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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Suspects > Maybrick, James

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  #1571  
Old 03-30-2018, 03:18 PM
Joshua Rogan Joshua Rogan is online now
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Is there anything suspicious about the fact that the watch was originally made in Lancaster, and according to Murphy's statement, he was given the watch by his father who had a jewellers shop in Lancaster? Did it travel between these two towns several times during it's life?
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  #1572  
Old 03-30-2018, 04:40 PM
Sam Flynn Sam Flynn is online now
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Having looked at a fair few pictures of victorian watch hallmarks recently (trying to work out if the lack of an assay office mark is significant), it struck me just how many of them had scratches as noticable, or more so, than the watch in question.
To this extent?

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Those criss-cross marks are, I'd suggest, indicative of someone deliberately scratching in one direction then the other, in order to deliberately wear down the engravings. However one looks at it, they are not the result of "accidental" damage over time.
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Last edited by Sam Flynn : 03-30-2018 at 04:42 PM.
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  #1573  
Old 03-31-2018, 03:19 AM
Phil Carter Phil Carter is offline
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Hello Gareth,

An observation from a complete amateur in the field of watch markings...

Apart from the diagonal scratch marks you indicate.. do I detect lighter diagonal markings..same direction..under your observation markings... that look to this eye of having been made with fine emery (forgive the spelling) cloth or sandpaper?
Just something that occurred to me. (Sandpaper being in the sporting news at the moment)



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  #1574  
Old 04-05-2018, 05:31 AM
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Originally Posted by David Orsam View Post
The good news, however, is that we now know that the best researcher in the business has interviewed Albert on the subject so perhaps we will be told what he said when he was asked the obvious follow up questions, namely: "Who did you tell about the watch?" and "Is there any way you think Robbie could have found out about it?".
If by 'the best researcher in the business', David means Martin Howells, then I think he will find that Albert told him he took the watch home from the shop and left it in a drawer for the next ten months. Albert also told Robert Smith that it had not been out of his possession before the markings were discovered.

I do remember asking Albert about this myself, and he said he couldn't think of any way that Robbie could have known about the watch or where it was kept, never mind taken it, tampered with it and put it back again, all without his [Albert's] knowledge.

Whether Albert secretly thought it was possible, or even suspected Robbie of duping him, I don't suppose we'll ever know. But nastier minds than David's or mine will happily believe they do know.

I still need to get my head round a bandwagon hoaxer scratching those Maybrick/ripper engravings into the untouched and unblemished inner surface of a watch they know bugger all about, which, for all they know, had previously always been in the family of J.O, whose large, ornate and professionally engraved initials are there for all to see on the outside back cover [and which Dundas denied were there, when describing the watch to Feldman].

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Caz
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Last edited by caz : 04-05-2018 at 05:41 AM.
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  #1575  
Old 04-05-2018, 06:06 AM
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Good post, John. However, in my view the diary is "strewn with errors-punctuation mistakes, spelling mistakes [and] grammatical errors". If you refer to my annotated version of the diary on Howard's site, you'll see why I arrived at this opinion.
Hi Gareth,

Assuming you wouldn't argue that Mike could have penned the diary himself, seeing as he was a stranger to the art of using upper and lower case letters correctly and consistently, and it would be a serious understatement to describe his own handwriting as too 'distinctive', how do you then account for spelling and punctuation mistakes if he was dictating the text to Anne, as he claimed in his January 1995 affidavit? How would that work? She would be spelling and punctuating everything as she went along, and if Mike had asked her to spell 'the cat's mother' as 'tHE KAtS MuvvER', I dare say she would not have been quite so co-operative.

Or did Mike choose someone more literate than himself, but less so than the missus, to do the do for him, and is that why Anne wanted to burn the bloody thing when Mike said he was planning to publish it?

What say you?

Love,

Caz
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  #1576  
Old 04-05-2018, 06:25 AM
Sam Flynn Sam Flynn is online now
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how do you then account for spelling and punctuation mistakes if he was dictating the text to Anne, as he claimed in his January 1995 affidavit? How would that work?
Perhaps her spelling and punctuation weren't infallible either, Caz. I don't know much about Anne but I've no reason to believe that she was significantly more literate than her spouse. She certainly wasn't averse to committing certain grammatical blunders, as we already seen.

(Seen what I did there? )
Quote:
Or did Mike choose someone more literate than himself, but less so than the missus
That's possible, of course, but I don't see a particular need to posit such a scenario. Personally, I can't see why the whole thing couldn't have been cooked up chez Barrett, with or without a spousal scribe's involvement.
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Last edited by Sam Flynn : 04-05-2018 at 06:27 AM.
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  #1577  
Old 04-05-2018, 07:17 AM
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Pinkmoon supposedly met Barrett for the first time in about 1999 of which he said "I first met Mr Barrett a few years after the diary was launched he was in a terrible state due to alcohol abuse he was drinking heavily at the time". Not the best condition to form a judgement about a person.
Interesting. I wonder what condition one would need to be in before David would concede that a judgement could be formed about that person? We have all seen David's tendency to dismiss any judgements formed, about the character, personality, literary or literacy skills of those involved in the diary and watch sagas, by those of us who have actually met and listened extensively and intensively to some of them, as if those judgements are going to be inherently flawed and therefore of no possible relevance or value.

