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25 YEARS OF THE DIARY OF JACK THE RIPPER: THE TRUE FACTS by Robert Smith

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  • Originally posted by John G View Post
    I think some people are starting to enter the realms of fantasy. So, Rigby finds the diary and, after what could only have been a cursory look, goes off in search of Mr X, during a period when he's supposed to be working, and asks him to locate Barrett, the local drunk, urgently.

    Mr X carries out an exhaustive search eventually finding Barrett where he informs him that Rigby -a man he subsequently denied knowing, and Rigby's never claimed to know Barrett either-has just made the find of the century.

    Now, does he do what any sane person would do at this stage, i.e. asking Mr X if he's drunk or whether he's been smoking something he shouldn't? No, Barrett immediately bombs off to the library in order to obtain the telephone number of a random London literary agent in order to triumphantly inform them that Jack the Ripper's diary has been found, a document he's not seen, let alone authenticated.

    And how did the diary subsequently get into Barrett's possession? If Rigby gave it to Mr X to give to Barrett, why would he trust someone who he has no proven connection to with what he regards as a valuable find? Why did Barrett phone the publisher before he's made even the most rudimentary attempts to authenticate the document?

    Why did Barrett subsequently accuse the electrician of lying about finding the diary at Battlecrease? Why didn't Rigby beat the hell out of Barrett at this point for "stealing" the diary from him? How did the electricians subsequently get the diary back into their possession in order to take it to Liverpool University? Why did they give it back to Barrett?
    From what I can gather, it seems like Caz is saying that she believes that version, rather than the version that has Barrett writing a diary and having it come out of the house on the 9th/12th(?) when I don't think that that version has to be the true one.

    What we know is that P&R had worked at the house before, and Dodd used them a few times due to their close proximity and their probable ability to get a job done well.

    If an association is being made between Barrett and one of the electricians, then does that not also allow for a plan to have been set in place to give this diary a provenance and a home at Battlecrease?

    Why would the diary need to have been completed in a space of a few days if it was known that work was going to be done on the house in the coming weeks, as it must surely have to have been. It seems likely that the work was booked by Dodd at least a week or so before it was actually initiated, due to the limitations that a small company such as P&R would have, what with their being a limited supply of workers for each job.

    People who complain about the likelihood of someone writing the diary and having it done and dusted in time for it to "appear" in Battlecrease during the date in question, seem to have no issues with accepting a similarly awkward timeline for it having been supposedly found beneath the floor, taken to the university and passed over to Barrett in the pub in Anfield, all on the same day.
    Last edited by Mike J. G.; 09-19-2017, 10:47 AM.

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    • Originally posted by Mike J. G. View Post
      From what I can gather, it seems like Caz is saying that she believes that version, rather than the version that has Barrett writing a diary and having it come out of the house on the 9th/12th(?) when I don't think that that version has to be the true one.

      What we know is that P&R had worked at the house before, and Dodd used them a few times due to their close proximity and their probable ability to get a job done well.

      If an association is being made between Barrett and one of the electricians, then does that not also allow for a plan to have been set in place to give this diary a provenance and a home at Battlecrease?

      Why would the diary need to have been completed in a space of a few days if it was known that work was going to be done on the house in the coming weeks, as it must surely have to have been. It seems likely that the work was booked by Dodd at least a week or so before it was actually initiated, due to the limitations that a small company such as P&R would have, what with their being a limited supply of workers for each job.

      People who complain about the likelihood of someone writing the diary and having it done and dusted in time for it to "appear" in Battlecrease during the date in question, seem to have no issues with accepting a similarly awkward timeline for it having been supposedly found beneath the floor, taken to the university and passed over to Barrett in the pub in Anfield, all on the same day.
      Yes, it's possible Barrett and his wife cooked up a plan years before the diary was made public, possibly involving one or more of the electricians as co-conspirators and the diary being "discovered" at Battlecrease, but for some reason that plan was abandoned. I also would like to know why the dates have now shifted when, previously, the owner of Battlecrease was perfectly willing to accept that the diary was discovered there in 1989, even to the extent of asking for 5% of the royalties in order to waive ownership rights.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by caz View Post
        Why, Gareth?

