Warren Commission Report
Appendix XI - Reports Relating to the Interrogation of Lee Harvey Oswald at the Dallas Police DepartmentAs discussed in chapters IV and V, Lee Harvey Oswald was interrogated for a total of approximately 12 hours between 2:30 p. m. on Friday, November 22, 1963, and 11:15 a. m. on Sunday, November 24, 1963. There were no stenographic or tape recordings of these interviews. Several of the investigators present at one or more of the interrogation sessions, prior to testifying before the Commission, had prepared memoranda setting forth their recollections of the questioning of Oswald and his responses. The following are the most important of these reports.
Report of Capt. J. W. Fritz, Dallas Police Department
Interrogation of Lee Harvey OswaldWe conducted the investigation at the Texas School Book Depository Building on November 22, 1963, immediately after the President was shot and after we had found the location where Lee Harvey Oswald had done the shooting from and left three empty cartridge cases on the floor and the rifle had been found partially hidden under some boxes near the back stairway. These pieces of evidence were protected until the Crime Lab. could get pictures and make a search for fingerprints. After Lt. Day, of the Crime Lab. had finished his work with the rifle, I picked it up and found that it had a cartridge in the chamber, which I ejected. About this time some officer came to me and told me that Mr. Roy S. Truly wanted to see me, as one of his men had left the building. I had talked to Mr. Truly previously and at that time he thought everyone was accounted for who worked in the building. Mr. Truly then came with another officer and told me that a Lee Harvey Oswald had left the building. I asked if he had an address where this man lived, and he told me that he did, that it was in Irving at 2515 W. 5th Street.
I then left the rest of the search of the building with Chief Lumpkin and other officers who were there and told Dets. R. M. Sims and E. L. Boyd to accompany me to the City Hall where we could make a quick check for police record and any other information of value, and we would then go to Irving, Texas, in an effort to apprehend this man. While I was in the building, I was told that Officer J. D. Tippit had been shot in Oak Cliff. Immediately after I reached my office, I asked the officers who had brought in a prisoner from the Tippit shooting who the man was who shot the officer. They told me his name was Lee Harvey Oswald, and I replied that that was our suspect in the President's killing. I instructed the officers to bring this man into the office after talking to the officers for a few minutes in the presence of Officers R. M. Sims and E. L. Boyd of the Homicide Bureau and possibly some Secret Service men. Just as I has started questioning this man, I received a call from Gordon Shanklin, Agent in Charge of the FBI office here in Dallas, who asked me to let him talk to Jim Bookhout, one of his agents. He told Mr. Bookhout that he would like for James P. Hosty to sit in on this interview as he knew about these people and had been investigating them before. I invited Mr. Bookhout and Mr. Hosty in to help with the interview.
After some questions about this man's full name I asked him if he worked for the Texas School Book Depository, and he told me he did. I asked him which floor he worked on, and he said usually on the second floor but sometimes his work took him to all the different floors. I asked him what part of the building he was in at the time the President was shot, and he said that he was having his lunch about that time on the first floor. Mr. Truly had told me that one of the police officers had stopped this man immediately after the shooting somewhere near the back stairway, so I asked Oswald where he was when the police officer stopped him. He said he was on the second floor drinking a coca cola when the officer came in. I asked him why he left the building, and he said there was so much excitement he didn't think there would be any more work done that day, and that as this company wasn't particular about their hours, that they did not punch a clock, and that he thought it would be just as well that he left for the rest of the afternoon. I asked him if he owned a rifle, and he said that he did not. He said that he had seen one at the building a few days ago, and that Mr. Truly and some of the employees were looking at it. I asked him where he went to when he left work, and he told me that he had a room on 1026 North Beckley, that he went over there and changed his trousers and got his pistol and went to the picture show. I asked him why he carried his pistol, and he remarked, "You know how boys do when they have a gun, they just carry it."
Mr. Hosty asked Oswald if he had been in Russia. He told him, "yes, he had been in Russia three years." He asked him if he had written to the Russian Embassy, and he said he had. This man became very upset and arrogant with Agent Hosty when he questioned him and accused him of accosting his wife two different times. When Agent Hosty attempted to talk to this man, he would hit his fist on the desk. I asked Oswald what he meant by accosting his wife when he was talking to Mr. Hosty. He said Mr. Hosty mistreated his wife two different times when he talked with her, practically accosted her. Mr. Hosty also asked Oswald if he had been to Mexico City, which he denied. During this interview he told me that he had gone to school in New York and in Fort Worth, Texas, that after going into the Marines, finished his high school education. I asked him if he won any medals for rifle shooting in the Marines. He said he won the usual medals.
I asked him what his political beliefs were, and he said he had none but that he belonged to the Fair Play for Cuba Committee and told me that they had headquarters in New York and that he had been Secretary for this organization in New Orleans when he lived there. He also said that he supports the Castro Revolution. One of the officers had told me that he had rented the room on Beckley under the name of O. F. Lee. I asked him why he did this. He said the landlady did it. She didn't understand his name correctly.
Oswald asked if he was allowed an attorney and I told him he could have any attorney he liked, and that the telephone would be available to him up in the jail and he could call anyone he wished. I believe it was during this interview that he first expressed a desire to talk to Mr. Abt, an attorney in New York. Interviews on this day were interrupted by showups where witnesses identified Oswald positively as the man who killed Officer Tippit, and the time that I would have to talk to another witness or to some of the officers. One of these showups was held at 4:35 p. m. and the next one at 6:30 p. m. and at 7:55 p. m. At7:05 p. m. I signed a complaint before Bill Alexander of the District Attorney's office, charging Oswald with the Tippit murder. At 7:10 p. m. Oswald was arraigned before Judge Johnston. During the second day interview I asked Oswald about a card that he had in his purse showing that he belonged to the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, which he admitted was his. I asked him about another identification card in his pocket bearing the name of Alex Hidell. He said he picked up that name in New Orleans while working in the Fair Play for Cuba organization. He said he spoke Russian, that he corresponded with people in Russia, and that he received newspapers from Russia.
I showed the rifle to marine Oswald, and she could not positively identify it, but said that it looked like the rifle that her husband had and that he had been keeping it in the garage at Mrs. Pain's home in Irving. After this, I questioned Oswald further about the rifle, but he denied owning a rifle at all, and said that he did have a small rifle some years past. I asked him if he owned a rifle in Russia, and he said, "You know you can't buy a rifle in Russia, you can only buy shotguns." "I had a shotgun in Russia and hunted some while there." marina Oswald had told me that she thought her husband might have brought the rifle from new Orleans, which he denied. He told me that he had some things stored in a garage at Mrs. Paine's home in Irving and that he had a few personal effects at his room on Beckley. I instructed the officers to make a thorough search of both of these places.
After reviewing all of the evidence pertaining to the killing of President Kennedy before District Attorney Henry Wade and his assistant, Bill Alexander, and Jim Allen, former First Assistant District Attorney of Dallas Count, I signed a complaint before the District Attorney charging Oswald with the murder of President Kennedy. this was at 11:26 p. m. He was arraigned before Judge David Johnston at 1:35 a. m. November 23, 1963.
Oswald was place in jail about 12:00 midnight and brought from jail for arraignment before Judge David Johnston at 1:35 a. m.
