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The Diary—Old Hoax or New?

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  • #91
    Just a suggestion on the handwriting.

    Is it unthinkable that Maybrick the drug-addled serial killer might have intentionally altered his handwriting for the diary? I’m not suggesting that he was schizophrenic at all but couldn’t he have seen the ripper as his darker side; his Mr Hyde, and so he used a different handwriting for him. Can we be said to always know what goes on in a killer’s mind. (If he was a killer in the first place of course)

    Im just asking if it’s entirely impossible?
    Regards

    Herlock






    "Crime is common. Logic is rare. Therefore it is upon the logic rather than upon the crime that you should dwell.”

    Comment


    • #92
      Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

      Hi Paul, but couldn't what might be called the "Kosminski hypothesis" come into play? What I mean is this. Certain supporters of the Polish Jew theory have argued that the crazed and rather pathetic figure we see in the asylum records in the 1890s and beyond does not necessarily give us an accurate glimpse of the 'capabilities' or mind-set of the Kosminski of 1888. That he rather quickly withered. Why couldn't the same argument apply to Barrett?

      Is it correct to assume that the shambling alcoholic wreck of 1994-96 (as described by Feldman) tells us much if anything about Barrett's capabilities (or ambition or sobriety) in 1990-2? Those years are undocumented and our knowledge of them almost entirely relies on what Anne Graham--his estranged wife during a bitter divorce proceeding--chose to tell us.

      Further, according to the Liverpool Daily Post of 26 September 1994, Barrett suffered a stroke sometime during the intervening years, and some visitors to these boards--including those who have met Barrett--have wondered how the stroke, especially coupled with Mike's ever increasing alcoholism, could have affected his personality and capabilities. Is the Barrett of 1995--the Barrett the diary's supporters mostly depict--the Barrett of 1992?

      I don't know the answer, I merely pose the question.
      Hi Roger,
      You’re quite right. It is entirely possible that Mike was able to plan and execute the diary at any time before his alcoholism took a grip, or perhaps even afterwards, and such things as a stroke can make big differences to a person. And whilst I don’t trust my judgement of people, the Mike I first met in his house in Goldie Street seemed an ordinary bloke, a family man whose biggest wish was for a small greenhouse, and who didn't seem to know anything more about Maybrick and Jack the Ripper than I’d have expected from someone who had done a little research. Afterwards, when Anne had left him, he used to phone me late at night, drunk (he was, I wasn't), spitting venom about Feldy, blaming him for wrecking his marriage, his rage and anger was such that I was and am convinced that he’d have given chapter and verse about forging the diary if he’d been able to do so. Maybe he’d already done his best (his retracted confession) and had no evidence to substantiate anything else he could say. But I don’t recall him ever doing more than making extravagant claims about getting his own back. He sounded like a man who was hurt and defenceless, frustrated and angry at his impotence.

      To me Mike was a househusband who was doing his best, the high-spot of whose day were a few pints at lunchtime before he collected his daughter from school, who dabbled in his garden and wanted a greenhouse. I probably misread the whole thing. But, yes, of course Mike might have conceived and executed the forgery, and he probably did. But I’m far from sure that that’s a conclusion we should accept too quickly.

      Comment


      • #93
        Originally posted by PaulB View Post
        To me Mike was a househusband who was doing his best, the high-spot of whose day were a few pints at lunchtime before he collected his daughter from school, who dabbled in his garden and wanted a greenhouse. I probably misread the whole thing. But, yes, of course Mike might have conceived and executed the forgery, and he probably did. But I’m far from sure that that’s a conclusion we should accept too quickly.
        Hi Paul,

