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IX (of 15), by The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy

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Title: Warren Commission (9 of 26): Hearings Vol. IX (of 15)

Author: The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy

Release Date: October 21, 2013 [EBook #44009]

Language: English

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INVESTIGATION OF
THE ASSASSINATION OF PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY

HEARINGS
Before the President's Commission
on the Assassination
of President Kennedy

Pursuant To Executive Order 11130, an Executive order creating a Commission to ascertain, evaluate, and report upon the facts relating to the assassination of the late President John F. Kennedy and the subsequent violent death of the man charged with the assassination and S.J. Res. 137, 88th Congress, a concurrent resolution conferring upon the Commission the power to administer oaths and affirmations, examine witnesses, receive evidence, and issue subpenas

Volume
IX

UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE

WASHINGTON, D.C.


U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE, WASHINGTON: 1964

For sale in complete sets by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office Washington, D.C., 20402


iii

PRESIDENT'S COMMISSION
ON THE
ASSASSINATION OF PRESIDENT KENNEDY

Chief Justice Earl Warren, Chairman

Biographical information on the Commissioners and the staff can be found in the Commission's Report.

A Mr. Willens also acted as liaison between the Commission and the Department of Justice.


v

Preface

The testimony of the following witnesses is contained in volume IX: Paul M. Raigorodsky, Natalie Ray, Thomas M. Ray, Samuel B. Ballen, Lydia Dymitruk, Gary E. Taylor, Ilya A. Mamantov, Dorothy Gravitis, Paul Roderick Gregory, Helen Leslie, George S. De Mohrenschildt, Jeanne De Mohrenschildt and Ruth Hyde Paine, all of whom became acquainted with Lee Harvey Oswald and/or his wife after their return to Texas in 1962; John Joe Howlett, a special agent of the U.S. Secret Service; Michael R. Paine, and Raymond Franklin Krystinik, who became acquainted with Lee Harvey Oswald and/or his wife after their return to Texas in 1962.


vii

Contents

  Page
Preface v
Testimony of—
Paul M. Raigorodsky 1
Mrs. Thomas M. Ray (Natalie) 27
Thomas M. Ray 38
Samuel B. Ballen 45
Lydia Dymitruk 60
Gary E. Taylor 73
Ilya A. Mamantov 102
Dorothy Gravitis 131
Paul Roderick Gregory 141
Helen Leslie 160
George S. De Mohrenschildt 166
Jeanne De Mohrenschildt 285
Ruth Hyde Paine 331, 426
John Joe Howlett 425
Michael R. Paine 434
Raymond Franklin Krystinik 461

EXHIBITS INTRODUCED

  Page
Commission Exhibit No. 364 93
De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No.:
1 277
2 278
3 279
4 279
5 279
6 279
7 279
8 279
9 279
10 279
11 279
12 282
13 282
14 282
15 282
16 26
Paine (Michael) Exhibit No.:
1 437
2 441
Paine (Ruth) Exhibit No.:
270 408
271 408
272 411
273 411
274 411
275 424
276 424
277 426
277-A 429
277-B 430
278 432
278-A 432
461 347
469 390
Raigorodsky Exhibit No.:
9 25
10 25
10-A 25
10-B 25
11 26
11-A 26
14 26
14-A 26

1

Hearings Before the President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy


TESTIMONY OF PAUL M. RAIGORODSKY

The testimony of Paul M. Raigorodsky was taken at 11:15 a.m., on March 31, 1964, in his office, First National Bank Building, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Raigorodsky, do you swear that in the testimony you are about to give, you will tell the truth, and nothing but the truth?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I do.

Mr. Jenner. Miss Oliver, this is Paul M. Raigorodsky, whose office is in the First National Bank Building, Dallas, room 522, and who resides in Dallas.

Mr. Raigorodsky. At the Stoneleigh Hotel.

Mr. Jenner. Who resides at the Stoneleigh Hotel in Dallas.

Mr. Raigorodsky, I am Albert E. Jenner, Jr., of the legal staff of the Warren Commission, and Mr. Robert T. Davis, who is also present, is the assistant attorney general of the State of Texas and is serving on the staff of the Texas Court of Inquiry. The Commission and the attorney general's office of Texas are cooperating in their respective investigations.

The Commission was authorized by Senate Joint Resolution 137 of the U.S. Congress and was then created by President Lyndon B. Johnson by Executive Order 11130 and its members appointed by him. The Commission has adopted rules and regulations regarding the taking of depositions. The Commission to investigate all the circumstances of the assassination of President Kennedy.

We have some information that you are particularly well acquainted with the overall so-called Russian emigre community in Dallas, and you are an old time Dallasite, and while frankly we do not expect you to have any direct information as to the assassination, today, we think you do have some information that might help us with respect to—using the vernacular—cast of characters, people who touched the lives of Lee Harvey Oswald and Marina Oswald, as the case might be, and as I understand it you appear voluntarily to assist us?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, sure.

Mr. Jenner. Helping out in any fashion your information may assist us in that regard?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. I think it will be well if you, in your own words, gave us your general background, just give us your general background—when you came to Texas and in general what your business experience has been.

Mr. Raigorodsky. My background?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, commencing—I don't know where to start, please?

Mr. Jenner. Well, where were you born?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I was born in Russia, I lived in Russia until I was, oh, let's see, I escaped from Russia in 1919, went to Czechoslovakia to the university there.

Mr. Jenner. You did what, sir?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I went to the university there and I am escaping from Russia—I fought against the Bolsheviks in two different armies and then came to the United States with the help of the American Red Cross and the YMCA.

2 Mr. Jenner. When was that?

Mr. Raigorodsky. In December—the 28th, 1920.

Mr. Jenner. 1940?

Mr. Raigorodsky. 1920.

Mr. Jenner. How old are you, by the way?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sixty-five—exactly.

May I have this not on the record?

Mr. Jenner. All right.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness off the record at this point.)

Mr. Jenner. All right, go ahead.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I came to this country.

Mr. Jenner. In 1920?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; and they told me that for the money that they advanced for me to travel, that we only have to serve in the United States for some capacity, so when I came in, I enlisted in the Air Force and was sent to Camp Travis, Texas, and then in 1922 I received an honorable discharge, and because it was I enlisted in time of war, I became full-fledged citizen in 4 months after I arrived to this country. We still were at war with Germany, the peace hadn't been signed. And then I went to the University of Texas in 1922 and graduated in 1924.

Mr. Jenner. What degree?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Civil Engineering. That's all they were giving, even though my specialty is petroleum engineering, but I took courses in different subjects.

By the way, first, I speak with accent and second, I speak with colds, and you can stop me any time and I will be glad to repeat.

And, that was in 1924—then I went to work in Los Angeles, Calif. I simultaneously married and that was in 1924. I married Ethel Margaret McCaleb, whose father was with Federal Reserve Bank—a Governor or whatever you call it.

Mr. Jenner. Federal Reserve Bank?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It was here in Dallas under Wilson in 1918—he was appointed. At that time he was a banker and was organizing banks. Then, I stayed in California for some—from 1924 until more or less—until 1928. I worked as an engineer with E. Forrest Gilmore Co.

Mr. Jenner. Is that a Dallas concern?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; that was a California concern, specializing in the building of gasoline plants and refineries. Then, I worked for Newton Process Manufacturing Co. and for Signal Oil and Gas Co.—just, that is, progressive—you see, it was going from one to another, getting higher pay and things like that, and then in 1928 the Newton Process Manufacturing Co. was sold out and three of us, I was at that time chief process engineer, and the other man was chief construction engineer, and the third one was chief operational engineer—we organized a company called Engineering Research and Equipment Co., and we started to build gasoline plants and refineries. Then, I was sent to Dallas because our business was good—I was sent to Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Your business was growing?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; growing. I was sent to Dallas and I organized an office here. Then, we moved the company from Dallas and made the Los Angeles office a branch office. Then, I went to Tulsa and opened an office of our company there, and that way we were building lots of plants in Louisiana, in Texas, in Oklahoma. Then, I sold out my third in 1929. It was a good time to sell out, and I organized the Petroleum Engineering Co., which company I have had ever since, until just now—it is inoperative.

Then, I continued to—I opened an office in Houston and continued to build gasoline plants and refineries under the name of Petroleum Engineering Co. and built about 250 of them all over the world and in the United States—lots of them—even in Russia, though I never went there, we had a protocol (I believe No. 4), under which we were supposed to have given them some refineries and gasoline plants—you know the "chickens and the eggs" situation. The fact is I3 had an order from the Treasury Department and one of them was sunk. Maybe this should be off the record?

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness off the record at this point.)

Mr. Raigorodsky. Let's see, now, Pearl Harbor was in 1939?

Mr. Jenner. 1941; December of 1941.

Mr. Raigorodsky. 1941?

Mr. Davis. 1941.

Mr. Jenner. December 8th.

Mr. Davis. The war started in 1939.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. The Germans invaded Poland in September 1939.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Already then we had the War Production Board, though to begin with it was the Defense Board, and then War Production Board, but I was asked to come to Washington. Now, let's see, which year was it? Probably 1941—before the war.

Mr. Jenner. Before the war with Japan, you mean?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Before Pearl Harbor.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Raigorodsky. I was asked to come to Washington to organize the Department of Natural Gas and Natural Gasoline Industries for the United States, which I did, and then I had to open—I worked under DeGolyer. I organized the Department from nothing until I had five offices. We had districts in California and Tulsa and Chicago, Houston and New York, and then in 1943 I resigned, and in the meantime I got ulcer, you know, working like you do, until 11:30 nights, so in 1943 I resigned and came back to my business.

Mr. Jenner. Here in Dallas?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, in Houston. At that time I officed in Houston. By the way, while I was building plants for others, I also built plants for myself for the production of motor fuel, L.P.G. and other pipeline products, and the first plant was built in 1936—the Glen Rose Gasoline Co. The second one was built in 1943—the Claiborne Gasoline Co. Then, I lived in Houston until about 1949 or 1950 and I got sick with my back. You know, I have a very bad back. They wanted to operate on me there but Jake Hamon here, a friend of mine, told me that he wouldn't speak to me unless I come to Dallas, so believe or not, they brought me to Dallas.

That's very interesting what I am going to tell you—in an ambulance from Houston—and there was a Dr. Paul Williams—he told me that without operation he would put me on my feet. I never went back to Houston, even to close my apartment or to close my office, but I moved my apartment and my offices here to Dallas and I offered people that worked with me, that I would pay them for whatever loss they had, because in selling their houses and moving here, lock, stock and barrel, I never went back. I was so mad, and I have lived here ever since with one exception. I believe it was in 1952—in 1952 I was asked by—you know General Anderson, by any chance?

Mr. Jenner. No.

Mr. Raigorodsky. He was what we call—there was an organization in Europe called SRE, Special Representatives to Europe. There was an Ambassador Draper at the head of it, and Ambassador Anderson is a Deputy, and in 1952 Ambassador Anderson asked me to come to Europe and help them with production, so I went to Europe to improve the production of tanks, planes, ammunition, et cetera for all the NATO countries.

I was Deputy Director of Production. Now, I think I was getting along all right and again I got sick in my neck this time, so they flew me—they flew me to Johns Hopkins and found out that I had bad neck. By the way, I'm not supposed to have this, but here is my card.

(Handed instrument to Counsel Jenner.)

I left in such a hurry, they flew me under such pain, that I didn't return anything, and I had to start to destroy most of the things, and I didn't destroy this one. I stayed there for several months and then I came back here and I have been here ever since, living here, going to different places, going to Europe and I made trips to Europe, Tahiti, Jamaica, and finally bought a plantation4 in Jamaica together with some other friends here and we organized a club called Tryall, T-r-y-a-l-l [spelling] Golf Club, and I go there every year now. That's about all. My wife divorced me in 1943 for the primary reason that I wouldn't retire. I have two daughters, one is Mrs. Harry Bridges. That has nothing to do with the——

Mr. Jenner. With the Longshoremen?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That has nothing to do with the Longshoremen. And off the record now.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness off the record.)

Mr. Raigorodsky. In fact, I just came from the wedding. That's the second marriage. Then, I have another daughter—maybe you know my son-in-law, Howard Norris?

Mr. Davis. Where is he—in Washington?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Howard Lee Norris, he graduated, I think, in 1951 or 1952.

Mr. Davis. No, I don't think so. What business is he in?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Lawyer of the University of Texas.

Mr. Davis. No, I don't think so.

Mr. Raigorodsky. I am very proud of that. That's my child.

(At this point the witness exhibited wedding pictures to Counsel Jenner.)

Mr. Jenner. This is your daughter on the left?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes. And, I will answer anything else you want to now.

Mr. Jenner. All right. While living in the Dallas area, and I listened to your splendid career, I assume that—and if this assumption is wrong, please correct me—that the people of Russian descent who came into this area of Texas would tend to seek your advice or assistance, that you in turn voluntarily, on your own part, had an interest in those people in the community and that in any event you became acquainted with a good many people from Europe who settled in this general area—in the Dallas metropolitan area and even up into Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes—Louise, will you get me my church file?

(Addressing his secretary, Mrs. Louise Meek.)

Mr. Jenner. Will you be good enough to tell me first, and Mr. Davis, in general of the usual—if there is a usual pattern of someone coming in here? How they become acquainted? What is the community of people of Russian descent, and I do want to tell you in advance that the thought I have in mind in this connection is trying to follow the Oswalds.

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. What would be the common manner and fashion in which the Oswalds would become acquainted, or others would become acquainted with them, and before you get to that, that's kind of a specific, I want you to give me from your fund of knowledge and your interests—tell me what your interests have been, what the expected pattern would be of people coming—like Marina Oswald, for example, into this community?

Let's not make it Marina Oswald—I don't want to get into a specific, but let's take a hypothetical couple?

Mr. Raigorodsky. All right. I can just summarize what happened in the many years that I have been both in Houston and in Dallas.

There are methods of, I would say, of immigration into the communities in Dallas of the Russians I'm talking about. One is via friendship, acquaintanceship somewhere in Europe or in China or somewhere else, but with different Russians and the order by the Tolstoy Foundation—you are acquainted with the Tolstoy Fund?

Mr. Jenner. I think for the purposes of the record, since the reader may not be acquainted with it, that you might help a little bit on the Tolstoy Foundation.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, Miss Alexandra Tolstoy is a daughter of our great novelist, Leo Tolstoy, and I guess you know him, and she came to this country and she organized a Tolstoy Foundation, which takes care of Russian refugees throughout the world wherever they may be. They process them, which means that they know all about them before they come into here through their own organization or your different organizations. Like, you have a church in the United States—you have a church organization or all kinds of benevolent organizations that want to help refugees and they don't know who to help5 so they go to the Tolstoy Foundation and therefore the Tolstoy Foundation is able to place many, many Russians in this country, not only in this country but—I am on the Board of Directors of the Tolstoy Foundation—but also in European countries. Sometimes they cannot bring them to the United States, not enough money perhaps. Now, anybody who comes to the Tolstoy Foundation, you know right off of the bat they have been checked, rechecked and double checked. There is no question about them. I mean, that's the No. 1 stamp.

Mr. Jenner. That's the No. 1 stamp of an approval or of their genuineness?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Of approval—in fact, the U.S. Government recognized that and has been up until about a year or two ago giving the Tolstoy Foundation as much as $400,000 a year subsidy for this kind of work.

Now, of the other Russians that come here, as I said, they come in through acquaintanceship—most of them.

Mr. Jenner. They come because of prior acquaintanceship?

Mr. Raigorodsky. With some.

Mr. Jenner. With some people who are here?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right—correspondence you see. Like we have in Houston—we had a bunch of people coming from Serbia, you know, Yugoslavia—the few we have that left Russia and went to Yugoslavia and then they had to escape Yugoslavia, and there was quite a Russian colony there and some of them drifted to the United States and settled in Houston, and of course they start correspondence and working and lots of other people came to Houston and to Dallas through that channel.

Mr. Jenner. They followed?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Then, there is a small bunch of Russians that appear from nowhere. I mean, they don't come with any approval from Tolstoy Foundation or do they come through the acquaintanceship of people here. They just drift and there's no place, believe me, in the world where you cannot find one Russian. Now, I would like this off the record.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Off the record.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness off the record at this point.)

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, let's have this on the record.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Now, because of my—I always believe that even though I am, myself, not much of a churchgoing man, but I believe that the only way to unite Russians, and I think they should be united in this country, was through a church, so, for many years we had a church in Texas—at Galveston—but that church—we didn't like because the Serbian priest, they were coming over there. We couldn't figure it out, whether they were one side of the fence or the other.

Mr. Jenner. One side of what fence or the other?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, the only fence I know of is between the communism and the anticommunism.

Mr. Jenner. All right. You are on the anticommunistic side of the fence?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh; of course.

Mr. Jenner. I want that to appear on record is why I asked.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; I have been all my life. So, let's see, maybe in 1949 or thereabouts—I have donated quite a bit of money to the Russian colony in Houston there with the understanding that if they would secure at least 50 percent of additional money from the rest of the people of the Russian colony, that they buy or build a church there, which they did.

Mr. Jenner. What religion is that—the name of the church?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Russian—Greek Orthodox. You may call it also Eastern Greek Orthodox. It's the same religion as Greek Catholics have with two main differences—one is the language in which the service is performed is the old Slavic languages against Greek, and then, of course, we have our own Patriarch at the head of our own church.

Mr. Jenner. In Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, no, no; we have in New York—it's Metropolitan Anastasia, who is the head of our church of this country.

Mr. Jenner. Who was the pastor over in Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I will come to that.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

6 Mr. Raigorodsky. Then, when we got to—when I came to Dallas we had Father Royster here of the church, I mean, he is a convert. He is an American convert to the Greek Orthodox religion and he approached me because he wanted to build the Church of St. Seraphim in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. You must be acquainted with Father Royster?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He knows me very well, but anyhow, here it is about the church here——

Mr. Jenner. The full name is Dimitri Robert Royster—go right ahead.

Mr. Raigorodsky. (Handed instrument to Counsel Jenner.) That gives us the history of the situation here, but then we had a split here between the Russians who came to this country escaping the Communists or Bolsheviks, at that time we called them—they called themselves the Guard.

Mr. Jenner. The original church that you helped organize, that is referred to as the Old Guard?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right, and St. Seraphim you see, because we both occupy the same premises and I was the head of both of them.

Mr. Jenner. You were the head of both churches?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; I belong to both churches. In fact I belong to three churches.

Mr. Jenner. They are different parishes in the same church, aren't they?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, they are entirely different churches. I would like to explain to you—you see, in this country—I'm quite sure you know—I don't know whether you would be interested in what I am going to tell you about?

Mr. Jenner. I am primarily interested in this—from the depositions I have taken and inquiries I have made, my impression is that one of the immediate sources of obtaining acquaintanceship in the community by refugees who come here is through the church.

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. St. Seraphim's is one parish and then there is another one—George Bouhe's folks.

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Or the church he is most active in, and I forget the name of that one—what is that?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's St. Nicholas.

Mr. Jenner. That's the St. Nicholas Church?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I'm head of that one.

Mr. Jenner. You are head of that one?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you say it is a third one?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, it is not a third one here—just the two. Now you see, this is the thing I have to tell you then, because that is, again, leads to the same Oswald situation, I believe.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Raigorodsky. You see, the Father Royster Church is not just for Russians. It is for all the Greek Orthodox, whether they are Serbians, Sicilians, or Lebanese—and there are lots of people that came for the same religion even though their services in their own churches is in their own language, but here they are all in the English language because of Father Royster's.

Mr. Jenner. Father Royster preaches the sermons in English?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; there is no question he is an American, he was a teacher at S.M.U. until he resigned. Now, I am a member of this church because it is a Greek Orthodox and I want to help them—that means I pay my dues and I help them with everything they need, in fact, we have a monastery there—that's the one which Father Royster organized of which also I helped them. Now, the difference between Father Royster's Church and Bouhe's Church, as you know it——

Mr. Jenner. St. Nicholas?

Mr. Raigorodsky. St. Nicholas—so that Father Royster belongs to Metropolitan Leonty—Metropolitan Leonty is in New York, and if you may say so, he is a competitor of Metropolitan Anastasia. Metropolitan Leonty is the head of the American Russian Church. You see, before the revolution, we had a church in America, and he was the head of it. Metropolitan Anastasia is the7 head of the Russians outside of Russia, because he is—whether he escaped Russia like all of us—therefore, all of us who escaped with him or about the same time belonged to that church.

Mr. Jenner. I see.

Mr. Raigorodsky. It is very simple, and as far as I am concerned it is the better method, because we know each other, we know about each other, we know which fought, which one fought against the Bolsheviks—all of the so-called St. Nicholas Church is an old anti-Communist group—period.

Now, the St. Seraphim Church can be infiltrated by anybody because nobody checks, you see, the only thing and there is no tie-in there except for the church—not that there is a tie-in because we fought against communism and because of the church. The same thing in Houston, the tie-in was not only because of the church but because we fought against communism and even though we came through different grounds, some through New York, some through California, but we got there and so we have a church over there.

Now, I personally believe that a church is a church—as long as it is my religion. I will go to one or I will go to another one. It doesn't make any difference to me—I tried to get them together and I didn't succeed in that town. In Houston—I think that is because it is only one church—it is more successful.

Now, I don't know it for a fact, but except as I was told by Father Royster that the Oswalds came through Fort Worth originally. Now, this is hearsay—that I believe they got acquainted with the people by the name of Clark.

Mr. Jenner. Max Clark?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I mean, that's all hearsay—I do not know it for a fact. While she is a Russian, in fact she is a first cousin of a very close friend of mine, Prince Sherbatoff, who lives in New York and lives in Jamaica. That's where I see him occasionally. Now, it is my understanding that the Clarks told some of their friends—again, this is hearsay, that "Here is a Russian married to an American and they don't even have milk for the babies." Now, that is my understanding. And so, the Russians, I mean of both churches, because there are not many Russians in our church as against another, started to provide them groceries, buy milk for the baby, in fact I was told that they had her fix her teeth—her teeth were absolutely, oh, it is unspeakable.

Mr. Jenner. This would, from your observation, be a perfectly normal sort of thing that would occur in this community through the churches that you have mentioned. They are small churches, the people are well acquainted with all the parishioners, that is, acquainted with each other. They seek to help?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Absolutely.

Mr. Jenner. They seek to help those who come from Europe as refugees or otherwise?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Those of Russian or Serbian or Central European derivation?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right—that's correct.

Mr. Jenner. About when was the first you heard of hearsay or otherwise of——

Mr. Raigorodsky. That that happened that way?

Mr. Jenner. No, of the Oswalds at all? When did it first come to your attention that the Oswalds were here in the Dallas-Fort Worth area?

Mr. Raigorodsky. The assassination. I am absolutely ignorant of their names—I never saw them before the assassination.

Mr. Jenner. I appreciate that—had you heard of the Oswald name?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, never had.

Mr. Jenner. Prior to November 22, 1963?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, in fact, I have heard a Russian discussing those things which I tell you are hearsay with me, on a meeting—we have yearly meetings.

Mr. Jenner. Did you say yearly?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Once a year—we meet to elect officers. We meet once a year to elect the officers.

Mr. Jenner. Is this true of both St. Nicholas and St. Seraphim?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It's St. Nicholas. In St. Seraphim I do not attend to any kind of administrative duties. I am just a parishioner, now, because,8 first of all, I believe that sooner or later all of us will die in the other church and there will be nothing left but St. Seraphim. First, because St. Seraphim Church is growing. Well, if there are one or two of us left—it would be fine. You see, how we are at St. Nicholas—we are supposed to meet once a month and we are supposed to have the priest from Houston come here and perform services, but now Houston doesn't have the priest and so we don't have the priest. So, our priest from Galveston comes up.

Mr. Jenner. Comes up here?

Mr. Raigorodsky. And I personally don't like him—so I wouldn't go to the services in my own church on his account.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Now, I went to New York and I discussed with our people from our Synod, you know.

Mr. Jenner. The Synod, S-y-n-o-d (spelling)?

Mr. Raigorodsky. And they are sending us a priest, a new priest, who will be stationed in Houston and then they come here once a month, but the Houston community is down to about 15 families and this is not any better. We have about 10 families, I would say.

Mr. Jenner. When you say different—you mean here in Dallas?

Mr. Raigorodsky. In Dallas—yes.

Mr. Jenner. What is the name of the priest who comes up from Galveston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Let me see—maybe I have it here.

(Examining file.)

Maybe he's not from Galveston—he comes from Houston, but he's the one that was, you know,—can this be off the record—I just throw those notices in the waste basket because I don't want to hear from him.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the Witness off the record at this point.)

Mr. Jenner. Miss Oliver, Mr. Raigorodsky has handed me a one-sheet document, single spaced, typed, entitled "Some Historical Information Concerning St. Seraphim Eastern Orthodox Church," which I have perused, and in view of the testimony of previous witnesses regarding the organization of St. Seraphim's Church and their attendance at its services, and our parishioners who have some contact through the church, or at least because of their acquaintance with other parishioners, and in turn with the Oswalds, it would be helpful to have this statement in the record, and will you please copy it.

Mr. Raigorodsky. You can have that—I have a photostat of it.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I want to copy it in the record.

Mr. Raigorodsky. All right. "Some Historical Information Concerning St. Seraphim Eastern Orthodox Church."

In April of 1954, a small group of converts to the Orthodox Faith (Rev. Ilya Rudolph Rangel, rector of the already existing Mexican Orthodox Church under the jurisdiction of Bishop Bogdan, Dimitri Robert Royster, a subdeacon in Bishop Bogdan's jurisdiction, and Miss Dimitra Royster) sought permission of their bishop to organize an English-language Orthodox mission in the city of Dallas. It may be stated parenthetically that the three above-mentioned persons were working, at the time of the organization of St. Seraphim's, in close cooperation with St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, of which Father Alexander Chernay of Houston was pastor and which held services periodically in the chapel of the Sunday School building at St. Matthew's Episcopal Cathedral.

Father Rangel and Subdeacon Royster set out to find a building that would be suitable to house the activities of the projected mission. Property was located at the corner of McKinney Avenue (3734) and Blackburn Street. The sale price of the property was $15,000, and since the financial resources of the organizers were limited, Father Rangel and Subdeacon Royster went to seek the aid of Mr. Paul Raigorodsky, a member of St. Nicholas' Parish. Mr. Raigorodsky agreed to make it possible for the group to acquire a loan from the First National Bank in Dallas in order to purchase the property (on which there was an eight-room two-story house). The property was bought in the name of St. Seraphim's Church.

9 Services in English began to be held in June of 1954. Father Rangel conducted occasional services—Sunday Vespers weekly and an early Liturgy once a month. Father Rangel and Subdeacon Royster constructed an iconostas and made a number of shrines and articles, and a chapel was arranged on the first floor of the house. After a month or 2 the members of St. Nicholas' Parish were invited to use the chapel, since one of their members had been so instrumental in the acquisition of the property.

On November 6, 1954, Subdeacon Royster was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Bogdan and became rector of St. Seraphim's Church. Shortly afterwards, it was agreed to transfer the title of the property at 3734 McKinney to St. Nicholas' Church. It was further agreed that the two groups would use the chapel, St. Nicholas' Church 1 weekend per month and St. Seraphim's Church the rest of the time.

In January of 1955 an extensive renovation program was undertaken, and both floors of the house were redecorated, sheet-rocked and painted.

Father Hilarion Madison had been ordained by Bishop Bogdan on October 31, 1954, and had worked with Father Rangel as assistant pastor at the Mexican Church until December 1954, when he joined the work at St. Seraphim's and became assistant to Father Royster.

For a few months joint services were held on the occasions when Father Alexander Chernay visited Dallas; that is, Father Dimitri and Father Hilarion concelebrated with Father Alexander.

In March 1955, Bishop Bogdan directed Father Dimitri and Father Hilarion to begin mission work in Fort Worth, taking advantage of the weekends when Father Alexander was in Dallas, in order to extend the benefits of the missionary activity to a group of Orthodox residents of that city. Services were held in the chapel of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in downtown Fort Worth until the summer of 1956.

In order better to pursue its mission as an English-language parish and to attract orthodox people of all national backgrounds, St. Seraphim's Church decided to acquire property of its own. A house was bought at 4203 Newton Avenue, and a chapel, meeting room, office and kitchen were arranged in the house after considerable renovation. This building served the needs of the parish until the new church was built in March and April of 1961. The house was then converted into a parish hall. In 1962, an adjacent lot with its house were bought by the parish. The house is being renovated at present and will eventually be used for a rectory.

In September of 1958 the parish was transferred from the jurisdiction of Bishop Bogdan to that of Metropolitan Leonty, the Russian Metropolia.

Membership in St. Seraphim's parish has grown from the original 3 to approximately 125 souls. Average attendance at the Sunday Liturgy has increased year by year and is now about 75. A Sunday School with two classes is maintained. Services are held regularly on Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings, and the Liturgy is celebrated on Sundays and on holy days.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Raigorodsky, in that connection, this document which is entitled "Some Historical Information Concerning St. Seraphim Eastern Orthodox Church," when was that prepared?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I have no idea because I have—let's see—the early part of this year I have asked Father Royster if he has anything historical about the St. Seraphim, how it started and everything, or can he prepare something, and he said "No," he already had something, and I said, "All right, send me a copy of it."

Mr. Jenner. Do you understand that Father Royster prepared this historical summary?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's my understanding.

Mr. Jenner. Now, have you read this historical summary?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; I did.

Mr. Jenner. And, are you familiar with the events and course of events that are recited in that 1-page summary?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I am.

Mr. Jenner. And to the best of your knowledge and information, does Father10 Royster, if he prepared it or whomever prepared it, is the recital reasonably accurate?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I'll say it's reasonably accurate except it does not give the actual reason for the split of the churches. You see, here he said:

"In order better to pursue its mission," as a native language parish, "and to attract orthodox people of all national backgrounds, St. Seraphim's Church decided to acquire property of its own."

Well, that's not the reason—the reason is that we couldn't get along together, you see, and there was a constant fight between the two churches.

Mr. Jenner. And, the factions split primarily, as I understand your testimony today, over the Father Royster group, and I use that expression not to tag him, well, I'll say the St. Nicholas Church, that would possibly be better, because Father Royster preached in the English language.

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And in the St. Nicholas Church or parish the services were said in what language, again?

Mr. Raigorodsky. In the old Slavic language. That's not the principal reason either.

Mr. Jenner. Then, another reason is that the organizers of the St. Nicholas Church were, as you have said, labeled "Old Guard" in the sense that they were composed primarily of those people of Russian origin and other Slavic origins who in Europe fought——

Mr. Raigorodsky. Either fought or escaped.

Mr. Jenner. Fought the Communists or Bolsheviks or escaped from their regime.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes—because there are lots of women and children over there, you see, they never fought against them.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; there are a lot of ladies, of course, who did not fight.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. And because of that common experience they tended to stay together?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right—more closely knit.

Mr. Jenner. More closely knit and they had a preference for the use of the basic language, and that group organized the St. Nicholas Church.

Mr. Raigorodsky. St. Nicholas was organized to begin with.

Mr. Jenner. Then, you tended to support it and you have supported it and you are more active in that Church?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. You are more active by far, in fact, you are an officer of that group, are you not?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; I am president.

Mr. Jenner. You are president of that group, but you are a member of the other parish or the other church and you assist it financially as a parishioner?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Is there anything else in the 1-page summary prepared or given to you by Father Royster that you would like to comment upon?

Mr. Davis. I would like to ask—did we ever get to the real reason for the split of the church?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I just made a statement a while ago.

Mr. Davis. I didn't understand—what was the reason that the church was split?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, they just couldn't get along together. I mean, it's purely personality.

You see, Father Royster at that time—that's the main point—Father Royster doesn't mean anything to you or to me, but to lots of Russians it means everything. You see, Father Royster at that time belonged to the Ukraine branch of the church. You see, he couldn't get ordained, but then he tried to, and I tried to help him to be ordained by Metropolitan and Anastasia, but he couldn't fulfill the requirements so he tried to get in through Metropolitan Leonty. He couldn't quite get in because of their requirements, but they suggested that he will be ordained by the Russian Ukranian Church, of which Father Joseph Bogdan, B-o-g-d-a-n [spelling] had the jurisdiction of the11 Ukranian branch of Metropolitan Leonty's branch of the Russian Church in this country, and so, you see, and that was—now, we have to go back through the basic facts that Russians and Ukranians have never gotten along together, and in fact, Ukranians were separative—they wanted to separate from the rest of the Russians and he will have their church to become part of their parish. That was just going against the grain of every Russian.

Now, all those things tended to create dissatisfaction and fights, I mean verbal fights, of course—no physical violence of any kind, but verbal fights, and Father Royster decided to pull out and he asked me if I would help him, and I said, "Sure, as long as it is a Greek Orthodox Church," and that's how it happened.

You see, some of the statements—like he said, "In September of 1958 the parish was transferred from the jurisdiction of Bishop Bogdan to that of Metropolitan Leonty, the Russian Metropolia."

Well, he is Russian Metropolia, but it isn't finished—in this country.

Mr. Jenner. The words "in this country" should be added there?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; in the United States. I mean, those are minor, but substantially, it is correct—what he said.

Mr. Jenner. With those explanations, Miss Oliver, will you please copy the historical statement into the record?

The Reporter. Yes, sir.

(The instrument referred to is set forth on pp. 8 and 9 of this volume.)

Mr. Jenner. These differences of opinion, historical, religious, and otherwise, and arguments rather than facts, tend to affect also the views of an individual who is a member of St. Nicholas Church with respect to individuals who regularly attended St. Seraphim's?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, it's a peculiar thing that the people, as I understand it, who helped Mrs. Oswald, were people from St. Nicholas Church.

Mr. Jenner. Largely?

Mr. Raigorodsky. So—I don't know how that came about—perhaps she is Russian. I can understand so much—she is a Russian and St. Nicholas is Russian and St. Seraphim is Eastern Orthodox.

Mr. Jenner. Did I understand you correctly, sir, that the parishioners, by and large, of St. Nicholas are exclusively anti-Communists?

Mr. Raigorodsky. There's no question about it.

Mr. Jenner. Because of the history, there's no question about it—largely?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Largely.

Mr. Jenner. There are other reasons, but that substantially is one major motivating force?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And while they would be interested in assisting persons who are of Russian birth, who would come into this community, would they also be interested in ascertaining at least what they thought might be the political views of someone who came fresh from Russia, with in turn the thought in mind that if that person or persons or family in their opinion had some affiliation with or even sympathetic to what we in America call the Communists in control of Russia, that these people in St. Nicholas would have an aversion to them?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Correct. You see, he asked the question you are getting to—that is the first time I heard she was Russian—they told me they were interrogated by different branches of the Government and that is the first time they told me that they know of Marina Oswald, how they helped her and everything else and I asked them—"How did it happen?" Now, she went to the church to have her child christened.

Mr. Jenner. She went to St. Nicholas?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; St. Seraphim's.

Mr. Jenner. And that caused what?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That caused them to think and to know, as they understood it, that she did it practically at the peril of her life.

Mr. Jenner. She did what?

Mr. Raigorodsky. She did it at the peril of her life——

Mr. Jenner. You mean they objected?

12 Mr. Raigorodsky. Because he told her she cannot do that, she had to sneak out with that child to be christened and since Communists are atheists, they knew that she could not possibly be Communists.

Mr. Jenner. You heard afterwards that Marina had had her child baptized in St. Seraphim's?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And those persons then in your church, the St. Nicholas Church, cited that as being a fact which led them to believe that she believed in the Lord and was therefore not an atheist, that it was a factor that led them in turn to believe that she was not a Communist, because Communists are atheists?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Whereas, you accepted that as a factor to consider, but there occurred to you a countervailing consideration, which was——

Mr. Raigorodsky. Correct—which was that the Communists may have been—if it was a conspiracy, that would to me have been the best way to get into the good graces of the Russian Church community.

Mr. Jenner. Lead people to believe that you were a Christian?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And not an atheist?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And seek by that stratagem to gain their confidence?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. So that that factor, whatever it was, had to be examined and held in abeyance so you wouldn't jump to a conclusion from that one thing?

Mr. Raigorodsky. You see—I don't trust them in any kind of a condition or any kind of a statement that they make. It doesn't make any difference, but in fact, I know it isn't truthful—it's just like Mr. Gromyko lying to President Kennedy sitting in his office, you know, lying just like a trooper and then knowing that it wasn't so, but he lied. I don't have to tell you all about what Communists do and how they operate.

Mr. Jenner. Did there in due course come into this community a man by the name of George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And you were here when he came here, were you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, let's say that I met George De Mohrenschildt in Dallas while I was coming here, just—you know—just occasionally to see my friends, probably about, I'll say 15 or 17 years ago, somewhere in that neighborhood.

Mr. Jenner. Had you heard of him prior to that time?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; I heard of him through Jake Hamon.

Mr. Jenner. Through Mr. Hamon?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Hamon, H-a-m-o-n [spelling]—Jake.

Mr. Jenner. Who is he?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He is an oilman friend of mine here, quite well known, and he told me there was a Russian here—do I know him, and I said, "No; I hadn't heard about him." That's how I met him—at a party.

Mr. Jenner. You are talking about George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. In this 17-year period from that initial acquaintance to the present time, had you come to know George De Mohrenschildt and acquire some knowledge of his origin and background?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I believe so.

Mr. Jenner. Would you please recite it to us—who is he, what is his history, his marriages, the nativity of the ladies he married and some of his activities, leaving until a little bit later in the questioning the business associations or contacts you may have had with him?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, from what I understand, George De Mohrenschildt comes from what we call by-the-Baltic Germans.

Mr. Jenner. What is—by-the-Baltic Germans?

Mr. Raigorodsky. The by-the-Baltic Germans are Germans that lived by the Baltic Sea and they were Russians or rather, Russiafied Germans and they were in the service of the Czar for generations and generations and were considered13 Russians. Most of them were barons, you know, and I don't know whether George's family were or not, but the "de" Mohrenschildt signifies that his family had a title.

Mr. Jenner. That's the "de"?

Mr. Raigorodsky. The "de"—yes; it signifies that. Now, I understand that he has a friend or his brother is teaching, I believe, at the University of Chicago.

Mr. Jenner. Is that the University of Chicago or Dartmouth?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Or what?

Mr. Jenner. Dartmouth, or the University of Chicago?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It might be, now, but at that time when I first learned it—he was at the University of Chicago.

Mr. Jenner. And his first name?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. What did you say his first name was?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. I thought you gave it to me the other day?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No.

Mr. Jenner. Maybe I could get it from some other source?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No—not from me. Now, when I first knew George he was an engineer in charge of the operations of the Rangley Field in Colorado. Then, he quit the job and went into the business of his own, which was supposed to be a consultant petroleum engineer and oil operator.

He was married, as far as I know, three times. I didn't know his first wife, but I know his daughter by the first wife.

Mr. Jenner. What is her name?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't remember; I'm sorry.

Mr. Jenner. But you have met her?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; they live here at the Maple Terrace, which is next door to the Stoneleigh Hotel. The second wife was—that's where this was when he married the second time—it was to a daughter of the Sharples, S-h-a-r-p-l-e-s [spelling].

Mr. Jenner. Was her name Wynne, W-y-n-n-e [spelling]?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; we called her something else—it will come to me—just leave that blank. They had two children, both of them were spastic.

Mr. Jenner. Was a boy and a girl?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right. One of them since died.

Mr. Jenner. The boy?

Mr. Raigorodsky. The boy. The son is still alive, and it's my understanding that his second wife divorced and she had to pay him, as I understand it, $30,000. Of course, you have the records.

Mr. Jenner. Yes, sir.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Then, there were two trusts set for the children and when one of the children died, George De Mohrenschildt wanted to claim the trust in his name and that was a fight which went to the courts, but at the request of some of the friends of Mrs. De Mohrenschildt and my friends, I called George and told him that if he pursues his suit, that his name will be mud and he can never come back to Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. How would that be enforced? You mean never come back to Dallas and join this Russian community?

Mr. Raigorodsky. And be a member, because——

Mr. Jenner. A member of what?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Of the social group that they were here originally. You see, he took it differently when I called him. I can tell you it was a hornet's nest is what it was. Anyhow, he withdrew the suit—whether I did it or for some other reason, but I think Mrs. Crespi can give you more information than that.

Mr. Jenner. Mrs. whom?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Mrs. Crespi, C-r-e-s-p-i [spelling]. She is the one who asked me to intervene if I can. I believe I could have at that time because George owed me a little money, frankly, and he has been borrowing from me occasionally, always repaid, but it took a long time. The last time he borrowed he repaid very quickly.

14 Mr. Jenner. The last time he borrowed was it a substantial amount?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; $500.

Mr. Jenner. He was divorced from the Sharples girl whose first name you can't recall at the moment?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Isn't that funny?

Mr. Jenner. And he then, let's see, that was the second wife; is that correct?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And he married a third time?

Mr. Raigorodsky. A third time.

Mr. Jenner. And is that his present wife?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And who is she?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's a question——

Mr. Jenner. Does the name J-h-a-n-a [spelling] or Jeanne serve your recollection?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Jean—Jean.

Mr. Jenner. His present wife is named Jeanne?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes—Jeanne.

Mr. Jenner. What do you know about her?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I don't know anything about her except that she was a successful dress designer, I believe, in California, and that she had, and I may say it frankly, that she had a low opinion of our form of government. I don't know whether she is a Communist, Socialist, Anarchist or what.

Mr. Jenner. What are her views with respect to——

Mr. Raigorodsky. Didi De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. That's the second wife?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It's Didi De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. She is the Sharples girl?

Mr. Raigorodsky. The Sharples girl.

Mr. Jenner. And did it come to your attention that his present wife was either born in China or went at a very early age, an infant age—came to China?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't know anything about her except I know that she is part Russian, French—something else, but you see, she never expounded her views to me about her beliefs, but she did to lots of Americans, you see, and they would ask me why? What does it mean? You know, for some reason or other—and I would like this off the record.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

(At this point statement by the witness, Mr. Raigorodsky, to Counsel Jenner off the record.)

Mr. Jenner. What is the reaction of the Russian community in Dallas to the De Mohrenschildts, with particular reference to their political views?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, the Russian community here, it was, you say—"And political views?"

Mr. Jenner. The views separately of George De Mohrenschildt, and then his wife, Jean.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, would you believe me if I tell you that after all this time, I do not know the political views of George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about him, what kind of a person is he? He seems from some of our information to be reckless, to make nonsense at times, he appears to have traveled extensively in Europe, Mexico, Haiti, the Dominican Republic; he is a man who has provoked or seems to seek to provoke others into argument by making outlandish statements. We would like to know something from you as a—if I may use the expression but in a sense of compliment—a member of the "Old Guard," and you have had some contact with this man for 17 years now—what is he or what makes him tick?

He had contact with the Oswalds, we haven't yet talked with him, and we are seeking to get all the information we can about this man, his personality, his habits, his business interests, his contacts with you—political views even if they are stated in supposed jest, and the political views of his wife, Jeanne, who is tolerant? Is he just a character?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's a question. You see, talking about, and believe me,15 that's the only time—first of all, I've got George De Mohrenschildt to become a member of the Petroleum Club.

Mr. Jenner. What is the Petroleum Club?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It is the Petroleum Club, Dallas Petroleum Club.

Mr. Jenner. Did you seek to do it for him?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No.

Mr. Jenner. He was a man of grace at the club?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Very much so a man of grace, a man of breeding.

Mr. Jenner. And did he begin to move in a different social circle?

Mr. Raigorodsky. An entirely different social circle.

Mr. Jenner. And was that a social circle of Russian emigre, a certain set of Russian emigre?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, no, that's the thing which both churches have against them. He belonged to the church, but he never sent in a donation.

Mr. Jenner. He belonged to the church in the sense that when he felt like coming, he came, but he never supported the church financially?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, that's right, from that point. Politically he never, and I can say honestly, not one time did he ever discuss with me any political questions or give me his views except one time when he went to take the trip—the walking trip.

Mr. Jenner. From the border of the United States and the Mexican border down to Panama?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us the incident that you are about to relate?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Except one time, you see, except one time—he was elated because he met Mikoyan in Mexico.

Mr. Jenner. And did he report this to you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. You know—just trying to show what—he always brags about things—he was bragging about many things.

Mr. Jenner. Was he given to overstatements?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Very much so, and he brags about the fact that he met Mr. Mikoyan, and this is not for publication, and I asked him why didn't he shoot this b——d?

Mr. Jenner. What did he say—when you said, "Why didn't you shoot him?"

Mr. Raigorodsky. He just smiled and smiled with that understanding smile, you see, as if I were taking away from his achievement.

Mr. Jenner. Was he a man of extraordinary dress or attire?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Anything but ordinary in attire.

Mr. Jenner. He was not only provocative in his habits, but provocative in his attire in the sense of nonconforming?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He is—he is absolutely nonconformist—that's the best definition I can give you.

Mr. Jenner. Does he speak Russian?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; he speaks Russian quite well with a by-the-Baltic German accent.

Mr. Jenner. Does his wife Jeanne speak Russian?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Does she have any peculiarity of accent?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I say her's would be Polish, but you know, it is very hard to say. I don't think she was born in Russia, I think she was born in France or somewhere, or maybe China, but George's was definitely, because he was born in Russia. Now, to me George—now this is again my idea——

Mr. Jenner. We are trying to get a background on him and we want your idea.

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't believe that George is a Communist, because I don't think that the Communists would stand for the behavior of George in the United States. I mean, that is the only thing that I can give him credit for. To them it is a religion. You see, communism is a religion to them and they lead, as we should, I understand they lead the Spartan life, I mean, they are supposed to, but George led anything but the Spartan life in this country.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have some business relations with him?

16 Mr. Raigorodsky. I had some small stock deals with him, oil deals when he would drill a well and I would buy a certain portion of the deal, maybe one-sixteenth or something like that. He had one dry hole I can remember and one well that came in very small and nothing to brag about and he tried to get me to go with him in business with him in Haiti.

Mr. Jenner. To whom?

Mr. Raigorodsky. To the banker—the banker—Commercial de Haiti. You can read that and pick up anything you want here and tell me what you want [referring to deponent's file]. He writes all the time—he was trying to get a $100,000 corporation set up here to do business with Duvalier, the head of the Haitian Government in the making of hemp and they were giving him concessions and lots of acreage which you could pick up for drilling and everything else, and he was trying to get people to come here and subscribe to stock but he didn't do anything. I believe that I have reported that incident and then there are lots of Russians here and some others told me about that trip of George's.

Mr. Jenner. Down through Mexico?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Down through Mexico, and I believe I called the FBI and told them. I said, "I don't know whether it means anything or nothing."

Mr. Jenner. Who is Mr. John De Menil?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Mr. John De Menil is a very close friend of mine. He is the financial head of Schlumberger Co. and when I wouldn't go with George in the deal, he asked me to give him any suggestion as to who may be interested, so I suggested John De Menil because the Schlumberger Co. is a worldwide organization and they deal with every country in the world—you know what I am trying to say?

Mr. Davis. Yes; I do. I am familiar with the name Schlumberger.

Mr. Raigorodsky. And that he might be interested in going in business in Haiti, and at my suggestion he called him and went to see him and nothing came out of it because John De Menil finally turned him down after the investigation.

Now, I am very sorry that in the past years I have had some correspondence with George but I didn't keep it, but then when things began to pop up and his name appeared in so many different things, I thought I better keep a file on him.

Mr. Jenner. Apparently this Haitian venture was in gestation or in the works as far back as 1962, is that what you understand?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; you know, he was consultant to the Yugoslav Government?

Mr. Jenner. He was a consultant to the Yugoslavian Government?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He was a consultant to the Yugoslavian Government. In fact, he was sent to Yugoslavian Government with the blessing of our Government, maybe—I don't know under what protocol that we were helping the Yugoslavians, and he went over there but peculiarly, in order to receive the appointment he had to have recommendations of some man known in the industry, and he didn't come to me—I can say this—I don't brag, but if he came to me that would have meant something to him because I was with the Government on a couple or two or three times, but instead of that he goes to Jake Hamon, a close friend of mine, and asked him for a recommendation on that job. Jake said he would not give him a recommendation unless he consults me. That surprised me that he wouldn't ask me right off the bat, but he went around about way. What could I do? Of course I said, technically on the job he is perfectly all right, I mean, he is a good engineer—good petroleum engineer.

Mr. Jenner. And that's your opinion of him?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes, without any question. You know, that field is quite a field—that you have to be supplied with a knowledge of underground structures and movement of the oil, and he had a good job, and as far as I know he quit the job—he was not fired.

Mr. Jenner. Are you acquainted with his reputation in this community for truth and veracity?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I'll say there is no other way around this—I don't think his reputation is that of a truthful person.

Mr. Jenner. His reputation in that respect is poor or bad?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Bad.

17 Mr. Jenner. Bad, and his reputation in the community as a man of morals, character, and integrity—is that bad or good?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Bad.

Mr. Jenner. And his reputation in the community as a man of capability in the profession which he pursues?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Good.

Mr. Jenner. For example—as a petroleum geologist?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; petroleum engineer—good. His knowledge of languages is good. In fact, he taught at the University of Texas. I believe he taught French or Spanish after he went to school there, where my daughter went, one of my daughters, and my son-in-law also went there at the same time.

Mr. Jenner. What is his reputation in the community as being a loyal American? If he has a reputation?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't think he has any reputation of that type. Now, remember there are two—he is in a different social circle now, you see, than he was before with his second wife.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Raigorodsky. In fact, if I'm not mistaken how he got to the Oswalds was through the Clarks. You see, the Clarks of Fort Worth were his friends.

Mr. Jenner. From a prior social circle?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; he met them—I don't know where he met them, but they were not in the so-called Dallas social circle that he was originally in with his wife because of her being a Sharples.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know of any business interests of De Mohrenschildt in Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. In Houston?

Mr. Jenner. Yes; in the last 5 years, let's say?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; he told me that he was going to see Herman and George Brown—they are brothers.

Mr. Jenner. What business are they in?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, again, don't put this down.

Mr. Jenner. Off the record.

(Discussion between Messrs. Jenner and Davis and the witness, Mr. Raigorodsky, off the record.)

Mr. Jenner. Now; I want this on the record.

Mr. Raigorodsky. George has been friends with many, many influential people in many cities.

Mr. Davis. In all of them, I imagine.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Is he a namedropper—is he a man who seeks to be friends of important people?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No—he was my friend, I was his friend—he was Jake Hamon's friend and Jake Hamon was his friend.

Mr. Davis. How often did De Mohrenschildt see him?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Jake?

Mr. Davis. No; how often did George De Mohrenschildt see Herman and George Brown?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't know, but he has been going to Houston quite often. In fact, he told me that everything is settled—he is going to deal with them in that Haiti situation, and then Herman died.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know of any particular business that he had in Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No.

Mr. Jenner. What information do you have regarding his interests or business in Houston—I take it that it came from his making statements to you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right, except in his dealing with John De Menil, in which John De Menil sent me the copies of the letters—you see, there is a copy from John De Menil.

Mr. Jenner. Where do you have information as to whether he was required to or did make regular trips, a trip every 4 or 5 weeks, to Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He—I can't answer that.

18 Mr. Jenner. He appears to have become acquainted with a gentleman in Houston by the name of Andre Jitkoff?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; sure.

Mr. Jenner. He is a professor at Rice Institute?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right—he's head of the Russian church in Houston.

Mr. Jenner. He is the head of the Russian church in Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; that's right—also his daughter is my—I'm a godfather to Mr. Jitkoff's daughter.

Mr. Jenner. Well, give me in a thumbnail sketch, something about Mr. Jitkoff's background.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Mr. Jitkoff—he is of the "Russian Old Guard," as you call it.

Mr. Jenner. How old a man is he, by the way, your best guess?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I would say around 60 now, no, maybe he is younger—let's see, his daughter—he probably is closer—is 50 some odd years—55.

Mr. Jenner. He is closer to 50 than to 60?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I believe so.

Mr. Jenner. Is he somewhere between 50 and 60?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right. The first I knew of Jitkoff, he was a tennis pro at the River Oaks Country Club.

Mr. Jenner. Where—Dallas or Houston?

Mr. Raigorodsky. In Houston; and he retired several years ago and he is teaching Russian.

Mr. Jenner. Was De Mohrenschildt an athletic man?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Very much so.

Mr. Jenner. Is he interested in tennis?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; very much so.

Mr. Jenner. What about Mrs. De Mohrenschildt? Is she an athletically inclined person?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Also interested in tennis?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And does each of them have an interest in any other sport to the extent of engaging in the sport itself?

Mr. Raigorodsky. As far as I know—swimming.

Mr. Jenner. Ice skating?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't remember anything about that, but they always played tennis, you know, they lived next door to me, you see, they played tennis all the time.

Mr. Jenner. Did either of them ever live in the Stoneleigh Hotel?

Mr. Raigorodsky. At the Maple Terrace. You see, it is owned by the same people—the Stoneleigh, Maple, and now there's another Terrace—the Tower Terrace.

Mr. Jenner. Are these buildings all in proximity one with the other?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; and they are owned by the same people, by the Leo Corrigan's son-in-law, Jordan.

Mr. Jenner. In addition to being an expansive person, is De Mohrenschildt a generous man?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; I would say he is a generous man.

Mr. Jenner. Is he the type of person who would seek, out of the goodness of his heart, to help people like the Oswalds or persons in like circumstances?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I would say he will do it because he wants to show what a grand person he is. You see, that would be my quick judgment. It would be different from the other Russians, you see, because they were appalled at the fact that the baby didn't have milk.

Mr. Jenner. That is, De Mohrenschildt might not have been sincere, while the other members who were seeking to assist were genuine and sincere about it?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Correct.

Mr. Jenner. De Mohrenschildt might be trying to put on a show, for example?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Exactly.

19 Mr. Jenner. And was he a man given to extreme statements in public?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes. Even though in a joking way. Maybe, like, at a big party—I'll never forget that, you see. It was for the first time I met him. It was at the Brook Hollow Golf Club before it burned down, at a big party and you know. I had some friends of mine, the Jake Hamons and the others, and suddenly George, you know, he always managed to do it, he always said, "There's a spy in the crowd." You know, he would say, "There's a spy in the crowd," just for the fun of it or whatever it is. So, we all started to say, "There's a spy in the crowd," and somebody asked me, "Are you the spy?" And I said, "Maybe," but that's the way he always did—just create some kind of maybe innocent unrest, but we didn't know how much truth there was to it.

Mr. Jenner. And would you give us the reason for that view?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Because he's liable to do anything.

Mr. Jenner. Liable to do anything because he is eccentric. He has no control over himself, really?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's what it is—because of his character.

Mr. Jenner. Would you have the impression that De Mohrenschildt is the type of person that might seek to induce others to do something he might hesitate to do himself?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; I don't think so.

Mr. Jenner. What is your opinion as to the legitimacy of the business in which he is engaged in Haiti?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, from the point of view of the U.S. Government, it is a legitimate business to do business up until now with Haiti. I think the other day—it was the first time that we granted them a loan or aid, but we wouldn't deal with Duvalier, but George moved there—he is there, and moved his furniture.

Mr. Jenner. That's so—in the spring of 1963?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you have had correspondence with him since?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes.

Mr. Jenner. You have given me a file and it is entitled "George De Mohrenschildt". I have been browsing through it. It seems to relate almost exclusively to the Haitian venture, and I don't see anything else in it.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Here is a letter of June 30 that must have been left here.

Mr. Jenner. Is this June 30, 1963, or 1962?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It must be 1963—yes, it is 1963.

Mr. Jenner. If this was June of 1963, this was before the events of November 22—I gather from your first sentence of this letter that he had been in Dallas?

Mr. Raigorodsky. After this—that's right; I see it is 1963, after this fiasco here, then he came back to Dallas—which I was called on.

Mr. Jenner. Now, the "fiasco here in Dallas" I take it from your testimony, was the suit brought by De Mohrenschildt against his wife Didi, and that suit was brought in Philadelphia and it had to do with the disposition of a corpus residue of a trust established for George's son.

As I recall, friends of the Sharples family appealed to you, or maybe sued directly, to see what you could do to help out?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; friends of her family.

Mr. Jenner. Friends of her family?

Mr. Raigorodsky. In fact, Mrs. Crespi, appealed to me to see what I can do.

Mr. Jenner. Who is Mrs. Crespi?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Mrs. Pio Crespi is a very well known person here. Her husband is retired; he has a company called Crespi & Co.—a cotton exchange brokerage. She is a close friend of the Sharples family.

Mr. Jenner. Mrs. Crespi?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What do you understand Mr. De Mohrenschildt is doing over in Haiti?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Over there?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

20 Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, he told me that he wants to get in on the ground floor and he has a connection with the top banker in the country who is the Duvalier banker, and that way he will be able to pickup some "juicy plums" in Haiti. That's exactly what he told me. That's why he wanted to organize the corporation here, you see, to go to Haiti and build plants and help them to develop the industry and reap the profits. You see, it so happened that I believe it is very hard to be a specialist in one line, and almost impossible in two, and my specialty is oil and all my business is in oil. If he came with an oil deal, I might be interested.

Mr. Jenner. Would you say in describing this man, that he has a sort of an adolescence personality, a fellow who has really never grown up?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It isn't a sort of—he is adolescent.

Mr. Jenner. He is adolescent?

Mr. Raigorodsky. George will never grow old.

Mr. Jenner. But will he grow up; is he lacking in maturity?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He always did.

Mr. Jenner. And things that amuse him are the sort of things that amused us, let's say, when we were adolescent—in our teens?

Mr. Raigorodsky. When we were 16—that's right—any kind of pranks.

Mr. Jenner. He is a prankster?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes, sir. And he does it so engagingly. I mean, his laugh is a genuine laugh and if you ever heard his laugh—he enjoys it. You see, it is a genuine laugh and of course that is very, very effective, you know, as far as other people are concerned.

Mr. Davis. Would you say he is very distinct——

Mr. Raigorodsky. There is no word for that—very engaging, I suppose would be the nearest.

Mr. Jenner. I think you mentioned, but I failed to pursue it, I think De Mohrenschildt sought to borrow money from you, did he, in 1963?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Occasionally.

Mr. Jenner. In connection with the Haitian venture?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No.

Mr. Jenner. He did not?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; he sought to have me to participate in the deal.

Mr. Jenner. And you did or didn't?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I did not.

Mr. Jenner. And that was to be what kind of a deal?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, it is a corporation—here is a chart of what he was planning to do.

(Handed instrument to Counsel Jenner.)

Mr. Jenner. Now, you have exhibited to me a chart that you have taken from your file. There is handwriting on the chart—is that George De Mohrenschildt's handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did he send that chart to you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; here's the envelope.

Mr. Jenner. And have you attached to the chart the envelope in which the chart was transmitted to you, and it is postmarked September 12, 1962, at Dallas, Tex., and is this an outline?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Of what he plans to do there.

Mr. Jenner. Of what he planned to do?

Mr. Raigorodsky. You see, "Port-au-Prince, August 27, 1962." He shows he will have group insurance, cheap housing development, banking, cotton gin, electric powerplant, import franchise, spinning mill, weaving plant for cotton mill, and he puts down here "credits available for these industries."

Mr. Jenner. Do you have any information that he is surveying the physical characteristics of the surface? Of the entire Haitian area.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, that's what my understanding was, that that is how he got in so close to them—because it was one of his consulting jobs.

Mr. Jenner. For the Haitian Government?

Mr. Raigorodsky. For the Haitian Government.

21 Mr. Jenner. Is he still engaged on that; do you know, or are you informed?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I don't know—I am not informed.

Mr. Jenner. Is it your impression that his Haitian proposal was legitimate, that is, a legitimate speculation or otherwise. What I am getting at, in other words, that it was not anything of an ulterior character?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, here's some more of the same thing, which I think might be helpful. Here's what information which they send to John De Menil.

Mr. Jenner. Which he was sending to John De Menil?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It's a copy for me.

Mr. Jenner. It is to John De Menil?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Would I have your permission to have these documents in your file duplicated?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, sure.

Mr. Jenner. I'll tell you what would be helpful to me—if you would have your secretary restore the file, because you have been generously pulling documents out of it, and if she will restore it to the order in which it was originally?

Mr. Raigorodsky. All right.

Mr. Jenner. Then I will be able to go through it with you.

(At this point the witness, Mr. Raigorodsky, called his secretary, Mrs. Louise Meek, into the deposing office, giving her the instructions to comply with Counsel Jenner's request, and after leaving the deposing office and returning thereto shortly with the file in the order as requested, Mrs. Meek then departed the deposing room and the deposition continued as follows:)

Mr. Raigorodsky. This shows the Haitian holding company. It shows what they are trying to do. There is correspondence with the bank and everything.

Mr. Jenner. There were two files there, as I recall it.

Mr. Raigorodsky. You can have them both—the other one is on the well operation.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, I understand. You were participating with him in some drilling?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And they were either dry holes or they didn't amount to anything?

Mr. Raigorodsky. One dry hole and one other. I want to ask you something?

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Have you ever talked to Mr. H. Gordon Calder. Mr. H. Gordon Calder is an oil man in Shreveport, La. He is a close friend of mine; in fact, he probably was the first friend I had in this country. We went to the University of Texas together. That's over 40 years ago. His last job before he quit, he was the head of the Southern Production Co., quite a large organization, and George has been working on several oil deals with Gordon Calder, and Gordon Calder has been more in contact with George than I have in the last several years. I see that Gordon Calder was in this well too; my office has the telephone number and address of Mr. Calder, in fact, if necessary, I can call him and he will come over here.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know whether Professor Jitkoff is acquainted with De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, I'm sure he is.

Mr. Jenner. You are acquainted with Basil Zavoico?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Who is he?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Basil—he is a Russian. His father was a general in the Russian Army. He has a brother. Basil Zavoico has been—his primary business has been what I would say is a bank and insurance consultant on oil matters. He has been with Prudential Insurance Co.; he has been with Chase National Bank. He was their consultant; and he has been in a business of his own mostly connected with oil financing.

Mr. Jenner. Did he at one time reside in Dallas?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; he resided in Houston.

22 Mr. Jenner. Do you know whether he would be acquainted then with George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, yes; I'm sure that they had some oil dealings. Now, both Gordon Calder and Zavoico probably had more dealings with George than I had.

Mr. Jenner. And he lives in Green Farms, Conn.?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Correct.

Mr. Jenner. And his place is known as "Cronomere"? Is there anything that occurs to you that might be helpful to the Commission, first, in its investigation of the assassination of President Kennedy; and secondly, in regards to the character and integrity of, background and interests of George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, the only thing I can say that I was told—it is a hearsay—that after meeting Marina Oswald—the way Russians met, there was a party somewhere.

Mr. Jenner. There was what?

Mr. Raigorodsky. A party—a social gathering.

Mr. Jenner. A party?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Somewhere—I don't remember where.

Mr. Jenner. Here in this country?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Here in Dallas, and at that party, there were several Russians, and they claimed that in walks George De Mohrenschildt with Marina Oswald and her husband. That's the only thing that out of everything that they told me that stuck in my mind.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall anybody who was reported to have been at this party?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I'll say that Mr. Bouhe and Anna Meller.

Mr. Jenner. M-e-l-l-e-r [spelling]?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; I'm not quite sure—there were quite a few other Russians, but it was George who brought the Oswalds into the party.

Mr. Jenner. We have had some off the record discussions all in the presence of Miss Oliver and Mr. Davis. Is there anything that occurred during our off-the-record discussions that is pertinent, which I have failed to bring out.

Mr. Raigorodsky. No; if it was pertinent I would not have taken it off of the record.

Now, may I say something myself?

Mr. Jenner. Certainly.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Would you care to know what my opinion of the assassination is, or is that just an opinion?

Mr. Jenner. All right; let's have it.

Mr. Raigorodsky. I still believe it is a conspiracy.

Mr. Jenner. Well, on what do you base that opinion?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I have read—I'm quite sure everything that you have read, and you read probably more than I did because you have these interrogations.

There are just so many things that are unbelievable, that a person like Oswald, would be allowed to do the things in Russia.

Mr. Jenner. We are interested in that sort of an opinion. What is the basis of your opinion in that respect?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I have studied communism and I have watched them operating, you know.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness, Raigorodsky, off the record.)

Mr. Jenner. Now, I want that on the record.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well—the fact that they gave you all of the record, they gave you all of the records on Oswald, that he was running around in Russia, marrying a Russian woman, that she was allowed to go out of Russia—I know several cases where they wouldn't allow a person whom Americans marry to come for several years. Here, everything was (snapping his fingers) so—just23 like that. It just reads too much like a fairy tale. I mean, as much as they claim they don't trust him, they surely didn't show it by the action in granting him different things which he received in Russia and in this country.

Now, Marina, I don't know anything about her.

Mr. Jenner. This is your supposition and rationalization on your part?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That is correct.

Mr. Jenner. Now. I have your file——

Mr. Raigorodsky. Now you take anything you want out of it.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Let's do it this way—I have your file which you have kept marked "Re: George De Mohrenschildt."

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I will just identify these documents.

Mr. Raigorodsky. You don't need to.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I need it for my record.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh, all right.

Mr. Jenner. I am not questioning you.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Well, I'm not questioning you.

Mr. Jenner. The bottom portion of this sheet consists of a duplicate telegram, and the upper portion consists of some French language or what might be clippings from a French newspaper. It is marked with a circle No. 1 [document is in evidence as De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 1].

What are they and how did you get those?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He sent them to me.

Mr. Jenner. De Mohrenschildt sent that to you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Oh yes; it is about a recent voyage to the United States of Mr. Clemard Joseph Charles. You see, he was trying to prove to me that Mr. Charles persona grata, both in Haiti and in the United States and was a big shot and here he was sending me some information about him.

Mr. Jenner. The next document is what purports to be a carbon copy of a letter dated July 27, 1962, addressed to Mr. Jean de Menil of Houston, Tex. It is marked with a circle No. 2 [document is in evidence as De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 5]. It has a typewritten signatures on the second page, "G. De Mohrenschildt." I see in the upper right hand corner, written in longhand "copy for Mr. Raigorodsky."

In whose handwriting is that notation?

Mr. Raigorodsky. His.

Mr. Jenner. That is in George De Mohrenschildt's handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did he send that carbon copy of a letter to you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right, and this was the—outlining a project in Haiti and the West Indies.

Mr. Jenner. And was there an outline enclosed?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And is that the next sheet which is entitled: "Haitian Holding Co.," dated August 1, 1962, and is on the letterhead of George De Mohrenschildt? Petroleum geologist and engineer, Republic National Bank Building, Dallas, Tex. [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 6.]

That was enclosed with the letter?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, this is the letter and then this is the outline, and besides that, you see, here is the outline of what he planned.

Mr. Jenner. The outline to which he refers is set forth in the two-page carbon copy of a letter I have heretofore identified?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And there's also enclosed with it what appears to be the mimeographed one piece sheet I have described, dated August 1, 1962, that has the mimeographed signature at the bottom, "G. De Mohrenschildt." Is that his signature?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. These documents were transmitted to you. Did you save the envelope?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

24 Mr. Jenner. And is the envelope clipped to the letter in the file? [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 3.]

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, this looks like it.

Mr. Jenner. And Mr. De Mohrenschildt addressed it to you, is that in his handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that's August 1962?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's it.

Mr. Jenner. Then, next is a letter on a letterhead of—would you read that for me?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, yes; it is the Banque Commerciale D'Haiti.

Mr. Jenner. And it is dated July 31, 1962. It is addressed to Mr. De Mohrenschildt, a typewritten signature of "Clemard Joseph Charles." This seems to be a duplicated letter. [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 2.]

Mr. Raigorodsky. It's a photostat.

Mr. Jenner. Did Mr. De Mohrenschildt send that to you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. On or about July 31, 1962, or shortly thereafter.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. The next document consists of—it looks like an organization chart? [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 10.]

Mr. Raigorodsky. It isn't quite an organization chart, it is the chart of the different projects that he planned to have in Haiti.

Mr. Jenner. And here again there is some longhand writing in ink.

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Is that De Mohrenschildt's writing?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And his signature?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And he also has written on there "Dallas, September 11, 1962."

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Did you retain the envelope [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 8], in which that document, marked with a circled No. 5, was transmitted to you, too?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And is it the next document which in turn is clipped to what I called an organizational chart? [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 10.] And just a diagram?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did anything else accompany that diagram?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, I'm quite sure nothing.

Mr. Jenner. Next is a photostatic copy of a telegram. [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 7]. It appears addressed to Lt.—is that what that is?

Mr. Raigorodsky. No, no; that's De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. It should have been "De" Mohrenschildt and it is "Lt. Mohrenschildt, 6628 Dickens, Dallas."

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. It has a signature by "Tardieu". How did you come by that?

Mr. Raigorodsky. He sent it to me.

Mr. Jenner. De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. The next document [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 16], appears to be a copy of a letter on August 7, 1963, addressed to "Mr. Jean de Menil," with a typewritten signature "George De Mohrenschildt." On the face of that document appears more handwriting—do you recognize the handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. Whose is it?

Mr. Raigorodsky. It's signed by George.

Mr. Jenner. It's George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And the "Dear Paul," in the footnote at the bottom of that letter is you?

25 Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And the memorandum is for you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that includes his handwriting on a notation in the upper right hand corner, "Copy for Mr. Paul Raigorodsky", correct?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Correct.

Mr. Jenner. The next appears to be the original of a letter on blue stationery, the letterhead of which is "3363 San Felipe Road, Houston, Tex." It has a typewritten signature, "John de Menil" and then apparently is signed by a secretary, and it is addressed to you, is it?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; and he investigated it later.

Mr. Jenner. And he is making a report to you and also then decided he is not interested?

Mr. Raigorodsky. But read this.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

"Dear Paul:

George De Mohrenschildt is a nice man, but I do not think his project is very well cooked. It is slightly visionary and not specific at all. This, of course, is my own personal reaction which I am giving you for your confidential information. It was also the reaction of my friend on Wall Street to whom I talked in the hope that perhaps he could get something out of the idea of George De Mohrenschildt.

With kinds regards and best wishes,

Yours sincerly,

/S/ John de Menil
cp
John de Menil

JdM:cp

Dictated by Mr. de Menil over the telephone from New York."

The next document is a carbon copy of a letter dated August 8, 1962, with the typewritten signature of John de Menil. [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 9.] It is addressed to Mr. George De Mohrenschildt in Dallas. You received that, did you?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And it was transmitted to you by Mr. de Menil's secretary; is that correct?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. The next is also a carbon copy—this is a letter to Mr. George De Mohrenschildt from Mr. John de Menil and it is dated August 27, 1962, with a copy to Paul Raigorodsky. [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 10-B.]

From whom did you receive that?

Mr. Raigorodsky. From Mr. de Menil.

Mr. Jenner. And then we have an envelope and a card enclosed. The envelope [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 10], is postmarked in New York May 11, 1963. The envelope is addressed to Mr. Paul M. Raigorodsky, First National Building, Dallas, Tex.

Do you recognize the handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. On the bottom of the envelope and the enclosed card [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 10-A]?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And is that [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 10-A] in Mr. De Mohrenschildt's handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And was it a card enclosed in that envelope?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. The next is an original of a letter addressed to Raigorodsky, dated June 6, 1963, signed, "Jeanne and George de M." [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 11.]

26 Is that George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Is everything that is in handwriting on the face of that letter in his handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you received that in due course?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Raigorodsky. This was written from Port-au-Prince.

Mr. Jenner. It was written on the stationery of a hotel, Hotel Sans Souci. Port-au-Prince, Haiti. [Raigorodsky Exhibit No. 11-A.]

The next document is an original letter from the De Mohrenschildts, it is a typewritten letter and is signed, "George and Jeanne" over the typewritten signature "Jeanne and George De Mohrenschildt," and is addressed to "Dear Paul." Up here in the right hand corner is "Port-au-Prince, September 12, 1963, c/o American Embassy." [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 9.]

That is a letter to you, is it?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You received it in due course?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. There is attached to the letter an envelope addressed to you, it looks like that is his handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, that George's handwriting.

Mr. Jenner. And is that the envelope in which the letter of September 12, 1963, was enclosed?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, I'm sure it is.

Mr. Jenner. Is that correct?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Correct.

Mr. Jenner. Now, Mr. Raigorodsky has handed me an envelope postmarked in New York, May 18, 1963, to which he has made reference in his testimony. It is addressed to Mr. Paul M. Raigorodsky, and it looks like fifth floor, First National Bank Building, Dallas, Tex., and it has a stamp on it, "May 20, 1963." That is a rubber stamp imprinted, accompanying this envelope, and there is handed to me his longhand note on "Racquet & Tennis Club" imprinted card, dated in longhand, "May 18, 1963." [Raigorodsky Exhibits Nos. 14 and 14-A, respectively.]

It begins, "Dear Paul," and is signed by "Geo. De M."

Mr. Raigorodsky, are this envelope and card in Mr. De Mohrenschildt's handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, they are.

Mr. Jenner. And was the card enclosed in the envelope here?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes, and here is another letter.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Raigorodsky has handed me another letter written on both sides, entirely on both sides in longhand, dated June 30, at Miami, and signed "Jeanne and George De M.". [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 4.]

Do you recognize the handwriting on each side of that letter, Mr. Raigorodsky?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Whose is it?

Mr. Raigorodsky. De Mohrenschildt's.

Mr. Jenner. And did you receive it in due course subsequent to June 30—of what year?

Mr. Raigorodsky. 1963. This is very interesting—this is a map of Haiti. You see where he sent me—he said "Our Shada Concession."

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Raigorodsky, has opened up a Texaco map of Haiti, [De Mohrenschildt Exhibit No. 11] Republica Dominicana on the face of the map—there is handwriting—do you recognize that handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; that's George De Mohrenschildt's.

Mr. Jenner. Did you receive that from him?

