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  • caz
    replied
    I think you're right, erobitha. There's nothing Anne can ever do now that will help her own situation or provide any clarity for others. She probably found herself in a no-win situation right from the day Mike first called Doreen to ask if she was interested in seeing Jack the Ripper's diary. There is no evidence that Anne knew about that initial phone call, or what Mike was up to, until the letters began arriving from Rupert Crew and it was almost a fait accompli. Yes, Doreen was fascinated to see what he had, and Mike seems to have given her the impression that Anne was onboard with it all, when he may not even have discussed it with her yet. If it was Mike who came up with the 'dead mate' idea, and fed it to Doreen before telling Anne, what could she have done about it if she thought it was madness? If she didn't have enough nerve to stop the rot before it went any further, she was stuck with going along with Mike's version of events, which could only end badly as it took hold of them both and dragged them down a rabbit hole of lies and fantasy.

    Mike stalled Doreen initially, by telling her they were off to York [where the Barretts had been on holiday in August 1991 when Tony had his fatal heat attack] and he would contact her again on their return. A family trip to York in March - term time - strikes me as a little odd, considering Caroline's Easter holidays were not far off, and would in fact begin on Monday 13th April, when Mike was free from the school run to take the diary down to London. So was the York trip a lie, because he didn't yet have the "old book" and was in the process of trying to buy it from a certain electrician? Or was he still trying to find a suitable book in which Anne was going to physically write the diary? I don't find it remotely plausible that the Barretts wanted to find out if anyone would be interested before investing in the project itself. How much time and effort - if not expense - would already have been spent by then, on all the research and drafting of the text? Did they really plan to ditch it all if Pan Books or Doreen had laughed and told Mike to pull the other one?

    Anne's biggest mistake in my view was to try and stop the rot two years too late, when Mike came out with his tallest story yet, in June 1994. Instead of coming out with a new but unprovable story of her own to keep Feldy happy, she'd have done far better to keep her head down and insist that all she knew was that Mike had brought the diary home one day in 1991 and said he'd got it from Tony Devereux. I can't explain why she didn't do that, but if she strongly suspected Feldy had been on the right track the previous year, when he investigated the electricians, might she have hoped that her 'in the family' story would stop him even thinking of returning to that line of enquiry, in case he eventually sniffed out the truth, that the diary was stolen from Battlecrease and only arrived in Goldie Street in March 1992, effectively making liars of them both? She had typed up his research notes, so she'd have known if they didn't date back further than March 1992.

    Love,

    Caz
    X

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  • erobitha
    replied
    Originally posted by caz View Post
    If she's not going to provide all the facts, it's going to be a bit difficult working out if she actually knows any facts about the diary's origins at all, beyond when she first set eyes on it.
    The problem we have here is Anne is damned if she does and damned if she doesn't. If she admits that she does not actually know where the old book ultimately came from (which seems to me to be the truth) then she has lied about it being passed down in her family and therefore nothing she says will hold any credibility. The truth (as I see it) will be contaminated and untrustworthy, as she went ahead with the provenance angle of it being in her family for generations. She becomes no better than Mike in that respect.

    I think stubbornness and pride runs in Anne as much as it does in Mike, and I believe she will maintain her version of events (which ironically also included Tony Devereux as a co-conspirator) until the day she dies. Her provenance story hangs on the word of her father who vouched for Anne's claim. I have two daughters and if I felt I could help one put the boot into an ex of theirs that I had very little time for, I'd do whatever she asked of me.

    Where does Anne actually go from here?

    Leave a comment:


  • caz
    replied
    Afternoon All,

    Apologies for absence, I was busy enjoying myself before we're all locked down again, and this week I'm enjoying myself decorating the downstairs lav.

    I have a few unanswered questions, which some kind soul may be able to answer.

