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Macnaughten Memorandum

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  • #31
    Originally posted by c.d. View Post
    Hi Andy,

    Do you know what Farquharson was basing his comments on?

    c.d.
    Not with certainty but he lived a mere 10 miles from Wimborne and would certainly have known the Druitt family well. What's more he was a fellow Etonian to Melville Macnaghten and John Henry Lonsdale, not in the same class but overlapping. Farquharson was the same age as Druitt and would certainly have traveled in the same company and social settings.

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    • #32
      Hi All,

      Could someone please tell me when the Macnaghten Memorandum [as seen in PDF format on Casebook] first surfaced; also the present whereabouts of the original?

      Many thanks.

      Regards.

      Simon
      Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

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      • #33
        What do people think of Jonathan Hainsworth's suggestion, in the current issue of Ripperologist, that the Aberconway version of the Macnaghten memoranda was written some years after the official version, and that some of the inaccuracies of the former can be explained by the possibility that the details were written from memory some years after Macnaghten had originally been given the information?

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        • #34
          I'd say you just took a plastic teat out of your mouth and are looking for something wholesome to suck.

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          • #35
            Chris,

            Despite what those not yet weaned themselves may say, it was an interesting article and you posed an impoirtant question. I would hope that there will be some real replies to this aspect of Jonathan's fine article.

            Don.
            "To expose [the Senator] is rather like performing acts of charity among the deserving poor; it needs to be done and it makes one feel good, but it does nothing to end the problem."

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            • #36
              Originally posted by Cap'n Jack View Post
              I'd say you just took a plastic teat out of your mouth and are looking for something wholesome to suck.
              Thanks for that observation.

              But maybe I should have added something along the lines of "If you don't have anything relevant to say, there's no need to say anything".

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              • #37
                I have not read the Ripperologist article. However given the detail and similarity of the Abberconway version I would think it most unlikely who ever wrote it was working from memory.

                Was Not the original taken to India? Wouldn’t the most likely explanation be that the Abberconway is a copy of this version?

                If I’m teaching gran to suck eggs then I apologize in advance.

                Pirate

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Pirate Jack View Post
                  I have not read the Ripperologist article. However given the detail and similarity of the Abberconway version I would think it most unlikely who ever wrote it was working from memory.

                  Was Not the original taken to India? Wouldn’t the most likely explanation be that the Abberconway is a copy of this version?
                  I think it's common ground that the surviving Aberconway version is a copy of the original, made after Macnaghten's death, but the question is when that original was written.

                  Jonathan Hainsworth does suggest the Aberconway version could have been written "perhaps entirely from memory", but I agree that its wording is far too close to that of the official version for that to be the case (unless they were written only days apart). But I think the main thrust of the argument is that various details in the Aberconway version that don't appear at all in the official draft were written several years later from memory, and are therefore unreliable.

                  One obvious question is whether there is a date on the Aberconway version. Hainsworth says "Whether Macnaghten backdated the adaptation is unclear, but this seems likely as both Tom Cullen and Daniel Farson, reporters who used the document in their Druitt-centric books, date the document to 1894 ..." It doesn't sound as though he has seen the article in the A-Z. From what's said there (p. 272), the Aberconway version isn't dated, but is headed "Memorandum on articles which appeared in the Sun re JACK THE RIPPER ON 14 Feb 1894 and subsequent dates".

                  I think that in itself casts some doubt on whether it could have been written later, as the official version has (correctly) "13th ... & following dates". It's easy enough to understand how a mistake over the dates of the articles could have been made in a draft, and then corrected, but not so easy to see why Macnaghten, writing years later with the official version in front of him, should have substituted the wrong date for the right one.
                  Last edited by Chris; 06-13-2009, 04:53 PM.

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                  • #39
                    Personally I think you are all splitting straws with an axe here.
                    The Macnaghten Memo is so factually flawed in the original that is doesn't really matter if a later draft has additional flaws.
                    It was fatally flawed at the start, so it doesn't really matter how it ended.

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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Supe View Post
                      I would hope that there will be some real replies to this aspect of Jonathan's fine article.
                      It does seem strange that there seems to be so little interest in this radical proposal regarding one of the seminal Ripper documents.

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                      • #41
                        'bout as radical as a radish, still in the ground, Chris.

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                        • #42
                          AP

                          Considering that the Macnaghten Memorandum provides the only evidence that Thomas and Charles Cutbush were closely related, I'd have expected this to be of at least some interest to you.

                          For example, wouldn't you be interested to know whether that claim is in the Aberconway version as well as the official version?

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                          • #43
                            Perhaps someone could clarify for me...

                            I was under the impression that Macnaghten's original handwritten draft had been written before the official version in the Police records. In other words, that it was a rough draft that was then corrected, edited, etc.

                            And that Christabel Aberconway typed a copy of this earlier draft.

                            I do not have the new Ripperologist. Is the sugestion that Macnaghten's draft (preserved in the Aberconway copy) was in fact written AFTER the official version that is in MEPO?

                            Rob H

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                            • #44
                              The only important thing about the memorandum is that MM appears to KNOW that the case is closed and that JTR is simply not around anymore.

                              Like the dead parrot...

                              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vuW6tQ0218
                              allisvanityandvexationofspirit

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                              • #45
                                Thinking about Chris' question and yes, I have read the Ripperologist article, it should be borne in mind that there may well have been three copies of the Macnaghten Memo.
                                The grandson who flitted off to India had one, Lady Aberconway had a second, and the police file contained a neat copy.
                                Alarmingly, Macnaghten seems to have been, not only a frustrated frontline detective, ( he reportedly attended several fresh crime scenes ), but he was also a busy collector of Official police property!
                                The red ink JTR postcard graced the Macnaghten family home for some years...Macnaghten nearly frightened the life out of his little girl one Sunday after church, when she opened her father's desk drawer and proceeded to open a photo album....it was not recorded she actually laid eyes on the JTR victim photos, but it has been admitted Macnaghten had copies ( true, these could have been copied from the Police negatives).
                                But rather as has been argued against Sir Robert Anderson, the morality of these senior officers seemed, at times," a moveable feast".
                                As to which of the three versions of the MM was first, and which last, it is interesting Donald Rumbelow in his book "The Complete JTR ", seems to think the one in the SY file is the final copy.
                                It is the neatest and least full of (writing) mistakes.
                                As to the MM being "full" of mistakes. To me, it appears Anderson, Macnaghten and Abberline and Swanson may have made errors in their written presumptions too. JOHN RUFFELS.

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