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Swanson's Marginalia: Our Perceptions

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  • #46
    Originally posted by Robert Linford View Post
    Which means, I am out of the office at the moment. I will respond upon my return.
    ...as it happens, Rob, this time you're right

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    • #47
      There's just no fooling some people is there.
      Ai Ddeuda rhywbeth a has Anderson a Fi sy rhywbeth a has Swanson ynddi , ni ll ca choelbrennau chan boblogi yn rhyfeddu beth ydy ydy Kosminski pawb am. 'i ll cathrena 'u chnau.

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      • #48
        Recently posted elsewhere....

        This despite the fact he ( Mr. B.) apparently has found time to post about a dozen times in the past day elsewhere. Or are you saying that he can post on other sites because they don't demand rigorous thought or application of standards? So he's busy, so he'll only post on the fluffy, non-challenging and thought-lite boards... -Ally Ryder

        Just to set the record straight, I asked Chris Phillips and Mr. Evans if they would care to discuss the Swanson Marginalia over here. Chris graciously declined and I haven't heard back from SPE, assuming he has even read the email I sent. 4 people are aware of that email I sent....3 moderators and JMenges.

        Hopefully...we can elevate our "standards" to what Ally desires by having Mr. Evans step in here and get the discussion going. If not, we'll do it ourselves.

        Ally has every opportunity to discuss the issues she has with the marginalia here,as she is a member in good standing...
        To Join JTR Forums :
        Contact Howard@jtrforums.com

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        • #49
          Not that Ally needs defending, but her comments were in response to Jeff Leahy saying:

          "Paul doesnt post on casebook because its to time consuming to give justice to the replies that he would prefer to give..."

          So she, I believe in a tongue in cheek way, suggested that this means his posts on this forum do not require time and consideration to give justice to the other posters.

          I too hope that Stewart and Paul would discuss this together, here or on casebook, but I find that likelihood remote.

          JM

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          • #50
            I can't tell if there is more drama here or on an episode of Grey's Anatomy.

            Please refer all who ask why research on this unsolved series of murders is not taken seriously to this thread.

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            • #51
              Originally posted by How Brown View Post
              Recently posted elsewhere....

              This despite the fact he ( Mr. B.) apparently has found time to post about a dozen times in the past day elsewhere. Or are you saying that he can post on other sites because they don't demand rigorous thought or application of standards? So he's busy, so he'll only post on the fluffy, non-challenging and thought-lite boards... -Ally Ryder

              Just to set the record straight, I asked Chris Phillips and Mr. Evans if they would care to discuss the Swanson Marginalia over here. Chris graciously declined and I haven't heard back from SPE, assuming he has even read the email I sent. 4 people are aware of that email I sent....3 moderators and JMenges.

              Hopefully...we can elevate our "standards" to what Ally desires by having Mr. Evans step in here and get the discussion going. If not, we'll do it ourselves.

              Ally has every opportunity to discuss the issues she has with the marginalia here,as she is a member in good standing...
              'so he'll only post on the fluffy, non-challenging and thought-lite boards...'

              Absolutely. Why make work for yourself.

              Leave me to relax for all the world like a Michaelangelo cherub on the fluffy, non-challenging, thought-lite clouds of these message boards, eating grapes and exchanging banalities.

              But fliting through my empty-head - damn, I just dropped a grape - is an idle question which I frankly struggle to ask: but since when did Casebook become some sort of court in front of which I am expected to appear to answer charges brought against me?

              I don't contribute to the Casebook message boards (never mind my reasons) and I haven't done so for years. If somebody has a question, is there any reason why they can't disturb my tranquility and join me on a fluffy cloud here. Or I can be emailed, or I can be sent a personal message, or a letter could be send via my publisher. Or I could be asked via someone who obviously has contact with me, like Howie. Has the world of communication broken down? Has anyone got any grapes?

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              • #52
                Differences

                Originally posted by Paul View Post
                I don't contribute to the Casebook message boards (never mind my reasons) and I haven't done so for years. If somebody has a question, is there any reason why they can't disturb my tranquility and join me on a fluffy cloud here. Or I can be emailed, or I can be sent a personal message, or a letter could be send via my publisher. Or I could be asked via someone who obviously has contact with me, like Howie. Has the world of communication broken down? Has anyone got any grapes?
                Paul, as you must be aware, I should like to know why the differences in the pencils used, and the slight variations in the handwriting were not spotted when you saw (examined?) the marginalia and endpaper notes all those years ago.

                Obviously if these irregularities had been spotted then they could have been addressed at that time, questions could have been asked that can not be asked now and this issue would not have arisen at this late date. Did you spot these things, they are obvious to the naked eye, as I found when I first saw the book in 2000? If so was it commented upon? And, of course, this has nothing to do with hindsight, as has been suggested, it has everything to do with something being properly looked at in the first place.

                I like to think, and I do believe (and indeed hope), that we have the greatest respect for each other. But if you take pops at me in things that you write (albeit some of them veiled) do not expect me to remain silent and to not respond.

