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  • #31
    Originally posted by Archaic View Post
    Hi, Debra! I had no idea that any facial skin was recovered...Ugh. Were pieces those pieces found together with the torso or separately?

    >Do you have any more info on this case (or related ones) that you could post when you have time? I'm quite interested in the various Torso murders, but any solid info seems awfully hard to come by... I've actually gotten quite a bit of it from your own posts! -Thanks very much, Archaic

    Hi Archaic,
    The skin from the face and scalp was found separately, as were the other sections of the body (I think the torso was cut into quarters), I don't think any of the portions were all found in the same area of the Thames, but discovered at different times of the day at different points around the Battersea area mainly, much the same as in the case of the Elizabeth Jackson murder.
    I have so much material on the various torso murders that it's hard to know what to do with it all! I've tried to look at each case seperately and weed out the sensationalist reports that are full of rumour not backed up by the medical evidence.
    The 1873 case was the original 'Thames Mystery' and the same rumours of abortions, dangerous bargemen murdering immoral women etc. were all claimed in this case too, 15 or so years before the same suspected motives were being reported for the 1887-1889 cases.
    Any female torso in the Thames seems to attract more press attention than other similar suspected murders. About the same time that the 1873 torso was discovered a man's head was found in a basket, on the roof of a house in Whitechapel! but the press reporting of this incident seems to be minimal. I would really like to find out how common this type of disposal of bodies was.

    Hi Nemo,
    I agree, the bodies don't seem to have been gutted, that's why I wonder if certain internal organs went missing just because of the way the body was cut up for disposal?

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    • #32
      Hi, Debra; thanks! Sure wish I lived a few thousand miles closer; I'd like to sit on the floor and read through all your clippings and files!

      I had a thought re: the victims 'losing' internal organs in the water without being deliberately disembowelled. This seems very likely to me as it a Tidal River with a strong current and a great deal of boating activity. I don't know precisely what it has in the way of aquatic life, but I'm afraid that's another possibility.

      I watched a good documentary on Burke & Hare last summer on a free online documentary site...trying to remember if it was Guba or Veoh or another one. I'll try to find it for you guys; its the historical re-enactment type of program, and at the end they show the famous book.

      Thanks, Archaic

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      • #33
        Id like to see the article....

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        • #34
          Originally posted by Archaic View Post
          I had a thought re: the victims 'losing' internal organs in the water without being deliberately disembowelled. This seems very likely to me as it a Tidal River with a strong current and a great deal of boating activity. I don't know precisely what it has in the way of aquatic life, but I'm afraid that's another possibility.
          Very true, Archaic, and at least one female body found in the Thames [I forget the exact date] has been put forward as a possible vicitm of a 'torso series' when in fact medical evidence of the time determined she was most likely a suicide victim, her body torn apart by the traffic in the Thames, as well as her internal organs being gnawed away by rats.

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          • #35
            It's dificult to know when Elizabeth Jackson or Rainham were dumped so this case and Pinchin are the two of the four Torso murders where we have some idea when they were left. The vault was apparently looked into on Saturday September 29 and the body was not there. The remains were then discovered on Tuesday October 2. Almost certainly the body was placed there at night and that leaves three nights. If the killer had a regular job then I would think the most likely time the corpse was dumped at the site would have been the Saturday evening/Sunday morning of the 29th/30th of September.

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            • #36
              Not lower class

              I'm not sure if I've heard mention of this "rich flowered silk underskirt" before? Debs?

              Hull Daily Mail Thu, Oct 4, 1888

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              • #37
                Hi Jerry
                Yes, the skirt was originally thought to indicate the Whitehall victim was of a higher class but the fabric in question was later found to be of a common type, the pattern three years old (some papers name the pattern of fabric type IIRC) and manufactured in Bradford.


                There's a recent thread on it here discussing Rob's article:

                http://www.jtrforums.com/showthread.php?t=19317

                The mention of a dress 'steel' in the papers is interesting I thought; if it was true, it may indicate a more fashionable vicitm than the Whitechapel victims were who barely had any underwear to their name, never mind dress forms.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Debra Arif View Post
                  Hi Jerry
                  Yes, the skirt was originally thought to indicate the Whitehall victim was of a higher class but the fabric in question was later found to be of a common type, the pattern three years old (some papers name the pattern of fabric type IIRC) and manufactured in Bradford.


                  There's a recent thread on it here discussing Rob's article:

                  http://www.jtrforums.com/showthread.php?t=19317

                  The mention of a dress 'steel' in the papers is interesting I thought; if it was true, it may indicate a more fashionable vicitm than the Whitechapel victims were who barely had any underwear to their name, never mind dress forms.
                  Hi Debs,

                  I know this is an old thread, but found this stuff on Century Dress Fabrics and patterns. IIRC, the ads for this company were run in magazines around 1884ish? Your last sentence is revealing and I would add, why would a woman dress up like this to go to a backstreet medical procedure? (Apologies for the images being so large, I will reduce later)





                  and this link. (copyright image so I didn't post it.)

                  https://www.alamy.com/an-exhibition-...222904971.html

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                  • #39
                    Hi Jerry, thanks for posting the Bradford advert, I love it, especially the little fabric samples pasted to it. I live in a village in Yorkshire that was once famous for its textile mills, the last of which I witnessed the demolition of the 1990s.

                    Nostalgia aside, I think you have asked a very good question.
                    The dress form is an intriguing find in the Whitehall case.Kate Eddowes clothing is the most detailed of all the Whitechapel victims and we see nothing similar in the way Kate dressed. Kate was apparently wearing all the clothing she possessed when she died, which tells us a lot about her lifestyle. Similarly, wearing a dress form in the late 1880s suggests someone who was able to follow fashion. The bustle was huge in the 1870s but by the late 80s it had experienced a revival in the form of a much more modest version consisting of a small wire cage attached to the body under the dress.

                    One thing to consider about back street 'procedures.' is that they were costly, No doctor would risk performing such a procedure without remuneration.
                    Women who sought the services of doctors willing to help them out of difficult situations were usually able to pay for the service.

                    Visiting such a doctor had to appear as normal as possible and so ordinary acceptable day clothing would be worn for the visit. The women were usually sent home after instruments were use on them or they had been administered some drug. Again, with the finding of the dress form, if this case was abortion related it suggests an instant death with a panic to get rid of the body.

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                    • #40
                      Thanks Debs,

                      The other thing that gets me is how a woman of that (supposed) status would go unnoticed from society? I guess there's a possibility she was wrapped up in someone else's dress? But her body features seemed to coincide with a higher social status too, so it's not unlikely they were her clothes.

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