On November 23 at 10:25 a. m. Oswald was brought from the jail for an interview. Present at this time was FBI agent Jim Bookhout, Forrest Sorrells, special agent and in charge of Secret Service, United States Marshal Robert Nash, and Homicide officers. During this interview I talked to Oswald about his leaving the building, and he told me he left by bus and rode to a stop near home and walked on to his house. At the time of Oswald's arrest he had a bus transfer in his pocket. He admitted this was given to him by the bus driver when he rode the bus after leaving the building.
One of the officers had told me that a cab driver, William Wayne Whaley, thought he had recognized Oswald's picture as the man who had gotten in his cab near the bus station and rode to Beckley Avenue. I asked Oswald if he had ridden a cab on that day, and he said, "Yes, I did ride in the cab. The bus I got on near where I work got into heavy traffic and was traveling too slow, and I got off and caught a cab." I asked him about his conversation with the cab driver, and he said he remembered that when he got in the cab a lady came up who also wanted a cab, and he told Oswald to tell the lady to "take another cab."
We found from the investigation the day before that when Oswald left home, he was carrying a long package. He usually went to see his wife of week ends, but this time he had gone on Thursday night. I asked him if he had told Buell Wesley Frazier why he had gone home a different night, and if he had told him anything about bringing back some curtain rods. He denied it.
During this conversation he told me he reached his home by cab and changed both his shirt and trousers before going to the show. He said his cab fare home was 85 cents. When asked what he did with his clothing, he took off when he got home, he said he put them in the dirty clothes. in talking with him further about his location at the time the President was killed, he said he ate lunch with some of the colored boys who worked with him. One of them was called "Junior" and the other one was a little short man whose name he did not know. He said he had a cheese sandwich and some fruit and that was the only package he had brought with him to work and denied that he had brought the long package described by Mr. Frazier and his sister.
I asked him why he lived in a room, while his wife lived in Irving. He said Mrs. Paine, the lady his wife lived with, was learning Russian, that his wife needed help with the young baby, and that i made a nice arrangement for both of them. He said he didn't know Mr. Paine very well, but Mr. Paine and his wife, he thought were separated a great deal of the time. He said he owned no car, but that the Paines have two cars, and told that in the garage at the Paine's home he had some sea bags that had a lot of his personal belongings, that he had left them there after coming back form New Orleans in September.
He said he had a brother, Robert, who lived in Fort Worth. We later found that this brother lived in Denton. He said the Paines were close friends of his.
I asked him if he belonged to the Communist Party, but he said that he had never had a card, but repeated that he belonged to the Fair Play for Cuba organization, and he said that he belonged to the American Civil Liberties Union and paid $5. 00 dues. I asked him again why he carried the pistol to the show. He refused to answer questions about the pistol. He did tell me, however, that he had bought it several months before in Fort Worth, Texas.
i noted that in questioning him that he did answer very quickly and I asked him if he had ever been questions before, and he told me that he had. He was questioned one time for a long time by the FBI after he had returned from Russia. He said they used different methods, they tried the hard and soft, and the buddy method and said he was very familiar with interrogation. He reminded me that he did not have to answer any questions at all until he talked to his attorney, and I told him again that the could have an attorney any time he wished. He said he didn't have money to pay for a phone call to Mr. Abt. I told him to call "collect," if he liked, to use the jail phone or that he could have another attorney if he wished. He said he didn't want another attorney, he wanted to talk to this attorney first. I believe he made this call later as he thanked me later during one of our interviews for allowing him the use of the telephone. I explained to him that all prisoners were allowed to use the telephone. I asked him why he waited Mr. Abt, instead of some available attorney. He told me he didn't know Mr. Abt personally but that he was familiar with a case where Mr. Abt defended some people for a violation of the Smith Act, and that if he didn't get Mr. Abt, that he felt sure the American Civil Liberties Union would furnish him a lawyer. He explained to me that this organization helped people who needed attorneys and weren't able to get them.
While in New Orleans, he lived at 4907 Magazine Street and at one time worked for the William Riley Company near that address. When asked about any previous arrests he told me that he had had a little trouble while working with the Fair Play for Cuba Committee and had a fight with some anti-Castro people. He also told me of a debate on some radio station in New Orleans where he debated with some anti-Castro people.
I asked him what he thought of President Kennedy and his family, and he said he didn't have any view on the President. He said, "I like the President's family very well. I have my own views about national policies." I asked him about a polygraph test. He told me he had refused a polygraph test with the FBI, and he certainly wouldn't take one at this time. Both Mr. Bookhout, of the FBI and Mr. Kelley, and the Marshal asked Oswald some questions during this interview.
Oswald was placed back in jail at 11:33 a. m. At 12:35 p. m. Oswald was brought to the office for another interview with Inspector Kelley and some of the other officers and myself. I talked to Oswald about the different places he had lived in Dallas in an effort to find where he was living when the picture was made of him holding a rifle which looked to be the same rifle we had recovered. This picture showed to be taken near a stairway with many identifying things in the back yard. He told me about one of the places where he had lived.
Mr. Pain had told me about where Oswald lived on Neely Street. Oswald was very evasive about this location. We found later that this was the place where the picture was made. I again asked him about his property and where his things might be kept. and he old me about the things at Mrs. Paine's residence and a few things on Beckley. He was placed back in jail at 1:10 p. m.
At 6:00 p. m. I instructed the officers to bring Oswald back into the office, and in the presence of Jim Bookhout, Homicide officers, and Inspector Kelly, of the Secret Service, I showed Oswald an enlarged picture of him holding a rifle and wearing a pistol. This picture had been enlarged by our Crime Lab from a picture found in the garage at Mrs. Pain's home. He said the picture was not his, that the face was his face, but that this picture had been made by someone superimposing his face, the other part of the picture was not him at all and that he had never seen the picture before. When I told him that the picture was recovered from Mrs. Pain's garage, he said that picture had never been in his possession, and I explained to him that it was an enlargement of the small picture obtained in the search. At that time I showed him the smaller picture. He denied ever seeing that picture and said that he knew all about photography, that he had done a lot of work in photography himself, that the small picture was a reduced picture of the large picture, and had been made by some person unknown to him. He further stated that since he had been photographed here at the City Hall and that people had been taking his picture while being transferred from my office to the jail door that someone had been able to get a picture of his face and that with that, they head made this picture. He told me that he understood photography real well, and that in time, he would be able to show that it was not his picture, and that it had been made by someone else. At this time he said that he did not want to answer any more question and he was returned to the jail about 7:15 p. m.
At 9;30 on the morning of November 24, I asked that Oswald be brought to the office. At that time I showed him a map of the City of Dallas which had been recovered in the search of his room North Beckley. This map had some markings on it, one of which was bout where the President was shot. He said that the map had nothing to do with the President's shooting and again, as he had done in the previous interview, denied knowing anything of the shooting of the President, or of the shooting of officer Tippit. He said the map had been used to locate buildings where he had gone to talk to people about employment.
During this interview Inspector Kelley asked Oswald about his religious view, and he replied that he didn't agree with all the philosophies on religion. He seemed evasive with inspector Kelley about how he felt about religion, and I asked him if he believed in a Deity. He was evasive and didn't answer this question.
Someone of the Federal officers asked Oswald if he thought Cuba would be better off since the President was assassinated. To this he replied that he felt that since the President was killed that someone else would take his place, perhaps Vice-president Johnson, and that his views would probably be largely the same as those of President Kennedy.
I again asked him about the gun and about the picture of him holding a similar rifle, and at that time he again positively denied having any knowledge of the picture or the rifle and denied that he had eve lived on Neely Street, and when I told him that friends who had visited him there said that he had lived there, he said that they were mistaken about visiting him there, because he had never lived there.
