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The Star
Largest Circulation of Any Evening Paper in the Kingdom.

Front Page


WE are glad that the jury investigating the murder of Mary Anne Nicholls have spoken out strongly on the failure of the authorities to offer a reward. We have said from the first that this thing ought to have been done. Another thing which ought equally to have been done was to offer a pardon for information from any accomplice. We do not say that either step would have been effectual; but we say that the thing ought to have been done as a matter of principle. It is possible that the murderer may have had accomplices. If he had, it is probable that the offer of a reward or a pardon would have had some effect. In a case of such grave emergency no stone should be left unturned, no avenue open. At the least the offer of a reward would have done something to allay panic by showing that Mr. Matthews and the police were awake to their responsibilities. It will be difficult to convince anyone of that now.

Page 2

LYCEUM THEATRE. - Sole Lessee, Mr. Henry Irving. - TO-NIGHT, at 9, MR. RICHARD MANSFIELD, in DR. JEKYLL and MR. HYDE.
Preceded at 8 by LESBIA, classical comedy in one act by Mr. Richard Davey. LESBIA, Miss Beatrice Cameron.
Box-office (Mr. J. Hurst) open daily from 10 to 5.


The Average Daily Circulation of
For the Week ending 14 Sept. was

The Number of Copies Circulated
during the Six Days was

This Number is Greater by
Than the Number Ever Circulated in
any week by any other

Production of a One-Act Comedy, "Lesbia."

Mr. Richard Davey, a critic well-known to the few who are familiar with the anonymous personnel of London journalism, appeared last night before the curtain of the Lyceum in the new character of a playwright. His little comedy, in one act, and in blank verse, entitled "Lesbia," is one of those attempts to breathe a brief stage-life into classical antiquity which have been far rarer on the English than on the French stage, where writers like Emile Augier and Edouard Pailleron began their theatrical career with choice specimens of the type. Mr. Davey's eponymous heroine - to use the appropriate language of the classical commentator - is, as will at once be guessed, Catullus's Lesbia, the mistress of the sparrow whose untimely death the famous poet has enshrined in what it is the cant of pedagogues to call immortal verse. This same sparrow, not dead yet, is brought on to the Lyceum stage; and so is Catullus himself, whose contemplated desertion of the fair but undowered Lesbia for the money-bags of the wealthy, though elderly, widow Alba, forms the motive of Mr. Davey's little piece. It is only just a brief scene of parting and meeting again with tears, a sort of amantium irae redintegratio amoris episode - though that, by the way, is not Catulline but Horatian; but it is lightly and gracefully handled, and serves its purpose of providing a marked contrast to the morbid horrors of "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." Archæological pedants may object that certain details of the piece, e.g., Lesbia's flowing locks, and such lines as "Lesbia with her beaming eye," are rather Caroline than Catulline, but the public sticks not at trifles like these, and both play and players were received last night with every mark of satisfaction. Miss Beatrice Cameron's Lesbia, a very neo-classic Lesbia, a Lesbia who occasionally deviated from the Appian Way into Fifth Avenue, was certainly a more acceptable paradox than Mr. John T. Sullivan's Wall-street Catullus, a most unconscionably prosaic poet. The staple of the evening's entertainment, Mr. Mansfield's version of Mr. Facing-both-ways, has apparently lost nothing of its weird fascination for the British sensation-hunter. It is still drawing crowded houses.

This Gentleman Was Fined.

At Marylebone Police-court, yesterday, John Chapman, 54, of 21, Portland-terrace, St. John's-wood, described as of independent means, and as a medical man, was charged with soliciting. On Saturday, at three o'clock in the afternoon, he had grossly insulted a lady named Mrs. Fergusson, accosting her improperly and persistently following her about near St. John's-wood Railway Station. The lady gave him in charge, and appeared against him yesterday morning, when Mr. Cooke fined him £5, or a month's hard labor in default. The "gentleman," who looked much surprised, was then removed. He had been locked up in St. John's-wood police-station since Saturday afternoon.

