Who really was Jack the Ripper


This subject has fascinated me for so long I can't imagine why I haven't posted this up before.
For 3 months the East End of London was under siege by a serial killer (quite possibly our first) who killed 5 women and it's likely that the real amount was nearer 11.
In 1888 on the 31st August it all started when the body of Mary Ann Nicholls aged 42 was found. As with all of the victims her throat had been cut so hard that her head was almost severed.
The mutilation was almost always to the stomach and genitals.
The official list includes the following:
8th September Annie Chapman
30th September Elizabeth Stride and Catherine Eddowes
9th November Marry Jeanette Kelly

Apart from the fact that the police really didn't have any idea how to investigate this new kind of crime why were the investigation details kept from the public for so long?


Major Contributor
An interesting question, since there has been no hard evidence, and the London Police had no one of the intellect of Eugene Vidocq, the scale of time involved was fairly short, so finding the perpetrator would have been highly fractious. It has given rise to many theories and postulations, and countless books and storylines have been generated. Besides all else, society women fere considered fragile emotionally, and much of the public were considered not ready to hear particular details of the horrendous crime. The other aspect could well have been to prevent any other criminal copying those methods. The world was not yet equipped to deal with crimes that would occupy the mental powers of Sherlock Holmes and his brother Mycroft.


Who know's what was going through the mind of such a maniac, but one can't help to recognise the skill used to anatomization of his (or her we shouldn't assume) victims. It's clear that Jack the ripper stated of by slicing the throat open to stop them from screaming but then went about his/her business in a badly lit back alley. This I'm guessing needs some skill to complete in the kind of environment the bodies were found.
One of the strongest theories was that the murders were done by [FONT=arial,helvetica,arial,lucida sans]Montague John Druitt, but as far as I can see he had no trained skill with a knife and probably would have struggled to remove the organs within the kind of time scale that theses mutilations must have occurred in.
Having said that his body was found floating in the Thames and the "Whitechapel butcher" stopped murdering forever!
My question is... was
[/FONT][FONT=arial,helvetica,arial,lucida sans]Montague John Druitt a fall guy?


Major Contributor
I know of this suspect, and the public acceptance; it was stated by many that a surgeon's skill was required as to the nature of the mutilations, I have never accepted that these could have happened in confrontation with a single person, there were no reported signs of struggle, I believe. The most likely scenario is of a meeting with a couple, one of which was a woman. I have known of at least one story which postulates a woman perpetrator. I also understand that there was no direct or implied connection between the victims, which there would have been in true Hollywood investigation style. This always seemed to me, the 'planned perfect crime' - for its own sake. Clinical precision. I have my own feeling that if it were possible to discover the original victim's clothing, that two sets of DNA would be discovered, a man and a woman; one to hold, the other to perform the gruesome act.


Active Member
I looked at this subject in depth about 15 years ago. Reading the 'Dear Boss' letter sent to the Central News Agency always sent shivers up my spine. Whether it was sent by the killer himself, who knows?

Dear Boss,

I keep on hearing the police have caught me but they wont fix me just yet. I have laughed when they look so clever and talk about being on the right track. That joke about Leather Apron gave me real fits. I am down on whores and I shant quit ripping them till I do get buckled. Grand work the last job was. I gave the lady no time to squeal. How can they catch me now. I love my work and want to start again. You will soon hear of me with my funny little games. I saved some of the proper red stuff in a ginger beer bottle over the last job to write with but it went thick like glue and I cant use it. Red ink is fit enough I hope ha. ha. The next job I do I shall clip the ladys ears off and send to the police officers just for jolly wouldn't you. Keep this letter back till I do a bit more work, then give it out straight. My knife's so nice and sharp I want to get to work right away if I get a chance. Good Luck.

Yours truly
Jack the Ripper

Dont mind me giving the trade name

PS Wasnt good enough to post this before I got all the red ink off my hands curse it No luck yet. They say I'm a doctor now. ha ha.


I've never seen this letter.... but then again I don't confess to studying the ripper case.
Disturbing as the letter is, I don't see any clues in the letter. For instance did he actually cut off some woman's ears and post them to the police after sending this letter?

It has an uncanny, almost haunting similarity to the Yorkshire Ripper tape.
During the winter of 1963 I was on a ship that spent one week in four in London moored in the old St.Katharine Dock next to Tower Bridge. At that time parts of Whitechapel that had survived the Blitz were still much the same as they had been at the time of those crimes. Returning to the ship, from Aldgate East tube station - at night, over the cobles, in the smog was always a bit -- spooky.

Unravelling the Jack the Ripper mystery gets more tangled as years go by. As good a reference as any is probably the work of university lecturer, historian and broadcaster Martin Fido.
Martin was born in Heamoor and although most of his working life has been spent in the U.S.A. a recent appearance of him letting his hair down on U Tube shows that he has retained some of his West Penwith accent.

U Tube ref
Historian and author Martin Fido, drunk and singing!, Knoxville, Tennessee, October 2008
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