During this interview, Oswald said he was a Marxist. He repeated two or three times, "I am a Marxist, but not a Leninist-Marxist." He told me that the station that he had debated on in New Orleans was the one who carried Bill Stakey's program. He denied again knowing Alex Hidell in New Orleans, and again reiterated his belief in Fair Play for Cuba and what the committee stood for.
After some questions, Chief Jesse E. Curry came to the office and asked me if I was ready for the man to be transferred. I told him we were ready as soon as the security was completed in the basement, where we were to place Oswald in a car to transfer him to the County Jail. I had objected to the cameras obstruction the jail door, and the Chief explained to me that these have been moved, and the people were moved back, and the cameramen were well back in the garage. I told the Chief then that we were ready to go. He told us to go ahead with the prisoner, and that he and Chief Stevenson, who was with him, would meet us at the County Jail.
Oswald's shirt, which he was wearing at the time of arrest, had been removed and sent to the crime lab in Washington with all the other evidence for a comparison test. Oswald said he would like to have a shirt from his clothing that had been brought to the office to war over the T-shirt that he was wearing at the time. We selected the best looking shirt from his things, but he said he would prefer wearing a black Ivy League type shirt, indicating that i might be a litter warmer. We made this change and I asked him if he wouldn't like to wear a hat to more or less camouflage his looks in the car while being transferred as all of the people who had been viewing him had seen him bareheaded. He didn't want to do this. Then Officer J. R. Leavell had cuffed his left hand to Oswald's right hand, then we left the office for the transfer.
Inasmuch as this report was made from rough notes and memory, it is entirely possible that one of these question could be in a separate interview from the one indicated in this report. He was interviewed under the most adverse condition in my office which is 9 feet 6 inches by 14 feet, and has only one front door, which forced us to move this prisoner through hundreds of people each time he was carried from my office to the jail door, some 20 feet, during each of these transfers. The crowd would attempt to jam around him, shouting questions and many continuing slurs. This office is also surrounded by large glass windows, and there were many officers working next to these windows. I have no recorder in this office and was unable to record the interview. I was interrupted many times during these interviews to step from the office to talk to another witness or secure additional information from officers needed for the interrogation.
Reports of Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
Federal Bureau of Investigation - Report #1Date: 11/23/63
Lee Harvey Oswald, 1026 North Beckley, Dallas, Texas, was interviewed by Captain Will Fritz of the Homicide Bureau, Dallas Police Department. Special Agents James P. Hosty, Jr. and James W. Bookhout were present during this interview. When the Agents entered the interview room at 3:15 p. m., Captain Fritz had been previously interviewing Lee Harvey Oswald for an undetermined period of time. Both Agents identified themselves to Oswald and advised him they were law enforcement officers and anything he said could be used against him. Oswald at this time adopted a violent attitude toward the FBI and both Agents and made many uncomplimentary remarks about the FBI. Oswald requested that Captain Fritz remove the cuffs from him, it being noted that Oswald was handcuffed with his hands behind him. Captain Fritz had one of his detectives remove the handcuffs and handcuff Oswald with his hands in front of him.
Captain Fritz asked Oswald if he ever owned a rifle and Oswald stated that he had observed a Mr. Truly (phonetic), a supervisor at the Texas Schoolbook Depository on November 20, 1963, display a rifle to some individuals in his office on the first floor of the Texas Schoolbook Depository, but denied ever owning a rifle himself. Oswald stated that he had never been in Mexico except to Tijuana on one occasion. however, he admitted to Captain Fritz to having reside in the Soviet Union for three years where he has many friends and relatives of his wife.
Oswald also admitted that he was the secretary for the Fair Play for Cuba Committee in New Orleans, Louisiana a few months ago. Oswald stated that the Fair Play for Cuba Committee has its headquarters in New York City. Oswald admitted to having received an award for marksmanship while a member of the U. S. Marine Corps. He further admitted that he was living at 1026 N. Beckley in Dallas, Texas, under the name of O. H. Lee. Oswald admitted that he was present in the Texas Schoolbook Depository on November 22, 1963, where he has been employed since October 15, 1963. Oswald stated that as a laborer, he has access to the entire building which has offices on the first and second floors and storage on the third and fourth, as w3ell as the fifth and sixth floors. Oswald stated that he went to lunch at approximately noon and he claimed he ate his lunch on the first floor in the lunchroom; however he went to the second floor where the Coca-Cola machine was located and obtained a bottle of Coca-Cola for his lunch. Oswald claimed to be on the first floor when President John F. Kennedy passed this building.
After hearing what had happened, he said that because of all the confusion there would be no work performed that afternoon so he decided to go home. Oswald stated he then went home by bus and changed his clothes and sent to a move. Oswald admitted to carrying a pistol with him to this move stating he did this because he felt like it, giving no other reason. Oswald further admitted attempting to fight the Dallas police officers who arrested him in this move theater when he received a cut and a bump.
Oswald frantically denied shooting Dallas police officer Tippit or shooting President John F. Kennedy. The interview was concluded at 4:05 p. m. when Oswald was removed for a lineup.
on 11/22/63 at Dallas, Texas. File# DL89-43 by Special Agents James P. Hosty, Jr. and James W. Bookhout /wvm. Date dictated: 11/23/93
Federal Bureau of Investigation - Report #2Date: 11/23/63
Lee Harvey Oswald, interviews in offices of the Dallas Police Department, was advise that he did not have to make any statement, any statement he made could be used against him in court and of his right to an attorney. He was requested to furnish descriptive and biographical data concerning himself.
The following was obtained from his responses and examination of contents of his wallet: Oswald declined to explain his possession of a photograph of a Selective Service card in the name of "Alek James Hidell."
When interview had been substantially completed and Oswald was asked as to his present employment, he stated he thought perhaps interview to obtain descriptive information was too prolonged, that he had declined to be interviewed by any other officers previously, and did not desire to be interviewed by this agent. He remarked "I know your tacticsthere is a similar agency in Russia. you are using the soft touch and, of course, the procedure in Russia would be quite different."
Oswald was advised questions were intended to obtain his complete physical description and background. Upon repetition of the question to his present employment, he furnished same without further discussion.
Race White Sex Male Date of Birth October 18, 1939 Place of Birth New Orleans, Louisiana Height 5' 9" Weight 140 Hair Medium brown, worn medium length, needs haircut Eyes Blue-gray Scars No tattoos or permanent scars Relatives Mother Marguerite Oswald, unknown address, Arlington, Texas, practical nurse (has not seen for about one year Father Robert Lee Oswald, deceased, August 31, 1939, New Orleans, Louisiana Wife Marina; tow infant children Brothers John Oswald, address unknown, last know at Fort Worth, Texas, five or six years ago, age about 30, works with pharmaceuticals, but not graduate pharmacist;
Robert Oswald, 7313 Davenport, Fort Worth, Texas (wifeVADA, two small children), works for brick company (believed Acme)
Dress at Time of interview Black trousers, brown "salt and pepper," long sleeved shirt, bareheaded Contents of Wallet Had card in possession, Lee Harvey Oswald, Social Security No. 433-54-3937 Photo of Selective Service System card with photo of Oswald, "Notice of Classification" and name "Alek James Hidell, SSS 42-224-39-5321." Card shows classification IV(?). Bears date February 5, 1962, reverse side shows card from Texas Local Board, 400 West Vickery, Fort Worth, Texas. Card shows erasures and retyping of the information indicated and bears longhand signature "Alek J. Hidell." Signature of member or clerk of local board (indistinct, may be Good.)
