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George William Topping Hutchinson Records

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  • Originally posted by The Good Michael View Post
    Many of my relations have no idea that my grandfather was involved with the Mafia, even my aunts. Yet, I do, and so do my brothers.

    Mike
    Mike.....the grandfather......JFK, LHO or Jack Ruby?

    Comment


    • i hope you havent stopped your research into Toppy, please carry on, because you've already portrayed him as a probable liar, and you dont have far to go until you've portrayed him as JTR as well.

      in fact, it could be argued that you already have, i think JTR is another GH, but i cant say that i'm unhappy with him as Toppy either, that is; thanks to your excellent research

      Comment


      • I haven’t gone anywhere – I’ve just been a bit busy lately. I’ll post up a few more documents that round off a couple of things a bit before going properly into the electoral registers.
        I don’t think he was that much of a liar and in any case nrthing that I have found particularly suggests that he was.

        Comment


        • OK Rubyretro – here’s a detailed response to your post on Toppy and Hutch.

          Is there anything in the police reports that suggests Toppy could be Hutch?
          We know that it is very likely that someone called George Hutchinson moved up to the East End at some time around the end of 1887. This is not absolutely provable but if you look at Toppy’s likely movements (and divorce the whole Ripper connection from your mind) then this is the most probable outcome.
          This is because he had family connections there and this period coincided with his father taking up with Emma Blackall. We have reason to believe that he disapproved of this relationship, partly shown by his adoption of the name Topping and his long term moving away from the bosom of his family.
          This is backed up by family oral history – agreed an imprecise science but one that should not be discounted.
          There is no other ‘George Hutchinson’ candidate to fill his boots. Maybe Hutch gave a false name? Other people did and ‘got away with it’ (errr Cross). But I would suggest that Hutch would have been fairly thoroughly ‘checked out’ so far as the police would have been able to do at that time and one of their standard questions would have been where ‘his people’ where from.
          I would suggest that Hutch satisfied the police on this question and I would hazard all their other questions. Otherwise quite simply he would have become a suspect – as at that time there were no other suspects for the police to choose from.

          The police reports do not mention what Hutch did for a living – it says he was in no regular employment. This is repeatedly and erroneously taken to mean that he was currently unemployed. It merely meant that he was not in the regular employ of someone – he was a casual worker. This is what we should expect with Toppy after he left home.

          We don’t know that Toppy stayed in the Victoria Home. However we know he was in a lodging house in 1891 and that for the next ten years at least he lived in some of the roughest addresses in London – the equivalent of Dorset Street. There is nothing incongruous about him staying at the Victoria Home, in many ways it is the obvious place for him to stay while he found his feet... which is why many people stayed there.

          This is not proof. It is or should be, obvious with things relating to this case that sort of bolted down proof will be pretty impossible to obtain – yet I would suggest that it is pretty much odds on that this Toppy equals Hutch, based on the Police report alone.

          The brief ‘Jewish appearance’ remark can as easily be an attempt to please the police, half knowing what was expected, or – possibly he did see someone of Jewish appearance – it wouldn’t have been unheard of in the East End. I don’t think this one brief comment qualifies Hutch or Toppy as being anti Semitic but this discussion is better suited to the witness thread.

          The various newspaper cuttings are those that refer to Hutch being a groom and labourer - rather than the police report. But they – along with the police report give substance that Hutchinson was paid as a roving witness – as stated in at least one version of the family tradition.
          What would Toppy have done for a living if he pitched up in the East End? Well labourer would be a favourite –his dad being a good example of this. So we are half way there.
          What of ‘groom’? I would suggest that ‘groom’ was not a job that required extensive training as there would have been a need for a great many grooms working on a wide variety of horses at all times. Hutch saying he was a ‘groom’ does not imply he was some sort of master farrier. Nor that he must have served in some cavalry regiment tending an officer’s horse.
          I would not get hung up over his description of himself as a groom. It can just be taken as a job he took to make ends meet. Maybe he did at some point consider it as a long term career – who knows. It isn’t significant.
          The evident delight that Hutch seems to have gained at being the centre of attention briefly, with the press and the police seems to me to be in keeping with the character of Toppy as well. It was his chance to be part of the tableau – the script for which had been pre-written and to which everyone, including the Ripper involuntarily conformed (an insight I have borrowed from talk given by Professor Clive Bloom at the recent Whitechapel Society Conference).

