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  • Originally posted by GBinOz View Post

    Hi Jeff,

    I would imagine that after having cut off some leather from the toe of his boot because it hurt his foot, any reasonable man would have tried the boot on and spent some time, even a minute, checking that he had achieved a result. Do we agree that he would have made this adjustment with a knife sharper than his carrot knife? He puts his boots on the next morning and they are fine in the house, but as he leaves to walk to #29, in less than a minute he has detected a boot rubbing problem of sufficient urgency that he feels compelled to attempt another adjustment with a blunt rusty broken handled knife sitting on a step in the dark rather than wait another two minutes until he reaches the market and can borrow a knife adequate to the task. Which he ended up doing anyway.

    That proposal makes no sense to me.

    Best regards, George
    The knife isn't described as a "blunt rusty broken handled knife", it is described by him as " an old table knife about five inches long, which I brought from home. I had been cutting a bit of carrot with it...". Your description wouldn't even be suitable for carrot cutting George, nor does it correspond to any of the descriptions I've seen. Herlock has collected a large number of news reports, and none of them include such a description. The only one that I see that includes anything more than the above is the last line of the The Evening Standard, Sept 13th., where it reads "Witness said it was only a small white handled knife."

    And to be honest, I don't understand why you think the idea of him noticing his initial repair was not sufficient only after he left for work so improbable. Honestly, while I often understand where you're coming from, on this occasion I really just don't get it? I hope this doesn't sound like I'm criticizing you, but I genuinely don't understand how you think any of that is unbelievable? I guess it is because Richardson's account is just too normal sounding to me to suggest it is unbelievable in any way. He notices his boot needs a bit more work, he realises he has a table knife on him that he pocketed by accident from the morning, and given it is all he had on him, he gives it a go. It didn't work, perhaps not overly surprisingly, so he gets a knife more suited to the job when he gets to work (he didn't have an option until then).

    Seriously, if I had something in my boot that was bothering me, and I had a few minutes to spare, I might try to remedy it with a stick if that was all I had. Sure, I might lament at the time it wasn't the ideal tool for the job, but I would be happy I had something at all. I might think to myself that it might not do the final job, but if I could at least push the bit of offending leather out of the way to relieve the irritation, then that would be better than nothing. That's what people do, they use what they have at hand, and if it doesn't work, get something better when they can. I truly can't see how any of that is even remotely unbelievable? It just sounds like what someone would do in those circumstances.

    We don't know how long he may have tested his boot the day before, or even if he did anything more than just put them on and move his foot around. But whatever he did, at the time his repair must have seemed fine as he would only stop when he thought he fixed it. Obviously, after he left to go to work he realises he was wrong, and he might have worked that out within a few steps.

    How could that happen? Well, given we don't actually know the specific problem, other than some leather somewhere in the toe of his boot was rubbing against him, it's hard to know, but for the sake of an illustration I could imagine something like this. When he was doing his initial repair, he cuts out some bit of leather that has curled out a bit, creating an edge that rubs on his foot. He uses a knife, which cuts off some of that edge and in the process also bends back some of the curl. He tries on his boot, it seems fine, he takes it off. By morning, the bent back bit has curled back out again, and within a few steps of leaving home he realises it is still rubbing against his foot and more needs to come off. From what he describes, that to me sounds like a plausible situation, but of course, we can never know because they didn't get into the fine details of his boot repair issue. It's just too common place to get into, you try to fix something, didn't quite work, so you try again, didn't have the right tool, so when you have the opportunity to get a better suited tool, you try and finish it up.


    Seriously, has nobody tried to fix something, only to later find it needs a bit more work despite thinking you had it sorted the first time? Is that only me?

    - Jeff





    Comment


    • Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post

      Hi Fishy,

      The backdoor steps and cellar steps are next to each other. So if he's looking down the cellar steps he is also at the backdoor steps, just at the bottom of them. And that location is not "going into the yard", "going into the yard" is like Cadosche, who has to cross the "yard" to get to the loo. Richardson just goes down the steps, he doesn't go "into the yard". One can debate the technicality of what constitutes "the yard", but people don't speak that way. Richardson going to the bottom of the backdoor stairs, so he can see from the top of the cellar stairs, is something that makes perfect sense to me when he says he didn't go "into the yard". It's a language use thing, which George and I have discussed before and for him simply going out of the door is what he thinks of as "going into the yard"; a subtle but important difference between Australian and Nova Scotian English in how he and I understand that phrase.

