INQUEST ON THE MITRE SQ. VICTIM
EVIDENCE OF IDENTIFICATION
ANOTHER SHOCKING TALE OF MUTILATION
At eleven o'clock yesterday morning, Mr. Langham began the formal inquest into the circumstances attending the death of the woman whose mutilated body was found in Mitre square early last Sunday morning. The inquiry was held in the handsome and commodious, but badly ventilated inquest hall attached to the mortuary in Golden lane, the room being closely packed the whole day, a very small number only of the general public being able to find room at the back of the court. The Commissioner, Colonel Sir James Fraser, the Assistant Commissioner, and Superintendent Foster were present on behalf of the City police, and Mr. Crawford, the city solicitor, watched proceedings and examined proceedings for the Corporation. The jury comprised a good many men whose appearance and whose questions from time to time indicated great shrewdness and capacity for the business with which they were called upon to deal. After being sworn they proceeded across the yard to view the body which surgical skill had rendered as presentable as possible, but which all the stitching and adjustment bestowed upon it still left a dreadful object. The lower part of the face was entirely unrecognisable, and it must have been from the forehead and hair alone that the friends of the poor creature could identify her. There remains, however, no doubt at all that she was Catherine Eddowes, whose connection and reason have been amply made out.
The first witness called was a sister of the deceased, a respectable middle aged woman, who manifested great distress, sobbing and crying piteously, but on the whole giving her evidence clearly and well. The main points of her testimony were that the deceased had never been married, but that she had cohabited for some years with an army pensioner named Conway, by whom she had had two children, and that subsequently she had lived for some years with "Mr. Kelly." Kelly was the next witness called. He looked to be perhaps forty years of age, a picturesque looking figure, with a fresh coloured face bronzed by a recent hop picking excursion, a head of thick black hair, a very low forehead, a well trimmed moustache and imperial. He wore the fustian clothes of a market labourer, with a light blue scarf round his neck, and spoke with a clear, deep, sonorous voice, looking composedly round the court while the Coroner was writing down his answers. When asked whether deceased had been in the habit of frequenting the streets, he answered sturdily, "No, sir, I never suffered her to do so." Immediately after, however, he let slip an expression which virtually contradicted his assertion. The whole testimony of this man was a sadly interesting illustration of the lives lived by such as he and the murdered woman. They had just returned from hopping in Kent, but had come back as penniless as they had gone, and he told of his sending the woman in to pawn his boots for half a crown while he stood barefooted outside; of their spending the half crown in food and drink, and their earning sixpence by an odd job, and at night separating, the woman to go to the casual ward at Mile end, and he into a bed in the lodging house. The night before they had both slept in the casual ward at Shoe lane, and on Saturday he had parted with her on the understanding that she was going over to Bermondsey to try and find her sister to see if she could get a trifle "to prevent her going out on the street" - after he had so stoutly declared he never suffered her to do so. After she had left him on Saturday somebody told him she had got locked up "for a little drop of drink." But he never went to inquire about her; he "knew she would be out on Sunday morning." By Sunday morning her wretched career was over, and she was a mangled corpse. Inexpressibly sad was the phase of human life thus spread out before the Coroner's Court; but for all its apparent wretchedness, this unhappy creature seems to have taken life with the giddy frivolity of so many of her class. "A very jolly woman," said the deputy of the lodging house in which she had lived for even years - "a very jolly woman, always singing." That was her lodging house kitchen phase. Her elder sister is reported to have said, "I only met the deceased occasionally. She always used to cry when she saw me, and say 'I wish I was like you.'"
The City Solicitor cross questioned the next witness, the lodging house deputy just referred to, apparently on the ground of some information he had as to a person who had gone into the house between one and two o'clock on Sunday morning. The deputy, however, with much show of brain cudgelling, avowed himself quite unable to remember anything of the kind. He was ordered to fetch his book, but this, when produced, proved of no service. There were only crosses set against the numbers of the beds as they were filled up. Police constable Edward Watkin, an intelligent looking officer, of long service in the force, gave evidence which added nothing of importance to what was already known as to the finding of the body and the condition of it. Next came Mr. E.W. Foster, architect and surveyor, son of the highly respected superintendent of the City police, who produced carefully elaborated plans of the scene of the murder. The chief point of interest in his evidence was that which apparently bore on some theory in the mind of the City Solicitor as to the course the assassin had taken after the perpetration of the deed. A person going from Mitre square to the lodging house in Flower and Dean street in which these people had lived would, it was proved, probably go through Goulston street. In Goulston street it was subsequently shown that a portion of the woman's apron with marks of blood upon it - blood undoubtedly, but the doctor was unable to say positively that it was human blood - was picked up. This fact, taken in connection with the City Solicitor's persistent attempt to elicit evidence as to the entrance of a person into the lodging house between one and two, clearly indicated a conviction, or at least a suspicion, that the criminal, whoever he was, had gone from the square through Goulston street to the lodging house. It will of course occur to everybody to ask how in such a case could the murderer have got rid of the blood upon him. Later on the medical officer of the City police expressed his belief that he probably had not much blood upon him. Inspector Callard (sic) gave long and elaborate evidence upon the finding of the body, and of the measures taken by the police, who searched both streets and lodging houses, made a house to house visitation in the vicinity of Mitre square, and stopped several men in the street. There was no evidence of any struggle whatever, said the inspector.
