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Dorothy Kilgallen: The Key Witness


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RFK disclosed in a private interview in 1964 (not intended for publication) that Hoover regularly briefed him about the information that he had about the Kennedys. This is why JFK changed his mind and agreed that Hoover should not be forced to retire as head of the FBI.

Hoover therefore had to real reason to want JFK ousted.

What is the source that JFK agreed that Hoover could stay on?

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I just discovered an interesting datum in the 1967 CIA Inspector General's Report. (I've probably included too much of it below.)

The point, made in red, is that Dorothy Kilgallen was apparently quite friendly with Sam Giancana's girl-friend Phyllis McGure. See the passage re Maheu, O'Connell and Rosselli going out for late-night drinks at the Copacabana in Manhattan and almost runnning into Phyllis McGuire, who was there with Dorothy Kilgallen.

Significant? You decide.

Document: CIA Plots to Kill Castro

This document, "CIA Inspector General's Report on Plots to Assassinate Fidel Castro," was approved for release in 1993 under the CIA Historical Review Program. The report describes the various capers the CIA engaged in during their attempts to "eliminate" Fidel Castro. From shellfish toxin to exploding conch shell, almost every spy-vs.-spy gag imaginable was considered by the CIA.

[document begins]

23 May 1967

MEMORANDUM FOR THE RECORD

SUBJECT: Report on Plots to Assassinate Fidel Castro

This report was prepared at the request of the Director of Central Intelligence. He assigned the task to the Inspector General on 23 March 1967. The report was delivered to the Director, personally, in installments, beginning on 24 April 1967. The Director returned this copy to the Inspector General on 22 May 1967 with instructions that the Inspector General:

Retain it in personal, EYES ONLY safekeeping

Destroy the one burn copy retained temporarily by the Inspector General

Destroy all notes and other source materials originated by those participating in the writing of this report

The one stayback burn copy, all notes, and all other derived source materials were destroyed on 23 May 1967.

This ribbon copy is the only text of the report now in existence, either in whole or in part. Its text has been read only by:

Richard Helms, Director of Central Intelligence

J.S. Earman, Inspector General

K.E. Greer, Inspector (one of the authors)

S.D. Breckinridge, Inspector (one of the authors)

All typing of drafts and of final text was done by the authors.

Filed with the report are:

Office of Security file used as source material

Memorandums concerning William Harvey

Certain MONGOOSE papers

Drew Pearson columns

[signed]

J.S. Earman

Inspector General

Edwards, Harvey, and O'Connell have differing recollections of the specifics of the turnover from Edwards/O'Connell to Harvey. Not all of the differences can be resolved--not even by follow-up interviews in which the information furnished by each was checked with each of the other two. There is no disagreement on the fact that the turnover nor on when it took place. The recollections vary decidedly, though, on the status of the operation at the time of its transfer to Harvey and on just how clean the break was between phase one under Edwards and phase two under Harvey.

a. Edwards believes that the operation was called off completely after the Bay of Pigs and that there was no further operational activity in connection with it until Harvey met Roselli and reactivated the operation in April 1962. O'Connell introduced Harvey to Roselli, and Edwards had nothing further to do with the operation--with the exception of a meeting with Attorney General Robert Kennedy in connection with the Phyllis McGuire wiretapping incident. (The wiretapping incident is described in a separate section of this report.) Edwards' records show that on 14 May 1962 Harvey called Edwards "and indicated that he was dropping any plans for the use of Roselli for the future."

There are other disagreements among the three on facts. They are reviewed here, not because they alter the essential fact of the turnover or of Harvey's sole responsibility for the operation after a certain point in time, but because they suggest that persons who were supposedly unwitting of events after the turnover were in fact witting, because they were not effectively cut off at the instant of turnover.

