Station wagon that carried Oswald’s gun up for auction

Ruth Paine's 1955 Bel-Air Station Wagon

Ruth Paine’s 1955 Bel-Air station wagon (credit: Jason Whitely, WFAA)

“What’s unique about this is this vehicle actually transported his rifle back to Dallas from where Oswald had been living in New Orleans,” said Farris Rookstool III, a JFK historian.

via Station wagon tied to JFK assassination up for auction.

36 comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    What’s interesting is that this is the car that Oswald allegedly referenced when prompted by Deputy Sherriff Roger Craig while being interrogated as to why he left Dealey Plaza in the immediate aftermath of the assassination in a “green Rambler station wagon.”

    http://spot.acorn.net/jfkplace/09/fp.back_issues/01st_Issue/rcraig.html

  2. ed connor says:

    So, if LHO couldn’t drive in October, 1963, how did he shoot at General Walker that April, and how did he get home with his 6.5 Mannlicher Carcano rifle? Bus? Taxi? Long walk?
    Of course, we only know of the Walker allegation because of one witness- Mrs. Oswald – who was in the care of Ruth Paine- a known CIA asset.
    The whole case reeks of intelligence involvement.

    • Bogman says:

      Oswald the committed communist never spent a minute in the presence of an American communist. In fact, most of his time was spent in the company of govt- connected folks. Amazing, ain’t it? What a ‘mystery’…

    • Ronnie Wayne says:

      Marina was in the care of the Secret Service/CIA/FBI/Hugh Aynesworth after the assassination. Ensconced in the Six Flags Inn (?). In Arlington where my cousin went on her honeymoon years later. Owned by the Wynne’s of Dallas oil and real estate fame.

    • max says:

      The story here from Marina was that, although Lee was very disappointed that he missed in trying to assassinate Walker, he bragged about the fact that he wasn’t driving and the dumb cops couldn’t figure this out. They were looking for someone with a car and he did it without a car. He did the surveillance first including taking photos of Walker’s house. Someone actually produced these pictures because they can be found in numerous books. He even hid the gun ahead of time. It’s up to the individual to decide whether or not this story has any merit.

      • David Regan says:

        The Walker bullet could not be positively matched to Oswald’s rifle. According to DPD records, neighbors witnessed two men at the scene of the crime, running into two cars and speeding away. Up until the assassination of President Kennedy, the Dallas Police had no suspects in the Walker shooting.

        Are we to believe Oswald somehow got his rifle across town to Walker’s residence (without a car), took the shot then buried the rifle, returned days later to retrieve it, again without being spotted by witnesses?

        Regardless, the Walker incident would have been inadmissible at trial.

        • Eric Hollingsworth says:

          Wasn’t Oswald, after allegedly firing at Walker, supposed to have hidden his rifle by some railroad tracks, which had they been near Walker’s house would have been the very same tracks that (still) run through Dealy Plaza, not so very far away? Kind of interesting, when you think about it.

          • David Regan says:

            Interesting, but how far was Walker’s residence from the apartment where Lee and Marina lived in April ’63?

          • David Regan says:

            6.4 miles according to Google Maps.(214 W Neely St to 4011 Turtle Creek Blvd)

            Marina claimed Oswald traveled by bus to Walker’s house and took the shot with his rifle. Interesting not a single witness has ever corroborated this nonsense.

      • sammy says:

        According to FBI agent, James P Hosty Jr., the bullet taken from the wall in General Walker’s home was checked by both the FBI lab and ballistic experts with the forensic lab of the New York State Police.
        ‘Even though the bullet had been partly mutilated when it was removed from the wall, and even though rifles typically change ever so slightly over time, the lab was able to find five identifying matches between Oswald’s rifle and the bullet.” The FBI, which Hosty said tended to be “overly conservative”, needed seven identifying matches and labeled it tentative. However the forensic lab in New York needed only five identifying matches and for them it was concluded to be a positive and conclusive identification.

        • David Regan says:

          Sammy, the bullet recovered from Walker’s house was too severely deformed to allow a conclusive analysis of its pattern of grooves. A spectrographic examination by Henry Heilberger of the FBI laboratory found that the lead alloy in the bullet was different from that of bullet fragments found in President Kennedy’s car
          http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?absPageId=757763

          The Walker bullet was a steel jacketed 30.06 bullet that had been fired from a rifle powerful enough to send it through brickwork. The Mannlicher-Carcano rifle was not that powerful and could only fire copper jacketed 6.5mm ammunition.http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=1140&relPageId=57

          • sammy says:

            According to FBI agent, James P Hosty, even though the bullet had been partly mutilated they were still able to get five identifying matches. And I quoted him from his own book. Two forensic labs got identical results. We aren’t referring here to the Kennedy assassination, the bullet found in the limo, but to the earlier attempt on Walker’s life. As Hosty said, the FBI was overly conservative and wanted seven matches but the forensic lab in New York said five was enough.

