Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

The Identity of Israel Schwartz

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #76
    Chris,

    Yes, you are quite right, my mistake...his 1891 census address was indeed 22Samuel Street.

    Could you inform me where the 22 Ellen Street address comes from. Is it documented somewhere or does it come a newspaper report, or other source. I presume it may be the address on the day that he reported what he saw....that is, September 30th 1888? From my limited reading of this whole story, I believe he was either about to move, or may have just moved the previous day, that is friday, and not on the Sabbath Saturday I presume.

    In other words, what does the Ellen St. address refer to? Is it he one he had just moved from or was abou to move to, if you see what I mean?

    Also...what ever hapened to the original notes and statements taken from him. Do we know the identity of his interpreter? Obviously there must be a lot of conspiracy theories produced by the apparant disappearance, etc of his and other files on the case. The lack of real hard evidence has obviously led to a lot of wild and unfounded, unsupported speculation, some of it probably contributed to by retired top CID policemen themselves, eg, Sir Robert Anderson; and Donald Swanson I believe. It's an industry that sells copy..in all forms.

    By the way, does Johnny Depp's From Hell have an Israel Schwartz character?

    Comment


    • #77
      Hi Dave,

      Here's Swanson at his sparkling best, getting the details wrong in his 19th October 1888 reportó

      Click image for larger version

Name:	ELLEN STREET.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	19.2 KB
ID:	655369

      Regards,

      Simon
      Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

      Comment


      • #78
        Simon,


        Thanks very much for that. Can you give us the web address so I can see more of that interesting letter/record/etc.?

        I see he has inadvertently inserted an H...producing "Helen" Or maybe he was simply 'ard of 'earin'? Was he the one responsible for recording that Schwartz - or more likely based on what his interpreter was saying - was "Hungarian", when we all know he (Schwartz or his interpretor) was simply saying in broken English mixed with Yiddish that he was hungry?

        Comment


        • #79
          Originally posted by dave View Post
          Could you inform me where the 22 Ellen Street address comes from. Is it documented somewhere or does it come a newspaper report, or other source. I presume it may be the address on the day that he reported what he saw....that is, September 30th 1888? From my limited reading of this whole story, I believe he was either about to move, or may have just moved the previous day, that is friday, and not on the Sabbath Saturday I presume.

          In other words, what does the Ellen St. address refer to? Is it he one he had just moved from or was abou to move to, if you see what I mean?
          I think the sole source of the Ellen Street address is the report prepared by Donald Swanson for the Home Office on 19 October, in which (as Simon has posted) he spells the name of the street as "Helen". (The relevant extract of this report is included here - http://www.casebook.org/witnesses/schwartz.html )

          I think that - as you say - this must be Schwartz's address at the time of his statement to the police, which was late on the afternoon of Sunday 30 September according to the Star report.

          The information about the move comes from the same report, which says:
          "It seems that he had gone out for the day, and his wife had expected to move, during his absence, from their lodgings in Berner-street to others in Backchurch-lane. When he came homewards about a quarter before one he first walked down Berner-street to see if his wife had moved. As he turned the corner from Commercial-road he noticed some distance in front of him a man walking as if partially intoxicated ..."

          And a bit further on it says that after witnessing the incident "He fled incontinently, to his new lodgings", so it seems that the move had taken place.

          So if that's all correct his wife moved in his absence on the Saturday, and 22 Ellen Street was the new address. But again, most of this hinges on the accuracy of the Star report, and it's possible that there could have been a misunderstanding in translation.

          It strikes me there might actually be some mileage in the idea that the Star reporter misunderstood this too, and that Ellen Street was the address of the old lodgings. According to the map in Gavin Bromley's dissertation, 22 Ellen Street is virtually at the end of Berner Street, and some distance from Back Church Lane, so that could reasonably be described as "lodgings in Berner-street". And if the new lodgings were in or near the southern part of Back Church Lane, then that would be consistent with Schwartz running west along Fairclough Street (as indicated by one press report) and down Back Church Lane "so far as the railway arch" (Swanson's report). It would also get round the difficulty of his wife apparently having moved house on the Sabbath.

