14 September 1888
Dr. Phillips and other witnesses were examined yesterday at the adjourned inquiry into the murder of Annie Chapman, who was found horribly mutilated at the rear of 29, Hanbury-street, Whitechapel, and some severe comments were made as to the entire absence of proper mortuary accommodation in the district. The inquiry was again adjourned. No further arrests have been made in connexion with the murder.
Yesterday a Mrs. Potter made an application to Mr. d'Eyncourt, at the Westminster Police Court, regarding the disappearance of her daughter, a girl of weak intellect. She stated that she had seen the divisional police surgeon and described her daughter's appearance to him, and that he said the particulars given to him would in every way correspond with the arm recently found in the Thames.
The statement that a woman's body had been found tied in a sack at the Sloane-square station of the District Railway has been contradicted.
Yesterday afternoon, at the Westminster Police Court, a Mrs. Potter, living in Spencer-buildings, Westminster, in considerable distress of mind, applied to Mr. d'Eyncourt, stating that she had reason to fear that the arm found in the river off Grosvenor-road belonged to her daughter Emma, a girl 17 years of age, of rather weak intellect, who had been missing from home since Saturday morning. Her daughter had given her some trouble by going into the streets at night, and at this time of the year she was particularly troublesome. At two o'clock on Saturday morning a policeman brought her home, and applicant, at eleven o'clock in the forenoon, went out, leaving her asleep on a couch. On the applicant's return her daugher had gone, and from that time she had seen nothing of her, although she had diligently pursued inquiries and been to places - the Green Park in particular - where she knew the girl was likely to go. She had been to workhouses and infirmaries without tidings, and the only item of information she could glean was from a policeman, who well knew the girl by sight. He last saw her at half-past five o'clock on Saturday evening in the neighbourhood of Buckingham-gate.
Mr. d'Eyncourt said he could only refer the applicant to the Press and the police.
The applicant said she had been that morning to see Dr. Neville, the acting divisional surgeon of police, and he remarked that the particulars she gave him of her daughter would in every way correspond with the arm which had been found. The doctor questioned her particularly as to the stature and appearance of her daughter, and having given his opinion, referred her to the police court.
The applicant furnished the following description of the missing girl. Tall and well formed, and of rather dark complexion, long arms, and a short nail on the left hand; attired in a brown dress, black jacket, white hat with black velvet band and white lace in front, and high lace-up boots.
It was reported yesterday that the body of a woman tied up in a sack had been found at Sloane-square Station of the District Railway, but we learn from the police that no such discovery has been made, and that there is no foundation for the report. Following on the recent tragedies, the rumour created much excitement and occasioned many inquiries.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE MORNING ADVERTISER,
SIR,- Knowing by experience the sagacity and keen sense of smell of the bloodhound, I would strongly urge upon the Government the propriety of testing their powers in discovering crime. It could be done without cruelty, such as biting or tearing human beings, by running the dogs in the new muzzle, in which they can open or shut their mouths without being able to bite or pick up poison, but they will run the scent of a man or horse, or anything else you like to put them on, in a chain, led by hand, just as well. You only want them to point out the criminals.
About the year 1844, my brother-in-law had two bloodhounds in Huntingdonsire, and a clergyman, a friend of his, about ten miles off, one night had two sheep killed. He sent his man servant over, requesting my brother-in-law to bring one of his dogs. He at once mounted one of his hunters, and rode over to where the sheep had been killed and their carcasses carried off some fourteen hours previously. There had been a severe frost during the night. The police were waiting and could make nothing of the case, the dog was laid on the trail, and without a break she ran the men three miles to where the sheep had been carried off by boat. The police, without further troubling the dog, crossed the canal and went straight to the house where they found the mutton and arrested the men, who got six months' imprisonment for the possession of meat for which they could not satisfactorily account. My brother-in-law gave the young dog to a friend in Cambridge, and to show him what the dog could do started his manservant across country on his best hunter, giving him twenty minutes' start, and running two other horses across the track to try and break the scent. The horses were from the same stable, but in forty minutes the young dog was alongside the manservant. Give the police two or three brace of bloodhounds in each county, and it will greatly prevent undetected crime.
