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The Bell Club incident, and the 1887 attack on Aaron Abrahams

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  • #16
    Originally posted by robhouse View Post
    I wanted to start this thread to discuss two separate incidents, either of which may (or may not) be related to Aaron Kosminski.

    1. The Bell Club incident - several newspapers reported on an incident in June 1889, in which a number of Jewish men apparently "brutally ill-used" 2 girls who were passing by a place called the Bell Club in Fieldgate street. This Jewish club was called a "gambling den" and a disgrace to the neighborhood, and that "half the crime originated in them". The cause of the violence was that the 2 girls went to the club to "demand a man called Abrahams, who, it was alleged, had seduced a Christian girl."

    I don't think there is a lot of information about this incident, or about the "Bell Club".

    Aaron Kosminski apparently sometimes went by the name Aaron Abrahams. Fieldgate Street was, of course, very close to Aaron's probable residence that the time.

    2. The 1887 incident with "Aaron Abrahams" - originally posted by Pat Marshall...

    "Lloyds weekly 4th Sept 1887......
    William Graham 23 was charged with assaulting Aaron Abrahams of Charlotte street Mile End.
    On Friday evening the prosecutor was walking along with a friend when a woman accosted them. The accused punched the prosecutor in the face, knocked him down and then kicked him. Graham made off but was arrested. When arrested Graham said I struck him because he struck a woman... Mr Lushington sentenced Graham to 2 months hard labour​."

    If Aaron Abrahams was indeed Aaron Kosminski (which seems likely) then this would be the first and only known documented incident in which Kosminski attacked a women in the street. Again... the details of this incident are pretty vague and unclear.

    Both of the above incidents deserve some further research and discussion, in my opinion.

    Paddy Chris
    Call me sceptical, but there seems precisely zero evidence to link either of these with Kozminski

    Comment


    • #17
      Originally posted by Aethelwulf View Post

      Call me sceptical, but there seems precisely zero evidence to link either of these with Kozminski
      I think the aim was to encourage research to see if there was a link or not.


      Steve

      Comment


      • #18
        Originally posted by Debra A View Post

        Yes, I noted Simmons too. There are also two different Abrahams families at Charlotte Court, just off Charlotte Street in 1891. One headed by David Abrahams but I forget the other name.
        Samuel was the other one. Perhaps David and Samuel were brothers, they are in separate households but both were born in the City within a few years of each other.

        Comment


        • #19
          Originally posted by Elamarna View Post

          I think the aim was to encourage research to see if there was a link or not.


          Steve
          If Aaron Abrahams was indeed Aaron Kosminski (which seems likely)?

          On another thread someone was quoting the Bell Club incident as a reason to be suspicious of Kozminski, but it seems all that comes down to is 'a man called Abrahams'.

          There's probably more of a case to be made for Lechmere as the ripper IMO.


          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by Elamarna View Post

            I think the aim was to encourage research to see if there was a link or not.


            Steve
            agree and good point. but wasnt Abrahams a fairly common alias for jews to go by at that time?
            "Is all that we see or seem
            but a dream within a dream?"

            -Edgar Allan Poe


            "...the man and the peaked cap he is said to have worn
            quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

            -Frederick G. Abberline

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

              agree and good point. but wasnt Abrahams a fairly common alias for jews to go by at that time?
              It seems it was common.
              The issue is questions are asked about these specific reports, therefore the need is/was to show if there was any connection to the suspect AK.
              From what we have seen, there is none tgat is obvious, and there are candidates other than AK for the person's mentioned.
              However, I see nothing to conclusively rule the possibility out, But at present it's fair to say probability is tending against a link.

              Steve

              Comment


              • #22
                Originally posted by Debra A View Post

                Yes, I noted Simmons too. There are also two different Abrahams families at Charlotte Court, just off Charlotte Street in 1891. One headed by David abrahams but I forget the other name.
                This goes down a rabbit-hole that I'm not willing to enter, but if I'm reading it correctly, there appears to have been an effort to link Simmons Abrahams at No. 21 Charlotte Street to the butcher Jacob Levy through his wife, Sarah Abrahams. (In a German-speaking forum dedicated to Whitechapel Murders).

                Jacob Levy (jacktheripper.de)

                There's also an entry on No. 37 Charlotte Street in the Booth Notebooks, 1886-1887. The building had a lot of rooms, but there was never a business prominent or perhaps stable enough to be listed in the London Directories in the years on either side of 1887, so a lot of people may have passed through that dwelling.

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

                  agree and good point. but wasnt Abrahams a fairly common alias for jews to go by at that time?
                  For what purpose?

                  c.d.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

                    This goes down a rabbit-hole that I'm not willing to enter, but if I'm reading it correctly, there appears to have been an effort to link Simmons Abrahams at No. 21 Charlotte Street to the butcher Jacob Levy through his wife, Sarah Abrahams. (In a German-speaking forum dedicated to Whitechapel Murders).

