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Daily News
United Kingdom
10 September 1888


Some excitement was caused in the Whitechapel road on Saturday morning by the appearance of a two horse van belonging to the Great Eastern Railway Company being rapidly driven towards the London Hospital. On the floor of the van lay the body of a man apparently dead. The body was covered over but the face was exposed to view. A police constable and four workmen were also in the van. The van, though driven at such a rapid rate, was followed by a crowd, which gradually increased in size while on its way to the hospital. Inquiry at the London Hospital elicited the fact that the man's name was Robert Tibbs, aged 55 years. He had nearly all his lifetime been employed at a florist's in Cheapside. Recently, however, business had become very slack, and it was found necessary to discharge some of the employees. Tibbs was one of the men who received his notice to leave. This apparently preyed on his mind, and during the past few days it was noticed that his manner was strange. On Saturday morning, however, Tibbs, his brother, and a nephew went to Liverpool Street station for the purpose of going into the country for a holiday. Tibbs seemed to be perfectly rational; and before entering the station they had a glass of wine together. While standing at the platform, however, Tibbs, without a moment's warning, threw himself before a train that was entering the station. Both his feet were cut off, and when picked up he was unconscious. He was at once conveyed to the London Hospital in a goods van. It was there found necessary immediately to amputate both legs. This was done, but the unfortunate man died shortly after the operation had been performed.

Another shocking murder, with still more atrocious mutilation of the victim than in the previous case, was perpetrated between five and six o'clock in Saturday morning, in Whitechapel. The scene of this crime was the yard of 29 Hanbury street, and the murdered person, Annie Chapman, was again a woman of low life and in the poorest circumstances. No clue to the murderer had up to last night been obtained. These repeated murders in the Whitechapel district have produced an amount of alarm and anxiety in that neighbourhood bordering on panic. The inquest will be opened today, when evidence of the finding of the body and of the mutilations will be given.

The Fourth Whitechapel Murder

On Saturday one more crime was added to the ghastly series of Whitechapel murders. Just before six that morning a woman was found murdered and mutilated at a lodging house in Hanbury street, Whitechapel road. She was of the same class as Mary Ann Nicholls, and she was butchered in much the same way. If there was a difference, it was in favour of the earlier victim. The head of Annie Chapman, the latest, had been nearly severed from her body by one stroke of a sharp knife, and her mangled remains had been disposed about her in a way that suggested a delight in the slaughter for the slaughter's sake. The details, for those who are able to endure the recital of them, will be found elsewhere. The house in Hanbury street is open all night. People are coming and going at all hours, mostly if not wholly, on perfectly lawful business, as many of them are labourers and market people. The body was found in the back yard. At twenty minutes past five a lodger went into the yard and noticed nothing to excite his suspicion. At a few minutes to six another lodger went there, and saw a sight that sent him screaming through the house. All, then, had been done in half an hour. In that time the murderer had decoyed the woman into the house, slain her in the yard, robbed her of her sham rings, inflicted nameless indignities on the dead body, indignity upon indignity, horror upon horror, and got clean away. The house teemed with life; it was near the hour of rising for most of the inmates, yet no human being heard a cry or an alarm. The swiftness of it, the perfect mystery of it, are heightening effects of terror. The wildest imagination has never combined in fiction so many daring improbabilities as have here been accomplished in fact.

