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What if the watch is real but the document isn't?

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  • #46
    Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post

    Hack the Ripper
    hi sam
    where ya been?
    "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


    • #47
      Originally posted by Graham View Post
      With the falling-off of discussion on this Forum concerning both the Diary and the Watch, I'd just like to say:

      1] I never believed that the Diary was a genuine 'journal' written by James Maybrick. I think there is a slight possibility that it can be dated back to a short time after the Ripper Murders, but so far it has not been possible for forensic science to make an accurate analysis.

      2] I never believed that the Diary was conceived and manufactured by Mike Barrett. However, I think, with no real basis and probably erroneously, there might be a slight possibility that his wife had more to do with it than we have so far been led to believe. It could be that it really was passed down to her by her father - we'll never know, but if as some folk still maintain it isn't a modern forgery, then this would seem a most likely route. And Anne Barrett has maintained her strict silence for many years now.

      3] Without casting any aspersions, I've always felt that it was a remarkable coincidence that the Watch came to light so soon after the Diary was revealed. Again, I wouldn't be surprised if there is still some missing but highly germane information regarding this, and which has never been made public. But maybe there isn't. Maybe it really was just coincidence.

      4] What, precisely, was Robbie Johnson's true role (if he had one, that is) in this saga?

      The above are just my thoughts and suspicions, no more, and I'm only writing this because lock-down is now beginning to get on my nerves.....

      Graham
      Hi Graham,

      Coming to this thread late... [I was going to start decorating the main bedroom this week with hubby - but I suspect paint would be better - and hubby's employers have now given him some work to do at home, so I'm back on board for now].

      Anyway, I totally agree with you about the 'remarkable coincidence' that was the timing of the watch coming to light, in early June 1993, soon after news of the diary broke - but in fact 4 months before the full text of the diary would be revealed. There is no evidence that the Johnsons had ever met the Barretts, or had any advance knowledge of what James Maybrick as JtR would be claiming about the Whitechapel murders. No advance knowledge that the diary wouldn't quickly go the way of the Hitler Diaries, pulling the watch straight down with it. No advance knowledge that 'Sir Jim' wasn't going to reveal, for example, that he didn't murder Liz Stride. 'I will never claim her as one of mine, and I will never, ever scratch any of my victims' initials in a gold watch'.

      But seriously, the bigger coincidence for me is that Albert bought his watch, with the large, ornate 'JO' engraved on the outside back cover, in July 1992, just when Mike Barrett was flogging his diary to the publisher, Robert Smith. The Johnsons had no idea who 'JO' may have been, nor if the watch might already have a provenance which ruled out the possibility that Maybrick had ever had his engraving tools near it. Only after the scratches were revealed, was it learned that the jewellers knew nothing about the watch's past life, and it had come from a complete stranger who had walked in off the street, agreed on a price and flogged it, before walking out again.

      As with the scrapbook used for the diary, there was - and still is - no known history to come back and haunt whoever created the artefact. But the Barretts and the Johnsons could not have known that. We know where and when Albert bought his watch. That was easy to establish and is beyond doubt. It has been a very different story with Mike's scrapbook, entirely due to his inability to tell a straight one.

      Love,

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


      Comment


      • #48
        Originally posted by Graham View Post
        And I don't think Mike even was a journalist in any sense of the word - rather, he liked to interview 'celebrities' and then base his articles around those interviews. And once he'd got his famous word-processor, how do you know that it was Mike who wrote up his notes into an acceptable article, and not the far more literary Anne? Was he an acceptable typist? I repeat - my understanding of Mike is that he wasn't completely illiterate, but his literacy was of a low level.
        Ha ha, Graham, your questions above to R.J reminded me of a highly amusing dream I had the other night. Someone came up to me and boasted that his cat could type. He asked if mine could too, so I turned to my cat Monty and asked him, to which he replied: "Yes, I can type." I woke myself up laughing.

        But there is a serious aspect to this, because when I was wide awake, it did occur to me that our Monty, bless him, may have been lying.

