Posted by: Dr. Grover B. Proctor, Jr. | 28 February 2019

The Revisionists Are Coming! or He Doesn’t Think What Didn’t Happen Actually Happened

It has been suggested by historians that a theory or a historical point of view has truly “arrived” when one begins to see revisionism rear its head. I was neither expecting nor waiting for that to happen with my research into “The Raleigh Call” event from the JFK Assassination — but it nevertheless has begun. Break out the champagne!

I am specifically referring to an article posted on the Prayer Man website, titled “The Raleigh Call Did Not Happen.” (I will have a complete, fully annotated reply to this article in the near future, but right now I am tied up with a consulting job I have undertaken, which takes precedence.)

I opened up the article when a fellow researcher sent it to me, and I began to read it. I got through the first few introductory paragraphs, which had nothing really to do with the Raleigh Call. But then I came to this statement:

I do not believe that Oswald made a call to Raleigh,
let alone spoke with John David Hurt.

There are so many errors involved with and implied by that one sentence that it stopped me dead in my tracks. Let me explain what I mean by that.

Based on that one sentence, if this is what the author means when he says “The Raleigh Call did not happen,” then I and 100% of everyone who was involved with or who investigated the Raleigh Call agree with him completely. That which he claims never happened — as specifically voiced in that sentence — in truth never happened. And so I join him in supporting the obvious. It will be interesting to go through the entire article to see if that is really what he meant to say.

Let me interject at this point that I am always pleased when I see that others have written about The Raleigh Call, and many have. Some have been laughably ridiculous and/or horribly inaccurate, while some have been thoughtful, relevant, fact-based, and helpful to the overall investigation. I have read them all, but my level of interest in them is always in direct proportion to their level of scholarship.

This latest author is, like everyone, entitled to draw his own conclusions about what happened that night in the Dallas jail. If any researcher takes all the facts as we know them (or, better yet, finds new facts!), and comes to a different conclusion than I do — based entirely on the facts, mind you — then I will honor and respect his/her intellect and scholarship, and I will say so publicly. But if that researcher plays fast and loose with the facts, then I frankly have neither respect nor time for it. That sort of thing gives all JFK researchers a bad name. At this point, I do not know into which category this new article falls, but that first sentence (see above) does not fill me with great hope.

In the interest of fairness and balance, here are links to the new revisionist article “The Raleigh Call Did Not Happen” and to my monograph The Raleigh Call and the Fingerprints of Intelligence.

If by this time you are asking yourself, what in the world is/was The Raleigh Call, here’s an abbreviated, “just-the-facts-ma’am” version.


What Was The Raleigh Call?