It is a positive relief to escape from the fact to the theory of the crime. There can no longer be any doubt that we have to deal with some form of malignant insanity. No person could murder at these risks, and for these gains, with any sense of purpose in his acts as purpose is known to the sane. A monster is abroad. The murders defy all rules of motive; they only suggest a union, not at all uncommon in insanity, of the utter absence of a moral sense with the most finished cunning in the adaptation of means to ends. Both are abnormal - the cunning and the worse than tigerish passion for blood. The first is quite as remarkable as the last, and its very perfection suggests a mind completely off its balance - that is, quite undeveloped on one side. The dreadful surety of the stroke would have been impossible to any being of ordinary mould. Every cut must have been given with the unerring precision of the slaughterhouse. One stroke took the head from the body, the others went straight to the mark of that elaborate desecration with which the crime was brought to a close. There was no more waste of effort than there is in the killing of a sheep. There could have been no more pity, or anger, or violent passion of any sort. The police have to find for us one of the most extraordinary monsters known to the history of mental and spiritual disease, a monster whose skull will have to be cast for all the surgical museums of the world. No other theory is admissible. Who could have done such things for gain alone or in the prosecution of any definite scheme of revenge? No "blackmailer" of unfortunate women would ever cut himself off from his market in this way. The thief never deals a useless stroke. The public are looking for a monster, and in the legend of "Leather Apron" the Whitechapel part of them seem to be inventing a monster to look for. This kind of invention ought to be discouraged in every possible way, or there may soon be murders from panic to add to murders from lust of blood. A touch would fire the whole district, in the mood which it is now. Leather Apron walks without making a noise, Leather Apron has piercing eyes and a strange smile, and finally Leather Apron looks like a Jew. The last is brutal as well as foolish, and it has already had its effect in a cry against Whitechapel Jews. Already, as our columns show today, the list of savage assaults in the neighbourhood has shown an alarming increase since the discovery on Saturday. Every man who can say a reasonable word ought to say it, or worse may follow than all we have already known.

Much depends on the police. It is hardly too much to say that the peace of a whole quarter of London is now, in an especial manner, in their hands. We have already commented on the inadequacy of the Force in the district affected by these crimes. Hanbury street must have been poorly patrolled if so much could have passed there in half an hour, and have left no trace behind. The police have a good deal of lost ground to recover. In the past year or two they have failed to bring many terrible offenders to justice. The Kentish town murder is still one of the mysteries of crime, and so is the murder at Canonbury. A lady was murdered near Bloomsbury square last year - the murderer has not been found. At about the same time a solicitor's clerk was murdered in Arthur street with precisely the same result. It is certain that no effort will be spared; but the public will hardly be satisfied with an assurance of that sort. The police must somehow contrive to win this time. Whatever the event, the crimes must remain a kind of public disgrace. It is sickening to think of the way some of us live now, as revealed in the incidental particulars of this tragedy. It is difficult to believe that no sound was heard at the critical moment. Sounds pass unheeded in Hanbury street - that is all. The lodger who came down at 5.25 fancied he hard a slight scuffle, with the noise of someone falling against the pailings, but he took no notice of that. They take very little notice in Hanbury street, even of strangers to the house, who sometimes turn in for a sleep on the stairs before the markets open. The murdered woman used to sleep in a lodging house in Dorset street, when she had the money. When she had not, she went out to earn it. She had come out on a quest of this sort the night of the murder. It was not her only vicissitude that week. At the beginning of it she had been rather severely knocked about by another woman in a stand up fight. She had thought of taking a turn at hop picking, if she could get a pair of boots. A few hours after her body had been discovered, another of her sex was nearly murdered in Spitalfields Market. But there was mystery in this affair. It was only a blind man quarrelling with the woman who served as his guide - wrangling as he walked along, and stabbing as he wrangled. So, tens of thousands of us live now in the greatest capital of the world.


Once more the neighbourhood of Whitechapel and Spitalfields has been terribly shocked by a brutal and mysterious murder. Before the inquest on Mary Ann Nicholls has been concluded, and almost before the grave has closed over her, another woman of the same unhappy class has met a precisely similar fate, and, as before, no possible trace of the murderer can be found. "For all we can tell," said an agitated woman in the crowd yesterday assembled before the house at which the body had been found, "he may be one of the mob listening to the speechifying about it." It is anything but improbable. That the assassin should have been there would have been quite in keeping with the cool audacity which must of necessity be characteristic of the man who, in all probability, has perpetrated all four of the murders which have so shocked this locality.