        It seems that R.J flatly rejects the possibility that Mike may have been lying about the mythical auction ticket. Yet he also seems to reject the possibility that the Barretts were being truthful when they both - separately - volunteered the information that Anne had had to 'tidy up' all Mike's published articles to make them fit for submission. A curious thing for either of them to lie about, if Mike had been able to produce his own unaided work to an acceptable standard. He always talked about his wish to be a writer in his own right, and claimed that Anne had only penned the diary because his own handwriting was so bad. Why admit that he couldn't type for toffee either? But far more curious if Anne was trying to bat away suspicions that she had helped her husband create the diary.

        Now, here's a little something to take R.J's mind off the watch and his lockdown frustrations for a wee while longer...

        Mike Barrett added it, in his own inimitable style, to his copy of his Disability Living Allowance Medical report from February 1996, which he sent to Shirley Harrison. It appears on the page where he had previously signed to confirm the information in his personal statement [handwritten by the examining doctor] was correct. I will attempt to transcribe it exactly:

        PS. So what!! I protect the people I love, but no-one will understand but you. Me I go in again in my own time, I owe them, the last time I Blew away a IRA BAstard BRiANS out. He Deverses it ANd I dont feel Guilty. Alougth I admit it HaRNTS Me. Like the DiARy.

        TAke care, you get your Money. tRust Me Mike XXXX


        Quite apart from the question of why the diary would be haunting Mike if it was his own idea in the first place and he could prove it, there is the question of why there is no mention, anywhere in the report, of the stroke he is meant to have suffered at some point after the diary emerged. The doctor's physical examination of the extent of Mike's disability in February 1996 produced the opinion that it was 100% due to the consequences of a road traffic accident when Mike was 14 years old, causing stiffness to his lower back and right hip, and a much more recent injury to his right wrist. The doctor reports that Mike has a slight limp in his right leg, and while there have been episodes of 'altered awareness', several blackouts going back 11 years and several more recent dizzy spells, the doctor finds him 'fully mentally competent', with no evidence of 'neurological deficit'. Mike himself [for what it's worth] tells the doctor he has used a walking stick for years, due to pain in his right leg, and claims to have pain in his back and right hip.

        Incidentally, the examination took place at 11am, while the various comments Mike added to the report later for Shirley's benefit, may have been written under the influence for all I know.

        Love,

        Caz
        X






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


        Comment


        • #49
          Originally posted by Graham View Post
          Juat to return very briefly to what passes as reality on this particular forum; if, as it seems to have been suggested, Robbie Johnson himself was responsible for the scratches in the Watch, then when did he do it? From what I've gathered, Albert Johnson didn't broadcast his purchase of the Watch, and seems to have kept it in a drawer for some time prior to taking it to the University to show to his workmates. Prior to that, it seems he had kept it in a drawer at home for some months. It was only when he was examining it at the University that the scratches were noticed for the first time. I can't help but feel that, if Robbie Johnson was responsible for the scratchings, then it must have been with the collusion of Albert.
          And Albert, it would seem, was the very model of honesty and propriety - which I believe. Now that Caz is back in town, maybe she could offer comments regarding this?
          Hi again Graham,

          Just noticed this one. I can't really add anything because your own observations are much like my own. It does seem to me that in order for anyone to accuse Robbie of being knowingly involved in a hoax, they would have to believe his brother Albert was, at the very least, a liar. The only alternative would be to suggest that Albert was considerably more gullible than anyone Robbie was hoping to con, or so muddle-headed, that he totally forgot about showing his brother the watch and where he kept it, and was completely persuaded by Robbie's later reaction, that it was the first he had heard of Albert buying a gold watch, let alone what was inside it.

          I believe Robbie was serving the last few days for a drugs offence when Albert bought the watch. Albert always said it was an investment for his little granddaughter Daisy, and he did eventually leave it to her. Curious, if he suspected for one second that his brother could have been responsible for turning Daisy's gift of an attractive gold dress watch into the fake souvenir of a Victorian maniac. It just doesn't fit with the Albert I knew. R.J speculated that the watch was not bought with Daisy in mind at all, but as a welcome home present for Robbie when he got out of jail. But that would make a liar out of Albert and his equally delightful wife Val, so it's all rather tacky and unpleasant. The finger doesn't just linger over Robbie, because he makes an easy scapegoat. We end up with two nests of forgers, hatching their plans to lay their own golden egg.

