Lee Harvey Oswald

Lee Harvey Oswald

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Lee Harvey Oswald shot President John F. Kennedy as he was driving through Dalls on November 23, 1963. Harvey was taken into custody and was subsequently shot by Jack Ruby.

Lee Harvey Oswald

Lee Harvey Oswald was the alleged assassin of US President, John F Kennedy. He was shot and killed by a Texas nightclub owner while being transferred to the county jail, two days after the assassination.

Before the age of 18, Oswald had lived in 22 different residences and attended 12 different schools. When Oswald was 14-years-old, a psychologist diagnosed him as having a "personality disorder". He served as a US Marine and was known as a sharp shooter, the army also taught him Russian.

In 1959 Oswald travelled to the USSR, where he attempted suicide, to avoid being deported as a suspected American spy. Oswald said he was a Marxist and went to live in Minsk, worked in a TV factory and married a Soviet woman.

He returned to the USA in 1962, with his wife and daughter and worked in a Dallas company, creating detailed maps of Cuba. Oswald reportedly told friends his move to the USSR was a CIA plot for him to gain technical secrets from the Soviets. He also claimed the move to Dallas was an assignment to identify potential safe houses of Pro-Castro fighters, and to collect names of US sympathisers.

The next year Oswald allegedly shot JFK, as his motorcade travelled through Dallas, and passed below the book depository where Oswald was employed. The why and ifs of this accusation have never been satisfactorily explained, as Oswald himself died only two days later.

Several theories suggest that Oswald did not fire the shots that killed the president instead they suggest JFK was killed by three shooters positioned on the other side of the road, and Oswald was the scapegoat, altrhough there is no consensus on whom these gunmen were operating for. The official files on the case have yet to be released to the public.


Porter was born Marina Nikolayevna Prusakova in the city of Molotovsk (now Severodvinsk), in Arkhangelsk Oblast, in the northwest of the Soviet Union. She lived there with her mother and stepfather until 1957, when she moved to Minsk to live with her uncle Ilya Prusakov, a colonel in the Soviet Ministry of Internal Affairs, and to study pharmacy. [2]

Marina met Lee Harvey Oswald (a former U.S. Marine who had defected to the Soviet Union) at a dance on March 17, 1961. [3] They married six weeks later and had a daughter, June Lee, born the following year. In June 1962, the family emigrated to the United States and settled in Dallas, Texas. At a party in February 1963, George de Mohrenschildt introduced the couple to Ruth Paine, a Quaker and Russian language student.

In January 1963, Oswald mail-ordered a Smith & Wesson .38 revolver and then, in March, a Mannlicher–Carcano rifle. [4] Later that month, as Marina told the Warren Commission, she took only one photograph of Oswald dressed in black and holding his weapons along with an issue of The Militant newspaper, which named ex-general Edwin Walker as a "fascist." Despite her sworn testimony that she took only one photo, the Warren Commission had two different poses of Lee Oswald, and they browbeat Marina into supposing that she might have accidentally taken the second pose. Since then, history has yielded four different poses, and a credible statement of one more.

These photos became known as the "backyard photos" of Lee Oswald, which some conspiracy theorists dismissed as fake. [5] The series of photographs were later found in the garage of the Paine household, with the exception of one, which had been given to George de Mohrenschildt. [6] [7] The photograph given to de Mohrenschildt was signed and dated by Lee Oswald on April 5, 1963. It also has a quote attributed to Marina in Russian, the translation of which reads "Hunter of Fascists, Ha-Ha-Ha. " [8] Marina denied writing the inscription in her 1977 testimony to the HSCA.

