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Jack the Ripper Sources Questions

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Introduction

1/ Source A is an extract from an article written for an East End newspaper a the time of the murders. It tries to draw similarities between the cases of Martha Tabram and Polly Nichols. From this source we can learn that both of the women were very poor 'that the victims have been the poorest of the poor.' It also tells us that the bodies had not been looted, 'no adequate motive in the shape of plunder.' The article also suggests that the killer was a demented being and that the wounds to the body was the evidence for this statement. The article says that there was extraordinary violence shown towards the deceased. This article shows us that the murder of both Polly Nichols and Martha Tabram were so violent and so unexplainable that even before the bodies of Annie Chapman Elizabeth Stride Catherine Eddowes and Mary Jane Kelly had been discovered the murder of Polly Nichols had begun to attract press attention, and be singled out from all the other murders in Whitechapel. 2/ Source C is a doctor's report on the body of Elizabeth Stride carried out at the scene of the murder. She was found in Dunfields Yard off Berner Street in Whitechapel. We can see from Source C that Elizabeth Stride was found lying on her side 'across the passage.' ...read more.

Middle

Elizabeth Long is describing the man she saw with Annie Chapman. What she says is very vague, she mentions that the man in question was 'foreign looking' and taller than the deceased. She is very uncertain in her statement saying things such as 'as well as I could make out' and ' I cannot be sure.' This would be a very unhelpful statement, seeing as Whitechapel was full of people that would have been foreign looking to Ms. Long. This statement as well did not give a specific height or a definite description of his clothing on the night of the murder. She is very vague in his height, just describing him as taller than the deceased. She is also unsure about his attire saying that she thought he could have been wearing a dark coat. To the police this could have described nearly three quarters of the men in Whitechapel. She does not say what his faces was like and fails to give an approximate age, which would even further hinder the police. For our purposes this source is only reliable for a lose description of the killer, maybe not even that much. The witness is very unsure and what she does say cannot be of very much help to us or the police in 1888. ...read more.

Conclusion

The message said 'The Juwes are the men who will not be blamed for nothing' The City of London police wanted to photograph it as evidence but the commissioner ordered it washed away. It was only Mary Jane Kelly who was photographed at the scene. It was also rumoured that the press would plant false evidence to make the story either gorier or more interesting for their readers. The press also pressurised the police to follow up the lead of 'The leather apron', even though they had reason to believe he was not responsible. The fact that both Scotland Yard and the City of London police force were both involved caused problems too. The lack of communication between the two forces meant that evidence was not shared which could prevent vital evidence form being followed up. They also had different policing methods, The City of London police force believed in taking photos at the scene of the crime and studying the scene and the surrounding area in great detail for any evidence. Scotland Yard, or the Metropolitan Police would move the body to perform autopsies as close to time of death as possible and take many statements. The angst between the two forces was probably one of the greatest problems in the Ripper case. ...read more.

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