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Jim Hargrove

John Armstrong blasts the mail order rifle “evidence”

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Jim,

As you know, I have determined to my satisfaction that the Hidell money order was forged. I consider the fake PMO to be a "smoking gun." In contrast, there are other unusual things that, when taken alone, can be explained away as innocent mistakes. For example, the 2/15/63 date on the deposit slip you posted, which could conceivably have been an innocent mistake. It's only when the whole picture is being considered that such things can be convincingly exposed as being mistakes made by cover-up artists.

I'd like to play devil's advocate, the purpose being to identify additional "smoking guns." This exercise could prove useful, for example when trying to persuade others that the mail order gun purchase never took place.

No rhetorical sleight-of-hand can keep this evidentiary house of cards from collapsing and utterly destroying the Warren Commission's story of the so-called mail order rifle purchase. Not only is the Magic Money Order demonstrably fraudulent, so is the rest of the so-called “evidence” allegedly supporting it!

We're told that the fine document reproduced below is a deposit slip indicating that Klein's deposited $13,827.98 with the First National Bank of Chicago, which included a $21.45 Magic Money Order from “Lee Harvey Oswald.” Look at it!

FNB_Chicago_Deposit_Slip.jpg

Note that there is no bank or date stamp on the document indicating it was actually received by the bank! Try bringing a document like that to your local bank and ask them to come up with THE MONEY YOU CLAIM THEY DIDN'T DEPOSIT TO YOUR ACCOUNT! Without a dated bank stamp, they'll laugh at you, and rightfully so! Anyone can make up a document like that.

I assume that the back side of the deposit slip isn't available to view. Is there any reason to believe that receipt markings should be seen on the front side of the slip?

But that's not the worst problem. Look at the date: 2/15/63—February 15, 1963.

That's right! THE DEPOSIT SLIP FOR THE MAGIC MONEY ORDER WAS ALLEGEDLY WRITTEN OUT A MONTH BEFORE THE MAGIC MONEY ORDER WAS ISSUED IN DALLAS! A MONTH BEFORE!!!

This could have been an innocent mistake.

Sandy,

I've got very little free time today, but....

When Waldman was testifying to the WC, he was supposedly shown the alleged deposit slip (it's part of Waldman Ex. 10) and he was asked when the money order was deposited and he said something like, "I have no way of knowing." That's a pretty strange answer for someone who is holding... or has access to... the deposit slip itself. I've never seen the back side of this so-called document, but wouldn't you think Waldman or one of those expensive WC attorneys might think to look at the deposit slip--front and back--at that point?

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I've never seen the back side of this so-called document, but wouldn't you think Waldman or one of those expensive WC attorneys might think to look at the deposit slip--front and back--at that point?

I think there's a good chance that the "Extra Copy" of the deposit ticket was never sent to the bank by Klein's. It's a carbon copy of the original ticket that could very well have just stayed with Klein's all the time for their records. So if it never was sent to First National, of course it would never have been stamped by the bank.

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I have today sent the following inquiry to the Postal Museum Library at the Smithsonian Institution:

I am an Arizona lawyer. A "controversy" has arisen within the community of researchers studying the assassination of President Kennedy. It concerns the punch-card Postal Money Order that Lee Harvey Oswald ostensibly used to purchase his rifle in March of 1963. The Postal Money Order is stamped on the bank with the rifle seller's deposit stamp for its account at the First National Bank of Chicago. The First National Bank of Chicago, a Federal Reserve member bank, then submitted the Postal Money Order to its regional Federal Reserve Bank in Chicago for processing and payment as the agent for the Postal Service. The Postal Money Order was subsequently imprinted with a File Locator Number by the Treasury Department and placed into storage at the Federal Records Center in Alexandria, Virginia. After the assassination, the Postal Money Order was retrieved from the Federal Records Center at the request of Postal officials and the Secret Service. A fringe group within the research community maintains that the Postal Money Order is demonstrably "fake" because it does not bear "bank stamps" from the First National Bank of Chicago and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. I realize this is a highly technical and esoteric question, but I personally have exhausted all online resources in researching it. I am hopeful that the Library of the Postal Museum may have someone within its circle of contacts who is highly knowledgeable about the processing of Postal Money Orders in the era of 1963 and who perhaps can shed some light on this issue. Thanks very much indeed for any assistance you can provide.

