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  • Aberconway Version

    When the Aberconway version of the memorandum became available I put together a couple of web pages giving parallel transcripts of it and the official version. I'm not sure whether anyone has ever looked at them, but they're moving to a new home because I've parted company with the appalling Virgin Media, so I thought I'd post the new URLs here:

    Transcript of Aberconway version:
    http://www.medievalgenealogy.org.uk/jtr/Aberconway.htm

    Parallel texts in same order as Aberconway version:
    http://www.medievalgenealogy.org.uk/...onwayOrder.htm

    Parallel texts in same order as official version:
    http://www.medievalgenealogy.org.uk/...icialOrder.htm

  • #2
    Fantastic, Chris !!!!
    Thanks very, very much !
    To Join JTR Forums, Contact :
    Howard@jtrforums.com

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    • #3
      Very useful, thankyou Chris.
      Regards, Jon S.
      "
      The theory that the murderer is a lunatic is dispelled by the opinion given to the police by an expert in the treatment of lunacy patients......."If he's insane
      " observed the medical authority, "he's a good deal sharper than those who are not".
      Reynolds Newspaper, 4 Nov. 1888.

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      • #4
        Bump Up
        To Join JTR Forums, Contact :
        Howard@jtrforums.com

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        • #5
          Oh yes, bump up.

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          • #6
            Indeed. Thanks, Chris, for posting this useful side-by-side comparison of the two documents. I can see why it has been generally accepted that the Aberconway is a draft for the apparent official version.

            There are several points of interest, but for now I would like to focus on the mention on two occasions in the Aberconway version of the city PC sighting near MItre Square. Why do you reckon that with this being the case - twice - that this rather significant event is not mentioned at all in the 'official' version?
            Best Wishes,
            Cris Malone
            ______________________________________________
            "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

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            • #7
              Maybe Macnaghten's boss had the final say with the "official" version and had an issue with that detail. Maybe the account of the City PC was inaccurate so it was deleted. It would help greatly if we knew for sure the specific purpose of the memoranda, the audience it was intended for and who in fact instigated its composition in the first place.

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              • #8
                I think we do know.

                I argue that Sir Melville Macnaghten, entirely alone, decided--how about scrambled--to get Druitt's name onto a document of state as a Ripper suspect, in the wake of the 1894 Cutbush 'scoop' which also involved a good, respectable family being sort of protected by a Liberal newspaper.

                In that document, the filed version, there are lame excuses about why Druitt was not arrested, e.g. there was a lack of hard evidence even though the family "believed" him to be the killer and he was definitely, without a doubt, a manaic who gained sexual pelasure from violence (wheres it was only hearsay that he was a medical man) and he supposedly matched better than the other two the "awful glut" [phony] litmus test.

                What we know from other sources--inlcuding Macnaghten in 1914--is that the real reason Druitt was not arrested was due to being long deceased, a fact concealed in both versions of his Report.

                In 1975 and 2013 Don Rumbelow argued that the Abercomway version came second, and Martin Fido agreed in 1987 (their views may have changed) and I think they were right.

                William Race is the point of the piece and yet he is margianlized in Aberconway.

                More to the point the Aberconway version's suspct's section, minus the names, was disseminated to the public thorugh authors known to Macnaghten. This then was likely to be its purpose in being composed at all (the Druitt family were further disguised as friends).

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                • #9
                  This is strictly speculative of course, but I can see Macnaghten initiating this report on his own.
                  Best Wishes,
                  Cris Malone
                  ______________________________________________
                  "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    There is nothing in the extant record that anybody at Scotland Yard or the Home Office knew about Macnaghten's report, either in its filed version or the version disseminated to the public via Griffiths and Sims (or knew anything about Druitt).

                    Abberline's comments in 1903, about the young medical student who drowned himself being the subject of a Home Office report, is unlikely to be a reference to Montague Druitt because he was not a medical student. Nor was he the subject of a Home Office report either immediately after his suicide or in subsequent years, not a report at least ever sent to that department of state (it is possible, of course, that Macnaghten is Abberline's source and, consequently, was completely misled).

                    The unofficial version's suspects section appeared in Major Griffith's book in 1898 (with some of the data further altered) and was referenced by Sims in 1903 In his spat with Abberline). He also used the suspect's section--and other material--in his 1907 big article. In 1903 Sims referred to this draft or copy as a "Home Office report" as a definitive document of state written by the un-named Commissioner-- by implication either Warren or Monro.