In April 1963, Marina and her daughter moved in with Ruth Paine (who had recently separated from her husband, Michael). Lee Oswald rented a separate room in Dallas and briefly moved to New Orleans during the summer of 1963. He returned to Dallas in early October, eventually renting a room in a boarding house in the Oak Cliff neighborhood of Dallas. Paine learned from a neighbor that employment was available at the Texas School Book Depository, and Oswald was hired and began working there on October 16, 1963, as an order filler. On October 20, Marina gave birth to a second daughter, Audrey Marina Rachel Oswald. [9] Her husband continued to live in Oak Cliff on weekdays, but stayed with her at the Paine household in Irving on weekends, an arrangement that continued until Oswald was arrested for the assassination of President Kennedy.

Marina learned of the assassination of President Kennedy from the media coverage of the event, and later, of the arrest of her husband. That afternoon, Dallas Police Department detectives arrived at the Paine household, and when asked if Lee owned a rifle, she gestured to the garage, where Oswald stored his rifle rolled up in a blanket no rifle was found. She was subsequently questioned both at the Paine household and later at Dallas Police Department headquarters, in reference to her husband's involvement in the assassination of the President and the shooting of Dallas police officer J. D. Tippit.

She was widowed at age 22, two days after the assassination when her husband was mortally wounded by Jack Ruby as Oswald was being transferred from the City Jail to the County Jail. After the assassination of Kennedy and the arrest of her husband, Marina was under Secret Service protection until she completed her testimony before the Warren Commission. She made a total of four appearances before the commission. Questions about her reliability as a witness were expressed within the commission, particularly in regard to her claims about an assassination attempt on General Edwin Walker, [10] and her allegation that Lee Oswald had intended to assassinate Richard Nixon. [11] [12] In her testimony, she stated her belief that her husband was guilty, an opinion she reiterated in testimony before the House Select Committee on Assassinations in 1978. [13]

She remained at first in Dallas, Texas. Per William Manchester in The Death of a President:

The plight of Marie Tippit [wife of J. D. Tippit, police officer shot by Oswald] and Marina Oswald appealed to American generosity mailbags of checks and cash descended upon them. Mrs. Tippit handled herself admirably. . Marina . led a more colorful career. With $70,000 in donations she engaged a series of business agents. Her husband's Russian diary brought $20,000 and a picture of him holding the Mannlicher-Carcano carbine [the gun used to shoot Kennedy] $5,000. Then she went after the gun itself, arguing that since Oswald was dead it could not be held as evidence. A Denver oil man who wanted it as a souvenir sent her a $10,000 down payment – about 49,900 percent profit on Lee's original investment – and then sued [Nicholas] Katzenbach for possession. Early in 1966 a federal court threw the case out. Late that autumn the Justice Department took title to C2766 [the gun's serial number]. Marina had spent the money long ago. With affluence she had acquired mobility. At first, she had told the press that the strongest force in her life was her love for the father of her children she only wanted to live near his grave. This quickly changed. First she enrolled at the University of Michigan. [14] Returning to Dallas, she bought an air-conditioned house, a wardrobe of Neiman-Marcus clothes, and membership in the Music Box, a private club. She became a chain-smoker and a drinker of straight vodka. In the Music Box she spun through a series of romances. Then, in 1965, in a Texas town called Fate, she became a June bride. [15]

Two years after Oswald's death, she married Kenneth Jess Porter, with whom she had a son. [16] Porter was a twice-divorced drag racer who was in jail 11 weeks after the marriage. Marina accused him of domestic violence, but a justice of the peace "reunited them". [15] In the mid-1970s, she moved to Rockwall, Texas. [ citation needed ] In 1989, she became a naturalized United States citizen. [17] She has appeared in numerous documentaries on the Kennedy assassination. She has contended subsequently that Lee Oswald was innocent of the assassination. [17] [18]

Lee Harvey Oswald - History

Age 13 Date of Admission 4/16/53

Date of Examination May 1st, 1953.

Psychiatrist Renatus Hartogs, M.D., Ph.D.

This 13 year old, well built, well nourished boy was remanded to Youth House for the first time on charge of truancy from school and of being beyond the control of his mother as far as school attendance is concerned. This is his first contact with the law.

