Dr. Edward Berdoe, whose discourse on "Paracelsus as a Reformer of Medicine" is to take the place of the Bishop of Ripon's deferred Browning sermon at University College on the 26th, practises at Hackney, where he is well known both as a physician and as an enthusiastic believer in the depth and helpfulness of Robert Browning's poetry.
He disputes with Dr. F. J. Furnivall the distinction of being the "fightingest" member of the Browning Society, which is probably the most pugnacious body of its size in existence. In his own profession he is for the people always as against the faculty. He is a fierce opponent of vivisection; and he is generally believed to be the real author of "St. Bernard's," a novel in which the hardships to which the sick poor are subjected by medical despotism in our hospitals were indignantly and unsparingly exposed.
SIR, - The Vicar of St. Luke's, Camberwell, in your issue of the 13th inst., declares that the moral of the Whitechapel murders is that "the rich must confine themselves to necessities." But may I ask what, in that case, is to become of the millions of workers now employed in producing luxuries? The Vicar may reply, "Let them cease producing luxuries, begin to produce necessities" but as they have no control whatever over production, they have no power under present conditions to do this. Where, then, is the magician who will turn tapestry looms into ploughs, court dressmakers' workrooms into bakeries, and jewellers' shops into kitchen gardens; and who will teach weavers to make straight furrows, milliners to bake, and lapidaries to raise peas and beans? Does Mr. Chapman think the rich will do it? Not they: if, when they have filled their stomachs, they agree to desire nothing further, it will simply mean that their demand for wage-labor will be so much the slacker that wages will fall and land go out of cultivation, filling the streets with starving crowds of those who are now employed to produce luxuries. The people live at present not by supplying their own needs, but by waiting on their masters, the landholders, who only allow a few of them to produce necessities enough to keep the whole proletariat squalidly alive, whilst it is waiting on them. The result is that their is neither machinery nor trained skill to produce more necessities than are at present in the market. The mere abstention of the rich cannot do anything but bring to a standstill the machinery and the skilled labor which now produces what they would abstain from. In a community where slavery prevails - in other words, wherever land is private property and the country fully populated - the whims of the rich are the opportunities of the poor. The demand for luxuries benefits them; and all the assertions of political economists to the contrary are based on the perfectly irrelevant truth that if the people were free the demand for luxuries would not benefit them (which is indisputable, as it would not even exist). But of what concern is that to people who are not free? If a voluptuary has six footmen, and a vicar persuades him that he ought to be content with one, the result is that five men are deprived of their means of subsistence - nay, their fellow-slaves who were only employed to make their cockades, their plush stockings, and the beef and bread to stuff their calves, are thrown out too, the voluptuary simply leaving his land fallow by exactly so much as his wants are diminished. Why, the very fundamental assumption on which the individualist economists used to prove that private property would employ the whole population, was that the proprietors would be practically insatiable.
The fact is, Mr. Star Editor, these philanthropic and right-hearted clergymen who talk about the rich abstaining, sharing, giving "money, sympathy, and personal contact," and so on, have no idea what an uncommonly tight place we have got into. If they mean to uphold the present system it is their duty to preach extravagance to the idlers and slowness and shirking to the workers - to resist machinery with all their might, and to encourage everything that tends to depopulate the country. In the presence of such a mortal gangrene in society as the open subjection of industry to idleness, a clergyman must either clamor for the extirpation of the gangrene or say - as he virtually does say in 999 churches out of a thousand to-day - "Evil, be thou my good." The only abstention that the landlord can beneficially practise is compulsory abstention from the land. Once that is achieved, his habits will no longer concern the people. Let him be as extravagant then as he likes - or as he can. - Yours, &c.,
The question of the mortuary scandals at Greenwich and the statement in a local paper that dead bodies were shown at a penny apiece was brought up at last night's meeting of the Vestry. The Chairman gave a general denial to the statements. He showed, however, that the disclosures had had a good effect, for he had himself directed certain alterations to be made. It was not denied that the bodies of women were washed and laid out by men.
A Woman's Throat Cut in Camberwell.