        X and Y use the same pub in Anfield.

        X knows an old book has just been found beneath floorboards at 7 Riversdale Road, Aigburth, because two of his mates have been working there. He figures Y will be interested and might have a good idea what to do with it.

        X goes to the pub that lunchtime, where Y is having a beer before picking up his daughter from school, has a word in his shell-like and a couple of phone calls later the charm is wound up.

        How is that stretching credulity to breaking point, unless your preconception is that Y wrote the book himself?
        In this context, I'm not worried about who may have written it, but about the timeline. I just can't see how, if the diary was found when Rigby had the floorboards up, someone could have taken it to the University, then returned to the Saddle, just happen to find Mike Barrett and give it to him in time to find the number of, and call them on the same day.

        Regardless of the timeline, I find it utterly extraordinary that someone who happened to find such a document in a house as (locally) famous as Battlecrease, would want to get rid of it at all. Even if it transpired to be an early hoax, it would surely still be of interest as a curio, and possibly of some value even in that capacity. Yet they decide to get shot of it to a comparative stranger as quickly as they could? Scarcely believable in its own right.
        Last edited by Sam Flynn; 09-19-2017, 11:07 AM.
        Kind regards, Sam Flynn

        "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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        • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
          In this context, I'm not worried about who may have written it, but about the timeline. I just can't see how, if the diary was found when Rigby had the floorboards up, someone could have taken it to the University, then returned to the Saddle, just happen to find Mike Barrett and give it to him in time to find the number of, and call them on the same day.

          Regardless of the timeline, I find it utterly extraordinary that someone who happened to find such a document in a house as (locally) famous as Battlecrease, would want to get rid of it at all. Even if it transpired to be an early hoax, it would surely still be of interest as a curio, and possibly of some value even in that capacity. Yet they decide to get shot of it to a comparative stranger as quickly as they could? Scarcely believable in its own right.
          Very good post, Gareth. To my mind, these latest revelations only serve to further undermine the credibility of the diary.

          And I'm still curious about the fact that a small electrical business, apparently now defunct, still has timesheets going back 25 years.

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          • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
            In this context, I'm not worried about who may have written it, but about the timeline. I just can't see how, if the diary was found when Rigby had the floorboards up, someone could have taken it to the University, then returned to the Saddle, just happen to find Mike Barrett and give it to him in time to find the number of, and call them on the same day.
            Nobody is suggesting that the University visit happened on March 9th, merely that the Diary was found that day, Barrett got wind of it in the Saddle (probably around lunchtime), and then (under the guise of Mr Williams) made his call to Doreen Montgomery before he'd actually got his hands on it. Subsequently, some electricians took something to the Uni for inspection which may or may not have been the Diary. All we know for sure here is that said journal was in Barrett's possession by the time of his first visit to the offices of Rupert Crew on April 13th.

            I've actually just checked The Inside Story and it states that Barrett's second call to Doreen was the following day, March 10th, and during that call he related how the discovery of Diary had affected his life and that, following some initial research, he was sure it was genuine. I must say, I really can't buy the story of the Diary coming out of Battlecrease on March 9th.

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            • Originally posted by StevenOwl View Post
              Nobody is suggesting that the University visit happened on March 9th, merely that the Diary was found that day, Barrett got wind of it in the Saddle (probably around lunchtime), and then (under the guise of Mr Williams) made his call to Doreen Montgomery before he'd actually got his hands on it. Subsequently, some electricians took something to the Uni for inspection which may or may not have been the Diary. All we know for sure here is that said journal was in Barrett's possession by the time of his first visit to the offices of Rupert Crew on April 13th.
              Thanks, Steven. So my choice is an improbable timeline versus an implausible sequence of events. Besides, I still cannot for the life of me understand why anyone would want to get rid of such an interesting find so quickly; if it had been me, I wouldn't have wanted to get rid of such a curio at all.

              I think I'll stick with the Devereux Provenance story
              Kind regards, Sam Flynn

              "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

              Comment


              • I read the first few chapters of Smith's book last night, and am still figuring them out. He seems to have talked to another witness, who indicates it was fairly common knowledge among the electricians (prior to any news story!) that "something" had come out of Battlecrease.