Local Board 114, Fort Worth, lee Harvey Oswald, SSN 41-114-39-532, address 3124West 5th Street, Fort Worth, Texas, registered September 14, 1959. Date of birth October 18, 1939, New Orleans, 5'11", 150 lbs., blue eyes, brown hair. Mrs. Zola Z. Burger, Clerk.
Snapshot photo of woman, apparently wife.
Snapshot photo of infant.
White card with longhand, "Embassy USSR, 1609 Decatur, NW, Washington, D. C., Consular REZHUYEHKO" (indistinct)
Department of Defense Identification No N$,271,617, issued to Lee H. Oswald, expiration date December 7, 1962, Private First Class, E-2, MCR/INAC, Service No. 1653230. Card shows date of birth October 18, 1939, 5'11", 145lbs., brown hair, gray eyes.
Dallas Public Library card, undated, expiration date December 7, 1965, issued to Lee Harvey Oswald, 602 Elsbeth, Dallas, school or businessJaggersChilesStovall, followed by the name Jack L. Bowen, 1916 Stevens Forest Drive, WH 8-8997.
U. S. Forces, Japan Identification card issued to Lee H. Oswald, Private, Service No. 1653230, organization MACS-1 MAG-11 1st MAW. Identification card #00646, issued, May 8, 1958. Date of birth October 18, 1939, American.
Card, "Compliments GA-JO Enkanko Hotel, telephone number ED 500755 of reverse side.
Certificate of Service in Armed Forces of United States, issued to Lee Harvey Oswald, 1653230, reflected honorably served on active duty, U. S. Marine Corps, October 24, 1956September 11, 1959. Card of "Fair Play for Cuba Committee, 799 Broadway, New York 3, New York, telephone Oregon 4-8295," issued to Lee H. Oswald, May 28, 1963, filed by V.T. Lee as Executive Secretary.
Card of "Fair Play for Cuba, New Orleans Chapter," issued to L.H. Oswald, June 15, 1963, files by A.T.(?) Hidell, Chapter President (note name Hidell on fictitious Selective Service card) Selective Service notice of classification card to Lee Harvey Oswald, Selective Service No. 41-114-39-532, IV-A, dated February 2, 1960, from Local Board 114, Fort Worth, Texas.
$13.00 in currency, consisting of one $5.00 bill and eight $1.00 bills
Residence 2515 West 5th Street, Irving, Texas, phone BL 3-1628 (residence of wife for past five weeks)
Room in rooming house, 1026 North Beckley for about five weeks. Phone number unknown.
Previous Residences 4706 magazine Street, New Orleans, Louisiana, no phone (about three months)
602 Elsbeth, no phone (about seven months), Dallas, Texas
Unrecalled street in Fort Worth, Texas, (a few months), with brother in Fort Worth, Texas, for a few months.
Previously in Soviet Union, until July, 1962.
Occupations Photography Jaggers Chiles Stovall, 522 Browder, Dallas, Texas
Factory worker, William B. Riley Company (Coffee and Coffee Canisters), 644 Magazine Street, New Orleans, Louisiana
Unemployed for several months
Employed with Texas State Book Depository, Dallas, Texas, September, 1963, stock work, filing orders, etc.
on 11/22/63 at Dallas, Texas. File#89-43 by Special Agent manning C. Clements / mac. Date dictated 11/23/63.
Federal Bureau of Investigation - Report #3Date: 11/25/63
Lee Harvey Oswald was interviewed at the homicide and Robbery Bureau, Dallas Police Department, by Captain J. W. Fritz in the presence of Special Agent James W. Bookhout, Federal Bureau of Investigation. Oswald was advised of the identity and official capacity of said agent and the fact that he did not have to make any statement, that any statement he did make could be used in a court of law against him, and that any statement made must be free and voluntary and that he had the right to consult with an attorney.
Oswald stated that he did not own any rifle. He advised that he saw a rifle day before yesterday at the Texas School Book Depository which Mr. truly and two other gentlemen had in their possession and were looking at.
Oswald stated that on November 22, 1963, at the time of the search of the Texas School Book Depository building by Dallas police officers, he was on the second floor of said building, having just purchased a Coca-cola form the soft-drink machine, at which time a police officer came into the room with pistol drawn and asked him if he worked there. Mr. Truly was present and verified that he was an employee and the police officer thereafter left the room and continued through the building. Oswald stated that he took this Coke down to the first floor and stood around and had lunch in the employees lunch room. He thereafter went outside and stood around for five or ten minutes with foreman Bill Shelly, and thereafter went home. He stated that he left work because, in his opinion, based upon remarks of Bill Shelly, he did not believe that there was going to be anymore work that day due to the confusion in the building.. He stated after arriving at his residence, then he went to a movie where he was subsequently apprehended by the Dallas Police Department.
Oswald stated that his hours of work at the Texas School Book Depository are from 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., but that he is not required to punch a time clock. his usual place of work in the building is on the first floor; however, he frequently is required to go to the fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh floors of the building in order to get books and this was true on November 22, 1963, and he had been on all of the floors in the performance of his duties on November 22, 1963.
on 11/22/63 at Dallas, Texas. File#DL89-43 by Special Agent James W. Bookhout /wvm. Date dictated 11/24/63.
Federal Bureau of Investigation - Report #4Date 11/25/63
Lee Harvey Oswald was interviewed by Captain J.W. Fritz, Homicide and Robbery Bureau, Dallas Police Department. Oswald was advised of the identity of SA James W. Bookhout, and his ca! $!pacity as a Special Agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He was informed of his right to an attorney, that any statement he might make could be used against him in a court of law, and that any statement which he might make must be free and voluntary. He furnished the following information in the presence of T.J. Nully, U.S. Secret Service; David B. Grant, Secret Service; Robert I. Nash, United States Marshal; and Detectives Billy L. Senkel and Fay M. Turner of the Homicide and Robbery Bureau, Dallas Police Department.
Following his departure from the Texas School Book Depository, he boarded a city bus to his residence and obtained transfer upon departure from the bus. He stated that officers at the time of arresting him took his transfer out of his pocket.
Oswald advised that he had only one post office box which was at Dallas, Texas. He denied bringing any package to work on the morning of November 22, 1963. He stated that he was not in the process of fixing up his apartment and he denied telling Wesley Frazier that the purpose of his visit to Irving, Texas, on the night of November 21, 1963, was to obtain some curtain rods from Mrs. Ruth Paine.
Oswald stated that it was not exactly true as recently stated by him that he rode a bus from his place of employment to his residence on November 22, 1963. He stated actually he did board a city bus at his place of employment but that after a block or two, due to traffic congestion, he left the bus and rode a city cab to his apartment on North Beckley. He recalled that at the time of getting into the cab, some lady looked in and asked the driver to call her a cab. He stated that he might have made some remarks to the cab driver merely for the purpose of passing the time of day at that time. He recalled that his fare was approximately 85 cents. He stated that after arriving at his apartment, he changed his shirt and trousers because they were dirty. He described his dirty clothes as being a reddish colored long sleeved, shirt with a button-down collar and gray colored trousers. He indicated that he had placed these articles of clothing in the lower drawer of his dresser.
Oswald stated that on November 22, 1963, he had eaten lunch in the lunch room at the Texas School Book Depository, alone, but recalled possibly two Negro employees walking through the room during this period. He stated possibly one of these employees was called "Junior" and the other was short individual whose name he could not recall but whom he would be able to recognize. He stated that his lunch had consisted of a cheese sandwich and an apple which he had obtained at Mrs. Ruth Paine's residence in Irving, Texas, upon his leaving for work that morning.
