Jack The Ripper (Compendium Thread)

What do you think is the most likely ?

  • The Ripper was a Freemason?

    Votes: 4 10.0%
  • The Ripper had medical knowledge?

    Votes: 4 10.0%
  • It was Maybrick?

    Votes: 2 5.0%
  • The Ripper was 'of the same class' as his victims?

    Votes: 7 17.5%
  • The Ripper was foreign?

    Votes: 2 5.0%
  • It was Druitt?

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • None of the suspects yet put forward?

    Votes: 10 25.0%
  • It was a woman?

    Votes: 1 2.5%
  • Another?

    Votes: 10 25.0%

  • Total voters
    40
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Slightly off-track, but I was thinking along these lines the other day.

People of my generation may be familiar with Barry Unsworth's novel, The Devil's Mill - which was I think part of the regular reading stock for many schools back in the 70's.

There are many Devil's Mills, but the mill in Unsworth's book is regarded as a thinly disguised version of Cressbrook Mill in the Derbyshire Peak District, which I regularly walk past.

Very striking it is too - and in a beautiful location. It's now luxury flats - back in the day it was hell on earth, not least for child workers.
 
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Dick Turpin

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It's worth pointing out that some of this heritage was quite horrible to live in - and the people who had to would very likely have gladly seen the back of it.

I mean, I get where people are coming from - but one man's heritage is sometimes another man's damp, mildewed, overcrowded, freezing, rat-infested, cholera-prone, shithole. With outside lavatory and optional roof tiles.

And, to be honest, isn't reverting to the Ten Bells effectively an exercise in heritage - given that this is what it was called at the time of the killings; the Ripper name has clearly been an after the fact attempt to cash-in. (And am I right in thinking that the association is extremely tenuous anyway?)

It’s a fair point spookdaddy and I take it, however I do think it important, we do not airbrush our heritage or history no matter how dark it may be.

That mill on the peak district you spoke of, should have turned into a museum, so future generations can appreciate what their ancestors had to endure just to survive…IMHO.

Anyway, back to the Ten Bells. I was at school with a kid who’s Dad was the publican in the 80’s, (I think it was he that had the rippers victims’ names engraved on the front window of the pub) and the pub back then was sympathetic to the victims, and to prostitution in general ( spitalfields until a few years ago still had a prominent red light district )
 

Bigphoot2

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This local story surfaces every so often.
Beyond Doubt: Was Jack the Ripper hanged in Dundee?
by Michael Alexander

September 22 2018, 8.00am
© DC Thomson

Michael Mulford beside a sketch of William Bury
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Ahead of an event in Kirriemuir, former Dundee-raised investigative journalist Michael Mulford tells Michael Alexander why he believes he now has firm evidence that Jack the Ripper was hanged in Dundee.

He is the wife killer who was hanged for strangling and mutilating his wife Ellen Elliot in Dundee in 1889.

But was William Henry Bury – famously the last man to be hanged in Dundee – also the notorious serial killer Jack the Ripper?

Dundee-raised investigative journalist Michael Mulford thinks so.

etc
https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/new...d-doubt-was-jack-the-ripper-hanged-in-dundee/
 

Cochise

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W. H. Bury is one of the better suspects that have come up over the years. He was in the East End at the appropriate time and he was a murderer. There was graffiti saying 'Jack The Ripper Lives Here' outside his house.

The argument against hinges around the nature of the murder of his wife, and of course as with all suspects to date there is no credible physical evidence or witness evidence linking him to the JtR murders (how ever many there were).

He'd be on my list as a 'possible'.
 

Cochise

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It’s a fair point spookdaddy and I take it, however I do think it important, we do not airbrush our heritage or history no matter how dark it may be.

That mill on the peak district you spoke of, should have turned into a museum, so future generations can appreciate what their ancestors had to endure just to survive…IMHO.