Mr. Raigorodsky. I can't answer that—it probably is mentioned in one of the letters.

Mr. Jenner. One of the letters I have identified?

27 Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. But all of that is his handwriting?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; and you see, he has written in here "Oil possibilities Mellon Concession" and "Our Shada Concession."

Mr. Jenner. What is "Shada"?

Mr. Raigorodsky. That's where he claims he had the concessions for the hemp.

Mr. Jenner. For hemp or sisal there?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Yes; sisal.

Mr. Jenner. These things will all show up on any photostat immediately of this?

Mr. Raigorodsky. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I state for the record, Mr. Raigorodsky, has authorized us to make a copy of papers I have identified and identified them in the record, so one thing is helpful—I don't have to go to the trouble of preparing a receipt because you have it in the record, and secondly, in the event—if we seek to question Mr. De Mohrenschildt I will have these documents identified as to their authenticity by way of this questioning of you.

Thank you very much, sir, you have been extremely patient and I would like the record to show that Mr. Raigorodsky appeared voluntarily, also he has a very bad cold which has been quite obvious and came to the U.S. attorney's office about 10:30 a.m. and then we repaired to here, his office, and it is now 2:15 in the afternoon and he has been under questioning during that whole period of time. I appreciate this personally and I know the Commission will. I offer in evidence the foregoing documents as Raigorodsky Exhibits Nos. 9, 10, 10-A, 10-B, 11, 11-A, 14, and 14A.

Mr. Raigorodsky. I hope to help you in some way, but I'm just as lost at this moment as I was then.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you have been very helpful throughout this.

Mr. Raigorodsky, Miss Oliver, the reporter, will transcribe this deposition possibly during the course of the week, if not, it will be ready next week, and you have the right to read it and make some corrections, suggestions or additions, and to sign it. That is a privilege that is accorded you, if you wish to examine it. You may also have a copy by purchase of a copy from Miss Oliver and whatever your deposition is with respect to all these alternatives.

Mr. Raigorodsky. I would like to have a copy for sure, and I may, when you might note in spelling in some of the names, I will be glad to help you with that if you will call me on the phone before you put it down.

Mr. Jenner. All right, we thank you very much.

Mr. Raigorodsky. All right, thank you.


TESTIMONY OF MRS. THOMAS M. RAY (NATALIE)

The testimony of Mrs. Thomas M. Ray (Natalie) was taken at 11 a.m., on March 25, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Wesley J. Liebeler, assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Robert T. Davis, assistant attorney general of Texas, was present.

Mr. Liebeler. Come in Mr. and Mrs. Ray and sit down.

Mr. Ray. We didn't get your letter until Monday because you addressed it to Blossom, Tex. We are on mailing Route 3, Detroit, Tex., and we are on the Blossom, Tex., telephone exchange.

Mr. Liebeler. Oh, I'm sorry. You are supposed to have 3 days' notice.

Mr. Ray. That's all right. We're here now.

Mr. Liebeler. Mrs. Ray, I would like to take your testimony at this time. Would you rise and raise your right hand and I will swear you before we start.

(Witness complying.)

28 Mr. Liebeler. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give here will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mrs. Ray. I do.

Mr. Liebeler. My name is Wesley J. Liebeler. I am a member of the legal staff of the President's Commission investigating the assassination of President Kennedy. Staff members have been authorized to take the testimony of witnesses by the Commission pursuant to authority granted to the Commission by Executive Order 11130 dated November 29, 1963, and Joint Resolution of Congress No. 137.

I believe Mr. Rankin sent you a letter last week?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; and I read it and have your name, too.

Mr. Liebeler. He sent with that letter copies of the Executive order and the joint resolution as well as copies of the rules and procedure governing the taking of testimony of witnesses. Did you receive that letter and copies of such documents?

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. Ray previously mentioned that the letter was routed to the wrong post office box and you did not get it until Sunday.

Mrs. Ray. Monday.

Mr. Liebeler. Under the rules of the Commission each witness is entitled to 3 days' notice before he has to testify and I suppose technically since you did not get the letter until Monday you do not have to testify today or you can waive that notice, and I presume you are willing to go ahead with the questioning at this time; is that correct?

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. We want to inquire of you today, Mrs. Ray, concerning the events at a party at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Declan P. Ford which was held in Dallas in December 1962, as the events at that party related to or involved Lee Harvey Oswald. We also want to question you about meetings and/or parties that you went to at other places in Dallas during the period shortly after December 28, 1962. Before we get into that, would you state your full name for the record?

Mrs. Ray. Me?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes; what is your full name?

Mrs. Ray. Natalie.

Mr. Liebeler. And your last name is——

Mrs. Ray. Ray.

Mr. Liebeler. R-a-y [spelling]?

Mrs. Ray. R-a-y [spelling].

Mr. Liebeler. What is your residence?

Mrs. Ray. Route 3, Detroit, Tex.—here, you mean?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes. Where were you born?

Mrs. Ray. Russia.

Mr. Liebeler. Where in Russia?

Mrs. Ray. Stalingrad.

Mr. Liebeler. Approximately when were you born?

Mrs. Ray. In 1922, May 1922.

Mr. Liebeler. When did you leave Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. Let me see, in 1943, in time war; Germans come and taken over Stalingrad and pick me up and send to Germany.

Mr. Liebeler. When the German troops reached Stalingrad they picked you up and other Russian people?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah; lots of Russians and they send us to Germany in camp, in concentration camp, labor camp, I guess, more.

Mr. Liebeler. How long were you in Germany?

Mrs. Ray. I been there until I come to America, 1946.

Mr. Liebeler. How did it come about that you came to the United States; what were the circumstances of your coming here?

Mrs. Ray. Well, I met my husband was town of Wiesbaden being liberated by Americans and that's the first time we ever saw American people and then they taken us out and tell us to wait until they able to send us to Russia.29 At this time we been working for Americans, soldiers, something in kitchen or different something, just for food until we be able to go back to Russia and I met my husband and when I met him, well, I lost all contact with home and been told there's nobody at home, no place to go and my husband tell me that I can marry American man and I said, "No, I cannot marry American man because Russia will not permit me to marry" and we did have lots of difficulty to get marry and my husband went to Paris, France, to have permission that they let us marry but they not let him see nobody, just asking where I am. I have to hide at this time because Russia picking up and sending all back to Russia, and my husband find me room in Germany where I have to stay until we get married. Well, they—Russians don't give me permission for me to get marry and later on I have to go up and became as a displaced person and in 1945, there, U.S. Government said could marry to displaced person and I marry my husband in May 1945. Yeah, I guess 1945 or 1946—let me see, yeah, in 1945 because—or 1946. I guess. I'm sorry.

Mr. Liebeler. You were both in Germany at the time?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; my husband and I used to travel when war still going on, you know, they move and I move with him; that will be something come. We go to Frankfurt; I went with him to Frankfurt. If he have to move I go with him. Three Russian girls, us, together, and I did in 1946. I guess. I marry. I forget now when, I am very sorry.

Mr. Liebeler. That's all right; that's not important.

Mrs. Ray. War ended in 1945 and year later I married; that's in 1946, I'm sorry.

Mr. Liebeler. And then you came to the United States with your husband, is that correct?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; well, we stay year in Germany after we marry.

Mr. Liebeler. Then when he left Germany you came back to the United States?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I go with him.

Mr. Liebeler. Are you an American citizen now?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I am.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever meet Lee Oswald or Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I met them at this party.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us about that in your own words; just tell us how you came to the party and how you met Oswald and to the best of your recollection just how it happened.

Mrs. Ray. Well, I wrote short stories for magazine and Mrs. Harris, Zena Harris, Ed Harris from Georgetown read that story and find my address and found me Russian. Until this time I never been have any—nobody there from Russian and I don't have not nobody.

Mr. Liebeler. You had no contact with Russian speaking people?

Mrs. Ray. No; except some friend in New York what we used to live in Germany together and we write each other Mrs. Harris called me on phone and said that—"I know you are Russian and I like to talk to you." I said, "Well, I am glad to know somebody Russian, just about forget how to talk to Russian." She said she like to come over and see me. I tell her she welcome to it. They did come visit us and she told me that they always get together in Dallas, lots of Russian girls and Russian men have a party and she like for me to come to this party. I said, "Well, I like to know, you know, more people Russian" because I never have contact with nobody. Well, she calling on phone from my house to Mr. Ford, Declan Ford and talk to his wife and tell her, said, "I found one Russian" and said "I like for her to coming to this party." They already planned this party. She asked her time when it's going to be. She said on Friday—Friday, I kind of think 29 before New Year and she said she welcome to it and said we going to have one Russian girl what just come back from Russia. She said she just coming with man in United States.

Mr. Liebeler. Mrs. Ford told you this, is that right?

Mrs. Ray. Mrs. Ford, yeah, she said she had girl what going to be at this party that just come back from Russia. Well, it's home and you like to hear what is going on, any change, still same or, you know——

Mr. Liebeler. Sure.

30 Mrs. Ray. Just glad to meet somebody. Well, we promised that we will come and Friday we go to this party and Mr. and Mrs. Harris and we went to Mr. Ford house. When we coming there, there's lots of people.

Mr. Liebeler. How many people were there, approximately, would you say?

Mrs. Ray. Between 25, 30 people; I cannot tell exactly but it's lots of people been there, and, surely, you know, you kind of like to know what's going on in Russia. First things I like to know this girl and this man. Well, they introduced everybody and then they tell that this Marina, she's come back from Russia. Well, I started talk to her and asking how she like it here. She said she liked very well. I said, "Did you have any difficulty to come to America?" She said, "No, she don't have any at all." Very much surprise me because I not been able to do much with my home. I not be able to send them packages or—I said, "Oh, that's very good; I guess now it's change and get better," I said.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you have relatives in Russia now that you know of?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I have a niece what I been—she write my mother passed away and I lost my brothers and sisters in war and then mother, when Germans take me from home, my mother and two children, my sisters, stay and I together and then they take me away. My mother and these two children stay. Then this child, one got killed; still war going on and one niece, my sister's girl and that's one is on the road out to my mother.

Mr. Liebeler. Was she living in Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. No; at this time, no; they moved. At this time she lived in Tchewchankowskiy, Rudnek. That's pretty close to——

Mr. Liebeler. Kharkov?

Mrs. Ray. That's lots salt mines there and that's close Kharkov. That's not too far from Kharkov.

Mr. Liebeler. I interrupted your story about your conversation with Marina. Would you go on with that?

Mrs. Ray. Yes. After she told that she don't have any difficulty to come here, you know, I, well, everybody interested. I told her, I said, "I am glad; I guess get better because if they let you so easy to get out Russia then that's get little bit better now and I guess they better friends." I said, "Maybe later on"—I let be get contact now with niece. I been trying call her on telephone. I never can get her on phone. I said, "Maybe I can calling her and talk to her now" and I never planned to go back but, you know, just for somebody there you want to get contact with and then another things I found out that her husband is—she introduced me to her husband like she done everybody and he speak just perfect Russian.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he speak to you in Russian?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; just perfect; really surprised me and I said "How come you speak so good Russian. How long you been in Russia?" He said well, he don't been there too long. He said he been just 3 year. I said "You just been three——

Mr. Davis. Excuse me, how long?

Mrs. Ray. Three year. I said "You speak good Russian." I asked him, I said "Do you like" no; I asked "How you like Russia?" He said "Oh, it's all right." But he don't have much to say, you know, but he always staying close to Marina and every time you asking something he seems to be one to answer it. If someone say where you from, he tell you. Maybe he just plain wanted let you know he speak Russian or something. I don't know reason but seems to me that he all time interfere.

Mr. Liebeler. When you would ask Marina a question Oswald himself would want to tell you the answer?

Mrs. Ray. Yes, always; he be very close.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ask him if he had gone to school anywhere to learn Russian?

Mrs. Ray. No; I don't but I give him credit for speak so well Russian. I said "I been here so long and still don't speak very well English"; I said "You speak fast Russian." He said in Russia he learn to speak Russian. He just came back.

31 Mr. Liebeler. You thought he spoke Russian better than you would expect a person to be able to speak Russian after only living there only 3 years?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I really did. I don't know, maybe Russian easy. I know American is very difficult language but I been taught here. Really, it's just too good speaking Russian for be such a short time, you know.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you anything about how he learned to speak Russian or did he just say it was from being in Russia?

Mrs. Ray. No; I never asked. Only things, I give him credit he speak so well Russian and I don't ask and then I want to introduce him to my husband, you know. He is an American and my husband did not remember him very well how he look and my husband, I guess, have few drinks and he is man don't talk much. This Oswald don't say much and you introduce and that's as far as go but he always constantly staying very close to his wife, you know.

Mr. Liebeler. Tell us the rest of your conversation with Marina or with Oswald as best you can recall it.

Mrs. Ray. Well, after she told that she don't have any difficulty and we decided that everything is getting better and we started asking her about Russian songs and they start to sing in Russian songs, and asking her sing, if she know any latest Russian song, and she start sing and we sing with her together and then I notice that's all been say as much conversation.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ask her where she lived when she was in Russia?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I ask her where she come from. She said she come from Minsk but said later she coming from Moscow. She been in Moscow with her husband. He has a paper fix and she said as soon as he got his paper fix to go to America, said she did not have difficulty. He told them he ready to go and he going to take her with him and said she got paper and they left. Don't take too long; said he have to wait for little while. I believe she said a year, have to wait before he got his paper.

Mr. Liebeler. Before he got his paper from the Americans or from the Russians; did she say?

Mrs. Ray. No; from Americans to go back to America; so he decided to go back to America.

Mr. Liebeler. Did she tell you how long they stayed in Moscow?

Mrs. Ray. She stayed 1 year.

Mr. Liebeler. She said they were in Moscow 1 year?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; see, from Minsk he have to go in Moscow to American Embassy to talking he wanted to go back and they staying year in Moscow before he got this paper and as soon as he got paper, he let Russian Embassy know he got paper, they ready to leave and said they give her paper and they left.

Mr. Liebeler. The Russians gave her the papers?

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Marina mention she had lived in Leningrad at one time?

Mrs. Ray. No; not that I remember.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you know or did she tell you she had relatives in Kharkov?

Mrs. Ray. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you learn what kind of job Oswald had while he was in Russia?

Mrs. Ray. Well, not exactly; all I know she said he working on factory, some factory and we don't get any details.

Mr. Liebeler. Did they tell you where this factory was located?

Mrs. Ray. Located what?

Mr. Liebeler. Where was the factory that Oswald worked in?

Mrs. Ray. In Minsk.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald work while they stayed in Moscow a year? Do you know about that?

Mrs. Ray. No; I cannot help in this. I do not know. I know that they coming and stay in Moscow.

Mr. Liebeler. Are you sure that she told you they stayed in Moscow for a whole year or did they just go to Moscow to see about the papers and then come back to Minsk and wait in Minsk for the year to go by?

Mrs. Ray. Well, really, when Mrs. Ford call us, she on telephone told us that32 she come from Moscow, you know. That is girl, Russian girl, she says she come back from Moscow.

Mr. Liebeler. From Moscow?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah, and then later on Marina said that she, you know—let me see how she say—that she come from Moscow. She fly—not fly—I do not know how they come but she say from Moscow she come to America but she been in Moscow 1 year. Said that's year or little better but she been in Moscow with him; that's what she tell.

Mr. Liebeler. For a year?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah.

Mr. Liebeler. But they did not tell you what they were doing there for a job?

Mrs. Ray. No; well, she tell he have to wait on paper this long and that's as far as I know.

Mr. Liebeler. Now, did Marina know how to speak English as far as you could tell?

Mrs. Ray. No; she don't understand word. She speak Russian but she don't understand English.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald or Marina tell you what kind of an apartment they had to live in when they lived in Minsk?

Mrs. Ray. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did they tell you where they lived when they were in Moscow?

Mrs. Ray. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember anything else that they may have told you about the time that they were in Russia together?

Mrs. Ray. Well, I don't think anything else. I can recall main things. I never been concerned about where they lived or what they been doing. All I wanted to know how easy she get out, you know; how come she so easy to go when such a difficulty to have anything to do. That's why my impression been that everything is get better, you know.

Mr. Liebeler. Did they tell you how much money Oswald was paid at his job?

Mrs. Ray. Where, there?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes.

Mrs. Ray. No, uh-uh.

Mr. Liebeler. Did they tell you why Oswald went to Russia in the first place?

Mrs. Ray. No; but I read in the paper and then, you know, before he went, I remember in Fort Worth paper, I read it about boy went to Russia that he said that's government he preferred and that's place he want to go to live and—but that's as far as—then Mrs. Harris is one that told me she know about him, that he went to Russia and want to stay there and then he change his mind and want to come back to America.

Mr. Liebeler. You knew that about Oswald when you met him at Ford's party, is that right?

Mrs. Ray. Yes—no, no; I don't know it because we suppose to know it and Zena—that's Mrs. Harris—don't know either who they are but when we go Mrs. Harris found out who is here and then she told me. That's in conversation, you know, he went to Russia and don't like it and he come back but marry this Russian girl and brought her with.

Mr. Liebeler. So, you learned that at the Ford party because Mrs. Harris told you that, is that right?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah.

Mr. Liebeler. After the Oswalds left the party was there any discussion about Oswald amongst the people there?

Mrs. Ray. Well, not that moment when they start leaving, well, we go to Marina and I personally ask why they are leaving so early—I don't recall the time—she said well, they coming with some couples, they don't have any car, they came with somebody and said they ready to go and "We better go; we have baby at home and we better go back." Well, we tell them "Bye" and that's as far as went but after they left at this time there has been no discussion whatsoever, you know, just they gone and everything is forgot.

Mr. Liebeler. Did there come a time later after the Ford party that there was a discussion about the Oswalds?

33 Mrs. Ray. Yeah, next day.

Mr. Liebeler. Where was that?

Mrs. Ray. Let me see, I have a dates what happened next Saturday. We went back to Ford's house. They ask us coming over and Saturday we staying at Ford house and there's not much been discussion about but she only know, she tell us that she been keeping Marina with her 2 weeks, Marina and her baby.

Mr. Liebeler. Mrs. Ford told you this?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; and she said "Well, he cannot find job"—said she just want to help out and that's as far as been discussed and forgot and then we went Sunday we going back to Mrs. Meller, let me see. Anna Meller.

Mr. Liebeler. That's Meller. Did you say the next Saturday? In other words a week after?

Mrs. Ray. No, no; that's same, that following Saturday. We been Friday, that Saturday and Sunday; we 3 days been here in Dallas. Sunday, we ask by George Bouhe—or how you say?

Mr. Liebeler. Bouhe.

Mrs. Ray. Bouhe, yes, to come and visit another Russian family what being at Ford's house; that's Anna Meller and we went over there and that's one main things taken place when we discussed Oswald and his wife.

Mr. Liebeler. Who was there at that time? Mr. and Mrs. Meller were both there, is that right?

Mr. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. Bouhe?

Mrs. Ray. Yes, sir; he.

Mr. Liebeler. Yourself and your husband?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; and Harris.

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. and Mrs. Harris?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; Mr. and Mrs. Harris and then another couple I cannot recall name and they gave me address but I lost it. They live on farm; I don't remember their name; they, couple, and some girl there been from Houston. She visit with Mrs. Meller.

Mr. Liebeler. Would that be Miss Biggers—Tatiana Biggers?

Mrs. Ray. Tatiana Biggers, yeah, she from Houston.

Mr. Liebeler. Anybody else there that you remember?

Mrs. Ray. Another girl here from Dallas; she not married. I don't remember what her name——

Mr. Liebeler. Lydia Dymitruk?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us to the best of your recollection what was said at this party or get-together?

Mrs. Ray. Well, when we got together, George Bouhe, one I told him, well, when things we started discuss it and we just wonder how come America take him back; said he choose this Russia, why they brought him back. Why don't they just let him alone over there, and said "You don't know Russia as we do. They have such funny tricks; never can tell what they can," but in the same time thinking if he choosing go to Russia and said "That's my country", why America want to bring him back, what for? We wonder why they take him back. Well, there's George Bouhe said "Oh, he gives so much trouble" and he start telling first things he cannot get job, said he kind of smart-aleck, he calling him. Said every place he go looking for the job, when they ask him where he last time work and he said Minsk, Russia, said "Well, who in heaven going to give job?" He don't explain. He seems to be proud he working in Russia and said nobody give him job and they been have very much difficulty to making living and said they so sorry for this girl. Said he brought her here and she don't know any language. Said she such have difficulty. They don't wonder she have wrong impression about America. Said we been trying help them. Said sometimes she call them and said she don't have nothing to eat for her kid if they cannot help. Said we go and get her and said Mrs. Ford keep her; Mrs. Meller keep her; Mrs. Ray keep her, not me, Ray, that's other Ray. Said we try to help and then George tell me he decided help him try find job maybe he can make living.

34 Mr. Liebeler. George Bouhe?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; George Bouhe, he said he go talk to somebody and they give him job. Said you know how long he stay. Said he staying 3 days and quit and I said "Well, I guess he expect since he been in Russia when he come back in America that they going to put red carpet for him and take him." Said well, tell us about America what is wrong, there in Russia they don't accept him and when he come back home they don't need him either here, don't put red carpet and he just disappoint and kind of, you know, just disgusted with everything and he said "Well, I don't know but I give up with them; I am through, we just cannot—he don't going to find job. He don't going to keep job." He thinking he can have some kind of special job; said "I am just through with him."

Mr. Liebeler. This is what Bouhe said?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; he said "as much as her, we want to help her because she is strange in country and we don't want her be mistreated but said him, we cannot help him any more" and that's as much as being said.

Mr. Liebeler. What else was said at this time?

Mrs. Ray. Well, I don't know; I cannot recall right now.

Mr. Liebeler. Was there any discussion on the question of whether or not Oswald might have been an agent of the Russian government?

Mrs. Ray. Well, as an agent we not—but we did discuss. Said Russia, you know, so funny; said never can tell they may send him with some kind of purpose here in America but it isn't saying exactly as an agent but we did discuss it that he may, you know, just send it by Russia because so easy way to coming to America.

Mr. Liebeler. Tell us now as best as you can recall just what was said about this question of Oswald possibly being sent back by the Russians? What did you say and what did Bouhe say; just tell us as best you can recall the substance of that conversation.

Mrs. Ray. I mostly talk to George Bouhe because he seems to be man what try to bring this Russians together just have fun, not any purpose but said kind of once in a year if we get together that's kind of help we don't forget to speak Russian. I don't know, I guess I am one who told him, I said "George", I said, "You know how Russia is funny", I said, "You know I just afraid maybe they just send him with some kind of, you know, just send him here knowing Russian." I go in college in Russia and if you live there and study you know what really going on. They going to do such a trick that you surprise.

Mr. Liebeler. Where did you go to college in Russia?

Mrs. Ray. In Leningrad.

Mr. Liebeler. In Leningrad?

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. And this was while you were living in Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. Well, my home in Stalingrad; I going in college in Leningrad and then I went home.

Mr. Liebeler. Back to Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. What did you study in Leningrad?

Mrs. Ray. Economist Statistics.

Mr. Davis. Economics Statistics?

Mr. Liebeler. Economics Statistics.

Mrs. Ray. Economics Statistics.

Mr. Liebeler. How long did you study?

Mrs. Ray. Three and a half year.

Mr. Liebeler. Where did you study in Leningrad, what college?

Mrs. Ray. Soljanoy Calach—that's salt. I suppose to after I finish they will send me work to the salt mines and been sent to Siberia, Irkutsk, Siberia. That's only on practice but I was work after I finish in Irkutsk, Siberia.

Mr. Davis. This was a Leningrad college?

Mrs. Ray. No, no; that's Stalingrad.

Mr. Davis. I mean college.

35 Mrs. Ray. Yes; Leningrad—street Maxim Gorky Street. That's on Maxim Gorky Street; that's college.

Mr. Liebeler. When were you there in Leningrad studying, what year, what years?

Mrs. Ray. You mean when?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes.

Mrs. Ray. See, what happen I study and then I have a permission, not permission. I have to go and work in Siberia, Irkutsk and before I go this far—that is very far from my home, I have 2-months vacation and I went home. From first I go to Irkutsk; then from there I coming home in summertime, in June. My brother supposed to come home from flying school to get married and I have 2 months after finish college. You have 2-months vacation; government paying you go back home.

Mr. Liebeler. To Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; take me 13 day to go home. When I coming home I staying there just few day and my brother coming and war started and after war started, I wrote letter to this government place where you have to write that you like to stay at home not to go back since war started that I like to staying at home with my mother, not to go back in Siberia, and that's where I stay. That's how come.

Mr. Liebeler. You were there when the Germans arrived in Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; when Germans come there.

Mr. Liebeler. So, you would have been studying at college in Leningrad from about 1937, is that right, to 1941?

Mrs. Ray. In 1941 when I coming home and just about 4 years.

Mr. Liebeler. So, it would have been about 1937 or 1938 that you started at the university in Leningrad?

Mrs. Ray. Well, wait minute, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1941; see, 3 year and they constantly, every second year they send you some place, you know, practice.

Mr. Liebeler. So, the time you were in Siberia was part of a practice program in connection with your college?

Mrs. Ray. No; at this time that's my job. That's where I have to go.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you actually go from Leningrad to Siberia to start work?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I went; I been once before on practice job then I come back and then they assign me to Siberia.

Mr. Liebeler. And, you actually went to Siberia before you came to Stalingrad?

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. How long did you stay in Siberia before you came back to Leningrad?

Mrs. Ray. This time I did not stay long. I had this plant they have on ground.

Mr. Liebeler. Salt processing?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; I have 2-months vacation and I told them that I did like to go back home. You know they let you do these things; you have to admit it and then go back and have us vacation and that's how come I coming home.

Mr. Liebeler. So, you were not in Siberia very long at all when you went there the first time?

Mrs. Ray. No; but I been to Siberia before on practice.

Mr. Liebeler. Let's go back to the conversation that you were having with Mr. Bouhe about possibility that Oswald might have been sent here by the Russians for some purpose, that the Russians had devised for him or asked him to do it.

Mrs. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Tell us as best you can recall what the conversation was?

Mrs. Ray. Well, seems to be everybody that hasn't just—first I talk with George but then everybody just starting wondering, you know, said why they taken him back; said that's funny, they should not taken him back, never can tell what is going happen. George—one said he don't have any guts to do anything, not any kind—he is just man that is silly. We just decided on this party that he just isn't crazy but—I don't know how to explain.

Mr. Liebeler. Mental case?

36 Mrs. Ray. Really not this way but we decided that he just not any count. He isn't any good. He said he try to be smart; he don't have enough sense. Said—they said they going to be through with him. They don't want have anything to do with him any more.

Mr. Liebeler. Was this conversation carried on in Russian or in English?

Mrs. Ray. In Russian.

Mr. Liebeler. Was your husband there at the time?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah; sometimes we tell him what is going on and he ask me sometimes. He remember this discussion, too.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you tell him about the discussion in English or did Mr. Bouhe?

Mrs. Ray. Well, we half way talk in Russian and then we get in on English, you know, and part what when he interested in something we tell him and he mostly, he know what we talking about.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any other reason for thinking that Oswald might be a Russian agent other than the fact that he had gotten married to Marina and left Russia with such ease? Was there any other reason that led you to suspect he might be an agent?

Mrs. Ray. I don't know; I cannot recall it but I cannot—I don't know how to tell, that is just my opinion but seems to be he very easy can quit job and go in Moscow. In Russia that isn't so easy quit job. They send me in Siberia; I have to stay there. I cannot quit. I cannot go home and stay there and work. I have to get permission and stay there and working. I imagine he have permission to go to Moscow, but he seems—from Minsk going to Moscow; I don't know what he been doing but not as far as this; other, I don't know.

Mr. Liebeler. So you thought that in addition to his apparent—in addition to the apparent ease with which he left Russia and the fact he was able to get married and bring Marina out and also because he was able to move from Minsk to Moscow, those are three reasons you thought he might be an agent. Did you have any other reason that led you to believe that?

Mrs. Ray. Well, main things—I don't thought those things be made him agent. I thought that's in Russia get better if they let people quit job and travel and let Marina come back here so easy. I don't thought—that's main things he can be as agent but how come this man coming to my mind, Russia have such a tricks that we thought never can tell what they——

Mr. Liebeler. Would do?

Mrs. Ray. Will do with him, really; see, I study in college and they don't need Communists coming to Russia. They need Communists going to other country and working.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever receive any training or did you know people who received training in college when you were in Russia to go outside Russia and be agents for Russia?

Mrs. Ray. No; I never received but I do know that we have it in Russia.

Mr. Liebeler. How do you know; do you have schools like that?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; we have school like this and see, my brother been in military school; he is flyer; he got killed and they do, you know. We study in college, too, that we have to send people out to work with the people and have organized Communist party right there. They don't need, you know in Russia them; they need in other country. They don't want a war; that's as far as they said. We do not want a war.

Mr. Liebeler. The Russians do not want a war?

Mrs. Ray. Yes; they said we do not want to have a war but we let them have war inside and have revolution and let them destroy themselves, but as far as fight, we don't want it and we have lots of pictures where they showing agents sent from other countries in Russia; other countries send it to Russia and they catch it and they said we have to always be alert and we have to send trained people over and that's as much as I know, but I don't know if they send it or they don't send it. I don't know any people I meet here because I really be cut off. That's first time I meet these people.

Mr. Davis. Where would that school be; do you know?

Mrs. Ray. Which kind?

Mr. Davis. School where they would teach people this.

37 Mrs. Ray. That is really secret. They don't let you know. In Russia?

Mr. Davis. Yes.

Mrs. Ray. I don't know if they do train agents.

Mr. Liebeler. You were told this when you were going to school in Leningrad, is that correct?

Mrs. Ray. Yeah.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you finally come to a conclusion in this discussion as to whether Oswald was probably a Russian agent or probably was not a Russian agent?

Mrs. Ray. No; we just decided he just plain not any count; just decided he just crazy, not really in mind crazy but he try to be smart but we don't have any conclusion that he is Russian agent but we just been wondering, you know.

Mr. Liebeler. In fact, didn't you sort of generally conclude and agree that because he did not seem to be a responsible person, that he did not seem to have money that you probably thought he was not a Russian agent?

Mrs. Ray. Well, yes; we said if Russia send some agent here, they do give him all connection here. He be not without money; he be not without job. As far as Oswald, he cannot get job. He have such difficulty and usually if Russia really send it he be don't have any such difficulty. That's what been discussed and we decided he not Russian agent.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember any of the other details of these conversations that you had or have you told us everything that you can recall?

Mrs. Ray. No; that all I recall right now.

Mr. Liebeler. Other than this one evening that you saw Oswald and his wife at the Ford party you never saw them at any other time; is that correct?

Mrs. Ray. No, sir; I never see.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know anything else about Oswald that you think the Commission should know that you have not already told us?

Mrs. Ray. No; I don't know nothing else.

Mr. Liebeler. Is there anything else you would like to add to your testimony you think we should know or do you think we covered it fairly well?

Mrs. Ray. I think you cover it. One thing I want to tell you. When I saw on television what happened, you know, I recognized him right away and when my husband come back from work I told him I said, "Honey, do you know who done it?" It shocked me to know you just met this man; made you kind of disgusted you even know him and never thought there here a man what we thought no count can do something like this and when my husband looking on television, he not remember him. I said, "Well, you remember when I introduced and tell he has been in Russia" and he said, "I not even know what he look like him" and that's much——

Mr. Liebeler. Did you and your husband discuss the possibility after you saw that Oswald had been arrested in connection with the assassination, did you discuss the possibility then that Oswald might have been a Russian agent or didn't you think about that again?

Mrs. Ray. No; we not. See, my husband called George Bouhe.

Mr. Liebeler. After the assassination?

Mrs. Ray. After this happen, yeah; and talking to him on telephone and said, "George, is that true that's Oswald really done it?" He said, "Well, we try—just hear it and everything is still—." he said, "We just try to figure out; there we thought he is just don't have any enough guts and then he done things like this." We just can't figure out that he have anything to do with these things, but he said they don't hear from him. He had been left from Dallas. Said last time we been there they quit with him. He give them so much trouble they just want to forget him. Said, "We don't hear from him" but said that's one Oswald what, said, you know this party; my husband did not remember and he thinking I am telling—am mixed up. I said, "Well, that's Marina, and this man is——

Mr. Liebeler. Do you have any other questions, Mr. Attorney General.

Mr. Davis. No.

Mr. Liebeler. I think that's all we have at this time. We want to thank you very much for coming in.


38

TESTIMONY OF THOMAS M. RAY

The testimony of Thomas M. Ray was taken at 12:10 p.m., on March 25, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Wesley J. Liebeler, assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Robert T. Davis, assistant attorney general of Texas, was present.

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. Ray, would you rise and raise your right hand?

(Complying.)

Mr. Liebeler. Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. Ray. I do.

Mr. Liebeler. My name is Wesley J. Liebeler. I am a member of the legal staff of the President's Commission investigating the assassination of President Kennedy. The Commission has authorized staff members to take the testimony of witnesses pursuant to authority which was granted to the Commission by Executive Order 11130 dated November 29, 1963, and Joint Resolution of Congress No. 137. It is my understanding that Mr. Rankin wrote to you and your wife last week and told you I would contact you to take your testimony.

Mr. Ray. Oh, yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Enclosed with that letter were copies of the Executive Order and joint resolution and a copy of the rules of the Commission's procedure relating to the taking of testimony. Did you receive the letter?

Mr. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did it contain copies of the documents I referred to?

Mr. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Technically, the Commission's letter requires the witness to be given 3 days' notice prior to the time they have to testify although that notice can be waived. I understand you did not receive the letter until Monday because it was misdirected to the wrong post office.

Mr. Ray. That's right.

Mr. Liebeler. But I assume you are prepared to go ahead with your testimony at this time?

Mr. Ray. I sure am; don't want to come over here again.

Mr. Liebeler. The testimony we want this time from you relates basically to some conversations that were had in late 1962 concerning the background of Lee Harvey Oswald. First of all, would you state your full name for the record?

Mr. Ray. Do I have to give my middle name?

Mr. Liebeler. If you don't ordinarily use it, you don't.

Mr. Ray. Thomas M. Ray.

Mr. Liebeler. Thomas M. Ray. What is your address, sir?

Mr. Ray. Route 3, Detroit.

Mr. Liebeler. Texas?

Mr. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. What is your employment, sir?

Mr. Ray. We have a dairy farm which my wife operates with the help of a hired hand and my supervision and I also am a commission salesman for Sam Weiss in Paris who is the consignee of Gulf Oil in Paris, and right now I am right in the middle of changing my place of employment. I am going on the road for Paris Milling Co. the 15th of this next month as assistant sales manager and I have been with Mr. Weiss for about 9 years.

Mr. Liebeler. You are a native-born American, aren't you, Mr. Ray?

Mr. Ray. Right; born in Paris, Tex.

Mr. Liebeler. You are married to Natalie Ray, is that correct?

Mr. Ray. That is right.

Mr. Liebeler. And your wife is a native of Russia; is that right?

Mr. Ray. That is right.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us briefly the circumstances under which you met and married your wife?

Mr. Ray. Well, I was stationed in Wiesbaden and as you probably already know there were a lot of displaced persons over there, and the army used these39 displaced persons for various duties, you know, kitchen work and things like that and I met her there during the time that she and some other girls came to work for our outfit. All we had to do was go get them, you know, feed them and transport them back and forth and feed them and that's where I met her, in Wiesbaden.

Mr. Liebeler. Then you were subsequently married and you brought her back to the United States; is that correct?

Mr. Ray. Yes, sir; after a length of time during which I was later discharged there and worked for the U.S. Force headquarters in Frankfurt.

(At this point in the hearing, Mr. Robert T. Davis, assistant attorney general of Texas leaves the room.)

Mr. Ray. [continuing]. I was employed there about, well, I think actually I was on the payroll until they sent me back to New York which would have been 16, 17 months, I think.

Mr. Liebeler. You were employed as a civilian is that correct?

Mr. Ray. Civilian employee of the Government.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you an officer or enlisted man; what was your rank when you met your wife?

Mr. Ray. Buck sergeant.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you incur any difficulty when you tried to marry your wife when you were in Germany?

Mr. Ray. At various times it looked like we were running into stumps but we got over them. At times it looked like they were going to send all the Russian nationals back to Russia and I even made a trip to Paris, France, once to try to talk to the Russian Embassy there and never got to see him. I think along about that time the Government stepped in and kind of protected these people that did not want to go back, you know, and things kind of let up then and we were left about our business for awhile; there after the war, they were trying to get all the Russian nationals back.

Mr. Liebeler. Did your wife have to obtain the permission of Russian authorities before she could marry you?

Mr. Ray. I don't think so. Now I'm not sure on that point. I wouldn't say for sure one way or the other; it has been so long ago.

Mr. Liebeler. What was your purpose in going to Paris to try and see the Russian Embassy, to get permission to keep her here?

Mr. Ray. To keep her from being sent back to Russia. You know it was during that time that they were trying to send them all back.

Mr. Liebeler. Did there come a time when you met Lee Harvey Oswald and his wife, Marina?

Mr. Ray. I met them.

Mr. Liebeler. Will you tell us the circumstances surrounding your meeting them, where was it, what happened?

Mr. Ray. Well, do you want to start from the beginning?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes; just tell us the story in your own words as to how you came to meet the Oswalds and what happened, what the extent of your contact was.

Mr. Ray. Well, I tell you how it happened. This Ed Harris and his wife that live in Georgetown, his wife had seen a magazine article or something about my wife and had gotten in touch and they had gotten acquainted and they had visited us a time or two, you know, and, actually, we knew none of these people at the party before we came over here. We came and we met them over here.

Mr. Liebeler. At the party?

Mr. Ray. No; we met them at a hotel and went to the party with them.

Mr. Liebeler. Who were the people that you met?

Mr. Ray. Ed Harris and his wife.

Mr. Liebeler. You had not met the Harrises before you came to Dallas to go to the Ford party?

Mr. Ray. Oh, yes; I say they were the only people we knew before we went to this party.

Mr. Liebeler. The party we are referring to is the party at the home of Declan P. Ford?

40 Mr. Ray. Yes, and actually the arrangements for us to come along were made from our home. Mrs.—Ed's wife, Mrs. Harris—called Mrs. Ford from our house and found out, you know, when the party was going to be and made arrangements to bring us along, or at least told her that we were coming or something. I don't understand this Russian that goes on when they start talking Russian. I don't know everything that was said but that's the way we happened to be at the party. We went along with the Harrises from Georgetown; at least we met them in Dallas and went to the party with them and that was the party that was on Friday night and we stayed over Saturday and we went back to the Ford's on Saturday night and then some—and visited awhile and stayed over until Sunday and Sunday afternoon we visited some other people that were at the party. But the only time I had any contact whatsoever with Oswald was at the party and frankly, I vaguely remember meeting him because when there's quite a few people at a party like that you don't get acquainted with all of them. I got acquainted with a few but I didn't get acquainted with Oswald or his wife.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember any conversation that you had with Oswald at all?

Mr. Ray. Nothing at all, no conversation at all, just no more than a handshake or something like that.

Mr. Liebeler. You did not form any impression of him that you can remember at the moment, is that correct?

Mr. Ray. No, I did not.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember anything about his wife, Marina Oswald?

Mr. Ray. The only thing I remember about her is when I met her, she was kind of small and she didn't speak any English so there I couldn't have any conversation with her in Russian and that's as far as it went.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you try to talk to her in English?

Mr. Ray. Oh, I might have said a few words but I do not recall.

Mr. Liebeler. It was clear to you that she did not understand English, is that correct?

Mr. Ray. That is right.

Mr. Liebeler. Now, did you notice anything peculiar or out of the ordinary about Oswald's actions at this party that appeared so to you?

Mr. Ray. Well, frankly, I just didn't pay much attention to the guy. I wasn't around him very much.

Mr. Liebeler. Did there come a time over the weekend either at the Ford party or following the Ford party where the Oswalds were discussed in your presence?

Mr. Ray. There was a time, yes, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. Where was that, do you remember?

Mr. Ray. That was at the home of—I believe their name is Meller or Miller.

Mr. Liebeler. M-e-l-l-e-r [spelling], would that be right?

Mr. Ray. Well, now the lady's name was Anna Meller and her husband was——

Mr. Liebeler. Would it be T-e-o-f-i-l [spelling]?

Mr. Ray. Yes; something like that.

Mr. Liebeler. Who was there at this time?

Mr. Ray. Of course, we were there, Natalie and I and the Harrises and Anna Meller and her husband and it seems like this lady from Houston was there. I believe she was from Houston.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember her name?

Mr. Ray. No; I don't now.

Mr. Liebeler. B-i-g-g-e-r-s [spelling]; does that ring a bell with you?

Mr. Ray. What was the first name?

Mr. Liebeler. Tatiana.

Mr. Ray. Yes, I believe she was there that Sunday afternoon. I believe she was.

Mr. Liebeler. Was anybody else there; do you remember George Bouhe?

Mr. Ray. Oh, yeah; George was there. I was trying to think. I got acquainted with George. He's one I got acquainted with.

41 Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember Lydia Dymitruk being there?

Mr. Ray. Well, I might.

Mr. Liebeler. I don't want you to remember if you don't really.

Mr. Ray. Well, I don't really right now. I don't really remember.

Mr. Liebeler. Tell us what the conversation about the Oswalds was to the best of your recollection.

Mr. Ray. The thing that I remember most was George telling us what a nut he was. It seemed that George had tried to help him and I think the Fords had tried to help him and maybe the Frank Rays or some of this group, you know, had tried to help him get adjusted and tried to help Mrs. Oswald get adjusted to the American way of life and frankly, George Bouhe came out and told me he said he was a damn nut.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you any specific reasons for his opinion?

Mr. Ray. Well, nothing real specific but it seemed that he wasn't too good to his wife. He didn't treat her as they thought he should. He wasn't real good to her.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Bouhe tell you that Oswald was reported to have beaten Marina up?

Mr. Ray. I think that came into the conversation, too, and that she had gone and stayed a couple weeks with somebody. I don't know if it was the Fords or the Rays or who it was but that I think was the situation.

Mr. Liebeler. Anyway, as far as you can recall Bouhe indicated that he was pretty much at the end of his rope as far as Oswald was concerned?

Mr. Ray. Yeah.

Mr. Liebeler. He did not have a very high opinion of Oswald?

Mr. Ray. No; he did not have a high opinion of Oswald.

Mr. Liebeler. Did anybody else there express an opinion about Oswald along these lines as far as you can remember?

Mr. Ray. Well, you know, sitting down at a table having coffee and tea and everybody talks a little but what George said about him impressed me more than anything else that was said. I am sure that the others did have things to say but frankly I was not interested in the guy.

Mr. Liebeler. You don't have any recollection of what anybody else said at this point?

Mr. Ray. At this point I couldn't tell you what anybody else said; no. I am sure there was a discussion among the group. We were having coffee and cake and what-not and the subject came up about the Oswalds and that's the way it went.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you recall any discussion on the question of whether or not Oswald might be a Russian agent?

Mr. Ray. I don't know whether that was discussed or not. It seems to me like somebody brought the subject up. It might have been my wife for all I know but we were wondering since he had left the United States and wanted to be a Russian citizen and had been over there, the time that he spent in Russia, why the hell did they let him back in; you know what I mean?

Mr. Liebeler. The United States you mean?

Mr. Ray. Yeah; why did they take him back and how—the question in my mind was how did he get his Russian wife out of Russia. It just looked odd to me.

Mr. Liebeler. Was the question in your mind as to how he got his wife out partly related to the difficulties you had had?

Mr. Ray. I knew the difficulties I had had and of course I have known the relations between the Americans and the Russians since the war and you know, the cold war and it cools off and it gets hot and I wondered at the time how the hell he got his wife out of Russia without so much trouble or maybe he had a lot of trouble getting her out but it did look odd to me.

Mr. Liebeler. Was that subject discussed at this time you can remember amongst the group there; did George Bouhe offer any opinion on this question?

Mr. Ray. I would say it could have been discussed and I cannot say whether it was or was not, you know that has been quite some time ago and it's hard to remember. I think the whole deal was discussed, you know, pretty well. We might have discussed that. I think we did but I wouldn't say for sure.

42 Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember if there was a conversation going on in Russian while you were there or did they speak in English—the people that were at the house?

Mr. Ray. Most of it was in English; now I am sure there was some Russian conversation going on because Ed Harris' wife irritates me to death with her Russian. If she starts talking to my wife, it's Russian and it just—I just get the drift of the conversation and that's all. I mean it is very rude the way she goes about it. She enjoys talking to Natalie and Natalie enjoys talking to her in Russian but it kind of leaves Ed and I out when we are together.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember whether the group came to any conclusion on this question as to whether Oswald might have been an agent? I don't want you to testify to something that you don't remember but do you remember whether the point was made that Oswald did not appear to have good connections here and he had trouble getting a job and holding a job and he did not appear to be a responsible individual and for these reasons, these reasons would lead you to conclude that he probably was not a Russian agent. Do you remember any conversation along these lines?

Mr. Ray. There could have been because I believe that was discussed and I believe George Bouhe might have said that he was such a nut that the Russians would not want him or something like that.

Mr. Liebeler. When you say you believe is that that you have a faint recollection to that effect, is that what you mean when you say you believe?

Mr. Ray. I have a faint recollection of discussing that possibility, see.

Mr. Liebeler. When you say you believe what you are really saying is that it seems likely that this might have been discussed or it is probable that it was discussed but you do not have any firm recollection?

Mr. Ray. No; I do not have any firm recollection about it.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you and your wife have any discussions about the Oswalds after you left Dallas and went back to Blossom or to Detroit prior to the assassination?

Mr. Ray. I am sure we did but at the time of the assassination I had completely forgotten, you know, that the guy even existed but I am sure we talked about it.

Mr. Liebeler. You don't have any recollection of what your conversation might have been?

Mr. Ray. I know my wife was concerned because they let him back in the country.

Mr. Liebeler. Did she tell you why she was concerned?

Mr. Ray. Well, she was kind of afraid he might be a Russian spy, that they might have sent him back for something.

Mr. Liebeler. She expressed that feeling to you?

Mr. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Let's go up to the date of the assassination. Do you recall any conversations with your wife at that time about Oswald's involvement in the assassination or his alleged involvement in the assassination?

Mr. Ray. Well, I was working that day, of course, and by the time I got home it was all on television, you know, and they had captured Oswald and she had seen his picture on television and she told me that was the guy we met at the party. I said "What guy?" She said, "Oh, you know, the guy that married the Russian girl and came back over, you know, brought her back." Well, of course, I remembered that but she sometimes misunderstands things and I thought possibly that she could be mistaken, see. She told me "That's the guy that killed the President. I saw him on television and they said he is the one that killed the President." Well, I still thought perhaps she could be mistaken and so the next morning I had her find these names and addresses of these people and I called this George Bouhe and asked him if that was the guy that we thought it was. He said "Yes, it was" and we had a short conversation and he told me he had been out to get a newspaper and said it was all in the papers and I could read about it. But, at the time I called him he didn't remember me just right quick. I mean a year had gone by, a year or more had gone by or maybe it wasn't quite a year or something like that but I had to tell him who I43 was before he remembered me and then of course after he remembered me, well, he told me "Yeah, that's the guy."

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any discussion with Bouhe as to whether or not Bouhe thought that Oswald was really guilty or really could have been the man who really did assassinate the President?

Mr. Ray. He said something about that he was trying to figure out how Oswald could have been at that place at that time and another place at another time. He couldn't figure how Oswald could have been at all those places in that short length of time.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us to the best of your recollection what he said? Can you remember anything more than that? In other words, at this point Bouhe expressed some doubt with the stories?

Mr. Ray. He expressed some doubt that in that way he could not figure how Oswald could have been in the building where the gun was fired and then later killed the policeman so many blocks away. I don't know how many blocks away it was and later apprehended in this——

Mr. Liebeler. Texas Theatre.

Mr. Ray. Movie theater. He was trying to figure out how he got from place to place in a short length of time. There seemed to be a little doubt in his mind at the time I talked to him.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he express any doubts as to Oswald's involvement based on his judgment of Oswald's character? Your wife testified and you did, too, to some extent that Bouhe was fed up with Oswald and did not think very much of him, didn't think him very capable or thought he was no account is the term your wife used. Did you have any discussion with Bouhe at this time when you talked to him on the phone?

Mr. Ray. I don't know but there was something said about—now, George was trying to justify himself in his association with Oswald, see. He said something about that the only thing he was guilty of was trying to help the guy; do you know what I mean? He had tried to help the guy when he first came back and he said, "If that's a crime, I'm guilty." I remember that statement.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he express any concern as to his own safety or did he tell you that he thought he was going to have difficulty because of his previous association with Oswald?

Mr. Ray. No; he didn't say a word about that.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you think his statements about being guilty of trying to help Oswald were just an attempt to justify himself in his own mind?

Mr. Ray. I think so; yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any subsequent conversation? Have you told us all now you can remember in your telephone conversation with Bouhe?

Mr. Ray. Well, he said it was all in the paper. "You can read it in the paper", said "It's all in there."

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember if he said anything else?

Mr. Ray. I don't know it has been so long ago that I don't right now; I don't remember anything.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever talk to Bouhe on the telephone again about that?

Mr. Ray. About this deal?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes.

Mr. Ray. No; that was the only time.

Mr. Liebeler. Have you seen him at any time?

Mr. Ray. Haven't seen him since then.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you talk to anybody else, or did you talk to anybody else that was at this party about this assassination?

Mr. Ray. Saw the Harrises, Ed Harris and his wife. I haven't—now, that's the only two people we've seen. I think Mrs. Ford wrote Natalie a letter. I don't know what the letter said. I wasn't interested but anyway she had tried to get her on the telephone or something and we did discuss this thing in Georgetown not too long ago. I had a niece to get married down at Kerrville so we had to go down to the wedding and on the way back we stopped and spent a little time at the Harrises and that's—of course, we discussed it then.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you talk with the Harrises about this get-together at Meller's that occurred after the Ford party at which Oswald was discussed?

44 Mr. Ray. I am sure we did; now, I don't really recall. We discussed the whole durned thing with the Harrises and I am sure that that came into the conversation but right now, I don't remember exactly when and how it came about, you know.

Mr. Liebeler. Well, during this conversation with the Harrises was there any more conversation about Oswald's possibility of being a Russian agent?

Mr. Ray. That subject always comes up and I am sure it did then.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you tell us the best of your recollection what was said about it?

Mr. Ray. No; I cannot because I just don't remember.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember whether there was any consensus or agreement as to whether Oswald probably was or probably was not a Russian agent?

Mr. Ray. Well, actually I don't think that the Harrises think he was a Russian agent.

Mr. Liebeler. Did they tell you that they did not think he was; how did you get that opinion?

Mr. Ray. If they had told me that they thought he was a Russian agent I would have remembered it. Do you know what I mean?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes; and you don't have any recollection of them ever telling you that they thought he was?

(Mr. Davis returns to the hearing.)

Mr. Ray. No, no.

Mr. Liebeler. Or telling you any reasons why they thought he might be?

Mr. Ray. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form an opinion of this question as to whether or not he was a Russian agent or might be?

Mr. Ray. Just from what little I know about it and the conversation that we have been over, I think he needed psychiatric treatments or something. I think he was just a damn nut like George said. Of course, you know a lot of times that might be the kind of man that they would want, you know, for a Russian agent.

Mr. Liebeler. That is just——

Mr. Ray. He might have been smarter than we thought or smarter than the people that knew him thought; I don't know.

Mr. Liebeler. That is just your own thought on it?

Mr. Ray. That is my own thoughts on it, see.

Mr. Davis. Have you all—I might inject here—have you all gone over the point—did you ever discuss with your wife or the Mellers or any of these other people that it was strange about them being able to come out of Russia so easily? It was strange about him being able to move about in Russia so easily? Was it with all of them the consensus that it was unusual; were they somewhat amazed?

Mr. Ray. I don't know whether they were or not but I was amazed and my wife was, too, that he went over there and left this country and denounced his citizenship and then a couple of years later or longer—how long was he over there? Anyway, they let him——

Mr. Davis. Going on 3 years.

Mr. Ray. Come back and bring his wife with him. That looked kind of ridiculous to me.

Mr. Liebeler. And that question was discussed in your meeting in the Meller's house and subsequently discussed between you and your wife, wasn't it?

Mr. Ray. Yes.

Mr. Davis. Let me ask you this: This group at the Ford's place where the Russian-born would tend to get together occasionally, has there been very frequent—I mean, have you and your wife gone—I believe this was the first time?

Mr. Ray. This was the first time we ever.

Mr. Davis. Did they mention about this having happened fairly frequently before? Do you know how often they had been meeting in Dallas?

Mr. Ray. It seems like now they kind of get together, you know, somewhere around New Year's—Christmas or New Year's; something like an annual affair for them to get together.

Mr. Davis. Did you know—were there any others in this group or did you45 have any occasion to hear from any others that had a similar story like the Oswalds where they had found it that easy to go and come or go out of Russia?

Mr. Ray. No, no; see, most of these people are, the way I get it, were Russian descent or else they were like—they had married a Russian over there or something of that nature, you see. I mean it wasn't everybody there wasn't Russian but there was some Russian connection with most of them.

Mr. Liebeler. But you heard of no other examples where people had come out of Russia as easily as Oswald had; is that correct?

Mr. Ray. No.

Mr. Liebeler. You know or did you hear of it?

Mr. Ray. I did not hear.

Mr. Davis. Has your wife or you or have you all heard of anyone since the time he came out where it has been easier for people to come and go? I believe your wife mentioned she thought it would be easier to contact her niece if conditions were easing up to that degree. Has this proved to be?

Mr. Ray. I don't know; 2 or 3 years ago she tried to call her niece on the telephone and tried 2 or 3 days and finally made the connection and the niece said, "Hello," and the line was out like that and she finally gave up.

Mr. Davis. In other words, to your knowledge you have seen no evidence it has been made easier to communicate back and forth?

Mr. Ray. No; fact of the business, my wife's mother had been dead a couple years before we even knew it.

Mr. Davis. How long has this been you received that information?

Mr. Ray. I think she died in 1953; I know it was a couple years gone by when my wife found out about it.

Mr. Liebeler. Was your wife's mother living in Stalingrad when she died, do you know?

Mr. Ray. I don't know. She was, I believe, in Arzamas; I am not sure that's where she died but that's near Stalingrad, some place near Stalingrad and that's where at least part of my wife's upbringing, you know, took place, in Arzamas.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you think now that you have told us about all you know or all you remember about your contact with Oswald and the discussion that you had about him? If there is anything you want to add at this point, go right ahead.

Mr. Ray. I think we pretty well covered it. I hope you have.

Mr. Liebeler. We want to thank you very much, Mr. Ray, for coming down here and I think you have been helpful and I appreciate it very much.

Mr. Ray. Well, like I said before, I went to the FBI voluntarily with what information that I had. Frankly, I didn't know anything about the guy except what I have told you but I did have the names and addresses of some of these people that knew him and that's why I went to the FBI, because of that. They might contact these people and find out more about it.

Mr. Liebeler. I think they have talked to most of them.

Mr. Ray. I am sure they have.

Mr. Liebeler. Thank you very much.


TESTIMONY OF SAMUEL B. BALLEN

The testimony of Samuel B. Ballen was taken at 2:20 p.m., on March 24, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Wesley J. Liebeler, assistant counsel of the President's Commission.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you raise your right hand to be sworn, Mr. Ballen? Do you solemnly swear that you will tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, in the testimony you are about to give?

Mr. Ballen. I do.

Mr. Liebeler. My name is Wesley J. Liebeler. I believe Mr. Rankin mentioned46 in the letter he sent to you last week that I would contact you this week to take your testimony.

The Commission has authorized me to take your testimony pursuant to authority granted by Executive Order 11130, dated November 29, 1963, and Joint Resolution of Congress 137.

Copies of those documents have been sent to you as well as a copy of the Commission's rules of procedure in the taking of testimony. You did receive those, did you not?

Mr. Ballen. Yes, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. We want to ask you about your somewhat limited contacts with Lee Harvey Oswald, and also inquire to some extent about your association with George De Mohrenschildt.

Will you state your full name?

Mr. Ballen. Samuel B. Ballen.

Mr. Liebeler. What is your address?

Mr. Ballen. 8715 Midway Road.

Mr. Liebeler. In Dallas?

Mr. Ballen. Dallas 9.

Mr. Liebeler. What is your employment, sir?

Mr. Ballen. I am a financial consultant, self-employed, and I am senior officer in several corporations.

Mr. Liebeler. Included among those corporations is the High Plains Natural Gas Co. and Electrical Log Services, Inc.?

Mr. Ballen. That's correct.

Mr. Liebeler. You are an American citizen, sir?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you born here in the United States?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. In Dallas?

Mr. Ballen. In New York City.

Mr. Liebeler. When did you move to Dallas?

Mr. Ballen. November 1950.

Mr. Liebeler. What is your age, sir?

Mr. Ballen. Forty-two.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us briefly your educational background?

Mr. Ballen. I went to public schools in New York. Attended Townsend Harris High; attended C.C.N.Y.; received a BBA Degree from C.C.N.Y., and then have also taken extension courses at Columbia University, Manhattan College, NYU Graduate School of Banking, Oklahoma University, and Texas A&M.

Mr. Liebeler. What were the graduate courses in, generally?

Mr. Ballen. Three fields. Money and banking; geology; and petroleum engineering.

Mr. Liebeler. Did there come a time when you made the acquaintance of Lee Harvey Oswald?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Will you tell us the circumstances surrounding that?

Mr. Ballen. In some respects, my memory is still a little bit hazy.

My best recollection though is that in the fall of 1962, George De Mohrenschildt, a close friend of mine, told me that he and his wife had met an extremely interesting couple who had worked their way from Russia here to Dallas and Fort Worth, and that among other problems, that this fellow was in pretty desperate financial straits and needed a job, and would I be willing to see him and try to find employment for him.

I said, "Yes." And he came down to my office and I spent approximately 2 hours with him.

He came down, and I left my office in the Southland Center with him to go to a meeting at the Republic National Bank, and walked down with him, and he then left and I believe stated that he was going over to the YMCA where he was residing.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you fix the date of this meeting with any precision?

Mr. Ballen. I can't. I think it was either the latter part of 1962 or the very early part of 1963.

47 I know the particular day was pleasant, because I recall walking down the street not wearing any topcoat, just wearing a regular coat, and that was also true of Oswald.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald have a job at the time he came to talk to you; do you know?

Mr. Ballen. He indicated to me that he was not employed.

Mr. Liebeler. He told you he was living at the YMCA in Dallas, is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. That's correct. He told me that his—I knew he had a wife and child, and he indicated that his wife was staying with some friends, and his child, but he at that time was working out of the YMCA.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you where his wife was staying?

Mr. Ballen. No. I would have had some vague idea about that from the De Mohrenschildts.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have an idea from De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Ballen. I had the idea that they were either moving into or just coming out of some apartment, and I would have an idea, which is very vague and not too accurate, that this may have been somewhere in the Oak Cliff region.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald tell you anything about his previous employment?

Mr. Ballen. Just during the course of my trying to be helpful to him and of trying to see what skills he had so that I could try to develop some employment for him.

He did say that he had some training in the U.S.S.R., in some area in the field of photography—no, some area in the field of reproduction, but the thing that I was impressed about in talking with him was his lack of any usable training.

Mr. Liebeler. What is the state of your recollection that Oswald told you he had received training in photography when he was in Russia?

Mr. Ballen. Pretty vague, but I had the feeling that he said he may have worked in some capacity, either in a house organ—or a newspaper in the U.S.S.R., and that he did have some training and knew how to use commercial camera equipment and general reproduction equipment.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you take any steps to help Oswald get a job as a result of his interview with you?

Mr. Ballen. No. During the course of my meeting with him, I started out being attracted somewhat toward him, and I started out having a fairly good impression of the individual, and I also started out feeling very sorry for the chap, knowing some hard times that he had been through, and of wanting to help him. But as this meeting wore on, I just gradually came to the feeling that he was too much of a rugged individualist for me, and that he was too much of a hardheaded individual, and that I probably would ultimately regret having him down at my organization. I was, during the course of this meeting, trying to analyze his training to find a place for him at Electrical Log Services, where we have a large camera and commercial reproduction equipment, but the more I talked to him, while I had a certain area of admiration for him, it still remained that I gradually came to the conclusion, and did not relay this to him in any way, that he was too much of a rugged individualist and probably wouldn't fit in with the team we had down there. So I never did really try to help Oswald. I think I told George De Mohrenschildt I would search around and see what I could do.

Mr. Liebeler. But in point of fact, you never took any steps after this to try to help him find a job?

Mr. Ballen. My memory was a bit hazy in one respect. I knew I reached my conclusion. I didn't know whether I had called up our general manager down at the Log Services to see what openings, if any, could be generated, but in checking with the individual, he does not have any memory of my calling him in that regard.

Mr. Liebeler. The other individual being the man in charge of operations at Log Services?

Mr. Ballen. That's correct.

Mr. Liebeler. What did Oswald say to you that led you to this conclusion that you have just expressed?

Let me ask you a broader question. Let me ask you, if you will now, to your48 best recollection, give the substance of the conversation that you and Oswald had that day?

Mr. Ballen. We commenced speaking in pleasantries, and I had known from De Mohrenschildt that he had gone to Russia, that he had married, and come back. I did not know of any unpleasant association with the Marine Corps, nor did I know of any attempt on his part to be a defector.

I asked him why he had left and gone to Russia, and he said that this Russian movement was an intriguing thing and he wanted to find out for himself and didn't want to depend upon what the newspapers or visitors had said, and that he had gone there and spent some time there. He gave me the impression somehow that this was in the southern portion of Russia. And he said that the place was just boring, that there was hardly anything of any real curiosity or interest there.

I had gotten the feeling, and I don't know how specific I can make this, but all of his comments to me about Russia were somewhat along a negative vein. He said nothing to me that would indicate that he still had any romantic feeling about Russia. His comments to me seemed to be fairly realistic.

Some time as we talked on, he displayed somewhat the same type of detached objective criticism towards the United States and our own institutions.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember anything specifically that he said along that line?

Mr. Ballen. I don't believe I can recall anything specific, but there were just during the entire course of this 2 hours, general observations, general smirks, general slurs that were significant to me that he was equally a critic of the United States and of the U.S.S.R., and that he was standing in his own mind as somewhat of a detached student and critic of both operations, and that he was not going to be snowed under by either of the two operations, whether it be the press or official spokesmen.

He would have displayed pretty much to me a plague-on-both-your-houses type of viewpoint, but the one thing that greatly started to rub me the wrong way is, as I started to seriously think through possible industrial openings or possible people I could refer him to, and he could see I was really making an effort in this respect, he kept saying, and then he repeated himself a little too often on this, he said to me, "Now, don't worry about me, I will get along. Don't you worry yourself about me." He said that often enough that gradually it became annoying and I just felt this is a hot potato that I don't think will fit in with any organization that I could refer him to.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever demonstrate or indicate to you any particular hostility toward any official of the U.S. Government?

Mr. Ballen. None whatsoever; none whatsoever. My own subjective reaction is, that the sum total of these 2 hours that I spent with him, I just can't see his having any venom towards President Kennedy.

Mr. Liebeler. Did President Kennedy come up in any way during the course of your discussion?

Mr. Ballen. No; it did not. The sum total of his reaction, limited as it was that I got from this individual, is that this man would have—this is subjective, I can put no concrete support in there, but I would have thought that this is an individual who felt warmly towards President Kennedy.

Mr. Liebeler. You drew that inference simply as a general impression based on the 2 hours that you spent conversing with him?

Mr. Ballen. That's correct.

Mr. Liebeler. Could you—and you can't pinpoint anything specifically that led you to that conclusion?

Mr. Ballen. No, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any discussion, or was the name of Governor Connally mentioned?

Mr. Ballen. No; it was not.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald manifest any hostilities toward any particular institution of the United States?

Mr. Ballen. Yes. I think he had referred sarcastically to some of our religious institutions, or all religious institutions, and I think he referred with some venom and sarcasm to some race prejudices in the United States. I cannot49 document that with any specific items which were discussed, but it is pretty strongly a general feeling that this had come out during that discussion.

Mr. Liebeler. Was it discussed in terms of the Negro race problem?

Mr. Ballen. Negro and all forms of human hatred. In other words, the meeting that I had with this individual, which was very limited. I had a certain element of attraction towards the man because I felt that this man did express, at least in an intellectual vein, feeling of compassion for mankind generally.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate that he was not in accord with policies which had as their end racial prejudice?

Mr. Ballen. Yes. In his general categoric manner, he would have felt that this was a form of stupidity as well as a form of injustice.

Mr. Liebeler. Was there any specific discussion, as you can recall, of any extremists groups or so-called "hate" groups?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form any impression of the man that would enable you to make a judgment as to the extent to which he would be influenced by racist or hate propaganda?

Mr. Ballen. You will have to make your question more specific.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you think that Oswald was the kind of person who would be influenced, by propaganda or by people who were associated with, say racist or extremist groups, to engage in any particular kind of activity? You mentioned before, for example, that Oswald took the position or expressed the attitude that as far as the Soviet Union and the United States generally were concerned, it was a sort of plague-on-both-the-houses, he was not going to let anyone substitute their judgment for what he regarded as the basic reality of the situation. Did you gain any impression about Oswald's attitude toward hate groups? Do you think he could have been moved or motivated by them?

Mr. Ballen. I think I understand your question, and there would have been no expression advanced by Oswald of contempt for a particular organization.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate that he had experienced certain difficulties in securing or holding employment because of his trip to the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. Yes; he said he ran into difficulty, and that he was not ashamed of his background and wasn't going to conceal it, and that in this particular geographic area that he was just finding it hard as heck to gain employment.

I could understand that, and I said, "Well, let's see what kind of training you have, if you get employment."

And I was struck with almost a total lack of any meaningful training other than what he had mentioned which I have already covered.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you any specific details of the kind of work he did in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. I have the impression that these were menial jobs. I am sure I discussed it with him. I am sure I would have asked him, and I have the impression that he had menial jobs, and that he would have worked in some kind of publication function, and he had learned about camera and reproduction equipment.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you how much he was paid?

Mr. Ballen. He did say that the economics there were awfully tight.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you recall specifically his mentioning any figure as to what his income was?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate in any way that he had received income while he was in the Soviet Union from sources other than this—his job?

Mr. Ballen. No; he didn't indicate anything like that. I did express a little puzzlement as to how he was able to get out with his wife.

Mr. Liebeler. What did he say about that?

Mr. Ballen. He shrugged that off and said, "Well, it's just a matter of sticking with it with the necessary bureaucrats, both Russian and the United States, of staying with the necessary bureaucrats to get out; and I got out."

I would add this. Jeanne De Mohrenschildt was making a serious effort to help out socially and economically the Oswalds, and she was reporting to us50 that on given evenings the De Mohrenschildts were visiting with the Oswalds, and that their whole life was pretty miserable. They were just sitting alone in the apartment and looking at each other and fighting with each other, and that it was necessary to bring these two people out into the fresh air and have them meet people and mingle and otherwise.

George asked me and also asked my wife to invite the Oswalds to our house for dinner and help these people out. This was a type of thing that we have done quite frequently, but there must have been something in my report to my wife about my meeting with this chap that my wife didn't pick up this suggestion, and never did extend that invitation to the Oswalds. In other words, my wife has never met either one of them, but based upon this meeting and the final impressions that I had of this chap is that we just didn't want to be involved with him. He was too independent a thinker. I am not talking on politics now. And my wife never did extend that invitation to them, which she otherwise would have done, as we have done to many, many people who recently moved into Dallas from afar.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember with any great specificity the things that Oswald said or did that led you to the conclusion that he was such an independent fellow?

Mr. Ballen. It was his overall mannerism, and he would have, did have, a habit of closing off discussion on a given subject by a shrug of the shoulders; and it was just an overall impression that I ended up with.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald indicate to you that he had traveled within the Soviet Union in any way?

Mr. Ballen. I had the impression that he had done considerable traveling there.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember whether he told you that, or how did you get that information or impression?

Mr. Ballen. I think he told me that he had traveled in the Soviet Union and finally ended up in a southwestern town and life was just incredibly boring and dismal.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you go into any details as to how the life was boring or dismal in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. No. This was my first visit with him and I knew he came down to see me in order to talk about a job, and I didn't want to impose on him.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you question him—did you have questions in your own mind as to where he obtained the funds to do this traveling?

Mr. Ballen. I had the impression that this was the kind of guy who could travel from one end of the continent to the other with very little money. He was dressed very modestly, and I, at least to me, he did, engender a certain amount of sympathy.

In other words, the type of fellow that you would feel sorry for, and if he were hitchhiking, you might buy him a meal or something like that. I just had the feeling that this was a fellow who could get around and make his way and find his way and not require any sum of money to do it.

Mr. Liebeler. Is there any other thing that led you to that conclusion?

Mr. Ballen. No; I am sorry. I don't know more specifically.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever lend Oswald any money?

Mr. Ballen. No; I didn't. If at the time he had asked me to loan him money, I would have. But I would say that this would, that the thing that he kept impressing on me to the point where it just rubbed me the wrong way is, that he kept insisting, raising his voice a little bit; "Don't you worry about me, I will take care of myself, and I will get myself work, don't you worry about me." Telling that too many times to a prospective employer isn't quite the best technique.

Mr. Liebeler. You have testified that Oswald told you that he had received some training in the use of photographic equipment when he was in the Soviet Union. Did he mention any other training that he received in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. No; I think I discussed a little detail with him about photography, continuous cameras and things like that, and he stated that he could operate most of the machinery we had down at Ross Avenue.

51 Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate to you a general comprehension and understanding of that type of machinery?

Mr. Ballen. I am not that familiar technically with the equipment myself to have gone into any explicit detail, but I mentioned different types of machinery, the M-4, blueprint machines, Repco continuous cameras, and he said yes, he could operate all those machines.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any discussion concerning his wife, Marina?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever meet Marina?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you speak Russian?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald ever tell you that he had been in the hospital when he was in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Other than the fact that he stated that life in the Soviet Union was very boring, did he indicate to you any reason for his return to the United States?

Mr. Ballen. Yes; he said that he had gone there to find out what this thing was like. He wanted to find it out for himself. He found out, and now was the time to come back, and that coming back he was running into all the prejudices of the people here who were washing him off because he had taken this plunge and gone on his own initially to the U.S.S.R.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you know at that time that he had attempted to renounce his citizenship?

Mr. Ballen. I did not know it, and he did not say anything that would have suggested that. You must bear in mind he came to me to look for a job.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he mention the name of the city in which he was employed and lived in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. He probably did, and I can't really recall it. I read so much in the newspaper, I don't know on that what is my own memory and what I have read in the newspaper.

Mr. Liebeler. You have read in the newspaper that he lived and was employed in the city of Minsk?

Mr. Ballen. That is correct. I would have thought that he would have—my memory is this. He told me he was in a community outside of Minsk. That is my best memory, but it is not too good.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you what kind of living quarters he had while in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. No; I didn't ask him.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you anything about meeting and marrying his wife when he was in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. As far as his return to the United States is concerned, you previously testified that you asked Oswald how he managed to leave Russia, and he said it was just a matter of sticking with the bureaucrats. Did he specify hostility towards the bureaucrats or any resentment?

Mr. Ballen. Yes; just in the sense that these were fellows who made life uncomfortable and detracted from the personal freedom of the human being.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he have that attitude toward both the American and Russian authorities? Do you remember any specific conversation relating to possible resentment of the United States?

Mr. Ballen. No; I do not.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember that he did indicate to you that the Americans were just as much responsible for delaying his return as Russia?

Mr. Ballen. No; I wouldn't have gotten that feeling; no.

Mr. Liebeler. You got the feeling that it was primarily the Russians who had delayed his return, is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. Well, it was a matter of working then through these bureaucrats and the American bureaucrats. This would be his reaction.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you say he expressed more resentment of the American bureaucracy or the Russian bureaucracy, or were they about the same?

52 Mr. Ballen. I would say about equal.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any discussion with Oswald concerning politics?

Mr. Ballen. Not in addition to what I have already alluded to, parenthetically.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald tell you anything about his educational background? About where he had gone to grade school or high school and that sort of thing?

Mr. Ballen. I am sure I questioned him on that, and the ultimate conclusion I came to was that he left—that he lacked educational training.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you that he had been employed by a newspaper in New Orleans?

Mr. Ballen. I think he told me that his knowledge of reproduction facilities had been refreshened by recent employment in New Orleans, and the—in the photographic field, but this employment, I thought in New Orleans, would have been in a printing shop rather than a newspaper.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember any of the details of what he told you about his activities in New Orleans?

Mr. Ballen. That would have been the only reference to New Orleans, and he said nothing whatsoever about any involvement with any Cuban committees or anything like that. I would have the feeling that this was a man who was at that stage a political, had no involvement with any Communist group, that he washed his hands pretty much of anyone or any part of the political spectrum.

Mr. Liebeler. You did not know that he was a professed Marxist?

Mr. Ballen. He may have—I think I had the feeling that he, to the extent that he could define it, that he was a student of Marxism and was a critic of societies along Marxist lines.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you led to that belief partly by his remarks about religion?

Mr. Ballen. No; I learned that from George De Mohrenschildt, and I think Oswald would have, somewhere along the line during my interview with him, made statements to reenforce that.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember what De Mohrenschildt told you about Oswald before you actually met Oswald?

