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  • #16
    Originally posted by Jonathan Hainsworth View Post
    That cuts no ice either. The set-up was much more fluid than you appreciate.
    Be that as it may, mere fluidity should not be taken as somehow supportive of Druitt's, or any other random toff, being there. We need proof, not speculation, if only because there are many theories in which suspects have been transported to the heart of Ripper territory on the most tenuous grounds.
    We will have to agree to disagree.
    No problem, Jon.
    Kind regards, Sam Flynn

    "Suche Nullen"
    (F. Nietzsche)

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Jonathan Hainsworth View Post
      Now I must go, for a time, as I and members of my family live near the bush-fires currently engulfing parts of my home state of South Australia (and I do not have a tablet).
      All the best to you and them, Jon.
      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

      "Suche Nullen"
      (F. Nietzsche)

      Comment


      • #18
        I hope all is well with you and your family Jpnathan. Sorry about the brush fires.

        I have continued to delve into back issues of 'Ripperologist' and found your article about Druitt at Winchester and noted the other student on the debating team, named Cook as I recall. Cook became involved with Toynbee Hall. I googled a bunch of pictures of Toynbee Hall activities to search for Druitt in a group and didn't find him but that could be a good place to look.

        A big problem with Druitt for me is after Kate Eddowes was killed the killer seems to have gone deep into Whitechapel. The inferences have been that he lived near George Yard or somewhere close and he was heading home to safety. However I note that Toynbee Hall was also close by. Could volunteers drop by any time of the night/morning? Perhaps volunteers had keys to the premises?
        The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

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        • #19
          To Anna, Simon and Sam. Thanks for your best wishes.

          I am between trips, and so I will defend myself as quickly as I can, and try to anticipate the replies and answer them now.

          To Sam

          We just approach this subject from very different angles, that are irreconcilable (in case you were considering it, do not waste your hard-earned coin on my book as it will not be your cup of tea).

          This sentence of yours perfectly encapsulates that we are on different planes:

          Be that as it may, mere fluidity should not be taken as somehow supportive of Druitt's, or any other random toff, being there. We need proof, not speculation, if only because there are many theories in which suspects have been transported to the heart of Ripper territory on the most tenuous grounds.

          a) 'Mere' fluidity is supportive of Druitt's candidacy. He was the Ripper as far as a police chief of the day was concerned. OK, so why Whitechapel?

          b) Druitt is not a "random toff", far from it. See a)

          c) We would love proof, impossible at this distance, but speculation will do for a provisional solution in which we know the murderer's probable identity. Unless you seek an absolute solution. I don't--so leave me out of this 'we'.

          d) Lechmere can be placed next to a victim and yet his candidacy falls down as there is ... nothing else. I am not transporting Druitt into the heart of Ripper territory; that was done by reliable sources during that era.

          Perhaps you missed a previous post of mine that went through all this in detail?

          Here is that argument again:

          There is no direct evidence, whatsoever, that Montague Druitt had anything to do with the reformist campaign of the Barretts, e.g. to bring the classes together at Toynbee Hall by having Oxford students live there during their breaks (this could not include Druitt, not as a live-in student, as it only really got going in 1884).

          There is an inferential case, however, that can be made that he probably was a part of that social reform movement. This was the theory of--in my opinion--the greatest writer on this subject, Tom Cullen ("Autumn of Terror-Jack the Ripper: His Crimes and Times", The Bodley Head, 1965)

          1. Montague John Druitt is the likeliest suspect to be the Ripper according to a contemporaneous and competent police chief (yes, it's that simple).

          2. Since Druitt did not live in the East End he could have become familiar with its topography by providing legal assistance to poor people, as he was an Oxonian (no longer a student, a working professional) and graduates like him gave up some of their time in their off-hours.

          3. The Vicar tale is arguably likely to be Druitt too, described as a gentleman who went to the East End to help prostitutes. That's hardly legal assistance, but is the same kind of broad motive for being in Whitechapel: muscular, Christian charity.

          4. A gentleman who gave what assistance his busy schedule allowed to a social improvement campaign, and who became dangerously deranged--as certain people at the time "believed"--could twist himself into a self-styled terrorist. This would explaining why he kept returning to a locale that was logistically awkward and, eventually, crawling with cops.

          5. Why did Druitt not hunt for easier victims in Blackheath, or Hyde Park, etc? In fact, the so-called canonical murders were all committed specifically in the "evil quarter mile", the area identified by reformers as the worst of the worst. Favourable press coverage of the poor began with the horrific murders of Emma Smith, and Martha Tabram (by separate groups) and then a knife-wielding lunatic got going straight after who both consolidated and accelerated this reversal of attitudes--as noted by George Bernard Shaw. Just a coincidence? Perhaps it was. Then again, perhaps it wasn't ...?

          I am not putting up Druitt as the solution. That was done by people of the Late Victorian Era. I have never seen a persuasive argument as to why their solution should not be provisionally accepted. I have read a load of unsupported speculation (e.g. twaddle) about why Druitt was really a tormented gay man and that Macnaghten was a hands-off, desk-bound incompetent (and most improbably that he of all people was homophobic).

          As I write in my book, there is a mystery inside the mystery of Jack the Ripper: how and why did the young barrister morph into the "mad doctor". Part of the challenge is due to the primary record being a hall-of-Mirrors, contradictory puzzle; e.g. some tell us the facts but not the truth, and some tell us the truth but not the facts.

          To Anna

          Sorry, I have never written an article about Druitt at Winchester.

          My articles for "Ripperologist" were "Druitt's Ghost", "Safely Caged", "The Drowned Doctor Red Herring" and "Clerical Sphinx"'. They were revisionist, largely unread (the second one, arguing in favor of Anderson's reliability as a source, did not inspire a single post even from Kosminski-advocates), and it is a testimony to Adam Neil Wood's ecumenical approach that he published them at all.

          The killer heading back into Whitechapel means nothing either way. He could have been a non-local simply doubling back and then escaping by a longer route he knew to be safer.

          George Sims claimed, in 1907, that the killer walked back to [the un-named] Blackheath after each murder.

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          • #20
            Take care, Jon, and we all hope you and yours avoid the fires.
            To Join JTR Forums :
            Contact Howard@jtrforums.com

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            • #21
              Thanks Howard!

              The fire came within five minutes driving distance of where we live--which is much worse than it actually is--and has reversed course. I am very sorry for the loss of property and animals for other people, but so far nobody has thankfully died (touch wood). The firefighters have been extraordinary.

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              • #22
                I probably got confused on the schools. I didn't take notes, but I refer to the article covering Druitt at school from age 13.

                There is a lot of value in what McNaughton says. I personally don't think his memory is that faulty concerning the Ripper suspect. Maybe on other things but I think he absolutely knows the name and other particulars on Druitt. If a writer wants to tell a story and not get sued, it is good to change enough points to get the story out but not get too close to what cannot be absolutely proven.

                At this point it is helpful to have directions for continued research. There are so many possible suspects at this point.

                My thoughts on Toynbee hall were simply that Druitt might have had a friend there or a connection, not necessarily a formal attachment. It is just another area to look at.
                The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Jonathan Hainsworth View Post
                  To Sam

                  ...in case you were considering it, do not waste your hard-earned coin on my book as it will not be your cup of tea
                  I probably will buy it, Jon, because I rather like your style of writing. It will be a good read, I'm sure.
                  Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                  "Suche Nullen"
                  (F. Nietzsche)

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