Reclaiming History? Or Re-framing Oswald?

  • Vincent Bugliosi's massive tome on the JFK assassination purports to be a "comprehensive and fair evaluation of the entire case.....The theorists may not agree with my conclusions, but in this work on the assassination I intend to set forth all of their main arguments, and the way they, not I, want them to be set forth, before I seek to demonstrate their invalidity. I will not knowingly omit or distort anything."

    We beg to differ. Judge for yourself.

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« Besmirching History: Vincent Bugliosi Assassinates Kennedy Again | Main | Review of Reclaiming History »

October 16, 2007


Brian and Beth

I have been wondering when the excellent Professor Wrone---with his unparalleled knowledge of the evidentiary base--- would publish an assessment of Mr. Bugliosi's book.

I have not been disappointed.

This is nothing less than a superb demolition of thesis advanced in book by Vincent Bugliosi.

Great job, Dr. Wrone.

 Raymond Carroll

QUESTION: Northbound Bus on Beckley St.

Greetings, Dr. Wrone. We chatted at the Duquesne conference and I enjoyed your review of Reclaiming History:

In your article you say:

" At 1:04 p.m., she stated and attested, he stood at the bus stop ... where he could catch a bus going north. [6]

The official record avoids presenting any information on the schedule and route the northbound bus took .... But after going north the bus route turned and ultimately passed the Texas Theatre.

Furbishing the logic of the bus stop wait, we recall that Oswald told Captain Will Fritz of the DPD during interrogation that after he left his room he went to the movies. [7]

Relevant Footnotes:
[6]. E. Roberts, affidavit, 7H439; Secret Service interview E. Roberts, and sketch of her sighting scene, SAIC Sorrels to Insp. Kelley, June 10, 1964, CO 2-34, 030.

[7]. R601.

I had never read or heard before that the Northbound bus actually swung south.

Is this a recent discovery? What Is the primary source of the bus route? surely not secret service reports? Finally, are these sources online?

Thank you.


Rex Bradford

This comment was written by David Wrone, author of the piece, in response to Ray Carroll's comment:

Dear Raymond Carroll:

Thank you for your thoughtful comment on my remarks. I recall our conversation in 04.

Maybe 35 years ago I spoke with Penn Jones, Jr., about this and in the 1980s several times spoke with Harold Weisberg about this incident.

Both told me of the bus being north bound on the rooming house side of the street where Roberts placed him. THE SS documents confirm this.

These are my sources as well as some desultory comments by names unrecalled of general folk in Dallas years ago.

I just assumed this was more or less common knowledge and have never given it much critical thought.

That it ultimately swung past the theatre was also told to me by P and W. These are my sources for that. I had no reason to doubt them, one was from the critic theory base, a short stature retired General Penn in his cowboy boots and hat and explicit language and fear of no man; and one a critic from the anti-theory group, Harold quiet at home in 30 year old shirts and a bum leg, submerged in documents and issues, and as honest an individual as I have ever met. Both were calm and clear when they spoke of it.

But that Oswald was standing at a north bound stop at !:04 certainly should have been considered by Bugliosi in his little adventure and not hidden, which the deed in the very reverse of sound history.

I know of no records; like so many points in the case I assume the officials did not want to open a can of worms that could destroy their set piece about Oswald. I should say at least for the north bound bus I have never seen or heard of any records.


David Wrone.

 Raymond Carroll

Thank you, Dr. Wrone. Even at this late date it should be possible to confirm the destination of all buses that stopped at that particular bus stop, and I promise to make further inquiry.

"But that Oswald was standing at a north bound stop at 1:04 certainly should have been considered by Bugliosi.."

Indeed it should, but as you and others here have noted, avoidance is one of Mr. B's favorite techniques when confronted with evidence that tends to contradict his theories.


Ed J

Oswald didn't kill Tippit? Are you for real, Mr. Wrone?

When Oswald was approached in the theater he said, "Well, it's all over now" - struck the officer in the face and pulled his loaded revolver(the revolver which turned out to be the Tippit murder weapon).

If the police approached you and you were innocent of any crime would you do any of the above? Not a chance.

And by the way, what the heck was Oswald doing in the movie theater? One of the most monumental crimes in the history of the world had just been committed at his workplace and he decided to go to the MOVIES? Is it rational to believe that?

Martin Hay

Professor Wrone

Great piece, It's most enjoyable seeing how a professional historian deals with a man like Bugliosi. I think it's clear than "Bugs" was more interested in "prosecuting" Oswald than discovering the truth. One has to wonder, if 70 to 80 percent of Americans believe a conspiracy existed in the Kennedy assassination, just who exactly is he "reclaiming history" from? The people?

Anyway, I wanted to ask a question. In your article you write:

"The actual evidence we now know shows two shots hit JFK in the head at Zapruder frames, 312/313, one from the front and one from the back, with severely fragmenting, soft metallic content whose gases and physical reactions exploded the skull at Z337-339 blowing out the rear of the head."

I seem to recall that in your Zapruder Film book you asserted that JFK was hit by only one shot - from the grassy knoll - and that the back of the head was entirely intact. I would guess this means that you have now changed your mind? I would be very interested to know what it was that altered your opinion.

Hope to hear from you,

Martin Hay

 Raymond Carroll

The Northbound bus on Beckley is discussed in this thread on the Lancer Forum.

It does appear that Penn Jones was mistaken in this instance and that any northbound bus on Beckley was headed into downtown Dallas.


Obviously all the information coming out about Oswald working for the FBI, Bugliosi seems to miss that point. I don't know if it's the truth Oswald said "well, it's all over." Do you expect me to believe the 20 officers that didn't even know who he was, descending down on the Theater as to being a truthful statement that he made ? I'd rather look for tooth fairies.

Ryan Post

If we know that Oswald's gun was the one that killed Tippit, to the exclusion of all other guns, that said gun was in his possession when he was arrested, and that several witnesses were able to place Oswald at the scene of the crime and later identify him in a line-up, what possible explanation can there be?

Richard Van Noord

First, the slugs pulled from Tippit's body do NOT match the shells in evidence. The shells found at the scene were marked by DPD Officer Poe, a typical chain of evidence procedure. None of the shells in evidence has his markings. None of the slugs has been positively identified as coming from Oswald's gun, the same gun that had a misaligned firing pin in the theatre and was unable to discharge, but supposedly discharged perfectly at the Tippit scene.
The shells at the scene were identified over police radio as .38 AUTO shells, Oswald had a .38 six shot revolver.
Benevidas, only after a death threat and over a month later, identified Oswald, but never did that day. Markham's testimony has been totally discredited. It has changed many, many times. Read her WC testimony. It wouldn't convince a die hard WC defender of Oswald's guilt. Other than that, who saw him kill Tippit? Why don't the fingerprints on the interior Police Cruiser door match Oswald's when witnesses said the assailant leaned into the car? If Oswald was in a hurry to get away, why, after three shots, did he kill Tippit execution style with no regard for getting away?
Your assumptions are just that, assumptions with no factual base. The case against Oswald in the Tippit slaying is sadly lacking.

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