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Motorcade Route


Jim Root
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Route of Death

Speculating about how the motorcade route was selected has intrigued me for years.

It seems obvious to me that the route chosen would have been a major decision for any potential conspirators to have considered while finalizing their plans to carry out an assassination of the President in Dallas. It is my belief that but for this single decision (the actual motorcade route) the events of November 22, 1963 would not have happened (at least would not have happened in the manner and sequence that they did in fact occur).

Could the results of the route planning have pre-determined the outcome? If so a conspiracy would exist only if the conspirators would have the pre-determined outcome in their minds while the planning was taking shape.

First: Was information available to potential conspirators that could have influenced the route planning?

With the work of Jefferson Morley and John Newman we have learned that at least one note sent by FBI agent James Hosty about the doings of Lee Harvey Oswald in the months preceding the assassination was forwarded to the office of Richard Helms within days after being sent. Although Hosty’s November 4th note, which provided the crucial information about where Oswald was working (TSBD) was never given a Warren Commission Exhibit number we can logically assume that this Hosty note made it to the same office as his previous note (one which Morley and Newman were able to track).

The planning for the motorcade was not completed until days after the Hosty note was sent and possibly not until the information about where Oswald was working was in the hands of Richard Helms, the CIA and perhaps others who would have access to this information for whatever potential reasons that we may speculate upon.

Second: Looking at a map of the motorcade approach (Commission Exhibit No. 2113) I noticed several interesting facts:

1. The turn from Houston to Elm is approx. 135 degrees rather than the normal 90 degree left hand turn.

2. If one wished to enter the Stemmons Freeway from Commerce St. (from either direction) one would be routed to Elm via Lamar not Houston (four blocks before Houston).

3. Lamar offers access to the Stemmons Freeway via Continental Ave. without the security risk of the Triple Underpass.

4. According to Commission Exhibit No. 2113 access to Elm could have been gained by a right turn then left onto Elm via anyone of these roads: Lamar, Austin, Market or Record.

5. The Houston to Elm route provides a view of both the approach (along Houston) of the motorcade and (after the 135 degree turn) the departure of the motorcade from a person (or sniper) on the upper floors of the TSBD Building

6. The (approx.) 135 degree turn onto Elm requires the motorcade to slow considerably to accomplish this turn.

7. Once the turn onto Elm is accomplished there is no escape route for the Presidential Limousine until after it has passed below the Triple Underpass and entered the Stemmons Freeway.

8. Any shot fired while the motorcade was approaching Elm from Houston would have allowed two possible escape routes for the Presidential Limousine(continuing down Houston or turning right onto Elm (instead of left) making this shot a less favorable shot decision for a person in the TSBD Building.

9. The only building on the complete motorcade route that has a view of both the approach of the motorcade and then views its departure is the TSBD.

10. “If” conspirators existed who wanted to give Lee Harvey Oswald the most favorable opportunity possible to assassinate the President they could not have selected a better motorcade route.

11. Information was available to any potential conspirators (via the Hosty note) of where Oswald was working.

11. As I have demonstrated there were alternative routes, which from a security approach, were safer to access the Stemmons Freeway, from Main St. (via Lamar would not have subjected the President to the threat that the Triple Underpass provided) and there were alternative ways to access Elm (rather than negotiating a 135 degree turn in front of the TSBD) rather than from Houston (Record, Market, Austin or Lamar).

Third: It is my belief that the conspirators could not have provided Lee Harvey Oswald with a better opportunity to assassinate the President.

Fourth: They (the conspirators) would have to have reason to believe that Oswald would take “the shot.”

Jim Root

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Jim...the probable order of events...

1. Decision to kill JFK in Dallas

2. Selection of Dealey Plaza best kill site

3. Route of motorcade determined

4. Placement of patsy in kill site location

5. Logistics in place

6. Event goes as planned

The route had already been determined before LHO

was placed in the TSBD.

The patsy had been selected by the time the backyard

photos were manufactured.

Finalized plans were approved when Dulles visited the

LBJ ranch before the assassination, and LBJ attended

the Murchison party the night before.

Jack

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Main Street through Dealey Plaza was part of the traditional parade route in Dallas. The only question was whether the motorcade would be going east or west, which depended on which luncheon site was chosen. This was not known until the Trade Mart site was chosen, under pressure from John Connally. This meant the motorcade would go west, and the Elm Street detour was the most practical way to reach the Trade Mart. But if the motorcade had gone east to another site, shooters with a patsy in place could have shot JFK from a building on the south side of the plaza just as easily as he was shot from the north side. The only difference is, we would be talking today about some disgruntled postal worker instead of Lee Harvey Oswald as the lone nut who did it.

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Ron

Always appreciate your comments.

I understand that Main St. was the traditional parade route in Dallas.

My statement deals with access to Elm St. from Main Street. I think that all would agree that a right then a left would have to be made at some point in order to leave Main and gain access to Elm.

Would you agree that the 135 degree turn from Houston to Elm was an unusual turn?

Did this turn require a slower approach than a traditional 90 degree left turn?

Were there alternative ways to access Elm from Main?

Would the selected route provide a view of the motorcades approach, turn and departure from the intersection of Houston and Elm to a potential assassin in the TSBD?

And what about the man who designed the route, Winston G. Lawson. Can he be associated with any of my potential conspirators?