The last and most important witness of the day was Dr. F. Gordon Brown, the City police surgeon. He described with great minuteness and at great length everything pertaining to the condition of the body when found and the results of the post mortem examination on the day of the murder. The first important inferences he drew from his examination were that death must have been the immediate result of cutting the throat, that it was cut in such a manner that no cry could have been raised, and that the various mutilations were certainly done after death. Probably the murder was committed with a sharp pointed blade at least six inches long, and the throat had been cut right through to the vertebral cartilages, just as was the case, it will be remembered, in the Hanbury street murder. Dr. brown said that he had removed the stomach, but he had not as yet had time to examine it so as to determine whether any kind of drug had been administered. The left kidney, the witness went on to explain, had been removed in a particular manner. "Do you," said the City Solicitor, "draw any conclusions from that?" and the answer evidently received the deepest attention. "I think that somebody who knew the position of the kidney and how to cut it out must have done it." It had been manifest for some little time that the City Solicitor in his cross examination of the witness had been leading up to what he knew would prove sensational, and the profoundest interest was displayed by all in court as the fact of the anatomical knowledge of the assassin became established by repeated answers of the surgical expert; and when at length in answer to explicit inquiry he stated that precisely the same organ, or a large portion of the same organ as had been found missing from the body of the last victim was also missing in this case, the sensation in court was profound. The possibility of this had of course been surmised, but all information on the results of the post mortem examination had been steadily refused, and this announcement came as a startling confirmation of what had before been only suspected. In proof of the anatomical and surgical skill of the assassin, Dr. Brown added that for the purpose of practically testing the time required for what had been done to this unfortunate woman, an expert practitioner had actually performed the operation, and found that it took three minutes and a half. The witness was disposed to believe that the murderer had not been hurried, and had probably done all he intended to do, or he would not have slashed and hacked the face about, which he had no doubt done merely for the sake of concealing the identity of the woman. "Would the parts removed be of any use for professional purposes?" asked Mr. Crawford. "Not the slightest," was the reply. "Would the knowledge necessary for these mutilations be likely to be possessed by one engaged in cutting up animals?" was another question put, and the answer was unhesitatingly, "Yes, sir."
Dr. Langham, the City Coroner, opened his inquiry yesterday, at the City Mortuary, Golden lane, into the circumstances attending the death of the woman whose mutilated body was found on Sunday morning last in Mitre square, Aldgate. The City Solicitor, Mr. Crawford, Superintendent Foster, and Detective Inspector M'William watched the case on behalf of the police.
Eliza Gold, 6 Fore street, Spitalfields, a widow, deposed - I recognised the deceased as my sister Catherine Eddowes. She was a single woman, about 43 years of age. She had been living for some years with a man named Kelly. I last saw her alive four or five months ago. She used to go out hawking for a living. She was a woman of sober habits. Before she went to live with Kelly she had lived with a man called Conway for some years and had two children, both of whom are alive, by him. I do not know whether Conway is still alive. Conway was a pensioner from the army, but used to go about hawking things. I do not know whether they parted on good or bad terms. I am certain the body of the deceased is that of my sister.
By the City Solicitor - I last saw Kelly 7 or 8 years ago. It is some time since I saw my sister and Kelly together, and then seemed to be happy together. They were living at 55 Flower and Dean street.
John Kelly, 55 Flower and Dean street, Spitalfields, said - I am a labourer, jobbing about the markets. I have seen the deceased and recognise it as that of Catherine Conway - the name under which I have always known her. I have known her for seven years, and have been living with her during all that time. She used to hawk things in the streets for a living. No 55 Flower and Dean street is a common lodging house. I was last in the company of the deceased at 2 o'clock on Saturday afternoon last, in Houndsditch. We parted on very good terms. The last thing she said to me was that she was going over to Bermondsey, to find a daughter of hers named Annie. This was a daughter whom I believe she had had by Conway. She promised me to be back about 4 o'clock, and no later. She did not return. I heard she was locked up at Bishopsgate Police Station. This was told me by an old woman whom I know, who said she had seen the deceased being led along Houndsditch by two policemen. I made no inquiries, as I believed she would be released on Sunday morning, in accordance with the City rule. I was told she was locked up for having a drop of drink. I never knew her to go out for any immoral purpose - I never suffered her to do so. She was only slightly in the habit of drinking to excess. When I left her she had no money about her. She went over to see her daughter to get a trifle from her, in order that I might not see her walking the streets at night.
What do you mean by that? - Well, neither of us had money to pay for our lodgings at night. I know nobody with whom she was at variance, or who was likely to injure her. I have never seen Conway in my life, and do not know whether he is living.
By the City Solicitor - You say she had no money - who paid for her drink? I do not know. She had not on any previous occasion recently come back to me after leaving me. A long time ago she left me, but only for a few hours, in consequence of a few words between us. She had not been to her daughter for money since last year. We had been in this lodging house for seven years.
On Friday night did you and deceased sleep at the lodging house? No; she had no lodging. She had the misfortune to go to the casual ward at Mile end. I slept that the lodging house. On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday night I was in Kent with the deceased hop picking. On Thursday we both slept at Shoe lane casual ward. On Friday I earned 6d, and she insisted on my sleeping at the lodging house, and on her going to Mile end. I met her next morning early. I pawned a pair of boots on Saturday morning for half a crown, out of which she bought some tea and sugar. We had some drink together, and by the time she left me for Bermondsey we had spent the 2s 6d in drink and food. I do not know why she left Conway. Deceased has never brought money to me in the morning that she might have earned at night. My missus pawned the boots, and I stood outside the shop with bare feet.