        Most scrapbook-detractors argue that our understanding of Barrett's motivations cannot be derived from simply having met him. I think it was you on Feldman's video who said (to the effect of) "Those of us who have met Mike Barrett are less inclined to disbelieve him" (cue Martin Fido's inevitable dismissive retort). Those of us who watch the Feldman video may take a similar view (I certainly do). The sober Mike Barrett of 1993 was a brilliant actor if he was able to portray that simplistic innocence for so long despite no obvious background as a thespian. With the benefit of the kind recommendation recently to review the Radio Merseyside broadcasts, I take the further step of claiming that the sober Mike Barrett of late 1995 was still incapable of acting as he passionately defended the scrapbook against his own earlier mad denials of authenticity. If Mike Barrett had any hand in the Victorian scrapbook, he deserved an Oscar, he really did. And speaking of 'hands', it is an interesting point which I noted within the last few days in private correspondence that none of the handwriting of James Maybrick, Mike Barrett, Tony Devereaux, Anne Graham, Billy Graham, Uncle Tom Cobley and all looks even vaguely like that of the scrapbook, and yet naysayers rant on here endlessly that the handwriting nails the hoax, whilst failing to acknowledge that the handwriting also makes the hoax so much less likely! Surely that isn't a spot of double standards going on?

        Cheers,

        Ike
        Iconoclast
        Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

        Comment


        • #94
          Hi Ike,
          I think you are quite right about the double standards regarding the handwriting, although Caz will be more familiar with the handwriting of all concerned that I am these days. If the handwriting isn't James Maybrick's, whose handwriting is it? As for Mike, sober or drunk he never really managed to give a coherent and detailed story of how and when he conceived the idea, whether he thought any tests would be done on the diary, what he did to make sure the diary passed those tests, what ink he used (I understand we know it wasn't Diamine), and so on. The nearest we've got was his retracted confession. As I say, on paper Mike looks like the probable forger, but the reality looks a lot different.

          There was always one thing that bothered me back then: to me forging something is so daunting that it would never become more than an idea. Mike, who was neither stupid nor ignorant, would have seen the same obstacles as I do, and I wonder if he, a complete novice, really would have felt able to forge a lengthy document that would remain undetected long enough to make him some money, even if it was just enough money to buy a small greenhouse. But in the absence of a Mr Big the Forger in the background, that's exactly what Mike must have done. Or we have to look elsewhere.

          Comment


          • #95
            Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

            Hi Paul,

            Most scrapbook-detractors argue that our understanding of Barrett's motivations cannot be derived from simply having met him. I think it was you on Feldman's video who said (to the effect of) "Those of us who have met Mike Barrett are less inclined to disbelieve him" (cue Martin Fido's inevitable dismissive retort). Those of us who watch the Feldman video may take a similar view (I certainly do). The sober Mike Barrett of 1993 was a brilliant actor if he was able to portray that simplistic innocence for so long despite no obvious background as a thespian. With the benefit of the kind recommendation recently to review the Radio Merseyside broadcasts, I take the further step of claiming that the sober Mike Barrett of late 1995 was still incapable of acting as he passionately defended the scrapbook against his own earlier mad denials of authenticity. If Mike Barrett had any hand in the Victorian scrapbook, he deserved an Oscar, he really did. And speaking of 'hands', it is an interesting point which I noted within the last few days in private correspondence that none of the handwriting of James Maybrick, Mike Barrett, Tony Devereaux, Anne Graham, Billy Graham, Uncle Tom Cobley and all looks even vaguely like that of the scrapbook, and yet naysayers rant on here endlessly that the handwriting nails the hoax, whilst failing to acknowledge that the handwriting also makes the hoax so much less likely! Surely that isn't a spot of double standards going on?

            Cheers,

            Ike
            Hello Ike,

            I know that you were expecting a response to Societies Pillar from David Orsam but I didn’t know if you were aware that he’s now published it on his website?

            https://www.orsam.co.uk/pillarofsand.htm

            Hes also added an article on the One-Off Instance debate.

            https://www.orsam.co.uk/oneoffarticle.htm

            Regards

            Herlock






            "Crime is common. Logic is rare. Therefore it is upon the logic rather than upon the crime that you should dwell.”

            Comment


            • #96
              Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

              Hello Ike,

              I know that you were expecting a response to Societies Pillar from David Orsam but I didn’t know if you were aware that he’s now published it on his website?

              https://www.orsam.co.uk/pillarofsand.htm

              [/URL]
              Hi Herlock,

              Many thanks for the flag. I was only made aware of Lord Orsam's online site recently (ironically, and by chance, regarding one of his articles which he criticises me in his text for not having read) and wasn't yet in the habit of checking it so I was unaware that he had finally responded to the brilliance of Society's Pillar. As I predicted in our email exchange of some weeks (months?) ago, he didn't let us down - as thorough an evisceration as one would have expected from the master eviscerator himself!

