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Identifying Hutchinson

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  • Identifying Hutchinson

    Just wondering, does anyone know of any documents or newspaper reports that give George Hutchinson's age?

    I know that the family of 'George Topping Hutchinson' said he was born in 1866, which would mean he was 22 years old at the time of the Ripper murders.
    I'm looking at the possibility of it being a different George Hutchinson who would have been slightly older...

    Anyone able to shed light on this?
    Thanks,
    Amanda

  • #2
    Hi Amanda.
    Mary Kelly was approx 24-25 years old,, so what is wrong with a young man of 22 years being familiar with her, I have no doubt at all, that Topping was the witness..but not many people agree ..
    Regards Richard..

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by richardnunweek View Post
      Hi Amanda.
      Mary Kelly was approx 24-25 years old,, so what is wrong with a young man of 22 years being familiar with her, I have no doubt at all, that Topping was the witness..but not many people agree ..
      Regards Richard..
      Hi Richard,
      I'm not doubting that it COULD have been a 22 year old Hutchinson, simply the possibility that it MIGHT have been a different person to Topping.

      I'm just trying to get some concrete facts about him & see if it fits with what I've found so far.
      Amanda

      Comment


      • #4
        In The Definitive, Bob Hinton is quoted as saying that all the papers that gave Hutchinson's age said he was 28.

        https://books.google.ca/books?id=ODa...n%2028&f=false

        I haven't checked the press reports or the sources yet.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by MayBea View Post
          In The Definitive, Bob Hinton is quoted as saying that all the papers that gave Hutchinson's age said he was 28.

          https://books.google.ca/books?id=ODa...n%2028&f=false

          I haven't checked the press reports or the sources yet.
          Thanks, Maybea-That's strange, -I don't recall any newspaper report that gives an age for Hutchinson. I was going to post to Amanda (Hi Amanda) that it had been suggested by Bob Hinton that one paper gave Hutchinson's age as 33 and that no one ever found that particular article again. I have suggested in the past that the age of 33 might have come from the association of the witness with the George Hutchi(n)son arrested for watch stealing in 1887 as that was his age.
          ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

          I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

          Comment


          • #6
            Thanks MayBea/Debra,

            If that age group (28-33) is correct, then George Topping Hutchinson would not fit the bill.
            I've found another George Hutchinson with very interesting details & was just deciding whether to dig deeper, think I might just do that now.

            If anyone can find a specific report with a definite age I would appreciate it, can't cope with too many wild goose chases at my age
            Amanda

            Comment


            • #7
              I can't find any newspaper report of Hutchinson being 28. I just love wild goose chases!
              Originally posted by Debra A View Post
              ...the age of 33 might have come from the association of the witness with the George Hutchi(n)son arrested for watch stealing in 1887 as that was his age.
              Who knows, Debra? That might just be our 'groom'. He was found drunk and hanging off the neck of a taxi horse!

              http://www.casebook.org/press_report.../18870902.html

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MayBea View Post
                I can't find any newspaper report of Hutchinson being 28. I just love wild goose chases!

                Who knows, Debra? That might just be our 'groom'. He was found drunk and hanging off the neck of a taxi horse!

                http://www.casebook.org/press_report.../18870902.html
                Hi MayBea/Debra,

                To be honest, there were so many George Hutchinson's living in London at the time that it's hard to know which is the right one without a specific age.
                At the moment I am inclined to believe that the 33 year old watch-stealer is a much more likely candidate than the 22 year old George Topping Hutchinson.
                So, here goes to a weekend of sifting through news reports....
                Amanda

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by MayBea View Post
                  I can't find any newspaper report of Hutchinson being 28. I just love wild goose chases!

                  Who knows, Debra? That might just be our 'groom'. He was found drunk and hanging off the neck of a taxi horse!

                  http://www.casebook.org/press_report.../18870902.html
                  The watch stealer was researched many years ago, Maybea-although I only found his signature within the last couple of years. His actual name was George Thomas Hutchison and not Hutchinson.
                  ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

                  I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Amanda View Post
                    Thanks MayBea/Debra,

                    If that age group (28-33) is correct, then George Topping Hutchinson would not fit the bill.
                    I've found another George Hutchinson with very interesting details & was just deciding whether to dig deeper, think I might just do that now.

                    If anyone can find a specific report with a definite age I would appreciate it, can't cope with too many wild goose chases at my age
                    Amanda
                    Hi Amanda, I am pretty certain that there is no newspaper report or document that gives an age for Hutchinson that has been discovered yet-perhaps Sally or other people who have also researched Hutchinson in depth too will come along and confirm this.
                    The 'Cottage Grove' watch stealer has been proposed several times over the years but as I said to Maybea, his actual surname was Hutchison.

                    I always wondered if George Hutchinson, son of Ambrose Hutchinson could have been the witness. He lived in Church St (IIRC) but died in or before 1901 so there is no 1911 census signature to compare(remembering back to the various Hutchinson 1911 signatures comparison thread we had going once) -plus he doesn't appear to have married to check that document either.
                    ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

                    I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Debra A View Post
                      Hi Amanda, I am pretty certain that there is no newspaper report or document that gives an age for Hutchinson that has been discovered yet-perhaps Sally or other people who have also researched Hutchinson in depth too will come along and confirm this.
                      The 'Cottage Grove' watch stealer has been proposed several times over the years but as I said to Maybea, his actual surname was Hutchison.