A woman named Brett, living at 66, Hornby-road, with a carman named Olney, had her throat cut last night. Two weeks ago a sailor, named Frank Hall, aged 19, came to live with them. Last night all three were out drinking together, and shortly before ten o'clock a discussion arose, in which the woman said, "We'll give Frank 10s. if he'll get rid of me." No sooner had those words been uttered than Frank, it is alleged, took up a large carving knife and cut the woman's throat. She ran into the street, where she staggered and fell. Upon being asked by Inspector Taylor who committed the deed, the woman replied "Frank did it." It was a dangerous wound extending from ear to ear. The two men were discovered in bed intoxicated, the sailor being the worse of the two. On the way to the station the youth said he was "Jack the Ripper," and wanted to know if they thought he was the "Whitechapel bloke."
This morning, in the City Summons Court, Joseph Dennis was summoned for causing an obstruction by selling The Star on the footway outside the King Lud, Ludgate-circus.
Police-constable David Stimpson said that on the morning of Saturday, the 6th inst., he saw the defendant standing outside the King Lud public-house. He was on the footway and caused an obstruction by people having to go round him. He was continually there. He was selling The Star and a racing paper. Witness told him to go away, but he would not do so. He had frequently cautioned the defendant.
In cross-examination by Mr. F. D. Askey, solicitor, the constable said that he had received no complaints as to these boys on that day. The other boys were standing on the kerb, and were not causing any obstruction. He took the defendant to the station to get his name, and added that he forgot to tell the alderman that.
Mr. Askey said that the boys who sold The Star were continually being
and the constable in this case seemed to direct his attention solely to them. He should call a witness to prove a direct negative to the constable's evidence.
Alderman Renals said that Mr. Askey need not do that, as he had made up his mind what to do with the case. He did not know for whom Mr. Askey appeared, but he should think for The Star.
Mr. Askey replied that he only appeared for the defendant
and not for The Star.
Alderman Renals said that he did not see why The Star should not be sold as well as any other paper. If the defendant promised to obey the police regulations he should dismiss the summons.
The defendant gave the required promise, and the summons was dismissed.
The City police have succeeded in discovering Thomas Conway, who some years ago lived with Catherine Eddowes, the woman murdered in Mitre-square. Up to yesterday, the efforts of the detectives had been at fault owing, as now suggested by the City Solicitor at the inquest, to the fact that Conway has drawn his pension from the 18th Royal Irish Regiment under a false name - that of Thomas Quinn. Apparently he has not read the papers, for he was ignorant till the last few days that he was being sought for. Then, however, he learned that the City detectives were inquiring after him, and yesterday afternoon he and his two sons went to the detective office of the City Police in Old Jewry and explained who they were. Conway was at once taken to see Mrs. Annie Phillips, Eddowes's daughter, who recognised him as her father. He states that he left Eddowes in 1880 in consequence of her intemperate habits. He knew that she had since been living with Kelly, and had once or twice seen her in the streets, but had as far as possible kept out of her way.
Two detectives passing through Back Church-lane (near Berner-street), shortly before two o'clock this morning, noticed a dark object lying in a doorway. One struck a light, and found it to be some old female attire and a pail made to resemble a body crouched up in the corner.
Early yesterday morning J. Gibson, of Putney, heard a woman screaming "Murder," and "Jack the Ripper," in a dark alley leading out of Coopers' Arms-lane, Putney. He ran to the spot and saw a woman named Bryan lying on the ground, and a man running away. He gave chase, and was joined by a police-constable. Both pursued the runaway for some distance, but when the latter, after jumping a gate and crossing some waste ground and a market garden, got on to the towing path, he outran his pursuers. Gibson seized the man's foot while he was jumping the gate, but lost his grip. The man was shabbily attired, about 5ft. 8in. in height, with a slight moustache, but no beard.
Bryan, who is a native of Putney, says the man induced her to enter the dark lane, and then knocked her down. She screamed "Murder" and "Police," and on hearing the sounds of approaching footsteps the man ran away. Bryan's head was slightly injured, possibly by falling against the wall.
Early this morning some "Jack the Ripper" writing in chalk was found on the gate of a stable at Lewisham-road, near Blackheath Railway Station. "Dear Boss," it says, "if you wish to find the head of the body on the Embankment it is in a sack on the water. I have done another to-night. Jack the Ripper. Revenge." A policeman is guarding the gate, though in all probability the writing is only that of someone playing a stupid joke.
