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  #41  
Old 05-22-2017, 10:36 PM
Richard Patterson Richard Patterson is offline
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Originally Posted by Pcdunn View Post
Oh, for Heaven's sake, Mr. Patterson, the information about Thompson's family and background, including his failed attempts at becoming a doctor-- as well as a Catholic priest-- are in those encyclopedia articles I linked to in an earlier post.
You know, I hope, that encyclopedias rely on facts, not myths.

I'm a Catholic, and a librarian, and have read other articles from the Victorian time period, and I feel reasonably sure that his writing about the poor of Spitalfields and Whitechapel and how awful the life was for the children is in keeping with the period

However, I will admit that the comment that his poem about the "witch-babies" stemmed from an opium dream is a guess, but it is an educated one, given that we know he was an addict.
You are fortunate to be a librarian with so many books at your ready disposal. Perhaps you could read one on Thompson. You might want to start with.

“Francis Thompson. A Critical Biography.” Paul Van Kuykendal Thomson’s 1973 book.

You have written, ‘Thompson attended six years of medical school because his father was a doctor who wanted him to follow in his footsteps.’

On page 30 of “A Critical Biography,” Anyone can read.

“It seems quite clear from what he later told Wilfrid Blunt that Thompson was in no sense placed in the position of having to agree to a stern paternal insistence that, having failed to become a priest, he should follow Dr. Thompson’s professional example. On the contrary, it appears to have been his mother’s wish that since her son could serve at the alter of God, he should choose “the next best thing” and serve God’s afflicted creatures.”

Your claim, that the poet’s training as doctor was his father’s wish, is not a fact.

I note that you think it is a fact Thompson had no real interest in becoming a doctor.You think it is a fact that Thompson's rhetoric is not unusual for the time-period.

You might want to check your sources and where they have gained their information or you could save yourself the effort and just read my book.
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  #42  
Old 05-22-2017, 10:57 PM
John G John G is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Patterson View Post
You are fortunate to be a librarian with so many books at your ready disposal. Perhaps you could read one on Thompson. You might want to start with.

“Francis Thompson. A Critical Biography.” Paul Van Kuykendal Thomson’s 1973 book.

You have written, ‘Thompson attended six years of medical school because his father was a doctor who wanted him to follow in his footsteps.’

On page 30 of “A Critical Biography,” Anyone can read.

“It seems quite clear from what he later told Wilfrid Blunt that Thompson was in no sense placed in the position of having to agree to a stern paternal insistence that, having failed to become a priest, he should follow Dr. Thompson’s professional example. On the contrary, it appears to have been his mother’s wish that since her son could serve at the alter of God, he should choose “the next best thing” and serve God’s afflicted creatures.”

Your claim, that the poet’s training as doctor was his father’s wish, is not a fact.

I note that you think it is a fact Thompson had no real interest in becoming a doctor.You think it is a fact that Thompson's rhetoric is not unusual for the time-period.

You might want to check your sources and where they have gained their information or you could save yourself the effort and just read my book.
Hello Richard,

I seem to remember that you previously noted that Thompson's landlady died in a fire that he had started, and when asked why he had made no effort to rescue his response was something like, " One doesn't tarry when the house is burning down". Is this correct?
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  #43  
Old 05-22-2017, 11:36 PM
Richard Patterson Richard Patterson is offline
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Hello John,

No, but I can see why you might thing so. I think I noted,

-He left his landlady to die in that fire and later jested about it. Of the fire, a business associate, Lewis Hind, asked Thompson, ‘But Francis, did you not rouse your landlady?’ Thompson’s reply was typical of his callous view on outsiders. ‘My dear Hind, a house on fire is no place for tarrying.'-

I did not mean that literally his landlady died. I mean it in the sense of someone who might say, 'and then they took the kayak off me and left me to die on the river bend.' Sorry for the confusion. I think if the landlady had actually died, then Thompson would have faced some sort of criminal charge. I'm not a lawyer so I can not say if leaving his landlady to die (even though she didn't) is in itself a crime.
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  #44  
Old 05-23-2017, 12:41 AM
harry harry is offline
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Alice and Wilfred Maynell befriended the destitute starving poet,and took him into their home.I believe Alice wrote poetry.
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  #45  
Old 05-23-2017, 02:09 AM
Harry D Harry D is offline
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There is absolutely no grounds to suspect Thompson, let alone definitively state that he was the Ripper. But don't let the facts get in the way of vainglorious self-promotion!
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  #46  
Old 05-26-2017, 02:30 AM
Richard Patterson Richard Patterson is offline
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Default A great poet but was he a good man?