                I have continued to point out that there is no evidence, as such, for forgery in the endpaper notes, and personally I do not consider that signing the notes 'D.S.S.' is in any way suspicious, although I do realise why some say it is. It has been noted by others that this is more something to do with the veracity of the endpaper notes rather than the authenticity. So, personally, I tend towards the view that Donald Swanson did indeed write them, but in accepting this, there are certain caveats posed by the examination (and the content) of the said notes. This situation, of course, was not previously known as, in my opinion, they had not been examined properly in the first place.

                When I first pointed the problems out a few years ago on the Casebook site, I did so in a factual manner, not even suggesting fakery. Martin's response, and to a lesser degree your own, was remarkable (although not totally unexpected) and, I confess, rather worrying. As you know I am always happy to chat, and you have my phone number (I don't have your current one) and I don't think that you and I have ever been reduced to cross words. Having said that, I think that this is a matter for public openness and transparency. The trouble is you and I often draw a crank or two in with us.

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                • #53
                  Hi ho

                  Not wanting to distract from the weightier to-ing and fro-ing but, seeing as it has been raised on another thread, so what if the thing was written in two pencils?

                  Two scearios have been posited elsewhere as to why two pencils. But....and not having seen the marginalia I am assuming "pencil" means "pencil"..... why not having him start to write, blunting/breaking his pencil, reaching for another, continuing and so on.?

                  Its not as if the desk of the average Victorian would only have one solitary pencil or that using two of them is indicative of anything? Other than him having dropped one pencil and reached for another, or went to make tea and happened to reach for another on return or whatever.

                  I'm sure there are reasons to discuss the marginalia....but using two pencils hardly seems damning.

                  p

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                  • #54
                    Good to see you back,Lars.

                    Thanks to Messrs. Begg and Evans for these early March 7th posts...and please, to one and all, lets let these two gentlemen discuss the issue as I have mentioned this thread will be moderated by 4 individuals to assure no sniping at any peripheral or unrelated issues at either of them or anyone as a matter of fact...and we mean it. Everyone,please keep your agendas off the thread. Thank you very much in advance.

                    Back to the thread !
                    To Join JTR Forums :
                    Contact Howard@jtrforums.com

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                    • #55
                      I donít recall observing them, I donít recall ever making that close an examination of the marginalia, and Iím not sure that I would at that time have been overly concerned because using different pencils and very small differences in handwriting are easily explained. Those were also pre-diary days and fakes were not paramount in one's mind. Furthermore, I lived in Yorkshire, my visits to London were infrequent and I probably only saw the marginalia two or three times. Having absolutely no reason then - or, for that matter, now - to think it was other than what it purported to be, my correspondence shows that at that time I was preoccupied with working my way through a large cache of Swanson material which included official and private papers, notebooks, a press cutting book, and other books containing marginal annotations, all of which had to be checked for accuracy and other snippets of information; I was also engaged in trying to establish provenance, to learn more about Donald Swanson, and to arrange for the material to be copied.

                      As said, there was and is nor reason to think that the marginalia is other than what it purports to be, namely some pencilled annotations by Donald Swanson; 'small differences' in handwriting can be caused by many things: fatigue, consumption of alcohol, changes of writing implement, and changes of writing surface, changes in writing position, and so on. We know he changed writing implement, he also turned the book to the endpapers, so we know he changed writing position. How many of the other factors came into play? And, as Lars says, changes in pencil means zilch. He broke one, it wore down and he changed it, he put a pencil down and picked up a different one, he wrote the endpaper somewhere else... If there were reasons for supposing that the marginalia wasn't genuine then these things would matter, as evidence that the marginalia isn't genuine it's very small beer.

                      Forgive haste, but I am in the final hours of finishing you know what...

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                      • #56
                        Two Pencils

                        Originally posted by Mr. Poster View Post
                        Two scearios have been posited elsewhere as to why two pencils. But....and not having seen the marginalia I am assuming "pencil" means "pencil"..... why not having him start to write, blunting/breaking his pencil, reaching for another, continuing and so on.?
                        Its not as if the desk of the average Victorian would only have one solitary pencil or that using two of them is indicative of anything? Other than him having dropped one pencil and reached for another, or went to make tea and happened to reach for another on return or whatever.
                        I'm sure there are reasons to discuss the marginalia....but using two pencils hardly seems damning.
                        p
                        Quite obviously two different pencils could have been used at the time. Indeed, this was a point I made back in 2000 when giving possible explanations for this. I also suggested that the handwriting on the endpaper might also be slightly different to the marginalia in view of the fact that a full blank page, the endpaper, provided a much larger area to write in than the cramped margins. But, as we have seen, other reasons may also be given.

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                        • #57
                          To Ally, on the other board, who wrote;

                          'The very good reason I have for not disturbing you on your fluffy cloud there is because, it has been proven, that if I post something over there that you don't like, you'll complain and have it deleted. So what's the point? It is better that Stewart posts the questions, because at least he has the standing not to have his posts poofed if you don't particularly like them.'

