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  • Eddowes at the Casual Ward

    Hi All,

    Into part of the evidence from Eddowes' Inquest I have annotated [in blue] facts taken from a February 1891 report into "The Homeless Poor of London".

    [Coroner] Where did you sleep?

    [John Kelly]—"On Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday we were down at the hop-picking, and came back to London on Thursday. We had been unfortunate at the hop-picking, and had no money. On Thursday night we both slept in the [Shoe Lane] casual ward . . ."

    [“Shoe Lane Casual Ward”—City of London Union Casual Ward, Robin Hood Court, Shoe Lane, St. Andrew Holborn, City of London. Casuals were released the following day].

    [John Kelly]—"On the Friday I earned 6d at a job, and I said, "Here, Kate, you take 4d and go to the lodging-house and I will go to Mile End," but she said, "No, you go and have a bed and I will go to the casual ward," and she went. I saw her again on Saturday morning early."

    [Coroner]—"At what time did you quit one another on Friday? - I cannot tell, but I think it would be about three or four in the afternoon.

    [Coroner]—"What did she leave you for?"

    [John Kelly]—"To go to Mile-end."

    [Coroner]—"What for?"

    [John Kelly]—"To get a night's shelter in the casual ward."

    The doors of the casual ward are usually opened in winter at about five, and in summer about six o'clock, and at most of these places, some time before the appointed hour, the casuals will be seen collected at the door waiting for admission.

    Admitted within the doors, each applicant for relief is in turn questioned as to his name, his age, occupation, where he slept the previous night and where he is going on departure. The particulars are recorded, and any further questions bearing on the fact of destitution may, if the superintendent thinks fit, be asked. Next the casual undergoes the ordeal of a search, and any money or other property found upon him is taken away. Articles other than money are restored to the casual on his departure; money may by order of the guardians be retained, but is in practice usually returned. If however the casual has as much as fourpence, admission is refused. When the search is completed the applicant is conducted to the bath. Here he strips, and his clothes are taken away to be 'baked' for the purpose of disinfecting them and destroying vermin. They are returned to him the following morning; in the meantime a clean night-shirt is given him.


    [Coroner]—"When did you see her next morning?"

    [John Kelly]—"About eight o'clock. I was surprised to see her so early . . ."

    [Juryman]—"Is not eight o'clock a very early hour to be discharged from a casual ward?"

    [John Kelly]—"I do not know."

    [Juryman] There is some tasks - picking oakum - before you can be discharged."

    [John Kelly]—"I know it was very early."

    On each day of his detention (Sundays excepted) the casual, unless in case of illness, does a task of work, which consists, in the case of men, of picking not more than four pounds of unbeaten or eight pounds of beaten oakum, or breaking not more than 13 cwt. [one hundredweight=112 pounds] of stones, while women usually pick two pounds of oakum, or else are employed in washing or scrubbing. The task of work is in no case an excessive one, and may usually be finished early in the afternoon, though the casual frequently dawdles over his work and makes it last on till five or six o'clock. In 1871 The Pauper Inmates Discharge and Regulation Act (34 and 35 Vic., cap. 108) provided that a casual pauper, who is defined to be a destitute wayfarer or wanderer, applying for relief, should not be entitled to discharge himself before 11 o'clock on the morning following his admission, nor before performing the task of work prescribed for him.

    1889 details for Mile End Casual Ward—

    MILE END CASUAL WARD.jpg

    Cellular = Everyone sleeps in a separate space.

    M = Males, W = Women, C = Children.

    If Detained: Yes = the casual is detained, except if seeking work.

    The documented facts tell us that the earliest Eddowes could have left the Mile End Casual Ward was 11.00 am, and then only if she had finished her washing, scrubbing or picking two pounds of oakum.

    [Frederick Wilkinson]—"Kelly slept there [at the lodging house] on Friday and Saturday, but not Kate. I did not make any inquiry about her not being there on Friday. I could not say whether Kate went out with Kelly on Saturday, but I saw them having their breakfast together.

    If Wilkinson's story was true, Eddowes could not have stayed at the Mile End Casual Ward on the night of Friday 28th September. But why would she have needed to stay there?

    [John Kelly]—"I think it was on Saturday morning that we pawned the boots."

    [Mr. Crawford]—"Is it not the fact that the pawning took place on the Friday night?"

    [John Kelly]—"I do not know. It was either Friday night or Saturday morning. I am all muddled up. (The tickets were produced, and were dated the 28th, Friday.)

    THE STAR, 1st October 1888—

    The articles pledged at [Joseph] Jones's, the pawnbroker, in [31] Church-street, have been taken away by Detective-Inspector McWilliams, who has charge of the case. The pawnbroker states that the articles must have been pledged by a woman, as it is against the rule to receive goods from a man pledged in a woman's name.