          The reference in the Dew memoirs which I alluded to and I think mentioned in an earlier post, was that Hutchinson was young. That’s all. But it is an aspect if Dew’s memoires that ‘Hutchinsonites’ tend to dispute.

          The family oral history, at the very least Reg’s testimony, cannot just be wished away just because family memory is often unreliable. It is one of those things that has to be put in the mix. When that is done it is a key indicator that they are one and the same – and nearly all the family testimony links in directly to what can be established from the other records.

          On the handwriting, yes there was a standardised form that Hutch and Toppy conformed to. I would suggest that an examination of various records shows that a distinct minority conformed to that ‘uniform’ style. Clearly that can be used as an excuse for their writing being similar. Or it can be taken as yet another indicator that they are one and the same.

          I think that objectively there is a lot more than wishful thinking that ties Toppy to Hutch.
          I have thought of a few extra lines of enquiry as well that may prove fruitful...

          Comment


          • Hi, Lechmere,

            You have done a lot of work! Thanks!

            Google: George Hutchinson, Mile End, Training Ship Exmouth. (at Grays)

            This George Hutchinson was listed as living in Mile End in 1881, when he was 15 making him 22 in 1888.

            Marlowe

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Lechmere View Post
              On the handwriting, yes there was a standardised form that Hutch and Toppy conformed to. I would suggest that an examination of various records shows that a distinct minority conformed to that ‘uniform’ style. Clearly that can be used as an excuse for their writing being similar. Or it can be taken as yet another indicator that they are one and the same.
              Equally, one could take the Hutchinson police statement signature that best approximates Toppy's signatures, completely disregard the two which bear no resemblance whatever to Toppy's standard signature, then assert similitude in context of the Hutchinson and Toppy handstyles.

              Adopting this same approach, one can turn a plumber into a groom and a slender man into one of short, stocky attributes.

              In other words, one can substantiate any argument if one simply disregards those factors which contradict it.

              An object lesson in confirmation bias.

              Comment


              • The George Hutchinson on the Training Ship Exmouth (moored up in Grays) was on the ship in 1881...
                http://www.angelfire.com/de/BobSanders/TSExmouth81.html
                He was 15 and originally from Mile End, rather than living at Mile End in 1881.
                I will have another look for him in other records but I think he has been rejected as a candidate previously.

                Comment


                • Garry...
                  Or turn man of military appearance into somebody who is not tall but stout...
                  Or a painter into a plumber (like Uncle John Hutchinson).

                  I notice that your view is that one of the police signatures is different from the other two – is that the one that may have been forged by Badham? The first on the police form?
                  Either way I wouldn’t say that any of the three bear ‘no resemblance’ to Toppy’s signatures.

                  Actually by putting forward your counter argument I clearly was not disregarding it. I think all counter arguments should be weighed with all the evidence from all sources in order for a balanced opinion to be taken.
                  I have never said that the signature evidence was conclusive but in my opinion it trends to weigh in favour of the connection and as such should be taken along side all the other evidence.
                  If the handwriting was obviously dissimilar, like most late 19th century handwriting was, then it would be conclusive in disproving a connection. But it isn’t.

                  It is also worth mentioning that Toppy’s signatures are a much closer match to the 1888 signatures than those for any other George Hutchinson for whom we have examples.

                  I was reviewing the overlong ‘Hutch in the 1911 Census’ thread and noticed that Sue Iremonger had acquired a copy of Toppy’s 1898 marriage certificate for comparison with the signatures on the 1888 police statement.
                  There were always several certificates that were signed on the ‘happy day’. I presume one was given to the couple, but another was certainly sent to the local registration office and another kept by the church as part of the parish records (actually this version had two marriage records on each page, so across an open book four records can be seen).

