Post by Graveyardbride on Oct 8, 2014 2:54:43 GMT -5
September 30, 1888: Two in One Night (Part 2 of 2)
When the body of the woman discovered in Mitre Sqaure arrived at Golden Lane Mortuary, a piece of her ear dropped from her clothing as they were removed.
At 2:30 on the afternoon of Sunday, September 30, Dr. Frederick Gordon Brown began the postmortem examination of Catherine Eddowes, noting initially that rigor mortis was well marked – although the body was not completely cold – and there was green discoloration over the abdomen. After carefully washing the left hand, he noted a recent sixpence-size red bruise on the back of the hand between the thumb and forefinger as well as several older small bruises. The hands and arms were bronzed, an indication she was a member of the lower, or working, class. There were no bruises on the scalp, the back of the body or elbows. The face, however, was “very much mutilated” with a quarter-inch cut through the lower eyelid and the upper left eyelid was scratched through the skin near the angle of the nose. The right eyelid was cut through about a half-inch. There was a deep cut over the bridge of the nose extending from the left nasal bone almost to the angle of the right jaw, cutting through the flesh of the cheek with the exception of the mucous membrane of the mouth. The tip of the nose was “quite detached” and another cut divided the upper lip, extending through the substance of the gum over the right upper lateral incisor tooth, and there was yet another half-inch oblique cut from the top of the nose. She was sliced at the right angle of her mouth with the laceration extending 1½-inch parallel with the lower lip. On the cheek, a 1½-inch cut “peeled up the skin” forming a triangular flap parallel with the lower lip as though sliced by a knife point. There were also two abrasions on the left cheek under the epithelium beneath the left ear.
The woman’s throat was cut across to the extent of about 6 or 7 inches and a superficial incision commenced about 1½-inch below the earlobe and about 2½-inches behind the left ear, extending across the throat area to approximately 3-inches below the lobe of the right ear. The large muscle across the throat was divided through on the left and the large vessels on the left side severed. The larynx was sliced below the vocal chord and all deep structures cut to the bone, the knife having sliced through intervertebral cartilages. The sheath of the vessels on the right side of the throat was slightly open. The carotid artery had a fine opening, the internal jugular vein was opened approximately 1½-inch, but not divided and there was clotted blood in the vessels. All this damage was accomplished using a sharp, pointed instrument like a knife. The cause of death was hemorrhage from the left common carotid artery. Death was immediate and the mutilations inflicted postmortem.
The front walls of the abdomen were laid open from the breast bones to the pubic region with the cut commencing opposite the ensiform cartilage. The incision sliced upward, but did not penetrate the skin over the sternum, then divided the cartilage. The liver was lacerated by a sharp-pointed instrument and there was a second incision into the liver of about 2½-inches. A vertical cut slit the liver a third time and there was “jagging” of the skin on the left side.
The abdominal walls were divided at midline to within a quarter-inch of the navel, with the cut then taking a horizontal course for 2½-inches to the right, then dividing around the navel on the left. A parallel incision left the navel on a “tongue of skin,” attached to which was 2½-inches of the lower part of the left rectus muscle. The incision then took an oblique direction to the right, extending down the right side of the vagina and rectum for a half-inch behind the rectum. There was an inch stab wound to the left groin from a pointed instrument and below this was a 3-inch laceration through all tissues perforating the peritoneum to the same extent.
Approximately an inch below the crease of the left thigh, there was a cut extending from the anterior spine of the ilium obliquely down the inner side of the leg, separating the left labium and creating a “flap of skin up to the groin.” The left rectus muscle remained attached. Another flap of skin was formed by a cut to the right thigh, attaching the right labium and extending up to the spine of the ilium and the muscles on the right side inserted into the frontal ligaments were cut through. The skin was retracted through the entire laceration through the abdomen, however, the vessels were not clotted, nor had there been any appreciable amount of bleeding therefrom. “I draw the conclusion that the act was made after death and there would not have been much blood on the murderer,” Brown observed. “The cut was made by someone on the right side of the body, kneeling below the middle of the body.”
