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5Q With : Neil Bell February 2015

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  • Monty
    replied
    Hey Jon,

    Apologies, I misinformed you. Monro receieved £300 for special duty patrols in January 89, and he asked for a further £200 in the March for the same reason, yet was only granted £51.

    Monty

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  • Monty
    replied
    To be fair, it may have been my fault when I PM'd em over How.

    I kinda touch upon it in the book Jon, but I'll be buggered if I can recall the details. I shall have to have a look. Sorry.

    I haven't read it yet.

    Monty

    Leave a comment:


  • Big Jon
    replied
    Originally posted by Monty View Post

    Off the top of my head, no. I do have the monthly strengths somewhere which would give an idea. Monro did argue for more funding to be raised by the Home Secretary so they could maintain the increase of men, and was granted another £500 for a period.

    Monty
    Would be an interesting little to thing to know. Also to see the trend on how quickly it was downscaled.

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  • Big Jon
    replied
    Originally posted by Monty View Post
    Heh,

    Not my fault John, I think How may have pasted them in a bit wrong.
    Probably!

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  • Howard Brown
    replied
    Sorry if I made a mistake, guys !
    Here they are again....


    1. You've been involved with Ripperology for many years. When did you decide to begin working on a book which would encompass the police aspect of these crimes?

    The idea began to form in my head a little time after the 2007 Wolverhampton conference. I had just done a talk on Catherine Eddowes last movements, which was based on the 2006 Ripperologist article I did with Jaako Luukanen. Jakes wonderful imagery went done really well, and we discussed future projects together. One was a similar article to the Eddowes piece, this time an in depth recreation of the events surrounding Francis Coles murder. The other was a coffee table book on the crimes centred around Jakes images. However Jake was approached by the Docklands exhibition to do some work, which never happened for some reason or another, and then immediately after that Jeff Leahy seconded Jake for the Definitive History documentary, so we put our intended collaboration on the back burner. Around that time I was working in investigations, and began to take interest in that aspect concerning the Ripper case, and found that there whilst we know a lot about police activities during the case, and the thoughts of the high ranking officers, we actually knew very little about the protocols and procedures, and those who trod the streets and alleys of Whitechapel. I felt that to understand fully the investigation into the case, or any case of the period, one had to understand what the police physically did during such investigations, and why?

    2. Which records that you located were the most interesting in terms of putting things in perspective?

    The Police Code bought a lot of things into perspective. It explained a lot of reasoning behind certain actions taken during the investigation into these murders. The calling of Doctors, photographing dead bodies, the use of fixed points, these things are fully explained, and answers questions which have been unnecessarily asked, and obliterated conjecture upon which some outlandish theories have been based.

    Likewise with the Police Orders, you can gleam a lot of information on procedure from them, such as instructions regarding the use of telegrams, which I discuss in my book. The everyday issuing of the orders makes one realise that on top of these murders, Whitechapel still had to be policed. Other things were happening on a daily basis.

    3. How much help did the community provide to the police, overall? Was it more than what the typical Ripperologist in 2015 thinks it was?

    I think so, slightly. I despise the use of the word ‘class’, however, Whitechapel was a mix of the criminal, low, middle and, albeit sparingly, high class. Usually the criminal classes wouldn’t lift a finger to help the police however during the scare even the majority of this class were appalled by this type of crime. Crime for the majority was ultimately about gain, whereas these murders served no gain in their eyes. They also drew attention, politicians began to get involved, and the East End was flooded with police. Clearly this was bad news for your average East End villain, who saw the numbers of Bobbies in Whitechapel increase, so their co-operation increased. That is not to say there was a ‘love in’ between the two sides. ‘Business’ carried on a usual, the villains still villianed and mocked the police, and the Bobbies still sort to cease their ‘vocational operations’ by fair means or, on occasion, foul.

    As for the regular hard working lower to middle classes, their co-operation would only benefit them and their community. The regular sweeps of the lodging houses did, on the whole, pass peacefully. There are no reports as those relayed to Booths right hand man, Duckworth, by Arnold’s replacement, Mulvaney, of regular assaults upon the police during visits to lodging houses. This to the point injuries caused by assaults was the largest cause of sick leave. It was mutually beneficial for the majority all around if Jack was caught sooner rather than later.