Oswald stated that Mrs. Pain receives no pay for keeping his wife and children at her residence. He stated that their presence in Mrs. Paine's residence is a good arrangement for her because of her language interest, indicating that his wife speaks Russian and Mrs. Paine is interested in the Russian language.
Oswald denied having kept a rifle in Mrs. Paine's garage at Irving, Texas, but stated that he did have certain articles stored in her garage, consisting of two sea bags, a couple of suitcases, and several boxes of kitchen articles and also kept his clothes at Mrs. Paine's residence. He stated that all of the articles in Mrs. Paine's garage had been brought there about September, 1963, from New Orleans, Louisiana.
Oswald stated that he has had no visitors at his apartment on North Beckley.
Oswald stated that he has no receipts for purchase of any guns and has never ordered any guns and does not own a rifle nor has he ever possessed a rifle.
Oswald denied that he is a member of the Communist Party.
Oswald stated that he purchased a pistol, which was taken off him by police officers November 22, 1963, about six month ago. He declined to state where he had purchased it.
Oswald stated that he arrived about July, 1962, from USSR and was interviewed by the FBI at Fort Worth, Texas. He stated that he felt they overstepped their bounds and had used various tactics in interviewing him.
He further complained that on interview of Ruth Paine by the FBI regarding his wife, that he felt that his wife was intimidated.
Oswald stated that he desired to contact Attorney Abt, New York City, indicating that Abt was the attorney who had defended the Smith Act case about 1949-1950. He stated that he does not know Attorney Abt personally. Captain Fritz advised Oswald that arrangement would be immediately made whereby he could call Attorney Abt.
Oswald stated that prior to coming to Dallas from New Orleans he had resided at a furnished apartment at 4706 Magazine Street, New Orleans, Louisiana. While in New Orleans, he had been employed by William B. Riley Company, 640 Magazine Street, New Orleans.
Oswald stated that he has nothing against President John F. Kennedy personally; however in view of the present charges against him, he did not desire to discuss this phase further.
Oswald stated that he would not agree to take a polygraph examination without the advice of counsel. He added that in the past he has refused to take polygraph examinations.
Oswald stated that he is a member of the American Civil Liberties Union and added that Mrs. Ruth Paine was also a member of same.
With regard to Selective Service card in the possession of Oswald bearing photograph of Oswald and the name of Alek James Hidell, Oswald admitted that he carried this Selective Service card but declined to state that he wrote the signature of Alek J. Hidell appearing on same. He further declined to state the purpose of carrying same or any use he has made of same.
Oswald stated that an address book in his possession contains the names of various Russian immigrants residing in Dallas, Texas, whom he has visited with.
Oswald denied shooting President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, and added that he did not know that Governor John Connally had been shot and denied any knowledge concerning this incident.
on 11/23/63 at Dallas, Texas. File#DL89-43 by Special Agent James W. Bookhout /wvb. Date dictated 11/24/63.
Federal Bureau of Investigation - Report #5Date 11/25/63
Lee Harvey Oswald was interviewed at the Homicide and Robbery Bureau, Dallas Police Department, at 6:35 p.m., by Captain J. W. Fritz in the presence of Special Agent James W. Bookhout, Federal Bureau of Investigation. Oswald was advised of the identity and official capacity of said Agent and the fact that he did not have to make any statement, that any statement he did make could be used in a court of law against him, and that any statement made must be free and voluntary and that he had the right to consult with an attorney.
Captain J. W. Fritz exhibited to Lee Harvey Oswald a photograph which had been obtained by the Dallas Police Department in a search by search warrant, of the garage at the residence of Mrs. Ruth Paine, located at Irving, Texas, which photograph reflects Oswald holding a rifle and wearing a holstered pistol. Oswald was asked if this was a photograph of himself. Oswald stated that he would not discuss the photograph without advice of an attorney. He stated that the head of the individual in the photograph could be his but that it was entirely possible that the Police Department had superimposed this part of the photograph over the body of someone else. He pointed out that numerous news media had snapped his photograph during the day and the possibility existed that the police had doctored up this photograph.
Oswald denied that he had purchased any rifle form Kleins Store in Chicago, Illinois.
Oswald complained of a lineup wherein he had not been granted a request to put on a jacket similar to those worn by some of the other individuals in the lineup.
on 11/23/63 at Dallas, Texas. File#DL89-43 by Special Agent James W. Bookhout /wvm. Date dictated 11/24/63.
Reports of Inspector Thomas J. Kelley, U.S. Secret Service
First Interview of lee Harvey OswaldAt about 10:30 a.m., November 23, 1963, I attended my first interview with Oswald. Present during the interview at the Homicide Division, Dallas Police Department, were Special Agent Jim Bookhout, FBI; Captain Will Fritz, homicide Division, Dallas Police Department; U.S. Marshal Robert Nash; SA David Grant and SAIC Sorrels; and Officers Boyd and Hall of Captain Fritz's detail. The interview was not recorded. Mr. Sorrels and my presence was as observers, since Oswald was being held for murder and his custody and interrogation at that time was the responsibility of the Dallas Police Department.
In response to questions put by Captain Fritz, Oswald said that immediately after having left the building where he worked, he went by bus to the theater where he was arrested; that when he go on the bus he secured a transfer and thereafter transferred to other buses to get to his destination. He denied that he brought a package to work on tat day and he denied that he had ever had any conversation about curtain rods with the boy named Wesley who drove him to his employment. Fritz asked him if he had ridden a taxi that day and Oswald then changed his story and said that when he got on the bus he found it was going too slow and after two blocks he got off the bus and took a cab to his home; that he passed the time with the cab driver and that the cab driver had told him that the President was shot. He paid a cab fare of $0.85.
In response to questions, he stated that this was the first time he had ever ridden in a cab since a bus was always available. He said he went home, changed his trousers and shirt, put his shirt in a drawer. this was a red shirt, and he put it with his dirty clothes. He described the shirt as having a button down collar and of reddish color. The trousers were grey colored.
He said he ate his lunch with the colored boys who worked with him. He described one of them as "Junior," a colored boy, and the other was little short negro boy. He said his lunch consisted of cheese, fruit, and apples, and was the only package he had with him when he went to work.
He stated that Mrs. Paine practices Russian by having his wife live with her. He denied that he had ever owned a rifle. He said he does not know Mr. Paine very well but that Paine usually comes by the place where his wife was living with Mrs. Paine on Friday or Wednesday. He stated that Mr. Paine has a car and Mrs. Paine has had two cars. He said in response to questions by Captain Fritz that two sea bags with some other packages containing his personal belongings and that he had brought those back form New Orleans with him sometime in September. He stated that his brother, Robert, lived at 7313 Davenport Street, Fort Worth, and that the Paines were his closest friends in town. He denied that he had ever joined the Communist party; that he never had a Communist card. He did belong to the American Civil Liberties Union and had paid $5 a year dues. He stated that he had bought the pistol that was found in his possession when he was arrested about seven month ago. He refused to answer any questions concerning the pistol or a gun until he talked to a lawyer.
