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Druitt Disguised--by accident or by design?

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  • Druitt Disguised--by accident or by design?

    Chris Phillips, who located a couple of extraordinary and indispensable sources by George Sims a couple of years ago (one, from 1910, is the first source to mention Macnaghten's final, official draft, and the last before 1966) needs to be congratulated again for finding yet another piece of the jigsaw, this time about Sims and his Drowned Doctor solution.

    What it says is unprecedented.

    A journalistic source contemporaneous with Sims (1905) has confirmed what has been argued since 2008 and the discovery of Farquharson; that a critical factor in the famous writer's pieces about the un-named Druitt was consideration for the drowned killer's vulnerable and respectable family.

    Yet, and here's the rub, even in the small article below there is enough data for the respectable circles in which the killer's family travels to recognize 'Jack'.

    In fact, to recognize him easily?

    He was a Gentile physician from a fancy London family--who are based in London--who was known to be afflicted by what sounds like 'epileptic mania' and who drowned himself in the Thames by jumping from the central Embankment.

    Here it is:

    The ‘Gloucester Citizen’, January 9th 1905

    JACK THE RIPPER

    'Inspector Robert Sagar, who is just retiring from the City Police, is entirely at variance with Mr. George R. Sims as to the identity of “Jack the Ripper”. I see he has just stated, in an interview, that the City Police fully believed this man to be a butcher who worked in Aldgate, and was partly insane. It is believed that he made his way to Australia and there died.

    Mr. Sims, from information which came under his notice, has told me on more than one occasion he is convinced that these murders were committed by a medical man who afterwards committed suicide near the Embankment. This man was well-known in London as subject fits of lunacy, and he belonged to one of the best families in town. It is consideration for his relatives which has prevented “Dagonet” from making a full disclosure of such evidence as he possesses. How he was himself run down by the police when pursuing his investigation in the East End, and carrying a small black bag, is public property.

    The third and last plausible story of identity was published by Mr. T .P. O’Connor, when he was editing the “Sun” a few years ago. This was of a maniac in one of our public asylums whom the police went to see in order, if possible, to clear the mystery for ever. But the doctor in the Sims’ theory was never in the asylum.’


    If a member of the Druitt family, and the circles in which they moved, or a graduate of the Valentine School read the above article there is no way they could connect the tragic Montague they recalled or had heard about--a barrister from a middle-class Dorset family who drowned himself in the Thames at Chiswick--with Sims' V.I.P. Ripper.

    Was that really just due to dumb luck?

    Because Macnaghten had such a poor memory or was poorly informed about Druitt?

    A police administrator, what is more, who is acclaimed in every other primary source for his incredible memory and hands-on, "man of action", street-sleuth approach to his desk job.

  • #2
    Jonathan, your 'case disguised' theory is unique. I like it.

    Of course, in the context of these famous murders, it's quite provocative, don't you think, for Mac & Sims to disguise Druitt as a doctor, with all that implies, given the macabre cutting and slicing that went on. As opposed to casting him as ... for instance ... a banker. Or an engineer. And so forth.

    'Doctor' - part camouflage, part Mardi Gras costume

    Roy
    Sink the Bismark

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, Roy, it sure is.

      In my opinion it evolved from Mac's initial attempt to obscure druitt by subsuming him into his father (Report--official version, 1894).

      From 1898 I believe that Mac and Tatcho had decided to subsume Druitt into Stevenson's 'Jekyll and Hyde' template--they stole shamelssly from the best.

      Comment


      • #4
        Rather than invent a false Druitt didn't they just stay quiet?

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Jonathan H View Post

          In my opinion it evolved from Mac's initial attempt to obscure druitt by subsuming him into his father (Report--official version, 1894).
          Why his father instead of another suspect, "Dr. T"?

          Comment


          • #6
            To Lech and Curious

            You are both skirting around the blunt question.

            Druitt was disguised. It's a fact.

            Was it be design or by accident?

            I presume you both believe it is the latter. Why not say so?

            To Lech

            The Druitt solution had spilled out of Dorset in 1891, it could do so again.

            Macnaghten knew this was the Ripper, but also knew it was an intitutionally embarrassing chief suspect and of course one who could never be brought to trial.

            The official version was written in 1894 in response to the Cutbush scoop, then archived--but not at the Home Office--as insurance. to be able to say that M. J. Druitt was on police radar as a minor, hearsay suspect whom police nonetheless knew (before he died?) was erotically turned on by ultr-violence. Somebody said he was a medical man, but this detail remained unconfirmed (perhaps he wasn't).

