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One Incontrovertible, Unequivocal, Undeniable Fact Which Refutes the Diary

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  • Originally posted by caz View Post

    Crafty old Palmer. He misses out the bit about Mike taking what's already in the old book he got from Eddie, and copying it into this genuine Victorian diary, to pass off as his own literary masterpiece.
    But not quite so crafty when he attempts his hugely embarrassing let's-just-bin-the-blindingly-obvious-evidence trick:

    Now just apply Ockham's Razor and toss out the non-event under Dodd's floorboards, and we can call it a night.
    Talk about sleight of hand. The most staggering coincidence in the history of all coincidences, and the acolyte wants to slip it quietly into the trash can!

    Like no-one would notice!

    Comment


    • Originally posted by caz View Post

      The difficulty is that alternate interpretations need some evidence which allows for one or more of them to be true. The only evidence we have is from Janet herself, who told the police that she had borrowed a copy of ToL from her father in January 1991, on the understanding that it belonged to "Bongo" and it was to be returned to him. We also know that in October 1993 she handed over the book she said she had borrowed nearly three years earlier. There was nothing to distinguish it from any other copy of the same book, so we don't even know for certain that Mike had ever handled it. Janet could have been mistaken on this point or misremembering. After all, her failure to return it between January 1991 and her father's death in August 1991, does suggest she had forgotten all about it belonging to Mike - at least until ToL was mentioned in a newspaper report in 1993 in connection with his diary. That may have been what triggered Janet's memory.

      Love,

      Caz
      X
      I've genuinely never been bothered about the Tales of Liverpool issue. So Bongo Barrett may have had a copy of Tales of Liverpool which he loaned to Tony D and forgot about. Such a drama! An inexpensive little book about Liverpool found in the house of a Liverpool family. Staggeringly suspicious, Sergeant Idiot - bag it up and get it off to the lab!

      Now, if it transpired that the Barretts also owned a record of the Grand National and that record included the times of the races, I might be somewhat more intrigued. But no such claim has ever been confirmed or even just made.

      Of course, Barrett did find the 'O costly intercourse' quotation in the Sphere volume, and that is obviously hugely suspicious. It doesn't have to mean that that was where he got the line from when constructing his 'hoax' (are we to imagine to read every volume in his possession until he found a line he thought he could use, or are we to believe he just opened that particular volume and it fell on that critical page?) but it is a remarkable coincidence that he had the very book he found it in (in Liverpool Central Library) in his attic.

      So coincidences do happen, it is true. It's really more about the scale of the coincidence. The Sphere volume being in Barrett's attic is definitely heading towards the far end of that scale, but the Battlecrease House one is simply off it ...

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

        Some advice to my dear readers ...

        Imagine any of this happening if that old scrapbook had never seen light of day in Battlecrease House on March 9, 1992.

        Mike's fears were very apparent. He was starting to realise where his precious 'DAiry' had come from and he was determined that it would not be handed back to Paul Dodd, the rightful owner, so he roped-in Eddie Lyons to throw a curve-ball and hopefully switch off the whole Electricians' Story before it grew arms and legs.

        Amongst all of the many conflicting tales, information, and misinformation around James Maybrick's confessional, there is an obvious, simple truth. If you just strip away at the nonsense and the daydreaming with Soothsayer's Razor, you will soon see it too, dear readers. The scrapbook was found on March 9, 1992, in Battlecrease House. It was sold to Mike Barrett who sold the story to Robert Smith who published it. Barrett's life went rapidly downhill and the rest is rather unpleasant history, but the provenance is obvious and you really should not look beyond it unless you have extremely strong evidence for doing so.

        Ike
        So let's turn this round, Ike, and imagine that Mike really had faked the diary with Anne's unwitting help.

        Naturally enough, when the Battlecrease rumours began doing the rounds, he'd have been worried that they would be believed over his bogus 'dead pal' story, and he'd have had no way to prove the rumours false. Paul Dodd didn't know whether the diary could have been in his house or not, but he could have put in a successful claim unless Mike could show that the diary came from somewhere else entirely. Sticking with the Devereux story could not have achieved this, because in theory Tony could have been the diary's middle man, on its journey between Battlecrease and Goldie Street. It is after all what Feldman believed must have happened - before Mike angrily denied it. His denial never made much sense to me, because he was claiming not to know where Tony got the diary, in which case he could have got it from anyone, including from a Battlecrease electrician. Feldman went down the route of believing that Mike's denial must have meant that he knew exactly where the diary had been - in the family. Increasingly, I went down the route of suspecting it was an indication of his fear that Dodd could win the day and claim the diary as his.

