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TABULAR ZAPRUDER FILM CHRONOLOGY 2010

by Chris Scally

There has been much recent discussion and debate about the authenticity of the Zapruder film of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas on November 22, 1963. To a large extent, the non-technical aspects of that discussion revolve around the questions of when and where any substitution or alteration of the true camera-original film could have taken place.

This paper attempts to document the whereabouts of the “camera original” film (and the three “first-day copies” which were created in Dallas on the evening of November 22, 1963) in the days immediately following the assassination. Anyone who embarks on a study like this has endless decisions to make about whose account to believe, and whose account not to believe. Such decisions that I had to make are therefore reflected in this paper, but always within the context of trying to ensure the accuracy of the chronology.

We all owe a debt of gratitude to authors Richard Trask and David Wrone, for their groundbreaking work in documenting the history of the Zapruder film. However, I must also acknowledge the work of Gary Murr, who has been extremely generous in providing me with a large amount of his unpublished research material. I also wish to express my grateful thanks to Richard Bartholomew for making his detailed interview notes available to me, and to Doug Horne, Gary Mack, Josiah Thompson, and Roland Zavada for taking the time to answer my many queries, and regularly encouraging me to complete this project.

Finally, my thanks to Debra Conway, Larry Hancock and JFK Lancer for providing a forum through which this paper can be made public.

Date / Time

Event

Source

 

 

 

Nov 22: 8 am

Zapruder arrives at his office

Trask, 29

10 am

Sitzman and Rogers persuade Zapruder to go home for his camera

Wrone, 9; Trask, 29-30

11:30 am

Zapruder returns with his camera

Wrone, 9; Trask, 30; Thompson 1998

12:25 pm

Zapruder films Sitzman and the Hesters in Dealey Plaza

Trask, 33-4; Horne, 1196

12:30 pm

Zapruder films shooting

 

12:40 pm

DMN reporter Harry McCormick fortuitously meets Zapruder in Dealey Plaza, and discovers he has filmed shooting.

Trask, 94; McCormick, recollections, 1964 (Belo Interactive CD 2000)

12:45 pm

Zapruder returns to his office, and tells Rogers to call authorities; 2 DPD officers arrive, asking for film, but Zapruder refuses

Zapruder testimony, 7H 571; Wrone, 17; Trask, 33

12:50 pm

Darwin Payne (DTH) tries unsuccessfully to purchase film rights

Wrone, 17; Trask, 95, 97-8; Payne/SFM interview

1:40 pm

Erwin Schwartz contacts office, and tells secretary (Mildred) to put camera (still containing film) into office safe

Trask, 32, 98; Wrone, 18; Thompson, 1998; Schwartz/SFM interview

1:50 pm

Schwartz arrives at office, followed by Harry McCormick and Forrest Sorrels of Secret Service

Trask, 99; Schwartz / SFM interview

2 pm

Sorrels orders DPD officers Osborn and Jones to take himself, Zapruder, Schwartz, and McCormick to DMN offices

McCormick, DMN CD, 2002; Schwartz interview; Scally 2010

 

DMN unable to process film – Zapruder & party walk next-door to WFAA studios

Mack/SFM chronology; Trask, 101

2:10 pm

Zapruder agrees to do live TV interview

Trask, 101

2:10-2:20 pm

WFAA’s Bert Shipp and Sorrels speak to Jack Harrison at Kodak about processing film

Wrone, 20; Trask, 106; Shipp and Harrison SFM interviews

2:21 pm

DPD officer Osborn tells dispatcher that he and Officer J.B. Jones are on “special assignment” with Sorrels

17H 428, 480; 23H 885

2:45 pm

Osborn & Jones drive Zapruder party to Kodak, arriving before 3 pm.

Trask, 106; Wrone, 21; Zavada Report, Study 1

3:15-3:30 pm

Sorrels returned to DPD HQ following arrest of Oswald

Bugliosi, 128; 13H 57

4 pm

Original unslit film (perforated with processing identification # 0183) shown at Kodak

Thompson 1998; Wrone, 23; Trask, 109; Horne, 1197; Zavada Study 1

4:30 pm

Osborn and Jones take Zapruder and Schwartz to their office, and McCormick to DMN office

Wrone, 24; Trask, 112; Schwartz interview

6 pm

Zapruder & Schwartz drive to Jamieson to get three copies of film made

Wrone, 24; Trask, 112; Schwartz interview

6:30-7:45 pm

Three copies produced

Wrone, 25; Trask, 114-5; Zavada Study 1

8-9 pm

Zapruder & Schwartz return to Kodak with original and three copies. Copies developed and perforated with nos. 0185, 0186 and 0187

