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How To Read The Newly Released JFK Documents

by Countable | 10.26.17

On Thursday, thousands of long-sealed documents about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy will be released to the public.

JFK was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, just over two years into presidency. Almost immediately, there were conspiracy theories about the murder: why JFK was killed, who pulled the trigger, if they acted alone, where he (or she, or them, or Ted Cruz’s dad) fired from.

On October 26, 1992, Congress enacted the JFK Assassination Records Collection Act, which included the language "Each assassination record shall be publicly disclosed in full, and available in the Collection no later than the date that is 25 years after the date of the enactment of this Act…"

Thus, here we are, 25 years later.

Here’s how to read the newly-released documents.

Log on to the National Archives JFK Assassination Records page

The JFK Assassination Records Collection Act mandated that all materials related to the assassination be housed in a single collection in the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

Click here for NARA’s main site then scroll down to 2017 Release. Or jump to the 2017 Release page here.

Scroll down to the October 2017 files

In July, the National Archives released a 3,810 documents, including 441 formerly withheld-in-full documents and 3,369 documents that had been released in the past with redacted portions. Those documents, and the interest in them, crashed the Archives site. While officials have said they’ve modified the site for the expected increase in traffic with this document dump, don’t be surprised by slow load times (or maybe it’s part of a conspiracy?).

Spin your mouse past all the July 2017 release files to the October 26, 2017 uploads.

Download the .zip files

The files are huge, so NARA has zipped them for faster downloading. (For reference, the July 2017 Release — Formerly Withheld In Full documents — was split into 18 parts, and ranged from 738MB to 1.7GB.) Therefore, make sure you have unzipping (expander) software like winrar for Windows or unarchiver for Mac.

Click on the file you want and download it to your hard drive.

Research away

After unzipping the file, you’ll have a library of full PDF documents you can read with Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Now, you can read them, search them, and try to solve the unanswered questions about the Kennedy assassination.

— Josh Herman

(Photo Credit: NoDerog / iStockphoto)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(12)
  • Matt
    10/26/2017
    ···

    We will finally get to learn the identity of the second [redacted] who had the better vantage point from the [redacted]. We will also learn that the CIA had plenty of credible evidence to suggest [redacted].

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  • Karan
    10/26/2017
    ···

    Ted Cruz is probably leaving the country

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  • Michael.J.L
    10/26/2017
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    I'm sure any bombshell information in the papers will be removed prior to release.

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  • BeStrong
    10/27/2017
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    Hmmmm...did you know that these records were slated to be released regardless of who was POTUS at the time. (Based on a 1992 congressional decision). Geeze...

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  • AnyPort
    10/26/2017
    ···

    Oh great! Now these papers (and the ones removed or redacted) are going to have their own conspiracy theory!

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  • SneakyPete
    10/26/2017
    ···

    Time has passed and its time to see what information that was hidden from the public, for whatever reason, by whoever. Were any Federal Agencies involved, as many have suspected, remains to be seen.

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  • Sean
    10/26/2017
    ···

    Wonder if the bastard that did this is still alive. Anti catholic bastard.

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  • Carlos
    10/27/2017
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    A Secret Service Agent riding behind Kennedy accidentally fired as he was looking up to spot Oswald; really that’s it... it was an accident; US Govt just to embarrassed to admit. Yes, Oswald also connected; but his bullets did not explode at impact they went in and out. The S. Service Agent’s bullet did explode on impact.

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  • Marty
    10/27/2017
    ···

    The records were going to be released anyways but he shortened the time frame for release if I am not mistaken. My recollection is 75 years was the scheduled release date. He shortened by 20 years and he is getting a push back from the fbi and cia. So that tells me they were involved somehow. Probably for the bay of pigs and attempts on Castro’s life. Then you have Fidel Castro and his brother Raul still who I think were responsible for the assassination. Which would have been an act of war which would have started a nuclear one. So the players are in my mind as follows. CIA , Castro brothers, the relatives of the bay of pigs and fbi now. The generation of that era was supposed to be dead by 75 years and it would be a moot point.. now it maybe not. Just my thought.

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  • Snooks
    10/27/2017
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    And, of course, Trump is taking credit for this release. Even though it was going take place, regardless.

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  • AndrewLinder
    10/28/2017
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    Liberals want to truly believe LHO was not a Communist activist...but he was!

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  • Patricia
    10/29/2017
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    How to read? I’m pretty sure that anybody on here knows how to read.

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