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Rectangular and round punch codes on the Hidell money order explained.

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even today bud, to some cross country location Fedex overnight service is in reality 2 day service. Cross country 1st class *air mail* service circa 1963 was at least 3 day service.

So the man who told Groucho Marx on the "You Bet Your Life" radio show in January 1952 that a letter could be delivered overnight from California to New York was just lying through his teeth. Is that what you think, DGH?

Maybe "they" were already starting to frame Oswald way back in '52, huh?

I love it! Groucho and DVP. The dynamic DUO! Boy, those cartoon guys at ROKC would have a field day with you and Groucho thrashing out the fifty + year farce called the WCR...

Perhaps Captain America (Alan Dulles) played a role in WC deliberations too, ya think, eh?

FWIW hon, Kennedy certainly did "bet his life," didn't he toots? And the best you can post to the International Ed Forum is foolish nonsense about "overnight mail," which, btw, in '52 at the very best, took 72 hours from west coast drop box to east coast mailbox... Get a grip laddie.

Perhaps it time for you to get back to what originally brought you to the internet, old time radio and tv programs, remember those good old days when you were a conspiracy theorist? Dave Stager, Dave Von Pein and Dave Reitzes sitting at the feet of your worship .John and Melvin? <sigh>

Edited by David G. Healy
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Have these marks been discussed?


Is the curly j at the circle an alignment mark to align a printer?

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What feature of the M.O. allows it to be aligned face up or face down in a sorter?

The M.O. illustration in the documentation in Armstrong's archive shows a corner removed that would then allow the card to be orientated. The extant M.O. appears rectangular and no corners are missing.

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What feature of the M.O. allows it to be aligned face up or face down in a sorter?

The M.O. illustration in the documentation in Armstrong's archive shows a corner removed that would then allow the card to be orientated. The extant M.O. appears rectangular and no corners are missing.

I was gonna bring this up in a day or two. (Because the forum is wearing me out.) But here goes...


Nice catch, Chris!

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  • 3 months later...

It has been brought it to my attention that I haven't really explained how the holes punched in the Hidell money order are to be decoded. Yes, I see that I am guilty of that. So I will explain it here. It's not difficult.

But first, for the record, the topic was first brought up on this forum when David Von Pein proclaimed that the "money order wasn't cashed" theory had been debunked. He and other LNers came to that conclusion when they notice that one Brian Castle had theorized that the holes were punched during the processing of the money order. They assumed that the holes were being used as a substitute for traditional bank stamps, and that this explained the absence of those stamps on the reverse side of the money order. As I will show, they are wrong.

Following are the front and rear sides of the money order:


You can see the tiny rectangular holes near the left end of the front of the money order.

I drew straight lines through the holes, both vertical and horizontal, so it would be easy to keep them in order. And also so I could label the meaning of each row, as you will see in a moment. Here is the reverse side of the money order with my lines added:


You can see that I have numbered some of the horizontal lines 0 through 9. A popular punch code used at the time was the Hollerith code, widely used for computer punch cards. Because the Hollerith code uses twelve rows, not ten, I had to add two extra lines, which labeled X and Y.

It's easy to read the code once that the rows are labeled. The first number is marked by the right-most vertical line. What you do is see where that line crosses over a hole. Unfortunately it's difficult to see that particular hole. It's also difficult to see the hole crossed over by the second vertical line from the right. For now, just trust me that these first two lines cross their respective holes at horizontal line 2. So the first two numbers are decoded as 22.

The next hole is easy to see. Look at the third vertical line from the right and see where it crosses its hole. It crosses at horizontal line 0. So that digit is 0, and so far we have 220.

Repeat this procedure for the other seven vertical lines to get the seven remaining digits. The fourth hole is also difficult to see. It is at horizontal line 2. With that we have 2202. The remaining holes are all easy to see. The fifth line from the right crosses its hole at horizontal line 1, so we have 22021. Continuing on, we end up with the following ten digits:

2202130462 or 2,202,130,462

This is precisely the same number that is printed on the front of the the money order. It is the money order number, the equivalent to a check number.

