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5 Q With : The Grave Maurice

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  • 5 Q With : The Grave Maurice

    We thank Ken for responding to the call of the 5 Q !


    Five Questions – Ken Whiteway (The Grave Maurice)

    1) Do you see Ripperology as an “industry” or an avocation/field with individuals more often than not researching and writing for goals other than financial gain?
    Personally, I’ve always viewed Ripperology simply as a hobby. I don’t really know anything about the economics but I find it difficult to believe that most authors, or even documentary makers, can earn much from this subject. I suspect that only a few tour guides (e.g., Donald Rumbelow) can make a decent amount of money. If it is an “industry”, it is of the cottage variety. Excluding people such as Patricia Cornwell, I believe most of us stick with it because we love an unsolved mystery and are fascinated by the East End and the LVP.

    2) Please give us one or two impressions of your experience at the recent Drexel Ripper Convention.
    The Drexel convention was thoroughly enjoyable and one of the best conferences, of any type, that I’ve ever attended. At most conferences, you have to sit through two or three boring presentations in order to hear one that really interests you. At Drexel, all of the speakers and topics were interesting.
    My wife and I enjoyed the walk from our hotel, over the Schuylkill River, to the Bassone Center and, when we entered the lobby, the first person to greet us was the charming Howard Brown, closely followed by one of my heroes, Christopher George. The conference organizers, Paula Marantz Cohen and Fred Abbate were personable and very welcoming to all the participants. (I just wish that I had read Paula’s book, What Alice Knew, before the conference instead of after because I thought it was an excellent piece of work and would have enjoyed discussing it with her.)
    We had the pleasure of breakfasting with Cordelia Biddle and lunching with Richard Conti and his wife. Martin Fido talked with me about his theory of where Sherlock Holmes purchased his Strad , and graciously signed all the copies of his books that I was able to fit into my luggage. I particularly appreciated the opportunity to speak with talented young scholars such as Craig Monk and Drew Gray. Richard Walter (a member of the Vidocq Society) was very entertaining, as was his colleague, John Maxwell, who is the most erudite (former) police officer I’ve ever met. People from related fields, such as James and Edith Reese and Hartley Nathan from the Bootmakers of Toronto (a scion society of the Baker Street Irregulars) also added greatly to the mix.
    And, besides all that, there were several students and a couple of local residents (whose names I have, unfortunately, forgotten) who seemed to appreciate the conference as much as I did. Good information, good company, and good grub: it was a wonderful weekend.



    3) Please provide one positive trend that you’ve noticed currently in swing in Ripperology.
    Lately it seems to me that a larger number of young people and women are becoming interested in studying and discussing the Whitechapel murders. I find that to be a very encouraging trend. When I started in this field, it was pretty much the domain of middle-aged men. Now it is being exposed more frequently to fresh thoughts and new perspectives.

    4) Considering that new data becomes available on a regular basis in our field, do you feel that efforts to get books in circulation with a solution are an example of a rush to judgment?
    Suspect books have never bothered me as much as they apparently do some people. Without suspect books, the JtR section of my bookshelves would be pretty sparse. I admire anyone who can write a book on this subject and I buy, and enjoy, them all---except the wackiest (e.g., Karen Trenouth’s efforts).

    5) Do you believe in the Double Event…that both murders were committed by the same killer?
    I’m an old school Ripperologist. I started reading about JtR in the mid-1960s and there is no doubt that part of the mystique was the Double Event. It was one of the things that made the Whitechapel murders so intriguing, and I won’t give it up lightly.
    I have absolutely no doubt that Catherine Eddowes was a victim of JtR. I’ve also read the many arguments stating that Elizabeth Stride was killed by Michael Kidney, or a copy-cat killer, or someone else. Those possibilities may well have merit and I don’t completely discount them. Still, it continues to seem unlikely to me that there was more than one murderer at work that night who killed women of that particular type in that way. It’s also interesting that the timing and locations of the two deaths are just about right to account for only one murderer.
    I could be convinced by new evidence but, until then, I’m a confirmed “Double Eventer”. One thing I do know is that the more I read about this subject, the less I seem to know about it.
    To Join JTR Forums :
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  • #2
    I enjoyed that. Too short though!

    Yours truly,

    Tom Wescott

    Comment


    • #3
      Maurice

      I enjoyed reading it too.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Ken Whiteway View Post
        I have absolutely no doubt that Catherine Eddowes was a victim of JtR. I’ve also read the many arguments stating that Elizabeth Stride was killed by Michael Kidney, or a copy-cat killer, or someone else. Those possibilities may well have merit and I don’t completely discount them. Still, it continues to seem unlikely to me that there was more than one murderer at work that night who killed women of that particular type in that way. It’s also interesting that the timing and locations of the two deaths are just about right to account for only one murderer.
        I could be convinced by new evidence but, until then, I’m a confirmed “Double Eventer”. One thing I do know is that the more I read about this subject, the less I seem to know about it.
        That's the best and simplest explanation I've ever seen... and it really doesn't have to be any more complicated than that.
        Excellent.
        Best Wishes,
        Cris Malone
        ______________________________________________
        "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

        Comment


        • #5
          "the charming Howard Brown"

          Gee, there must be two HBs.

          Comment


          • #6
            Great feature. If it isn't a regular, it should be.
            Best wishes,
            Steve.

            Comment


            • #7
              Steve:

              I ask people periodically to request a list of questions...sometimes they do.

              If you're up for it, by all means go for it daddio.
              To Join JTR Forums :
              Contact [email protected]

              Comment


              • #8
                Do you mean submit some questions or offer to answer some?

                Steve "Real gone daddy" Russell

                Comment


                • #9
                  And sometimes the same people continuously beg for more! (hint hint)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Steve & JM ;

                    I'll be working on a set for the two of youse soon...thanks for volunteering.
                    To Join JTR Forums :
                    Contact [email protected]

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                    • #11
                      Hi Ken

                      Thanks for your kind words about me, and your welcome reflections on the Drexel event. I should have my answers to Howard shortly as well. It's a Moveable Feast, to quote Hemingway.

                      All the best

                      Chris
                      Christopher T. George, Lyricist & Co-Author, "Jack the Musical"
                      https://www.facebook.com/JackTheMusical/ Hear sample song at https://tinyurl.com/y8h4envx.

                      Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conferences, April 2016 and 2018.
                      Hear RipperCon 2016 & 2018 talks at http://www.casebook.org/podcast/.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Chris G. View Post
                        I should have my answers to Howard shortly as well. It's a Moveable Feast....
                        Many of us look forward to your answers, Chris. (MF, BTW, is my favourite Hemingway book.)

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