Height and Shoulders

Posted April 3, 2014

Documents including photographs show that Lee Harvey Oswald was impersonated over a span of a several years. This conclusion flows from a comparison of the documented height and shoulders of subjects represented and misrepresented as Lee Harvey Oswald.

The official height of Lee Harvey Oswald as determined by the autopsy differs from the height given on other documents. In itself these disagreements are no cause for concern. One can almost expect that random errors would cause the height on one document to differ by an inch or two more or less than the height on another document. However, in this case the differences in height are not randomly distributed. Instead the various documents fall into two distinct categories which have an unchanging two-inch difference in their heights.

Two documents give the height of Lee Oswald as 5' 9''. These are a Marine photograph from the late fifties published as JFK Exhibit F-166 by the HSCA and the autopsy report of November 24, 1963. The Warren Commission published this report as CE 1981.

Four documents list the height of Lee Oswald as 5' 11''. The first document, CE 1989, summarizes the contents of a Department of Defense identification card. This undated item carries an expiration date of December 7, 1962. An application for admission to the Albert Schweitzer College , CE 228, completed while Oswald was still in the Marines is the second document. The third document is the passport application of September 10, 1959, CE 946, completed one day before release from active duty. Likewise the fourth document is the passport application of June 24, 1963, CE 781.

Some people have squared shoulders and others have drooped shoulders. In most cases, the shoulder either squared or drooped on one side of the body matches the shoulder on the opposite side. This is the case for some photos of Oswald. However, other photos show an Oswald with unequal droops of the shoulders.

Three photographs show Lee Oswald had shoulders with equal and moderate droops. These pictures are the Marine photo, JFK Exhibit F-166, taken when Oswald was stationed in Japan , the mug shot taken on August 9, 1963 by the New Orleans Police Department and the Dallas Police Department mug shot of November 23, 1963.

An unequal droop of the shoulders may occur in two ways. The left shoulder may be more drooping than the right or the right shoulder may have the excessive droop. The photographs on the passports of September 10, 1959 - CE 946 and June 24, 1963 - CE 781 show excessive droops of the right shoulder.



Excessive Droop

Passport of 1959

5' 11"


Passport of 1963

5' 11''


Marine Photo

5' 9''


NOPD Mug Shot

Not Shown


DPD Mug Shot

Not Shown


Autopsy Report

5' 9''

No Description

Figure 1 - Laying My Case on the Table

The various documents describing Oswald enable comparing the height and shoulders of the subjects.

Height is rounded to the nearest inch. This practice calls immediate attention to the absence of any document which gives 5' 10'' as the height of Oswald. The absence of a reported height of one inch less than 5' 9'' or one inch more than 5' 11'' is also noted.

The droop of the shoulders could occur in one of four ways. In one way an excessive droop of the left shoulder may accompany a normal droop of the right shoulder. Alternately unequal droops of the shoulders may occur with the excessive droop on the right side. The photos on both passports illustrate this second possibility. A third possibility arises from the unobserved case of an excessive droop of both shoulders. Finally both shoulders may lack an excessive droop as seen in the mug shots taken by both police departments.

Each reported height of 5' 11'' could have belonged with excessive droop of both, the left, neither or the right shoulder. However, these two documents show that the 5' 11' height was accompanied by excessive droop of the right shoulder. Likewise the 5' 9" height could have been associated with shoulders behaving in four different manners. The Marine photo provides a direct link between this 5' 9" height and excessive droop of neither shoulder. Documents produced by the Dallas authorities provide indirect corroboration of this link by associating the 5' 9" height given in the autopsy report with an excessive droop of neither shoulder in the DPD mug shot.

The logical inference of these multiple regularities is that two people used the name of Lee H. Oswald. One stood 5' 11'' tall and had an excessive droop of their right shoulder. The other Lee H. Oswald was 5' 9'' tall and had shoulders with equal and normal droops.

A photograph of Lee Oswald appended to the visa application presented to the Cuban consulate in Mexico City and included in JFK Exhibit F-194 shows shoulders with equally moderate droops. These matching shoulders conflict sharply with the excessive drop of the right shoulder seen of the passport application of June 24, 1963, CE 781.

These combined results make a convincing case for an Oswald impersonator who was active over a period of several years.

A letter from Lee H. Oswald dated March 7, 1962 strongly suggests that he knew an impersonator used a passport bearing his name. He wrote:

Source: FBI 105-82555 Oswald HQ File, Section 72, page 65

I have not violated; Section 1544, Title 18, U. S. code, therefore you have no legal or even moral right to reverse my honorable discharge from the U.S.M.C. of Sept. 11, 1960 [sic], into a[sic] undiserable [sic] discharge.

The cited law, section 1544 of title 18, pertains to misuse of a passport.

Source: Legal Information Institute - 18 U.S. Code 1544

Whoever willfully and knowingly uses, or attempts to use, any passport issued or designed for the use of another; or

Whoever willfully and knowingly uses or attempts to use any passport in violation of the conditions or restrictions therein contained, or of the rules prescribed pursuant to the laws regulating the issuance of passports; or

Whoever willfully and knowingly furnishes, disposes of, or delivers a passport to any person, for use by another than the person for whose use it was originally issued and designed -

Shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 25 years (if the offense was committed to facilitate an act of international terrorism (as defined in section 2331 of this title)), 20 years (if the offense was committed to facilitate a drug trafficking crime (as defined in section 929 (a) of this title)), 10 years (in the case of the first or second such offense, if the offense was not committed to facilitate such an act of international terrorism or a drug trafficking crime), or 15 years (in the case of any other offense), or both.

Perhaps Oswald learned or surmised the existence of an impersonator during his unfriendly interrogation by the KBG in Moscow .

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Last Updated on April 3, 2014 by Herbert Blenner