      Basically, what I'm getting at, is that Richardson standing in a location at the bottom of the backdoor steps, and the top of the cellar steps, is the only location that makes sense of all the reports. They all fit with him standing in that location, and if we place him elsewhere, some reports continue to make sense and others do not. That means our placing him elsewhere becomes the source of the conflict between the reports - it is not the reports per se, it is our assumption that is the source of conflict. When we consider him where I'm suggesting, then there is no longer conflict, indicating that this placement is the most consistent with all of the reports - and it is one that doesn't not require unusual behaviour by Richardson to check the lock by bending way over. And because it is Chandler that describes the location as the top of the cellar steps, and Richardson references the backdoor steps, the difference in reference for this location comes down to different people describing the location itself. Which means if we place him on the backdoor steps we need to explain why Chandler "gets it wrong", but if we place him at the bottom of the backdoor steps, which is at the top of the cellar steps, all the reports are accurate.

      He might only do that "bending over to check" if he was in a rush to get to work, but we know he wasn't because he takes the time to work on his boot. Checking from the bottom of the doorsteps at the top of the cellar steps is the simplest way to check the lock, it means by saying he can see them from the back door steps is accurate, and it also means if there were a problem he would be on his way to check if anything were stolen again.

      Wickerman's post contains new information that needs to be used to re-evaluate things. The goal, after all, is to understand what happened, not find a way to continue to believe one way or the other. I've generally been open to the various ideas, and while the checking from the top of backdoor steps has always struck me as weird given the roofing over the cellar entrance, it seemed there were some arguments to continue to include it. However, Wickerman's find make that odd behaviour inconsistent with this new information, and at the same time, it resolves a lot of the other debates (as to how he could see the lock given the roofing, and so forth). When new information single-handedly resolves a number of issues, that is a good sign that that information is pointing to the actual events.

      - Jeff
      “You don’t realize how language actually interferes with communication until you don’t have it, how it gets in the way like an overdominant sense. You have to pay much more attention to everything else when you can’t understand the words. Once comprehension comes, so much else falls away. You then rely on their words, and words aren’t always the most reliable thing.” — Lily King

      Hi Jeff,

      There seems to lately be a great deal of stock placed in the words in a single publication, with those words being contradicted in the same publication of the previous day. Here are the two relevant sections from each day's testimony:

      Daily Mail 12 Sep:
      The Coroner-Do you go every morning to see if the cellar is secure?-No; only on market mornings, when I am out early and there's a good lot of people about. I have done so for some months. Is that all you went for?-Yes, sir.

      A Juror-His mother said there had been no robberies.

      The Witness-She forgot. If you will ask her, you see that it is right.

      The Coroner-On other than market mornings do you leave the cellar to take care of itself?-Yes, sir.

      Was the front door open on Saturday morning.

      The Witness-No, sir; it was shut. So was the back door. I opened it and sat on the back steps to cut a piece of leather off my boot.

      What sort of a knife did you use?-One four or five inches long.

      What do you usually use that knife for?-I had been using it to cut up a piece of carrot for the rabbit, and I afterwards put it in my pocket.

      Do you generally keep it in your pocket?-No.

      Why did you put it there on this occasion?-I suppose it was a mistake on my part.

      When you had cut the piece of leather off your boot did you leave the house?-Yes. I tied my boot up and went out. I did not close the back door. It closes itself. I shut the front door. I was not in the house more than two minutes at the most. It was not quite light, but enough for me to see.

      Did you notice any object in the yard?-No, sir. I could not have failed to notice the deceased if she had been there then.

      You have heard where she was found?-Yes, I saw the body.

      How came you to see it?-A man in the market told me there had been a murder in Hanbury-street. He did not know at which house. I saw the body from the adjoining yard.


      When did you first think your boot wanted cutting?-It hurt my toe and I cut a piece out the day before, but I found I had not cut enough.

      Then all you did at Hanbury-street was to cut your boot?-That's all, sir.

      Did you go into the yard at all?-Not at all, sir.

      I thought you went there to see that the cellar was all right?-Yes; but you don't need to go into the yard to see that. You can see the padlock of the cellar door from the back door steps.

      And that was the sole object you had in going there?-Yes, sir.

      Did you sit on the top step?-No, the second step.

      Where were your feet?-On the flags of the yard.

      You must have been quite close to where the body was found?-Quite right, sir. If she had been there at the time I must have seen her.

      Have you seen any strangers in the passage of the house?-Yes, lots; plenty of them, at all hours.

      Men and women?-Yes; and I have turned them out. I have seen them lying down on the landing.

      Do they go there for an immoral purpose?-They do. I have caught them.

      A Juror-His mother said she never knew anybody to go for an immoral purpose.

      The Coroner-Has your knife been seen by the police?

      The Witness-No, sir.


      Have you got it with you?-No.