I am, Sir, yours, &c.,
71, Wellington-road, Dublin, Sept. 12, 1888.
P.S.- It may be remembered that in London some years ago the body of a murdered woman was discovered through the sagacity of a dog.
The inquiry, adjourned from the previous day, into the circumstances attending the death of Annie Chapman, aged 47, who was murdered under exceedingly revolting circumstances at the rear of No. 29, Hanbury-street, was resumed yesterday in the Alexandra Hall, Working Lads' Institute, Whitechapel-road, before Mr. Wynne Baxter, one of the coroners for Middlesex.
Inspector Chandler, H divison, said - On Saturday morning about ten minutes past six I was on duty in Commercial-street, at the corner of Hanbury-street. I saw several men running up the street. They beckoned to me, and one of them said, "Another woman has been murdered." I went with the man to 29, Hanbury-street. On going through the passage into the yard I saw body of the deceased woman lying on the ground. She was on her back, her head being towards, but about two feet from, the back wall of the house. Her head would be only about six or nine inches from the steps leading from the passage to the yard. The face was towards the right side, and the left hand was lying on the right breast. The left arm was by the side. Her legs were exposed as far as the knees. A portion of the intestines still connected with the body were lying over the left shoulder. There were pieces of skin on the ground near the head, just over the left shoulder, lying in a pool of blood. The body was lying parallel with the fencing. A number of persons were in the passage, but no one was in the yard. I remained in the yard and sent for the divisional surgeon, also to the station for further assistance. When the constables arrived all the people were removed from the passage, and a piece of canvas was thrown over the body.
The Coroner: Did you examine the clothes of the deceased? - After the body had been removed there were found in the yard a piece of muslin, a pocket comb, and a small tooth comb in a leather case. They were lying near where the feet of the deceased had been. A piece of paper - a portion of an envelope - was found near the spot where the head had been, and this contained two pills. There was part of an address on the envelope, and the words, "Sussex Regiment" embossed upon it in blue. Inquiries were being made about this. On the reverse side was a part of a letter written in a man's handwriting, I should think. There was a postmark on the envelope indicating that it had been posted in London.
Did you find anything else in the yard? - Yes, a leather apron, which was saturated with wet. It was lying about two feet from the water-tap. I showed the apron to the doctor. I also found an empty nailbox, such as would be used by a packing-case maker, and a small piece of flat steel. Mrs. Richardson had identified those articles.
Was the yard paved? - Only a portion was roughly paved with stones, some being flat stones and others being round.
Was there any appearance of a struggle? - No, I think not.
As to the fencing, was it strong or temporary? - It was slight.
Would it support the weight of a man getting over it?- It might. None of the palings were broken, but those in the adjoining yard had been since; only the palings near which the body lay was stained with blood.
Have any other marks been found? - Not on the palings, but on the wall of No. 25 marks have been found, which may have been seen by Dr. Phillips. I could not discover any bloodstains outside the yard.
Any those near were in the immediate neighbourhood of the body? - Yes. There were splashes of blood on the wall near where the head of the deceased had lain. The largest spot was about the size of a sixpence. A plan of the yard had been prepared.
Did you search the body? - I searched the clothes. Deceased was wearing a long black jacket reaching to the knees. There were bloodstains on the neck of the jacket, both inside and out, and also on the arms. The jacket was buttoned in front, and it did not show that there had been any struggle. There were no pockets in any of the clothing, but a large pocket was found tied round the waist underneath the skirt. It was torn in front, also at the side, and was empty. Deceased was wearing a black skirt, and there was blood on the outside at the back where she had lain. The two petticoats of the deceased were blood-stained, and likewise the two bodices she was wearing. Deceased's chemise was covered with blood, more or less all over. She was not wearing stays. There were no blood marks on the stockings or shoes, which were very old.
Did you see young Richardson? - I did later on, about seven o'clock. He was then in the passage. He told me he was in the passage about a quarter to five o'clock.
