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Now, this is part 2 of my jack the ripper conspiracy theory post. Part one explained the facts behind Jack the Ripper. Tackling the killer’s MO, timeline, his victims and the letters sent to the police department during the autumn of terror. Be sure to check that out if you don’t know much about the killings, I will add a link in here.
However, if you have read that post, or if you already know about the killings then you are in the right place. In this post I am going to tackle my five favourite conspiracy theories. From the realistic and thought provoking to the utterly bizarre! So, if creepy conspiracy theories are your cup of tea be sure to give this post a like, so I know to make more.
Without further ado, here are my top 5 conspiracy theories.
P.S initially I was going to put these in order however they’re all so different and I find them all so interesting that I couldn’t do it, so the following are in no particular order.
- Jill the Ripper aka The Mad Midwife
This is the theory that Jack the Ripper was in fact Jill the Ripper. One of the first female serial killers disguising herself under the male pseudonym. This theory was initially put forth by police inspector Abberline following the death of Mary Jane Kelly – the last of the canonical five victims.
The morning after Kelly’s body was discovered a witness, Mrs Maxwell, claims to have seen Kelly twice. She described to the police the clothing Kelly had been wearing in great detail with emphasis on the purple colour of her shawl. This information matched, and the police had no reason to doubt Mrs Maxwell. This is when Abberline developed a hypothesis that Jack was actually a Jill. He put forward the suggestion that the killer had dressed themselves in Kelly’s clothes to get away from the crime scene unseen.
Another detective suggested that for this to be the case, the only way a female would have the anatomical knowledge to cause such harm, she would have to be a midwife. This theory would also explain some major questions such as: why someone would be out at the hours of the murder and how were they getting away with walking the streets of London covered in blood. A midwife works all hours of the night and would naturally be covered in blood hence arousing little suspicion. The theory further developed that the Midwife was an abortionist. This would have explained why she would have been acquainted with the prostitutes of London.
This theory, however, was largely based upon the fact that at the time of her death Mary Jane Kelly was 3 months pregnant and, too poor to afford lodgings, couldn’t afford to care for a child.
An unrelated piece of evidence that the murder was in fact female accompanies the bonnets the first four victims had been wearing. Mary Anne Nichols even boasted about her pretty new hat when her landlord asked for her doss money. All five victims were unable to afford their lodgings, yet all seemed to have new bonnets raising the question of where the bonnets came from. If they had come from a man they had been entertaining the women would have been less likely to boast as most clients had wives. However, had the hat been from a female, a friend, they would have had little reason to hide their newest accessory.
- Montague John Druitt aka the son of a doctor
Rather than a general suggestion, this theory points directly at a man who many believed to be the killer. Druitt was a middle-class lawyer; whose father was a doctor. During the investigation Druitt’s name was top of the publics suspect list.
His father’s occupation and his education made him capable of the precise injuries on the victims and also meant the lawyer probably had the anatomical knowledge to find and remove each of the women’s organs. However, this was merely speculation based on circumstantial evidence and nothing ever came of it.
Druitt was a married man with a profession and had no place walking the streets in the middle of the night, however his middle-class status lead some to believe Druitt was well acquainted with these prostitutes and had any of the five victims, who were desperate for money, tried to blackmail him, his anger could have gotten the better of him.
Being a middle class educated man the letters sent to the police department would have fit his vocabulary. The first two letters were well articulated and clearly written by someone with an education behind them. Prior to his dismissal Druitt had also been an educator at a boy’s school leaving him with the abilities to write such letters.
Perhaps, realising that the police could discover his middle-class status from the tone of the letters and his suspect status to the public, Druitt decided to write try and throw the police off the scent with a poorly written third letter from Hell.
Another piece of damning evidence surfaced in the following century, when an Australian journalist released an article entitled “the murderer of the east end – I knew him.” Following some investigation this journalist was discovered to be the cousin of Druitt. However, some believe she was just fame hungry and living off of the rumours which had been circling at the time of the murders.
A final piece of evidence against Druitt was his death. Shortly after the final murder of Kelly, Druitt’s body was discovered floating in the River Thames following a suicide attempt. Politicians soon took this opportunity to call Druitt a coward as he took the easy way out of facing the heinous crimes he had committed.
However, we do have to question weather Druitt was Jack the Ripper or if in fact he was a scapegoat. Several politicians used his death as a way to conclude public fear of the Ripper and to calm everyone. Yet there was no certain evidence that Druitt was the murder. In fact, Detective Abberline never saw Druitt as a suspect as he had an alibi for each of the five murders. What do you think?
- Aaron Kosmonski
A third theory is that the Jack the Ripper was actually Aaron Kosmonski. This is the theory is probably the one I think has the most weight behind it and is the one I believe to be the most accurate.
Aaron Kosmonski was a Polish Jew who had immigrated to London to get away from Tsarist rule in Russia. It is unknown as to where he lived full-time, but it is largely speculated that he mainly resided at his sisters address which was near by the third and fourth murder sites. He was said to be a barber at the time of the murders however was becoming increasingly ill.