      The Coroner-Go and get it.


      Daily Mail 13 Sep:
      Did you see John Richardson? - Later on in the morning, a little before seven o'clock. It was in the passage of 29, Hanbury-street. He told me he had been in the house that morning, about a quarter to five.

      Did he say what for? - He said he went into the back yard and down the cellar to see if all was right, and then went away to his work in the market.

      Did he say anything about cutting his boot? - No.

      Did he say he was sure the woman was not there? - Yes.

      By the Foreman - Witness told him that he did not go to the bottom of the steps leading to the cellar. He went to the top, and looked down.


      There are many things to note in this reporting of the inquest testimony.
      ​​
      Richardson notes that there are a "good lot of people about". It is from this "good lot" that Long, three days after the event, remembers seeing a woman she has never seen before.

      When asked what he used his knife for he did not include cutting leather, even though he had used a knife recently to address that task.

      When he heard that a body had been found, why did he go next door to view it. He must have known the murder took place at #29 because the police would have been denying entry to that premises the public. Why didn't he gain access by stating that he lived there, as he did later? It is claimed that his preliminary conversation with Chandler would have been followed up with a formal interview. When did that take place? Chandler had no knowledge of the additional boot cutting story and the police had not requested that the knife be produced. "from Inspector Chandler's tone and manner, he had himself apparently no doubt that this young man's evidence was reliable". It would appear that the tone and manner were perceived from the only communication between the two where there was no mention of boot cutting.

      One hundred and thirty years after the event, there is a great deal of pontification about whether the lock could have been seen from the backdoor steps past the cover. Two people who lived there and worked there said it could be, and no-one at the time challenged those statements. The Foreman of the jury specifically confirmed that fact:
      Witness told him that he did not go to the bottom of the steps leading to the cellar. He went to the top, and looked down.
      ​​
      That is in its entirety what all this "new evidence" is about. An editor perhaps altering a couple of words (to save space?).
      Witness told him that he did not go to the bottom of the house steps that lead to the cellar steps. He went to the top of the house steps, and looked down.

      I have agreed that the backdoor step could perhaps be considered to be not part of the yard, but to expand that exclusion to include the top of the cellar steps because they are next to the backdoor steps is for me about two bridges too far. Annie's body was also next to the steps. Was her body not in the yard either? Can "the yard" be arbitrarily varied to accommodate a particular theory, thereby adjusting the evidence to suit? I will respectfully abstain from inclusion in that procedure.

      If you will allow me your usual indulgence, I would have to comment that I feel that your conclusions are non sequitur. A single statement in a single publication that is contradicted in that same publication is not, IMO, reason to abandon all the other reports.

      Best regards, George
      ​​
      They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
      Out of a misty dream
      Our path emerges for a while, then closes
      Within a dream.
      Ernest Dowson - Vitae Summa Brevis​

      ​Disagreeing doesn't have to be disagreeable - Jeff Hamm

      Comment


      • Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post

        The knife isn't described as a "blunt rusty broken handled knife", it is described by him as " an old table knife about five inches long, which I brought from home. I had been cutting a bit of carrot with it...". Your description wouldn't even be suitable for carrot cutting George, nor does it correspond to any of the descriptions I've seen. Herlock has collected a large number of news reports, and none of them include such a description. The only one that I see that includes anything more than the above is the last line of the The Evening Standard, Sept 13th., where it reads "Witness said it was only a small white handled knife."

        And to be honest, I don't understand why you think the idea of him noticing his initial repair was not sufficient only after he left for work so improbable. Honestly, while I often understand where you're coming from, on this occasion I really just don't get it? I hope this doesn't sound like I'm criticizing you, but I genuinely don't understand how you think any of that is unbelievable? I guess it is because Richardson's account is just too normal sounding to me to suggest it is unbelievable in any way. He notices his boot needs a bit more work, he realises he has a table knife on him that he pocketed by accident from the morning, and given it is all he had on him, he gives it a go. It didn't work, perhaps not overly surprisingly, so he gets a knife more suited to the job when he gets to work (he didn't have an option until then).

        Seriously, if I had something in my boot that was bothering me, and I had a few minutes to spare, I might try to remedy it with a stick if that was all I had. Sure, I might lament at the time it wasn't the ideal tool for the job, but I would be happy I had something at all. I might think to myself that it might not do the final job, but if I could at least push the bit of offending leather out of the way to relieve the irritation, then that would be better than nothing. That's what people do, they use what they have at hand, and if it doesn't work, get something better when they can. I truly can't see how any of that is even remotely unbelievable? It just sounds like what someone would do in those circumstances.

