JFK FILES

J. Edgar Hoover Memo: Public Has to Believe Lee Harvey Oswald Was Assassin

J. Edgar Hoover, the director of the FBI when John F. Kennedy was assassinated, was adamant that the American public needed to believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in shooting the president and stated that concern in an internal memo on Nov. 24, 1963—the day Jack Ruby killed Oswald. Hoover said: “There is nothing further on the Oswald case except that he is dead.” Hoover referred to the Deputy Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach helping ensure that the public did not believe there was any wider plan to help Oswald: “The thing I am concerned about, and so is Mr. Katzenbach, is having something issued so we can convince the public that Oswald is the real assassin.”