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Daily People On Dorset Street

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  • Simon Wood
    replied
    Hi All,

    Gentle reader, kindly consider the following account as an example of the calibre of the type of witness who offered testimony at the inquest of Mary Jane Kelly, resident of Room 13, Millers Court, Dorset Street, Spitalfields.

    New York Press, 30th June 1901—

    SWEET BRIDGET M'CARTHY.

    "It was when the visitor entered the ill-famed alley that active trouble began. From a door on the left of the passageway there emerged a tall and evil-faced woman, who rushed up and poured upon the photographer such a shower of obscene invectives as it is given to few men outside a London slum to hear.

    "Yer impudent dog"—this was the mildest of her epithets—"you just dare to snap that thing in this alley and I'll tear yer face off yer!" emphasising her not too vague intention by shaking under the stranger's nose a skinny fist adorned with long, dirty and particularly threatening nails.

    "This excellent lady proved to be Bridget McCarthy, known far and wide in Spitalflelds. She is the rent collector for nearly all the unknown landlords holding property in Dorset street, and her "say" would turn any household in the street out of doors; consequently, she queens it there, and her rule is no light one. But besides her profession of rent collector, Mrs. McCarthy manages one of the largest "cubicle" lodging houses in Dorset street. Nor is the extent of this building, from which she emerged to strike terror to the heart of the visitor, its chief claim to renown, for this is the place of which it is said that a murder has been committed in every room.

    "Naturally, in these embarrassing circumstance, Mrs. McCarthy was jealous of the fair fame of her property. "The impudince of 'im!" she shrieked to her sympathetic audience, "comln' down here to take 'is bloody pictures, just as if the place hadn't a bad name enough already. Git out with yeh, now, before I maul yeh!" Mrs. McCarthy's wrath stirred up her constituents, and they spared no effort to baffle the invader who had aroused the anger of their sovereign lady. They swarmed in a solid phalanx between the photographer and whatever part of the district they saw he was bent on picturing, and their efforts would have prevented a picture of No. 35, the lodging house where the most recent murder took place, had not an athletic policeman appeared opportunely and succeeded in forcing the surging crowd back for an instant, or long enough for a hasty snapshot to be made."

    Regards,

    Simon
    Last edited by Simon Wood; December 11, 2012, 03:39 PM. Reason: spolling mistook

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  • Chris G.
    replied
    Good stuff, Howard and Simon. Those images give a really good idea of the neighborhood and the local folk.

    Cheers

    Chris

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  • Simon Wood
    replied
    Blackest London's Blackest Slum District

    Hi All,

    Here are three drawings made from photographs taken in 1901 by Curtis Brown, who ran a London news agency.

    They were published in the New York Press, 30th June 1901 under the headline "Blackest London's Blackest Slum District".

    Dorset Street
    Click image for larger version

Name:	DORSET STREET 1901.JPG
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    Millers Court
    Click image for larger version

Name:	MILLERS COURT 1901.JPG
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    Annie Chapman's Lodging House
    Click image for larger version

Name:	35 DORSET STREET 1901.JPG
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ID:	552949

    Curtis Brown wrote, "A visit to Dorset street, made with the object of taking the photographs for this article, resulted in exciting experiences. Taking photographs in London slum districts is always a matter of difficulty on account of the feverish desire of the entire population—men, women and children alike—to have their "likeness" taken; but in Dorset street there was determined opposition to any pictures of the locality being taken at all."

    Regards,

    Simon

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  • Howard Brown
    started a topic Daily People On Dorset Street

    Daily People On Dorset Street

    I might be reposting something already on the boards...but what the hell....

    Daily People
    New York
    September 16, 1901
    ***************





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