He is tense, withdrawn and evasive boy who dislikes intensely talking about himself and his feelings. He likes the give the impression that he doesn't care about others and rather likes to keep to himself so that he is not bothered and does not have to make the effort of communicating. It was difficult to penetrate the emotional wall behind which this boy hides and he provided us with sufficient clues, permitting us to see intense anxiety, shyness, feelings of awkwardness and insecurity as the main reasons for his withdrawal tendencies and solitary habits. Lee told us: "I don't want a friend and I don't like to talk to people." He describes himself as stubborn and according to his own saying likes to say "no." Strongly resistive and negativistic features were thus noticed but psychotic mental content was denied and no indication of psychotic mental changes was arrived at.

Lee is a youngster with superior mental endowment functioning presently on the bright normal range of mental efficiency. His abstract thinking capacity and his vocabulary are well developed. No retardation in school subjects could be found in spite of his truancy from school. Lee limits his interests to reading magazines and looking at the television all day long. He dislikes to play with others or to face the learning situation in school. On the other hand he claims that he is "very poor" in all school subjects and would remedial help. The discrepancy between these claims and his actual attainment level show the low degree of selfevaluation and selfesteem at which this boy has arrived presently, mainly due to feelings general inadequacy and emotional discouragement.

Lee is the product of a broken home as his father died before he was born. Two older brothers are presently in the United States Army while the mother supports herself and Lee as an insurance broker. This occupation makes it impossible for her to provide adequate supervision of Lee and to make him attend school regularly. Lee is intensely dissatisfied with his present way of living, but feels that the only way in which he can avoid feeling too unhappy is to deny to himself competition with other children or expressing his needs and wants. Lee claims that he can get very angry at his mother and occasionally has hit her, particularly when she returns home without having bought food for supper. On such occasions she leaves it to Lee to prepare some food with what he can find in the kitchen. He feels that his mother rejects him and really has never cared very much for him. He expressed the similar feeling with regard to his brothers who live pretty much on their own without showing any brotherly interest in him. Le has a vivid fantasy life, turning around the topics of omnipotence and power, through which he tries to compensate for his present shortcomings and frustrations. He did not enjoy being together with other children and when we asked him whether he prefers the company of boys to [that] of girls he answered "I dislike everybody." His occupational goal is to join the Army. His mother was interviewed by the Youth House social worker and is described by her as a "defensive, rigid, self-involved, and intellectually alert woman who finds it exceedingly difficult to understand Lee's personality and his withdrawing behavior. She does not understand that Lee's withdrawal is a form of violent but silent protest against his neglect by her and represents his reaction to a complete absence of any real family life. She seemed to be interested enough in the welfare of this boy to be willing to seek guidance and help as regards her own difficulties and her management of Lee.["]

Neurological examination remained essentially negative with the exception of slightly impaired hearing in the left ear, resulting from a mastoidectomy in 1946. History of convulsions and accidental injuries to the skull was denied. Family history is negative for mental [?] disease.


This 13 year old well built boy has superior mental resources and functions only slightly below his capacity level in spite of chronic truancy from school which brought him into Youth House. No finding of neurological impairment or psychotic mental changes could be made. Lee has to be diagnosed as "personality pattern disturbance with schizoid features and passive - aggressive tendencies." Lee has to be seen as an emotionally, quite disturbed youngster who suffers under the impact of really existing emotional isolation and deprivation, lack of affection, absence of family life and rejection by a selfinvolved and conflicted mother. Although Lee denies that he is in need of any other form of help other than "remedial" one, we gained the definite impression that Lee can be reached through contact with an understanding and very patient psychotherapist and if he could be drawn at the same time into group psychotherapy. We arrive therefore at the recommendation that he should be placed on probation under the condition that he seek help and guidance through contact with a child guidance clinic, where he should be treated preferably by a male psychiatrist who could substitute, to a certain degree at least, for the lack of a father figure. At the same time, his mother should be urged to seek psychotherapeutic guidance through contact with a family agency. If this plan does not work out favorably and Lee cannot cooperate in this treatment plan on an out-patient's basis, removal from the home and placement could be resorted to at a later date, but it is our definite impression that treatment on probation should be tried out before the stricter and therefore possibly more harmful placement approach is applied to the case of this boy. The Big Brother Movement could be undoubtedly of tremendous value in this case and Lee should be urged to join the organized group activities of his community, such as provided by the PAL or YMCA of his neighborhood.

