20 September 1888
Mr. Wynne Baxter, the Coroner for South-East Middlesex, resumed yesterday, at the Working Lads' Institute, Whitechapel, the inquest upon the body of Annie Chapman, who was found in the yard of the house, 29, Hanbury-street, Whitechapel, on the morning of Saturday, the 8th inst., with her throat cut and her body mutilated. The following evidence was taken:-
Eliza Cooper said - I lodge at 25, Dorset-street, Spitalfields. I have done so for the last five months. I knew the Deceased. I had a quarrel with her the Tuesday before she was murdered. On the previous Saturday she brought Mr. Stanley into 25, Dorset-street. The Deceased came into the kitchen, and asked the people there to give her some soap. They told her to ask "Liza." She came to me, and I opened the locker and gave her some. She gave it to Stanley, who went outside and washed himself in the lavatory. When she came back, I asked her for the soap, but she did not return. She said, "I will see you by-and-bye." Mr. Stanley gave her two shillings, and paid for the bed for two nights. I saw no more of her that night. Stanley treated me. I saw her on the Wednesday. When I met her in the kitchen, I said, "Perhaps you will return my soap." She threw a halfpenny on the table, and said, "Go and get a halfpennyworth of soap." We got quarrelling, and we went out to the Ringers' public-house, and continued the quarrel. She slapped my face, and said, "Think yourself lucky I did not do more." I struck her in the left eye, I believe, and then in the chest. I afterwards saw that the blow had marked her face.
When was the last time you saw her alive? On the Wednesday night, in the Ringers.
Was she wearing rings? Yes, she was wearing three rings on the third finger of the left hand. They were all brass. She bought them from a black man.
Had she ever a gold wedding rind to you knowledge? - No, not since I have known her. I have know her for about fifteen years. I know she associated with Stanley, "Harry the Hawker," and several others.
A Juror - was she on the same relations with the others as she was with Stanley?
Witness - No. She used to bring them casually into the lodging-house.
Dr. Baxter Phillips, the divisional police surgeon, was re-called, but before he was further examined,
The Coroner said - It appears to me necessary that all you ascertained from the post-mortem examination should be on the records of the Court for various reasons which I need not enumerate. However painful it may be, it is necessary in the interests of justice.
Dr. Phillips - I have not had any notice of that. I should have been glad if notice had been given to me, because I should have bean better prepared to give the evidence; however, I will do my best.
The Coroner - Would you like to postpone it?
Dr. Phillips - No, I have my original notes here, but they are in another man's writing. I still think that it is a very great pity - of course, I bow to your decision - but there are matters which have come to light now which show the wisdom of the course pursued on the last occasion, and I cannot help reiterating my regret that you have come to a different conclusion. On the last occasion, just before I left the Court, I mentioned to you that there were reasons why I thought the perpetrator of the wound upon the woman's throat had caught hold of her chin. In consequence of being imperfectly able to read the notes I was unable to come to that conclusion. I should like to follow that up.
The Coroner - Certainly.
Dr. Phillips the proceeded with his evidence. On the lower jaw were three scratches, one and a half to two inches below the lower lobe of the ear, going in a contrary direction to the incision in the throat. These were of recent date. There was a bruise on the right cheek, and at a corresponding point with the abrasions on the right side was a well marked bruise. I watched these bruises, and they came much more distinct, whereas the bruises mentioned in my last evidence remained the same. Those were the indications that led me to the conclusion I mentioned in my previous evidence.
The Coroner - What conclusion?
Witness - That the perpetrator of the crime seized hold of the chin in making the incision in the neck. The further details I could give are only fit for yourself (the Coroner) and the Jury.
The Coroner - I see ladies and boys in Court, and I think it right to say that they are bound to leave.
The person referred to accordingly left the Court.
The Coroner - We are bound to take all the evidence in the case, and, whether it is made public or not, is a matter for the responsibility of the Press.
The Foreman of the Jury - We are of the opinion that the evidence the doctor on the last occasion wished to keep back should be heard.
The Coroner - I have never heard of evidence having been kept back which has been asked for.
The Witness - I have not kept it back; I have only suggested whether it should be given or not.
The evidence given by the Witness on the previous occasion having been read.
Dr. Phillips proceeded to give details of the post-mortem examination he made on the body. He stated that two important abdominal parts were missing. He repeated his opinion, derived from the character of the incisions, that the length of the instrument with which they were made must have been at least five or six inches, and that the incisions indicated a certain amount of anatomical knowledge. The womb was entirely removed and the nature of the incisions and other circumstances indicated that the object of the operator was to obtain possession of it.
