Category Archives: Collection issues

Notes on the collection as a whole, including its history, management, and access issues.

Response to Matt Douthit

Matt Douthit, a JFK assassination researcher, posted a comment on Fred Litwin’s Youtube interview with me. I respond to Douthit’s comment in this note.

MD’s comment

Apologists: “There’s nothing to see in the remaining sealed files!”
In reality…
David Morales—61 pages still classified
William King Harvey—123 pages still classified
Anne Goodpasture—286 pages still classified

CIA working files and DCI minutes

This note concludes my survey of CIA record categories in the JFKARC. It is the fourth and last note in the series. Links to the series are available here. The two categories summarized below include fewer than 540 records, but some of these are quite interesting.

The DCI morning meeting minutes

From the early days of the CIA, the DCI (head of the CIA) held a meeting every morning with CIA executive officers, a practice that lasted up until the mid-1970s.…

CIA files on Oswald

This is another long-overdue note giving a brief overview of CIA files on Lee Oswald, the man who shot President Kennedy. It is the second in a series of notes on CIA records in the JFKARC. The first note, on CIA docs in HSCA records, is available here.

Note the plural in the title of this post; there were multiple CIA files devoted to Oswald over the years, as well as files where Oswald was mentioned, but was not the main subject.…

CIA documents in the HSCA records

[Corrected and revised on 1/17/24; new refs added 1/23/24]

This long-overdue note gives a brief overview of CIA documents that were collected by the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA), a special Congressional committee that investigated the assassinations of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr.

During its 1976-78 investigation, the Committee acquired a massive collection of CIA records, dating from World War 2 all the way up to the 1970s.…

Reconstructing the J Walton Moore OS file

This note discusses how I was able to put together again virtually all of a lengthy CIA file using both the latest releases from the ARC and bits and scraps of an ancient file from 1993.

The file

The file I am discussing in this note is the CIA Office of Security file for J Walton Moore, who for many years was the head of CIA’s field office in Dallas, including the period when Lee Oswald was a Dallas resident.…

Judge Tunheim’s letter to President Biden

Judge John Tunheim served as chair of the Assassination Records Review Board from 1994 to 1998, and together with the other four Board members, deserves much credit for the important accomplishments of the Board, the greatest of which was the successful creation of the massive JFK Assassination Records Collection (JFKARC or ARC), a most valuable contribution to the history of both the JFK assassination and to the historiography of the cold war as a whole.…

SISS records from the ARC now on line at Mary Ferrell

Some interesting ARC docs have recently been posted online at the Mary Ferrell Foundation website. These docs are records of executive session testimony before the SISS (Senate Internal Security Subcommittee), which conducted a “limited inquiry” into the JFK assassination in late 1963. The session records were acquired by the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB) all the way back in 1995, and are noted in the ARRB’s Final report (see here and here).…

Summary of December 2021 releases (updated)

I have not yet posted any notes on the December 15 releases. I may have an article on these elsewhere in the next few weeks, so I will hold off on extended discussion for now. Following is just a quick summary of the records posted on NARA’s website.

Agency totals

Totals of records released per agency (the number in parentheses is the agency prefix):

# agency record count percent
1 CIA (104) 958 64%
2 FBI (124) 355 24%
3 HSCA (180) 106 7%
4 SSCIA (157) 24 2%
5 Ford Lib (178) 15 1%
6 ACSI/IRR (194) 11 < 1%
7 OSA (198) 5 < 1%
8 JFK Lib (176) 5 < 1%
9 JCS (202) 3 < 1%
10 DOS (119) 3 < 1%
11 LBJ Lib (177) 2 < 1%
12 NARA/WC (179) 2 < 1%
13 NSC (145) 1 < 1%
14 NARA (181) 1 < 1%

Newly released records

One surprise in the December releases was to see 70 78 records which were not previously released in 2017-2018.…