    On Friday night Eddowes and Kelly had 2/6d [30 pennies], more than enough to pay for their lodgings in Flower and Dean Street [8 pennies].

    There are two further flaws in John Kelly's story—

    Firstly, if on Friday 28th September Eddowes set off at "about three or four in the afternoon" to reach the Mile End Casual Ward, how could she have pawned Kelly's boots in Church Street, Whitechapel, that same night?

    Secondly, the Casual Poor Act 1882 amended the 1871 Pauper Inmates Discharge and Regulation Act—

    PAUPER LAW.jpg

    "A casual pauper shall not be entitled to discharge himself from a casual ward before nine o'clock in the morning of the second day following his admission."

    If Eddowes had stayed at the Mile End Casual Ward on the night of Friday 28th September, she wouldn't have been discharged until 9.00 am on Sunday, 30th September, eight-and-a-quarter hours after her murder.

    Regards,

    Simon
    Last edited by ; October 3, 2009, 01:15 PM. Reason: clearing more rogue asterisks

  • #2
    Dear Simon:

    Sorry for the late response to your threadstarter...this is very interesting work.

    Unless you are working on an article and don't wish to divulge much more than the material already kindly provided....what do you make of this situation?

    Is it possible that Eddowes could have stayed at another casual ward which didn't have the same strictures as the Mile End ward did ?

    Shoe Lane was a ward that apparently had a different protocol for release procedure ( Letting them out the next day ).

    All that aside, and again only if you are up to elaborating....it looks like you think she didn't stay at another ward...and if not, then what do you think is going on here ?

    One final thought.....since the Poor Law was amended once, then could it have been amended after 1882/1883 and allowed people to leave the following day as Shoe Lane's ward did ?

    Thanks again Simon....very interesting material.
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    • #3
      Hi Howard,

      Thank you for your observations.

      I've got a mountain of stuff on John Kelly, Eddowes and the events surrounding the so-called "double-event", but the details I have managed to assemble are as yet inconclusive and it would therefore be premature of me to set them out in any detail. I'm sure you understand.

      But here's a sneak preview of where my researches are leading.

      1. Eddowes and Kelly did not go hop-picking in Kent.
      2. Emily Burrell/Birrel was an invention.
      3. Eddowes did not stay in the Mile End Casual Ward.
      4. Eddowes was not arrested in Aldgate High Street.
      5. Eddowes was not taken to Bishopsgate police station.
      6. Eddowes did not die in Mitre Square.

      And then, of course, there's the matter of the GSG and piece of apron.

      Mitre Square was a complex piece of deception. It is the Rosetta Stone of the WM. Discover what happened on the night of 29/30th September 1888 and everything else falls into place.

      Regards,

      Simon

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Jon Simons
        Wasn`t Eddowes ejected from the Casual Ward before 08.00 am on the Saturday due to some unspecified trouble ?
        So said John Kelly!

        I would think that involvement in any sort of 'trouble' would have landed an inmate in the Workhouse for a couple of weeks; ... not back on the streets, which is precisely where they all wanted to be, after having enjoyed the 'comforts' of the Casual Ward, the previous evening.

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        • #5
          Hi Jon,

          Many thanks for the Jack London story. I hadn't seen it before.

          Eddowes' movements throughout September come from a single-source—John Kelly. The only third-party corroboration of her being at Mile End Casual Ward is a story which appeared in the East London Observer, 13th October 1888—

          "A reporter gleaned some curious information from the Casual Ward Superintendent of Mile End, regarding Kate Eddowes, the Mitre-square victim. She was formerly well-known in the casual wards there, but had disappeared for a considerable time until the Friday preceding her murder. Asking the woman where she had been in the interval, the superintendent was met with the reply, that she had been in the country "hopping". "But," added the woman, "I have come back to earn the reward offered for the apprehension of the Whitechapel murderer. I think I know him." "Mind he doesn't murder you too" replied the superintendent jocularly. "Oh, no fear of that," was the remark made by Kate Eddowes as she left. Within four-and-twenty hours afterwards she was a mutilated corpse."

          It all sounds very amicable, which is odd because it doesn't jive with Kelly saying that Eddowes was ejected from the Casual Ward before 8.00 am on Saturday due to some unspecified trouble [not that I'm suggesting he was telling the truth]. Dripping with the stuff of melodrama though the ELO story may be, it is nothing more than unsupported hearsay, made even more unlikely by not appearing until two weeks after the event.

          Regards,

          Simon

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          • #6
            Thanks Jon...

            Jack London could afford to violate the rules of the WCW . He didn't have to live there...