Harvey's notes show that he and O'Connell went to New York City to meet Roselli on the 8th and 9th of April 1962. O'Connell recalls it as being early in April and that the introduction was made on a Sunday, which would make it the 8th. Harvey says that only he and O'Connell met with Roselli; O'Connell says that Maheu was also present at the meeting. Both are positive of the accuracy of their recollections, and each gives reasons for his confidence in his clarity of recall. The significance, for purposes of this inquiry, is whether Maheu did or did not know that the operation continued under Harvey.

a. Harvey is certain that he would have remembered it if Maheu were present. He and Maheu were in the same FBI training class at Quantico in 1940. He does not remember having seen Maheu since he, Harvey, came with the Agency in 1947, although he acknowledges that he may have seen him once or twice socially. He is sure he has not seen Maheu since 1952 when Harvey was assigned to Berlin.

b. O'Connell, who set up the meeting, is just as positive that Maheu was there. He describes a series of events that reassure him of the accuracy of his memory. The four of them traveled separately to New York. They met at the Savoy Plaza Hotel (Savoy Hilton?) where all four stayed. After discussions, Maheu suggested dinner at the Elk Room, a fashionable restaurant in a nearby hotel. O'Connell says that Maheu picked up the tab. They finished dinner about 9:30 or 10:00 p.m. Roselli wanted to buy the group a nightcap, but since it was Sunday night nearly all of the bars were closed. They walked around the neighborhood looking for an open bar and finally wound up at the Copacabana. They were refused admittance to the bar because of a rule restricting admission to couples, so they ate at a table where they could watch the floor show. Roselli found himself facing a table at "ringside" at which Phyllis McGuire was sitting with Dorothy Kilgallen and Liberace for the opening night of singer Rosemary Clooney. To avoid Phyllis McGuire's seeing him, Roselli got his companions to change their seating arrangement so that his back was turned to Miss McGuire. Maheu was an integral part of all this. (Roselli's reason for not wanting Phyllis McGuire to see him with his companions will become evident from her role in the wiretapping incident, which is described in a separate section of this report.)

Edited by Tim Gratz
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Document: CIA Plots to Kill Castro

This document, "CIA Inspector General's Report on Plots to Assassinate Fidel Castro," was approved for release in 1993 under the CIA Historical Review Program. The report describes the various capers the CIA engaged in during their attempts to "eliminate" Fidel Castro. From shellfish toxin to exploding conch shell, almost every spy-vs.-spy gag imaginable was considered by the CIA.

castro.jpg

Edited by Robin Unger
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I just discovered an interesting datum in the 1967 CIA Inspector General's Report.  (I've probably included too much of it below.)

The point, made in red, is that Dorothy Kilgallen was apparently quite friendly with Sam Giancana's girl-friend Phyllis McGure.  See the passage re Maheu, O'Connell and Rosselli going out for late-night drinks at the Copacabana in Manhattan and almost runnning into Phyllis McGuire, who was there with Dorothy Kilgallen.

Significant?  You decide.

I don’t think this is significant. Dorothy Kilgallen had a large number of friends who were in show business. After all, she was mainly a gossip columnist. It might have been significant if she was seen having a meeting with Sam Giancana.

Interestingly, there were rumours that she had been murdered by the mob. The reason was her long-term feud with Frank Sinatra. He often made personal attacks on her during his concert performances. This conflict dated back to an article she wrote about Sinatra in 1956. Another enemy was Jack Paar. This is an extract from Lee Israel’s book on Kilgallen:

”There had been some snide little items about her (Dorothy Kilgallen) in the columns, an occasional short profile in the magazines, and frequent strafing from television performers. Jack Paar led the pack in 1960, taking up Sinatra's slack. That tempestuous round began when Dorothy swiped at him in the column over his impassioned support of Fidel Castro. She was violently opposed to the new Cuban leader and peppered her column with anti-Castro items, many of which appear to have been fed to her by Miami-based exiles or CIA fronts on an almost daily basis. Paar retaliated on his prime-time, high-rated television show.”

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I just discovered an interesting datum in the 1967 CIA Inspector General's Report.  (I've probably included too much of it below.)