Did he tell you what he was there for? - Yes; he said he came to look if all was right. He told me that he was sure the body was not in the yard about five o'clock.\
By the Jury. - The door opened into the yard and would hide the body from sight unless a person stood on the top of the steps or went into the yard. Richardson only told me that he went to the top of the steps and looked down into the cellar. He said nothing about having sat on the top step.
A Juror. - Something has been said about an envelope with the name of a regiment or some barracks. Are you going to produce the pensioner, Stanley?
Inspector Chandler. - We have not been able to find him yet.
The Juror.- Surely he is a very important witness. He was with the woman Saturday after Saturday - week after week, and he ought to be produced.
Inspector Chandler. - No one is able to give us any information whatever about him or where he comes from. The parties where the woman lived have been requested to communicate with the police if he goes there.
The Coroner. - I think the man, if he knows his duty, ought to come forward.
Police-sergeant Badham stated that on Saturday morning last he conveyed the body of the deceased to the Whitechapel mortuary, where it was identified by two females from 35, Dorset-street, where deceased lived.
Robert Mann, who had charge of the building where the body was taken, gave evidence. The Coroner (in reply to an observation) said - The fact is the police had no right whatever to take the body to this place. It is not a mortuary at all, but simply a shed belonging to the workhouse officials.
A Juror.- I think it is a very bad state of things that there is no mortuary.
The Coroner.- It is not at all a proper condition of things.
The Juror._ Whitechapel extends over a very wide area, and there ought to be a mortuary.
The Coroner.- Quite so. The East-end, where a mortuary is more required than anywhere, is without one. It often happens that the bodies washed up from the river have to be put in boxes owing to the absence of proper accomodation, and I have had instances in which bodies found at Wapping have been brought all the way to this workhouse shed. A workhouse man is not a proper person to take charge of bodies in this way. The shed is simply for the use of the workhouse people.
A Juror.- Funds are being collected locally for the purpose of offering a reward for discovering the murderer, and Mr. S. Montagu, M.P., has offered a reward of 100£; but we think that these efforts would be more likely to be successful if a substantial reward were offered by the Government.
The Coroner.- I do not speak from offical knowledge, but I have been told that the Government have determined not to give any reward in these cases. I do not mean in this case particularly, but in murder cases generally - not from any economical motive, but because they think it is a bad system.
Witness said the handkerchief produced was picked up in a corner of the shed, and given by him to the doctor.
Timothy Donovan, deputy at 35, Dorset-stree, recalled, identified the pocket handkerchief as one which the deceased, who had purchased it of a fellow lodger, usually wore round her neck. She had it on when she left the lodging house on the morning of the murder.
By a Juror.- He should recognise the pensioner if he saw him, but he did not know him. He knew "Harry the Hawker." The pensioner came as usual on the Saturday afternoon after the murder, and when he was told what had occurred he went away - he would not stop. Witness sent for the police, but he had gone before they arrived.
Mr. George Baxter Phillips, police divisonal surgeon, sworn, said - I was called to see the deceased at about ten minutes past six o'clock on the morning in question, and saw the body within ten minutes of being called. Deceased was lying on her back on the left-hand side of the yard steps leading from the passage to 29, Hanbury-street. The legs were drawn up, and the knees were turned outwards. The face was swollen, and the tongue, which was evidently much swollen, protruded, but not beyond the lips. The small intestines and a flap of the wall of the stomach, also the cover of the intestines, were lying on the right side of the body on the ground above the right shoulder, and were attached to the remainder of the intestines in the body by a coil of intestine. Two flaps of the wall of the stomach were lying in a large quantity of blood above the left shoulder. I searched the yard, and found a small piece of coarse muslin and the other articles mentioned by Inspector Chandler. The muslin and combs had apparently been arranged, or placed in order, where I found them. The left side of the body was cold, excepting a remaining heat under the intestines in the body. The stiffness of the limbs was not marked, but was commencing. I noticed that the throat was severed deeply, and that the incision through the skin was jagged. There were about half a dozen small patches of blood on the wall at the back of the head, about eighteen inches from the ground, and on the palings, about fourteen inches from the ground, near the head, were smears of blood. After receiving instructions from the coroner, I proceeded to the labour-yard of the workhouse, and was surprised to find that the body had been stripped, and was lying ready for examination. It was with very great difficulty that I conducted the examination, and I must raise my protest against members of my profession being called upon to perform such duties under such inadequate circumstances.