    Firstly, I'm having the greatest difficulty understanding how Anne, of all people, can be accused of being the true 'suppressor' of an affidavit typed up by Alan Gray and sworn by Mike, of which a copy was hand delivered to her. How was she meant to stop copies being sent to anyone of Mike's choosing? We know that certain individuals were in on the 'secret' by the summer of 1995, but it's far from clear to me how the news reached Evans and Gainey [but not Keith Skinner] except via Melvin Harris, and what dictated how much the authors were prepared to say or write about it publicly at that time. It's safe to say that Anne could have had no possible say in the matter, and would have had no idea that Stewart, or anyone else for that matter, had not given Keith all the information he needed to investigate Mike's claims without her knowledge.

    Secondly, and these are for Al B to consider, what is the source for Mike lying to Scotland Yard about the transcript of the diary, and also denying any knowledge of his Tales of Liverpool? When asked by Bonesy if he had a copy, he said yes, but didn't know where it was. What he denied any knowledge of, when interviewed by Martin Howells in September 1993, was lending the book to Tony D, presumably because at some point after January 1991, when Janet D borrowed it, he had forgotten all about it, explaining why he never asked for it back and why Janet still had it in 1993, two years after her father's death.

    What is the evidence that 'if Mike didn't do the hard work researching and drafting, he was still heavily involved'? Having that opinion is fine, but it's not a fact.

    Why does Devereux make 'a good candidate'? Because he was chosen by Mike, as a conveniently deceased acquaintance, to explain where the diary came from, and was later named by Mike as a co-conspirator in a Barrett hoax when the story changed completely? What else is there to suggest Devereux had anything whatsoever to do with the diary's existence, never mind that he did any of 'the hard work researching or drafting' it?

    What is it about Mike that makes it unlikely that he would have bought an old book in the Saddle, but likely that he would have thought of producing a literary hoax, identifying Maybrick of all people as Jack the Ripper? And how is it known that Anne wasn't 'the least bit suspicious' to see this old book 'with pages cut out and crudely written'? Did she not have a huge row with Mike, confirmed by him and witnessed by their daughter, when he insisted he was going to get it published? What was that all about, if she had spent 11 days, between 31st March and 12th April 1992, transferring the text of the diary into this old book, just so that Mike could make his appointment in London with her handiwork on the 13th? She may have been very suspicious about it, and more than a little worried, not knowing where Mike got it from or what its origins were, and her angry reaction supports that far more than it supports the idea that she was in on it from day one, back before Tony D's death, and was now just itching, by the end of March 1992, to be able to put pen to paper, the moment Mike finally found what they needed at the auction.

    The origin of the diary is genuinely interesting, but I suspect Anne Graham is the only person who can provide all the facts, and she's not going to.
    If she's not going to provide all the facts, it's going to be a bit difficult working out if she actually knows any facts about the diary's origins at all, beyond when she first set eyes on it.

    Love,

    Caz
    X

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  • Al Bundy's Eyes
    replied
    Hi Caz,

    I'm not stating anything as fact there, it's just my opinion, I'm certainly not foisting it upon anyone. I don't think they'd want it anyhow!

    David makes some good points, which got me thinking about other things I've mentioned before, but really, it's a bit of a distraction in the grand scheme of things. I've mentioned my take on Mike's red diary, his transcript which he lied to Scotland Yard about, his T of L book he denied knowledge of, all things that don't bode well for his lack of involvement.

    As for the author of the "diary", if Mike didn't do the hard work researching and drafting, he was still heavily involved. Devereux makes a good candidate, not that there's many to pick from. By the by, the diary's not authentic, the probability is that it was produced shortly before it's appearance in London. I don't buy into Mike being some kind of rube, buying a book in a pub. And even if he did, Anne, who we're told is an intelligent woman, was not in the least bit suspicious that her husband had been ripped off with a "diary" with pages cut out and crudely written? Did he bring home magic beans the week before? Or she believed his mate gave it to him? The origin of the diary is genuinely interesting, but I suspect Anne Graham is the only person who can provide all the facts, and she's not going to. And I know this is an anathema to Ike and Ero, but I've never criticised others for believing in the diary.