Oswald stated that at various other times he had been thoroughly interrogated by the FBI; that they had used all the usual interrogation practices and all their standard operating procedure; that he was very familiar with interrogation, and he had no intention of answering any questions concerning any shooting; that he knew he did not have to answer them and that he would not answer any questions until he had been given counsel. He stated that the FBI had used their hard and soft approach to him, they used the buddy system; that he was familiar with all types of questioning and had no intention of making any statement. He said that in the past three weeks when the FBI had talked to his wife, they were abusive and impolite; that they had frightened his wife and he considered their activities obnoxious. He stated that he wanted to contact a Mr. Abt, a New York lawyer whom he did not know but who had defended the Smith Act "victims" in 1949 or 1950 in connection with a conspiracy against the Government; that Abt would understand what this case was all about and that he would give him an excellent defense. He stated in returning a question about his former addresses that he lived at 4907 magazine Street in New Orleans at one time and worked for the William Riley Company; that he was arrested in New Orleans for disturbing the peace and paid a $10 find while he was demonstrating for the Fair Play for Cuba Committee; that he had a fight with some anti-Castro refugees and that they were released while he was fined.
Upon questioning by Captain Fritz, he said, "I have no views on the President." "My wife and I like the President's family. They are interesting people. I have my own views on the President's national policy. I have a right to express my views but because of the charges I do not think I should comment further." Oswald said "I am not a malcontent; nothing irritated me about the President." He said that during 1962 he was interviewed by the FBI and that he at that time refused to take a polygraph and that he did not intent to take a polygraph test for the Dallas police. At this time Captain Fritz showed a Selective Service Card that was taken out of his wallet which bore the name of Alex Hidell. Oswald refused to discuss this after being asked for an explanation of it. both by Fritz and by James Bookhout, the FBI Agent. I asked him if he viewed the parade and he said he had not. I then asked him if he had shot the President and he said he had not. I asked him if he has shot governor Connally and he said he had not. He did not intend to answer further questions without counsel and that if he could not get Abt, then he would hope that the Civil Liberties Union would give him an attorney to represent him. At that point Captain Fritz terminated the interview at about 11:30 a.m., 11-23-63.
Thomas J. Kelley, Inspector
Interviews with Lee Harvey Oswald on November 23, 1963At about 12:35 p.m., November 23, 1963, Lee Oswald was interviewed in the office of Captain Will Fritz of the Homicide Division, Dallas Police Department. Among those present at this interview were Inspector Kelley, Captain Fritz, Detectives Senkel and Tiernon of the Homicide Division and SA James Bookhout, FBI. Captain Fritz conducted the interview which was concerned mostly with Oswald's places of residence in Dallas and was an attempt to ascertain where the bulk of Oswald's belongings were located in Dallas. As a result of the interview, Oswald furnished information to Captain Fritz that most of his personal effects, including a sea bag, were in the garage at the address of Mrs. Paine, 2515 West 5th Street, Irving, Texas.
The interview was concluded about 1:10 p.m. and immediately thereafter members of the Homicide Division secured a search warrant and recovered Oswald's effects from the home of Mrs. Paine. Found among the effects were two different poses in snapshot type photographs taken of Oswald holding a rifle in one hand and holding up a copy of a paper called the Millitant and "The Worker" in the other hand. Oswald was wearing a revolver in a holster on his right side. This photograph was enlarged by the Dallas Police Laboratories and was used as a basis of additional questioning of Oswald at approximately 6:00 p.m. that same evening.
On November 23, 1963, at 6:00 p.m., in the office of Captain Fritz, Homicide Division, Dallas Police Department, I was present at an interview with Oswald. Also present were Captain Fritz, FBI Agent Jim Bookhout, and four officers from the Homicide Division. This interview was conducted with Oswald for the purpose of displaying to him the blow-ups of photographs showing him holding a rifle and a pistol which were seized as a result of the search warrant for the garage of Mrs. Paine at 2515 West 5th Street, Irving, Texas. When the photographs were presented to Oswald, he sneered at them saying that they were fake photographs; that he had been photographed a number of times the day before by the police and apparently after they photographed him they superimposed on the photographs a rifle and put a gun in his pocket. he got into a long argument with Captain Fritz about his knowledge of photography and asked Fritz a number of times whether the smaller photograph was made from the larger or whether the larger photograph was made from the smaller. He said at the proper time he would show that the photographs were fakes. Fritz told him that the smaller photograph was taken from his effects at the garage. Oswald became arrogant and refused to answer any further questions concerning the photographs and would not identify the photographs as being a photograph of himself. Captain Fritz displayed great patience and tenacity in attempting to secure from Oswald the location of what apparently is the backyard of tan address at which Oswald formerly lived, but it was apparent that Oswald, though slightly shaken by the evidence, had no intention of furnishing any information.
The interview was terminated at about 7:15 p.m.
Thomas J. Kelley, Inspector
U.S. Secret Service- Preliminary Special Dallas Report #3November 29, 1963
Chief Inspector Kelley
Covers third interview with Oswald and circumstances immediately following his murder.
This interview started at approximately 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, November 24, 1963. The interview was conducted in the office of Captain WIll Fritz of the Homicide Bureau, Dallas Police. Present at the interview in addition to Oswald were Captain Fritz, Postal Inspector Holmes, SAIC Sorrels, Inspector Kelley and four members of the Homicide Squad. The interview had just begun when I arrived and Captain Fritz was again requesting Oswald to identify the place where the photograph of him holding the gun was taken. Captain Fritz indicated that it would save the Police a great deal of time if he would tell them where the place was located. Oswald refused to discuss the matter. Captain Fritz asked, "Are you a Communist?" Oswald answered, "No, I am a Marxist but I am not a Marxist Leninist." Captain Fritz asked him what the difference was and Oswald said it would take too long to explain it to him. Oswald said that he became interested in the Fair Play for Cuba Committee while he was in New Orleans; that he wrote to the Committee's Headquarters in New York and received some Committee literature and a letter signed by Alex Hidell. He stated that he began to distribute that literature in New Orleans and it was at that time that he got into an altercation with a group and he was arrested. He said his opinions concerning Fair Play for Cuba are well known; that he appeared on Bill Stukey's television program in New Orleans on a number of occasions and was interviewed by the local press often.
He denies knowing or ever seeing Hidell in New Orleans, said he believed in all of the tents of the Fair Play for Cuba and the things which the Fair Play for Cuba Committee stood for, which was free intercourse with Cuba and freedom for tourists of both countries to travel within each other's borders.
Among other things, Oswald said that Cuba should have full diplomatic relationship with the United States. I asked him if he thought that the President's assassination would have any effect on the Fair Play for Cuba Committee. He said there would be no change in the attitude of the American people toward Cuba with President Johnson becoming President because they both belonged to the same political party and the one would follow pretty generally the policies of the other . He stated that he is an avid reader of Russian literature whether it is communistic or not; that he subscribes to "The Militant," which, he says, is the weekly of the Socialist party in the United States (it is a copy of "the Militant" that Oswald is shown holding in the photograph taken form this effects at Irving Street). At that time he asked me whether I was an FBI Agent and I said that I was not that I was a member of the Secret Service. He said when he was standing in front of the Textbook Building and about to leave it, a young crew-cut man rushed up to him and said he was from the Secret Service, showed a book of identification, and asked him where the phone was. Oswald said he pointed toward the pay phone in the building and that he saw the man actually go to the phone before he left.
I asked Oswald whether as a Marxist he believed that religion was an opiate of the people and he said very definitely so that all organized religions tend to become monopolistic and are the causes of a great deal of class warfare. I asked him whether he considered the Catholic Church to be an enemy of the Communist philosophy and he said well, there was no Catholicism in Russia; that the closest to it is the Orthodox Churches but he said he would not further attempt to have him say something which could be construed as being anti-religious or anti-Catholic.