Trask, 115-6; Wrone, 26; Zavada Study 1

9 pm

Zapruder & Schwartz leave Kodak, and drive to DPD HQ in search of Sorrels. Sorrels asks them to take 2 copies to agent Max Phillips at Secret Service office on Ervay Street

Horne, 1199; Trask, 119-120; Wrone, 26-7; Schwartz/SFM interview

9:55 pm

Phillips sends one copy to Secret Service Chief Rowley in Washington, and retains other copy (0186) for Sorrels

CD87, 66; Wrone, 28, 279-280; Thompson “Six Seconds…”, 311-2

10:30 pm

Zapruder and Schwartz both reach their homes

Wrone, 31; Trask, 126-7; Schwartz & Reis SFM interviews

11 pm

Richard Stolley (Life) makes initial contact with Zapruder. Agree to meet next morning

Trask, 127; Stolley; Wrone, 32

 

 

 

Nov 23: 8 am

Stolley arrives in Zapruder’s office

Wrone, 32; Trask, 127

Unknown time

Secret Service Insp. Kelley loans copy #0186 to FBI’s James Bookhout, who gives it to SA Robert Barrett, who gives it to SAC Shanklin

Trask, 120; Wrone, 30

Morning

Two FBI agents view 16mm copy of film at Kodak for nearly an hour

Trask, 120; Wrone, 26; Zavada Study 1

9 am

Zapruder shows 8mm copy of film to Stolley and others in his office. Zapruder sells print rights to Life

Wrone, 33; Trask, 128-9; Schwartz SFM interview; Horne 1200

10:30 am

Stolley leaves Zapruder’s office with original 16mm print of film (#0183), which is immediately couriered to Donnelly printing plant in Chicago, where Life magazine is being prepared. Zapruder retains the best of the 3 first day copies.

Stolley, “What happened next”, Esquire, November 1973, 134-5; Thompson and Mack e-mails to author, May 2010;Wrone, 34; Richard Bartholomew/Schwartz interview, 2004

 

Three 16mm b/w copies of film made by Life in Chicago

Wrone, 27, 35; Horne, 1199; Trask, 119; Zavada 2010

5:20 pm

Dallas FBI office send 16mm film (#0186) on American Airlines flight 20 to Washington HQ

Wrone, 30; Trask, 122; Horne, 1346

10 pm

CIA Director McCone alerts NPIC Director Lundahl to expect film. Lundahl calls in Brugioni

Horne, 1231, 1236

12 pm

Brugioni meets two Secret Service agents with 8mm copy of film

Horne, 1231, Wrone, 28-9

 

 

 

Nov 24: 6-7 am

NPIC complete production of briefing boards and notes for Lundahl / McCone

Horne, 1230 ff

During day

Zapruder shows 8mm copy of film for Sorrels; Life Chicago send original film to Life HQ in New York; film later damaged at frames 155-6 and 207-212; Stolley told to purchase all rights to film; Secret Service make copies of film in Washington

Trask, 131-2; Stolley; Wainright, “The Great Magazine”, 369; Wrone, 35; Mack e-mail to author, May 26, 2010; Zavada e-mail to author, July 9, 2010

Evening

Stolley contacts Zapruder to discuss purchase of all rights to film

Stolley, 1973; Thompson, 1998; Trask, 146

8 pm

16 mm film brought from Kodak in Rochester to McMahon and Hunter at NPIC by "Secret Service Agent Bill Smith." Hunter recalls nothing of "Smith" or "Rochester". McMahon says it was original film, but Hunter recalls working on a copy with no intersprocket images. Hunter says film "not high resolution."

Horne, 1222 ff; Bugliosi endnotes, 354; “Murder In Dealey Plaza”, 314-322; Thompson, 2001

 

 

 

Nov 25:
Afternoon

Stolley and Zapruder agree sale of all rights to film to Life. Dan Rather may have been present for part of meeting. Stolley leaves with the last of the first-day copies, which Zapruder retained since Nov 22.