        Moving on, this would explain Mike's two fishing trips to Colin Rhodes - to try and discover who was working where and when, so he could prove the rumours false, as he knew they had to be if he had faked the thing himself.

        Not getting any joy, Mike then learned that a certain Eddie Lyons, living on Fountains Road, had been contacted by Feldman and was apparently willing to say he found the diary while working in Dodd's house. Naturally, Mike was furious and went round to threaten Eddie with solicitors if he went ahead. He still had no other way to squash the rumours.

        Fortunately for Mike, Feldman convinced himself that Eddie was lying, but then Robert Smith got in on the same act and asked Mike if he knew any of the electricians, to which Mike replied that he knew Eddie, who also used the Saddle.

        Here it becomes less clear what would have been in it for Eddie to agree to go to the Saddle on 26th June, where he walked in, was introduced to Robert by Mike, told his famous 'skip' story and left again - IIRC without even staying for a drink. I don't know that Eddie was actually 'quizzed' by Robert either, who merely listened to what he had to say and suspected he had just been fed a line that suited both scallies down to the ground.

        I can see why it would have helped Mike, as the faker of the diary, that Eddie was now denying that he had found it, and was instead claiming it was some other old book that he chucked into a non-existent skip. But why would Eddie have changed his story to help a stranger who had recently threatened him on his own doorstep? What would he have gained by telling this story to Robert in Mike's presence, unless they both had their reasons for covering up a common truth that could affect them equally - the removal and selling on of someone else's rightful property?

        If this was any other true crime story, it would surely be obvious to anyone, who has not reached a predetermined conclusion, what was going on here. And it wouldn't be that Mike and Eddie had been total strangers before 1993, and that Eddie wandered into the Saddle that evening just for jolly, to tell another stranger a nonsensical tale about a find he hadn't made in Maybrick's former home. If Mike had faked the diary, and Eddie had known bugger all about it, he'd have been free to tell Mike to get lost and to fight his own battles. He'd have had no need to go out of his way to deny anything, or to explain himself to anyone, at any time, whether that was in the Saddle in June 1993 or back in the grounds of Battlecrease in 2018.

        Love,

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


        Comment


        • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

          I've genuinely never been bothered about the Tales of Liverpool issue. So Bongo Barrett may have had a copy of Tales of Liverpool which he loaned to Tony D and forgot about. Such a drama! An inexpensive little book about Liverpool found in the house of a Liverpool family. Staggeringly suspicious, Sergeant Idiot - bag it up and get it off to the lab!

          Now, if it transpired that the Barretts also owned a record of the Grand National and that record included the times of the races, I might be somewhat more intrigued. But no such claim has ever been confirmed or even just made.

          Of course, Barrett did find the 'O costly intercourse' quotation in the Sphere volume, and that is obviously hugely suspicious. It doesn't have to mean that that was where he got the line from when constructing his 'hoax' (are we to imagine to read every volume in his possession until he found a line he thought he could use, or are we to believe he just opened that particular volume and it fell on that critical page?) but it is a remarkable coincidence that he had the very book he found it in (in Liverpool Central Library) in his attic.

          So coincidences do happen, it is true. It's really more about the scale of the coincidence. The Sphere volume being in Barrett's attic is definitely heading towards the far end of that scale, but the Battlecrease House one is simply off it ...
          I have to ask you, Ike, in the interests of fairness, to tell us your source for the Sphere book, which was handed over to Alan Gray at the end of 1994, ever having found its way to Mike's attic.

          If this was another Sphere book, as its condition strongly suggests, then I would strongly suggest that Mike never did have the relevant volume in Goldie Street prior to April 1992, and the one he handed to Gray was almost certainly a copy he had only recently found in a second-hand bookshop.

          If your only source is Mike... I'm not buying it.

          Why did he say anything about finding the line in the library, and allowing for this to be the truth because the volumes were indeed right there on the shelf? Did he forget that he was supposed to be in 'confession' mode at this point? If the relevant volume had not been sitting there on the library shelf, or if Mike had handed over his own volume to Harold Brough in June 1994 and had never referred to finding the line later in a library book, he'd have made it ten times harder for anyone to argue that he was as much in the dark as anyone else in 1992, as to where the line might have come from.