It seems to be pretty conclusively established that the victim in this case is Annie Chapman, the widow of a veterinary surgeon who died about a year and a half ago at Windsor. She had long been separated from her husband, who appears to have allowed her ten shillings a week while he lived, and she has been known for the past six years among the lodging houses of the neighbourhood in which she met her death. She appears to have maintained herself to some extent by making antimacassars or selling articles in the street, but there is little room for doubt that her earnings in this way were eked out by less creditable courses. She cohabited, it is said, for a time with a sieve maker, commonly known as Jack Sivvy, and hence she has been generally known as Annie Sivvy, and the name appearing in the summonses for the inquest is "Annie Siffey." Those who know her best spoke of her as a quiet, inoffensive creature, not given to drink, and earning her living respectably in so far as she could. She had relatives; and a friend who had lodged with her, and had been in the habit of writing her letters for her says that last week she expressed her intention of going hop picking if she could get her sister to provide her with a pair of boots. She had, it is said, a sister and a mother, and also two children - a daughter travelling with a circus company in France, and a crippled boy about four years of age at some sort of charity school near Windsor. Judging by the appearance of the woman as she lay in the mortuary on Saturday she must have been somewhere about five and forty years of age. She was a little over five feet in height and strongly built, with dark hair, and features somewhat plain and unprepossessing, her nose being especially flat and broad. For some months past she has been in the habit of frequenting a lodging house in Dorset street, Spitalfields, an extremely low and turbulent spot, just in front of Spitalfields Church, on the opposite side of Commercial street. the deputy of the lodging house, No 35, states that she had been there for the past four months, and on Saturday evenings usually came with a pensioner or a soldier. The man generally left on Monday and Chapman would stay in the place for the early part of the week, paying eightpence a night. Last Monday night the two left together, and she was not seen again till about half past eleven last Friday night, when she reappeared, and in answer to inquiries said she had been in the infirmary. This was probably the truth, as the deputy of the lodging house had during her absence found letters which showed she had been under medical treatment at St. Bartholomew's Hospital. She had probably come out of the infirmary with little or nothing in her pocket, and after putting in an appearance at the lodging house passed out into the street till just before two on the fatal Saturday morning, when she returned eating baked potatoes, and according to the deputy somewhat the worse for drink. This we have some reason to believe was a mistake on his part. The woman was probably quite sober and wanted a bed. She passed downstairs into the kitchen, and a demand was made for payment for the bed. "I haven't got enough," she replied, and turned to go out again into the street. "Keep my bed for me," said the poor creature, "I shan't be long; I won't be long, Brummy," she added to the watchman, as she passed out; "See that Jim keeps my doss for me." That was just before two o'clock last Saturday morning. About a quarter before six she was found in a dirty little yard up in a muddy corner beneath some broken pailings, her head nearly severed from her body, and her person mutilated in a manner too horrible for description.

How came she there, and who was her assassin? These are the questions that are now being discussed over the East of London with a degree of excitement and agitation quite distressing in its intensity, and as we shall presently show, with effects in themselves not a little serious and alarming.

There can be little reasonable doubt that the unfortunate woman went out into the streets to obtain the price of her bed; that she went in the ordinary way of her outcast sisterhood into this little back yard, as it is likely enough her wont had been, and there in the grey dawn, under the back windows of houses crowded with people, she suddenly found herself in the clutches of a homicidal maniac. Before she had time to utter so much as a cry or make one resulting movement, her throat was cut. She was treated, in fact, precisely as poor Nicholls had been in a neighbouring street within a few days. So far as can be made out, there is really no reason whatever to suppose that the murder was committed elsewhere and the victim carried here, or that any "gang" were concerned in it. In all human probability the hundred and fifty police who, we are credibly informed, have been drafted down into this neighbourhood for special duty in connection with this shocking affair have to pit their wits against the ferocious cunning of a monomaniac, who in all ordinary respects is, it may be, perfectly sane and seemingly quiet and inoffensive. The marvellous astuteness and deep cunning of certain phases of madness are of course perfectly familiar to doctors, and the very fact of a person's being taken by lunacy out of the range of the motives, the fears, and the agitations which would beset a sane mind, if we can conceive a sane mind planning and executing such a scheme, would no doubt tend to give the calm audacity which has hitherto baffled all attempts to solve these frightful riddles.

