Users Currently Browsing This Topic:
0 Members

Author Topic: O.L. Nelms  (Read 534 times)

Offline Robert Reeves

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 286
O.L. Nelms
« on: June 05, 2022, 09:17:37 PM »
I was listening to a Sixth Floor Museum interview with the Newman family. Bill is asked does he remember seeing any of the ''well known'' other witnesses, on the day. His reply interested me because he mentioned a name that he, at the time, thought was actually the person stood on the spot where Zapruder was. He mentioned a name which took me quite a while to track down. O.L. Nelms. Apparently someone that was quite well known in Dallas.

Here's a transcript of what Bill Newman said in the interview.

I remember seeing Mr Zapruder, he was standing back behind us at an elevated height, and at the time I thought it was O.L. Nelms, a local person here that uh, I wouldn't call him a celebrity, he was a flamboyant person.And that's who I thought was standing back there.

From approx 5:10

Not saying there's any truth to what Bill Newman said. Might well have been just a random mistaken identity, obviously. But turns out O.L. Nelms had a 'business' relationship with Jack Ruby. Ruby actually worked for Nelms.back in the 50s

Nelms once owned the Longhorn Ballroom, I've seen someone else calling it ''Bob Wills Ranch Barn'' built in around 1950. And Jack Ruby was the manager for a while. I found a signed contract related to the venue. It's signed by both men, Ruby and Nelms.

Nelms is the guy in the far left below.

Not a lot of assassination info on O.L. Nelms ... only some info Jack White claimed to be the words of Bill Newman given to Jack during an interview..


Jack: Thursday afternoon in Dallas I had a chance to talk for a few minutes

again with Bill Newman and asked him some questions again: (answers


JW...did you notice Zapruder on the hill behind you?

BN...before the president arrived I noticed a man up there

with a camera. At that time I thought it was O.L.Nelms, the

eccentric Dallas millionaire. But I later learned it must have

been Mr. Zapruder. I did not know Mr. Zapruder, but I was

familiar with what Nelms looked like. Afterwards I thought

to myself "I hope Mr. Nelms did not shoot him."

JW...was there a woman with him (Nelms/Zapruder)?

BN...I did not see any woman with him. He was alone.

The above was posted at the education forum in 2011

The Sixth Floor interview with the Newman family slightly corroborates what Jack White claimed Bill Newman told him. That he initially thought O.L. Newman was stood around where Zapruder was. The reason it interests me is because Bill Newman initially thought the shots came from 'on top of the mound', or the knoll. But because of the Warren Commission conclusions he seems to have sat on the fence when it comes to which direction. 

Just wondering if any researchers have spoken to Bill Newman about this issue? (other than Jack White's paraphrased recollection).
« Last Edit: June 05, 2022, 09:20:01 PM by Robert Reeves »

Offline Tom Scully

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1179
Re: O.L. Nelms
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2022, 04:07:11 AM »
The Saturday Evening Post - Volume 217 - Page 15 books
1945 ‎Snippet view

"Occasionally , tiring of familiar scenes , Nelms goes hoboing incognito , doing odd jobs in strange cities.."
On October 18, 1967, BILL TURNER called and advised as follows:

"...Olsen stated Ruby had many friends in. Houston. He recalled
particularly a man in the outdoor sign business who Was always
accompanied by a business associate or bodyguard and drove a white
Cadillac. This man come by the Carrousel off and on for some three
years, and at the end was in the process of selling the sign business. Olsen said he was in his late 20s or early 30s.

Olsen advised that a. pttrolman named Bill Swafford was a frequent visitor to the Carousel. The most frequent visitor, he
said, was GerEL.Wal. (the sergeant who found shell casings at the
Tippit shating scene and was at the Texas Theatre), to whom Ruby
was always giving six-packs of beer. Hill escorted FBI men to
persons around the Carousel locale and told the persons, "Tell the
FBI what you.know about Ruby."' Olsen says that one of these persons
cracked, "Why don't you, you knew him best." (It is noted that Hill
was not questioned - by the Commission vis a vis Ruby.)

Olsen did not know the nature of the relationship between
Bertha Cheek and Ruby, but he did say that Cheek obtained many
business leads from a man named 0. L. Nelms, a shrewd entrepeneur
who once bought and sold the Sanger-Harris department store, making;
$100,000 on the deal.,,"

Mrs. Nelms's Obit, 1996
« Last Edit: June 06, 2022, 05:10:37 AM by Tom Scully »

Offline Jerry Freeman

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3726
Re: O.L. Nelms
« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2022, 04:49:45 AM »
....a man named 0. L. Nelms, a shrewd entrepeneur
who once bought and sold the Sanger-Harris department store, making;
$100,000 on the deal.,,"
Chicken feed. Nelms was a millionaire. All kinds of Texas real estate. Also went partners in the 50s with those in the Texas drive-in theater business.

JFK Assassination Forum

Re: O.L. Nelms
« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2022, 04:49:45 AM »

Offline Robert Reeves

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 286
Re: O.L. Nelms
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2022, 07:51:38 PM »
I've been thinking about this O.L. Nelms thing and Bill Newman. It's fascinating Bill Newman stood up, immediately after witnessing JFK's head exploding and thought "I hope Mr. Nelms did not shoot him.". He said that was his first thought upon standing up after he and the wife made sure the kids were ok. That to me is seriously odd, and you'd have thought the local cops would have least wanted to know if O.L. Nelms was holding a camera in the position close to where Bill Newman thought the final head shot came from (behind them).

And the guy that Bill Newman initially thought might have been a gunman, the guy he suspected might have just shot JFK, this guy just happens to be the former boss and business partner of Jack Ruby, he kills Oswald, as we nearly all know. O.L. Nelms was a very prominent person in Dallas life, at the time. He posted billboards all over the city boasting of his achievements. But this is part of the problem, and, maybe, ultimately the genius of choosing Dallas as the venue. They're all blackmail material. Everybody seems to have been buddies with at least one of the two central characters in the killing(s). The perfectly decent Dallas cops that might have witnessed any strange events.during the assassination would have had to explain if, or why, they had a relationship with Ruby. Just like the many cops friendly with Jack Ruby. Another link to Ruby, and seemingly no encouragement to question the witnesses about their true thoughts from the day.

Bill Newman gives a fairly recent interview with the Sixth Floor Museum and he's still chirping away about thinking O.L. Nelms was somewhere behind him around the area Mr Zapruder was positioned! He's still got it in his head after all this time, no doubt people telling him he's wrong and it was Zapruder. He's still thinking about that initial 'O.L. Nelms was the guy behind him near the pergola'. Then again, he might not give a flying shizz. The Newmans seem like a really down to earth couple and seem to have a good sense of humour about it all. Very good witnesses.