Anyway, back to the Ten Bells. I was at school with a kid who’s Dad was the publican in the 80’s, (I think it was he that had the rippers victims’ names engraved on the front window of the pub) and the pub back then was sympathetic to the victims, and to prostitution in general ( spitalfields until a few years ago still had a prominent red light district )
Still does. Last time I was through there (beginning of this year) I was invited by a pimp to take my pick. Explained why I wasn't interested and we parted good mates.
 

Bigphoot2

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W. H. Bury is one of the better suspects that have come up over the years. He was in the East End at the appropriate time and he was a murderer. There was graffiti saying 'Jack The Ripper Lives Here' outside his house.

The argument against hinges around the nature of the murder of his wife, and of course as with all suspects to date there is no credible physical evidence or witness evidence linking him to the JtR murders (how ever many there were).

He'd be on my list as a 'possible'.
When I was researching my family tree I discovered that my grandfather on my father's side of the family actually lived across the road from Bury. Just by coincidence I had bought the book about him as a gift for a friend and was flicking through the pages when I realised that was where my grandfather lived.

There is certainly a lot of circumstantial evidence pointing in his direction - the sudden departure from London, his behaviour in Dundee, his wife telling people that "Jack the Ripper was taking a rest".
 

FelixAntonius

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From the Daily Telegraph of the 15th September 2018:-

Jack the Ripper’s victims were not prostitutes - Helena Horton

It remains one of the most enduring mysteries in British criminal history with budding detectives desperate to unveil the true identity of Jack The Ripper.

But less is known about the serial killer's victims, who were assumed to have been prostitutes targeted by the Ripper, because many became so fascinated with the perpetrator.

Now historian Dr Hallie Rubenhold has gone back to the archives to uncover the true biographies of the women killed in 1888, which reveal they had varied lives, from working in a coffee shop to living with a friend of the Prince of Wales.

Dr Rubenhold has uncovered the interesting lives of the women, blaming "sexist" historical policemen and researchers for erasing the stories of the victims.

Dr Rubenhold, who is writing the first comprehensive history of the Ripper victims, told The Telegraph: “We glorify the Ripper, we have a whole industry based around Jack the Ripper, a fascination with him, an unsolved murder mystery going on for 130 years.

"We have fixated on this and never really thought about the women, who they were when they were killed.”

For decades numerous enthusiasts have tried to solve the mystery of who Jack The Ripper was. American crime writer Patricia Cornwell spent 11 years researching the attacks.

She worked for a former Scotland Yard commander John Grieve and spent millions of her own money buying 32 of Sickert’s works to try and solve the historic crimes.

His crimes have fascinated the world, with people frequently visiting the Jack the Ripper museum in London.

Despite this obsession Dr Rubenhold found that one of the women was living in the residence of a friend of the Prince of Wales, before going to a rehabilitation centre for alcoholism, and another moved to London from Sweden in search of a better life, spending much of her time running a coffee shop in Poplar with her husband.

While it has been accepted by history that all five of the Ripper’s victims were likely prostitutes, Dr Rubenhold said at least three of them were not, and there is no proof that those who had previously taken part in sex work were soliciting when they were murdered.

"We have never questioned 19th century orthodoxy - the world in which they were killed was a world in which women were disrespected and treated as second class citizens - we have never changed that narrative - they have been overlooked by society,” she said.

"They were poor, working class women, one of them was more middle class actually, they got married and had children, they were mothers and they were wives, when they fell on hard times they worked in laundry, they worked as servants...but the accepted narrative that all five were prostitutes and that he was a prostitute killer.”

History has ignored these women, she argued, and labelled them all as prostitutes, because the profession has long been sexist.

The researcher explained: "We have to question a lot about our narratives in history - misogyny and sexism runs very deep. When we don't question current and historical cultural norms we run into dangerous territory.

"These are five women who have been completely dehumanised for 130 years by our culture. And we need to redress the balance".

The Five has been optioned for a drama series by Main Street Pictures, and will be released as a book next March.

Source: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/09/15/jack-rippers-victims-not-prostitutes/


The book mentioned, is already on Amazon for pre-ordering.
 