        We don't know how long he may have tested his boot the day before, or even if he did anything more than just put them on and move his foot around. But whatever he did, at the time his repair must have seemed fine as he would only stop when he thought he fixed it. Obviously, after he left to go to work he realises he was wrong, and he might have worked that out within a few steps.

        How could that happen? Well, given we don't actually know the specific problem, other than some leather somewhere in the toe of his boot was rubbing against him, it's hard to know, but for the sake of an illustration I could imagine something like this. When he was doing his initial repair, he cuts out some bit of leather that has curled out a bit, creating an edge that rubs on his foot. He uses a knife, which cuts off some of that edge and in the process also bends back some of the curl. He tries on his boot, it seems fine, he takes it off. By morning, the bent back bit has curled back out again, and within a few steps of leaving home he realises it is still rubbing against his foot and more needs to come off. From what he describes, that to me sounds like a plausible situation, but of course, we can never know because they didn't get into the fine details of his boot repair issue. It's just too common place to get into, you try to fix something, didn't quite work, so you try again, didn't have the right tool, so when you have the opportunity to get a better suited tool, you try and finish it up.


        Seriously, has nobody tried to fix something, only to later find it needs a bit more work despite thinking you had it sorted the first time? Is that only me?

        - Jeff




        Hi Jeff,

        I was actually quoting Wolf Vanderlinden in his dissertation:
        The knife he produced was a rusty and blunt little dessert or table knife with half the blade broken off and no handle.

        To illustrate my point of view, when I go to buy a new pair of shoes I try them on and walk about in the store to assess their level of comfort. This procedure is both expected and encouraged by the shoe salespersons. If after a minute or two's testing, the shoes feel ok, I may wear them away. If I return 30 seconds later and claim that one of the shoes is hurting my foot I would expect some polite but incredulous looks from the sales person.

        So while I agree with Herlock and Jon's claim of intolerable rubbing after "a day", "serious walking" or "hours", less than a minute is only believable, IMO, if he didn't do any testing after he originally cut the leather from the toe. That would be like me buying shoes without trying them on and coming back 30 seconds later complaining that they hurt my feet.

        Best regards, George
        Last edited by GBinOz; 10-08-2023, 01:30 AM.
        They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
        Out of a misty dream
        Our path emerges for a while, then closes
        Within a dream.
        Ernest Dowson - Vitae Summa Brevis​

        ​Disagreeing doesn't have to be disagreeable - Jeff Hamm

        Comment


        • Originally posted by GBinOz View Post

          I was actually quoting Wolf Vanderlinden in his dissertation:
          The knife he produced was a rusty and blunt little dessert or table knife with half the blade broken off and no handle.
          I too remembered reading that the knife had no handle. Therefore I was shocked when Jeff indicated that none of the contemporary material corroborates this. Like you I've also read the dissertation written by Wolf Vanderlinden. Perphaps that's the root of my own belief that the knife had no handle.

          In the last couple of days I was reminded of how much each of the press accounts vary. So while there are peculiarities and suspicious aspects associated with Richardson it's hard to tell how many are from his own genuine actions and how many can be attributed to distortions made by the press.

          At this stage I am not entrenched in either camp. Is he an honest chap who invited suspicion onto himself because of a little impromptu boot repair or was he dishonest. I just don't know.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Indian Harry View Post

            I too remembered reading that the knife had no handle. Therefore I was shocked when Jeff indicated that none of the contemporary material corroborates this. Like you I've also read the dissertation written by Wolf Vanderlinden. Perphaps that's the root of my own belief that the knife had no handle.

            In the last couple of days I was reminded of how much each of the press accounts vary. So while there are peculiarities and suspicious aspects associated with Richardson it's hard to tell how many are from his own genuine actions and how many can be attributed to distortions made by the press.

            At this stage I am not entrenched in either camp. Is he an honest chap who invited suspicion onto himself because of a little impromptu boot repair or was he dishonest. I just don't know.
            Hi Indian Harry.

            While I was quoting Vanderlinden, I am fairly sure that I also read another account that described the knife in this way. As always, recalled memories are not at all easy to track down. I have no doubt that Wolf would not have included this description without a source which, unfortunately, he failed to include.

            I'm not entrenched in either camp either. I just slightly favour the earlier ToD.

            Cheers, George
            Last edited by GBinOz; 10-08-2023, 05:03 AM.
            They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
            Out of a misty dream
            Our path emerges for a while, then closes
            Within a dream.
            Ernest Dowson - Vitae Summa Brevis​

            ​Disagreeing doesn't have to be disagreeable - Jeff Hamm

            Comment


            • Originally posted by GBinOz View Post

              When he heard that a body had been found, why did he go next door to view it. He must have known the murder took place at #29 because the police would have been denying entry to that premises the public. Why didn't he gain access by stating that he lived there, as he did later?