            And/or Macnaghten knew that the Vicar was going to reveal the truth in 1899, and this could cause trouble too for Scotland Yard's image. In 1898 he rewrote his report to be more propaganda-friendly and disseminated this version to the public via reliable cronies.

            During the Edwardian Era the case was [allegedly] solved. It was only rebooted as a mystery after the Great War. By the 1900's the crisis of Dorset had passed, and the Ripper snugly hidden within fiction.

            I realise it is the most unwanted heersy to write this but the case is arguably not a mystery, and has not been one since 1891, or, from the public's p.o.v., from 1898/9.

            To Curious

            I think that Macnaghten did exploit the Tumblety fumble in the 1900's as the disguised Druitt becomes increasingly Tumbletyesque, and I think he told Jack Littlechild a lie that originated with the drowned barrister and not the fleeing American (about vanishing: maybe abroad, maybe a suicide).

            But I think that Macnaghten, back in 1894, was experimenting with a dcoument (that he never sent) for Asquith. How could the minister talk about the drowned barrister in the Thames withour potentially exposing the family to ruin?

            By tweaking it as a surgeon, rather than son of a surgeon (plus fudging the date of his death.).

            If he had sent it and if it had blown up in Mac's face he could claim it was just an error; that somebody--not me, says Mac--had told him, wrongly as it turned out, that Druitt was a doctor (though it was left unconfirmed: "... said to be a doctor ..") when it was really his father confused with the son.

            A much bigger 'error' in the same document is the implication that Druitt was investigated for being 'Jack' whilst alive, and the evidence was lacking to make an arrest--totally untrue, and the Chief Constable knew it (his memoirs confirm he knew).

            Comment


            • #7
              Jonathan
              Disguised implies design.
              I think it. was a case of incomplete information and clutching at straws by Macnaghten to make him feel more comfortable with his career.
              There is no motive for a cover up. The Druitt's were not an important family.
              Their disgrace would not have impacted on anyone but themselves.
              Montague Druitt couldn't have been brought to trial but his exposure as the red hot suspect would have reassured society and prevented more police hours being wasted.
              t is not 'Ripperological' heresy to suggest Druitt as the culprit - it is very much part of the orthodoxy. Your particular theory offers an explanation for Macnaghten's actions, that's all.
              We have Macnaghten writing an official, if unused, report that names Druitt yet we are to believe that no one else in the police knew about Druitt. It was Macnaghten's secret. Yet he couldn't keep a secret so he dropped disguised hints all the time. Not exactly likely.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Lechmere View Post
                There is no motive for a cover up. The Druitt's were not an important family.
                Their disgrace would not have impacted on anyone but themselves.
                Hi Lech,

                Quite. Especially if the suspicions could be traced back to a loose-lipped Druitt family member - which they would need to be, to hold any water in the first place. I can't see how the family could have kicked up much of a stink in those circumstances. They could surely only have sued if the whole 'family belief' thing was unsubstantiated "conjection". A most ingenious paradox.

                Love,

                Caz
                X
                "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                Comment


                • #9
                  I understand why this is resisted.

                  But Lech, at least you have answered the question-- the 'disguise' is by accident.

                  Fair enough. I don't agree. In fact I think it is a naive opinion.

                  To Caz

                  What the new source about Sims shows is his claim that there is a concern to protect the family of the killer.

                  Yet he gives away enough information for them to be exposed?

                  Unless ... what he is propagating does no such thing and he knows it.

                  And it doesn't; it shields the Druitts.

                  This is the real, big story of the aftermath of the Ripper murders of 1888. That is what is unorthodox and will never be accepted here.

                  And that's fine.

                  The MP is identified as a man who lived nine miles from the Druitts and is part of the Old Boy Net with Mac.

                  No change.

                  Sims is revealed to be in on it.

                  No change.

                  Logan shows that Macnaghten knew Montie in minute detail.

                  No change.

                  On the other site the 'West of England' MP source, the great bridging/Holy Grail source--that Farson could not find in Oz,while Cullen settled for a hoax source--is being dismissed as nothing.

                  Yet it proved that belief in Montie as the fiend predated Macnaghten, that it came from "his own people" in Dorset, that for political reasons Tory Mac was not going to name a Tory MP in a report to a Liberal govt. (never sent anyhow), and that the fictional-disguise began with the M.P. and was continued by a fellow Old Boy.