Returned to the United States

The Oswald family settled in Fort Worth, Texas. Oswald worked sporadically at different jobs, such as a sheet-metal worker and a photoprint trainee. He and his wife were having marital problems and Oswald was becoming very secretive. In March 1963 Oswald used a false identity to purchase an Italian 6.5-caliber Mannlicher-Carcano rifle with a telescopic sight from a mail-order company. A month later, on April 10, Oswald used this rifle to try to shoot retired General Edwin A. Walker of Dallas, Texas. Oswald missed his target and escaped unnoticed. He then moved his family to New Orleans to avoid further investigations into the shooting.

Oswald worked for the Reily Coffee Company in New Orleans and became politically active again. He started the New Orleans branch of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee (FPCC), a pro-Castro organization that argued for free trade and improved diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba. Oswald tried to establish himself publicly as pro-Cuban. In September 1963 he traveled alone to Mexico City and applied for both Cuban and Soviet citizenships. When both governments refused him, Oswald moved his family back to Dallas, Texas. Upon arriving in Texas, Oswald assumed the name O.H. Lee. An acquaintance helped him get a job at the Texas School Book Depository, earning $1.25 per hour. A few days later, on October 20, 1963, Oswald's second daughter Audrey Marina Rachel Oswald was born.

President John F. Kennedy is assassinated

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States, is assassinated while traveling through Dallas, Texas, in an open-top convertible.

First lady Jacqueline Kennedy rarely accompanied her husband on political outings, but she was beside him, along with Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, for a 10-mile motorcade through the streets of downtown Dallas on November 22. Sitting in a Lincoln convertible, the Kennedys and Connallys waved at the large and enthusiastic crowds gathered along the parade route. As their vehicle passed the Texas School Book Depository Building at 12:30 p.m., Lee Harvey Oswald allegedly fired three shots from the sixth floor, fatally wounding President Kennedy and seriously injuring Governor Connally. Kennedy was pronounced dead 30 minutes later at Dallas’ Parkland Hospital. He was 46.

Vice President Lyndon Johnson, who was three cars behind President Kennedy in the motorcade, was sworn in as the 36th president of the United States at 2:39 p.m. He took the presidential oath of office aboard Air Force One as it sat on the runway at Dallas Love Field airport. The swearing in was witnessed by some 30 people, including Jacqueline Kennedy, who was still wearing clothes stained with her husband’s blood. Seven minutes later, the presidential jet took off for Washington.

The next day, November 23, President Johnson issued his first proclamation, declaring November 25 to be a day of national mourning for the slain president. On that Monday, hundreds of thousands of people lined the streets of Washington to watch a horse-drawn caisson bear Kennedy’s body from the Capitol Rotunda to St. Matthew’s Catholic Cathedral for a requiem Mass. The solemn procession then continued on to Arlington National Cemetery, where leaders of 99 nations gathered for the state funeral. Kennedy was buried with full military honors on a slope below Arlington House, where an eternal flame was lit by his widow to forever mark the grave.