          How many times does Mike 'Lucky' Barrett have to so narrowly avoid falling headlong into one of his own traps, for people to start questioning if he really knew anything at all on 8th March 1992?

          Love,

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


          Comment


          • Originally posted by caz View Post
            If this was any other true crime story, it would surely be obvious to anyone, who has not reached a predetermined conclusion, what was going on here. And it wouldn't be that Mike and Eddie had been total strangers before 1993, and that Eddie wandered into the Saddle that evening just for jolly, to tell another stranger a nonsensical tale about a find he hadn't made in Maybrick's former home. If Mike had faked the diary, and Eddie had known bugger all about it, he'd have been free to tell Mike to get lost and to fight his own battles. He'd have had no need to go out of his way to deny anything, or to explain himself to anyone, at any time, whether that was in the Saddle in June 1993 or back in the grounds of Battlecrease in 2018.
            Love,
            Caz
            X
            You can't read this analysis by Caz and not be struck by how utterly implausible it would be for Mike Barrett to have created the Maybrick scrapbook and for him to subsequently persuade Eddie Lyons to largely incriminate himself (or to sail very close to it) in The Saddle if the poor bloke had nothing whatsoever to do with the scrapbook's arrival in the public eye a year earlier.

            Some people might say that Mike paid Eddie to come in and say it, I suppose, and we'll doubtless never know if that's true or why Eddie would be so cavalier with a story that might easily have backfired on him.

            Some people might say that Mike got someone else to come in to The Saddle to see Robert Smith; but I've emailed a picture of Eddie (albeit from 2018) to Robert and he was categorical that that was the bloke he met in the pub in 1993. Robert could be wrong, I suppose, but he was very categorical in his response so I take it as clear evidence that the actual Eddie Lyons joined Robert Smith and Mike Barrett in The Saddle on that June evening - something which just seems to me to be utterly bizarre if Eddie didn't particularly know Mike and if Eddie had nothing to do with the scrapbook seeing the light of day.

            Back to your analysis, Caz. It should be required reading on all Jack the Ripper degree courses. It was first class, kidda.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by caz View Post
              I have to ask you, Ike, in the interests of fairness, to tell us your source for the Sphere book, which was handed over to Alan Gray at the end of 1994, ever having found its way to Mike's attic.
              Absolutely, Caz, I knew that the Sphere book in the attic had never actually been proven to be true but I thought if I mentioned that it would look like I was trying to score points which I wasn't seeking to do (on this occasion!).

              If this was another Sphere book, as its condition strongly suggests, then I would strongly suggest that Mike never did have the relevant volume in Goldie Street prior to April 1992, and the one he handed to Gray was almost certainly a copy he had only recently found in a second-hand bookshop.
              Well, I don't believe that there is any evidence that Mike had the Sphere book in his attic on the day he discovered the Crashaw line? I accept it as true because it doesn't really amount to much (other than another of the coincidences this case throws up). The copy Mike gave to Alan Gray had been annotated by what was assumed to be an English Literature student which - to me - smacked of Mike discovering the source of the Crashaw line and then going out and buying a second hand copy for himself. I understand that Mike claimed he gave all of his Sphere volumes to his friend Jenny's son, but I don't know if any of that was ever confirmed so maybe he simply never had the Sphere volumes in the first place ("I just don't know", to quote the great man himself).

              If your only source is Mike... I'm not buying it.
              Sounds like good advice to me, and accepted without recourse to the switchblade, thank you very much.

              Why did he say anything about finding the line in the library, and allowing for this to be the truth because the volumes were indeed right there on the shelf? Did he forget that he was supposed to be in 'confession' mode at this point? If the relevant volume had not been sitting there on the library shelf, or if Mike had handed over his own volume to Harold Brough in June 1994 and had never referred to finding the line later in a library book, he'd have made it ten times harder for anyone to argue that he was as much in the dark as anyone else in 1992, as to where the line might have come from.
              The simple answer is generally a good candidate for the truth. He genuinely did find the quotation the Sphere volume in the Liverpool Central Library - motivated (provoked) by Shirley Harrison's stinging criticism of his contribution to the original book and after that he bought his own copy. Whether he had the Sphere volume in his attic all along, I just can't say.