So here is the evidence. In 1991 – the same year as the final potential Ripper murder, Kosmonski was admitted into an insane asylum after threatening his sister with a knife. It was widely known the he had a “hatred for women” and had “homicidal tendencies”. His violent nature towards women would explain the mutilation of the women’s faces and their chest and pelvis areas. Furthermore, most the women attacked by the Ripper had dark hair and were roughly five and a half feet, which is the same description of Kosmonski’s sister.
His job as a barber also would have provided him with access to the potential murder weapon … he is beginning to sound a little bit like sweeny tod to me.
Kosmonski was also on the police radar and many officers involved in the ripper investigation believed him to be the culprit. In the police commissioners’ memoirs, the killer was supposed to be a “lower-class Jew” with “violent tendencies”. Whether this was an anti-Semitic remark, or a justifiable comment is unknown however a later review of these memoirs saw the name Kosmonski pencilled into the margin … creepy.
Worse still was the DNA evidence supposedly found on the shawl of Catherine Eddowes which was said to be a match to Kosmonski. Yet one of the most damning pieces of evidence which bought Kosmonski onto the police radar was an eye witness recount. This witness supposed they had seen Kosmonski at the scene of the crime and later identified him to be the killer. However, the weird part is, that this witness later refused to testify against Kosmonski as he was a fellow Jew. Was this genuine; or had the witness been threatened to back away. Another witness had been chased away from the scene of the crime by two polish men in one of the early murders.
However, the police themselves believe that no one other than the ripper himself witnessed the crimes take place and so have doubts about the witness.
Furthermore, the DNA evidence was not reviewed by any of the scientist’s peers and so is considered an inconclusive piece of evidence.
Also due to his polish and Jewish nature it would have been more likely that Kosmonski spoke Yiddish as opposed to fluent English. His abilities to lull women down dark alley ways would have hence been limited and furthermore, he would have been unable to articulate the ripper letters sent to the police office.
Some believe that Kosmonski’s suspicion was actually a matter of mistaken identity. Arron Davis Cohen was also said to be violent and a danger to himself and others, he too spent time in an insane asylum but unlike Kosmonski, Cohen died in December of 1888. Just one month after the final of the undisputed five murders.
Either way … I find this theory overwhelmingly disturbing.
- Prince Albert aka Eddy the murderer
Now saving my favourite theory until last, some people believe Jack the Ripper to be none other than prince albert himself. There were many theories including Prince Albert (or Eddy to his friends) but today I’m just going to get into my two favourites.
The first suggests that Eddy began circulating rumours that he was a “Ladies Man” to disguise the fact that he was a homosexual. The palace was said help to cover up many a scandal of Eddy, the worst of which being the Ripper Murders.
Upon a trip away Eddy was said to have contracted syphilis. This alongside his supressed homosexuality and hatred towards women arguably caused him to go insane and begin killing women.
One piece of evidence is the missing ear. It is argued that since Eddy was deaf in one ear he took his anger out on his victims, slicing off an ear and sending it to the police detective.
The most damning piece of evidence which supports the theory that the price was the murderer came when the theory was first released in the early 20th century. The historian argued that he had read the facts in the notes of Gull, Eddy’s doctor. However, he also claimed that they were burnt not long after he read them and so this can not be checked.
Eddy also wasn’t in the London at the time of two of the murders either, giving him a pretty solid alibi. This theory was therefore a little vague and a little out there and so another historian ran with the idea developing a theory which could just be true …
- Prince Albert Victors jilted lover
This theory suggests that Eddy himself did not commit the crime but rather his jilted lover did, following an accident that drove him insane.
Lets back track a little. There were many rumours that Eddy was a homosexual and many believed him to have had a romantic relationship with James Stephen – the son of Virginia Wolf. Their relationship was said to be intense until rumours of Eddy’s homosexuality began circling and he cut it short.
Shortly after the relationship was ended Stephen was said to have been in an accident which could have only had 2 outcomes: death or insanity. Following his survival Stephen was also put into the care of Dr. Gull therefore meaning the notes found could have been for Stephen rather than Eddy himself.
In the proceeding months Stephen’s health deteriorated and so he resorted to writing poetry to pass the time. Now, this poetry was said to show some very violent imagery towards female characters. At the same time, Stephen began acting strangely, plunging his knife into bread and laughing.
It is argued that to avenge Eddy, Stephen treated these women as blood sacrifices – remember he was a little insane at this point – and therefore murdered them all.
It is also argued that the writing of his poems matched that of the from hell and dear boss letters… is that enough evidence for you?
In 1891, the year of the final potential victim’s death, Stephen died of his injuries and the murders stopped…
So, there you have it! My top 5 conspiracy theories. I hope you enjoyed these. If you have be sure to give this post a like and I’ll look into doing more like this in the future. Until next Friday!