                  I reproduced on page 2 post 20 of this thread the marriage certificate that was kept as part of the parish records which shows a genuine Toppy signature.
                  The one reproduced on the ‘Hutch in the 1911 Census’ thread by Sam Flynn (on page 16, post 167) would be the version held by Tower Hamlets Registry Office (and which can obtained via the National Archives). It clearly does not include an authentic Toppy signature – it was completed in full (including the ‘signatures’) by the curate. It wasn’t a modern reproduction as erroneously claimed by one or two people in that thread.
                  It seems likely that this is the version obtained by Sue Iremonger back in 1992.
                  I don’t believe the parish record version would have been easily available back in 1992. Without any other records to compare – eg the 1911 census – it is understandable why she may have not smelt a rat when looking at the marriage certificate ‘signature’.

                  Comment


                  • In post 101, page 11 I sketched out various dates and places and speculated that the Hutchinsons met the Wrattens around 1880 and when Emma Blackall moved in with her sister Harriett, George Hutchinson moved to Lee, where his daughter also set up home with her new husband.

                    George Wratten junior was born in Eltham around 1880.
                    The Hutchinsons were living in Eltham in 1881, but by then the Wrattens were in Lee.

                    It is possible that George Hutchinson got to know the Wrattens when they briefly moved to Eltham around 1880.
                    When Mrs Tapp died, Emma would be in need of a new place to live. She may well have visited her sister and met George Hutchinson, who was recently widowed.
                    Sometime in the mid 1880s George Hutchinson and Emma Blackall moved in together in Lee and she took his name – although I don’t think they formally married. In about 1890 they had a son together called Herbert (who was born in Lee). George died in 1895 in Lewisham.
                    In 1886 George’s daughter married James Knott in Lewisham (Lee comes under Lewisham) and they also set up home in Lee.
                    The whole Hutchinson Lee connection is through the Wrattens moving there.


                    My conclusion – that it was the Wrattens moving to Lee and luring the Hutchinsons there was essentially wrong. This is because I did not know at that time that Mrs Yapp (not Tapp!) had died in 1887, after the marriage of George Hutchinson’s daughter.
                    In other words it was the marriage of George Hutchinson’s daughter in 1886 that lured the Hutchinsons to Lee and this was the catalyst for George Hutchinson meeting Emma sometime in 1887 and for Toppy getting the hump and moving up to London.

                    This is also show because Emily Jane Hutchinson married James Knott and it turn out that James Knott was from Lee. Here is the 1881 census return for the Knott family. They lived at Burnt Ash Hill.
                    This was just a few minutes away from Summerfield Street where James and Emily were to set up home together.
                    It shows James as an 18 year old joiner and turner born in Crayford.
                    Attached Files

                    Comment


                    • Hi Lechmere,

                      Are you sure the "Exmouth" Hutchinson has been rejected previously?

                      What was the reason he was rejected? Thanks.

                      Comment


                      • I can't remember but I will double check

                        Comment


                        • Lechmere -the George Hutchinson that I wish that you could find out more about is Bob Hinton's favourite : George Hutchinson "born 10th of December 1859 at 43 King David Lane Shadwell ". Making him aged 28 at the time of the murders.

                          This one suddenly interests me alot because according to Bob, George's father Joseph was a 'licensed victualler'. A term that could no doubt cover
                          anything from a one room 'beer shop' to a coaching inn...

                          One of the latter, that I've read about, had stalls for 22 horses. There MIGHT -possibly- be a link there with our 'Groom'...(very logical for a child whose Father had stalls for visiting horses, to be put to work in the Stables...).

                          Otherwise, Bob has this George Hutchinson working as a barman at the 'John of Jerusalem' pub in Rosaman Street, Clerkenwell in 1881.

                          I'm sure that I have read that amongst the jobs that Hutchinson -the witness- had done, one was 'humping beer barrels'...(not suggesting that is a 'barman'...there is a tentative connection though).