Frederick William Wilkinson - I am the deputy of 55 Flower and Dean street. I have known the deceased and Kelly these last seven or eight years. They passed as man and wife, and lived on very good terms. They had a few words now and again when she was drunk, but never quarrelled violently. I believe the deceased got her living by hawking in the streets and cleaning amongst the Jews. Kelly used to play for the lodgings pretty regularly. The deceased was a very jolly woman, and was often singing. I do not think I have ever seen Kelly drunk in my life. I saw the deceased at the lodging house on Friday when they came back from hopping. She went out in the evening, and I saw here again on the Saturday morning between 10 and 11 o'clock, and no more until I saw her body in the mortuary. She was not in the habit of walking the streets, to my knowledge. She always came in between 9 and 10 o'clock at the latest. She used to say that her name, Conway, was "bought and paid for," meaning that she had been married. On Saturday night when Kelly came to pay for his lodging, between 7.30 and 8, I asked him where "Kate" was, and he said he heard that she had been locked up and he took a single bed. A single bed is 4d and a double bed 8d.
By the City Solicitor - I should think the last time they slept together at the lodging house was five or six weeks ago before they went hopping. I never heard of any quarrel about Kate between Kelly and another man.
Did any stranger take a bed at your lodging house between 1 and 2 o'clock on Sunday morning?
- No stranger.
Did any one you know come in about that time? - I do not think so. A couple of detectives came about 3 to know if we had any women missing. I could find out from my books whether a stranger took a bed on any particular night.
By the Jury - I would have trusted them of they had come to me. I trust all the regular lodgers. The witness then went to fetch his books.
City Police constable Watkins, 881, deposed - I was on duty in Mitre square on Saturday evening. I went on duty at a quarter to ten. My beat extends from Duke street, Aldgate, through Henke lane, a portion of Bury street, through Cree Church lane, along Leadenhall street eastward into Mitre street, round the square, and again into Mitre street, then into King street, along King street, St James's place, round St James's place, then into Duke street. That beat takes between twelve and fourteen minutes. I had been continually patrolling the beat between ten in the evening of Saturday until one o'clock on Sunday morning. No person or thing had excited my attention during these hours. I passed through the square about 1.30 a.m. on the Sunday morning. My lantern was turned on, and, in accordance with practice, I looked into all the passages and crevices. At that hour nothing excited my attention, and I saw nobody about. No one could have been in any portion of the square without my seeing him. I next got into Mitre square about 1.44. I turned to the right as I entered Mitre square. I saw the body of a woman lying on her back with her feet facing the square - the clothes much disarranged - and I saw that her throat was cut and her bowels protruding. The stomach was ripped up, and she was lying in a pool of blood. I did not touch the body. I ran across the body to Messrs. Kearney's (sic) watchman Morris, and called him. he came out, and I sent him for assistance while I remained by the body. Other constables and Dr. Sequeira soon arrived on the scene, and were followed by Dr. Gordon Brown, the police surgeon.
As you entered the square did you hear any footsteps as of someone running away? - No, not a sound.
Mr. Frederick William Foster, 26 Old Jewry, produced plans made to scale of the locality of the murder. The distance between Berner street and Mitre square would take about a quarter of an hour to traverse, and a person would most likely go by way of Gouldston (sic) street.
The City Solicitor pointed out that the importance of this latter piece of evidence lay in the fact that a portion of the deceased's apron had been found in Gouldstone (sic) street.
The deputy of No 55 Flower and Dean street, Wilkinson, was then recalled, and questioned as to whether he could tell from his books whether any one had taken a bed between one and two o'clock. He said - There were six strange men sleeping in the house that night, but I cannot say I remember any of them coming in at that time.
Do you remember any strange man going out soon after 12? - I should hardly notice, as I am always so busy at that hour.
By the Jury - It is the custom when a stranger comes and pays his money to allot him a bed and ask no questions. Over a hundred persons sleep in the house every night.
Inspector Edward Collard, of the City of London Police, deposed - At five minutes before two in Sunday morning last I received information at Bishopsgate Police station that a woman had been murdered in Mitre square. Information was at once telegraphed to headquarters, and I despatched a constable at once to inform Dr. Gordon Brown. I arrived at Mitre square at two or three minutes after two o'clock. I there found Dr. Sequeira and several police officers. The deceased person was lying in the southwest corner of the square in the position described by Constable Watkins. The body was not touched until Dr. Gordon Brown shortly afterwards arrived. The medical gentleman examined her, and in my presence Sergeant Jones picked up from the footway, on the left side of the deceased, three small black buttons of the kind generally used for women's boots, a small metal button, a common metal thimble, a small mustard tin containing two pawn tickets. The doctors remained until the arrival of the ambulance, and saw the body placed in the conveyance. The body was then taken to the mortuary. It was stripped in the presence if the two doctors and myself. No money was found on it. The piece of linen produced, which was found in Gouldstone street, corresponds with a piece which is missing from an apron the deceased was wearing at the time of the discovery of the body. On my arrival at the square I took immediate steps to find the person who had committed the murder. Mr. M'William on his arrival shortly after with a number of detectives sent the latter out to make a search in all directions in Spitalfields both in the streets and in lodging houses. Several men were stopped and searched in the streets, but without any good result. I had a house to house inquiry made in the vicinity of Mitre square, asking whether any noise was heard or anybody seen at about the time of the murder. Nothing came out except what will be told by two witnesses who will be called.