The point, made in red, is that Dorothy Kilgallen was apparently quite friendly with Sam Giancana's girl-friend Phyllis McGure.  See the passage re Maheu, O'Connell and Rosselli going out for late-night drinks at the Copacabana in Manhattan and almost runnning into Phyllis McGuire, who was there with Dorothy Kilgallen.

Significant?  You decide.

I don’t think this is significant. Dorothy Kilgallen had a large number of friends who were in show business. After all, she was mainly a gossip columnist. It might have been significant if she was seen having a meeting with Sam Giancana.

Interestingly, there were rumours that she had been murdered by the mob.

Wrong. The rumours favored the U.S. government as the interested party. Ron Pataky had no ties to organized crime, but he did graduate from one of the schools for assassins that later became the U.S. Army School of the Americas. During the year and four months that he was close with Kilgallen he worked as a movie reviewer for a daily newspaper called the Columbus (Ohio) Citizen Journal. It no longer exists.

Dawnlight Music was incorporated in New York on February 23, 1965 with the following shareholders: Pataky, Kilgallen, American singer Jerry Vale and Vale's manager Dee Anthony, who later became famous managing Peter Frampton and Joe Cocker. The purpose of Dawnlight was to promote Pataky's original songs. They were in the "cocktail" musical genre of Sinatra and Vale, NOT rock & roll.

A short time after Dawnlight was incorporated, the Citizen Journal ran two strange film reviews by Pataky that contained non - sequiturs about American patriotism. Both appeared in April of 1965 when Kilgallen was hospitalized for a broken shoulder. She had a little more than six months left to live.

Pataky's laudatory review of The Sound Of Music had a non sequitur at the end. He said in effect that Julie Andrews was the most wonderful woman in his life. "Next to Betsy Ross of course" are his very words.

Shirley MacLaine was the star of the other film that reminded Pataky of his patriotism: "John Goldfarb Please Come Home." Pataky wrote that officials of Notre Dame in Indiana had complained about the silly way their football team was portrayed in the film. Pataky wrote that they were remiss for saying nothing about the silly way that U.S. intelligence agencies were depicted in the film. His very words: "Alma mater, si ? United States, no ?"

The microfilm copies of Pataky's reportage in the Citizen Journal are available at several libraries in Columbus, Ohio and at Ohio University in the small isolated Ohio town of Athens (far away from Columbus and close to West Virginia). The microfilm collection at Ohio University evidently never got the attention of Dr. Eric Paddon when he taught history there in the 1990s. He authored the segment of Dr. John McAdams' web site that tries to debunk the Kilgallen - JFK theory. He doesn't refer to Pataky at all in it.

B)

The reason was her long-term feud with Frank Sinatra. He often made personal attacks on her during his concert performances. This conflict dated back to an article she wrote about Sinatra in 1956. Another enemy was Jack Paar. This is an extract from Lee Israel’s book on Kilgallen:

Why does Lee Israel's book constitute 99 percent of your source material on Dorothy Kilgallen ? You don't care about the fact that Lee never mentioned Florence Pritchett in the text. Recently she tried to explain why, but you didn't listen.

The document you cited about Johnny Rosselli avoiding a confrontation in a nightclub tells us nothing about Kilgallen. So what if she was there ? She visited those clubs hundreds of times. It was her job. Her relationship with Ron Pataky had nothing to do with her job.

”There had been some snide little items about her (Dorothy Kilgallen) in the columns, an occasional short profile in the magazines, and frequent strafing from television performers. Jack Paar led the pack in 1960, taking up Sinatra's slack. That tempestuous round began when Dorothy swiped at him in the column over his impassioned support of Fidel Castro. She was violently opposed to the new Cuban leader and peppered her column with anti-Castro items, many of which appear to have been fed to her by Miami-based exiles or CIA fronts on an almost daily basis. Paar retaliated on his prime-time, high-rated television show.”