              You have heard where she was found?-Yes, I saw the body.

              How came you to see it?-A man in the market told me there had been a murder in Hanbury-street. He did not know at which house. I saw the body from the adjoining yard.


              ​​

              I've always took this to mean, "A man in the market told me there had been a murder in Hanbury-street. [When he was telling me there was a body, I asked him in which house and he said] He did not know at which house. [When I went there, I was told that the body was at 29 Hanbury Street but the police had taken possession of the yard and would not let anyone near the yard to see the body no matter what because it needed examining, and since someone offered to show me the body next door, I went next door and] I saw the body from the adjoining yard. [I realised it was right where I had been staring at so I decided I had better tell my story]"





              Comment


              • Originally posted by Hair Bear View Post


                I've always took this to mean, "A man in the market told me there had been a murder in Hanbury-street. [When he was telling me there was a body, I asked him in which house and he said] He did not know at which house. [When I went there, I was told that the body was at 29 Hanbury Street but the police had taken possession of the yard and would not let anyone near the yard to see the body no matter what because it needed examining, and since someone offered to show me the body next door, I went next door and] I saw the body from the adjoining yard. [I realised it was right where I had been staring at so I decided I had better tell my story]"
                Hi Hair Bear,

                Is that your conjecture as to what may have been said, or do you have a reference to an actual conversation?

                If Richardson didn't know where the body was found he could have looked very suspicious telling Chandler that he went to the back door and didn't notice the body had it been found in the house near the back door.

                Cheers, George
                Last edited by GBinOz; 10-08-2023, 05:31 AM.
                They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
                Out of a misty dream
                Our path emerges for a while, then closes
                Within a dream.
                Ernest Dowson - Vitae Summa Brevis​

                ​Disagreeing doesn't have to be disagreeable - Jeff Hamm

                Comment


                • Originally posted by GBinOz View Post

                  Hi Jeff,

                  I was actually quoting Wolf Vanderlinden in his dissertation:
                  The knife he produced was a rusty and blunt little dessert or table knife with half the blade broken off and no handle.

                  To illustrate my point of view, when I go to buy a new pair of shoes I try them on and walk about in the store to assess their level of comfort. This procedure is both expected and encouraged by the shoe salespersons. If after a minute or two's testing, the shoes feel ok, I may wear them away. If I return 30 seconds later and claim that one of the shoes is hurting my foot I would expect some polite but incredulous looks from the sales person.

                  So while I agree with Herlock and Jon's claim of intolerable rubbing after "a day", "serious walking" or "hours", less than a minute is only believable, IMO, if he didn't do any testing after he originally cut the leather from the toe. That would be like me buying shoes without trying them on and coming back 30 seconds later complaining that they hurt my feet.

                  Best regards, George
                  Hi George,

                  Ah, ok. There could be a source for it somewhere, I've just never seen that description, and the only thing I had seen beyond "kitchen knife, 5-6 inches" was the white handled bit, which I saw for the first time when Herlock posted the collection of news stories (which I'm sure is not an exhaustive list - so maybe there's a contrasting description somewhere, which wouldn't surprise me).

                  Anyway, knowing you often have sources I've not seen, I was wondering where you got that from. I should read Wulf's bit I suppose.

                  - Jeff

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by GBinOz View Post

                    “You don’t realize how language actually interferes with communication until you don’t have it, how it gets in the way like an overdominant sense. You have to pay much more attention to everything else when you can’t understand the words. Once comprehension comes, so much else falls away. You then rely on their words, and words aren’t always the most reliable thing.” — Lily King

                    Hi Jeff,

                    There seems to lately be a great deal of stock placed in the words in a single publication, with those words being contradicted in the same publication of the previous day. Here are the two relevant sections from each day's testimony:

                    Daily Mail 12 Sep:
                    The Coroner-Do you go every morning to see if the cellar is secure?-No; only on market mornings, when I am out early and there's a good lot of people about. I have done so for some months. Is that all you went for?-Yes, sir.

                    A Juror-His mother said there had been no robberies.

                    The Witness-She forgot. If you will ask her, you see that it is right.

                    The Coroner-On other than market mornings do you leave the cellar to take care of itself?-Yes, sir.

                    Was the front door open on Saturday morning.

                    The Witness-No, sir; it was shut. So was the back door. I opened it and sat on the back steps to cut a piece of leather off my boot.

                    What sort of a knife did you use?-One four or five inches long.

                    What do you usually use that knife for?-I had been using it to cut up a piece of carrot for the rabbit, and I afterwards put it in my pocket.