The contents of the stomach were removed and placed in a jar for examination. There appeared to be little food or liquid, but partly digested farinaceous (starchy) food escaped the cut end. The intestines had been detached to a large extent and approximately two feet of colon was cut away. The sigmoid flexure (the S-shaped curve of the large intestine) was very tightly invaginated (turned inside-out or folded back on itself) into the rectum. The right kidney was pale (bloodless). There were cuts on the under surface of the liver, which was otherwise healthy and the gallbladder contained bile. The pancreas was lacerated, but not all the way through, on the left side. The peritoneal lining was cut through as was the left renal artery and the left kidney carefully removed. “I would say that someone who knew the position of the kidney must have done it,” Brown concluded.
The lining membrane over the uterus was sliced through and the womb was cut through horizontally, leaving a stump of ¾-inch. The remainder of the womb was missing along with some of the ligaments. The vagina and cervix were intact. The bladder was healthy, undamaged and contained 3 or 4 ounces of urine. There was a tongue-like cut through the anterior wall of the abdominal aorta. The other organs were also healthy and there were no indications of sexual intercourse.
In conclusion, Dr. Brown said: “I believe the wound in the throat was first inflicted. I believe she must have been lying on the ground. The wounds on the face and abdomen prove that they were inflicted by a sharp, pointed knife, and that in the abdomen by one six-inches or longer. I believe the perpetrator of the act must have had considerable knowledge of the position of the organs in the abdominal cavity and the way of removing them. It required a great deal of medical knowledge to have removed the kidney and to know where it was placed. The parts removed would be of no use for any professional purpose. I think the perpetrator of this act had sufficient time, or he would not have nicked the lower eyelids. It would take at least five minutes. I cannot assign any reason for the parts being taken away. I feel sure that there was no struggle, and believe it was the act of one person. The throat had been so instantly severed that no noise could have been emitted. I should not expect much blood to have been found on the person who had inflicted these wounds. The wounds could not have been self-inflicted.”
At the time of her death, Catherine Eddowes was wearing a black straw bonnet trimmed in green and black velvet and black beads, black jacket with large metal buttons and imitation fur at the collar, cuffs and pockets. Her skirt was dark green chintz patterned with Michaelmas daisies and golden lilies with three flounces and a brown button at the waistband. She was also wearing a man’s white vest with matching buttons down the front, brown linsey bodice with black velvet collar and brown buttons down the front, grey petticoat with white waistband, very old green alpaca skirt (worn as an undergarment), very old ragged blue skirt with red flounces and light twill lining (worn as an undergarment) and white calico chemise. She was not wearing either drawers or stays. Her shoes were men’s lace-up boots with mohair laces and the right boot had been mended with red thread, underneath which she was wearing brown ribbed stockings darned with white cotton. As a neckerchief, she was wearing a length of red gauze silk. She was carrying a large white pocket handkerchief, large white cotton handkerchief with red and white bird’s eye border, a blue stripe bed ticking pocket and two calico pockets with tape strings.
Her possessions included a tin box of tea, tin box of sugar, piece of coarse white linen, piece of blue and white shirting, piece of red flannel containing pins and needles, small tooth comb, white table knife, metal teaspoon, red leather cigarette case with white metal fittings, ball of hemp, piece of old white apron that had been repaired and an empty matchbox. There were also two small bed-ticking bags, one red mitten, two short black clay pipes, six pieces of soap, several buttons, part of a pair of spectacles, 12 pieces of white rag (some of which were bloodstained), several buttons and a thimble. A mustard tin contained two pawn tickets, one in the name Emily Birrell, 52 White’s Row, dated August 31 - 9d for a man’s flannel shirt. The other was in the name Jane Kelley of 6 Dorset Street, dated September 28, indicating 2 shillings for a pair of men’s boots. Both addresses were false. The final possessions catalogued were a printed handbill and (according to a press report) a printed card for “Frank Carter, 305 Bethnal Green Road.”
