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  • Solved?

    How many of you here believe that the Ripper case has actually been solved?

    Yes, the case has been solved.
    No, the case has not been solved
    I have not made up my mind as to if the case has actually been solved or not.

  • #2
    I do not believe it is solved or will ever be solved.


    • #3
      Case solved?

      Not by a long - shot and probably (almost 100% certainly IMHO) never will be.

      I'm in the Rumbelow camp - on the Day of Judgement, when JtR is called to stand forth, we'll all say, "Who?"!!!!

      If they could not track him down in the 1880s/90s we will never find conclusive proof today. the records are incomplete - there's too much contradiction between witnesses.

      We don't even know how many murders JtR committed. (A few years back, after 35 years or so of interest, I'd have said there were five. Now, I reckon that Stride and MJK are probably not by the same hand as Nichols, Champan and Eddowes.)

      So some light has been shed on these ghastly crimes.

      I'm pretty sure that Michael Kidney killed his ex - Stride - on impulse and in a drunken rage. I don't know who killed MJK - most probably NOT Barnett.

      For the others - I was long a Druittite, and it remains possible that Macnaghten had strong enough private information to persuade him. But I have moved away from the idea of the middle-class killer.

      I am more minded now to look at the Kosminskis, Levys etc and have recently awakened to the Timothy Donovan argument (especially if Kelly is not a JtR victim).

      But again, how would we ever prove it? Too many of the documents have vanished and though some may reappear (as in 1988) I don't think that even if we had everything, we would be any the wiser.

      I don't believe that there will be a confession, diary or printed proof. Ms Cornwall has shown how problematic her approach can be.

      And the reception here of the new photo of Dutton's Yard when it was found (I have just caught up with that) shows how sceptical many are of anything new. I suspect that if only because they had not found it, many "authorities" would question the veracity, source, bona fides and authenticity of any alleged proof.

      Finally, too much of the writing on JtR remains weak and even laughable. the logic is simply based on the seven degree of separation model - you can link almost any two people quite quickly. hence we have the finger pointed at the Mann's, the Barnardos and Carrolls and I one day fully expect to see the Queen Empress herself under suspicion!

      I had high hopes in the late 80s and before the diary that the then new generation of Ripperologists (Begg, Fido, Rumbelow and their ilk, and i'd include Ogan, Warren) with the A to Z, magazines such as the early Ripperana and deeper research into the context and background might lead us somewhere. I am still impressed with publications such as the Ultimate Source book, Letters, Sugden's serious study etc - but ripperdom has a long way to go before it can really match the seriousness and achievements of say the Richard II society and its genuine contributions to historical research.

      So - I wish it could be otherwise - but NO, we'll never know for sure.



      • #4
        "we'll never know "

        I think that we may have to swop "know" for "agree". And - luckily - also for "give up" ...

        The best,


        • #5
          Originally posted by Phil H View Post
          I am more minded now to look at the Kosminskis, Levys etc and have recently awakened to the Timothy Donovan argument (especially if Kelly is not a JtR victim).
          Hi Phil,
          Can I ask, when you say "especially if Kelly is not a JTR victim," would that be because of the previously suggested identification of Crossingham's Timothy Donovan as the man who died on Nov. 1st 1888?
          If so you may be interested in this thread, showing that Timothy Donovan was alive and well at the time of the Kelly murder.

          ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

          I am not DJA. He's called Dave.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Fisherman View Post
            "we'll never know "

            I think that we may have to swop "know" for "agree". And - luckily - also for "give up" ...

            The best,
            Very well said Fisherman! Even "agree" may be an untenable standard. History is like a Picasso painting, depending on what you choose to value, you can see a face, or a lamp, or a gnu. I am ASSuming we will all choose to accentuate different items, and correspondingly see different things. Dave
            We are all born cute as a button and dumb as rocks. We grow out of cute fast!


            • #7
              Debra - thank you. I will certainly look at that thread.

              My conclusions were indeed based on the assumption that Donovan was dead by the date of MJK's murder.

