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  • The Stephen Knight Zone.

    I have two reasons for creating this thread. Firstly as an attempt to focus any discussion of the Knight/Sickert Theory which has tended to spill out onto other threads and has become a distraction to posters discussing other topics. Secondly, it’s an attempt to give an opportunity for any doubts to be discussed or defended. Previously I’ve raised issues that we are all aware of regarding the story. It has been stated that these issues can be overcome and that previous rebuttals can themselves be rebutted. To date no rebuttals have been posted though. Questions have been avoided and the subject has been changed. This is an opportunity for those points to be made and evidence presented for discussion. Whether this will happen is another matter of course. I’ll list the points numerically for ease of response.
    1. A connection between Sickert’s family and the Danish Royal Family has been suggested as the reason why Princess Alexandra entrusted part of her son’s education to Walter Sickert. The problem is that there appears to be no evidence of this ‘connection.’ Sickert’s grandfather Johann Jürgen was a decorative painter who, according to Sickert himself, was employed by the Royal Palaces of Christian VIII of Denmark. The Danish Royal Archives have no record of this employment though so this appears to be a baseless claim. And with droves of established artists who would no doubt have been falling over themselves to ingratiate themselves with the a Royal Family we have to ask.....why Sickert? At the time of the murders Sickert was not only an unknown but he was also a part of an art movement (under Whistler) that was roundly rejected by the art establishment.
    2. We know the story of Annie being a Catholic and that she and Eddy allegedly went through a Catholic wedding ceremony but, in the St. Marylebone Workhouse Creed Register Annie and her daughter Alice Margaret are listed as Church Of England. (From the research of Simon Wood)
    3. The Knight story has Annie living at 6 Cleveland Street but between 1886 and early 1888 no’s 4 to 14 were demolished and replaced by a red brick block of flats called Cleveland Residences which are still there today. (From the research of Simon Wood)
    4. To make things ‘fit’ Knight claims that Annie Elizabeth Crook and Elizabeth Cook were one and the same person but the Rate Books show that Elizabeth continued to live at Cleveland Residences until 1893 so they were very obviously two different people and entirely unconnected. Further proof are the admission forms to the Endell Street Workhouse of January 22nd 1889 when Annie and her daughter were admitted. She was destitute but had been living at No. 9 Pitt Street, Tottenham Court Road. At the same time that Cook was living at Cleveland Residences.(From the research of Simon Wood)
    5. On Sickerts alleged studio at number 15 Cleveland Street. In 1886 numbers 15 and 17 were demolished for the building of the Middlesex Hospital Trained Nurses Institute. (From the research of Simon Wood.) It has been suggested, in defence of Knight, that Sickert had many studios and that this is a minor error. The problem is that Joseph was very specific in giving the address as number 15. At the time of the murders Sickert was close to penniless and almost completely reliant on his wife’s allowance to live and work. Sickert’s habit of regularly changing studios didn’t begin until the late 1890’s. We have documented records of Sickert’s many studios and Cleveland Street is never mentioned. The nearest was Fitzroy Square but he didn’t acquire that one until 1898.
    6. Knight states “The St. George’s Club ran a hospital at 367 Fulham Road, where Annie Elizabeth Crook died. This new evidence indicates how the Freemason’s in charge of the cover-up could have handled the incarceration of Annie Elizabeth.” This address was actually the Fulham Road Workhouse. (From the research of Simon Wood)
    7. Knight obvious puts Annie’s decline down to Gull’s operation (and let’s not forget that Gull was a Physician and not a Surgeon) but as we know (again from Simon Wood’s research) Annie’s mother Sarah Anne suffered from epilepsy so a more likely explanation is that Elizabeth inherited the illness.
    8. Why would these conspirators have no issue with butchering 5 women purely because they might have known something inconvenient to the Monarchy and yet they leave the cause of these problems, Annie Crook, alive? Why didn’t they simply kill her too? This makes no sense.
    9. The alleged words of Florence Pash have been cited as corroboration for the story but we have no such actual words. We have a story allegedly told by Pash to Violet Overton-Fuller who in turn told her daughter Jean. Hardly cast-iron is it? It’s also strange that Violet Overton-Fuller edited a compilation of Sickert’s letters to Pash because “ having read so much about Sickert......[Florence] did not think that his unfailing kindness and gaiety of heart had been sufficiently emphasised.” These letters dated from 1890 until 1922 and contained notes from Pash herself. Rather surprisingly she forgets to mention that Sickert was Jack the Ripper. How careless of her!
    10. Why would the Monarchy be concerned about some alleged marriage between Eddy and Annie when they knew that this marriage was null and void under The Royal Marriages Act? Eddy needed Victoria’s consent. Would any Vicar have refused to have kept silent if he’d been told to “forget” that the marriage ceremony ever happened? Of course not.
    11. All of the evidence shows that the women were killed where they were found. This is what those investigating the crime scenes at the time believed and today we have no evidence otherwise except for those that doubt whether the killer of Eddowes would have been able to have done what he did under those conditions and in the time available. No one reported seeing or hearing a posh horse and carriage in the slums of Whitechapel and we have to assume that it would have to have been left near to the crime scenes as it’s even harder to imagine two men carrying a mutilated corpse through the streets.
    12. Would the Government have been driven to such drastic measures by a gaggle of prostitutes peddling a fantastic story? Let’s face it, Eddy’s father Bertie was a philander of Olympian standards. His affairs were common knowledge and yet there was no question of him not becoming King. Would the respectable newspapers have published this scandalous story? The establishment would have closed ranks.
    13. Where did this story originate? A secret marriage, a secret ‘Royal’ baby and a potential cover-up by the Establishment? A very plausible possible source for this story can be read in Simon’s ‘Deconstructing Jack’ in the chapter headed titled The Malta Story. It’s too long for me to relate here though.