            Word of mouth goes a long way. I can imagine if I had to stay at one of those establishments...and bolted as London did....and then, as a result of my rule breaking, the incident is shared with the supervisor or attendant at another local casual ward...who may not allow me to enter because of my prior early departure at the other joint.
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            • #7
              Thats probably true Jon.

              However, lets pretend you needed to stay at Simon's casual ward.
              You decide to bolt before it was agreed upon.

              I doubt you would be allowed again in that ward.

              Its possible that word of what you did at Simon's would make its way over to my casual ward. I doubt if I would put up with similar shenanigans.

              Hence, you would be painting yourself into a corner or at least, limiting the number of wards you may be allowed to enter in your own neighborhood.

              But...I do understand what you mean too.
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              • #8
                Originally posted by Simon Wood View Post
                "But," added the woman, "I have come back to earn the reward offered for the apprehension of the Whitechapel murderer. I think I know him." "Mind he doesn't murder you too" replied the superintendent jocularly. "Oh, no fear of that," was the remark made by Kate Eddowes as she left.

                Interesting how one can read the same statement over and over during the years and sometimes something catches your eye for the first time. Kate isn't claiming definitive knowledge of the Ripper's identity; she's just saying she thinks she knows the culprit. (Assuming of course the entire conversation isn't an invention.)

                I've always thought the comments were fictitious but if you were going to make something up out of whole cloth for the papers wouldn't you say Kate claimed to know who the Ripper was as opposed to an Andersonian "she only thought she knew" ?

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                • #9
                  Edward McKenna

                  from the E-book Jack the Ripper: A Suspect Guide by Christopher J. Morley (2005)

                  Edward McKenna

                  McKenna was arrested on 14 September 1888 after acting suspiciously throughout the day, and according to press reports, had threatened to stab people. When searched, his pockets contained amongst other things an assortment of rags, handkerchiefs, women's purses, several metal and cardboard boxes, and that most underrated of vegetables a spring onion. Questioned by Inspector Abberline, McKenna said he peddled laces and other small articles for a living. He was able to provide the police with the alibi that he was sleeping at a lodging house at 15 Brick Lane at the time Annie Chapman was murdered. McKenna was described as 5ft 7"tall, slightly built with sandy coloured hair, beard and moustache, shabbily dressed, wearing a cloth skull cap, which apparently did nothing to improve his appearance.

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                  • #10
                    Hi All,

                    The Mile End Casual Ward Superintendent story sounds uncannily like another which appeared two days later in the Kent and Sussex Courier, 12th October 1888, and must have originated with Kelly—

                    "Their last meal together [Eddowes and Kelly] was on Saturday, and they parted in the afternoon at about two p.m., the woman then expressing her intention of visiting her daughter at Bermondsey. The last words Kelly addressed to her were a caution to 'beware of the knife', an allusion to the Whitechapel murderer. She replied, 'Oh, don't fear for me; I'll take care', and went off."

                    Regards,

                    Simon

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                    • #11
                      Hi All,

                      Just to be square.

                      Seven days before the Mile End Casual Ward Superintendent story in the ELO and nine days before the story in the Kent and Sussex Courier, 12th October 1888, this story appeared in The Star, 3rd October 1888—

                      JOHN KELLY—"She [Eddowes] told me she had made up her mind to go to her daughter's in Bermondsey. I begged her to be back early, for we had been talking about the Whitechapel murders, and I said I did not want to have that knife get at her. "Don't you fear for me," said she, "I'll take care of myself, and I shan't fall into his hands." With that she went out. I went with her to the street corner below, and I never laid eyes on her again till I saw her down at the mortuary last night."

                      Boo Hoo. It fair tugs at yer heart strings.

                      Regards,

                      Simon
                      Last edited by ; October 5, 2009, 12:55 AM. Reason: spolling

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Simon Wood View Post

                        Boo Hoo. It fair tugs at yer heart strings.
                        This isn't exactly a burning line in the sand, so I'm not worked up....but I have to ask you , Simon : Why is it so hard to believe that Kelly and Eddowes might have had an emotional connection ? It seems of all the Ripper victims Eddowes had a shot at something resembling an emotional connection to a male.

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                        • #13
                          Hi Sir Robert,

                          I agree. That's how it would seem.

                          Regards,

                          Simon

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Simon Wood View Post
                            I agree. That's how it would seem.
                            Am I to take it you're not buying it ?

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                            • #15
                              Bob:

                              With all due respect to anyone who thinks otherwise, I lean in the direction that Kelly did have some affection for Kate....specifically because he downplays the occasional prostitution around the time of her Inquest...and mentions it in another article. Thats just a unprovable "gut" feeling.

                              The instance where he does allude to it ( an article that Spry found a few years back) gave me the feeling he did so in a most non-deferential way. Totally unscientific, I know....but just that "gut" feeling.
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