By the City Solicitor - Deceased was lying in a pool of blood - no blood was in front of her, but the back of her head and shoulders were lying in it. There was not the slightest sign of a struggle. I made a careful search with the two doctors, but could find no trace whatever. The blood was in a liquid state, and not congealed, which showed in my opinion, that what had occurred could not have taken place more than a quarter of an hour before. We endeavoured to trace footsteps, but could find no trace of any. A search was made at the back of the empty houses which adjoin.
Dr. Gordon Brown, surgeon to the City Police, said - I was called to mitre square shortly after 2 o'clock on Sunday morning. I reached there about eighteen minutes past two. My attention was called to the body of a woman lying there. The body was lying in the position the constable has already described. It was on its back, the head turned to the left shoulder; the arms by the side of the body as if they had fallen in that position, the palms of the hands being upwards. The fingers were slightly bent; a thimble was lying near to the right hand; the clothes were disarranged. The bonnet was at the back of the head; the throat was cut across; below the cut was a neckerchief; and the upper part of the dress was pulled open. The intestines were to a large extent drawn out of the abdomen and placed over the right shoulder. A piece of the intestines about two feet long was detached and placed between the left arm and the body, apparently by design. This would also apply to what had happened to the right shoulder. The lobe of the right ear was cut completely through. There was a quantity of clotted blood on the left side of the body on the pavement above the shoulder, and the same above the right shoulder. the body was quite warm and no death stiffening had taken place. Death must have taken place within the half hour. we lo0oked for superficial bruises and saw none. There were no marks of blood below the middle of the body.
By the City Solicitor - There was no blood on the throat part of the jacket or dress.
The witness, continuing his evidence, said - A post mortem examination was made in the mortuary in Sunday afternoon. Rigor mortis was strongly marked, but the body was not quite cold. After washing the left hand carefully, a recent bruise the size of a sixpence was discovered on the back of it between the thumb and first finger. There were a few small bruises on the right shin, but these were old. The hands and arms were bronzed as though the sun had been much on them. There were no bruises on the scalp, the back of the body, or the elbows. There were sixteen teeth missing, The face was very much mutilated. There was a cut of about a quarter of an inch through the lower left eyelid, dividing the structures completely. The upper eyelid of that side had a scratch through the skin near to the angle of the nose. The right eyelid was cut through to about half an inch in extent. There was a deep cut over the bridge of the nose extending from the left border of the nasal bone, down nearly to the angle of the jaw of the right side. This cut went into the nasal bone, dividing all the structures of the cheek except the mucus membrane of the mouth. The tip of the nose was quite detached by an oblique cut from the bottom of then nasal bone to where the corners of the nostrils join on the face. A cut from this divided the upper lip and the substance of the gum over the right upper lateral incisor. About half an inch from the tip of the nose was another oblique cut. There was a cut at the right angle of the mouth as if from the point of a knife. There was on each side of the cheek a cut which peeled up the skin forming a triangular flap of about an inch and a half. On the left cheek there were two abrasions of the outer skin and two more under the left ear. The throat was cut across, extending some six or seven inches. A superficial cut commenced beneath the lobe of the ear on the left side and extended across the throat to about three inches below the lobe of the right ear. The sterno mastoid was divided and the large vessels of the left side were also severed. The larynx was severed below the vocal chords. All the deep structures were severed to the bone, the knife marking the vertebral cartilage. The sheath of the vessels on the right side was just opened; the carotid artery had a pinhole opening. The internal jugular vein was opened to an inch and a half in extent, but was not divided. The cause of death was hemorrhage from the severance of the left columnar carotid artery. Death was immediate, and the mutilations were made after death. The witness then went on at great length to describe the shocking further mutilations to which the deceased had been subjected, but the details were too horrible for publication. One of the most important points in this part of the evidence was that the injuries to the lower part of the body having been inflicted after death, the murderer would probably get but little blood upon his hands. The left kidney had been carefully taken out in such as manner as to show that it had been done by somebody who not only knew its anatomical position, but knew how to remove it. Some part of another specific portion of the body similar to that abstracted from a previous victim was also missing with its ligaments.
By the City Solicitor - I think the wound in the throat must have been inflicted as the deceased lay on the ground. The wounds must have been inflicted with a sharp knife, which must have been pointed, and at least six inches long. The person who made the mutilations must have possessed considerable knowledge of the position of the abdominal organs, and of the way of removing them. the missing parts would be of no use or value for any professional or scientific purpose.
Would the knowledge necessary for these mutilations be likely to be possessed by one engaged in cutting up animals? - Yes.
have you any opinion as to whether the perpetrator was disturbed? - I think he had sufficient time, or he would not have cut and nicked the eyelids if he had not had plenty of time. I should think the whole thing could have been done in five minutes. As a professional man, I can assign no reason for the parts being taken away. I feel sure there was no struggle. I think the act would have been the act of one man only. As to no noise being heard, the throat would have been so instantly severed that no noise could have been emitted by the victim. I should not expect to find much blood on the person who had inflicted these wounds. My attention was called to the apron which the woman was wearing. It was a portion of an apron cut, with the string attached to it (produced). The blood stains on it are recent. Dr. Phillips brought in a piece of apron found in Gouldstone street, which fits what is missing in the one found on the body. It is impossible to assert that the blood is human blood. It looks as if it had had a bloody hand or a bloody knife wiped upon it.
By the Jury - I am going to examine the stomach on a future occasion to see if any drug had been administered.
The Court then adjourned until Thursday next at 10.30.
