Air mail envelope, 6 x 4.5, addressed in Oswald’s hand to his brother, “U. S. A., Fort Worth, Texas, 7313 Davenport St., Mr. R. Oswald,” and adding his Moscow return address in Russian, including his name, “A. Oswald,” also in Russian, at the bottom. Envelope bears two September 9, 1961, Russian postmarks on the front, and two Texas postmarks on the reverse. This envelope was part of Warren Commission Exhibit number 305. In fine condition, with a couple small spots and expected wear. A photocopy of the letter originally contained in the envelope is also included, and reads, in part: “The Russians are holding me up, and are giving me some trouble about the visas, so for now I can only wait. In general for an ordinary Russian, Its impossible to leave the USSR, simply because he wants to. However, I and my wife have the possibility because of the fact I am still an American citizen and have the U.S. passport.” Struggling to obtain exit visas from the Soviet Union for himself and his pregnant wife, Marina, Oswald sent regular correspondence to his family in Texas to prepare for his homecoming. Provenance: Collection of Dr. John K. Lattimer. Pre-certified John Reznikoff/PSA/DNA and RR Auction COA.
Category Archives: Lee Harvey Oswald
Oswald’s personally-owned and -worn long double-breasted raincoat issued by the United States Marine Corps, dark green, size 38R, stenciled inside the collar area, “L. H. Oswald.” His name is also stenciled inside the belt, which is included. In fine condition. Accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from University Archives and notarized letter from Robert L. Oswald, in part: “Lee wore this coat during the period of time from his enlistment in 1956 until his discharge in September 1959. Before leaving for Europe in September 1959, Lee left this very coat with me in my Fort Worth home.” An outstanding piece with impeccable provenance, this is the only clothing officially issued to Oswald we have offered. RR Auction COA.
Lee Harvey Oswald’s blue and white bead baby necklace, worn by Oswald as a new born at the French Hospital in New Orleans. The intact necklace measures approximately 4.25″ long with his last name, “Oswald,” spelled out in black letters on white beads. Necklace is taped to an 8.5 x 11 off-white sheet, notated at the top by Oswald’s mother Marguerite, “Lee Harvey Oswald, Born N. O. La, October 18, 1939 at ‘The French Hospital,’ necklace around neck for identification, Sent to Mother-Dad at birth.” Accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from Oswald’s bother Robert, stating the necklace was worn by his brother and the notations on the sheet were done by his mother.
Original tag used to identify the body of Lee Harvey Oswald at the Parkland Hospital morgue, with affixed lock of hair and expected staining. Tag measures 3 x 4.75, with the date, “11/24/63,” the address “1026 N. Beckley,” and the name “Oswald, Lee Harvey” filled in in type. The remainder of the tag has been filled in by Dr. Tom Shires, Chief of Surgery at Parkland Memorial Hospital. He writes the time of death, “1307,” “Surg,” for surgery under “Service” and he signs his name, “Tom Shires” in the space beneath “Pronounced dead by Dr.” The “Admitting Office Notified” area has “1310” written beside it, meaning 1:10 PM, and the “Signature of Nurses” section has been left blank. Handwritten on the bottom third of the tag in the space marked “Use Addressograph Plate” is “EOR #25260 / Parkland Hospital / Dallas, Texas.” A lock of Oswald’s hair has been tied to the tag with white thread. This tag was removed by Jay Phillips, a 22-year-old Emergency Ambulance driver for the Miller Funeral Home in Fort Worth, Texas. Accompanied by a letter from Phillips to his parents detailing his trip to the hospital and how he acquired the tag. In part: “We rolled our cot down to the morgue and we were followed by dozens of cameramen. We went into the morgue and got Oswald out of the cooler and on to the cot. As we left we were filmed by every major news agency you could imagine…We then went to the funeral home and we were guarded by the police till we got rid of him…The tag is the toe tag I took off the body.” Also included is Phillips’s 1963 ambulance driver permit issued by the city of Fort Worth and a clipped newspaper article mentioning Phillips retrieving Oswald’s body from Dallas.
In fine overall condition, with some creases and light stains to tag. Provenance: The Pugliese Collection: Guernsey’s, 2008. RR Auction COA.
Oswald’s personally-owned and -used softcover workbook entitled “U. S. Marine Corps Score Book for U. S. Rifle, Caliber .30, M1 and U. S. Carbine, Caliber .30, M1A1,” 80 pages, 6 x 3.75, filled out by Oswald on the front cover in pencil with his name, “Oswald, L. H.,” rifle number, “4314215,” organization, “2060 2nd R.T.V.,” and date issued, “3 Dec. ’56.” The first few pages contain instructions for shooting and scorekeeping, and bear a couple pencil notations by Oswald in the margins. The majority of the book consists of target diagrams and tables filled out in pencil by Oswald, plotting his shots on the diagrams and recording relevant details like date, elevation, and wind speed/direction. Oswald also generally indicates his firing position in the upper margin, such as “kneeling,” “sitting,” or “prone.” In total, Oswald completed 32 such pages throughout the month of December, with two being practice ‘samples’ and the rest his actual results. In very good to fine condition, with two toned tape remnants affixed to the front cover, light general soiling, and three small areas of surface loss to the back cover. Accompanied by interesting correspondence from 1969 between Marguerite Oswald and John Lattimer, a notable researcher of the Kennedy assassination, who originally purchased the score book from her; this includes one ALS from Marguerite, in part: “My late son’s Marine score book is in the same condition as when he left it with me…Someday soon it will be proven that a conspiracy did exist and that my son was indeed the ‘patsy.’”
