No announcement yet.

Albert Backert at the Frances Coles inquest and a sighting

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #31
    Hi Chris

    This was in the next day's Western Mail. I had a quick look through Lloyd's for Oct 12th, and Bachert, of course, managed to be mentioned in it, but I could not find an interview with a lady.
    Attached Files


    • #32
      I bet that by the next calender year we will see a "Albert Backert was Jack" book on the market!!
      Regards Mike


      • #33
        Robert, Chris
        Lloyd's weekly of Sun Oct 19 1890 has quite a few letters from people relating to the Bachert's lodger story. There are letters from the landlady and one supposedly from the lodger himself, the Captain, all printed on the same page. Don't know if you have come across them on your travels.


        • #34
          Hi Debs, Mike and Robert
          many thanks for the feedback
          I have found the article which is a rebuttal of the Backert claims and included a letter from the "lodger" himself, a man from Ipswich
          This is still not the end of the trail as the Lloyds article refers to an earlier article "of last week" (i.e. Oct 12 1890)
          I found this interesting in that it is rare to be able to trace a story of this kind through in as as much detail

          Lloyds Weekly
          19 October 1890

          "JACK THE RIPPER"

          Following close on the publication of certain threatening letters alleged to have been sent by "Jack the Ripper," came last week a circumstantial story of the most extraordinary character from the chairman of the so called "Vigilance Committee" of Whitechapel. The statements contained in it pointed to a direct clue to the Whitechapel murderer, and were said to have been made by a woman. Further inquiry by reporters brought out apparent confirmations of a still more startling character. These were worked up in certain directions with an amount of gruesome detail and ghastly horror that left little to the imagination. On sending a representative of Lloyd's to make independent inquiries into the matter, Mr Backert could not be found, and from the account of an interview which appeared in the Evening News, he was not aware of either the name or address of the woman who made the statement. Even the initial was unknown to him, for when the pressman said, "Give me her name or I'll find her out," Mr Backert replied,
          "The name is Newcome or Newcomb, but I'm not sure. I think it began with an N."
          "Nicholson, Nelson, Newman, Newton, Ner_"
          "She didn't want her name published."
          Researches in another quarter, however, ultimately led our representative in the right direction, and on finding the woman, she told a very different story to that sent to the papers by Mr Backert. It was given at length in a large portion of our special edition of last week; and went to show that a simple tale of feminine fright had been magnified into a sensational horror. Notwithstanding this Mr Backert sought to defend his conduct in the following letter, which appeared in the Morning Chronicle:-
          Several newspapers have attempted to throw some doubt upon the statement which was sent to you on Friday concerning the woman who called at my place and made the statement. From the information I supplied to a Lloyd's News reporter he was able to trace the woman and get a statement from her. I swear positively that every mentioned in my letter was said by her although I notice in the newspapers this morning that several passages have been contradicted - in fact, the woman appeared so upset that I firmly believe she does not now remember what she really did say. I may add that the report which appeared in the Star on Saturday is entirely untrue. The conversation I had with the reporter was not at all as reported. There were two gentlemen present (Mr Long and Mr Copleston) who will swear that what appeared in the Star concerning what I was supposed to have said is not true. I never stated that I wished notoriety - in fact I have always shunned it; and in reference to the murders I have all along endeavoured to trace the murderer and have been assisted by many others who elected me as their leader and chairman. The names of many of these men can be given if required. In justice to myself and others whop have helped us, I trust you will insert this note in your next issue.
          I remain, yours faithfully,
          Albert Backert, 13 Newnham Street, Whitechapel
          Oct. 12.
          We may tell the chairman of the Vigilance committee that he is altogether mistaken in supposing that he gave our representative the clue.

          On Friday the following communication, which throws an interesting light on the story of the latest scare, came to us from Ipswich:-
          To the Editor of Lloyd's News
          Dear Sir,
          I have just had my attention drawn to the paragraph in your issue of the 12th inst., containing the account of the interview of your reporter with my ex charwoman at ____ Square, Mrs _____ ; also a copy of Mr Backert's letter to the Daily Chronicle, giving his version of an interview with the same informant. I am the "Captain" referred to, and I wish to thank you for the sensible and able manner in which you have investigated the matter.
          The information given by Mrs _____ to your reporter is straightforward and correct in almost every detail. My memory, however, in one respect, does not serve me well; for I do not recall as clearly as she appears to my movements at the time of the murders, with the exception of the occasion of the last one, which occurred while I was spending a fortnight with friends in Kent.
          I am quite aware that the various coincidences were so remarkable as to furnish Mrs _____ with reasonable ground for suspicion, especially as on one occasion to which she refers, I was suffering from an acute attack of cystitis, for which I was treated for about a fortnight as an in patient at University College hospital.
          With regard to Mr Backert's letter, I am certainly of opinion, after reading Mrs _____'s straightforward and temperate statement to your reporter, that, as your paper remarks, "there was nothing to justify the heated and exaggerated letter he sat down to write."
          I enclose a copy of a letter which I am sending to Mr Backert, and of which, as well as of this, you are at perfect liberty to make any use you please.
          Enclosed you will find my card; but you will of course understand that I do not wish my name in full to be brought before the public.
          I remain, your obedient servant,

