Previous Post
Next Post

The Mannlicher-Carcano rifle Lee Harvey Oswald used to assassinate president Kennedy.

As you’ve probably heard, President Trump has authorized the release of a cache of documents relating to the Kennedy assassination that have been withheld since the Warren Commission completed its work 50-odd years ago. The the FBI and CIA have managed to persuade the POTUS to hold back certain documents, ostensibly for “national security, law enforcement, and foreign affairs concerns.” It’s a move that will only continue to proliferate grassy knoll conspiracy theories.

One of the items released in the document dump, though, is a photo of the 6.5mm Mannlicher-Carcano rifle (above) used by Oswald in Dealey Plaza that day in November. We’ll have to see what other items of interest are included in the sanitized information now made public. If anything.

Previous Post
Next Post


  1. I’m sure this will be further used in calls for more gun control. Again. Wasn’t Oswald the whole reason they included restricting firearms shipping to FFLs only, in the GCA of 68′?

    • Although each one was different, JFK, MLK & RFK combined to create the perfect storm for the GCA.

    • Yes, and the situation was exacerbated because Oswald was alleged to have ordered this rifle from an advertisement which ran in the American Rifleman. This significantly damaged the NRA’s standing in the debate, although they did head off federal registration.

      Every gun owner should read President Johnson’s remarks made during the signing of the Gun Control Act:

      …..Some of you may be interested in knowing-really-what this bill does:

      –It stops murder by mail order. It bars the interstate sale of all guns and the bullets that load them.
      –It stops the sale of lethal weapons to those too young to bear their terrible responsibility.
      –It puts up a big “off-limits” sign, to stop gunrunners from dumping cheap foreign “$10 specials” on the shores of our country.

      Congress adopted most of our recommendations. But this bill–as big as this bill is–still falls short, because we just could not get the Congress to carry out the requests we made of them. I asked for the national registration of all guns and the licensing of those who carry those guns. For the fact of life is that there are over 160 million guns in this country–more firearms than families. If guns are to be kept out of the hands of the criminal, out of the hands of the insane, and out of the hands of the irresponsible, then we just must have licensing. If the criminal with a gun is to be tracked down quickly, then we must have registration in this country…….

      President Johnson also signed Executive Order 11432 “Control of Arms Imports” the same day, transferring importation controls from the State Department to the far more hostile Treasury Department.

  2. The spooks and fibbies want to keep a lid on these documents for the same reason they won’t cooperate with Congress on investigating Russian Collusion and the Clinton Crime Family: CYA.

  3. What could have happened 55 years ago that would still be relevant to national security? Will have to think on that a bit I guess. But will be interesting to see what’s released. I was in my 7th grade science class in Dallas when JFK was shot. Remember the effect it had on most everybody I knew. And taking umbrage to the position of the elites that somehow all of Dallas was responsible. Even then I knew that sort of thinking was off base.

    The guns involved in this affair would be the Carcano, the pistol Oswald used to kill Officer JD Tippett, the pistol Tippett had, the pistol Ruby used to kill Oswald, and the guns carried by the detectives escorting Oswald when Ruby shot him. All of interest to collectors? What’d I miss?

    And Robert, PLEASE fix the comments section, and I also agree the ads are getting intrusive enough to limit my reading the rest of the content at times.

      • Yes you’ve got to go adblock. I held out a long time myself. Site staff kept claiming they were “working on the problem.” Screw it. I started using adblock last year and I haven’t had even one issue on the TTAG site since then. I didn’t want to have to do it but it makes the site useful again. Do it for the children!

  4. He obviously knew how to shoot.

    Did he choose this rifle because he knew it would be capable or it was known to be capable? Or did he know he could pretty much make the shot as long as the rifle was in good shape and just picked any old rifle from that catalog?

    Because I’d think someone now days would put a lot of thought into what they’d use.

    • The 6.5 Carcano is actually a very BAD rifle. The bolt has a nasty tendency to disassemble itself if you don’t work it carefully. It also shoots 6.5 unobtanium.

      • It is loud enough to turn heads, and can kill, then maim, perform a 180 degree turn and shatter bone.

        6.5 x 52 . . ..the smokiest / loudest of smokeless powder small arms rifle rounds at the time?

        It has a long projectile that’s not typically found . . . in any JFK evidence photos (including the “pristine” one recovered from the gurney).

        ; )

      • I’ve had a Carcano. 1980-86? It’s was coffee can accurate at around 100yrds. Open sights, it actually wasn’t to bad. When a box of 30-06 was $11 the carc was 22 and only Norma had them. The original ones dated 1954 penetrated awesomely, and all but two out of twenty failed to fire. The guns bolt was sloppy and I never could get 2.5 seconds per shot with any decent accuracy. Oswald’s might have been better. It definitely had the penetration.

        • My brother and I shared a carbine and a rifle in about the same time (early 80’s). He still has them but I haven’t seen them for many years. I recall that they both functioned just fine and the rifle was actually pretty accurate. The rifle was also very well made with not a lot of tool marks, nicely finished, and very good wood.