EXCITING CHASE OF A "SUSPECT"
The closing hours of Wednesday night and the early dawn of yesterday morning proved an exciting time for the Est end population. Rumours of the most extraordinary character were freely circulated in all directions. Again and again it was asserted, with details more or less circumstantial, that the criminal had been arrested under conditions that attested the gallantry of the police, the determination of the public, and the desperate character of the murderer. The result was that people's minds were inflamed to an almost incredible extent. the rumours, of sensational, were for the most part as ridiculous as they were untrue. Thus late at night it was widely reported that the man had been captured in the Ratcliffe Highway while attempting another outrage upon an unfortunate woman, and that in the scuffle a police officer had been stabbed. With such acceptance did this rumour meet that even the authorities at Old Jewry deemed it desirable to send Detective Sergeant Child to the Leman street Police station to inquire into the truth of the statement. That officer was speedily convinced that a gross misrepresentation of fact had been made. What actually occurred was this; Sergeant Adams, of the H Division, while on duty on Wednesday night between nine and ten in the Ratcliffe Highway heard the voice of a woman shouting for help in an adjacent court. Proceeding in the direction whence the cries came he met a man, evidently a foreigner, hurrying away from the court. Examining the man who was near with the aid of his bull's eye the sergeant concluded that he bore a somewhat near resemblance to the description already published by the police of the man who is supposed to have been seen in the company of the unfortunate woman Stride subsequent to her leaving the lodging house in Flower and Dean street on Saturday evening last. The stranger evaded the police officer's questions as to what he was doing there, but volunteered the information that he was a Scandinavian, and was sailing for America the following day. Sergeant Adams deemed the circumstances to be sufficiently suspicious to warrant him in taking the man into custody, and conveying him to Leman street Police station. Here he was searched, but no weapons were found upon him. Questioned by the inspector in charge, the stranger declared that he was a Maltese by birth, and again mentioned he was starting for America on the following day, and gave his name and address without hesitation. The latter being found on inquiry to be correct he was liberated during the early hours of yesterday morning. Another arrest was made in Shadwell, the captive in this case being an Englishman. On being brought to Leman street, however, he was able to furnish the police with satisfactory proofs of his innocence, and was released an hour or two afterwards.
By far the most sensational feature in a night of alarms was the elaborate and detailed rumour which, travelling westward, reached Fleet street about midnight. It was alleged that an hour before a man, who was believed to be the author of the diabolical outrages of Sunday last, lured an unfortunate girl into one of the side alleys off Union street, Whitechapel, and they (sic) made an attempt on her life. The would be victim, however, was said to have been sharp enough to detect in time the glitter of a steel blade, and shrieked for assistance. This proved to be quite near at hand, and the clatter on the pavement of rapidly advancing feet warned the assailant that he would have to seek safety in flight. Just as he started a man and some two or three women arrived on the scene, and the former gave chase. The pursuer almost immediately came up with him, and succeeded in knocking a knife with which he was armed out of his hand. The man, however, evaded his grasp, darted into the roadway, jumped into a passing cab to the amazement of "cabby," and shouted to him to drive him "as hard as he could wherever he would." The cabman started off as desired; but his vehicle was speedily surrounded by police and a howling mob, and a constable jumped in and secured the occupant, who was conveyed at one to Leman street. This was the story. Although the details proved upon inquiry to be fictitious, there ran through the rumour a slight substratum of truth. Between ten and eleven o'clock a well dressed man rushed out of the Three Nuns public house in Aldgate, followed by a woman who, in a loud voice, declared to the loungers and passers by that he had molested and threatened her. While he was thus being denounced to the crowd, the stranger hailed a cab, jumped in, and proceeded to drive off. A hue and cry was at once raised, and the vehicle was followed by an excited mob, which rapidly grew in numbers. It was the general belief that the murderer who has been terrorising the East end was the occupant of the cab, and a hot pursuit was given. In a moment or two the cab was stopped, and a police constable got in, secured the man, and directed the cabman to drive to the Leman street police station. Here the prisoner was formally charged on suspicion. The cab was followed to the station by the woman who had raised the outcry. She stated to the police in the most emphatic manner that the prisoner had first accosted and molested her in the street, and that when she refused to accede to his proposals he threatened physical violence. While the woman was making her statement the prisoner was holding down his head and looking at the ground, and he never once attempted to make a remark. When, however, a man stepped forward to corroborate the girl's story, he looked up angrily and denied the truth of the allegations with considerable emphasis. The woman was then asked if she desired to make any charge, but she declined to do so, and shortly after left the station. It was, however, deemed prudent by the officer in charge to detain the man pending inquiries, When removed to the cell his attitude became impudent and defiant, and in the course of the conversation which he carried on with a slightly American accent while pacing up and down his place of confinement, the frequency with which he used the word "Boss" was particularly noticed. It was not until half past nine yesterday morning that he was discharged, diligent inquiries by the police leading them to the conclusion that their prisoner was not the man wanted. But for the obstinacy he displayed after his arrest, it is probable that he would have been released long before. Matters stand now, so far as the murderer is concerned, just where they did on Sunday last, and it is safe to state that not the faintest evidence likely to lead to detection and arrest has yet been forthcoming.