          Love,

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


          Comment


          • #50
            Originally posted by Mike J. G. View Post

            This tends to imply that you don't fully grasp what science is or how it's used.

            So far as I know, the watch has not been scientifically proven to be anything other than a curious addition to an already silly story involving a cotton merchant who apparently often frequented post offices for a jar of ale while penning his letters, according to Ike, lol.

            Much like the pages of a faked diary can be artificially aged, the scratches/marking on said watch can also be artificially or even accidentally aged. To deny this is what I truly find ironic. The basic lack of understanding of science on these forums is startling.
            Thanks for pointing me in the direction of self-improvement with regards to understanding words and definitions - in particular what the word "science" means. I took your advice and found that according to Oxford English Dictionary (other dictionaries are available) and it concludes "The state or fact of knowing; knowledge or cognizance of something; knowledge as a personal attribute. Now archaic and rare". More words for me to learn.

            Passive agressive banter aside, this type of forgery as you suggest wiith regards to the watch is near impossible to replicate without expert knowledge and expensive machinery to place aged brass particles (do you know how big a particle is? Not very big) into the base of engravings. Perhaps the lab had aged brass particles flying around the room which somehow on the gust of wind found their way into the engravings by pure coincidence and accident. In which case it can't be a very good lab. But by all accounts these are world-class in their field of knowledge. But still, Robbie Johnson might have had the brainwave himself and dusted down his old school microscope kit and did it himself. Which is not possible scientifically and certainly most likely outside of Robbie's own many skills.

            So the question is, if you believe the particles could be faked - how? The watch wasn't sold at the time, by Albert's own choice and he was offered serious money. So why fake it? Motivation is usually money, and many seem to think that was Robbie's motivation, but money never came. Method would have to be by someone so skilled that Robbie would have had to pay alot of money to convince this was a good idea to do on his behalf. But the method only matters if the motivation can be achieved. Nobody with that kind of skill would do it for a laugh or a favour.

            It remains an inconvenient truth, and just because you don't like the timing doesn't make the science any less valid. But then, I have only just learned what science means. What do I know?
            Last edited by erobitha; 04-25-2020, 07:29 PM.

            Comment


            • #51
              Originally posted by erobitha View Post

              Thanks for pointing me in the direction of self-improvement with regards to understanding words and definitions - in particular what the word "science" means. I took your advice and found that according to Oxford English Dictionary (other dictionaries are available) and it concludes "The state or fact of knowing; knowledge or cognizance of something; knowledge as a personal attribute. Now archaic and rare". More words for me to learn.

              Passive agressive banter aside, this type of forgery as you suggest wiith regards to the watch is near impossible to replicate without expert knowledge and expensive machinery to place aged brass particles (do you know how big a particle is? Not very big) into the base of engravings. Perhaps the lab had aged brass particles flying around the room which somehow on the gust of wind found their way into the engravings by pure coincidence and accident. In which case it can't be a very good lab. But by all accounts these are world-class in their field of knowledge. But still, Robbie Johnson might have had the brainwave himself and dusted down his old school microscope kit and did it himself. Which is not possible scientifically and certainly most likely outside of Robbie's own many skills.

              So the question is, if you believe the particles could be faked - how? The watch wasn't sold at the time, by Albert's own choice and he was offered serious money. So why fake it? Motivation is usually money, and many seem to think that was Robbie's motivation, but money never came. Method would have to be by someone so skilled that Robbie would have had to pay alot of money to convince this was a good idea to do on his behalf. But the method only matters if the motivation can be achieved. Nobody with that kind of skill would do it for a laugh or a favour.

              It remains an inconvenient truth, and just because you don't like the timing doesn't make the science any less valid. But then, I have only just learned what science means. What do I know?
              Very good, erobitha - made me chuckle.

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

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