      • I had two of those wretched pieces of crap when I was a boy. Neither of them could reliably hit the side of a washing machine at 50 yds. There is no way Oswald used that rifle and managed to hit JFK twice in a moving car from that distance

      • ‘Bad’ is relative.
        The M1891 Carcano was as good as its contemporaries, including the M1888 Mauser and M1889 Mannlicher from which parts of its design were taken. It continued in production into the early 1940s, and its receiver was strong enough to accept the upgrade to 7.35mm ammunition without modification. The Italians used the same rifle throughout WWI against the Austro-Hungarian army armed with Mannlichers, continued to use it in East Africa into the 1930s, and kept it and its 7.35mm M38 version in servce until their participation in WWII ended in 1943. Tens of thousands of dead people can attest to the efficacy of the rifle.
        The fit and finish on a GOOD M1891 or M91/38 is on par with any other European manufacturer; The Japanese bought several thousand of a slightly modified version just before WWII and called it the ‘Type I,’ and those guns exceed the normal build quality of the Japanese Type 38 rifle made in Japan.
        Most folks have never seen a ‘good’ M91 or M91/38; A beat-up long-service surplus gun imported on the cheap is rarely going to be an impressive shooter. However, with GOOD ammunition (original Italian military factory production was very ‘iffy,’ with poor quality control) the 6.5×52 is as accurate as any 6.5mm long-bullet military cartridge.
        No major power ever sent their troops into battle with a ‘bad’ rifle; The only possible exception are the Japanese, who even at the very end of WWII were still issuing completely serviceable, strong, and safe, if not very ‘pretty,’ rifles. They did produce some smoothbore home-defense guns, and some iron-receivered second-line guns, but those never went into front-line service.
        Many of the M1891/38s and the Japanese Type I variant were built in the Beretta factory. Beretta doesn’t build ‘bad’ guns.

    • I’ve visited the spot where LHO shot from, and literally a child could have made the shot. The street runs dead straight out from the room he was in and the motorcade would have been going very slowly.

      • Are you talking about the shots Oswald actually took, or the best shot Oswald could have taken?

        From what I can recall, he passed up a fairly easy shot to later take a more difficult shot.

        • Even if Oswald passed up an “easier” shot, the shots from that window onto the motorcade wasn’t exactly difficult because the motorcade would have been traveling at a very low speed and right below his window.

          The big challenge would have been getting off aimed shots using that crappy bolt action.

    • Of course Oswald was a good shot he had been in the Marines!
      John Kennedy hated LBJ!!!! In fact all the Kennedys hated him. It was speculated that John and Bobby planned to replace LBJ before next election.
      Lyndon Johnson was a rude, crude, corrupt with a lot of political power. He was selected only to carry Texas and other southern states. Johnson months as VP were limited and he knew it.
      I was in the 8th. grade history class when JFK was murdered.

      Lady Bird Johnson was a lovely woman. Gracious, compassionate and very rich. The main reason why he married her. I think she did love him. He didn’t deserve her. He didn’t deserve to be President either. John F Kennedy was not the first person to die because of Johnson. Moved to Fredericksburg at age of 12 in June. Learned a lot about Johnson from childhood friends, whose fathers worked at LBJ’s ranch or as private security, after Johnson became President.

      • I was in the 7th grade when Kennedy was assassinated . I agree what you said about Johnson just from what I read about him. I never could figure how he could have so much power. There will never be another president to sway Congress his way. Would you have any idea how he was so successful?

        • J. Edgar shared his blackmail files with Johnson?
          Johnson had his own collection of blackmail materials?

  5. .38 Caliber Revolver Belonging to Lee Harvey Oswald Allegedly Used to Shoot Dallas Policeman J. D. Tippit

    Bunch of other things here too…*:*&f.parentNaId=305131&f.level=item&sort=naIdSort%20asc

    Bullet Found on Stretcher at Parkland Memorial Hospital

    Four .38 Special Cartridges Found in the Revolver in the Possession of Lee Harvey Oswald at the Time of His Arrest

    Duplicate of Lee Harvey Oswald’s Mannlicher-Carcano Rifle Used by the Federal Bureau of Investigation for Ballistics Testing

    6.5 Millimeter Cartridge Case Found on the Sixth Floor of the Texas School Book Depository

  6. Word is they still have to release the remaining documents after review and possible redaction, ostensibly because there are names / assets / techniques still in play today, or who could be in danger if compromised, even after all this time. We’ll see

  7. The “magic bullet” that went through Kennedy and then Connelly actually left fragments visible on the x-rays of Connelly’s wrist, but wasn’t damaged enough to account for it.

    The CIA and FBI want documents withheld from release so as not to reveal sources and techniques. What sources and techniques are they still using 55 years later that aren’t dead or haven’t changed?!?

    P.S. Why am I still having to fill in Name and e-mail? Fix the damn website already.

  8. The part that makes me suspicious of conspiracy is that Oswald could have went in any gun store and buy the same rifle using a fake name. In that era he would have been able to do that.

    • The police would have been asking every gun store in the area if anyone had bought that rifle, a description would have soon been available of Oswald, and fake name or not he would have been hunted down.

      Oswald bought the rifle thru mail order because he wasn’t planning on getting caught.