Following the discovery of Kate’s body, a blood-stained fragment of her apron was found a 15-minute walk from Mitre Square on nearby Goulston Street. Above the bit of cloth, someone had written in chalk: “The Juwes are the men that Will not be Blamed for nothing.” Unfortunately, Police Commissioner Sir Charles Warren, fearing riots by the Jewish population of Whitechapel, ordered the message washed off the wall and it was removed before daybreak. Years later, Major Henry Smith, acting commissioner of city police, wrote in his memoirs that he discovered bloody water in a public sink in a courtyard off Dorset Street. The water was slowly running from the basin and he concluded the Ripper had been there moments earlier. Others believed it was unlikely the Ripper would have been washing his hands in a semi-public place 40 minutes after the crime. There is no mention of the hand-washing in the official police reports.
Dr. Brown examined a portion of the apron in question, saying: “My attention was called to the apron, particularly the corner of the apron with a string attached. The blood spots were of recent origin. I have seen the portion of an apron produced by Dr. Phillips and stated to have been found in Goulston Street. It is impossible to say that it is human blood on the apron. I fitted the piece of apron, which had a new piece of material on it (which had evidently been sewn on to the piece I have), the seams of the borders of the two actually corresponding. Some blood and apparently fecal matter was found on the portion that was found in Goulston Street.”
Catherine Eddowes was buried Monday, October 8, 1888, and the following day, The Times reported: “The funeral of the victim of the Mitre-square tragedy took place yesterday afternoon. In the vicinity of the City mortuary in Golden-lane quite a multitude of persons assembled to witness the departure of the cortege for the Ilford cemetery. Not only was the thoroughfare itself thronged with people, but the windows and roofs of adjoining buildings were occupied by groups of spectators ....
“One of the sisters of the deceased laid a beautiful wreath on the coffin as it was placed in the hearse, and at the graveside a wreath of marguerites was added by a sympathetic kinswoman. The mourners were the four sisters of the murdered woman, Harriet Jones, Emma Eddowes, Eliza Gold and Elizabeth Fisher, her two nieces Emma and Harriet Jones, and John Kelly, the man with whom she had lived.
“As the funeral procession passed through Golden-lane and Old-street the thousands of persons who followed it nearly into Whitechapel rendered locomotion extremely difficult ....”
Kate was buried in Public Grave No. 49336, Square 318. Today, this area is part of the Memorial Gardens for cremated remains. She lies beside the Garden Way in front of Memorial Bed No. 1849. In late 1996, cemetery authorities placed a plaque on the grave of Catherine Eddowes.
The woman found in Dutfield’s Yard was not immediately identified, but on Monday, October 1, 1888, after being transported to St. George’s Mortuary, someone finally recognized the body on the table as that of Elizabeth “Long Liz” Stride. At 3 p.m. that day, Dr. Frederick Blackwell and Dr. George B. Phillips (who had examined the remains of Mary Ann Nichols and Annie Chapman) performed a postmortem. By that time, there was marked rigor mortis and mud was noted on the left side of her face and matted in her hair. The woman was fairly well-nourished and there was a bluish discoloration on both shoulders and beneath the collarbone. The incision in the neck was clear-cut and approximately 6-inches in length, commencing 2½ inches below the angle of the jaw. The straight cut was a half-inch deep over an undivided muscle, then becoming deeper and deviating downward, lacerating arteries and “other vessels.” The cut on the right side was more superficial and trailed off to approximately 2-inches below the right angle of the jaw and there was no laceration of the vessels. It was evident the hemorrhage was the result of the partial severing of the left carotid artery. The skin showed signs of decomposition with dark brown spots on the anterior surface of the left chin. There was a deformity of the bones in the right leg, which were not straight, but “bowed forward.” There were no recent injuries other than those to the throat area.
After a more thorough washing of the corpse, healing sores became visible and it was revealed the lobe of the left ear was torn, possibly from an earring. When the scalp was removed, there was no sign of extravasation (leakage) of blood. The heart was small, the left ventricle firmly contracted and the right slightly so. The pulmonary artery was free of clots, but the right ventricle was filled with dark clots. The stomach was large and contained partly-digested food identified as cheese, potato and possibly flour. All the teeth in the left lower jaw were missing.