          Originally posted by dave View Post
          Also...what ever hapened to the original notes and statements taken from him. Do we know the identity of his interpreter? Obviously there must be a lot of conspiracy theories produced by the apparant disappearance, etc of his and other files on the case. The lack of real hard evidence has obviously led to a lot of wild and unfounded, unsupported speculation, some of it probably contributed to by retired top CID policemen themselves, eg, Sir Robert Anderson; and Donald Swanson I believe. It's an industry that sells copy..in all forms.
          Unfortunately Swanson's report is pretty much all we have by way of official documentation, though there is some further correspondence concerning the significance of the word "Lipski" (which adds the detail that "Schwartz has a
          strong jewish appearance"). Beyond that there is the detailed report in the Star (also transcribed here - http://www.casebook.org/witnesses/schwartz.html ) and a couple of other brief press reports that don't really add anything except the detail about Schwartz running along Fairclough Street (either westwards or eastwards).

          Originally posted by dave View Post
          By the way, does Johnny Depp's From Hell have an Israel Schwartz character?
          I'll have to defer to the film experts on that, but I can't see one listed at www.imdb.com.

          Comment


          • #80
            Chris,

            Many thanks again for all the info.

            A few issues: Would Schwartz -assuming him of course to have been an average religious Jew...have gone out for the day...on the holy Sabbath, alone, to leave his wife to move their belongings on the Sabbath..which in orthodox Judaism would not be permitted. This would be regarded as "work". He may have gone out to visit friends (as permitted and is quite common to do on the Sabbath ) or whatever...but would he have done so alone? Maybe.

            2. Why would he have come homewards at 12.45 a.m. down Berner St. to see if his wife had moved? Had not the move already been agreed with his wife, as his earlier part of the report in the Star had indicated.

            3. Why did he wait so long on Sunday to go to the police? Surely news like that would have spread in that area very quickly. Was he possibly concocting a story that would explain why he came forward- in case he was later identified as being in the vicinity.

            Possible motivation for lying? Antisemitic pogrom breaking out.

            Perhaps he gave a concocted description of the man he saw...because he did in fact know the identity(ies) (even the name/s) of the Jewish man/men he saw...but was fearful of an antisemitic pogrom -which he may have experienced himself before he came to England - and was determined not to divulge the identity to the authorities. This could fit in with the Kosminki suspect, or even with another.

            Considering that he lived in roughly the same area for many years...whether he was a regular attender at his local shul....and whether there is any info lying around to be obtained. Also if he had his sons..and there were many of them...circumcised, and bar-mitvahed in the local shuls...then perhaps there are shul records...similar to the school ones that you hunted down? BTW, did you obtain a photo of Israel Schwartz?

            I love speculating.

            Comment


            • #81
              Dave, did you know that there are hundreds of thousands of t'fillin lying in the harbour of New York? True! Loads and loads of men threw them overboard as they prepared to start a new life in the New World!

              I suspect this happened going into England as well. So Israel Schwartz may have lived his entire life around Whitechapel, where there were a lot of very observant Jews, and not been frum himself. It wouldn't affect the fact that he couldn't speak English very well. And he may well have left his wife to organize the flit while he was off somewhere, probably at an all-day poker game...

              Comment


              • #82
                Originally posted by dave View Post
                A few issues: ...
                As with other aspects of the case, there is a tantalising mix of suggestive statements and things that don't entirely seem to make sense here, which invites speculation about just was going on.

                I suspect that Israel Schwartz would probably have preferred not to get involved at all, which might explain why he came forward later rather than earlier in the day. It may even have been that he had been seen running down Fairclough Street by someone who recognised him, as one press report may suggest ( http://www.casebook.org/press_report.../18881001.html ), and that he feared he might be falsely accused of involvement in the murder.