Capt. Fritz displayed an Enco street map of Dallas which had been found among Oswald's effects at the rooming house. Oswald was asked whether the map was his and wheter he had put some marks on it. He said it was his and remarked "My God don't tell me there's a mark near where this thing happened." The mark was pointed out to him and he said "What about the other marks on the map?I put a number of marks on it. I was looking for work and marked the places where I went for jobs or where I heard there were jobs."
Since it was obvious to Captain Fritz that Oswald was not going to be cooperative, he terminated the interview at that time.
I approached Oswald then and, out of the hearing of the others except perhaps one Captain Fritz's men, said that as a Secret Service agent, we are anxious to talk with him as soon as he had secured counsel; that we were responsible for the safety of the President; that the Dallas Police had charged him with the assassination of the President but that he had denied it; we were therefore very anxious to talk to him to make certain that the correct story was developing as it related to the assassination. He said that he would be glad to discuss this proposition with his attorney and that after he talked to one, we could either discuss it with him or discuss it with his attorney, if the attorney thought it was the wise thing to do, but that at the present time he had nothing more to say to me. Oswald was then handed some different clothing to put on. The clothing included a sweater. Captain Fritz made a number of telephone calls to ascertain whether the preparations he had placed into effect for transferring the prisoner to the County Jail were ready and upon being so advised, Captain Fritz and member of the Detective Bureau escorted Oswald from the homicide office on the third floor to the basement where Oswald was shot by Jack Ruby.
On the completion of the interview, SAIC Sorrels and I proceeded to the office of the Chief of Police on the third floor and were discussing the interview when we heard that Oswald had been shot. We both ran down the steps to the basement. I arrived in the ante-room where they had dragged Oswald. SAIC Sorrels located and interviewed Ruby. Someone was bending over Oswald with a stethoscope and he appeared to be unconscious in very serious condition at that time. I asked Captain Fritz what had happened and he said Oswald had been shot by one Jack "Rubio" whom the police know as a tavern operator. Shortly thereafter a stretcher arrived and I accompanied the stretcher to the ambulance which had been hastily backed into the garage. I observed that during the transfer that Oswald was unconscious; when the ambulance drove away from the building, I attempted to boar a cruiser that apparently was going to follow the ambulance but I was unable to get into the car before it pulled away. Special Agents Warner and Patterson had heard of the shooting on their radio, proceeded to Parkland Hospital where Oswald was being taken and arrived very shortly after Oswald had arrived at the emergency entrance and was being taken into the emergency treatment room. One or the other of these agents was in close proximity to Oswald while he was being treated. When I arrived at the hospital, I rode up on the elevator with Dr. Shaw who had looked at Oswald as he had come in and was being recalled to the operating room where Oswald had been taken. While Oswald was in the operating room, no one other than medical personnel was present but a Dallas policeman who had accompanied Oswald in the ambulance was standing in the doorway of the operating room in operating room scrub clothes. No other investigating personnel were in the vicinity, in the immediate vicinity of the detective was Special Agent Warner. Oswald made no statements from the time he was shot until the time of his death. He was unconscious during the ambulance run to the hospital which I verified through Detective Daugherty, who accompanied him. He did not regain consciousness at any time during the treatment until he died. At the time of his death, myself, Detective Daugherty and Colonel Garrison of the Texas State Police were on the firth floor of the hospital arranging a security room in which to take Oswald, in the event he survived the operating room treatment. It was never necessary to use this room and upon learning of his death, I proceeded to the morgue to arrange for his family to view the body. When the family head of the death they were in the process of being interviewed by Special Agents Kunkel and Howard, and requested to be brought to the hospital. Oswald's brother, Robert, who had also come to the hospital, was being interviewed by Special Agent Howlett. Before the post mortem was performed, Oswald's family, with the exception of Robert, viewed the body. The family was accompanied during the viewing by the hospital chaplain.
After making arrangements through the chaplain and another clergyman for the burial of the body, the family was returned to a secluded spot under the protection of Special Agents Kunkel and Howard, and the Irving Texas police. Precaution was taken to insure their safety in view of the excitement caused by the killing of Oswald. Special Agents Howard and Kunkel did an excellent job in handling the security of this family detail and insuring their safety. Thereafter, I was called by SAIC Bouck who advised me that the President and the Attorney General were concerned about the safety of this family and instructed that all precautions should be taken to insure that no harm befell them. SAIC Bouck was advised that the family was presently under our protection; we would continue providing protection until further notice.
Later that day, I was contacted by SA Robertson of the FBI who asked wheter we had someone with the family. He was assured that we had. He requested to be advised where the family had been taken. Since their ultimate destination as unknown to me at the time, I assured him that when I learned of their whereabouts I would relay it to him. He said that they received instructions from the Attorney General and President Johnson that precaution should be taken to insure the family safety.
At 11 p.m. Sunday, November 24th, I was advised of the location of the family and immediately notified Robertson and inquired whether they now wished to take over their protection. He said no they had no such instructions, they merely wished to be assured that someone was looking out for their safety. I assured them that adequate protection was being provided and that they were available for interviews by the FBI. He stated that they did not wish to interview the family at this time; that they merely wanted to make sure they were in safe hands.
Report of U.S. Postal Inspector H.D. HolmesDallas, Texas
December 17, 1963
Memorandum of Interview
Informal memorandum furnished by Postal Inspector H. D. Holmes, Dallas, Texas, of an interview he took part in with Lee H. Oswald on Sunday morning, November 24, 1963, between the approximate hours of 9:25 a.m. to 11:10 a.m. Those present, in addition to Inspector Holmes, were Captain Will Fritz, Dallas Police, Forrest V. Sorrels, Local Agent in Charge, Secret Service, and Thomas J. Kelly, Inspector, Secret Service. In addition, there were three Detectives who were apparently assigned to guarding Oswald as none of them took part in the interrogation.
Oswald at no time appeared confused or in doubt as to whether or not he should answer a question. On the contrary, he was quite alert and showed no hesitancy in answering those questions which he wanted to answer, and was quite skillful in parrying those questions which he did not want to answer. I got the impression that he had disciplined his mind and reflexes to a state where I personally doubted if he would ever have confessed. He dined, emphatically, having taken part in or having had any knowledge of the shooting of the policeman Tippit or of the president, stating that so far as he is concerned the reason he was in custody was because he "popped a policeman in the nose in a theater on Jefferson Avenue."
P.O. Boxes. He was questioned separately about the three boxes he had rented, and in each instance his answers were quick, direct and accurate as reflected on the box rental applications. He stated without prompting that he had rented Box 2915 at the Main Post Office for several months prior to his going to New Orleans, that this box was rented in his own name, Lee H. Oswald, and that he had taken out two keys to the box, and that when he had closed the box, he directed that his mail be forwarded to him at his street address in New Orleans.
He stated that no one received mail in this box other than himself, nor did he receive any mail under any other name than his own true name; that no one had access to the box other than himself nor did he permit anyone else to use this box. He stated it was possible that on rare occasions he may have handed one of the keys to his wife to go get his mail but certainly nobody else. He denied emphatically that he ever ordered a rifle under his name or any other name, nor permitted anyone else to order a rifle to be received in this box. Further, he denied that he had ever ordered any rifle by mail order or bought any money order for the purpose of paying for such a rifle. In fact, he claimed he owned no rifle and had not practiced or shot a rifle other than possible a .22, small bore rifle, since his days with the Marine Corp. He stated that "How could I afford to order a rifle on my salary of $1.25 an hour when I can't hardly feed myself on what I make."
