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Dorothy Kilgallen Said Many Things About Marilyn Monroe -- Consult Microfilm


David Yarnell
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Has anyone consulted the New York Journal American on microfilm to read everything Dorothy Kilgallen wrote about Marilyn Monroe's death ?

If you're relying on Lee Israel's book as your only source, then you're missing a lot. Lee cites just two Kilgallen columns: those published on August 3, 1962 and August 8, 1962. Lee leaves out a few words from August 3 and several paragraphs from August 8.

Lee Israel skips Kilgallen's entire column from August 16. Here's an excerpt from that day:

"Why did Mrs. Murray call the doctor in the middle of the night just because Marilyn didn't answer a knock on her bedroom door ? If she were just trying to get to sleep and took the overdose of barbiturates accidentally, then she could have slept through an explosion. Mrs. Murray and Dr. Greenson knew that. Isn't there some other reason Mrs. Murray decided to call the doctor ?

"Also, if Mrs. Murray was really a housekeeper, why was Marilyn's room such a mess ? It was a small house and should have been easy to keep tidy."

In this column, Kilgallen says her readers have been sending her letters asking here these and other questions.

In another column from mid August 1962, Kilgallen asks why the Los Angeles police have failed to ask police in Lake Tahoe, Nevada about a suicide attempt Marilyn allegedly made there one week before she died. More than twenty years later, Anthony Summers said in "Goddess" that Marilyn did, indeed visit the Cal Neva Lodge in Lake Tahoe a week before she died. He echoed Kilgallen's assertion that Marilyn overdosed on pills there and her stomach was pumped.

To learn more about Kilgallen's take on Monroe, please visit a microfilm collection in the New York City area or the University of Texas at Austin or the Library of Congress. I have heard that a few newspapers in the U. K. and Australia reprinted Dorothy Kilgallen's column, but they could have deleted the stuff that originated in New York. Only the New York Journal American published the entire Voice of Broadway.

Somebody must consult the Journal American on microfilm. I can't keep doing this again and again.

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Hello David,

Anxious to hear if anyone has checked your suggested source.

I would think Tony Summers would have known and checked.

Are you familiar with the so-called "Spirgilio document," purportedly a survillance report on a tapped phone that ties Kilgallen, Monroe, UFO aliens and the plots to kill Castro?

Also just came across a curiosity - in checking out the basic backgrounds of those mentioned in the articles in the DMN Robert Howard posted on the D.H. Byrd thread, - among those who also hunted at the Barron's African safriland was Robert Ruark. A prolific adventure writer, adventurer and hunter, in doing a Google it appeared that at one point Dorothy Kilgallen fell asleep while reading one of Ruark's books.

Now I don't know what that means, other than Kilgallen didn't find Ruark's book very exciting, and it seems they all run in the same social circles. I just can't imagine Dorothy Kilgallen on a hunting expedition without an umbrella.

BK

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among those who also hunted at the Barron's African safriland was Robert Ruark. A prolific adventure writer, adventurer and hunter, in doing a Google it appeared that at one point Dorothy Kilgallen fell asleep while reading one of Ruark's books.

Now I don't know what that means, other than Kilgallen didn't find Ruark's book very exciting, and it seems they all run in the same social circles. I just can't imagine Dorothy Kilgallen on a hunting expedition without an umbrella.

BK

A few bits and pieces on Ruark:

Extract from:

Barry Ulanov, “Is Sinatra Finished?,” Modern Television & Radio, December 1948

Frank's troubles all started sometime in 1946--just ten years after his memorable visit to the Bing Crosby movie that decided him on his career of moon and swoon. Sinatra happens to be a good-natured guy; in fact, the gold in his heart often seems to make him slightly soft in the head.

Anyway, "The Voice" was persuaded by certain political salesmen to identify himself with "Causes" that would (so he was convinced) help mankind. These "Causes" would help the underdog they said--and also help the downtrodden masses. He was shown how to do his bit by attending certain Hollywood rallies, by collecting funds for folks unable to help themselves, by making speeches in ballrooms and ballparks. Frankie went all out in these activities. He's not the kind to spare himself when he firmly believes he is on the side of right. The only trouble was that Frank had been persuaded to tie himself up with "transmission belts." These are outfits (sometimes called "innocent organizations") that use people like Sinatra, who more often leap with good heart than hard head. Unfortunately, the political color of this cause happens to be a deep shade of red!