Yithian

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So some of Jack the ripper's victims were not just prostitutes.

But then nobody with any sense ever claimed they were. And a huge amount of work has been done trying to tease out plausible biographies for the victims and present them fully as more than just cadavers-to-be.

I sense that anybody buying this book is going to find that half of it has almost nothing to do with the ripper or his victims.

Happy to be proved wrong, but so many university-based academics seem only to tie their work to the ripper case to publicise more general studies on the iniquities of Victorian society. I hope this isn't another such one.
 

Bigphoot2

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The story continues

Kin of detective rejects Dundee Jack the Ripper claims
by Michael Alexander

September 28 2018, 9.40am

William Bury who was believed by some to be Jack the Ripper

A descendent of the Victorian detective in charge of the Jack the Ripper murders investigation has rejected claims that the serial killer was hanged in Dundee.

Nevill Swanson, the great grandson of the late Scotland Yard officer Donald Sutherland Swanson, said the culprit was identified by his ancestor as being Aaron Kosminski – a Polish Jew who was committed to a London asylum where he subsequently died.

The Courier reported last week how former Dundee investigative journalist Michael Mulford believed he had proven “beyond reasonable doubt” that Jack the Ripper was William Bury – the wife killer who was hanged for strangling and mutilating his bride, Ellen Elliot, in Dundee in 1889.

Ahead of a ‘mock trial’ held in Kirriemuir this week, he received the endorsement of Mark Stewart QC, defence counsel and former senior advocate depute, who described Michael’s evidence as a “classic circumstantial case” and Len Murray – retired Justice of the Peace and former Solicitor to the Supreme Courts of Scotland – who said Michael had finally solved the case “not just beyond reasonable doubt but beyond all doubt”.

etc
https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/new...ective-rejects-dundee-jack-the-ripper-claims/
 

fudgetusk

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The ripper was no random killer, that is for certain. Ivor Edwards measured the distances between the kill/dump sites on a map and then with a surveyor's wheel. Here are the results.

The distance from site 1 to site 2 was 930 yards
The distance from site 2 to site 4 was 930 yards
The distance from site 3 to site 4 was 950 yards
The distance from site 3 to site 5 was 950 yards

Also "Compass bearings were taken in the field it was found that sites 1,2,3,4 were located due east, south, north and west."

More here...

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id...v=onepage&q=jack the ripper 950 yards&f=false

And here is my theory...that jack was a magician or magicians performing a spell to Venus...

http://forum.forteantimes.com/index.php?threads/jack-the-ripper-venus.62578/#post-1679126
 

Ascalon

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Indeed, this is a good point. They were not just given to the odd bit of soliciting when things got rough, they were also casual workers of various sorts.

Annie Chapman was well documented as returning from hop picking when she fell into the train of events that led to her end.

While this is certainly great work, it is a bit so what, as I know of no researchers who explicitly said they were solely prostitutes.
 

Frideswide

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so many university-based academics seem only to tie their work to the ripper case to publicise more general studies on the iniquities of Victorian society.
rephrase: "so many people with interesting and worthwhile research find that there is no chance of getting it before the wider public without pandering to existing hot buttons"

:)
 

Victory

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If I was to buy a book, a clearly written and well ordered "Introduction" to the subject of Jack The Ripper, what would people recommend please?
 

Yithian

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Best 'introductions' are documentaries. I really rate this:


As to books, Sugden's The Complete Jack the Ripper is the best place to start.

Begg & Fido's Complete A to Z of Jack the Ripper will make anything else digestible.

I started with Fido's The Crimes, Detection and Death of Jack the Ripper.

Caveat: I'm not an expert. If one of those comes along, listen to him/her.
 
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Roger Nowell

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I found Fido's Crimes, Detection and Death of J. the R. a good intro. Covers the basic facts, looks at the obvious suspects. Yes, he had a theory but keeps it to the end. It was written some time ago so doesn't touch on more recent theories such as Tumblety or the fabricated Ripper diary.
 
