Online Collection

Tom Russell Oral History

Object Number: 2004.001.0013
Category: Oral Histories
Oral history interview subject: Tom Russell
Oral history interviewer: Stephen Fagin
Type of Object: Oral history
Dimensions: 33 Minutes
Videotaped oral history interview with Tom Russell. A Dallas real estate developer in 1963, Russell attended the Trade Mart luncheon and put a memorial cross for President Kennedy in Dealey Plaza after the assassination. He recalls the entire city being a hotbed of radical conservative activity.

Interview conducted at The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza on March 16, 2004 by Associate Curator Stephen Fagin. The interview is thirty-three minutes long.

The video attached to this record is an excerpt. The entire interview is available in our Reading Room to on-site researchers or by submitting a Rights & Reproductions Request Form.
Curator's Notes

At the time of this oral history, Mr. Russell donated photographs of the recognizable memorial cross he placed in Dealey Plaza in memory of President Kennedy.

Ironically, despite being perhaps the most ornate display in the plaza in the aftermath of the Kennedy assassination, Mr. Russell was forced to quickly remove his controversial tribute. Because Russell prominently listed the name of his development corporation on the display, the City of Dallas Parks Department considered it to be an advertisement. Russell was informed that it must be removed from the plaza or it would be confiscated and destroyed. In defiance, he kept the memorial tribute displayed in front of his home for more than one year after the assassination. - Stephen Fagin, Curator

All requests for permission to reproduce, publish or broadcast materials in this collection must be submitted to the Museum's registrar, using the Rights & Reproductions Request Form. Inquiries may be sent to