Page 3


Fatal Delusion of a Butcher.

A young butcher named Hennell cut his throat from ear to ear in his parents' house, 76, Enfield-buildings, Ashford-street, Hoxton, last night. The young man was evidently insane. He had repeatedly expressed the fear that they "were after him for the Whitechapel murder." His parents had watched him closely for the last few days, and he took the opportunity of his mother leaving the room a minute to cut his throat.

A Deserted Woman's Sad Story.
This morning, at Poplar, Coroner Baxter held an inquest on the child of a woman named Searle, found in the Thames off Cocoanut-stairs. Mrs. Clarissa Horsham, 260, Long-lane, Bermondsey, the wife of a sewer-man, identified the body as that of her niece. The child was the daughter of her unmarried sister who had been deserted by the child's father, a potman. The acquaintance had been made while both were employed at a public-house in Roupell-street, Lambeth. She didn't know where her sister was. An open verdict was returned.


He Carried a Knife and Steel and Resembles a Man Seen with Blood-stained Hands Soon After the Murder - A Knife Found in a Hampstead Pond.

The Holloway lunatic, who is detained on suspicion in connection with the Whitechapel murders, is not a German, as stated yesterday, but a Swiss, named Isenschmid. A Star reporter made inquiries about him last night. Some time ago he kept a pork butcher's shop in Elthorne-road, Holloway, and he is what is known in the trade as a "cutter-up." Some years ago, it seems, he had a sunstroke, and since then he has been subject to yearly fits of madness. These fits have usually come on in the latter part of the summer, and on several occasions his conduct has been so alarming that he has been carried off to Colney Hatch. It is a fact of some significance that he was last released


One of his delusions is that everything belongs to him - he has called himself the King of Elthorne-road. On several occasions he has threatened to put certain people's lights out, as he has expressed it, and more than once the landlord of the shop in Elthorne-road, a gentleman named Allan, has been warned not to approach his lunatic tenant. One of the alarming practices of Isenschmid when he is mad is his continual sharpening of a long knife, and his disappearance from home for a few days has not been unusual. He went mad some weeks ago, and his frightened wife got an order for his detention in a lunatic asylum, but Isenschmid could not be caught. The police have been looking for him for some little time, and


in the expectation that he would go there. It may be only a curious coincidence, but the mad pork butcher very closely answers the description of the man who was seen on the morning of the murder near the scene of the crime with bloodstains on his hands. He is about 38 years of age, about 5ft. 7in. in height, of rather stout build, and has hair on his head and face of a ginger color. George Pigott, arrested at Gravesend, was taken for the man who went with bloody hands into Mrs. Fiddymont's public-house, but three people failed to identify him as the man they saw on the morning of the murder. Can the mad Swiss butcher be the man who behaved so strangely that Joseph Taylor followed him into Shoreditch?

A Star reporter had an interview this morning with Mrs. Isenschmid. She said, "Five or six years ago my husband had some sort of a fit, and he has never been right in his head since. About this time of the year he gets much worse. He has been in the asylum once before, but he was not quite right in his mind when they let him out. Since Whitsuntide he has become worse than he has ever been. He got so bad that I got an order to have him put in the asylum again. A doctor came to see him and then he got suspicious. I told him the doctor was only the broker's man, but he said the broker's man wouldn't ask him how he was. He got afraid that he would be put in the asylum again, and


Since that time he has been home five or six times, generally in the night, but he never stopped long and never said where he had been to. On one occasion he came home at six o'clock in the morning with a big grey dog. He walks about till he's nearly starved, when he goes away and he has got pinched in his appearance and much thinner. When he was in a torpid sullen mood he couldn't be got to do anything, not even wash his face, but would sometimes sit and


straight off and sometimes would fling the book to the other side of the room. 'I must be a very wicked man if all the Bible says is true,' he would sometimes say. When his violent fits came on he became very dangerous. I believe he hates me,' Mrs. Isenschmid said, "and I feel sure he would kill me if he caught me alone."

