«4 evidence, a sound recording of the assassination itself that has been only recently turned up. The photographic experiments were conducted by the ...»
evidence, a sound recording of the assassination itself that has
been only recently turned up.
The photographic experiments were conducted by the
photographic panel of experts. They involved attempts to
analyze camera "jiggle" in an effort to record what may well have
been the startled reactions to gunshot.
The thought was that Zapruder may have reflexively moved his
camera when he heard each shot. By measuring the intensities of
blurs on a given frame, it was hoped that the timing of the shots could be indirectly pinpointed.
Dr. William Hartmann was in charge of what has come to be known on the staff as the jiggle analysis. Dr. Hartmann received a B.S. degree in physics from Pennsylvania University in 1961, an M.S. degree in geology from the University of Arizona in 1965 and Ph. D. degree in astronomy from the University of Arizona in 1966.
He has been assistant professor at the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, associate and senior scientist at the IIT Research Institute and currently is the senior scientist at the Planetary Science Institute of Scientific Applications, Inc.
Dr. Hartmann is a member of the American Astronomical Society and is the cowinner of the 1965-66 Ninniger Meterorite Award.
He has written numerous professional articles and has served as an associate editor of the Journal of Geophysical Research. He has authored a planetary textbook and coauthored a book on the planet Mars.
Dr. Hartmann served as a photo analyst for the U.S. Air Force/ University of Colorado study of UFO's and served as photo analyst and coinvestigator on the Mariner 9 mission to photograph Mars.
It would be appropriate at this time, Mr. Chairman, to call Dr.
Chairman STOKES. The committee calls Dr. Hartmann.
Sir, will you raise your right hand to be sworn?
Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you will give before this committee is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?
Dr. HARTMANN. I do.
Chairman STOKES. Thank you.
You may be seated.
The Chair recognizes counsel Gary Cornwell.
Mr. CORNWELL. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Dr. Hartmann, as a member of the photo panel, did you conduct photographic analysis in order to determine if there was any measurable reaction on the part of photographers who were taking pictures in Dealey Plaza at the time of the assassination which might be associated with the sound of gunfire?
TESTIMONY OF WILLIAM HARTMANNDr. HARTMANN. Yes.
Mr. CORNWELL. What theoretical reason or justification would there be for conducting that type of analysis?
Dr. HARTMANN. I think there are several possible justifications for it that add together.
First, psychological experiments have shown that there is a rather universal startle reaction, and interestingly enough, the classic work on this published in 1939 used gunshots before unsuspecting witnesses as the source of the stimulus to cause the startle reaction.
Second, using a motion picture camera such, as Mr. Zapruder's camera and his film, is an ideal test for startle reaction, because the photographer is attempting to hold this camera still or pan very smoothly, so that any startle reaction would cause a disturbance of that smooth panning motion.
Third, then there would be a question, was the stimulus, the gunfire in Dealey Plaza, loud enough to cause such a startle reaction.
I was present on August 20 when the committee did some test firing with the rifle similar to the one believed to have been used, and I found, first of all, that this was a very loud noise, louder than I had suspected, and in fact I attempted to take some pictures simultaneously with the gunfire and found that in three out of three cases my pictures were blurred when they were taken with gunfire and not when they were taken at other times.
In fact I think my pictures were probably more blurred, showed a larger startle reaction than Mr. Zapruder's.
Finally, it is a reasonable investigation to undertake because we know that there are some episodes of blur in the Zapruder film as you watch it.
Mr. CORNWELL. When did you first undertake this analysis?
Dr. HARTMANN. It was proposed in February, but we did not undertake it until July when it began to be apparent to the committee that there might be data from the acoustic analysis with which we could compare it, so that we would have some independent information to compare with.
Mr. CORNWELL. Who did you work with in the analysis?
Dr. HARTMANN. Frank Scott, who is a photo scientist with Perkin Elmer, and Elmer was also a member of the photo panel, and he did an independent set of measurements on the same film.
