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London, U.K.
22 September 1888


There is occasionally a comic side to the worst of crimes. Since the last murder in the East end, two men became suspicious, the one of the other, and spent their days and nights in following one another about. Such a proceeding could only have the effect of increasing the suspicion on both sides. A few days ago one became so convinced that his distrust was well founded that he pointed out the other to a constable, whereupon the second man, thinking that this was a favourable opportunity, gave the first one into custody. The policeman took both to the station, where the Inspector, so the London correspondent of the Sheffield Independent has been told, could with difficulty listen to the men's statements for laughter. What their opinions were of each other when they were sent about their business is not known, but they probably resolved to play no more at amateur detectives. The police themselves are occasionally victims to similar mistakes. Only recently a plain clothes officer, investigating a murder in the northern part of London, was taken into custody by an inspector, who deemed his appearance and movements suspicious. On one occasion, it is stated, Superintendent Littlechild was arrested by one of his subordinates.


Sir - Permit me to call attention to the cause of the labourers in the East end Docks, who are known as a hardworking class of men, with small earnings, compelling them to live in low and dirty lodgings, amidst disgusting surroundings, whose sufferings during the winter months it is deplorable to behold. Being constantly on the spot I notice that, from early morning until past midday, these poor creatures are to be seen attending in the roads and corners, amidst wind, rain, and snow, often stockingless, with clothes in tatters that are past repair, without food, patiently and submissive to fate, awaiting employment outside the Dock gates; and when some of their number are needed, to see them rush, thrusting aside the older and weaker ones, is a sickening sight to behold. My object in drawing public attention is, firstly, that these wretched beings shall, before the winter sets in again, have some shelter provided for them, either within the Dock gates or near by, in order that they may have protection from the inclement weather, and where a cup of tea or coffee, with bread, or soup, can be provided at the cost of one penny; and secondly, that they might have their names or numbers called when the managers of the Dock Company have work for them, and prevent that unseemly rush for work, in which doubtless those who deserve it most have not the strength to struggle for it. I would most earnestly invite all those who are interested in suffering humanity to see for themselves the above facts. Some years since, my friend, the Rev. Mr. Greatorex, of St. Paul's, Dock street, failed to induce the managers of the London and St. Katherine Dock Company to provide this much needed shelter. I shall therefore be glad of the names of those who are willing to co-operate.

I am, Sir, yours obediently,
Moses Davis
Chairman, Dietz, Davis, and Co. (Limited), London Docks.


Sir - I have carefully read your able and impartial review of the pamphlet by "ex-Captain" Redstone, and also the pamphlet itself in regard to the "seamy side" of the Salvation Army. It is not at all likely that a man like Dr. Geikie would have written an introduction to the pamphlet, such as he has, without he had fully proved all the circumstances connected with the revelations of the treatment received by "Captain" Redstone at the hands of those in authority in the Salvation Army. In spite of the letter of "Commissioner Railton," "Nonconformist," and "A.D.638," there still remains most serious allegations, and, undoubtedly, genuine letters from Ballington Booth, Bramwell Booth, &c., in the pamphlet, which are unanswered by either of your Correspondents, and which (if the Salvation Army wish to retain any status) they should feel it their duty to see to at once; and, if the allegations and statements contained in the pamphlet are false, refute them. I enclose my card, and remain, Sir, yours, &c.

Fair Play.

Related pages:
  John Littlechild
       Dissertations: A Mystery Play : Police Opinions on Jack the Ripper 
       Message Boards: John George Littlechild 
       Official Documents: The Littlechild Letter 
       Police Officials: John George Littlechild 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 4 January 1923 
  Salvation Army
       Press Reports: Echo - 18 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Echo - 21 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Evening News - 11 December 1888