Jim

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Main Street through Dealey Plaza was part of the traditional parade route in Dallas. The only question was whether the motorcade would be going east or west, which depended on which luncheon site was chosen. This was not known until the Trade Mart site was chosen, under pressure from John Connally. This meant the motorcade would go west, and the Elm Street detour was the most practical way to reach the Trade Mart. But if the motorcade had gone east to another site, shooters with a patsy in place could have shot JFK from a building on the south side of the plaza just as easily as he was shot from the north side. The only difference is, we would be talking today about some disgruntled postal worker instead of Lee Harvey Oswald as the lone nut who did it.

Ron...there was NO TRADITIONAL PARADE ROUTE THROUGH DOWNTOWN. To the contrary

most parades went east on Commerce, not west on Main. I cannot recall ANY parade

using Main Street. This parade was unique as far as I know in using Main Street. If I am

wrong, please cite other parades which used this route.

A motorcade from Love Field through downtown USING ELM AS A FREEWAY ENTRY should

have used Elm Street all the way, avoiding the turns, and speeding up after crossing Houston.

Contrary to what you describe, a DOWNTOWN motorcade going east to Fair Park would have to

go west before going east; a likely route would have been Elm west to Houston south to Commerce

and east to Fair Park. So your description is not correct. A route from Love Field to Fair Park

would not go through the main part of downtown.

Jack

Edited by Jack White
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Jack

I believe the Warren Commission Report sites a Presidential visit by Roosevelt using the Main St. motorcade route and then refers to it as the 'Traditional" route.

Jim Root

I do not understand how a SINGLE PARADE IN 1936 makes Main Street THE TRADITIONAL ROUTE,

just because the WC says so.

Jack

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Jack

I will respectfully disagree with you on the probable order of events

I might suggest:

1. Decision to kill JFK

2. Search for potential assassins/patsys

3. FBI begins to follow Lee Harvey Oswald’s movements after the attempted assassination of Major General Edwin Anderson Walker. (Associated or not this did in fact occur and the movements of LHO were provided to Richard Helms of the CIA).

4. Oswald gets a job at the TSBD

5. Conspirators become aware of this fact and have reason to believe that Oswald attempted the assassination of General Walker and they may even know why Oswald attempted to assassinate Walker. They are also aware or believe that Oswald has a weapon capable of accomplishing the deed and that he has a motive that very few others would understand.

6. John F. Kennedy has a trip planned to Dallas.

6. Conspirators plan for the cover-up (lone nut scenario) and multiple ways to eliminate Oswald if he escapes or is arrested. Providing Oswald with the contact name of John Hurt would assure the cooperation of US intelligence in the assassination of Lee Harvey Oswald after the assassination.

7. Route is planned providing the greatest opportunity for Oswald to accomplish the deed.

8. Conspirators wait, understanding that they have provided a person who has a motive and a weapon the means and opportunity to accomplish their desired outcome, the assassination of the President of the United States.

Jim Root

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First: Was information available to potential conspirators that could have influenced the route planning?

With the work of Jefferson Morley and John Newman we have learned that at least one note sent by FBI agent James Hosty about the doings of Lee Harvey Oswald in the months preceding the assassination was forwarded to the office of Richard Helms within days after being sent. Although Hosty’s November 4th note, which provided the crucial information about where Oswald was working (TSBD) was never given a Warren Commission Exhibit number we can logically assume that this Hosty note made it to the same office as his previous note (one which Morley and Newman were able to track).

:blink:

Hey, Jim. No one appreciates all the hard work that goes into the amazing amount of research around this place more than I—in with which, of course, are all manner of little whirlpools and eddies that don't ever quite seem to get into the flow of the stream: just sort of spin 'round and 'round, collecting a lot of flotsam and jetsam. Most I just note with idle curiousity, but some seem to be of log jam proportions.

With all due respect to those busy little Morley and Newman beavers, it seems that someone would have gotten around to noticing that Buell Wesley Frazier was hired at the Texas School Book Depository on the CIA's favorite day: Friday the 13th. Yes, it was on Friday, 13 September 1963. If they had scratched that down on a napkin, they might have gotten around to correlating it to the fact that this was just about one week after a person or persons unknown at the White House changed the itenerary for John F. Kennedy's trip to Texas, extending it from 21 November through 22 November—"to allow for a motorcade in Dallas."

Now why, some may wonder, would the hiring of Buell Wesley Frazier at the TSBD one week after this significant change of plans be napkin-worthy.

Perhaps you know. Perhaps you'd now like to take this little matched pair of data and plug them into your scenario here and see where it goes downstream. Perhaps not. We'll see.

Ashton

Edited by Ashton Gray
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I do not understand how a SINGLE PARADE IN 1936 makes Main Street THE TRADITIONAL ROUTE,

just because the WC says so.

Mr. SORRELS - Main Street is right through the heart of the city. It is the best choice for parades. It gives an opportunity for more people--tall buildings on the side of the street--and it is almost invariably---every parade that is had is on Main Street. The one in 1936, when President Roosevelt was there, was the same route in reverse, so to speak.

We came up on Houston Street from Union Station, turned right on Main Street, right on Main Street, through the very heart of the town.

Mr. STERN - And went right past the School Book Depository then on Houston Street?

Mr. SORRELS - Just within I block of it, because we were coming, in that instance, from the Union Station, which is south of the Depository, to Main Street, right on Main Street, which is just 1 block from the Depository.

Mr. STERN - I take it, then, that once you were told there was to be a motorcade, and approximately 45 minutes was allotted to the motorcade, this route pretty well mapped itself, apart from the question whether to use the expressway or Harwood Street to get on to Main Street, is that right?

Mr. SORRELS - Yes, sir; that is right.

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