At the close of his service in the City temple yesterday morning, Dr. Parker referred at length to the East end murders. Replying to the question of how far the pulpit was responsible for such crimes, the Rev. gentleman said the pulpit had undertaken instrumentally to convert society, and the pulpit had signally failed. Always allowing for exceptions, the pulpit was the paid slave of respectable society. The pulpit loved respectability, the pulpit boasted of respectable, intelligent congregations. The pulpit had lost its hold on the tragic and impetuous life of the world. The outcasts of society turned away from the preacher as from a man who talked in an unknown tongue and troubled himself about antiquities and metaphysics for which the sad and maddened heart of the world cared nothing. Men were wanted who knew the country they lived in, the sorrows which surged in billows around their very homes, the poverty that was completed by hopelessness and the mental unrest which could not be touched by dead fathers and living pedagogues. Every pulpit in the world should denounce the crimes which London mourned, but denunciation was a poor part of pulpit duty. Every congregation should offer a reward for the recovery of the criminal. What the Home Secretary was doing, or thinking of doing, passed his (Dr. Parker's) comprehension. If offering a reward for the discovery of the criminal did not detect the perpetrator of the crime what harm was done? But if offering a reward should end in the detection of the criminal great good was done. (Applause.) This quick murder of women, however, was nothing compared to the slow murder compared to the slow murder that was going on every day. Compared with many who were cruel deliberately, the perpetration of these East end crimes was gentleness - mercy itself. The magistrates should be armed with greater powers. Nothing would really make a certain class of criminals feel their crime but bodily chastisement. It was no use trying moral suasion upon garrotters, violent robbers, cruel husbands and fathers, they must be flogged. Church Congresses and Nonconformist assemblies should suspend their sittings, that these tremendous grievances might be attended to. They had had papers enough on distant subjects, addresses enough upon things that were only in the air. What were they to do with the real concrete intolerable life immediately around them? It was in vain to meet as quiet, respectable, gospel imbibing congregations drinking orthodoxy to the full, and setting down the empty goblet with a sigh of impious satisfaction. The Devil laughed at the sacrifice. As to denouncing the criminal, better ask how far they were responsible for his creation by making labour a disappointment, by running profits down so small as to turn young men to gambling, by surrounding men with drinkeries and then fining them for drinking. Away with piety that trifled with the stream when might dry up the fountain.
On the paper of business to be brought before the meeting of the Court of Common Council yesterday afternoon was a notice of motion by Mr. John Pound authorising the Corporation to offer a reward of £500 for the apprehension of the Aldgate murderer. Immediately after the reading of the minutes, however, the Lord Mayor rose and said :- The Court is aware of the course I was advised and thought it right to take, as to the prompt offer in the name of the Corporation of a substantial reward for the apprehension of the Mitre square murderer, and I am glad to see that not only is public opinion satisfied, but judging from the paper of business the Court is also satisfied. I have now only to ask the Court to endorse that which I have done in its name, and I am sure we all join in the earnest hope that the perpetrator or perpetrators of these hideous crimes will be speedily detected.
Mr. F. Green said he was sure the Court desired to endorse the action which had been taken by his lordship. All England had for days past been horrified by particulars of the terrible crimes that had been committed and they had but one object in view, and that was to leave no stone unturned in their endeavour to lead to the arrest of the murderer. He, therefore, moved a resolution endorsing the action of the Lord Mayor in offering the reward.
Mr. Alderman Cowan seconded the motion.
The resolution was adopted unanimously.
In connection with the Mitre square murder it may be mentioned that the foreman of the sewer hands who are engaged at Aldgate in sweeping the streets and clearing away the refuse, &c., in the early hours of the morning, has stated most positively that at the time when the murder is supposed to have been perpetrated he was standing not more than 20 yards away from the spot where the body was subsequently found by the constable and himself. He states emphatically that he never heard any woman's cries for help, nor did any sounds of a struggle reach his ear.
The Central Press has received the following letter, bearing the E.C. postmark. It is written in red ink, in a round hand, apparently by an person indifferently educated. At the foot there is a rude drawing of a sharp pointed knife, the blade measuring three inches and the handle one inch:
Dear Boss -
Since last, splendid success. Two more and never a squeal. Oh, I am master of the art! I am going to be heavy on the guilded - now, we are. Some dutchess will cut up nicely, and the lace will show nicely. You wonder how. Oh, we are masters. No education like a butcher's. No animal like a nice woman - the fat are best. On to Brighton for a holiday, but we shan't idle - splendid high class women there. My mouth waters - good luck there. If not, you will hear from me in West end. My pal will keep on at the east a while yet. When I get a nobility - I will send it on to C. Warren, or perhaps to you for a keepsake. O, it is jolly.
George of the High Rip Gang.
Red ink still, but a drop of the real stuff in it."
The manager of the Central Press, immediately on receipt of the above extraordinary communication, placed it at the disposal of the Scotland yard authorities.
The number of detectives on duty in the Whitechapel district was as large as ever, and there were also about fifty working men on voluntary patrol duty, most of whom remained on the streets until daylight. The local Vigilance Committees have charge of this movement, and they hope to arrange matters so that no man shall be required to give more than one night per week to the work.
The officers who are making inquiries with respect to the shocking discovery made at the new police offices at Westminster have received information that on Saturday afternoon, at twenty minutes past five, a respectably dressed man, about 35 years of age, was seen to get over from the hoarding in Cannon row, and to walk quietly away, and that he was not followed, or the police informed of the matter, because no importance was attached to the matter at the time. The police have forwarded a description of this man to all police stations, with a view, if possible, of tracing him. Inquiries are also being made for the purpose of ascertaining whether any person on Saturday afternoon after the workmen had left the building was seen to get over the hoarding with any bundle. Yesterday morning the work of carefully examining the vaults where the body was found was diligently proceeded with by a number of detectives. There is a well in the vaults, and this has yet to be searched. The police are firmly of opinion that the individual who conveyed the body into the vaults was intimately acquainted with the formation of the building.