    As for David Barrat, you don't have to like him for him to be right. I have alot of respect for the work he puts into his articles. Certainly, I respect him more than he does me, but it's a public platform, he's free to comment. And mutual respect isn't compulsory, nor should it be. There's so many people who's cumulative knowledge if combined could put a definitive answer to the whole saga. My opinions contribute little by comparison.

    But, it's a toxic subject. As such, I'll follow RJ's lead and leave this one to others.

    Leave a comment:


  • caz
    replied
    Originally posted by Al Bundy's Eyes View Post
    Hi Caz, RJ

    I think that although the idea of Mike making a confession had been about for a while, his actions that January probably convinced Anne and Harrison that he wasn't just talking through his hat.
    But how is it known that Shirley knew Mike had sworn this particular affidavit, and also all the details it contained?

    Personally, I think that's why Anne started talking publicly.
    As I said previously, Al, she told her story in July 1994 and it was published in Shirley's paperback, months before 'his actions' in January 1995.

    Maybe the handwriting request is a coincidence, but it ties in with the need to neutralise the affidavit.
    I just told you that Keith decided to ask Anne for it on the spur of the moment, knowing nothing about Mike's affidavit for another two years, so how can you say 'it ties in with the need to neutralise the affidavit'? Whose need?

    If Keith genuinely didn't know or at least hadn't physically seen the affidavit in '95...
    Keith genuinely didn't know.

    Why did Anne and Shirley intentionally keep him in the dark?
    There is no evidence that Shirley was intentionally keeping Keith in the dark. If Anne said anything to her about Mike's latest claims, she was a big girl and could check them out for herself. I just can't see Anne doing that, though, if she knew his claims could be substantiated. Why would she mention them at all?

    The fact is, Shirley's enquiry to the auction house in January 1995, and Kevin Whay's response, show no awareness that Mike's album was now supposedly stuffed with collectable WWI photos or had been sold with a compass. So if Shirley had wind from Anne about the supposed auction, she doesn't appear to have been armed with all the details when contacting O&L. When she finally received a copy of the actual affidavit, in January 1997, she immediately sent O&L his auction description so they could do a fresh search on that basis. What would be the point of repeating the same exercise, if she'd been able to pass on all the details first time round, in 1995?

    Details of the affidavit were discussed on a public radio show in 1995. How did Keith miss this crucial piece of information for two years? Was he totally unaware, or had he just not handled an actual copy until 1997?
    He was totally unaware, although to be fair Mike had made various sworn or signed statements to various effects by then, and I'm not sure how much detail the radio show went into, about this particular statement? Mike asked to take part in the show because he was incensed by the fact that he had heard Evans and Gainey rubbishing the diary as a modern hoax. Ironic, much? They knew about the affidavit, but like Anne, they didn't say anything to Keith about it. If they presumed someone else would have told him, they wouldn't have been the only ones!

    Maybe it's nothing, but I find it odd that Feldman and Anne appear at the C+D with this family history so soon after Mike produces something more substantial than an empty threat.
    But how much more 'substantial' was it, considering it still hasn't proved anything all these years later? What if Anne knew it was all a pack of lies? Feldman didn't need to know about it, to want Anne to appear at the Smoke & Stagger to validate his beliefs, but Anne might well have wanted to support herself in advance of Mike, reaching desperation point, deciding to go public with his false accusations against her.

    The affidavit is constantly ridiculed, but we've not got access to the recordings from the Gray meetings that led to it's formation. Why not destroy the affidavit's claims at the time, if it was so unreliable? But it did mention that little diary. And that was sat on by Anne for long enough, that diary is nothing short of damning for the Barretts.
    Oh dear, you're not under Barrat's spell are you, Al? Have we lost you, or are you still open to alternative interpretations?