        • David Regan says:

          FBI Unable to Link Walker Slug, Rifle”, Dallas Morning News, December 20, 1963, sec. 1, p. 7.

          • sammy says:

            Yes, as Hosty said, the FBI called it tentative but the New York state forensic lab, giving a second opinion, said it was enough. The FBI admitted they, the FBI, tended to be overly conservative.

          • David Regan says:

            I must admit, I have not read Hosty’s book. Does he note the date of the NY State Police lab tests?

          • sammy says:

            David
            The testing of the bullet and matching it to the rifle was done after the assassination. It was Marina’s testimony that brought Oswald to their attention. Before Marina testified that it was Oswald they suspected one of Walker’s own followers. From “Assignment Oswald”; “During the investigation, the Dallas police knew I had been investigating Walker for inciting a riot in Oxford in protests over the desegregation of the University of Mississippi. The police asked me if I had any ideas on possible suspects. I had an informant who was a member of Walker’s Minutemen who told me that the Minutemen were upset with Walker for going to Oxford in the first place. Through Walker’s blunder there, he had caused himself and one of his aides to be arrested. Whenarrested, the aide had in his possession confidential documents revealing the strength of the Minutemen. My informant told me that because of all this, there was now talk among the Minutemen of replacing Walker as their leader. After I relayed all of this information to the police, the police concentrated on Walker’s own followers as suspects.”This was Hosty talking.
            Hosty talking again….”Following Marina’s revelation, the FBI lab compared the bullet recovered from General Walker’s wall to Oswald’s rifle. Even though the bullet had been partly mutilated when it was removed from the wall, and even though rifles typically change ever so slightly over time, the lab was able to find five identifying matches between Oswald’s rifle and the bullet. Because the FBI required seven matches before they could label it a conclusive match, it was only labeled “tentative”. The Warren Commission had a second forensic lab, that of the New York State Police, check the bullet. While the FBI tended to be overly conservative in such matters, the New York State Police experts required only five matches
            for a positive and conclusive identification.” This can be found on page 107 in the book, Assignment Oswald”, by James P Hosty.
            From the same source also on page 107; “Finally, one of Oswald’s acquaintances, George DeMorenschild, reported to us that a short time before the Walker shooting, he and Oswald had been discussing politics when Walker’s name came up. DeMorenschild mentioned that Walker, who was fervently anti-Castro, was just another Hitler. He told Oswald tthat Walker was a menace to society and that maybe it wouldn’t be such a bad idea if someone took a shot at him. DeMorenschild told us he had said this in the heat of passion – he hadn’t been serious about that comment. But he might have inadvertently put the idea in Oswald’ head.Hosty goes on to say more about the motive, etc. I’m sure you have heard this all before but wanted to show that I took the quotes directly from Hosty’s book. Perhaps the Dallas Morning News just didn’t bother to add that the NY State police had come in with a second opinion or the WC was again careless.

          • David Regan says:

            So Sorry, I am not sold. This is hardly conclusive evidence. According to Dallas Police Department records, the Walker bullet was a steel-jacket 30.06, obviously not the same ammunition found at the TSBD.

            Marina also claimed Oswald took a bus across town to Walker’s house (6.5 miles from their apartment); buried the rifle along train tracks near the scene and returned days later to retrieve the it. Yet, amazingly enough, Oswald the “phantom assassin” was not spotted by a single witness in all of this.

            Neighbors of Walker witnessed two men at the scene of the crime, running into two cars and speeding away. Robert Surrey, an associate of General Walker, reported that he had seen two men acting suspiciously outside Walker’s house two days before the shooting. Neither man resembled Oswald.

            The WC case against Oswald in the Walker shooting was flimsy at best and would never have been admissible in a court of law, especially Marina’s testimony.

    • max says:

      Is it at all possible that Ruth Paine was not a CIA asset? She was a Quaker and if a practicing one, wouldn’t be involved in blatant deceit.
      I also wonder why the car, like Oswald, has so many differing descriptions?

  3. Ronnie Wayne says:

    How can anyone be sure the rifle was transported in this car when there is no proof or memory of anyone picking the gun up from Oswalds post office box in the first place? That’s a big can of worms that has been discussed at length many times.

    • Eric Hollingsworth says:

      Look, if Farris Rookstool III says that what’s unique about this is this, not the vehicle that belonged to Ruth Paine, not the vehicle in which Marina Oswald rode often, not the vehicle in which LHO was learning to drive, but “vehicle actually transported his rifle back to Dallas from where Oswald had been living in New Orleans,” who are we to argue? After all, Mr. Rookstool is “the world’s leading expert on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.” He is assuredly correct and unbiased.