Number 29, Hanbury street, is a house let out to various tenants, like a great many of the houses about there. The different occupants fasten their own doors if they think proper; but as they come home at night and got out in the morning at all sorts of hours, according to their occupations, the front door is left unfastened. Anybody is free to walk through the house passage into the back yard, and it is not uncommon in all parts of London for homeless persons to creep in and sleep in passages and staircases thus left. In this very house only a short time since one of the residents says a man slept on the stairs, certainly one night, and probably more than one. Under such circumstances, of course anybody passing through the yard would attract no attention. One lodger went out at four, and saw nothing amiss. The landlady's son, who is engaged in Spitalfields Market, is said to have looked round the yard before going to his business at ten minutes to five, as there had been some sort of robbery there recently, and at that time there was nothing noticeable. About six o'clock, however, John Davis, who lives at the top of the house, before setting out to his work happened to go into the yard, and then found the body of the woman and rushed frantically off for the police. His alarm soon roused general excitement, and in the horror and agitation which ensued there were, it appears, imaginative minds capable of adding a gruesome touch or two even to such a tragedy. The body undoubtedly was dreadfully mutilated, but some of the details published are unquestionably exaggerations, to say the least of it. But beyond all question the poor creature was cut and gashed horribly, and presented a sight indescribably shocking. the police and the divisional surgeon soon arrived on the scene, and the body was borne away on a stretcher to the very mortuary from which only a day or two before Mary Anne Nicholls had been carried out.

The excitement has been intense. The house and the mortuary were besieged by people, and it is said that during a part of Saturday people flocked in great numbers to see the blood stained spot in the yard, paying a penny each. In the Whitechapel road "Lines on the Terrible Tragedy" were being sold, and men with the verses round their hats were singing them to the tune of "My Village Home." A wretched waxwork show had some horrible picture out in front, and people were paying their pence to see representations of the murdered women within. The result of all this sort of thing working up the excitement natural to the shocking tragedy is startlingly illustrated by the experience of the divisional surgeon of police. Mr. Phillips says that he and his assistant were out of their beds nearly all Saturday night in attendance on cases of assault, some of them of the most serious character, arising directly or indirectly out of the intense excitement occasioned by the discussion of this affair. Unless Mr. Phillips's experience is different from that of other medical men in the locality, this certainly shows that even so dreadful a murder as that which has just taken place is only a part of the mischief such an occurrence originates.