Mr. Ballen. Yes; he said that this was a very unusual situation, sir. Here is a chap who suddenly appears in the Dallas area, and that he had been to Russia, went to Russia, came back, and has no hatred either for Russia or for the United States, and is just a man with no hatred, and by gosh here he appears in the United States, having gotten out of Russia with a wife, and that this was an independent and truth seeking young man and very interesting, and George was talking to him at length in Russian, and someone just totally unlike anyone else who came back who was either very much pro and very much anti, and this is a fellow with no hatred.

Mr. Liebeler. Did De Mohrenschildt indicate to you that Oswald had no hatred of anything?

Mr. Ballen. That is what—De Mohrenschildt had emphasized it to me that his view of this man was that the chap wasn't getting involved with hatred and was outside the cold war on either side and his emotions connected with it.

Mr. Liebeler. Was De Mohrenschildt's opinion borne out in your mind when you met and talked to Oswald?

Mr. Ballen. Based on that 2-hour visit with him, to a certain extent; yes. But I would express it rather than Oswald not having hatred, that he would have had a little disdain for both sides.

Mr. Liebeler. You did not get the impression, however, that he was emotionally involved in any significant extent with either of the two sides? Would that be a fair statement?

Mr. Ballen. Definitely.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you also have the impression that Oswald would not be influenced against the Soviet Union by anti-Soviet Union propaganda that might be disseminated in the country?

Mr. Ballen. Definitely he would make the decisions for himself and would consider himself much more of an expert than anyone in the United States, including our Government.

Mr. Liebeler. You would say that Oswald would not likely be influenced by propaganda of this sort?

Mr. Ballen. He forms his own conclusion in his own way, and he didn't53 appear to me, either by his use of language or any other reference, to be particularly informed, particularly learned, but he did impress me as a man who was going to make up his own mind in this own way, and these tendencies were so pronounced that I felt I didn't want to involve him in my firm, which means a team operation.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald appear to be a particularly intelligent person or did you form an opinion as to his intelligence?

Mr. Ballen. I thought he was of above average intelligence, and the unusual thing that struck me as being particularly unusual was the degree to which he would go for self-education and self-improvement. It was this quality—these qualities which attracted him somewhat to me.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he appear to be in any way mentally unstable?

Mr. Ballen. Appeared to be just a little too much a hard head.

Mr. Liebeler. What makes you say that, Mr. Ballen?

Mr. Ballen. Too much a hard head?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes, sir; what do you mean by that?

Mr. Ballen. I—just his general conduct, his general responses, general bearing. He just seemed to be a little too aloof from society, and just seemed to know all things and everything a little too affirmatively, a little too dogmatically, but as far as feeling that he was mentally ill, I didn't come away with that feeling.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember any specific example of his efforts at self-improvement or self-education that you could give us?

Mr. Ballen. Well, he just indicated a wide range of readership, literature, and the fact that, my impression was one of a little curiosity, a chap out of Fort Worth who would go to the point of reading and becoming familiar with Marxian literature just struck me as someone who was displaying more than the normal amount of initiative.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you know at that time that he had received Marxian literature?

Mr. Ballen. Yes; I think I knew even in his offhanded reference to comments on those that he was using Marxian terminology.

Mr. Liebeler. You think he had Marxian leanings to the extent he understood them to be Marxian leanings?

Mr. Ballen. I think he considered himself a Marxist, and what exactly his understanding of that philosophy was, I didn't have an opportunity to go into that with him.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember being interviewed by the FBI about December 10, 1963, in connection with your acquaintance with Oswald?

Mr. Ballen. Was that the FBI or the Secret Service?

Mr. Liebeler. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, agents Kesler and Mitchell.

Mr. Ballen. Yes; I recall being interviewed, yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember that he questioned you whether you were familiar or knew of Oswald's Marxist leanings?

Mr. Ballen. I had a conversation with them pretty much the same as I have been having with you, and I suppose that question came up.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember what your answer was?

Mr. Ballen. No, sir; I don't remember what my answer was.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you recall that you told the two agents that you were unaware that Oswald had Marxist leanings, and that in a great deal of the conversation Oswald was critical of Russia?

Mr. Ballen. The difficulty in this thing is in trying to be objective on a conversation which occurred quite some time ago. In reading the newspapers—all I can say in answer to that is, that I am giving the best answer now to my memory and I gave the best answer then, to my memory? I have greater faith in my response today than in December.

Mr. Liebeler. You are not conscious of any difference in those two answers?

Mr. Ballen. Oh, yes; I can see that my answer on that day is not the same as my answer here today.

Mr. Liebeler. Assuming that was your answer that day?

54 Mr. Ballen. If that was my answer that day, that would have been my best memory and best recollection at that time.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you know anything about the relationship between Oswald and De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Ballen. I knew that George had met this fellow. In the events after November 22d, the question came up in my own mind how did George meet this fellow. Prior to November, I didn't know how George met this fellow. George meets all kinds of individuals. He is a magnet for individuals who are not run-of-the-mill. I knew that George and his wife were making an effort to help out the Oswalds, and I think that this effort continued pretty near up until the time when they were leaving for Haiti.

George and his wife were visiting my home two or three or four times a week, and we played tennis two or three or four times a week. Sometimes more than that. And I know that quite frequently they came to our house at 9:00 or so in the evening and they would have just come from the Oswalds, trying to cheer them up. "And those poor souls are looking at the wall and fighting each other."

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember that on or about April of 1963, there was an attempt made on the life of General Walker?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever discuss that with George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Ballen. Not in any detail. We may have. George and I would discuss either in a joking way or serious way pretty near everything that occurred. I'm sure we would have discussed that also and made some pleasantry about it, but I don't recall and doubt if I ever discussed it with him in any great——

Mr. Liebeler. Did De Mohrenschildt ever mention Oswald's name to you in connection with the attempt on Walker's life?

Mr. Ballen. None whatsoever. I don't think he ever mentioned it to me.

Mr. Liebeler. You have no recollection that he did?

Mr. Ballen. I do not.

Mr. Liebeler. Did De Mohrenschildt ever mention to you that Oswald owned a rifle?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald mention in his conversation with you the fact that he was a member of a hunting club while he was in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Was there any mention of any kind of firearms of any kind in that conversation?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Was the time that Oswald came to your office the first time that you met him, or had you met him previous to that?

Mr. Ballen. If I had met him previously, it would have been on a Sunday morning in the De Mohrenschildt's household for a period of time of about 40 minutes, but I am about satisfied, in talking to other people, that the individual I met on that Sunday morning was not Oswald, but some other stray dog.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember who this other stray dog was?

Mr. Ballen. I don't know his name. This was someone who had worked his way here either from Hungary or Bulgaria.

Mr. Liebeler. And subsequently disappeared from the scene?

Mr. Ballen. I don't know his name. This was one of the individuals De Mohrenschildt had latched on to for a period of 4 or 5 or 6 weeks.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you surprised when you learned that Oswald had been arrested in connection with the assassination of President Kennedy?

Mr. Ballen. When I first heard of Oswald's arrest, I didn't realize that this was the chap I had met. It only dawned upon me about 2 or 3 hours later that this was the chap I met.

I told my wife that evening that there must have been some mistake, that I didn't believe that chap was capable of this kind of thing, and she said, what do you mean? She said they picked him up and got the gun. I said Oswald wasn't that sort of guy. I told my wife that if you lined up 50 individuals, the one55 person who would stand out as being suspicious or strange would be Lee Harvey Oswald, but I was very surprised when Oswald was arrested.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any further conversations along that line with your wife?

Mr. Ballen. Well, as this story developed day by day, we would naturally discuss it.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you still have the same view that you expressed to your wife when you first learned of the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. I want to read the report that I assume the Warren Commission will ultimately publish. The circumstantial evidence as reported in the press is overwhelming, to say the least, but there remains a shadow of skepticism in my mind, and I am looking forward to seeing the published report.

Mr. Liebeler. It would certainly be fair to say, however, would it not, Mr. Ballen, that you at no time prior to the assassination had any reason to believe that Oswald was capable or would be inclined to commit an act of this sort, is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. That is correct.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know of any contact between Oswald and Jack Ruby?

Mr. Ballen. None whatsoever.

Mr. Liebeler. When did you first meet George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Ballen. Approximately 1955, maybe 1954.

Mr. Liebeler. Have you had any conversation with De Mohrenschildt since this assassination?

Mr. Ballen. Only through the mails.

Mr. Liebeler. You have corresponded with him since the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you write about the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. Only in a very guarded way, because I understood that mails in Haiti are subject to scrutiny, and I didn't know what his environment was down there, so I only corresponded with him in a very guarded way.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you tell me in general what you wrote to him?

Mr. Ballen. I made no reference to the assassination directly. I said in one letter that I wanted to hear from him. I was—I wanted to know that he was okay. I didn't use those words in the letter, but he understood what I was asking him.

And I said it was a shame that he had to leave Dallas, that if he and Jeanne had remained here, that possibly this never would have happened, because they were the only people who were trying to bring this closed mind out into the open air.

And I received one reply back from George's wife, and she thanked me for what she thought were kind sentiments.

Subsequently he chided me a little bit, and I again wrote to him and let him know I wondered how he was getting along.

And he wrote back and said, "I am fearful about you, all kinds of race riots and assassinations in Dallas, but how are you getting along? Let us hear from you."

Subsequently, as you know, his wife's daughter and son-in-law were guests in my house for 2 weeks, and so I learned from them about George and his wife, and I am about due another letter in the next week or so.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you keep copies of the letters you wrote to him?

Mr. Ballen. No, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you still have the letters he wrote to you?

Mr. Ballen. No; I first started to save his letters when he and his wife walked through Central America, and this was a collection of letters, but I am not a letter saver. But I did save them, saved them until he returned from his trip and gave them all to him, and those are the only letters that I have ever saved.

Mr. Liebeler. You mentioned De Mohrenschildt's daughter-in-law?

Mr. Ballen. Well, his wife's daughter.

Mr. Liebeler. His wife's daughter?

Mr. Ballen. That's right.

Mr. Liebeler. What are their names?

56 Mr. Ballen. Rags and Chris Bogoiavlensky-Kearton. And the De Mohrenschildts call them Buggers.

Mr. Liebeler. You say that Rags and Chris stayed at your house for a period of time?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. How long, approximately?

Mr. Ballen. About 2 weeks.

Mr. Liebeler. They originally resided in Anchorage, Alaska, is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. Well, that is where they formerly resided; yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Have they permanently moved from Anchorage?

Mr. Ballen. Your guess is as good as mine is. I received a letter from him this morning. They are in Philadelphia on their way to New York.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know whether or not these two people, Rags and Chris, ever knew Lee Harvey Oswald or Marina Oswald?

Mr. Ballen. They say they had not, and in thinking through the chronology of events, I am satisfied that they did not. There was some confusion in my mind in my interview with the FBI about the individual who Rags and Chris did know, and whom they went out of their way to try to help.

They drove him to east Texas once and to a timber farm.

Mr. Liebeler. Was this the other person whom you described a little while back as another stray dog?

Mr. Ballen. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. While Rags and Chris stayed at your house, did you have any discussions with them as to what the De Mohrenschildts had said about the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. They were very upset that George and Jeanne were publicly stating in Port-au-Prince that the FBI had assassinated Kennedy, and that Oswald was a patsy, and we were very upset because they apparently had no basis for such a statement, and it wasn't very wise for them to be banding about.

Mr. Liebeler. Am I correct in understanding you to say that Rags and Chris reported to you that De Mohrenschildt and his wife were saying publicly in Port-au-Prince that the FBI was responsible for the assassination of Kennedy and Oswald was a patsy?

Mr. Ballen. They told me that they stated that at a reception for members of the Foreign Diplomatic Corps in Port-au-Prince.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you when that reception was?

Mr. Ballen. It would have been while Chris and Rags were in Haiti.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Rags and Chris tell you they heard De Mohrenschildt make this remark?

Mr. Ballen. That was the impression I had, but I couldn't answer your question directly.

Mr. Liebeler. Will you fix for me more specifically, if you can, the dates that Rags and Chris were in Port-au-Prince?

Mr. Ballen. This is March. I believe that Rags and Chris came through my house possibly the first week of December 1963. They stayed at my house one night. We had quite a bit of snow that night. They had come through in a mad rush from Alaska. They left Florida for Haiti, and they left Haiti about a week prior to showing up at my house.

Mr. Liebeler. When did they show up at your house again for the second time?

Mr. Ballen. They left my house 2 Sundays ago, and they would have been at my house a total of 2 weeks. They would have arrived at my house at about March 2, something like that. They would have arrived at my house March 1, and left March 15, more or less.

Mr. Liebeler. Will you state for us, as best you can recall, the conversations that you had with Rags and Chris concerning these remarks allegedly made by De Mohrenschildt while they stayed at your house.

Mr. Ballen. This information was brought to me by Rags and Chris that they were very much upset about it. And I told Rags that probably all of George's mail was being intercepted in and out, and that I felt that sooner or later he would be called before the Warren Commission.

57 The FBI had already interviewed me, I told Rags, and that distressed him a little bit that the FBI was probably intercepting his mail and probably had a tail on him.

He thought I was kidding, and I said, no; that this was a pretty serious item and that probably he was under surveillance, and so he then took the initiative to call the FBI and said if they wanted to see him, he was out there, and he would be leaving for parts unknown, and so they came out to my house and interviewed him.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know whether Rags told the FBI about the remarks that De Mohrenschildt was alleged to have made?

Mr. Ballen. I do not. I was out of the house when the FBI agent was there, but I kept myself elsewhere in that building, not in the room where they were.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know the name of the agent who came out?

Mr. Ballen. He was one of the agents who interviewed me from California. Had a very nice tan, but I don't know his name.

Mr. Liebeler. One of the two agents that interviewed you when?

Mr. Ballen. About March 6th or 7th.

Mr. Liebeler. The interview that you have just referred to concerns your acquaintanceship with De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Ballen. That's correct.

Mr. Liebeler. Would it refresh your recollection if I advised you that the names of the agent that interviewed you were W. James Wood and Raymond P. Yelchek?

Mr. Ballen. The gentleman who came out to my house was Mr. Wood.

Mr. Liebeler. It was Mr. Wood that interviewed Rags, is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. That's correct.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Rags discuss with you the interview after the agent had left?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Rags tell you anything about his conversations with De Mohrenschildt after De Mohrenschildt had allegedly made this remark that the FBI was responsible for the assassination of the President?

Mr. Ballen. Just to the extent that he or Chris had protested vigorously on politics generally with George, and as I had already known before Rags came to my house, the visit in Haiti had deteriorated into quite a personality clash.

I had gotten a letter from George which showed that he was very critical on personal grounds of Rags.

Mr. Liebeler. Why was De Mohrenschildt critical of Rags, do you remember?

Mr. Ballen. These are personal matters, and I am just asking a question now. Is it within the realm of your interest? These are really personal matters between one individual and a somewhat removed son-in-law, a son-in-law of his wife, and, so, I wrote back to George and said that his anger was only natural, that the Navajos had a taboo against sons seeing their mother-in-law in pains of having their eyes removed, and maybe the Navajos know what they are talking about.

But to answer your question, the discussion in that matter was on a personal matter, and I really do not think it has anything—any bearing here. If you want me to discuss it, I will.

Mr. Liebeler. No; if you represent to me that the differences were of a purely personal matter, that is sufficient for me.

Mr. Ballen. With only one exception, and that is that George, by his overall nature, is leaning to left center, and Rags, by his overall nature, leans to the right of center, and just among other things this was one of the sources of some conflict.

Mr. Liebeler. They had political differences, in other words, also?

Mr. Ballen. In their overall perspective; yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Have you told us everything that you can remember about your conversations with Rags concerning these statements by De Mohrenschildt that the FBI was responsible for the assassination? Tell us everything about that that you can remember, either about your conversation with Rags, or what Rags told you about his conversation with De Mohrenschildt, and the reactions of other people to De Mohrenschildt's statements.

58 Mr. Ballen. He or Chris said that the American Embassy down there was very disturbed that George, at a cocktail party possibly run by, well, I think by someone in the Foreign Corps there, whether it be the French, that George or Jeanne had made this statement, and it was a foolish thing for him to say and a distressing thing, and I think also at that party there was a Negro emissary from one of the newly free republics in Africa who told the Haitians that if Haiti is the result of 300 years of freedom, he would like to go back to French rule.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Rags specifically mention the names of anybody else who was at this party, that you can remember?

Mr. Ballen. No; I don't think so. And if he had, it wouldn't rest with me. This was one of numerous cocktail parties down there.

I had the impression, from what Rags said, that this was George's statement and was known to the American Embassy down there.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember what Rags said about that?

Mr. Ballen. That it was distressing to the American Embassy, and that George and Jeanne were kind of a thorn in the side of the American Embassy.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Rags indicate whether or not De Mohrenschildt had been interviewed by the FBI while he was living in Port-au-Prince?

Mr. Ballen. Yes; George had said to me in one of his letters that he had had a previous visit with the FBI, and then subsequently Mr. Wood—was that his name?

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. Wood was the gentleman who interviewed Rags.

Mr. Ballen. He subsequently; yes, subsequently I believe Mr. Wood indicated that he had gone down there and also had met George.

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. Wood indicated that to you at some point in his interview of you, is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. No; after his interview with me he indicated to Chris and Rags that he had just the day before or 2 days before seen George and Jeanne previously at the American Embassy at Port-au-Prince and they were looking fine.

But prior to that, much prior to that, I had written to George and told him that I had received a visit from the FBI inquiring about him. And he wrote back to me and said that he also had a previous visit from the gray flannel suit boys.

Mr. Liebeler. He didn't tell you any details of his conversation with the FBI?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Based on your knowledge of De Mohrenschildt and your knowledge of De Mohrenschildt's relations with Oswald, do you have any reason whatsoever to believe that De Mohrenschildt could have been involved in the assassination in any way?

Mr. Ballen. None whatsoever.

Mr. Liebeler. Have you discussed this matter with anybody?

Mr. Ballen. Would you make your question a little more specific?

Mr. Liebeler. Have you discussed with anybody the possibility of De Mohrenschildt's possible involvement in any way in the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. Only to the extent that on November 23, when I realized that I had known Oswald and I realized how I had met him, my wife and I then said, how in heck did George meet him and that George had better have a good answer to that one.

And during the ensuing months I have made inquiries of the Russian colony here and kind of came to the understanding that George had met him through George Bouhe.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you speak to Mr. Bouhe about that?

Mr. Ballen. No; I haven't seen George Bouhe.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember who told you that De Mohrenschildt and Oswald had met through Bouhe?

Mr. Ballen. It would have either been Declan Ford or Natasha Voshinin.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you discuss with any of these people the possibility that De Mohrenschildt might have had something to do with the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Have you heard anybody else discuss that question?

59 Mr. Ballen. No; it is question that to us would be so absurd; that is, the first time I have heard that question raised is today.

Mr. Liebeler. Yet you did say to your wife, as you have just testified, when you heard that, when you recalled that Oswald was the man that De Mohrenschildt had introduced you to, you said to your wife De Mohrenschildt had better have a good answer as to how he met Oswald; is that correct?

Mr. Ballen. That is correct.

Mr. Liebeler. In your letters with De Mohrenschildt or through the contact that you had with De Mohrenschildt through Rags and Chris, did you learn what the last contact was that De Mohrenschildt had with Oswald prior to the assassination?

Mr. Ballen. No; this was not discussed with any of them. I have the feeling that the contacts would have been fairly continuous up to their leaving Dallas for Haiti 9 months ago.

Mr. Liebeler. You don't know that Oswald and De Mohrenschildt corresponded after De Mohrenschildt left for Haiti?

Mr. Ballen. I do not.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you think of any other matter about which you might have knowledge, or anything else that you can think of that you think should be brought to the attention of the Commission in connection with this matter?

Mr. Ballen. I would only add that in my opinion, George is an extremely discerning person, and while right now his emotions are kind of tensed up, not because of politics, but because of his personal life and finances and things concerning prior marriages and his children, and consequently his behavior and conduct right now might not be the best, but despite that, he is an extremely intelligent and fine person and I would think that he should be in a position to contribute as much as anyone on the type of person that Lee Harvey Oswald was.

George was speaking the language. There was a rapport. They were both familiar with the same geography, and George and his wife were befriending him. I would think George could give a pretty good personality sketch and political sketch on Lee Harvey Oswald.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you have any reason to believe that there is any truth in the remark that De Mohrenschildt was alleged to have made concerning the FBI's involvement in the assassination and Oswald's being a patsy.

Mr. Ballen. Do I have any reason to believe that?

Mr. Liebeler. Yes.

Mr. Ballen. No, sir; I have no reason to believe that. I would only add that if there is one faint line of skepticism still in my mind about Lee Harvey Oswald, and if I were to draw up alternative possibilities using my wildest imagination and draw up a list of 10,000 other possibilities, I suppose included in that 10,000 might be some unofficial cabal of the FBI, but the answer to your question is "No."

Mr. Liebeler. Did Rags or Chris indicate to you whether or not either of the De Mohrenschildts had stated any reason for their belief that the FBI was involved?

Let me ask you preliminarily, did Rags or Chris indicate that De Mohrenschildt really believed that fact that he was alleged to have uttered?

Mr. Ballen. They indicated that in De Mohrenschildt's emotional state, that apparently this was a sentiment they arrived at.

Mr. Liebeler. Now let's go back to the preceding question. Were there any reasons expressed by De Mohrenschildt for this belief?

Mr. Ballen. No; because Rags and Chris said this is a madness. That there are no reasons, and this is a madness.

Mr. Liebeler. Had De Mohrenschildt expressed any reason as to why he believed this?

Mr. Ballen. None were expressed to me; no, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you think of anything else that you want to add?

Mr. Ballen. No; I don't believe so.

Mr. Liebeler. Thank you very much, Mr. Ballen.


60

TESTIMONY OF MRS. LYDIA DYMITRUK

The testimony of Mrs. Lydia Dymitruk was taken on March 25, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission.

Mr. Jenner. I am Albert Jenner.

Mrs. Dymitruk, will you stand to be sworn, please?

I am about to take your testimony by deposition. Do you solemnly swear that you will tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I do.

Mr. Jenner. Thank you. Be seated please.

Mrs. Dymitruk, I am Albert E. Jenner, Jr. I am a member of the staff counsel and consultant for and to the Commission appointed by the President of the United States to investigate the assassination of President Kennedy.

Now this is a Commission appointed pursuant to Executive Order of the President of the United States, Mr. Lyndon B. Johnson, No. 11130, dated November 29, 1963, and Joint Resolution of the Congress of the United States No. 137.

Have you received a letter from J. Lee Rankin, the general counsel for the Commission, asking if you would come here and depose or have your deposition taken?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; I have.

Mr. Jenner. And included with that letter were copies of the Executive order and the resolution to which I have made reference?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And, pursuant to that request, as a lot of other fine American citizens, you are appearing voluntarily here this morning?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; I am.

Mr. Jenner. As it appears from the Executive order and the resolution, the Commission is investigating all the circumstances we can obtain respecting and relating to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and also the subsequent death of Lee Oswald, and persons involved in those two unfortunate events. And it is our information that you have some possible information that might help us with respect to Marina Oswald and Lee Oswald, and I should like to question you about that.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir; I am ready.

Mr. Jenner. You seem a little excited. Why don't you sit back and relax, pull your chair around and be comfortable. Nothing's going to happen to you.

Mrs. Dymitruk. I'm not afraid.

Mr. Jenner. Your name is Lydia Dymitruk?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And do I correctly pronounce your name?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir; that's all right.

Mr. Jenner. And it is spelled [spelling] L-y-d-i-a. And Dymitruk is [spelling] D-y-m-i-t-r-u-k?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Uh-huh.

Mr. Jenner. You live at 3542 10th Street in Fort Worth?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And I'm not going to ask you if Fort Worth is a suburb of Dallas—because I understand that would offend you.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir [laughter].

Mr. Jenner. But it is a large Texas city about, what—25 or 30 miles from here?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir; I like it very much.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, it's a splendid town. You're employed at the Neiman-Marcus store in Fort Worth?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. I understand that's a beautiful store.

Mrs. Dymitruk. It is—it is beautiful store and nice place to work—and I like it.

Mr. Jenner. How long have you resided in Fort Worth?

61 Mrs. Dymitruk. How long I'm in Fort Worth?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Let me see—I think it was from August.

Mr. Jenner. Of what year?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Last year.

Mr. Jenner. 1962?

Mrs. Dymitruk. 1962—yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right. And where have you resided prior to August 1962?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Why?

Mr. Jenner. Where? You came to Fort Worth in August 1962, did you say?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yeah; yeah.

Mr. Jenner. From where?

Mrs. Dymitruk. From Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. From Dallas?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. You had been a resident of Dallas up to that time?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. How long had you been a resident of Dallas?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, about 4 years—and 3, 4 months.

Mr. Jenner. And from where had you come when you came to Dallas?

Mrs. Dymitruk. From Belgium—Brussels.

Mr. Jenner. Are you a native of Belgium?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir; I am a citizen of Belgium.

Mr. Jenner. You are a citizen——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Born in Soviet Union.

Mr. Jenner. I might occasionally have to ask what might be considered personal questions but I'm not merely curious—I'm seeking information.

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's okay.

Mr. Jenner. What is your age?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Thirty-seven.

Mr. Jenner. Thirty-seven.

Are you married?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Have you ever been married?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. In this country or in Belgium or in Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I was married in Belgium.

Mr. Jenner. Married in Belgium?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did your husband come with you to this country?

Mrs. Dymitruk. He came first to United States, and I came afterward.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Tell me how and the circumstances of your coming from Russia, where you were born, to Belgium.

Mrs. Dymitruk. In 1942, we were kidnapped from the Germans during the war and brought to Germany—Dusseldorf.

Mr. Jenner. Was this your parents and you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; just sister—an older sister and I and that's all. We are separated from the family.

Mr. Jenner. And the German Army took you to Dusseldorf?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And then you were freed by the advancing Allied armies, essentially?

Mrs. Dymitruk. The Americans.

Mr. Jenner. The Americans?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

And you and your sister went to Belgium, did you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; 1945. After the war.

Mr. Jenner. Now, my arithmetic is very bad. How old were you then?

Mrs. Dymitruk. In 1945?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

62 Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, 17.

Mr. Jenner. All right. So you were about 15 years old when you were captured by the Germans?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where did you live in Russia when you were captured by the Germans?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Rostov.

Mr. Jenner. [Spelling] R-o-s-t-o-v?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Or is that "o-w"?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; it's "v".

Mr. Jenner. Did you have any brothers?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. Just yourself and your sister were the only children?

Mrs. Dymitruk. And a little sister—she was born after the war, in 1947. So, I haven't seen her.

Mr. Jenner. Your parents are still in Russia as far as you know?

Mrs. Dymitruk. They are; yeah.

Mr. Jenner. Were either of your parents active politically in Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Active politically?

Mr. Jenner. Yes; was your father an active member of the Communist Party, for example?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I think so.

Mr. Jenner. Were you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. Is your husband still in this country?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I don't know.

Mr. Jenner. You don't?

Mrs. Dymitruk. We were divorced for, I think, 3 years ago—3 years ago. I don't know where he is.

Mr. Jenner. I take it for part of this time at least—was he an American?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; he was from White Russia.

Mr. Jenner. White Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. You were married in Belgium, were you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And he preceded you to this country?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did he settle here in the Dallas area?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; he settled for awhile. And—uh—he never settled down in same place. He always traveled all over United States to find a better place to live. But I like here, and I stay here.

Mr. Jenner. What was his business or occupation?

Mrs. Dymitruk. His occupation?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. He was a draftsman.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Is he now an American citizen?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I heard yes.

Mr. Jenner. I see. And you certainly are?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Not yet.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, you're not yet?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. What status are you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Sir?

Mr. Jenner. What is your status? Have you applied?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I applied 5 years ago when I came to this country that I would like to be American citizen. I can read, I can speak, but I can't write. So that's why I have to go to school first.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, to write English?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes. To have examinations you have to learn writing English.

Mr. Jenner. I see. But you are doing that?

63 Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, yes; I study at home.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And the Constitution of the United States.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, yes; great document!

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; I think so.

Mr. Jenner. Were any children born of your marriage?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No children.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know a lady by the name of Anna Meller?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Sometimes pronounced "Miller"?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell me your acquaintance with Anna Meller. How did it come about?

Mrs. Dymitruk. When I came to United States——

Mr. Jenner. Wait a minute. What year was that?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I think it was 1960.

Mr. Jenner. All right. You came to the United States and you came to Dallas?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. You joined your husband here?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And you became acquainted with Anna Meller?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Not through him.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Through George Bouhe.

Mr. Jenner. George Bouhe?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I met him the other day. Monday, as a matter of—what is today? Yes, Monday.

George Bouhe—he's a resident here in Dallas, a man who takes a great interest in all Russian emigre people, and he tried to organize a little church, did he not?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, he helps everybody I know.

Mr. Jenner. Yes. He's a short, bald-headed man?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes. He's not just to help Russian people, he helps everybody—Germans, Belgians, everybody.

Mr. Jenner. He's a generous man?

Mrs. Dymitruk. He just like to help. That's all——

Mr. Jenner. He's bouncy and vigorous. All right. I interrupted you. Go ahead.

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's okay.

Mr. Jenner. Your acquaintance with Anna Meller?

Mrs Dymitruk. Yes; I met her at George's house——

Mr. Jenner. You met her where?

Mrs. Dymitruk. At George Bouhe's house.

Mr. Jenner. I see.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And, since then, once in while I see her in church or I go visit her at home.

Mr. Jenner. All right. What church is that?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It's the Russian church.

Mr. Jenner. Russian Orthodox Church?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Russian Orthodox Church. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall the name of it? Saint somebody or other?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I don't know the name because I go to both churches. One is Father Dimitri's church on Newton Avenue. I went there and few times I went to George Bouhe—but I don't know the name. I don't know if it's his name or not. I don't know; really. That's his church and he just likes everybody to go there—but I prefer to go to this one—Father Dimitri's church.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So, once in while, I see Anna Meller at a party somewhere or when I'm in Dallas, I visit with her and her husband.

Mr. Jenner. In their home?

64 Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. In 1962, you were living in Dallas?

Mrs. Dymitruk. 1962; yeah.

Mr. Jenner. You had an apartment of your own at that time?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And where was that?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It was on McKinney Avenue.

Mr. Jenner. McKinney?

Mrs. Dymitruk. McKinney Avenue. Yes. Palm Gardens Apartments.

Mr. Jenner. And was there an occasion when there was an interchange between you and Mrs. Meller with respect to the possibility of your befriending or harboring another lady—taking somebody into your home—your apartment?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. No?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. Was there any conversation at any time between you and Mrs. Meller about the possibility of your taking a lady into your home temporarily?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, I couldn't take in my home because I got just one little room. I couldn't take. But it was once a conversation—I remember it—that Marina Oswald, she was looking to live with somebody in a house, or not to be by herself, because she was separated from her husband.

Mr. Jenner. Separated?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes. It was some kind of conversation that I ought to help her, or something, but I didn't know her in that time.

Mr. Jenner. Had you heard of her at that time?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I heard about her, yes; but I haven't met her.

Mr. Jenner. From whom?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It was from Anna Meller. Anna Meller and George Bouhe. Both of them.

Mr. Jenner. Told you about——

Mrs. Dymitruk. About, yes. That she's separated from her husband and she are looking for—uh—to help—for somebody can help her to find a living or somewhere. But she was at that time somewhere living with somebody, but I don't know with whom.

Mr. Jenner. I see. Did George Bouhe or Mrs. Meller then tell you about this lady?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, yes; she told me—yes.

Mr. Jenner. What did she—what did they tell you about her?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I visit her on Sunday once and—uh—she told me that Marina was in her apartment for a week.

Mr. Jenner. Had lived with Mrs. Meller a week?

Mrs. Dymitruk. With Mrs. Meller; Yes. And that she went back to her husband and that she called, that was on Sunday, and she cried that her baby is very ill and the husband he won't go to the hospital.

Mr. Jenner. The husband would not take them to the hospital?

Mrs. Dymitruk. The baby to the hospital or to see a doctor.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And she asked me——

Mr. Jenner. Now, Mrs. Meller asked you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Mrs. Meller; yes. She asked me if I want to go and see her and take that baby to the hospital or to the doctor because I've got my own transportation. And I told her on Sunday, I don't want to go. So—and I thought about it on Monday and I think, "Well, I don't know. If something happened to that baby, then it's my fault. I better go." So, on Tuesday was my day off and so Anna Meller she give me the address and she says, "If you can go—if you go to her and see her, could you bring the books?" They borrowed a dictionary—English dictionary—hers and George Bouhe's—dictionaries. I said, "Well, okay."

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. Mrs. Meller asked you that if you went to the Oswalds, would you please bring with you——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. English-language and Russian-language dictionaries——

65 Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, they were English.

Mr. Jenner. English dictionaries that the Mellers had; that you would then bring them——

Mrs. Dymitruk. To her.

Mr. Jenner. To Mrs. Oswald?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No. Those books were at Marina's house.

Mr. Jenner. I see.

Mrs. Dymitruk. There was two books. One, George gave it to her; and other one, Anna Meller gave it to her.

Mr. Jenner. And they were both English-language dictionaries?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; English-Russian.

Mr. Jenner. English-Russian?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

So, she asked me to bring it back—those books.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So, it was on Tuesday early in the morning——

Mr. Jenner. Tuesday?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Tuesday.

Mr. Jenner. I thought you said Thursday?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; Tuesday is my day off.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And on Tuesday I went to Marina's house—I found her house—and——

Mr. Jenner. Was she at home?

Mrs. Dymitruk. At first, I couldn't find her at all. I went, first, to see the landlady, and I talked to her for a minute—maybe 5 or 10 minutes—and I ask her where she lives, in which apartment. There was so many apartments—some empty—and, you know, I just couldn't find her. So, she showed me where to go up to find her. So, I came there, I knocked on door and she came. And I asked her if she was Marina Oswald and she said, "Yes."

Mr. Jenner. Is that the first time you ever met Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's the first time. I think was the first time. The first I remember.

Mr. Jenner. Okay.

Mrs. Dymitruk. She said, "well, yes?"

And I said to her, "I hear that your baby is sick. Anna Meller told me that your baby's very sick and you need help. And maybe I can help you to bring that baby to the hospital."

"Oh," she said, "my husband, he's against it and I'm in trouble with him. I don't know what to do."

And I said, "Where is he?"

"Well, he's working."

I said, "Well, so long as he's working, we can go to the hospital." I said, "Do you have a doctor of your own?"

She said, "Well, I don't know. It was some kind of doctor before, but I don't know."

I said, "Well, okay. Let's go to the hospital."

Mr. Jenner. Were you speaking in Russian?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And, I take it, you have a fluent command of the Russian language—you speak Russian well?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, yes.

Mr. Jenner. And do you have an impression as to Marina? Did she speak Russian well?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Go ahead.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So—and she said that the baby had 103——

Mr. Jenner. Fever?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Fever. And I said—it was some kind of cold weather—"You had better put some warm clothes—and in the car it's warm, so we go to the hospital so they see that baby."

She said, "Well, all right."

66 So, it was about 10 o'clock or 10:30——

Mr. Jenner. In the morning?

Mrs. Dymitruk. In the morning.

I went to the Parkland Hospital.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, we'll just hesitate a minute.

Did you enter the apartment?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And tell us what you observed as to the conditions around the apartment. How she was dressed; whether you thought they might or did have funds, or whether they were poor; what did she look like? You know.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Uh—I think she was all right. And house was clean. And it was, I mean, it was nice apartment. I lived in much worse apartment when I came to United States—so——

Mr. Jenner. So, she was neat, the apartment was neat and clean——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And she was neat and clean?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And, I take it, you had, at that moment, a good impression of her?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And what sex was this baby—girl or boy?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It was a girl.

Mr. Jenner. A little girl. About how old?

Mrs. Dymitruk. (Gesturing with hands.) Baby couldn't walk. I don't know.

Mr. Jenner. Could not walk? All right. That's really what I was getting at. She was carrying the baby in her arms?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Could you recall a little more clearly what she said about her husband? That is, was she having difficulty with him or were they getting along well—or what was your impression in that respect?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, I haven't seen him at all—so, I couldn't say anything——

Mr. Jenner. I know, but from what she said, Mrs. Dymitruk?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, that's what she said about her husband—that he's against the hospital and against the doctors because he can't afford to pay the bills.

Mr. Jenner. I see.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So, I said to her at the Parkland Hospital you don't have to pay anything or maybe something—I don't know.

So, I took her to the hospital with her baby.

Mr. Jenner. You went to the Parkland Hospital here in Dallas?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And you drove Marina and her child?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Okay.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So, we come to the hospital emergency room, they checked the baby, fever 103, they give some little medicine for the temperature to go down, and they said, "I'm sorry, we can't help you; we don't have a children's doctor here."

Mr. Jenner. Do not have a children's doctor?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; I was little bit surprised because they deliver babies over there every day so many and they don't have a children's doctor.

Mr. Jenner. Yeah.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And I said, "Well, what we can do right now? I don't know what to do with the baby now."

"Well, if you can come in the evening."

Mr. Jenner. The doctor or the attendant said——

Mrs. Dymitruk. That was the nurse.

And she said, "Well, in the evening, it will be a doctor for the children."

I said, "Is it possible to find somebody else right now?"

Because the baby couldn't breathe and I don't know—I don't have my own children but really I was scared to see baby.

67 Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And they said, "Well, we give the address to go to another children's hospital in Dallas."

And that's what I did.

Mr. Jenner. You and Marina and the baby then drove to——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do you remember where that was?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Sir, I don't remember. It was a little hospital—children's hospital. I think it was free. You don't have to pay anything.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, yes; it was a clinic-type of hospital?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Just for children.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So, when I come there there were at least 40 children there waiting.

Mr. Jenner. 40?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I think so. There were so many children.

And at first I asked the nurse to take care of the baby if it is possible right away.

Mr. Jenner. Because the baby has a fever?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; and she said, "Well, I'm sorry. I can't help it."

Mr. Jenner. Cannot?

Mrs. Dymitruk. "I cannot—because they have so many children here and you have to wait your turn."

I said, "Maybe those children——"—I see around there—playing around—so, I say, "Maybe they don't have a fever high like this. Can't you take baby right away?"

"Oh, no; you have to wait 3 or 4 hours"—or something like that.

I said, "Well, I'm sorry. We have to go home."

So, I brought her home. It was about 2 o'clock. And I said to her, "Well, if your husband comes home, you have to decide what to do. If you want it, I can take you to hospital this evening."

She said, "Yes."

So I came to see her around, maybe 6 o'clock—maybe 5 o'clock or something—I don't remember. But when I came home to see her her husband wasn't home.

Mr. Jenner. Was not?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Was not. I said, "Now, Marina, I would like to take you to the hospital. Do you want to go?"

She said, "Yes; but wait just a minute when my husband will be back."

I said, "Okay."

So he came home and first he was eating——

Mr. Jenner. Were you introduced to him?

Mr. Dymitruk. Yes. She said, "That's my husband." And he spoke Russian to me.

Mr. Jenner. He did speak Russian?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; and I was really surprised—in short time, he spoke nicely.

Mr. Jenner. He spoke pretty good Russian?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

So—and I asked him if he wanted to go to the hospital with the baby. And he said, "I don't know. I can't afford it. I can't pay."

So they went to the living room and I was sitting in the kitchen, and they were fighting in the living room—what to do—to go or not to go.

Mr. Jenner. Was it a real argument?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It was. Yes. I could hear from the kitchen that they argued.

Mr. Jenner. It was a heated argument?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, they were just—uh—I don't know what it was all about, but when they came out they told me that they wanted to go to the hospital.

Mr. Jenner. Yes. And from what you heard of this argument, he didn't want to go, she did?

Mrs. Dymitruk. She want to go but he——

68 Mr. Jenner. He did not want to go?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; no. So then he decide that he want to go to the hospital and take his baby. I said, "All right."

So, we went to the hospital and we found a doctor. And there were children waiting and we wait. So he took care of the baby. He—the doctor took a blood test and took a X-ray—a lung X-ray and, I don't know, all kind of tests, right away.

So, on the way back—he got some kind of papers, I think it was two copies or three copies of papers——

Mr. Jenner. From the hospital?

Mrs. Dymitruk. From the doctor to go to the service desk.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. So, at the service desk—he was standing here [indicating], I was behind him, and Marina was behind me with the baby. So—and the service desk asked question—the address and if he's working, and he said "No."

Mr. Jenner. Not working?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No. Then she said, "Do you have unemployment—do you get some unemployment money?"

He said, "No."

And she said, "Well, how do you live then?"

He said, "Well, friends helping me."

And Marina—she was behind me—and she says, "What a liar!"

And they argue again.

Mr. Jenner. They argued—between the two of them?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, in Russian language.

Mr. Jenner. Did he overhear her make the remark to you that you've just told us?

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's what she told. That's what she told.

Mr. Jenner. Did he hear her say that—is what I'm——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes—because then they were in argument.

Mr. Jenner. Then, they got in an argument?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And what was the argument about?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, about the—that he is not working—because he was lying.

Mr. Jenner. I see. Did he say why he lied?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; no. He didn't say anything.

So, that piece of paper—he received some kind of paper——

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. To turn around and to pay a cashier, or something, I think so—but he put it in his pocket.

Mr. Jenner. He put the paper in his pocket?

Mrs. Dymitruk. In his pocket.

And so we came out and I brought them home—and I didn't come into the house.

Mr. Jenner. They just got out of the car and went in?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes. They didn't say anything—thank you or what—anything.

Mr. Jenner. To you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Nothing.

Mr. Jenner. They just got out?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yeah. You know, one thing, he said, "I don't want to pay any penny. It's suppose to be free. Doctors and everything in Russia is free. It's suppose to be free here, too."

I didn't like that at all. I was disgusted.

Mr. Jenner. You were disgusted——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. With him?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I was disgusted with him [laughing]——

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall that the burden of his argument, the point of his argument was that these things were free in Russia——

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's right.

69 Mr. Jenner. And they should be free in the United States?

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And he shouldn't be required to pay? If they were free, he shouldn't be paying?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; that's what he figures.

Mr. Jenner. When, if ever, did you next see either Marina or Lee Oswald?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I have seen her. It was in 1963, summertime—I think was in July or June, or something like that. I saw her in Irving. I worked in Irving as manager of a French bakery in the Wyatt's Store—located in Wyatt's Store there.

Mr. Jenner. That's a supermarket?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes. And I managed the bakery.

So, I saw her shopping——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. I assume you speak French, too, do you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Very little.

Mr. Jenner. Very little?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes. Flemish and German.

Mr. Jenner. Flemish and German and Russian—and English?

Mrs. Dymitruk. And English.

Mr. Jenner. You do very well with English.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Thank you. And I saw her with little baby and her dressed maternity.

Mr. Jenner. So she had the same child she had the year before?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And she was pregnant with another child?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, she was dressed like she was.

And I just saw her from far—and I said, "Marina?"

"Oh!" she says, "How are you?"

I said, "Okay."

Mr. Jenner. Did she recognize you?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh, yes. And she said, "Do you see anything on me?"

I said, "Well, I don't know."

She said, "Well, I expect another baby."

I said, "Well," I said, "that's something." I said, "How is your husband doing?"

"Oh, he's in New Orleans. And I'm going to New Orleans, too."

And there was another lady with her.

Mr. Jenner. There was another lady? Would you describe the other lady, please?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, she was tall, black hair. She spoke Russian.

Mr. Jenner. What was her command of Russian?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Very—not too bad. But I was surprised at her. Because I thought she was English first—her type of face.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. And she said, "Well, no. I'm American—and I went to the university and studied Russian—and I practice now with Marina."

I said, "Why Russian?" I said, "Well, in United States, if you need another language, you study Spanish or French or German. Why Russian?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. "Oh," she said, "I don't know, but I like very much the Russian language.

And I thought [gesturing with hands out, palms up]—I don't know.

And they sit down on the table and I give them some coffee. And she say that the lady was with her, she will drive her to New Orleans.

Mr. Jenner. The lady who was accompanying Marina was going to drive Marina to New Orleans?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Right.

Mr. Jenner. What time of the year was this?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Years and dates, I'm just lost.

Mr. Jenner. Well, was it in the spring?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No, no, no. It was in summertime.

70 Mr. Jenner. It was in the summertime?

Mrs. Dymitruk. In summertime. Just before we close up the store. I think was in July, or maybe June. I'm not sure.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's the last time I saw her.

Mr. Jenner. That's the last time you saw Marina?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yeah.

Mr. Jenner. And is that the last time you had even any indirect contact—people speaking of her—that is, prior to November 22—did you hear about her in between?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. Not at all?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. When you were assisting them with their child and went to their apartment, that apartment was here in Dallas, was it?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; I think it was in Oak Cliff.

Mr. Jenner. In Oak Cliff?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I think was in Oak Cliff.

Mr. Jenner. In your driving to the clinic that evening with Lee Oswald and Marina and the baby and your returning home that night, was there any discussion at any time, other than you have already indicated, of his views with respect to Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It was just only about the hospitalization.

Mr. Jenner. Only the hospitalization?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir; that's right.

Mr. Jenner. Did you learn, during the course of those visits with Marina and the visit to the hospital with both of them, as to whether he had been in Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I knew; yes.

Mr. Jenner. You knew that before—well, I'll ask you this: How did you know he had been to Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I knew from George Bouhe.

Mr. Jenner. From George Bouhe?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; he told me about it—uh—one person who went to Russia and then he come back with Russian wife and a baby—back to United States. "Well," I say, "that's one thing—that he learned something. To go to Russia and he didn't like it and then he come back. He was just lucky that he did come back to United States."

Mr. Jenner. He was fortunate that he could come back?

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. In your talks with Marina that morning, when you were taking her to the hospital and you brought her back, you were with her a good many hours?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Oh—let me see. It was maybe till 2 o'clock—2:30 maybe.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say anything about the circumstances of her meeting Oswald in Russia? Did she tell you anything about her life or their lives in Russia and their life here in the United States? Did you girls have some smalltalk?

Mrs. Dymitruk. It was just about life in United States; not in Russia.

Mr. Jenner. Not in Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

She told me that her husband want to go back to Russia.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, she did?

Mrs. Dymitruk. "And I don't want to go," she say.

Mr. Jenner. Fine. Tell me about that. Was it, to the best of your recollection, that her husband wanted to go back to Russia, including himself and her?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Or was it that he wanted her to go back to Russia and he was going to stay here?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; he wanted to go with her.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

71 Mrs. Dymitruk. And she said, "He can go if he want to, but I don't go—because I like here and I don't go."

Mr. Jenner. I see. But she did make a point of telling you about that?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, can you recall anything else that occurred during this day when you were with them for a good many hours?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No; with her.

Mr. Jenner. Yes—with her.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, I asked her if she like United States. She says, "United States, I do—but not everything"

I said, "What you mean—not everything?"

"Well, just the same problem—the hospitalization and the doctors."

I said to her that in United States we have, when you work with a company, you have insurance. You pay just a little every month and then if you go to the hospital, the insurance company will pay.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's how I explain to her.

"Well, in Russia, when a baby is born in Russia—my baby was born in Russia, and they took care and when I come home from the hospital there was a nurse for 8 days in my room who took care of the baby—and why is it not in United States like this?"

I said to her, "Well, you just can't compare two countries—Russia and United States." I said, "I am longer here and I can explain so you will understand."

Mr. Jenner. And did you explain to her?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I explained about this hospitalization what we have here.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

Mrs. Dymitruk. "Well," she said, "it's still too expensive. If you have to go doctor, you pay the visit."

I said, "You can go to the hospital—to the Parkland Hospital and it cost you nothing because they don't charge you anything."

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mrs. Dymitruk. "If you have your own doctor, for example, if you go to doctor, then you pay $10 or $5 or something like that." I said, "Why, that's nothing."

"Well, I can't afford it."

I said, "Well, that's why I'm taking you to hospital—to Parkland Hospital—to see the doctor and you don't have to pay anything."

That was the only—what she complained about.

Mr. Jenner. But otherwise she thought well of the United States?

Mrs. Dymitruk. She liked it.

Mr. Jenner. She wanted to stay?

Mrs. Dymitruk. She want to stay; yes.

Mr. Jenner. In any event, she did not want to go back to Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. No.

Mr. Jenner. But she told you that her husband did want to return to Russia?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. With her?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do you remember specifically now?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes; I remember. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You have a firm recollection that it was that he wanted to go back with her?

Mrs. Dymitruk. With her. And she said, "I don't want to go. If he want to go, he can go by himself. I stay here."

Mr. Jenner. Now, did she say anything, during the course of this time you were with her, about her husband's attitude toward the United States?

Mrs. Dymitruk. She told me that he was unhappy and that he was very disappointed; that he would lose jobs just because that he was in Russia and the people find out that he was in Russia, so he's on the street.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

72 Mrs. Dymitruk. And that's why he was always so upset.

Mr. Jenner. I see. All right.

Now, Mrs. Dymitruk, does anything occur to you now to which you would like to call my attention and, through me, the Commission, that you think for any possible reason might be helpful to us in this important investigation?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, in my opinion, naturally, everyone American who goes from United States to Russia, let them there. Don't bring them back. That's the only thing that I can say. It's no reason to leave United States and change your nationality or something. Because I have experience myself. I lived in Russia for 15 years and, in my childhood, I knew too much about the life in Russia. And I can't see any reason that American want to go to Russia and to accept Russian life—I mean the Communists. I can't see that.

Mr. Jenner. You have a personal aversion to communism?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And it's your viewpoint that if any American goes to Russia with the intention of living there that we ought to leave them there?

Mrs. Dymitruk. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And not encourage him to return to the United States?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Not encourage—or if he ask to come back, just let him stay there.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh. All right.

Anything else?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Let's see—Uh—one thing that I'm just always wonder about Marina and her husband—that she knew—if she knew that her husband tried to kill General Walker. I think she was responsible, in that case, to tell the Government or somebody in Government that her husband tried to do this.

Mr. Jenner. It's your viewpoint about——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir; that's right.

Mr. Jenner. That she should have disclosed that?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir. Husband or no husband, I would feel that I should.

Mr. Jenner. Your feeling is that regardless of whether it was a husband, or whomever it might have been——

Mrs. Dymitruk. Right.

Mr. Jenner. That was involved in such an incident, that it should have been disclosed to the police or the Government?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Anything else?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Well, you ask questions. I don't know.

Mr. Jenner. I can't think of anything at the moment.

Now, we've had occasional discussions off the record when the reporter hasn't been transcribing. Is there anything that occurred during the course of any off-the-record discussion that I haven't brought out in questioning you that you think is pertinent here?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Nothing.

Mr. Jenner. Everything that's pertinent I have questioned you about?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. As far as you know?

Mrs. Dymitruk. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Now, Mrs. Dymitruk, this questioning will be transcribed and this fine young lady will have it some time next week. You may read it if you desire, or not—as you see fit. And some people like to read it over and see if they're any corrections they would like to make. That's optional. You may or may not as you see fit. And you have a right to do this if you want. You also may waive it.

Mrs. Dymitruk. I think that's all right.

Mr. Jenner. You would prefer to waive it?

Mrs. Dymitruk. I think that's all right. What I say is truth.

Mr. Jenner. Well, all right.

Thank you very much. We appreciate your coming voluntarily. It's certainly an inconvenience, I know, but you've been very helpful.

Mrs. Dymitruk. Thank you.


73

TESTIMONY OF GARY E. TAYLOR

The testimony of Mr. Gary E. Taylor was taken at 2 p.m. on March 25, 1964, in the office of the U.S. Attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Robert T. Davis, assistant attorney general of Texas, was also present.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Taylor, will you stand and be sworn please?

In your testimony which you are about to give, do you solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. Taylor. I do.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Taylor, did you receive recently—I guess it was last week—a letter from J. Lee Rankin, the general counsel for the Presidential Assassination Commission——

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Asking if you would appear for the taking of your deposition?

Mr. Taylor. That's true.

Mr. Jenner. And was there included with that letter a copy of the Executive Order of President Lyndon B. Johnson, No. 11130 of November 29, 1963, in which he appoints and authorizes the Commission and directs that it prescribe its procedures——

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Together with a copy of the Senate Joint Resolution No. 137 of the 88th Congress, first session, legislatively authorizing the creation of the Commission?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; there was.

Mr. Jenner. Pursuant to that Executive Order and the Senate joint resolution, the Presidential Assassination Commission is investigating all the facts and circumstances that it thinks are pertinent to the assassination of the President and all the facts and circumstances surrounding it and what led up to it or might have led up to it.

We have, from information which you have voluntarily furnished, and from other sources, knowledge that you had contacts with the Oswalds and with persons who, in turn, also had contacts with the Oswalds and that you might be able to furnish some information which we think might be helpful.

I am a member of the legal staff of the Commission which, you will notice from the rules, a staff member is authorized to take depositions here in Dallas and conduct the examination.

And you appear here voluntarily?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, your full name is Gary—[spelling] G-a-r-y E. Taylor?

Mr. Taylor. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. What's your middle name?

Mr. Taylor. Edward.

Mr. Jenner. And you live in Fort Worth—is that correct, sir?

Mr. Taylor. No; I live in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Dallas? And your address in Dallas?

Mr. Taylor. 3948 Orlando Court, apartment 111.

Mr. Jenner. Are you a married man?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Family?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. How many children?

Mr. Taylor. One.

Mr. Jenner. And what is your age?

Mr. Taylor. Twenty-three.

Mr. Jenner. You are an American citizen?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Born here?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your wife is an American citizen?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

74 Mr. Jenner. Born here?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your children born here?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Are you a native of this area of the country?

Mr. Taylor. I am a native of Wichita, Kans. I've been in Dallas since 1951.

Mr. Jenner. Did your profession or avocation or vocation or work bring you to Dallas?

Mr. Taylor. No; I moved here with my parents.

Mr. Jenner. Your parents came here. All right. And what is your business or occupation or profession?

Mr. Taylor. I'm a recording engineer for the Sellers Co.

Mr. Jenner. And what is the Sellers Co?

Mr. Taylor. A recording company whose primary function is the recording of radio and television commercials.

Mr. Jenner. And how long have you been in that business?

Mr. Taylor. I went to work for them in September.

Mr. Jenner. 1963?

Mr. Taylor. Prior to that, I was in the Motion Picture Industry. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Give me your occupations back through, let us say, 1961.

Mr. Taylor. Uh—prior to joining the Sellers Co. in September last, I was self-employed in the Motion Picture Industry in Dallas as a grip and assistant cameraman. Before that, I worked at various part-time jobs and attended college at Arlington State.

Mr. Jenner. Are you a graduate of Arlington State?

Mr. Taylor. No; I'm not. I'm a 3-year student.

Mr. Jenner. So, you've had elementary and high school education and 3 years at Arlington State?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Are you attending there at night—is that a night school?

Mr. Taylor. They hold night classes. I'm not attending.

Mr. Jenner. During the time you had your interest, which you still may have, in—what did you say—photographing?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What was the nature of that?

Mr. Taylor. Oh—it was motion picture work primarily centered around television commercials.

Mr. Jenner. Are you an amateur camera fan?

Mr. Taylor. Just a little bit. I try to carry it on as best I can.

Mr. Jenner. Did you at any time become acquainted with or meet either Marina or Lee Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Which of the two did you meet first?

Mr. Taylor. I don't actually remember. I met both of them on the same day in their home.

Mr. Jenner. On the same occasion?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Had you had any information about them prior to the time you met them?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I had.

Mr. Jenner. Now, when was it you met them?

Mr. Taylor. I believe it was in September 1962.

Mr. Jenner. Was this a prearranged meeting, an accidental meeting, or was it a purposeful meeting?

Mr. Jenner. It was prearranged.

Mr. Jenner. Prearranged. All right. We'll get to the purpose in a moment, if we can defer that for a bit.

Would you tell us the circumstances, persons involved also, that led to your becoming acquainted in advance with something about the Oswalds and which led up to the occasion when you met them, as you have now indicated?

Mr. Taylor. All right.

75 Mr. Jenner. In other words, how did it come about—from the beginning of the world to the present?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—about a week before I met them, uh—my wife was told of them by either her father or stepmother. That would be either Mr. or Mrs. George De Mohrenschildt [spelling] D-e M-o-h-r-e-n-s-c-h-i-l-d-t.

Mr. Jenner. Yes. And the first name is George. And do you know the present Mrs. De Mohrenschildt's first name—given name?

Mr. Taylor. It is pronounced Zhon [phonetic].

Mr. Jenner. Pronounced as though it's spelled J-o-n?

Mr. Taylor. Yes—uh—it is pronounced as the Dutch would say it—Zhon. I believe that she uses the French spelling of the name, although I'm not familiar with it.

Mr. Jenner. Is she sometimes called Jeanne [spelling] J-e-a-n-n-e?

Mr. Taylor. Yes. I'm not sure of the "e" on the end of it.

Mr. Jenner. I'd like to back up a moment. Your wife—what was her maiden name?

Mr. Taylor. Alexandra Romyne——

Mr. Jenner. [Spelling] R-o-m-i-n-e?

Mr. Taylor. [Spelling] R-o-m-y-n-e.

Mr. Jenner. De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And she was the daughter of whom?

Mr. Taylor. Of George De Mohrenschildt and a woman who is now known as Mrs. J. M. Brandel.

Mr. Jenner. Spell that last name.

Mr. Taylor. [Spelling] B-r-a-n-d-e-l.

Mr. Jenner. And the present Mrs. Brandel—she was the wife of George De Mohrenschildt and, in turn, is the mother of your wife?

Mr. Taylor. That is true. But that is not the present Mrs. De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. No. I appreciate that. Where does she live now?

Mr. Taylor. Mrs. Brandel, as last I knew, was living at Stellara B.

Mr. Jenner. Will you spell that?

Mr. Taylor. [Spelling] S-t-e-l-l-a-r-a B.

Mr. Jenner. Just the letter B?

Mr. Taylor. Just the letter B. I believe Stellara means apartment in Italian. Vagna Clara [spelling] V-a-g-n-a C-l-a-r-a, Rome, Italy.

Mr. Jenner. Has she remarried?

Mr. Taylor. Yes, she has remarried—and her name is Brandel.

Mr. Jenner. How many children were born of that marriage?

Mr. Taylor. One.

Mr. Jenner. Just your wife?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And was the present Mrs. Brandel the first wife, second wife, third wife of Mr. George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Taylor. The first wife—to my knowledge.

Mr. Jenner. Are you informed that in addition to the present Mrs. Brandel and the present Mrs. De Mohrenschildt, De Mohrenschildt also was married to at least one, if not two other women?

Mr. Taylor. Yes, I am aware of one other one.

Mr. Jenner. Will you tell us about the one that you do have in mind?

Mr. Taylor. I know very little about her, other than that her name is Dee—her first name is Dee.

Mr. Jenner. [Spelling] D-e-e?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Dee or DeeDee? Is she sometimes called DeeDee?

Mr. Taylor. She may have been. And that they had two children, one of which is deceased.

Mr. Jenner. And the one who still survives is male or female?

Mr. Taylor. Female.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know her name and whereabouts?

Mr. Taylor. Her given name is Nodjia—and I do not know the spelling of it. It is, I believe, a Russian name.

76 Mr. Jenner. Could you spell it phonetically?

Mr. Taylor. [Spelling] N-o-d-j-i-a (phonetic).

Mr. Jenner. Is she married?

Mr. Taylor. No. She's a minor.

Mr. Jenner. She's still a minor?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where does she live?

Mr. Taylor. I believe in Philadelphia—but I can't be sure of that.

Mr. Jenner. The impression is, at least, that she is living with her mother in Philadelphia?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Rather than with the De Mohrenschildts in Port-au-Prince, Haiti?

Mr. Taylor. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. You are aware of the fact that George De Mohrenschildt and his present wife now, are at least presently, are residing in Port-au-Prince, Haiti?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

(Off the record discussion follows.)

Mr. Jenner. In order that the record be not too confused, I think it would be well that you finish recounting what led up to your meeting with Marina and Lee Harvey Oswald, and then I will go back when we finish that subject, and put the De Mohrenschildts in proper perspective.

Mr. Taylor. All right.

Mr. Jenner. We have been off the record in the meantime, haven't we, Mr. Taylor, during which time you recounted to me something about the De Mohrenschildts and the relation between your present wife and the De Mohrenschildts, and other matters in that connection?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. We will bring that out later.

(At this point, Mr. Jenner asked your reporter to orient the witness by referring back to the point of interruption, when he started recounting how his meeting with the Oswalds came about.)

Your Reporter. [Reading] "About a week before I met them, my wife was told of them by either her father or stepmother—Mr. and Mrs. George De Mohrenschildt."

Mr. Jenner. Now, that's where I interrupted. Please go on from there.

Mr. Taylor. They explained to us that——

Mr. Jenner. When you say "they," you mean whom?

Mr. Taylor. One or the other of the De Mohrenschildts.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. Explained to my wife——

Mr. Jenner. In your presence?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. This is something your wife told you?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. That a Russian girl, Mrs. Oswald, was living in Fort Worth with her husband, and that they were going to be—the De Mohrenschildts were going to be in Fort Worth on Sunday afternoon attending a concert and that after the concert, they would like for us to join them, the De Mohrenschildts, and visit the Oswalds.

Mr. Jenner. Now, when was this?

Mr. Taylor. In early September of 1962.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Go on.

Mr. Taylor. We——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. Had you ever heard of a Lee Oswald or of an American being back here with a Russian wife—or was this entirely new to you?

Mr. Taylor. This was new to me. I was not aware of the presence of either one of them prior to this.

Mr. Jenner. And, as far as you know, was it new to your wife?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And, from a conversation we had while we were off the record,77 the wife you now speak of—that is, back in 1962—that is not your present wife?

Mr. Taylor. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. But that wife—what was her maiden name?

Mr. Taylor. Alexandra Romyne De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. And we met them, as they had suggested, in Fort Worth one Sunday afternoon.

Mr. Jenner. When you say "them," you mean——

Mr. Taylor. The two De Mohrenschildts. And we met the Oswalds and also——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. What did you do? You went to the concert over there?

Mr. Taylor. We went to the Oswalds' home. We had been given an address and a time when the De Mohrenschildts would already have arrived.

Mr. Jenner. And when you arrived at this place, were your father-in-law and mother-in-law present?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; they were.

Mr. Jenner. And where was this?

Mr. Taylor. This was on Mercedes Street. I do not remember the number.

Mr. Jenner. In Fort Worth?

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir; in Fort Worth.

Mr. Jenner. You located the apartment, as you had been advised of the number?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; it was a house.

Mr. Jenner. It was a house—not an apartment?

Mr. Taylor. It was a house.

Mr. Jenner. Was it a single-family dwelling or a duplex?

Mr. Taylor. I'm not sure. It was either a single-family unit or a duplex.

Mr. Jenner. You have no present recollection which one it was?

Mr. Taylor. No, sir; I do not.

Mr. Jenner. Describe to us what you saw in the way of the room or rooms, the surroundings, whether neat and clean and whether threadbare or new furniture—or what did it look like inside?

Mr. Taylor. It was a comparatively bare room, as I remember, uncarpeted. The furniture was badly worn. It was, however, clean—particularly so considering the number of people that were there.

Mr. Jenner. And it was orderly—not messy?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Now, when you entered that room, there were present two persons introduced to you as Mr. and Mrs. Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Was Mrs. Oswald introduced to you as Marina Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. I believe she was.

Mr. Jenner. And your father-in-law and your mother-in-law, the De Mohrenschildts, yourself, and your wife—anybody else present?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; several other people were present. Lee Oswald's mother was there.

Mr. Jenner. Marguerite Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. Yes. George Bouhe was there. A Mr. and Mrs. Hall was there—John Hall and his estranged wife. I'm not sure of her name—first name.

Mr. Jenner. Elena [spelling] E-l-e-n-a Hall?

Mr. Taylor. Elena.

Mr. Jenner. Which, of any, of these people had you known prior to the time that you stepped into this room?

Mr. Taylor. Only the De Mohrenschildts.

Mr. Jenner. So, this was your first acquaintance with the Halls, your first acquaintance with Marguerite Oswald, and your first acquaintance with Lee and Marina Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And what ensued—by way of what anybody did and what anybody said?

78 Mr. Taylor. I don't remember but very sketchily what went on that afternoon. There's a number of questions in my mind about what preceded—I mean, Mrs. Oswald——

Mr. Jenner. Will you please state them and where you are stating a question in your mind as distinct from something that was said——

Mr. Taylor. Well, I will come to that. I was only trying to establish a general vagueness of recollection of the afternoon. Mrs. Oswald left shortly after I arrived.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you mean Marguerite?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; Lee's mother.

Mr. Jenner. Have you ever seen her other than on this short visit?

Mr. Taylor. Not except in news media. Never in person other than that one afternoon.

Mr. Jenner. And you've had no contact with her directly since this particular occasion you are now relating?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And the news media to which you refer is news media activities subsequent to November 22, 1963?

Mr. Taylor. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. She was just there for about 5 minutes?

Mr. Taylor. Less than 45 minutes, I would say.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have an opportunity to form an impression of her in those few minutes?

Mr. Taylor. I just have a vague recollection of a somewhat plump woman who seemed to be—uh—out of place in the present crowd that was there that afternoon. And she didn't seem to be particularly interested in anything that went on—and I think that's what prompted her to leave.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have an opportunity to observe and form an opinion from those observations as to the attitude between Lee Oswald and Marguerite?

Mr. Taylor. I would say that it was one of estrangement between them; that they had very little communication between them; that they were almost strangers—and possibly even didn't like each other. Particularly on Lee's part, I should think.

Mr. Jenner. That was your impression?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And this was, again, September of 1962—did you say?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right. September 1962. Okay—I've got myself oriented. Go ahead.

Mr. Taylor. And that we talked generally about some of the things that—uh—some of Lee's observations about Russia.

Mr. Jenner. Did he speak in English or Russian?

Mr. Taylor. He spoke in English when talking to my wife of that time or I; and quite often in Russian—as I believe everyone in the room spoke Russian except my wife, myself, and John Hall. I'm not sure if John Hall spoke Russian or not—but certainly both the De Mohrenschildts, and George Bouhe does.

Mr. Jenner. George Bouhe, both of the De Mohrenschildts—your mother-in-law and father-in-law and both the Oswalds—Lee and Marina?

Mr. Taylor. That's right. In addition to that, there was Mrs. Hall.

Mr. Jenner. And Mrs. Hall also spoke Russian?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Neither you nor your then wife spoke Russian?

Mr. Taylor. She had a knowledge of Russian but certainly not enough to converse with them. She could understand some Russian when it was spoken to her, but could not speak but just a few words.

Mr. Jenner. Could she follow a normal conversation between two others who were speaking so each could understand the other, but not any attempt to slow down and what-not in order to enable her to try and pick up?

Mr. Taylor. I imagine they would have had to have spoken very plainly and slowly and using simple words for her to have understood any of it.

Mr. Jenner. I believe I interrupted you at a point where you stated that you talked generally about some of Lee's experiences and observations about Russia.79 Would you continue from that point, indicating as best you can now recall, what was said about Lee's experiences in Russia?

Mr. Taylor. It's difficult to remark specifically about what we talked of that day. Perhaps it would be better if I—uh—told you all I can remember that he said about Russia on several occasions now rather than—because I cannot remember specifically what we discussed on that day.

Mr. Jenner. All right. So we can get one point in the record—I'll probably ask more specifically about the different occasions later on. But give us a running account such as you have indicated you desire to make.

Mr. Taylor. All right. Lee, on various occasions, and I discussed the life that he led in Russia, his experiences in Russia, and his general observations about it. I guess I should best start with his observations of family life there.

He and Marina lived in an apartment. It was about 10 x 14. And he remarked that all families in Russia lived in apartments of this approximate size regardless of the size of the families—that there were no private residences as we think of them. And that six family units would be grouped around a community kitchen and lavatory, and where all the families shared the same facilities. And that he and Marina did live in this manner. That he worked as a sheet-metal fabricator in the town of Minsk, and received for his remuneration for his work 45 rubles a month—which was the minimum, he said, that everyone in Russia receives whether they work or not.

He went into some detail about what is received directly from the State without payment. In other words, what services a Russian citizen receives in what we would call socialized services—such as medicine. A Russian citizen does not have to pay for medical services; the house—apartment, a place to live, a Russian citizen does not have to pay for it. There is no charge for this. And we also discussed what other people made. I believe he said Marina received 180 rubles a month for her work as a pharmacist. And that she had received training in that. And we discussed their school system somewhat—how a student that worked hard is allowed to continue with his schooling, whereas a student that either doesn't work hard or isn't capable is taken only to a level of which they are capable and then put to work.

And we went on and discussed their financial system a little bit further, and I learned that a person does get raises in a job, that salaries—once you are given a job, why your salary does increase as you continue through the years on a skilled job.

Mr. Jenner. As your skills increase?

Mr. Taylor. No; at the same job.

Mr. Davis. As your age increases?

Mr. Taylor. In other words, for length of time at your machine, for example. When you first come to work, like Lee, and you make 45 rubles a month, as he does it for so many years or for such a length of time, he gets a raise over and above that.

Mr. Jenner. Then, that increase comes purely as a matter of passage of time and has no relation to skill?

Mr. Taylor. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Did he say anything about—take the example he gave—machine operator—if the machine operator next to Oswald, for example—take a hypothetical person—is much more skillful then Oswald, is the compensation the same?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—to my knowledge, it would be.

Mr. Jenner. That's the impression you received?

Mr. Taylor. That is the impression I received. I believe he said that someone doing his job, by the time they reach retirement age—I don't remember what that was—would be receiving something just under 200 rubles a month for performing the same task.

Mr. Jenner. Did he indicate a comparative relationship between the ruble and the dollar—to give you some notion of what 45 rubles a month, for example, or 200 rubles a month meant in terms of American money?

Mr. Taylor. I asked Lee that question, as I remember, and he told me that a comparison was difficult because of the socialized or free services given to the citizen by the Government; that, for example, out of his 45 rubles a month80 that he had to buy little other than food and clothing; and that the 45 rubles a month would buy food, a bare minimum, and sufficient clothing to clothe one individual.

Mr. Jenner. Liberally? Or just enough to get along?

Mr. Taylor. Just enough to get going on—in both cases. And that his impression—the impression he left with me was that a person needed little else as far as entertainment and so on was concerned, these things were held by the State so that—uh—to get the families out of these cramped quarters, that everything—and constant entertainment in some form—athletics, or occasional motion pictures, different kinds of stage presentations—were held nightly away from the home, so that the families could get out of the cramped quarters and wouldn't feel this.

Mr. Jenner. It was all designed, in part at least, with that objective in mind—of getting people out of their cramped quarters or room apartments, into theatres and concert halls and athletic events?

Mr. Taylor. That's right. And we discussed travel for the average Russian citizen—which is nonexistent. A person that——

Mr. Jenner. Now, you are telling us things he said to you?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; to the best of my memory I am telling you.

Mr. Jenner. To the best of your ability? You are not rationalizing or speculating from things you have read in works published with respect to life in Russia?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. You are trying to do your best to tell us what he said?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. He said that for the average worker or citizen in Russia that travel was nonexistent; that a person that grew up in Minsk would probably spend his whole life without venturing far from the city. That living areas like the apartment he lived in were built around factories so that a person in a job like his, he wouldn't even probably know what was across on the other side of the city. And this is just about the end, at least, to my easy recollection of the things that we discussed.

Mr. Jenner. Was anything said about the context of 180 rubles a month earned by Marina and 45 rubles a month earned by Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember any specific comments that he made about that. The only thing I remember in this regard was that he did mention at one time that Marina had a higher education than he had and that—uh—I don't believe I ever heard him say anything else about it.

Mr. Jenner. In any event, you didn't raise the question?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Did he say that Marina, after they married, that Marina worked as well as he?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember whether she worked after they were married or not.

Mr. Jenner. Did he say anything about custom and habit in Russia that wives worked?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; he mentioned that most wives—most women do work. He didn't, as I remember, go into any specifics about it. I don't remember much being said about it other than that most women do work—or, I should say, they are encouraged to work.

Mr. Jenner. Did he state or did he imply, do you have any impression on his reaction toward this life in Russia?

Mr. Taylor. He—uh—oh, he indicated throughout our discussions that he was dissatisfied with the life of the average Russian citizen; that they didn't have any freedoms, as we think of freedom, in other words, to go get in our car and go where we want to, do what we want to, or say what we want to; that, generally speaking, they did not have this privilege as we enjoy it.

Mr. Jenner. Did he say anything about any privileges or any activities on his part that were different from—that is, that were accorded him—that were different from those accorded Russian people or foreigners, let us say, in Russia, having circumstances or work comparable to his? This is, was he treated or81 accorded benefits different from or in addition to those which would normally have been accorded him?

Mr. Taylor. I think he felt like that the situation that the Russians put him into—in other words, the environment they put him into—- was less than he had anticipated. This is only an impression now.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; I know.

Mr. Taylor. It was never—we never discussed this. But I always felt like that he was disappointed that they put him in a factory forming sheet metal and didn't give him what he felt was something important to do.

Mr. Jenner. That is, did you have the impression, in your contacts with him discussing his life in Russia, that he had an opinion of himself that was such that he felt he was not being accorded that which at least his ambitions and desires, he thought, warranted?

Mr. Taylor. I think that's true. He didn't—uh—I think he expected, as a former American, to be treated as something special—as though he were a rarity, because he had left this country and gone there, and that they would have treated him with a red carpet, so to speak. Of course, he was very disappointed what they actually gave him.

Mr. Jenner. And your statement that he was very disappointed in what he actually received—did he say that to you? Was it more than just an impression on your part?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—he never said that. It's only an impression.

Mr. Jenner. Is it a distinct impression or——

Mr. Taylor. Yes. It's a very distinct impression.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. That this is one of the reasons why I would never have asked him, as you asked me, what he felt about his wife making more money. He seemed very depressed about how the Russians had treated him.