The poor woman's position is a pitiful one. Her husband's friends are in Switzerland, and unknown to her, and some money her husband had left her has been lost through his madness. She has several little children, is entirely without any means of support, and is even homeless, since all her goods have been taken by the brokers for rent.

The man who now has the shop where Isenschmid formerly carried on business has seen the maniac several times since 10 weeks ago he took flight from his home. Once he went to the shop with his butcher's apron on and


hanging by his side, and showing a bullock's tail he said he had slaughtered 40 bullocks. Last week a load of bullocks' entrails were brought to the shop, and the order that they should be sent there had been given by Isenschmid at three o'clock that morning. Where they had been brought from the man at the shop doesn't know, but one of the men, he says, "looked like a Jew."

This morning a knife with a white bone handle and


which appeared to have been much worn, and had dark stains upon it, was found in one of the Hampstead ponds, and was handed over to the police.

At present the police are engaged in tracking Isenschmid's mysterious movements during his 10 weeks' absence from home.

Capture of a Man With a Knife.

Charles Ludwig, 40, a decently dressed German, of 1, The Minories, at the Thames Police-court to-day, was charged with being drunk and threatening to stab Alexander Finlay, of 51, Leman-street, Whitechapel. - Prosecutor said at three o'clock this morning prisoner came up to a coffee-stall in Whitechapel, pulled out a knife and tried to stab witness. Ludwig followed him round the stall, and made several attempts to stab him.

Constable 221 H, who arrested the prisoner, said On the way to the station, he dropped a long-bladed penknife, and on him was found a razor and a long-bladed pair of scissors.

City-constable Johnson, 866, stated early that morning he heard loud screams of "Murder" proceeding from a dark court in the Minories in which there were no lights. The court led to some railway arches, and was a well-known dangerous locality. On going into the court he found the prisoner with a prostitute. The former appeared to be under the influence of drink. The woman, who appeared to be in a very agitated condition, said, "Oh, policeman,


The woman was so frightened that she could then make no further explanation. He got her and the accused out of the court, and sent the latter off. He walked with the woman to the end of his beat, when she said, "Dear me; he frightened me very much when he pulled a big knife out." Witness said, "Why didn't you all me that at the time?" and she said "I was too much frightened." He then went and looked for the prisoner, but could not find him, and therefore warned several other constables what he had seen. Witness had been out till the morning trying to find the woman, but up to the present time had not been able to do so. He should know her again. He believed the prisoner worked in the neighborhood.

It has been ascertained that Ludwig, who now professes he is not able to speak English, has been in this country for about three months. He accounts for his time during the last three weeks.

Mr. Saunders ordered prisoner to be remanded.

A Woman May be the Murderer.

"S. G. O." takes up the parable of the Whitechapel murders in a long letter printed in the Times in big type. We seem (he says) to have needed at last some home stroke to awaken us to the fact that we have at our very doors an element of danger threatening consequences which may prove, but too late, that we have suffered, with little attempt to arrest it, the growth of a large and increasing portion of our population to live, move, and have their being under a condition of things tending to


of the very commonest principles of civilisation; leading to the commission of crimes which hitherto would have been held to have been so abhorrent as to be inconceivable even where all ordinary crime had full sway. Just so long as the dwellings of this race continue in their present condition, their whole surroundings a sort of warren of foul alleys garnished with the flaring lamps of the ginshops, and offering to all sorts of lodgers, for all conceivable wicked purposes, every possible accommodation to further brutalise, we shall have still to go on - affecting astonishment that in such a state of things we have outbreaks from time to time of the horrors of the present day. All strange, sir, as it may appear to you and the generality of your readers, it is within the range of my belief that one or both these Whitechapel murders may have been


There are details in both cases which fit in well with language for ever used where two of these unfortunates are in violent strife; there is far more jealousy, as is well known, between such women in regard to those with whom they cohabit than is the case with married people where one may suspect the other of sin against the marriage vow.