The Coroner - Can you give any idea how long it would take to produce all the injuries that were found on the body of the deceased?
Witness - I could not have performed all the injuries I saw on that woman, and affect them, even without a struggle, under a quarter of an hour. If I had done it in a deliberate way, such as would to the (?) of a surgeon, it would probably have taken me the best part of an hour.
The Coroner - Have you anything further to add with reference to the stains on the wall?
Witness - I have not been able to obtain any further traces of blood.
The Foreman - Is there anything to indicate that the crime in the case of Nicholls was perpetrated with the same object?
The Coroner - There is a difference in this respect, at all events, that the doctor is of the opinion that, in the case of Nicholls, the injuries to the abdomen were made first.
The Foreman - It has occurred to the Jury whether the eyes of the Deceased would retain any impression of the murderer.
Dr. Phillips - I have no particular opinion upon that point. I asked about it very early in the case, and I gave my opinion that the operation would be useless, especially in this case; and also to the use of a bloodhound, which was suggested. I think the blood of the murdered woman would be more likely to be traced than the murderer. These questions were submitted to me by the police very early; I think within 24 hours of the murder.
The Coroner - Were the injuries to the neck such as might have produced insensibility?
Witness - Yes; they were consistent with partial suffocation, taken in conjunction with the woollen tongue and turgid nails.
Elizabeth Long said - I live in Church-row, Whitechapel. I am married to James Long, a cart minder. On Saturday, the 8th September, about half-past five o'clock in the morning, I was passing down Hanbury-street, from home, on my way to Spitalfields Market. I knew the time, because I heard the brewer's clock strike half-past just before I passed 29, Hanbury-street. On the right-hand side, the same side as the house, I saw a man and a woman standing on the pavement talking. His back was turned to Brick-lane, and the woman's was towards the market. They were standing only a few yards nearer Brick-lane from 29, Hanbury-street. I saw the woman's face. I saw the deceased in the mortuary. I am sure the woman that I saw in Hanbury-street was the deceased. I did not see the man's face, but I noticed that he was dark. He was wearing a brown deerstalker hat. I think he had on a dark coat, though I am not certain. By the look of him he seemed to me a man over 40 years of age. He appeared to be a little taller than Deceased.
Did he look like a working man? - He looked like a foreigner.
Did he look like a dock labourer? - I should say he looked like a shabby-genteel.
Were they talking loudly? - They were talking loudly. I overhead him say to her, "Will you?" and she said, "Yes." That is all I heard, and I heard this as I passed. I left them standing there, and I did not look back, so I cannot say where they went to.
Did they appear to be sober? - I saw nothing to indicate that either of them was the worse for drink.
Was it not an unusual thing to see a man and a woman standing there talking? - I see lots of them standing there.
At that hour of the day? - Yes; that is why I did not take much notice of them.
What time did you leave home? - I got out about five o'clock, and I reached the Spitalfields Market a few minutes after half-past five.
The Foreman - What brewer's clock did you hear strike half-past five?
Witness - The brewer's in Brick-lane.
Edward Stanley, 1, Osborne-place, Osborn-street, Spitalfields, said - I am a bricklayer's labourer.
Are you known by the name of the Pensioner? - Yes.
Did you know the Deceased? - I did.
And you sometimes visited her? - Yes.
At 35, Dorset-street? - About once there, or twice, something like that. Other times I met her elsewhere.
When did you last see her alive? - On Sunday the 2nd September between one and three o'clock in the afternoon.
Was she wearing rings when you saw her? - Yes, I believe two. I could say on which finger, but they were on one of her fingers.
What sort of rings were they - what was the metal? - Brass, I should think. They were of the colour of brass.
Do you know any one she was on bad terms with? - No one, so far as I know. I heard nothing. She had some bruises on her face when I last saw her - a slight black eye, which some other woman had given her. I did not take much notice of it. She told me something about having a quarrel. It is possible I may have seen Deceased after 2, as I was doing nothing all that week. If I did see her I only casually met her, and we might have had a glass of beer together.
The Coroner - The deputy of the lodging-house said he was not to let the bed to the Deceased with any other man but you?
Witness - It was not from me he received those orders. I have seen it described the man used to come on the Saturday night, and remain until the Monday morning. I have never done so.
A Juror - You were supposed to be pensioner.
The Coroner - It must be some other man?
Witness - I cannot say that; I am only speaking for myself.
Are you a pensioner? - Can I object to answer that question, sir? It does not touch on anything here.