Mr. Jenner. Did he appear to you to be sensitive on this score—that he——

Mr. Taylor. It appeared that he would be sensitive if I had broached the subject.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, have you exhausted your recollection as to what he told you of his life in Russia?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did he say anything about any independent activity on his part—that is, activity of his distinct from Marina—such as, for example, going hunting?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Was the subject of the use of firearms for hunting ever discussed by him with you?

Mr. Taylor. No; nor was the subject, which I think you were leading up to, of the Russians' right or lack of right to own firearms discussed.

Mr. Jenner. The subject of firearms was never discussed?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss at any time with you, or did you hear him discuss it in your presence, his effort to return to the United States and any difficulties, if he had any, in that connection?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I believe he said that—uh—he did have difficulties and that it took him—uh—about a year to get permission to come to this—return to this country with his wife.

Mr. Jenner. Did he say anything about whether he undertook that effort prior to his marriage—had commenced it prior to the time he had married Marina?

Mr. Taylor. No; he indicated that he commenced it after his marriage.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss with you at any time, or was the subject discussed in your presence, as to the courtship between Marina and himself?

Mr. Taylor. No; or, if it was, I have no recollection of it.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss with you, or was there a discussion in your presence, of any illnesses on his part while he was in Russia?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Have we now exhausted his discussions with you with respect to the subject of his life in Russia?

82 Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss with you, or was there a discussion in your presence, the subject of why he sought to return to the United States?

Mr. Taylor. Oh, only that he was unhappy with both the way of life in Russia and—uh—the place that he had been given in it.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss with you, or was there a discussion in your presence, the subject of Marina's inclinations in that connection—any desire on her part to come to the United States?

Mr. Taylor. No; there was never—uh—any discussion as to her feelings about coming to this country at all. I don't think, in any case, that they were important to him.

Mr. Jenner. At least, they weren't discussed in your presence and not with you directly?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Was there discussed in your presence, or did he discuss directly with you, their route back to the United States?

Mr. Taylor. No; I believe the only thing that he ever mentioned about that was that the American Embassy, I presume in Moscow, loaned him the money to return.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss with you, or was there discussed in your presence, his reaction to the Russian system, as such, distinguished now from what was accorded him which you have related—more in the area of the political area—the Communist system, as such, the political philosophy, as distinguished from the U.S.S.R. as a country or government?

Mr. Taylor. Well, everything that we discussed, of course—and the things I have related—illustrate the distinction between the two political governments—such as, services that a Russian citizen obtains free and the housing, various rights or lack of them that the Russian citizen had. We did not discuss the system otherwise except perhaps some impressions he had about government officials living somewhat better than the average citizen lived.

Mr. Jenner. Did he ever discuss with you, or was there discussed in your presence, the Communist Party as distinct from the Russian Government?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Did he discuss with you, or was there discussed in your presence, his political philosophy?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—I would say that at the point in his life which I knew him, he was somewhat confused about philosophy. He did not seem particularly happy with the form of government we have in this country or with government as it exists anywhere. I think he had been—and perhaps still was—a partisan of a Communist form of government, but, as it is practiced in Russia, I don't think that he liked it at all.

Mr. Jenner. All right. What else was discussed on this—was it a Sunday afternoon?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; there was a discussion about Lee's job—which I believe he had just left the Friday before. He was—he terminated his employment. I don't know if he was fired or how he became severed from it—and he wanted to move to Dallas. And there was some discussion about the move and it taking place, and so on, and I cannot be sure now whether it was this Sunday or the following Sunday that Marina came to stay in my home.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

Mr. Taylor. I tend to think that it was that Sunday afternoon that we invited her to come and stay with us, and I believe Lee said——

Mr. Jenner. In the event he went to Dallas?

Mr. Taylor. No; to actually come and stay with us from that Sunday evening forward.

Mr. Jenner. Why?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—during their move. Just to give her a place to live until he was able to find a job here in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. It was, therefore, your impression, I take it, that your invitation was not tendered because of any difficulties between Marina and Lee, but rather to afford her a place to live temporarily until Lee became established elsewhere?

Mr. Taylor. That's right. In Dallas.

83 Mr. Jenner. I mean, my statement is a fair statement of the then atmosphere?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I, at that time, was not aware that there was any marital disharmony.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, I'm going to ask you that question as of that afternoon. What was your impression, if you have any, of the relationship between Marina and Lee as of that time?

Mr. Taylor. As of that time, it appeared to be normal—normal man and wife relationship. I think it was somewhat strained by a language barrier. Some of the people present, not speaking Russian, and she did not speak any English, and this left somewhat of a burden upon the others present to interpret the conversations from one side or the other. But I was not able to sense any disharmony at that point.

Mr. Jenner. Now, by the time you had arrived at their home, had you had some notion of why you were invited to be present on that occasion?

Mr. Taylor. Only to meet them and I hoped to learn something about Russia and how people live there.

Mr. Jenner. All right. How long did this meeting take place?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—I believe from about 4 until 7.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have anything to eat during that period of time?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Have you now related all the subjects discussed at that meeting having a relation to the Oswalds and any part you would play in their lives?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—well, as I mentioned before, it was difficult to remember whether it was that Sunday or the following Sunday, but I tend to think that that Sunday evening, Marina and her daughter, June, returned to Dallas with my wife and I and that Lee stayed——

Mr. Jenner. That was at the time of that first meeting?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; at the time of the first meeting—at the end of it. And that Lee stayed in Fort Worth that night and that he and Mrs. Hall, some time the next day, moved their bigger belongings—more bulky ones other than clothing—to Mrs. Hall's garage and stored them there. And then he came to Dallas and—uh—took up residence at the Y.M.C.A. here.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh. Now, do you know, as a matter of fact, that he did take residence at the Y.M.C.A.?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. How long did Marina remain with you and your wife in your home, commencing that Sunday night?

Mr. Taylor. Approximately 2 weeks.

Mr. Jenner. And she brought with her what—in addition to her child, of course?

Mr. Taylor. Just clothing.

Mr. Jenner. And you were residing then where?

Mr. Taylor. At 3519 Fairmount.

Mr. Jenner. In what town?

Mr. Taylor. Dallas, Tex. I believe it was apartment 12.

Mr. Jenner. You say you spoke no Russian, you understood no Russian, your then wife understood a few words of Russian but had difficulty with the language?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. How did you get along about your social intercourse between Marina on the one hand, yourself and your wife on the other, during this week?

Mr. Taylor. My social intercourse with Marina during this period was somewhat limited. She and my wife at that time, Alex, were able to—uh—not to discuss anything, but were able to communicate sufficiently to get along and perhaps even enjoy each other's company to some extent. My son and their daughter, June, are within a month of the same age; so that helped the barrier of language somewhat in their being able to play with the children and the children play with each other.

Mr. Jenner. Did she have any visitors during that week—or did you say 2 weeks?

Mr. Taylor. Two weeks.

84 Mrs. De Mohrenschildt, on one occasion I remember specifically, and probably Mr. De Mohrenschildt, and George Bouhe came one time.

Mr. Jenner. Did you hear anything from Lee Oswald during that 2-week period?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When did you first hear from him?

Mr. Taylor. I think on either the following Monday or Tuesday.

Mr. Jenner. That would be the next day or the day after the Sunday meeting?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I believe I, or someone, talked to Lee on the telephone and I believe I went down and got him. I went down to the Y.M.C.A.

Mr. Jenner. Here in Dallas?

Mr. Taylor. Here in Dallas, on two or three occasions, and picked him up.

Mr. Jenner. Did you go in to pick him up or did you find him in front of the building?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—I think I did both. I remember specifically once going into the desk and asking for him and then telephoning him to come down.

Mr. Jenner. You asked for him, you were given a room number, you used the house telephone to call him? Is that a fair statement?

Mr. Taylor. Something—I just remember that I went in and asked for him and he came down. I did not go up to the room, but I do remember going in and his coming down to meet me.

Mr. Jenner. All right. I think it might be helpful, now, if you would continue from the point after your 3-hour visit in the Oswald apartment late Sunday afternoon and early evening. You then took Marina to your home. Your recollection is that the next contact you had was that there had been a telephone call by Lee to your home. As a result of that call, you went to the Y.M.C.A. Is that correct?

Mr. Taylor. I believe so.

Mr. Jenner. Now, why did you go to the Y.M.C.A. as a result of that call?

Mr. Taylor. To pick him up so that he might visit his wife.

(Recess: 3:35 p.m. Reconvened: 3:50 p.m.)

Mr. Jenner. Now where were we?

Mr. Taylor. Let's see, I believe I was talking, awhile back, about people that had seen them during this period, and I mentioned that there was only George Bouhe and Mr. and Mrs. De Mohrenschildt. And George Bouhe came by just, I think, to be sociable, and to see if he could give Lee any suggestions on where he might look for a job. And at some point during this period——

Mr. Jenner. This is the 2-week period?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; the 2-week period—Mrs. De Mohrenschildt came by and picked Marina up.

Mr. Jenner. At your home?

Mr. Taylor. At my home—and took her, I believe, to a dentist.

Mr. Jenner. Now, how do you know this?

Mr. Taylor. Well, it sticks in my mind because while the two of them were gone, Marina's little girl, June, cried almost constantly because, I guess, it was the first time she had ever been away from her mother—and she cried constantly and wouldn't even eat for the whole period Marina was gone—which, as I remember it, was the better part of 1 day. I think she had two teeth pulled, or something. I'm not sure about what was done other than that she did go to see, I think a charity—went to a charity dental clinic.

Mr. Jenner. And it is your distinct recollection that she was taken to the charity dental clinic by your step-mother-in-law?

Mr. Taylor. My mother-in-law. There's no "step" to me. Just mother-in-law.

Mr. Jenner. I see. All right. By your mother-in-law.

Mr. Taylor. That would be a stepmother to my wife.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Did you ever take Marina to a dental clinic?

Mr. Taylor. No—not to my recollection. I didn't take—uh—Marina anyplace that I remember.

Mr. Jenner. Are you familiar with the Baylor University College of Dentistry?

Mr. Taylor. No; I know that there is one here; that they have one out at Baylor Hospital—but I'm not familiar with it otherwise.

85 Mr. Jenner. Would you fix the period when Marina was in your home—first, the month?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—it was in September of 1962.

Mr. Jenner. And all of the stay was in the month of September, and none of it in the month of October 1962?

Mr. Taylor. My memory, as I say, is not clear back that far. But—uh—I personally have no recollection of dates involved. Even when I was first interviewed, I believed it to be during this period we are talking about. It was pinpointed for me one time that it would—that Lee left his job on or about the 6th of September and that, just going from that date, why it would, presuming, as I remember, that that was a Friday in 1962, I believe that they came—she came to my home for a period of 2 weeks after that. I don't believe that it lasted any longer.

Mr. Jenner. During this period, did you have occasion in calling from your home or place of business to call Lee Oswald at the Y.M.C.A.?

Mr. Taylor. I believe I—uh—I may not have personally. I may have dialed the telephone for Marina and asked for him so that she could talk to him.

Mr. Jenner. Well, did you ever seek to reach him by telephone either for yourself or for Marina?

Mr. Taylor. I don't specifically remember an occasion doing that.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall any occasion when you made a telephone call to the Y.M.C.A. in an effort to reach Lee Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. No; not specifically. I could only say that it is probable that I would have.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall whether Mrs. Taylor ever made an effort to do so?

Mr. Taylor. No; I don't recall her having made an effort to do that.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I'll put it this way: Did you ever have any trouble finding Lee Oswald, whether by telephone or direct visit, at the Y.M.C.A.?

Mr. Taylor. I never had any trouble locating him at the Y.M.C.A. when I made an attempt to. I never remember any difficulty in contacting him there.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I gather that Marina's visit at your home terminated at the end of about 2 weeks. Did anything occur during those 2 weeks about which we have not talked that arrested your attention?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—nothing, outside of possibly some insights into Marina—I mean, her personality and how she acted. There was nothing that arrested my attention.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Tell us about that.

Mr. Taylor. Uh—she personally seemed to be person of a number of fine qualities—an excellent mother, possibly even doting too much upon her child, and a clean person in her habits and, as best she could, in her dress. And she seemed very intelligent and interested in learning all that she could about her new environment.

Mr. Jenner. You don't mean her new environment in your home—you mean——?

Mr. Taylor. I'm talking about in this country.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Taylor. And I do have one recollection pursuant to this about her desire to learn English.

Mr. Jenner. I was going to ask you about that. Go ahead.

Mr. Taylor. During the period that I knew them, on several occasions, this subject came up. And Lee was in opposition to her learning English—not—he would not come out, at least, never did around me, and say that he didn't want her to learn English but—uh—he was or did appear to be in opposition to it. And George De Mohrenschildt prepared for Marina several lessons in English—and I believe that Lee later took them away from her.

Mr. Jenner. I would like to have you give me as much on this series of incidents, with respect to her learning the English language and becoming more proficient in its use. First—as to what you based your present comments upon, by way of what occurred, that you recall? Something occurred to her to lead you to state as you have stated in terms of conclusion that Lee did not wish her to learn the English language. And, secondly, that Lee took from her the86 English language lessons. I assume they were on sheets of paper. Is that correct?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. That George Bouhe had prepared for her?

Mr. Taylor. George De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; that George De Mohrenschildt had prepared for her?

Mr. Taylor. I remember asking Lee about his opposition to it on one occasion and as I remember he told me that—uh—or brushed it aside by saying, "It isn't necessary at this time"—something like that. And then, of course, he did take the lessons from her.

Mr. Jenner. How do you know that?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—because, as I remember, this was the first time that I had knowledge of her being beaten by him.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Tell us about that.

Mr. Taylor. As I remember it, shortly after they moved, Mrs. De Mohrenschildt——

Mr. Jenner. They moved where? Into your home or from your home?

Mr. Taylor. Moved into their apartment here in Dallas—the first apartment they had, on Elsbeth.

Mrs. De Mohrenschildt came by and told us that she had seen Marina and that she had a black eye, I believe, and was crying and said that she and Lee had had a fight over the lessons and they had been taken from her, and——

Mr. Jenner. Lee had struck her?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; that Lee had struck her.

Mr. Jenner. She said that to you?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; this is Mrs. De Mohrenschildt now. This is not Marina that said that.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; I appreciate that.

Mr. Taylor. And—not pursuant to that, but while we are speaking of their marital troubles, I seem to remember on one occasion where Marina left—I think this was somewhat later, probably in November——

Mr. Jenner. Left the home?

Mr. Taylor. Left Lee and went to stay with someone—I don't remember who. It may have been this woman in Irving that she was living with.

Mr. Jenner. Mrs. Paine?

Mr. Taylor. Mrs. Paine. I do not know where she went except that I was told that she had left him.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Anything else that comes to your mind with respect to their relations, one with the other, and whatnot, covering this 2-week span while she was a visitor in your home?

Mr. Taylor. The only other observation I would make is that—again, it has to do with relationship between them—and that is that to my knowledge at all the meetings between them that I was present at during this 2-week period, there was no personal communication between them—at least, that I was able to determine. Of course, I couldn't understand them when they spoke to each other in Russian. But, certainly, for this length of time, you would think that a man and woman married would want some time alone together. They could have—we had parks nearby, within one door of us was a big park where they could have taken walks and been alone together and talked—but this never happened.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

Mr. Taylor. It was just like two friends meeting. There was nothing intimate or personal between them at these meetings.

Mr. Jenner. No expressions that you could understand or, at least, conduct between them that would lead you to believe there were evidences of love and affection?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. It was more platonic—a friendship relationship?

Mr. Taylor. Uh-huh.

Mr. Jenner. Did he visit on more than one occasion in your home during the 2-week period?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; on several occasions.

87 Mr. Jenner. And on these occasions, was it always that he called and asked to come over, or were you told that he was coming and there had been a previous arrangement—or what do you recall as to that?

Mr. Taylor. Well, I think perhaps once or twice Marina instigated their meetings, would call him and he would then come.

Mr. Jenner. Was he always transported, or did he come——

Mr. Taylor. I think he may even have come by himself once or twice. We were not far from downtown and had good bus service—and I remember at least one occasion where he rode the bus. He left late one evening and rode the bus back to town.

Mr. Jenner. Any questions, at any time during the 2-week period or at any other time, about his ability to operate an automobile on the streets?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; there was discussion about this possibly on two or three occasions.

Mr. Jenner. With him?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember him being present or having knowledge of them. Mrs. De Mohrenschildt tried to get me to teach him how to drive, and I never did.

Mr. Jenner. You never got around to it?

Mr. Taylor. I never had any time or inclination to use my automobile to teach a beginner how to drive.

Mr. Jenner. Your understanding was from Mrs. De Mohrenschildt that he was unable to operate an automobile?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. But you had no direct conversation with him on the subject?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Or with Marina through an interpreter?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Did this conversation with respect to inducing you to attempt to teach him to drive a car occur in the presence of Marina?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall whether Mrs. De Mohrenschildt then, in Russian, spoke to Marina on the subject in your presence?

Mr. Taylor. No; I don't remember the details such as that on the various discussions we had. I just remember that on several occasions they did try to get me to do it, and I refused.

Mr. Jenner. Did you receive or was there paid or offered to be paid to you anything by them, Lee or Marina, financially for this generosity on your part of keeping her in your home for that 2-week period?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. You never received anything?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Did you receive anything from anybody other than Marina and Lee Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. You never received anything from anybody at all?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. The answer is "Yes; you have never received anything from anybody."

Mr. Taylor. I never received any financial reimbursement for any of the expenditures that I made on their behalf.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, the 2-week period concluded and was there something that occurred in particular that brought about the termination of that 2-week guest period?

Mr. Taylor. Mrs. Hall—I believe you said Elena—had an automobile accident and I think Marina went to Fort Worth and lived in Mrs. Hall's home so that she might help Mrs. Hall. Mrs. Hall was at least semibedridden. She was certainly not able to get up and cook herself food and so on.

Mr. Jenner. Was she living alone at that time?

Mr. Taylor. Yes she was.

Mr. Jenner. That is, Mrs. Hall?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; the only reason I remember about Mr. Hall was by associating88 it with either Midland or Abilene—I don't remember which one. It was west Texas anyway. And he was living there at the time.

Mr. Jenner. And her leaving your home then—there was no cause or reason for it other than that, as you now understand or from your memory of it, that Mrs. Hall had been involved in an automobile accident, was partially bedridden, was having some difficulty in any respect; she was then by herself because her husband was in west Texas and at that time they were, as you understood, separated?

Mr. Taylor. Or divorced. I don't remember which.

Mr. Jenner. And Marina went to Mrs. Hall's home in Fort Worth to help care for Mrs. Hall?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, that would take us to about the last week in November—somewhere in that area—I mean September—is that correct?

Mr. Taylor. September; I should think; yes. Toward the end of September, and possibly even early in October—again, due to time, this is all quite vague—I had Lee with me. I don't remember where I got him. But Lee and my wife, Alex, and I went to Fort Worth and picked up Marina and their child and all of the Oswald's belongings that had, through this period, been stored at Mrs. Hall's, and brought them to Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you went to Mrs. Hall's—is that where you went?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When you reached the Halls' you picked up the Oswalds' house paraphernalia, clothing and other things——

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Or whatever had been stored at the Halls' you picked up?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, your recollection doesn't serve you at the moment to be more specific as to how this came about?

Mr. Taylor. It doesn't. Not at all. I can't even remember now where I got Lee that day. I wish I could—for several reasons you are probably aware of. But I don't remember.

And, at any rate, we went to Fort Worth——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me.

Do you recall being interviewed by two agents of the FBI on the 29th of January 1964.

Mr. Taylor. I think so.

Mr. Jenner. Would it refresh your recollection did you tell those agents at that time that you picked up Lee Oswald at the curb of the YMCA in Dallas and drove to Fort Worth to the Hall residence where Marina was living?

Mr. Taylor. Well, it is refreshing to my memory, but I would like to say this about it.

That in the course of several interviews by the FBI, the Secret Service, and the Dallas Police Department which have occurred, and between these and since the last one, I have naturally tried to remember all that I can concerning the areas in which I was vague in my memory. And at my last interview concerning this one particular item, it occurred to me that at one time—once—I went to—uh—and looked for a place where Lee was staying in the Oak Cliff area of Dallas and tried to locate him. I remember going and trying to locate him. I don't remember whether I found him or whether I did not. I know that—uh——

Mr. Jenner. Can you pinpoint this as to time?

Mr. Taylor. No; that's the trouble. I can't pinpoint it as to time. I just remember some vague directions that——

Mr. Jenner. What about year—1962?

Mr. Taylor. 1962 definitely.

Mr. Jenner. And it had to be some time after——

Mr. Taylor. It had to be some time between September and November 15, because my wife and I separated after that. Anyway, at some point during this period, I do remember going to an area in Oak Cliff and looking for Lee. I don't think I found him—at least, not on the occasion I remember. All I had was some vague directions that——

89 Mr. Jenner. From whom?

Mr. Taylor. Well, directly from my wife but indirectly I believe that came to her from Mrs. De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. Were you requested to seek to locate him?

Mr. Taylor. I don't know why I was trying to locate him. I don't remember anything except I remember driving around one area one evening looking for a residence of his on some vague directions. As I say, I don't even remember if it was a residence of the whole family or just of Lee.

I went back to this area within the last few weeks and located a building that stuck—or I had a recollection of one building in this area and I went back to the area and found it and gave that information to Agent Yelchek of the FBI. I don't know what he——

Mr. Jenner. What location was that?

Mr. Taylor. I gave him the exact street address—but it seems to me like it was—well, the name of the apartment building was the Coz-I-Eight [spelling] C-o-z—I—E-i-g-h-t—apartments, and I think they were located at 1404 North Beckley. But the address I could be off on; but the name I do remember.

Mr. Jenner. What kind of a building was this?

Mr. Taylor. An apartment building.

Mr. Jenner. Brick?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. A more substantial-type thing than you had seen the Oswalds occupy prior thereto?

Mr. Taylor. Repeat, please.

Mr. Jenner. Was this a building of a substantiality higher caliber than the Elsbeth Street home, for example?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—I would say it was in the same class.

Mr. Jenner. Did the occasion arise in which Lee Oswald called you to ask you to assist in moving him and Marina to an apartment in Dallas?

Mr. Taylor. I'm not sure how definitely that was—I'm not definitely sure how that was instigated. I'm not sure. It was either Lee directly or Mrs. De Mohrenschildt that asked for this assistance in moving. Whichever it was, my wife and I got together with Lee, I believe, on a Sunday afternoon.

Mr. Jenner. Did you pick him up or did he come to your home?

Mr. Taylor. I cannot remember.

Mr. Jenner. Did he have anything with him in the way of luggage?

Mr. Taylor. I believe he did.

Mr. Jenner. Describe it, please.

Mr. Taylor. I believe he had a paper bag of clothing, a rather large one, and an old leather suitcase. And that he had these two containers of personal belongings, and we went to Fort Worth and added Marina's to this—Marina's belongings and the household furnishings, whatever they were, and brought it all to the Elsbeth Street apartment.

Mr. Jenner. Now, did you pile all of this clothing and household furniture, to the extent they had any, in the rear of your automobile, and haul it back to Dallas? Or how did you do this?

Mr. Taylor. I rented a trailer in Fort Worth.

Mr. Jenner. Now, where did you rent that trailer? Where was the place located from which you rented the trailer?

Mr. Taylor. I do not remember. I have even been to this place recently again with Mr. Yelchek of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. And we went over one evening and pinpointed the location of that service station where I had rented a small covered trailer and——

Mr. Jenner. A small covered trailer?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; it was covered.

Mr. Jenner. And give me the location of the place you pinpointed with Mr. Yelchek.

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember an address on the service station. It is a mile or so north of Texas Christian University in Fort Worth.

Mr. Jenner. I see. Does University Drive sort of refresh your recollection?

Mr. Taylor. It—uh—could be University; yeah. However, it was not University Drive. It was another street which I just can't remember. This90 service station was west of the South Freeway, as I say, about a mile north of Texas Christian University.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

Mr. Taylor. I did originally think that it was on University but, upon investigation of the—visual investigation, actually being there one evening, why we did locate it and it was in another place.

Mr. Jenner. The place that you located when Mr. Yelchek accompanied you was different from the one that you had remembered when you first talked to the FBI?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; however, it, in my mind, is a positive identification. There is no question about it.

Mr. Jenner. Your more recent one is?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; when Mr. Yelchek and I went. I was able to positively identify the location. I might add, after having talked to him since then, that the owner says that—or there is no record of the rental at this location. There seems to be a set of duplicate books involved—one for themselves and one for the National Trailer Co., whichever one it was. A little fraud, or something, involved in that. We didn't get too involved in it—just to know that there wasn't any record.

Mr. Jenner. Is the name J. H. Pendley familiar to you?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Do you have your driver's license with you?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Would you look at it and tell me what the number of it is?

Mr. Taylor. 1606670. And that's my memory that's talking.

(Witness then takes the driver's license from billfold and hands to Mr. Jenner.)

Mr. Jenner. 1606670.

(Hands license back to witness.)

Did the people from whom you rented the trailer take your driver's license number on that occasion?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember. It's common—in fact, it's normal procedure to take the license number—driver's license and vehicle license.

Mr. Jenner. How long have you had that number?

Mr. Taylor. It's permanent in the State of Texas.

Mr. Jenner. So you had it on this occasion—the same number?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What's the practice in Texas in respect to license numbers? Do you get a new one every year, or do you get a sticker—or what?

Mr. Taylor. Vehicle?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Taylor. They change from year to year.

Mr. Jenner. They change the number?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; they do.

Mr. Jenner. Do you, by any chance, remember your license number in 1962?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Do you ever recall having a license number with the digit letters "E" and "Y"?

Mr. Taylor. I would never have a license tag with that number.

Mr. Jenner. With those prefix letters?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; as long as I lived in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Why is that, sir?

Mr. Taylor. The "E" prefix—the prefixes beginning with "E" are for Tarrant County, of which Fort Worth is a part.

Mr. Jenner. And you being in Dallas County, your initials are what—your prefixes?

Mr. Taylor. In Dallas County they would be some of the "M" prefix, all of the "N" and "P".

Mr. Jenner. "N" as in "Nancy," "P" as in "Paul"?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; and some of the "M" as in "Mary."

Mr. Jenner. But it would be a combination of two or more of those three letters?

91 Mr. Taylor. It would be a combination of two letters beginning with the three that we have just been discussing.

Mr. Jenner. From one of the three we have just discussed?

Mr. Taylor. Beginning with either an M, an N, or a P. All of the N's and P's—like NA or NS or PA or PZ.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

You piled all this material in the covered trailer?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. This was on a Sunday, as I recall your saying?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When did you return that trailer?

Mr. Taylor. The same day.

Mr. Jenner. And you went from Mrs. Hall's to where with the loaded trailer?

Mr. Taylor. I took the loaded trailer to an apartment on Elsbeth Street in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. And then what happened when you got there?

Mr. Taylor. We unloaded it and I returned the trailer to the service station where I had rented it in Fort Worth.

Mr. Jenner. Did you pay for the renting of that trailer?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember for sure.

Mr. Jenner. Well, somebody paid for it. It wasn't just given to you, was it?

Mr. Taylor. No. It wasn't given to me. I do not remember, however, who paid for it. I—it comes to mind that Lee probably did—but I can't say specifically that Lee did it.

Mr. Jenner. Did Lee accompany you to the service station to rent the trailer in the first instance?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And your recollection does not serve you now as to whether upon its return, he paid for it or you did?

Mr. Taylor. No; payment would be in advance.

Mr. Jenner. That would be an out-of-pocket payment. Would you say your recollection is, in view of your haziness about it, that you did not pay for it?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. You returned the trailer. Did you help put the household furniture and whatnot into their apartment?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you do that before you returned the trailer?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. After you returned the trailer, did you return to their apartment that same afternoon or evening?

Mr. Taylor. I can't be absolutely sure whether I returned that evening or not. I'm not sure whether they went back with us or not. I don't——

Mr. Jenner. Back with you where?

Mr. Taylor. Back to Fort Worth to return the trailer.

I don't know if they took that ride over there with us or not.

Mr. Jenner. That would be how much of a ride?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—round trip it would take probably 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Mr. Jenner. What is the distance from the Elsbeth Street address to Fort Worth—just approximately?

Mr. Taylor. Well, to the place in Fort Worth where the trailer was rented, I would say, it was about 30 miles. And, in case you're wondering about the time, it's all a turnpike and expressway trip.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Did you see the Oswalds, or either of them, after that time?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Next, and under what circumstances?

Mr. Taylor. Sometime after the move—I am not, again, can't be specific about dates—my memory isn't that good—I visited them by myself, and I believe that the purpose of that visit specifically was to return a manuscript, or at least it's been called that, certainly just a collection of notes Lee had that he had compiled on his visit to Fort Worth—I mean, on his visit to Russia.

Mr. Jenner. I show you in a volume which has a sticker on its front entitled92 "Affidavits and Statements Taken in Connection with the Assassination of the President," which has been supplied to me by the Dallas city police, and I direct your attention to pages 148 to 157. And I ask you whether those pages are familiar to you as being either all or a part of what you now describe as notes prepared by Lee Oswald on his trip or life in Russia?

Mr. Taylor. Can we go off the record and let me look at this a minute? It will be a minute, because I only looked at part of this thing.

(Witness peruses document page by page.)

Mr. Jenner. Have you examined those pages, which are a photostatic copy of what purports to be a draft by Lee Harvey Oswald of various stages of his life, including time in Russia, in the Marines, the period in New Orleans, and what not?

Mr. Taylor. Those are not the same pages of which I was speaking.

Mr. Jenner. I should advise you, Mr. Taylor, that they are incomplete. That is, we are advised that there are other sheets which we don't happen to have. I could ask you this: Was it on the type of paper which is indicated in these photostats—that is, lined 8 by 11 sheets?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. It was not?

Mr. Taylor. No; it was not.

Mr. Jenner. Was it ringed notebook paper?

Mr. Taylor. No; it was not.

Mr. Jenner. Are you familiar with Lee Oswald's handwriting?

Mr. Taylor. No; I am not.

Mr. Jenner. Was this material you saw in his handwriting or was it typed?

Mr. Taylor. I would not know—this material? I'm sorry. I was thinking about——

Mr. Jenner. The material that you saw, was that in his handwriting?

Mr. Taylor. It was typed.

Mr. Jenner. It was typed?

Mr. Taylor. It was typed—on white paper.

Mr. Jenner. Plain white paper?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I interrupted you because you had mentioned something he showed you. Now, would you please go on?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; and the occasion for this visit that I was talking about was to return what has been discussed as a manuscript. And I had had this in my possession from the time Marina had been staying with us. I had asked him for it then and intended to read it. I did not ever read it fully. I read a page or two of it—of which my recollection is very dim. I remember almost nothing about it except that it seemed to be in a narrative style and was about his experiences in Russia.

Mr. Jenner. What impression did you have as to spelling, grammar, or content? Was it the writing of an educated man, or was it sophomoric in character, or do you have any impression about it?

Mr. Taylor. I don't have any impression—having read so little of it such a long time ago.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you went to see him to return this manuscript?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where was he living?

Mr. Taylor. He was still living on Elsbeth.

Mr. Jenner. And you reached their apartment, did you?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Was she home?

Mr. Taylor. Yes, she was.

Mr. Jenner. Did you visit with them on that occasion?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I did. I was treated as a very welcome guest. I assumed, at the time, that the reason for that was I was probably the only guest they had had—or at least certainly that guests were unusual, and that I was very welcome. As a matter of fact, almost immediately after I arrived, Marina left and walked some two and a half blocks to a doughnut shop and bought some doughnuts and returned.

93 And we just talked briefly that evening—not about anything in great detail. I stayed—I didn't go to stay a long time, just to return the manuscript, but due to the hospitality that was extended, I stayed perhaps an hour or 2 hours.

Mr. Jenner. How did they appear, in their relations one to the other, on this occasion?

Mr. Taylor. It appeared that—uh—they were getting along well. When I arrived, the baby was asleep and they were both in the kitchen. He was sitting at a table, I think, reading and——

Mr. Jenner. A book or a newspaper?

Mr. Taylor. Sir?

Mr. Jenner. Reading a book or a newspaper?

Mr. Taylor. A book, I believe. I think he checked out a number of books from the library.

Mr. Jenner. Did you understand him to be an avid reader?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you ever observe what character of books he was reading?

Mr. Taylor. As I remember, they were primarily political philosophy. I don't remember any titles specifically. I think he did have a copy of—uh—at one time, of something by Karl Marx. I don't remember the title or name of the book.

Mr. Jenner. "Das Kapital"?

Mr. Taylor. I'm aware of that title—but I just don't remember what he had a copy of.

Mr. Jenner. But they were political——

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Books on political philosophy, governmental structure, and philosophy?

Mr. Taylor. I would say primarily on philosophy.

Mr. Jenner. Philosophy or theories of government?

Mr. Taylor. Uh-huh.

Mr. Jenner. All right. You had, I gather, a reasonably pleasant visit on this particular evening?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you see them again after that?

Mr. Taylor. I did not see both of them again after that. Sometime much later——

Mr. Jenner. This is much later but prior to November 15, 1962?

Mr. Taylor. Prior to November of 1963? Is that what you meant?

Mr. Jenner. I had concluded you were speaking of prior to——

Mr. Taylor. No; I did make contact with them after my separation—if that's what you are alluding to. In the spring of 1963 I dropped by this Elsbeth apartment building and, finding no one at home, I asked someone who was sitting in the courtyard about them. And I think he was the manager. And he told me that they had moved and he told me where they had moved.

Mr. Jenner. What did he say?

Mr. Taylor. He told me that they had moved into a small apartment about a block away. And I went there.

Mr. Jenner. What street was that?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. What town?

Mr. Taylor. Dallas—about a block away from Elsbeth. And, anyway, I went to this—where I had been directed, and found Marina at home.

Mr. Jenner. Was Lee at home?

Mr. Taylor. No, he was not.

Mr. Jenner. What day of the week was this?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. Why did you go there?

Mr. Taylor. Just for a friendly visit.

Marina was at home. She—her English had improved enough for her to get across to me a few ideas. She said that Lee was not home, that—uh—I don't remember her saying where he was. She said that he was attending94 night school, Crozier Tech here in Dallas—which is our technical high school and——

Mr. Jenner. Was this occasion in the early evening?

Mr. Taylor. I think it was in midafternoon.

Mr. Jenner. Midafternoon?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Are you certain about that?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; uh—because this apartment in question had a small balcony on the front of it and I remember the door was open and I thought what a nice place for the baby to play and some of the baby's toys—a ball and something or other—were out there on this porch, and I thought how much nicer this was than the apartment they had had.

Mr. Jenner. Was that what led you to suggest that it was in the afternoon rather than the early evening? It doesn't get dark here in Texas—and this was what? The spring, did you say?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. 1963?

Mr. Taylor. Yes. No; you are trying to say that it may have been early evening, although it was still quite light. My memory tells me that it was midafternoon.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Was anything said about the fact he was working?

Mr. Taylor. I don't remember her saying what he was doing or if he was working at all.

Mr. Jenner. I shouldn't have used the term "working"—whether he was employed?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—I don't think at that time he was. Again, it's just a very, very vague recollection.

Mr. Jenner. Was she able to communicate with you, or you to understand, as to what studies he was pursuing at Crozier Tech?

Mr. Taylor. No; I don't believe that I remember what he was studying at all at Crozier Tech.

I did inform Marina of my impending divorce and—uh—in other words, telling her that Mrs. Taylor and I were no longer living together and we had separated. Uh—and she said that she had been ill, I believe. And—uh—she invited me to come back in the evening and I left. And I would say the whole interview with her took certainly no longer than 10 minutes.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh. And this, as you recall, was in 1963?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Was anything said that his attendance at Crozier Tech was in the night school?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; it was in the night school.

Mr. Jenner. But your visit was in the midafternoon?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Did she indicate to you that he was then at Crozier Tech or that he would be at Crozier Tech that evening?

Mr. Taylor. She, I don't believe, indicated either thing to me. I don't—I can't honestly say that she indicated where Lee was at the time. She may have said he was at work or not at work.

Mr. Jenner. You just don't have enough recollection to know whether she said he was employed and working and had work at that time?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—the general impression is that he was not working, but it is not distinct enough to make a flat statement upon.

Mr. Jenner. Is that the last time you ever saw Marina?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When was the last time you ever saw Lee?

Mr. Taylor. The previous occasion I have mentioned where I went to visit them in the evening to return the manuscript. That was the last time I saw Lee.

Mr. Jenner. That was prior to November 15, 1962?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I don't know why he wanted that manuscript at that time. I know that he wanted it very badly.

Mr. Jenner. He called you for it?

95 Mr. Taylor. Uh—yes, he did. On two occasions. And, on the second one, I think I got in the car and took it to him.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh. He called you on the telephone?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, before I go to the De Mohrenschildts, I'd like you now to give me—now that we've had this discussion between us—your impressions of the Oswalds individually.

(Off-the-record discussion followed.)

Mr. Taylor. Uh—my impression, first, of Lee would be that—uh—he was, first, rather confused, particularly, politically. He wanted to be well-informed and an idealist. He considered himself well-informed. I don't think he was even very knowledgeable on the subject.

In our conversations, when I would take exception to something he had said and argue a point with him, why, superficially, he could make a statement or support an idea that is commonly regarded in some areas as being true—such as, well, the Republican and Democratic Parties have different ideas on how things should be done just as democracy and communism have.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Taylor. And he could present Communist ideas to a point that it was very superficial—and when you started digging down in to the meat of the subject, why, Lee was through.

He seemed to have perhaps read quite a bit of political philosophy, but when it came to really understanding it, he couldn't present a very good case for it.

Mr. Jenner. Was he emotional in that respect?

Mr. Taylor. He would—uh—not any more so than anyone else you would get into a political discussion with. This seems to be a fairly emotional subject on everyone's part.

Mr. Jenner. You didn't regard him as a vicious type—as a man who would think in terms of inflicting bodily harm if frustrated?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—well, I thought of him as a man who—uh—would kick a dog or beat his wife, but—uh—I was never afraid of him because I never felt like that he would attack anything his equal.

Mr. Jenner. You were a bigger man than he, weren't you?

Mr. Taylor. Well, even a person—even a grown human being, any male, I wouldn't ever have expected this of him.

Mr. Jenner. Regardless of size?

Mr. Taylor. Regardless of size.

Anything that could present a forceful retaliation, why, I would not have expected him to——

Mr. Jenner. Was he mild-mannered, or——

Mr. Taylor. He tended to be, in temperament, a little hot; but there was a very definite limit to it—even suggesting some inner cowardness.

Mr. Jenner. Did you ever have occasion to observe Marina when she had any black and blue marks on her person?

Mr. Taylor. [Pausing before reply.] No.

Mr. Jenner. Did he ever mention the Kennedys or the Connallys?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Did he ever mention the administration of either of them or their policies?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—no; I'm not even sure that Connally was in office at that time.

Mr. Jenner. Well, he was Secretary of the Navy.

Mr. Taylor. That's right. I was thinking of him as Governor.

I never heard Lee take exception to Government officials; take exception to Government policies—definitely——

Mr. Jenner. We all do this sometimes but never to the human being that might formulate them. Just to the policy itself. Did he ever mention Jack Ruby or Jack Rubenstein in your presence?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Was he a drinking man?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Give me as best you can now recall—did you ever loan him any money or give him any money?

96 Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. But you did things for him. You made expenditures in their behalf?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you ever pay for any of the dental care administered to Marina?

Mr. Taylor. No. To my knowledge, that expense was borne by the county.

Mr. Jenner. At least, you never assumed any of it?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Have you now told us all of the occasions in which you either expended funds in their behalf or for them or accorded them help in your home, or otherwise were charitable to them?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Were you aware that he was employed here in Dallas by Jaggars-Chiles-Stovall?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You ever pick him up there?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. What did you ever observe with respect to his cleanliness, his personal habits in that respect?

Mr. Taylor. That his clothes, generally, appeared to have been worn several days, and it was always in question as to when he had taken his last bath. He was not a clean person, either in clothing or personally.

Mr. Jenner. Was there any contrast in that respect between himself and Marina?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. She was fastidious, was she?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; very much so. And the same thing applied to her treatment of the child. It never had a damp diaper on if she knew about it. It just had to be damp—it didn't have to be wet.

Mr. Jenner. Did you ever see him dressed up in the sense that you and I are dressed now—in a business coat?

Mr. Taylor. No. To my knowledge, he did not own any clothing that would be acceptable in what we would call business circles, say.

Mr. Jenner. Did you ever see him with a tie on?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. Give me your judgment as to the relationship between Lee Oswald and George De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Taylor. Uh—it's difficult to assess their relationship because there probably was more to it than I ever saw. But what little of it I saw, they were quite in opposition to each other—such as the lessons in English for Marina. But I certainly think that they must have been closer than they appeared or the De Mohrenschildts wouldn't have been so active in seeing that they got along well.

Mr. Jenner. Do you have any opinion as to whether George De Mohrenschildt exercised any influence over Oswald?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; there seemed to be a great deal of influence there. It would be my guess that De Mohrenschildt encouraged him to move to Dallas, and he suggested a number of things to Lee—such as where to look for jobs. And it seems like whatever his suggestions were, Lee grabbed them and took them—whether it was what time to go to bed or where to stay or to let Marina stay with us while he stayed at the YMCA.

Mr. Jenner. And he tended to follow De Mohrenschildt's suggestions?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I want to finish with the Oswalds before I get to the De Mohrenschildts.

(Looking through papers.)

Tell me, chronologically, about the De Mohrenschildts and your relationships with them and who these various De Mohrenschildts are?

Mr. Taylor. In other words, I will go back time-wise and bring you up.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Taylor. He was born in Russia, I believe in Georgia. This is, of course,97 all what I had been told for a while here. He was born in Russia and I believe he went to the——

Mr. Jenner. Now, this is what you were told and heard while you were——

Mr. Taylor. Married to his daughter.

Mr. Jenner. His daughter. And this comes by way of conversations over a long period of time?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. He was born in Russia and, I believe, to a titled family. He claimed for himself the title of Baron. Original name was von Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. [Spelling] v-o-n?

Mr. Taylor. That's right. And that he came to this country—when, I'm not sure, but certainly prior to 1939 when he was associated with the University of Texas in the capacity of instructor or professor in their Geology Department. And he married my former wife's mother in New York City.

Mr. Jenner. Repeat the names, please.

Mr. Taylor. He married my former wife, Alex's, mother—the present Mrs. Brandel—in New York City.

Mr. Jenner. And was it your information that that was his first wife?

Mr. Taylor. To my knowledge, that was his first wife.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. They married approximately 3 months before she was born.

Mr. Jenner. Before your wife was born?

Mr. Taylor. Before my wife was born, and that their divorce came rather quickly after she was born.

And, from that time until he married the wife, Dee or Dee Dee, my knowledge of him is rather sketchy. I know that, at least, part of the time they were married he resided in Dallas, was evidently well-established in business here, and owned a home—which, I believe, he had built to his own plans—and was generally well-accepted here in the business community.

And then he gets a little vague—at least to my knowledge—after that until 1958 or 1959 when I first met him—1958, I'm sure.

Mr. Jenner. Was he then married?

Mr. Taylor. He was then not married, to my knowledge.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. He was living with the present Mrs. De Mohrenschildt but they were not married; also living with them was her daughter, Christiana or Chris or Jeanne, Jr.—whatever the particular alias she felt like at the moment. And I met them through her.

Mr. Jenner. When you say "her," which——

Mr. Taylor. Through Christiana, Jeanne's daughter.

Mr. Jenner. Whom you subsequently married?

Mr. Taylor. No. This would be the half-sister. I guess it is a half-sister of my wife's.

Mr. Jenner. All right. We should say, at this point, your former wife?

Mr. Taylor. My former wife. This sure is involved.

Mr. Jenner. You are doing all right. Go ahead.

Mr. Taylor. And I met Christiana through a mutual girl friend and we dated over a period of a few weeks and then she left Dallas and started attending U.C.L.A. as a student, and I don't believe I saw her any more until—uh—May or June of 1959.

Mr. Jenner. Was the mutual friend through whom you became acquainted a Nancy Tilton?

Mr. Taylor. No, no; the mutual friend was a girl named Judy Mandel, of Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Is the name Nancy Tilton familiar to you?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Who is she?

Mr. Taylor. She is a cousin of my wife at that time.

Mr. Jenner. And your wife's name was Alexandra?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

At any rate, I met—uh—at this time, I asked Chris out on a date and she98 said that she had her little sister—I think is the way she termed it at that time—visiting her, and could I find someone for her to go out with at the same time. And I did that, and I think we went out—couples of four, or two couples—on two occasions. And then I started dating the younger of the girls, which was Alex. And, during this time, why, I was in or around their home for a whole summer—in fact, until the time we married, and quite intimate with the whole family. Does that bring it chronologically up to date—or would you like the otherwise?

Mr. Jenner. Well, I don't know what the "otherwise" is.

Mr. Taylor. I skipped Mrs. Brandel in this, I think. They were married, as I mentioned, in New York City approximately 3 months before my former wife was born and divorced shortly thereafter. And he stayed away—or stayed in the background of Alex's life until 1958 when he and Mrs. Brandel, his former wife and Alex's mother went into court and sued the previously mentioned Mrs. Tilton for her custody.

When Alex was born, Mrs. Tilton paid by check, which I saw, Mrs. Brandel $5,000 for custody of the daughter, Alex; and they had to go into court and get this custody set aside—at which time the daughter went to Paris and lived with Mrs. Brandel, where she lived at that time.

Mr. Jenner. The daughter—this is Christiana?

Mr. Taylor. We're talking still about my former wife, Alex.

Mr. Jenner. Your former wife lived in Paris?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; my former wife, after the custody suit, was taken to Paris by her mother where she lived until the spring of 1959, when I met her.

Mr. Jenner. Now, while she was in Paris, were you dating Christiana?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; however, I was not even aware of Alex's existence until I met her that evening, as previously described.

Mr. Jenner. Have you information as to where Jeanne was born?

Mr. Taylor. In China.

Mr. Jenner. That's the present Mrs. De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

My knowledge of her is that—uh—it's rather sketchy, because that's all my former wife knew of her.

She was born in China. I believe her parentage, at least on one side, was Russian. She claimed that, at any rate. And she traveled through her late teens and early twenties—I don't know exactly how long—with her former husband, Mr. Bogovallenskia, as ballet performers.

Mr. Jenner. I see. I have a spelling of that name, Mr. Taylor, which is B-o-g-o-v-a-l-l-e-n-s-k-i-a [spelling].

Mr. Taylor. That may be more correct. This is phonetic here that I have [referring to paper].

Mr. Jenner. Is that a maiden name or a married name?

Mr. Taylor. That is her married name—Jeanne's married name to——

Mr. Jenner. Is Jeanne the same as Christiana?

Mr. Taylor. No; Jeanne is the mother. Christiana is the daughter.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Taylor. That is the name of Christiana's father and the man I was just saying that Jeanne traveled with as ballet performers in China.

All of the press clippings I saw, I think, were prior to World War II. And, as far as Mr. Bogo—as far as Chris' father is concerned, he was in Dallas during 1959 or 1960 and—uh—he had severe mental problems and Chris returned with him to California where, the last I heard, he was resident of a State mental hospital.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh.

And Chris is now married to a gentleman whose given name is Ragnar [spelling] R-a-g-n-a-r, but you don't recall his surname?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—I do not. My memory is rather vague, but it seems to me like, in connection with his name, that his father is either a vice president or is the executive vice president of Hughes Aircraft.

I don't know anything about him other than that except I was told he is a physicist, as Chris' father is, and he is a rather unusual character to meet and to know—being somewhat of a beatnik. But, at least, he seems to, when he99 works, be able to make an awful lot of money and he must have money because they—Ragnar and Chris—honeymooned on a yacht that he owned, and to my knowledge, since he has not worked—which is a period of 2 years.

Mr. Jenner. Does George De Mohrenschildt have a brother?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What's his name?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—he uses George De Mohrenschildt's original name of Von Mohrenschildt. He is a professor at an ivy league university—Cambridge, I think.

Mr. Jenner. Well, Cambridge would be Harvard. What about Princeton? What about Dartmouth? Columbia? Brown? Cornell?

Mr. Taylor. At the moment, I don't remember. I should remember.

Mr. Jenner. Did you ever meet him?

Mr. Taylor. I never met him. I believe I talked to him on the telephone. He passed through Dallas and called. I just talked to him briefly on the telephone.

Mr. Jenner. Now, give me your impression of De Mohrenschildt. First, describe him. What kind of personality is he?

Mr. Taylor. Uh—he is a rather overbearing personality; somewhat boisterous in nature and easily changeable moods—anywhere from extreme friendliness to downright dislike—just like turning on and off a light.

Mr. Jenner. What about his physical characteristics? Large, small, handsome, or otherwise?

Mr. Taylor. He's a large man, in height he's only about 6'2" but he's a very powerfully built man, like a boxer.

Mr. Jenner. Athletic?

Mr. Taylor. He is athletic. And he has a very big chest, which makes him appear to be very much bigger than he actually is.

Mr. Jenner. Now, Mr. Taylor, do you know Mr. Liebeler? Mr. Liebeler is a member of the staff.

Mr. Taylor. I don't believe I do. My letter told me that he would contact me.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Give me a little more about the personality of George De Mohrenschildt's—and I think I'm about ready to let you go home.

Mr. Taylor. I would say that he has an inflammable personality. And he's very likable, when he wants to be, and he oftentimes uses this to get something he wants, put a person in a good mood and then, by doing this, he tries to then drag whatever it is that he wants out of them.

Mr. Jenner. Is he unconventional?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; I would say that they lead a somewhat Bohemian life. The furnishings in their home somewhat show this.

Mr. Jenner. Is he unconventional in dress?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; oftentimes wearing merely bathing trunks, and things like this, that—for a man of his age, which is about 50 to 52—is a little unusual.

Mr. Jenner. You mean out on the street?

Mr. Taylor. On the street, as a constant apparel.

He does not often work. In fact, during the times that I was married to his daughter, I have not known of him to hold any kind of a position for which he received monetary remuneration. So, as a result, why, he could spend his time at his favorite sport, which is tennis. And this could be in 32 weather in the bathing shorts I mentioned—only.

Mr. Jenner. On any time during the week?

Mr. Taylor. Any time during the week. They have always owned convertibles and they would ride in them in all kinds of weather with the top down. They are very active, outdoor sort of people.

Mr. Jenner. When you say "they," you mean he and his present wife?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; uh-huh.

Mr. Jenner. Is she unconventional at times in her attire in the respects you have indicated in regards to him?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; very similar.

Mr. Jenner. She, likewise, wears a bathing suit out on the street, does she?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; quite a bit. And usually a Bikini.

Mr. Jenner. What about his political philosophy?

100 Mr. Taylor. Uh—well, that's—uh—I have heard them say everything—from saying that he was a Republican and she expressed democratic ideals, and they expressed desires to return to Russia and live—so, it's all colors of the spectrum. Anything that—again, so much of what they do is what fits the moment. Whatever fits their designs or desires at the moment is the way they do it.

Mr. Jenner. Uh-huh. When did you marry your present wife?

Mr. Taylor. In—let's see—on November 21, 1959.

Mr. Jenner. Your present wife?

Mr. Taylor. Oh, I'm sorry. That was Mr. De Mohrenschildt's daughter that I married on that date. We married on September 28, 1963.

Mr. Jenner. Have you had any correspondence from either of the De Mohrenschildts in which there have been any allusions to the assassination of President Kennedy or to either of the Oswalds?

Mr. Taylor. I have not personally received any correspondence at all from them. My parents have received correspondence from them—none of which mentioned—I take that back—in one case, the assassination was mentioned in passing; and the Oswalds were not mentioned in specifics.

Mr. Jenner. I take it, your parents are acquainted with the De Mohrenschildts?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And does that acquaintance go back prior to your acquaintance with the De Mohrenschildts?

Mr. Taylor. No; that acquaintance was after Alex and I got married.

Mr. Jenner. I see. All right. Now, we have had some discussions off the record. I will ask you first—is there anything you would like to add that occurs to you that you think might be helpful—as an occurrence having taken place or even general thoughts on your part—to the Commission in this important investigation it has undertaken?

Mr. Taylor. Well, the only thing that occurred to me was that—uh—and I guess it was from the beginning—that if there was any assistance or plotters in the assassination that it was, in my opinion, most probably the De Mohrenschildts.

Mr. Jenner. On what do you base that?

Mr. Taylor. I base that on—uh—their desire, first of all, to—uh—return to Russia at one time and live there; uh—they have traveled together behind the Iron Curtain; uh—they took a trip to Mexico, through Mexico, on the avowed purpose of walking from Laredo, Tex., to the tip of South America——

Mr. Jenner. Panama?

Mr. Taylor. And——

Mr. Jenner. On beyond that?

Mr. Taylor. Beyond—to the tip of South America—the southern tip of South America.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Taylor. Uh—and this they claim to have done, yet further information indicated to me that their trip extended only to the portion of South America where the Cuban refugees were being trained to invade Cuba and that this trip coincided and that they were in the area while all this training was going on. And, so, from that—from these observations——

Mr. Jenner. Do you conclude that they were attempting to spy on that invasion preparation?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; because where—they went to Guatemala where the invasion troops were being trained, or they were in Guatemala when they were supposed to be on a walking trip, and had taken up residence in the unoccupied home of some acquaintances there and—unbeknowing to anyone—and when these acquaintances returned——

Mr. Jenner. This was the trip during the time you were married to their daughter?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You are basing this information on communications from them, conversations with your wife, conversations that occurred after they returned?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; and to clarify it on the last point here, about them being in Guatemala, in conversations with Nancy Tilton.

101 Mr. Jenner. Yes; I asked you about her. Who is Nancy Tilton?

Mr. Taylor. Nancy Tilton is the cousin who brought up my former wife, Alex, after she was born. Her mother never took her from the hospital. This Mrs. Tilton did. And on a visit to Mrs. Tilton's home, the people——

Mr. Jenner. Mrs. Tilton reared her?

Mr. Taylor. Yes; to age 14. On a visit to Mrs. Tilton's home——

Mr. Jenner. Where is that?

Mr. Taylor. In Tubac, Ariz. Uh—Mrs. Tilton remarked that some friends of hers, the people in question in Guatemala, had found them living in their home——

Mr. Jenner. Had found the De Mohrenschildts there?

Mr. Taylor. Yes, living in their home in Guatemala and had forcefully evicted them from it.

Mr. Jenner. That the Tiltons had forcefully evicted the De Mohrenschildts from the Tilton home in Guatemala?

Mr. Taylor. No; it isn't the Tiltons' home in Guatemala. It was a friend of the Tiltons. I don't remember their names.

Mr. Jenner. Well, who was evicted? The De Mohrenschildts or the people who owned the house?

Mr. Taylor. The De Mohrenschildts were evicted when the people who owned it returned.

Mr. Jenner. In other words, you gather from that that they had not had advance permission to occupy that home?

Mr. Taylor. That's right. They had not had advance permission and had occupied it for a period of about 3 weeks—as best the people who evicted them could determine from what was eaten and——

Mr. Jenner. In other words, they were trespassing?

Mr. Taylor. That's right.

(Off the record discussion follows.)

Mr. Jenner. You are basing your comment with respect to the De Mohrenschildts' possible involvement, if there was any involvement by anyone else with Oswald which you have already stated and you are stating the reasons why. And you have related the walking trip down through Mexico to the tip of South America. This was at the time of the training of Cuban refugees for a possible invasion of Cuba. And it was during the period of time in which you were married to the De Mohrenschildts' daughter?

Mr. Taylor. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And now you have made a remark that we didn't quite get. What was that?

Mr. Taylor. Are you speaking of what I said off the record?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Taylor. I summed it up by saying that—uh—there was an indication here that they had been in an area where some spying or information-gathering might be valuable to Communist interests. They had expressed a desire to live in a Communist country; and that they had traveled extensively through Communist countries.

Mr. Jenner. What countries?

Mr. Taylor. Poland and Hungary—no; I'm sorry. Poland and Czechoslovakia. And Mr. De Mohrenschildt told me one time that he had met Marshal Tito.

Mr. Jenner. In Yugoslavia?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And did they make any trips to Europe during the period that you were married to their daughter?

Mr. Taylor. No; they did not. These trips were prior to our marriage. However, I had seen photographs and had some pointed out to me in the family album—photographs of them in various Communist countries.

Mr. Jenner. I see. Where does your former wife, Alexandra, now live—if you know?

Mr. Taylor. In Wingdale, N.Y.

Mr. Jenner. Is she married?

Mr. Taylor. Yes.

102 Mr. Jenner. What's her husband's name?

Mr. Taylor. Gibson. I only know him as Don Gibson.

Mr. Jenner. What business is he in?

Mr. Taylor. I do not know.

Mr. Jenner. Where does Christiana reside—if you know?

Mr. Taylor. To my knowledge, they have not had a fixed residence since they married. My last communication from the De Mohrenschildts said that they were on their way to Europe and I don't know anything other than that.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Is there anything in addition to what you have already said that you would like to add to the record that you think might be helpful to the Commission—that would open avenues for further investigation or give us directly information that might be helpful?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. We have been off the record once or twice, Mr. Taylor. Is there anything that you now can recall that you related to me off the record that is pertinent here or, at least, that you might think is pertinent, that I have failed to bring out?

Mr. Taylor. No; there is nothing.

Mr. Jenner. Is there anything that was stated in your off the record statements that you regard as inconsistent with any statement you said on the record?

Mr. Taylor. No.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, you have the right to read this deposition if you wish. It will be ready sometime next week. You may communicate with me or Mr. Barefoot Sanders, the U.S. attorney, and come in and read it and make any corrections, if you think any are warranted, make any additions if you think any are warranted, and sign it if you desire and prefer to sign it. You have all of those rights. You also have the right to waive that if you see fit.

Mr. Taylor. For the sake of accuracy, I would like to read it.

Mr. Jenner. All right. You call, I would suggest—this is a rather long deposition—about Wednesday of next week.

Mr. Taylor. All right. Barefoot's an old friend. I'll call him.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Thank you very much. We appreciate it. It's much longer that I had anticipated—but you were very helpful and thanks for coming here despite the inconvenience.

Mr. Taylor. That's quite all right. I hope I was of some help.


TESTIMONY OF ILYA A. MAMANTOV

The testimony of Ilya A. Mamantov was taken at 10 a.m., on March 23, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Messrs. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., and Wesley J. Liebeler, assistant counsels of the President's Commission.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Mamantov, do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Before I examine you, Mr. Mamantov, you are appearing voluntarily at our request?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. You understand, do you, that you are entitled to counsel if you wish counsel?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. But you don't wish counsel?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't wish it.

Mr. Jenner. And you are also entitled to purchase a copy of your transcript of your testimony at whatever the usual rates the reporters charge and you are also entitled to read over your testimony if you wish, and to either inspect or sign it, or you may have the right to waive the signing of your deposition.

103 Mr. Mamantov. It doesn't matter—what the proper procedure is—I would like to read those—it's always possible, because the interpretation of a single word that would change the meaning by someone is up to you. If you want me to sign, I'll sign. If you don't, all right.

Mr. Jenner. That's your option—you may sign it or not, as you see fit.

Mr. Mamantov. That's my option—all right.

Mr. Jenner. Off the record.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the Witness Mamantov off the record.)

Mr. Jenner. On the record. If he wishes—it will be Thursday morning probably—we would like to have it ready for you to read over, would that be convenient for you?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. If you will come up to this office then, Thursday morning, then one of the other of us will be here and a transcript of your testimony will be available to you to peruse if you wish.

Mr. Mamantov. My name as you used my name was misspelled—I don't know if you want that—it was misspelled on my letter sent me.

Mr. Jenner. When I examine you I will have you spell your name. Go ahead and spell it for us now.

Mr. Mamantov. It's M-a-m-a-n-t-o-v [spelling], it is an "an" and not "en" as you have it.

Mr. Jenner. All right, give your full name and spell it.

Mr. Mamantov. I'll give you my full name.

Mr. Jenner. And how do you pronounce that full name? I-l-y-e [phonetic spelling], or I-l-a [phonetic spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. I-l-y-a [spelling], A. M-a-m-a-n-t-o-v [spelling], and the address has been changed in the meantime too—to 2444 Fairway Circle, Richardson, Tex., Zip No. 75080, if it is important.

Mr. Jenner. Did you give your telephone number?

Mr. Mamantov. AD-5-28—2873, it's a new number.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Mamantov, the Commission desires to inquire of you because of your acquaintance with the De Mohrenschildts, and your work with the Dallas City Police on November 22 and 23.

Mr. Mamantov. The 22d.

Mr. Jenner. The 22d only, and you translated for Marina Oswald in that connection?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Your acquaintance with the Russian emigre group in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and especially your acquaintance with Marina to the extent you had one. You have given your full name and your full address. What is your business, profession, or occupation?

Mr. Mamantov. A research geologist with Sun Oil Co.

Mr. Jenner. And how long have you held that position?

Mr. Mamantov. Since 1955.

Mr. Jenner. And is that your profession—a geologist?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. And prior to 1952, your employment was?

Mr. Mamantov. With the Donnally Geophysical Co. here in Dallas as seismologist.

Mr. Jenner. And over what period of time did that work extend?

Mr. Mamantov. It covers 1951, the summer of 1951 until the fall of 1955, when I took my present job.

Mr. Jenner. Let's take one step back—by whom were you employed, or with whom were you associated, prior thereto?

Mr. Mamantov. Lion Match Co.

Mr. Jenner. L-y-o-n [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. L-i-o-n [spelling] Match Co. in New York.

Mr. Jenner. In what capacity?

Mr. Mamantov. As a production scheduling or scheduler for the machines.

Mr. Jenner. I take it, then, though, you were a trained geologist, you at104 least at that phase of your career you were not pursuing your profession or your particular calling?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, because I just came from Europe as a displaced person and I didn't speak English enough.

Mr. Jenner. All right, I got back to where I was going to go faster than I thought.

Mr. Mamantov. I'll put it this way—you want it in details—my life—approximately at that time?

Mr. Jenner. Not in great detail, but start out this way—I am a native of such and such country—and just tell us about yourself.

Mr. Mamantov. All right. I am a native of Russia. When I was 7 my parents came to Latvia.

Mr. Jenner. They immigrated to Latvia?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, and there I was raised and educated and I received my geological education and training. In 1945, excuse me, 1944, we left for Germany with the retreating German Army and I went to South Germany, stayed until the American Army moved in Peissenberg, P-e-i-s-s-e-n-b-e-r-g [spelling], Germany and in August of that year, excuse me, of 1945, we went to a DP camp.

Mr. Jenner. "DP" meaning displaced persons?

Mr. Mamantov. Displaced persons camp near Guenzburg, G-u-e-n-z-b-u-r-g [spelling], Germany.

Mr. Jenner. You say "we", at the time were you married?

Mr. Mamantov. I, oh, I was married all time.

Mr. Jenner. When did you marry?

Mr. Mamantov. 1938.

Mr. Jenner. A native of Latvia or of Russia?

Mr. Mamantov. Latvia, and my wife is Latvian—native Latvian.

Mr. Jenner. By the way, what is your age, sir?

Mr. Mamantov. 50 and, so, I am—my mother-in-law was also with us.

Mr. Jenner. Who is she—what is her name?

Mr. Mamantov. Dorothy Gravitis, G-r-a-v-i-t-i-s [spelling].

Mr. Jenner. And is she in this country?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. All right. I'll ask you some more questions about her later.

Mr. Mamantov. And her husband was arrested by the Communist in 1941 and we haven't heard of him since that time.

Mr. Jenner. You say "arrested by the Communist" do you make a distinction when you use the word description "Communist" as something different from the Russians?

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, yes; nothing to do with the nation. As you know, Communists are in Latvia, Communists are in Russia, and Communists are in Germany, and nothing to do with the nation. I am using this as an occupational force—I'll put it this way.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Mamantov. Or way of government.

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And where did you receive your higher education?

Mr. Mamantov. In Riga, R-i-g-a [spelling], Latvia, which is the capital of Latvia, and the name of the university was the University of Latvia.

Mr. Jenner. And have you had graduate school education?

Mr. Mamantov. That's where I got my graduate school. My degree is approximately equivalent to a local Ph. D—it's actually between master's and Ph. D.

Mr. Jenner. When did you settle in Dallas?

Mr. Mamantov. In September 1955.

Mr. Jenner. And have you and Mrs. Mamantov resided in Dallas ever since?

Mr. Mamantov. No; my wife still was in Roswell, N. Mex., at that time and she moved to Dallas immediately after the Thanksgiving Day.

Mr. Jenner. In 1955?

Mr. Mamantov. Right. You see, we received our citizenship in November of 1955 at Roswell, N. Mex.

Mr. Jenner. Both you and your wife?

105 Mr. Mamantov. Whole family, and Mrs. Gravitis.

Mr. Jenner. Does that include Mrs. Gravitis?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Any particular reason why you were in Roswell, N. Mex.

Mr. Mamantov. I was with Donnally Geophysical Co. at that time.

Mr. Jenner. And was its main office located there?

Mr. Mamantov. No; this was the field party. The office is located here in Dallas and we traveled—at the start of 1951—Post, Tex.; Brownfield, Tex.; Lubbock, Tex.; Hobbs, N. Mex.; Odessa, Tex.; Roswell, N. Mex., and I left——

Mr. Jenner. I think that's enough.

Mr. Mamantov. My family and my wife and I moved to Mississippi for a month.

Mr. Jenner. Still employed by Lion?

Mr. Mamantov. Still employed by the seising crew which was in Magee, Miss. From there we moved to Palacious, Tex. From there to Coalgate, Okla.; from Coalgate, Okla., to Seminole, Tex. My wife quit the company at that time and went to Roswell to join the family.

Mr. Jenner. Is your wife a professional person also?

Mr. Mamantov. She is not graduated from a law school, but she went quite a way.

Mr. Jenner. She took legal training, training in the law?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, but she worked as a geologist—as geological computer for that particular company.

Mr. Jenner. Did she finish her law work in Europe or here?

Mr. Mamantov. No; she didn't graduate. The Communists moved in and our law didn't exist at that time, as well you know.

Mr. Jenner. For the purpose of the record, I am Albert E. Jenner, and this gentleman is Jim Liebeler. We are members of the advisory staff of the general counsel of the President's Assassination Commission, and under the provisions of Executive Order 11130, dated November 29, 1963, Joint Resolution of Congress 137, and rules procedure adopted by the Commission in conformance with the Executive order and the joint resolution, we have been authorized to take the sworn deposition of Mr. Mamantov.

I should also say to you, Mr. Mamantov—have you had 3-days' notice?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, the Secret Service called me on Friday and on Saturday I received your letter, which was sent to my old address.

Mr. Jenner. Well, that might not be technically 3-days' notice. You are entitled under the rules of procedure to the 3-days' notice of the taking of your deposition.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; Friday, Saturday, Sunday—I had.

Mr. Jenner. You are entitled to waive that full 3 days if you desire, and do you agree to waive it?

Mr. Mamantov. I mean—I agree to deposition—I don't know your legal terms.

Mr. Jenner. We've got you into Dallas, now.

Mr. Mamantov. No; we got to Seminole—one more place I went from there. No; two more places—I went from Seminole to Snyder, Tex., and from Snyder, Tex., I went for 3 weeks to Forest, Miss., and at that time I quit the company and got my job with Sun Oil Co. here in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. With Sun?

Mr. Mamantov. Right; and purchased our home at 6911 East Mockingbird in October, the 1st of October 1955.

Mr. Jenner. Now, what is your facility in the command of the Russian language, with particular reference to—did you or have you done any teaching of the language?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; I am teaching since 1960 here in the Dallas area. I taught scientific research to some men, of a research personnel in 1960–1961. And, I taught in the Austin College in Sherman from—it was the fall of, yes, it was fall of 1961 and 1962. No—1962 and 1963. Now, I am teaching at SMU or Dallas College, to be specific, of SMU.

Mr. Jenner. Have you done any interpreting or translating?

106 Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir; for the American Geophysical Union, quite extensively in 1959, 1960, and 1961, and I think—yes—1961 I finished.

Mr. Jenner. And have you also done any interpreting or translating for any law enforcement agencies?

Mr. Mamantov. Here in the States?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. Let me think a little—no, I don't remember. I have translated minor papers, you see, like Soviet Union's marriage certificates and birth certificates for our local courts connected with divorces, and I might be of a help to a group of Latvians, people here in town, when they received their citizenship, so much, but this is the first time for the police department.

Mr. Jenner. All right. I'll get to that. Have you ever been called upon by either any agency of the Government of the United States or of the State of Texas or the City of Dallas to do any interpreting or translating?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, I was called by the police force for the City of Dallas around 5 o'clock, November 22.

Mr. Jenner. What year?

Mr. Mamantov. Of 1955, on 2 or 3 minutes' notice.

Mr. Jenner. It was 1955 or 1963?

Mr. Mamantov. Excuse me, 1963.

Mr. Jenner. I got from what you have said, then, you had no prior notice?

Mr. Mamantov. No; sir.

Mr. Jenner. You were called by some official of the city police department?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; I was called by Lt. Lumpkin. I think he's Lieutenant—they call him Chief.

Mr. Jenner. And you repaired then to the Dallas City Police Station?

Mr. Mamantov. Excuse me, I was called by somebody else, a couple of minutes ahead of Lumpkin—is it important?

Mr. Jenner. I don't know—you might state what it is.

Mr. Mamantov. All right. I was called by Mr. Jack Chrichton, C-h-r-i-c-h-t-o-n (spelling)—I don't know how to spell his name right now, but I guess it is that, but I can find out in a day or two.

Mr. Jenner. And who is he?

Mr. Mamantov. He is a petroleum independent operator, and if I'm not mistaken, he is connected with the Army Reserve, Intelligence Service. And, he asked me if I would translate for the police department and then immediately Mr. Lumpkin called me.

Mr. Jenner. All right, that was your first——

Mr. Mamantov. This was a period of five minutes, I would say, maximum.

Mr. Jenner. This, then, was your first contact with or connection with this tragedy?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And you then came to the Dallas City Police Department, did you?

Mr. Mamantov. Right. However, I called FBI about half an hour before the police called me. You see, I was in the dentist's office when I heard Lee Oswald's name, and when this name appeared on the radio, I felt it is my duty to notify the FBI that I know of him and knew fairly well his background here in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. And you so advised the FBI?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. That was a half hour ahead of the time——

Mr. Mamantov. This was approximately, I would say——

Mr. Jenner. 4:30?

Mr. Mamantov. 4:30.

Mr. Jenner. I'll get into that background in a little while, Mr. Mamantov. You did go, then, to the Dallas City Police Station?

Mr. Mamantov. They sent a police car.

Mr. Jenner. To pick you up?

Mr. Mamantov. To pick me up—it was quite disturbing because there was sirens and red lights and the neighborhood was quite disturbed.

Mr. Jenner. Where did you reside at that time?

107 Mr. Mamantov. 6911 East Mockingbird.

Mr. Jenner. East Mockingbird?

Mr. Mamantov. East Mockingbird Lane.

Mr. Jenner. That's correct. And you were escorted into the Dallas City Police Station?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct and was introduced to Captain Fritz.

Mr. Jenner. Go right ahead.

Mr. Mamantov. He took me into a room filled up with the detectives—before we entered that room, I had to pass through the hallway filled up with the newspaper and TV and people.

Mr. Jenner. You just went through that?

Mr. Mamantov. I mean, I just went through with Captain Fritz there that I saw.

Mr. Jenner. When you got into the room, now, whom did you see there?

Mr. Mamantov. When I got into the room I saw Marina, I saw Mrs. Paine, whom I knew, who has been once in our house, and I have numerous telephone conversations with her in regard to her learning Russian.

Mr. Jenner. Does Mrs. Gravitis live with you?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. When you say "our house," that's the house in which you, your wife and Mrs. Gravitis reside?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct. She resides with us since 1943—we never were separated.

Mr. Jenner. Is her first name Dorothy?

Mr. Mamantov. Dorothy, and I saw Mrs. Paine and I saw next to her a young woman with a young baby whom I assumed to be Marina Oswald.

Mr. Jenner. Have you ever seen Marina Oswald in your life prior to that moment? Knowingly?

Mr. Mamantov. No; sir.

Mr. Jenner. Had you ever met her prior to that time?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; I met her after that, accidentally.

Mr. Jenner. No; this is prior—up to that moment, you had had no contact, no acquaintance whatsoever with her?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Nor with Lee Harvey Oswald?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; but Marina and my mother-in-law had telephone conversations from my home, so I knew of her quite a bit through Mrs. Paine and Mrs. Gravitis, but I never had seen her in person, but I never had talked to her before, so from that room I was taken into another small room, and after a while Mrs. Paine and Marina was brought in and she also had a baby.

Mr. Jenner. And whom else, in addition to you, was in the room?

Mr. Mamantov. There was a young detective, I forgot his name. Then, there was another tall detective who actually questioned Marina and for whom I interpreted.

Mr. Jenner. Do you remember his name?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; but if I would see him I would place him.

Mr. Jenner. And those were the persons?

Mr. Mamantov. Well, there was another person, the agent of the FBI, who was taking notes and sitting across at the desk.

Mr. Jenner. What is his name?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. Is the name "Hosty" familiar to you?

Mr. Mamantov. It was "H", but I don't remember; but it was, either this young fellow that was the detective was Hosty, or FBI, but it started with "H".

Mr. Jenner. Well, it might be "H"—Hosty.

Mr. Mamantov. Right; and I talked to him after that a few minutes, he will recognize me and I recognize him when we get together.

