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boston herald

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  • boston herald

    Anybody familiar with this?

    Here's the accompanying blurb,

    Most of the Jack The Ripper newspapers you come across on ebay are mere secondhand or thirdhand reports, of no new historical importance or shedding no new light into what we already know. This is true of all the London newspapers, which have been read and studied over and over again, their contents posted all over the internet. This issue, though, is quite different. It is the Nov 10, 1888 issue of the Boston Herald. At that time, the Herald had its own London correspondent, who lived over there and reported news by cable to the Boston headquarters. And, it so happens that this correspondent was covering the case, and was present the morning that Mary Jane Kelly was found. His story, The Deed Of A Devil, stretches across 2 front page columns of the paper, as he reports on the awful discovery of Mary Jane Kelly's body that morning as he is describes in the grisliest of details the condition of her body in the room, and even interviews one of her friends, "Mary Jane's Pal," as she called herself, shedding some light as to how Mary Jane lived, and even her actual age at the time. He begins by letting Americans know how squalid the conditions were on Dorset street in London then, especially to American eyes, stating that "Misery is written all over the place, the worst kind of London misery, such as those who have lived their lives in America can have no idea of." His report begins with eyewitness reports placing Mary Jane, called "Fair Emma", at a bar in Commercial Street at 11:30 the previous evening. At midnight, she was seen heading to her room in the company of "an unknown man" by two men sitting on a stoop near Miller Court. The men recognized a laugh as Mary Jane's- laughing, so the report states, at a Wanted Poster for the Whitechapel Murderer placed near Dorset St. Those men, interviewed by this writer, could only later say that "he did not look remarkable." The report resumes at 10:00 the next morning, right after the murder, as he describes McCarthy, who was on his way to her room to ask her for back rent money, peering into her window and discovering Mary Jane dead. 3 policeman, after taking large glasses of brandy, knocked down the door with a pickaxe, and discovered the remains about the little room. "Though not an imaginative man, the report continues, "McCarthy at once expressed the conviction that a devil, no a man, had been at work." The description of her body parts strewn about the room is next, with the police taking nearly an hour to reconstruct her body from the pieces, "so as to place it in a coffin and have it photographed." He saw her in that room, as his descriptions are too accurate to have learned of them secondhand, there is no doubt of that. He evens warns the reader that "what he is about to say is horrifying, but necessary to write." The reporter then follows the police to the morgue, where he describes the scene there: "the poor women's fragments, put together as skillfully as possible, are lying in the Houndsditch mortuary, in a scratched and dirty shell of a coffin, often used before. The mortuary is in a graveyard back of gloomy old Houndsditch Church." Earlier, when the body was finally removed from Mary Jane's room, "Thousands crowded as near the police would allow- such a degraded Whitechapel throng. Those with any money were getting drunk pretty fast.The drunkenness of the poor in London is amazing. Many sober women and all the drunken ones were crying from terror, while the men lounged about, singing or fighting, and chaffing the women, according to their ideas of humor." He then interviewed Mary Jane's friend, simply known as "Mary" in this report. The two "were good friends, but quarrelsome." Mary lived directly across from Mary Jane in the same house. Mary told the reported that Mary Jane "was pretty before she was cut up," and her actual age was 24, not 30 as had been speculated. He even went into Mary's room next to Mary Jane's: "I was invited to inspect Mary Jane's room as evidence of the fact that her taste was superior to the murdered Mary Jane's. It was about as big as a horse car." He spent an hour in that room, as the girl drank a quart of beer brought to her by a little red haired girl, and told tales of her friendship with Mary Jane. The descriptions of the conditions of the room are unsettling to be sure. The girl bade him good-bye drunkenly crying about her friend, and swearing she would "never go out into the streets to make a living again." The little red haired girl told the reporter that she had positively heard Mary Jane singing the song "Sweet Violets" at 1:00 the previous evening. The rest of the report goes on to talk in generalities about the murder and murderer, a couple more paragraphs. This is really one of the most useful Ripper newspapers around folks, a very rare item to be sure, and in superb condition!
    aka drstrange

    "Whenever an expert says something that bolsters the Lechmere theory, it is not my task to disprove him ..."