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G.Wentworth Bell Smith

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  • #31
    Nice work, Dave, and a very nice connection.
    Regarding the St Georges Society of America and Canada I think you to be right, but it is worth keeping in mind that there may well have been a melding of interests here between charitable and business organisations, in that if you look at the setting up of the 'American, British and Colonial Insurance Company' in 1881 in London with a million pound float in shares, you will soon see that the major directors of the newly formed company were in fact the charitable directors of the St Georges Society of New York and Montreal.
    My feeling is that such an organisation, leaning towards social charity, but meantime making a killing on the stock exchange, may well have been Bellsmith's true occupation.


    • #32
      AP, you could be right, it would certainly make sense of his statement about having large wealth at his command.
      The connection with the 'Surrey side of the water' is interesting as well, as he lived to the south (albeit Kent rather than Surrey) from circa 1870 - 1878.
      His known addresses before moving to Canada are: -
      1851 2 Brunswick Villas, Hammersmith
      1861 5 Drayton Grove, Kensington
      1871 138 Alexandra Cottages, Beckenham (occupation Draper's warehouseman)
      In 1881 he is on the Canadian census, and 1900, 1910 and 1920 the New York census. I can't find him in 1890/1891, probably because he was in England during the US census and vice versa.


      • #33
        I have just been sent a bizarre little booklet written by HWB in 1915 entitled 'A Plea For A Human Science' ... this is an extract from the introduction, to give you some idea of its contents: -

        The purpose and plan of these pages may therefore be stated, as follows:
        1st To establish that Universal law cannot be universal unless it is applied to humanity. Therefore, when we say "All things are governed by law and all laws govern all things" we do not make any exception in respect of man or man's affairs, so that man is law begotten and law controlled.
        2nd That the individuality of man is primarily the sum of a concatenation of forces measured out by his parents at the moment of conception and inherited from them and that this heredity furnishes the quantitative element on the differentiation of the individual.
        3rd That sex is the result of preponderance of positive and negative polarity in the female and male parents respectively.
        4th That the hour of birth is more or less determined by hereditary selection, so that man is born in a planetary hegemony that will correspond with the hereditary individuality.
        5th That the planetary forces become the element by which direction is given to hereditary forces subject to the primary direction of sexual polarity.
        6th That the directions established by planetary influences and the activities resulting from the combinations of these influences reacting upon and through the environment give to the individual an habitual mental and physical attitude towards his environment which constitutes his character and determines the natural course of events and activities in his life.
        7th That this predestined course of life and activity can only be changed by a force that has the power to change the directions and modify them and that a new direction or directions may be established as the habitual attitude of the individual.
        8th That these changes are wrought by the power of Hypnotic suggestion which includes parental control and example. The force and example of teachers and their teaching ,and companions, and religious phenomena.
        9th That the force of hypnotic suggestion both external and automotive is limited to the mental grasp of the ideas suggested and that therefore our ideas of higher goodness must determine our attainment thereto.


        • #34
          A post over on Casebook just reminded me of this thread, so I thought I would drop by with a couple of updates.

          HWB has turned up on the 1891 Canadian census with wife number one. However, other evidence shows that he was with wife number 2 (not that it appears they were ever legally married) in 1888 or 1889. It seems that there was a bit of adultery going on. Interestingly, wife number 2 lived in Poplar, so HWB would have had to travel right through the heart of Ripper territory to visit her.

          It also looks as if Henry may have fathered a child by wife number 2 in 1890 (Frank, whose previously stated birth year of 1887 was apparently falsified in order to get into the US Army early)


          • #35
            Thanks for the update David. Much appreciated,buddy.
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            • #36
              An update (Expect a further one in another three years!)

              A newspaper report from 1889 states that Henry's Toronto accountancy business was in financial difficulty and that he was in England trying to launch a money lending concern. The company were described as 'assignees', so they managed trusts. Therefore it would be fair to say he was in London to raise funds for A Toronto Trust Society, if not THE Toronto Trust Society.

              I think this confirms beyond any doubt that he was Callaghan's suspect.

              As previously suggested, he fathered a son born in London in November 1890, although interestingly the birth certificate shows his name simply as 'Henry Smith'. The mother was the daughter of a boiler maker in Poplar. He was still married to his first wife in Canada at this time.


              • #37
                Thanks very much Dave...and good to hear from you !
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                • #38
                  The last post #30 is dated 2007? Is this a computer glitch?


                  • #39
                    Can't you see the posts from 2010 and yesterday ?
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                    • #40
                      Thanks Dave

                      Bell Smith's movements during 1889 are interesting in that Callaghan claimed that Bellsmith told a few lies, such as saying he had had his watch stolen when it hadn't, but also that he had returned to Canada though he had been spotted in the East End


                      • #41
                        Hi Nemo,

                        I agree, his behaviour does seem extraordinary. Why did he stay out late at night? Why did he suddenly leave the Callaghan's and yet remain in London for a further three months? He was from a respectable family, and had a respectable occupation. What was he up to, and how did he end up in an adulterous relationship with a much younger woman from a completely different social class?

                        If Callaghan's statement can be taken at face value (and personally I believe it can, give or take some minor errors which can be put down to faulty memory) then I think he would be an incredibly strong suspect ... If only he was in the country when Mary Kelly was murdered!



                        • #42
                          Thanks Dave

                          I suppose there is the possibility he "worked" with an accomplice - as suggested by the Dodger letter, and the accomplice could have committed the Kelly murder

                          IIRC the Dodger latter asked for help and said "we can't get through it", suggesting multiple "accomplices"

                          However, in the letter the word "Dogger" deleted in favour of "Dodger" suggests to me that the letter was dictated by someone who could spell Dodger to someone who couldn't, whatever that might tell you


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                            Can't you see the posts from 2010 and yesterday ?
                            I can now, it must be something my end as when it first appeared it stopped at post # 30.


                            • #44
                              Yes, I seem to recall mine stopped there too.


                              • #45
                                Just to clarify a bit, Callaghan said that GWB received postcards and letters from someone who signed himself Dodger, one of which read in part "we can't get through this"

                                Forbes Winslow seemed to link the story of John Cleary having knowledge of the Pinchin St torso with his theory of JtR working with an accomplice and, conveniently, on 23rd September 1889, a letter was received from the Ripper and Dodger

                                The 23rd Sept letter read as follows...

                                Addressed "To the Inspector of Police Scotland Yard"

                                Dear Boss,

                                I write these few lines to you hoping you are quite well as at present the bloke that thinks he is on the right track is right off scent and now I have got my eye on four or five young girls from ponton rd...Lane Vauxhall 2 of which I must have this week commencing...[sections illegible]/
                                ...others later or...& goodbye for the present from the Ripper and the dodger

                                In the time that you receive this note I shall have my knife well sharpened and on my way there. You will hear...
                                [sections illegible]

                                Written over two pages

                                I'm pretty certain that's the one with the "Dogg (deleted) Dodger" sign-off (apologies if my memory fails me, I can't find a picture of the actual letter but I'll keep looking)