Mr. Jenner. You seem to be a man who has reasonably good powers of recall; would you start now, and I will try not to interrupt you, and relate as best you can recall, and as precisely as you can recall, at least the substance and the exact words of the questioning and the responses—the questioning of Marina and the responses she gave?

108 Mr. Mamantov. All right. Shall I go ahead?

Mr. Jenner. Yes; just do it the way it comes naturally to you.

Mr. Mamantov. All right. The problem is, I never tried to memorize this because—I mean—this was pure translation.

Mr. Jenner. And you were probably a little excited then, too, weren't you?

Mr. Mamantov. I was quite excited and I didn't feel like I should try to memorize it, but she was questioned if she lived at Mrs. Paine's residence in Irving——

Mr. Jenner. To which she responded?

Mr. Mamantov. She responded.

Mr. Jenner. What did she say? Did she respond in the affirmative, is what I was getting at?

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, yes; she said she was living there.

Mr. Jenner. Do the best you can, and I'll try not to interrupt you, but I'll have to, I'm sure, at times.

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember the questions, but I would remember approximately what she was asked.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Mamantov. All right. She was asked if she lived with Mrs. Paine around that particular day and if she was that morning in Mrs. Paine's home. She answered positively then.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me—I'm sure that positively is affirmative?

Mr. Mamantov. Affirmative.

Mr. Jenner. By the way, as long as we are now interrupted again, what time was this—5:30 or 6 o'clock.

Mr. Mamantov. I would say it's 5:30, because going to the police station I met my wife coming from work, which should be 5:30 or 6 o'clock, I would say. Then, she was asked if Oswald spent that night in Mrs. Paine's home at that time, that night from 21 to 22 of November.

Mr. Jenner. The previous evening?

Mr. Mamantov. The previous evening and including the night.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. She affirmed that. Then, how did he get up? She said he had an alarm clock on and this was the way he got up and he went into kitchen and supposedly had breakfast. They asked her also if usually she prepared breakfast for him, and if I remember right, she said usually she did, but this particular morning she didn't because she was tired and she had to get up to take care of her baby in an hour or so, so she didn't get up and he went into the kitchen and was supposed to eat breakfast. Now——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. Was she questioned, or did she say anything about whether, when he left the bedroom and went into the kitchen to make his breakfast, whether he returned to her and said goodby to her?

Mr. Mamantov. No; as far as I remember he didn't return. I mean, I don't think the question was asked to her. Or, it is in my mind that he didn't return, relating the conversation to that particular time.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, Mr. Mamantov, may I say this—I don't want any of my questions to induce you to make a response that you don't recall definitely.

Mr. Mamantov. No; I understand.

Mr. Jenner. There are bits of information that we have of things we would like to find out. Do you have a definite recollection that the subject was even brought up at that time, that is, whether he returned from the kitchen to the bedroom to say goodby to her before he left or are you refreshing your memory, is what I am getting at? If you have no recollection, I would prefer you say so.

Mr. Mamantov. No; I'll put it this way. I remember conversations somewhere along the line that he did return to her room. I remember also when she got up she was wondering that he didn't eat breakfast; apparently coffee was poured or prepared either by him or by her, which, I don't remember, and he didn't eat breakfast, and this was after he left, we'll say, a few minutes.

Mr. Jenner. Don't let me interrupt you here before you finish your answers—do I gather correctly that what you are saying is that she stated there that night that she did go out to the kitchen?

109 Mr. Mamantov. That morning.

Mr. Jenner. That morning—that she did go out to the kitchen that morning and she found that he had not prepared any breakfast?

Mr. Mamantov. No; I'll put it this way. She apparently slept a little bit longer after he left, and when she got up and went into the kitchen she found out he didn't eat breakfast, which was surprising to her. From this I made my opinion that she usually prepared breakfast for him and she ate.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, sir; when you testified a moment ago that she said she usually prepared breakfast for him, were you then rationalizing from the circumstance you have just stated, or do you recall that she said that?

Mr. Mamantov. I understood—here's my problem—either I recall or I recall future instances from translating her life history.

Mr. Jenner. It is important, Mr. Mamantov, for you to recall and to exclude from your mind—it is very difficult I appreciate—and to exclude from your mind what you have learned and to exclude from your mind what you have learned afterwards; that is, after November 22d.

Mr. Mamantov. I realize that.

Mr. Jenner. What I am trying to get now is exactly to the best of your powers of recall, what was said on that occasion by her without your rationalizing from facts you recall as to what she might have said; do you understand?

Mr. Mamantov. I understand. As far as I know, she said that he didn't return backward—I mean—come back to her—she didn't get up at the time he was leaving. After a while she got up.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me; now, as a result of this further questioning it is your present recollection that at the time you were doing the translating you——

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. At the city police station, that she said was that he left the bedroom to make breakfast for himself, that he did not return to the bedroom, and she, because of being up during the night to care for the baby, she went back to rest or sleep and got up later on.

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say that she then went into the kitchen?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And did she say what she found when she reached the kitchen?

Mr. Mamantov. She found that the coffee wasn't—I mean, or, she thought he didn't eat.

Mr. Jenner. He had not prepared breakfast, in fact?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Mamantov. Then, I also remember her saying, but I don't remember how the question was put to her, that she went into the garage to check her belongings which were stored in the garage, Mrs. Paine's garage, and she saw a grey blanket which appeared to her in a little bit different position than she remember it before.

Mr. Jenner. Did she describe the configuration, shape—form of the blanket?

Mr. Mamantov. That's what I'm saying—I'll come to it. Then she was asked what was in that blanket before, why did she pay attention particularly to the blanket. She said he kept his gun in that blanket. Now, she also said—she was asked if she would remember the gun, how it looked, she said, "Probably—yes," she has seen not the whole gun but she has seen part of the gun wrapped in that grey blanket and at this moment the gun was brought in.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, she volunteered that when she got up and went to the kitchen, noticed that Oswald had not prepared any breakfast——

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. She then went to the garage; is that correct?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, or she was led to that question, if she had gone to the garage, and she said continuously that "I went." I assume that she was led to that question when she stated that she went to the garage.

Mr. Jenner. After she had inspected the kitchen?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say whether Mrs. Paine was up and about at that time?

110 Mr. Mamantov. No; I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. You don't remember anything about Mrs. Paine?

Mr. Mamantov. You see, Mrs. Paine also gave a statement later on after Marina finished.

Mr. Jenner. Let's stick with Marina for the moment.

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, otherwise I would be confused.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say why she went to the garage or was she asked, and did she respond on that subject?

Mr. Mamantov. To the best of my memory, she was asked and led to that question, if she had gone to the garage, if she had seen a blanket——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, sir; they could be asking her, in connection with the questions, to see whether she went to the blanket later in the day. Do you recall that the question—is it because of the questioning, or she voluntarily stated——

Mr. Mamantov. No; because of the question.

Mr. Jenner. Because of the questioning, that after she was in the kitchen that morning, at that time she then went into the garage for the purpose of examining the blanket and its contents? Just relax and think about it.

Mr. Mamantov. I'm afraid I wouldn't remember in such extent, if she went immediately or she went later or she went during the time when police was at Mrs. Paine's home, and I imagine those points are very important to you, and I don't remember at the moment, I mean, to the exact time.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; they are important—you see, your responses when you first approached this subject, the implication was she looked at the kitchen, and that she went immediately out into the garage.

Mr. Mamantov. No; I'm afraid I cannot state positively whether she went during the day or whether she went immediately from the kitchen—I do not know.

Mr. Jenner. You cannot state it?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't know.

Mr. Jenner. Does your recollection serve you that she went before noontime?

Mr. Mamantov. No; I cannot state.

Mr. Jenner. Or that she went out to the garage at any time before the police arrived, which was in midafternoon?

Mr. Mamantov. That, I don't remember. I do remember that she was asked about blanket, if she has seen blanket, and she has seen blanket in a very unusual, or she said in unusual shape as she said she has seen before, about 2 weeks. I remember her mentioning about 2 weeks to the questioning.

Mr. Jenner. Do you mean by that, sir, that the shape and form of the blanket when she saw it that day was different from the shape and configuration when she had seen the blanket prior thereto?

Mr. Mamantov. About 2 weeks—yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your answer was "yes?"

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; it was in different shape than she had seen before. After that the question was asked what was in this blanket. She said it was his gun, she was asked when did he purchase the gun, where did he get this gun, and she stated she didn't know and also probably he would bring the gun from the Soviet Union, and also was asked the question if she would recognize the gun if the gun would be shown to her, and at this moment the gun was brought in. Let me try to remember a little bit?

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. In her responses to the questioning, did she say whether or not she had been aware of the presence of the gun and the blanket in the garage prior to November 22, 1963?

Mr. Mamantov. This question was asked her. And, she gave a little bit evasive answer.

Mr. Jenner. You tell us what she said rather than you giving your opinion as to whether it was evasive.

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, if I remember right, she said she didn't know if it were there.

Mr. Jenner. She did not know——

111 Mr. Mamantov. That it was there on that particular morning; however, she has seen in the past, well, she thought, if I remember right, that Lee took with him the gun and she was also asked——

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, she testified or she stated in your presence and you translated it?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. That she was aware of the fact that the gun had been in the blanket in the garage?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, sometime in the past.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; did she say whether she had seen the gun in the blanket in the garage prior to November 22?

Mr. Mamantov. If I remember right—yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did she describe what she had seen in the blanket when she had discovered it prior to November 22?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us what she said in that regard.

Mr. Mamantov. She saw the stock of the gun, which was dark brown—black, she said.

Mr. Jenner. These were responses of hers before the weapon was brought in the room?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. I want to stick to that period, before the weapon was actually brought into the room, and state what she said.

Mr. Mamantov. They asked her also at that time when did he purchase the gun and such as where. If I remember right, she said she didn't know, she stated also that he had had a gun in the Soviet Union. They asked her a question if it was a dark brown or black gun. She said, "Yes, it was the same color," and she said, "to me all guns are the same color," and then she was asked if she would recognize a gun if shown to her, and at that time the gun was brought in.

Mr. Jenner. Let's not go to that subject at the moment. I want to go back.

Mr. Mamantov. All right.

Mr. Jenner. What did she say, if anything, as to what she saw or discovered when she went into the garage that morning, the morning of November 22, to examine the blanket?

Mr. Mamantov. No; here, I cannot state exactly if it was morning, noon or time police arrived, when she saw the blanket without the gun, and this—I don't remember—here is my time lapse—whenever she saw it.

Mr. Jenner. But whenever she responded, whenever she saw it that day, what did she say as to what the package contained, if anything?

Mr. Mamantov. The blanket was, I'll put it this way, different position as she has seen in the past.

Mr. Jenner. You mean in a different position, in a different place in the garage?

Mr. Mamantov. No; it was supposedly in the same place, but there wasn't anything in it.

Mr. Jenner. You mean it was in a different shape or form or condition?

Mr. Mamantov. I'll put it this way—condition.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say what the different condition was?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember, but that attracted her attention. This I remember very well. She stated it attracted her attention—as she had seen before, so much I remember.

Mr. Jenner. Her attention was arrested by the fact that the condition, shape, form or configuration of the blanket package was different from what she had noticed it to have been in on prior occasions when she had seen it?

Mr. Mamantov. Evidently—if somebody, for instance, if you see a package in one shape and at different times, you see different shape.

Mr. Jenner. Did she describe the shape and form and condition of the package as she saw it prior to this particular occasion on November 22, what it looked like earlier, and then contrasting that with what it looked like on the occasion of November 22 when she saw it again?

Mr. Mamantov. If I remember right, going back, she had seen the package of112 elongated form and for some reason she opened it and saw a gun, and knowing it was Lee's, at least a gun, and he didn't want her to touch his things, he was very particular, and after she opened a corner, she left it in same shape she had found it.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say whether she had pulled the gun entirely out of the package?

Mr. Mamantov. No. No.

Mr. Jenner. Just the butt end?

Mr. Mamantov. Just the stock end and she covered immediately and back so as a result, she—she didn't pull out all—she didn't open the package.

Mr. Jenner. Did they question her as to where the package was in the garage, precisely, on the two occasions, that is, when she had seen it before November 22 and the position it was located in in the garage when she saw it on November 22?

Mr. Mamantov. The question was asked and she answered, it was with her belongings which she couldn't bring into Mrs. Paine's home, and if I remember right, she said it was in one corner of the garage, and that particular day the blanket was in the same area, but was in a different shape or in a different condition. What it was, I don't know. It was in the garage in one of the corners.

Mr. Jenner. What did she say as to the difference and the content?

Mr. Mamantov. She said when she saw the blanket it didn't contain the gun.

Mr. Jenner. It did not contain the gun?

Mr. Mamantov. It did not contain the gun.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say anything about whether the blanket's form or condition was, for purposes of illustration not for the purpose of placing words in your mouth, that the blanket was absolutely flat when she saw it on the 22d, whereas, prior thereto it appeared to contain what she discovered was a rifle?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say anything about whether the package, the blanket package, was wrapped in any fashion, with string or any other wrapping of that character?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. Was that subject brought up?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. At any time during the questioning was the blanket package brought into the room?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Was anything said when she was asked about her entry into the garage and her examination of the package as to whether anybody was with her when she did that?

Mr. Mamantov. I think—was police and Mrs. Paine.

Mr. Jenner. At the time that she examined the blanket?

Mr. Mamantov. Once for sure—I don't know what happened before that.

Mr. Jenner. Was she asked whether she had examined the blanket that day at any time prior to her examination of the blanket in the presence of Mrs. Paine and the police?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. But you do recall that she did testify or relate as to the incident you now have in mind that Mrs. Paine was present and the police were present?

Mr. Mamantov. On one occasion; yes.

Mr. Jenner. And is that the only occasion she was examined about, that is, her having entered the garage once and then only in the presence of the police?

Mr. Mamantov. This, I don't know for sure.

Mr. Jenner. It might have been that she testified to having gone to the garage on two occasions that day.

Mr. Mamantov. Sir, I don't remember for sure. I rather wouldn't like, as you say, to interpret—I would be very happy to relate everything I know. If you don't remember, you don't.

Mr. Jenner. May I emphasize over and over again, Mr. Mamantov, that you don't tell or say anything other than that which you recall in your mind took place around 6 o'clock on the 22d.

113 Mr. Mamantov. Well, I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. So, let me impel you from any thought I have a desire for you to testify one way or the other.

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Because I don't—all I want you to do is to tell, as best you can, your recollection of what took place.

Mr. Mamantov. No; I don't remember if she stated this or she didn't.

Mr. Jenner. I do want to ask you this—you don't want to exclude by this testimony the possibility that she did, that is, that she testified or might have said at that time that she had entered the garage on an earlier occasion sometime during the day, that is, prior to the time the police arrived.

Mr. Mamantov. No; I don't want to exclude it.

Mr. Jenner. You just don't have enough recollection at the moment to testify one way or the other on that?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I noticed that you did say that Marina related the fact that she had seen the rifle in a disassembled condition?

Mr. Mamantov. No; I didn't say so. I said, "Elongated package—she saw an elongated package," but I don't recall the size of the package, the size of the package she testified it was.

Mr. Jenner. I think you did testify earlier that Marina remarked that she had seen the gun in sections?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Today?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; you can read it back—I haven't.

Mr. Jenner. Off the record.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the Witness Mamantov off the record.)

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; you asked me the shape of the package she saw, and I related to you an elongated package and she opened one corner and she saw the stock of the gun so much—that I said—there—so much—you asked me.

Mr. Jenner. It's important, Miss Oliver, let's go back just so we will be certain of it and see if we can find it.

(At this point at the request of Counsel Jenner the reporter referred to previous testimony of the Witness Mamantov and reread the following:

("No, put it this way. I remember conversations somewhere along the line that he didn't return to her room. I remember also when she got up she was wondering that he didn't eat breakfast, apparently coffee was poured or prepared either by him or by her, which, I don't remember, and he didn't eat breakfast and this was after he left, we'll say, a few minutes.")

Mr. Jenner. When the question was put to her as to why she went to the garage to examine the package and what motivated her in that direction, what did she say?

Mr. Mamantov. That, I don't remember. That is again coming to the point—I don't remember what time she saw—either she saw by herself or she saw during the time when police arrived.

Mr. Jenner. But, in either event, whether she went there on her own prior to the time the police arrived and then again, if that's the way it was, when the police did arrive, what did she say when, as you have testified, she was asked why she went to the garage to examine the package, if she said anything?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes. When police arrived they asked her specific questions about particular blanket.

Mr. Jenner. What questions?

Mr. Mamantov. If the blanket was in the shape she saw today in relation to the shape she saw last time. She said, "No, it has different shape."

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Mamantov, did the police ask her right off the bat whether the package in the garage, the blanket package in the garage, had a different configuration, or did they first question her, for example, as to whether her husband owned a gun and whether she was aware of the fact that he did own a gun and whether she was aware of the fact the gun was in or about the premises of the Paine's—what was the sequence, as you recall?

114 Mr. Mamantov. She was asked if she knew that the gun was at the premises of Mrs. Paine.

Mr. Jenner. The questioning, then, assumed that there was a gun, is that correct?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct. She was asked whether this gun—when at the Paines, whether she knew where the gun used to be, and then she said she hadn't seen gun since the gun—she saw last time—and this particular day when gun wasn't there. No; she never stated, and I don't think she was asked if she knew that the gun was there that particular morning. That, I don't know, but she was asked if she knew that the gun was with her belongings.

Mr. Jenner. Prior to November 22?

Mr. Mamantov. Prior to November 22—that's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And her response was in the affirmative?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And your distinct recollection is that the blanket was not brought into the room at any time while you were there to exhibit to her?

Mr. Mamantov. Only physical item was gun.

Mr. Jenner. Your recollection is that it is true that the blanket was not brought into the room?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, the only physical item was brought in, was the gun itself, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And was the gun when brought in fully assembled?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Did it have the telescopic sight on it?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And did it have a sling, a leather sling, do you know what I mean by a sling?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; I know what you mean, but I don't remember right now. I think it did, but I wouldn't be for sure—I wouldn't be sure of the statement.

Now, I don't know if it is important to you or not, she also stated when she was questioned before—where he purchased the gun, and if it was a gun which he had in the Soviet Union.

Mr. Jenner. And what was her response?

Mr. Mamantov. Her response was that it is possible that this is the gun which he had in the Soviet Union. She cannot say one way or the other if this is a different gun or which he had before. Now, no person had a gun in the Soviet Union—I can say so much for sure and that's where I didn't like this.

Mr. Jenner. No; you just interjected your own observation, that is, no person had a gun in the Soviet Union—that was an observation on your part, not what she said.

Mr. Mamantov. No, no; that's my observation, but maybe not to be—not to put it into the record, but I think it is very important when she went back—when she said that the gun was brought in from the Soviet Union.

Mr. Jenner. Might have been?

Mr. Mamantov. It might have been—so, she didn't know. The question was asked when did he purchase, when and where he purchased it and she said, "I don't know. He had always guns. He always played with guns even in the Soviet Union. He had the gun and I don't know which gun was this." And she was asked a question if she would recognize the gun—she was asked the color of the gun, if this was the same gun or resembled the gun which he had in the Soviet Union. She said, to her all guns are dark and black and that's all—so much she said about it.

Mr. Jenner. Before we get to the gun itself, I would like to ask you some more questions.

Mr. Mamantov. Before we get to the gun itself—all right.

Mr. Jenner. I take it from your answers that she either said or implied that when they were in Fort Worth, when they were in New Orleans, that he had the gun that she had in mind?

Mr. Mamantov. This particular gun?

Mr. Jenner. Whatever gun she had in mind.

115 Mr. Mamantov. She made statement this way: She said he always had guns, he always was interested in guns—this statement she made.

Mr. Jenner. And he always had a weapon?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, he always had a weapon.

Mr. Jenner. Did she say anything about a pistol as distinguished from a rifle?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember the question and I don't remember a reply.

Mr. Jenner. Now, when she was asked whether she examined the package on that day, was she then asked to state what she did in the examination of the package and what she found—would you state as chronologically as you can? Did she say, and this is a hypothetic, now, on my part—"I went into the garage, I looked for the blanket package, I saw the blanket package, I walked over to the blanket package, I stepped on it, or I lifted it up, or I opened it up"—was she questioned that closely?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember, questions like you stated.

Mr. Jenner. Was she questioned about whether she looked for or whether there was any other weapon different from or in addition to the weapon in the blanket package?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember the question—neither question.

Mr. Jenner. Is it fair to say that your best recollection is that she was not examined on that subject?

Mr. Mamantov. I would say so—yes.

Mr. Jenner. At any time during this questioning was she asked whether she had seen her husband handle the weapon, that is, that the weapon she saw with him in his possession—unwrapped?

Mr. Mamantov. No, I don't remember, I don't think the question was asked.

Mr. Jenner. Was she asked whether she knew of her knowledge or information with respect to her husband's use of a rifle—whether it was a rifle, a pistol, or otherwise?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; she stated that he liked to hunt.

Mr. Jenner. Well, was she asked whether he hunted in Russia when he was in Russia?

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, yes. She made statement that he also was hunting in Russia and supposedly was hunting here.

Mr. Jenner. She did say that her impression was that he hunted here in the United States?

Mr. Mamantov. I'll put it this way—she said he was using his guns for hunting. She didn't say specifically which, but she said that he used to hunt in Russia but she didn't say specifically he hunted here.

Mr. Jenner. She did not say that he hunted in the United States?

Mr. Mamantov. No.

Mr. Jenner. From the evidence, they came over to this country in June 1962.

Mr. Mamantov. No—the question was asked if he hunted here or not and reply to why did he have the gun—because she said he had hunted in Russia, he always liked guns, he always played with the gun.

Mr. Jenner. Was she questioned at all on the subject whether he had hunted with this rifle or any other gun in the United States?

Mr. Mamantov. Not in my presence.

Mr. Jenner. Was she questioned on the subject of whether she had seen him or was aware of the fact, if it be the fact, that he occasionally or on one or more occasions had the gun, say, out in the yard of their home in New Orleans or out in the yard or courtyard in Fort Worth, sighting it and pulling the trigger—dry sighting; do you know what dry sighting is?

Mr. Mamantov. Right—no, she wasn't asked.

Mr. Jenner. Was she asked in your presence whether there was an incident in which there was an attempt on the life of General Walker?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Nothing about that at all?

Mr. Mamantov. Nothing about that.

Mr. Jenner. In other words, at the risk of boring you and the reporter, she was not questioned on this information when you were doing the translating116 or interpreting about any use of the rifle by him, dry sighting, hunting, or otherwise in the United States?

Mr. Mamantov. No, not specifically, but this rifle—I'll put it this way—about her seeing him with a weapon.

Mr. Jenner. Any weapon?

Mr. Mamantov. Any weapon.

Mr. Jenner. All right, now, have you told us everything you can recall about the questions and answers and interplay up to the time the rifle was brought into the room? Is there anything else—don't be concerned about whether you think it is relative or not, anything that she said on this occasion is relevant to us.

Mr. Mamantov. I understand and I am trying to recollect. No, I remember—I think I said everything I could remember.

Mr. Jenner. You have now exhausted your recollection as to everything that was said at least in substance, and to the extent of the recall of each of the particulars up to this moment, that is to the moment when the gun was brought into the room?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. By the way, was there a court reporter present?

Mr. Mamantov. If I remember right, the detective took down.

Mr. Jenner. Made notes?

Mr. Mamantov. Made some notes, and which were read to her.

Mr. Jenner. Eventually—that is, at the conclusion of the examination he summarized his notes in her presence?

Mr. Mamantov. No, he read word by word, I translated back. He didn't write in shorthand, but he wrote it, I remember very well—Mrs. Paine tried to correct his English and, of course, minor mistakes. I probably wouldn't write the same way—you don't expect every policeman to write the same English, and which the question was whether "I" or "me"—that's the mistake it was.

Mr. Jenner. Now, when that summary was given by the officer in the presence of Marina, did she affirm that it was at least in substance correct?

Mr. Mamantov. She signed it.

Mr. Jenner. Did you seek to correct anything in the statement read to Marina by the officer, that is, did you call attention to anything you thought had been left out or anything that had not been fairly stated?

Mr. Mamantov. No, they read back to her, I translated back into Russian and she agreed. Only, there was Mrs. Paine—Mrs. Paine made a remark about the grammar.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I think—let's go ahead—the weapon is brought in.

Mr. Mamantov. All right.

Mr. Jenner. It is fully assembled?

Mr. Mamantov. It is fully assembled.

Mr. Jenner. It has a telescopic sight on it and the leather sling?

Mr. Mamantov. Captain Fritz brought it in and was holding it in his two hands, with two or three fingers, not to touch gun around—in that position (indicating).

Mr. Jenner. Holding it up—holding it like that (indicating)?

Mr. Mamantov. More or less—you see—inclined in that position.

Mr. Jenner. Holding it up horizontally or close to the horizontal?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, and it was brought close enough to her to examine. She was specifically asked if this was the gun she had seen in the past in that blanket. She said, "I don't know. All guns to me are the same, are a dark brown or black."

He asked her again—"This," which was to me very dark or black colored. He said, "Is this what you see?" She said, "No, I don't know. I saw the gun—I saw a gun;" she said again, "All guns are the same to me." Then they asked her about a sight on the gun.

Mr. Jenner. S-i-g-h-t [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; a telescope—she said, "No; I never have seen gun like that in his possession," and she referred back again to the Soviet Union.

Mr. Jenner. What did she say to you—is this a conclusion on your part that she referred back to the Soviet Union?

117 Mr. Mamantov. No—no—she said this way.

Mr. Jenner. It isn't a conclusion, if you put the words in her mouth, so you can go ahead.

Mr. Mamantov. No, she said the gun which he had in the Soviet Union, she didn't know how to say—she said, "This thing."

Mr. Jenner. The telescopic sight?

Mr. Mamantov. The telescopic sight—she pointed to it with her finger.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, did she say that the rifle or weapon, whatever it was he had in the Soviet Union—her recollection was it did not have a telescopic sight on it?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct. She was asked if she had seen this part of the gun which he had in the garage in the blanket—this she said again—she said, "No; I have only seen one part of the gun, which was the end of the gun"—which part they asked her—I think I am calling it——

Mr. Jenner. The stock?

Mr. Mamantov. She pointed to the stock—correct—and then she was asked about the gun again and she said, "Dark brown-black."

Mr. Jenner. Still referring to the stock?

Mr. Mamantov. Still referring to the stock, and then they asked her for a couple more questions, if she saw this particular gun in his possession. She insisted that to her all guns are the same and she couldn't distinguish this gun from any other gun that he had in the past.

Mr. Jenner. In other words, it is your recollection that they questioned her very closely in an effort to elicit from her, if it weren't a fact that the weapon they were showing her was the weapon she had seen, and her responses consistently were—they were, no matter how close or vigorous the examination, that all guns are alike to her, that the only thing she ever saw was the stock of the gun in the blanket?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And her recollection was it was dark brown, and that's all she thought, to fairly summarize?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct. They asked her again, "Is this the color you saw?" She said "Yes—yes, it reminds me of the same color." They particularly questioned her fairly close, if this was the same gun which belonged to him and she only insisted she saw the stock of the gun and hasn't seen the whole gun.

Mr. Jenner. All right, go ahead.

Mr. Mamantov. And they asked her, I think they came back again and asked her if she has seen him carrying something.

Mr. Jenner. Carrying something?

Mr. Mamantov. Carrying something, and she said, "No," she didn't see him leaving, so she didn't know if he was carrying something.

Mr. Jenner. You mean they came back and asked her whether, when he left that morning he was carrying anything?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And her response was?

Mr. Mamantov. She didn't see him leaving or walking out of the house, or whatever he was taking—means of transportation.

Mr. Jenner. She didn't see him leave, so she doesn't know whether he had anything with him or not, is that a fair statement?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Is that a fair statement of her statements?

Mr. Mamantov. That's exactly right.

Mr. Jenner. Did they question her as to the details of his coming to Irving, Tex., the night before, and what did he bring with him, if anything, and what did he say as to why he was returning on Thursday night, whereas, he usually came on weekends, as on a Friday, did they go through that previous evening with her in detail and from point to point so that they could exhaust the movements of Lee Oswald that previous evening?

Mr. Mamantov. No; if I remember right, they didn't question her to the extent of his arrival—well, I don't remember.

118 Mr. Jenner. They concentrated on his presence the following morning and what occurred from the time she awakened until the time he left?

Mr. Mamantov. To me as a layman, the whole talk was around him having the gun, and "this is the gun he used."

Mr. Jenner. Your best recollection, you recall, is that there was no questioning of her with respect to movements of this man the previous evening?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, any questions as to why he came home on Thursday rather than on Friday as usual?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. Did they go into any questions with respect to the acquaintances of the Oswalds with people here in Dallas or in Irving or in Fort Worth or in New Orleans?

Mr. Mamantov. At that particular time?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Over what period of time did this examination take place? What was its duration?

Mr. Mamantov. Roughly, I would say about 2 to 3 hours. You see, Mrs. Paine also testified, she was present so they took two statements—from both of them.

Mr. Jenner. They took Mrs. Paine's and then they took Marina's?

Mr. Mamantov. First Marina's and then Mrs. Paine's.

Mr. Jenner. Was Mrs. Paine's statement taken in Marina's presence?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And Marina's statement was taken in Mrs. Paine's presence?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. Did you interpret from English into Russian the statements made by Mrs. Paine that is, did you translate Mrs. Paine's statement, as she made it and the questions put to Mrs. Paine, for the benefit of Marina, so that she would understand the questions to Mrs. Paine and Mrs. Paine's responses?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; the statement was not translated into Russian.

Mr. Jenner. And you can see why that is important to me, as to whether Marina would take exception to anything Mrs. Paine said?

Mr. Mamantov. Right. Now, we were waiting about 2 or 3 hours altogether for the typist to type that.

Mr. Jenner. It was the taking of the statement, the transcribing of the statement, the reading of the statement to Marina and Mrs. Paine, and then have the witnesses read the statements or listen to them and then sign them.

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. All of this took about 3 hours?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Did Mrs. Paine speak to Marina in Russian while you were present?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, yes, she did. Mrs. Paine spoke in Russian to Marina—yes, she did.

Mr. Jenner. Any statements made by Mrs. Paine in Russian to Marina, were they pertinent to the subject matters about which you have testified?

Mr. Mamantov. No; I don't think so. I don't remember—personal conversation more or less about the child who was present.

Mr. Jenner. The conversations between Mrs. Paine and Marina in Russian, were they conversations related to personal matters—the children?

Mr. Mamantov. The children; and only on one occasion I remember was to her protection—Marina's protection.

Mr. Jenner. And what was that?

Mr. Mamantov. "What are they going to do with me now?"

Mr. Jenner. Who made that statement?

Mr. Mamantov. Marina asked of Mrs. Paine.

Mr. Jenner. "What are they going to do with me now?"

Mr. Mamantov. What are they going to do with me now?"

Mr. Jenner. And what did Mrs. Paine say?

119 Mr. Mamantov. Well, then, she asked—are they going to send her back to the Soviet Union, and Mrs. Paine said, "I don't know," and then she looked at me and I said, "I don't know either. If you are innocent, then you will be innocent." I couldn't say one way or the other, and I didn't want to go into conversation.

Mr. Jenner. Did you say to Marina that, "If you are innocent—then you are innocent"—did you mean to imply by that that she would not be deported in that event?

Mr. Mamantov. Right; and then I expressed hope that nothing would happen to her.

Mr. Jenner. Now, have you now told us everything you can recall to the best of your recollection that was said?

Mr. Mamantov. In relation to Marina or to both of them?

Mr. Jenner. First, in relation to Marina—during the course of that 3-hour meeting or session at the Dallas City Police Station.

Mr. Mamantov. I think I have told you everything I remember.

Mr. Jenner. In an effort to perhaps refresh your recollection, but without suggestion that these things actually occurred, was anything asked her about her relations with her husband, Lee Oswald, whether they got along well, didn't get along well, whether they had any problems in that connection?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't think it was brought up at that particular time.

Mr. Jenner. You have an especial command of the Russian language, you teach Russian?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And have taught Russian?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. You have heard Mrs. Paine speak Russian?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Would you please state for the record the extent of Mrs. Paine's command of the Russian language?

Mr. Mamantov. Say for—I can give only comparison for American person and for Russian person. I say for an American person—fair to good for knowledge of the language, for command of language—very poor.

Mr. Jenner. Is that the only occasion when you interpreted or translated for Marina?

Mr. Mamantov. In person? In her presence?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. That's the only occasion.

Mr. Jenner. Did you see Marina at any time after this incident, this questioning?

Mr. Mamantov. Intentionally or unintentionally?

Mr. Jenner. Well, I think, either way.

Mr. Mamantov. Either way—yes, sir—I once on one Saturday, my mother-in-law and I went to Sears to Ross Avenue store.

Mr. Jenner. Was this some time afterward?

Mr. Mamantov. Shortly afterward.

Mr. Jenner. How shortly—the next day?

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, no—the next day after Martin, I guess, came into the picture.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have occasion to speak with her then?

Mr. Mamantov. My mother-in-law went into the main entrance and I opened the door, and if I remember right, I was holding the door for somebody else to pass by and mother-in-law got ahead. I closed the door and started to walk off and catch up and I heard somebody calling, like in my conscious, calling, "Mr. Mamantov," in Russian and in a very little whisper, and I was walking a couple of steps further and I heard it again, "Mr. Mamantov," again in Russian and I turned around and here was a young lady, two children, and about three or four young men around, so in my mind it occurred—this is Marina, but I was so surprised and she didn't look like she looked at the police station. Her hair became dark and I called out "Netasha," and she called me in Russian and said, "No, this is Marina." So, I introduced myself immediately to the gentlemen with her, saying I was translating for her at the police station and my name is so and so.

120 In the meantime mother-in-law turned around and started to look for me and I told her to pass by, don't look, and try to get away, and, I said, "How are you doing?" She said, "Now is becoming quieter. I am very tired."

That is the extent of our conversation, so we went into basement of Sears store and when we finished our business, we were going up again—excuse me—by myself. Mother-in-law was waiting for me somewhere—I had to go and check on my credit, so after going into the Sears' office, coming back on the escalator, here was the group again, and I tried to be polite and let her and her escort get on the escalator, and I stepped on and I told to one, who later I found out was Martin, and I didn't know at that time who was Martin, and I told him, I said, "If she needs help in translating the language, please call on me." And so and so, and that's the time I saw her.

Mr. Jenner. Is that the last time you have seen her?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know a gentleman by the name of George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. You do—when did you first meet him?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember exactly, but let me go back—are you through with Mrs. Paine and Mrs. Oswald?

Mr. Jenner. I'm through with her only if you have told us everything about this particular occasion.

Mr. Mamantov. One occasion they asked Mrs. Paine, and who was also present and gave us testimony, they asked her if she knew if he had a gun.

Mr. Jenner. If Mrs. Paine knew?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct—it's important to you to know this, please?

Mr. Jenner. Yes; it is.

Mr. Mamantov. And she said, "No, she didn't." Why didn't she know that Marina had her belongings in her garage, and she said, "Yes, I knew," and "How didn't you know that she had a gun," and she said, "Because I didn't go through her belongings. I mean, it isn't my business to check on what she had there." Now, they asked her also, knowing that she is a—what is the religious denomination in Pennsylvania?

Mr. Jenner. Quaker.

Mr. Mamantov. Quaker. Would you allow her to have the gun, knowing that you are Quaker? She said again, "It belongs to her, and it isn't for me to say," and this is the extent I remember statements on Mrs. Paine's part.

Mr. Jenner. She wasn't asked either about what had occurred the previous evening; is that correct?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. Mamantov. You told me to say only what I know—I know this.

Mr. Jenner. I want you to state only what you recall, sir.

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember—this is overlapping two occasions—whether that was that evening, if you will show me the statement that was written, I will elaborate in details on it.

Mr. Jenner. Off the record.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness, Mamantov, off the record.)

Mr. Jenner. Back on the record. Are you acquainted with a man by the name of George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. When did you first become acquainted with him?

Mr. Mamantov. If I remember right, in the early part of 1956.

Mr. Jenner. You were then a resident of Dallas?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And will you describe George De Mohrenschildt as to his physical characteristics first?

Mr. Mamantov. A tall, handsome man, well built, very talkative and loud in society, likes to tell one company jokes—one sex jokes.

Mr. Jenner. He's a hail fellow, well-met type?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

121 Mr. Jenner. Garrulous, talkative?

Mr. Mamantov. Very.

Mr. Jenner. Expansive type?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. What color is his hair?

Mr. Mamantov. Brunette with quite a few grey hairs at that time when I met him, and appealed to ladies and used to take advantage of that.

Mr. Jenner. Sort of a ladies' man?

Mr. Mamantov. Sort of a ladies' man, and at that time was married, twice for sure, and maybe more, and shortly after that had a—a divorce was pending.

Mr. Jenner. Did you become acquainted with his then wife?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; I am acquainted of his girl friend of that general area, who is now his wife.

Mr. Jenner. And what was her name?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember——

Mr. Jenner. Was she a native born American?

Mr. Mamantov. Zhana, I think, probably in English would be Jane, and to spell Zhana in English translation is Z-h-a-n-a [spelling]. This was the way she was called in the Russian society.

Mr. Jenner. And translation of that would be Jane in English, you think?

Mr. Mamantov. I would say so—also of Russian.

Mr. Jenner. I was about to ask you—she was of Russian derivation?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. She was born in Russia?

Mr. Mamantov. That, I don't know—I don't know her, as well as I know George.

Mr. Jenner. She was not an American born?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't think so, but I don't know for sure. I'll put it this way. She speaks too good Russian to be an American born.

Mr. Jenner. What about De Mohrenschildt in that respect?

Mr. Mamantov. He speaks perfect Russian.

Mr. Jenner. Is he a native-born American?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; I don't think so, because he was educated in Leige, Belgium—well, he finished here—I know for sure if we meet again, I can bring you more details from our geological directories, all this information, and if I remember right, shortly we met him and Zhana together and we had service in our church, which was very small—actually was just a regular residence.

Mr. Jenner. You told us earlier in the course of our visiting that you participated in an effort to organize a church here in Dallas?

Mr. Mamantov. In Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. In which you anticipated people of Russian derivation would be interested?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And did that church have a name?

Mr. Mamantov. Saint Nicholas Eastern Orthodox Church.

Mr. Jenner. Eastern Orthodox Church?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, and there I saw him and her, I'm talking about Zhana, very improperly dressed for a church service. If I remember right, either both of them or she came in shorts toward the end of the service, which shocked all my family. I mean—just to describe a man this way——

Mr. Jenner. You mean this is part of his personality?

Mr. Mamantov. Right; and every place we met him he was talking to ladies elder than he, in a way normally a well brought up person wouldn't do it.

Mr. Jenner. Well, what I am trying to have you do is tell us of your acquaintance with George De Mohrenschildt, and avoiding speculation to the extent you can—and the part he played in your life. I am getting at the Russian emigre group here in Dallas.

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, had you known him prior to the time you met him, as you have described?

Mr. Mamantov. No—no, no; I haven't.

Mr. Jenner. Or known of him?

122 Mr. Mamantov. No; the first time I met him through Mr. Bouhe, and this was a first acquaintance and just like I said, the only places—it was in somebody's house and parties, we usually wouldn't stay too long because of him. We just have some reason—we had a tendency to avoid this person as much as possible.

Mr. Jenner. You acquired a normal or natural aversion to or dislike of George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. From what he did and what you thought he represented?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, because being of the same nationality, I thought he was hurting all of our emigre here in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know whether Marina or Lee Oswald knew the De Mohrenschildts?

Mr. Mamantov. I know that Marina related the conversations to my mother-in-law as "our best friends in Dallas," referring to both of the De Mohrenschildts.

Mr. Jenner. You are now stating that your mother-in-law told you that Marina said to her, "These were their best friends in Dallas"?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. We both appreciate that that is pure hearsay, but that remark was made to you?

Mr. Mamantov. I mean, it was made in a family—after my conversation between my mother-in-law and Marina.

Mr. Jenner. And there was yourself—and anybody else present——

Mr. Mamantov. My wife was present.

Mr. Jenner. When your mother-in-law made that statement in your presence?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; that's correct.

Mr. Jenner. But Marina was not present at that time?

Mr. Mamantov. No, no; our family haven't seen Marina in our lives. Mother-in-law never have seen Marina—was except at a distance at Sears store, except that time.

Mr. Jenner. Your information is that there never was any direct contact between your mother-in-law and Marina except on the telephone?

Mr. Mamantov. On telephone.

Mr. Jenner. And, was that by way of the telephone?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And you were not present, in the presence of your mother-in-law, when your mother-in-law had that conversation with Marina?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; I was at work. You see, she lived—if I can take your time, I can tell you how it happened, if it is important I can. I don't want to take your time.

Mr. Jenner. I want to avoid hearsay, and that's why I am going a little carefully at this moment because, on this trip we plan to talk with your mother-in-law and take her testimony directly, just not hearsay.

Mr. Mamantov. That's what I thought, but the reason she talked was because Marina was at Paine's house and Paine went to San Antonio and asked my mother-in-law to check on Marina because Marina was pregnant at that time—you see the connection?

Mr. Jenner. No; to check on Marina, that she had any suspicion of her?

Mr. Mamantov. No, no; but in case she needs help, but just in the way of help, and this way the whole conversation came up. Now, my mother-in-law—I asked Mr. Peterson who called me on Friday if my mother-in-law would be called or is called, I will come with her because she needs a translator.

Mr. Jenner. You may bring her.

Mr. Mamantov. If I may bring her with me because everything she knows we know in the family, and she needs a translator, and I translated for her when she was questioned by FBI. She doesn't speak enough English to answer your questions.

Mr. Jenner. Oh, is that so?

Mr. Mamantov. She will understand what you are talking about but—as far as that—she is 75, and an elderly lady and she can be quite nervous by being by herself and so on.

123 Mr. Jenner. All right, I will attempt my best to put her at ease, which I have tried to do with you.

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, I am at ease as much as I can be. I'm trying to be, because the reasons I hesitate to say—"Yes, I remember." I don't remember in some cases, or maybe I remember, like when I translated with Mr. Martin over here, because in my mind it is very hard to separate right now without going back and reading the report.

Mr. Jenner. Are you acquainted with a couple, Igor and Natalie Voshinin?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. They are friends of yours?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct; they are also friends of the De Mohrenschildts.

Mr. Jenner. And have you had conversations with the Voshinins with respect to Mr. De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; and on quite a few occasions.

Mr. Jenner. During any of those conversations was any reference made to a trip that De Mohrenschildt made or might have made to Mexico City, Mexico?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. When was that trip supposed to have taken place?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't remember if it was in 1958 or 1959. I don't know. Mrs. Voshinin can tell you exactly the time.

Mr. Jenner. All right, we intend to interrogate them as well. We will leave it to them.

Mr. Mamantov. Right, but I heard from her, I mean, her statement to us was that De Mohrenschildt went to Mexico and met with the Soviet representatives and Mikoyan——

Mr. Jenner. That's spelled M-i-k-o-y-a-n [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes—who was visiting at that time in Mexico. This, actually, if you will let me elaborate a little bit more on this—this mainly was my opinion of his politics, I mean, I had suspicioned, but this was actually what led me to believe or doubt his loyalty.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you are speaking of De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir; De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us your contacts with De Mohrenschildt; do they extend beyond what you have stated that he participated in the effort to organize the Eastern Orthodox Church?

Mr. Mamantov. No, no; he did not participate.

Mr. Jenner. He did not?

Mr. Mamantov. He did not—he never was interested in church life, but I met him through that group, and Mr. Bouhe, who are the most active participants in organizing the church.

Mr. Jenner. Would you please tell us what other Russian emigres of this group in Dallas participated in the effort to organize the church about which you have testified—yourself, Bouhe——

Mr. Mamantov. No; I joined. This was done already by other people. We came in 1955—this already was going for a couple of years.

Mr. Jenner. Who are reasonably regular attendants or at least persons interested?

Mr. Mamantov. Mr. Bouhe——

Mr. Jenner. Bouhe, yourself, your wife?

Mr. Mamantov. My wife not so much—she is a Catholic.

Mr. Jenner. I see.

Mr. Mamantov. But she attended, and, of course, she did everything for the sake of her children who are Greek Orthodox, and then Mrs.—oh, gosh, what is her name—Mrs. Zinzade, Z-i-n-z-a-d-e [spelling]. Her first name is Helen and his name is, I think, George, but I can look in the telephone book later on.

Mr. Jenner. That's all right. Are all these people generally Russian intellectuals?

Mr. Mamantov. No.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I call you an intellectual.

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. I meant to imply that.

124 Mr. Mamantov. Put it this way—all of them have lower educational level than I do, except De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. De Mohrenschildt has a higher education, as you do?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Most of these other people have the qualifications or are interested in what?

Mr. Mamantov. De Mohrenschildt has the same or a little bit low——

Mr. Jenner. As yours?

Mr. Mamantov. As mine. We are both geologists and might be called miners, and the Voshinins are the same.

Mr. Jenner. Who else?

Mr. Mamantov. Grigor'ev—this was the benefactor of that church. That's called Grigor'ev, he was the benefactor of that church. Voshinin, Bouhe, all of us were on the same educational level. The rest of them were below high-school education, especially like in Mr. Bouhe's case, he is an accountant, and a Latvian—Mrs. Grolle, G-r-o-l-l-e [spelling], and the first name is Emma. Now, who else was there—now, an Estonian couple who are very active—Hartens, H-a-r-t-en-s [spelling], and his first name, I don't remember, but if you need it exactly, we take the telephone book—all of these names are in the telephone book. This group actually was very active in organizing.

Mr. Jenner. Meller, M-e-l-l-e-r [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; and Mrs. Meller—right, and the closest relationship is between her and Mr. Bouhe.

Mr. Jenner. You mean there's a close relation between Mrs. Meller and Mr. Bouhe, they are close friends.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; closest of all this group because these people actually was the nucleous of those church workers or financial supporters. I was a worker for a while, but I didn't contribute money because we just came to Dallas and we didn't have enough to contribute, but Mr. Grigor'ev and Mr. Bouhe were the main financial supporters and through them, through all this group, I met Mr. De Mohrenschildt the first time.

Mr. Jenner. Then, I'll ask you this general question—would you please state all you know about George De Mohrenschildt, and you are free, in making the statement, to give your impressions and take it as chronologically as you can, and I should say to you that this testimony is privileged. You are not subject, unless you have an evil heart and evil intent, to any litigation, that is, slander, libel, or otherwise.

Mr. Mamantov. No; only I know about the man, like I told you, that we were being closer acquainted with him and his present wife.

Mr. Jenner. Yes, sir.

Mr. Mamantov. Because of his characteristics, of his frivolous life, his behavior in the presence of ladies—to us suspicious political trips supposedly related to his business and this is the extent I can say of him.

Mr. Jenner. Have you told us everything you said to the FBI when you called them on the 22d of November before you were contacted by the Dallas office?

Mr. Mamantov. I haven't told them anything except I know of the assassin and if I can be of service I would like to relate the knowledge I have.

Mr. Jenner. Now, was there an occasion on which your mother-in-law, Mrs. Gravitis made some comment or gave an opinion to you, her opinion as to Lee Oswald with particular reference to his possible political leanings, and does that serve to refresh your recollection enough—I don't want to suggest the conversation to you.

Mr. Mamantov. In relation to what?

Mr. Jenner. In relation to Oswald, whether he was a Communist or what his political leanings were in her opinion?

Mr. Mamantov. Well, on many occasions that came up, the conversation, after her conversations with Mrs. Paine, and after hearing through Mrs. Paine and my mother-in-law what he was saying and how he was opposed to our way of life and knowing that he came from that country, she and I stated that he is a Communist—we didn't hesitate.

Mr. Jenner. That was based upon the reports to you from your mother-in-law125 as to what Mrs. Paine might have or did say to her and from, I gather, your general knowledge at that time that he had gone from this country to Russia?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. And had returned with Marina as his wife?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, and not only through Mrs. Paine, because after we found out—many people of Russian descent were somehow acquainted with Lee Oswald and Marina, so we heard later from different sources of him and his political opinions.

Mr. Jenner. Now, do I correctly interpret your testimony that because there is a Russian emigre group here that is lively and interested in each other, that they took an interest, if for no other reason, that they took an interest in Marina and to an extent, Lee Oswald, to expand her acquaintance in the Dallas-Irving-Fort Worth area and make them comfortable to the extent that you people out of the kindness of your heart could do so? I don't want to describe it incorrectly—give me your reaction to that.

Mr. Mamantov. My reaction—I never was asked to help them, never was approached by them or people who tried to help them.

Mr. Jenner. What was your impression, that people were trying to help them?

Mr. Mamantov. People who tried to help them, I told them on many occasions they shouldn't do it.

Mr. Jenner. What do you mean?

Mr. Mamantov. Well, I told Mrs. Paine—Mrs. Paine was an interested person.

Mr. Jenner. Why?

Mr. Mamantov. Because, in my opinion, Oswald was a Communist and was sent here with certain purpose, whether to kill or what to do, but he had an assignment and because my belief was and still is, and which is strengthened due to the 22d assassination.

Mr. Jenner. And these views and opinions of yours are not based on any direct knowledge on your part of Lee Harvey Oswald, that is, any direct contact during the course of events up to November 22, that is, you don't point to any specific knowledge on your part, but it is a realization——

Mr. Mamantov. It is a realization of what the people told me of his political viewpoints, their home being in the Soviet Union and supposedly being an undesirable person, but I have again past cases in my life where exactly what he did, other people, they are doing it, and I am sure you have heard many questions on TV and those questions were asked before.

Mr. Jenner. And I take it, Mr. Mamantov, that you regard yourself, and that you are a loyal and dedicated, naturalized American.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; I am.

Mr. Jenner. And you are proud and concerned about your standing in that respect?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir; but I'm not a member of the John Birch Society, I am not a member of any organization except my professional and local Republican Party.

Mr. Jenner. At any time prior to November 1963, were you aware of or has there come to your attention any information or statement attributed to Oswald, that to you indicated that he had animosity or opposition to President John F. Kennedy as an individual, as I say, prior to November 22?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; I understand—no, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Or any animosity or opposition to John F. Kennedy in his capacity as President of the United States?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; only the information was relayed to me that he was opposed to the Government of the United States, without mentioning the President or any other name.

Mr. Jenner. And you have no information on which you personally can rely of your personal knowledge, indicating that Oswald was a Communist?

Mr. Mamantov. You mean if I have proof—physical proof?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. When did you meet George Bouhe?

Mr. Mamantov. It is September or, I mean, late part of September or early126 part of October 1955, when I still was by myself in Dallas. I heard of him being from Estonia, which was mistaken and happened to be a Russian. So I called him up and we met in the restaurant. He came to my house—he came to my room where I rented. I forgot the number—3405, if I remember right, Milton Street, and invited me to eat with him out in the restaurant by name Europa, and there we ate and then somehow we went back, you know, I discovered he is White Russian and I am White Russian and he talked extensively about Mrs. Meller.

Mr. Jenner. Me-l-l-e-r [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. Mrs. Meller—right.

Mr. Jenner. Is she a White Russian?

Mr. Mamantov. No; she is—she came the same way like Mrs. Ford came from—was brought by Germans into Germany and came to the States.

Mr. Jenner. Off the record a moment, please.

(Discussion between Counsel Jenner and the witness Mamantov off the record.)

Mr. Jenner. On the record, now. Are you acquainted with what Lee Oswald's reputation was in the community in which he resided as to his personality? Now, in this question I seek to distinguish from his political beliefs. What kind of person was he—was he quiet, retiring, avoiding friends, did he have any reputation toward inclination to violence, or did he have a reputation in that connection, and if so, are you acquainted with his reputation in the community?

Mr. Mamantov. I'll put it this way—the people who wanted to help Marina didn't want to help Oswald because he was holding back—I mean—people tried to start conversations, always he went into political questions and, of course, immediately he disagreed.

Mr. Jenner. Did he have a reputation for being unpleasant, pleasant, was he sociable in the sense that he was at ease among other people, did he seek their company? I'm asking now, only reputation, sir.

Mr. Mamantov. Again, I can say only in the houses he has been—for one reason or another he was disliked—I'll put it this way.

Mr. Jenner. All right—by the Russian emigre group as a whole?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. They had a low opinion of his reputation in the community, in that community of people—Mr. Mamantov?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right.

Mr. Jenner. It was one of reservation, dislike—that they did not think well of his personality?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, he was holding back and he didn't try to make friends or he didn't try, was what I heard—he tried to keep Marina away from those people and appeared a couple of times with her in other Russian houses, but not very willingly and was holding back.

Mr. Jenner. He was holding back?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall anything else with respect to his reputation in the Russian community area? I'm not seeking specific instances, but only general reputation, the reaction of the Russian community group toward Lee Harvey Oswald before November 22?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; once he beat up Marina.

Mr. Jenner. Now, that's a specific instance, and therefore is not reputation. May I explain to you that reputation in a community is what the whole body of the community feels after knowing a person for a while. It is a reaction gained by people in the community from many instances.

Mr. Mamantov. Not from the one instance.

Mr. Jenner. But, not from one—one instance is hearsay to us.

Mr. Mamantov. Well—only, I know that he was undesirable—and after people met him a few times, or, we say, met even once in their own houses, he was undesirable to those people.

Mr. Jenner. Was he regarded as a difficult person?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. I think you have said this, but may I ask you—your mother-in-law, Mrs. Gravitis, has served as a tutor for Mrs. Paine?

Mr. Mamantov. I mean—she get the job through me.

127 Mr. Jenner. Yes; of course.

Mr. Mamantov. That put her to work with Mrs. Paine. You see, what happened, Mrs. Paine was calling me at the office and asked to teach—and I told her I'm not interested to teach individual students, and I suggested my mother-in-law, and this way we made arrangement for my mother-in-law to teach her Russian.

Mr. Jenner. Are you acquainted with the reputation in the Russian community of Marina Oswald, and I'm going to ask you several subdivisions—first, as to her personality.

Mr. Mamantov. From what I heard, she was a very pleasant young girl, was quite open in her discussions, in her conversations. My conclusion was that she is very pleasant to be around.

Mr. Jenner. Are you acquainted with her reputation in the Russian community for truth and veracity?

Mr. Mamantov. For whom?

Mr. Jenner. As to her truth and veracity, that is, did she have a reputation with respect to whether she was or was not a truthful person?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, I see what you mean.

Mr. Jenner. A person upon whose statements one might rely?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't know—as a community. I do know in our family discussion.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I'll take that part of the community.

Mr. Mamantov. All right. We didn't accuse her one way or another way, but we couldn't understand how she could come out of the Soviet Union so easily and also, statements she made to my mother-in-law about him living in a small apartment, which we still have relatives and, I mean distant relatives, and we know that they cannot live in a comfortable apartment. For this reason, we have opinion, or, we wouldn't trust her on the first-hand information.

Mr. Jenner. Did she have a reputation in the Russian community with respect to whether or not she was a member of the Communist Party? Now, that is a political question.

Mr. Mamantov. Now, she told my mother-in-law——

Mr. Jenner. Now, please, did she have a reputation?

Mr. Mamantov. Wait just a second——

Mr. Jenner. A reputation, whether she was or was not—what did the Russian community as a whole, now, not just your mother-in-law?

Mr. Mamantov. All right—you want the Communist Party of the United States or Communist Party of the Soviet Union?

Mr. Jenner. All right, I'll take both of them—I'll take the Communist Party of the Soviet Union first.

Mr. Mamantov. Everybody knew that she was a member of the Communistic Youth Organization—she didn't even hide this, but I never have heard of somebody implying that she would be a member of the Communist Party of the United States, so as community, I don't think everybody considered her as well tied to the Communist Party as the community did Oswald himself.

Mr. Jenner. What was the general reputation, if any, of Marina in the Russian community on the subject of whether she had any fixed political views and might actively support those views here in the United States?

Mr. Mamantov. No; I don't know this—I mean—I don't have any opinion. I haven't heard anything—I know that she didn't—she avoided political discussions, I'll put it this way.

Mr. Jenner. She did?

Mr. Mamantov. She did avoid political discussions.

Mr. Jenner. I take it from your testimony, you are acquainted with the Fords?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. I think you said Mr. Bouhe was a bachelor?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct. He is a bachelor now—he was married—he's divorced.

Mr. Jenner. He's a grass widower?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, but he was a very short time widower—he could be married.

128 Mr. Jenner. Were you and your family aware of Bouhe's efforts, if they were efforts, to collect clothing and otherwise be helpful to the Oswalds?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. You were aware of that?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. And was that in your opinion a good faith, charitable impulse on his part?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

Mr. Jenner. You think it might have been ulterior?

Mr. Mamantov. We objected immediately when we heard about this. We objected to every person who took Marina in their own house, in trying to collect money and clothing, and this supposedly happened after her husband beat her up.

Mr. Jenner. When there went through the Russian community a report that Lee Oswald had inflicted physical violence on Marina, then the community objected to assistance being afforded the Oswalds?

Mr. Mamantov. I don't know—I think they were especially helping her, after they left Fort Worth, and they had domestic disagreements. Supposedly, she was attacked by him—then the Russian community here in Dallas tried to help her by taking her into the houses or collecting money and collecting clothing and stuff like that, so I opposed this more and more violently.

Mr. Jenner. But you do know that the Russian community, as such, of which Mr. Bouhe was a member, was seeking to assist her?

Mr. Mamantov. Correct.

Mr. Jenner. By collecting clothing?

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Gathering money and taking her into their homes on occasions?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right—assigning for certain families to keep for a couple of weeks or a week.

Mr. Jenner. That included Mrs. Meller?

Mr. Mamantov. That included Mrs. Meller, Fords, and he tried to get this person——

Mr. Jenner. When you say "he" you mean Mr. Bouhe?

Mr. Mamantov. Mr. Bouhe.

Mr. Jenner. He tried to place her with whom—Mrs. Grolle?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; she's an elderly person and lives by herself and had a few rooms for rent and as far as I know, she didn't take her into her home.

Mr. Jenner. Well, we have no information that she did.

Mr. Mamantov. As far as I know, I don't think that she did, but I don't think that she did, but Mellers and the Fords took her for a week or for 2 weeks.

Mr. Jenner. Have you ever heard of a Mrs. Elena Hall?

Mr. Mamantov. Elena Hall—how do you spell it?

Mr. Jenner. H-a-l-l [spelling], E-l-e-n-a [spelling].

Mr. Mamantov. No; the first name—Elena Hall?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir; you see, we have a secretary, Helene, H-e-l-e-n-e [spelling] Hall, which couldn't be that person.

Mr. Jenner. No, that's a different person.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Paul Gregory or Peter Gregory?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, sir; father, I think, is Peter.

Mr. Jenner. You mean one is the father and one is son?

Mr. Mamantov. One is father's name and one is son's name—that's correct, but his father is not living. Do you know how Russians call your name—if I would refer to you, it is your name first and your father's name second, instead of saying Mr. so and so, so that's how it appears.

Mr. Jenner. What do they say in case—since my name and my father's name are the same?

Mr. Mamantov. The same—it would be, if you are, for instance, Oswald, it would be Oswald Oswald, each ending implies you are a son of Oswald.

Mr. Jenner. You have already mentioned Volkmar Schmidt.

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

129 Mr. Jenner. He was a roommate or lived with Mr. Glover.

Mr. Mamantov. And a close friend of Dick Pierce.

Mr. Jenner. P-i-e-r-c-e [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. Also a geologist.

Mr. Jenner. Or, P-e-a-r-c-e [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. No, P-i-e-r-c-e [spelling].

Mr. Jenner. What was his first name?

Mr. Mamantov. Richard, R-i-c-h-a-r-d [spelling].

Mr. Jenner. Is Mr. Norman Fredricksen a student?

Mr. Mamantov. I was teaching scientific Russian for the Socony Mobil Research Lab in Duncanville, and this student joined. Actually, the class was carried out first, well, first semester and Mr. Fredricksen was hired by Socony Mobil and joined the class.

Mr. Jenner. How old a man is he?

Mr. Mamantov. Oh, I would guess around 28 plus.

Mr. Jenner. He is a young man?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; he came to—he served in the Army.

Mr. Jenner. Do you—the United States Army?

Mr. Mamantov. United States Army, was in Germany, and studied Russian in Heidelberg. When he came back, he did graduate work after the Army. He did graduate work at the University of Pennsylvania and had studied Russian, so when he came to my class he had a very good background of the Russian language already.

Mr. Jenner. Now, there was an occasion, was there not, in which this student, Norman Fredricksen, said something to you about Oswald; isn't that correct?

Mr. Mamantov. May I point out, I lost him for a while after I finished that semester, that interrupted Russian, and this was in the spring of 1961, and if I am right, about a semester or two semesters later, he and Volkmar Schmidt came to my home and asked me to conduct private lessons for both of them.

Mr. Jenner. Had you also been tutoring Volkmar Schmidt?

Mr. Mamantov. They came—right now, they came to my house. Not before—the first time I met Volkmar Schmidt was when Fredricksen and Volkmar Schmidt came to my home, and I said, "All right, I'll take both of you," and I talked to Fredricksen, and Volkmar Schmidt was described as knowing the same amount of the Russian language, and I found out he didn't know half as much as Fredricksen did and I offered to split and I would continue to teach for the same amount of money Fredricksen, and Volkmar Schmidt would take from my mother-in-law, who had time and willingness to teach individual students, so we split—I was tutoring Fredricksen and she was teaching Schmidt.

Mr. Jenner. And did there come this occasion when Fredricksen spoke to you about the Oswalds one night?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right, and Fredricksen and his wife came to visit with us.

Mr. Jenner. Your home?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct, and this was, I would say, sometime—March, April, might be of 1963, and so they told us yesterday or day before yesterday that they went to a very interesting party where the person present just came in from the Soviet Union and his wife, and the party was held at Glover's home. I asked him who was present. He said Mrs. Paine was present, of course, both Oswalds were present, and the De Mohrenschildts were present. Of course, Glover was present and I don't remember who else he mentioned, and we started the conversation.

Mr. Jenner. Was Fredricksen present?

Mr. Mamantov. Right, Fredricksen and his wife, he and my wife, my mother-in-law and myself violently jumped into the conversation, and I said, "Folks, you just don't know with whom you are associating. You shouldn't be at that party, and you shouldn't be going into those houses," and, of course, they said, "We just wanted to speak Russian. Mrs. Paine wanted to learn Russian, so we wanted to learn Russian and we just decided to get together and learn Russian." And they didn't speak Russian very much except with Marina. She130 was very shy and didn't talk very much. Most of the evening was spent conversing with Oswald on political questions, because he understood.

Mr. Jenner. This was the report they made to you?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Jenner. In the questioning by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, you mentioned either a Mr. Clark or a Mrs. Clark.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, those people from Fort Worth.

Mr. Jenner. What are their names—do you remember a given name?

Mr. Mamantov. No, I don't remember, but he is a lawyer and his wife, she is a Russian from France. He married her, I think, during the American occupation of Europe.

Mr. Jenner. By the way, Mr. Gregory is a native-born Russian?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes, he is Grigor'er. He has changed his name—it isn't his original name.

Mr. Jenner. Originally, it was Gregoria and he changed it to Gregory, spelled G-r-i-g-o-r'e-r [spelling]?

Mr. Mamantov. It could be—he spelled it also with an "e", but that's originally his name.

Mr. Jenner. He is a petroleum consultant of some type?

Mr. Mamantov. Petroleum engineer—correct.

Mr. Jenner. Is he part Russian—part of the Russian emigre group here in the Dallas-Fort Worth area?

Mr. Mamantov. That's right. You see, we are not meeting with them for quite a while as a group. We broke away, but individually, I have been with Gregorys on a few occasions—I have been with the Clarks on few occasions together. I have been with Mr. Bouhe quite frequently in the past—whom else—the same I know them very well personally but we didn't meet—we don't meet as a group any more.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Mamantov, do you have anything that occurs to you that you think I would like to add to the record that you think might be helpful to the Presidential investigation of the assassination of President Kennedy, in connection with its work in investigating the assassination of President John F. Kennedy; if so, would you please state what you have in mind?

Mr. Mamantov. I have grave doubts of Marina's exit of the Soviet Union so easily. Of course, I don't have any proof one way or the other—but knowing her life from what I translated, I have more doubt of her arrangement—how the woman could come out so easy from the Soviet Union, because if I liked to get—if I would have liked to take some of my family out it would take for me years and thousands of dollars to get my closest relative out of the Soviet Union. Besides, she should be old, practically as a laborer help not useful to the Soviet Union, and here, a young lady—20 or 21, just married an American citizen came out and—but I don't want to accuse her—maybe she's completely innocent. I know other cases where people would use all possible means to get out of the Soviet Union. Maybe this is the case, but there is still in my mind quite a doubt of her coming out so easy.

Mr. Jenner. Is there anything else you want to add?

Mr. Mamantov. No, not on this particular case, I think that's everything.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we have had some off the record discussions and I had a short talk with you before we began this deposition.

Mr. Mamantov. Right.

Mr. Jenner. Is there anything that occurred during the course of our off the record discussions or preliminary talks before the deposition, that you think is pertinent here that I have failed to bring out?

Mr. Mamantov. No, I think you brought out everything that I think of.

Mr. Jenner. Was there anything you said to me in the off-the-record discussions or the preliminary discussions which, in your opinion, is inconsistent with any testimony that you have given on the record?

Mr. Mamantov. No, I don't think it is.

Mr. Jenner. And, as you sit there, do you have any feeling that at any time, on or off the record, that I directly or indirectly sought to influence you in any statements you might have made?

Mr. Mamantov. No, sir.

131 Mr. Jenner. Well, we very much appreciate your cooperation and help and in sticking with us now and going into all of this with us, and at the moment, I don't have in mind anything further, but it is possible that while I am still here in Dallas this week or next week, or afterwards, I might wish to get in touch with you and have you further extend your deposition.

Mr. Mamantov. All right, sir.

Mr. Jenner. We will close the taking of the deposition of Mr. Mamantov at this point.


TESTIMONY OF MRS. DOROTHY GRAVITIS

The testimony of Mrs. Dorothy Gravitis was taken at 1 p.m., on April 6, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. David W. Belin, assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Ilya A. Mamantov, interpreter.

Mr. Belin. I am going to ask you both to stand up. Would you raise your right hand. Mrs. Gravitis and Mr. Ilya Mamantov, do you solemnly swear, Mrs. Gravitis that the testimony you are about to give, and Mr. Mamantov, the translation that you are about to give, will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Your name is Mrs. Dorothy Gravitis?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Where do you live?

Mrs. Gravitis. Today?

Mr. Belin. Now.

Mrs. Gravitis. Richardson, Tex., 2444 Fairway Circle (AD 5-2873).

Mr. Belin. Is that a suburb of Dallas?

Mrs. Gravitis. That's correct.

Mr. Belin. Mrs. Gravitis, is your daughter married to Mr. Mamantov?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Where were you born?

Mrs. Gravitis. Latvia.

Mr. Belin. May I ask approximately how old you are?

Mrs. Gravitis. Seventy-four years old.

Mr. Belin. Did you live in Latvia all your life before coming to America?

Mrs. Gravitis. First Latvia was independent. It was part of Russia. I was born in Latvian territory, which was at that time Russia.

I was educated in Russia, in Moscow.

I was teaching in the Russian territory, and after that in Latvian territory, before Latvia became independent, in Ventspils, the name of the city where I was teaching in Latvia.

Mr. Belin. Latvia became independent in 1918?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. And remained independent until Russia annexed these three Baltic countries around 1939, or so?

Mrs. Gravitis. 1940. In 1913, I got married.

Mr. Mamantov. Do you need a very detailed story on her life?

Mr. Belin. No.

Mrs. Gravitis [through interpreter]. I lived until 1950 in Ventspils, and then I and my husband were evacuated to St. Petersburg or Petrograd at that time. This was in 1915.

Mr. Belin. Now it is Leningrad?

Mrs. Gravitis. Leningrad.

Mr. Belin. Let me ask you this. Did you stay in either Russia or Latvia from that time on until after—for how long?

Mrs. Gravitis. From 1915 to 1919, in Petrograd. Then in 1919 I and my132 daughter came to Latvia. My husband remained in Petrograd. They didn't let him out.

Mr. Belin. From 1919 onward, where did you live?

Mrs. Gravitis. From that time until 1940, I lived and worked as a teacher in Latvia.

Mr. Belin. Where did you teach?

Mrs. Gravitis. I taught mathematics, approximately the equivalent to junior high, and the Russian language.

Mr. Belin. Did you work for the State or for a private school?

Mrs. Gravitis. State school.

Mr. Belin. From 1940, where did you live and what did you do?

Mrs. Gravitis. At that time it became the Soviet Union, part of the Soviet Union, and I lived in the same spot in Latvia.

Mr. Belin. Do you know the city?

Mrs. Gravitis. Zilupe, which is about half a mile from the Russian border.

Mr. Belin. How long did you stay there? From 1940 on?

Mrs. Gravitis. All the time.

Mr. Belin. Until when?

Mrs. Gravitis. I worked 1 year under the communistic government as a teacher until 1941. Then I was teaching under the German occupation as a teacher until 1943. Then I came to live with Mr. Mamantov in 1943, in Riga, which is the Latvian Capital.

Mr. Belin. Up to 1940, had your husband left Petrograd to move back to Latvia with you?

Mrs. Gravitis. When I came with my daughter to Latvia in 1919, I didn't go back any more, and my husband joined me in February 1923.

Mr. Belin. And he stayed until how long? Did he stay with you in Latvia then, and what happened to him?

Mrs. Gravitis. When he came to Latvia, he was a railroad station manager immediately, or became. And I was a teacher in that town. And we lived there until 1941, until he was arrested.

Mr. Belin. Do you know what ever became of him?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know. Just recently I received a letter from my sister-in-law and she said that he died in Siberia and didn't know when.

Mr. Belin. When did you leave Latvia, and where did you go?

Mrs. Gravitis. 1944, I went to Germany.

Mr. Belin. You went with your daughter and son-in-law?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes; and two children.

Mr. Belin. And your two children?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Your two grandchildren?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Where did you stay in Germany?

Mrs. Gravitis. In Bavaria.

Mr. Belin. In a camp?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; not immediately. We were all the time together, and so we came to Bavaria in October 1944, and stayed in private residences until August 1945, and at that time we went to DP camp near Guenzburg.

Mr. Belin. How long did you stay in the DP camp? Until when?

Mrs. Gravitis. Four years in—until October of 1949, when we went to Bremerhaven and proceeded to the United States.

Mr. Mamantov. She left 2 weeks ahead of us because her name started with "G".

Mr. Belin. Where did you go in the United States when you got here? Where have you lived since you have come here?

Mrs. Gravitis. In New York City.

Mr. Belin. How long did you live in New York, and where have you lived since then?

Mrs. Gravitis. Approximately 1 or 2. However, we left New York February 28, 1952.

Mr. Belin. And you came to——

Mrs. Gravitis. To Post, Tex.

133 Mr. Belin. Is that near Dallas?

Mrs. Gravitis. 325 miles west of Dallas.

Mr. Belin. How long did you stay in Post, Tex.?

Mrs. Gravitis. I am sorry, Brownfield, which is 38 miles north of Post.

Mr. Belin. Where have you lived in Texas since then?

Mrs. Gravitis. Quite a few places, because I don't remember the small towns. Brownfield, Lubbock, and again Brownfield.

Mr. Belin. Since you have come to Texas, have you always lived with your daughter and son-in-law?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin [to Mr. Mamantov]. So in your deposition, I would assume then, Mr. Mamantov, what you said, I would find the places you have lived in Texas?

Mr. Mamantov. That's correct.

Mr. Belin. Before coming to Texas, did you do anything in Europe other than teach? Any occupation other than teaching when you were in Europe?

Mrs. Gravitis. Before we left Latvia, you mean?

Mr. Belin. Yes.

Mrs. Gravitis. I was a housewife also. No other profession.

Mr. Belin. Since coming to America, what has been your occupation?

Mrs. Gravitis. In New York I was part-time janitor together with Mr. Mamantov, on Broadway somewhere. Was cleaning the sidewalks and heating the furnace. The people helped me, the neighbors helped me to clean the sidewalks.

I was raising the grandchildren, and by that time we had three. One was born in Germany. Then after that I sewed and taught Russian, individual students.

Mr. Belin. This is generally what you have done then since coming to Texas, is private tutoring?

Mrs. Gravitis. And sewing. The sewing is the main point, but tutoring on and off, because it is not enough students.

Mr. Belin. When did you first become acquainted with Ruth Paine, Mrs. Michael Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. I was teaching in Berlitz School here in Dallas. I was also teaching Mrs. Paine. This was 3 years ago, but I don't remember the date when I started. And Mrs. Paine used to take Russian instructions at the Berlitz school, but not from me. I can add this.

Mr. Belin. Do you know how much the Berlitz School of Russian lessons cost?

Mrs. Gravitis. You mean how much I got paid?

Mr. Belin. No; how much Mrs. Paine paid?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know for sure. The principal didn't tell me, but I heard somewhere from $5 to $6.

Mr. Belin. That is at the Berlitz School?

Mrs. Gravitis. He paid me $2.50.

Mr. Belin. $2.50 for a private lesson?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Being directly, not through the Berlitz School?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; I received remuneration.

Mr. Belin. The Berlitz School paid you $2.50?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. For how long a teaching session would this be?

Mrs. Gravitis. One hour.

Mr. Belin. A private session at the Berlitz School for one hour, or would this be several people in the class?

Mrs. Gravitis. If I had one student, then I received $2.50. If I had two, then I received $3.

Mr. Belin. When you taught Mrs. Paine, was there generally one student?

Mrs. Gravitis. Excuse me, I never taught Mrs. Paine. Mrs. Paine was taking lessons before I came to that school.