Talk about a loaded question!

Regardless, I think you're asking the wrong people. Other than for the Postmaster General and those close to him, those in the Postal Service wouldn't know anything about FRB regulations or bank procedures.

The obvious people to contact would be those who actually stamped financial instruments... bank employees.

The above was a "loaded" question? With the possible exception of the word "fringe," I would say that it stated the issue about as neutrally as it could be stated for the benefit of someone who presumably has no prior knowledge of the matter.

I have contacted the "wrong" people, you say? And who would be the "right" people that Armstrong contacted or you have attempted to contact? Would that be "no one"? If "the obvious people to contact" would be bank employees, why did Armstrong not contact any? Why have you not attempted to contact any?

The National Postal Museum Library, with its resources and possible circle of contacts, seems a likely to place to start. For all I know, they may have a file cabinet of old money orders for comparison. It may come as a surprise to you, but the National Postal Museum is not staffed by "those in the Postal Service." I will also be making an inquiry to sources within the Federal Reserve, but it does not appear that this can easily be done online.

I don't know about DVP, but I can hardly wait for the conspiracy to be expanded to include the National Postal Museum. Yep, the conspirators even got to the good old Smithsonian Institution.

It will never end, DVP, it will never end ...

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I've never seen the back side of this so-called document, but wouldn't you think Waldman or one of those expensive WC attorneys might think to look at the deposit slip--front and back--at that point?

I think there's a good chance that the "Extra Copy" of the deposit ticket was never sent to the bank by Klein's. It's a carbon copy of the original ticket that could very well have just stayed with Klein's all the time for their records. So if it never was sent to First National, of course it would never have been stamped by the bank.

It certainly does look like a carbon copy.

Would a carbon copy have gone to the bank with the original, and been stamped? I think the answer to both questions would be no.

It makes a whole lot of sense, then, that Waldman would say that he had no way of knowing the date of deposit.

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Version 4

Alternate Explanation for Incorrect Rifle Information Being Reported

Innocent Explanations for Mail Order Rifle Anomalies

Version 5 Date: 3/4/16

Substantive changes in red.

UNEXPLAINED ANOMALIES IN ALL CAPS

FBI Locates the Hidell Purchase Order at Klein's

  1. The FBI has the Carcano rifle in their possession by 2:15 Dallas time on Friday the 22nd, from which they get the serial number C2766.

  2. The FBI discovers from a gun dealer in Dallas that Italian surplus WW2 rifles were being distributed by Crescent Firearms in New York City. This leads the FBI to Klein's in Chicago after discovering that Crescent had sold the C2766 rifle to Klein's.

  3. The FBI searches Klein's records and the Internal Invoice matching the C2766 rifle is found. (This is "Waldman Deposition Exhibit No. 7").

    SDL HYPOTHESIS (3/4/16): It takes seven hours to locate the Hidell order because only the rifle's serial number and an approximate date of sale were known. Thousands of internal invoices have to be pulled and inspected.

    The FBI then finds on microfilm two purchase orders that matches the price and payment method as indicated on the Internal Invoice. One was paid for with an American Express MO, the other with a postal MO. The latter is suspected of being the offending purchase order, or what Chief Curry will later call the "Order Letter." (This is CE773). The Order Letter consists of an order form clipped out of the Feb. 1963 American Rifleman magazine, and the envelope in which it was mailed.

    The FBI quickly determines that the writing on the Order Letter was that of Lee Harvey Oswald.

    Internal Invoice Information: A. Hidell customer name; 3/13/63 receipt date; 3/20/63 processing & shipping date; $19.95 rifle cost; $21.45 total cost; C2766 serial number; paid via money order; "W/ 4X SCOPE".