Francis Thompson was a great man but was he a good one? How would a man react if he were investigated for the murders of several women? A good man would be innocent of such crimes. A good man would want the murderer caught. A good man would welcome any research done against him because, once he is eliminated as a suspect, there would be one less man to investigate. Francis Thompson, if he were a good man, would not be against a book suggesting he was Jack the Ripper. Any temporary suspicion raised against him would pale in comparison to the serving of justice to the victims. Anyone who resists a close examination of Thompson, as candidate for the Ripper crimes, may believe that Thompson was a great poet but they do not believe he was good man. Anyone who thinks it is right to dismiss Thompson as the being the ripper as groundless, without first contemplating the possibility, cannot therefore be a good man.
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  #47  
Old 05-28-2017, 02:38 PM
Herlock Sholmes Herlock Sholmes is offline
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My opinion for what it's worth

I've just finished the book. I enjoyed reading it and have just ordered the John Walsh biography. I think that most people would have to agree that no suspect has yet been proven to have been Jack. So do I believe that Richard Patterson has categorically proven Thompson was the ripper? No. All I can do is try tick boxing the criteria. This is my view after one reading:

Age/physical ability - no issues there for me. 28 years old, average looking build. I've known people addicted to drugs and that addiction didn't make them weaklings or idiots.

Location - no issues. Thompson was obviously within easy reach of all murder sites.

Medical Knowledge - yes it has been debated whether Jack would have required it or not. Nevertheless Thompson had 6 years medical training with plenty of dissection.

Unsound mind - fairly obvious religious mania added to the effects of drug abuse

Link to prostitutes - a link to at least one. His only love a prostitute that left him causing him to spend nights roaming the East End in search of her.

Violence - no actual violence but plenty of graphic stuff in his writings (dissembowling fallen women etc)

Weapon use - no use, but he carried a dissecting scalpel.

Why Jack stopped - soon after MJK's death he was placed in a private hospital and then the Priory at Storrington. In the later part of his life Maynell appears to have had him 'watched.' He also discouraged his second love Katie King from seeing him; telling her mother he was a danger.

For me Thompson straight away leapfrogs over about 98% of the suspects proposed to date. I congratulate Richard Patterson. I don't consider myself an expert and many will disagree with me but this is my opinion.

Was Thompson definately Jack? No

Could he have been Jack? Absolutely

Regards

HS

Last edited by Herlock Sholmes : 05-28-2017 at 03:08 PM. Reason: Missing comma
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  #48  
Old 05-28-2017, 03:18 PM
Herlock Sholmes Herlock Sholmes is offline
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I was too late to add as an edit : Further research may turn up some categorical disproving fact but I can't see one as yet. Further research could also strengthen his candidacy. I will be very interested to see what, if anything, more can be revealed about Thompson.
Let's face it. Candidates like Lechmere/Cross, Hutchinson, Mann, Barnett etc have only location to recommend them. Others might tick 2 or maybe 3 boxes. Thompson ticks more and so to me, provisionally, I have to consider him, at least, the right 'type.'

Regards

HS
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  #49  
Old 05-28-2017, 04:15 PM
Richard Patterson Richard Patterson is offline
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Thank you Herlock Sholmes for reading and reviewing my book, looking at the strengths of Thompson as a jtr candidate.

You can not imagine what it is a relief to finally have someone writing in a Casebook forum who has actually read my book.

I agree with your summation of my findings. Was Jack the Ripper? I do not know and my book never states that it is a fact that he was, but I do feel that people who completely dismiss the theory on Thompson as groundless do so prematurely and are misguided. When we do what you do, tick boxes, Thompson is more likely the type of suspect, than most, if not all, other suspects, so far named.

Thanks for the feeback and I am glad you enjoyed reading my book.
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  #50  
Old 05-28-2017, 04:40 PM
Herlock Sholmes Herlock Sholmes is offline
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Hi Richard

I don't understand why so many people appear to vehemently oppose Thompson as a possible JTR.
Compare him to Cross, Hutchinson, Mann and Barnett. Take away the one fact that they were around at the time and there's absolutely nothing left.

I even thought of the similarities with the myth of Matter's Dr Stanley. There you had a doctor, whose son, also a doctor caught a disease from a prostitute, so he searched Whitechapel for that prostitute killing others on the way.
With Thompson you have someone who trained as a doctor. He was ill (addiction) and he searched Whitechapel for a prostitute (possibly killing others). Who knows where these oral histories come from? Then you have stories of insane medical students. Some researchers have made greater 'leaps.' Even Druitt was called a doctor.
I hope that your research is ongoing. Facts emerge all the time so who knows?
Until then, surely Thompson should be considered as, at the very least, one of the most plausible candidates? I'm looking forward to reading the Walsh biography. Who knows, I may spot something.
Regards
HS
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