                The time-sheets prove Rigby was the only man working the week ending March 10 (on the company's work schedule, apparently, not by calendar), who had been largely alone in the room which had been Maybrick's bedroom.

                Smith also thinks the time-sheets prove the other named electricians were present. He suggests a "courier" (possibly the apprentice who worked only two hours in the morning, or a friend who was not working the same job) took the book to the university during the day. He says the university does agree two men brought in something to be looked at, but they didn't have details as to what or to whom. He also offers the detail that the book was in a "biscuit tin, with a gold wedding ring", but as the involved electricians deny seeing such a thing (and neither the tin nor the ring has turned up), he can't pursue it further.

                I think I'll need to re-read that chapter later...
                Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
                ---------------
                Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
                ---------------

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                • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                  I think I'll stick with the Devereux Provenance story
                  Ha ha, that's exactly the conclusion I've reached since finishing Smith's new book.

                  If we move on from the highly dubious electricians story, and if we discount the notion that Barrett forged it (which is more risible than Maybrick being JTR IMHO) then what are we left with? Barrett's original story (which, apart from when he was at his lowest booze-fuelled ebb, he stuck to rigidly from 1992 until his death last year), and Anne's 'been in my family for decades' revelation. The funny thing is, Mike's story and Anne's story actually work together perfectly, which is very rare in this crazy saga!

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                  • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                    Thanks, Steven. So my choice is an improbable timeline versus an implausible sequence of events. Besides, I still cannot for the life of me understand why anyone would want to get rid of such an interesting find so quickly; if it had been me, I wouldn't have wanted to get rid of such a curio at all.

                    I think I'll stick with the Devereux Provenance story
                    Hi Sam,

                    is that the Devereux Provenance with or without the smilie...??

                    Graham
                    We are suffering from a plethora of surmise, conjecture and hypothesis. - Sherlock Holmes, The Adventure Of Silver Blaze

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                    • Originally posted by Graham View Post
                      Hi Sam,

                      is that the Devereux Provenance with or without the smilie...??
                      Definitely "with", Graham. There's a strong chance that the Devereux Provenance was made up as well, but at least it's more plausible than the alternative.
                      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                      "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                        Definitely "with", Graham. There's a strong chance that the Devereux Provenance was made up as well, but at least it's more plausible than the alternative.
                        Thought so, Sam.

                        Graham
                        We are suffering from a plethora of surmise, conjecture and hypothesis. - Sherlock Holmes, The Adventure Of Silver Blaze

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Pcdunn View Post
                          I read the first few chapters of Smith's book last night, and am still figuring them out. He seems to have talked to another witness, who indicates it was fairly common knowledge among the electricians (prior to any news story!) that "something" had come out of Battlecrease.

                          The time-sheets prove Rigby was the only man working the week ending March 10 (on the company's work schedule, apparently, not by calendar), who had been largely alone in the room which had been Maybrick's bedroom.

                          Smith also thinks the time-sheets prove the other named electricians were present. He suggests a "courier" (possibly the apprentice who worked only two hours in the morning, or a friend who was not working the same job) took the book to the university during the day. He says the university does agree two men brought in something to be looked at, but they didn't have details as to what or to whom. He also offers the detail that the book was in a "biscuit tin, with a gold wedding ring", but as the involved electricians deny seeing such a thing (and neither the tin nor the ring has turned up), he can't pursue it further.

                          I think I'll need to re-read that chapter later...
                          Okay, it just gets better. So the electricians find the diary and for some bizarre reason decide they have to send it, via courier, to Liverpool University without delay.

                          Presumably some time after his escapade one of the electricians then decides to dispatch it to the local drunk, a man he met in a pub, and dispatches a search party. Barrett then sets off to the library to find the number of a random London publicist before close of business.

                          Or maybe one of the electricians bunks off work and goes in search of a phone box and they just happen to find Barrett in. Barrett then heads off to the library to obtain the number of a random London publicist based on a phone call from a man he may have met in a pub, and who he subsequently denies knowing, in respect of a diary he hasn't even seen. Wow!