    Order Letter Information: a few words in Hidell's handwriting; Hidell's address; $19.95 rifle price.

    WHY DID THIS SEARCH TAKE 7 HOURS?

    HOW COULD THE FBI AUTHENTICATE OSWALD’S HANDWRITING FROM WHAT LITTLE TEXT WAS IN THE ORDER LETTER? (THEY DIDN'T HAVE THE MONEY ORDER YET.)

  4. Purchase Order Information is Released to the Press

  5. SDL HYPOTHESIS (2/23/16): Somebody in the FBI was given a copy of the Internal Invoice (and perhaps also the Order Letter) and was assigned to search for Klein's ads matching the C2766 rifle. He finds one. The ad has a large "$12.78" price printed on it. The agent notes the 3/20/63 processing/shipping date on the Internal Invoice, and determines it to be a suitable "purchase date." He clumsily doesn't realize that the $12.78 price didn't include the scope. (Or perhaps he has heard that the Texas Sports Shop had added the scope later.) This information is passed on to Chief Curry of the DPD.

  6. SDL HYPOTHESIS (2/24/16): The Texas Sports Shop episode (with Dial Ryder) is an unrelated event. The FBI nevertheless investigates it. It may reveal that the original scope was replaced with a second one.

    EVEN I, AS THE AUTHOR OF THIS HYPOTHESIS, HAVE A HARD TIME BUYING IT. MAYBE THE PART ABOUT A REPLACEMENT SCOPE COULD BE BELIEVABLE. BUT TO ME THE WHOLE DIAL RYDER THING WREAKS OF CONTRIVANCE THAT IS BEYOND WHAT WC APOLOGISTS ATTRIBUTE TO DIAL RYDER. I THEREFORE CALL UPON DVP TO ANSWER THIS.

  7. In a hallway press conference on the night of Nov. 23 at ~7:00 PM Dallas time, Chief Jesse Curry comments on the Order Letter. He reports that the price of the rifle, including the scope, was $12.78; that it “was advertised in some magazine for that [price];” that the purchase date was Mar. 20, 1963; and that the writing had been authenticated as Oswald's. This info had been provided to the DPD by the FBI.

  8. On the evening of Nov. 23, the media began reporting the following information regarding the rifle purchase: 1) Mar. 20 purchase date; 2) $12.78 price tag; and 3) that the order handwriting was Oswald’s. Some in the media had a Klein’s catalog ad showing the $12.78 price. (See the Frank Reynolds Video in Post 102.)

    WHY DID IT TAKE NEARLY A WEEK FOR THE FBI TO CORRECT THE PRICE OF THE RIFLE BEING REPORTED BY THE PRESS? The price being $19.95, not $12.78.

    FBI Locates the Money Order

  9. According to FBI report CD75, on Nov. 23, the following information is received from the VP of Klein's bank, Robert Wilmouth.

    -- On Mar. 15 1963, Klein's deposited $13,827.98 in its bank. The deposit included a $21.45 postal money order.

    -- On Mar. 16 the bank sent the $21.45 PMO to the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. It would have been received by the FRB on Mar. 18, according to Wilmouth.

    SDL HYPOTHESIS (3/4/16): Klein's deposit slip is accidentally hand-dated Feb. 15, 1963 instead of the correct date of deposit, Mar. 15, 1963.

    Only the carbon copy of the deposit slip, without any bank deposit stamps, was presented to the WC as evidence. William Waldman, the VP of Klein's, testified that he couldn't tell from that what the date of deposit was.

    WHY DIDN'T THE WC VERIFY THE CORRECT DATE OF THE DEPOSIT BY PRESENTING INTO EVIDENCE THE BANK RECEIPT (SUPPOSEDLY) STAMPED ON THE BACK SIDE OF KLEIN'S DEPOSIT SLIP? OR BY PRODUCING A KLEIN'S BANK STATEMENT SHOWING THE DEPOSIT?

