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A couple more dismemberment murders

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  • A couple more dismemberment murders

    In a few newspaper articles about the Whitehall torso case, some compared it to the "Wainwright murder". This was apparently a case from 1875 where a couple were found with a dismembered corpse in a cab, also known as the Whitechapel Road murder. Here is a site compiled from contemporary Times reports;

    http://www.victorianlondon.org/crime/harrietlane.htm

    And a full account of the trial;
    http://www.oldbaileyonline.org/brows...iv=t18751122-1

    At the time, this was described as "a brutal murder of the Greenacre type", another case I'd not heard of. This was from 1837 apparently;

    http://archive.spectator.co.uk/artic...-murder-of-han

    And the Old Bailey transcript;
    http://www.oldbaileyonline.org/brows...=t18370403-917

    Hopefully these are of some interest.

  • #2
    Hi, Joshua.

    A most interesting find, indeed.
    I saw this was mentioned last month in the Torso Murders thread on here but I didnt follow it up.
    These appear to be very detailed accounts and have provided me with a worthwhile activity this evening.
    Thank you.

    Yours, Caligo.
    https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/flag_uk.gif "I know why the sun never sets on the British Empire: God wouldn't trust an Englishman in the dark."

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    • #3
      Thanks Josh.
      G U T

      There are two ways to be fooled, one is to believe what isn't true, the other is to refuse to believe that which is true.

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      • #4
        Cheers Joshua

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        • #5
          JR,

          Thanks for starting a Wainwright thread! Henry Wainwright is the perfect example of the guy next door that you thought would never commit a horrible crime.

          There is a lot of information to share about this case. I will be brief in this first post. Of course first off, for those unfamiliar with the case, Henry Wainwright was known as the "Whitechapel Murderer" after killing Harriet Lane and burying her remains under the floor boards of their Whitechapel brush-making business. Henry's brother, Thomas, aided in dismemberment of the body, exactly one year later, and was helping Henry move the body parts to his [Thomas'] warehouse in Southwark called the Hen and Chickens where Thomas worked as an Ironmonger. Henry had recruited a young woman to go with him in a cab from Whitechapel to Southwark and it was upon arrival at the Hen and Chickens that they were arrested and found to possess the body of Harriet Lane. Henry was hanged for the murder and Thomas was sentenced to 7 years as an accessory. Thomas served 6 of the 7 years in Portland Gaol and was released in 1881. During the whole of this time, another brother, William, carried on the family brush-making business in Whitechapel. The business eventually moved to Great Gardens Street in Whitechapel Road. The original premises was next to the Pavillion Theatre, a short distance from Buck's Row on Whitechapel Road. The Great Gardens location was a few blocks to the west of this original location.

          Superintendent Arnold had this to say about Thomas Wainright.

          The Eastern Post & City Chronicle
          Saturday, 3 February 1893


          Yes. The Wainwright murder was a terrible affair. I shall never forget my introduction to Harry Wainwright, who was subsequently executed for the murder. I was called one night with the cry that the Pavilion was alight. It turned out to be Wainwright's warehouse next door to the Pavilion. I had a long chat with Wainwright afterwards. He impressed me as being about the last man on earth who was likely to do the deed of which he was afterwards convicted, and yet, according to the evidence subsequently brought forward, at the time I was talking to him, the mutilated and lime-burnt body of poor Harriet Lane must have been lying in the shop opposite - little more than 20 yards away. I was almost inclined to share in the opinion expressed by a good many people - that Harry was innocent of the crime - and that opinion is to a certain extent supported by the story I heard only the other day (I know not on what authority) that Tom, who was sent to prison and afterwards went abroad, has recently died and made a confession that he was the murderer.

          Brother William had a sad end as well. In late September, 1892, William Wainwright boarded a train of the North London Railway heading to Dalston. Upon arrival he was found dead on the floor of the first class carriage with a bullet to the head. His death was recorded as a suicide. At the time, William Wainwright was 53 years old and living in Bow on Addington Road. He was a member of the Whitechapel Board of Works, a church warden and a past master at a well-known Masonic lodge. Some speculate that William may have had a hand in the murder of Harriet Lane also. His suicide was later attributed to family problems and drinking.

          Researching awhile back I found these two articles relating to the Whitehall torso.

          Freemans Journal and Daily Commercial Advertiser
          6 October, 1888


          Facts have come to light which place the Whitehall murder more clearly on all fours with the Wainwright murder of thirteen years ago.

          Star 6 October, 1888

          The date on which the body was placed in the underground recess is a matter of great importance. If placed there before or on Saturday, the fact would seem to indicate that the removal was a necessity before quarter day. The removal of Harriet Lane's body by Wainwright was due to the fact that he was about to give up the tenancy of the house wherein the body had up till then remained.
          Last edited by jerryd; 07-16-2016, 08:52 PM.

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          • #6
            Picture of Thomas

            Gary Barnett found a prison mugshot of Thomas Wainwright.

            http://www.jtrforums.com/showthread....ght=wainwright (post #2)

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            • #7
              I wrote an article in THE RIPPEROLOGIST a decade ago called "What Wainwright Wroth" about the Whitechapel Road Case. I suggested that the notoriety the murder of Harriet Lane gave to Whitechapel due to it being the site of a dismemberment murder might have registered the locale into the mind of the future Ripper, but it was just a suggestion.

              By the way, some families have little luck at all. Henry had two brothers, William (the oldest) and Thomas (who, unfortunately, decided to assist Henry in deceiving Harriet and in later hiding the corpse to some extent). Because of his assistance to Henry (who was hanged) Thomas went to prison for many years. At the time I wrote the article I did not really look closely into the fate of the older brother William, and only a year ago I discovered that he did not escape the family misfortune. In the late 1880s William's married life began to crumble, and in 1890 his wife left him. He tried a reconciliation, but he did not succeed. There was a report of his suicide (by poison) in a railway train in 1890.

