Groundbreaking history and exciting investigative journalism combine in a work jam-packed with newly unearthed finds and fresh insights that pull us deeper into the world of Jack the Ripper and closer to the man himself. Wescott does not promote a suspect but instead comprehensively investigates the murders of Polly Nichols and Elizabeth Stride, bringing to light new medical evidence, crucial new material on important witnesses, and – revealed for the first time – the name of a woman who may have met Jack the Ripper and survived to tell the tale.
Also discussed in this book:
Charles Lechmere, recently named as a suspect in the Jack the Ripper documentary, Conspiracy: The Missing Evidence, is restored to his proper place in history as an innocent witness.
Walter Sickert, the subject of Patricia Cornwell’s Jack the Ripper books, was not the Ripper, but is revealed here to have been only one of several artists and poets who may have been acquainted with victim Mary Kelly.
Bruce Robinson’s Jack the Ripper book, They All Love Jack, controversially endorsed the myth that fruiterer Matthew Packer sold grapes to Liz Stride which were later found on her hand. Around this was constructed an intricate police conspiracy. In Ripper Confidential the truth is exposed and these events are proved beyond doubt to have never taken place.
Was Elizabeth Stride a Ripper victim? For the first time, all the myths are cleared away and the facts are looked at in great detail.
The contemporary investigators speak out from the past and tell us what they thought of one of the Ripper’s most enigmatic and controversial clues – the chalk-written message on the wall in Goulston Street. Did the Ripper write it and what might it actually have said?
A comprehensive look is taken at Berner Street witness, Israel Schwartz. Why did he disappear within weeks from the written record? Was or was he not a legitimate witness? This and much more is discussed, and for the first time it’s revealed why he did not give evidence at the inquest, why the two best known versions of his story are inconsistent, and – most crucially – that he was not the last person to see Liz Stride with a man who was probably her killer.
So it sounds to me as if Charles Lechmere is proven to be a witness only, as if Walter Sickert is proven not to have been the killer, the Stride murder is finally presented for exactly what it was with every misconception cleared away and the GSG is explained and it´s potential meaning revealed. It is also established whether the Ripper wrote it or not (and there is a spolier in the Amazon text, since it is called on of the Rippers most enigmatic clues...)
It´s good thing that this book surfaces and puts an end to so may things that we have been pondering for so many fruitless years!
I am, however, slightly worried about how the author himself has appeared on JTR, saying: "Since there's pages of discussion about my mention of Lechmere in the Amazon book description, I'll quickly mention that I incorporated popular Ripper-related search words into the description to boost it's searchability. I also mention 'Patricia Cornwell's Jack the Ripper book', 'Bruce Robinson' and some other stuff. The book itself is hardly about Charles Lechmere."
Either Tom is being very modest here, not accepting the full glory of having brought so many matters to a final conclusion, or perhaps he has gotten slightly cold feet?
To my mind - and do keep in mind that I am quite a cynical old geezer - it sounds as if the restoration of Charles Lechmere to a mere witness status may turn out to be nothing but Tom having a dig at the docu, much in the same vein that people out here have done the exact same.
And perhaps the decapitation of the Sickert theory is something of the same kind?
Time will tell.
If that IS the case, one must say that it is a good thing that Tom chose such a thrilling array of key words for Amazon to use, and that Amazon was able to present it in such a mouthwatering shape - if nothing else, the competence to market a new book seems to have been ship-shape. It may well be that both searchability and sellability will benefit from the combined efforts.
I wish Tom the best of luck with his new book. May it stir an interest for the case and, not least, for Charles Lechmere.
And may it deliver what Amazon says it delivers.
The very fact that the news hit Casebook on April 1:st isn´t reassuring, though.
Last edited by Fisherman : 04-02-2017 at 12:28 AM.
Yeah, Fish. I got cold feet. Because, you know, that's what I do.
Probably the wisest decision you could make, Tom. Unless, of course, you manage to prove Lechmere a witness only, prove Cornwell wrong (she is, but I´ll be damned if I can prove it) and clear up the Stride and GSG business, all in one breath.
Last edited by Fisherman : 04-02-2017 at 09:25 AM.