Another Theory.

With reference to the missing parts of Annie Chapman's body, Thomas Bolas writes:- "That biologists have been so infatuated by their pursuits as to cause murder to be committed in aid of their researches is a matter of history, and to my mind there is quite enough evidence of the last murder being the work of some half-mad physiologist in search of living tissues or organs from a healthy subject, for experiments on graftation, to justify certain investigations by the police."

Page 4

The Old and the New - Some Criticisms by One who Knew Both.

Public discontent with our present detective system increases with every day that passes over without any satisfactory clue being obtained to the perpetrator or perpetrators of the latest Whitechapel horrors.

The rank and file of the detective force have generally to bear the brunt of all shortcomings connected with it, but from information in our possession it would appear that they are less to blame than the system - instituted by Mr. Howard Vincent and continued by his successors - under which they are compelled to work.

No doubt Mr. Vincent had very good reasons when he came into office for making changes in the old detective system, which had not altogether worked well. The conduct of certain notorious officers, who were once thought to be perfect, had exposed the detective force as a body to universal censure. The force, it was thought, wanted taking in hand, and the direction of a superior mind with more discipline seemed to be necessary. Things at Scotland-yard had got into a somewhat slipshod state as regards the detective force. Accordingly the whole system as it stood was overhauled, and


were enlisted to do detective duty. Where they came from nobody exactly knew. They had little or no experience of the work they were called upon to perform, their chief qualifications for detective work being, according to all accounts, a knowledge of foreign languages and a somewhat superior education to the average detective. Some of the old hands said that not a few of their new brethren had been nothing better than gentlemen's servants - in fact, had been gentlemen's servants - but perhaps that was only a little bit of sarcasm. However this may be, it is certain that the old hands did not fraternise with the new, and do not to any appreciable extent now; not did constables in uniform regard the new men with any favor, a feeling which was perhaps not limited to the rank and file of that branch of the force.

The detective of what may now be called the old school was more after the pattern of the celebrated Inspector Field,


as he was familiarly called (the original of Mr. Inspector Bucket in "Bleak House"). Often not a very well-educated man, he yet had plenty of cunning, and made up for what he lacked in the shape of education and a knowledge of foreign languages by an extra amount of "nous." One of the most celebrated officers of the old school was the well-known Sergeant Walsh, who was attached to the M Division as Divisional Detective for many years. He had, it is said, been complimented by judges and juries time out of mind for his skill in bringing cases to a successful issue, and had received more than 80 solid rewards in the shape of good round sums of cash. Yet this old and well-tried officer was dismissed, or advised to resign, because a convicted thief who was undergoing a long sentence of imprisonment, declared that he had committed a crime that Walsh had brought home to the door of others (presumably his "pals"), and whose conviction he had secured, the convict well knowing that his confession would not aggravate very considerably, if at all, the term of punishment he was undergoing. It was a sore point with Walsh that the word of a convicted felon should be taken in preference to his after his many years of service; and it caused great dissatisfaction at the time amongst his brother officers, who considered that he had been sacrificed to the new official prejudice against officers of the old school.

This old officer had a peculiar way of his own of going about his business. He had a theory that when a crime was committed by any notorious character whose haunts were known, it was a mistake to look for him for a time in those haunts, for he would be sure to leave them until he thought he might safely return to them; for, he argued, return he would, and it was only a question of allowing him a reasonable time to come back to "drop upon him." Frequently, after the fashionable Scotland-yard detectives had failed to capture the man wanted after scouring the neighborhood of his haunts for weeks following the crime, has Walsh, acting upon his system, after giving him time to think the affair had blown over, succeeded in arresting him in his old haunts, to which he had returned.