Lee Harvey Oswald, born in New Orleans in 1939, joined the U.S. Marines in 1956. He was discharged in 1959 and nine days later left for the Soviet Union, where he tried unsuccessfully to become a citizen. He worked in Minsk and married a Soviet woman and in 1962 was allowed to return to the United States with his wife and infant daughter. In early 1963, he bought a .38 revolver and rifle with a telescopic sight by mail order, and on April 10 in Dallas he allegedly shot at and missed former U.S. Army general Edwin Walker, a figure known for his extreme right-wing views. Later that month, Oswald went to New Orleans and founded a branch of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, a pro-Castro organization. In September 1963, he went to Mexico City, where investigators allege that he attempted to secure a visa to travel to Cuba or return to the USSR. In October, he returned to Dallas and took a job at the Texas School Book Depository Building.

Less than an hour after Kennedy was shot, Oswald killed a policeman who questioned him on the street near his rooming house in Dallas. Thirty minutes later, Oswald was arrested in a movie theater by police responding to reports of a suspect. He was formally arraigned on November 23 for the murders of President Kennedy and Officer J.D. Tippit.

On November 24, Oswald was brought to the basement of the Dallas police headquarters on his way to a more secure county jail. A crowd of police and press with live television cameras rolling gathered to witness his departure. As Oswald came into the room, Jack Ruby emerged from the crowd and fatally wounded him with a single shot from a concealed .38 revolver. Ruby, who was immediately detained, claimed that rage at Kennedy’s murder was the motive for his action. Some called him a hero, but he was nonetheless charged with first-degree murder.

Jack Ruby, originally known as Jacob Rubenstein, operated strip joints and dance halls in Dallas and had minor connections to organized crime. He features prominently in Kennedy-assassination theories, and many believe he killed Oswald to keep him from revealing a larger conspiracy. In his trial, Ruby denied the allegation and pleaded innocent on the grounds that his great grief over Kennedy’s murder had caused him to suffer “psychomotor epilepsy” and shoot Oswald unconsciously. The jury found Ruby guilty of “murder with malice” and sentenced him to die.

In October 1966, the Texas Court of Appeals reversed the decision on the grounds of improper admission of testimony and the fact that Ruby could not have received a fair trial in Dallas at the time. In January 1967, while awaiting a new trial, to be held in Wichita Falls, Ruby died of lung cancer in a Dallas hospital.

The official Warren Commission report of 1964 concluded that neither Oswald nor Ruby were part of a larger conspiracy, either domestic or international, to assassinate President Kennedy. Despite its firm conclusions, the report failed to silence conspiracy theories surrounding the event, and in 1978 the House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded in a preliminary report that Kennedy was “probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy” that may have involved multiple shooters and organized crime. The committee’s findings, as with those of the Warren Commission, continue to be disputed.

Lee Harvey Oswald Shot

On Sunday morning, November 24, in front of the press, Oswald was being led to be transferred to the county jail from Dallas Police Headquarters. "The Dallas police were extremely worried for the safety of their prisoner," KRLD radio reporter Bob Huffaker, who was there, told CBS News. "We knew that Oswald was the most hated suspect of the 20th century."

Ruby shot Oswald point-blank in the stomach with a small-caliber pistol. Oswald died at Parkland Hospital, where Kennedy had died two days earlier.

Ruby was indicted on November 26 and convicted of murdering Oswald and sentenced to death by electric chair. The ruling was overturned on appeal, but Ruby died of a pulmonary embolism stemming from lung cancer in 1967, before a new trial could take place.

John F. Kennedy Jr. saluting as the casket of his father, the late President John F. Kennedy, is carried from St. Matthew&aposs Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

Bettmann Archive/Getty Images

A Brief History of Lee Harvey Oswald’s Connection to Cuba

Donald Trump raised eyebrows this week when he alleged that the father of his former rival in the Republican presidential primaries once had links to Lee Harvey Oswald. The claim, which came just hours before Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz dropped out of the election, stemmed from a recent story in the National Enquirer suggesting that Cruz's father, Rafael, can be seen in a photo of Oswald and several pro-Cuba activists several months before the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

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The allegations were summarily dismissed by the Cruz campaign, and the Miami Herald’s Maria Recio points out several gaping holes in the theory shared by the real estate mogul and the supermarket tabloid. But while these unsubstantiated claims might seem like just another surreal beat in this odd election year, like any good conspiracy theory, the story relies on real history, in this case the decades-old argument that there was a deep connection between the presidential assassin and Communist Cuba.

