OSWALD IN MONTREAL: MORE DOCUMENTS
Looking back in my files, I have found three more documents that were kept away from the public and that I had copied at the National Archives in College Park, Maryland.
The two first reports related to an inquiry made by the FBI on words that a Windsor attorney, Roger Desrosiers, circulated about the presence of Oswald in Montreal.
They basicly stated that:
At 2:05 P.M., November 26, 1963, Clerk ROBERT HAGER received a telephone call from Attorney RICHARD MAC RAE, 1012 (…) BuildIng, telephone Wo. ,1—9250, Detroit, Michigan.
MAC RAE advised that he had recently been in conversation with attorney ROGER DES ROSIERS, Guardian Trust Building, Windsor, Ontario, telephone CL. 3—1611, who advised that he had received information indicating that LEE H. OSWALD had been seen in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, at the time the FLQ terrorists were placing bombs in that city.
At 2:25 November 26, 1963, SA MELVILLE H. SHANNON telephonically contacted ROGER DES ROSIERS and was advised by him that above information was not accurate. DES ROSIERS stated that he had heard the rumor from unconfirmed sources that LEE H, OSWALD had at some unspecified time been at Montreal, Quebec, engaged in a “Ban-the-Bomb” protest . He advised that he could not recall his original source and had no further information in his possession regarding OSWALD or captioned matter.
Unfortunately the FBI didn't make a good job at finding the sources for this rumor and were satisfied that Desrosiers "could not recall the original source", something a little hard to swallow. Most probably- the FBI didn't want the source to be known.
Fortunately, the day after this report, on November 27, 1963, a newspaper article triggered more curiosity from many US officials. As we can see in the next document, even if the article was quicly ruled as unfounded, it was taken seriously by high ranking US officials. Look for yourself at the following telegram sent to the Departement of State by the United States Consul General in Canada.
The text of this airgram is quite interesting:
On November 27, 1963 the final edition of The Montreal Star carried a story, subsequently declared unfounded, that Lee Harvey Oswald had paraded in the ban the bomb demonstrations last summer and suggested that he may have taken part in demonstrations in front of the United States Consulate at the time of the United States quarantine of Cuba. The story was ascribed to a police officer who declined to be identified. However, there may be something to the story.
We have been informed by the Senior U.S. Customs Representative - that his office has been contacted by several persons who have advised that Oswald was seen in Montreal last summer distributing pamphlets entitled Fair Play for Cuba at St. Jacques and McGill Streets. The Senior Customs Representative informs us that Mr. Jean Paul Tremblay, Investigator, Customs and Excise, Montreal informed. him on November 27, 196) that he received one of the above-mentioned pamphlets from a man on St. Jacques Street, Montreal, believed to be in August 1963, and he is positive that this person was Oswald. Mr. Tremblay also stated that Oswald was accompanied at the time by a short, homely, heavy woman who took unusually long steps when walking and two men about Oswald’s age and weight. One of these two men is described as a little taller than Oswald and has a freckled face. Mr. Tremblay also stated that he believes he could identify the three persons that accompanied Oswald and that the reason for paying special attention to these persons was because he was working on cases involving Cuba at the time. Mr. Tremblay has asked that he be protected as a source. The Senior Customs Representative today, has reported this information to Secret Service authorities in Washington. Jerome T. Gaspard, United States Consul General
From the Consul text, it appears that there would be two differents sources to the story: the police officer that was at the origin of the Montreal Star article and Jean-Paul Tremblay the Canadian Customs investigator. It is possible that Tremblay was referred by the Montreal Star as a police officer and was the source of the newspaper story, but it seems more likely that there was more than one official agent that remembered having seen Oswald in Montreal during a pro-Cuba manifestation.
It is interesting to note that the American Consul in Canada expressed the opinion that "However, there may be something to the story." We already saw that the Jean-Paul Tremblay's report was took seriously enough by Lawrence Fleishman and Aurelien Chassé, of the US Treasury department and that both the FBI and the RCMP meet and investigate the case. Now this last document shows us that even the United States Consul General was under the impression that "there may be something to the story".
Since at that time peoples from Montreal -high placed in US government offices- gave credence to those reports, maybe researchers should open their mind to the possibility that Lee Harvey Oswald came up north in the Spring of 1963.
For readers of this blog, many interesting exchanges on the subject can be found on the Education Forum at: http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=6548