As Elizabeth Stride’s body lay in the morgue, a mob of irate citizens formed on Berner Street protesting the murders and what they considered the haphazard efforts on the part of the police to identify the Ripper. The protests weren’t in vain, for they attracted the attention of the Home Office (a ministerial department in charge of law and order in the UK) and thereafter, the Whitechapel slashings were listed as top priority.
At the time of her death, Elizabeth Stride was wearing a long fur-trimmed black jacket with a red rose and white maiden hair fern pinned thereto, black skirt, dark brown velveteen bodice and black crepe bonnet; checked neck scarf knotted on the left side, two light serge petticoats, one white chemise, white stockings and spring-sided boots. She was carrying two handkerchiefs (the larger of which appeared to have fruit stains), a thimble and a piece of wool wound around a card. In the pocket of her underskirt, she was carrying a small piece of lead pencil, comb, broken piece of comb, metal spoon, dress hook, piece of muslin, padlock key (possibly from the lock Michael Kidney used to lock her in), six large and one small button, and one or two small scraps of paper. What happened to the sixpence she earned cleaning the rooming house?
On Saturday, October 6, 1888, Long Liz Stride was buried at East London Cemetery, Plaistow, in Grave No. 15509, Square 37. Funeral expenses were paid by the parish.
The inquest into the death of Elizabeth Stride continued for several days and following a short deliberation, the jury returned a verdict of “Wilful murder by some person or persons unknown.”
While Dr. Phillips was examining the corpse of Elizabeth Stride, a postcard postmarked October 1 arrived at the Central News Agency. The handwriting was very similar to that of the “Dear Boss” letter received three days before and read:
I was not codding dear old Boss when I gave you the tip, you’ll hear about Saucy Jacky’s work tomorrow double event this time number one squealed a bit couldn’t finish straight off. ha not the time to get ears for police. thanks for keeping last letter back till I got to work again.
Jack the Ripper
Again, many considered the communication a hoax, but there were others who cited the fact the ears of Catherine Eddowes were sliced, likely in an attempt to remove them, and the writer mentioned a “double event” before the details of the September 30 murders were released to the press.
A few days later, a local newspaper came in possession of a letter dated October 6, 1888. Obviously, this communication was intended as a warning to Israel Schwartz (who identified a man he saw with Liz Stride) or Joseph Lawende (who provided a description of a man he saw with Kate Eddowes). The letter read:
You though your-self very clever I reckon when you informed the police. But you made a mistake if you though I dident see you. Now I known you know me and I see your little game, and I mean to finish you and send your ears to your wife if you show this to the police or help them if you do I will finish you. It no use your trying to get out of my way. Because I have you when you dont expect it and I keep my word as you soon see and rip you up.
Yours truly Jack the Ripper.
PS You see I know your address
Even though the murders of Elizabeth Stride and Catherine Eddowes occurred within approximately an hour of each other, not everyone believed – or believes – Long Liz was a Ripper victim, primarily because she was killed in a dark alley near a busy pub. The other three victims were killed in dark, out-of-the-way places and murdered prostitutes weren’t exactly a rarity in Whitechapel.
There also are those who believe Catherine Eddowes went out that night with the intention of rendezvousing with the man who took her life. Because the damages to the body of Liz Stride were nowhere near as devastating as those inflicted during the killing and disembowelment of Kate Eddowes, there is some disagreement as to whether the killer used the same instrument on both women. However, it is much more likely the Ripper was interrupted when Louis Diemschutz appeared in the alley with his pony cart and had no choice but to abandon his attempted mutilations and run. Additionally, when Liz was discovered, the blood was still flowing and the cart-driver described the body as “warm,” indicating she had just been killed. The yard was pitch black and Diemschutz was unable to see what was blocking his way, therefore, the assailant could have been hiding no more than a few feet away and once police arrived and a crowd gathered, simply stood about unnoticed.