                Originally posted by dave View Post
                Considering that he lived in roughly the same area for many years...whether he was a regular attender at his local shul....and whether there is any info lying around to be obtained. Also if he had his sons..and there were many of them...circumcised, and bar-mitvahed in the local shuls...then perhaps there are shul records...similar to the school ones that you hunted down?
                Unfortunately there seem to be very few surviving records of East End synagogues from this period, as far as I've been able to discover.

                As far as the sons go, I know of five at the moment - Lionel/Lew/Louis, Daniel, Judah/Edward, Abraham/Alf and Montague/Monty. But looking at the dates, it certainly seems possible that there were other children who died young and therefore don't appear in the census returns. In particular, there is a big gap between the births of Ettie (1884) and Louis (1891), in which records might perhaps include a reference to 22 Ellen Street and definitely confirm that this is the right Israel.

                Originally posted by dave View Post
                BTW, did you obtain a photo of Israel Schwartz?
                I haven't, though it would obviously be very interesting to see one.

                Originally posted by Chava View Post
                Dave, did you know that there are hundreds of thousands of t'fillin lying in the harbour of New York? True! Loads and loads of men threw them overboard as they prepared to start a new life in the New World!

                I suspect this happened going into England as well. So Israel Schwartz may have lived his entire life around Whitechapel, where there were a lot of very observant Jews, and not been frum himself. It wouldn't affect the fact that he couldn't speak English very well. And he may well have left his wife to organize the flit while he was off somewhere, probably at an all-day poker game...
                I'm sure it's a valid point that not all Jews in the East End were religious. Regarding the Israel Schwartz who appears in the census records, though, the announcement of his death in the Jewish Chronicle does describe him as "a noble and righteous Jew". I don't think I've seen this formula elsewhere in JC death notices, so I'd suspect it indicates that he was rather devout, at least in later life.

                Comment


                • #83
                  Chris, thank you. The work you, Gavin Bromley, Gareth and others have done in tracing the known facts of Mr. Schwartz is really good historical study. As is Chava's knowledge.

                  Help me here. His name was not given in the Star newspaper report. And he did not appear at inquest. Do researchers not learn his identity until sometime in the 20th century? How did this come about?

                  Roy
                  Sink the Bismark

                  Comment


                  • #84
                    Roy,

                    I am sure Chris will elaborate but I believe that Schwartz's name was first mentioned by the Inspector in charge, Donald Sutherland (if my recall is right) Swanson, in a summary by him only a few weeks after Schwartz had reported it. But was it reported directly thru the interpretor to him?

                    Comment


                    • #85
                      Hi Dave and welcome,

                      Yes the Swanson report. He took the interviews, etc and made summary reports of them.

                      My question had to do more with when a researcher first came up with this. For instance, Tom Cullen's book doesn't have it, and he relied on McCormick. Both Evans & Rumbelow and Evans & Skinner have some info on the files, where they were, etc.

                      I suppose my question is an arcane one, which researcher/author found the report with Schwartz named as the witness and when did this happen.

                      Roy
                      Sink the Bismark

                      Comment


                      • #86
                        Originally posted by Roy Corduroy View Post
                        I suppose my question is an arcane one, which researcher/author found the report with Schwartz named as the witness and when did this happen.
                        I may be wrong, but I think it was first published in Stephen Knight's Jack the Ripper: The Final Solution (1976).

                        Comment


                        • #87
                          By the way...regarding the apparant claim by Schwartz that he heard "Lipski" being said/shouted or whatever.

                          This means that he believed it was the sound "Lipski" Isn't it very possible that it could very well have been another similar sounding word...such as "Lizzie" (the soon-to-be victim, Elizabeth Stride) or "Psssst", the hiss of a cat, or simply the sound of the second man striking a match with which to to light his pipe, etc., etc.?? Charles Laughton (Witness for the Prosecution) or Perry Mason...where are they when you need them?