              How many times does Mike 'Lucky' Barrett have to so narrowly avoid falling headlong into one of his own traps, for people to start questioning if he really knew anything at all on 8th March 1992?
              Quite a lot. Do I win the prize?

              Ike

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

                But not quite so crafty when he attempts his hugely embarrassing let's-just-bin-the-blindingly-obvious-evidence trick:



                Talk about sleight of hand. The most staggering coincidence in the history of all coincidences, and the acolyte wants to slip it quietly into the trash can!

                Like no-one would notice!
                Unbelievable - he wants us to disregard actual documented evidence which backs up the Battlecrease provenance, in order to believe his tales of pure fabrication regarding the auction and Anne's involvement. I for one am not having it.

                Comment


                • A useful update from Keith Skinner here:

                  From memory it wasn't just one volume that Mike claimed was in his attic. It was the entire canon which Shere had sent to him for his "white elephant" stall in order to raise funds for victims of the Hillingsborough dsaster. Mike didn't think these would sell so stuck them up in the attic and then later gave them to his girlfriend for her teenage son who might find them useful in his school work. When Mike allegedly found the Crashaw quote, he thought the book had a familiarity about it and went and reclaimed it from his girlfriend and gave it to his solicitor for safe keeping. The solicitor has no record of any book ever being deposited with them. However, Alan Gray witnessed Mike go into the solictor's office and minutes later come out with the book - which he gave to Alan Gray - and I bought off him circa 2004. It is a worn book - no dustjacket - with pencilled notes in it. Mike later admitted that he had bought it in a second hand bookshop in Liverpool. He also admitted asking for help in Liverpool Library when trying to identify the quote and "getting lucky".

                  When I was transcribing the recording of Gray and Barrett at the solicitor's office, I was very aware that there was nothing stopping Barrett from having the book in his coat pocket and therefore coming out of the solicitor's office after a suitable delay and handing his second hand copy over to Gray as 'proof' of his involvement in a hoax. Gray did not go into the office with Barrett so there is no evidence for Barrett's claim to have filed his original Sphere volume (that he used too create the line in the scrapbook) in his solicitor's office for safe keeping.

                  What it does suggest is that Barrett was desperately trying to provide Gray with something to 'prove' he'd hoaxed the scrapbook and obviously could not.

                  It's a little bit like the scraps of 'letters to Anne' which Barrett prudently left lying around 12 Goldie Street for Alan Gray to pick up and send to Melvin Harris. On them, Barrett had written things like "You know we hoaxed the diary together" (or words to that effect). He was desperate to convince Gray because he liked having Gray around. He had no-one else to talk to. It would be sad and poignant if Barrett hadn't turned out to be such an unpleasant character.
                  Last edited by Iconoclast; 09-05-2023, 05:09 PM.

                  Comment


                  • A useful update from Keith Skinner here:

                    From memory it wasn't just one volume that Mike claimed was in his attic. It was the entire canon which Shere had sent to him for his "white elephant" stall in order to raise funds for victims of the Hillingsborough dsaster. Mike didn't think these would sell so stuck them up in the attic and then later gave them to his girlfriend for her teenage son who might find them useful in his school work. When Mike allegedly found the Crashaw quote, he thought the book had a familiarity about it and went and reclaimed it from his girlfriend and gave it to his solicitor for safe keeping. The solicitor has no record of any book ever being deposited with them. However, Alan Gray witnessed Mike go into the solictor's office and minutes later come out with the book - which he gave to Alan Gray - and I bought off him circa 2004. It is a worn book - no dustjacket - with pencilled notes in it. Mike later admitted that he had bought it in a second hand bookshop in Liverpool. He also admitted asking for help in Liverpool Library when trying to identify the quote and "getting lucky".


                    It's not much of an update, Ike. I've read basically this same statement many times over the years, but thanks.

                    "[Mike] admitted asking for help..."

                    "Mike later admitted that he had bought it in a second-hand bookshop..."

                    Are these those rare moments where we are to become Barrett Believers and accept these statements from a pathological liar, or should I start yelling to see the...

                    Bookshop receipt!

                    And what was the name of the librarian that helped Mike? Can you provide it, or is it just another one of Mike's many uncorroborated yarns?

                    It sounds like Keith is putting a lot of trust in Mike's own unverified statements, that is, if we are supposed to take Mike's accounts at face value.