                          I assume you are refering to the late and great days of Batboy, but you thought that's what I did, but it is not in fact what I did, but you never asked. Nor did I do anything like it. Sorry. Also, Howard does not delete posts simply because I want him to. He can be a bastard that way. The times I tell him to delete a post, and the times he just won't do. It's enough to make one spit.

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                          • #58
                            Only Once

                            Originally posted by Paul View Post
                            I donít recall observing them, I donít recall ever making that close an examination of the marginalia, and Iím not sure that I would at that time have been overly concerned because using different pencils and very small differences in handwriting are easily explained. Those were also pre-diary days and fakes were not paramount in one's mind. Furthermore, I lived in Yorkshire, my visits to London were infrequent and I probably only saw the marginalia two or three times. Having absolutely no reason then - or, for that matter, now - to think it was other than what it purported to be, my correspondence shows that at that time I was preoccupied with working my way through a large cache of Swanson material which included official and private papers, notebooks, a press cutting book, and other books containing marginal annotations, all of which had to be checked for accuracy and other snippets of information; I was also engaged in trying to establish provenance, to learn more about Donald Swanson, and to arrange for the material to be copied.
                            As said, there was and is nor reason to think that the marginalia is other than what it purports to be, namely some pencilled annotations by Donald Swanson; 'small differences' in handwriting can be caused by many things: fatigue, consumption of alcohol, changes of writing implement, and changes of writing surface, changes in writing position, and so on. We know he changed writing implement, he also turned the book to the endpapers, so we know he changed writing position. How many of the other factors came into play? And, as Lars says, changes in pencil means zilch. He broke one, it wore down and he changed it, he put a pencil down and picked up a different one, he wrote the endpaper somewhere else... If there were reasons for supposing that the marginalia wasn't genuine then these things would matter, as evidence that the marginalia isn't genuine it's very small beer.
                            Forgive haste, but I am in the final hours of finishing you know what...
                            Yes, but I saw the book only once and noticed the inconsistencies immediately. Obviously you were (and are) quite happy that there is no problem whatsoever with the annotations and that all should stand as it did back in 1988. I am, I must admit, surprised that you didn't make a closer examination in view of the relevance, and importance of these notes.

                            I, too, went through all the Swanson material in the collection in a very short time and photographed it as well. As this book, and its annotations, forms a very large part of your, and Martin's, theorising, I am surprised that you didn't accord it more attention. It was by far the most important part of the collection and its relevance in relation to the possible identification of the Ripper cannot be gainsaid.

                            I must accept what you have said in answer to my questions and do not wish to trouble you when you are so busy. Best of luck with the book.

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Hi ho

                              I am not accusing anyone of anything (just in case). I only addressed the matter of pencils for the simple reason that it was put forward within the context of two possible scenarios which I felt are not exactly all encompassing.

                              Especially in that they didnt include the, given all our experiences with pencils, very likely if not most probable scenario of his either having access to two (TWO! Imagine it!) pencils and having employed both given that he had misplaced/blunted one whilst writing.

                              It is apparent that some beleive there are valid reasons to doubt the text or its authorship. The use of two different pencils is hardly one of them?

                              And no... I did not say that Stewart P. Evans is hinging everything, or indeed anything, on two different pencils.

                              p

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Originally posted by SPE View Post
                                Yes, but I saw the book only once and noticed the inconsistencies immediately. Obviously you were (and are) quite happy that there is no problem whatsoever with the annotations and that all should stand as it did back in 1988. I am, I must admit, surprised that you didn't make a closer examination in view of the relevance, and importance of these notes.

                                I, too, went through all the Swanson material in the collection in a very short time and photographed it as well. As this book, and its annotations, forms a very large part of your, and Martin's, theorising, I am surprised that you didn't accord it more attention. It was by far the most important part of the collection and its relevance in relation to the possible identification of the Ripper cannot be gainsaid.

                                I must accept what you have said in answer to my questions and do not wish to trouble you when you are so busy. Best of luck with the book.
                                No offence, Stewart, but good for you. You saw it, I didnít. You think itís somehow significant, I donít. Times were different, priorities were different, we are different people. As I said, there was - and is - no reason to suppose that the marginalia is other than what it purports to be. If it looks like a dog and barks like a dog and is a dog, thereís not much to be gained from taking it to a vet just on the off-chance that itís a chicken. I was and am satisfied with the provenance, I know of no reason for supposing that it isnít genuine, even Dr Christopher Davies has said Ė twice Ė that the handwriting is probably Swansonís. Even you say ĎI tend towards the view that Donald Swanson did indeed write themí. My judgement at the time was that the marginalia is genuine, nothing has come along to so much as shake that judgement. Having established authenticity as best one could the next step was to examine the content. That's on-going. Back to work now eith a vengeance.
                                Cheers
                                Paul

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