DALLAS—In the 45 years since John F. Kennedy’s fateful drive through Dealey Plaza on a bright November morning in 1963, virtually every aspect of his assassination has been examined in minute detail, tested and presented to the world for consumption. For conspiracy theorists, historians, military buffs, and the merely curious, Kennedy’s death has been a source of much speculation. Equally compelling, though, is the story of how Lee Harvey Oswald arrived at the moment of shooting JFK, forever marking his name in infamy.
On Oct. 17, Heritage Auction Galleries will offer The JFK Assassination Collection of John K. Lattimer as part of its October Grand Format Manuscripts Auction in Dallas. The auction will include several dozen important documents and relics related to Oswald and the JFK assassination. This is likely the first time since the Warren Commission first presented its study that all of this material will be available in one place for viewing.
“Dr. Lattimer was an eclectic collector, and his interest in the topic of assassinations is even better illustrated in his Lincolniana Collection, which Heritage will be auctioning in November," said Sandra Palomino, Director of Historical Manuscripts. “It has been an honor to work with both collections and gain insight into Dr. Lattimer’s thought processes. I’ve come to understand his fascination with both events, and appreciate the bizarre parallels that exist.”
Heritage’s Oct. 17 auction will feature an archive of letters from Oswald to his mother and brother, with the majority written from the Soviet Union. The letters follow Oswald’s romance with Communism and all things Soviet, and devolve into burgeoning paranoia as his disillusionment with Soviet-era Russia grew. While his early letters detail his dedication to the Communist cause and hate for America, they quickly become filled with pleas and his daily struggles to secure exit visas for himself and his wife Marina.
"Many of these letters were originally purchased by Dr. Lattimer from Oswald’s mother Marguerite," said Palomino. "This important archive also contains many letters from Marguerite to Dr. Lattimer regarding these transactions. Her letters reveal the environment in which Oswald was raised. The tragedy of Kennedy’s assassination became a trademark for Marguerite – she even took up the affectation of adding ‘Mother of Lee Harvey Oswald’ when signing her name."
"Another very important lot in the auction is Oswald’s Marine Rifle score book,” Palomino added. “Oswald’s scores show him to be a capable marksman, and certainly able to have been President Kennedy’s shooter. In addition, we have Oswald’s falsified application to Schweitzer University, which allowed him to obtain a student visa to Europe in order to go to the Soviet Union.”
To see additional items from The JFK Assassination Collection of John K. Lattimer, go online to: www.ha.com/692/.
To discuss consigning historical manuscripts to an upcoming auction at Heritage, call Sandra Palomino 800-872-8467 ext. 1107, or email to SandraP@HA.com.
Heritage is the world’s third largest auction house, and by far the largest auctioneer of rare collectibles, with annual sales more than $600 million, and 400,000+ registered online bidder members. For more information about Heritage’s auctions, and to join and gain access to a complete record of prices realized, along with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, visit www.HA.com.
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