              Jeff
              Last edited by Mayerling; 07-17-2016, 07:45 AM.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Mayerling View Post
                I wrote an article in THE RIPPEROLOGIST a decade ago called "What Wainwright Wroth" about the Whitechapel Road Case. I suggested that the notoriety the murder of Harriet Lane gave to Whitechapel due to it being the site of a dismemberment murder might have registered the locale into the mind of the future Ripper, but it was just a suggestion.

                By the way, some families have little luck at all. Henry had two brothers, William (the oldest) and Thomas (who, unfortunately, decided to assist Henry in deceiving Harriet and in later hiding the corpse to some extent). Because of his assistance to Henry (who was hanged) Thomas went to prison for many years. At the time I wrote the article I did not really look closely into the fate of the older brother William, and only a year ago I discovered that he did not escape the family misfortune. In the late 1880s William's married life began to crumble, and in 1890 his wife left him. He tried a reconciliation, but he did not succeed. There was a report of his suicide (by poison) in a railway train in 1890.

                Jeff
                Hi Jeff,

                To add to the bad luck I found this some time ago.

                London Evening News And Post October 4, 1892

                An East End Suicide

                A Late Employee of Wainwright Ends His Life
                by Cutting His Throat


                An evil fate would seem to pursue the Wainwright family, and even those connected with it. Henry Wainwright was hanged for the murder of Harriet Lane 17 years ago. Last week his brother, William Wainwright, blew out his brains in a railway carriage. This morning it transpired that a man, named Bernard G. Terry, residing at 10, Bradwell-street, Mile End, who, until recently, was employed by the latter, has committed suicide by cutting his throat. The deceased, it is stated, was in receipt of a small allowance from Mr. Wainwright, and it is conjectured that the loss of this, as well as the death of his old employer, so preyed upon his mind as to lead him to commit the deed.
                Mr. Wm. Wainwright's funeral took place yesterday, and was attended by several hundred people.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by jerryd View Post
                  Hi Jeff,

                  To add to the bad luck I found this some time ago.

                  London Evening News And Post October 4, 1892

                  An East End Suicide

                  A Late Employee of Wainwright Ends His Life
                  by Cutting His Throat


                  An evil fate would seem to pursue the Wainwright family, and even those connected with it. Henry Wainwright was hanged for the murder of Harriet Lane 17 years ago. Last week his brother, William Wainwright, blew out his brains in a railway carriage. This morning it transpired that a man, named Bernard G. Terry, residing at 10, Bradwell-street, Mile End, who, until recently, was employed by the latter, has committed suicide by cutting his throat. The deceased, it is stated, was in receipt of a small allowance from Mr. Wainwright, and it is conjectured that the loss of this, as well as the death of his old employer, so preyed upon his mind as to lead him to commit the deed.
                  Mr. Wm. Wainwright's funeral took place yesterday, and was attended by several hundred people.
                  Thanks Jerryd, and also for correcting the date of William's death as in 1892, not 1890, and the suicide being by gun, not poison.

                  The only one who benefitted (if at all) from this tragedy was another employee of Henry Wainwright named Alfred Stokes. He had stumbled onto the fate of Harriet Lane when Wainwright left "packages" with Stokes (who had been just walking by the place Wainwright was standing at) and went to get the carriage to transport the "packages" to another spot (Wainwright had buried the remains of Ms Lane in his old warehouse, but the new owners were going to be moving in and renovating, so he dug up the remains and put them into the packages for easy removal).
                  While Wainwright got a hansom cab, Stokes looked at the packages, and out of curiosity opened one and saw a severed body part. He closed the package, and Wainwright returned with the carriage. They put the packages into the cab, Stokes remaining silent, and then Henry noticed a female friend on the street and offered her a ride. She joined in the cab! After it left, Stokes decided he had to stop Wainwright (Stokes seems to have been slow on the digesting of obvious information). He started what would be a two or three mile chase through London traffic, across a bridge, and then to the other side of the Thames. Several times he tried to get police assistance, but the bobbies thought he was nuts or playing a prank.
                  Finally he reached the other side of the river and found the cab with the lady friend still inside, as well as some of the packages (Wainwright having entered another building where he planned to bury the body parts again). At this point, fortunately, Stokes managed to get the attention of a more intelligent constable than before, and this constable happened to stop Wainwright and inquire what he was transporting. Instead of having a packgage that was set up to reassure such inquiries, Wainwright tried to brazen it out with the officer. The officer got more inquisitive and began to unravel a package. Wainwright now panicked and tried to get the offier to forget the whole thing for a bribe (he went as high as 50 pounds, a small fortune at the time for most people). The officer had opened the package (in front of Stokes and the woman passenger), and Wainwright was arrested. So, unfortunately, was his female companion, but later they realized she was an innocent bystander and released her.

                  For chasing Wainwright and helping catch him, Stokes got a nice reward from the Court by order of the judge.

                  Jeff
                  Last edited by Mayerling; 07-17-2016, 10:26 AM.

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                  • #10
                    Thanks Jeff,

                    Henry's brothers, William and Thomas, remain interesting in my mind. Though we will probably never know the truth, William and Thomas were both implicated in the death of Harriet Lane. Of course as we know, the press doesn't always get it right. But an interesting statement none the less.

                    Brooklyn Daily Eagle
                    New York, USA
                    1 October 1892


                    William, the brother who killed himself today, was also suspected of having been implicated in the murder. As yet no reason is given why he should have committed suicide.
                    Last edited by jerryd; 07-17-2016, 10:44 AM.

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