Sinatra's disillusion with his "innocent" activities, plus the bad publicity it resulted in, was followed quickly by a nasty experience that was headlined on thousands of newspapers. That was the smear campaign resulting from Frankie's famous 1947 handshake, in Cuba, with the notorious gangster, Lucky Luciano.

It was just plain hard luck for "The Voice" that Robert Ruark, a widely-syndicated columnist, happened to be in Cuba at the time. It seems that the unsavory Luciano was a Sinatra fan, and somehow managed to arrange a meeting with the singer. It also happens that Robert Ruark was nearby when the historical handshake took place . . . Thus started the one-week newspaper sensation that boosted some newspaper circulation sky-high, but did nothing to boost Frankie's reputation. Especially coming on the heels of Frankie's innocent association with pro-Soviet causes. And so another dent was added to the reputation of "The Voice."

Now the more a guy hits the front pages, the more the gossip columnists, scandal-mongers and ill-wishers get to work on him. Newspapermen just like to write about other people in trouble. So the disparaging remarks about Frankie's "caverns in his cheeks," his "English Droop figure" and his bevy of swooning, screaming bobby-sox fans increased. There was no romantic scandal to sock Frankie with in the press--so the careless speech here, and the casual handshake there, provided grist for the gossip mill.

Full article: http://www.jazzsingers.com/IsSinatraFinished/

Two further Ruark pieces of interest:

Robert Ruark, “The Spy Business Is Quite Unnecessary,” The New York World-Telegram & Sun, August 1957 (?), p.?, on the Abel case:

“What in the name of the Kremlin, Abel could have found out in America I cannot say. We publish so much of our so-called top secrets in papers and magazines that often a spy can ring for room service and ask for the coffee and the latest printed information on what’s cooking. A lot of this microfilm nonsense is for the moving pictures.

Some spies are little sillier than bird-watchers. They see a bird, they know it’s a bird, and they send off a message saying: ‘Saw tufted titmouse today in Connecticut.’ This is a big deal for some bum with a pair of spyglasses. He might have well have said: ‘Saw English sparrow following horse.’

I have known in my time a mess of spies. Mostly, they never bought a drink, and asked questions like, ‘Where is the Sixth Fleet?’ when the Sixth Fleet was anchored in full view. Tangier used to be full of spies, and most of them couldn’t find the way home if they had the cab fare.

A spy can be useful in wartime, if you want a bridge blown up, or some people throttled. A spy can be useful in peacetime, if you want to assassinate someone or explode a bridge. But apart from the repulsive physical aspects of espionage, you might as well leave it, because there is not much information a paper-stealer can swipe that’s worth stealing…”

[source: Joachim Joesten. They Call It Intelligence: Spies and Spy Techniques Since World War II (NY: Abelard-Schuman, 1963), p.13.]

James Tracy Crown. The Kennedy Literature: A Bibliographical Essay on John F. Kennedy (London: University of London Press, 1968), p.160:

Writing of Sylvan Fox’s Unanswered Questions About President Kennedy’s Murder (NY: Award Books, 1965), Crown writes: “The question about the official version of the Dallas slaying raised by Fox’s widely distributed paperback seem to have spurred a number of other skeptics to continue their research. Fox’s critique may have been the result of his job as city editor of the late New York World Telegram & Sun, a paper where the deep press room doubts about the government version of Dallas kept popping into print much more frequently than in other papers. See Richard Starnes’ “Warren Report Is Big, But So Is Loophole,” November 25, 1964, and Robert Ruark’s “Puzzled By Warren Report,” October 9, 1964. Ruark, who knew his guns, wrote: “I have read the Report scrupulously several times and the ballistics end of it makes no sense.”