              Much appreciated,



              • #8
                unless some conclusive evidence turns up...? no the whitechapel murders havent been 'solved' do i think they will be? no.... some murders never are.

                Some famous cases like JTR, The Rode Hill House murder and Lizzie Borden for example will never be conclusively 'solved'. Unless new evidence or new forensic tecniques are discovered some murders will remain a mystery. The perpetrator's of these crimes will forever remain shouded in mystery and as time goes on the chances of truely solving the mysteries recede further and further.


                • #9
                  Anyone who says that the case has been solved are just trying to peddle their books.


                  • #10
                    I'll take the optimistic (nave ?) side on this one.
                    I spent all my youth summer vacations in a low mountainous area where local farmers had kept on taking stones, small or large, out of their pastures for centuries, ending up building miles long walls with them.
                    No matter how hard their followed their stone picking duties, 'new' stones surfaced after every winter.
                    I guess, FWIW, that new evidence will surface again, perhaps not to the point of putting a name behind the caracter we've come to call JtR, but at least some social background, etc...

                    Wait and see...


                    • #11
                      This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

                      Stan Reid


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by JosephDurham View Post
                        How many of you here believe that the Ripper case has actually been solved?

                        I believe it has not been solved.

                        I believe that the primary killer was the fiend we call jtr. I also believe that their was a copy cat at play, perhaps more. This accounts for the slight changes in style and injury.

                        I believe the primary killer was not anyone considered then or now.
                        It was Bury whodunnit. The black eyed scoundrel.

                        The yam yams are the men, who won't be blamed for nothing..


                        • #13
                          No, it's not been solved. I agree 100% with Fisherman on this one. Even if there ever was a piece of evidence pointing to one suspect, there would always people there to argue differently.

                          All the best,


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Limehouse View Post
                            I do not believe it is solved or will ever be solved.
                            ^ what this guy said.


                            • #15
                              I am not permitted to vote in this poll, but I certainly agree with the consensus that it has not been solved. What's more, I'm willing to say that the actual perpetrator is not any of the suspects named on this forum.

                              It's easy to romanticize Jack the Ripper, and therein lies nine-tenths of our problem today. Take my favorite suspect, Tumblety: the man was a product of his age, a quack-doctor wandering the Earth, moving in the rarefied airs of the upper classes, venturing across continents to peddle his dubious wares. In a world far more dramatic than our own, he would make a wonderful murderer - but, alas, no matter how much my imagination argues against it, it's highly unlikely he ever killed anyone by means other than criminal medical malpractice.

                              The same goes doubly for pop-suspects like Walter Sickert. I don't know why there hasn't been a big-budget Hollywood blockbuster portraying Sickert as the killer; he looks like one, or, at least, Hollywood's post-Hannibal vision of a killer. Sickert, more than any other suspect that I can think of, could certain fill the popular imagination's portrait of the Ripper as a gentleman decked out in coat-and-tails and hidden within the shadows of a top hat. Of course, the material case against the man is nonexistent, but that never mattered to anyone before.

                              The reality is that we're looking at a time and place filled to the brim with individuals who could conceivably have the mentality of a serial murderer. How many people in Whitechapel and Spitalfield alone made their living in occupations we would today consider grotesque? How many butchers, morticians, and so forth? How many petty criminals? In terms of sheer quantity alone we're looking at a vastly higher percent of the general population than engage in such activities today.

                              Now, I am not convinced that the case cannot be solved, at least to satisfy most Ripperologists. What I think needs to happen is a broad move away from a suspect-based mentality, or, at least, from the suspects we currently have documentation on. A much closer look must be given to typical residents of the area (which, of course, offers its own set of problems, given the dearth of information on the sort of persons we ought actually be looking at). I believe that the killer was likely a local man, and probably someone who, absent his proclivities, would be completely unremembered today. To find such a person, we would need the resources of a small army willing to dredge through the personal lives of tens of thousands of individuals for whom documentation is virtually non-existent. No small task, indeed.