                    Is Keith forgetting that Jenny Morrison confirmed to Shirley Harrison that Mike had had these twelve volumes? Not Mike Barrett--Jenny Morrison. I think it was on the old forums that Shirley was told by Morrison that she still had the whole twelve volume set--minus volume 2--which Mike had come to retrieve.

                    Which puts Mike's "secondhand bookshop" claim in serious jeopardy.


                    Mike "finding this volume in a second-hand store" sounds a lot like Mike "finding a copy of Tales of Liverpool" in a bookshop sometime later, when we know for a fact that Devereux had been lent a copy of the same volume as far back as 1991 and Mike was caught in a lie about it by Martin Howells.

                    Alan Gray also confirmed with "Mike's own family" (at one point Alan said 'Mike's sister') said that she, too had, seen these Sphere volumes.

                    So, it is hardly just "Mike's word for it"---unlike his mythical trip to the Central Liverpool Library during a serious alcoholic bender which is based solely on Mike's uncorroborated claim and is not even remotely plausible.

                    More on that another day but let me correct a small error on page 145 of Ripper Diary: The Inside Story that will later take on some small significance.

                    "Among a number of publishers he contacted to donate books for selling were Sphere Books, who sent several volumes from their literary criticism series, including a volume containing an essay on Crashaw."

                    The essay was not on Richard Crashaw.

                    It was on George Herbert. The full title being George Herbert and the Religious Lyric by Robert Ellrodt.

                    This is not an insignificant detail.

                    Click image for larger version  Name:	George Herbert.jpg Views:	0 Size:	25.4 KB ID:	817948

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by caz View Post

                      You do realise, FISHY, that you have been thoroughly hoodwinked by Palmer's post?

                      Did he guess you were in a barrel at the time?

                      Love,

                      Caz
                      X
                      You do realize tho that its all just a fairytale based on a wild theory with not a shread o evidence to prove its tru.?
                      'It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is. It doesn't matter how smart you are . If it doesn't agree with experiment, its wrong'' . Richard Feynman

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by FISHY1118 View Post

                        You do realize tho that its all just a fairytale based on a wild theory with not a shread o evidence to prove its tru.?
                        Doh! Claimed by the man who has not read a single book on the Maybrick case!

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

                          Doh! Claimed by the man who has not read a single book on the Maybrick case!
                          Give me the title of the book that proves James Maybrick was JtR and ill gladly read it.
                          'It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is. It doesn't matter how smart you are . If it doesn't agree with experiment, its wrong'' . Richard Feynman

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by FISHY1118 View Post

                            Give me the title of the book that proves James Maybrick was JtR and ill gladly read it.
                            Fishy,

                            If your motivation to post or to research the case of Jack the Ripper is to witness the final proof of his true identity, you may as well give up now. Outside of Maybrick, there is not a single scrap of evidence against any candidate at any point in last 134 years with the possible exception of the controversial shawl which clearly failed to meet its burden of proof (but doesn't mean it isn't genuinely Kosinski's - I don't think it is for a moment but I can't rule it out just because the DNA test was so incompetently performed). There is no evidence (especially given the history of the Maybrick scrapbook) that there will ever be any evidence which is universally accepted as final proof of the author of those despicable acts.

                            If that is your single criterion for enquiring into his identity, then you may as well give up now.​

                            If - on the other hand - you wish to continue to consider the possible (perhaps even the probable), then you should read pretty much anything on Maybrick's candidature because those who think he probably or definitely was the killer can make a decent case for it, and those who think he probably or definitely wasn't can do the same. That makes James Maybrick the most exciting, complex, and controversial candidate in the history of the crimes, which in itself explains why this particular thread is universally revered as The Greatest Thread of All (why is there no award for these things?). It is not - as fools have suggested - because of the incredulity of those who read it that people could believe it.

                            That said - and notwithstanding the beauty of all that has gone before (usually when I post) - that's why you need to read more than a 10,000 post thread on an internet site if you want to form a well-rounded and insightful opinion on his candidature for the Whitechapel murders of 1888.

                            People who do not are rightly called dilettantes.