Mr. CORNWELL. Did the procedures which were selected, were they followed both by you and Mr. Scott, the same procedures?
Dr. HARTMANN. No. We used separate procedures. We both made a series of measurements on the film, but each decided for himself what system might be best to record in a quantitative way these blurs or jiggles.
Mr. CORNWELL. Just very briefly, would you tell us what the differences were between the two approaches that you took?
Dr. HARTMANN. Briefly, I measured the amount of blur or smearing of the image in each frame of the film, one frame at a time, and what Mr. Scott did was to follow from one frame to the next the position of the camera, where it was pointed in the landscape, and to see how smooth that tracking was between one frame and the next frame.
Mr. CORNWELL. So then would it be accurate to state that you measured the blur internally within the frame and Mr. Scott measured the blur which occurred between two frames?
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes, in a real sense mine is a measure of the blur while the shutter was open, and Mr. Scott's is a measure of the blur that occurred from the middle of the time the shutter was open on one frame to the time it was open on the next frame.
Mr. CORNWELL. I would like to show you exhibits F-224, 225, 226, and 227, which I believe have been previously admitted in this case.
The photographs correspond to frames 188 to 191 of the Zapruder film. I ask you if you would use those exhibits to illustrate first the technique which you applied.
[The information follows:]
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes. May I go over to the board?
Now these are frames 188 through 191 in order and it is a good example of what can be done. These are enlargements of part of the frame, but here you see a reasonably sharp frame, a rather typical frame, and there are some highlights on the car which appear as circular or slightly elliptical bright spots. So these are the smallest things that you can resolve, the smallest spots that you can see in the picture.
On this frame, you may be able to see that the spots are now elongated a little bit in this direction, meaning that while the shutter was open, the camera moved a little bit in that direction.
Now the camera is moving considerably more violently during the exposure, and we have an elongation in this direction, and here, finally, frame 191, which is quite seriously blurred and is in fact one of the more blurred frames in the sequence. So the length of these spots can be measured from frame to frame, and that gives a measurement of what we call the blur or the jiggle.
Mr. CORNWELL. So it would be possible then, I take it, to quantify the amount of blur or jiggle in the frame.
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes, by direct measurement of the length of this blurred spot, and that, in essence, is a measurement of the error in the photographer's accuracy in panning on the Presidential car that went by.
Mr. CORNWELL. I would like to show you JFK exhibit F-175 and ask you if you can identify that.
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes. This is a plot of the amount of blur that we measured by the technique I used on each frame.
Mr. CORNWELL. Mr. Chairman, at this time I would request that that exhibit be admitted into evidence.
Chairman STOKES. Without objection, it may be entered into the record at this point.
[The information follows :] 160 170 180 190 200 210 220 230 240 250 260 270 280 290 300 310 320 330 340 350 360 37~
-8 -7 -6 -5 -4 -3 -2 -1 0 +1 +2 +3
Mr. CORNWELL. Would you explain, Dr. Hartmann, what that exhibit illustrates or what it shows?
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes ; I tried to plot the amount of blur. So the amount of blur is plotted in this vertical direction and it is expressed here in terms of the percent of the width of the field so that a blur right along here of this magnitude is about 1 percent of the width of the field. Up here it is about 6 percent of the width of the field.
These are the frame numbers. This is a running count of the time in seconds. I chose to use zero at about frames 310 to 311 because that would be the moment in essence when the man pulled the trigger on the gun. The bullet is seen to strike the head in 313, or the head is seen to explode at that time, so zero can be considered one known gunshot time.
Now each dot is a frame. And if you asked for a threshold and said are there any blurs greater than 6 percent, let's say, well, there would be none. And if you start to lower your threshold, coming down to about 4 percent, we start to pick up a blur. This one is frame 330, and as we come on down, we pick up more blurs.
