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  • "Red Terror"

    In the East London Advertiser 15th Sept 1888, there's what I take to be a reference to the killer as the "Red Terror", which I can't recall seeing anywhere else. Is this a known, pre "Dear Boss" letter nickname, or their attempt to coin one that didn't stick?

    "After two days of such intense excitement as prevailed everywhere in East London on Saturday and Sunday, it was only natural that Monday morning should arrive bringing with it more quietness, that in some degree helped to restore the confidence of the people, which had been so sadly shaken. There were not wanting those who looked for some further manifestation of the presence of the "Red Terror," but happily their fearful anticipations were not justified by any fresh tragedy."

  • #2
    Hi Joshua,

    'Red Terror,' certainly doesn't ring any bells to me. I'm certain that it wasn't a pre- Dear Boss letter name. The only 'names' in common usage were The Whitechapel Murderer or Leather Apron. The 'Red Terror' was later used to describe the bloody events at the start of the Russian Revolution. I think you're right that they just came up with a sensational phrase that didn't catch on. The nearest we get is the ripper period being known as The Autumn of Terror.

    Regards

    HS
    Regards

    Herlock






    "There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact!"

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    • #3
      I haven't seen the phrase anywhere in relation to the Ripper, so I think it's safe to assume it's probably an attempt to coin a new catchy moniker that just didn't work out.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Joshua Rogan View Post
        In the East London Advertiser 15th Sept 1888, there's what I take to be a reference to the killer as the "Red Terror", which I can't recall seeing anywhere else. Is this a known, pre "Dear Boss" letter nickname, or their attempt to coin one that didn't stick?

        "After two days of such intense excitement as prevailed everywhere in East London on Saturday and Sunday, it was only natural that Monday morning should arrive bringing with it more quietness, that in some degree helped to restore the confidence of the people, which had been so sadly shaken. There were not wanting those who looked for some further manifestation of the presence of the "Red Terror," but happily their fearful anticipations were not justified by any fresh tragedy."
        Hi,

        before that, two days after Chapman, it was also in the Dublin Evening Mail from 10th September 1888.

        Pierre

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        • #5
          When I first saw the title of this thread, I thought of the Cold-War era phrase "the Red Menance" used to describe Communism.

          Could "Red Terror" have been linked to anarchist groups? We've heard of the Black Hand and other such groups; could the paper have been invoking something along those lines?

          I also keep thinking of the famous cartoon of the Ripper as a cloaked corpse holding a dagger and stalking the poor inhabitants of Whitechapel.
          Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
          ---------------
          Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
          ---------------

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Pierre View Post
            Hi,

            before that, two days after Chapman, it was also in the Dublin Evening Mail from 10th September 1888.
            Thanks Pierre. Any chance you could post the relevant section? I don't have access to an archive containing that publication.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Pcdunn View Post
              Could "Red Terror" have been linked to anarchist groups? We've heard of the Black Hand and other such groups; could the paper have been invoking something along those lines?
              Hmm, interesting thought. But the paragraph it's from is headed "scenes from the inquest" (of Annie Chapman), so pretty sure it refers to the murders.
              It's funny to think, if the Dear Boss letter had never been written, this could be "Casebook: Red Terror". Or perhaps not...would the case even be remembered today with such a generic nickname?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Joshua Rogan View Post
                Hmm, interesting thought. But the paragraph it's from is headed "scenes from the inquest" (of Annie Chapman), so pretty sure it refers to the murders.
                It's funny to think, if the Dear Boss letter had never been written, this could be "Casebook: Red Terror". Or perhaps not...would the case even be remembered today with such a generic nickname?
                I see your reasoning, you're probably right.
                As to whether "Red Terror" would have stuck as a nickname, I doubt it. It is very generic, and could be anything from a pirate's name to a slur against American Indians.
                'Jack the Ripper", on the other hand-- what a vivid moniker, evoking a chap with a blade in his hand, waiting to strike. It still enthralls us today.
                Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
                ---------------
                Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
                ---------------

                Comment

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