                            Ike
                            Last edited by Iconoclast; 09-08-2023, 08:12 AM.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

                              Fishy,

                              If your motivation to post or to research the case of Jack the Ripper is to witness the final proof of his true identity, you may as well give up now. Outside of Maybrick, there is not a single scrap of evidence against any candidate at any point in last 134 years with the possible exception of the controversial shawl which clearly failed to meet its burden of proof (but doesn't mean it isn't genuinely Kosinski's - I don't think it is for a moment but I can't rule it out just because the DNA test was so incompetently performed). There is no evidence (especially given the history of the Maybrick scrapbook) that there will ever be any evidence which is universally accepted as final proof of the author of those despicable acts.

                              If that is your single criterion for enquiring into his identity, then you may as well give up now.​

                              If - on the other hand - you wish to continue to consider the possible (perhaps even the probable), then you should read pretty much anything on Maybrick's candidature because those who think he probably or definitely was the killer can make a decent case for it, and those who think he probably or definitely wasn't can do the same. That makes James Maybrick the most exciting, complex, and controversial candidate in the history of the crimes, which in itself explains why this particular thread is universally revered as The Greatest Thread of All (why is there no award for these things?). It is not - as fools have suggested - because of the incredulity of those who read it that people could believe it.

                              That said - and notwithstanding the beauty of all that has gone before (usually when I post) - that's why you need to read more than a 10,000 post thread on an internet site if you want to form a well-rounded and insightful opinion on his candidature for the Whitechapel murders of 1888.

                              People who do not are rightly called dilettantes.

                              Tom
                              If its your intention to support James Maybrick as a suspect, who like all suspects may or may not have been JtR thats entirely up to you .

                              Just dont use the Diary and the Watch to try convince me or others that those two items prove it to be true.

                              They have been shown to be less than convincing and full of circumstancial shortcomings, with out the use of them by those who favour Maybrick as the Ripper ,he offers very little if anything that one would even consider giving him a second glance as a real suspect. .

                              'It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is. It doesn't matter how smart you are . If it doesn't agree with experiment, its wrong'' . Richard Feynman

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by caz View Post
                                So let's turn this round, Ike ...
                                Steady on, Cazmo, the lad's not for turning (thank you, Margaret Thatcher).

                                ... and imagine that Mike really had faked the diary with Anne's unwitting help.
                                I honestly only have so much imagination, but I'll try to keep up here ...

                                Naturally enough, when the Battlecrease rumours began doing the rounds, he'd have been worried that they would be believed over his bogus 'dead pal' story, and he'd have had no way to prove the rumours false.
                                Okay, I see that.

                                Paul Dodd didn't know whether the diary could have been in his house or not, but he could have put in a successful claim unless Mike could show that the diary came from somewhere else entirely.
                                You have my attention.

                                Sticking with the Devereux story could not have achieved this, because in theory Tony could have been the diary's middle man, on its journey between Battlecrease and Goldie Street. It is after all what Feldman believed must have happened - before Mike angrily denied it.
                                I'm keeping up.

                                His denial never made much sense to me, because he was claiming not to know where Tony got the diary, in which case he could have got it from anyone, including from a Battlecrease electrician.
                                So why was Mike so passionate in his claims it couldn't have come out of Battlecrease House? I see where you're going with this, Cazeroo.

                                Feldman went down the route of believing that Mike's denial must have meant that he knew exactly where the diary had been - in the family.
                                Bloody hell, this is a little bit like a philosophy essay, isn't it? How do I know that I'm not just a brain in a vat, and all that?

                                Increasingly, I went down the route of suspecting it was an indication of his fear that Dodd could win the day and claim the diary as his.
                                A bit like his need for a scrapbook doppelgänger in case someone came knocking at his door with an Enforcer screaming "FBI!", you mean?

                                Moving on, this would explain Mike's two fishing trips to Colin Rhodes - to try and discover who was working where and when, so he could prove the rumours false, as he knew they had to be if he had faked the thing himself.
                                Okay. So he knows that he and Anne knocked-up the scrapbook one wet weekend in Liverpool but - to protect the very thing he created - he has to find out if the electrician's story could ever have any legs and inadvertently deprive him of the very thing he created? No wonder he referred to it as 'Frankenstein's Baby', eh?

                                Not getting any joy, Mike then learned that a certain Eddie Lyons, living on Fountains Road, had been contacted by Feldman and was apparently willing to say he found the diary while working in Dodd's house. Naturally, Mike was furious and went round to threaten Eddie with solicitors if he went ahead. He still had no other way to squash the rumours.
                                I'm still with you, kidda.

