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  • Hello Ben,

    I made a timeline of his activities on a thread titled Joseph Isaacs in Other Suspects.

    He was wearing an Astrakhan trimmed coat. Throw some bling on that, with the fancy shoes and cuffs, and you've got Hutch's suspect. You don't have to arrive by coach or be wealthy to wear that kind of coat. You don't have to be a toff to appear tofflike. You can be a homeboy toffed up.

    Roy
    Sink the Bismark

    Comment


    • Joseph Isaacs - no "toff", he...

      Hi Roy

      For info, Isaacs was NOT described as wearing "an astrakhan-trimmed coat", although I can see why Chris Morley might have reached that incorrect conclusion. Isaacs' appearance "answered the published description of a man with an astrachan trimming to his coat", according to the Daily News of 8th Dec 1888.

      Note that it does not say that Isaacs was wearing such a coat, only that he matched the description of another man who did. The match could easily have been based on his height, hair colouring, moustache, build, complexion, eyebrows, his "Jewish appearance" and/or his "surly" looks - without his also having to be similarly attired.

      Isaacs was, in any case, a "cigar maker of no fixed abode", who dossed in Paternoster Row.
      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

      "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

      Comment


      • Hi Roy,

        He was wearing an Astrakhan trimmed coat. Throw some bling on that, with the fancy shoes and cuffs, and you've got Hutch's suspect.
        In theory, you're absolutely right, but the mentality behind any decision to do so is arguably even more ludicrous than the hypothetical toff venturing into a known abyss, dressed in a manner that was virtually guaranteed to attract attention, especially at the height of the murders when anyone remotely out-of-place became the object of instant mob-fuelled suspicion. I doubt very much that any self-respecting member of the strongly represented "vicious, semi-criminal" fraternity would have spent much time pondering over whether or not such a perfect candidate for mugging was genuinely wealthy or simply flashy.

        The bling had only to look real for likely disaster to ensue.

        Best regards,
        Ben

        Comment


        • Originally posted by Ben View Post
          Hi Roy, In theory, you're absolutely right...
          ...except inasmuch as Isaacs was never described as wearing an astrakhan-trimmed coat, Ben. See my previous post.
          Kind regards, Sam Flynn

          "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

          Comment


          • Precisely so, Gareth.

            An important clarification, and very well-spotted on your part.
            Last edited by Ben; 01-02-2009, 10:20 PM.

            Comment


            • Hi again Ben & Sam,

              Again, my point is, you don't have to arrive by coach or be wealthy to be someone who "answered the published description of a man with an astrachan trimming to his coat." You don't have to be a real toff. As an example, a Mr. Oakes said that Joseph Isaacs changed clothes a lot. In Paternoster Row.

              People did change their appearance, you know. The clothing items described by Hutchinson were available anywhere. A psychopatic murderer could dress this way to procure an invite from the desirable Mary Jane back to her room. Then he kills her.

              This type of individual is not going to be afraid of going into a vicious, criminal area. He is the vicious one.

              Roy
              Sink the Bismark

              Comment


              • Hi Roy,

                A psychopatic murderer could dress this way to procure an invite from the desirable Mary Jane back to her room. Then he kills her.
                That sort of dress was incredibly unlikely to have attracted Kelly, though. It would have aroused her suspicions if anything, considering that the Astrakhan man's appearance pandered very heavily to a lot of the myths that were circulating in relation to the killer's likely appearance (Jewish, well-dressed, conspicious, small black package). An East End prostitute didn't need flashy clothes to be enticed into business - they simply couldn't afford to be choosey, and if shabby ol' Blotch was anything to go on, Kelly clearly wasn't. In that area and that perilous time, the most "attractive" type of client was the unthreatening tried and tested local.

                It wouldn't have mattered how "vicious" the killer was. By attiring himself in a manner almost guaranteed to attract negative attention at the worst possible moment in history, he was really peeing on his own bonfire quite unnecessarily, and the fact that he may not have been "afraid" would not have availed him when set upon by a gang of thugs or wannabe Vigilantes.

                I doubt very much that fake bling was that easily obtainable, and an entire toff costume was probably beyond the means of most men in the district, even if we're not talking solid gold here.

                Best regards,
                Ben

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Roy Corduroy View Post
                  As an example, a Mr. Oakes said that Joseph Isaacs changed clothes a lot.
                  Unfortunately, Roy, we have no evidence of what sort of clothes they were. As Isaacs was "of no fixed abode", and a lowly cigar-maker, I think we can hazard a guess.
                  Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                  "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                  Comment


                  • Ben & Sam, again, thank you for answering my posts. The case of Joseph Isaacs shows us:

                    (1) The police were still interested in him when he returned to Spitalfields in December. His suspicious behavior and attire in November in the murder district warranted their attention, meaning they had not given up on Hutchinson's description.

                    (2) He answered the published description of a man with an astrachan trimming to his coat. So this proves you don't have to arrive in a coach or be a lord to look like a toff. A toff-looking man doesn't have to just appear out of nowhere, sort of a "Beam Me Up Scotty."