                    Do you generally keep it in your pocket?-No.

                    Why did you put it there on this occasion?-I suppose it was a mistake on my part.

                    When you had cut the piece of leather off your boot did you leave the house?-Yes. I tied my boot up and went out. I did not close the back door. It closes itself. I shut the front door. I was not in the house more than two minutes at the most. It was not quite light, but enough for me to see.

                    Did you notice any object in the yard?-No, sir. I could not have failed to notice the deceased if she had been there then.

                    You have heard where she was found?-Yes, I saw the body.

                    How came you to see it?-A man in the market told me there had been a murder in Hanbury-street. He did not know at which house. I saw the body from the adjoining yard.


                    When did you first think your boot wanted cutting?-It hurt my toe and I cut a piece out the day before, but I found I had not cut enough.

                    Then all you did at Hanbury-street was to cut your boot?-That's all, sir.

                    Did you go into the yard at all?-Not at all, sir.

                    I thought you went there to see that the cellar was all right?-Yes; but you don't need to go into the yard to see that. You can see the padlock of the cellar door from the back door steps.

                    And that was the sole object you had in going there?-Yes, sir.

                    Did you sit on the top step?-No, the second step.

                    Where were your feet?-On the flags of the yard.

                    You must have been quite close to where the body was found?-Quite right, sir. If she had been there at the time I must have seen her.

                    Have you seen any strangers in the passage of the house?-Yes, lots; plenty of them, at all hours.

                    Men and women?-Yes; and I have turned them out. I have seen them lying down on the landing.

                    Do they go there for an immoral purpose?-They do. I have caught them.

                    A Juror-His mother said she never knew anybody to go for an immoral purpose.

                    The Coroner-Has your knife been seen by the police?

                    The Witness-No, sir.


                    Have you got it with you?-No.

                    The Coroner-Go and get it.


                    Daily Mail 13 Sep:
                    Did you see John Richardson? - Later on in the morning, a little before seven o'clock. It was in the passage of 29, Hanbury-street. He told me he had been in the house that morning, about a quarter to five.

                    Did he say what for? - He said he went into the back yard and down the cellar to see if all was right, and then went away to his work in the market.

                    Did he say anything about cutting his boot? - No.

                    Did he say he was sure the woman was not there? - Yes.

                    By the Foreman - Witness told him that he did not go to the bottom of the steps leading to the cellar. He went to the top, and looked down.


                    There are many things to note in this reporting of the inquest testimony.
                    ​​
                    Richardson notes that there are a "good lot of people about". It is from this "good lot" that Long, three days after the event, remembers seeing a woman she has never seen before.

                    When asked what he used his knife for he did not include cutting leather, even though he had used a knife recently to address that task.

                    When he heard that a body had been found, why did he go next door to view it. He must have known the murder took place at #29 because the police would have been denying entry to that premises the public. Why didn't he gain access by stating that he lived there, as he did later? It is claimed that his preliminary conversation with Chandler would have been followed up with a formal interview. When did that take place? Chandler had no knowledge of the additional boot cutting story and the police had not requested that the knife be produced. "from Inspector Chandler's tone and manner, he had himself apparently no doubt that this young man's evidence was reliable". It would appear that the tone and manner were perceived from the only communication between the two where there was no mention of boot cutting.

                    One hundred and thirty years after the event, there is a great deal of pontification about whether the lock could have been seen from the backdoor steps past the cover. Two people who lived there and worked there said it could be, and no-one at the time challenged those statements. The Foreman of the jury specifically confirmed that fact:
                    Witness told him that he did not go to the bottom of the steps leading to the cellar. He went to the top, and looked down.
                    ​​
                    That is in its entirety what all this "new evidence" is about. An editor perhaps altering a couple of words (to save space?).
                    Witness told him that he did not go to the bottom of the house steps that lead to the cellar steps. He went to the top of the house steps, and looked down.

                    I have agreed that the backdoor step could perhaps be considered to be not part of the yard, but to expand that exclusion to include the top of the cellar steps because they are next to the backdoor steps is for me about two bridges too far. Annie's body was also next to the steps. Was her body not in the yard either? Can "the yard" be arbitrarily varied to accommodate a particular theory, thereby adjusting the evidence to suit? I will respectfully abstain from inclusion in that procedure.

                    If you will allow me your usual indulgence, I would have to comment that I feel that your conclusions are non sequitur. A single statement in a single publication that is contradicted in that same publication is not, IMO, reason to abandon all the other reports.

