooting at Mr. Slack’s target. There were some words exchanged by the two men, and eventually Oswald left the rifle range without further incident. According to his statement, Mr. Slack kept the target paper that Oswald was shooting at the day of the incident, and that he handed it over to police.  On November 22nd, 1963, Garland Slack is standing near the intersection of Houston and Elm Street when the Presidential motorcade goes by. He is unable to see the President, as the crowds had pushed him too far back. As the motorcade made the turn onto Elm, he heard the first shot which he thought came from the Triple Underpass. When the third shot went off, he was more convinced that some of the shots came from the depository. It is interesting to note, how a man who claims he saw Oswald at the rifle range just a few days before, is able to be in the prime location of the assassination. The statements that Mr. Slack gives, states that he was at the rifle range November 9th, 10th, and 17th. Again, he mentions that Oswald is not alone at the rifle range when he sees him. In some of his statements, Mr. Slack mentions that Oswald was being driven to the rifle range by a man named “Frazier”. The Warren Commission decides that this does not fit their story too well, and they decide to leave out these witnesses in the final report.

slack_garland-0005

Garland Slack 3

The decision to not further investigate the individual who was seen with Oswald at the rifle range, further fuels speculation that others were involved. The Warren Commission could have used these witnesses to back up their story of Oswald using the rifle before the assassination, but instead they decided to leave it out, because of the mention of others with Oswald at the time. Another witness at the rifle range is Malcolm Price. In his statements he claims that he helped sight the scope on Oswald’s rifle, and that Oswald tried out the new scope right in front of him. Their are lots of these types of stories and not all of them may be true, but when you have witnesses that are all seeing the same thing, then maybe these types of things should have been looked into further. The rifle range story is just one of many stories that were never fully told by the Warren Commission. The description of the man seen with Oswald on these dates, fits the description of a man walking in Dallas with a rifle case, on the morning of November 22nd, 1963.

Sources:

Dallas (Tex.). Police Dept.. [Information Regarding Oswald’s Firing His Rifle on the Sporting Gun Range #1], Text, December 2, 1963; digital images, (http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth337276/ : accessed January 13, 2014), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, http://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Dallas Municipal Archives , Dallas, Texas.

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