                  Why on earth would he tell anybody at the Yard when that would guarantee the Druitts would be destroyed?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    How would druitts family know he was our killer it's very unlikely he would have told them himself so who could have told them.Mr Valentine could be one possibility I don't think the mother would be taken to seriously due to her mental condition or could old Monty have had a partner and did he or she realise all was not well or could Monty have even confided in he or she lets face it the other half always knows when somethings wrong .
                    Three things in life that don't stay hidden for to long ones the sun ones the moon and the other is the truth

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      To Pinkmoon

                      2008 was a decisive year for recovering the solutuion believed by many at the turn of the previous century, and to identifying the real people behind its fictitious shield.

                      The source of Macnaghten's private information was identified--by name, M.P. Henry Farquharson--and the culpability of the murderer was established by what he said, by his confession to a priest.

                      Whereas Edwardians were told that the killer had no time to confess anything to anybody after the final murder, because he was mentally destroyed and committed suicide instantly.

                      But the mad doctor had confessed, or so Sims' readers were informed (and mis-informed) in a mental institution in 1887, in which he had been a volunary patient ("twice"). As a patient the mad doctor had been very spcecific in articulating his maniacal desires: he sought to kill and mutilate East End harlots. The scandal was that they ever let him out!

                      We have known since 1959 (the public since 1965) that behind the Drowned Doctor is Montague Druitt, a young barrister who had three weeks to confess anything he liked to anybody he chose.

                      If the following source is about Druitt, and it may not be, then the broad outlines of his double life and the reason he took his own life--despite having easily outwitted the police--finally makes sense, as does why his family, and later his MP, a police chief and a famous writer also 'believed'.

                      Western Mail
                      19 January 1899

                      WHITECHAPEL MURDERS
                      DID "JACK THE RIPPER" MAKE A CONFESSION?


                      'We have received (says the Daily Mail) from a clergyman of the Church of England, now a North Country vicar, an interesting communication with reference to the great criminal mystery of our times - that enshrouding the perpetration of the series of crimes which have come to be known as the "Jack the Ripper" murders. The identity of the murderer is as unsolved as it was while the blood of the victims was yet wet upon the pavements. Certainly Major Arthur Griffiths, in his new work on "Mysteries of Police and Crime," suggests that the police believe the assassin to have been a doctor, bordering on insanity, whose body was found floating in the Thames soon after the last crime of the series; but as the major also mentions that this man was one of three known homidical lunatics against whom the police "held very plausible and reasonable grounds of suspicion," that conjectural explanation does not appear to count for much by itself.
                      Our correspondent the vicar now writes:-

                      "I received information in professional confidence, with directions to publish the facts after ten years, and then with such alterations as might defeat identification.
                      The murderer was a man of good position and otherwise unblemished character, who suffered from epileptic mania, and is long since deceased.
                      I must ask you not to give my name, as it might lead to identification"
                      meaning the identification of the perpetrator of the crimes.

                      We thought at first the vicar was at fault in believing that ten years had passed yet since the last murder of the series, for there were other somewhat similar crimes in 1889. But, on referring again to Major Griffiths's book, we find he states that the last "Jack the Ripper" murder was that in Miller's Court on November 9, 1888 - a confirmation of the vicar's sources of information. The vicar enclosed a narrative, which he called "The Whitechurch Murders - Solution of a London Mystery." This he described as "substantial truth under fictitious form." "Proof for obvious reasons impossible - under seal of confession," he added in reply to an inquiry from us.

                      Failing to see how any good purpose could be served by publishing substantial truth in fictitious form, we sent a representative North to see the Vicar, to endeavour to ascertain which parts of the narrative were actual facts. But the Vicar was not to be persuaded, and all that our reporter could learn was that the rev. gentleman appears to know with certainty the identity of the most terrible figure in the criminal annals of our times, and that the Vicar does not intend to let anyone else into the secret.

                      The murderer died, the Vicar states, very shortly after committing the last murder. The Vicar obtained his information from a brother clergyman, to whom a confession was made - by whom the Vicar would not give even the most guarded hint. The only other item which a lengthy chat with the Vicar could elicit was that the murderer was a man who at one time was engaged in rescue work among the depraved women of the East End - eventually his victims; and that the assassin was at one time a surgeon.'

                      My theory is that Montie confessed to his cousin Charles, a Dorset Vicar from 1891 to his death in 1900.

                      The brother clargyman buffer is just that, a fictitious buffer. Charles was a Vicar at the right time, his parish was partly naled 'Whithcuch' and the cleric in the article says that his own name gives away the identity of the murderer.