Much has also been made of the fact witness descriptions did not match and during the inquest into the death of Elizabeth Stride, it was noted as follows: “It will be observed that allowing for differences of opinion between PC Smith and Schwartz as to the apparent age and height of the man each saw with the woman whose body they both identified, there are serious differences in the description of the dress ... so at least it is rendered doubtful that they are describing the same man. If Schwartz is to be believed, and the police report of his statement casts no doubt upon it, it follows that if they are describing different men that the man Schwartz saw is the more probable of the two to be the murderer.”
Israel Schwartz described the man he saw with Liz Stride as around 30-years-old and approximately 5'5" tall, with a fair complexion, dark hair and small brown moustache, dressed in an overcoat and old black felt hat with a wide brim. According to Police Constable William Smith, the man he saw was around 28-years-old, stood 5'7" and wore a dark felt deerstalker hat and dark clothing, including a cutaway coat and dark trousers. Actually, with the exception of the hats the suspects were wearing, the descriptions offered by the two men aren’t that different and when one considers Long Liz stood 5'5" – extremely tall for a poor London woman of the late 19th century – it isn’t at all unlikely that one or both underestimated the man’s height.
While there were some doubts as to who killed Elizabeth Stride, no one doubted Catherine Eddowes was a victim of Jack the Ripper. Did Kate really know the identity of the Ripper as she allegedly boasted to the superintendent of the casual ward? Although it is possible the man to whom she made these comments was himself boasting in order to draw attention to himself, it is possible, that as a woman of the streets, Kate had come into contact with a man she honestly believed was the Whitechapel killer. However, if she did, indeed, know the man’s identity, why did she go out to meet him on a darkened street and allow him to lure her to Mitre Square? Wouldn’t she, as a savvy street woman, have insisted they remain in a public place, or at least within shouting distance of help?
Joseph Lawende, who saw Kate Eddowes with a man shortly before her death, described him as between 5'7" and 5'9" tall, of medium build with a fair moustache, wearing a grey cloth cap and having the appearance of a sailor. Nevertheless, Lawende also told police he would not be able to identify the man if he saw him again.
With the exception of the man’s headwear – which was either a wide-brimmed black hat, a dark deerstalker hat or a grey cloth cap – and other minor discrepancies in the description of the clothing, there aren’t any significant differences in the identifications provided by PC Smith, Schwartz and Lawende. Both Schwartz and Lawende noticed a moustache, which Smith did not mention, so it is possible the other two men saw Jack the Ripper, while the person Smith saw was nothing more than a cad soliciting the services of a prostitute.
* * *
More than a week had passed since Catherine Eddowes was laid to rest when George Lusk, president of the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee, received a 3-inch-square cardboard box in the mail. When he opened it, he found half a kidney preserved in wine, along with the following letter:
I send you half the Kidne I took from one woman and prasarved it for you tother piece I fried and ate it was very nise. I may send you the bloody knif that took it out if you only wate a whil longer
Catch me when you can Mishter Lusk
Dr. Thomas Horrocks Openshaw examined the kidney, found it to be human and very similar to the one removed from the body of Catherine Eddowes.
Sources: Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper - Case Closed by Patricia Cornwell; The Murder of Elizabeth Stride; The Murder of Catherine Eddowes; The Complete Jack the Ripper by Donald Rumbelow; The Complete History of Jack the Ripper by Philip Sugden; Casebook: Jack the Ripper; History in the Headlines; The Whitechapel Murders; CrimeLibrary; BBC News; and Jack the Ripper - 1888.
“September 30, 1888: Two in One Night” (Part 1): whatliesbeyond.boards.net/thread/2518/september-30-1888-night-1
“August 31, 1888: Slaughter in Buck’s Row”: whatliesbeyond.boards.net/thread/2329/august-1888-slaughter-bucks-row
“September 8, 1888: Murder in the Backyard”: whatliesbeyond.boards.net/thread/2388/september-8-1888-murder-backyard