              Hand on heart, I'm up at my mother-in-law's helping to re-chip her driveway right now (Mrs Iconoclast is getting excited at the thought of me developing some muscles at long last) so I didn't read the whole of the good Lord's response. I certainly read enough to start to suspect that he doesn't fully agree with some of the points I highlight in Society's Pillar, though. I'll need to put some time aside to read it all in detail to be clear whether my early suspicions are correct or whether he later yields to my argument. Tee hee. I'm not optimistic, in truth.

              I'm currently updating SP (as mentioned earlier), but to further update it in the context of Lord Orsam's majestic deconstruction of it will take far longer than my patience will permit me right now. When I do find the patience, I may have to take so much out that I might also find SP 's only got about ten pages left in it. But - hey - they'll be the best ten!

              As you are in occasional contact with the Lordster, would it be possible to ask him to widen his text window, please? I can't help feeling that there's an awful lot of wasted screen going on there and that his site would have more appeal (and readability) if the margins were somewhat further apart.

              I do so miss his imperiousness, you know!

              Many thanks,

              Ike
              Iconoclast
              Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

              Comment


              • #97
                Originally posted by PaulB View Post
                Hi Ike,
                There was always one thing that bothered me back then: to me forging something is so daunting that it would never become more than an idea. Mike, who was neither stupid nor ignorant, would have seen the same obstacles as I do, and I wonder if he, a complete novice, really would have felt able to forge a lengthy document that would remain undetected long enough to make him some money, even if it was just enough money to buy a small greenhouse. But in the absence of a Mr Big the Forger in the background, that's exactly what Mike must have done. Or we have to look elsewhere.
                You make a good point, Paul. If the scrapbook is a hoax, it's an audacious one. It's also a well-researched one (even a brief read of Lord Orsam's fine rebuttal to Society's Pillar shows that he believes the hoaxer did a fair amount of research). So it's audacious, and it's well enough researched that accusations of shoddiness are truly mere smokescreens. Whoever planned and then executed such a hoax had serious intent. He or she meant it to make some dosh (whether he or she ever saw that dosh, who is to know?).

                But then he or she goes and spoils all their hard work with handwriting which seems to belong to no-one - and certainly not to James Maybrick. Is this the very height of his or her audacity or the very nadir of their clumsiness? The handwriting is a devil to understand. It neither makes sense if the scrapbook is genuine and nor does it make sense if it is a hoax. And then somehow or other we get two provenances, one of which must be an astonishing coincidence. It is either an astonishing coincidence that Florence Maybrick took the surname 'Graham' on leaving prison; or else it is an astonishing coincidence that there were workmen in Battlecrease on the very day Mike Barrett first contacted 'London' with his huge scoop. Your head goes 'round and 'round trying to rationalise these apparently irreconcilable facts. And that's before you start to ponder the possibility that both astonishing 'coincidences' were indeed coincidences - the implausibility of it bends the mind!

                The one thing I feel we can confidently state is that there is a story if the scrapbook is authentic (obviously!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) and there is a story if it is a hoax.

                Cheers,

                Ike
                Iconoclast
                Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

                Comment


                • #98
                  Originally posted by PaulB View Post
                  There was always one thing that bothered me back then: to me forging something is so daunting that it would never become more than an idea. Mike, who was neither stupid nor ignorant, would have seen the same obstacles as I do, and I wonder if he, a complete novice, really would have felt able to forge a lengthy document that would remain undetected long enough to make him some money, even if it was just enough money to buy a small greenhouse. But in the absence of a Mr Big the Forger in the background, that's exactly what Mike must have done. Or we have to look elsewhere.
                  Hi Paul, thanks for your response. I think that subjective opinions will inevitably carry a certain amount of weight after all these years. It is possible, of course, that everyone was merely wrong, but more and more it interests me that all or nearly all of the early Diary researchers were united in their belief that Mike couldn't have been the author (Harrison, Harris) and some believed that Mike didn't even know where the Diary came from (Feldman, Alan Gray). This, regardless of whether they thought it was a modern hoax or not. And lo and behold, when Anne Graham finally came forward, with Feldman at her side, to tell her version of the provenance, she also incorporated Mike's apparent ignorance into her storyline. It never really struck me before, but it's a rather interesting detail.