Another account says that at five minutes to six on Saturday morning a man named John Davis, living at 29 Hanbury street, Spitalfields, discovered that a woman had been murdered in the yard at the rear of that house, and that when the police were called in the circumstances attending her murder made it clear that she was another victim of the miscreant who murdered Mary Ann Nicholls in Buck's row, Whitechapel, only a week previously. The same horrible ferocity had been exhibited in the commission of the crime, and the victim was again an "unfortunate," so poor that robbery could scarcely be suggested as a motive for the murder. The house, 29 Hanbury street, (which is not half a mile from Buck's row) is let out by rooms to several people, all very poor and struggling. The front parlour is in the occupation of a Mrs. Hardiman, who uses it as a shop for the sale of cats' meat. She and her son also sleep in the room. The back parlour is a sort of sitting room for the landlady and her family, and looks out upon a yard, at the further side of which stands a shed. The passage of the house leads directly to the yard, passing the door of the front parlour, the yard being about four feet below the level of the passage, and reached by two stone steps. The position of the steps creates a recess on their left, the fence between the yard and the next house being about three feet from the steps. In this recess John David, as he crossed the yard at five minutes to six o'clock, saw the body of a woman, horribly mutilated, and her throat so terribly gashed that the head was nearly severed from the trunk. Davis seems at once to have run out and called in Police constable Pinnock, 238 H, who sent information to the station in Commercial street. Inspector Chandler, on duty, with others, hurried to the place, and before the body was removed from its position the divisional surgeon, Mr. George Bagster Phillips, of Spital square, was called to examine it. The fiendish character of the mutilation then became revealed. There was no doubt, he said, that the throat was first cut and the stomach subsequently mutilated. As in the case of Mary Ann Nichols, in Buck's row, the body had been ripped up. The body was removed as soon as possible to the mortuary of the parishes of Whitechapel and Spitalfields, in Old Montague street, and placed in a shell - the same in which a week before the corpse of the previous victim had been placed. The precise description of the body was quickly made out and before ten o'clock it was identified as that of Annie Chapman alias "Sivvey", a name by which she had become known through living with a sieve maker. One of the same class as Mary Ann Nicholls, her usual places of abode were also in the common lodging houses if Spitalfields and Whitechapel. A stout, well proportioned woman of about five feet in height, she was described as quiet and as one who had "seen better days." Detective Inspector Abberline of Scotland Yard, who had been detailed to make special inquiries as to the murder of Mary Ann Nicholls, at once took up the inquiries with regard to the new crime, the two being obviously the work of the same hands. He held a consultation with Detective Inspector Helson, J Division, in whose district the murder in Buck's row was committed, and with Acting Superintendent West, in charge of the H Division. The result of that consultation was an agreement in the belief that the crimes were the work of one individual only, and that, notwithstanding many misleading statements and rumours - the majority of which in the excitement of the time had been printed as facts - the murders were committed where the bodies had been found, and that no "gang" were the perpetrators. It having been stated that the woman must have been murdered elsewhere and her body deposited in the yard, the house door giving access to the passage and the yard being never locked, the most careful examination was made of the flooring of the passage and the walls, but not a trace of blood found to support such a theory. It is moreover considered impossible that a body could have been carried in without arousing from their sleep Mrs. Hardiman and her son, past whose bedroom door the murderer had to go. There is no doubt that the deceased was acquainted with the fact that the house door was always open or ajar, and that she and her murderer stealthily passed in to the yard. Although, as in the case of Mary Ann Nicholls, a very small quantity of blood was found on the ground (which would lead to the supposition that the murder was committed elsewhere), its absence is accounted for by the quantity the clothes would absorb. The throat being so completely severed, it is the opinion of medical experts, would preclude the slightest cry, and the tenants of the house agree that nothing was heard to create alarm. The back room on the first floor, which has an uninterrupted view of all the yard, is a bedroom, and was tenanted by a man named Alfred Walker and his father, neither of whom "heard a sound." John Richardson, living in the house, states that he, in accordance with his usual practice, entered the place when on his way to work at Leadenhall Market, and at that time, 4.50, he was certain no one was in the yard. Albert Cadosch, who lodges next door, had occasion to go into the adjoining yard at the back at 5.25, and states that he heard a conversation on the other side of the palings, as if between two people. He caught the word "No," and fancied he subsequently heard a slight scuffle, with the noise of a falling against the palings, but thinking that his neighbours might probably be out in the yard, he took no further notice and went to his work. The police have been unable to discover any person who saw the deceased alive after two a.m., about which time she left the lodging house, 35 Dorset street, because she had not 4d to pay for her bed. No corroboration of the reported statement that she was served in a public house at Spitalfields Market, on its opening at 5 a.m., could be gained, nor of the sensational report that the murderer left a message on a wall in the yard, which was made out to read, "Five: 15 more, and then I give myself up." With respect to the statement that a knife and apron were discovered beneath the body of Annie Chapman, it may be said that there was no knife; and though an apron was found it belonged to a man in the house, and no importance is attached to the fact, the police not having taken possession of it. It seems certain that the deceased was robbed of three rings which she wore on the left hand, and which the murderer mistook for gold, though it is said that to a woman in the lodging house she admitted they were only brass. It is possible of course that the murderer before discovering the fact may endeavour to dispose of the rings, and the police will be glad to receive any information on such a matter.

The Deptford police yesterday made a communication to the effect that a man had been arrested by them under suspicious circumstances. Up to a late hour, however, he had not been brought up to Commercial street police station fir the purpose of identification.