Mr. Belin. How did you get in contact with Mrs. Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. I gave two lessons to Mrs. Paine at the Berlitz School. This way I became acquainted and she said it was too expensive, and Mrs. Paine dropped out of school.

134 Mr. Mamantov. After she dropped out, Mrs. Paine called me at the office and asked me to teach, and I refused, but I suggested my mother-in-law would teach her at home.

Mr. Belin. At whose home?

Mrs. Gravitis. At our home. I mean it is a private lesson for $8 per hour, private lesson.

Mr. Belin. When Mrs. Paine was taking from you those two lessons at the Berlitz School, was there anyone else in the class with her?

Mrs. Gravitis. She was by herself and I gave her only two lessons.

Mr. Belin. What kind of student was Mrs. Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. She was a good student, talented, serious.

Mr. Belin. Had she had any contact with any other Russian teachers, that you know of, in Russia?

Mrs. Gravitis. Pardon me?

Mr. Belin. Did Mrs. Paine have any contact with any Russian teachers in Russia?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. What do you know about this?

Mrs. Gravitis. I was correcting the lessons. I had the letters—Mrs. Paine was writing to this particular teacher. The name of this teacher was Nina, and she was teaching English language, beginning classes. Some were in Russian, somewhere in Russia. I don't remember the name of the city.

Mr. Belin. Do you know how Mrs. Paine got in contact with this Russian teacher?

Mrs. Gravitis. I asked her, and as far as I remember, she said through a youth organization, but she didn't go into detail. I didn't question her any more.

Mr. Belin. Do you know what the name of the youth organization was?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; I don't.

Mr. Belin. Or was it a political youth organization?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know.

Mr. Belin. In the letters that you translated or corrected did the grammar of Mrs. Paine, contain any political discussion?

Mrs. Gravitis. Letters, you mean?

Mr. Belin. The letters that Mrs. Paine was sending to the teacher, or the letters you saw from the teacher, was there any political discussion involved?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. When did you first start teaching Mrs. Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. I started some time during the summer before Mrs. Paine's son was born, who was born in February, the following February, and then she discontinued taking lessons.

Mr. Belin. What period would this have been? What year?

Mrs. Gravitis. Approximately 3 years ago. The boy right now is 3 years old, so we say 1961.

Mr. Belin. 1960, wouldn't it?

Mrs. Gravitis. The boy was born in 1961. Yes; 1960, the summer of 1960.

Mr. Belin. After the boy was born, did you ever give her any more Russian language lessons?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes; during the fall when the boy was a few months old.

Mr. Belin. Did you keep up contact with Mrs. Paine after she quit taking lessons?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. When did you first hear or learn about Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Gravitis. Either April or May. Probably April. Mr. and Mrs. Fredricksen came to our house and told us they had attended a party, that there was an American who came recently from the Soviet Union, and his wife is a Russian.

Mr. Belin. When did you first have a conversation with Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Gravitis. I never have talked with her in person, but only on the phone. In May of that particular year, Mrs. Paine went to San Antonio, and she asked me would I help Marina because she doesn't know the English language and nobody could help her.

135 Mr. Belin. This was Mrs. Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. She asked me to help, and Marina was pregnant at that time.

Mr. Belin. Let me ask you this. Have you ever met Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Have you ever met, or did you ever meet Lee Harvey Oswald, her husband?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Did you ever talk to Lee Harvey Oswald on the telephone?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Did you ever talk to Marina Oswald on the telephone?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. How many times, approximately, have you talked to Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Gravitis. Two.

Mr. Belin. When did the first conversation take place, and what was said?

Mrs. Gravitis. The time when Mrs. Paine went to San Antonio, we had a severe storm, and the next day in the morning, I called Marina at the Paine's home.

Mr. Belin. This would have been when?

Mrs. Gravitis. I think this was in May 1962, or 1963, I forget. This was this past summer, 1963.

Mr. Belin. What did Marina Oswald say? Did she say where she was from and where she lived before she came to this country?

Mrs. Gravitis. I asked her where did she come from, from what city in Russia. The answer was, she came from Leningrad and used to live in Leningrad, on Ligovka Street.

Mr. Belin. Did she say she lived anywhere else other than Leningrad?

Mrs. Gravitis. She said she lived in Minsk and got married in Minsk, and together with her husband—excuse me it is just the reverse. She lived in Minsk, got married in Minsk, and went to Leningrad and lived on this street in Leningrad.

Mr. Belin. After she was married?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. She lived in Leningrad with her husband after she got married?

Mr. Mamantov. Would you mind if she started again?

Mr. Belin. Let's start at the beginning now.

Mrs. Gravitis. In Minsk she got married. This is White Russia. And then together with her husband arrived at Leningrad. They lived in Leningrad on this street, Ligovka Street.

Mr. Mamantov. Now mother stresses that so much, because she remembers this part in Petrograd very well, and this was the laborers, the poor part of Leningrad—I mean of Petrograd at that time, and somehow brought mother's memory back to Petrograd.

Mr. Belin. Did she say what she did in Leningrad and Minsk after she was married, or what her husband did?

Mrs. Gravitis. I asked her what is her profession. She said she is a pharmacist. And I was surprised at 22 years and pharmacist.

Mr. Belin. Did she say what her husband did in Russia?

Mrs. Gravitis. I didn't ask and she didn't say.

Mr. Belin. Did she say what her father did?

Mrs. Gravitis. No. She said that she didn't have parents. Father and mother were dead, and for this reason she had easier time to get out of Russia.

Mr. Belin. Did she have a stepfather?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know.

Mr. Belin. Did she say why she came to the United States?

Mrs. Gravitis. She said her husband was returning home and she came with her husband. I was very surprised how did the Soviet Union let you out, I asked Marina. She said, "We had a luck."

Mr. Belin. Did she say anything else about that?

Mrs. Gravitis. "Husband doesn't have work here." I mean in the United States, and so her husband didn't have any income, and for this reason she lives at Mrs. Paine's home.

136 Mr. Belin. Did she give any other statements about how she happened to get out of Russia other than that she had luck?

Mrs. Gravitis. I didn't ask and I felt she wouldn't tell me. I mean, I didn't ask, and I feel if I asked, Marina wouldn't tell me. Nobody who is coming out from there would tell how they got out or why they got out. She was complaining that her husband didn't have work here and couldn't get a job. I replied that everybody who wants to work in the United States can get a job. Then she asked me what kind of work you mean. I said any kind of laboring work is possible. Roadwork or any kind of work. And she said that her husband thinks that such type of work is below his dignity.

Mr. Belin. Did she say whether or not her husband was a Communist?

Mr. Mamantov. She would like to ask you now what do you understand by the word Communist?

Mr. Belin. Well, I would like to have your mother-in-law explain just what she would call it.

Mrs. Gravitis. I had a conversation. I said here in Dallas is a person or a gentleman who helps many Russians who are arriving in this city, or who has helped in the past, Mr. Bouhe. Marina said, "Yes, I know him." She said her husband and Mr. Bouhe don't match in their characters. And I replied that you think probably not match the characters, but they agree in their principles, and she said, "Yes."

Mr. Mamantov. She said, my husband—and this word, I don't know exactly how to translate it—I mistranslated it for the FBI, this word, and I think in your investigation it is very important.

She replied that her husband is now—I could not translate just the individual word. I have to give you the meaning of the Russian word, which was developed fairly recently—that my husband is a person who believes in ideas, and it means ideals of the Communist movement. Now, I can give you the translation of this word if you would like to insert, because maybe in Washington you can get a better description of this word.

Mr. Belin. Can you spell the word?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes; ideinyi—which has political connotations, and it means a person who believes in the Communist movement, Communist ideals, but doesn't hold yet a ticket or membership in the Communist Party. But this is a step to achieve the membership in the Communist Party.

And I think it is very important, which mother emphasizes, and I translated it in the FBI report, "idealist," which is not correct. So it is broken down first, pioneer. Second, the membership in the Youth Communist Party. Third, the candidate for the Communist Party. And this third step is eventually for this particular work.

Mr. Belin. As I understand it now, you say there are various stages to become a member of the Communist Party in Russia, is that correct?

Mr. Mamantov. When mother heard this word from Marina, she couldn't talk to her any more or ask her any questions, because this stage of the person becoming a full time member Communist was most dangerous for the people in Russia or in Latvia or in the Soviet Union.

Mr. Belin. What do you mean by most dangerous?

Mrs. Gravitis. I mean that this is the most dangerous stage, because this person or during this stage, they are spying on other people. They are spying on other people to gain personal reward from the communistic people.

Mr. Belin. In other words, they had to do certain deeds when they go to the last stage, which is the actual Communist membership, is that it?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes. I also said in the previous conversation, which I can assure you that this is true, which I know from my personal experience. When I was teaching from 1940 until 1941, people like this, who were in this particular stage, who were not yet members of the Communist Party, were spying on me, listening behind the door when I was teaching in the class, and this way it is my experience from that.

Mr. Belin. I believe that she said that a very small percentage of the Russians are actual members of the Communist Party, and that it is the screening process that gets memberships, is that correct?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes. It is a small percent of population are the members,137 are the actual members of the Communist Party, and to become, they have to gain reward. I mean, they have to be advanced by the individual deed.

Mr. Belin. About what percent are members of the Communist Party?

Mr. Mamantov. Are you asking her at that time when she left or what it is now?

Mr. Belin. Both.

Mrs. Gravitis. At that time there were approximately 2 million, which is 1 percent, approximately. And I have read recently that there are approximately 5 or more million people members.

Mr. Belin. But she doesn't know of her own knowledge?

Mr. Mamantov. She read. She said that she read recently also that there are approximately 20 million of the communistic youth members, or members of the communistic youth organization.

Mrs. Gravitis. If you don't belong to that organization, you cannot get education. You cannot advance in your educational system.

Mr. Belin. Did Marina Oswald say whether she was a Communist?

Mrs. Gravitis. She said that when she got married she was expelled from the communistic youth organization, which in Russia is called Komsomol.

Mr. Belin. Did she say why she was expelled?

Mrs. Gravitis. Because she married an American. I understood that this was the reason why she was expelled. And I asked how did they allow you to leave the Soviet Union. When you are expelled, they considered them as enemies of the people, and they don't give them permission even to work, a working permit. And they don't give those people also the free education or scholarship.

Mr. Belin. When you are expelled from the Communist movement, does this affect whether or not you get out of the country?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know. I think it wouldn't help.

Mr. Belin. Did Marina Oswald say anything else about her husband?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Did she say much about the people that she knew here in Dallas, Tex.?

Mrs. Gravitis. She said that many Russians helped her and Americans here in this vicinity helped her. She said that she wouldn't like to meet with the Russians any more.

Mr. Belin. Why not?

Mrs. Gravitis. Because Russians are asking too many questions. I feel that because she got tired of being questioned all the time.

Mr. Belin. Did Marina Oswald say whether or not she would take any work here?

Mr. Mamantov. They haven't talked on this particular subject. However, mother's interpretation is that she couldn't work because she has a small child. She talked only about her husband who didn't have work and they didn't have an automobile.

Mr. Belin. Didn't have an automobile?

Mrs. Gravitis. That's correct.

Mr. Belin. Did her husband know how to drive?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know.

Mr. Belin. Did she say anything about her husband as a photographer?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes; he would like to obtain a job as a photographer. And I understood that he was in Oak Cliff a photographer, and when he went to New Orleans, he continued to look for a job as a photographer.

Mr. Belin. Did Marina Oswald say anything about what her husband did or had done in Russia and where he had gone?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; only that he was in Minsk and then Leningrad so much. I didn't ask her any more questions.

Mr. Belin. Could he travel in Russia?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know.

Mr. Belin. What kind of living accommodations did Lee Harvey Oswald have in Russia? A house, or an apartment, or what?

Mrs. Gravitis. She said that in Leningrad they had a room, and she volunteered138 to say that the room was better than the Russian people locally would have.

Mr. Belin. Why was this?

Mrs. Gravitis. Was because her husband was an American.

Mr. Belin. Was it just that he was an American? Did she say, or was it because he was in this so-called third stage of the—of becoming a member of the Communist Party?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know.

Mr. Belin. Did she say anything about whether or not the husband, Lee Harvey Oswald, had a gun in Russia or whether he went hunting there?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. She didn't say anything?

Mrs. Gravitis. I didn't have time to talk. It is my personal opinion, if he is just an average man in Russia, he wouldn't have any chance to have a gun or rifle or shotgun in Russia.

Mr. Belin. What about to become a member of a hunting club or go hunting?

Mrs. Gravitis. This is so in America. There is no such thing as hunting clubs over there.

Mr. Belin. You know of no such hunting clubs over there?

Mrs. Gravitis. Of course there are trappers, but either they are professional trappers or they are members of the communistic party. Otherwise, you have to have permission to have a firearm.

Mr. Belin. You have to be a member of the Communist Party to belong to a hunting club?

Mrs. Gravitis. I don't know.

Mr. Belin. Did Marina Oswald say anything about ever going for walks to discuss things so they wouldn't be overheard when they were in Russia?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. When you say that the living accommodations were better because Lee Harvey Oswald was an American, what do you mean they were better? In what way would they be better than the average person there?

Mrs. Gravitis. The room was larger, cleaner, and probably in a better area of the city. I think, because he would write to his relatives, that he certainly would say that he had better accommodations.

Mr. Belin. What did Marina Oswald say about how she liked the United States?

Mrs. Gravitis. She liked the United States and she also said that she was watching TV that particular day when they talked, and she saw our President being in the crowd and shaking hands with people. It was unbelievable. She said it is unbelievable such a freedom.

Mr. Belin. Did she say anything about whether she belonged to a church?

Mrs. Gravitis. In Russia or in the United States?

Mr. Belin. Here in the States.

Mrs. Gravitis. She didn't say that she belonged to a church, but she did say that she christened her daughter or she had christened her daughter.

Mr. Belin. And what church?

Mrs. Gravitis. The Greek Orthodox. It is called Eastern Orthodox.

Mr. Belin. Here in Dallas?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Was there anything else in this first conversation that you had with her that she said about her husband?

Mrs. Gravitis. First of all, what struck me was that she said it is below his dignity to take any kind of work. That surprised me very much. That is my personal interpretation.

Mr. Belin. My question is this. Is there anything else that Marina Oswald said about her husband?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Now did you have any other telephone conversations with Marina Oswald?

Mrs. Gravitis. Two times.

Mr. Belin. Two more?

Mrs. Gravitis. Twice in total.

139 Mr. Belin. Two conversations in total?

Mrs. Gravitis. That's correct.

Mr. Belin. Now, the first one you said was in May of 1963?

Mrs. Gravitis. That's right.

Mr. Belin. When was the second one?

Mrs. Gravitis. Approximately maybe 2 or 3 weeks. I don't remember exactly when Mrs. Paine came back from San Antonio.

Mr. Belin. This would be, say, June of 1963?

Mrs. Gravitis. Approximately. Before she went to New Orleans.

Mr. Belin. Have you ever talked to Marina Oswald since that time?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Have you ever talked to Mrs. Paine about either Marina Oswald or Lee Harvey Oswald since these conversations with Marina Oswald, or about that time? Have you ever since talked to Mrs. Paine about the Oswalds?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. What did you say, and what did Mrs. Paine say?

Mrs. Gravitis. Mrs. Paine told me that Oswald obtained a job as a photographer in New Orleans, and now Marina can join him and go to New Orleans.

Mr. Belin. Did Mrs. Paine ever invite you over to the home to meet Marina Oswald or her husband?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; but she offered to bring Marina to our house. I mean, she didn't invite me to her own house, but offered to bring Marina to our house.

Mr. Belin. What did you say to that?

Mrs. Gravitis. She can bring Marina, but not her husband.

Mr. Belin. Why didn't you want her husband?

Mrs. Gravitis. Because he was using again this word, ideinyi. He was in the third stage of obtaining the Communist membership. Because I am afraid, and all of us are afraid that they are collecting some information on us and notifying their own people.

Mr. Belin. By the use of the word "they," who do you mean? Lee Harvey Oswald, Marina Oswald, or both, or some other person?

Mrs. Gravitis. Oswald—the people who are in this particular stage trying to get promotion. So they would spy on us. I had a fear.

Mr. Belin. Did you think or did you say anything to Mrs. Paine about whether Marina Oswald had anything to do with this group that might be trying to spy, or what have you?

Mrs. Gravitis. If I said to——

Mr. Belin. To Mrs. Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; have not said. However, I said to Mrs. Paine to be more careful.

Mr. Belin. What did Mrs. Paine say to that?

Mrs. Gravitis. She said, "don't worry." Mrs. Paine is an American woman, and she is very naive, as all Americans are naive, nice, and very generous.

Mr. Belin. Are you a citizen, Mrs. Gravitis?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes.

Mr. Belin. Are you coming here voluntarily to testify before the Warren Commission, the President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy?

Mrs. Gravitis. Yes; we received a letter from Washington, of course.

Mr. Belin. But you are here voluntarily to testify here? You have been asked to come here?

Mrs. Gravitis. Nobody dragged us here; yes. We certainly volunteered, if you interpret it that way.

Mr. Belin. Is there any other information you can give about Lee Harvey Oswald or Marina Oswald that you feel might be helpful in any way?

Mrs. Gravitis. You mean personal opinion?

Mr. Belin. Go ahead.

Mrs. Gravitis. Mrs. Paine told me that Oswald—I did not know her last name, she always called her Marina and Lee—so Mrs. Paine told me that Lee wants to send his wife to the Soviet Union. I asked why. She said, "She was pregnant." And she said, "Lee said that he doesn't have money to pay doctor bills, but had enough money to send her back to the Soviet Union." I said that140 this isn't true. I was surprised, and I replied that this isn't true, because it is possible if a person doesn't have money, that medical help would be given for free here in the States. That is, Mrs. Paine was surprised if this could be true, that we could get local free help. I suggested to her to contact her personal physician and he will send Marina somewhere.

She said I will go on my way back from vacation and pick up Marina and bring her. And then when she got back, she called me again and said she is very happy for this suggestion, that Marina got free medical help, had another baby, and even the doctor offered with her dental work, and she said the treatment was excellent in the hospital. I was very surprised how Mrs. Paine didn't know, and Oswald being also an American didn't know that local help or local medical help is available to people who don't have money.

Mr. Belin. Did Mrs. Paine or Marina Oswald or anyone say anything more to you about Marina Oswald or Lee Harvey Oswald that you think should be noted here, that we should discuss?

Mrs. Gravitis. Maybe, but I don't remember right now.

Mr. Belin. Is there anything else that you care to add?

Mrs. Gravitis. Mrs. Paine told me that Lee is very bad husband, that he even hit her, Marina.

Mr. Belin. When did Mrs. Paine tell you this?

Mrs. Gravitis. When she went to pick up Marina in New Orleans. She said, "I have to go in person to pick her up because I cannot write her things like that, that Lee would read her letters and then would reprimand his wife."

Mr. Belin. Did she say whether Marina said that this had been different, that Lee had always been this way about hitting his wife, or was this something different that happened when they came to New Orleans?

Mrs. Gravitis. Marina did not tell me.

Mr. Belin. I mean Mrs. Paine?

Mrs. Gravitis. I didn't ask and she didn't say.

Mr. Belin. Is there any other information that you can think of that might be helpful here?

Mrs. Gravitis. Mrs. Paine was at our house the first of April of this year, 1964. I asked if she thought if Marina would know if Lee had intended to kill somebody, or President. And Mrs. Paine replied that she thought that Marina did not know. However, she felt that Marina knew that Oswald was in Mexico, but she didn't tell Marina.

Mr. Belin. What do you mean she didn't tell Marina?

Mrs. Gravitis. Excuse me, Marina didn't tell Mrs. Paine. Marina knew that Oswald was in Mexico, but about his being there, didn't tell Mrs. Paine.

Mr. Belin. Why do you feel that Mexico was very important?

Mrs. Gravitis. Because I felt that he was preparing himself for a trip somewhere; either Cuba or somewhere else.

Mr. Belin. But this is just a feeling, or did you have any facts upon which to base it?

Mrs. Gravitis. No; this is my personal feeling.

Mr. Belin. Any other facts that you know of that might be helpful here?

Mrs. Gravitis. I would help you more, but I don't have enough acquaintance here in town that I really feel that I would know more. I know Mrs. Paine beside her Russian tutoring so well, because Mrs. Paine or her husband left her. She was separated or still is separated, so Mrs. Paine more or less came to me an elderly person for advice. Her husband came home after the President was assassinated.

Mr. Belin. Why did he come home, do you know?

Mrs. Gravitis. I asked her, but Mrs. Paine said she don't know why. And she still has domestic problems. I feel that he would like to make it easier on her after that particular time.

Mr. Belin. Anything else you can think of that might be relevant?

Mrs. Gravitis. No.

Mr. Belin. Well, we want to thank you very much for coming down here, Mrs. Gravitis, and also thank you very much, for your help.

Mrs. Gravitis. Thank you; Mr. Belin.

Mr. Belin. Your mother-in-law has the opportunity to read the deposition141 and sign it or make corrections. Do you want to come down and do that with her some time, or do you want to waive the signing and let it go directly to Washington?

Mr. Mamantov. She trusts you without signing.

Mr. Belin. So you waive the signing?

Mr. Mamantov. Yes.


TESTIMONY OF PAUL RODERICK GREGORY

The testimony of Paul Roderick Gregory was taken at 4 p.m., on March 31, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Wesley J. Liebeler, assistant counsel of the President's Commission.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you rise and I will swear you as a witness?

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. Gregory. I do.

Mr. Liebeler. I would like to advise you that my name is Wesley J. Liebeler. I am a member of the legal staff of the President's Commission investigating the assassination of President Kennedy. I have been authorized to take your deposition by the Commission pursuant to authority granted to it by Executive Order 11130, dated November 29, 1963, and Joint Resolution of Congress No. 137.

I understand that Mr. Rankin wrote you a letter either last week or the week before last, with respect to your appearance to give testimony. I believe that he included a copy of the Executive order and the Resolution of Congress, as well as a copy of the Commission's Rules of Procedure relating to the taking of testimony; isn't that right?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. I want to inquire of you today concerning your knowledge of Lee Harvey Oswald and Marina Oswald, which we understand you gained as a result of your association with the Oswalds, basically during 1962.

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you state your full name for the record, please?

Mr. Gregory. Paul Roderick Gregory.

Mr. Liebeler. You are presently a student of the University of Oklahoma; isn't that right?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. What are you studying at the University of Oklahoma?

Mr. Gregory. Russian language and literature.

Mr. Liebeler. What year are you in at the University?

Mr. Gregory. First year graduate student.

Mr. Liebeler. You already hold a degree from the University?

Mr. Gregory. I have a bachelor's degree in economics.

Mr. Liebeler. You are now pursuing a master's or doctor's?

Mr. Gregory. A master's degree.

Mr. Liebeler. In the subject you have just indicated?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; Russian language and literature.

Mr. Liebeler. You are the son, are you not, of Peter Paul Gregory?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Where does he live?

Mr. Gregory. 3513 Dorothy Lane, Fort Worth, Tex.

Mr. Liebeler. Your father is originally from somewhere in Siberia, is that not correct?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. And he came to the United States approximately when, do you know?

Mr. Gregory. I would guess about 1920, or '21, or '22. I am not sure of the exact year.

142 Mr. Liebeler. He has engaged in business as a geological consultant, is that correct?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. When is the last time you were home in Fort Worth?

Mr. Gregory. I can't tell you the exact date. It must have been February the 10th, I believe, or February the 9th, because it was right around my birthday, which is February the 10th.

Mr. Liebeler. What year were you born?

Mr. Gregory. 1941.

Mr. Liebeler. Have you had occasion to speak with your father over the telephone or to exchange letters with him since the time he appeared before the Commission in Washington.

Mr. Gregory. I spoke with him approximately three times since that, I guess.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you discuss with him the testimony that he gave before the Commission?

Mr. Gregory. No. He only said that he mentioned my name. That is the only thing he said about the testimony.

Mr. Liebeler. Did there come a time when you met Lee Harvey Oswald and his wife, Marina?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us when that was and the circumstances of that event?

Mr. Gregory. I met Lee and Marina Oswald in the summer of 1962. I would suppose in the middle of June. I met them both at Lee's brother's house in the western part of Fort Worth. Lee Oswald had become acquainted with my father a week or two weeks earlier. I think he came to him with the desire to get some kind of paper showing his ability in the Russian language; I think he wanted to get a job as interpreter or something; some kind of work which would have something to do with his ability to use Russian.

I think he came in my father's office twice. I am not sure, because I wasn't there, and gave him the address of his brother where he was staying at the time.

And I don't know, he may have said, "Come see us." And my father and I were both interested in meeting his wife who was Russian, we heard. So, I believe my father found out their address and we went out for a visit, purely social visit. That was, as I say, probably in the middle of June, 1962, and that was the first time I ever met either Lee Oswald or Marina Oswald.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you know that at some time, in about June of 1962, your father invited the Oswalds to come to your house?

Mr. Gregory. Oh, yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Was that before or after the time that you mentioned?

Mr. Gregory. That was at the end of the summer. They had actually been at our house twice. One time about a month before this dinner at our house. I just drove by with them for a few minutes. That was the first time they had ever been to our house. And the second time was at this dinner which you mentioned.

Mr. Liebeler. When was the dinner?

Mr. Gregory. I can't give you the date. It was near the end of the summer, I imagine, in August, 1962.

Mr. Liebeler. So the first time, then, that you met Oswald was at his brother's place in Fort Worth?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Who was present at that first meeting?

Mr. Gregory. His brother's name, I think, was Bob Oswald. Bob Oswald's wife and their children, I think they had two or three young kids, Lee, and Marina, and June Lee, their baby, those were the only people there.

Mr. Liebeler. Plus your father and yourself?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Tell us, to the best of your recollection, what the conversation was at that time?

Mr. Gregory. I remember they brought out pictures which they had taken in the Soviet Union and showed us where they had lived in Minsk, and I believe they143 might have had pictures of Leningrad. I am not sure. And then this evening there was something said about their trip back, how they passed through Poland and Germany. And then my father wanted to know how, what Marina thought of Russia, if it had changed after all the years. And that was the general tone of the conversation.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember any details of the conversation about the Oswalds' life in Russia?

Mr. Gregory. At this time I did not. Later on we had quite a bit of discussion about it, but not this time.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you go through the period of time that you knew the Oswalds, and to the best of your recollection tell us the approximate number of times that you saw them and the circumstances under which you saw them, and the dates that you can remember, from the first time you met them at Robert Oswald's house at Fort Worth, to the last time that you saw them?

Mr. Gregory. Okay. We have already gone through the first meeting, and right after the first meeting I left town for about a month. I visited in San Francisco. I returned and then we decided it would be a good idea if I would take Russian lessons from Marina, and it would be quite a big help.

Therefore, the second time I saw them was in June, the middle of June, a month, and to the 10th of August, let's say, just as a guess, we went over to their house, my father and I.

We had to go somewhere, and therefore we only stayed for about ten minutes. And we said, "Paul would like to take Russian lessons from Marina," and she said, "Fine." And I set up dates to go twice a week, I think Tuesdays and Thursdays, or Tuesdays and Fridays—I can't remember the exact dates. Therefore, I was at their house two times a week from, say, the middle of August until I went back to school which was in the middle of September.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you also present at the dinner which your father gave for the Oswalds?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Who else was present at that dinner?

Mr. Gregory. Myself, my father, the Oswalds, George Bouhe, Anna Meller, her husband, I can't remember his first name; then Mrs. Clark and Mr. Clark. I can't give you their first names.

Mr. Liebeler. You clearly remember that they were there?

Mr. Gregory. I think they were there. I could be mistaken. There is a possibility they weren't. I can't remember exactly.

Usually, the reason is, whenever we have the Russians over, they were there. Now that I think about it, they weren't, because I believe my mother was the only one that didn't understand, and Mrs. Clark's husband didn't understand Russian. Therefore, I guess they weren't there. Then my mother was there and June Lee was there.

Mr. Liebeler. The Oswalds' little girl?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. I believe that was all. And I saw them once more, if you are interested. That was probably the Friday or Saturday after Thanksgiving of 1962.

Marina called up. I was home for vacation. And she said that she and Lee were at Robert Oswald's house for Thanksgiving dinner, or something, and she wanted me to come over and pick them up and have the visit, and I would take them down to the bus station, because they rode the bus over from Dallas.

They had since then moved to Dallas. And I went and picked them up and brought them back to our house and we had sandwiches, and I took them down to the bus station, and that was the last time I saw them.

Mr. Liebeler. You just left them off at the bus station and they went and got on the bus, and as far as you know, went back to Dallas?

Mr. Gregory. Yes, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. You didn't pay for the bus tickets, did you?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. You let them off at the bus station in Fort Worth?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. You let them—did you ever give any money to either Lee or Marina Oswald?

144 Mr. Gregory. Yes; I gave Marina a check. As I remember, it was around $35 or $40, something like that.

This was for the Russian lessons which she did give me. As I remember, $35, something like that.

Mr. Liebeler. Is that all the money that you gave to either of them?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. And that check was made out to Marina Oswald, is that correct?

Mr. Gregory. Marina.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever lend the Oswalds any money?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever see anybody else ever give either of the Oswalds any money?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know of anybody else ever giving them any money?

Mr. Gregory. I believe Mr. Bouhe gave them money. I know he gave them gifts, playthings for their daughter, and possibly clothes. I heard he gave them clothes, but I, myself, did not see this, so that is hearsay.

Mr. Liebeler. Did either of the Oswalds ever spend any money or pay any bills while in your presence?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. I often took them—I believe the second day I would go over in the week was Friday, and I would usually take them shopping and we would go down to a Leonard Department Store where you could get groceries cheaper, and they would buy their groceries at this time. But the only articles they were purchasing in my presence was food.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you have any recollection of approximately how much they spent on food?

Mr. Gregory. It was very little. I recall I was amazed at how little they bought, and that Lee would always be very careful with the meat. He would be sure to get the cheapest possible cut he could get, and he would haggle and make sure they gave him the best. I mean, that he would get the better cuts and things like that. I remember they bought very little though.

Mr. Liebeler. Other than the groceries, you never saw them spend any money or pay any bills; is that correct?

Mr. Gregory. No; never.

Mr. Liebeler. You did not see them? I suppose the answer should be, "Yes; I did not see them"?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; I did not see them paying any bills.

Mr. Liebeler. Did the Oswalds ever discuss their finances with you, or discuss their finances between themselves that you ever heard?

Mr. Gregory. Not that I can remember. There is something faintly about them saying, "Well, if we had this money, we would buy something for June Lee," but I can't think of any specific instance.

Mr. Liebeler. Now, taking all of your experiences with the Oswalds together and all of the conversations that you had with them, would you relate to us what they told you, and differentiate between Lee or Marina, as best you can, about the whole Russian episode, why Oswald went to Russia; what he did when he was there; how he met Marina; why he decided to come back; and how he came back, and so on?

Mr. Gregory. On one of the questions I can't answer very well because I never discussed with him why he went. I personally never asked him.

At this dinner, I am sure you have already heard an account of it, he explained that he went because he was disgusted with the American system or the capitalist system where everything is run by money and the desire to get money. That seemed to be his only objection, that I ever heard, and his only reason as to why he left.

Let's see, what was the other. Oh, according to Lee, then also he was very disgusted with the Marines, how the Marines had treated him. I don't know if you could classify that as a reason for him leaving and going to the Soviet Union. Maybe it was.

Mr. Liebeler. What did he tell you about that?

Mr. Gregory. Oh, I just asked him—I knew he had been in the Marines—what he thought of it. He would never speak of it. He was sort of—look disgusted145 and say, "I don't want to talk about it," or something like that. Those are the only two reasons which I heard, and the second one would be one which I am not sure of.

Mr. Liebeler. He never discussed with you beyond the extent you have indicated, his experience in the Marine Corps?

Mr. Gregory. No; he was disgusted with it.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever indicate anything about his discharge from the Marines?

Mr. Gregory. No; he never did. I think a lot of things which he told me were like the way he talked, that he graduated from high school, from the same high school that I had gone to, and I read in the papers that he was only there a month or so. So, possibly a lot of information which he had given me would not be right, but he never did speak of a discharge.

Mr. Liebeler. Whether it would be right or not, it is important that you tell us what he told you. You indicate now that he did tell you that he graduated from Arlington Heights High School, is that correct?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. And you believed that until after the assassination and you read in the newspaper that he had not, in fact, graduated from Arlington?

Mr. Gregory. Yes, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you what kind of job he had in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. He was in some kind of factory. Evidently, according to him, it had something to do with radio equipment, because I remember asking him once about thievery in the Soviet Union, because I always read or had thought that factory workers take what they need and barter because they don't get enough or are not able to make enough money to buy all they need. And he said that he himself had stolen a radio and phonograph. From that I know it was some kind of a shop and he ran some kind of a machine. Because he told me of some incident when he had to—the shop had to be changed, or they moved the equipment into another building, and the first thing they moved was the picture of Lenin and later they moved the equipment. It was heavy equipment, and they set the machines so that the men could work facing Lenin. And then they decided Lenin had to be hung in the most favorable place in the shop, and the Commissar came in and inspected the next setup and decided Lenin wasn't in the right place, and, therefore, they had to come back in and completely remount all the machinery and turn it around to face Lenin's new position.

He brought that up as a—I would ask him about what the people in the Soviet Union think of a person who is a member of the Communist Party. And he seemed to classify all members of the Communist Party as opportunists who were in it just to get something for themselves out of it, and he brought up this incident here because it was a Communist Party man who came in and said you have to put Lenin back there, and therefore you have to completely re-do all the machinery. He thought it was stupid. And he said all the members of the Communist Party were always the ones that shouted the loudest and made the most noise and pretended to be the most patriotic, but he seemed to have quite a disgust for the members of the Communist Party.

Mr. Liebeler. He indicated quite a disgust for them?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; he thought they were opportunists and it was my impression that he thought they were ruining the principles which the country should be based on. In other words, they were not true Communists. They were ruining the heaven on earth which it should be, in his opinion. That might have been a personal interpretation on my part.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you anything more than the kind of place that he worked and what he did?

Mr. Gregory. Just that he worked in a shop that I mentioned. I remember his main complaint about his life there was that he didn't get enough to eat, that he had to go, either he or Marina, would have to go stand in line in order to get anything, and he seemed to have only potatoes and cabbage while he was there. And he would always speak about how poorly he ate. That seemed to be his great objection to the Soviet Union, that he didn't eat very well.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate that the same was true of other Soviet citizens, or——

146 Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. They all had the same trouble?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate in any way that he might have received more favorable treatment as compared to other Soviet citizens who held similar jobs?

Mr. Gregory. No. I think he was under the opinion that he possibly received worse than just average treatment, because I think in the Soviet Union, as I understand it, the methods of the bestowing of favors is to give somebody a good apartment, because of the housing shortage. And he complained that he did not get good housing. He lived in a poor apartment, and that he was unable to change his job or leave, because he had no place to go.

If he would leave or go to another factory, he would not be able to get a new apartment. And I think I asked him a question about are people in the Soviet Union free to change jobs and travel from place to place, and he said maybe technically but they can't because it depends on the apartment.

Then, as to whether he got special treatment, I asked Marina. I said, "Was he the center of attention in Russia," and she said he was quite a, I wouldn't say freak or oddity, but something quite unusual, and I am sure he enjoyed this fact that he was the center of attention. She said she met him at a dance, I guess in Minsk, and she didn't know who he was, and she danced with him or something, and thought he was, because of his accent, thought he was from the Baltic States, and later somebody called her aside and said, "I guess you don't know who he is," and so forth, and I guess they more or less left him alone.

I know he mentioned having several friends in the Soviet Union. One was some young fellow, I think his name was Pavel, and possibly another fellow, and I know after he was in the United States he continued to correspond with these people over there.

He showed me letters which he had written to them or which he was getting ready to send, and letters which he had received. I believe one was the son of a highly fairly influential person.

Mr. Liebeler. Would that have been Pavel?

Mr. Gregory. I think. I just remember something about him, about him being a general's son or a colonel's son.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember his last name?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you think you would remember it if I mention it to you?

Mr. Gregory. There is a possibility. I believe they let me read one letter which was harmless. There was no—I mean it was a personal letter. Maybe I would.

Mr. Liebeler. G-o-l-a-c-h-e-v [spelling], would that be the name?

Mr. Gregory. It might be. To tell you the truth, the first name Pavel, I am fairly sure of the Pavel part.

Mr. Liebeler. Yes; I think that is correct.

Mr. Gregory. That is the only name I remember.

Mr. Liebeler. You don't remember the name of this other fellow?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald let you read any letters other than the one you just mentioned?

Mr. Gregory. No. It may have just arrived or he was explaining something about how you address a letter differently. How you put where it is going at the top, and the return at the bottom. He was showing me something, and as I recall, I read the letter, but it was just personal matters. I can't even remember the contents.

Mr. Liebeler. You have no recollection of the contents of the letter at this point?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Was there anything in it, as far as you can remember, that would indicate that it was secretive or anything of that sort?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. On this question of whether Oswald thought that possibly he was treated less favorably than other Soviet citizens, there has been some147 testimony that he perhaps felt disenchanted with the Soviet Union because he was not given the kind of job that he expected to be given when he got there.

Mr. Gregory. Yes; I remember something now. He expected—I think he and I got along well because he considered me fairly smart because I was interested in the Soviet matters, and therefore our discussions were quite a bit about academic matters, and he pretended, or possibly was, fairly well educated. He seemed to read quite a bit. But he expected to go over there and get into a Russian university. He made an application for the Peace University or one of these universities for the foreign students, I think, and he was quite disenchanted when he was not accepted into this. That was his first idea, I believe, to go over there and go to school. Then after he was not accepted, they sent him somewhere to work in a little factory, and I guess he didn't quite like this.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you that one of the reasons he had gone to Russia was to enter college or university there?

Mr. Gregory. I don't know as that was one of his reasons for going, but that seemed to me, according to him, the first thing he did was make this application.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever mention to you anything about an application to the Albert Schweitzer College in Switzerland? Did he indicate to you in any other way that he was dissatisfied with the treatment he had received by Russian authorities?

Mr. Gregory. Well, there was. He said when he wanted to return, it was touch and go whether Marina would get to come back with him, and he felt that she had been discriminated against, because he told about meetings which they had held in the factory or place where Marina worked denouncing her as a traitor, et cetera, because she wanted to leave the country. And I think this went on for weeks and weeks where they put pressure on her not to go with him, and he expressed amazement for the fact that they did allow her to return with him.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember any more of the details about what he said about that?

Mr. Gregory. About these meetings?

Mr. Liebeler. About the meetings and his expression of amazement as to why they did let Marina come back.

Mr. Gregory. I think he said something about it was just an accident where maybe 1 out of 10 just happens to get through where they allow it. He seemed to think there was no special reason that they let her go. It was more or less an accident.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he say that to you?

Mr. Gregory. Or an exception, yes, as I remember.

Mr. Liebeler. So that he indicated to you his surprise that Marina had been permitted to leave the Soviet Union with him?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. He explained it basically in terms of an accident or something that he couldn't readily explain?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he offer as a suggestion as to why they had permitted Marina to come back anything to the effect that it was a time of reduced tension between the Soviet Union and the United States?

Mr. Gregory. Not that I can remember.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember anything else that he said about the subject of Marina being able to come back with him?

Mr. Gregory. No. Marina spoke of it as being a very horrible time with all her friends putting pressure on her, and it was very unpleasant for her.

Mr. Liebeler. Did she indicate that she had had any nervous difficulties as a result of this?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you learn at any time from either of the Oswalds that Marina had gone to the hospital as the result of the pressure that was put upon her by her friends?

Mr. Gregory. No; I did not.

Mr. Liebeler. Did she mention to you, or either of them mention to you, that Marina went to Kharkov on a vacation at one time?

148 Mr. Gregory. No; I asked them about travel that each of them had done in the Soviet Union, and the only other place that they mentioned as having been, or one of them as having been, was Leningrad, which was the city where Marina received her training as a pharmacist. And I don't know if Lee had gone to Leningrad or not. Of course, Lee would always tell me about his trips to Moscow and his trips to the mausoleum, and going to all the museums and factories. He seemed to speak as if he were a regular tourist then, because they assigned him an interpreter, and evidently he paid the regular tourist fee.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you when this was?

Mr. Gregory. No; he may have told me. I am sure it was in winter, because he said—no, I am not sure. Put this down as something I don't remember well, but I think that he said that it was cold and that the Russians let him get up to the first line because he was an American. It could have been someone else, because I have had several friends that—I can't remember if that was Lee or not.

When he did speak of, I believe when we were having our conversations was after—I can't remember when the de-Stalinization was, when they took Stalin out of the mausoleum, but it happened before Lee came back, and I asked him about that. That was another thing he seemed to get quite a laugh out of. He looked at it very skeptically and thought the Russians should be laughed at for doing things like this, where the street signs would change overnight and no one would mention Stalin's name any more, and he thought it was highly comical. I am saying this to show that, in my opinion, he wasn't—never mind.

Mr. Liebeler. No; I would like to hear your remarks.

Mr. Gregory. Well, I don't know how to put it. In other words, he looked at things critically over there.

He was not one who would say Khrushchev said this, therefore it is right. He always was more or less critically observant of everything he saw over there.

Mr. Liebeler. When you say critically, you mean, as I understand now your use of the word, he attempted to observe things objectively and perceptively? He just didn't follow things because somebody handed it out?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. You don't mean to use the words in the sense that he was just complaining about things, do you?

Mr. Gregory. I could say you can use it in both senses. My main point was that if Khrushchev says this, well, any good party man or anyone who would be a conformist, if Khrushchev says that is fine, he was not that type. He always expressed a great admiration for Khrushchev. He seemed to think he was quite a brilliant man. And he said you cannot read a speech of Khrushchev's without liking the man. He said he was a very rough man, a very crude man, but he thought of him as a very brilliant man and very able leader.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember anything else that he might have said about him, Mr. Khrushchev?

Mr. Gregory. Well, he might have spoken of him several times, but that was the general idea. And while we were on Khrushchev, whenever he would speak about Khrushchev, Kennedy would naturally come into mind, and he expressed admiration of Kennedy.

Both he and Marina would say, "Nice young man." I never heard him say anything derogatory about Kennedy. He seemed to admire the man, because I remember they had a copy of Life magazine which was always in their living room, and it had Kennedy's picture on it, or I believe Kennedy or someone else, and he always expressed what I would interpret as admiration for Kennedy.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you recall any specific details concerning his remarks about Kennedy or the conversation that you had with him concerning Kennedy?

Mr. Gregory. No; just that one time, as I can remember in their apartment that we did look at this picture of Kennedy, and Marina said, "He looks like a nice young man." And Lee said something, yes, he is a good leader, or something, as I remember, was a positive remark about Kennedy.

Mr. Liebeler. He never expressed any adverse feelings or made any adverse remarks about President Kennedy in your presence?

Mr. Gregory. No.

149 Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever hear of him making any such remarks in the presence of anyone else?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever mention Governor Connally?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever hear through any other source that he made any remarks about Governor Connally?

Mr. Gregory. No, sir.

Mr. Liebeler. As far as Marina was concerned, you indicated that she too expressed a kindly feeling or a good feeling toward President Kennedy?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Would that indicate to you that Oswald had probably indicated such feelings to her, since she was not able to read English or understand English?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Or didn't you think about that?

Mr. Gregory. I didn't think about it, and would not think that would be true. I couldn't answer the question.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form any opinion of Marina's ability to speak English during the time you knew her?

Mr. Gregory. Very poor. She knew two or three words.

Mr. Liebeler. Was that true throughout the entire time you knew her?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; the very last time I ever saw her was at Robert Oswald's house and all she could say was "excuse me," because she would go sit in the corner while everyone else ate.

Mr. Liebeler. While everybody else what?

Mr. Gregory. Ate.

Mr. Liebeler. She didn't eat with you when she was sitting in the corner and all the other relatives were sitting around the dinner table?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; evidently she had eaten before I got there, just in time to take them by, but every time I would go over I would ask, "What have you learned in English," and she would always say, "I haven't learned a thing." I personally gave her some vocabulary which I had used to study Russian, which she could use in the reverse manner to study English words and I assumed that would help her. I don't know if she used them.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever think that Marina was deceptive as to the extent to which she could understand English?

Mr. Gregory. No; I don't believe so. Well, she never spoke English with me, or never attempted to speak English. She would say, "How do you do," something like that.

Mr. Liebeler. What about Oswald's proficiency in Russian?

Mr. Gregory. He spoke a very ungrammatical Russian with a very strong accent.

Mr. Liebeler. What kind of accent?

Mr. Gregory. Well, I can't tell you, because I am not that much of a judge. You would have to ask an expert about that. It was this poorly spoken Russian, but he was completely fluent. He understood more than I did and he could express any idea, I believe, that he wanted to in Russian. But it was heavily pronounced and he made all kinds of grammatical errors, and Marina would correct him, and he would get peeved at her for doing this. She would say you are supposed to say like this, and he would wave his hand and say, "Don't bother me."

Mr. Liebeler. He indicated that he didn't care to have Marina correct him as far as his use of the Russian language was concerned?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever have any discussion with them as to why Marina did not learn English?

Mr. Gregory. I said I thought it was kind of strange that she was not picking up anything, but her expression was that she had to stay home and she had no opportunity to speak. I did not observe any obvious attempts on Lee's part to hold back her English, but I guess there was an attempt since he would not help her himself. Evidently he didn't help her.

150 I knew that later on George Bouhe tried to teach her English. He would send her lessons and she would send them back and he would correct them. I don't know to what extent these lessons went on, but these lessons started after I had gone away to school.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever have any opportunity to judge Oswald's ability to write the Russian language? You mentioned that you had seen this one letter. Did you notice any misspelled words in it?

Mr. Gregory. No; I did not see any letter that he had written.

Mr. Liebeler. This was a letter that he had received?

Mr. Gregory. I couldn't say at all. I imagine he would have quite a bit of difficulty, because I don't think he had any understanding of the grammar.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you think that his proficiency in Russian was particularly good, or about average for the length of time he had been in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. I couldn't judge. All I think is, he was fluent and he could read well in Russian. Probably he did have a better grammatical knowledge than I thought, because of all of the reading which I saw him do, excepting for a few books, was in Russian.

I mean, if he would sit down to read a book, he would be reading in Russian.

Mr. Liebeler. How much did he read?

Mr. Gregory. I couldn't say. He was always going down to the library and coming back with all kinds of books. Usually he would not read in my presence, because we would all sit around and talk. Toward the end, I was writing a paper and I needed Marina's help to correct the grammar, and we would go over to one side and work on that, and he would sit and read. He read Lenin. I can't remember which book it was, but that is the only thing I have really seen him read. And then he always spoke about his, he said, this great love of history.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever see him read any books other than this book about Lenin?

Mr. Gregory. No; it was not about, it was Lenin writings, and Lenin was all.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember the name of any books that Oswald brought home from the library that you saw in his apartment?

Mr. Gregory. I can't remember. It would have been nothing extremely interesting. I can't give any titles.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever discuss with him the nature of his love of the study of history?

Mr. Gregory. No; I always—my opinion of him was that he was not very smart. I thought maybe he would read a lot, but not absorb it. That was my opinion of him.

He just said he always had this love of history, and he several times—one evening he went out to TCU and another time he went out to get the catalog for Arlington State to try to get some night school or something, and this evidently was a pure dream on his part, seeing he did not have the high school degree. And he always spoke that he wanted to go back to school and get a degree and study economics and history and philosophy and things like that.

Mr. Liebeler. He went out to TCU? Did he tell you that he went out to TCU?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. For what purpose, did he tell you?

Mr. Gregory. To look for night school.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember approximately when that was?

Mr. Gregory. It was the first time I ever went over there to have a lesson, he was gone. And he returned after, say, 15 minutes. He said he was at TCU, and he had a schedule of their classes. And another time I took and I would take them out to look at the town. One night we went to TCU, and he asked me, do you think the director of the evening classes or some official, if they would be in at this hour, because he wanted to go see, and I said, "No; I am sure no one will be there."

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever tell you that he talked to any of the officials at TCU concerning the night school program?

Mr. Gregory. No; he evidently must have talked to someone if he came back with a schedule, because I remember looking at the schedule.

151 Mr. Liebeler. Did he come back with the schedule before or after the occasion on which you were driving in your car to TCU?

Mr. Gregory. No; it seems the first evening I went over there he referred to the schedule.

Mr. Liebeler. So, it was after that that he asked you during your drive whether you thought anybody would be present at TCU?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Your first Russian lesson was approximately when?

Mr. Gregory. I would say August 10. I would hit it within a week either way. All this time I thought he had his high school degree and I was encouraging him to go back. I said, "Why don't you?" And he used as an excuse that he had to work. And he never did tell me that he did not finish high school.

Mr. Liebeler. Going back to the statements that he may have made about his activities in Russia, did he ever indicate to you in any way that he had a source of income in the Soviet Union other than the income he received from his job at the factory?

Mr. Gregory. No; he never did. He always spoke as if he didn't have enough money over there but he never indicated another source of income.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you how much he was paid for his work at the factory?

Mr. Gregory. He told, but I don't remember.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember any discussions about his source of income and what he did with it? I know you cannot specifically remember the amount that he was paid.

Mr. Gregory. No; the only discussion as to how he spent his money was the tremendous difficulty he had buying food and buying enough food. It seems to me as if the way he spoke, he spent all the money on food and he had several articles of clothing which he brought back with him, of which he seemed to be very proud.

I think he had a pair of boots or something like that, and he had a closet full of junk.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever show you his boots?

Mr. Gregory. I think so.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember anything about them?

Mr. Gregory. I am not positive about the boots. I remember he had one article of clothing which he showed me; said it was made in the Soviet Union, and he seemed to be proud of it. As I remember, it was boots.

Mr. Liebeler. You have no other recollection about it than what you have just expressed?

Mr. Gregory. No; I think a lot of his clothes were from the Soviet Union, but I can't identify the articles.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever mention anything about assistance he might have received from the Red Cross while he was in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. No; the only financial spot which he mentioned to me was the money he got through the U.S. Ambassador to Russia.

Mr. Liebeler. What did he tell you about that?

Mr. Gregory. He just said he went in and told them he wanted to return, and the fellow gave him something like $300. And then after that, he spoke of his trip back. He went through Poland and East Germany.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you that he had stayed for a time in Moscow before leaving the Soviet Union to return?

Mr. Gregory. The only time I know of his being in Moscow was when he was there at the very first as a tourist, and that is the only time I heard him mention being in Moscow.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you anything about any difficulties that he encountered in obtaining the necessary papers for him and Marina to return to the United States?

Mr. Gregory. The only difficulties which I have heard are the difficulties I have already brought up about the pressure put on Marina. But as far as paperwork, I can't bring anything out specifically.

Mr. Liebeler. He never mentioned any difficulty that he encountered with the U.S. authorities in that regard?

152 Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form an impression as to the feeling he had about the U.S. officials concerning his return?

Mr. Gregory. He mentioned that they had given this money to return.

Mr. Liebeler. I thought you mentioned that he told you they had loaned him money to return?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; I am saying he never expressed an opinion one way or the other. It seems to me that normally a person in that situation would say he was very glad they gave him the money. He seemed to expect this money as if it was something that was due him, and he never expressed any gratitude toward the Ambassador or whoever it was that gave him the money.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he express any resentment toward any of the Government officials concerning his return?

Mr. Gregory. Completely neutral.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you whether or not he returned the money to the State Department?

Mr. Gregory. No; he never told me.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form any opinion either from your discussions with Oswald as to whether or not Oswald was well liked in the Soviet Union, and accepted by the people in the community in which he lived?

Mr. Gregory. As I said before, it seems to me as he was treated as an outsider, and the only two people I ever heard him speak of were the two I mentioned besides Marina. Evidently Marina was a special case, that she did pay attention to him.

He evidently must have been fairly militant over there, or fairly, could I say not friendly, because he told me of one instance where the fellows at the factory were studying night course in English or something, and they came to him and wanted him to help them, and he helped them once or twice, but then he came to the conclusion they were lazy and he threw them out and told them he didn't want to help them any more. Evidently, he wasn't too friendly over there, so I doubt if he had too many acquaintances.

Mr. Liebeler. Is that all he told you about the incident when the fellow factory workers were trying to learn English?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; and I think one fellow, Pavel, he came to Lee to help him with his English and he said this fellow was a good student, and he evidently gave him quite a bit of help.

Mr. Liebeler. Lee gave quite a bit of help to Pavel and Pavel was trying to learn English?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; but the other fellows he thought were lazy and refused to pay attention.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he indicate whether Pavel gave him any assistance in learning Russian?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Or whether he received any other training in the Russian language while he was in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. The only thing he said he learned in the factory when he went over there, he said he didn't know anything, and when they just stuck him in a factory, he said he picked it up there, and Marina helped him quite a bit.

Marina told me that Lee's Russian when I was with him was bad compared to the Russian Lee spoke while he was in the Soviet Union.

In fact, I have Lee's dictionary which he gave me. He gave me his Russian dictionary and he told me, "I don't need it any more," and therefore he gave me the dictionary.

Mr. Liebeler. You have that at the present time?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Where is that, in Norman?

Mr. Gregory. In Norman; yes.

Mr. Liebeler. I wonder if you would make that available to us?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; I looked through it to see if there is any writing and there is no writing. There is something, he wrote a name up there or something.

Mr. Liebeler. If you would make it available to us, we would appreciate it. We will have somebody from the Secret Service or FBI contact you in Norman153 and obtain it, or if you want to mail it to us at the Commission. How do you want to handle it?

Mr. Gregory. Either way.

Mr. Liebeler. We will have somebody from the Secret Service.

Mr. Gregory. I don't know of any writing.

Mr. Liebeler. We will make arrangements for someone to pick it up and we will eventually return it to you.

Mr. Gregory. Yes; okay. I have a card also which he sent me, if you are interested, which was written to inform me a change of address to Dallas, which was dated on November 1, approximately, 1962. Those are the only two things I have that belonged to him or were from him.

Mr. Liebeler. We would like the card too, if you would make that available.

Mr. Gregory. All right.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald mention anything to you about hunting trips that he went on while he was in the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he mention any access that he might have had to firearms?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form any opinion, or did Marina tell you anything that would indicate the reason why Marina seemed to take a special interest in Oswald, or seemed to be a special case, I think you used that terminology?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. I could tell you—this is a personal opinion—but evidently she was kind of a rebel or nonconformist herself, and she met quite a bit of opposition because she did see Lee. And I am not sure, but I believe her family gave her quite a bit of trouble about that, too.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you remember any specific situation that she may have said about that?

Mr. Gregory. All I know is that when she returned—she said she had written her relatives—she had an uncle and aunt and sister, and they refused to answer, and she never received an answer from them.

Mr. Liebeler. Now, did you infer from that that they gave her difficulty in connection with her marriage to Lee Oswald, or that they disapproved her decision to come to the United States?

Mr. Gregory. I assume it was both. It is an assumption on my part.

Mr. Liebeler. Marina never indicated specifically any difficulty that she had with her relatives?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you form any opinion, or did Marina ever indicate to you that possibly she married Oswald to get out of the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. No; I don't believe so.

Mr. Liebeler. And you never formed that opinion?

Mr. Gregory. I never formed that opinion. She seemed quite interested and quite enthusiastic about a new life in America, and she seemed to me that she wanted to take part in it, but she got over here and it was, she was just in one room and never got out, and she always kept saying, "When I learn English, it will be different."

She always expressed a desire to learn English, and, "Do you think I will ever be able to learn it?" And I said, "Yes." And she seemed quite enthusiastic about America.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you think it was strange that she seemed interested to learn English but apparently made no attempt to learn it? Did you discuss that with her at all?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; I would always ask her, "What have you learned," and she would say "Nothing." And I said, "Well—" we really never went into it completely why she hadn't. I just assumed that either she didn't want to or else she really didn't have the opportunity to get out, or I can't answer specifically.

Mr. Liebeler. She never indicated a desire to you that you should help her learn English in connection with her attempt to teach you Russian or to improve your Russian?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever discuss with Oswald the reason, or with Marina,154 for that matter, the reason why Oswald decided to leave the Soviet Union and return to the United States?

Mr. Gregory. Well, let's see, I have brought up why he was dissatisfied. Well, of course, he didn't get enough food. That seemed to be one of his major things.

And evidently he lived fairly poorly over there. Then I am sure he went over there thinking this would be the heaven on earth, the workers' paradise, and he quickly found out that wasn't so. This might be a personal judgment on my part, but I think he felt that they are making a mess of things over there. Maybe he did believe in communistic principles which I don't believe he understood if he believed in them. But he felt that the present administration like the party boys and the people in power were just making a mess of things, that they didn't know what they were doing. He felt like, he said they were opportunistic. No; he never came out and said, "I left because so-and-so and so-and-so."

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever indicate a desire to have his children raised in the United States?

Mr. Gregory. I can't remember if he did.

Mr. Liebeler. You told us a moment ago that Oswald at one point told you how he had left the Soviet Union and gone through Poland and East Germany. I would like you to tell us everything you can remember about that.

Mr. Gregory. I really can't remember anything specifically. I just asked him how he came out, and he said he was on the train, and something or other happened in Poland, I didn't quite understand it, where there was some incident in Poland where they bought something, or some person sold them something black market and—I can't remember it, but they never gave me a travellogue of their trip out of the Soviet Union.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you that he eventually went to some point in Holland and boarded a ship and came back to New York?

Mr. Gregory. He did.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you have any recollection about that other than what I have just stated?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you how he got from his landing point in the United States to Texas?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you where he landed in the United States?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know that now?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever indicate any dissatisfaction with the conditions here in the United States other than the ones that you previously indicated that he expressed? That is, that everyone seemed to be concerned about making money? Did he ever indicate that he thought particular institutions ought to be changed in any way?

Mr. Gregory. No; his only objection that he ever voiced to me was about the money everyone was out for themselves, and evidently he never had much money, and I guess he felt persecuted on account of this. I remember one evening I gave him a tour of the town, and I took them to, you know, drove by all the big mansions. I figured they would be interested in seeing that, and it seems like there if he would really have any strong feelings, they would have come out then.

He said something about how horrible it is that here people are living in these big mansions, and I think just before that we had seen a bad part of town where the colored people lived, but he made no comment there. I think he just said, "Well, I never want to be rich like that."

Mr. Liebeler. He indicated no particular animosity toward people of wealth and position?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Going back to his experience in the Soviet Union, did he ever tell you that he had ever been in the hospital there?

Mr. Gregory. No.

155 Mr. Liebeler. Did he tell you any of the details about his marriage to Marina, as to any difficulties they experienced in getting permission to become married, or anything of that nature?

Mr. Gregory. No; I don't think so. As I remember, it happened quite fast. I believe they were married 2 or 3 weeks after they met.

Mr. Liebeler. Can you think of anything else that he ever told you about his experiences in the Soviet Union that we haven't already covered?

Mr. Gregory. Not at the moment.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald ever discuss any subject concerning Russian military movements or the presence of troops, concentration of equipment, aircraft and that sort of thing?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Never mentioned it at all?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. You told us before that you held a bachelor degree from Oklahoma University and that you majored in economics?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever discuss economics with Oswald?

Mr. Gregory. I never discussed it with him because I don't think he knew anything about it.

Mr. Liebeler. Did the subject ever come up between you?

Mr. Gregory. He would always say that is my great love, history and economics.

Mr. Liebeler. What did he say about it? I am interested in this, because I gained the impression from others that he didn't know very much about it. In my opinion you probably do know more about it than most of the men that I talked to, so I would like to have you tell us as much as you can.

Mr. Gregory. He never said anything, and that is the reason I got the impression he didn't know anything about it, because if he knew, he would want to talk about it. I never approached the subject because he seemed to not want to get into it. I thought from an interview with him, when they were having all this on TV, that they asked him a question, something about comparative economics, and he gave some kind of stupid answer and more or less confirmed my opinion that he didn't know too much about it. But we never did have a specific discussion about economics.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever discuss with Oswald any contacts between him and agents of the Soviet Government in connection with any attempt on their part to recruit him as an intelligence agent or as open activity of the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever discuss it with anybody else?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did it ever occur to you that Oswald might be an agent of the Soviet Union?

Mr. Gregory. No; I was always fairly positive that he wasn't, because I figured that if the Soviets wanted to get someone, they could get someone a lot more reliable. They would have a lot more sense than to get him, because I think he was, personally had a bad temper, I think.

Mr. Liebeler. What makes you say that?

Mr. Gregory. Well, he would always, he never really didn't get mad, but he would—I never did figure out if he and Marina were arguing or just talking, but he would always shout, and I remember one evening that we went out, were going to the grocery store, and Marina had June in her arms and she stepped over and fell off the porch, and boy he got mad. You know, the baby fell on the ground. He really got mad. And that was the only time I ever saw him real mad. I guess maybe he had reason to be mad, because Marina had dropped the child.

Mr. Liebeler. Did she fall out of her arms?

Mr. Gregory. They both fell. She hurt her back. I thought she had.

Mr. Liebeler. What did he do?

Mr. Gregory. He went over and picked up the baby.

Mr. Liebeler. Then what did he say?

156 Mr. Gregory. He got real mad, and then they ran in and they had the medical book written in Russian about baby care, and they went through it and I think the baby had a cut on its head, and Marina had a cut on her knee or something, and everything quieted down and we went out again, but it was a real hot moment.

Mr. Liebeler. Other than the fact that you noted, is there any other reason why you said you thought he had a bad temper?

Mr. Gregory. I heard afterward, after the last time I saw him, I heard reports about him beating her, from the Dallas acquaintances.

Mr. Liebeler. You never saw any evidence of that yourself?

Mr. Gregory. No. One time I went over and she had a black eye. At this time I had no suspicion, that—but possibly I never asked her where did you get the black eye.

Mr. Liebeler. And you never had any reason to think that——

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. That he had been mistreating her, based on your own experience?

Mr. Gregory. Later when I heard about this in Dallas, well I thought maybe it could have happened back there then.

Mr. Liebeler. Are there any other reasons on which you base your opinion that he had a bad temper?

Mr. Gregory. No, just personal judgment. He seemed to be a small person that is always ready to flare up. We always had very good relations. We were very friendly.

Mr. Liebeler. Other than the fact that you think he had a bad temper, is there any other reason why you think the Soviets would not recruit him as an agent?

Mr. Gregory. As I say again, I don't think he was very smart.

Mr. Liebeler. Are there any other reasons?

Mr. Gregory. No. Then, of course, his animosity which he expressed toward the Soviet.

Mr. Liebeler. Towards the members of the Communist Party?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. He didn't quite enjoy life over there, and it just didn't enter my mind that he could have been.

Mr. Liebeler. Did it ever enter your mind?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. It is only after the assassination that you considered this question; is that correct?

Mr. Gregory. Even then I never considered it seriously.

Mr. Liebeler. But my question is: When did you consider it at all?

Mr. Gregory. Only after, yes.

Mr. Liebeler. After?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. I think this might be important. More or less his philosophy, which I think came out, is that at the time I was interested in going and studying in the Soviet Union in our exchange program. We have an exchange where our University sends over students and they send over to ours, and I was interested in seeing how it was, how life would be, see if it would be too hard, and he says, he told me, "Just go over there. Don't get on a waiting list. You will never get there."

He said, "If you want to do something, go ahead and do it. You will get involved in red tape." And I think that was possibly the way he thought about everything.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever form an impression of Oswald, based on your association with him, form an opinion prior to the time of the assassination that he was mentally unstable, too, in any way?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. You did not? He did not appear to be that to you?

Mr. Gregory. Let's say, I wouldn't classify him as—evidently he was, but at the time I didn't think he was. I just thought he was, as I say, fairly hot tempered and not extremely brilliant.

But I never did think of him as mentally deranged. Maybe I saw him mixed up. He must have been mixed up to do what he did, as far as the assassination, but just going over to the Soviet Union——

157 Mr. Liebeler. Did you consider this question prior to the assassination? The question is, tell us in your own words what opinion you formed of Oswald and what you thought about him at the time you knew him in 1962?

Mr. Gregory. I never minded him. I always enjoyed being with him. I enjoyed Marina more than Lee. She was a very pleasant person, very pleasant to be with, interesting. I can't say that I disliked Lee. He had bad qualities, but I mean, when we were together, I think he more or less put on his best front, because I think he considered me someone he could talk to. Because I think he considered other people beneath him, and he thought that everyone was judging him.

I think he felt that his brother—this is a personal opinion—that they were sort of taking him in out of the goodness of their hearts.

And I never expressed any judgment on it or even asked him or faced the matter as to why he had done what he did. Therefore, our relations were always good. But still I classified him as hot tempered, not very smart, and slightly mixed up. And I am sure about a good many other examples, but I am not a psychiatrist or psychologist.

Mr. Liebeler. When you are saying not very smart, are you talking about what your impression of what his intelligence or what his level of education?

Mr. Gregory. I am thinking of academic sense, inability to grasp things.

Mr. Liebeler. Basically a function of his IQ rather than his formal education?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you ever interested in his formal education, or make any inquiries on that?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; I was interested in it as to whether he finished high school, and that he had expressed to me desire to go on in higher education.

Mr. Liebeler. We have already covered that.

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever indicate to you, or did you ever form the opinion, that he was capable of violent acts?

Mr. Gregory. No; I didn't think he was. I would say maybe I could only picture him getting into a fight or something. Judging from the type of person he was, if someone would insult him, I think he would get into a fight, but as far as the major violent act, I couldn't picture him doing.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you consider that question prior to the time of the assassination?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. It just never occurred to you?

Mr. Gregory. No. Just an automatic judgment like I make, a general judgment about all people, I figured he was the type person, if you go downtown with him and someone would say, would insult him, he would probably get into a fight or something like that. That is just my general judgment of him. He never did in my presence, or nothing ever happened. It is just a general judgment.

Mr. Liebeler. The kind of judgment you would make about many people, is it not?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. There never was anything peculiar about Oswald that caused you to form a peculiar judgment about him or think he was peculiar in any way?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. But he was the kind that easily flared up, although he never did it in your presence, he was the type that would, and you did think that about Oswald?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. But as far as any violence, I couldn't picture him.

Mr. Liebeler. Did Oswald ever indicate to you that the world situation was not due to the people in the world, but was caused by the leaders in the various countries?

Mr. Gregory. I think so. Once or twice he made that exact statement, and I can't remember if it was Marina or Lee. That is the exact words.

Mr. Liebeler. Was that translated into any animosity against the leaders of the two countries, either Khrushchev or Kennedy?

158 Mr. Gregory. I could not say. I would not think so, because of what I have already said about the fact that Lee had expressed admiration of Khrushchev and had expressed that positive feeling toward Kennedy.

Mr. Liebeler. Now that I have called to your attention and you recall that either Lee or Marina did make a remark about the world troubles being caused by the leaders and not the people, does that cause you to reflect on your prior testimony?

Mr. Gregory. No; I don't think so. There was no animosity in the statement. It was more or less——

Mr. Liebeler. Philosophical opposition—no personal animosity expressed at all?

Mr. Gregory. No; no such animosity.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know of any connection between Lee Oswald and Jack Ruby?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any knowledge of Oswald's drinking habits, as far as alcoholic beverages are concerned?

Mr. Gregory. He never drank in my presence.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know whether or not Oswald was interested in any other women during the time that you knew him?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever hear that he was?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he ever express an interest in guns to you?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever observe any firearms in his presence?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Or in his possession?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Or discuss the subject of firearms?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. During these lessons that you received from Marina in the Russian language, was Oswald usually present or usually absent?

Mr. Gregory. Usually present. In fact, he was always there. The first time I was ever over was the time that he was away somewhere, and he came back, say, 10 minutes after the lesson started.

Mr. Liebeler. That was the time he had been to TCU?

Mr. Gregory. Yes.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever hear of any attempt on Oswald's part to commit suicide?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. The same question as to Marina?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know James Martin?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. You never met James Martin at any time?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you meet him in Oklahoma?

Mr. Gregory. No; I never met him in Oklahoma.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know anyone by the name of James Martin?

Mr. Gregory. The only persons I ever met in Lee's presence are his brother, and Thanksgiving when I went to pick him up there was another half brother and his wife.

Mr. Liebeler. The name was Pic, was it not?

Mr. Gregory. Yes. I learned that after the assassination.

Mr. Liebeler. After the assassination did you learn that there was a man by the name of James Martin who became Marina's business manager?

Mr. Gregory. I believe I read the name in the paper.

Mr. Liebeler. But you never met him either in Fort Worth or Norman or any other place?

Mr. Gregory. Never heard of him.

Mr. Liebeler. Just never met him—any individual, who appeared to be159 Marina's business agent, whether or not his name was James Martin or anything else?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you have any conversation with Lee or Marina about Marguerite Oswald?

Mr. Gregory. No. He never mentioned the fact that he even had a mother.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever observe Lee Oswald driving an automobile?

Mr. Gregory. No. I asked him if he could drive. He said, "Yes." But if we ever went anywhere, I drove.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember anything more about that? Was that just a simple statement?

Mr. Gregory. I just simply said, "Do you know how to drive?" And he said, "Yes."

Mr. Liebeler. When did you ask him that?

Mr. Gregory. I don't remember whether we were going out to some grocery store or something like that.

Mr. Liebeler. But you never saw him drive a car?

Mr. Gregory. No. He would walk great distances without thinking about it. I mean, what is in our estimation a great distance. And then he rode the bus quite a bit. But I never saw him drive a car or heard of him driving a car.

Mr. Liebeler. Were you surprised when you learned that Oswald had been arrested in connection with the assassination?

Mr. Gregory. Very.

Mr. Liebeler. Would you tell us something about your state of mind at that time?

Mr. Gregory. Well, my first impression was, I saw him on television when they first brought him in, and they didn't mention his name. And later they said the first suspect being brought in is Lee Oswald. I felt sure he had not done it. I felt that they probably brought him in because of his record in the Soviet Union and thought maybe he would be a likely person, but I did not think he had done it.

The only time I decided he may have done it was when the Secret Service talked to me and said the evidence looked——

Mr. Liebeler. Talked to you?

Mr. Gregory. Yes; it was on a Saturday after the assassination, and said it looked like he was the one. And my—I more or less reoriented my thinking that he was the one.

Mr. Liebeler. Who from the Secret Service talked to you; do you remember?

Mr. Gregory. I can't remember. Real nice fellow. Oklahoma City.

Mr. Liebeler. Mr. Nielsen?

Mr. Gregory. I think that was it.

Mr. Liebeler. Did he outline the evidence to you relating to Oswald's alleged guilt?

Mr. Gregory. No; he just said something that, I think something came over the radio that the chief of police said he was the one, and then he made a phone call and he said it looked like he was the one, or something like that. Something that he identified the gun or, I can't remember the exact words.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you remember any organizations of which Lee Oswald was a member during the time you knew him?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Did you ever hear of any organizations to which he belonged?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know of the names of any people with whom he associated?

Mr. Gregory. No; besides his brother and myself. That is it. Oh, then the Dallas Russians who I have mentioned.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know a gentleman by the name of Gary Taylor?

Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. Do you know George De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. Gregory. I think I heard my father mention the name De Mohrenschildt. I think he is from Dallas.

Mr. Liebeler. But you do not know him personally, however?

160 Mr. Gregory. No.

Mr. Liebeler. I have no further questions. If there is anything that you would like to add to the record, we would like to have you do it.

If there is anything you think I should have asked you about that I haven't, I would like to have you mention it and we will put it on the record now.

Mr. Gregory. No; I think you have covered it.

Mr. Liebeler. In that case, we will terminate the deposition. I want to thank you very much, Mr. Gregory, for driving all the way from Norman to Dallas to give us your testimony. The Commission appreciates it very much.


TESTIMONY OF MRS. HELEN LESLIE

The testimony of Mrs. Helen Leslie was taken at 3:20 p.m., on April 1, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Robert T. Davis, assistant attorney general of Texas, was present.

Mr. Jenner. This is Mrs. Helen Leslie of 4209 Hanover Street, Fort Worth, Tex.

Mrs. Leslie. Not Fort Worth—Dallas, Tex.

Mr. Jenner. Mrs. Leslie, would you stand and hold up your hand, please?

Mrs. Leslie. Oh, yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do you solemnly swear that in the testimony you are about to give you will tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Mrs. Leslie, I am Albert E. Jenner, Jr., and I am a member of the legal staff of the Warren Commission. The Warren Commission was created pursuant to a Senate joint resolution creating the Commission to investigate the assassination of the late President, John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes, I know what it is.

Mr. Jenner. And all the circumstances surrounding it.

Pursuant to that legislation, President Lyndon B. Johnson appointed the commission, of which the Honorable Earl Warren, Chief Justice of the United States, is chairman.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that Commission has the assignment I have indicated to you in the legislation. We are seeking on behalf of the Commission to inquire into all pertinent facts and circumstances relating to that assassination, and particularly to people who might or could have had any contact with or knowledge of one Lee Harvey Oswald and his wife, Marina Oswald.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes, yes.

Mr. Jenner. In the course of some depositions that I have been taking here in Dallas, mention was made by some of the witnesses of you.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And possibly you might have some information. I do want to assure you that all the references to you were in a complimentary vein and I have sought to have this privilege of talking with you and taking your deposition, because I think perhaps you might be helpful to us.

Mrs. Leslie. I will be glad to—as much as I can.

Mr. Jenner. You just sit back and relax and nothing is going to happen to you.

Mrs. Leslie. I don't think I know very much; actually it is very little.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you appear voluntarily.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes. Now, you want to know if I met the man and his wife?

Mr. Jenner. Maybe I can take it by easy steps, if you will let me.