      • Robert Paul says:

        Eric, with all due respect to both you and Mr. Rockstool, where’s the documentation? Is his assertion covered in one of the “over 500,000 pages of classified investigative reports” that Rockstool says he read over nine(9)years with the FBI? See: http://farrisrookstool.com/ Has that file been made public or are we just supposed to trust his memory for his claim about the rifle’s travels?

        The astounding thing is that there would be over 500,000 CLASSIFIED investigative pages covering ONE (lone) nut assassin!

    • sammy says:

      What about dry-firing a rifle? I found this term in several different books including, “Oswald’s Game”. The claim is that Oswald would sit on his porch and dry-fire his rifle……”In late August he began practicing dry-firing his rifle several times a week on his front porch. He explained the practice to Marina……” I’m making the assumption that it means firing without bullets which wouldn’t really be getting any serious target practice in but would be another witness that Oswald owned a rifle.

    • Ronnie Wayne says:

      Not the Mauser. Willy I shouldn’t but since you asked, for those new to the subject…
      Oswald’s order of the rifle was processed before the payment could have cleared the bank by mail at that time of non electronic transfers. A longer rifle was shipped than ordered, with/without a mis aligned scope that had to be shimmed to be tested. The time frame for ordering the rifle is screwed up regarding the month of issue of the magazine the order form was taken from.
      Then there is no required Postal form for anybody picking up a fire arm from Oswald’s P.O. Box.
      Just from memory.

  4. Bogman says:

    Would be nice to dust for prints and see who shows up…

  5. Robert Paul says:

    It appears there were four or five white or light colored station wagons that extemporaneous witnesses described:
    1. The well known green Rambler or Nash that Officer Craig and others testified about.
    2. A white station wagon that gas station witnesses reported immediately after the Tippet murder, driven by two men that reportedly had a shotgun or rifle on its rear seat. (see: DPD radio transcript at 1:34PM 11-22-63).
    3. Carl Mather’s (Tippet’s former neighbor) station wagon that had the same plate number described in HSCA’s “Wise Allegations.” see: http://jfkassassination.net/russ/jfkinfo4/jfk12/hscalojt.htm
    4. Ruth Paine’s light blue ’55 Cheve Station wagon
    5. Also there is this curious Dallas police interview from: http://spot.acorn.net/jfkplace/09/fp.back_issues/17th_Issue/Rmblr96.FP.html
    The document is marked “URGENT,” and its text is typed in uppercase characters. It reads as follows:
    Assassination of President Kennedy, Dallas, Texas, November two two, last. AFO.
    Norman Deuel, four two two five Telegraph Avenue, Oakland, California, retired inspector of Oakland Police Department, who is considered a reliable individual, advised that on Friday last just after assassination of President he was watching TV showing first rerun photos of motorcade and distinctly heard a male voice in audio background comment about a white station wagon speeding from the area after the shooting. Deuel does not know what station he was tuned to at the time. In subsequent TV news reports Deuel heard mention made that a white station wagon with Texas license had been identified as moving Oswald when he left his residence without paying rent and moved to another. Foregoing submitted for information Dallas.
    End and ACK PLS.

    While station wagons were as common in 1963 as today’s SUV’s, one has to wonder how about the commonality of these reports. Also, did LHO just stumble on to both of his rented rooms (Marsalis and Beckley) in October 1963. Both were close by to the motorcade route. He rented both of those rooms BEFORE he had his job at the TSBD. Was he driven by someone who knew the area and the route? If so, by whom – driving what? Does anyone know?

  6. @Ed- and no one has ever come forward to say they saw Oswald on a bus carrying the gun in either direction. Even in Dallas, carrying a gun in a bus would likely have been noticed. 🙂

    As for the walker shooting, the critical evidence was Marina’s testimony which of course was not admissible in court and suspect for numerous reasons we have discussed elsewhere on this page.

  7. Ronnie Wayne says:

    If I had the money I think I’d buy this car, get it running, paint it, new upholstery. Get a custom Texas license plate that says LHO. Then drive it to the parking lot behind the grassy knoll every year on on 11/22. Just to keep attention focused on the absurdity of the lone nut wc bullshit.
    Then again I could go there every weekend like Robert Groden. Give people a ride in the car LHO rode in, through Dealy Plaza for $20-25 bucks and point out important spots. Fifty for a trip over the river past where his rooming house was, Tipitt died and the Texas Theater, including a trip down the alley behind it where the other Oswald from the balcony was taken out according to witnesses.
    Ruby’s apartment too, as a bonus.

  8. Jordan says:

    Allegedly transported the alleged weapon…

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