Colleague Richard Starnes’s tribute to Richard Ruark, who died in 1965, is to be found here: “One of the Rare Ones,” Washington Daily News, July 2, 1965, p.25

Paul

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Paul,

Many thanks for that interesting info.

In the course of your research on Scripps-Howard, have you came accross any obvious Mockingbird connections?

BK

Anybody wanting to delve into the Sinatra labyrinth of information HAS to be aware of this link.....url link that is,

http://foia.fbi.gov/foiaindex/sinatra.htm

Not to divert the thread but ....I have always wanted to know the serial # of the Colt .38 Smith & Wesson, used in the kidnapping of Frank Sinatra Jr....anybody have any ideas, I have checked some of the links on the link I posted, so far no luck....Also there was a famous female atty, who got caught up in the controversies surrounding

Frank Sinatra Jr's kidnapping named Glady's Towles Root, I would wager she would know volumes about the subject under discussion here, BTW she also had some type of legal relationship with Robert Clayton Buick.....There seems to be hints of "a circle of everybody knows somebody..." back then, or maybe I just read about the same people over and over....lol

See

http://www.crimelibrary.com/notorious_murd...cs/root/12.html

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Paul,

Many thanks for that interesting info.

In the course of your research on Scripps-Howard, have you came accross any obvious Mockingbird connections?

BK

Bill,

Yes, but...My hard-drive was Trojaned a month ago, and I lost both the word document and email containing Dick Starnes' recollection of a particularly revealing incident.

To keep it brief; and from memory.

In early 1960, Starnes resigned as managing editor of the NYWT&S. In the late summer of that year, he was assigned to visit Egypt. Shortly before departure, the third in charge of the Scripps-Howard Washington bureau called him into his office for a chat. Starnes found another figure, unknown to him, present. The stranger turned out to be Agency, and the offer was for the Congo, not Cairo.

Present in the Congo for S-H at that time was D'Lynn Waldron: she had proved very helpful to Lumumba, carrying handwritten messages across the border for transmission to Washington. (Lumumba was anxious to establish good relations with Eisenhower and had high hopes that he could correct the myths and rumours surrounding his intentions.) The plan appears to have been to terminate Waldron's tenure, and replace with a tame hack who would run pieces on cannibalism and chaos.

Starnes declined the Agency man's offer. The latter turned instead to the unfortunate Henry N. Taylor, who was ex-ONI. No sooner had he arrived in the Congo than he was killed in a clash between government troops and a tribe backed by the Agency.

Much of the datings etc for this sequence can be established from Waldron's fascinating website.

I hesitate to name the S-H exec who served as the Agency's point man within the group because I can't remember it exactly. I keep thinking of the name "Olin Russell," but don't hold me to that as it has temporarily gone from both memory and computer.

Paul

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  • 4 weeks later...
Hello David,

Anxious to hear if anyone has checked your suggested source.

I would think Tony Summers would have known and checked.

He didn't. He relied totally on Lee Israel's book.

Are you familiar with the so-called "Spirgilio document," purportedly a survillance report on a tapped phone that ties Kilgallen, Monroe, UFO aliens and the plots to kill Castro?

Yes, and it's a fraud. Howard Rothberg, alive today in the Miami area, says he never told Kilgallen anything about UFO's. He only told her about Marilyn sleeping with Bobby.

Also just came across a curiosity - in checking out the basic backgrounds of those mentioned in the articles in the DMN Robert Howard posted on the D.H. Byrd thread, - among those who also hunted at the Barron's African safriland was Robert Ruark. A prolific adventure writer, adventurer and hunter, in doing a Google it appeared that at one point Dorothy Kilgallen fell asleep while reading one of Ruark's books.

Now I don't know what that means, other than Kilgallen didn't find Ruark's book very exciting,

Several people saw her lying dead holding Ruark's book "The Honey Badger" in her hand. The book was published posthumously. Kilgallen said in her newspaper column shortly before she died that the protagonist of the book dies in the end.

and it seems they all run in the same social circles. I just can't imagine Dorothy Kilgallen on a hunting expedition without an umbrella.

BK

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