    We've not got access to the Barrett & Gray comedy box set because RJ made a mistake and gave his tapes away, and appears to think it's Keith's responsibility to put that mistake right, because he kept hold of his tapes for his own research purposes. If Keith is not considered a reliable source these days, then I can't say I blame him for waiting to see if RJ will make any attempt to retrieve his own tapes, from wherever he sent them.

    I'm wondering just how Anne was meant to 'destroy' the claims made by Mike in that affidavit, even if she knew they were all false? For example, how could she prove he didn't attend any auction at any time under any name, and obtain the ledger used for the diary? How could she prove the little red diary wasn't ordered for the purpose of faking Maybrick's diary?

    How did sitting on it 'for long enough' help her? She had proof of its purchase in May 1992, which was safe enough to admit, as it implied that it was bought too late to have had any sinister purpose. As she had plenty of time to think what she was going to say if asked, why did she then freely admit to Keith that she thought Mike's enquiry had been "pre-Doreen", effectively cancelling out her cunning plan and allowing for Mike's claim to be true, that the red diary was obtained and rejected before the finished product was seen in London on 13th April 1992? That makes no sense, so I assume David Barrat had even longer to come up with his own cunning plan to explain why she made such an admission. There was nothing to prove she had any prior knowledge of Mike's enquiry, or of his original intentions, until that day in May 1992 when he asked her to pay for the diary. She didn't need to say another word about it.

    Love,

    Caz
    X
    Last edited by caz; 09-23-2020, 05:19 PM.

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  • Al Bundy's Eyes
    replied
    Hi Caz, RJ

    I think that although the idea of Mike making a confession had been about for a while, his actions that January probably convinced Anne and Harrison that he wasn't just talking through his hat. I think him behaving erratically, punching glass doors and producing a signed affidavit rattle cages. Personally, I think that's why Anne started talking publicly. Maybe the handwriting request is a coincidence, but it ties in with the need to neutralise the affidavit. Anne has talked about how close she was with Feldman and described him as her 'protector', so I'm suspicious that Feldman didn't know anything. If Keith genuinely didn't know or at least hadn't physically seen the affidavit in '95, then I agree RJ, that poses the question "why?". Why did Anne and Shirley intentionally keep him in the dark? That said, no one had an interest in crowing about Mike's affidavit (other than Mike), so maybe it was looked into? Anne holds all the keys though, and she wisely choose to keep quiet years ago.

    Details of the affidavit were discussed on a public radio show in 1995. How did Keith miss this crucial piece of information for two years? Was he totally unaware, or had he just not handled an actual copy until 1997?

    Maybe it's nothing, but I find it odd that Feldman and Anne appear at the C+D with this family history so soon after Mike produces something more substantial than an empty threat. Maybe I'm suspicious, but one of them had a lucrative film deal in the pipeline, the other, if Battlecrease is now the first choice provenance, a proven liar on a grand scale. They couldn't have been up to no good could they?

    The affidavit is constantly ridiculed, but we've not got access to the recordings from the Gray meetings that led to it's formation. Why not destroy the affidavit's claims at the time, if it was so unreliable? But it did mention that little diary. And that was sat on by Anne for long enough, that diary is nothing short of damning for the Barretts.

    That's enough Muppetry from me on the matter for now.

    Leave a comment:


  • rjpalmer
    replied
    Originally posted by Al Bundy's Eyes View Post
    Well, I think it's safe to put that particular debate to bed. Melvin didn't suppress anything. Anne, Shirley, Feldman and others knew exactly what Mike was planning.
    I'm not entirely sure I read the same article that you did, Al.

    I agree that Caz's recent accusations against Melvin Harris have backfired badly--the true 'suppressor' was the cat allowed among the pigeons, Anne Graham. What I don't think is clear is that "Feldman and others knew exactly what Mike was planning." Mike's initial 'plan' had already happened: he had attempted to apply leverage to Anne by giving her a copy of his affidavit.

    But the key point is that Anne apparently DIDN'T let Feldman and his team to 'know all about it.' There is no direct evidence that she alerted them, and Keith Skinner has denied knowing about the affidavit's existence until some two years later.