                          Not that the university scenario makes sense anyway. Feldman's electrician contact made it quite clear that the three electricians made the trip to the university together; and I see no reason why he would lie about this having admitted the visit.

                          To top it all, Barrett then steals the diary- or obtains it via a trick- despite the fact that the electricians previously regarded this document as being so valuable that they took extraordinary steps to get it to Barrett and the university on the same day.

                          And why would they then pathetically allow Barrett to assert ownership, claiming all the plaudits and financial reward, without challenge? In fact, they don't even challenge him when he visits one of the electricians and accuses him of lying about the Battlecrease find.

                          It certainly can't be because they were afraid of being accused of theft. Feldman established that the owner of Battlecrease was prepared to be pragmatic about the affair, telling Feldman that "possession is nine-tenths of the law" and that he would be prepared to waive ownership in return for a modest 5% share of royalties.

                          I'm afraid this is what happens when pseudo-historians, such as film directors, and guns for hire, like Keith Skinner, decide to right a book about what should be a serious historical subject.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post
                            Give her a call
                            One-off instance
                            Top myself
                            Spreads mayhem

                            I make that four eyebrow-raising potential anachronisms occurring within the same, short document. Attempts have been made to explain one or two of these on an individual basis but, taken together, they - surely? - point to the diary's having been composed in the latter part of the twentieth century.
                            Hi Gareth,

                            I appreciate your use of the word 'potential'. Shows you are still in the real world.

                            Give her a call - extensive written usage from at least as early as 1860, as an alternative to 'pay her a call/visit'. [Gary Barnett]
                            Top myself - slang term in conversation, to mean 'hang myself', from at least as early as 1877. [Gary Barnett]
                            Spreads mayhem - either as in using a knife to spread 'mangled' or 'mutilated' bodies around town, or causing 'chaos' - the latter according to two dictionaries from 1880 and 1890. [Robert Smith]

                            You were saying?

                            Love,

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


                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by John G View Post
                              The diarist also misspells the word "rendezvous", as "rondaveau". Would an educated man like James Maybrick make such a basic error? No, but Michael Barrett might well have done!
                              Actually, John, the diary author appears to have spelled it 'rondavous' [or possibly even 'rondevous'], but when the Barretts did the original transcript for Shirley's book, it was rendered 'rondaveau', probably because it's quite difficult to make out.

                              We don't of course know that much about Maybrick's spelling abilities but I'd say they were average for a merchant who had no higher schooling, and on a par with many more educated posters I've seen here over the years. The diary author, to my mind, was not aiming to portray him as anything but a mister average who likes to think he is smarter than the average bore.

                              Love,

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


                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Observer View Post
                                I would say there is more than a fair chance that we will see in the not very distant future a book being devoted to the Diary being an "old hoax". Buyer's beware.
                                What's a buyer's beware when it's at home?

                                Anyway, you make a brilliantly perceptive observation here, because I've been keeping this very book under wraps for at least the last ten years, in readiness for this happy day. And I will now post the entire volume here for everyone to read and digest - for free.

                                Are you sitting comfortably, children? Then I'll begin.

                                The diary is not in Maybrick's handwriting.
                                [Source - see facsimile first published in 1993]

                                The diary is not in Michael or Anne Barrett's handwriting.
                                [Source - see Observer's post reproduced as an appendix]

                                The End.

                                Appendix:
                                Originally posted by Observer View Post
                                If it was possible to completely disguise one's hand writing over a 60 plus page document, wouldn't this mean that hand writing analysis would be obsolete?

                                Phew! That was quite exhausting and took all my creative juices.

                                Coming here sometimes feels like being surrounded by angry wasps - but without the charisma. But if any arsehole would like to spit venom at me in my absence for shamelessly promoting this book, or whinge when I don't immediately answer all their questions about how I arrived at such absurd, credulity-stretching conclusions, would they please form a disorderly queue.

                                I won't be here. I'll be 'resting'.

                                Actually, I'm escaping to The Village for some fresh air, sanity and peace and quiet. If you're lucky, and if I'm even luckier, they'll make me stay.

                                Be seein' you.
                                "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


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