Earle Cabell

Earl Cabell was born in Dallas County on 27th October, 1906. After graduating from Southern Methodist University Cabell worked as a salesman. In 1932 he joined with his two brothers to establish Cabell’s, Incorporated (dairies and convenience stores) and became president and chairman of the board.

A member of the Democratic Party, Cabell was elected mayor of Dallas in May 1961. He therefore was involved in planning the trip John F. Kennedy made to Dallas on 22nd November, 1963. James H. Fetzer believes that Cabell took part with his brother Charles Cabell, in the plot to kill Kennedy: "The two combined motive, means, and opportunity."

He was reelected two years later but resigned on 3rd February, 1964, to become a candidate for Congress. He was elected to the Eighty-ninth and to the three succeeding Congresses (January 3, 1965-January 3, 1973).

After failing to be become candidate for reelection in 1972 he retired and returned to Dallas where he died on 24th September, 1975.

Primary Sources

(1) Leon D. Hubert cross-examined Earle Cabell on behalf of the Warren Commission on 13th July, 1964.

Leon D. Hubert: When did you observe anything at all relative to the shooting of the President?

Earle Cabell: Well, we were just rounding the corner of Market and Elm, making the left turn, when the first shot rang out.

Leon D. Hubert: Would you describe what you saw or heard, please, sir?

Earle Cabell: I heard the shot. Mrs. Cabell said, "Oh a gun" or "a shot", and I was about to deny and say "Oh it must have been a firecracker" when the second and the third shots rang out. There was a longer pause between the first and second shots than there was between the second and third shots. They were in rather rapid succession. There was no mistaking in my mind after that, that they were shots from a high-powered rifle.

Leon D. Hubert: Are you familiar with rifles so that your statement that it was your opinion it came from a high-powered rifle was that of a person who knows something about it?

Earle Cabell: I have done a great deal of hunting and also used military shoulder guns, as well as hunting rifles.

Leon D. Hubert: Were you in the armed services during the war?

Earle Cabell: No; I was not, but there was no question in my mind as to their being from a high-powered rifle and coming from the direction of the building known as the School Book Depository.

Leon D. Hubert: That you judged, I suppose, by the direction from which you thought the sound came?

Earle Cabell: Right.

Leon D. Hubert: Could you estimate the number of seconds, say, between the first and second shots, as related to the number of seconds between the second and third shots? Perhaps doing it on the basis of a ratio?

Earle Cabell: Well, I would put it this way. That approximately 10 seconds elapsed between the first and second shots, with not more than 5 seconds having elapsed until the third one.

(2) Leon D. Hubert cross-examined Earle Cabell on behalf of the Warren Commission on 13th July, 1964.

Leon D. Hubert: Did you know prior to the shooting of Oswald, or have you learned since whether there was any awareness in the police department of possible danger to Oswald?

Earle Cabell: No, no. After it had all occurred, then I recall having been told by someone that there had been an attempt, or that an attempt would be made, but that is not clear, and purely a matter of hearsay.

Leon D. Hubert: I believe in your conversation with Chief Curry on Sunday, you discussed a threat that had been made to you, or indirectly?

Earle Cabell: He called me that this call had come through the switchboard of the city hall, and it was his understanding that it was long distance, but he did not know the source, and since it was a direct dial and they could not trace it, there was not enough time, wherein the caller said that an attempt would be made on my life.

Leon D. Hubert: He told you that was a long-distance call?

Earle Cabell: It was his impression, the switchboard operator's impression that it was some long distance.

(3) James H. Fetzer, Assassination Science and the Language of Proof, included in Assassination Science (1998)

The Deputy Director for Operations at the time of the Bay of Pigs invasion was an Air Force Lt. General by the name of Charles Cabell. Cabell had overseen attempts by the CIA in collusion with the Mob - which wanted to regain its casinos and resorts in Havana, where it was running the largest money-laundering operation in the Western hemisphere - to take out Castro. It was Cabell who, in the presence of Dean Rusk, called JFK to plead with him for the close air support he believed the President had promised, but which JFK refused to provide. He would later return to the Pentagon, after being relieved of his position at the CIA by JFK, where he would describe the President as a "traitor".

Charles Cabell was born in Dallas in 1903. His brother Earle was born near Dallas in 1906. In 1961, Earle Cabell became Mayor of the City of Dallas. In his capacity as Mayor, he not only supervised the police department but oversaw ceremonial activities, including parade routes and motorcades. There is no way that the Presidential motorcade could have taken the peculiar and improper route it took through Dealey Plaza - which even contradicted the route published in the morning paper - without the approval of the Mayor. The two combined motive, means, and opportunity. The psychodynamics of the assassination, as I reconstruct the crime, thus appear to have pitted two rich and powerful right-wing brothers against two rich and powerful left-wing brothers.