Horne, 1202; Wrone, 35-6, 283-5; Trask, 146; Mack e-mail to author, May 14, 2010; Zapruder / Time Inc contract, Nov 25, 1963

Unknown time

Multiple copies of film (#0186) generated by FBI Lab in Washington between Nov. 23 and Nov. 25

Trask, 122; Wrone, 30; Murr (unpubl) 2010

8:40 pm

Dallas Secret Service contact Dallas FBI office requesting return of their copy (#0186) of the film. Request passed to Washington HQ

Wrone, 31; Trask, 122

Unknown time

Possible unauthorised copies of film made by FBI personnel

Wrone, 31

 

 

 

Nov 26:
3:21 am

FBI HQ return film to Dallas office on Braniff Airlines flight 543; film picked up by SA Hall and given to SA Bookhout

Wrone, 31; Trask, 122

9 am

Bookhout returns film to Inspector Kelley (Dallas Secret Service)

Wrone, 31; Trask, 122

 

 

 

Dec 3:
Unknown time

FBI HQ send one of the two requested copies of the film to Dallas office

Murr (unpubl) 2010

 

 

 

Dec 5:
Unknown time

Dallas Secret Service ask FBI for copy of the film for Dallas Police Dept.

Wrone, 31; Murr (unpubl) 2010

 

 

 

Dec 6:
Unknown time

FBI HQ send copy of film to Dallas office, for transmittal to DPD via Dallas Secret Service

Wrone, 31; Murr (unpubl) 2010

 

 

 

Dec 9:
Unknown time

FBI SA Brown passes copy for DPD, received on Dec 6, to Secret Service Agent Kunkel

Murr, (unpubl) 2010; Wrone, 31; Trask, 359

 

Sources:

The following abbreviations are used in the “Source” column in the above table:

Horne: Doug Horne: “Inside the Assassination Records Review Board”, Vol. 4, pp. 1185-1377, 2009;
Mack: Gary Mack/Sixth Floor Museum: http://jfk.org/go/collections/about/zapruder-film-chronology;
Murr (unpubl) 2010: Unpublished research material of Gary Murr, which he very generously made available to the author, July 2010;
Schwartz / SFM interview: Erwin Schwartz Sixth Floor Museum Oral History Interview (same format for other SFM Oral history interviews);
Scally 2010: Author’s article, A Process of Elimination, in the "Dealey Plaza Echo", Vol. 14, No. 2, July 2010;
Thompson 1998: “Why the Zapruder Film Is Authentic”, 1998, http://www.jfk-info.com/thomp2.htm;
Thompson 2001: “The Disinformation Series”, January 9, 2001, available at http://www.jfkresearch.com/Tink/tink.html;
Trask: Richard B. Trask: “National Nightmare on six feet of film”, Yeoman Press, Danvers, Massachusetts, 2005;
Wrone: David R. Wrone: “The Zapruder Film – Reframing JFK’s Assassination”, University Press of Kansas, 2003;
Zavada Study: Roland Zavada: Kodak Technical Report 318420P – “Analysis of Selected Motion Picture Photographic Evidence”, September 25, 1998;
Zavada 2010: Roland Zavada: “Comments on (Horne’s) Chapter 14: The Zapruder Film Mystery”, 26 May 2010.

© Chris Scally, 2010

 


 

Illustration 1:

Illustration 1

Illustration 2:

Illustration 2

Illustration 3:

Illustration 3


JFK Lancer's November In Dallas Power Point Presentation by Chris Scally


Sources:

The following abbreviations are used in the “Source” column in the above table:

 

Horne: Doug Horne: “Inside the Assassination Records Review Board”, Vol. 4, pp. 1185-1377, 2009;

Mack: Gary Mack/Sixth Floor Museum: http://jfk.org/go/collections/about/zapruder-film-chronology;

Murr (unpubl) 2010: Unpublished research material of Gary Murr, which he very generously made available to the author, July 2010;

Schwartz / SFM interview: Erwin Schwartz Sixth Floor Museum Oral History Interview (same format for other SFM Oral history interviews);

Scally (unpubl) 2010: Unpublished paper by the author, March 2010; 

Thompson 1998: “Why the Zapruder Film Is Authentic”, 1998, http://www.jfk-info.com/thomp2.htm;

 

Thompson 2001: “The Disinformation Series”, January 9, 2001, available at http://www.jfkresearch.com/Tink/tink.html;

 Trask: Richard B. Trask: “National Nightmare on Six Feet of Film”, Yeoman Press, Danvers, Massachusetts, 2005;

Wrone: David R. Wrone: “The Zapruder Film – Reframing JFK’s Assassination”, University Press of Kansas, 2003;

Zavada Study: Roland Zavada: Kodak Technical Report 318420P – “Analysis of Selected Motion Picture Photographic Evidence”, September 25, 1998;

Zavada 2010: Roland Zavada: “Comments on (Horne’s) Chapter 14: The Zapruder Film Mystery”, 26 May 2010.

 

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