                    Jacob Levy (jacktheripper.de)

                    There's also an entry on No. 37 Charlotte Street in the Booth Notebooks, 1886-1887. The building had a lot of rooms, but there was never a business prominent or perhaps stable enough to be listed in the London Directories in the years on either side of 1887, so a lot of people may have passed through that dwelling.
                    Thanks RJ. I couldn't find it in a directory either - I first thought it might have been a business address for Charles Fern and his pottery dealing as well as his home address.
                    The mention of 21 Charlotte Street, home of Simmons Abrahams, on the forum you linked to seems to be just a coincidence. I think one of the people at 21 Charlotte Street in 1891 had the same name as one of Sarah Levy's siblings that they were looking for but they ruled out the inhabitant of 21 CS as being that person ...I think

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      I'm interested in this 'Bell club', mostly from an interest in the gambling clubs which could be found around the Whitechapel area, over any particular interest in Aaron Kosminski. I haven't found any other reference to the Bell Club, but I wonder if it was the house at 11 Fieldgate Street which was raided on the 19th of April, 1890 (about nine months after the riot).



                      Birmingham Mail - Monday 21 April 1890



                      Oxfordshire Weekly News - Wednesday 30 April 1890

                      Mrs Sarah Lewis? - I wonder...​​

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by seanr View Post
                        I'm interested in this 'Bell club', mostly from an interest in the gambling clubs which could be found around the Whitechapel area, over any particular interest in Aaron Kosminski. I haven't found any other reference to the Bell Club, but I wonder if it was the house at 11 Fieldgate Street which was raided on the 19th of April, 1890 (about nine months after the riot).



                        Birmingham Mail - Monday 21 April 1890



                        Oxfordshire Weekly News - Wednesday 30 April 1890

                        Mrs Sarah Lewis? - I wonder...​​
                        Hi Seanr, I looked at exactly the same thing too.
                        I came to the conclusion that the mention of Mrs Sarah Lewis was a misprint as in other accounts I found it was a Mrs Levy who was mentioned as owner of the house and she let out the back room. The front of the house (also said to be No 13 in some accounts) was a restaurant. I managed to trace George Brooke at 2 Eliza Place Hoxton, the address given for him in reports, but Mr Ernstein was difficult to pinpoint.

                        I also came across the 'Oriental working men's club' at Vine Court. Most men reported on during one particular incident there had Jewish sounding names.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          This is well-off topic, and perhaps of no interest, but on the page that alludes to No. 37 Charlotte Street in Booth's 1886-1887 notebooks, there is a margin note about charwomen and washerwomen who work for the Jews on the Sabbath.

                          Unfortunately, I can't decipher the last word. The note reads:

                          "I had often wondered whence came all the work for the widowed charwomen and washerwomen. According to Mr. Bowsher many of them work for the Jews on the sabbath at 1/6 for a day’s work. They are called “chi-z-er” (?)



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                          Why this note is relevant to Charlotte Street, I couldn't say--perhaps the street's Jewish inhabitants were in the habit of hiring women to do the cleaning up on the sabbath, or maybe the women who lived on that street were so employed.

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Originally posted by robhouse View Post

                            2. The 1887 incident with "Aaron Abrahams" - originally posted by Pat Marshall...

                            "Lloyds weekly 4th Sept 1887......
                            William Graham was charged with assaulting Aaron Abrahams of Charlotte street Mile End.
                            On Friday evening the prosecutor was walking along with a friend when a woman accosted them. The accused punched the prosecutor in the face, knocked him down and then kicked him. Graham made off but was arrested. When arrested Graham said I struck him because he struck a woman... Mr Lushington sentenced Graham to 2 months hard labour​."
                            William Graham, 23, who netted two months with hard labour for the assault, would have been a free man by around 2 December 1887.

                            I noticed the following:

                            The East London Observer for 24 December 1887 gives the case of William Graham, same age (23), arrested in Whitechapel High Street for picking pockets which netted him a month with hard labour. His partner in crime was listed as Robert Burchell, age 21.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post
                              "I had often wondered whence came all the work for the widowed charwomen and washerwomen. According to Mr. Bowsher many of them work for the Jews on the sabbath at 1/6 for a day’s work. They are called “chi-z-er” (?)

                              Why this note is relevant to Charlotte Street, I couldn't say--perhaps the street's Jewish inhabitants were in the habit of hiring women to do the cleaning up on the sabbath, or maybe the women who lived on that street were so employed.
                              Kind of sounds like Biddy the Chiver. Better ask Gary Barnett.

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Scott Nelson View Post

                                Kind of sounds like Biddy the Chiver. Better ask Gary Barnett.
                                It looks like cheizer. The only guess I could come up with--and it's a rude one--is a corruption of chazir.

                                Chazir (pronounced kha-ZIR) is Hebrew for “pig.” This word appears in the Five Books of Moses when the verses list the non-kosher animals. A pig or a greedy person. Derogatory.

                                ​From what I read, the standard term for a person thus employed was shabbes goy:

                                A “Shabbes Goy” is a non-Jew who does things that a religiously observant Jew cannot do, in such a way that the Jewish person in question might benefit from it. They will be paid for these services.
                                Last edited by rjpalmer; 02-04-2023, 08:49 PM.

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