                    Roy
                    Sink the Bismark

                    Comment


                    • church

                      Sam has beaten me to it! I have just been spending time checking the inhabitants of Church/ Fournier st on 1881 census. And there is not a toff in sight
                      The houses were multi occupantcy with between 15 and 30 people in each, many Jews. Small tradesman, tailors, cigar makers,porters ivory tuners etc.
                      It is irrelevant how grand they were in the 18th century,by 1880s they were slums . The east end was one of the most populated and poverty stricken parts of the country by 1860
                      There is no real evidence that toffs hung out there for immoral purposes, apart from assertion.

                      I have read loads of accounts of toffs in West end Brothals

                      The West End was full of brothals had catered to every vice,from homosexuality to S&Mm everything was available in discreet comfortable, surroundings.Its nonsense to say men were worried about being recognised in public. The reason to go up west at night was to have a good time. Ladies did not go there, unless escorted to a respectable theatres.There was a constant supply of fresh girls virgins being brought in from the country. Madams used to stand at railway stations and pick them up with a false story about a good job.
                      Toffs if they had VD liked a virgin.
                      So given a choice of possibly the greatest sex industry in the world,in the West End apart from Paris. we are expected to take on trust that a very fussy snobbish toff, [I dont mean the Oxbridge socialists who actually did good] who had the best of everything, and lived luxury and comfort and who's opinion of the east enders would be on a par with horseshit, [ if they ever entered his consciousness] would in all his finery,rush down to Dorset street to find a drunk middle aged hag, who probably had fleas, and possibly lice. Fleas and lice are never mentioned in the attempt to romanticise the situation, but they were present, and who probably stank, in order to give her one in a back ally. And then go back without being attacked
                      Dos not have the ring of veracity about it somehow.
                      Miss Marple
                      PS As the eastend was the centre of the tailoring trade and even in the 19th century astrakhan cloth was being made, which was a good imitation of the real thing. It very possible for a small tradesman to possess such a coat. Also astrakan was very flash, an english gent would not have worn it.
                      Last edited by miss marple; 01-03-2009, 01:16 AM. Reason: adding

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                        You can check out the 1891 Census listing for Fournier Street (then "Church Street"), here:

                        http://www.census1891.com/churchstwhfull.htm

                        Can't see (m)any toffs there, I'm afraid.In Shepherd Market, Mayfair - a place infamous for high-class hookers, and nowhere near as much a "red light area" as Soho, a mile or so to the east. Needless to say, Shepherd Market is decidedly more "up-market" than Soho, or modern-day Spitalfields come to that.No, the judge summed up by asking the jury of Mary Archer "Does she not have elegance? Does she not have fragrance?", which isn't the same as implying that Monica Coghlan was "a bit smelly" at all.

                        totally incorrect about Monica Coghlan.She was no high class hooker----my ex was one of the journalists who heard the stories .And the "implication".by the judge,was that Monica was "neither fragrant nor elegant"----think nuance and inference here and you will understand why he drew laughter!

                        Comment


                        • Now dont get your knickers in a twist Miss Marple! Agatha would be ashamed of you
                          Seriously,why not wait just a few days until I get back to London when I can post my photos? You really do need to quote chapter and verse to convince me of all this nonsense about Fournier Street being a slum in 1888.Provide the link and the proof please.2 Fournier Street was the rectory.So chapter ,verse,page numbers please.........

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Natalie Severn View Post
                            totally incorrect about Monica Coghlan.She was no high class hooker
                            Totally wrong about what I said, Nats, which was that Shepherd Market was infamous for its high-class hookers. What is a high-class hooker, anyway - a woman who drops her aitches only when she has an orgasm?

                            I thought that they were hookers who served high-class clients, and charged accordingly, rather than being particularly "fragrant" types per se.
                            Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                            "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Natalie Severn View Post
                              You really do need to quote chapter and verse to convince me of all this nonsense about Fournier Street being a slum in 1888.
                              I posted a link to the 1891 Census, Nats - give it a click. While you're there perusing the endless shoemakers, charwomen, potmen, barmen and hat-blockers, perhaps you can think of an ingenious reason as to why the Fournier Street's demographic content changed so radically in the 2 years or so that separated the Census and Kelly's death in November 1888.

                              And, by the way, I don't think anyone's said that Fournier Street was a "slum", only that its occupants weren't perhaps as well-heeled as some might like to believe.
                              Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                              "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                              Comment


                              • Hi Roy,

                                The police were still interested in him when he returned to Spitalfields in December. His suspicious behavior and attire in November in the murder district warranted their attention, meaning they had not given up on Hutchinson's description.
                                Perhaps not by that stage, but it was shortly thereafter that Hutchinson's evidence was fairly obviously discredited, at least as a means of capturing a potential murderer. Notice also that it was only the press that claimed a similarity between Isaacs and the Astrakhan man. We don't know that the police were interested in him for that reason.

                                So this proves you don't have to arrive in a coach or be a lord to look like a toff.
                                Not really, Roy, because as Gareth mentioned, there was never any indication that Isaacs was dressed like an Astrakhanian toff. In fact, the chances of a cigar-maker "of no fixed abode" having the financial means to even approximate a Mr. Astrakhan costume was rather remote, suggesting instead that the Astrakhan-Isaacs similarity was based more on height, complexion, moustache etc, along with the obvious "Jewish" factor.

                                Best regards,
                                Ben

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