  10. DVP HYPOTHESIS: Somebody in the FBI transmitted the wrong total price to other FBI personnel ($21.95 instead of $21.45). This led to confusion when the FBI and Secret Service began searching for the money order.

  11. According to SS report CD87, at about 8:30 PM EST on Nov. 23 a request was issued to locate and obtain postal money order #2,202,130,462 dated 3/12/63 in the amount of $21.45 payable to Klein's by Alek James Hidell.

    [question: how and when did the SS get the money order number and date?]

  12. The postal money order was recovered at 9:35 PM EST (8:35 PM Dallas time) on Nov. 23.

Corrections to Address

Jim DiEugenio: Post 161 on this page. Addressed!

Information to Review

David Josephs: Posts 129 and 135 on this page.

Jim Hargrove: Post 145 on this page.

Important Topics to Address Later

Jim DiEugenio: The 1962 rifle shipment that was replace with a 1963 one.

(See post 161 on this page, item 2. Also previous related posts.)

Search Keywords

alternate explanation for incorrect rifle information being reported

Edited by Sandy Larsen

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I don't know about DVP, but I can hardly wait for the conspiracy to be expanded to include the National Postal Museum. Yep, the conspirators even got to the good old Smithsonian Institution.

I'm pretty sure that Jim Hargrove wouldn't hesitate to add the Smithsonian to his list of plotters and/or cover-uppers in a heartbeat. After all, Jim said this to me just two weeks ago....

JIM HARGROVE SAID:

There is plenty of evidence at the National Archives incriminating “Lee Harvey Oswald,” and all of it is phony.

DAVID VON PEIN SAID:

When you have to resort to such massive allegations of constant "alteration" and "falsification" and "fabricated" stuff, it's a good sign that you've reached a level of deep desperation from which you can likely never escape.

In other words....since you've got no evidence of your own to prove any conspiracy, you have no choice but to try and invalidate the real evidence in the case. (The Hidell money order and CE399 being two prime examples, among dozens of others.)

When I see words like "all of it is phony", it's a sure sign that the CTer who wrote such nonsense has a very weak case for "conspiracy". So he's got to attack the legitimacy of ALL of the evidence. A very tiresome (and predictable) way to approach any murder case.

It will never end, DVP, it will never end ...

You are absolutely right, Lance. I've been arguing with JFK conspiracy theorists for about 13 years now, and I completely agree with what the late Vincent Bugliosi said many times in his 2007 radio interviews....

"There is no bottom to the pile in the Kennedy case. It is absolutely endless." -- V. Bugliosi

http://Vincent-Bugliosi.blogspot.com

Edited by David Von Pein

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I'm pretty sure that Jim Hargrove wouldn't hesitate to add the Smithsonian to his list of plotters and/or cover-uppers in a heartbeat. After all, Jim said this to me just two weeks ago..

Some folks when building a Kitchen like to throw in the Kitchen sink as well, for some folks, they believe everyone and their mama did it... smh...

Edited by Scott Kaiser

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Bulletin from the DVP Newsroom! ---

For those unaware of it, Scott's recent use of the abbreviation "SMH" stands for "Shaking My Head" (via the good old "Urban Dictionary").

That was a new one on me. I hadn't the foggiest idea what that one meant until I Googled it just now.

(And, yes, Scott, I'm just having a little fun at your expense, as a result of this humorous exchange three days ago. Nothing personal.) :)

Edited by David Von Pein

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David J.,

The reason the PMO issue is important (not a distraction) is because it has a short learning curve and is easy to understand.

You're kidding, right Sandy?

I see nothing easy about the PMO issue once you throw Holmes' story into the mix, or the conflicting reports as to where and when it was found.

Let's see if I can recap:

During the course of his day, March 12, 1963 Oswald kept detailed records of the projects he worked upon for JCS.

His timesheet shows no breaks prior to 10:30am - the time of the Kleins envelope postmark. In fact, there is no time during that day when Ozzie can take care of this errand.

All the USPS reports state that the PMO, if real, would have been purchased in the morning of March 12 while Ozzie is at work.