BALMORAL, OCT. 4.
Yesterday morning the Queen went out, attended by Lady Ampthill.
The Prince and Princess Henry of Battenberg and Princess Alice of Hesse walked out.
In the afternoon the Queen, attended by the Dowager Marchioness of Ely, took a drive.
The Princess of Wales, with Princesses Louise, Victoria, and Maud, and Prince Albert Victor of Wales, the Duchess of Albany, with the young Duke and Princess Alice of Albany, as well as Princess Frederick of Hanover and Baron von Pawel Rammingen, visited Her Majesty.
The man Pizer, who was arrested on suspicion of being connected with the murder of Annie Chapman in Hanbury street, and who gave a satisfactory account of himself, complained to Mr. Lushington that since he was released from custody he had been subjected to great annoyance. Only that morning a woman accosted him in the street, and after calling him "Old Leather Apron" and other insulting expressions, struck him three blows in the face. Mr. Lushington told Pizer he could have summons against the person who had assaulted him.
William Webb, 43, a labourer and army pensioner, living at New end square, Hampstead, was charged before Mr. B.W. Smith and Mr. G.H. Powell, with appearing in Heath street in female costume, with a carving knife in his possession, supposed for an unlawful purpose. Mackenzie, 591 S, deposed that on Wednesday night, about a quarter to 8, he was on fixed point duty near the Metropolitan Fire Brigade Station, when he saw a crowd outside the Horse and Groom public house, Heath street. Witness went to ascertain the cause, and saw the prisoner in the midst of a crowd dressed up in the woman's clothes now produced - hat, skirt, petticoat, and jacket - and with a handkerchief round his neck. Witness thought prisoner was a man and told him to go away. The prisoner would not go, but drew the knifer produced (about a foot long with the blade) from up his sleeve, and acting about with it, said he was going to Whitechapel to catch the murderer. Witness did not know the prisoner, but he was known in Hampstead. He did not seem to be the worse for drink. Witness took him to the station. The prisoner said he was drunk in the morning, and had some more drink in the evening. Some of his companions had told him that he had not got the pluck to go down to Whitechapel to look after the murderer, and so he went home and put his wife's clothes on, in which he came out, but with no intention of going to Whitechapel. It was only a joke. Inspector Sly, S Division, said that prisoner had shaved off his moustache. Witness thought it right to detain him when he was brought to the station, but now believed that prisoner's conduct was nothing but a joke. Prisoner admitted that he had shaved off his moustache. The Bench said the constable had acted properly in taking prisoner into custody, and fined the accused 10s, or in default seven days' imprisonment, for disorderly conduct. Prisoner was locked up in default.
Dr. Langham, the City Coroner, yesterday opened an inquest on the body of the woman who was murdered early on Sunday morning last in Mitre square, Aldgate. The deceased was recognised by witnesses as a woman who had been known by the name of Catherine Conway. Police evidence as to the discovery of the body was also taken. Dr. Gordon Brown, describing the result of a post mortem examination, said that not only had the face been very much mutilated (after death) but the left kidney and another portion of the body had been abstracted. the cause of death was hemorrhage, from the severance of the carotid artery. The inquiry was then adjourned till Thursday next.
It will be seen from the reports which we publish today that the police have obtained no evidence likely to led to the detection of the murderer of women at Whitechapel. One or two arrests have been made, but to no purpose. Alarming rumours have served to prolong excitement and terror in the district. At the City Temple yesterday Dr. Parker referred in strong terms to the murders, and said that what the Home Secretary was doing passed his comprehension.
"Resolved, that this Board regards with horror and alarm the several atrocious murders recently perpetrated within the district of Whitechapel and its vicinity, and calls upon Sir Charles Warren so to regulate and strengthen the police force in the neighbourhood as to guard against any repetition of such atrocities."
"Go to," adroitly replies Sir Charles Warren. "Look to your lamps. The purlieus about Whitechapel are very imperfectly lighted, and the darkness is an important assistant to crime." There can be no doubt in the mind of anybody who knows the purlieus of Whitechapel that the Commissioner has fairly scored one against the Whitechapel District Board of Works. "You are decidedly of opinion, then," was a question addressed to Chief Inspector West, "that if your division were generally better lighted it would tend materially to render many forms of crime more difficult and the capture of criminals more easy?" "Most certainly," was the ready rejoinder. "Look even at this Commercial street. It has always appeared to me to be very insufficiently lighted - a broad and important thoroughfare like this. It is none too brilliant now. Lying just off it there are some of the lowest of lodging houses, and you can see how easy it must be for rough characters to snatch from the persons passing along and rush off into their dens in the darkness with very little chance of their being identified or followed. But wait until the few shops are closed, and the public house lights are put out, and see then how wretchedly the street is lighted, and what opportunities there are for all sorts of mischief to go on."