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John, the reason I thought Kilgallen's friendship with McGuire could be significant was because, of course, of McGuire's relationship with Giancana and the evidence that Giancana blabbed not only to Phyllis but also to her sisters about his involvement in plots to kill Castro. What else did Giancana tell Phyllis that she MIGHT have told Kilgallen?

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John, the reason I thought Kilgallen's friendship with McGuire could be significant was because, of course, of McGuire's relationship with Giancana and the evidence that Giancana blabbed not only to Phyllis but also to her sisters about his involvement in plots to kill Castro.  What else did Giancana tell Phyllis that she MIGHT have told Kilgallen?

Nobody knows.  Phyllis McGuire never came out with a book she has claimed for many years to be working on.  She also never pursued a lawsuit against HBO because of the fiction it inserted in its 1996 original movie "Sugartime" about the Giancana / McGuire relationship.

When HBO started production on "Sugartime" in 1995 Phyllis planned to sue HBO for distorting her Giancana story in the screenplay.  An attorney advised her not to discuss her memories with anyone in light of the possible legal action, and she adheres to his advice to this day.  She was arrested for and convicted of drunken driving a few years after HBO broadcast the movie.

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The rumours favored the U.S. government as the interested party.  Ron Pataky had no ties to organized crime, but he did graduate from one of the schools for assassins that later became the U.S. Army School of the Americas.  During the year and four months that he was close with Kilgallen he worked as a movie reviewer for a daily newspaper called the Columbus (Ohio) Citizen Journal.  It no longer exists.

Dawnlight Music was incorporated in New York on February 23, 1965 with the following shareholders:  Pataky, Kilgallen, American singer Jerry Vale and Vale's manager Dee Anthony, who later became famous managing Peter Frampton and Joe Cocker.  The purpose of Dawnlight was to promote Pataky's original songs.  They were in the "cocktail" musical genre of Sinatra and Vale, NOT rock & roll.

A short time after Dawnlight was incorporated, the Citizen Journal ran two strange film reviews by Pataky that contained non - sequiturs about American patriotism.  Both appeared in April of 1965 when Kilgallen was hospitalized for a broken shoulder.  She had a little more than six months left to live. 

Pataky's laudatory review of The Sound Of Music had a non sequitur at the end.  He said in effect that Julie Andrews was the most wonderful woman in his life.  "Next to Betsy Ross of course" are his very words. 

Shirley MacLaine was the star of the other film that reminded Pataky of his patriotism:  "John Goldfarb Please Come Home."  Pataky wrote that officials of Notre Dame in Indiana had complained about the silly way their football team was portrayed in the film.  Pataky wrote that they were remiss for saying nothing about the silly way that U.S. intelligence agencies were depicted in the film.  His very words:  "Alma mater, si ?  United States, no ?"

The microfilm copies of Pataky's reportage in the Citizen Journal are available at several libraries in Columbus, Ohio and at Ohio University in the small isolated Ohio town of Athens (far away from Columbus and close to West Virginia).  The microfilm collection at Ohio University evidently never got the attention of Dr. Eric Paddon when he taught history there in the 1990s.  He authored the segment of Dr. John McAdams' web site that tries to debunk the Kilgallen - JFK theory.  He doesn't refer to Pataky at all in it.

Are you saying that Lee Israel’s "Out-of-Towner" is Ron Pataky? This is what David B. Henschel claimed in 1993. As far as I know Lee Israel has always refused to confirm that it was Pataky? She has always ignored my email questions about this. Nor has she been willing to answer this point on the forum. It has always puzzled me why Israel did not name “Out-of-Towner” in her book? It is not as if she accused him of murdering Dorothy Kilgallen.

Do you have your own evidence that "Out-of-Towner" is Ron Pataky? Or are you relying on the research carried out by Henschel?

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I don’t think this is significant. Dorothy Kilgallen had a large number of friends who were in show business. After all, she was mainly a gossip columnist. It might have been significant if she was seen having a meeting with Sam Giancana.

Interestingly, there were rumours that she had been murdered by the mob.