LNers may want people to believe that these holes are punched when the check is being processed, and that this somehow signifies that the money order was actually cashed. But that is simply not true. The holes merely duplicate what is printed on the front of the money order and has nothing to do with clearing of the check. The holes are punched at the same time the money order number is printed, before the money orders are even issued to post offices.

You may have noticed two more vertical lines located further to the left. The first crosses two holes and this pair represents the letter P. The last (leftmost) line crosses the horizontal line labeled "Y" and this represents the "-" (dash) mark. (You need to have access to a Hollerith code table to see these.) I haven't spent any time trying to figure out the meaning of these.

Finally, there are five round holes on the opposite half of the money order. At first I ignored them since five digits isn't sufficient to represent a number on a bank stamp. I thought perhaps they represented a post office routing number. But I have since spent more time on them and discovered that they actually represent the number 02145, which obviously refers to the $21.45 value of the of the money order.

So in summary, the ten rectangular holes represent the money order number and are punched when the money order is manufactured. The round holes represent the price/value of the money order and are punched when the money order is purchased.

I like to use the Hidell money order against LNers because it is extremely reliable evidence that Oswald was being framed as the shooter of the assassin's rifle. It's impossible for LNers to explain away how bank stamps can be missing from a canceled money order. But of course they will try.


The most unimpeachable evidence for the authentication of this PMO is the concurrently filled out and stamped stub which matches it and is retained in a book showing PMO #'s prior to and after the one used as evidence.

This was not only not offered, but has never been found. Like the Order for the rifle in the first place, only that order exists and only this PMO exists from a continuous string of numbered documents.

So even before we bother with the bona fides of this document and the convoluted/tortured way it comes into being, it has no connection to its origin - the book of PMO's.

If no other "cancelled thru the FRB system" PMO in that book can be found - how can it be said our PMO is authentic?

What follows must, by definition, be activities designed to allow this PMO to be created, correctly... Please let's not be so foolish as to believe the USPS was not helping our intelligence agencies create "documents" which would check out as "authentic" within their own little world... since other orders or similar SOP are never reviewed - authenticity is a self fulfilling feature of the Evidence.

Harry Holmes' theater of the absurd is the basis for this nonsense.

So I see this as the simple acquisition of

  • the Klein's stamp (check - Friday night),
  • the Dallas GPO Stamp (check - Holmes is at the GPO),
  • a Blank book of PMO's (check - they're at the GPO),
  • access to the machinery of the USPS (check),
  • 1st Bank of Chicago processing stamp (ooops - Wilmouth not only didn't give that up but tells us the deposit info he saw does not match the Waldman exhibit),
  • time and confusion (check)
  • cooperation of USPS expert in the processes and procedures for PMO's. (check - DVP links to Marks' bona fides via Scully)
  • agencies cooperating to generate the evidence required to keep us from WWIII (check - FBI USPS USSS all create intertwined reports that double speak their way thru this critical evidence)
  • someone to retrieve the PMO who would also disappear into history (check Robert Jackson - Richard Jackson of the NOLA USPS testifies as does Robert Jackson a Dallas News photographer... just not the man charged with entering the Archives at 9pm on a Sat and acquire the one item which connects the payment and delivery of the assassination rifle to the accused.. in TX where he could have paid cash for any weapon he wanted - uh, right)

All the debating in the world will not produce the one item that MUST EXIST for this item to be real.

Not only do we not have it, but it and the book were never offered as evidence at any time - nor can I seem to find a question put to Holmes related to the PMO book, stub

Harry Holmes:

In those days, postal money orders were issued in a book of paper money orders which, when you bought a money order, the clerk put the amount and the date, then you had a template that you put on that tore off at $10, not more than $15, or whatever. The clerk then ripped that off and handed it to the customer while the stub was retained which matched the money. All this was to be filled out in your own handwriting.

It wasn’t ten minutes that they hollered, “Eureka!” They had the stub!

I called it in immediately to the chief on the open line to Washington and said, “I’ve got the money order number that Oswald used to buy this gun, and according to the records up there, they had shipped it to this box that he had rented at the main office in Dallas at that time, which he later closed and opened another at the Terminal Annex because it was closer to the School Book Depository.”

So he said, “Well, we’ll run that right through the correlators or whatever they do up there.” In about an hour, he called back and said, “We’ve got it! Both the FBI and the Secret Service labs have positively identified the handwriting as being that of Oswald.”

