A……….Lee Harvey Oswald Employed at the Texas School Book Depository
There may be literally thousands of people out there at any given moment who would like to kill the President of the United States. Of these, only a tiny fraction actually possess the means to do so (skilled with a firearm or explosives, etc.) and of these, almost none of them will ever be afforded the opportunity to do so. This is what makes Oswald’s case so remarkable; consider that here is an ex-Marine sniper with Marxist leanings and a desire to make himself famous by killing a world leader, who purchases a high powered rifle through the mail for fifteen bucks, and then somehow gets a job at the one place the President of the United States’ motorcade is going to pass within fifty yards of just a month beforehand. Quite a remarkable coincidence that was to provide Oswald, who already had the means and the motive, with the opportunity to commit one of the most heinous crimes in history, and one that remains controversial to this day. What if he hadn’t gotten the job at the Schoolbook Depository Buildingo n October 16, 1963? Impossible to say for certain, but it’s a near certainty he would not have had nearly the fine perch the City of Dallas was to provide him that sunny November afternoon.
This one is an old story, but worth recounting because it is so unusual. It revolves around an unusual number of coincidences that occurred between Presidents Kennedy and Lincoln in regards to their assassination. For example, both men were elected 100 years apart (Lincoln in 1860, Kennedy in 1960); they were both succeeded by Southerners named Johnson, and the two Johnsons were born 100 years apart (Andrew in 1808, Lyndon in 1908). Both assassins were born 100 years apart (Booth in 1839 and Oswald in 1939) and both died before they could be brought to trial. Lincolnwas shot in a theater and his assassin was cornered in a warehouse, while Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and his assassin was captured in a theater. Finally, Lincolnwas shot in Ford’s theater, while Kennedy was shot while riding in a Ford Lincoln, and to top it all off, Kennedy had a secretary named Lincoln (Evelyn Lincoln) while Lincolnhad a secretary named Kennedy. The list goes on from there and has been the source of considerable debate ever since. Of course, mathematicians have been quick to spoil all the fun by trying to show how all these things were bound to happen despite the long odds, which is why most people consider mathematicians poor party conversationalists.
No, not John Wilkes and Abraham. Edwin and Robert. Turns out that a few months before John Wilkes Booth obtained notoriety for murdering the President at Ford’s Theater, the President’s son, Robert Todd Lincoln, was waiting on a narrow, crowded platform for a train in Jersey City, New Jersey when he lost his footing and fell beneath the slowly moving carriage of a departing train. Pulled to safety before any harm befell him, he turned to thank his rescuer and was surprised to see it was the well known actor Edwin Booth, the brother of John Wilkes. In what could only be considered one of the most remarkable coincidences in history, the son of a president was rescued by the brother of that president’s assassin! But then,Lincoln’s only surviving child had a knack for such coincidences, being present at the assassination of President Garfield in 1881 (he was Garfield’s Secretary of War at the time and an eyewitness to the event) and of President McKinley in 1901. I suspect invitations to the White House leveled off a bit after that.
Jeff Danelek is a Denver, Colorado author who writes on many subjects having to do with history, politics, the paranormal, spirituality and religion. To see more of his stuff, visit his website at www.ourcuriousworld.com.