The rumours favored the U.S. government as the interested party. Ron Pataky had no ties to organized crime, but he did graduate from one of the schools for assassins that later became the U.S. Army School of the Americas. During the year and four months that he was close with Kilgallen he worked as a movie reviewer for a daily newspaper called the Columbus (Ohio) Citizen Journal. It no longer exists.

Dawnlight Music was incorporated in New York on February 23, 1965 with the following shareholders: Pataky, Kilgallen, American singer Jerry Vale and Vale's manager Dee Anthony, who later became famous managing Peter Frampton and Joe Cocker. The purpose of Dawnlight was to promote Pataky's original songs. They were in the "cocktail" musical genre of Sinatra and Vale, NOT rock & roll.

A short time after Dawnlight was incorporated, the Citizen Journal ran two strange film reviews by Pataky that contained non - sequiturs about American patriotism. Both appeared in April of 1965 when Kilgallen was hospitalized for a broken shoulder. She had a little more than six months left to live.

Pataky's laudatory review of The Sound Of Music had a non sequitur at the end. He said in effect that Julie Andrews was the most wonderful woman in his life. "Next to Betsy Ross of course" are his very words.

Shirley MacLaine was the star of the other film that reminded Pataky of his patriotism: "John Goldfarb Please Come Home." Pataky wrote that officials of Notre Dame in Indiana had complained about the silly way their football team was portrayed in the film. Pataky wrote that they were remiss for saying nothing about the silly way that U.S. intelligence agencies were depicted in the film. His very words: "Alma mater, si ? United States, no ?"

The microfilm copies of Pataky's reportage in the Citizen Journal are available at several libraries in Columbus, Ohio and at Ohio University in the small isolated Ohio town of Athens (far away from Columbus and close to West Virginia). The microfilm collection at Ohio University evidently never got the attention of Dr. Eric Paddon when he taught history there in the 1990s. He authored the segment of Dr. John McAdams' web site that tries to debunk the Kilgallen - JFK theory. He doesn't refer to Pataky at all in it.

Are you saying that Lee Israel’s "Out-of-Towner" is Ron Pataky?

You're not listening. Dorothy Kilgallen and Lee Israel are the ones who essentially said it. Kilgallen identified Ron Pataky as the newspaper critic from Columbus, Ohio who invited her to share a taxicab with him from London Airport (Heathrow ?) to the Dorchester Hotel. That's usually a long ride on a hot Friday (June 12), isn't it, Londoners ? Much traffic.

While Israel doesn't cite that particular Voice of Broadway column, she does cite press agent Mike Hall (AKA Mitch) and the Out of Towner himself as sources on the fact that the Out of Towner was one of the 100 - plus journalists on that junket. Farther down on the same page, on the following page and several pages later Israel adds more details about the man that match Pataky:

# 1 -- Some time before the journalists' junket, police reported to the scene when Israel's mystery man, in the company of his friends and his date, broke glass while he was drunk. Israel said, "Glass was broken; the police were called." This matches the front page of the Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch of December 5, 1963. The banner headline that day concerned the arrest of Ron Pataky, movie critic for another Columbus newspaper, on charges of public intoxication and resisting arrest. The news story said he was with his girlfriend Anna Maria Alberghetti, visiting from Los Angeles, in the home of a Columbus friend when he (Pataky) hit his head on a glass door while drunk.

# 2 -- Several pages after the segment on the journalists' junket, Israel reports that Dorothy Kilgallen tried to help the Out - of - Towner launch a new career "as a writer of popular songs." Sure enough, on a few days in 1965 the Columbus Citizen Journal plugged songs that its movie critic Ron Pataky wrote for cocktail singers Jerry Vale (April), John Gary (September) and Frankie Randall (December -- the month after Kilgallen died).

All the newspaper accounts of that 20th Century Fox press junket place the number of participants in it between 100 and 120. We know that Ron Pataky was one of them. He is the only one who matches the Out of Towner on three points: a prior arrest record for public intoxication, a friendship with Dorothy Kilgallen that blossomed immediately after the journalists flew from Rome to London, and, finally, the subsequent launch of a new career as a songwriter with Kilgallen's help. How can more than one out of 120 people match those three conditions?