A brief excerpt from

The Raleigh Call and the Fingerprints of Intelligence


         The story presented here takes place in the Dallas jail, 34 hours after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
         It’s Saturday night, November 23, 1963, in the Dallas jail, sometime before 10:00 p.m. Though of course he cannot know it, Lee Oswald has only 12 hours left to live. Around this time, he lets it be known that he wishes to make at least one telephone call. That request set in motion the following train of events.
         Between 10:15 and 10:35 p.m., 43-year-old telephone switchboard operator Alveeta Cave Treon arrived at work on the fifth floor of the Dallas Municipal Building, to begin her 11-to-7 shift. She came in well before her shift began in order to relieve one of the operators who had previously asked to leave early that night. Seated near one end of the ten-position switchboard was another operator, Louise Swinney, and Mrs. Treon took a position near the other end, leaving about four to six seats separating them.
         The following narrative is told from the perspective of, and uses quotes from the testimony by, Mrs. Treon (1920-1999).
         As soon as Mrs. Treon sat down to begin work, Mrs. Swinney told her there would be two men — “I am not sure if she said Secret Service, homicide, or what” — coming to the switchboard room to listen into a call. “They had told her that they would be taking Lee Harvey Oswald to a telephone to let him make a call.” Mrs. Swinney made it quite clear that their superiors had sent instructions for them to cooperate with the men.
         About 10 minutes later, said Mrs. Treon, “a knock came to the door, which is kept locked at night for security purposes. Mrs. Swinney, who was closest to the door, went and unlocked it. Two men identified themselves to her, I think by showing their identification cards. I didn’t remember what they said but I assumed they were the expected law enforcement men. They entered the room and immediately went to the equipment room.”
         As they were the only two operators at the board at that time, Mrs. Treon said she knew that either she or Mrs. Swinney would handle Lee Oswald’s call when it came through.
Lee Oswald in the Dallas jail          “A few minutes after the men went into the private room, a red light came up on the board showing a call from the jail. Mrs. Swinney and I both plugged in simultaneously to take it.” Mrs. Treon was the first to say “Number, please,” but it was Mrs. Swinney who took charge of the call. “[I] let her handle it alone,” Mrs. Treon said later. “I did not unplug. I quit trying to handle the call and let her, but I stayed plugged in with my key open.” This meant that Mrs. Treon could hear everything that was being said to Mrs. Swinney by Lee Oswald.
         Mrs. Treon’s 20-year-old daughter, Sharon — who also worked for the Dallas Police Department, as a records stenographer in the Records Office — had come in to visit with her mother that night, and was sitting in a chair a few feet away from the switchboard. Sharon asked her mother, if it worked out that she handled Lee Oswald’s call, “to make a memorandum of it — a copy of the original ticket — as a souvenir.” When it was clear that Mrs. Swinney was taking the call, Mrs. Treon sat back and listened.
         ‘I Was Dumbfounded.’   Mrs. Treon continued: “I heard her repeat a number to the caller and saw her write down details on a notation pad, which is normal routine. She then closed the key so no one on the line could hear her, then called the two men in the room on a line and said that Oswald was personally placing his call.”
         “I listened and watched very carefully for Mrs. Swinney to place the call with the long distance operator. She appeared very nervous and visibly shaken. For a few minutes she just sat there trembling.” Mrs. Treon would later comment that she understood Mrs. Swinney’s nerves. “I continued watching and listening but she did not place the call.” Because Mrs. Swinney’s key was closed, it was not possible for Oswald or the men in the equipment room to know what was happening, nor whether she had placed the call that Oswald had requested.
         “I was dumbfounded at what happened next. Mrs. Swinney opened the key to Oswald and told him, ‘I am sorry the number doesn’t answer.’ I am pretty certain she said number and not numbers. She then unplugged and disconnected Oswald. Immediately, then, the two men in the equipment room came out, thanked us for our cooperation and left.”
         Mrs. Treon would later say that her “lasting impression of the events that night is that Mrs. Swinney had been instructed by someone to not put the call through to Oswald.” That belief was strengthened, she said, “by the fact that Mrs. Swinney did not leave work as soon as Mrs. Treon came on that night as she usually did. Instead she remained as though she had been assigned to handle the call.”
         In 1978, Captain Will Fritz of the Dallas Police Department was asked by a Congressional investigator if he remembered sending any of his homicide detectives to the Switchboard room to monitor Oswald’s calls. Captain Fritz said he did not remember giving those orders, “but he stated that it still could have happened.” He further noted that Dallas Jail records “show nothing relating to a call from Oswald to John Hurt,” but that would be consistent with the fact that the call was never attempted, and Mrs. Swinney made no official record of Oswald’s request.
         The LD Call Slip.   In 1963, switchboard operators who placed Long Distance (LD) calls for people from inside the jail were required to fill out an LD ticket and turn it in for accounting purposes. However, such tickets were not required to be turned in for long distance calls that did not go through. Mrs. Treon was later asked if she knew what Mrs. Swinney did with the LD ticket she had begun to fill out, but she said he had no idea what had become of that ticket, though the normal thing would have been for her to throw it in the trash.
         However, because she had kept her key open when Mrs. Swinney was talking with Oswald, Mrs. Treon heard and made notes of all the information he had given concerning the call he wished to place. Surell Brady, a Senior Staff Counsel for the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA), summarized Mrs. Treon’s version of events this way:

Mrs. Treon stayed on the line. She said she was therefore able to hear everything Oswald said and she is sure he asked for the name John Hurt and gave the two numbers. She said that as she listened she wrote the information down on a regular telephone call slip. However, since Mrs. Swinney actually handled the call, Mrs. Treon signed her [Mrs. Swinney’s] name to the slip she intended to keep as a souvenir. She said the notations on the slip of “DA” and “CA” stand for did not answer and cancelled, because the call was never actually put through. Mrs. Treon said she never retrieved any paper from the wastebasket on which Mrs. Swinney supposedly entered the information.

The Raleigh Call LD phone slip
         Had Mrs. Treon not kept the LD call slip that she filled out as a souvenir, this story would be no more than the most minor of footnotes in the tragedy of the Kennedy Assassination. However, years later, when the identity became known of the man to whom Oswald was trying to place a call, its significance would rise to the “very troublesome” and “deeply disturbing” levels ascribed to it by HSCA Chief Counsel Robert Blakey.

* * * * * * *

To read more about the man in Raleigh, NC that Lee Oswald was trying to call, as well as the implications for this man having been a former Special Army Counterintelligence Agent, you are invited to read the entirety of The Raleigh Call and the Fingerprints of Intelligence by clicking here.







  1. Dear Grover: Do you think John Hurt was the cut-off for James Angleton (counter-intelligence at CIA). Hurt and Angleton would have known each other when they worked in the counter-intelligence dept in Europe during WW2. Since Oswald was a ONI spy he would have been trusted by Angleton (or monitored by Angleton) to report on KGB double agents. If Oswald was secretly reporting to Angleton or his deputies about the KGB mole-hunt, then he would have trusted Angleton to protect him after he was arrested in Dallas. What are your thoughts on this theory? Thanks, Joe

  2. My question to you Dr. Grover, concerns the story of a woman at the time of the shooting of JFK, she was across the street from A. Zapuder, filming the caravan. Did you ever hear of this woman? And what happened to the film she recorded?

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