A little girl named Maggie Smith, living at 17, Arnott-street, New Kent-road, picked up a parcel in New Kent-road, and took it to her mother. The covering consisted of a copy of the Echo of 5 Oct., and part of a piece of music entitled "Grandfather's Clock." Inside was the upper portion of a pair of blood-stained grey-mixture trousers, attached to which was a piece of paper, on which was written the words, "Jack the Ripper's work."
Through the connivance of Mr. Plunket, First Commissioner of Works, and Sir Charles Warren, an illegal meeting was held in Trafalgar-square to-day. The approaches to the Square were guarded by extra police, and the notice of "I, Charles Warren" was posted conspicuously in the neighborhood laying down the law that "no meeting shall be allowed to assemble, nor shall any person be allowed to deliver a public speech in Trafalgar-square, or in the streets or thoroughfares adjoining or leading thereto." Notwithstanding there was a miscellaneous crowd of several hundred persons in the Square by eleven o'clock. The ostensible object of
was the unveiling of General Gordon's statue, but this ceremony was quite a momentary affair, while the meeting lasted an hour. There was a statue to be sure. It stands in the centre of the square, midway between the fountains, and is hidden from public view by the Nelson Column, which so far as the average London statue goes is a distinct public advantage. The statue, which is of bronze, is the work of Mr. Thornycroft. Gordon is represented in his soldier's travelling outfit. His left foot rests on a broken cannon, and he wears a calm, placid look on his face. The base of the pedestal on which the statue rests is of Aberdeen granite, and the column of Portland stone. The inscription which is on the side facing the Nelson column is as follows :-
On two sides are the figures of Charity and Justice, Fortitude and Faith, in bronze relief; the other side remains blank, and on a scroll which runs round the cornice of the column are the words, "Gravesend, Equator, Crimea, 1855, China 1864, Innisan, Soochow, Soudan, and Kartoum." There was a crowd round the statue, and there was a general impression that somebody was to arrive about half-past eleven and unveil it. Somebody did arrive in the shape of Mr. Plunkett, who peeped timidly round the north corner of the statue. Mr. Thornycroft took him by the arm and tried to instil into him some of the courage of the man represented in bronze. Mr. Plunkett seemed to shrink back, but by an heroic effort reached the granite basement of the statue and caught hold of a string, which he held on to nervously while two workmen at the other side unveiled the statue. A long-haired unkempt-looking
and kept Mr. Plunkett's courage up. Mr. Plunkett was accompanied by a body-guard of clerks from his own office. When the canvas fell, and exhibited the figure of General Gordon, Mr. Plunkett respectfully saluted the statue, retired, and vanished in the crowd. "You dare not speak," said a voice from the crowd; "Now hold your meeting, if you dare," shouted another; "Move on," cried a chorus of policemen, and the crowd gradually thinned away. Among the rich unemployed who came to see the statue the only one who had the courage to stay and look at it was the Baroness Burdett-Coutts.
A public meeting is to be held on 25 Oct., under the auspices of the borough of Finsbury Liberal and Radical Association, "to protest against the London police being turned into a military force, and to demand the right of public meeting in Trafalgar-square." Mr. Conybeare, M.P., has promised to attend and address the meeting.
SIR, - Up to last night we sheltered 609 men, women, and children, and fed them, for we now give them food as well as shelter, and help them on to a better road afterwards. Funds are needed; every penny shall be honestly applied and accounted for. - Yours, &c.
212, Devonshire-road, Forest-hill, 13 Oct.
SIR, - A shelter for outcast females will be opened in a few days at Harlow House, 34, Mile-end-road.
Such poor creatures as are without home, food, friends, or money will be given a warm shelter, with a supper of a pint of coffee and bread, but the same applicants will not be admitted more than three nights in any week. Convenience will be provided for washing, &c. Applicants will be received from ten p.m. until two a.m. every night, and those admitted can leave from five to eight o'clock in the morning to enable them to obtain the casual employment that requires early applications. The only condition will be - abject poverty, and decorous conduct while in the shelter. Applicants will be able to obtain an order from the police-station or any constable in the district.
Any donation, however small, will be thankfully received, and duly accounted for. We shall also be glad of the assistance of ladies and gentlemen. - Yours, &c.
Office, 94, Mile-end-road, E.
[The competition in night refuges is becoming severe, but we are informed that the above is a perfectly genuine undertaking. - ED. The Star.]