    Harrison evidently knew, because she quizzed the O & L auctioneers, however inconclusively. I'm not entirely surprised that Harrison didn't alert Feldman, because she apparently felt that he had an unprofessional way of rushing into things, thus hopelessly muddying the waters--and has said so.

    But if Feldman "knew all about it," as you suggest, why didn't he alert his crack researcher to this fact, and have him look into it? Wouldn't that have been crucial?

    Or are you suggesting that Feldman and Anne and others were deliberately keeping a member of their own team in the dark, knowing he would turn over stones that otherwise wouldn't be turned over?

    That's a question worth asking, perhaps, but maybe also a question best left for the researcher in question to ponder privately, since he was the one who was there at the time, and who knew these people.

    If others are fine with Anne's house of secrets, and merely give it a shrug, there's not much we can do about it but scratch our heads.

    But what it does bring home is the fact that no one on Feldman's team researched Mike's claims until years after-the-fact, when the trail had already grown cold, and yet we have been constantly told that his affidavit has been thoroughly debunked.

    I don't find that satisfactory in the least. The ball is in Anne Graham's court and has been for decades. But she's not talking and there is no way to make her talk.

    End game.


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  • caz
    replied
    I meant to add that if Anne knew the affidavit contained a basic truth, that she and Mike had concocted a hoax for financial gain, she could have done nothing to suppress it, but at least she wasn't obliged to tell anyone about it, or give any details to someone who would naturally have checked them out.

    But if she knew the whole thing was one big lie, designed by the man she had just divorced to get a much desired reaction from her, would that not have been a private matter between the two of them? Would she have wasted a third party's time with it, knowing that if she gave a copy to Shirley, Keith, Feldy or anyone else, they'd be engaged in a fruitless exercise, investigating claims she knew to be totally false?

    Love,

    Caz
    X

    Leave a comment:


  • caz
    replied
    Afternoon Al,

    Would you allow that David Barrat's interpretation of the Barretts' behaviour may be based on a complete lack of interest in what was happening to their personal relationship? When Mike was desperate to talk to Anne and to see his daughter, and Anne was having none of it, do you think the diary would have been uppermost in her mind? Could Mike not have been using it as a bargaining tool, to try and get what he wanted more than anything else in the world? To have his family back and get some peace of mind?

    Keith Skinner tells me that he certainly had no idea of 'what Mike was planning' and doubts very much if Shirley or Feldman knew either. Anne had come out with her new provenance story back in July 1994, and it appeared in Shirley's paperback that autumn, while Mike's affidavit wasn't sworn until January 1995, so I'm not quite sure what you mean by the 'coincidental timing of Anne's public ownership of the provenance'? Keith's request for a sample of Anne's handwriting in January 1995 was only 'bizarre' in that nobody present at the time knew he was going to ask her. Keith didn't know that Anne had already supplied a specimen of her handwriting, and presumes this must have been very early on, probably before Feldman's involvement.

    If Anne knew all Mike's forgery claims were rubbish, they were also both aware that there were - and still are - plenty of people out there, only too ready and willing to believe him, so it wouldn't have been an entirely empty threat, and it may have been all Mike had in his arsenal. In that case the potential damage would have been to Anne's credibility, among a tiny community of JtR enthusiasts and sceptics, and to the Barretts' future financial interests in the diary, neither of which had ever appeared to bother her much, if at all. One might imagine Anne was in a no-win situation, regardless of the truth. Yet she never did give in to Mike's emotional demands to see her and Caroline, which might suggest he had nothing of any real substance over her regarding the diary's origins, and she knew it. With no possibility of fraud charges, with far-reaching consequences for her young daughter's happiness and security, she'd have had no need to give in to Mike's personal threats and entreaties for fear of something worse, and they got him precisely nowhere. All this would seem to be supported by the fact that today, in 2020, nothing has been proved against Anne. Did she know Mike would never really have backed up his threats, with the evidence that they pulled off a hoax together in more harmonious times? Or did she know he never did have any such evidence to begin with?