Plus, does it make sense to microfilm the envelope and not the PMO enclosed inside?

On page 14 of this folder http://digitalcollections.baylor.edu/cdm/ref/collection/po-arm/id/34791we get a report from LH Stephens USPS Inspector in charge who claims the same thing as Holmes, that

"a check was made of the issued stubs of the Dallas office from March 1 through March 13 and only one money order in this amount was found"

IOW we should see a PMO stub for $21.45 from the Dallas office as definitive proof that THAT PMO was purchased on that date by A. Hidell and made out to Kleins - but we don't ever get to see it.

The item of evidence which appears in numerous reports as being found and leading to the recovery of the PMO, is not in evidence and Holmes can't remember the name of one of his own clerks who found it...

Uh, right . :rolleyes:

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I wonder what "DVP" means? (Probably some idiot's initials.)

:)

(I have a brother who has some cool initials -- MVP.)

Edited by David Von Pein

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David J.,

The reason the PMO issue is important (not a distraction) is because it has a short learning curve and is easy to understand.

You're kidding, right Sandy?

I don't know why you ask that, David. No I'm not kidding. It's very easy to understand that an unprocessed PMO could not have bought a gun. Compare that statement to the following:

There is no evidence Kleins ever had C2766 to ship in March in the first place other than a list of 100 rifles for which not a single other rifle has EVER been found - only C2766. There is also nothing to refute the locations the FBI claimed did not sell the rifle even though as we see below, 2766 appears in a shipment in June to Empire Wholesale. As we come to learn - there were no rifles without prefixes in the 100 rifle shipment claimed to go to Kleins so to assume these 1300 rifles did not have a letter prefix appears to be quite a stretch.

In addition, SOP for Rupp and Crescent is to accumulate orders and then instruct Rupp to remove rifles and prepare them to ship when enough orders are ready to go from Kleins. The Hidell Order of C20-T750 being shipped in March and recorded on the microfilm with 900+ other orders would have to be part of a larger # of shipments of C20-T750 orders, fulfilled by any one of the other 99 rifles.

If this was going on for all C20-T750 orders - a $19.95 36" TS carbine being replaced with the larger 40" FC rifle then surely ALL C20-T750 orders fulfilled after Feb 22 would have shipped one of these rifles. The FBI could shut the door on the entire matter by showing Kleins record of doing the same thing with all their C20-T750 orders... yet not one is ever seen, ever offered and not one of the 99 rifles has EVER been found.

which makes my eyes glaze over.

I understand the statement "there is no evidence Klein's ever had C2766 to ship in March in the first place." And that would be compelling if I understood the situation well enough to know that there truly was no C2766 rifle to ship. But that looks a lot more complicated than this one statement: "There are no bank stamps on the PMO, and this proves it wasn't processed." All I need to be convinced of beyond that is that bank stamps really were required. And the documented regulations for that are short and easy to read as well. Then you're done. It literally takes less than five minutes to understand. (If it seems more complicated than that in the forum, that's only because we have a lawyer making it more complicated than it really is.)

I see nothing easy about the PMO issue once you throw Holmes' story into the mix, or the conflicting reports as to where and when it was found.

So don't throw it in... it's not necessary.

Let's see if I can recap:

During the course of his day, March 12, 1963 Oswald kept detailed records of the projects he worked upon for JCS.

His timesheet shows no breaks prior to 10:30am - the time of the Kleins envelope postmark. In fact, there is no time during that day when Ozzie can take care of this errand.

All the USPS reports state that the PMO, if real, would have been purchased in the morning of March 12 while Ozzie is at work.

Plus, does it make sense to microfilm the envelope and not the PMO enclosed inside?

That's another easy thing for people to grasp. But it's a little problematic because people are known to cheat on time sheets.