The Coroner.- The building is not at all suitable. It is simply a shed.
Dr. Phillips.- It is not at all fit for post-mortem examinations. There is no adequate convenience, and at certain seasons of the year it is dangerous to the operator to perform his duties there.
The Coroner.- As a matter of fact there is no police mortuary between the city of London and Bow.
A Juor.- The jury can quite endorse the doctor's statement of the place.
Examination continued.- The body had evidently been attended to since its removal to the shed, and had probably been washed. I noticed a bruise over the right temple and two distince bruises, each the size of a man's thumb, on the forepart of the chest. The fingernails and lips were tinged. There was an abrasion over the first joint of the ring finger, with distinct markings of a ring or rings, probably the latter. The incisions in the skin around the neck indicated that they had been made from the left side. There were indications of two distinct cuts half an inch apart on the left side of the neck, parallel with the spine, and it appeared that an attempt had been made to separate the bones of the neck. There were other mutilations of the body, but I am of opinion that they were committed subsequent to the death of the woman, occasioned as it was by the wounds in the neck, and subsequent to the escape of the blood from the throat. Possibly the details, however, would be painful to the jury and the public, and unless desired I do not propose to give them.
The Coroner.- They may be important as showing the character of the person committing the murder, but you have a record of them, and I will not call for it at present. Probably it will be better if you give the result of your examination as to the cause of death.
Witness.- Death arose from syncope, occasioned by the loss of blood, caused by the severance of the throat.
Were the wounds in the abdomen caused by the same instrument as that by which the wound in the throat was caused? - Most probably. They must have been made with a thin, narrow blade at least six or eight inches in length, possibly longer.
Could the wounds have been inflicted by any instrument used by a military man, such as a sword or sword bayonet? - No, I think.
Or any instrument such as a medical man would use for post-mortem purposes? - No ordinary case would contain such an instrument.
Would a slaughterman use such a knife? - I think so, especially if the knife was well ground down.
Can you suggest any instrument used by a shoemaker or in the shoe trade? - Only the knife used by a splitter.
Was any anatomical knowledge displayed by the murderer? - I think there were indications of it, and I believe that the indications were only prevented from being more marked in consequence of the haste in which the deed was committed.
Was the whole of the body there? - No; portions had been taken from the abdomen, and I think that the mode in which the walls of the stomach had been abstracted showed some anatomical knowledge.
Might not some portions of the body have been lost in transit? - No; they had been excised from the body without a doubt.
How long do you suppose deceased had been dead before you saw the body? - At least two hours, probably more, but the morning was fairly cold, and the body would have become cold sooner in consequence.
Was there evidence of any struggle? - No; not about the body of the woman, but I am positive that a struggle took place in the yard. There were no traces of blood in the passage in the street leading to it, as there must have been had the wounds been inflicted prior to the deceased going to the yard. There was no mark of blood on the apron, which, from its appearance, did not seem to have been unfolded recently.
About the marks on the wall of No. 25, Hanbury-street? - They look like blood marks, but I am not able to trace any signs of blood. There was considerable disease of the lungs and of the membranes of the brain of the deceased, and although the body was fat there were indications that it had been badly fed. I am quite convinced that deceased had taken no alcoholic drink for some considerable time before her death.
Could the injuries have been self-inflicted? - Certainly not the recent injuries which were the immediate cause of death. The marks on the temple and face were recent, but those on the chest were of long standing.
Can you form any opinion as to how the injuries were inflicted? - I am of opinion that the person who cut the deceased's throat caught hold of her by the chin, and then commenced cutting from left to right.