Well, of course, if you go too low, you are getting into basically noise, just the ordinary jiggle, and we don't want to clutter up our analysis with looking at the ordinary jiggle. So I arbitrarily chose a threshold, and to make it a little bit clearer, drew a line here, and any jiggles or blurs or errors in panning that stick up above that line then are outlined with solid lines to make them clearer. So there are some patterns, or clusters of jiggles, which may be response to some sort of stimulus.
Mr. CORNWELL. I would like to ask you, if you could use the blackboard now which is behind you, and illustrate for us, if you would, Mr. Scott's analysis.
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes; he reasoned as follows : Suppose the car is coming by and the photographer is following the car precisely. He would be aiming his camera at the middle of each exposure as the shutter opens and closes and opens and closes at a series of points which would be arranged in a nice smooth line and relatively equally spaced.
Now if any stimulus or any cause made him jiggle the camera or jerk the camera, we would have this pattern of regular pointing spots going on, and then perhaps, let's say, the camera moves in a downward direction. And so in the first case, we would have a line of points like that, but in the second case, a line like this, and this would betray an irregularity in the panning on the Presidential car.
Mr. CORNWELL. I would like to show you now JFK exhibits F-371, 372, and 373, and ask you if you would tell us what those are.
Dr. HARTMANN. I might just comment also, as that is being set up, that a way to express this measurement quantitatively and in a similar fashion to the other diagram would be to say that at this particular frame the photographer should move, in the next frame, he should move to this position, but, in fact, we discover that he has moved down here, so that this distance is a measure of the error. So it is possible to convert these into a set of quantitative measurements of the error. This is essentially a method known as just vector subtraction between these two lines.
Yes, and these are, first, an explanation of his method and enlargement of one sequence of frames in the fashion that he measured them and his entire sequence of measurements.
Mr. CORNWELL. So referring to JFK exhibit F-373, that is the entire sequence of the frames in the Zapruder film beginning at what point and ending at what other point.
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes ; these run from in the 130's, when the Presidential motorcade comes around the corner, all the way to the 390's, as it disappears.
Mr. CORNWELL. And, would it be accurate to state that, JFK exhibit F-372 is simply a blowup of one portion of 373?
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes, it is; it is the first portion.
Mr. CORNWELL. May we have these three exhibits admitted into evidence, Mr. Chairman?
Chairman STOKES. Without objection, they may be entered into the record.
[The information follows:]
PANNING OR JIGGLE RECORD OF ZAPRUD ER FILM
IF ZAPRUDER PANNED HIS CAMERA PERFECTLY, THE JIGGLE RECORD WOULD LOOK
LIKE THIS :
IF ZAPRUDER PANNED HIS CAMERA PERFECTLY, EXCEPT FOR A RAPID MOVEMENT
WHERE HE MOVED HIS CAMERA DOWNWARD, THE JIGGLE RECORD WOULD LOOK LIKE
IF ZAPRUDER PANNED HIS CAMERA PERFECTLY, AND MAINTAINED GOOD HORIZONTAL
PANNING BUT DID NOT PAN SMOOTHLY, THE JIGGLE RECORD WOULD LOOK LIKE
Mr. CORNWELL. Dr. Hartmann, referring to the center JFK exhibit F-372, would it be accurate to state that the blowup there illustrates that at some points in the film Mr. Zapruder in fact doubled back instead of going forward with his panning as you would expect?
Dr. HARTMANN. Yes. There is a slight doubling back, and I would just caution that there are different types of panning errors. In other words, there is this type that I sketched here. There is the type where you actually double back, but there is the type where you are going along in a straight smooth direction and suddenly move a great distance in this direction, all right, just to the right in the same direction, but by more than you should have, so that that produces a line, a straight line, still, and yet there is a very large error here. So don't be fooled into thinking that the only reactions or jiggles are the places where the line gets tangled.
There may be some reactions in places where the line is spaced out by more than the usual amount.
Mr. CORNWELL. As the exhibits were being put up, you stated that you could quantify the results of the technique applied by Mr.
Scott, the same as the technique that you had applied.