Mrs. Leslie, you live in Dallas?

Mrs. Leslie. I live here in Dallas. I can start for you from where I was born, how I came here?

161 Mr. Jenner. All right, do that, will you?

Mrs. Leslie. I am not young girl. I was born in Moscow in 1900. This year on April 30, I will be 64 years old. I came to Dallas only 3 years ago.

Mr. Jenner. 2 years ago?

Mrs. Leslie. In 1960—it's only 3 years ago. I am a widow, my husband died in 1947, whom I married—I married in 1923, so I am a widow about 17 years.

Here in Dallas, actually, I was going from Florida to California, but my step-daughter, which is a daughter of my husband's first wife, asked me if I wanted to stop here in Dallas and maybe we can live together. So, I did and I arrived Dallas and I bought a house, so I settled here and on Hanover Street. It is my own house, in my name, and where I met a few Russians here, but deep regret—there was not a real Russian church, which I miss very much. It is in English language which certainly is not the same as your own language, the church has to be a Russian church on Newton Street.

Mr. Jenner. On what street?

Mrs. Leslie. On Newton Street.

Mr. Jenner. Is that St. Nicholas?

Mrs. Leslie. No, St. Seraphim.

Mr. Jenner. The sermon is preached in English, is it not, at St. Seraphim?

Mrs. Leslie. In English—Father Dimitri is preaching there. By the way, Father Dimitri christened the daughter of this Oswald. His wife came there to christen the daughter June, I heard.

Now, I was introduced to a few Russian people here.

Mr. Jenner. When you came here?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes; my daughter, she was here, and she is a ballerina and she was visiting Dallas a few times and she knew some people here. She is a ballerina—a dancer. She met here many people—mostly connected with ballet, artists, so she introduced me to the Voshinins, that's Igor and Natalia Voshinin, and then she introduced me to Mr. and Mrs. Ford.

Mr. Jenner. To Mr. and Mrs. Declan Ford?

Mrs. Leslie. Declan Ford and then to the Mellers.

Mr. Jenner. The Mellers, M-e-l-l-e-r [spelling]?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes; and then George Bouhe, and I think there are some Russians in Fort Worth—those Fort Worth Russians—the Clarks.

Mr. Jenner. Max Clark—Mr. and Mrs. Max Clark?

Mrs. Leslie. Those are all the Russians which I knew here.

Now, I don't remember which year it was, it seemed to me it was in 1961, when George Bouhe called me on telephone and told me there was one couple, a young couple came from Soviet Union and if I am interested to hear something about there, you know, the conditions in Soviet Union, he invites me to his house to meet them. He invited them and a few Russian people all interested in the conditions in the Soviet Union, which I left in 1924, and never corresponded with my own mother since that, and my own sisters. I don't know what happened to them, but I lost completely all trace of my own blood family. I never wrote them, because I was advised not to contact them, so I went to this George Bouhe's apartment.

Mr. Jenner. Now, Mrs. Leslie, the Oswalds returned from Russia on the 12th of June 1962.

Mrs. Leslie. 1962—so, it was in 1962. As I said, I am not sure which year it was—it was so long ago. Since that I have never seen him—I just have seen them once.

Mr. Jenner. This was a meeting at George Bouhe's house?

Mrs. Leslie. At George Bouhe's house—where he lives—I could be wrong.

Mr. Jenner. Was it during the daytime or the evening?

Mrs. Leslie. No, sir; it was in the daytime, you know, but I don't know exactly—I can't mention what hour it was, but it was in some entertainment, you know, some wine and a few things, and there was this couple with their baby, which was Oswald and his wife.

Mr. Jenner. Who was there in addition to yourself and Mr. Bouhe?

Mrs. Leslie. Mrs. Meller. From there we went to Mrs. Meller's house for dinner, so I presume it was something—3 o'clock or 4 o'clock that we were over at Mr. Bouhe's place, and then we went to Mrs. Meller's place for dinner.

162 Mr. Jenner. And who was present on that occasion?

Mrs. Leslie. There was a few people which I didn't know actually, I tell you—when I was introduced to Oswald—I didn't catch his name, his last name. They called them Lee and Marina, you know, and he didn't impress me very much.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about that.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes—he didn't impress me, you know, but the only thing—the only one thing impressed me—he was talking quite fluently Russian language. He was making some mistakes, grammar mistakes, in very good Russian language, because I was born there and raised there, but he was talking fluently. Everything he was talking in Russian language, but sometimes he was—he didn't use grammar things or something, he wasn't quite good in grammar. I think he was doing some mistakes, not in pronunciation but in grammar.

Mr. Jenner. What about Marina?

Mrs. Leslie. Marina impressed me as not so like people was saying—they have an education or something, she was quite wise and she was a pharmacist. I think as I understood after, she was a pharmacist, I think I understood after from some Russian, she took course of pharmacy and was working in Leningrad as a pharmacist, you know, so I will tell you—this Mr. Bouhe, he is a very kind man. He always liked to help everybody he can. So, he was born also in—Petrograd, before the Russian revolution it was, and she was born there, and when he heard she's from his hometown, that's why he took such an interest in this couple. He wanted to help them.

Now, she impressed me as a wise person, for her age, you know, and she was talking very good Russian language, which I rarely ever heard even on television, you know, sometimes when there was some talk of Ambassadors. It was a different language they use now—so many new words which I do not recall in our language. She was talking nice Russian language and that's all I remember.

Mr. Jenner. Did she speak good grammatically?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes, she probably finished school, you know, there is a different systems of school and a special course of pharmacy because she knew all terms, the Latin terms—something that not many people know, because she was educated in this field.

Then, we went to dinner and she had the trouble there with her baby, you know, changing diapers and so on like always, but this first baby it was. It wasn't the second baby then.

Then, I never met them—sometimes I was getting calls—how was this Russian couple getting along, and they tried to find for them new work for him—he was not satisfied with what he was doing. I think too little and always not enough money and Bouhe was trying to help them financially.

Mr. Jenner. Bouhe solicited money from you and others?

Mrs. Leslie. No, I didn't give. He was just helping because he is a quite wealthy man. He is alone and he doesn't have any limitation or anything. He always takes interest in some poor people. He sends money and he is supporting some old people. I do not know exactly which they are and so on.

Mr. Jenner. This interest of Mr. Bouhe, and this course of conduct that you have related was, as far as you are concerned, there was nothing extraordinary about it, it was something you normally would expect of a man like George Bouhe?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes, and I will tell you now, even now I do not meet with Mr. Bouhe and there is a completely different reason why. He is a temperate man, a little bit—he can tell you—insult you sometimes without thinking, and I am a little bit older than he is, a few years, so it was a case which probably will interest you because it was one of the finest things which happens.

When I was a child and close with my mother, I saw a photograph of my mother which was taken by some artist that was collecting Russian costumes of art, you know, peasant's costumes and her brother was in an academy, he was a painter, and this painter came from London and he wanted to help to make a book about Russia as an artist. So, he wanted to take photographs of the girls in these costumes and my mother was pretty, very pretty when she was young. She was 17 then—she was very pretty then, but that was long ago, that was 70 years ago, so they took her photograph in the costume and when163 I was 5 years old, I sold this photograph to a man, nothing else, you know, just a photographer and I forgot about it, and already being in America, I was living in Boston with my husband. I visited one of my friends and she was collecting Russian things, embroideries and books and she showed me some books and it was art books and I was looking at those costumes and then I see a portrait of my mother.

It was, you know, very big thing for me because being already 13 years out of Russia and I find a portrait of my mother in America and it was a very rare case.

I was asking this lady to give me the name of this book so I could find it, and she put this book so well on the shelf and after a few years finally, she sends me the name of this book, and when I met Mr. Bouhe, I told him I would like to buy a book, which is a very old edition, maybe 60 years ago, which now probably they wouldn't make it any more. He said, "That's what I like to do. I like to do everything. I don't have too much to do," and you know, he has nothing much to do and he says that he will find it. Finally, he found these two books, one for $60 and one for $20. So, I said, "I don't care about the book, I care only about my mother, the picture of my mother. I will pay for it $20." And, at 7 o'clock in the morning he calls me and he says, "I have this book—or rather it has arrived. Which one is portrait of your mother?"

There were about 20 portraits of different girls in costumes and how can I tell him which one is my mother and I said, "You bring me book and I will show you. I cannot tell you."

And he said, "Oh, how can you not tell about your mother, how she looks and so forth?'

I said, "I cannot tell you. Come and I will show you, and why do you call me at 7 o'clock in the morning. I have to rush to my job and I have no time to talk now." So, he hung up. Then, in the evening I found the book in the threshold of the house. So, indeed, after my job I called him on the telephone and I told him, I wanted to thank him for it and ask him, "Why didn't you come in the evening so I can show you where is my mother?" And he told me, "I don't want to know you any more. You were so rude to me, you didn't want to tell me which one is your mother so I don't want to know you any more and I am not interested in it." I said, "That's your privilege. I cannot force myself on you, if you don't want to know me." So, that was a break, you know, so since that—it was about more than 1 year I have lost track of it.

After this I was not at his house. So, I meet him socially sometimes at Mrs. Ford's house and shake hands with him, but I not invite him. He says he doesn't want me to know him—he doesn't want to know me, so I do not invite him to my house, he does not invite me to his house; and that's the situation, and I didn't meet him since—since this case, but I have nothing against him, but I was expecting from him some apology. I am an older woman and, after all, he is a man and I am a lady and when he told me he doesn't want to know me, so that's his, you know, duty to excuse me. I was a little bit rough, or something, and that's the end, but he didn't, so I'm stubborn too, so that was the end with Mr. Bouhe, and I never met him one time, and when I meet him, I say, "Hello, how are you," and that's all.

Mr. Jenner. How did these people, Lee Oswald and Marina Oswald act toward each other on the occasion when you saw them?

Mrs. Leslie. I will tell you something—I don't know if Bouhe told you or others too. When she was out at a place—she had a black eye and she has her tooth out, one tooth was out, so a second man it was raised a question how she had this black eye and so on, and she said, "Oh, I hit the kitchen door. The baby was crying and I didn't want to make a light, the door was open and I hit it—the kitchen door."

And then, later, I heard from Mrs. Meller that he beat her, he was beating her, that he was always beating her and everybody was sympathetic with her. Frankly now, it is understandable. She was Russian, you know, it is some kind of a feeling of a Russian toward a Russian and they were mad at him and how he could beat his wife—this is not proper—to beat his wife.

Mr. Jenner. Well, now, we don't approve of that in America.

Mrs. Leslie. No. All I say now is what other people like Mellers and like164 Fords told me that once he beat her so hard and threw her out in the street, so she took her baby as a result in just a little blanket—she didn't know where to go and she came to Mellers and she said, "I don't know where to go," that she wasn't talking good English and he wanted to talk Russian at home, so she didn't know what to do and the Mellers are very nice people, so they took her in their house and she stayed there a few days until they found a place for her. I don't remember, but they said, "Oh, the awful things," and they took her—I think, you know, that she was staying with them.

I didn't know she was staying with Fords. I didn't know when, because I lost trace of her and so that's all I know about Oswalds. Actually, I didn't see her until when she was on television.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I want to ask you about a certain George De Mohrenschildt.

Mrs. Leslie. I do not know him very much, he is a friend of my daughter's and he is in Haiti.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; I know that.

Mrs. Leslie. And he was patronizing Oswalds.

Mr. Jenner. What kind of fellow was George De Mohrenschildt?

Mrs. Leslie. You know, my daughter is ballerina and so even I have pictures somewhere with her. He was taking her out, you know, courting her. She is a very beautiful girl, my daughter—Nattialie Krassooska of the stage, and she is a very, very attractive girl and a very prima ballerina many, many years and he was courting her. They were going together, swimming together, and I don't know where—that's why she invited me to come here. She said, "I have here some friends," but when I came, he already married this Jeanne.

Mr. Jenner. Jeanne?

Mrs. Leslie. She's Russian—I don't know her maiden name, Jeanne or Jane or something in Russian, but I could not tell what her maiden name is and he was married four times and she was married, I don't know, a few times, and then they took this trip, a walking trip in South America or somewhere, you know, they walked.

Mr. Jenner. From the Mexican border down to Panama?

Mrs. Leslie. I don't know exactly, so they was walking and what were the arrangements he made—with some Life Magazine, or something, but he is a geologist anyway. She took this job in Haiti also make geologist, and when I came here he already was married, but it happens like so, once he lost his little boy from another wife and he was very much grieving about this boy, so my daughter, being his friend, she sympathizes with him and wrote him a little letter. She wrote him a letter of sympathy because he lost his little boy and then his wife, Jeanne, called my daughter and said that they was not meeting since he was married and she said she would like to meet her and since then, occasionally, we was meeting them at Fords and other houses and then once at Christmas time she invited them to come to our house, so they were once at our house. Now, I didn't know them before and I will tell you something—that what many people were afraid of, his wife is atheist. She doesn't believe in God.

Mr. Jenner. This is Mrs. De Mohrenschildt?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes—his wife, and he wasn't, when he was going with my daughter, which is very religious, he was going to church, even singing in chorus of church. After he married this Jeanne he became atheist too, you know, so I don't know—maybe he always is under the influence of somebody, but it is hard to tell, but I cannot judge them. I don't know how to judge the characters that they are, but everybody says, "Well, he is under influence of this Jeanne." That's all they say about him.

Mr. Jenner. Is there anything extraordinary about him in his dress and his attitude?

Mrs. Leslie. You know, after this trip, they are very—they don't like to dress. You can invite them for Christmas and he will come in slacks, dirty, and in sweaters, you know, his appearance always shocked me a little bit. You know, when you invite people for dinner, you expect them to be more or less decent dressed, and she, too, and they was saying when they were making this trip to Mexico or South America, or I don't know, they was walking in bikinis and practically naked and there was dogs and a mule, and you know, so I don't know165 what kind of people—whose influence was this and was he the same before or not, I cannot tell.

I never was interested in that, in this family, you know, close, so that's all I know about De Mohrenschildts.

Actually, now, it's already a long time, and my daughter doesn't either. The De Mohrenschildts are more or less friends with—and I don't know who knows them best, but I think—whether the Mellers do or not—I don't know who is friends, but I heard that he took interest in these Oswalds and Oswalds was in his house many times, but what they was talking about, if he knew about his point of view or if he knew he is a Communist, you know, many people was thinking that probably she didn't broke with the Soviet Union when she left, why he left, you know, why they let him out, you know, but nobody knows, you know, it is so hard to leave from there—his wife and child, why they let them out.

Mr. Davis. Did this occur to you?

Mrs. Leslie. It has occurred to everybody—how—he was so poor and Bouhe was helping him and he has no decent job and at the same time he took a trip to Mexico and he took a trip to New Orleans—he was taking these trips—who supplied him with money—nobody knows. You know, that's a thought everybody was thinking—how he went there and how—it's strange things, but nobody can answer these questions.

Mr. Jenner. But the interest of Mr. Bouhe and the Fords and the Mellers and the De Mohrenschildts and others was an interest growing out of good heartedness?

Mrs. Leslie. I hope so—I think so—I hope so. Mostly, you know, I cannot tell about De Mohrenschildts. She's Russian and he is Russian. I don't know—he's from Estonia or something, you know, De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. On the Baltic Sea?

Mrs. Leslie. Yes; but she is Russian. Now, you know, it is natural that Russians wants to meet Russians to talk their own language, and not to forget it, so they met them somewhere and invited them to their place, and if they helped them, I don't know, but they met, which I know—they was meeting them—somebody told that the FBI was looking for De Mohrenschildt here, and I think they found he was in Haiti, and I think in 6 months he will come back and it will all be over, after this is over. Probably he will come back into the United States.

Now, I cannot tell any more. Yes—I wanted to tell this—so, when this naturally occurred, I was watching television because President Kennedy was coming to Dallas and, the man, you know, he was nice, and there was Mrs. Kennedy, the First Lady, and then there was a bullet and a shot and he was shot and later they show a picture of Oswald. They presume that it was Oswald who is killer, you know, and I look at this Oswald, and then they showed Marina with the child and I did not recognize her; you know, I have not seen them in a couple of years and I didn't know his last name, the name Lee and Marina didn't meant to me everything, and then they said "Russian born," but didn't occur to me that I met them, and then I went to church on Newton Street and then there was a friend of mine, Igor Voshinin and Natalia Voshinin and she said, "Did you hear who killed President Kennedy?" I said, "I don't remember his name. They named it on television but I don't remember his name."

They said, "It's Oswald, you know him." I said, "I know him?" And they said, "But yes; you met him." I said, "Well," and then I said, "Oh, yes; I met him." And then I stopped to look at the pictures more closely and I recognized him then, but at first even I didn't recognize him, because when you are not expecting—I didn't know his last name and such a common face he has, and such a—you couldn't remember his face very closely—it is just one person you can recognize him, and that's how it happened that I knew him and his wife. Oh, I feel so bad; I shaked his hand—I didn't remember if I did or not. I shaked his hand, and I said, "Oh, I shaked hands with the killer of the President," and I felt dirty and I touched something I didn't want to touch, you know, but actually I'm very sorry about Marina, his wife. I am sorry.

Mr. Jenner. Have you seen her since the occasion you met her?

Mrs. Leslie. No, no; I think she is now helped by Mr. and Mrs. Ford. It was166 correct that they was helping her because she received so much from the donations and money, and somebody took advantage of it and they was providing her money and she could not get for herself anything and they was investing it or something—I don't know the situation, but she is now—they asked her—as Russian—to watch over her. I don't know what she does—I never meet with her; I never invited Marina Oswald to my house and I do not intend to. I just don't want to—I don't know, but, you know, I have such a feeling that it is better to—I don't know, maybe I am wrong and have to be more Christian.

Mr. Jenner. Well, Mrs. Leslie, we appreciate very much your coming in, I know, at an inconvenience to you.

Mrs. Leslie. But if I can help with something I want to.

Mr. Jenner. You were helpful to us and we appreciate it very much.

Mrs. Leslie. Thank you very much.

Mr. Jenner. Miss Oliver will write this up and if you wish to read it, you have that liberty and that right to do so, and if you would prefer to do that, we will make your transcript available to you to read.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes; you will mail it to me?

Mr. Jenner. If you call in here to Mr. Barefoot Sanders, the U.S. attorney's office, he will have it.

Mrs. Leslie. I have to write his name.

Mr. Jenner. And he will know when your transcript is ready.

Mrs. Leslie. He will call me on the telephone?

Mr. Jenner. You had better call him because there are so many witnesses. Call him sometime next week and then you may come in and read it and sign it.

Mrs. Leslie. Yes; I will be glad to because everything I told, I told it under oath and it is completely true and I didn't try to hide anything.

Mr. Davis. That's the name and the phone number.

Mrs. Leslie. Sir, I will call him and ask him—what I have to ask—is my deposition ready?

Mr. Jenner. If the writeup of your deposition is ready for you to read?

Mrs. Leslie. To read—all right; thank you.

Mr. Jenner. You give him your name and he will tell you.

Mr. Davis. Let me give you another name to call since Mr. Sanders may be hard to get. You might call Martha Joe Stroud, who is an assistant attorney here and she is actually in charge of those, and she might be the one you could reach and she would be at this same number.

Mrs. Leslie. All right; I will do it.

Mr. Davis. I would say about Tuesday or Wednesday of next week. Thank you so much, Mrs. Leslie.

Mrs. Leslie. Thank you.


TESTIMONY OF GEORGE S. DE MOHRENSCHILDT

The testimony of George S. De Mohrenschildt was taken at 10 a.m., on April 22, 1964, at 200 Maryland Avenue N.E., Washington, D.C., by Mr. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Dr. Alfred Goldberg, historian, was present.

Mr. Jenner. Will you rise and be sworn? Do you solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth in the deposition you are about to give?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I do.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. Reporter, this is Mr. George De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt, you and Mrs. De Mohrenschildt have received letters from Mr. Rankin, the general counsel of the Commission, have you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We received one.

Mr. Jenner. One joint letter?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. One joint letter.

Mr. Jenner. With which was enclosed copies of the Senate Joint Resolution 137, which was the legislation authorizing the creation of the Commission to167 investigate the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy; the Executive Order No. 11130, President Lyndon Johnson—which brought the Commission actually into existence and appointed the Commissioners and fixed their powers and duties and obligations. And, also, a copy of the rules and regulations adopted by the Commission for the taking of testimony before the Commission, and by deposition.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Are you a representative of the Commission?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A lawyer for the Commission?

Mr. Jenner. I will state it in a moment.

I am Albert E. Jenner, Jr., member of the legal staff of the Commission, and have prepared to make inquiry of you with respect to the subject matter with which the Commission is charged.

In general, as you have noted from the documents enclosed with Mr. Rankin's letter, the Commission is charged with the investigation and the assembling of facts respecting the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on the 22d of November 1963, the events that followed that assassination, and all matters before and after that are deemed by the Commission relevant to its obligations.

In pursuing these lines of inquiry, which we have been doing now for some months, we have examined before the Commission and by way of deposition various people who, by pure happenstance in the course of their lives, came into contact either with Lee Harvey Oswald or Marina Oswald, or others who had some relation with them. And in the course of our investigation, we have learned that you and Mrs. De Mohrenschildt befriended the Oswalds at one time, and had some other contact with them.

As you realize, there are rumors and speculations of various people who do not know what the facts are—some of them know bits of the facts—which require us in many instances to inquire into matters that are largely personal. We are not doing so merely because we are curious.

I will confine myself to matters that we believe to be relevant. It may not always be apparent to you, because we know a great deal more, of course, than any one witness would know.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You know, this affair actually is hurting me quite a lot, particularly right now in Haiti, because President Duvalier—I have a contract with the Government.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; I want to inquire on that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They got wind I am called by the Warren committee. Nobody knows how it happened. And now he associates me, being very scared of assassination, with a staff of international assassins, and I am about to be expelled from the country. My contract may be broken.

So I discussed that with our Ambassador there, Mr. Timmons, and he said, of course, it sounds ridiculous, but he will try to do his best.

Supposedly, President Duvalier received a letter from Washington. Now, this is unofficial—one of the ministers informed me of that—in which this letter states that I was a very close friend of Oswald's, that I am a Polish Communist and a member of an international band.

Mr. Jenner. I would say that you are misinformed on that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, he did receive some kind of a letter.

Mr. Jenner. But nothing that would contain any such statements.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I don't know from whom. Some kind of a letter he received from someone.

Mr. Jenner. It may have been a crank letter.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. What is that?

Mr. Jenner. It may have been a crank letter, but nothing official.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I am sure it is nothing official. I am sure it could not have been anything official.

I hope Mr. Timmons will investigate it. Because, naturally, the Minister of Finance of Haiti tells me that it is an official letter and seems to indicate that it comes from the FBI. But I just doubt it, personally. Probably a crank letter. I do not have an extraordinary admiration for the FBI. But, frankly, I don't think they would do anything like that, you know.

Mr. Jenner. They don't go around making official——

168 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. So I hope that this unpleasantness will be somehow repaired by Mr. Timmons. And I think that just a communication from him to the foreign office there might help. I am not persona non grata at the Embassy. He doesn't have to swear I am this or that, or that I am a good friend of his. But just that I am not persona non grata would be sufficient, I think. Because this job I have there in Haiti is a result of many years of work, preparation, and it is important for me. It involves a considerable amount of money, $285,000, and further development, mining and oil development, which goes with it—and preparation of this job started already in 1947, when I first came to Haiti, and went several times subsequently and worked there. It is a long-term approach that I have started, because I like the country, and I think it has excellent oil possibilities, and I finally got that contract about in March last year.

So if the committee could do something in that respect—I am going also to see a gentleman in the State Department who Mr. Timmons suggested me to see and explain the situation to him. It would be very unpleasant, just to be kicked out of the country because of the rumors.

Mr. Jenner. Well, we certainly don't want that to happen. All right.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Please think about what can be done in this respect, because it is really very important to me.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. And excuse me. I am also employing American geologists there, and I am responsible for them and their families. I have several Haitian engineers and geologists working there. So it is not a fly-by-night project, you see.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I don't regard it as such, and I know something about it. I think probably it would be well if we start from the beginning. You were born in 1911?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Some of the reports say April 17th and some say April 4th, or something of that nature. It is probably a difference in the calendar.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is it exactly. It is a difference in calendar.

Mr. Jenner. It is April 17, 1911, by what calendar?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. By our calendar here.

Mr. Jenner. And what date by——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. April 4th.

Mr. Jenner. And by what calendar is that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. By the Gregorian Calendar.

Mr. Jenner. In any event, you are now 53 years old?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where were you born?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A town called Mozyr.

Mr. Jenner. What country?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Russia; Czarist Russia.

Mr. Jenner. Czarist, did you say?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, some of the reports indicate that this was Poland rather than Russia. Would you explain this?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I don't remember the town, because I never lived there to my memory. But it is not too far from the Polish border.

Mr. Jenner. Now, your father was Sergis Alexander Von Mohrenschildt, is that correct? And your mother was Alexandra Zopalsky?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What nationality was your mother?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My mother was Russian, of Polish and Hungarian descent.

Mr. Jenner. And the nationality of your father?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He was also of Russian, Swedish, German descent.

Mr. Jenner. Would you tell me a little bit about your father? And may I say this. There appear in the reports that he was—or maybe your grandfather, was Swedish, or someone in your line was Swedish, and received some commission or grant from the Queen of Sweden at one time, or maybe your family.

169 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about that, will you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, the family is of Swedish origin. The name is spelled M-o-h-r-e-n-s-k-u-l-d.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; I saw last night in looking over these materials the spelling S-k-o-l-d-t, is that correct?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right, it is spelled this way. That is a Swedish way of spelling. And the letter "o" with two dots over it is a typical Swedish letter which cannot be translated or written down in any language. So in probably moving to Russia, or to the Baltic States, you see, which was an intermediary area between Russia and Sweden, they probably changed it to S-c-h-i-l-d-t. And it can also be written in Russian, at the same time.

Mr. Jenner. Now, what did your father do? What was he?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He was a landowner. He was a director of the Nobel interests for a while. He was a marshal of nobility of the Minsk Province.

Mr. Jenner. He was what?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Marshal of nobility. He was elected representative of the landowners to the Government.

Mr. Jenner. Of what country?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Of Czarist Russia. He was born in Russia, and spent all his life in Russia, spoke German at home sometimes, sometimes Russian. That was a mixed-up family, of which there were so many in Russia.

Mr. Jenner. You, yourself, have the command of at least four, maybe five languages. May I see if I can recall them. English?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; if you consider it a command.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; I do. German?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. German, not too well.

Mr. Jenner. Spanish?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Spanish.

Mr. Jenner. French?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Russian?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Russian; yes.

Mr. Jenner. And I suppose a smattering of a number of other languages.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You have traveled widely?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Especially in Europe?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Now you can add Creole to it.

Mr. Jenner. From your experience in Haiti?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. And Yugoslav.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; you spent almost a year in Yugoslavia.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you pick up any Danish when you were there, or do they speak French there?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They speak German and French.

Mr. Jenner. Your father is deceased?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What do you know about his death?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My father was——

Mr. Jenner. I think it might be well, Mr. De Mohrenschildt—I am trying to make this informal. I want you to relax.

May I say, because of the considerations about which you are concerned, I will tend to inquire into these things.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I am very glad that you do, because you know what I mean—it is probably being in a controversial business like I am, international business——

Mr. Jenner. Also, I gather that you are a pretty lively character.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Maybe so. I hope so. All sorts of speculation have arisen from time to time. And I don't mind, frankly, because when you don't have anything to hide, you see, you are not afraid of anything. I am very outspoken.

170 Mr. Jenner. I understand that you are, from witnesses I have interviewed, and from these mountains of reports.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I can imagine. By the way, those reports—again, you see this inquiry is probably going to hurt my business. I hope they are conducted somehow delicately.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I was asking you to tell me about your father.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Up to the time of his death, from what you understand to be the circumstances of death.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; well, my father, then, therefore, was an important official of the Czarist government. But he was a liberal—he had very liberal ideas. He, for instance, was——

Mr. Jenner. Now, liberal, to me, over in that country would mean nothing. You tell us what you mean by that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Liberal means disliked anti-Semitism, the persecution of Jews.

Mr. Jenner. He was opposed to that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Opposed to that. Disliked the oppression, some elements of oppression of the Czarist government.

Mr. Jenner. He was opposed to that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Opposed to that. And preached constitutional government. During the war he was a member—being an official—member of the group which mobilized the Army, and all that.

Mr. Jenner. He mobilized the Czarist army?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You are talking now about World War I?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. World War I. It is such a long time ago.

Mr. Jenner. I have to get these things on record, so that somebody who is reading this, Mr. De Mohrenschildt, a hundred years from now—I should tell you that your testimony will be reproduced in full just as you give it, with all my questions put to you just as I put them. And it will be printed as part of the report.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I can imagine what a volume it will be for the future Ph. D.'s to study. This is vague in my memory. I am saying what I vaguely remember, because, at that time, I was 5 years old. But I vaguely remember those days, the objections of my father against the Czarist government to a degree, although he was an official. He was an independent character, too. Finally he resigned his marshal of nobility position, and became a director of Nobel interests, of which his older brother was a president or chairman of the board—I don't know, I don't remember any more, in Baku, Russia. So we spent a little time there—in the oil fields. And then, of course, the revolution came.

Mr. Jenner. And that came when?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Beg pardon?

Mr. Jenner. When?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1918, I guess. Then the revolution came. We were returned to Minsk.

Mr. Jenner. In 1918 where were you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In 1918 probably in St. Petersburg, or Moscow, one or the other—in both towns at some times. Because the headquarters of that Nobel enterprises were in Petersburg or Moscow. But I am not so sure about that. Anyway, we lived there for awhile.

Mr. Jenner. You do have a personal recollection of having lived in St. Petersburg and Moscow?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, very vague. I never expected you to ask me such questions. I really have to delve into my memory. It is not very difficult, because, you know, I like to write things. So I did write a story of my childhood, and it is called "Child of the Revolution," a memory of the child of the revolution. It was poorly written. I showed it to one of the editors, Scribners, I remember, and they wanted me to change it, and I abandoned the whole thing. Well, so I do have a little bit more recollection than I am supposed to have just by living so many years, because I did write it down.

Mr. Jenner. Yes. You wrote it when you came over to this country.

171 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you refreshed your recollection at that time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Discussions with your brother, I suppose?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you have mentioned Minsk.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That was the province where my father was governor—not governor, but marshal of nobility of.

Mr. Jenner. What province is that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Province of Minsk. Surprisingly, that is where Lee Oswald lived. This is one of the reasons I was curious about his experiences, because I remember it very well. I remember that town very well.

Mr. Jenner. What age were you when you left Minsk?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. So from Leningrad, during the occupation by the Germans of Minsk, you see, we escaped from the Communists in Leningrad, and moved to Minsk back again, because it was German occupied.

Mr. Jenner. This was in World War I?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, in World War I. That was in 1918 or 1919. I don't remember exactly what year it was. That area was still occupied by the Germans. Anyway, there was famine in Moscow, or Leningrad, I don't remember which one—-there was famine there. So we escaped.

Mr. Jenner. Did your whole family escape to Minsk?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't remember what my brother was doing at the time. I think—I think just my father, mother, and myself. I think my brother was in the Naval Academy at the time.

Mr. Jenner. I want to ask you about your brother in due course.

He is about 12 years older than you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes—11.

Mr. Jenner. A man of some scholarly attainment, by the way.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He certainly is. He loves books.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Anyway, we escaped from the famine, frankly, more than communism, and moved back to Minsk—whether we had a house, or I don't remember, but we had some possessions there. And we arrived there. And from then on we stayed there, although the Communists eventually occupied Minsk. Then my father was put in jail. I will make it short.

Mr. Jenner. Please—that is all right. I don't mind the shortness. But I want times. About when was your father put in jail?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The first time in 1920, I think.

Mr. Jenner. And you were still with your family then?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. At this time you were 9 years old.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your mother was still alive?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your father was seized?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. By whom?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. By the Communists, by the Communist regime.

Mr. Jenner. Why was he seized?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. For being outspoken, I guess. I remember—the first time I don't remember, frankly. But the second time I remember very well, because this is very interesting. He was seized the first time. Then the Polish Army arrived—the Poles and the Russians were fighting at the time. And at the last moment the Communists released my father, because of the intervention of some friend, you see. And we always had some friends whom we had protected once upon a time, who always came and helped him at the right moment with the Communists, because many Jewish people he had helped became Communists, or halfway Communists. They helped him. And that is how eventually we were able to escape from Soviet Russia.

The first time he was released, the Poles arrived, we were in Poland again, that was a temporary occupation. And then the Poles retreated and the Russians172 arrived again. And here was the question to decide whether we should go with the Poles or stay in Russia. And my father decided to stay in Russia because being a liberal he had an impression that they have changed.

Mr. Jenner. That the Russians had changed?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; he heard from somebody that they have become liberal. He stayed in Minsk, and because he stayed he got some kind of an appointment in the Soviet Government. I don't remember which one it was. I guess in the Department of Agriculture, because he was interested in division of big estates. That was his idea—what was going on in Russia was opposed by the huge estates. We had one, also, but not as big. So he was always in favor of the division of the big estates, breaking them up into smaller farms. And he had this appointment, adviser to the Minister of Agriculture—I don't remember what it was exactly. And we lived more or less happily for a certain number of months—although there was a famine there.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you are still in Minsk?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Still in Minsk; yes—in probably 1920. And then one day they arrested him again. And here is what happened. I will show you what kind of a person he was. At the time they were installing museums in churches. And my father objected to that.

Mr. Jenner. Your father was a religious man, was he?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; he was not religious. But he objected by principle to that. He was not very religious at all. But he objected to the intervention into other people's faith. We never had too much religion in the family. And he was put in jail. And started criticizing the Soviet Government. And, finally—I remember this more distinctly—because he was finally sentenced to life exile to Siberia. And that I will never forget about my father—an interesting thing.

Mr. Jenner. He was banished to Siberia by the Russians?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. These are the Bolsheviks who had conducted the revolution. This was a revolutionary period?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. This is 1921 by now.

Mr. Jenner. You are now 10 years old?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I remained on the street making my own living somehow. My mother runs around the country trying to save my father. He is in jail for the second time, and finally he gets sentenced to life imprisonment in a town called Vieliki Ustug in Siberia. This is as far as I remember the name of it.

And why was he sentenced for that—because at the hearing, whatever they called the court, they asked him, "What kind of government do you suggest for Soviet Russia?" And he said, fool as he was, "Constitutional monarchy," and that was it. That was his sentence—just because of that. Because, actually, they didn't have anything against him. My father was a liberal and never hurt anybody. He became very sick in jail. And these friends—the friends whom he had helped previously——

Mr. Jenner. You mean true friends?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. In this particular case I don't remember their names. They were a couple of Jewish doctors who advised my father to eat as little as possible, any way to appear very sick, and finally—they themselves were his doctors. They finally made the position with the Soviet Government that he was going to die, he was not going to survive the trip to Siberia, because he was going to be sent directly to Siberia, with the family, with all of us. And that he should be released to stay home, and just appear once—a couple of times a week to show he is there, until his health condition improved, and he was able to be sent to Siberia.

And they did that, surprisingly, and they released him. And that is where he made his preparations for escape. And the same people, helped him to get some transportation, a hay wagon, and we crossed the border, in a very long and tedious way. But we crossed the border of Poland.

Mr. Jenner. You crossed the border into Poland, and he settled where?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In a town called Wilno.

Mr. Jenner. That was yourself, your mother, and your father?

173 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My father. But my mother almost immediately died from typhoid fever which she contracted during this escape. We all had this typhoid fever.

Mr. Jenner. But she succumbed to it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And this was what year?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1922.

Mr. Jenner. You are now 11 years old.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. At this point I might ask you—the name was Von Mohrenschildt at this particular time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your name is now De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I think your brother still uses the Von, does he not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Would you explain that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes—because I am more or less of a French orientation. And when I became an American citizen, I did not like the prefix "Von" which is German to the average person. And so we used "De" which is equally used in Sweden or in the Baltic States, interchangeably. And my uncle, who was here in the States for quite some time, and died here——

Mr. Jenner. I was going to ask you about him. You might as well give his full name.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Ferdinand De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. Jenner. I will digress for a moment. Ferdinand De Mohrenschildt was some officer, or had a connection with the Russian Embassy here in Washington?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about that, please.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, he was First Secretary of the Czarist Embassy, the last Czarist Embassy here in Washington. He married McAdoo's daughter.

Mr. Jenner. William Gibbs McAdoo's daughter. She is now Mrs. Post.

Is she still alive?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; she is still alive.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall her first name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Nona.

Mr. Jenner. Your uncle is deceased?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He is deceased; yes.

Mr. Jenner. They were eventually divorced, were they not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, sir; no—he died. They were never divorced. She was divorced many times—remarried and divorced many times. But he died—I guess in 1925 or 1924.

Mr. Jenner. Sometimes people refer to you as Baron De Mohrenschildt.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Would you explain that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't refer to myself as that, you know. But supposedly the family has the right to it, because we are members of the Baltic nobility.

Mr. Jenner. Through what source?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Through the Swedish source, from the time of Queen Christina. But my father never used the title, because of his perhaps liberal tendencies. Neither did Ferdinand, I think.

Mr. Jenner. And as near as I can tell, your brother never has?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My brother—I don't think so; no.

Mr. Jenner. At least I don't find it in any of the papers.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You are an interesting person, Mr. De Mohrenschildt, to many people. They have gathered ideas about you, and many of them in the past at least have felt that you might have been, or that you perhaps were—had a title of some kind. I just wanted to explain that of record.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we have you in Wilno, Poland. You are 11 years old.

174 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I have some papers which say that we are barons, in my files. But, frankly, I don't—I think it is sort of ridiculous to use the title. My ex-wife loved the idea.

Mr. Jenner. Which one?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The very last one, Sharples.

Mr. Jenner. Am I correct that there were two children, yourself and your brother Dimitri?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And no others—just two children?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you stayed in Wilno, Poland, how long?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Stayed in Wilno until I graduated from gymnasium, which is the equivalent of high school. A little bit more than a high school. That must have been 1929. Not constantly over there, but that is where our home was.

Mr. Jenner. What did your father do in Wilno?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In Wilno he fought for the—tried to regain back our estate. It happened to be we had an estate, a piece of land.

Mr. Jenner. In Russia?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In Russia—which became Poland—in Czarist Russia, but which became Poland. Right on the border. It became through the partition of Czarist Russia, it became part of Poland. And this estate was in Poliesie. That is a wooded area of Poland, right on the border.

Well, the estate was seized by the peasants and divided among themselves by themselves. It was not large, but it was—well, maybe 5,000 acres; 5,000 or 6,000 acres.

Mr. Jenner. I would say that is fairly large.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My father was able to regain it. He did not take it back from the peasants, but he regained ownership and was able to sell the forests from it, and eventually sold it back again to the peasants piece by piece. So we were not completely penniless refugees.

Mr. Jenner. Did your mother have an interest in that estate?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, it was mother's and father's estate, probably jointly.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Now, you completed your classical intermediate education, as you call the gymnasium, in 1929.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. So you are now 18 years sf age?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your mother is deceased. Did you live with your father during this period?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very close relationship I had with my father.

Mr. Jenner. Now, did you then leave Poland?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No. Then I tried to—I did not like the country very much, Poland. We became Polish citizens, but I didn't particularly feel at home there. I learned the language. But it didn't feel like home. And I decided to go to study in Belgium, and asked for permission to go to Belgium, and the Polish Government refused me the permission because I was close to the military age. So I volunteered for the Polish Army.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I would like to go into that. Go right ahead.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I volunteered for the Polish Army and chose the cavalry and was sent to the military academy in Grudziondz. Well, it was a famous military academy in Poland where the Polish nobility displayed their ability to ride horseback. And I was able to get to it because I volunteered—I was 18 years old. I graduated from there.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. May I ask you this; Would it have been possible for any young man your age at that time, let's say, if I may use a reference, peasant, which you were not, to have volunteered for the same position or division in the Polish Army?

175 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. There were some exceptions. Most of the people there were members of the aristocracy, Polish aristocracy, and German aristocracy, who happened to have estates in Poland. But we had some exceptions. But they did not survive later on. They were eliminated, not because of the snobbishness, but it was a pretty tough training, and you needed money to be in that school. You had to have a uniform, you have to have your own horse.

Mr. Jenner. Now, where did you get the funds to finance it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, my father had this estate, sales of land from that estate, and he also was—now, this I forgot to mention about my father. He started originally as a professor in the gymnasium, then became a government official with the Czarist government. So he was always—always liked to teach.

Mr. Jenner. You are taking us back to Russia for a moment?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Back to Russia for a moment; yes. So now his profession as a government official was no good—neither his experience as a director of Nobel Enterprises was not much good. So he became a professor and a director of the gymnasium, the Russian gymnasium.

Mr. Jenner. That is the high school?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. High school, in Wilno. You know—where the immigrants send their children. And he was director of it for a number of years. I don't remember what exact years. I guess until 1929 or 1930. I didn't go to the same school, by the way. I went to a different school.

Mr. Jenner. You mean you went to a school different from the one in which he was teaching?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; in order not to be under my father's—not supervision, but also that school did not give the rights in Poland, by the way—did not have the rights in Poland to go to a university in Poland or to serve a short military term, because it was a refugee school, conducted in the Russian language. So I went to a Polish school, had to learn the Polish language, and finally graduated.

Mr. Jenner. Did I mention Polish as one of the languages of which you have a command?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. And, therefore, it was very important, because the military service for the people graduating from nonaccepted schools was 4 years, or something like that, and for the ones who graduated from the official school it was, I think, a year and a half.

Mr. Jenner. Now, how long were you in the military academy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A year and a half.

Mr. Jenner. And this would take us, then, to the middle of 1931.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1931; yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you had reached what, if any, rank in the military service?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I reached candidate officer—sergeant candidate officer, an intermediate rank between an officer and noncommissioned officer. The highest you can get after you get from the military academy.

Mr. Jenner. Just before as in this country you are about to be commissioned a second lieutenant?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. Except that you are not completely a soldier—you are not a noncommissioned officer, you are not a commissioned officer. You are about to be commissioned a lieutenant.

Mr. Jenner. I see. All right. Now, you didn't pursue that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No, no. It was just a reserve. You see, it gives you a reserve rank which you can pursue by going back to maneuvers, and pursue that.

Mr. Jenner. Now, there are some indications that you did return.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, tell me what you did in that connection?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I went to school, then to Belgium—I was free now to go to school to Belgium. And I went to Institut Superieur de Commerce a Anvers.

Mr. Jenner. The translation of that is the institute of higher commercial studies, Antwerp, Belgium. When attending the institution of higher commercial studies in Antwerp, you returned to Poland, did you, from time to time?

176 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. In connection with your summer maneuvers?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And what was the requirement in that connection?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Just to come there when they called you, and go with the Army—summer maneuvers, summer exercises. I think I did that twice. I don't recall.

Mr. Jenner. And this was still in the cavalry?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Still in the cavalry.

Mr. Jenner. Were you ultimately commissioned?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; always stayed a sergeant.

Mr. Jenner. You entered the institute of——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. By the way, which was a commission—that is very hard to explain to you. It is like midshipman in the Navy. That is what it is. And since I did not pursue the military career, I remained a candidate officer.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I was not disqualified for any reason. On the contrary, I was the best actually, if I may say so.

Mr. Jenner. Let me pass for a moment in this connection so we can get it on the record here—your brother, Dimitri, 11 years older than you, he also devoted his time to the service, but to the Navy.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, that was the Russian Czarist Navy, was it not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And tell us about that, please.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, he joined the naval academy when I think he was 11 or 12 years old. That is what they have out there. They start very young. Do you want a little bit of the background of my brother?

Mr. Jenner. Yes, sir; go right ahead.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He is really a ferocious anti-Communist, so you would be very happy to hear about that. He was in the Russian Imperial Navy, became a midshipman.

Mr. Jenner. Give me some dates.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, he was a midshipman in 1918, in Sebastopol, which is the headquarters there.

Mr. Jenner. Now, he was born March 29, 1902, in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. I thought he was born in 1900.

Mr. Jenner. Well, his records at the passport office give his birth as March 29, 1902, and he gives his birth in his biographical material at Dartmouth and Yale.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, anyway, he was a young edition of a midshipman. He was a midshipman in 1918, which is like graduation from Annapolis here.

Mr. Jenner. And did he actually serve in the Czarist Navy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. All the time you are in that school you are in the navy, all the time—even when you are 12 years old, you are a member of the navy. It is not like here.

Mr. Jenner. Did he participate in World War I, in the late 1918 period of fighting.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall where?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't recall where. He joined anti-Communist groups, was finally caught by the Communists, and sentenced to death in a town called Smolensk.

Here we were coming back to our—we were already in Minsk at the time, that was not too far. My brother was in Smolensk in jail, in a Communist jail. My father also in jail. And I was the only one at liberty. And my mother was running around trying to help both of them.

My brother was sentenced to be shot. He was put to the wall and they told him, "You will be shot when they say three, and they would say one, two—he was supposed to disclose the names of his accomplices.

Now, I do not recall; Yes, yes. The Polish Government exchanged him against a Communist. They made an exchange. They had some Communist prisoners,177 and my brother was with a group of Poles who were prisoners of the Communists, and the Poles exchanged him against some of my father's old friends. And I remember who it is. It was a Catholic bishop in Poland.

Mr. Jenner. What was his name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Lozinski. He was a bishop who was in jail with my brother, also, and they wanted him, he helped my brother to get out.

Mr. Jenner. Did your brother join you in Wilno, Poland?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He immediately—it looks vague. I think he joined us for a little while, or he maybe went ahead of us and came to the United States.

Mr. Jenner. My information is that he emigrated to the United States on the 20th of August 1920.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. A little bit ahead of us.

Mr. Jenner. Does that square with your recollection?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. You see, there was an intermediate year. The Poles had occupied part of Russia. I think we saw him just before he departed for the United States. The Poles offered him to join the Navy in Poland, and he decided to go to the United States.

Mr. Jenner. All right. I had digressed a moment because it was appropriate to have your brother come in at the point we reached. But we have you now in Belgium, attending the university.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Had your brother had a higher education while he was still in Russia? That is, had he gone beyond the gymnasium stage?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No. My brother was a midshipman in the Navy. He had only the naval academy education, and even shortened—short naval academy education. I don't know what you would compare it to. Certainly better than high school here.

Mr. Jenner. Junior college?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Junior college; yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you continued your studies, did you, in Belgium?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And did you receive a degree from the institute of higher commercial studies in Antwerp?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. I received what you called—master's degree, probably equivalent, because they don't have bachelor's degree there. You get immediately a master's degree—a license—in finance and in maritime transportation—another year of maritime transportation.

Mr. Jenner. And you attended this institute for 4 years, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. For 5 years.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you received——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; all the degrees you can get there.

Mr. Jenner. This is one of the oldest commercial institutions of higher learning in Europe?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Something like the Harvard Business School?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; founded by Napoleon.

Mr. Jenner. And you received a——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It is a mixture of some engineering and commercial—not exactly like Harvard School of Business Administration. It lets you carry on industrial and business activities, with a specialization in maritime transportation.

Mr. Jenner. There is some indication that your degree is one of master of arts in commercial, financial, and counsular sciences.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you continued on—after you received that master's degree, you continued on for another year, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. No; you entered——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I entered the University of Liege.

Mr. Jenner. And how long did you study there?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Two years.

Mr. Jenner. And you ultimately received a degree, did you not?

178 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What was that degree?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Doctor of science in international commerce.

Mr. Jenner. Did you write a doctorate thesis?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. On what subject was it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It was the subject of the economic influence of the United States on Latin America.

Mr. Jenner. Had you already acquired, through that, an interest in Latin America?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you have pursued that in subsequent years, have you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; a very useful dissertation it was.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we have you—let's see, this is about 5 years—you are about——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1938.

Mr. Jenner. We are up in 1938.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now,——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In the meantime, my brother came to visit me from the United States. We had not seen each other since 1920. He was studying—he was pursuing his career, and eventually got married.

Mr. Jenner. To Miss McAdoo?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; that is my uncle. My brother married a lady by the name of Betty Cartright Hooker.

Mr. Jenner. That is right. And you were in partnership at one time with Edward Hooker, were you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. I will get to that in a moment. She is still living, is she not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She still is living; yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. Is she in this country or in Paris or Italy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She is in New York now. I have her address some place. She lives between New York and Paris.

Mr. Jenner. Did you engage in some kind of a business in Europe during this period?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. While you were attending the university?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. How did you manage that while you—inasmuch as you were pursuing your studies at two universities?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I had an interest in a sport shop with a girl friend of mine. It helped me to make ends meet.

Mr. Jenner. What was the name of that company?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The name was Sigurd.

Mr. Jenner. And that was devoted to what—readymade clothes, ski clothes, and that sort of thing?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And did you attempt to sell those throughout Europe?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. In the process of doing so, did you then travel through Europe?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where did you get the funds to finance that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very little funds—maybe a $1,000, $2,000, from my father, and whatever savings my girl friend had. She was an excellent saleswoman.

Mr. Jenner. Had you received any funds from your mother's participation in the estate you had?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think that was the money that helped me to start—when I was 21 years old I received a couple of thousand dollars—although I did not take all the money away from my father, but at least part of it. Or maybe more than that—maybe $4,000 or $5,000. I really don't recall.

179 Mr. Jenner. There is some indication in the papers that it was as much as $10,000.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Maybe so.

Mr. Jenner. You just don't have——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It was a very successful operation, this business, Sigurd.

Mr. Jenner. Did you subsequently dissolve it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Dissolved it, quarreled with my girl friend, decided to come to the States.

Mr. Jenner. Your brother had been over to see you in the meantime?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; and that is what, by the way, induced me into coming to the States, because my brother and his wife came to meet me. They sort of were not too much interested in meeting a mistress—let's face it—and eventually it led to a breakup between us, between my ex-girl friend and myself.

Mr. Jenner. And you came to this country in 1938?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. May of 1938.

Mr. Jenner. May of 1938, I think it was. What did you do to sustain yourself?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I brought some money with me. I brought some money with me—something like $10,000, I would say.

Mr. Jenner. And what did you immediately do in connection with that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. What did I do immediately?

Mr. Jenner. I mean did you enter into——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I started looking for a job, very unsuccessfully, if I may say so. In New York in those days, in 1938. I even started selling perfumes, I remember, for a company called Chevalier Garde.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have any interest in that company?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; just purely as a salesman. I even sold some materials for Shumaker and Company.

Mr. Jenner. Where were you residing then, with your brother?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; part of the time. Then I had my own room.

Mr. Jenner. Your brother was then living on Park Avenue, was he?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. 750?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you—how long did you stay with him?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think as soon as I arrived we went to spend the summer on Long Island, Belport, Long Island.

Mr. Jenner. And at Belport, you made what acquaintances?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Lots of people, but especially Mrs. Bouvier.

Mr. Jenner. Who is Mrs. Bouvier?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Mrs. Bouvier is Jacqueline Kennedy's mother, also her father and her whole family. She was in the process of getting a divorce from her husband. I met him, also. We were very close friends. We saw each other every day. I met Jackie then, when she was a little girl. Her sister, who was still in the cradle practically. We were also very close friends of Jack Bouvier's sister, and his father.

Mr. Jenner. Well, bring yourself along.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That friendship more or less remained, because we still see each other, occasionally—Mrs. Auchincloss, and occasionally correspond.

Well, then, I realized there was no future selling perfume or materials in the State, and having had that background of the oil industry in my blood, because my father was the director of Nobel Enterprises, which is a large oil concern in Russia, which was eventually expropriated and confiscated, and I decided to come and try to work for an oil company. I arrived in Texas.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me, sir. Before we get there—because that skips some things—one of your efforts was as an insurance salesman?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; that is right.

Mr. Jenner. And——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. How did you know that?

Mr. Jenner. You were unsuccessful in that, were you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very unsuccessful.

180 Mr. Jenner. As a matter of fact, you didn't sell a single policy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Not a single policy.

Mr. Jenner. Over what period of a time did you pursue that activity?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I even didn't pass my broker's examination. I tried to get an insurance broker's license. I studied to be an insurance broker in the State of New York. And I failed dismally that examination. So that was the end of my insurance business.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we have you up to the advent of World War II, which was—this is about 1941.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. But before that I was in Texas and worked for Humble Oil Co.

Mr. Jenner. Before 1941 you had gone to Texas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; in 1939.

Mr. Jenner. You went to Texas in 1939?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And how did that come about?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I was interested in the oil industry and wanted to see in which way I could fit into the oil industry.

Mr. Jenner. Whom did you contact? How did you get there?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I went by bus—to Texas by bus. But what actually helped me was that my sister-in-law, my wife's sister, had a very, very close friend in Louisiana, Mrs. Margaret Clark—Margaret Clark Williams, who had large oil properties, large estates in Louisiana. That is about the year 1939.

I got to Louisiana, as the guest, I remember—with my sister-in-law's aunt, Mrs. Edwards. And then I looked the situation around in New Orleans and decided to apply for a job with Humble Oil Co.

Mr. Jenner. In New Orleans?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No. They had a branch office in New Orleans, but I had to apply for a job in Houston. So I went to Houston, and I applied for a job with Mr. Suman, who is vice president of Humble Oil Co. Also I met the chairman of the board of the Humble Oil Co. through mutual acquaintances.

Mr. Jenner. Did you return to Louisiana and do some work there?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I worked in Terebonne Parish, on a rig.

Mr. Jenner. You worked on a rig. This is physical work?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Physical work, yes; lifting pipes, cleaning machinery.

Mr. Jenner. In other words, starting from the ground floor?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. If there is such a thing in the oil business.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Absolutely.

Mr. Jenner. Whatever the bottom was, you were doing it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, sir. Very well paid, by the way—a very well paid job, but very tough—at the time, you see, what good pay was at the time.

Mr. Jenner. I think we might at this time see if I can describe you for the record.

You are 6'1", are you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And now you weigh, I would say, about 195?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Back in those days you weighed around 180.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. You are athletically inclined?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And you have dark hair.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No gray hairs yet.

Mr. Jenner. And you have a tanned—you are quite tanned, are you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And you are an outdoorsman?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. I have to tell you—I never expected you to ask me such questions. I also tried to get various jobs otherwise. I went to Arizona.

Mr. Jenner. Mr. De Mohrenschildt, one of the things I am trying to do is181 get your personality into the record, because many people have described your personality.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very different, probably.

Mr. Jenner. I wouldn't say very different. But you would be surprised the kind of things that are said about you. I don't know that you would be surprised.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I know that I have friends, I have enemies.

Mr. Jenner. Well, everybody has.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I also went to Arizona, I remember, and tried to get a job as—I don't know if it is after this experience with Humble Oil Co.—probably—over—to get a job as a polo instructor at the Arizona Desert School. Since we played polo in the military academy, I know how to play polo. I am not an expert player, but I do know how to play polo, and I am a good rider, and was a good rider. So I tried to get the job in the Arizona Desert School for Boys. And for some reason I could not get this job. There was a job available. I don't remember what the circumstances were. I never got this job. But I think it is after my experience with Humble Oil Co.

Mr. Jenner. You worked in the Louisiana oil fields as—what did you call it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A roughneck, or roustabout, it is called.

Mr. Jenner. And you pursued that how long?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think 3 or 4 months.

Mr. Jenner. We are still in 1939?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Probably in 1939. And I got amoebic dysentery in Louisiana, and got very sick. I had an accident on the rig, was badly cut up—something fell on my arm, and then I got dysentery. And, frankly, I do not recall whether they fired me or I resigned myself. I do not remember. Maybe both—resigned and mutual agreement. But I remained very good friends with the chairman of the board of the company, Mr. Blaffer. And he gave me the idea already then to go in the oil business on my own. He says, "George, a man of your background and education, you should be working for yourself," and he explained to me the fundamentals of the oil promotion, if you know what I mean—drill wells, get a lease—drill a well, find some money to drill that well.

Well, I said, "Mr. Blaffer, frankly it is a little above me to go in so early in my experience in the United States—to go into that type of business. I don't think I am capable enough to do that."

Mr. Jenner. Well, you didn't have the capital at that time, did you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I didn't have the capital. But he said you could do it without capital.

Mr. Jenner. All right. When you left the Louisiana oil fields, what did you do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Went back to New York, recovered from my amoebic dysentery. And I don't remember whether it is then that I tried insurance or not. It is possible then that I was trying to work at this insurance broker's deal. And then this friend of my sister-in-law's, Margaret Clark Williams, died, and left all of us a certain amount of money. My sister-in-law, Mrs. Edwards, myself—I don't remember what it was, $10,000 I guess, each. And what happened then—yes, then comes the draft time in the U.S. Army.

Mr. Jenner. That is right; 1941.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you are in New York City.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I am in New York City. I am called to the draft, and they found I have high blood pressure.

Mr. Jenner. With the advent of the war in Europe, did you——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, I forgot to tell you.

Mr. Jenner. Did you volunteer?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. I was mobilized by the Polish Army in 1939—since being a candidate officer, I was mobilized by the Polish Army, got the papers in 1939 that I have to return to New York, and I did return to New York in 1939. That was just exactly after my Texas experience with the Humble Oil Co.

182 Mr. Jenner. Your Louisiana experience?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Louisiana, Texas, the same company. And it was just—I was intending to return to Poland, because my father was there—I had very close connection with my father. Somehow I felt maybe it was my duty to be in the Polish Army.

And it was too late. The last boat, Battory, which took the people—I never arrived in Poland.

I reported to the Polish Embassy here in Washington. It was too late to join the Polish Army. Maybe all for the best, because I probably wouldn't be alive today.

Mr. Jenner. You have some——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You have to refresh my memory, because, as I say, I never expected questions like this. Sometimes if I make a mistake, it is not my intention.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I don't suggest you are ever making a mistake. You are calling on your own recollection.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, yes; I am doing my best recollection.

Mr. Jenner. At this particular time, did you have some, oh, let me call it, tenuous connection with some movie business?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; that is right.

Mr. Jenner. Facts, Inc.?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. That is another venture I went into.

Mr. Jenner. This was 1941?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What was it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I have a distant cousin by the name of Baron Maydell.

Mr. Jenner. Now, he was a controversial man, was he not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A very controversial person.

Mr. Jenner. In what sense?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In the sense that some people considered him pro-Nazi.

Mr. Jenner. He was accused of being, was he not, during this period, a German spy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No. I don't know that. But he had been an officer in the Czarist Army. He was a White Russian. And having lost everything through Communism, he saw the future of his return to Russia, back to his estates, through German intervention. Like many other White Russians. He possibly was more German than Russian—although he had been a Russian citizen, officer of the Czarist Army, and so forth and so on. A controversial person, no question about it. But I liked him. And he offered me to learn something about the making of documentary movies.

Mr. Jenner. Documentary?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes—which is Facts—what was it called? Film Facts Incorporated.

Mr. Jenner. Film Facts I think is the name of it.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. And he had a very interesting movie there of the Spanish revolution which he made. And this movie was shown all over the United States and was backed by—this, again, is my recollection, because it almost escaped from my mind. This movie was backed by quite a number of people here. I remember most of them—by Grace, who is president of Grace Lines today. So we decided with Maydell that we could make another documentary movie on the resistance of Poland. This is already—Poland had already been occupied. The movies were made in Poland, I think, by Americans. I don't recall that exactly—by Americans who were there during the occupation of Warsaw. And Maydell had these movies in his possession, and we decided to make a movie for the benefit of the Polish refugees.

Mr. Jenner. Resistance movement?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. And collected money to that effect, small amounts of money from the sympathizers of Poland. To me it was actually a very pleasant experience. I tried to do my best, number one, to make some money; number two, to help the Polish cause.

183 So I went to the Polish Consulate, made arrangements for the consul to be a sponsor of this movie. And we eventually made this movie, put it together. It was about 45 minutes long—a very interesting movie, very moving picture of the resistance. But financially it was not a success. I don't even recall why. Either Maydell never gave me any money or something. Anyway, we broke up our partnership.

The movie did make some money for the Polish resistance fund. I think they used it showing around the country. The Polish organizations in the United States used that movie to show and collect money for their own purpose.

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I remember the picture was called "Poland Will Never Die." It was an assembly job.

Mr. Jenner. Now, your interest was a business interest?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; we also cut it together. We put the music together. I learned a little bit about the technical end of it. We did not own the studio, but we used the studio on the west side in New York to have the technical facilities. Not very complicated. But we did it all together.

Mr. Jenner. Was your grandfather born in this country?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; great grandfather, or great, great grandfather.

Mr. Jenner. Sergius Von Mohrenschildt, born somewhere in Pennsylvania, later went to Russia, entered the oil business?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I will be darned. I didn't know that.

Mr. Jenner. I am not saying it is so.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't remember. We have in the family some Baltic Swede, an ancestor of ours, who was an officer of the Independence Army. But his name was not Mohrenschildt. He was Baron Hilienfelt. My brother knows of that, because he is more interested in it. He became an officer in the Army of Independence, took the name of Ross. He was an officer in the Army of Independence, and then went back to Europe and died there. And somebody was telling me there was on his tomb in Sweden, I went later on to Sweden, and I was curious and inquired about it. It was said he was a lieutenant or captain in the American Army of Independence. So my brother, I think, because of that, being an older member of the family, had the right to be—what do you call it—a descendant——

Mr. Jenner. Of the American Revolution?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. He told me either he became a member of it, or could become a member of it. I have to ask him about that.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Did you once describe your work in the insurance business as the lousiest, stinkingest, sorriest type of business possible?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that wine company—was that the Vintage Wine, Inc.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I also was doing some selling of wine in Vintage Wine, Inc.

Mr. Jenner. On a commission?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you have mentioned the Shumaker Company.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Is the name Pierre Fraiss familiar to you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; this is one of my best friends.

Mr. Jenner. Is he still alive?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What business was he in then?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He was then chief of export of Schumaker and Company.

Mr. Jenner. Did Mr. Fraiss have any connection with the French intelligence in the United States?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you become involved with him in that connection?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, it was just probably in 1941, I presume, in 1941.

184 Mr. Jenner. What did you do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, we collected facts on people involved in pro-German activity, and——

Mr. Jenner. This was anti-German activity?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. On behalf of the French intelligence in the United States?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I was never an official member of it, you see, but I worked with Pierre Fraiss, and it was my understanding that it was French intelligence.

Mr. Jenner. And did that work take you around the country?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about it.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I think we went to Texas together again and tried to contact the oil companies in regard to purchases of oil for the French interests.

Mr. Jenner. Were the Germans also seeking to obtain oil?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; that is right.

Mr. Jenner. And——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We were trying to out-bid them. I think the United States were not at war yet at the time.

Mr. Jenner. That is right.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. And so the French intelligence devised a system whereby they could prevent the Germans and Italians from buying oil by outbidding them on the free market. We went to Texas. We had some contacts there with oil companies. And also in California. There we met the Superior Oil people of California and other people, too, whose names now I have forgotten.

Mr. Jenner. When was that work completed?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I could not tell you exactly, but I think it is about—it was not completed. We just somehow petered out.

Mr. Jenner. Were you compensated?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No—just my expenses, traveling expenses, and daily allowance. It was handled by Mr. Fraiss. But no salary.

Mr. Jenner. Had you——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think this whole thing, when the United States got into war there was no more activity on their part, you know.

Mr. Jenner. Well, there was no need to outbid the Germans, because they could not buy oil here anyhow.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. So that is how it ended.

Mr. Jenner. You mentioned a Mrs. Williams. Was that Margaret Williams?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And she made a bequest to you of $5,000, wasn't it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes—I think $5,000—I thought it was $10,000, frankly.

Mr. Jenner. Do you remember being interviewed in February 1945?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. By whom?

Mr. Jenner. Some agents of the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In 1945?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They interviewed me a couple of times.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you have been interviewed more than once.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Well, at that time you are reported to have said that Mrs. Williams left you the sum of $5,000, and I suggest to you that your recollection was better in 1945 than it is now.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, at or about the time that you were doing work with Mr. Fraiss, did you meet a lady by the name of Lilia Pardo Larin?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. She was in this country, was she?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Oh, boy. Do you want to have everything about me? Okay. I met her through a Brazilian friend of mine.

185 Mr. Jenner. What was his name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The King of Bananas of Brazil—his name will come back to me. Dr.—I forgot his name. Anyway, a rich Brazilian, medical doctor, very wealthy man, who traveled between Brazil and New York. Just recently I was talking about him with the Brazilian Ambassador in Haiti, and he says he is still alive and doing very well.

Dr. Palo Machado, Decio de Paulo Machado. An enormously wealthy Brazilian, who calls himself the banana king, who liked American girls, the good life, and very good businessman at the same time.

Mr. Jenner. You liked American girls, too, didn't you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I am not queer, you know. Although some people accuse me of that even—even of that. Not as much as some other people, you know—because this girl really was the love of my life—Lilia Larin. Anyway, both Machado and I fell in love with this girl. She was a divorcee.

Mr. Jenner. She wasn't divorced as yet, was she?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She was divorced already once. But she had a husband some place in the background, who was a Frenchman.

Mr. Jenner. Guasco?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. With whom I got into a fistfight. Well, anyway, the best man won, as it goes in the book, and Lilia and I fell in love—I just got a discharge from the military service in the United States, 4-F, and she invited me to come with her to Mexico. This was my experience with the FBI. Really, it is so ridiculous that it is beyond comprehension.

Mr. Jenner. Well, on your way to Mexico——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Around Corpus Christi—really, if we didn't have a sad story to discuss, the death of the President, you could laugh about some of the activity of the FBI, and the money they spend following false trails.

Mr. Jenner. Well, they don't know they are false when they are following them.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. I don't know whose advice they followed.

But, anyway, here we were about ready to enter Mexico and stopped for awhile in Corpus Christi. And there we decided to go to the beach, from Corpus Christi. I think my visa was not ready yet.

Mr. Jenner. You stayed at the Nueces Hotel in Corpus Christi?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; and we went to the beach.

On the way back from the beach, all of a sudden our car was stopped by some characters.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. You went to Aransas Pass?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And when you were in Aransas Pass, what did you do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We swam; and probably stayed on the beach enjoying the sunshine.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. What do they say we did?

Mr. Jenner. Did you make—take some photographs when you were in Aransas Pass?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Possibly; of each other.

Mr. Jenner. You took no photographs of a Coast Guard station at Aransas Pass?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't recall that.

Mr. Jenner. Did you make any sketches?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes—because I like to sketch. By the way, I forgot to tell you, I like to sketch. I sketched the dunes, the coastline, but not the Coast Guard station. Who gives a damn about the Coast Guard station in Aransas Pass?

Mr. Jenner. I can tell you that is what got you into trouble.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Is that so? Well, you know, you are the first one to tell me about that.

Mr. Jenner. I want to know this. This interest that you say you have, which I will bring out later, in sketching, in painting, water colors, and otherwise—you186 and this lady with whom you were in love were down at Aransas Pass, you went down there for the purpose of having an outing?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. I even have those sketches today, of the Bay of Corpus Christi, of the seashore near Aransas Pass.

Mr. Jenner. You apparently were not aware of the fact this country was then at war.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. But nobody told me there was any military installations around Aransas Pass.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you were seen sketching the countryside.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that aroused suspicion.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. That is the whole thing.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you were driving cross-country, were you not, with this lady friend of yours?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And on the way back then from Aransas Pass——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Some characters stopped the car and came out of the bushes, and they said, "You are a German spy." They said, "You are a German citizen, you are a German spy." It was very strange. Here is my Polish passport. So—they never said anything about sketching. I thought they were from some comedy actors.

Mr. Jenner. Didn't they identify themselves?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think they said they were from the FBI.

Mr. Jenner. They might have been from some other government service.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Maybe some other government service. But I have the impression they told me they were from the FBI, and they followed me all the way from New York—all the way from New York.

Mr. Jenner. In any event, five men stopped you at that time, searched your car?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Searched the car, found absolutely nothing, except the water colors, the sketches. I still have the sketches.

Mr. Jenner. With that experience, did you proceed on into Mexico?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They were very insulting to this Mexican lady, very insulting. And I think she made a complaint about them later on to the Mexican Ambassador. And being a vicious Mexican girl, she doesn't forget that. I think she told them they stole something from her. That I do not recall exactly.

Mr. Jenner. As near as I can tell, she never made any such complaint officially.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think she told me she will complain officially.

Mr. Jenner. She complained, but she never complained anything was stolen.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You reached Mexico City?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And—with this lady.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you remained in Mexico how long?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, that is 5 months, 6 months—until they expelled me from Mexico.

Mr. Jenner. Does this refresh your recollection—that you made a statement in 1945 when you were questioned that you remained in Mexico City for approximately 9 months, not doing much of anything except painting and going around with Lilia?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. I did something. I invested some money in a sugar factory there. I visited a sugar company there, and the manager of the sugar company told me to invest some money in that outfit, because it was going to—the stock was going to go up, which I did. I made some nice money out of that investment.

Mr. Jenner. You had funds when you went into Mexico, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

187 Mr. Jenner. You had some letters of credit?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Would that amount to around $6,000?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Probably.

Mr. Jenner. Did you travel to various places in Mexico during this 9 months with this lady?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I had an apartment on my own in Mexico City, on Avenue De—the main street of Mexico City. I don't recall the name. Paseo de la reforma.

Mr. Jenner. Towards the end of that 9 months you ran into some difficulty in Mexico, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Boy, did I get in difficulty.

Mr. Jenner. Was there a man by the name of Maxino Comacho?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. General in the Mexican Army.

Mr. Jenner. And as a result of—just give me that in capsule form.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think he wanted to take my girl friend away from me. We were going to get married.

Mr. Jenner. You were serious about that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very serious. She was getting a divorce. I think by the time she got to Mexico—she already got a Mexican divorce. I am sure she did. She was already free.

Mr. Jenner. She had a Mexican divorce, but there was some question about whether it was good in the United States?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right; something like that. Anyway, she was getting a divorce. She was an exceedingly beautiful person. We thought about getting married. And then this character intervened and had me thrown out of the country.

Mr. Jenner. I am not interested in his accusation, but he made some accusation?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He did, really?

Mr. Jenner. I am asking you.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; no accusation. He said, "You are persona non grata in Mexico." I actually went to the American Embassy, as far as I remember, and said, "I am a resident of the United States, and why am I being thrown out of the country?" I don't know if they have done anything about it. Anyway, they suggested for me to leave, and go back to the States.

Mr. Jenner. You didn't leave immediately, did you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I went into hiding for a few days, because some Mexican friends tried to have it all fixed. I remember the names of those Mexicans who tried to help me.

Mr. Jenner. Manuel Garza; was he one of them?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And your attorney?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; and Cuellar, another attorney. He is still a good friend of mine.

Mr. Jenner. You then returned to the United States?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They said, "That is the best way for you, to leave, because you cannot fight against the constitutional forces of Mexico."

Mr. Jenner. While in Mexico, you engaged in no espionage for anybody?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No.

Mr. Jenner. You were in love with this lady?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And you saw her frequently, and her friends and other friends, and did some traveling around Mexico?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where did you get the money to do that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, $6,000, you know. And then we shared alike. And I told you that life in Mexico was very cheap at the time. You could live on a hundred dollars a month. One of my best friends there at the time was a young MacArthur boy.

188 Mr. Jenner. General MacArthur's son?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Nephew, the son of MacArthur, the playwright. He was also living in Mexico, very close friends. We made some trips together. The son of John MacArthur.

Mr. Jenner. You eventually returned to America, to the United States?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You went back to New York?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. By train?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. As a matter of fact, you went by chair car?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That I didn't remember. How did you know that? I don't remember, frankly. Those FBI people are excellent in following a chair car. But, believe me, they are very often——

Mr. Jenner. Was it about this time when you returned that you started to work on your book, "A Son of the Revolution"?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we are in what year—about 1942, 1943?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, about that.

Mr. Jenner. 1942, I think.

Now, upon your return to New York, what did you do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I was working on that book. I sold that interest in the sugar company—that is, the Mexican outfit I told you about—and then I remember once I went to Palm Beach.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. What else did I do then?

Mr. Jenner. When you reached Palm Beach you met the lady who became your first wife, Dorothy Pierson?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell me who was Dorothy Pierson?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Dorothy Pierson was an attractive girl, the daughter of a local real estate man whose mother was married to an Italian, Cantagalli, Lorenzo Cantagalli, from Florence. And the mother and daughter came back to the United States during the war. She was the daughter of Countess Cantagalli by the first husband, who was an American. That is why her name was Pierson. And, anyway, Dorothy and I fell in love with each other and got married.

Mr. Jenner. She was quite young, was she not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very young.

Mr. Jenner. About 17 or 18?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you subsequently married where?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In New York.

Mr. Jenner. In New York City?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. New York City.

Mr. Jenner. And that marriage subsequently ended in divorce, did it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. About a year later.

Mr. Jenner. You were married just a short time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Just a short time. A child was born.

Mr. Jenner. There was a child born of that marriage?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that child's name was Alexandra?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Is she still alive?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I will deal with her subsequently, if I might. The divorce took place—well, we might as well close up with Lilia. You never married her?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No.

Mr. Jenner. When you got back to the United States——

189 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We pursued correspondence, and I intended to marry her, and go back to Mexico. But there is no way of getting back to Mexico.

Mr. Jenner. The records indicate that you made some effort here in Washington to obtain reentry into Mexico, and you were unable to do so.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And that Lilia attempted to assist you.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And she attempted to come into this country?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. She also was persona non grata at the moment, is that right?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. She had two sons?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. One of them was in Racine, Wis.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Both of them were in military academy—young boys.