But could that have been done without the deceased having the opportunity of shouting? - I think so.
A Juror. - The swelling of the face and tongue would indicate that the deceased was partially suffocated before the murder was committed? - That is a supposition you are quite at liberty to draw as well as myself.
Examination continued. - The handkerchief produced was tied loosely round the deceased's neck. It did not seem to have been disturbed when the throat was cut, and I do not think it was placed round the neck after the murder was committed.
Mary Elizabeth Simons, nurse at the Whitechapel Infirmary, stated that she, with the head nurse, stripped the body of the deceased at the workhouse. They did it by direction of Inspector Chandler, and they also washed the stains of blood from the body. The handkerchief they left round the neck of the deceased. They noticed no cuts in the clothing.
Inspector Chandler denied giving the instructions mentioned by the nurse.
The Coroner. - No blame can be case upon the workhouse authorities, because they are doing in the best way they can the work which should be done by the vestry.
In reply to a question, the coroner's office said he believed that in consequence of the clothing having been cut or torn from the body of one of the woman recently murdered, instructions had been given that the nurses only should strip bodies taken to the mortuary.
The inquiry was then adjourned until Wednesday afternoon next. It may be mentioned that the public excitement caused in Whitechapel by the murder seems to have entirely subsided. But very few person other than those compelled to attend were present in the room where the inquiry took place, and outside, judging from the entire absence of idlers, the proceedings appeared to evoke no interest whatever.
Up to the present no further arrests have been made in connexion with the Whitechapel tragedies. The police continue their inquiries and investigations, but so far their labours do not appear to have met with much success. Pigott, the man arrested at Gravesend, is still an inmate of the workhouse infirmary, and it is stated that his mental condition has not materially improved. It having been stated that on Sunday afternoon he was seen to enter a tram car, carrying a black leather bag, a search has been made in the chalk pits near Rosherville and Northfleet. Up to the present nothing has been found to confirm that statement. A gentleman who knew Pigot when the latter lived at Horton, states that a few years ago Pigott was an inmate of the lunatic asylum.
The Lancet, referring to the tragedies, says - "The theory that the succession of murders which have lately been committed in Whitechapel are the work of a lunatic appears to us to be by no means at present well established. We can quite understand the necessity for any murderer endeavouring to obliterate by the death of his victim his future identification as a burglar. Morever, as far as we are aware, homicidal mania is generally characterised by the one single and fatal act, although we grant this may have been led up to by a deep-rooted series of delusions. It is most unusual for a lunatic to plan any complicated crime of this kind. Neither, as a rule, does a lunatic take precautions to escape from the consequences of his act; which data are most conspicuous in these now too celebrated cases. The truth is, that under the circumstances nobody can do more than hazard a guess as to the probable condition of mind of the perpetrator of these terrible tragedies. Until more evidence is forthcoming, it appears to us to be useless to speculate upon what can only at present be regarded as problematical."