The Coroner - It was said the man was with her on each occasion when going to receive his pension? - It could not be me, sir. It has been stated all over Europe that it has been me.
It will not affect your financial position all over Europe when it is known that you are not a pensioner? It will affect my financial position in this way, sir, that I am a loser by having to come here for nothing, and may get discharged for not having been at my work.
Were you ever in the Royal Sussex Regiment?
Never, sir. I am a law-abiding man, sir, and interfere with no person who does not interfere with me.
The Coroner - Call the deputy.
Witness asked meanwhile whether he should have a remuneration for coming to give evidence.
The Coroner - Yes, if you wait long enough you are entitled to a fee.
Timothy Donovan, deputy of the lodging-house, was so called.
The Coroner - Did ever you see that man (Stanley) before?
Witness - Yes, sir.
Is he the man you call "the pensioner?" - Yes, sir.
Was it he who used to come with the Deceased on Saturday and stay till Monday? - Yes.
Was it he who told you not to let the bed to the Deceased with another man? - Yes; on the second Saturday he told me.
How many times have you seen him there? - I should think five or six Saturdays.
When was he last there? - On the Saturday before the woman's death. He stayed until the Monday. He paid for one night, and the woman afterwards came down and paid for the other.
The Coroner - What have you to say to that, Mr. Stanley? Is that as good as your pardon?
Stanley - You can cross it all out, sir.
Cross your evidence out? - No, sir, but his.
It is incorrect! - It is all wrong. I went to Gosport on the 6th of August, and remained there until the 1st of September.
Stanley added, while the Coroner was writing his last statement:- You have not done with me yet apparently. You are talking to an honest man when you are talking to me, sir.
The Foreman - Why, you were with the Deceased on September 1.
The Coroner - He returned on that day.
The Foreman - You said you we there on the Saturday previous.
Stanley - No; I have not said so.
Were you there when the quarrel was? - No; I had not any quarrel with her.
Had you known at Windsor at all? - No; she told me she knew someone about Windsor, and that she once lived there.
You did not know her there? - No; I have only known her about two years. I have never been to Windsor.
Did you call at the lodging-house on Saturday, the 8th, after the murder? Yes; I was told by a shoeblack it was she who was murdered, and I went to the lodging-house to ask if it was the fact. I was surprised, and went away.
Did you not give any information to the police that you know her? You might have volunteered evidence. - I did volunteer evidence. I went voluntary to Commercial-street Police-station, and told them what I knew. I did not want to stay, as it was always a loss to me to be away.
They did not tell you that the police wanted you? - Not on the 8th, but afterwards. They told me the police wanted to see me after I had been to the police. I have given you all the facts.
Albert Cadosch said - I live at 27, Hanbury-street. My occupation is that of a carpenter. 27 is next door to 29, Hanbury-street. On Saturday, the 8th Sept., I got up about a quarter past five in the morning. I went through the yard of my house to he far end of the yard furthest from 29. It was then about 20 minutes past five, I should think. As I returned towards the back door I heard a voice say "No" just as I was going through the door. It was not in our yard, but I should think it came from the yard of No. 29. I, however, cannot say on which side it came from. I went indoors, but I came back again into the yard about three or four minutes afterwards, and proceeded to the end of the yard. In coming back I heard a sort of fall against the fence which divided my yard from that of 29. It seemed as if something seemed to touch the fence suddenly.
Did you look to see what it was? - No, sir.
Had you heard any noise while you were at the bottom of your yard? - No, sir.
Did you hear the rustling of any clothes? - No, sir. I then went into the house, and from there into the street to go to my work. It was about two minutes after half-past five as I passed Spitalfields Church.
Do you ever hear people in these yards? - No, sir, not as a rule.
But at that time in the morning do you ever hear anybody? - Yes, now and then. Of course, some times the packing-case work at night.
By the Foreman - I went twice to my back yard in so short a time, not from curiosity, having heard the noise, but because I had occasion to go.
By a Juror - I informed the police the same night after I returned from my work.
The Foreman - What height are the palings?
Witness - About 5ft. 6in. to 6ft. high.
And you had not the curiosity to look over? - No, I had not, as it is usual for people in the yard next door. They are very early risers.
It is not usual for thumps against the palings? - They are packing-case makers, and now and then there is a great case goes up against the palings. I was thinking about my work, and not that there was anything the matter, otherwise most likely I would have been curious enough to look over.
The Foreman - It's a pity you did not.
