Sunday, September 26, 2010

A discovery in the Archives

After the PIDB meeting I spent a few days going through docs at Archives II.  I'm trying to get back into reviewing ARRB doc batches.  I was looking at the additional FBI releases in what I call Batch 11.  Batch 11 was listed in The Federal Register, Vol. 61. No. 1 Tuesday, January 2, 1996 pages 48 - 52.  This was the first large dump of documents from an agency.  The Fed Reg notice gave the Record Identification Form Number (RIF) but you have to put that number into the JFK database to get the Agency File Number.  You have to hit the "submit search" button, and not your return key, then "display results". So, for example, 124-10159-10381, gets you one hit, then you want to hit the "full results" button.  That gets you 83-43-664.  These FBI documents are archived by the Agency File Number and not the RIF, so you need both numbers to be sure you've got the right document.  

Then when you go there in person you go to the second floor and get a form in the researcher consultation area.  This is an old school, government form with carbon copies in it. BTW, you have to talk to a staff member and tell them you're interested in JFK documents. They will call someone from the JFK access staff. The JFK people have their own people who will get your stuff. I met a man named James who was very nice and helpful. Don't put your requests in with everybody else.  You write on the top white one, one RIF number per form, which I think is time consuming and wasteful, but there's nothing you can do about it, that white one goes to someone, the pink one goes to the area where they bring out your cart, and the green one gets attached to the box the document you want is in.  The box has several green folders in it, anywhere from 1 to 9, maybe more.  In each folder can be several documents, or maybe one document is 700 plus pages and they'll divide that up into two green folders, or three.  It's somewhat similar to knowing a paragraph is in this book, and you read every page from page one until you find the paragraph you're looking for.  It's a strain on the eyes and it's very time consuming.  It may have a bunch of documents that start with 124-10159-10001 and go numerically upward to 124-10159-10380 and you think the next one is the one I'm looking for and it's not there.  The next folder may start with 124-10168-10001 and 54 documents in there's the doc you want.

FYI, You need to bring enough money to gets the docs you want, now 25 cents per page to copy, and enough money for extra things you'll find.  There's no real way to determine what this amount will be.  You will come across items too good not to get copies of while you focus on what you came for, which brings me to my discovery.

These FBI docs are in boxes.  In some boxes there are brown envelopes that hold various items.  They often do not have a RIF number on them.  So, I can only tell which box this is in. And, sorry, but I'm going to hold off on doing that for awhile.  Anyway, inside one brown envelope were 40 smaller brown envelopes.  Each envelope contained at least one B&W photo of "the crime scene," with the negative, sometimes there were two photos. These were made by the Dallas Police Department. The envelope is about the size of a postcard, same with the photo and negative.  The photos themselves are not interesting.  You've seen these.  What was interesting is what was typed, and sometimes handwritten on the envelopes.  Some of you have noticed that the cardboard boxes in the photos of the 6th floor seem to have a different arrangement in photos to photo. These envelopes are proof positive that they moved the boxes around on the 6th floor. But, wait, the story gets better. 

So, exhibit #1

     You should be able to read that, if not it says, "Picture taken from north to south 4th aisle - Small boxes were taken from this location to window where shots were taken."  Note the date, this is the day of the assassination.  Small boxes were taken from the area where whomever took this photo was standing over to the alleged sniper's area.  Why?

     Exhibit #2A

     "This picture was reconstructed with palm print on box.  The Paper that was used to carry the gun was found to the right of the box in the upper right hand corner of the picture."  This is now Monday, November 25th, 1963.  And what are they doing? Reconstructing the arrangement of the boxes.  They never put a marking on a photograph to mark exactly which box they're talking about.  I think they mean the taped box that is basicaly in the center of the photo And keep that palm print in mind. 

     Exhibit #2B

This is the second of two photos in this envelope.  If you did not see the first photo you would have no idea which box they're talking about.  The box from the first photo is in the same location.  But, notice this arrangement of three boxes that are made to look like the assassin rested the rifle on one of them.  Note, that two seem smaller than the one resting on the floor.  Were these two small boxes the ones referenced on envelope #5?

     Exhibit #3

     Now the maddening thing is that no one looking solely at the photo and the info on the envelope would know which friggin' box are they talking about that had a palm print on it?  Of course, Oswald worked there and his palm prints and fingerprints would be on many boxes.  It means nothing.  But, wait for it, something interesting is about to be revealed.  For purposes of discussion let's concentrate on the 3 boxes in the middle of the picture. Let's call the larger box on the floor, Box 1, and the smaller one on top of that Box 2, and the one on the window sill Box 3.  Box 3 is a pesky one.  Box 2 is pointing toward the corner and a side of the window brace, towards 2 o'clock.

     Exhibit #4A

     Now we are told boxes were moved, but for the benign reason of looking for fingerprints.  They could do that without actually moving any box.  Presumably, any lingering fingerprint or palm print would be on the exposed surfaces of the box.  Regardless, please notice that this time Box 2 of three boxes is lying on a flat radial plane being supported by the box underneath, Box 1. It seems like Box 2 is touching the window sill.  This is not the arrangement of boxes in what I'm calling Exhibit #3 above. There one box is on the window sill and at an angle, it's tilted, one side is pointing up and out the window, the other end is pointing downward toward the floor.  It has only part of the window sill supporting it.  You cannot see that box, Box 3.  And now Box 2 is pointing out the window toward the Triple Underpass, towards the knoll on the other side adjacent to Commerce Street. 

     Exhibit #4B

     This is the same arrangement as what I'm calling exhibit #4A.  This time  Box 2 appears higher but I think that's a result of the differing angle at which the photographer took the picture.

     Exhibit #5, the one you've been waiting for, and thank you for your patience.

     Well, there's a few interesting things here.  Notice no date is recorded.  This is a "reconstruction." Box 2 is back to pointing more towards the corner and if you went in a straight line towards the Dal-Tex building.  It's not pointing out towards the Triple Underpass.  And what was that about the palm print? "Palm print replaced on box."  We now have a moving palm print.  It sure seems to me that they are saying they took a palm print from something somewhere and placed it on a box. 

     So, they took smaller boxes from aisle 4 over to the alleged sniper window on the day of the assassination and they "replaced" a palm print onto a box at some unrecorded time.  

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