Messrs. W. H. and H. Le May have issued their annual circular on the state of the hop crop of the world :-
"From a most careful personal survey of the plantations in England (they say) we estimate the crop hanging on the poles at from 100,000£ to 120,000£ old duty; but to estimate the crop that will be picked it is impossible to do so, as we find during the last few days mould, both red and white, running very fast, and also a very great increase of lice in many gardens which had been thought clean until a few days ago; so what the final result will be we cannot say. That the crop will not exceed our estimate of 100,000 to 120,000 old duty you may rely upon, and of this quantity not more than one-fourth will be fine. In our opinion the merchants do not at the present moment realise the serious state in which the crop is, and we feel sure that when they do wake up to the true state of affairs, there will be a very sharp demand for all good clean lots at increased prices. The few lots that have come to hand at present have sold at the following prices:- Choice East Kent Goldings, per cwt., 11£ to 13£; low to medium East Kents, 5£ to 9£; choice Mid Kent Goldings, 10£ to 12£; low to medium Mid-Kents, 5£ to 9£; choice Weald of Kents, 8£ to 9£; low to medium Wealds, 5£ to 7£; choice Sussex, 7£ to 8£; low to medium Sussex, 4£ to 6£. Up to the present there have been no Farnhams or Worcesters on the market, but we are certain that any bright sample of either description will command at least 10£ per cwt. as soon as they arrive. We have just received from the Agricultural Department of the Privy Council the return of the average under cultivation of hops this year, which proves to be the shortest for the last 20 years. The figures are as follow - 1886, 70,127; 1887, 63,706; 1888, 58,494 acres. We have also received the return from the Excise Office of the duty paid upon beer during the last twelve months, which amounts to 8,874,510£, this being the largest amount that has ever been paid. This proves conclusively that the consumption of beer is increasing at a rapid rate, and with the increase of population, will go on increasing. The number of barrels of beer on which duty was paid was 29,581,700, and calculating that the brewers used the small quantity of 2 1/2 lbs. of hops per barrel of 36 gallons, it gives a net quantity of hops used during the year of 660,306 cwts., which is equal to an old duty of 330,000£. Now, if we calculate the present crop at our highest estimate, viz., 120,000£ old duty, or 240,000 cwts., and add to that the possible stock held by brewers, merchants, and growers - say 100,000 pockets, or 100,000 cwts. - we have a total of 400,000 cwts., which leaves a deficiency of 260,306 cwts. The greatest quantity ever imported into England in any year has never reached this weight, and as the Continental and New York State crops are only estimated at from one-half to two-thirds of last year's growth, which was not a large one, we are confident that the importation of foreign hops for the coming year will not reach anything like the amount of our deficiency. It is, therefore, quite evident that all hops will be wanted before we get another crop on the market, and that prices must advance as the scarcity shows itself."
A Japanese, named Supiwajan, 38, was charged with wounding Ellen Norton, 9, Jamaica-passage, Limehouse. The prosecutrix, whose head was bandaged, said on Wednesday night, in the "Coach and Horses" beer-shop, West India Dock-road, she heard screams close by the Strangers' Home, and saw the accused in the act of stabbing her friend, Emily Shepard. She rushed forward and got the knife into her head. She then remembered no more until she was at the station, having her head dressed by a doctor. She had been drinking, but not in prisoner's company. - Emily Shepard said the accused came up to her, and said, "If you go away from me to-night I will rip you up the same as the woman was served in the Whitechapel-road." She screamed out, when the prosecutrix ran up. The accused then stabbed Norton in the head with the long bladed knife produced. He kicked witness, and afterwards broke a plate-glass window at the Strangers' Home. - Constable 448 K said he heard screams of "Murder," and saw a crowd assembled, and prisoner jump through the glass panel of the door of the Asiatic Home. On gaining admission he found accused in the yard washing the blood off his hands. Witness took him into custody. - Sergeant Brown, 2 K, produced the knife covered with blood. - Mr. G. R. Anderson, surgeon, said prosecutrix had an incised wound on the scalp. The only fear of danger was from erysipelas setting in. _ Mr. Lushington committed the prisoner for trial.
Hannah Robinson, 45, married, of 22, Skinner-street, Clerkenwell, was charged before Mr. Bros with being disorderly at Rosoman-street, Clerkenwell. - Constable Snell, 15 G R., said at a quarter to ten on the previous evening he was on duty at Rosoman-street when he saw the prisoner drunk and behaving in a disorderly manner. He requested her to go away, but she refused, and loudly exclaimed, "Go and look for old 'Leather Apron.'" - Mr. Bros discharged the prisoner with a caution.
Elizabeth Thompson, 38, was charged with being disorderly at Pentonville-road. - Constable Rumsey, 24 G R., at eleven o'clock on the previous evening saw the prisoner in the Pentonville-road fighting with a man. Witness went up and requested her to go away, but she refused and called out, "Here is 'Leather Apron.'" A large crowd assembled, and the mob was with difficulty dispersed. - Mr. Bros discharged the prisoner.
The charges at Clerkenwell Police Court were not commenced until nearly one o'clock, when Mr. Bros attended the court after having disposed of the business at Dalston.