This is what David B. Herschel claimed in 1993.

You're citing an email that that person sent to the Internet Engineering Task Force in November of 1993. The Internet was much different then. IETF members and American college students constituted a large number of Internet users. Did you know what the Internet was in 1993 ?

If you read the web site carefully you will note that a member of the IETF replied to Henschel's essay by joking that IETF stood for the "International Electronic Theater of Funnymen." Obviously, the IETF member circulated Henchel's essay because the member thought it was funny. Unless you used the fledgling Internet in 1993, you are foolish to cite this essay as a source. Stick with Lee Israel's book and Kilgallen's newspaper column. People have vouched for them as good sources on Kilgallen's career and social life. Some have disputed them, but many have defended them. Who can support what somebody circulated about dead people on the Internet in 1993 ? Nobody can.

As far as I know Lee Israel has always refused to confirm that it was Pataky? She has always ignored my email questions about this. Nor has she been willing to answer this point on the forum.

News flash: Ron Pataky is alive. He wants you to know that. Here's a link to his web site:

Ron Pataky speaks.

He doesn't mention Kilgallen or Oswald there, but you can see his psychotic sense of humor. Read the Midwest Today web site to get his quotes on Kilgallen.

It has always puzzled me why Israel did not name “Out-of-Towner” in her book? It is not as if she accused him of murdering Dorothy Kilgallen.

But she cites a taped interview with him in which he seems suspicious. He says he does not recall details of a telephone conversation with Kilgallen on the night she died, but he asserts that Kilgallen did call him from her New York home. He lived in Ohio.

First he says she called him at about one a.m., then he says he can't remember the time. His remarks contradict several witnesses who placed Kilgallen in three places that night: CBS Studio 52, P. J. Clarke's and the cocktail lounge of the Regency Hotel. Nobody saw her go home. One witness said in 1999 that Kilgallen had a private, serious conversation with a man at the Regency lounge. The witness wanted to compliment Kilgallen on What's My Line? but Kilgallen and the man were so busy talking that interrupting them was a bad idea.

Do you have your own evidence that "Out-of-Towner" is Ron Pataky? Or are you relying on the research carried out by Henschel?

What part of "Kilgallen's first - person narrative" do you not understand ? Her column from June 14, 1964 has her first - person narrative of befriending Ron Pataky in London. It's not nuclear physics.

Edited by Jonathan Wendland
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John Kelin: I am very interested in the research carried out by Penn Jones. He seems to have come up with information that has not been duplicated in other books by JFK researchers. For example, this is what he wrote in the Midlothian Mirror on November 25, 1965:

I have a concern for the strange things happening in America in recent months. With the passing of the second anniversary of the murder of President Kennedy, we take not of some of the strange things which continue to plague those around the principals.

Miss Dorothy Kilgallen joins the growing list of persons who have died after a private interview with one of the two members of the Jack Ruby-George Senator team. We have printed the strange deaths of Bill Hunter and Jim Koethe after they had a private interview with George Senator and Ruby’s attorney, Tom Howard. Hunter and Koethe were murdered. Lawyer Tom Howard died under strange circumstances...

Now Miss Kilgallen dies under clouded circumstances. During the Ruby trial in Dallas, Judge Joe B. Brown granted Miss Kilgallen a privilege given no other newsman. She had thirty minutes alone in a room with Jack Ruby. Even the guards were outside the door. Miss Kilgallen told some of what went of during the interview in her columns. But was someone afraid she knew more? Is she another victim of possibly knowing the secret that still moves in the troubled mind of Jack Ruby?...

What is happening in our land? How many murders of persons connected in some way with the assassination principals can go unnoticed by our people? How many lies must we prove on The Warren Commission before a demand for reopening becomes a commanding one?