          Ipswich Oct. 16, 1890.
          I have just seen two reports of certain information supplied by an ex charwoman, Mrs _____, formerly of _____ Square, E., in one case to yourself, in the other to a reporter from Lloyd's Paper with regard to the so called Jack the Ripper murders. May I suggest that you might have shown more wisdom had you communicated the information unobtrusively to the police instead of rushing into print with a slipshod and highly embellished version of what was evidently intended to be, and was in almost all particulars, a truthful statement by an honest though ignorant woman; for by the former method of procedure you would have put the matter into the hands of experts, and you would have avoided not only the trouble and excitement caused by your letter, but the possibility of having to answer for your unjustifiable conduct. I enclose my card, but trust that you will have sufficient discretion to understand that my name is not for publication.
          I remain, sir, your faithfully,

          Last night we received a letter from the woman herself - too long for publication - in which she says of Mr Backert:-
          "I solemnly declare I was only two minutes in this man's company... but I was about half an hour in his sister's company... He describes me as a nervous woman - how, then, could I lodge such a man? I can assure you, sir, that I was not so nervous as not to remember what I told him. In the first place I had only two rooms - one leading out of the other. I now declare I never let a furnished room, and never on oath did I tell this man such a story. He has injured me a great deal. Why did he not send his sister for a policeman? He says he had not time; but he found time to sit down and write to the paper. A more cruel attack against a defenceless woman was never read."
          The poor woman is afraid she will be called "Jack the Ripper's landlady." This need not be if she will only keep her own counsel. We have refrained from printing her name or address, and so far as we are aware, it is unknown to Mr Backert to this hour. In the public interest, as well as that of the parties concerned, silence is best; but the Vigilance chairman - we do not hear of any committee - does not appear to be of this opinion. Not satisfied with the unwarrantable publication of the mass of hysterical nonsense of last week, he appeared at Lloyd's office last night, showing a letter bearing the postmark "Low Hill, Liverpool," which ran as follows:-
          "Dear Boss,
          I am sorry for troubling you, but, since my last epistle, I have altered my mind as regards Hackney, London, and intend to do a bit in Liverpool for a short time in the vicinity of Hanover Square. I am already billeted here as you will see by the postmark. I intend to give the Liverpool police the chance of their skill this time.
          Jack the Ripper."
          In giving publicity to this letter we must state that we do not attach the smallest importance to it. The police authorities say that threatening letters have become so common that they are convinced they are designedly written for mere wantonness or to create a scare. A "vigilance committee," if it be of the slightest public good, should discountenance sensational excitement.
          Let Mr Backert, instead of rushing into print, quietly hand over any letters he may receive to the police, and he will be acting far more wisely than he has done in the past.


          • #35
            The still unfound previous article in Lloyds is the one referred to in:

            Researches in another quarter, however, ultimately led our representative in the right direction, and on finding the woman, she told a very different story to that sent to the papers by Mr Backert. It was given at length in a large portion of our special edition of last week; and went to show that a simple tale of feminine fright had been magnified into a sensational horror.

            I have looked through the whole list of contents of the issue of Oct 12 1890 and there is an article about the Ripper but contains no details about the woman and her story


            • #36
              Well done, Chris and Debs. It's strange that someone who can only be described as a JTR celebrity should have died apparently unknown. The idea of Bachert sinking into obscurity seems a contradiction in terms!


              • #37
                Hi Robert
                I agree - our Albert hardly seems the sort to go quietly!
                He may have adopted the name Becker (the one under which he is listed in 1901) permanently
                He may have adopted another name completely
                He may have finally decided to emigrate as he was apparently thinking of doing in 1893
                It's hard to speculate a possible window for his death if he stayed in the UK. He is listed in 1901 as 26 years of age but he was actually about 41.
                I have also not found any ibdication that he ever married