    4. What were (as many as you want to list) some of the inspired moves on the part of H Division in trying to capture Jack the Ripper?

    I’d say more logical than inspired How, well initially. Brian W. Schoeneman, in his excellent dissertation on how Scotland Yard managed the investigation in to the crimes, called Crisis for Scotland Yard: A Crisis Management Based Analysis of the Whitechapel Murders, is spot on with his assessment. It was a case of Scotland Yard enduring in an initial crisis management phase, however later they seemed to be more pro-active. The flooding of the area with extra men was a no brainer, as that immediately reduced the killer chances of killing without a police presence close by. However, this introduction of more men in the area didn’t happen until Nichols and Chapman had been murdered, on top of Smith, who is included in the murders file despite the opinions of many, and Tabram. Whilst Nichols was an alarm call, Chapman’s murder was an acknowledgement and call to action.

    When reviewing the protocols and orders, it seemed to me that The Met were more preoccupied with procedure and less with innovation (maybe Warrens influence to a degree?), whereas the City Police would look to be the more willing to experiment, and the use of photography is one example. Met police followed protocol and took the photos of the face of the deceased, purely for identification reasons. The City, with regards Eddowes, took full length photos of her. They took head shots, post mortem shots, they even pre mortem shots too. This, to me, is an indication they were evidence gathering, and something the Parisian police force (with whom the City and the Met regularly liaised regarding forensics and training) may have inspired, as they were very advanced when it came to recording forensics. The City, Rob Clack and I suspect, took the wall writing photo, so they were pretty hot on this new technology. However, whilst they were a few steps ahead of the Met regarding this aspect 1888, it was the Met who created a photographic team in 1901, something the City did not do until the 1930s. So the Met seems to have followed the Citys lead and, eventually, overtook them.

    The use of the telegram system, with the “Whitechapel again” codeword, is another move designed to aid the killers capture, and likewise the introduction of the four blast whistle code after the Coles murder. Fortunately this whistle code was never used, as there were no further murders after Coles. It would have been interesting to see if that idea would have worked.

    5. Are there any plans in the future regarding another Ripper related work?

    Yes. Adam Wood and I, along with the blessing of the Metropolitan Police Force, are writing the introduction to the soon to be re-issued 1889 version of Howard Vincent’s Police Code. This book was a Bobby’s handbook, designed to guide a policeman through any event which may occur during his duty, from rabid dogs to lost children, from dead bodies to chimney fires, from drunks to prisoner searches. The book was used from 1881 to 1938 and is an excellent snapshot not just of police life, but also Victorian life in general. When Howard Vincent died in 1908 he stated, in his will, that a percentage of the proceeds of any future sales would go to the Metropolitan & City Police Orphanage and Fund. Whilst the Orphanage is long gone, the fund remains; therefore Adam and I shall be upholding that original instruction left by Howard Vincent.

    Once that is completed, I shall be turning my head to another project. Cannot say much about it at the moment, other than I am really looking forward to eventually getting my teeth into it. And plans have also been laid down for another collaboration on a Jack related book; work due to commence later this year.

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  • Monty
    replied
    Heh,

    Not my fault John, I think How may have pasted them in a bit wrong.

    Off the top of my head, no. I do have the monthly strengths somewhere which would give an idea. Monro did argue for more funding to be raised by the Home Secretary so they could maintain the increase of men, and was granted another £500 for a period.

    Monty

    Leave a comment:


  • Big Jon
    replied
    Very informative Neil, and I'm looking forward to the Police Code. Quick question - do you know (or could you estimate) how many officers or what percentage of the Met would have worked on the Whitechapel case in total?

    Your answers seem to get a bit groundhog day at the end!

    Leave a comment:


  • Howard Brown
    started a topic 5Q With : Neil Bell February 2015

    5Q With : Neil Bell February 2015

    Many thanks To Neil for taking the time to heed the call of the 5Q !!
    ************************************************** *
    The Q & A are up ahead a post or two....
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