On October 26, 1956, 17-year-old Oswald reported for duty at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego, where he was assigned to the Second Recruit Training Battalion and began training in, among other things, the use of the M-1 rifle. His practice scores were reportedly not very good, but when his company fired for a record on December 21, he scored 212, two points above the score necessary to qualify as a sharpshooter (with the classification scale ranging from marksman to sharpshooter to expert). Over the next three years, his skill seemingly declined; a Marine in the same unit as Oswald in 1958 reported that he was frequently given the red flag in qualification firing, indicating a complete miss of the target, and when re-tested in May of 1959, Oswald qualified only as a marksman. It has been frequently argued that even an expert marksman would struggle to duplicate Oswald’s alleged feat in the assassination of Kennedy, hitting a moving target three times in less than nine seconds (the time has been heavily disputed, ranging from 5.6 to 8.3 seconds). Filled out by Oswald—who frequently lied about his actions—this book shows a high skill level, especially at longer distances in rapid fire. Offering a detailed and lengthy account of his earliest training results, this is an absolutely fascinating piece in the question of whether or not Oswald held the capability of carrying out the assassination. RR Auction COA.
One of the most significant and personal items connected with the assassination of President John F. Kennedy…Lee Harvey Oswald’s gold wedding band. The gold band, with three stamps on the inside, was purchased in a jewelry store in Minsk before his marriage to Marina Prusaakova on April 30, 1961, and according to Marina, he left the ring on a night table next to Marina’s bed at Ruth Paine’s house in Irving, Texas, on November 22, 1963, the day of the Kennedy assassination. After Oswald’s arrest the ring was given to the United States Secret Service by Paine on December 2, 1963, and then to the possession of a Fort Worth lawyer, Forrest Markward, who joined the firm of Brackett and Ellis. The ring remained at the firm until it was discovered among Markward’s files after his passing, and eventually returned to Marina in 2012. The ring is accompanied by its original manila Treasury Department Secret Service evidence envelope, labeled at the top, “Wedding ring,” with a typed receipt stapled to the front which states: “Receipt is hereby acknowledged of a gold wedding band which had been turned over to the United States Secret Service on December 2, 1963, by Mrs. Ruth Paine.”
The band is also accompanied by an amazing, one-of-a-kind five page handwritten letter from Marina Oswald Porter, dated May 5, 2013, documenting the history of the ring from its purchase by Oswald in Minsk in 1961, his leaving it on a table in her room in Ruth Paine’s home the morning of November 22, described by Marina as “the worst day of my life,” and its confiscation by the Secret Service from Paine’s home. She goes on to mention her appearance in front of the Warren Commission, their insinuation of a hidden meaning of the ring being left behind, with her response being “I do not know,” as well as the final return of the ring some 49 years after it was confiscated, having been found among a lawyer’s papers, and her wish to not “have Lee’s ring in my possession because symbolically I want to let go of my past that is connecting with Nov. 22, 1963.”
Also included is a July 24, 2012, letter from Luther Ellis of Brackett and Ellis informing Mrs. Porter of the discovery of the ring in Markward’s files. The letter states: “I am writing you concerning a gold ring which appears to be a wedding band that may have belonged to Lee Harvey Oswald at the time of his death. Our law firm came into possession of the ring when it was found among the files of Forrest Markward…The ring is in an envelope marked ‘Treasury Department Secret Service,’ together with an unsigned receipt indicating the ring was delivered to the ‘United States Secret Service on December 2, 1963, by Mrs. Ruth Paine.’ There is no indication in Mr. Markward’s files how he came into possession of the ring. However, it appears to have been in his possession since 1964.”
The ring is referenced at least twice during the Warren Commission proceedings, with one entry in which Marina was asked if her husband had left a note for her on November 21-22, 1963, with her response stating “she had been shocked when she discovered the police had found her husband’s wedding ring when they searched the Paine residence on November 22, 1963.” The ring was also mentioned in an exchange between Chairman Earl Warren, General Counsel Lee Rankin and William McKenzie. McKenzie asks for the return “of everything Mrs. Oswald has previously furnished the Commission…In particular there is a wedding ring that I would like to ask the Commission to return at this time.” Warren advises McKenzie that nothing will be returned that day, but the Commission will give it consideration.
Left by Oswald on that fateful November 1963 day, this ring, and the money he left behind, could be construed by many as Oswald’s final farewell to his wife, as he made one last effort to reconcile with her and start over in Dallas. A superlative item of great historical significance and intrigue, newly discovered by the last living major figure of the Kennedy assassination, and offered for public auction for the first time.