By the Coroner - I did not see any man and woman in the street when I went out. I did not see Mrs. Long, one of the witnesses here to-day. I saw a workman passing on the other side.
William Stevens, 35, Dorset-street, said - I am a painter. I knew the deceased. I saw her alive at twenty minutes past twelve on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 8. She was in the kitchen. She was not the worse for drink.
Had she any rings on her fingers? - Yes, sir. Shown a piece of an envelope, Witness said: I believe it is the same she picked up near the fireplace. I did not notice the crest, but it was about that size, and it had a red postmark on it. She pulled a pill box out of her pocket, and put two pills into the piece of paper. The box collapsed in her hand. She put the pills and the piece of envelope in her pocket. She left the kitchen about that time. I thought she was going to bed, and, indeed, she said she would not be long out of bed. I did not know anyone that she was on bad terms with.
A Juror - Is there any chance of a reward being offered by the Home Secretary?
The Foreman - There is already a reward of 100/- offered by Mr. Samuel Montagu, M.P. There is a Committee getting up subscriptions for another 100/-. The Coroner has already said that the Government ought to offer a reward.
A Juror - There is more dignity about a Government reward.
The Foreman - There are several ideas of rewards, and it is supposed that about 300/- will be got up. It will be done by private individuals
The Coroner - As far as we, the case is complete.
The Foreman - As far as we can see, it is a case of murder against some person or persons unknown.
The Coroner - Shall we meet again tomorrow or next week?
The further inquiry was adjourned to next Wednesday afternoon.
A meeting of the Vigilance Committee, of which, Mr. Lusk is president, was held yesterday at 74, Mile-end-road, for the purpose of receiving the reports of the honorary officers. From the statements of Mr. Aaruns, Mr. B. Harris, Mr. Cohen, and the President, there appeared to be some thousands of the better classes at the East-end who believe that a substantial Government reward would bring about the apprehension of the murderer, and all donors or non-donors to the reward fund, now, steadily increasing, were loud in denunciation of the police authorities and the Home Office for declining to offer the reward.
The Secretary said of the 15th inst. The Committee sent a letter to the Home Secretary on the subject which was to the following effect:- "At a meeting of a Committee of Gentlemen held at 74, Mile-end-road, E., it was resolved to approach you upon the subject of the reward we are about to offer for the discovery of the author or authors of the late atrocities in the East-end of London, and to ask you, sir, to augment our fund for the said purpose, or kindly state your response for refusing." To this letter he had received the following communication:-
Whitehall, Sept. 17, 1888
"Sir, - I am directed by the Secretary of State to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 18th inst. With reference to the question of the offer of a reward for the discovery of the perpetrators of the recent murders in Whitechapel, and I am to inform you that, had the Secretary of State considered the case a proper one for the offer of a reward, he would have at once offered one on behalf of the Government; but that the practice of offering rewards for the discovery of criminals was discontinued some years ago, because experience showed that such offers of reward tended to produce more harm than good, and the Secretary of State is satisfied that there is nothing in the circumstances of the present case to justify a departure from the rule. - I am, sir, your obedient servant,
G. LEIGH PEMBERTON
"Mr. B. Harris, The Crown, 74, Mile-end-road, E."
The Landlord of the hotel in Finsbury, where the man Weitrel (yesterday called Ludwig), now in custody, charged with attempting to stab a youth in Whitechapel, stayed at various times, has made the following statement:- "I must say I have been very suspicious of the man since the last murder at Whitechapel. On the day after that event, that is Sunday, he called here about nine o'clock in a very dirty state, and asked to be allowed to wash. He said he had been out all night, and began to talk to me about the Spitalfields affair. He wore a felt hat, a dirty greyish suit, and yellow sea-side slippers. He brought with him a case of razors, and a large pair of scissors, and after a time he wanted to shave me. I did not like the way he went on, and refused. Previously to this I had not seen him for about eighteen months, and he made most contradictory statements as to where he had been. I did not see whether he had any blood on his hands, as has been said, for I did not watch very closely, and wanted to get him out of the place as soon as possible. He is a most extraordinary man, is always in a bad temper, and grinds his teeth in rage at any little thing which puts him out. I believe he has some knowledge of anatomy, as he was for some time an assistant to some doctors in the German army, and helped to dissect bodies. He always carried some razors and a pair of scissors with him, and when he came here again on Monday night last he produced them. He was annoyed because I would not let him sleep here, and threw down the razors in a passion, swearing at the same time. If there had been a policeman near I should have given him into custody. I noticed on this occasion a great change in his dress. Whereas on the former visit he looked very untidy, he was this time wearing a top hat and looked rather smart. He has told me that he has been living in the West-end, but I believe he is well known at the cheap lodging-houses in Whitechapel. From what he has said to me I know he was in the habit of associating with low women. On Monday last he remained here till about one o'clock, and I then turned him out, as he is a very disagreeable fellow and very dirty in his habits."