                    Best regards, George
                    ​​
                    Hi George,

                    I think your issue with the yard is reflective of the fact it has always been a usage that you are unfamiliar with. Honest, I don't see a problem with it. Richardson says he didn't go "out into the yard", which is a phrase that means he didn't ... oh this is so frustrating trying to come up with a different way to say it ... but it means he didn't go out into the yard! ha ha! Sorry, to me it is such a basic concept that it's hard to put another way. But basically, going down the steps, standing at the top of the cellar steps, would not be "going out into the yard", that requires more walking away from the house with one's back to it type thing - like crossing over to the loo. I don't think I can describe the concept clearly, but the way he speaks and what he describes indicates to me that Richardson's idea is more similar to mine than it is to yours, where "going out into the yard" happens as soon as he exits the house. We won't resolve that, I'm afraid, and as a result my arguments will appear nonsensical to you, as your objections will appear unnecessary ones to me. We conceptualise the meaning differently, hence you see him as lying (because his words appear to contradict his actions to you) while I see him as describing what he did (because his words fit the actions he describes). For what it is worth, nothing I say below contradicts the idea that Richardson didn't "go out into the yard", the action of going to the bottom of the steps, standing to look down the cellar steps, and so probably closer to the top right corner of the cellar steps, the bit next to the backdoor steps, would be something that when asked if he went into the yard that he could respond "no" to and not risk his immortal soul type thing. Meaning, he would be being truthful, at least I would consider him truthful because I understand the phrase to mean something very different from what you do. And given Richardson's responses, I'm confident that Richardson's meaning is more aligned with my definitions than with your definition. I do recognize that such things are not convincing arguments to hear, because I know I am making no sense to you - the conflict is at a deep conceptual level of the meaning of the words, and there's just no way to get around that convincingly.

                    With regards to the importance of the new statement, it is important because it gives us a description of Richardson's location from a new person - Chandler, who tells us what he was told by Richardson. So at that time, Richardson told him where he stood to view the lock, and Chandler tells us that location is at the top of the cellar steps. The backdoor steps and the cellar steps are side by side, so one standing at the corner of the two sets of steps, at the bottom, is located both at the backdoor steps and the cellar steps. There is nothing improper about Richardson saying he could see the lock "from the back door steps" because the location I'm suggesting can be described that way (from the backdoor steps doesn't mean on one of the steps, but would be a description that suits stepping down and onto the ground beside them, just like being at the top doesn't mean right in the middle of the stairway, but at the side of them where you can see down is a location that can also be described that way). Chandler, being a new person, has just landmarked the location to the cellar steps, where the lock is, because he's a police officer detailing a witness's information, and the lock is the primary object of his interest. Richardson is landmarking to the backdoor steps because he had just walked down them, he didn't "interact" with the cellar steps.

                    Rather than introducing edits to make Chandler's statement somehow put Richardson back up on the backdoor steps, reintroducing all the issues with how he could see the lock given the roofing, the solution seems trivial. Richardson stood on the ground, right beside the backyard steps and at the top of the cellar steps, where he could see the lock. And that location means when he and his mother say that you can see the lock from the backdoor steps, they aren't lying because you can because being in that location can be described that way. It can also be described in other ways, like being at the top of the cellar steps, as Chandler has done. This is why his new information is important. There aren't other locations that can both be described as looking "from the backdoor steps" and "at the top of the cellar steps". It is also a location that removes any issue about lock visibility, and it also smoothly fits in with Richardson sitting on the backdoor steps to fix his boot, and also explains why he's positive Annie wasn't there.

                    Without Chandler's statement, all we have are various versions of what Richardson said at the inquest, so multiple reports all describing the same event (what he said on that one occasion). With Chandler's statement that Wickerman provided us, we now have a version of what Richardson told Chandler on the day, with regards to where he viewed the lock from. And Chandler records that location landmarked to the cellar steps, telling us the location must be a location that can be landmarked to both sets of steps, and being on either cannot be. But being in the small space at the bottom of the doorsteps and the top of the cellar steps can be. His new information brings in a new constraint we have to consider, and because there is a location that entirely satisfies those constraints, we have no reason to start suggesting editorial changes. Obviously, with the different versions in the press with regards to Richardson's inquest statement alone, we have to put that down to press re-wording. But in the end, it doesn't matter, because we know the location has to be connected to both sets of stairs now, due to this new information.

                    I do see having new information from a new source (meaning person), as a very big thing. Yet another version of Richardson's inquest statement would be of little use, but this is different - it is a version of what Richardson said on the day to Chandler. And that is an entirely new event.

                    I'm forever saying that it would be nice if new information would be found. This is exactly the sort of thing I mean. Ok, I know Wickerman said it was posted before, but it seems to have been overlooked (I missed it). So, to be honest, I'm actually rather excited about that fact. It's something new, at least to me, and new data is always important.

