Friday, January 6, 2017

Marguerite Never Smiled

John Armstrong must have spent a great deal of money through the years researching his book Harvey and Lee. Consider the cost of documents which he acquired from the National Archives and many other sources. Also, travel expenses-he went to Argentina to interview Ana Ziger and to Switzerland to research the Albert Schweitzer College.

But one thing he decided to not spend money on was an editor. Reportedly, Armstrong’s manuscript was originally 3000 pages which he cut down to about 1000. Unfortunately, I believe it should have been edited down to three or four hundred. One of the reasons I say that is the subject of this article. Some will say this is a minor point and they may be right. But things like this (and there are others) bother me because they are unnecessary and, in some cases such as this, just silly. On pages 109-110 of Harvey and Lee, we find:

Mr. Goodman [a witness Armstrong uses to bolster his theory] also told me about a characteristic of Marguerite Oswald that he never forgot. Mr. Goodman said, “She never smiled.” Mr. Goodman’s recollection of Marguerite caused me to think about the many photographs I have seen of the short, heavy-set “Marguerite Oswald” imposter. Goodman was correct, this “Marguerite Oswald” never smiled.


Armstrong either forgot about this assertion or isn’t serious about it as one can see on page 214 of his book:

Beginning in mid-1958, after assuming the identity of the real Marguerite Oswald, FBI reports and witness testimony allows us to follow the employment and residences of the “Marguerite Oswald” imposter. This woman was never able to hold a job for more than a few months, moved continuously, and had no close friends (see 4 photos from 1954 thru 1961).




Here are three photos of the Marguerite “imposter” smiling. The first two are from the group of four photos Armstrong refers to above and includes on his CD. The third one I found on the Internet and apparently comes from Robert Oswald’s collection. It is captioned “1961-11 Vernon TX”. Indeed, on page 362-63 of Harvey and Lee, we find confirmation that this is his imposter:

When “Marguerite Oswald” left the McAdams ranch in Crowell, Texas on August 1, she moved to a ranch owned by Mr. Phillips north of Vernon, Texas. Phillips hired “Marguerite” to care for his elderly mother and father, and she remained in his employ thru the remainder of 1961.


I should also mention that this photo from Robert Oswald shows that the “imposter” Marguerite was not “dumpy and heavy-set” as Armstrong maintains throughout his book. A little older and a little grayer perhaps, but certainly not as unpleasant as Armstrong asserts.

There are many photos of Marguerite (Armstrong’s “imposter”) taken after the assassination which show her smiling. Perhaps Armstrong would say these don’t count because she was happy after completing her mission. But the ones that he points to as examples and the one that I found are certainly of the “Imposter” and I am sure there are others.

Amazingly, it seems that Armstrong was aware of the problem but still chose to use this idea in his book. Here is a post from the old JFK Research forum by Jack White dated 11/21/2002, about a year before Armstrong’s book was published:

…I have seen NO photo of the fake Marguerite smiling.


In the same thread, researcher Phil Hopley posted one of the photos of the smiling imposter. So, White and Armstrong were aware of the problem yet Armstrong chose to use this in the book and even put photos on the companion CD that refuted it. I think he should have skipped the Switzerland trip and hired an editor.

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