Amongst other statements, the following has been made: John Davis, who was first to make the shocking discovery, says - Having had a cup of tea at about six o'clock, I went downstairs. When I got to the end of the passage I saw a female lying down, her clothing disarranged, and her face covered with blood. I had heard no noise, nor had my missus. I saw Mr. Bailey's men waiting at the back of the Black Swan ready to go to their work - making packing cases. I said to them, "Here's a sight! a woman must have been murdered!" I then ran to the police station in Commercial road, and I told them there what I had seen, and some constables came back with me. I did not examine the woman when I saw her - I was too frightened at the dreadful sight. Our front door at 29 Hanbury street is never bolted, and anyone has only to push it open and walk through to the gate at the back yard. Immoral women have at times gone there. No lock has ever been placed on the front door; at least, I have never seen one; but it is only a fortnight ago that I came to lodge there. I have known people open the passage door and walk through into the yard when they have had no right there. There are about fifteen altogether living in the house.

Mrs. Richardson, the landlady at 29 Hanbury street, the house where the body of deceased was found, in the course of an interview said: "I have lived at this house fifteen years, and my lodgers are poor but hardworking people. Some have lodged with me as long as twelve years. They mostly work at the fish market or the Spitalfields marker. Some of the carmen in the fish market go out to work as early as 1 a.m., while others go out at 4 and 5, so that the place is open all night,and anyone can get in. It is certain that the deceased came voluntarily into the yard, as if there had been any struggle it must have been heard. Several of the lodgers sleep at the back of the house, and some had their windows open, but no noise was heard from the yard. One of my lodgers, a carman, named Thompson, employed at Goodson's, in Brick lane, went out at 4 o'clock in the morning. He did not go into the yard, but he did not notice anything particular in the passage as he went out. My son John came in at ten minutes to 5, and he gave a look round before he went to market. He went through to the yard, but no one was there then, and everything was right. Just before 6 o'clock, when Mr. Davis, another of my lodgers, came down, he found the deceased lying in the corner of the yard, close to the house, and by the side of the step. The lower part of her body was uncovered. There was not the slightest sign of a struggle, and the pool of blood which flowed from the throat after it was cut, was close to the step where she lay. She does not appear to have moved an inch after the fiend struck her with the knife. She must have died instantly. The murderer must have gone away from the spot covered with blood. There was an earthenware pan containing water in the yard; but that was not discoloured, and could not, therefore, have been used by the murderer. The only possible clue that I can think of is that Mr. Thompson's wife met a man about a month ago lying on the stairs. This was about four o'clock in the morning. He looked like a Jew, and spoke with a foreign accent. When asked what he was doing there, he replied he was waiting to do a "doss" before the market opened. He slept on the stairs that night, and I believe he has slept on the stairs on other nights. Mrs. Thompson is certain she could recognise the man again both by his personal appearance and his peculiar voice. The police have taken a full and careful description of this man."

The deputy of a lodging house at 30 Dorset street, stated that Annie Chapman used to lodge there about two years ago with a man called Jack "Sivvy", a sieve maker; hence her nickname Annie Sivvy. She appeared to be a quiet woman, and not given to drinking; in fact, he was quite surprised to hear that she had been drinking the night before the murder. The woman had two children to his knowledge - a boy who was a cripple, and who he believed was at some charitable school, and a daughter who was somewhere in France.