                    In 1910 Sims was debunking Anderson's claims that any Jews assisted the Polish suspect to evade justice. For the only time Sims mentioned that there was final version of the report at the Home Office. Although semi-fictionalized, this was the first and only mention of the filed version of Macnaghten's report until the existence of this document--albeit gathering dust in the Scotland Yard archive--was discovered in 1966 by Robin Odell.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by CGP View Post
                      When the Aberconway version of the memorandum became available I put together a couple of web pages giving parallel transcripts of it and the official version. I'm not sure whether anyone has ever looked at them, but they're moving to a new home because I've parted company with the appalling Virgin Media, so I thought I'd post the new URLs here:

                      Transcript of Aberconway version:
                      http://www.medievalgenealogy.org.uk/jtr/Aberconway.htm

                      Parallel texts in same order as Aberconway version:
                      http://www.medievalgenealogy.org.uk/...onwayOrder.htm

                      Parallel texts in same order as official version:
                      http://www.medievalgenealogy.org.uk/...icialOrder.htm
                      Thanks Chris! Very helpful. I don't recall seeing this before.

                      One thing that occurred to me reading this (and I assume this has been discussed before) is that in the Official copy Kozminski's residence is given as Whitechapel. This seems to have been clarified after the Aberconway version was written, which only says he " lived in [... ...] heart of the district where the murders were comimitted."

                      This is a bit curious, since we assume Kozminski actually lived in Mile End. I have always thought this was either a simple error, or that "Whitechapel" was a term used to mean "that general area".

                      RH

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Rob House View Post
                        This is a bit curious, since we assume Kozminski actually lived in Mile End. I have always thought this was either a simple error, or that "Whitechapel" was a term used to mean "that general area".
                        Yes, I think it was used to describe Mile End Old Town as well. On some of the naturalisation papers the address is given as Whitechapel, though strictly it was outside the parish.

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                        • #13
                          I subscribe to the theory, originally argued by Rumbelow and Fido, that 'Aberconway' is written second and what's more some years later.

                          Whichever order they were composed it is 'Aberconway' whose suspect contents were propagated to the public - but in such a way that the press could not really check up on these might-be Jacks.

                          I belieev that was deliberate, not fortuitous for all concerned.

                          Between the filed and unofficial version Aaron Kosminski has been sexed-up as 'Kosminski', to use a modern expression meaning something has been hyped to suit some kind of agenda usually to please a voracious media (this is true of all three suspects).

                          This process of deliberate hyperbole began with backdating Aaron Kosminski's incarceration to much closer in time to the Mary Kelly murder. It was also done by turning this man's threatening behaviour with a knife into latent, though vague, homicidal tendencies. It wss done by relocating him not only near the crime scene but living in Whitechapel; living in the very heart of the locus of evil.

                          Regarding the Polish suspect, 'Aberconway' contains the innovation that a carefully un-named police constable (e.g. an unimpeachable witness, trained to observe suspicious characters) saw a man resembling 'Kosminski', a Polish Jewish man at the crime scene of the Eddowes murder. In fact 1888 sources show no such thing: in reality a German-Polish Jewish witness had seen a Gentile-featured figure previous to the murder, maybe chatting amiably with the victim. This witness, Joseph Lawende, may have been used to confront Ripper suspects Tom Sadler and William Grant (both Gentile sailors) before whom it is alleged he said no and yes, respectively.

                          It is possible, therefore, that a witness, an immigrant of the Hebrew Faith, affirmed to a Ripper suspect, though in 1895.

                          The cop in 'Aberconway' is perhaps a lift from PC Thomson's nearly stumbling upon the murderer of Frances Coles, though he could give no description of the killer (nonetheless Macnaghten's successor, Sir Basil Thompson, among others, thought that this was whom Major Griffiths was referring to).

                          George Sims used this semi-fictional tale too, in 1907, to imply that the beat cop had some kind of subsequent confrontation with the Polish suspect, but he could not make a positive identification.

                          An argument can be mounted that the deliberate distortions of 'Aberconway' [partly] set in motion the allegation--one that morphed and mutated over succeeding years--that 'Kosminski' (a fictional variant of a real person) had been positively identified by a Jewish witness who said yes and then no.

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