Mr. Jenner. And in any event, that eventually petered out?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And you met Dorothy Pierson in Palm Beach, Fla.?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you subsequently married her in New York City, on the 16th of June 1943?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is the date. The dates of my marriage are very vague now in my mind. I am taking your word for it.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I don't want you to take my word for it.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It is probably correct. You must have it some place.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall your daughter's birthday—it was on Christmas Day, was it not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. 1943?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. During the period you were married to Dorothy in New York City, what did you do, if anything, other than work on your proposed book?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I had an exhibition of my paintings.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I want to get into that. While you were in Mexico, did you do some painting?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I did a lot of painting—a whole tremendous file of paintings in Mexico.

Mr. Jenner. And did you subsequently exhibit those paintings?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Where?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Newton Gallery, New York, 57th Street.

Mr. Jenner. And did those paintings receive comment from the critics?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The newspapers wrote about them, that they were original, but the sales were hardly successful, if I may say so.

Mr. Jenner. Do you still have some of those paintings?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; some I have given away, but I still have some.

Mr. Jenner. They are water colors?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Water colors, washes; yes. But no military installation—the tropical jungle. Girls, tropical jungle, Mexican types—I am very fond of Mexico. Roderick MacArthur and I tried to make a trip at the time through the wilderness of Mexico together in an old Ford which belonged to him; the road did not exist yet, so we went together in this old broken down Ford, drove, drove and drove a couple of days with no roads, and finally one evening——

Mr. Jenner. This is in Mexico?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; during that time.

Mr. Jenner. During the 9 months you were there?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; we hit a steel pole sticking out in the middle of the trail, and the whole car disintegrated under us. So we walked back a190 couple of days in order to get back to Mexico City. We left the car right there.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. If you see him in Chicago—I will write to him again; and I hope to see him.

Mr. Jenner. You came to Texas in 1944, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1944.

Mr. Jenner. Do you recall making a loan at the——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, yes.

Mr. Jenner. Russian Student Fund?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. After my divorce I decided that I am still interested in this oil business, and all my pursuits in various directions are not too successful, so I should go back to school and study geology and petroleum engineering.

Mr. Jenner. Had you made inquiry at the Colorado School of Mines?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Tried Colorado School of Mines, Rice Institute, and University of Texas.

Mr. Jenner. All right. You are now about 33 years old, somewhere in that neighborhood?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. During these years you led sort of a bohemian life, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Well, you see—bohemian and trying to make a buck, as you might call it.

Mr. Jenner. I am trying to bring out your personality.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. But you see the main reason I actually came to the United States is to look for a country which did not have—which was a melting pot, because I am a melting pot myself, as you can see. I changed from one country to another, a complete mixture. So I thought that would fit me right. And eventually it did. It took a long time to get adjusted to it. The first five years are very difficult in the United States. I didn't speak English very well. And it was just tough going. Fortunately I had friends, acquaintances, and a lot of relations. But, otherwise, I probably would have starved. And it did actually happen that I did starve occasionally. So I decided to go——

Mr. Jenner. You were young and full of energy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. While working for the Humble Oil Co. I said that a man without the education in that particular field—I did not have the background of geology or petroleum engineering, except that I kept on studying by myself. I didn't have much chance to succeed. I was wrong, by the way. I should have followed Mr. Blaffer's advice and gone in the oil business, and I would have been a multimillionaire today.

Mr. Jenner. Well, you might still be.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I probably will be. But really that was—he was the man, the only man who gave me the right advice—of all my friends and acquaintances. He said, "George, go on your own and try to speculate on oil leases and drill wells on your own," which is the basis of the oil industry. "We will give you a lease, you can promote some money to drill on it, and here you have it." And that is what happened. That is the origin of many, many of my friends in Texas who are very wealthy.

Mr. Jenner. All right. You came to Texas——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Came to Texas——

Mr. Jenner. 1944.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. That was following your divorce from Dorothy Pierson?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Got a loan.

Mr. Jenner. You entered——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Entered the University of Texas, and School of Geology, and Petroleum Engineering as my minor—major in petroleum geology and minor in petroleum engineering. And with a fantastic effort and speed I succeeded in getting my master's degree in petroleum geology and minor in petroleum engineering in 1945, I think.

Mr. Jenner. You received your master's in 1945, did you not?

191 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And in petroleum geology?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; with minor in petroleum engineering.

Mr. Jenner. Did you pursue your studies further?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; well, I wrote a dissertation. I pursue my studies as the time goes by. But that was the end of my education in American schools.

Mr. Jenner. Now, while you were at the University of Texas, did you serve as an instructor——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In French.

Mr. Jenner. You had no tenure there? You were not a professor?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; an instructor in French, to make some additional money.

Mr. Jenner. When did you complete your work at the University of Texas—all of your studies?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In the fall of 1945.

Mr. Jenner. How long were you at the University of Texas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think about 2 years.

Mr. Jenner. Now, following your obtaining your master's degree at the University of Texas, did you enter into business?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; I got a job waiting for me in Venezuela, the Pantepec Oil Co. in Venezuela.

Mr. Jenner. What was the nature of that work?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I worked as a field engineer.

Mr. Jenner. In Venezuela?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Very good salary; pleasant conditions. But eventually fought with the vice president.

Mr. Jenner. What?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Eventually I got into some personal trouble with the vice president, and this time was not kicked out but through mutual agreement it was decided between Warren Smith, who was my president, and a close friend, that I should resign and also——

Mr. Jenner. When did you leave that position?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Some time in 1946.

Mr. Jenner. I interrupted you. You were going to add something.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Some time in 1946. And also I wanted to come back to the States to renew my citizenship paper application, because I would lose my citizenship papers by staying in Venezuela too long, you see.

It was an American company all right, but I think it was incorporated in Venezuela.

Mr. Jenner. Did you have to have a passport to get to that position in Venezuela?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; well, I think I still have my Polish passport. But I had a reentry permit to the States.

Mr. Jenner. So you returned to the United States in 1946?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Then what did you do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I arrived back through New York, but stayed a very short time, and went to Texas again.

Mr. Jenner. What town?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. To Houston. To look for a job. I did not want to be in a tropical part of the United States, in a hot part. I was trying to find a job somewhere in the northern part of the United States. And then I heard that there is a job available as an assistant to the chairman of the Rangely Field Engineering Committee.

Mr. Jenner. At Rangely, Colo.?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And what was the field engineer's name? He is now dead, is he not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; Joe Zorichak.

Mr. Jenner. There was an assistant. What was his name? There were two of you assisting the chairman?

192 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't remember the other assistant's name. I was the only one in the office. Later on—we were part of the group of all the oil companies operating there. But we were the only ones actually working for the committee. I don't remember.

Mr. Jenner. I will find it here in a moment.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You see, this committee was a consulting organization set up by, I think, 8 or 10 oil companies operating in Rangely Field, which is the largest field in Colorado, in the Rocky Mountains. It still is.

Mr. Jenner. Does the name James Gibson sound familiar to you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; Gibson—James Gibson; yes. But he was not in our outfit. He was an engineer for Standard Oil of California. But he worked very close to us. In other words, he was an employee of the Standard Oil of California.

Mr. Jenner. Does the name J. M. Bunce sound familiar to you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Who is he?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He was a representative of a pumping outfit from California who sold oil well pumps.

Mr. Jenner. Now, this Rangely Engineering Committee was formed by the various oil companies?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And they were operating in the Rangely, Colo., oil field, is that correct?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And for the purpose of compiling statistics and engineering data for the entire field?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No, yes; this and also to allocate production to various wells in the field, because we didn't have any regulatory body in Colorado at the time. We actually applied a certain formula to each well to see how much each well would be allowed to produce. This was our main job, you know.

Then, of course, our job was to coordinate the technical advances in that field and promote the new methods of drilling producing, to cut down expenses in the field. Among other things, we introduced diamond drilling there, drilling with diamond bits, which eventually became very, very successful.

Mr. Jenner. Now, this was what—1947?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1946, 1947. I stayed there, I think, about 3 years, something like that. 3 years, maybe.

Mr. Jenner. Now, at this time you met and married your second wife, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Phyllis Washington?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, tell us about that a little bit.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I went on a vacation to New York, met a very pretty girl, and she was willing to follow me in the wilderness of Colorado, which she did. She was young and a little bit wild. But very, very attractive and adventurous. And she came with me to Colorado—without being married.

Her father was with the State Department, Walter Washington.

But I didn't know him.

Mr. Jenner. She was an adopted child?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Her name originally was Wasserman?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; something like that. And she was a beautiful girl who decided to come to Colorado with me. She stayed with me, we fell in love. She created a terrible confusion in Colorado. Imagine an international beauty with bikinis. I don't know if it is for the record. With bikinis, walking around the oil fields. But she was a wonderful girl, wonderful girl. She gave up the possibility of going to Spain, where her father was appointed charge d' affaires at the time. She decided she would rather stay with me in Colorado in the wilderness.

And I will tell you, that was a terrible place. That was the last boomtown193 in America. Rangely, the last boomtown in the United States. We lived in shacks, we lived in 40-degree below zero temperature, mud. It is the roughest place you ever saw in your life.

Mr. Jenner. You eventually tired of Rangely, Colo., and moved over to Aspen, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; I didn't move to Aspen. I just had a little cabin in Aspen. I had a cabin in Aspen, and would go there on weekends. But then I became chairman.

Joe Zorichak resigned his position and moved to Dallas as assistant president of the American Petroleum Institute, assistant to the president of the API. And I was appointed to replace him.

Mr. Jenner. Was it about this time that you took residence in Aspen?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, no; about that time. I would say—I didn't take residence. I just had a cabin in Aspen.

But I commuted between Rangely and Aspen.

Mr. Jenner. That is quite a commutation. It is 165 miles, isn't it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Nothing for the oil field.

Mr. Jenner. But it takes a long time to get 165 miles.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 3 hours. But naturally I would go there on the weekend and come back. Probably they accuse me of spending all my time in Aspen. But, anyway, what finally happened is, good or bad, we decided to sever connections with the Rangely Engineering Committee. They decided to stop completely the Rangely Engineering Committee.

Mr. Jenner. You had some difficulties with them before they decided to break it up, didn't you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't remember too much of a difficulty.

Mr. Jenner. Was there something about your spending too much time over at Aspen, and not being——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, they never told me that. But possibly.

Mr. Jenner. The severance of your relationship was mutual?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, I think so. I don't think—you may call it I was fired, but I don't think so. As far as I remember, we just got together with the manager of Texaco in Denver and he told me, "George, we are just going to stop the operation at Rangely Field of the Engineering Committee."

I was the only one left, you see. So I said fine, stop it.

Mr. Jenner. And this was about when?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I forgot to tell you. Since you are interested in my character—is that it?

Mr. Jenner. Yes, of course.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. At Rangely. Colo., it stopped being an operating oil field, and it became a statistical job. When I moved there first it was the greatest boomtown and the greatest drilling place in the United States. We had 30 rigs going. It was very interesting.

Every day we had new problems. It was a very active life. Then at the end of my stay there was no work practically except to compile the statistical report. So naturally I started going to Aspen more often. I don't think I ever had any complaint against me.

Mr. Jenner. You were interested a great deal initially when the field was being developed.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. When it degenerated, if I may use that term, into a statistical assembly, you lose interest, spent more time over at Aspen, and there were some disagreements about that, a difference of opinion, and your employers questioned it.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Was there any problem about your savoir-faire, for example, attitude with respect to keeping expenses?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Maybe so. But you know, our salary was very small there, and so we had to show certain expenses. They never questioned me. But possibly they considered my living expenses were too high. But I was the only one to do the job, instead of two. I kept the budget, more or less, at the same level, maybe lower.

194 Mr. Jenner. Now, you terminated your employment in January 1949, did you not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think so. The date is not clear to me.

Mr. Jenner. Well, this may refresh your recollection.

Had you become an American citizen in the meantime?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And was that on the 11th of July 1949 at Denver?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, in Denver, Colo.

Mr. Jenner. Now, your employment with the Rangely Oil Field Committee terminated after you became a citizen, did it not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, sir.

Mr. Jenner. And does that refresh your recollection—it occurred about 6 months later?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. When your employment in the Rangely Oil Field Committee terminated, what did you do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Then I realized that I could not remain married to Phyllis, because she was a girl of—who needed money, who needed a good way of life, needed luxury—she was used to luxury. And I asked her to go back to her parents, to New York, and that I will try to make a success out of—I decided to go on my own as a consultant—that I should try to make a success out of the consulting business.

But I just should do it by myself, without her being present. And so I moved to Denver, Colo., gave up that establishment in Aspen, and got some help from my friends, and with very little money I started my own consulting firm.

Mr. Jenner. In Denver?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; in Denver.

Mr. Jenner. In the meantime, did the—was the marriage to Phyllis Washington terminated?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; either in the meantime or just right at that time.

Mr. Jenner. Was that by her suit?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; by my suit.

Mr. Jenner. You filed the suit?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And where did you file that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In the court in Denver. She was gone. I returned in the meantime to see her, to see whether we can patch up things.

Mr. Jenner. You returned to New York City?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; to see if we could patch up things. We became very good friends with the other side of her family, the Wassermans, very interesting people who are still good friends of mine. Bill Wasserman is a banker in New York, used to be ambassador to Australia during the Roosevelt administration, I think—or to New Zealand.

And, frankly, he also, and her aunt, who were taking care of her—because, in the meantime, her stepfather was in Europe, they had also their own difficulties.

Mr. Jenner. Their own marital difficulties?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; they decided we better forget about this marriage. We remained very fond of each other. But we finally came to an agreement to have a divorce. And I filed a suit for divorce.

Mr. Jenner. When was that decree entered?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, that I do not remember.

Mr. Jenner. When did you get your divorce decree from Phyllis Washington?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In a court in Denver, Colo., but I do not recall the date.

Mr. Jenner. 1949 or 1950?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Something around that.

Mr. Jenner. Were any children born of that marriage?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No children. We were married in Grand Junction, Colo. And the divorce was entered—the reason was desertion, which was actually true, because she did not come back to me. She stayed in New York, or195 eventually—she drank, also, an awful lot. Today she is an alcoholic—poor girl.

Mr. Jenner. You entered the oil consulting business in Denver?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. First of all, as just an ordinary consultant. I got helped by a friend of mine who has a small oil company in Denver.

Mr. Jenner. What was his name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Jimmy Donahue. And he facilitated by giving his office, the secretary and so on. Because it is rather expensive to start on your own.

But very soon afterwards I started getting consulting jobs—doing evaluations on the wells and things like that. And one night—this will be interesting for you, how to start an oil business—one night I was driving through Oklahoma, tired as hell, and I said to myself, by God, everybody is making money in the oil business except me, I am just a flunky here for all these big operators—I should go in the oil business on my own, really in the oil business, drilling and producing, which was interesting to me. And then I recalled that my ex-nephew, Eddie Hooker, in New York, asked me to go in business with him. He had visited me in Colorado and was very much interested in the work I had done. I gave him a telephone call from some place in Oklahoma.

I said, "Eddie, how about it?"

He was working for Merrill Lynch at the time.

And he said, "George, I am ready. I am tired of Merrill Lynch."

Mr. Jenner. Merrill Lynch, Fenner and Beane at that time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. "I am tired of that Merrill Lynch, Fenner and Beane."

We formed a limited partnership together.

Mr. Jenner. And that is the partnership of Hooker and De Mohrenschildt?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that was when—1950?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I think so—1950.

Mr. Jenner. And did it last very long?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It lasted, I think, 3 years.

Mr. Jenner. About 2 years?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 2 or 3 years.

Mr. Jenner. And——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Now, we made money, we lost money, but it was a pleasant relationship. We are still very good friends.

Mr. Jenner. What did you do in connection with that partnership?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I did buying of the leases, doing the drilling, and helped him in New York, also, to raise money.

Mr. Jenner. He handled the financial end, or raising of money end?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you the field work?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Sometimes—we opened an office in New York, a small office. He was in New York most of the time. I was in Denver.

Our first well was a dry hole, a disastrous dry hole. But our second well was a producer. We made some production. But never anything big.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Eventually I returned to Texas from Denver, because I had always retained some good friends in Texas, and they suggested, one of them who participated in our well, first venture—suggested that, "George, you will do better in Texas, because Wyoming is too expensive"—a well costs $200,000 or $300,000 in Wyoming, you know—in Wyoming or Colorado.

Mr. Jenner. Now, when you were in partnership with Mr. Hooker, your field work and discovery work was in Wyoming and Colorado, is that correct?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No. We started by drilling our first well in Wyoming, operating from Denver. And we had—we were snowbound there, we paid the rig time for a hell of a long time. To make the story short, our first venture was quite a failure. One of the reasons we finally split partnership with Eddie Hooker is that he is a very wealthy boy. He comes from a very wealthy family. And he wanted the oil business to make millions.

My reason to be in the oil business is to make a reasonable living, and eventually build up some production.

196 On our first venture in Wyoming, on the very first one, after we bought the leases, and before starting drilling, we got an offer from another company to sell out for a very substantial profit, without drilling a well—they would do it. Naturally, I told Ed we should do that instead of running a tremendous risk of drilling our own well. Well, he said if they want to buy it it means that we have something there, the usual story.

I was a little more conservative—I said better sell out and try to find something less risky.

He said if we hit it, we are millionaires right away—which was true—we had a huge block, of 12,000 acres, something like that.

Well, from then on, the next venture was in Texas, and we drilled quite a few successful wells, quite a few dry holes, too.

Mr. Jenner. You returned to Texas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. What year?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Abilene, Tex., we had the headquarters—that was the center of the small size independent operators at the time.

Mr. Jenner. What was the name of the hotel at which you stayed?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Wooten Hotel.

Mr. Jenner. And the partnership was still in existence?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Our partnership was broken up after I married Miss Sharples. It was, frankly, a personal thing.

Mr. Jenner. I think this is a good time to stop, because that is the next phase I want to get into. We can go to lunch.

(Whereupon, at 12:35 p.m., the proceeding was recessed.)


TESTIMONY OF GEORGE S. DE MOHRENSCHILDT RESUMED

The proceeding reconvened at 2 p.m.

Mr. Jenner. On the record.

Before we start on the next phase of your life, I would like to go back a minute to your father.

You left there about 1931 or 1932?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; but I came back many times.

Mr. Jenner. You came back to see him?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; almost every summer vacation.

Mr. Jenner. Now, what happened to your father, with particular reference to World War II?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He was living in Wilno, the same town that I went to school in, during the war, and I arranged for his visa to come to the United States at the time.

Mr. Jenner. Now, is this at a time when you were in this country?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I was in this country, and I knew that—this was before the outbreak of the war. I arranged for the visa to come to America, and he did not take advantage of it.

Mr. Jenner. That invasion was in September of 1939.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1939; yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you made these arrangements before September 1939?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Before September 1939. And instead of that, you know, he did not take advantage of those arrangements. Maybe he was too old, decided not to come to the United States. And then there was the German invasion of Poland and the Russian invasion on the other, and he happened to be in the Russian part of Poland, and naturally went into hiding.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. You mean Russian part in the sense that the Russians invaded Poland?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. To meet the Germans who were invading Poland from the other side?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. So he then became engulfed by the Russians?

197 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. He became engulfed in advance of the Russian Army and had to go into hiding because he had a sentence of life exile to Siberia against him. And at that time the Germans and the Russians were not at war yet, so the Russians and the Germans made an agreement that all the people of German or Baltic or Swedish origin could go to Germany, and they could declare themselves openly and go to a special German commission set up for that effect in various towns.

Mr. Jenner. You say declare themselves openly. What do you mean by that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Declare themselves that they they are willing to go and live in Germany, instead of living in Russia.

Mr. Jenner. Declare allegiance to the German Government?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right—declare allegiance to the German Government, and declare themselves Volkdeutsche, which means of Germanic origin. Russia had many millions of people of that type, an enormous German colony. So the Germans did it in order to get all those Germans from the Volga Province into their own country. And all the other people, like my father. And he declared himself willing to go to Germany, and the Germans took him into Germany. He would rather be with the Germans than with the Communists, and spent the rest of his life——

Mr. Jenner. Was your father still anti-Communist?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; very strongly anti-Communist——exceedingly strongly anti-Communist, almost fanatically so. Naturally, he had the sentence against him. And then he spent the rest of his life in Germany and was killed at the end of the war in an air raid, as far as we know—some air raid hit that place where he lived.

Mr. Jenner. Do you know what town it was?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; I don't know the town, but it is an old castle in Oldenburg. It is near the Danish border. My brother is going to go right now there to visit his tomb, because neither of us had the time to go and see that place. But he is in Europe now, and he will go and see the place where he was buried.

Eventually, we received some of his papers and documents and letters through some German friends who stayed there with him.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I take it he was—we can at least fairly say that he had sympathies, or was sympathetic with the German cause?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; I remember we exchanged letters with him during the war through some friends in Argentina and in Japan, before Japan got into the war. My father wrote me a letter in which he said, "George, the Nazis are no good, and Germany is going to lose the war, but I prefer to be in Germany than in Soviet Russia. At least I am free and nobody is bothering me."

It was the policy of the Germans to protect the people who had some positions in Czarist Russia. But he never became pro-Nazi. He was too clear thinking for that. He liked the Germans all right, but he was not pro-Nazi. But he hated Communism. That was his life's hatred.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we have you back in New York City—this is when we went to lunch—around 1953—1952, 1953.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Your partnership with Mr. Hooker had terminated.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No, no; still active. I think it was in 1952—because I was not married—we still had the partnership. I was visiting Ed Hooker in New York at that particular time, and through him I met my next wife, my last wife.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, who was she?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Wynne Sharples.

Mr. Jenner. She at that time was a student?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She was just graduating from the medical school at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University. That was her last year. And she was late in her studies. She was 28 or 29 years old at that time. So she had missed a couple of years, you see. And we fell in love with each other and decided to get married.

Mr. Jenner. Tell me about the Sharples family.

198 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The Sharples family is from Philadelphia, Philadelphia Quakers. He is in the centrifugal processing business and also in the oil business. And I had dealings with his nephew for many years.

Mr. Jenner. What is his name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Butler, Samuel Butler, Jr. He runs the oil end of Mr. Sharples' operations. And they had a small interest in Rangely Field. That is how I got acquainted with Mr. Butler.

So we knew about each other before—my wife's father, and so on and so forth—and—the daughter asked his advice, whether she should marry such an adventurous character like me, and the father said, all right—obviously had sufficient good information from Butler about me. Butler was my best man at the wedding.

Mr. Jenner. Best man at your wedding to Miss Sharples?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; Sam Butler.

There were several ushers. He was one of the ushers. I don't remember who was the best man. My brother was the best man. He was one of ushers. So we got married.

Mr. Jenner. Was the Sharples family wealthy?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very wealthy.

Mr. Jenner. Socially prominent?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Socially prominent. But not too interested in society, because they are Quakers, you know. But my wife is interested——

Mr. Jenner. She has a nickname?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; Didi.

Mr. Jenner. Some of the people apparently—voluntarily—they know her with that nickname—Didi.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. We got married, I think, after her graduation immediately in the Unitarian Church in Chestnut Hills.

Mr. Jenner. What is that—a suburb of Philadelphia?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A suburb of Philadelphia. And she moved to Dallas, and I moved to Dallas, also, from Abilene, where I used to live, so she could continue her work in the medical field, and to take her residence in the hospital in Dallas. She was a resident physician——

Mr. Jenner. In what hospital?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In the Baylor Hospital.

Mr. Jenner. Baylor University?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Was it university connected?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't remember. But it is Baylor Hospital, in Dallas. It is not the same as Baylor University. It is called Baylor Hospital.

Mr. Jenner. All right.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. And she stayed there as a resident. I worked very often in my office in Dallas, instead of Abilene, and continued my partnership with Ed Hooker. But there developed a tremendous animosity between Ed Hooker's wife and my wife, Didi.

Mr. Jenner. And Ed Hooker's wife was——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Was an ex-model, very attractive girl, Marion. And probably my wife snubbed her or something. She didn't come from such a prominent family.

Anyway, there was a great deal of animosity there. And Ed told me, "George, you are a fool to marry this girl—she is nuts."

She had had nervous breakdowns.

Mr. Jenner. This is Mr. Hooker's wife?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; that is my ex-wife, Didi Sharples. She is very high strung—she is a very high-strung person, and had nervous breakdowns while going to medical school. I don't know if it is interesting for you, all those details.

Mr. Jenner. Well, I think not as to that. I am interested, though—she came to Dallas with you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She came to Dallas to live with me. We had an apartment first. Then we bought a house jointly, a farm, a small farm outside of Dallas. And then she had—we had two children, Sergei, and a girl, Nadejeda,199 whom we called Nadya because the name is very difficult. It is my aunt's name, and Sergei is my father's name.

Mr. Jenner. When were those children born?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. One year difference—in 1953 and 1954.

Mr. Jenner. Your son was born in 1953 and your daughter in 1954?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. I think you were about to tell me some differences arose, you thought, between Mr. Hooker's wife and your wife.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And did that have an effect on your partnership?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; it was more or less, I would say, a social problem and personal dislike. Ed is very much devoted to his wife. He told me one day, "We cannot continue this partnership in such unpleasant circumstances, and I think we should break our partnership and sell out what we have." We had some oil properties and we sold it out and divided the proceeds.

Oh, yes—also, Ed was dissatisfied that I moved away from the oilfield—another reason we broke our partnership. Because I was staying in the oilfields before that all the time. But now I moved to Dallas, and I could not be right in the center of the oil activity, according to him. It turned out to be that this actually was much better for the oil business, to be in Dallas than to be in Abilene.

Mr. Jenner. Why is that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, because we are more or less in the center of things than just in a small hick town, you see.

Mr. Jenner. You——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. At the same time about, when we were breaking this partnership, my wife's uncle, Col. Edward J. Walz, from Philadelphia, who is an investment man and a man who is fascinated by the oil business, offered me to form a partnership with him, and we formed a partnership just about the same time.

Mr. Jenner. Have you identified this new man?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; Col. Edward J. Walz, this was my wife's uncle, Miss Sharples' uncle—much younger than his—than her mother, but a man of substance, from Philadelphia—with whom we developed friendly relationship. He liked me and I liked him. And we decided to form a partnership, and we called this partnership Waldem Oil Co.—with the idea of doing the same thing I did with Ed Hooker—that I would do the fieldwork and he would do, more or less, the financial end of the business in Philadelphia.

We had several very successful dealings together. On our first drilling venture we found oil. I kept producing that little field for quite some time.

Mr. Jenner. What field?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Post field, in Texas—a small part of this field belonged to us, and we kept on producing. We did other operations in the oil business, selling leases, buying leases, and things like that.

But we didn't do anything spectacular because he never could provide any large amounts of money for anything spectacular. We did small things. It was a small operation. But we always made money together.

Eventually, after my wife and I got divorced——

Mr. Jenner. Now, you mention divorce. You and Wynne Sharples were divorced?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And when did that take place?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That, I think, was in 1957, I guess, or 1956. We were married for 5 years.

Mr. Jenner. Well, it must have been 1957, then.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1957, yes; it turned out to be that both of our children had cystic fibrosis—it is a terrible illness of genetic nature. The children who have it have no hope to recover, as yet.

Now, my ex-wife and I started a foundation, National Foundation for Cystic Fibrosis in Dallas, of which Jacqueline Kennedy was the honorary chairman.

Now, my ex-wife says that I didn't have much to do with this foundation, this Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, but actually I did, because I collected most of the200 money from my Dallas friends. It started with very little—we started with $10,000 or $20,000, and now it is a $2 million foundation, with headquarters in New York. Last year I was chairman of this foundation in Dallas for the first public subscription to our Cystic Fibrosis Fund for the Dallas children, and we got $25,000.

Now my son, Sergei, died from cystic fibrosis in 1960.

By the way, the reason for our divorce, in addition to whatever disagreements we had, which was not very important, was the fact that we both obviously have a tendency for cystic fibrosis, a genetic affinity for cystic fibrosis, and the children born from such a marriage have a very poor chance to survive. She wanted more children. She was scared to have more children with cystic fibrosis. The little girl is still alive. She lives in Philadelphia.

Mr. Jenner. She is with her mother?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. With her mother, yes.

Mr. Jenner. Is her mother pursuing her profession in Philadelphia?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Her mother is not actually practicing but she is in charge of the Cystic Fibrosis Research Institute in Philadelphia, she is a trustee of Temple University.

But her husband, Dr. Denton——

Mr. Jenner. She remarried?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She remarried.

Mr. Jenner. What is his full name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Dr. Robert Denton. He is the doctor who treated our children for cystic fibrosis. At present he is a professor of pediatrics and assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania.

Mr. Jenner. I don't want to go into the litigation. There was some litigation, was there not, between you and your former wife with respect to some trust?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Trust fund.

Mr. Jenner. Established for whom?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Established for Sergei, for our son. Now, I had to contribute, according to the divorce, $125 a month for the support of the children, which I did, and she put that money in a trust fund. She did not want to use that money for the upkeep of the children, because she is independently wealthy, and eventually she refused to accept any more contribution of money from me. I objected on my side to the fact that I was removed away—that the children were very far away from me. They were living in Boston at the time, and I encountered constantly difficulties in regard to my visitation rights of the children. Well, anyway, finally all of a sudden, after Sergei died, a long time afterwards, I received a notification that we inherited, my ex-wife and I—we inherited this trust fund.

Mr. Jenner. Which trust fund?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Established for Sergei, our son.

Mr. Jenner. Who established the trust fund?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Her grandfather, my boy's grandfather, Mr. Sharples, plus the money that came from my monthly contribution for the children's support—whatever money she could put in it. Anyway, it was a small trust fund of $24,000, which eventually was split up between my ex-wife and myself—about $12,000 each. There was a litigation in regard to that, but I don't know if it is interesting for you.

Mr. Jenner. No—I have the complaints. Your ex-wife—Dr. Denton lives in Philadelphia?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And she does research work, does she?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She doesn't do the actual research. She is more or less running the administration end of a second foundation. She was eventually asked to leave the National Cystic Fibrosis Foundation which we had formed together in Dallas, and which became this national foundation.

She developed some difficulty with the other trustees and was asked to resign, or resigned herself—I don't know for sure—the other trustees say they asked her to resign. She says she was forced to resign. And she formed with the help of her father and her friends another foundation in Philadelphia which is much smaller, and I think which does also research on cystic fibrosis. And she201 is running the administrative end of it. She is not doing the actual research, but she is running this foundation as an administrator.

Mr. Jenner. Do you visit your child?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I used to. Right now I have a great deal of difficulty in visiting my daughter, Nadya, because she wants to live with me, you see.

Mr. Jenner. The daughter?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The daughter, yes. And she thinks that by living in Texas her health will improve. Now, the mother thinks it is just the opposite—that if she lives in Texas that she will die, because of the inadequate medical facilities. So we had rather bitter litigation last year as to—I tried to take the custody away from her, because of various reasons—mainly, I think that the daughter would be happier with me, and with my new wife. And the little girl has developed a tremendous liking for my new wife. But the court decided that—we went into such bitter fighting, that I stopped this litigation in the middle, and I said, "I am going to Haiti anyway. Let's leave things as they are for a year. I am not going to see Nadya for a year, on the condition that she will get all my letters, all my gifts, and that I get a medical report from her every 4 months." And the poor girl is also under psychiatric treatment.

Mr. Jenner. Who is?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Nadya, my little girl. She is under psychiatric treatment—because of her illness, and also she developed a dislike for the other members of her family, for her half brothers and sisters, because they are healthy, and she is not.

Mr. Jenner. I take it that your former wife—there had been some children born of her present marriage?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; who have no cystic fibrosis.

Mr. Jenner. All right. Now, when the divorce took place, your wife filed suit in Philadelphia, didn't she?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; the suit was filed in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. She commenced it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Did you resist it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; we came to an agreement that we would get a divorce anyway. I don't know what you call it in legal terms. The lawyers made an agreement that, here it is, you see. We decided to sell our house and settle our accounts.

Mr. Jenner. Property?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Property settlement. And I think it was very fair for her, just as my lawyer, Morris Jaffe, can tell you the whole story about that.

Mr. Jenner. Now, upon your divorce from Wynne, or Didi, Sharples, did you remain in Dallas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I stayed in Dallas, carried on my consulting work in the same manner, concentrating mostly from then on on the foreign end of this business.

Mr. Jenner. What do you mean foreign end?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I started taking more and more foreign jobs. In 1956 I took a job in Haiti for a private—for some private individuals connected with Sinclair Oil Company.

Mr. Jenner. When was that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In 1956—just before our divorce, I think. We were already separated. Then we must have been divorced the end of 1956.

Sorry—too many marriages, too many divorces. So I started taking more and more foreign jobs. And, also, in my relationship with Mr. Sharples, because—my ex-wife's father—I did some foreign work for him, mainly in Mexico. He had some foreign exploitation in Mexico, some oil operations in Mexico. Anyway, I started getting a lot of foreign jobs—maybe jobs in Nigeria.

Mr. Jenner. I want to know what countries you were taken to in connection with those.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, all in all, I visited and I did foreign work, which means preparation for taking of concessions and suggestion of what areas should be taken for an oil and gas concessions—it was in Nigeria, in Togoland, in Ghana, in France—I may have forgotten with some other countries where202 I did not have to go, but I did some work right there in Dallas—examined the geological work and made suggestions.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. And eventually——

Mr. Jenner. You did travel to Mexico?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; many, many times.

Mr. Jenner. In connection with that work.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In Cuba, too.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, in Cuba—I traveled in Cuba before Castro, during the Batista days. The ex-president of Pantitec Oil Co. formed the Cuban-Venezuela Oil Co., a development—a land development to promote eventually a large oil drilling campaign in Cuba. He almost owned about half of the whole country under lease. This was during the Batista days. He invited me to come there and look the situation over, and make recommendations. And so I visited the fields there, and his office—that type of job that I had from time to time.

Mr. Jenner. I want to get the countries now. Cuba——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Cuba, Mexico, Ghana——

Mr. Jenner. These are your travels now?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. That is where I actually went.

Mr. Jenner. That is what I want to know.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Ghana, Nigeria, Togoland, and France.

Mr. Jenner. Now, all of this was in connection with the work you were doing with respect to oil exploration and gas exploration and development for what group?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. For No. 1—for Charmex. Then Cuban Venezuelan Trust—that is Warren Smith Co. Then the Three States Oil and Gas Co. in Dallas.

Mr. Jenner. Now—were there some other companies?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; then Lehman Trading Corp. in New York. I may have had other jobs, but they escape me now. But they were all consulting jobs for clients of mine—either from Texas or from New York. And then in 1957 those foreign jobs led to my being pretty well known in that field. I was contacted by Core Lab in Dallas in regard to a job in Yugoslavia.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us about that. That was for——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That was for ICA—a job for ICA and for the Yugoslav Government.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us what ICA is.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. International Cooperation Administration here in Washington—which wanted an oil and gas specialist to go to Yugoslavia and help them develop oil resources under the—I don't know—some kind of government deal. Under this——

Mr. Jenner. Did a man named Charles Mitchell accompany you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes—George Mitchell.

Mr. Jenner. And his wife?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I found him because he was a geophysicist. In other words, I did the geology and petroleum engineering, and he did pure geophysics. The ICA needed two men. I looked over the country for somebody who was capable and willing to go to Yugoslavia, and found George Mitchell in Dallas, and eventually both of us went there.

Mr. Jenner. You were single at this time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And he was married?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. He was married.

Mr. Jenner. And his wife accompanied him?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She did; yes.

Mr. Jenner. This was for the International Cooperation Administration?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Washington 25, D.C.

The Yugoslavian Government paid my living expenses there, and the ICA paid my salary.

203 Mr. Jenner. And you had a contract of some kind?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I think the contract was for 8 or 9 months.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you left on that venture, as I recall it, somewhere around February of 1957, wasn't it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I left for Yugoslavia.

Mr. Jenner. Yes; you left for Yugoslavia when?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think it was very early in 1957, because, 8 months, and I returned in October.

Mr. Jenner. 1957?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1957; yes. All the reports were made—quite a considerable number of reports were made in triplicates—some of them went to ICA, some went to the Yugoslavian Government. I think some went to the Bureau of Mines here.

Mr. Jenner. That was nonsecurity work, was it not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't have the slightest idea. They checked me, they gave me some kind of clearance before I went there. Because I had to wait for quite some time before they gave me the okay. And I noticed that after I got back from Yugoslavia, they were still checking me—after I got back from Yugoslavia they were still checking on me. One character came to see some of my friends in Dallas and said, "Well, George De Mohrenschildt is about to go to Yugoslavia. Do you think he is all right?" He said, "But he is already back from Yugoslavia."

Mr. Jenner. In the meantime, you had met your present wife, is that correct?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I met her in Dallas. And while we were in Yugoslavia, we became engaged, and she came to visit me in Yugoslavia for awhile. But she was actually by profession a designer for a Dallas firm of I. Clark, and she went to Europe on a business trip for I. Clark, and while doing so she came and visited me in Yugoslavia for a couple of weeks.

Mr. Jenner. She was not yet divorced at that time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't think she was divorced. She was getting a divorce.

Mr. Jenner. Where had you met her? Were you living at the Stoneleigh Hotel in Dallas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And she was living there, also?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She was living there, also. And she had this separate apartment. I was living on the Maple Terrace. She was living at the Stoneleigh Hotel.

Mr. Jenner. Was her daughter with her at that time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; I don't think she was. She came over later.

Mr. Jenner. I mean was her daughter living in Dallas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; her daughter was living in California.

Mr. Jenner. What was the name of that town?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Where she lived in California?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Some canyon—Cayuga Canyon. She can tell you about that.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I met my present wife's ex-husband. His name was Robert LeGon. We developed a liking for each other. I remember he told me that he will give his wife a divorce if I promise that I would marry her. A very charming fellow.

Mr. Jenner. Did you and your present wife live with each other before you were married?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, we did, for a relatively short time, because we couldn't make up our minds whether we should get married or not. We both had experiences in the past. We decided that we would see if we wanted to be married or not. And we eventually did.

Mr. Jenner. Now, I think you can remember this.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In the name of God we were married, because I remember we went on a trip to Mexico and decided that here we are married—in the name of God, we are married. Then, later on, we put it in the name of——

204 Mr. Jenner. You had a civil ceremony?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. After your wife had become divorced from her former husband? His name was Bogoiavlensky?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; but he changed his name to LeGon.

Mr. Jenner. Can you spell that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That name was a discovery for me, also. In the States they used the name of Le Gon.

Mr. Jenner. When you and your wife married—by the way, her given name is Jeanne, is it not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. When you and she married, did you continue to live at the Stoneleigh, or did you take up residence somewhere else?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No, we kept on living at the Stoneleigh for awhile, and then we took a house in University Park, on Thackery. We took a house because both our daughters came to live with us. Actually, her daughter lived with us a little while before, and then my daughter came to live with us. She came from France to live with us.

Mr. Jenner. You mentioned her daughter. Now, you make reference to your daughter. That is your daughter Alexandra?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And she had been living in France?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She had been—she was brought up by her aunt in Arizona, because her mother——

Mr. Jenner. And her aunt's name is what?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Nancy Clark—and eventually she became Nancy Tilton III. Anyway——

Mr. Jenner. She lives where?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She lives in Valle Verde Ranch, near Tucson, Ariz. And that is where my daughter was brought up. She was brought up and spent most of her childhood in that place, with her aunt and her husband, Mr. Clark.

Mr. Jenner. Her aunt's husband?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. This is the daughter by your marriage to Miss Pierson?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. Her mother, more or less, left her with—it was with what we call her aunt, because it is a European way—that was her first cousin, so, therefore, we call it an aunt—my daughter's aunt. I guess in English you would call it a cousin. We call it an aunt—whether it is cousin, second cousin or third cousin, it is still an aunt. Anyway, she calls her "Aunt" also. And she spent practically all her childhood there.

Mr. Jenner. Did you visit there?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; very frequently I went to visit her there, as often as I could. And Mrs. Clark and her husband wanted to adopt her. So we had a litigation there. I objected to her adoption.

Mr. Jenner. Did your former wife consent?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Which one?

Mr. Jenner. To the adoption?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, for awhile she was willing to accept that adoption, because she was not interested in her any more. She lived away from her, and married somebody else. She was not interested in the daughter.

I objected to that adoption, and very fortunately, because eventually both my ex-wife and myself had to ask back for the custody of Alexandra because her aunt became an alcoholic and became an impossible person to live with. And Alexandra asked me and her mother to take her away from her. We had a lawsuit—not a lawsuit, but whatever you call it—a custody case.

Mr. Jenner. Where was this, in Tucson?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No, that was in Palm Beach—because Nancy took Alexandra with her to Palm Beach, and tried to keep her away from us. And we caught her there in Palm Beach and eventually the judge decided that she should be with us.

Mr. Jenner. When was this?

205 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That was in 1956.

Mr. Jenner. Now, you say "with us." Who do you mean?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I mean either with me or with the mother—with the mother who became Mrs.—what a complication—Mrs. Brandel—my ex-wife, the the mother of my daughter Alexandra, became Mrs. Brandel. Her husband is a Dutchman who lives in France and in Italy, and is a television producer.

Mr. Jenner. So your ex-wife, Dorothy Pierson——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. And myself—asked the judge to decide with whom our daughter should stay. And she asked to stay with me. But I was not married yet. This was in the time between the marriages. I was not married. I could not offer her a home—although I wanted her to be with me.

And then the judge said, "Well, you go with your mother to France."

And that is what she did. She went to France, stayed with her mother, I contributed to the support. She stayed there for, I think, a year and a half, and decided to come to stay with me in Dallas later on.

That is why we had the house on Thackery. She lived with us.

Mr. Jenner. She did come to live with you?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. After you were married?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. She lived with us in Dallas for quite some time.

And, finally, she eloped from school——

Mr. Jenner. From what school?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Highland Park School.

Mr. Jenner. In Dallas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, and married a boy from Dallas by the name of Gary Taylor. She is divorced from him now.

Mr. Jenner. That was last September, was it not?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, last September.

Mr. Jenner. And——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They have a little boy by the name of Curtis Lee Taylor.

Mr. Jenner. And who has custody of that child?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The boy has the custody.

Mr. Jenner. Gary Taylor?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Maybe I am wrong on that. Maybe they have a divided custody. But the child right now, according to my information, is with Gary Taylor and with Gary's mother, Mrs. Taylor.

Mr. Jenner. Gary has remarried, did you know that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. I keep in touch with Mrs. Taylor, find out what is happening to the child.

Mr. Jenner. You say you keep in touch with Mrs. Taylor. Which Mrs. Taylor?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Mrs. Taylor, Gary's mother, who, more or less, takes care of the little boy right now.

Mr. Jenner. Following that divorce, your daughter—what did she do?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She went to school, to Tucson, to study——

Mr. Jenner. What school is that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Some secretarial school. And from then on, the situation becomes vague to me, because I was already gone. I get occasional reports telling that she left school, that she is somewhere in New York right now.

Mr. Jenner. Has she remarried?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Not as far as I know. I am trying to get in touch with her right now.

The last address is in some small town in New York, working in a hospital. She always wanted to be a nurse. Supposedly she has a job as some sort of a practical nurse in a hospital right now.

Mr. Jenner. How old is she now?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She will be 19 now.

Mr. Jenner. Did your daughter come to know either Lee or Marina Oswald?

206 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. All right. I will get to that, then.

While we are on these children, let's cover, if we might, your present wife's daughter.

What is her name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Her original name was Jeanne LeGon, the same as my wife's.

Mr. Jenner. There is something indicating that her name was Elinor.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. Jeanne Elinor LeGon—middle name Elinor.

My wife being an ex-dancer, she was a ballerina, had a tremendous admiration for Eleanor Powell, and named her daughter's middle name after Eleanor Powell. She was also an admirer of Eleanor Roosevelt, but that is beside the point.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She changed her name——

Mr. Jenner. Your daughter did?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Her daughter changed her name from Jeanne to Christiana, not to be confused with her mother. And the name is hard to pronounce. She changed it legally, herself, to Christiana LeGon.

Later on, I understand she changed it to Christiana Bogoiavlensky—whatever I hear about it.

Mr. Jenner. Is your daughter married—is Christiana married?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. To whom is she married?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She married Ragnar Kearton.

Mr. Jenner. And who is Ragnar Kearton?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Ragnar Kearton is a young man from California, from San Diego, Calif., whose mother I know, and whose father I don't know, but I understand he is vice president of Lockheed Aircraft Corp. And Ragnar is a well educated fellow, went to London School of Economics, but never graduated. He is a freelance writer, painter. To make a living I understand he works for Lockheed for awhile, and also he buys yachts, repairs them, fixes them up, and sells them.

Lately they moved to Alaska, and have been living there.

Mr. Jenner. What is——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Working for the Forestry Department.

Mr. Jenner. In Alaska?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Is Christiana also known as Christiana Valentina?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That I don't know. Never heard that name.

Mr. Jenner. After she married Kearton——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They changed their name to—according to them—to make it known the fact that her father's name was Bogoiavlensky, and they do not want to deny the Russian heritage. So that she is very fond of her father, and she wanted his name to be incorporated in their name, and that was by mutual agreement.

Mr. Jenner. Is it your understanding that your wife's former husband, Robert LeGon, married your present wife, and after they were married, they—his name was then Robert Bogoiavlensky?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It is my understanding.

Mr. Jenner. And after they were married they changed their name to Le Gon?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I understand that when they came from China, they decided that the name was too difficult to pronounce, and they changed their name to Le Gon.

I have always known her as Jeanne LeGon, my wife. She is still carrying that name professionally. She is well known—she is a well known designer, she has a name practically as a trademark.

Mr. Jenner. She met Mr. Bogoiavlensky in China?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. This is all hearsay, of course, because I was not particularly——

Mr. Jenner. She will tell us first-hand tomorrow.

207 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I understand of her family—she also has Russian background. Her father was a director of the Far Eastern Railroad in China, and she was born in China and lived there.

Mr. Jenner. Harbin?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, in Manchuria. Lived there until 1938. She came to the United States the same year I did.

Mr. Jenner. That is a pure coincidence?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. We lived right next to each other in New York, and didn't know each other—right next door.

Mr. Jenner. I understand you are very happily married.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes. At last.

Mr. Jenner. Now, your wife's daughter, Christiana, she is where, at the present time?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Right now she is in Copenhagen, Denmark, with her husband.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They came to visit us in Haiti.

Mr. Jenner. I was about to ask you that. When did that take place?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They came to stay with us in December.

Mr. Jenner. Of 1963?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And January 1964?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. And where does your daughter live when her husband is in Alaska?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. She was in Alaska with him. They lived both in Anchorage and in Valdez. That is where the earthquake took place—in both places.

Mr. Jenner. But they are presently vacationing or traveling in Europe?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Do they have any children?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. They have no children.

Mr. Jenner. What are Mr. Kearton's interests?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Interests in life? Or professional interests?

Mr. Jenner. Well, give me the professional ones first.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Professional—he is—my wife will tell you more about him, although I know him pretty well, also, and I like him. He is of ultra conservative tendencies politically.

Mr. Jenner. Please explain that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. In other words, he is for Senator Goldwater, 100 percent. His father is a friend of Goldwater's. And——

Mr. Jenner. Well, is he an aggressive——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very aggressive fellow.

Mr. Jenner. Is he aggressive politically?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Likes to discuss it, but I don't know whether he has any actual political—I mean whether he actually works to have Goldwater elected. But he likes him and freely expresses his admiration for him.

I don't think he is too much of a boy to go around and try to collect votes for Goldwater. He is too much concentrated on himself.

Mr. Jenner. Does it refresh your recollection that you and your wife, Wynne Sharples, were married on the 7th of April 1951?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is probably it, yes.

Mr. Jenner. And you were divorced almost exactly 5 years later, in April 1956?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, that is correct—5 years. I have the date clearly in my mind.

Mr. Jenner. By the way, let me ask you this at the moment: Are you a drinker?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Occasionally, but not too much.

Mr. Jenner. This will be all right to state to you on the record. Of all the people interviewed, everybody said that you were, if anything, a purely social drinker, they had never seen you intoxicated or close to it.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It is not true, because I have been drunk many208 times—not every day, but many, many times. Not under the table, but I have drunk more than I should.

Mr. Jenner. You said your son, Sergei, had died in 1960.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, in August 1960.

Mr. Jenner. You are sure of that—rather than 1961?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1960—I am pretty sure.

Mr. Jenner. Well, what I have might be a misprint.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My wife will tell you. I am not very good at dates.

But I think it is 1960.

Mr. Jenner. You are very good on names, though.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes, I remember names. Dates I am very poor at. That death, you know, put me in such a terrible condition of despair, that I decided, and I asked my wife to go with me on a trip throughout all of Mexico and Central America, to get away from everything, and to do some hard physical exercise. At the same time I thought I would review the geology of Mexico and Guatemala. And it was an old dream of mine to make a trip like that, but not in such rough conditions as we did it.

Mr. Jenner. I am going to get into that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. If you are interested, go ahead.

Mr. Jenner. I am just trying to recall where we were when I interrupted myself.

At this point, tell me your political philosophies.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My political philosophy is live and let live. I voted Republican, but—I am just not interested in politics.

Mr. Jenner. I am not thinking of politics in that sense, Mr. De Mohrenschildt, I am thinking in politics with a capital P.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I think I am a 100 percent democrat, because I believe in freedom.

Mr. Jenner. Are you talking about individual freedom now?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Individual freedom. And I believe in freedom of expressing myself when I feel like it. I believe in freedom of criticizing something which I think is not democratic.

Mr. Jenner. What is your attitude towards communism?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Towards communism, I wouldn't like to live in a Communist regime, I am not a Communist, never have been one. But if somebody likes it, let them have it. And I get along very well with fellow workers who are Communists. For instance, in Yugoslavia, I got along very well with them. Of course, we didn't discuss politics very much out there. On the contrary, you have to stay away from that subject. But I consider the other person's point of view.

If somebody is a Communist, let them be a Communist. That is his business.

Mr. Jenner. Have you——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I do not try to propagandize him, and I see some good characteristics in communism.

Mr. Jenner. There are some indications that you have expressed that view from time to time during your lifetime while you are in this country, that there are some good qualities in communism.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Now, there we mean—or what do you mean? What is your concept of communism?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I am looking at communism more or less more from the economic point of view. I think it is a system that can work and works, and possibly for a very poor man, and a very undeveloped nation it may be a solution.

Mr. Jenner. A temporary one?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A temporary one, yes—which eventually, and I believe in evolution, and I have seen through my life that communism in certain places has developed into a livable type of an economy, a way of life.

Now, I repeat, again, that I would not like to live there. Otherwise, I would be there. Because I am too independent in my thinking, and I like business to be free. But——

Mr. Jenner. You like individual freedom and free enterprise?

209 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Which you find in the United States?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And while you can see some benefits in communism as to persons of limited means, and poor countries, for initial development, you think that for a higher level of economic or cultural development communism is not good?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. Is that about it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Exactly.

Mr. Jenner. I don't want to put words in your mouth.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Exactly.

Now, I am very much influenced by a book called "Poor Countries and Rich Countries," by the editor of the Economist in London, which expresses my ideas on economics of the world as it is today.

It is a book which says that—which is available any place here—which says that the world today is divided into poor countries and rich countries, and that the question of communism and socialism is for ignoramuses. That freedom can exist in both types of economies—could exist eventually.

But the main problem of countries today is the richness and the poorness. Now, the rich countries are all of Western Europe, the United States, Canada, all of the satellite countries of Soviet Russia, Soviet Russia, Australia, and so on. Those are the countries which are producing more than they can eat—you see what I mean? And they develop the tools to produce industrial goods.

While the other countries, the rest of the world, is falling down in the morass of poverty, and becomes poorer and poorer as time goes on. You see what I mean?

Right now, I am living in one of those countries temporarily, Haiti, which is in terrible economic condition because people eat more than they can produce. Now, what can save those countries?

Either a tremendous injection of money from the capitalist countries, or a Communist regime, or a Socialist regime. What else can they do? So that is something to think about and worthwhile reading.

Mr. Jenner. But, on the other hand, as far as your political philosophy is concerned, the thing that stands major with you is individual freedom?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. Naturally, you can see from all my life that I believe in individual freedom, and I could not live without it.

Mr. Jenner. Sometimes to excess.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. To excess; yes. The big discussions I had in Yugoslavia was always about the freedoms. And I remember that I was attacked one day by a group of Communists in Yugoslavia about Governor Faubus, in Arkansas—saying "What happens there? Is that an example of democracy in Arkansas?" And I told them, yes, it is an example of democracy. I told them that you can imagine in your own country that the Governor would object to the order from the President, and the President had to send troops to make the Governor obey. And that made an impression on them. A few examples like that.

Mr. Jenner. When you were in Yugoslavia, then, you did have debates with the Communists?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Occasionally—after a few drinks, you can talk to them. But they were engineers and geologists—they were not people active politically—they were not big shots.

With the big shots you cannot discuss it. But with smaller people, you can discuss.

Mr. Jenner. Are you interested in debate?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Very much so; yes.

Mr. Jenner. Are you inclined in order to facilitate debate to take any side of an argument as against somebody who seeks to support——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is an unfortunate characteristic I have; yes.

Mr. Jenner. And that leads you at times to not necessarily speak in favor of, but to take the opposite view of somebody with respect to communism?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; sometimes it annoys me to have somebody who does not know anything about conditions anywhere else in the world attack210 while he is himself actually a Communist. You see what I mean? A Communist to me, in a bad sense, is somebody who does not believe in free discussion. So it annoys me that somebody Bircher will tell me, "George, we are for freedom here." I said, "Just the opposite, you are not for freedom."

Mr. Jenner. That is, you have taken the position that the Bircherites are not for freedom?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't like that movement personally. I dislike it very much. I have run into trouble lately in Texas before I left with some of my clients who were very much inclined in that direction.

For instance, they object to the United Nations. They put words in my mouth. I remember one day they said, "George, would you believe in abolition of the Army in the United States and creating an international force?"

I said, "No."

He said, "Well, that is what the United Nations stands for."

Mr. Jenner. Well——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I get sometimes into heated discussions and sometimes I say things which maybe you don't think. But I may have insulted some other people's feeling, because I don't have a hatred against anybody. I don't hate communism—hell, let them live.

Mr. Jenner. You don't hate it for somebody else, but you don't want it yourself?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I don't want it myself; no.

Mr. Jenner. Your whole stay in Yugoslavia, however, was in connection with the International Cooperation Administration?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; I am glad that you reminded me of that. I developed an idea, being in Yugoslavia, of forming a joint venture to use Yugoslav workers and American equipment.

Mr. Jenner. What workers?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yugoslav workers, who are very good and very inexpensive, to do some drilling in Arabic countries, and using American equipment. One of my clients is John Mecom in Houston, who, among other things, controls Cogwell Oil Well Equipment Co. in Wichita, Kans. And he has been having a hard time selling his equipment lately. So one day we were discussing in Houston what could we do to promote the use of his equipment. And we came to a conclusion that it might be a good idea to form a joint venture, American-Yugoslav joint venture, using cheap Yugoslav labor, and very good labor, to drill in Arabic countries, because there is a great future of doing this, you see.

And John Mecom sent me to Yugoslavia in 1958 to look at the possibility of forming such a venture.

Mr. Jenner. Excuse me. Was this the same year you were in Yugoslavia for the International——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; the next year. This was in 1958.

Mr. Jenner. Were you then married?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. You had married your present wife?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I think so. I hope I am right on my dates. Yes—I think we were married then. Anyway, I went by myself to Yugoslavia.

Mr. Jenner. I think you married your wife, Jeanne in 1959, did you not, in the summer?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You are probably right. Maybe I was not married at that time. Now, don't take those dates 100-percent sure. I can correct them later on when I look at the papers. My mind was so busy with Oswald that I don't keep my mind on the dates of marriage.

Mr. Jenner. I haven't reached Oswald yet.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I know. It will be a long discussion. I think I expressed my point of view pretty well.

Mr. Jenner. I do want you to get into this 1958 Yugoslav venture.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. Tell us more about it.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. All right.

John Mecom said, "George, you go to Yugoslavia and fix a contract for me211 to use the American equipment in conjunction with Yugoslav labor, and possibly use some Yugoslav engineers, to drill in Arabic countries—especially in Egypt." This is a little bit beside the point. But Marshal Tito is very close to Nasser, and it is very easy to send Yugoslav workers to Arabic countries today, and they actually do it all the time. They send the workers there, they do some jobs there. And they use German equipment, and sometimes Italian equipment. So why not use American equipment?

I heard about the very big deal in Egypt that could be gotten with that type of combination. However, before going to Yugoslavia I went to see the ex-head of ICA here in Washington. He was Ambassador in Yugoslavia when I was there. Riddleburger. And I told him about this project. And I asked him, "Do you think it will be workable? Will it be acceptable in Washington?"

And he said, "I think that sounds like a good idea."

It is nothing terrible to form a joint American-Yugoslavian venture—form a corporation.

I went to Yugoslavia and did get a contract of that type, a contract in the form of an agreement to be signed later on, just a project.

I came back to Texas, discussed it with Mr. Mecom, and he said, "George, I have changed my mind. I don't think I would like to do business with those damned Communists."

So the project fell through. And eventually quite a few corporations of that type were formed, between the French and the Yugoslavs, Germany and Yugoslavs, and Italians and Yugoslavs.

Mr. Jenner. You were in Ghana in 1957, was it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I think later than that. I think 1960, probably, or 1959.

Mr. Jenner. What led you to go to Ghana?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I have clients in New York by the name of Lehman. The first name is Rafael Lehman, who owns the Lehman Trading Corp. I have done some work for him in Texas. A wealthy man of American and Swedish origin, who owns, among other things, stamp concessions all over Africa. They have rights to issue stamps for the Government. And this is one of those ventures that are very profitable, because they practically give the stamps gratis to the Government, and sell the stamps to the philatelic agents. And he has, I think, about 11 African countries under contract to produce stamps for them. And one of them is Ghana.

And while there—he travels around Africa all the time—he found out that there were some oil seeps in the northern part of Ghana, indications of oil. And he asked me to go there and investigate. And eventually we took a concession in the northern part of Ghana. We still are supposed to have it, this concession.

Mr. Jenner. Was it published when you went to Ghana that you were a philatelist?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. When we arrived in Ghana?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Sure.

Mr. Jenner. Explain that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That was a trick, because I was representing the philatelic agency, Lehman, but we did not want to let it be known to Shell Oil Co. that I was a consulting geologist.

Mr. Jenner. Don't you think Shell Oil Co. would know that George De Mohrenschildt was an oil geologist?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, we didn't want it to be known, anyway, because I even didn't go through—I didn't spend any time in Accra. I went right away to the northern provinces. How did you know that I went as a philatelist? You have to say that sometimes in the oil business you use certain tricks. But that was intentional on the part of Mr. Lehman, because Shell Oil Co. is supposed to have the real entry to all those countries, as far as concessions go.

Mr. Jenner. Did this venture of yours in behalf of Lehman Trading Corp. have anything—was that political in any nature, and I say political with a capital P.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; of course they have to be friendly with Nkrumah,212 because they produce stamps for him. But that is the only affiliation they have with him.

Mr. Jenner. So this venture in Ghana had no political aspects whatsoever?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No.

Mr. Jenner. It was entirely and exclusively business, as you have explained?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A hundred percent business.

Mr. Jenner. Except that you were working for the International Cooperation Administration when you were in Yugoslavia first, that had no political, capital P, implications whatsoever?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; it was purely business.

Mr. Jenner. And your second venture in Yugoslavia for the Cardwell Tool Corp., that was strictly business?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. No politics involved?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No.

Mr. Jenner. Have you ever been in any respect whatsoever an agent?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Never have.

Mr. Jenner. Representing——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Never, never.

Mr. Jenner. Any government?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You can repeat it three times.

Mr. Jenner. Any government?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No. I could take what you call the fifth amendment, but, frankly, I don't need to.

Mr. Jenner. I should say to you, Mr. De Mohrenschildt, that any time you think that your privacy is being unduly penetrated, or that you feel that your constitutional rights might be invaded, or you feel uncomfortable, you are free to express yourself.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You are more than welcome. I have never been an agent of any government, never been in the pay of any government, except the American Government, the ICA. And except being in the Polish Army—$5 a month.

Well, maybe I made a mistake. Maybe I am working for the Haitian Government now. It is a contract. But it has no political affiliations.

Mr. Jenner. Subject to that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Again, no political angle to it.

Mr. Jenner. What I am driving at—whether you work for a foreign government or not, whether you ever have in your lifetime—have you at any time had any position, which I will call political, in the capital P sense, in which you sought to advance the interests of a movement or a government or even a group against a government?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Never have. Never was even a Mason. Never part of any political group.

Mr. Jenner. And any views you have expressed during your rather colorful life have been your personal views?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Personal views; yes.

Mr. Jenner. Not induced or fed or nurtured by any political interests, with a capital P, on behalf of any group?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right. Sometimes I criticize things, like in Texas—I criticize the lack of freedoms that the Mexicans have, the discrimination, and things like that. But nobody pays me for that. I say what I think.

Mr. Jenner. Whether they pay you or not——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. I have never been a member of any group of any kind. My life was too busy, as you can see, in order to be involved in anything like that.

Mr. Jenner. Now, we covered your two Yugoslav ventures, your Ghanian venture—the time that you had the company when you were a young man in Europe, traveled around Europe.

We covered all your employments in the United States, from the time you came here in May of 1938.

I think we have reached the point of your great venture which you started to tell us about, and I had you hold off—your trip down into Mexico and the213 Central American countries—tell us about that in your own words, how it came about, and what you did.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I started explaining that already, that it is not a new idea for me. I said before that 20 years before, Roderick MacArthur and myself set out on a limited trip of this type, when we were both young men in Mexico.

And I have always been interested in Mexico as a very rich country mining wise, and I thought that it would be very interesting and useful for me to take a trip along the old trails of the mining of the Spaniards as they went through Mexico during the days of the Conquistadors.

You see, the Spaniards went to Mexico for the purpose of finding mines, and the routes they made in Mexico and through Central America are all directed toward certainly logical prospects, certain mines. And I started collecting through the years—I started collecting information on routes of the Spaniards in Mexico.

But I never thought I would really be able to do it, until came the time in 1960 when my boy died, and I was in very—practically out of my mind, because this was my only son. And I said to hell with all that—I had some money saved up, and I said I am going to stay away from my work and from the civilized life for 1 year, and I am going to follow the trails of the Spanish Conquistadors, all throughout Central America, and possibly all the way to South America.

And to do it the hardest possible way, because I believe in physical therapy for your mental problems.

And my wife, fortunately, also, loves the outdoors, and agreed with me that that is something we should do.

We gave up our apartment, I gave up my office, and we set out from the ranch on the border of Mexico and the United States.

Mr. Jenner. What ranch?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. This was—that is the ranch which belongs to a friend of ours. It is called the—it is Piedras Negras. It is on the Mexican side of the U.S. border. On the American side you have a little town called Eagle Pass. On the Mexican side you have Piedras Negras.

There we have some very close friends who own a big ranch. Their name is Tito and Conchita Harper. They have—they are half Mexican, half Americans. They live on the ranch nearby, and in Piedras Negras.

By the way, when I was visiting them, at the time I was visiting them, a few months before, we heard about the death of my boy, right in their house. We were sitting in their house when there was the long distance call from Canada that my boy had died. They are very, very close friends. They also advised me that it would be a good thing for me to take a trip like that, knowing my interest in Mexico and my interest in the outdoor life.

And that is what we did. We started off at the first 200 kilometers—Tito took us in a plane to cross the first range, a very difficult range, and the rest of the trip was made on foot, all the way to the Panama Canal.

Mr. Jenner. All the way to where?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The Panama Canal.

Mr. Jenner. Tell me what countries you passed through.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We passed through the whole of Mexico, in the longest trajectory you can have. Then the whole of Guatemala, the whole of San Salvador—El Salvador, rather, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.

And on the way there we stopped occasionally in towns, received our mail, through the American Embassy and consulates, visited some of the friends we have out there. In other words, we led a life close to nature for a whole year.

Mr. Jenner. Were you in Mexico City during this trip?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No; because our route kept us away from Mexico City.

Mr. Jenner. At any time during that trip was Mikoyan in Mexico?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Oh, yes. That I have to tell this incident; that is interesting. This is completely a different incident.

I went to Mexico City, I guess, with—a year before that, on behalf of——

Mr. Jenner. Just a minute.

214 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. This is another consulting job.

Mr. Jenner. When did you make your walking trip through Mexico?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That was the end of 1960 and 1961—all of 1961.

Mr. Jenner. That took about 8 months?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Almost a year.

Mr. Jenner. So you would return in the late fall of 1961?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. 1961.

Mr. Jenner. November, I believe.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I remember that.

Mr. Jenner. Now, the occasion when Mikoyan was in Mexico was some other occasion?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. A different occasion; yes.

Mr. Jenner. As long as we have raised it at this point, we might as well complete it. Tell us about that.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. About this Mikoyan incident?

Mr. Jenner. Yes.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, I went to Mexico City on behalf of Texas Eastern Corp., which is a gas company in Houston, which has a contract with the Mexican Government for the purchase of gas. In other words, this corporation is buying gas from Mexico at the border.

Mr. Jenner. We talk about gas here—we are talking about natural gas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Natural gas; yes. And this contract was in jeopardy—somebody else wanted to take it. And Texas Eastern, which is the corporation, a very large powerplant corporation which has the Big Inch from Texas to the east—through their vice president, John Jacobs, asked me to go to Mexico, since I am familiar with the country, and try to figure out in which way we can keep that contract. And while in Mexico, we had to entertain all the officials of the Mexican Government.

Mr. Jenner. You say "we."

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. My wife went with me.

Mr. Jenner. Your present wife?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes.

Mr. Jenner. When did this take place?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It was—I think it was in 1959. I cannot swear you about the dates. But about 1959. Or early in 1960—one or the other. I went to Mexico on other jobs before, many times. But this particular job, since you are interested in the Mikoyan deal, which you call it, was this particular——

Mr. Jenner. Did I say deal or incident? I think I said incident.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Incident. Anyway, one of our friends in Mexico is the pilot of the president—the personal pilot of the President Mateos of Mexico. He also took the Russian group, the Russian engineers, with Mikoyan, on the tour of Mexico, at the same time I was there.

By the way, our proposition of the Texas Eastern was to provide some financing for Pemex in exchange for this contract—which is the Mexican Oil Co. And the Russians were offering the same thing to the Mexicans.

Mr. Jenner. So you were then really competing with the Russians?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Competing with the Russians. And through my contacts with this pilot, and with the Mexican officials, I knew exactly what the Russians were offering. We did not make any particularly big fight about it, but we knew what they were offering, and we knew what we could offer for our contract. It was one of the most interesting jobs I ever had.

And then one day, Mikoyan was with that group—the rest of them were technicians. One day Mikoyan was leaving. I remember we had dinner the night before with this pilot of the president. And he said, "George, why don't you come with me to meet Mikoyan tomorrow at the airport?"

I said, "By God, that sounds like an interesting idea. I would like to meet the character."

He had such a publicity of being an excellent businessman, I wanted to learn something from him.

So I said, "All right, I will go with you."

And my wife said, "George, you better not go, because your people at Texas Eastern will look at it—they may look at it in a very peculiar manner, if you215 appear with Mikoyan"—and the Texas Eastern people—they are very conservative Texas people—if I appear in public with Mikoyan, I will not get any jobs from them.

Mr. Jenner. Particularly having in mind your Russian background?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; particularly my Russian background. So she says, "I better go instead of you."

Mr. Jenner. Your wife?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; so the next morning she went with the Mexican major, the pilot of the president—he still is a pilot for the president today, and he is married to an American—he is not a Communist, believe me. And he and Jeanne went together to the airport.

It was full of security officers—the Russian security officers and the Mexican officers. And the Mexican pilot let her go through all that mess.

Here was the Russian plane, and Mikoyan was making a speech. After that, the pilot took Jeanne, for the hell of it, and said, "I will introduce you to Mikoyan."

And Jeanne went to him and said in perfect Russian, "How are you, Comrade Mikoyan? Nice to know you." And he almost collapsed, because it was such a surprise for him that somebody went through all that security officers without being detected—because she was right there in that group. So she said—he asked her where she is from, and she says, "I am from Texas."

"What do you mean from Texas?"

She said, "Yes, I am from Texas." She said, "Why don't you come and visit us in Texas and I will give you a Russian dinner."

And Mikoyan said, "Thank you very much, some day I will come and see you."

So here was the Mikoyan incident.

Mr. Jenner. That is all of the circumstances of the so-called Mikoyan incident?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. It was pure happenstance and a bit of fun?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. That is right.

Mr. Jenner. And you, in fact, declined the same invitation?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; I declined to go—purely for business reasons—because I didn't want my clients to think that I was buddy buddy with Mikoyan.

Mr. Jenner. Now, this trip of yours down through Mexico, and the Central American countries—wasn't that about the time of the Bay of Pigs invasion?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It was indeed; yes. And we didn't know anything about it.

Mr. Jenner. You didn't?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We didn't know anything about it.

Mr. Jenner. Your trip had nothing whatsoever to do with that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Nothing to do with it—except I remember we arrived in Guatemala City, and by God you know we walked on the street, we were trying to get some visas to get to the next country—you have to get visas and permits to carry guns. We had to carry a revolver with us to protect us, because we were going constantly through a jungle. We did not follow any roads. We were all the time following the trails.

Mr. Jenner. The old Conquistador trails?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Yes; we carried two revolvers and a shotgun with us, And to be able to cross the border you had to get permit each time. That took us in Guatemala City quite some time. We were walking around the town trying to get a permit to Nicaragua, and to San Salvador, and to Honduras. And as we were walking on the street we saw a lot of white boys, dressed in civilian, but they looked like military men to me.

And I said to Jeanne, "By God, they look like American boys."

The consulate—we received our mail through the American consulate.

Mr. Jenner. In Guatemala City?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Everywhere—Guatemala City, San Salvador—not Honduras, but in San Jose—everywhere we received our mail through the consulate or the Embassy. And I was asking the help of the consul there—could they help me to get a permit to go to Honduras and carry my shotgun there.

He said, "I am too busy today, I cannot do anything for you."

216 And then we left Guatemala City—2 days later—we read the paper on the road about the Bay of Pigs invasion. That is all we knew about it.

Mr. Jenner. What did you do on your trip through Mexico and the Central American countries?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, we took—I took—we walked and found our way by the map, spoke to the people, collected samples.

Mr. Jenner. Samples of what?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Samples of rocks, of various rocks that seemed to have——

Mr. Jenner. How did you carry it?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We sent them back—we carried—all the stuff we carried on the back of a mule. We had a big mule that could carry 150 pounds. This whole thing is recorded in a book I have written. It is a manuscript I have—600 pages—day for day description of our adventures. If you are interested, I will give it to you. The publishers don't seem to be interested. It is now in the hands of a publisher in France, and they may publish it.

Mr. Jenner. I had heard about that. I heard if it had a little more color it might be salable.

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. It is a little bit too dry. It is day by day—that is what I could do. Someday when I have more time, I will make it a little bit more colorful. But as it is now, it is a diary of our trip, day by day.

Mr. Jenner. Now——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. You see, that took quite some time each day to record what I saw, to record the geology, to record the observations I had of each place. Because we went to places that no white man has ever been in before, in many places. And certainly no geologist had ever visited before. We had some fascinating adventures. We were attacked many times. We were robbed. But we always came out all right.

Mr. Jenner. Did you make movies of that?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We have a movie made of it, which I have here with me, because I would like to show it—I showed it to many friends in Dallas and in New York. It is an 8 millimeter movie which has about 1,200 feet—three big reels. This movie seemed to be quite interesting to people who like the outdoors. It gives you a complete sequence of our trip.

Mr. Jenner. Did you get pretty native in the course of that trip?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, we became completely native. We ate only what the natives ate. We drank what they drank. And we returned to civilization only once in awhile when we were in towns, in the big cities. Otherwise, we lived exactly like the natives. And that is how we were able to make a trip like that. We looked like Indians. They thought that we were Indians from somewhere. We were poorly dressed. All our cameras and equipment was covered by a piece of old rag, on top of that mule. In other words, we did not want to show to the people that we had money with us—we did carry money with us.

Mr. Jenner. Where did that trip end?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. The trip ended exactly at the Panama Canal. At the end of the trip, we went to say hello to Mr. Farland, the U.S. Ambassador there. And we also met Mr. Telles, our Ambassador in Costa Rica. They know all about our trip. And there were many articles written about our trip in the local papers.

Mr. Jenner. You mean local in Dallas?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Local in Dallas—and local papers in Central America, small local papers. It was a purely geological trip, plus a desire to be away from civilization for a while because of the death of my son. That, I think, is sufficient reason.

Mr. Jenner. It has no political implications whatsoever?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. No political implications. I am not interested at all in politics. Naturally, when I was going there I could not help seeing what was going on. The dictatorship in Honduras, the civil war in Panama, the guerilla fights. But it is all recorded in my book.

But I had nothing to do with it.

Mr. Jenner. You went from Panama to where?

217 Mr. De Mohrenschildt. We just arrived from the border of Texas to Panama. We performed one big chunk of—we covered a big chunk of territory which is about 5,000 miles, on foot. And, believe me, not many people can do it, you know.

Mr. Jenner. When you completed that trip——

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. When we completed this trip, we were very tired, and we decided to go and take a rest in Haiti.

Mr. Jenner. Why did you select Haiti?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Well, as I said before, I had been there many times as a tourist. I have a very close friend of my father's who lived in Haiti. I speak French. And I like the country. I said we are going to visit this old man, a friend of my father's.

Mr. Jenner. What is his name?

Mr. De Mohrenschildt. Mr. Breitman; Michael Breitman. He used to be a very wealthy man in Russia—also involved in the oil industry in Russia, and in Czarist Russia—a friend of my father'