In his book, Volume II: Forgive My Grief (1967), Penn Jones added more to this story:

Shortly before her death, Miss Kilgallen told a friend in New York that she was going to New Orleans in 5 days and break the case wide open. Miss Kilgallen 52, died November 8, 1965, under questionable circumstances in her New York home. Eight days after her death, a ruling was made that she died of barbiturates and drink with no quantities of either ingredient being given.

Also strangely, Miss Kilgallen’s close friend, Mrs. Earl E.T. Smith, died two days after Miss Kilgallen. Mrs. Smith’s autopsy read that the cause of death was unknown.

Many skeptical newsmen have asked: “If Miss Kilgallen knew anything, surely as a journalist wouldn’t she have left some notes?” This is a legitimate question. Possibly Mrs. Smith was the trusted friend with the notes. No one will ever know now.

I have discovered that Mrs. Earl E. T. Smith was Florence Smith who was a journalist who was generally known as Florence Pritchett. What is really amazing about this is that JFK was involved in an affair with Pritchett that lasted from 1944 up until his death in 1963.

In June, 1957, President Dwight Eisenhower appointed her husband, Earl Smith as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Cuba. FBI files reveal that over the next two years John F. Kennedy made more than a dozen visits to Cuba in order to meet Florence. Florence also met Kennedy in Miami and Palm Beach, where their homes were conveniently adjoined. Earl Smith held right-wing views and later accused the CIA of helping Fidel Castro to gain power in Cuba.

I believe it is highly possible that Kilgallen got secret information about JFK’s foreign policy via Florence Pritchett/Earl Smith. For example, she wrote about the Mafia/CIA plots on Castro in the New York Journal American as early as July 1959.

In your research on Penn Jones did you discover if he identified who Mrs Earl Smith was? Did you get the chance to read Jones’ unpublished papers during your research?

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In your research on Penn Jones did you discover if he identified who Mrs Earl Smith was? Did you get the chance to read Jones’ unpublished papers during your research?

I have read them. Jones was wrong to suggest that Florence Pritchett Smith's death was suspicious. It wasn't. She and Earl had one child, a son named Earl, who has said, "My poor mother died of cancer." In the 1990s he worked for John Hancock Life Insurance at its famous Boston building.

We will never know how Dorothy Kilgallen learned in 1959 about the CIA / Mafia plots to eliminate Fidel Castro. Linking her with Florence in any way is speculation. The only author who has published a book on Kilgallen is Lee Israel, and she posted information to this forum almost three years ago. You can find it. Lee said she interviewed hundreds of people who knew Kilgallen, and none of them mentioned Florence. The two women were not close. Penn Jones never met either of them.

:up

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http://www.variety.com/article/VR111799328...d=2431&cs=1

Producer John Davis has optioned "Good Night, Dorothy Kilgallen," a proposal for an expose book by Paul Alexander that ties the syndicated columnist’s death to her investigation of the JFK assassination. Book sold to St. Martin's Press.

Davis will produce through his Davis Entertainment banner and will bring the project to Fox through his first-look deal.

Alexander, whose previous books include "Boulevard of Broken Dreams: The Life of James Dean," will script a fictionalized conspiracy film supervised by screenwriter Shane Salerno.

Salerno and Derek Dauchy will be exec producers.

In her syndicated column Kilgallencovered subjects ranging from Hollywood to Sam Sheppard’s murder trial. After the death of President John F. Kennedy, whom she considered a friend, Kilgallen became obsessed with proving a conspiracy and landed the only interview with Jack Ruby, the killer of assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, for a book called "Murder One." Alexander’s tome asserts that Kilgallen died mysteriously after turning in her book, with the chapters about JFK disappearing.

"The striking thing about Paul’s book proposal was that Dorothy wasn’t reporting on the death of a president as much as she was investigating the murder of a friend," Salerno said. Salerno recently set up the spec "Reckless" with Davis and Fox and preemptively sold Fox his spec "The Doomsday Protocol."

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Kathy, that was answered in the quote box in post # 31.

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