Quote:
Caz is certainly of the view that Mike wasn't capable but came unstuck when I asked her if Mike and Anne could jointly have been capable of forging the diary. She was unable to provide a sensible response.
I know who is more in danger of coming 'unstuck' and it's not me. Melvin Harris never met Mike or Anne as far as I know, but even he said Mike didn't have the 'capacity' to forge the diary. Nor did he believe that Anne wrote it out to Mike's dictation. He had Mike and Anne down as front men, handling and marketing the work of others. Whether he thought Anne may have composed, or helped compose the text, with occasional input from Mike, I don't know, but he had a third party down as the person who held the pen.

I wonder what Melvin would have made of the theory that the guardbook was only acquired at the end of March 1992 and the diary written into it and completed just a day or two before being shown to the British Museum's curator of 19th century manuscripts and to a specialist on 19th century literature? I think he might have laughed out loud if he'd had the capacity. His own argument was that writing using a Victorian style gallotannic ink couldn't be dated unless it was examined within a year of the ink drying, or at the outside six months, if certain conditions had allowed for it to have stabilised that quickly. He was presumably wrong about this too, and the scribe either knew it or took a complete gamble that they wouldn't come 'unstuck'. Even Baxendale wasn't fool enough to suggest the writing was less than a year old when he examined it, never mind just a couple of months.

Love,

Caz
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  #1578  
Old 04-05-2018, 08:10 AM
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The above was posted by me on 23 Jan (#604). It was in response to a claim by the world's leading Diary expert that the Rendell team had concluded that the Diary was written "prior to 1970".

The response to my post by the world's leading Diary expert on 25 Jan was "Fair enough, David" (#644) indicating a full acceptance of what I had said, namely that it was Rod McNeil, not the Rendell team, which said the Diary was written "prior to 1970".

Today, however, I see in another thread that the same person has posted this:

"The Rendell team in the US was hired by diary sceptics, but I don't see anyone suggesting this affected their results or objectivity. In fact, they stuck their neck out with a date for the diary's creation, based on science, finally settling on 'prior to 1970', which Rendell himself went on to undermine by appearing to accept Mike Barrett's claim to have forged it himself!"

It's unbelievable. It was only 3 months ago that this person was accepting that the Rendell team did not settle on a "prior to 1970" date. And so the cycle of misinformation goes on. It's like some computer software that can't be deprogrammed and continues to repeat the same thing, churning out the same old nonsense, regardless of how many times it is corrected.
Rod McNeil, a scientist, gave his professional opinion, while working as one of Rendell's team, that pen met paper 'prior to 1970'.

Q: Was Rendell a scientist?

Perhaps David can tell us.

Q: Was Rendell's personal opinion, that the diary was "written very recently, probably within a year before its announced "discovery"" based on his own, or anyone else's scientific findings?

Perhaps David can tell us that too.

Q: Did Rendell offer this opinion from 1994 before or after Mike's first claim to have written it himself? [I'm pretty sure I asked this before but can't recall seeing any response.]

Perhaps David can tell us that too - or remind us.

But if Rendell's personal opinion had no scientific basis, perhaps David can explain its relevance to a minor discussion on another thread about which professional scientists will put their jobs and reputations on the line to produce the desired result for whoever's paying them.

Love,

Caz
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  #1579  
Old 04-05-2018, 08:48 AM
Sam Flynn Sam Flynn is online now
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She certainly wasn't averse to committing certain grammatical blunders, as we already seen.

(Seen what I did there? )
Correction. That should of course read "See what I done there"
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  #1580  
Old 04-05-2018, 09:16 AM
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I can't see that many scratches would spontaneously appear on the inside back of a gold watch, even 100+ years after its manufacture, so perhaps there weren't (m)any scratches there when the "Mabyrick" writing was laid down. Once it was, the distressing/aging process would have created its own set of scratches which, naturally, the "Maybrick" writing would have lain beneath.
Hi Gareth,

There weren't any scratches on that surface when the Maybrick signature and 'I am Jack' were carved into it - which is merely consistent with the carver being the first person to cause any scratches at all. It doesn't tell us whether that was in 1888 or 1993, or at any point in between, but a hoaxer working in 1993 would have had to cause all the overlying scratch marks, including those referred to as superficial, those resembling repair marks and any caused by apparent attempts to scour away at the Maybrick/ripper markings beneath.

We're back to the testimony of the Murphys, and what reason Ron Murphy would have had to lie about not only seeing several scratch marks on that surface in early 1992, but trying to buff them out. For the watch to be a 1993 Johnson hoax, on the back of a 1992 Barrett one, don't you have to explore and try to explain Murphy's motivation for saying what he did? Or is he just collateral damage?

And incidentally, before David pipes up, I'm not remotely bothered if Murphy did acquire the watch from his father-in-law, who in turn acquired it from a stranger who came into his shop several years before 1992. It's where that stranger got it from that really matters - or should have done to anyone seeing J.O. on the back and deciding to use the watch for forgery purposes.

Love,

Caz
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Last edited by caz : 04-05-2018 at 09:23 AM.
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