Under the old system detectives remained permanently attached to a division in which they had gained their experience and fame, which is not the case now. They are being perpetually moved on, so to speak, by order of the central authorities at Scotland-yard to districts to which they are strangers, while fresh men, often mere novices in the profession, take their place, who are equally at sea in the districts in which they are called upon to work. The advantage of having a man attached permanently to a division was that he


in the locality, and could put his hand in a moment upon anyone that was wanted. Long association with the district had made him familiar with the faces, ways, habits, haunts, and associates of doubtful characters, and a man who was "wanted," to use the professional term, had only to be described to be almost immediately pounced upon. As things are, it takes a long while for a new man to pick up all this knowledge. No doubt he does pick it up in time, but while he is picking it up he cannot be said to be of very much service in his new duties. It is impossible to divine what good purposes is served by this continual changing about. There may be some reason for it, but, if there is, it is only known at headquarters. The detectives affected by the changes are certainly in the dark as to the motives for making them, and so are we. It would be interesting to have them explained.

Another merit claimed for the old system was, that if a crime was committed within the limits of a particular division, the superintendent of that division had practically the management of the whole business of finding it out entrusted to him, at any rate; there was


from Scotland-yard, which is not the case now. Instead, the whole direction of the affair is taken in hand by the authorities at Scotland-yard, and a number of superior detectives of the new stamp are sent down to make inquiries, who are, as a rule, utterly ignorant of the floating criminal population of the district, and are entirely dependent for the information they pick up on the local men, who are naturally, from the highest to the lowest, annoyed at the conduct of the affair being taken out of their hands, and indignant at the prospect that all the credit that may attach to its successful prosecution will be monopolised by the new comers. This jealous feeling often prevents the local men from giving information, and the feeling among them is, with respect to the Scotland-yard men, "Oh, find out what you want for yourself; we are not going to give you information for which


Hence it is, that when a great crime is committed the smart detectives who are sent down from Scotland-yard to find out all about it are so often baffled.

The average detective has a profound contempt for his stylish brethren at Scotland-yard, who are in his opinion very poor thief-catchers, though he admits that the knowledge of foreign languages which they nearly all possess may to a certain extent qualify them for "extradition business." If he is correct, it is a pity that they are not entirely confined to that sort of duty.

It is a general complaint of divisional detectives that when engaged in a case they are not allowed sufficient freedom to carry out their own theories. Hints and suggestions as to what should be done are not always well received by those over them, and a snub is often the result. Consequently their ardor cools and they simply do what they are told, and that is all. Amongst the many things that cause dissatisfaction among the police outside Scotland-yard is the


that seems to be in fashion there. Thus, when a local inspector resigns, or perhaps dies, the two senior sergeants next to him in rank, who ought to be moved up in rotation, are not promoted; but, instead, a junior sergeant from Scotland-yard who has ingratiated himself with the authorities there, is preferred to the vacant post.

It may be said, in conclusion, that the system of criminal investigation introduced by Mr. Howard Vincent, and still in vogue, does not give satisfaction to the police generally, whether in uniform or plain clothes, outside the sacred precincts of Scotland-yard, any more than it does to the public, and that the new fashioned detective is not any improvement, if he is so good even, at the class of man he has pushed aside. The exact sort of detective system and the exact sort of detective it seems has yet to be discovered.

W. Forsyth, 11, Wyndham-road, Camberwell, complains that he was molested by a man in Fleet-street, and struck without the least provocation, and that he called the attention of a policeman to the matter, but because he couldn't "show a mark," his assailant was allowed to go unpunished. Forsyth says there were plenty of witnesses to the assault.

Related pages:
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       Message Boards: Charles Ludwig 
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       Press Reports: Times [London] - 12 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 13 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 14 September 1888 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 15 September 1888 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: A Suspect Guide - William Pigott