Looking up this main thoroughfare it is impossible to deny that there is much force in what the officer says, and turning into the minor streets and lanes in the neighbourhood the opportunities afforded by the murky condition of the streets for the perpetration of crimes of violence are very apparent. Put out the public house lamps at twelve o'clock, and shut up one or two little shops, and you have - for instance, in Fleur de Lys street - a dismal little lane suggestive of almost anything bad. Obscure thoroughfares like Elder street, Quaker street, Blossom street are all of them open to the same criticism, and a very little exploration will convince anybody that that in most of them there are deeper depths of gloom, affording really startling facilities for vice and crime. "Look here, sir," said an anxious and despondent woman to the officer who was looking round one of these murky lanes last evening. "We may all be murdered here any night. This door's open all night long. People may get down in the cellar or out in the back yard, or up the staircases, and none of us can prevent 'em." The house passage widened out into a sort of washhouse, and behind this was a very nasty yard, all in utter darkness. The District Board of Works saw, and reasonably enough of course, that they cannot be held responsible for this. It is the landlord's affair. But as a matter of notorious fact, in all the poorer quarters of London, the landlords do not look to the security of their tenement passages and back yards, and cannot be made to do so. And it is a fact which certainly seems to afford a strong reason why at least the actual streets should be well lighted. In many cases, however, not only is the lighting of the streets very insufficient either for comfort or security, but yards for which the authorities are certainly responsible are entirely neglected. Take as an illustration of this Pope's Head court in Quaker street. It opens from the street by a public passage, and the yard itself is in utter darkness. The lodgers in an adjacent public house have a way to it by a back gate. Seen at any rate by night it has the appearance of a place specially planned for deeds of crime and vice; and the unfortunate people who have to grope their way to their rooms through the dirt and darkness are loud in their complaints. "Been here six years," said a rough looking occupant of a room in the court, "and never had no key, and never had the front door locked. Look at that staircase leading up to that place there - anybody may get up them, and do just what they like. I have begged the landlord to give us a lock on the door, and a key. But not he; he takes no notice of us, and don't care a curse whether we gets murdered or not." The lighting and cleansing at least of this court seem to be the work of the District Board, and the circumstances under which this nasty little retreat was found - quite incidentally in the course of an inspection of the street - certainly suggested the probability that many others of a similar character might have been found by further search in the same neighbourhood. Some of the courts and streets inspected in this poor neighbourhood are very fairly lighted, but every here and there one was found in which apparently the greatest economy of lamp lighting had been practised, in consideration of the fact that the flaring lights of public houses sufficiently supplemented the street lamps up till midnight. After midnight, however, such streets are terribly gloomy. Let any one go down Spital street, for instance, after twelve o'clock at night and say whether throat cutting and "snatching" and general vice are not suggested by the murky darkness of the locality. From there go on to Buxton street and thence into Code street - not only wretchedly lighted, but ankle deep in mud, by the way. These are in the immediate neighbourhood of Hanbury street, which is itself for the most part very poorly lighted. In this street, it will be remembered, it has already been shown that large numbers of the houses are let out tenements, and the street doors and passages are open all night long. The terror of many of the people at the time that murder was found out in one of these houses was intense. Said one woman, "There are unlocked cellars down under these houses, and the yards are all open, and we may any of us be murdered in our beds." Last night as a small party of inspectors moved about the neighbourhood there were abundant indications that this terror had by no means subsided. Again and again appeal was made that something should be done for their greater safety, and the general anxiety and sense of insecurity must unquestionably have been greatly intensified by the unsatisfactory lighting in the streets. "When this public house is shut up, " said the police inspector, "how could I possibly make out anything going on a few yards off." The lamps, it may be, are not too far apart, but they are feeble flickerings wholly behind the times.
Now it must not be supposed that we are singling out the Whitechapel district for especial censure. Much of the evil character of Whitechapel as a region of slums and filth and squalor is purely a matter of tradition. It may have been true of it a generation ago, but it is true no longer, as regards by far the greater part of the district at least. In lighting and cleansing and general management Whitechapel is at least on an equality with localities in the south and north, and even in may parts of the west. But there are 70,000 people here, and among them a police sergeant observed last night that he had in the district assigned to him no less than 6,000 residents in common lodging houses. Of course they will include a serious proportion of the criminal and cadger class, and lighting and patrolling that might be sufficient elsewhere may very well be wholly insufficient among a population like this. Having regard to the character of the population, Sir Charles Warren says unequivocally that the neighbourhood is imperfectly lighted, and that the darkness is an important assistant to crime. The District Board of Works will we understand shortly have the Commissioner's letter under consideration, and the reply they may be expected to make is that they do not increase their lamps for precisely the same reason that Sir Charles Warren does not increase the number of his men. Lamps, like policemen, cost money, and the lighting of Whitechapel cannot be rendered more brilliant without a serious addition to the rates. Roughly speaking, every street lamp represents a hundred pounds capitalised. That is to say, the annual maintenance of a lamp costs about the interest of £100, and altogether the lighting of the entire district costs in round figures £5,000 a year. It is a good round sum no doubt but if it is really true that an increase of light would tend decidedly to the suppression of crime it seems very probable that the addition of even another £5,000 and the doubling of the light would be a good investment. But a good deal less then this would effect a great improvement in the safety and comfort of thousands of people, and very much the same may be said of many other large districts of London. At no very distant date it may be science and public spirit may combine to banish darkness altogether. Science, indeed, is quite ready to undertake the business offhand, and to pour over any section of London such a blaze of light that slums and passages and back yards can no longer give shelter to deeds of darkness. But funds, alas, are not yet forthcoming. As yet we prefer to spend our money in providing plunder for thieves, and in maintaining them when we have caught them in spite of all the difficulties of darkness. No doubt we shall be wiser some day, but an intelligent comprehension of these matters is like the revolution of electric lighting - a matter of slow and gradual progress.