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The Times (London).
9 July 1889

THE THAMES MYSTERY

Yesterday Mr. Braxton Hicks, the Mid Surrey coroner, resumed the inquiry into the circumstances attending the death of Elizabeth Jackson, aged 24, whose mutilated remains were found in various parts of the Thames, on the Embankment, and in Battersea park.

The proceedings commenced by the Coroner stating that he had originally fixed the adjourned inquiry for the 25th inst., but as Fairclough, the man with whom the deceased had left London, had been found, he had thought it advisable to call the jury together while it was available, and he took this opportunity of commenting upon the want of discretion shown by the Press in publishing the fact that Fairclough was to be called as a witness, as such a statement going forth might have very seriously interfered with the ends of justice.

John Fairclough was then called. he was well dressed in some clothes he had had given him, and bore the appearance of a respectable mechanic. Though uneducated, he evinced marked intelligence, promptly answering all the questions put to him. He said that he was a millstone dresser by trade, a native of March, Cambridgeshire, and 36 years of age. He first made the acquaintance of Elizabeth Jackson about the end of last November, when he met her at a public house at the corner of Turk's row, Chelsea, and she then told him that she had been living with a man named Charlie. He remembered it was a Sunday night, and on the following day she agreed to go with him to Ipswich, which she did, and he was employed there for four months. She was a sober woman, and they only quarrelled now and then. On March 30 they left Ipswich and took the train to Colchester, when they tramped to London, where they stayed for five days at a lodging house in Whitechapel. They afterwards took lodgings at Mrs. Paine's, in Millwall. He then asked her to go with him to Croydon, but she refused saying that she would rather go to her mother at Chelsea until after her confinement. He then went to Croydon alone, having no money to leave her, and got a few days' work at Waddon Flour Mills. From there he went to Wandsworth, sleeping two nights near the railway, then tramped to Isleworth, Uxbridge, Ware, Bishop's Stortford, Saffron Walden, Cambridgeshire, St. Ives, Huntingdon, St. Neot's, Biggleswade (staying at the Red Lion), Hitchin, Luton, and St. Albans, and reached Harpenden on May 31. He also went to Watford, where he slept at the Red Lion, kept by an army pensioner named Sullivan, and on June 3 (the last day deceased was seen alive) he was at High Wycombe, and called at Great Marlow on his way to Reading, where he stayed two night. He subsequently visited Odiham, where he was bitten by a dog, and had the wound cauterised by the parish doctor. On Whit Sunday he visited Basingstoke, and continued travelling westward until he reached Tipton, near Ottery St. Mary, where the police found him on Saturday. From the time he left Jackson at Millwall he had neither seen nor heard anything of her. He had not read the newspapers - in fact, had hardly seen one in the parts he visited, and had consequently not heard of a body being found in the Thames. He knew of no one who would have been likely to have done deceased an injury. He did not hear her mention the address of any house to which she was likely to go in Battersea. The linsey dress produced he had bought for her in Ipswich.

By the jury - Deceased was eight months advanced in pregnancy when he left her.

Inspector Tunbridge, who had travelled down to Tipton St. John on receipt of a communication from Sergeant Pope, of the Devonshire Constabulary, stated that when he found Fairclough at Ottery St. Mary he was wearing the same clothes described by Mrs. Paine as those worn when he left her, and the inspector added that inquiries had already been set on foot with a view to verify the dates and places mentioned by Fairclough, and that it had been ascertained that he was at Croydon on the day he had stated.

The Coroner then stated that that was as far as he could now carry the case. The police had been so very successful in procuring the identification of the woman that they might be able to bring out other facts, and with that view he would adjourn the inquiry until the date originally fixed, viz., the 25th inst.


Related pages:
  Elizabeth Jackson
       Message Boards: Elizabeth Jackson 
       Press Reports: Atlanta Constitution - 26 June 1889 
       Press Reports: Decatur Daily Herald - 26 June 1889 
       Press Reports: El Siglo XIX - 11 July 1889 
       Press Reports: Evening Star - 4 June 1889 
       Press Reports: Newark Daily Advocate - 5 June 1889 
       Press Reports: Te Aroha News - 27 July 1889 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 2 July 1889 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 26 July 1889 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 26 June 1889 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 4 July 1889 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 5 July 1889 
       Press Reports: Trenton Times - 26 June 1889 
       Press Reports: Weekly Gazette and Stockman - 27 June 1889 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: A Cast of Thousands - Elizabeth Jackson 
       Ripper Media: Life and Death at the Old Bailey - Chapter 8 
       Victims: Elizabeth Jackson 
       Victims: Elizabeth Jackson