Originally Posted by Henry Flower
Mr Orsam, you remain absolutely indispensable. And if your indefatigability irritates the odd yay-sayer here and there, well, all the better.
One thing that I find quite compelling is the fact that the diary MB got hold of was too small for his purposes, he claims. And indeed we have confirmation that it is too small. And having been frustrated in this, and being pressed for time, the Diary appears not in a diary at all, but in a denuded scrapbook, which is of course larger than many a diary. That ties together MB and the Diary logically and consistently for me far more completely than a word I've read so far about the floorboards or the timesheets.
Indeed. And how many absurd "scenarios" have we had to date as to why Mike Barrett bought the red Victorian diary? Four ? Five?
I have always been of the opinion that it's possible that Mike Barrett was accurate in his dating for the acquisition of the photo album/diary, that is, late January 1990. I believe the idea for the hoax took shape on the 100th anniversary of the ripper murders in 1988, and the subsequent 100th anniversary of the Maybrick murder in 1889. It's possible the finished article was completed by January 1990, and Mike Barrett went ahead and bought the photo album/diary in an attempt to use it to perpetrate the hoax. I believe Barrett decided that the photo album/diary was not fit for purpose, and decided against using it. It's possible he abandoned the venture, but in March 1992 decided to give it another go, and so he bought the red leather Victorian diary. Finding that this diary was too small for purpose, he again turned to the original photo album/diary he had bought in 1990, and decide to use that. The rest is history.
Just to add, by the time he had paid for the second diary, he had forked out £75 for the two diaries. Not wanting to throw more money away by purchasing a third diary, and realising it could be quite some time before he could source a suitable diary, if it was at all possible, he decided to use the original photo album/diary.