                  Comment


                  • #99
                    Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post
                    I know that you were expecting a response to Societies Pillar from David Orsam but I didn't know if you were aware that he's now published it on his website?
                    Pillar of Sand is the title? David must be growing soft. I would have guessed Society's Pillock.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

                      Pillar of Sand is the title? David must be growing soft. I would have guessed Society's Pillock.
                      Very good. I like it.
                      Iconoclast
                      Soldier of Fortune, Man of Peace, Destroyer of Images, Nice Guy, Genius

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

                        Very good. I like it.
                        how about Societys Pill?
                        "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


                        • Originally posted by PaulB View Post
                          Hi Ike,
                          I think you are quite right about the double standards regarding the handwriting, although Caz will be more familiar with the handwriting of all concerned that I am these days. If the handwriting isn't James Maybrick's, whose handwriting is it? As for Mike, sober or drunk he never really managed to give a coherent and detailed story of how and when he conceived the idea, whether he thought any tests would be done on the diary, what he did to make sure the diary passed those tests, what ink he used (I understand we know it wasn't Diamine), and so on. The nearest we've got was his retracted confession. As I say, on paper Mike looks like the probable forger, but the reality looks a lot different.

                          There was always one thing that bothered me back then: to me forging something is so daunting that it would never become more than an idea. Mike, who was neither stupid nor ignorant, would have seen the same obstacles as I do, and I wonder if he, a complete novice, really would have felt able to forge a lengthy document that would remain undetected long enough to make him some money, even if it was just enough money to buy a small greenhouse. But in the absence of a Mr Big the Forger in the background, that's exactly what Mike must have done. Or we have to look elsewhere.
                          Well, what about Tony D.? I asked once before if HE was capable of being the real (modern) forger, but never received an answer. Was he a writer?
                          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.
                          ---------------

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

                            Hi Paul, thanks for your response. I think that subjective opinions will inevitably carry a certain amount of weight after all these years. It is possible, of course, that everyone was merely wrong, but more and more it interests me that all or nearly all of the early Diary researchers were united in their belief that Mike couldn't have been the author (Harrison, Harris) and some believed that Mike didn't even know where the Diary came from (Feldman, Alan Gray). This, regardless of whether they thought it was a modern hoax or not. And lo and behold, when Anne Graham finally came forward, with Feldman at her side, to tell her version of the provenance, she also incorporated Mike's apparent ignorance into her storyline. It never really struck me before, but it's a rather interesting detail.
                            I think the feelings of those who met Mike in the early days have to be given attention, if only for their interest value, but obviously their value beyond that is questionable. The impression I had of Mike from those early meetings is that he was as curious about the "diary" as we were, but even I wouldn't attach much weight to what I felt. I could have been helplessly wrong. I like Anne, for example, and Feldman helped her a lot, to the point, I suppose, of staking his name, reputation, and maybe even his job on her story. I find it hard to believe that she was lying to him, playing him for a fool, knowing what he was investing in her story. Yet in some scenarios it is supposed that she did exactly that. And if she did, what value is my judgement! Nevertheless, I think it's a bit glib to readily attribute the "diary" to Mike. But where does one go if one doesn't?

                            Comment


                            • Could Anne have been largely responsible for the diary, with Mike acting as frontman, and playing a largely subsidiary role?
                              Last edited by John G; 07-29-2019, 07:38 AM.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by John G View Post
                                Could Anne have been largely responsible for the diary, with Mike acting as frontman, and playing a largely subsidiary role?
                                Yes, she could. She could have forged it, rather than found it in her father's house, and given it to Tony Devereaux to pass on to Mike to give him something to do. It's what she claimed (except the forging part), and it completely takes Mike out of the equation. And since Anne's motive was to give Mike something to research, she wouldn't have had to worry about handwriting. The thing is, was the forgery done to fool anyone? Since Mike didn't have the money to arrange scientific tests, there would have been no need to use a Victorian or like-Victorian ink, or use an old-fashioned nib pen, so was it by pure accident that Anne used an ink that would pass muster in the tests?

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