                      The reference to the 'North' is, I argue, part of the fiction that the newspaper had to maintain in order to get an audeince with the clergyman, to try and penetrate his shield of 'honest lies'. The interview really took place in Dorset in the South-west.

                      Confirmation that this could have happened comes from Guy Logan in 1905. The Druitts are relocated 'up North; to Yorkshire (and upped in class to the nobility). Henry Farquharson is relocated to the North as well, becoming the young Tory M.P. Viscount Hardcastle (whose tongue is too sharp for his own career).

                      I understand that neither of these breakthroughs can have any impact here and never will (only in the outside world).

                      I would just say to newcomers that this clergyman is disguisjng his suspect by design. It is compared unfavourably (by Sims, a few days later) with a suspect who killed himself instantly and could not have confessed. Behind the latter is Druitt who did have plenty of time. Macnaghten via Griffiths and sims is propagating incorrect infomation which, by a lucky coincidence, makes the cops look better. Whereas the Vicar's Ripper--a man of good position, of unblemished character, going to the East End to help--fits the real Montague better. Yet we know that the former is about Montague Druitt.

                      Is it really likely to be a coincidence that the Vicar's candid mix of fact-and-fiction fits better the suspect who is, simultaneously, being secretly cocooned in fiction?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Jonathan H View Post
                        To Pinkmoon

                        2008 was a decisive year for recovering the solutuion believed by many at the turn of the previous century, and to identifying the real people behind its fictitious shield.

                        The source of Macnaghten's private information was identified--by name, M.P. Henry Farquharson--and the culpability of the murderer was established by what he said, by his confession to a priest.

                        Whereas Edwardians were told that the killer had no time to confess anything to anybody after the final murder, because he was mentally destroyed and committed suicide instantly.

                        But the mad doctor had confessed, or so Sims' readers were informed (and mis-informed) in a mental institution in 1887, in which he had been a volunary patient ("twice"). As a patient the mad doctor had been very spcecific in articulating his maniacal desires: he sought to kill and mutilate East End harlots. The scandal was that they ever let him out!

                        We have known since 1959 (the public since 1965) that behind the Drowned Doctor is Montague Druitt, a young barrister who had three weeks to confess anything he liked to anybody he chose.

                        If the following source is about Druitt, and it may not be, then the broad outlines of his double life and the reason he took his own life--despite having easily outwitted the police--finally makes sense, as does why his family, and later his MP, a police chief and a famous writer also 'believed'.

                        Western Mail
                        19 January 1899

                        WHITECHAPEL MURDERS
                        DID "JACK THE RIPPER" MAKE A CONFESSION?


                        'We have received (says the Daily Mail) from a clergyman of the Church of England, now a North Country vicar, an interesting communication with reference to the great criminal mystery of our times - that enshrouding the perpetration of the series of crimes which have come to be known as the "Jack the Ripper" murders. The identity of the murderer is as unsolved as it was while the blood of the victims was yet wet upon the pavements. Certainly Major Arthur Griffiths, in his new work on "Mysteries of Police and Crime," suggests that the police believe the assassin to have been a doctor, bordering on insanity, whose body was found floating in the Thames soon after the last crime of the series; but as the major also mentions that this man was one of three known homidical lunatics against whom the police "held very plausible and reasonable grounds of suspicion," that conjectural explanation does not appear to count for much by itself.
                        Our correspondent the vicar now writes:-

                        "I received information in professional confidence, with directions to publish the facts after ten years, and then with such alterations as might defeat identification.
                        The murderer was a man of good position and otherwise unblemished character, who suffered from epileptic mania, and is long since deceased.
                        I must ask you not to give my name, as it might lead to identification"
                        meaning the identification of the perpetrator of the crimes.

                        We thought at first the vicar was at fault in believing that ten years had passed yet since the last murder of the series, for there were other somewhat similar crimes in 1889. But, on referring again to Major Griffiths's book, we find he states that the last "Jack the Ripper" murder was that in Miller's Court on November 9, 1888 - a confirmation of the vicar's sources of information. The vicar enclosed a narrative, which he called "The Whitechurch Murders - Solution of a London Mystery." This he described as "substantial truth under fictitious form." "Proof for obvious reasons impossible - under seal of confession," he added in reply to an inquiry from us.

                        Failing to see how any good purpose could be served by publishing substantial truth in fictitious form, we sent a representative North to see the Vicar, to endeavour to ascertain which parts of the narrative were actual facts. But the Vicar was not to be persuaded, and all that our reporter could learn was that the rev. gentleman appears to know with certainty the identity of the most terrible figure in the criminal annals of our times, and that the Vicar does not intend to let anyone else into the secret.