When asked if had had a post office box in New Orleans he stated that he did, for the reason that he subscribed to several publications, at least two of which were published in Russia, one being the hometown paper published in Minsk where he met and married his wife, and that he moved around so much that it was more practical to simply rent post office boxes and have his mail forwarded from one box to the next rather than going through the process of furnishing changes of address to the publishers. When asked if he permitted anyone other than himself to get mail in box 30061 at New Orleans, he stated that he did not. It will be recalled that on this box rent application he showed that both Marina Oswald and A. J. Hidell were listed under the caption "Persons entitled to receive mail through box". After denying that anyone else was permitted to get mail in the box, he was reminded that this application showed the name Marine Oswald as being entitled to receive mail in the box and he replied "well so what, she is my wife and I see nothing wrong with that, and it could very well be that I did place her name on the application". He was then reminded that the application also showed the name A. J. Hidell was also entitled to receive mail in the box, at which he simply shrugged his shoulders and stated "I don't recall anything about that".
He stated that when he came back to Dallas and after he had gone to work for the Texas School Book Depository, he had rented a box at the nearby Terminal Annex postal station, this being Box 6225, and that this box was also rented in his name, Lee H. Oswald. He stated he had only checked out one key for this box, which information was found to be accurate, and this key was found on his person at the time of his arrest. He professed not to recall the fact that he showed on the box rental application under name of corporation "Fair Play For Cuba Committee" and "American Civil Liberties Union". When he simply shrugged and said that he didn't recall showing them. When asked if he paid the box rental fee or did the organizations pay it, he stated that he paid it. In answer to another questions, he also stated that no one had any knowledge that he had this box other than himself.
Organizations-Membership in. With respect to American Civil Liberties Union he as a little evasive stating something to the effect that he had made some effort to join but I was never made clear whether he had o had not been accepted. He stated that he first became interested in the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, after he went to New Orleans, that it started out as being a group of individuals who, like him, thought and had like political opinions. They did decide to organize, and did organize after a fashion, but denied that they had any president or any elected officers. He stated that he, himself, could probably be considered the secretary since he wrote some letters on their behalf and attempted to collect dues which, if I recall, were $1.00 per month. He also stated that there was a "Fair Play for Cuba Committee" in New York which was better organized. He denied that he was set to Dallas for the purpose of organizing such a cell in Dallas.
When asked if he was communist, he stated emphatically not, that he was a Marxist. Someone asked the difference and he stated that communist is a Lenin-Marxist, that he himself was a pure Marxist, and when someone asked the difference, he stated that it was a long story and if they didn't know, it would take too long to tell them. He stated further that he had read about everything written by or about Karl Marx.
When asked as to his religion, he stated that Karl Marx was his religion, and in response to further questioning he stated that some people may find the Bible interesting reading, but it was not for him, stating further that even as a philosophy there was not much to the Bible.
Marine Corp. Service. Captain Fritz made some mention of his dishonorable discharge form the marine Corp at which point he bristled noticeably, stating that he had been discharged with an "honorable" discharge and that this was later changed due to his having attempted to denounce his American Citizenship while he was living in Russia. He stated further that since his change of citizenship did not come to pass, he had written a letter to Mr. Connally, then Secretary of the Navy, and after considerable delay, received a very respectful reply wherein Connally stated he had resigned to run for Governor of Texas, and that his letter was being referred to the new Secretary, a Mr. Cork, Kurth, or something like that. He showed no particular animosity toward Mr. Connally while discussing this feature.
Map. Captain Fritz advised him that among his effects in his room, there was found a map of the City of Dallas that had some marks on it and asked him to explain this map. Oswald said he presumed he had reference to an old City map which he had on which he had made some X's denoting location of firms that had advertised job vacancies. He stated that he had no transportation and either walked or rode a bus and that as he was constantly looking for work, in fact had registered for employment at the Texas Employment Bureau, and that as he would receive leads either from newspaper ads or from the Bureau or from neighbors, he would chart these places on the map to save time in his traveling. He said to the best of his recollection, most of them were out Industrial, presumably meaning Industrial Blvd. When asked as to why the X at the location of the Texas School Book Depository at Elm and Houston, he stated that "Well, I interviewed there for a job, in fact, got the job, therefore the X".
When asked as to how he learned about this vacancy, he stated that "Oh, it was general information in the neighborhood, I don't recall just who told me about it, but I learned it from people in Mrs. Paines' neighborhood" and that all the people around there were looking out for possible employment for him.
Activity Just Prior To and Immediately Following Assassination Attempt. To an inquiry as to why he went to visit his wife on Thursday night, November 21, whereas he normally visited her over the weekend, he stated that on this particular weekend he had learned that his wife and Mrs. Paine were giving a party for the children and that they were having a "houseful" of neighborhood children and that he just didn't want to be around at such a time. therefore, he made his weekly visit on Thursday night.
When asked if he didn't bring a sack with him the next morning to work, he stated that he did, and when asked as to the contents of the sack, he stated that it contained his lunch. Then, when asked as to the size or shape of the sack, he said "Oh, I don't recall, it may have a small sack or a large sack, you don't always find one that just fits your sandwiches." When asked as to where he place d the sack when he got in the car, he said in his lap, or possibly the front seat beside him, as he always did because he didn't want to get it crushed. He denied that he placed any package in the aback seat.
When advised that the driver stated that he had brought out a long parcel and placed it in the back seat, he stated "Oh, he must be mistaken or else thinking about some other time when he picked me up."When asked as to his whereabouts at the time of the shooting, he stated that when lunch time came, and he didn't say which floor he was on, he said one of the Negro employees invited him to eat lunch with him and he stated "You go on down and send the elevator back up and I will join you in a few minutes." Before he could finish whatever he was doing, he stated, the commotion surrounding the assassination took place and when he went down stairs, a policeman questioned him as to his identification and his boss stated that "he is one of our employees" whereupon the policeman had him step aside momentarily. Following this, he simply walked out the front door of the building. I don't recall that anyone asked why he left or where or how he went. I just presumed that this had been covered in an earlier questioning.
A.J. Hidell Identification Card. Captain Fritz asked him if he know anyone by the name of A.J. Hidell and he denied that he did. When asked if he had ever used this name as an alias, he also made a denial. in fact, he stated that he had never used the name, didn't know anyone by this name, and never had heard of the name before. Captain Fritz then asked him about the I.D. card he had in his pocket bearing such a name and he flared up and stated "I've told you all I'm going to about that card. you took notes, just read them for yourself, if you want to refresh your memory." He told captain Fritz that "You have the card. Now you know as much about it as I do."
About 11:00 a.m. or a few minutes thereafter, someone handed through the door several hangers on which there were some trousers, shirts, and a couple of sweaters. When asked if he wanted to change any of his clothes before being transferred to the Country Jail, he said "Just give me one of these sweaters." He didn't like the one they handed him and insisted on putting on a black slip-over sweater that had some jagged holes in it near the front of the right shoulder. One cuff was released while he slipped this over the head, following which he was again cuffed. During this change of clothing, Chief of Police Curry came into the room and discussed something in an inaudible undertone with Captain Fritz, apparently for the purpose of not letting Oswald hear what was being said. I have not idea what this conversation was, but just presume they were discussing the transfer of the prisoner. I did not go downstairs to witness the further transfer of the prisoner.
Dallas 22, Texas