                          If "Lizzie", then obviously the man knew her, and it may well have not been one of the murders committed by the Ripper. Or maybe it was!

                          Comment


                          • #88
                            Originally posted by Chris View Post
                            I may be wrong, but I think it was first published in Stephen Knight's Jack the Ripper: The Final Solution (1976).
                            This report appears in The Star, 1st October 1888:

                            SAW THE WHOLE THING.

                            It seems that he had gone out for the day, and his wife had expected to move, during his absence, from their lodgings in Berner-street to others in Backchurch-lane. When he came homewards about a quarter before one he first walked down Berner-street to see if his wife had moved. As he turned the corner from Commercial-road he noticed some distance in front of him a man walking as if partially intoxicated. He walked on behind him, and presently he noticed a woman standing in the entrance to the alley way where the body was afterwards found. The half-tipsy man halted and spoke to her. The Hungarian saw him put his hand on her shoulder and push her back into the passage, but, feeling rather timid of getting mixed up in quarrels, he crossed to the other side of the street. Before he had gone many yards, however, he heard the sound of a quarrel, and turned back to learn what was the matter, but just as he stepped from the kerb


                            A SECOND MAN CAME OUT

                            of the doorway of the public-house a few doors off, and shouting out some sort of warning to the man who was with the woman, rushed forward as if to attack the intruder. The Hungarian states positively that he saw a knife in this second man's hand, but he waited to see no more. He fled incontinently, to his new lodgings.


                            ...obviously a reference to Schwartz's account.

                            Schwartz doesn't seem to appear in Woodhall (1937), McCormick (1959), Cullen (1965) or Farson (1972), which are the earliest books I have on the subject.

                            Comment


                            • #89
                              John

                              Thanks. But I think the question was really who had first uncovered Swanson's report mentioning Israel Schwartz. Having said that, though I think it was Knight who first brought Schwartz's story to prominence, I'm not sure whether that was based on Swanson's report or the article in the Star.

                              Just another thought about Israel Schwartz. It has been suggested, based on the Star reports, that his story was doubted by the police (though Swanson explicitly says "the police report of his statement casts no doubt upon it").

                              The Star reports say:

                              The police have arrested one man answering the description the Hungarian furnishes. This prisoner has not been charged, but is held for inquiries to be made. The truth of the man's statement is not wholly accepted.
                              [1 October]

                              In the matter of the Hungarian who said he saw a struggle between a man and a woman in the passage where the Stride body was afterwards found, the Leman-street police have reason to doubt the truth of the story. They arrested one man on the description thus obtained, and a second on that furnished from another source, but they are not likely to act further on the same information without additional facts. If every man should be arrested who was known to have been seen in company with an abandoned woman in that locality on last Saturday night, the police-stations would not hold them...
                              [2 October]

                              Now I reckon that pretty clearly "the man" the truth of whose statement is doubted in the first report is the prisoner who is being held for further inquiries, not Israel Schwartz. Not a shadow of doubt has been cast on Schwartz's veracity in the foregoing extended account of his story.

                              But that is not made explicit, and a careless reader could perhaps get the impression that it was Schwartz's statement that was doubted.

                              The second report seems less ambiguous - the construction implies that the doubt attaches to the Hungarian's story. But there are sufficiently many points of contact between the two reports to suggest that the second is based on the first. Could it be that reporter B has been careless in his reading of reporter A's account, and has made an erroneous transference of the doubt felt by the police - from the man arrested to the witness?

                              Comment


                              • #90
                                Thank you John & Chris,

                                Yes my very arcane question was, who was the first author/researcher to actually use the name Israel Schwartz.
                                --------------------------------------------
                                Chris I see exactly what you are saying, that reporter B may have misread the doubt mentioned in account A, which referred to the detainee . You may just have the answer inside that riddle.

                                Roy
                                Last edited by Roy Corduroy; 12-02-2008, 04:09 PM.
                                Sink the Bismark

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X