                          Bob might have found all there is to be found.....but maybe it's worth another crack ????
                          Last edited by Rubyretro; 10-12-2011, 07:01 PM.
                          http://youtu.be/GcBr3rosvNQ

                          Comment


                          • I notice that your view is that one of the police signatures is different from the other two – is that the one that may have been forged by Badham? The first on the police form? … Either way I wouldn’t say that any of the three bear ‘no resemblance’ to Toppy’s signatures.

                            My view is not nearly so complicated, Lechmere. Hutchinson dictated a police statement that extended to three pages, each one of which was individually signed by Hutchinson.


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                            Curiously, neither one of these signatures was especially similar to the other two. Indeed, from a stylistic perspective, they could have been penned by three different men.

                            Although I have only ever seen copies of Toppy’s signatures, they appear to me to evidence consistency over time. Remarkable consistency, in point of fact. So how is it that in purportedly detailing a police statement Toppy managed to generate three significantly differing signatures in a single sitting?

                            And why do those who would have Toppy as Abberline’s witness concentrate solely on just one of these three signatures – the specimen, as it happens, that bears the strongest resemblance to the Toppy examples?

                            Worse still, I have even seen it argued that the Hutchinson and Toppy signatures are a perfect match if those elements that do not correspond are disregarded!

                            The fact is that the signatures do not match. Look at the distinctive second ‘h’ in Hutchinson’s surname. Look at the opening ‘G’ in George. Look at the direction of the tail in the final ‘n’ in Hutchinson. These elements remain consistent in Hutchinson’s signatures but are nowhere to be found in the Toppy examples.

                            They do not match.

                            Except, of course, if you disregard those elements that do not correspond.

                            Then they do.

                            And if that seems ridiculous, welcome to my world.
                            Last edited by Garry Wroe; 10-13-2011, 02:58 PM.

                            Comment


                            • There are many reasons why someone’s signature on different occasions may look dissimilar. For example you may not be sitting perpendicular to the piece of paper and so writing at a forced angle. You may be hurried, just getting it out the way.
                              The marriage certificate signatures are likely to be careful.
                              The census ones careful but by rote – like doing lines at school.
                              The police ones, hurried and probably skew-whiff.
                              Similarly at the age of 22 he may well not have had cause to write anything since leaving school at 14. Whereas by his later life he may have had to regularly write estimates and so forth.
                              My youthful signature is similar but different to my current one. As you get older changes become less pronounced so one would expect to find less differences between 1898 and 1911 then between 1888 and 1898.
                              The Toppy signature issue is in the eye of the beholder in many ways.
                              I think they are all a good match – the least ‘good match’ aspect is the loop in the middle h.
                              But I am more interested to find out whether indeed Sue Iremonger’s analysis was based on the marriage certificate which clearly doesn’t bear Toppy’s signature. I suspect we won’t find out at this passage of time but it does call into question the expert analysis which discounted the connection.

                              Rubyretro
                              I have been a bit busy lately but I will start a separate thread in due course going though rival Hutchinsons – including the Grays one.
                              However I will caution that there were very few coaching inns in the East End, so the chance that your Joseph Hutchinson’s hostelry was a coaching inn is miniscule. But I will endeavour to find out.
                              Also I think the ‘humping beer barrels’ reference will not be found in any contemporary record – I think it is piece of modern ‘Romfordian’ speculation.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Lechmere View Post
                                But I am more interested to find out whether indeed Sue Iremonger’s analysis was based on the marriage certificate which clearly doesn’t bear Toppy’s signature. I suspect we won’t find out at this passage of time but it does call into question the expert analysis which discounted the connection.
                                Assuming your interpretation to be correct, Lechmere, it means that we can add the curate's signature to that of the census enumerator as examples of how unrelated individuals have rendered the name 'George Hutchinson' in a handstyle that closely approximates that of Toppy. In other words, the similarities between the Hutchinson and Toppy signatures aren't as significant as some would have us believe.

                                Comment

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