Timothy Donovan, the deputy of the lodging house, 35 Dorset street, where the deceased frequently stayed, states that the deceased stayed there on Sunday night last. She had been in the habit of coming there for the past four months. She was a quiet woman, and gave no trouble. He had heard her say she wished she was as well off as her relations, but she never told him who her friends were or where they lived. A pensioner or a soldier usually came to the lodging house with her on Saturday nights, and generally he stayed until the Monday morning. He would be able to identify the man instantly if he saw him. After the man left on Monday deceased would usually keep in the room for some days longer, the charge being eightpence per night. The man stayed at the house the Saturday to Monday, and when he went the deceased went with him. She was not seen at the house again until Friday night last about half past eleven o'clock, when she passed the doorway, and Donovan, calling out, asked her where she had been since Monday, and why she had not slept there, and she replied, "I have been in the infirmary." Then she went on her way in the direction of Bishopsgate street. About 1.40 a.m. on Saturday morning she came again to the lodging house, and asked for a bed. The message was brought upstairs to him, and he sent downstairs to ask for the money. the woman replied, "I haven't enough now, but keep my bed for me. I shan't be long." Then as she was going away she said to John Evans, the watchman, "Brummy, I won't be long. See that Jim keeps my bed for me." She was the worse for drink at the time, and was eating some baked potatoes. He saw nothing of her again until he was called to the mortuary on Saturday morning, when he identified the deceased by her features and her wavy hair, which was turning grey. After the deceased left on Monday last he found two large bottles in the room, one containing medicine, and labelled as follows: "St. Bartholomew's Hospital. Take two tablespoonfuls three times a day." The other bottle contained a milky lotion, and was labelled "St. Bartholomew's Hospital. The lotion. Poison." This confirmed her statement that she had been taking medical treatment.

A woman named Amelia Farmer gave important information that she had been a fellow lodger with the deceased, and had known her for some considerable time. She stated that the deceased was Annie Chapman, the wife of a veterinary surgeon, who had died at Windsor about eighteen months ago. She was accordingly taken to the mortuary at half past eleven o'clock, and immediately recognised her friend, apparently being much touched at the dreadful spectacle. Later on she made a statement of what she knew of the history of the murdered woman. Annie Chapman had for a long time been separated from her husband, a veterinary surgeon at Windsor, by mutual agreement and had been allowed 10s a week by him for her maintenance. The money had been sent by post office order, made payable at the Commercial street Post Office, and had always come regularly. About eighteen months ago the instalments suddenly ceased, and, upon inquiry being made, it was found that the husband had died. Annie Chapman had two children, but where they were she could not say. The deceased had a mother and sister, who were living in the neighbourhood of Brompton or Fulham. Farmer had been in the habit of writing letters for her friend, but could not remember the exact address of the mother or sister, but thought it was near the Brompton Hospital. Last Monday Chapman had intimated her intention of communicating with her sister, saying, "If I can get a pair of boots from my sister I shall go hop picking." Another relation, a brother in law of the deceased, lived somewhere in or near Oxford street. Farmer asserted that her murdered friend was apparently a sober, steady going sort of woman, and one who seldom took any drink. For some time past she had been living occasionally with a man named Ted Stanley, who had been in the militia, but was now working at some neighbouring brewery. Ted Stanley was a good tempered man, rather tall, about 5ft 10in, fair, and of florid complexion. He was the last man in the world to have quarrelled with Chapman, nor would he have injured her in any way. At the beginning of the week the deceased had been rather severely knocked about in the breast and face by another woman of the locality through jealousy in connection with Ted Stanley. As a regular means of livelihood she had not been in the habit if frequenting the streets, but had made antimacassars for sale. Sometimes she would buy flowers or matches with which to pick up a living. Farmer was perfectly certain that on Friday night the murdered woman had worn three rings, which were not genuine, but were imitations, as otherwise she would not have troubled to go out and find money for her lodgings.

Another clue which may prove of value was furnished by Mrs. Fiddymont, wife of the proprietor of the Prince Albert public house, better known as the "Market house," at the corner of Brushfield and Steward streets, half a mile from the scene of the murder. Mrs. Fiddymont states that at seven o'clock on Saturday morning she was standing in the bar talking with another woman, a friend, in the first compartment. Suddenly there came into the middle compartment a man whose rough appearance frightened her. He had on a brown stiff hat, a dark coat, and no waistcoat. He came in with his hat down over his eyes, and with his face partly concealed asked for half a pint of four ale. She drew the ale, and meanwhile looked at him through the mirror at the back of the bar. As soon as he saw the woman in the other compartment watching him he turned his back, and got the partition between himself and her. The thing that struck Mrs. Fiddymont particularly was the fact that there were blood spots on the back of his right hand. This, taken in connection with his appearance, caused her uneasiness. She also noticed that his shirt was torn. As soon as he had drunk the ale, which he swallowed at a gulp, he went out. Her friend went out also to watch him.