The Queen went out yesterday morning, accompanied by Princess Beatrice, and in the afternoon Her Majesty drove to the Linn of Muick, accompanied by Princess of Alice of Hesse, and attended by the Hon. Harriet Phipps.
Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Albany visited the Queen.
Prince Albert Victor of Wales went out deer stalking.
His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Battenberg, attended by Colonel Clerk, arrived at the Castle.
Princess Beatrice, attended by Miss Bauer, drove to Ballater, and met his Royal Highness at the station.
Earl Cadogan had the honour of dining with the Queen and the Royal Family.
Miss Minnie Cochraine has left, and the Dowager Marchioness of Ely has arrived at the Castle.
At Hastings yesterday, the South of England finished their second innings for 175, leaving the Australians 58 to get to win, which they did, with the loss of only one wicket.
The inquest on the woman CHAPMAN, who was murdered in Whitechapel on the 8th inst., was resumed yesterday. The medical man who made the post-mortem examination said the nature of the incisions, and other circumstances, indicated that the object of the murderer was to obtain possession of the womb, which was missing. A woman named LONG, who was on her way to the Spitalfields Market a few minutes before the murder, said she saw the Deceased talking to a man, whom she described; she thought he was a foreigner. The inquest was adjourned for a week.
At a meeting yesterday, in Whitechapel, of one of the Vigilance Committees recently formed, a letter from the Home Office was read, in which the HOME SECRETARY stated there was nothing in the circumstances of the recent murders to justify a departure from the rule not to offer rewards for the discovery of murderers.
Mr. JUSTICE BUTT yesterday made an order for the release, from Holloway Gaol, of GEORGE HOLGATE, a working man, who was, last June, committed to prison for not filing accounts as administrator in an action.
It is easy to understand the feeling of regret - approaching to indignation - with which many people regard the refusal of the Home Office to offer a reward for the discovery of the perpetrators of the recent murders. Minds which are impressed with the horror of the crime are naturally impatient to see something done towards the elucidation of the mystery; and, as everything else has painfully failed, they angrily demand that recourse shall be had to the old device. As a private subscription has been started, there will be an opportunity of putting the question, there will be an opportunity of putting the question of comparative expediency to the test. The result, we imagine, will only justify the course pursued by Mr. MATTHEWS. The question has to be decided by experience - not by impulse - and all experience is against the system of rewards. The present HOME SECRETARY simply decline to do what his predecessors found to be not only useless, but mischievous. In the particular cases with which we are concerned, here is an absence of any plausible reason for reverting to the abandoned practice. One inference has pressed itself upon nearly everybody who speculates about the character of the atrocities - that they are the work of one hand. The murderer, whoever he was, and whatever his motive may have been, had no accomplices, and carried through the horrid business with a calmness which excludes the possibility that he is likely, after his escape, to betray himself. If public spirit, if the instinct of mere humanity, would not be enough to unseal the lips of any one having a particle of information that might help Justice to lay its hand on the miscreant, we can hardly imagine that any offer of money would prevail. On the other hand, assuming that any human being could be so base as to wait in silence till an adequate bribe be offered, may we not fear that all this parade of subscription is only whetting his cupidity, and counselling him not to sell his information too cheaply? But the assumption that anybody, save the murderer, knows the secret of the murder is too preposterous to be worth arguing on. The medical evidence which was elicited at the inquest yesterday affords some light, which ghastly as it is, may at least facilitate the task of the detectives. The mutilation to which the body of the victim was subjected was of a kind which implies almost professional skill in the assassin. There are degrees even in cold-blooded murder, and the morbid bent shown in the cases of these unfortunates at the East-end, assigns the wretch who killed them to a place of his own. To remove the organs, the possession of which appears to have been the object of the mutilation, must have occupied at least a quarter of an hour. Had the operation been performed by a skilled anatomist in the ordinary way, it would have taken nearly an hour. The picture of cool-headed, daring brutality suggested by this circumstance transcends, one would have thought, the creation of the most diseased imagination. Yet, we have precise warrant for it in the testimony of an experienced expert. Here, at all events, is something for the police to go upon. Scoundrels possessed of such accomplishments as the Whitechapel assassin ought to be marked men.