                        The murderer died, the Vicar states, very shortly after committing the last murder. The Vicar obtained his information from a brother clergyman, to whom a confession was made - by whom the Vicar would not give even the most guarded hint. The only other item which a lengthy chat with the Vicar could elicit was that the murderer was a man who at one time was engaged in rescue work among the depraved women of the East End - eventually his victims; and that the assassin was at one time a surgeon.'

                        My theory is that Montie confessed to his cousin Charles, a Dorset Vicar from 1891 to his death in 1900.

                        The brother clargyman buffer is just that, a fictitious buffer. Charles was a Vicar at the right time, his parish was partly naled 'Whithcuch' and the cleric in the article says that his own name gives away the identity of the murderer.

                        The reference to the 'North' is, I argue, part of the fiction that the newspaper had to maintain in order to get an audeince with the clergyman, to try and penetrate his shield of 'honest lies'. The interview really took place in Dorset in the South-west.

                        Confirmation that this could have happened comes from Guy Logan in 1905. The Druitts are relocated 'up North; to Yorkshire (and upped in class to the nobility). Henry Farquharson is relocated to the North as well, becoming the young Tory M.P. Viscount Hardcastle (whose tongue is too sharp for his own career).

                        I understand that neither of these breakthroughs can have any impact here and never will (only in the outside world).

                        I would just say to newcomers that this clergyman is disguisjng his suspect by design. It is compared unfavourably (by Sims, a few days later) with a suspect who killed himself instantly and could not have confessed. Behind the latter is Druitt who did have plenty of time. Macnaghten via Griffiths and sims is propagating incorrect infomation which, by a lucky coincidence, makes the cops look better. Whereas the Vicar's Ripper--a man of good position, of unblemished character, going to the East End to help--fits the real Montague better. Yet we know that the former is about Montague Druitt.

                        Is it really likely to be a coincidence that the Vicar's candid mix of fact-and-fiction fits better the suspect who is, simultaneously, being secretly cocooned in fiction?
                        Hi Jonathan,thanks for the very interesting and detailed reply I wonder if it could be possible that Druitt spent time in an asylum under a different name?
                        Three things in life that don't stay hidden for to long ones the sun ones the moon and the other is the truth

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yes, it is possible.

                          But. Not. Very. Likely.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Jonathan H View Post
                            Yes, it is possible.

                            But. Not. Very. Likely.
                            Why did sir Melville name Druitt in his famous memo?
                            Three things in life that don't stay hidden for to long ones the sun ones the moon and the other is the truth

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              You may not know this but there were two versions of the 'memo', and they are quite different and were written to please for different audiences.

                              Several secondary sources, even good ones, now only include the official version. This was written in 1894 in response to a Liberal newspaper's alleged scoop that the fiend was a lunatic in Broadmoor (Thomas Cutbush) and this was known to the upper echelons of the Force.

                              Macnaghten feared that the Cutbush 'scandal' might dislodge the Druitt solution from Dorset, again, and that this time it might be unstoppable. The Chief Constable, who was a law unto himself at C.I.D. as Warren feared, scrambled to get on file Druitt's name (but as a minor, hearsay suspect from 1888 who paradoxically gained pleasure from violence--as a fact) in case this eventuated.

                              It did not.

                              In the aftermath Mac filed it in the S.Y. archive as 'insurance'. It was not needed. It had no impact and was unknown until 1966. Modern researchers mistake it for Macnaghten's definitive opinion. This is only half-right. For example, Druitt was not a suspect in 1888, as it misleadingly implies, and there was no 'awful glut' litmus test which led the 'police' back to the only-might-be-a-doctor suspect.

                              In 1898, in anticipation of the Vicar's potentially troublesome account, Macnaghten retrieved his 'report' and rewrote it, or 'sexed it up', to share the Druitt solution with the public--albeit anonymously via cronies, one a Tory the other a Liberal for bi-partisan balance--yet disguised so that his family would be protected and the rep of the Yard would be enhanced by the bald-faced lie that they were about to arrest the 'mad doctor' but just missed him.

                              It worked perfectly, but decades later would, inadvertently, continue to mislead researchers who took Macnaghten to be honest but incompetent--or at least poorly informed about Druitt--when in reality he was cheerfully deceitful, had an elephantine memory and was a smooth, bureaucratic operator.

                              The newly discovered 1905 Logan source is further [textual] evidence that Macnaghten was well-informed about Montie Druitt.

                              Comment

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