Great weight is attached to the statement as to the rings which were on the woman's hand before the murder was committed, but which are supposed to have been wrenched off by the murderer before he made good his escape. On Saturday evening a further clue had been gained. It was ascertained that a pawnbroker in Mile End road had detained rings which had been presented to him for pledge, but which on being tested had not been found genuine. Should these rings prove to be those taken from Annie Chapman, and should Amelia Farmer be able to identify them, a solid trace of the murderer will be obtained which may lead to his capture.

All day yesterday five policemen guarded the scene of the crime in Hanbury street. No one was admitted unless he resided in the house. In the street half a dozen costermongers took up their stand and did a brisk business in fruit and refreshments. Thousands of respectably dressed persons visited the scene, and occasionally the road became so crowded that the constables had to clear it by making a series of raids upon the spectators. The windows of the adjoining houses were full of persons watching the crowd below. A number of people also visited the house in Dorset street where the murdered woman lodged.

In the course of the day nearly a dozen persons were arrested and conveyed to the Commercial street police station. In the afternoon a vast crowd had collected about the streets, and as each apprehension was noted they rushed pell mell towards the station, obviously under the idea that the murderer of the woman had been caught.

The following is the official telegram sent to each station throughout the metropolis:

"Commercial street 8.20 p.m. Description of a man wanted who entered a passage of the house at which the murder was committed of a prostitute at 2 a.m. the 8th. Age 37; height 5ft 7in; rather dark beard and moustache. dress: Shirt, dark jacket, bark vest and trousers, black scarf and black felt hat. Spoke with a foreign accent."

The inquest will be opened today at 10 o'clock at the Lard's Industrial Institute.


Shortly after eleven o'clock on Saturday forenoon a man suddenly attacked a woman in the Spitalfields Market while she was passing through. After felling her to the ground with a blow, he began kicking her, pulled out a knife and inflicted various stabs on her head, cutting her forehead, neck, and fingers before he was pulled off. At this juncture the police arrived, arrested the man, and after a while had the woman conveyed on a stretcher to the police station in Commercial street, where she was examined by the divisional surgeon. She was found to be suffering from several wounds, but none of them were considered dangerous. She was subsequently removed to the London Hospital where she was detained as an in patient. Her assailant is described as a blind man, who sells lace in the streets, and whom she led about from place to place. The affair occurred midway between Bucks's row and Hanbury street, where the last two horrible murders have been committed.

Related pages:
  Annie Chapman
       Home: Timeline - Annie Chapman 
       Dissertations: Cadosch The Other Side of the Fence 
       Dissertations: Considerable Doubt and the Death of Annie Chapman 
       Dissertations: Long -vs- Cadoche 
       Dissertations: The Pensioner, and a Brief History of Fort Elson 
       Dissertations: Windows and Witnesses 
       Message Boards: Annie Chapman 
       Message Boards: Annie Chapman, Jack the Ripper Victim: A Short Biography 
       Official Documents: Annie Chapman's Inquest 
       Press Reports: Alderley and Wilmslow Advertiser - 21 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Atlanta Constitution - 8 June 1889 
       Press Reports: British Daily Whig - 10 September 1888 
       Press Reports: British Medical Journal - 22 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Croydon Advertiser - 15 September 1888 
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       Press Reports: Morning Advertiser - 11 September 1888 
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       Press Reports: Woodford Times - 21 September 1888 
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       Ripper Media: Annie Chapman, Jack the Ripper Victim: A Short Biography 
       Ripper Media: Dark Annie (Piston Baroque) 
       Victims: Annie Chapman 
       Victims: Testimonies of Elizabeth Long and Albert Cadoche 
       Victorian London: Hanbury Street