In many ways, Fidel Castro’s Cuba was one of Kennedy’s greatest nemeses during his tenure as president. From the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion to the Cuban Missile Crisis, the small island nation played a central role in Kennedy’s foreign policy. After all, having a Communist country within spitting distance of the United States was a persistent bugbear of Kennedy’s short-lived presidency, David Corn writes for Mother Jones. In addition to these public efforts, Kennedy was also waging a secret war against Castro, with the CIA developing all sorts of plans to try and kill the Communist leader (a choice few involved an exploding seashell and a poison-spewing pen).

Cuba and Castro’s politics also played an outsized role in Oswald’s life, but in a very different way. While Kennedy strived to take the dictator down, Oswald spent years advocating on behalf of Castro and his Communist regime in the United States. At one point, Oswald reportedly applied for passage to Cuba at its embassy in Mexico City, but was allegedly rejected because the government feared he was an undercover provocateur. The photo that resurfaced on the National Enquirer’s cover in April was taken three months before Oswald assassinated Kennedy, when he and a pair of hired hands were passing out pamphlets on behalf of a pro-Castro organization called the "Fair Play for Cuba Committee," Philip Bump reports for the Washington Post.

With this in mind, it wasn’t too much of a leap at the time to suppose that Kennedy could have been the target of a Cuban-led conspiracy with Castro at the head. In fact, even Castro himself understood how easily it would be for him to be blamed for the president’s death – and he had good reason to fear that conclusion. If investigators determined that Castro had been behind the killing in any way, that could be considered an act of war and grounds for an American invasion of Cuba, Jeffrey Goldberg writes for the Atlantic. Castro went so far as to secretly meet with a member of the Warren Commission that investigated the circumstances around Kennedy’s death on a yacht off of Cuba’s coast in order to convince American officials that he had nothing to do with Oswald.

Ironically, Castro himself has said he believes Kennedy was assassinated for his actions towards Cuba. During a 2013 interview, Castro told Goldberg that he believes in several popular conspiracy theories about Kennedy’s death, including that there were multiple shooters and that Oswald may have acted on behalf of members of the American government.

The events may have lined up to suggest a narrative where Oswald killed Kennedy because of his anti-Cuba policies, but it seems incredibly unlikely that Rafael Cruz (a Cuban refugee and avowed anti-Castro activist) would have had anything to do with the pro-Castro Oswald.

Today, 53 years after the fact, it remains impossible to do anything but speculate on Oswald’s intentions. And in the absence of evidence, all manner of wild-eyed theories continue to easily take root.

About Danny Lewis

Danny Lewis is a multimedia journalist working in print, radio, and illustration. He focuses on stories with a health/science bent and has reported some of his favorite pieces from the prow of a canoe. Danny is based in Brooklyn, NY.


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Anonymous, &ldquoOswald, Lee Harvey,&rdquo Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 28, 2021,

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[Death Certificate of Lee Harvey Oswald]

Death certificate of Lee Harvey Oswald. Oswald died at Parkland Hospital of a hemorrhage secondary to a gunshot wound to the chest.

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[List of property belonging to Lee Harvey Oswald]

Inventory on loose notebook pages of property belonging to Lee Harvey Oswald, and arranged in alphabetical order.

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Inventory on loose notebook pages of property belonging to Lee Harvey Oswald, and arranged in alphabetical order.

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[Inventory from a small notebook listing property belonging to Lee Harvey Oswald] (Legal Document)

Part one of an inventory from a small notebook listing property belonging to Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby, arranged in alphabetical order. Part one refers to property belonging to Oswald and part two refers to property belonging to Ruby.

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