    Love,

    Caz
    X


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  • Al Bundy's Eyes
    replied
    Interesting read, nice to see some of the events in a clear way. Also, "Silence of the Anne" goes a good way towards explaining why the otherwise shy Anne was out in public from Jan 1995 talking about her family provenance dating back to the 50's. I've stated before that I think it was a knee jerk reaction to Mike's threat, but I've also been told that his affidavit wasn't common knowledge at that time. Well, I think it's safe to put that particular debate to bed. Melvin didn't suppress anything. Anne, Shirley, Feldman and others knew exactly what Mike was planning.

    Ok, I'll concede, it doesn't make Mike's affidavit 100% factually correct, but it does lead one to wonder about the coincidental timing of Anne's public ownership of the provenance, and of the otherwise bizarre request for a sample of her handwriting. They were well and truly trying to head off Mike at the pass.

    The article lives here:
    https://www.orsam.co.uk/silenceoftheann.htm
    Last edited by Al Bundy's Eyes; 09-22-2020, 03:23 PM. Reason: Addition of link

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  • rjpalmer
    replied
    Just a brief comment.

    The revelation that Graham received a copy of Barrett's sworn affidavit in January 1995--and didn't say anything about it to Feldman’s team--is quite provocative, though unless someone has followed the ins-and-outs of the saga, it might pass unnoticed.

    I have felt for years that Barrett's confession and threats of confession were a way to apply leverage--blackmail, if you prefer--to those that he believed, no matter how fairly or erroneously, were not giving him his due royalties.

    But Orsam theorizes, with good reason, that Mike's initial target was Anne Graham.

    Of course, the mere fact that a man confesses, or threatens to confess, is not in itself evidence that he is telling the truth. But most intelligent people can appreciate that blackmail is going to be a hell of a lot more effective if the dirt the blackmailer claims to possess is true--particularly if his intended target is in a position to know whether or not it is true.

    Obviously, Graham was in such a position. If Barrett’s affidavit was a plate of pork pies, she would know it.

    Yet, even though she was working closely with Feldman and Feldman's team for the next 2-3 years, she at no time alerted them to the impeding threat of Barrett’s affidavit?

    Even if she knew Mike's affidavit was utter poppycock...

    No. Let me rephrase that.

    Especially if she knew Mike's affidavit was utter poppycock, why wouldn't she have alerted Feldman’s 'team' to Barrett's intentions, so they could investigate his claims and thus be in a position to defend their project against his allegedly 'false' (?) attack? Certainly, it would have been extremely important to share this information, if only so that Feldman and his researchers could anticipate and ward-off the damage it might do?

    Yet she evidently kept it a secret?

    Strange behavior, and remarkable.

    But, ultimately, friendships are more important than hoaxes. Maybe Skinner and Graham should work this one out between the two of them? Maybe Graham can even finally explain what was really going on?


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  • Abby Normal
    replied
    Just getting into Lord Orsams latest-amazing stuff as usual and must read for anyone interested in the details, origins and motivations of the people involved with forging of the diary. Just finished the Silence of the Anne, Anne and Keith in a Tree and The new Cult of Diary Denial (not only didnt the barretts not forge the diary-its not even a diary! LOL).
    The real bombshell though is in the Silence of the Anne.

    just wow.
    Last edited by Abby Normal; 09-21-2020, 03:53 PM.

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  • MrBarnett
    replied
    These days a ‘diary defender’ is anyone who questions any aspect of the diary detractors’ dogma.

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  • Scott Nelson
    replied
    One other guy from years ago when the Diary Threads were in their heyday...Peter Wood, an ex-cop from Manchester. Passionate about the Diary's authenticity, but a really loopy poster.

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  • Scott Nelson
    replied
    Just as an aside, can anyone name the "diary defenders"? I can think only of erobitha and Ike.

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