        • He rented a P.O Box under the Assumed name Alek Hidell a known alias that Oswald went by. He ordered the rifle and the .38 revolver and had them sent to the same P.O. box. The receipt was shown on the news within 24 hours of the assignation He even posed for photos with the rifle. His wife knew that he kept it in the garage. He even practiced with it at a rifle range.
          Oswald did not exactly keep a low profile prior to the assignation.

  9. I have zero interest in the JFK assassination; possibly less interest than I do in the assassination of Franz Ferdinand. Even if there was a conspiracy, all of the people involved are probably dead, and their goals now irrelevant, achieved or not. I have far more interest in finding out more about the people that the Clintons have had assassinated, because it’s not too late to bring that cartel to justice.

    • I’d love to see that as well, i.e. Clinton’s getting what they deserve. Unfortunately, it seems that very few people, including our current prez, are interested in getting that done, despite the literal mountains of evidence against them.

  10. “…..the position of the elites that somehow all of Dallas was responsible.” because if it wasn’t Dallas’ fault, they’d have to acknowledge JFK was assassinated by a left-wing, wack-o, Marxist progressive douchebag.

    So it was “all Dallas’ fault”.

  11. It’s a Carcano Model 91/38. Mannlicher–Carcano was a name invented by the press because even then they didn’t know what they were talking about.

  12. ” The the FBI and CIA have managed to persuade the POTUS to hold back certain documents, ostensibly for “national security, law enforcement, and foreign affairs concerns.” It’s a move that will only continue to proliferate grassy knoll conspiracy theories.”

    Meaning that there IS evidence revealing that the official story is the wrong or incomplete story. How in the world can any reasonable person come to the conclusion that continuing to obscure the truth will clear up questions?!
    When the giant bowl of alphabet soup that has become our defacto goverment utters the phrase “national security” you should always translate that into “retaining government power”. It has little or nothing to do with a citizen’s actual security, in fact, it’s usually quite the opposite.

    • Supposedly they have 180 days to review the documents and make their requests before the documents are released. It’s anyone’s guess how much they will get of what they’re asking.

      • 180 days? It’s way over due! Warren Report dictated release at 50 years mark.

        The only thing you’ll going to see is a stack of blacked out pages with “The End” at bottom of last page.

    • The actual issue is, there are still sources alive in Great Britain who violated their own nation’s espionage laws in order to leak information to the U.S. government. If that specific information were released to the public, not only would they be subject to prosecution, but other (potential) future sources would likely be “scared off” from leaking to USG, fearing the U.S. would not honor their non-disclosure agreements.

  13. Please fix the comment section code.
    If it can’t be fixed, find a system that will work the way it’s supposed to work.
    It really can’t be all that hard to do, since other sites have done it.

  14. Golly 54 freakin’ years later and they STILL want a cover up! Almost literally no significant actors are around. Russia,the dead mobsters,Castro,LBJ John Birchers or Jack Rubenstein…EXCEPT the CIA and the FBI. From a corrupt gubmint beyond comprehension.

  15. Johnson was behind this, Johnson Lied about the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, Federal Baby Incinerators were in the pocket of Johnson Democrats, along with CIA because of appropriations! All our watch dogs of Government were neutered, just like the Obama administration did while owning the IRS (Learner), FBI (Comey), BLM (Reids buddy screwing Bundays so son could get land to sell too the Chinese for a Solor Farm), Justice Department (Holder contempt of Congress) ATF (Fast and Furious.
    Bill Rugar sided with them to protect his Ranch rifle which was a piece of expensive crap when compared to the SKS.
    Remember the CIA was in cahoots with the Mob trying too over throw Castro and supporting the Bay of Pigs. They were Pissed at Kennedy for not supporting the Invaders.
    Personally; when Kennedy was whacked I got a day off from school, of course the press had an hr. by hr coverage for Two weeks, sort of like today,s coverage of mass shootings! I could have cared less except for the Consequences of Gun control and a political War with Vietnam in which politicians are the blame for a no win strategy just too improve their bank accounts using American blood.

    • Bull Ruger sided with George Bush 1 and Communist senator Howard Metzembaum on the 1989 import “assault weapons” ban (not the 1968 GCA) to save his Mini-14 from any domestic bans whic were floating around after the import ban. Good thing that Ruger booted the Ruger family out of the company. The kids were just as toxic.

  16. PBS’s Nova broadcast an excellent program titled “Cold Case JFK” a few years back. I have it DVR’d, and up until recently, it was available to view in its entirety on the Nova site. I found a copy of it on YouTube (aspect ratio & speed altered):
    It seems to answer all the questions with the ballistics & forensics experts they use.
    I **know** this will never convince the Tinfoil Hat Brigade, but there it is…

  17. The bullet found on the stretcher was far from “pristine” and showed significant deformation. “Pristine” is a word some people keep using that does not mean what they think it means.

    To address someone else’s question, I believe LHO used the alias “A. Hidell” to mail order purchase the Carcano.

  18. 1. Who sold Klein’s the rifle ? 2. Was it from a ‘Gladio’ cache of arms ?
    3. Who was the arms dealer ?

Comments are closed.