Introduction to Jack The Ripper

The Jack the Ripper crimes vie with the Kennedy assassination as history’s greatest murder mystery. They inspire visions of a black garbed figure at midnight, stalking gaslit streets shrouded in fog as he cuts down the female population of East London one by one.
That is the image. The reality was the murder of several tragic Women whom a society shaped by gold, and the hypocrisy it spawned, cast out to be buffeted by the cruel winds of poverty until they were driven under a murderer’s knife. In a moving editorial following the death of Annie Chapman the “Daily Telegraph” said:

Details

Martha Tabram

Tabram, ne; WHITE, 1849-88, was born in South London. She married and had two sons but, with the same depressing similarity to the other victims, by 1888 was living apart from her Husband and family and was prostituting herself to fund her heavy drinking. On the night of August 6-7th she had at least one client…

Details
Location Map Mary Kelly

Mary Jane Kelly (Jeanette) 1863 – 1888

  Almost nothing is known about “Kelly’s” background; she remains a mystery within a mystery. In November, 1888, she was around 25 and living in a small room off DORSET STREET, NO 13, MILLER’S COURT, just a couple of footfalls from the lodging house where Annie Chapman had resided. At 10.45 on the morning of November 9th her…

Details
Location Map Catherine Eddows

Catherine Eddows (Kate Kelly) 1842 – 1888

A tiny, gregarious, woman who hailed originally from Wolverhampton, Cathy took up with an ex-soldier named Thomas Conway, who appears to have been a Writer of sorts, and bore him three children prior to their separating in 1880. Eddowes ended up in London where she became the common-law Wife of John Kelly, a Market Porter. The…

Details
Location Map Eliz Stride

Elizabeth Stride (Long Liz) 1843 – 1888

ELIZABETH STRIDE’S dead body was found in DUTFIELD’S YARD, BERNER STREET, ST GEORGE’S-IN-THE-EAST, three quarters of an hour before Catherine Eddowes in Mitre Square, which is fifteen minutes walking distance from Berner street. Stride’s sole injury was to her throat, which had been cut in a similar fashion to the above three. except that it was…

Details
Location Map Annie Chapman

Annie Chapman (Dark Annie) 1841 – 1888

Arguably the definitive Ripper victim, Annie was born in Paddington, North-West London. Age 27, she married John Chapman, a Coachman, with whom she set up home at Windsor and had three children. Annie is the only victim of whom a known photograph taken during life exists. By the early 1880’s the family had split up. John Chapman subsequently died of…

Details
Location Map Mary Nichols

Mary Ann Nichols (Polly) 1845 – 1888

  The Daughter of a Locksmith and Blacksmith, she married Printer William Nichols in 1864 and bore him five children. The marriage was not however a success and the couple separated in 1880. By August, 1888, Mary Ann – known to her friends as Polly — was reduced to living in East End lodging houses and…

Details