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If I was to buy a book, a clearly written and well ordered "Introduction" to the subject of Jack The Ripper, what would people recommend please?
I'd agree with Yithian - Philip Sugden's, The Complete History of Jack the Ripper would be a very good place to start: a thorough introduction to the subject - Sugden has his own ideas about the culprit, but he doesn't let this sway or overshadow what is a very fine overview

Has anyone here read They All Love Jack by Bruce Robinson?
Its...erm...entertaining. But Robinson's thesis is nowhere near as revolutionary or interesting as the hype and shouting might suggest. Don't get me wrong - it's an enjoyable read, if you can stomach the style, but it's not a place to start. (There was a discussion here on the subject of this book some time back.)
 
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Its...erm...entertaining. But Robinson's thesis is nowhere near as revolutionary or interesting as the hype and shouting might suggest. Don't get me wrong - it's an enjoyable read, if you can stomach the style, but it's not a place to start. (There was a discussion here on the subject of this book some time back.)
I've tried searching the board for "they all love jack" and it's not that helpful.

It looked like a "novel" approach to the subject, I'm no "ripperologist" but know most/all the basics. Not read a "book length" treatment, unless From Hell counts.
 

Victory

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Best 'introductions' are documentaries. I really rate this:


As to books, Sugden's The Complete Jack the Ripper is the best place to start.

Begg & Fido's Complete A to Z of Jack the Ripper will make anything else digestible.

I started with Fido's The Crimes, Detection and Death of Jack the Ripper.

Caveat: I'm not an expert. If one of those comes along, listen to him/her.
Thank you Yithian and Roger Nowell and Spookdaddy.

Will let you know once I have read them what I think.
 
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maximus otter

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Has anyone here read They All Love Jack by Bruce Robinson?
From my post (#1780):

If you altered the author’s name to A. Scargill and changed every reference to JTR/Maybrick to M. Thatcher, the book would make almost as much sense.

The review plastered across the cover states “A bloody good read”. The review is from the Guardian.

Shocker
.”

Robinson makes Dr. Who scripts sound like extracts from Mein Kampf.

If you leave aside his strident politics, his suspect is vaguely interesting. However, Robinson’s inclination to loud-pedal the good stuff and downplay the inconsistencies in his theory becomes wearing.

maximus otter
 

Dick Turpin

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I found Fido's Crimes, Detection and Death of J. the R. a good intro. Covers the basic facts, looks at the obvious suspects. Yes, he had a theory but keeps it to the end. It was written some time ago so doesn't touch on more recent theories such as Tumblety or the fabricated Ripper diary.
Has the diary been proven to be a fraud, or is that just the general opinion amongst the rippeologist community.?

As far as I know the provenance is obviously questionable, but nothing as yet has been proven either way.

Can someone let me know if I have missed something please.
Ta.
 

Roger Nowell

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In January 1995, Michael Barrett swore in two separate affidavits that he was "the author of the Manuscript written by my wife Anne Barrett at my dictation which is known as The Jack the Ripper Diary."[14] Adding to the confusion, however, was Barrett's solicitor's subsequent repudiation of his affidavit, then Barrett's withdrawal of the repudiation.
Some people, including Robert Smith, the present owner of the diary and original publisher of the associated book by Shirley Harrison, insist it may be genuine


The above is courtesy of Wikipedia. It all seems a bit dubious to me but I suppose there is no guarantee.
 

Dick Turpin

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Thanks roger and thank gawd for that - thought i’d missed something vital then.

I know all about mike Barrett and I don’t for one second believe he penned the journal - no disrespect to the guy, but I don’t think he would have had the know how in regards to faking the ink for one.

Something doesn’t add up though, his wife went onto say the diary had been in her family for generations.

If the diary is a fraud then whoever the author was / is, was very very clever and extreamly knowledgeable about the case - that part in the diary that states that he took Mary Kelly’s, heart was so little known about, even to the so called experts.
 
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