                                Fortunately for Mike, Feldman convinced himself that Eddie was lying ...
                                A bit too peremptorily if you ask me (though I did have to look up how to spell it).

                                ... but then Robert Smith got in on the same act and asked Mike if he knew any of the electricians, to which Mike replied that he knew Eddie, who also used the Saddle.
                                It feels more likely at this point that MIke's best answer is to say "No". Does our brilliant hoaxer make a mistake here, I wonder

                                Here it becomes less clear what would have been in it for Eddie to agree to go to the Saddle on 26th June, where he walked in, was introduced to Robert by Mike, told his famous 'skip' story and left again - IIRC without even staying for a drink.
                                If Eddie had nothing to do with the scrapbook's emergence, then a tenner or a few beers would be enough, surely? What would he care what his little tale would lead to - if it wasn't true it clearly couldn't be proved (not even by our very best corrupt police forces but I think they wouldn't be much motivated to fit him up for it).

                                I don't know that Eddie was actually 'quizzed' by Robert either, who merely listened to what he had to say and suspected he had just been fed a line that suited both scallies down to the ground.
                                Well, the way it is described, it certainly sounds like a bit of collusion entered the contract negotiations before Edward agreed to briefly pop in.

                                I can see why it would have helped Mike, as the faker of the diary, that Eddie was now denying that he had found it, and was instead claiming it was some other old book that he chucked into a non-existent skip. But why would Eddie have changed his story to help a stranger who had recently threatened him on his own doorstep?
                                Money? Beer? A snog from Anne? (Mike's scrapbook - assuming he wrotted it - certainly implies he fantasised about a ménage ā trois, did it not?)

                                What would he have gained by telling this story to Robert in Mike's presence, unless they both had their reasons for covering up a common truth that could affect them equally - the removal and selling on of someone else's rightful property?
                                Money? Beer? A snog with Anne?

                                If this was any other true crime story, it would surely be obvious to anyone, who has not reached a predetermined conclusion, what was going on here. And it wouldn't be that Mike and Eddie had been total strangers before 1993, and that Eddie wandered into the Saddle that evening just for jolly, to tell another stranger a nonsensical tale about a find he hadn't made in Maybrick's former home.
                                All whimsy apart, Cazerdazerdoo, as you know I am steering a Campaign for the Simple Truth, and the simple truth here is that Eddie needed to steer Robert Smith away from him by saying, "Yes, there was an old book (I told Brian Rawes as much so I'd better cover my back here) but I chucked it in a skip (which didn't exist, that was stupid of me) and therefore any old Thomas, Richard, Harold, or Michael could have come along and somehow led it to 12 Goldie Street but nothing to do with me, Mr. Smith, I'm innocent of everything other than slinging out an old book from under Maybrick's floorboards (which is actually what I did do - in a sense - and how I regret it when I think about how I could have been pissing all Mike's beer up a wall most nights if I'd realised what I'd found and sold to him).

                                Okay, that was more whimsy than I intended. Let's get serious for the denouement ...

                                If Mike had faked the diary, and Eddie had known bugger all about it, he'd have been free to tell Mike to get lost and to fight his own battles. He'd have had no need to go out of his way to deny anything, or to explain himself to anyone, at any time, whether that was in the Saddle in June 1993 or back in the grounds of Battlecrease in 2018.
                                And that is both the nub and the rub of it, isn't it? The simple and obvious truth is that the meeting in the Saddle in June 1993 would not have happened if Mike had hoaxed the scrapbook and Eddie had no part whatsoever to play in the emergence of it into the public arena. The best I could come up with in trying to see why Eddie would have done so is that he did it for a tenner or a few beers or the promise of a tryst with Anne, but I don't take any of those options seriously, nor do I see any great motivation for Mike the hoaxer putting the hand grenade called Eddie Lyons next to the hand grenade launcher called Robert Smith if it wasn't in his interests for protecting his ownership of the scrapbook, and there's no knowing for certain what the hand grenade might have said once in close proximity to the hand grenade launcher.

                                It all points very firmly to Mike having good reason to worry that the scrapbook could have come out of Battlecrease House and therefore needing to throw researchers off the scent.

                                Great post, by the way, Socaztes!
                                Last edited by Iconoclast; 09-08-2023, 09:12 AM.

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