                      I always wondered if George Hutchinson, son of Ambrose Hutchinson could have been the witness. He lived in Church St (IIRC) but died in or before 1901 so there is no 1911 census signature to compare(remembering back to the various Hutchinson 1911 signatures comparison thread we had going once) -plus he doesn't appear to have married to check that document either.
                      Thanks Debra,
                      That's helpful, I think I've found a couple of possible leads from the 1881 census reports (been up all night!) so might try rent books now.
                      Comparing signatures is always a good way to go, presuming our George Hutchinson could read & write. If he couldn't, things could be tricky..
                      Amanda

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Debra A View Post
                        Hi Amanda, I am pretty certain that there is no newspaper report or document that gives an age for Hutchinson that has been discovered yet-perhaps Sally or other people who have also researched Hutchinson in depth too will come along and confirm this.
                        The 'Cottage Grove' watch stealer has been proposed several times over the years but as I said to Maybea, his actual surname was Hutchison.

                        I always wondered if George Hutchinson, son of Ambrose Hutchinson could have been the witness. He lived in Church St (IIRC) but died in or before 1901 so there is no 1911 census signature to compare(remembering back to the various Hutchinson 1911 signatures comparison thread we had going once) -plus he doesn't appear to have married to check that document either.
                        Hello Debra and Amanda

                        It's a tricky issue, this Hutchinson business. I had a pretty good go at it, but like others before me, got precisely nowhere in the end

                        Firstly, you are right, Debra, there don't appear to be any newspaper reports that give Hutchinson's age. I had also understood that Bob Hinton had found a newspaper report stating his age as 28; but that this reference had since been lost. Of course, it's possible that it's out there as not everything has been digitised [astonishing as that resource is - don't get me started, I could go on all day about how grateful I am for online newspapers...] On the other hand, an isolated reference should always be treated with caution by default unless there's a good reason for not doing so. I guess the upshot of all that is that we might never know how old Hutchinson purported to be.

                        I did look at several people with the same name. The most promising candidate by far was George James Hutchinson, a former groom and subsequent butcher, who lived in the East End all his life. He was the son of a stonemason from Bishop Auckland, who died when he was a child. He married at a young age and had two children, one of whom sadly died in childhood. In later years, he separated from his wife and took up with another woman, with whom he was still living when he died from heart failure in 1905 - so like George son of Ambrose, no 1911 signature.

                        However, in his case there is a marriage signature and also a signature on the death certificate for his daughter Eliza; and neither of them are similar to that of the witness Hutchinson - so I don't think he's the one.

                        As for Toppy - well, I think there are too many issues with that one for me to accept it at present. It's possible of course; I haven't ruled it out; but I have my doubts. Without wishing to provoke another Toppy debate - for which I have neither the time nor the inclination - one of the issues for me is that a mere three years subsequent to the events of 1888, Toppy was living in a respectable, private lodging house in a street where rents were typically between 8 and 10s a week. His fellow lodgers, of which there were but a handful, were, like him, professional men - because by that time, he was working as a journeyman plumber - not apprentice, mind you. He was one of four plumbers living in the same street. It's likely that three of them were working for the other, who was a master plumber with his own business. The house where he was living at that time had fewer inhabitants than at any time since the census began - a sure sign of relative affluence in an overcrowded area. He lived in an area that generally serviced Tottenham Court Road and it's environs, in a street where some households had servants; and several their own businesses. Tottenham Court Road was itself servicing the affluent; being home to luxury dining establishments and hotels; dressmakers, jewellers and hairdressers; and a servants' registry.

                        All that seems to me to be a long way up from an out of work labourer in a 4d a week bed in a dosshouse [albeit one of the least worst] in Whitechapel a mere three years previous. It doesn't fit together very easily for me.

                        To be honest, I'm more inclined to think that 'George Hutchinson' was an assumed name these days; perhaps inspired by something he'd read in the paper - but then, I'm now pretty happy to say I think that he relied heavily on other sources for his story, so it's probably understandable that i'm not giving him much credence

                        Having said that, It'd be great if the witness could be identified - quite happy to be wrong about it being an assumed name.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Amanda View Post
                          Thanks Debra,
                          That's helpful, I think I've found a couple of possible leads from the 1881 census reports (been up all night!) so might try rent books now.
                          Comparing signatures is always a good way to go, presuming our George Hutchinson could read & write. If he couldn't, things could be tricky..
                          Amanda
                          Here's the Hutch in 1911 census thread in case you haven't seen it, Amanda.
                          http://forum.casebook.org/showthread.php?t=2204

                          It might help you out with what has been researched as far different Hutchinsons and their signatures go and save you some groundwork.
                          The signature comparison has featured prominently in past research because William Topping Hutchinson was ruled out as being the witness by a handwriting expert consulted about it, despite there being more similarity between the signatures than most of us expected before we had seen it for ourselves.

                          Yes, some couldn't sign their names, also, some weren't alive in 1911 or ever got married, like the GH I mentioned so haven't been included in signature comparison discussions. Plus, if a GH couldn't sign his name then there's a good chance he isn't the witness as the witness apparently did sign his statement, although this has also been debated many times over the years too!
                          Last edited by Debra A; 05-22-2015, 01:55 AM.
                          ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

                          I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thanks, Sally.
                            ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

                            I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks Debra & Sally,

                              You've given me some great info, which will hopefully save me a lot of time.

                              I'm going to give it a few weeks of intense research now, will let you know if I find anything significant.
                              Amanda

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