On page 14 of this folder http://digitalcollections.baylor.edu/cdm/ref/collection/po-arm/id/34791we get a report from LH Stephens USPS Inspector in charge who claims the same thing as Holmes, that

"a check was made of the issued stubs of the Dallas office from March 1 through March 13 and only one money order in this amount was found"

IOW we should see a PMO stub for $21.45 from the Dallas office as definitive proof that THAT PMO was purchased on that date by A. Hidell and made out to Kleins - but we don't ever get to see it.

Another easy thing to understand. But not seeing the stub does not mean it doesn't exist.

The item of evidence which appears in numerous reports as being found and leading to the recovery of the PMO, is not in evidence and Holmes can't remember the name of one of his own clerks who found it...

Uh, right . :rolleyes:

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IOW we should see a PMO stub for $21.45 from the Dallas office as definitive proof that THAT PMO was purchased on that date by A. Hidell and made out to Kleins - but we don't ever get to see it.

The item of evidence which appears in numerous reports as being found and leading to the recovery of the PMO, is not in evidence and Holmes can't remember the name of one of his own clerks who found it...

The "missing" stub would have been the Post Office Record portion of the three-part punch card form (Money Order / Purchaser's Receipt / Post Office Record). According to the 1963-era samples that I have seen, the stub would have included only the dollar amount, money order number and date stamp - no purchaser or payee information. If the supposed discovery of the stub was all part of a conspiracy, the fact that Holmes initially had the wrong dollar amount and timeframe and reported that he could find nothing is certainly one of those curious little details that only genius-level conspirators would think up. When Holmes finally had the correct information, he stated that employees readily located the stub and called him with the number of the money order - "called" suggesting that he was not where the stub was physically located. He then relayed this information to the Postal Inspector In Charge in Ft. Worth, who initiated a search at the Records Center in Alexandria. I have a hard time seeing the "missing" stub as suspicious. It would have contained no useful information and, once the actual money order had been located a matter of hours later, I can see how no one would have given any further thought to the stub.

The stub and perhaps affidavits from the employees who located it might have been made part of the record in a perfect world, but it doesn't strike me as inherently suspicious that they weren't. It often seems to me that we tend to view the assassination record as though everyone back in 1963-64 should have had one eye on the future and been anticipating how all their little screw-ups might look to a conspiratorially-minded researcher like Armstrong. I have a case right now involving a commercial loan by one of the largest banks in the country, and the gross negligence in the handling of the loan by bank employees, as well as the utter chaos of the loan files (then and now), is simply beyond belief; the world is a messy place. While I don't completely reject the notion of a conspiracy in the assassination of JFK, it does seem to me that much of the evidence that diehard conspiracy theorists regard as indicative of a conspiracy actually cuts the other way - it is exactly what you'd expect to find if there were no conspiracy and people were simply being the screw-ups they are most of the time. This is especially true when you factor in the intense pressure they were under in the aftermath of a Presidential assassination.

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I've never seen the back side of this so-called document, but wouldn't you think Waldman or one of those expensive WC attorneys might think to look at the deposit slip--front and back--at that point?

I think there's a good chance that the "Extra Copy" of the deposit ticket was never sent to the bank by Klein's. It's a carbon copy of the original ticket that could very well have just stayed with Klein's all the time for their records. So if it never was sent to First National, of course it would never have been stamped by the bank.

It certainly does look like a carbon copy.

Would a carbon copy have gone to the bank with the original, and been stamped? I think the answer to both questions would be no.

It makes a whole lot of sense, then, that Waldman would say that he had no way of knowing the date of deposit.

Really? Waldman (or a WC attorney or staff member) couldn't call the First National Bank of Chicago and ask when Kleins had last made a deposit of $13,827.98? For that matter, why couldn't Waldman have merely looked at Kleins' FNBC bank statements for those earlier months in 1963 and checked to find when the $13,827.98 deposited. I'll bet there was only one deposit in that amount for the whole year.

Waldman was the vice president of a huge mail order outfit in Chicago. He doesn't know this simple stuff? And the well-paid WC attorneys? They let that kind of weasel language slide under the table? My guess--just a guess--is that Waldman said something else entirely.

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