    There’s more of course but I’ll leave it at that. The opportunity is here for any of these points, and others, to be debated or disputed if anyone feels inclined to do so. It’s not good enough to simply propose a theory and then to respond to criticism by saying things like “people don’t understand the complexity of the Knight theory,” or “ doubters just haven’t done the necessary research.” This research has been done and it’s a hats off to Simon for doing the original research which exposed the falsehoods. I still find it an interesting story though and like Paul Begg I’d love to know for certain how it originated and grew. I fear that it’s too late for that though but who knows what might turn up? There’s one thing that we can be certain of though....this is simply not the solution to the case. Can anyone name another theory that has so many provable falsehood’s propping it up.



    So know is the chance for ‘evidence’ to be presented. For the alleged ‘rebuttals’ to be presented. I’m not exactly holding my breath to be honest but I’m willing to discus them.




    Regards

    Herlock






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

  • #2

    Simon Wood’s invaluable 1987 Bloodhound article.
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    • #3
      Click image for larger version

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      • #4
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        • #5
          Thanks for that Jonathan. I’d never seen Simon’s article in full.
          Regards

          Herlock






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

          Comment


          • #6
            Hasn't it also been established that Prince Eddy was not in Britain when Annie Elizabeth Crook's daughter was conceived?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Fiver View Post
              Hasn't it also been established that Prince Eddy was not in Britain when Annie Elizabeth Crook's daughter was conceived?
              ... he must have had a good aim
              Kind regards, Sam Flynn

              "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Sam Flynn View Post

                ... he must have had a good aim
                Used a turkey baster.

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                • #9
                  I haven’t read all the postings but is there anything there pertaining to the recent discoveries related to Captain Verney (MJK’s Gentleman?!) who is linked to Sickert through Mrs. Cobden-Sickert’s working with Lady Verney and Florence Nightingale? As distractions go, it’s one of the best. I think Knight and Gorman missed the boat to France on this one.

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                  • #10
                    As far as Sickert’s father’s and grandfather’s connections to the Danish Court go, they are perhaps undocumented. A cursory search online seems to show that the connections, the grandfather painting palace decorations and the father receiving a stipend for his (the father’s) education, are based on Walter Sickert’s autobiography?

                    Both the father and grandfather were Danish subjects, and artists. It’s very possible that they were employed or supported by the court in some way.
                    It’s possible to find out, but it seems so insignificant. Even if there were connections, by 1858 they ceased since the father moved abroad. And various contacts to a royal or noble house were how artists supported themselves in those days. It would not have been unusual at all. As I understand it, there’s no actual evidence that Walter Sickert was entrusted with the princely education, making it all moot anyway.

                    But if someone’s actually checked it out, a reference to the relevant publication would be handy, and I could doublecheck in the Danish national archives.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Kattrup View Post
                      As far as Sickert's... connections to the Danish Court go, they are perhaps undocumented.
                      Perhaps there was a Danis Royal Conspiracy to suppress the evidence
                      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

                      "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

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                      • #12
                        Sounds familiar.
                        Attached Files
                        My name is Dave. You cannot reach me through Debs email account

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Kattrup View Post
                          As far as Sickert’s father’s and grandfather’s connections to the Danish Court go, they are perhaps undocumented. A cursory search online seems to show that the connections, the grandfather painting palace decorations and the father receiving a stipend for his (the father’s) education, are based on Walter Sickert’s autobiography?

                          Both the father and grandfather were Danish subjects, and artists. It’s very possible that they were employed or supported by the court in some way.
                          It’s possible to find out, but it seems so insignificant. Even if there were connections, by 1858 they ceased since the father moved abroad. And various contacts to a royal or noble house were how artists supported themselves in those days. It would not have been unusual at all. As I understand it, there’s no actual evidence that Walter Sickert was entrusted with the princely education, making it all moot anyway.

                          But if someone’s actually checked it out, a reference to the relevant publication would be handy, and I could doublecheck in the Danish national archives.
                          I don’t have the Sturgis book with me at the moment Kattrup but the impression that I got is that the Royal Archives had been checked and that the Danish Royal Family could find no evidence of Sickert’s Grandfather ever working for them. Sickert grew up in a household where money was really tight as his father barely made a living so it’s difficult to see how he could have done any work for the Monarchy either without it being mentioned as a big deal. But, as you said, there really is zero evidence that Walter would have been chosen by Princess Alexandra who, in all likelihood, wouldn’t have even heard of the struggling, unknown artist. If she had wanted an artist to take Eddy under his wing and introduce him to the world of art and culture a disciple of Whistler certainly wouldn’t have been recommended by advisors. Eyebrows would have been raised and Queen Vic certainly would not have been amused.
                          Regards

                          Herlock






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

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Why would the Crook family living at Churchtown in Gloucestershire,hint at a Royal connection. Wa s there a connection between that family and Annie Elizabeth Crook?

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                            • #15
                              There is something very compelling about the Royal Conspiracy Theory, it has all the elements of a great dramatic story, not unlike Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code. And it does make some sense as a theory, though as we now know thanks to research by Simon Wood, the details are not accurate to the point we know that the theory as presented is not valid.

                              If I were to play devil's advocate, I might wonder whether chinese whispers had any influence on how the details were changed over time before becoming public. If that was the case, is there some part of the story which is based on actual events and rather than dismiss and move on, is there any merit in critically assessing to potentially find a truth hidden in the story?

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