Richard E. Sprague

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Richard E. Sprague was an American computer technician, researcher and author. According to American journalist Dick Russell, who dedicated seventeen years to the investigation of John Kennedy assassination, Sprague was "the leading gatherer of photographic evidence about the Kennedy assassination". Sprague published his investigation in 1985 as The Taking of America.


Sprague graduated from Purdue University in 1942 and after World War II was employed as an engineer at Northrup Aircraft. Sprague began investigating the Kennedys' assassination on his own in 1966 upon Zapruder film.

Sprague served a year as photographic expert advisor in the investigations conducted by New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison. In 1968 he co-founded the Committee to Investigate Assassinations. Sprague later worked as a full time consultant to Battelle Memorial Institute of Frankfurt.


In his article "The Assassination of John F. Kennedy: The Application of Computers to the Photographic Evidence" (Computers and Automation, May 1970) Sprague wrote that the Warren Commission examined only five percent of 510 known still photos and films of the assassination and aftermath. For the tenth anniversary of assassination, Sprague contributed an article "The Framing of Lee Harvey Oswald" (Computers and Automation, October 1973) that examined some of the photographic evidence against Oswald and featured several photos at the time not generally available. Sprague was able to obtain a copy of the full original photo, showing the floor beneath the one from where Oswald supposedly fired, which was cropped by the Warren Commission before merging into the report.

Much of the information in The Taking of America had been published by Sprague before in the magazines Computer and Automation and People and The Pursuit of Truth. According to Sprague's research, because of great oak with dense crown that crossed the trajectory of the shot it is unlikely that Oswald could fire from the window where the rifle was subsequently found.[1] Sprague holds that there were six shots towards Kennedy, but he was hit only by four.

Sprague's analysis of Zapruder's film was used in "The Guns of Dallas" article by L. Fletcher Prouty.


  1. ^ Антиснайперы и снайперы (in Russian). Bratishka magazine. Retrieved 2009-03-24. 

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