                    - Jeff


                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post

                      Hi George,

                      Ah, ok. There could be a source for it somewhere, I've just never seen that description, and the only thing I had seen beyond "kitchen knife, 5-6 inches" was the white handled bit, which I saw for the first time when Herlock posted the collection of news stories (which I'm sure is not an exhaustive list - so maybe there's a contrasting description somewhere, which wouldn't surprise me).

                      Anyway, knowing you often have sources I've not seen, I was wondering where you got that from. I should read Wulf's bit I suppose.

                      - Jeff
                      Just compiled from the Press reports on here Jeff. If I’ve missed any it was unintentional.
                      Regards

                      Sir Herlock Sholmes.

                      “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

                      Comment


                      • “As late as five o'clock yesterday morning it is said the woman was drinking in a public-house near at hand called the Three Bells.”

                        This is from Lloyd’s on the 9th. Has anyone seen this mentioned anywhere else? I’m assuming that this refers to The Ten Bells?

                        Theres this in The People, also on the 9th

                        Another report states that the discovery of the crime was not made until six o'clock, and that the murdered woman was seen drinking as late as five o'clock in the morning
                        Last edited by Herlock Sholmes; 10-08-2023, 09:00 AM.
                        Regards

                        Sir Herlock Sholmes.

                        “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Wickerman View Post

                          Thankyou Jeff, also, as he says he sat on the middle step, which initially struck me many years ago as odd, most people would normally sit on the top step - but, like everyone else I let it go.

                          Now, it falls into place, if you remember he said the door closed by its self.
                          This is why he couldn't sit on the top step, the door had closed behind him closing off the top step.
                          This happened because he walked over to the top of the cellar steps, the house door closed shut.
                          He looked down the cellar steps to check the lock, and returned to the house steps, to turn around and sit on the only step available - the middle one.

                          You can see in this pic. that the door when closed would conceal the top step, leaving the middle step as effectively the highest step to sit on.

                          Why would Richardson need to walk down the house steps and over to the cellar steps in the yard ?, if by his own testimony he said this to the coroner .

                          Daily News
                          United Kingdom
                          13 September 1888



                          [Coroner,] Did you go into the yard at all?-Not at all, sir.!!!!!!!!!!!

                          I thought you went there to see that the cellar was all right?- [Richardson] Yes; ''but you don't need to go into the yard'' to see that. You can ''see the padlock'' of the cellar door ''from the back door steps.''!!!!!!!!!!



                          Now look again what the coroner says after he ask Richardson ''did you go into the yard'' ? ''No sir '' , i thought you went there to see the cellar was ok ?

                          His telling Richardson that in his opinion the cellar door is in the yard ! . Richardson then confirms this to the the coroner with his next statement, he very well knows the cellar is in fact in the yard, thats why he told the coroner ''but you don't need to go into the yard'' to see that.​
                          ​.

                          So Wick, Has not Richardson told the Coroner one thing and done another ?[what you have suggested] Is this not the very essence of what myself and others have been saying about witness testimony being uncertain , unreliable ,ambiguious and unsafe to rely on to confirm an accurate t.o.d one way or the other ?
                          Last edited by FISHY1118; 10-08-2023, 09:27 AM.
                          'It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is. It doesn't matter how smart you are . If it doesn't agree with experiment, its wrong'' . Richard Feynman

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by FISHY1118 View Post

                            Why would Richardson need to walk down the house steps and over to the cellar steps in the yard ?, if by his own testimony he said this to the coroner .

                            Daily News
                            United Kingdom
                            13 September 1888



                            [Coroner,] Did you go into the yard at all?-Not at all, sir.!!!!!!!!!!!

                            I thought you went there to see that the cellar was all right?- [Richardson] Yes; ''but you don't need to go into the yard'' to see that. You can ''see the padlock'' of the cellar door ''from the back door steps.''!!!!!!!!!!





                            You can see what was presumably the cellar door in the film of James Mason's visit to 29 Hanbury Street in 1969, shortly before the site was demolished.

                            The back yard was so small that you could obviously have seen it in its entirety from the door steps.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR 1 View Post




                              You can see what was presumably the cellar door in the film of James Mason's visit to 29 Hanbury Street in 1969, shortly before the site was demolished.

                              The back yard was so small that you could obviously have seen it in its entirety from the door steps.
                              What your point then P.I ?
                              'It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is. It doesn't matter how smart you are . If it doesn't agree with experiment, its wrong'' . Richard Feynman

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by FISHY1118 View Post

                                What your point then P.I ?


                                I am agreeing with you!

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