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There's Something Wrong with the Swanson Marginalia

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  • #16
    Signature

    And Swanson's signature in 1903, note the variation (this is a photocopy) -

    Click image for larger version

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    SPE

    Treat me gently I'm a newbie.

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    • #17
      Hi All,

      You may find this version of the endpaper notes more readable—

      Click image for larger version

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      Regards,

      Simon

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      • #18
        I am sure this has been asked before but since I don't know the answer...why would someone sign their own initials to something that they themselves wrote apparently for their own use?

        c.d.

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        • #19
          Hi CD,

          Twice.

          Regards,

          Simon

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          • #20
            If I had been writing, I would have said "the suspect was Kosminski." Could it be that he meant to say "Kosminski was the suspect who ... and never finished the sentence for some reason?

            Yes, I know that is pretty wild...but since we are speculating here.

            c.d.

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            • #21
              Perhaps he had to refer to notes for the suspect's name, which is why it was included at the end.

              Since Swanson made his first annotations upon the publication of Anderson's book, it stands to reason that he would have been in correspondence with Anderson at this time, reminiscing about events in the book, and reminding each other of details. Perhaps he updated his own notes as the correspondence went along.

              Yours truly,

              Tom Wescott

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              • #22
                Originally posted by c.d. View Post
                I am sure this has been asked before but since I don't know the answer...why would someone sign their own initials to something that they themselves wrote apparently for their own use?

                c.d.
                People do,c.d. its quite a common practice.

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                • #23
                  I disagree, Natalie, I think cd has hit it right on the button here.
                  I just spent fifteen minutes looking at all my hundreds of marginalia in Stewart's sourcebook, and I never initialled or signed one entry.
                  Why should I?
                  Why should he?

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                  • #24
                    Stewart, Simon, et al,

                    Thank you for posting the various Swanson signatures. Would anyone like to offer an opinion as to how they compare?

                    Yours truly,

                    Tom Wescott

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                    • #25
                      I actually find them quite dissimilar. Specifically the little loops on the tops of the S's which are more angular and jagged in the initials, but that could be down to a variety of things though.

                      It would be nice to have actual reports in front of us so we could see what the official examiners actually said about the handwriting, but I doubt that will ever happen.

                      Let all Oz be agreed;
                      I'm Wicked through and through.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Ally
                        I actually find them quite dissimilar. Specifically the little loops on the tops of the S's which are more angular and jagged in the initials, but that could be down to a variety of things though.
                        This is 'spot on' with what I was thinking. I just didn't want to go first.

                        Yours truly,

                        Tom Wescott

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                        • #27
                          Regarding why Swanson signed his personal notes in the first place, I'm at a crossroads. Like AP, I don't believe this is common practice for people. But like Robert and Natalie, I could see someone who held a position like Swanson continuing on with these little habits in retirement, particularly when he's fully aware that a) his documents and books will be left to his family, and b) there's much interest in the Ripper case.

                          I suppose this shouldn't be an impossible question to answer since we know that Swanson left other volumes to his descendants, and presumably these volumes contained similar notes and marginalia. Were these similarly signed?

                          Yours truly,

                          Tom Wescott

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                          • #28
                            This is Swanson signature from a 1901 Telegram. It's from a Digital Scan.

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                            Rob

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Tom_Wescott View Post
                              I suppose this shouldn't be an impossible question to answer since we know that Swanson left other volumes to his descendants, and presumably these volumes contained similar notes and marginalia. Were these similarly signed?
                              In his Ripperologist article, Paul Begg refers to an annotation in Swanson's copy of Adam Worth, alias 'Little Adam', by William Pinkerton, which he initialled.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Ally View Post
                                I actually find them quite dissimilar. Specifically the little loops on the tops of the S's which are more angular and jagged in the initials, but that could be down to a variety of things though.
                                He seems to have formed his lower-case "g" rather differently over the years, too - quite radically so, if the samples kindly provided are truly representative. That said, handwriting can, and does, change subtly over time.
                                Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                                "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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