Mr. BELIN. So what happened?

Mr. HOLMES. So in about an hour Postal Inspector McGee of Chicago called back then and said that the correct amount was $21.95---$21.45 excuse me, and that the shipping---they had received this money order on March the 13th, whereas I had been looking for March 20.

So then I passed the information to the men who were looking for this money order stub to show which would designate, which would show the number of the money order, and that is the only way you could find one.

I relayed this information to them and told them to start on the 13th because he could have bought it that morning and that he could have gotten it by airmail that afternoon, so they began to search and within 10 minutes they called back and said they had a money order in that amount issued on, I don't know that I show, but it was that money order in an amount issued at the main post office, which is the same place as this post office box was at that time, box 2915 and the money order had been issued early on the morning of March the 12th, 1963.

Mr. HOLMES. I gave that information to my boss by telephone. He called Washington immediately. Of course this information included the money order number. This number was transmitted by phone to the chief inspector in Washington, who immediately got the money order center at Washington to begin a search, which they use IBM equipment to kick out this money order, and about 7 o'clock Saturday night they did kick out the original money order and sent it over by, so they said, by special conveyance to the Secret Service, chief of Secret Service at Washington now, and it turned out, so they said, to be the correct money order. I asked them by phone as to what it said on it, and it said it had been issued to A. J. Hidell, which to me then was the tip that I had the correct money order. Up to then I didn't know whether I had the correct money order or not.

To round it out - the EXPERT who was so instrumental with one Mail order weapon appears to know his limitations and steers clear of the US MAIL ORDERED pistol...

Mr. BELIN. Is there anything else that we haven't covered that you think might be helpful here and you think we ought to talk about, Mr. Holmes? Have you found now in your records the money order number that was involved in the purchase of the rifle?

Mr. HOLMES. The money order number that was found in Washington and matched the original money order was number 2--202--130--462, issued at the main office in Dallas, Tex., on March 12, 1963, in the amount of $21.45.

Mr. BELIN. Do you have any information on the money order for the pistol or how the pistol was paid for, or was there a money order?

Mr. HOLMES. No, sir.

Edited by David Josephs
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  • 3 years later...
On 11/11/2015 at 8:41 AM, Hank Sienzant said:

At the 10am entry I see this:

"FBI SA Gale Johnson, James Hanlon and Phillip Wanerus supposedly

interview Wilmouth - VP 1st National Chicago. Appears to only be

ONE $21.45 Money Order yet Wilmouth says the original PMO would

go to the Fed Reserve of Chicago on Monday the 18th of March."

Nothing about a bank stamp being applied to the back of the PO Money Order.

Where do I see the support for the claim that a bank stamp needs to be applied?

As I said above, it appears to be only an assumption that personal checks and money orders were handled by banks in 1963 in the precise same way, although they are completely different financial instruments.

"Damage Control" is another group entirely. I'm part of the "Your Assumptions are not Evidence" team. :D


From the "My Evidence is not an assumption" files....  in 1963 when a delivery was too big for a PO Box, they would leave a note in the PO Box so the patron could retrieve their package.
Not only did no one remember this 5' carton pick-up, there was no note.  In fact, as you will see, the carton SHOULD have been returned.



Furthermore, when a RIFLE is shipped in the US Postal System in 1963 there were RULES involved:




One has to wonder why the FBI/USPS/CIA/ATF.... was not CONTEMPORANEOUSLY AWARE of a 5' carton marked FIREARMS delivered to Lee Oswald's PO Box in a name which was not to receive mail.

Here is a list of FBI docs from the time Oswald supposedly got the rifle and Pistol until Oct 22....  and not one mention of the man who picked up a 5' RIFLE CARTON and somehow got it home to Magazine.


who ALSO went to REA to get his pistol without leaving a trace... and without notice in his PO Box that the pistol had even arrived....  Like the USPS Form, 

Oswald would have gotten one of these in his PO Box to come get his delivery....

Yet all that is a moot point once you understand both the pistol and rifle used to frame Oswald came from Century International Arms (CIA)
with help from InterArmco....  The 2 main suppliers of surplus WWII weapons in the USA.  Crescent was tiny compared to these two...








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