Day 4 of the Jack the Ripper Remembrance

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube, so that you can compare the varying perspectives on the Ripper and see how widely the different theories on the Ripper’s identity vary. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

From The Illustrated Police News for November 17, 1888 showing the discovery of Mary Jane Kelly's body at 13 Miller's Court
From The Illustrated Police News for November 17, 1888 showing the discovery of Mary Jane Kelly’s body at 13 Miller’s Court

What better way to remember Jack the Ripper’s last known murder than to visit a reconstruction of the crime scene? Be forewarned: this is not for the squeamish!

Finally, let me wrap up this series with an interesting thought that occurred to me awhile back and which I have never heard previously: what if the reason Jack the Ripper stopped killing was because his last would-be victim killed him first? It would not be surprising if many of the denizens of the Whitechapel, considering they lived in a dangerous area and knew Jack the Ripper was around, armed themselves. This opens up a wealth of new possibilities. Unfortunately, I have seen no evidence of this, but it is a nice theory.


For more information on Jack the Ripper, this Wikipedia article provides a summary of Jack the Ripper’s murder spree. For more excellent Jack the Ripper YouTube videos, follow this link to “Missing Evidence: Jack the Ripper” and “Unmasking Jack the Ripper”, whose producers limited them to be played only on YouTube.

More superb videos on Jack the Ripper are available to you on The Chamber’s Jack the Ripper Playlist on YouTube.

The Illustrated Police News for November 24, 1888

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Remembrance of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888.

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

Day 3 of the Jack the Ripper Remembrance

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

For more information on Jack the Ripper, this Wikipedia article provides a summary of Jack the Ripper’s murder spree. For more excellent Jack the Ripper YouTube videos, follow this link to “Missing Evidence: Jack the Ripper” and “Unmasking Jack the Ripper”, whose producers limited them to be played only on YouTube

More superb videos on Jack the Ripper are available to you on The Chamber’s Jack the Ripper Playlist on YouTube.

The Illustrated Police News for September 15, 1888
The cover of the September 21, 1889, issue of Puck magazine, featuring cartoonist Tom Merry's depiction of the unidentified Whitechapel murderer Jack the Ripper.
The cover of the September 21, 1889, issue of Puck magazine, featuring cartoonist Tom Merry’s depiction of the unidentified Whitechapel murderer Jack the Ripper.

Look closely at this magazine cover. The man scrutinizing the theoretical images of Jack the Ripper is carrying a bloody knife and wearing a leather apron, as many believe Jack the Ripper did. In fact, an alternate name for Jack the Ripper is “leather apron”.

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Remembrance of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888.

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

The Illustrated Police News for September 15, 1888

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Remembrance of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888.

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

Day 2 of the Jack the Ripper Remembrance

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.


Tonight is the anniversary of the murder of Annie Chapman (born Eliza Ann Smith in 1840–God rest her soul). Annie’s story is a tragedy typical of the times. She was born into an average family, but always had a weakness for drink (particularly rum) from a young age. She married John Chapman, a servant to a wealthy family, when she was 29. They had three children, Emily, Annie, and John, who was born crippled and had to be institutionalized eventually. Emily died of meningitis at age 12. Although Annie had quit drinking by 1880, after Emily’s death she and John both began drinking heavily.

Annie Chapman, 1869
Annie Chapman, 1869

In 1886, Annie and John separated by mutual consent with John retaining custody of the children. However, after this John sent Annie 10 shillings/week to live on. There were very few job opportunities for women in the 1880’s. In 1886, John died of alcoholism on Christmas day. Annie then had to struggle to make money any way she could to survive. By that time she was staying with a man who made wire sieves. Sometime after that, she was staying in a lodging house with a man named Edward Stanley and he often paid for the room. Annie made money any way she could, whether by crochet work, selling flowers, or prostitution.

On the night of September 8, Annie lacked the money to pay for her nightly lodging at Crossingham’s Lodging House. Therefore, she told a fellow lodger to tell the landlord she would be back with the money soon and left, possibly to prostitute herself. Sometime later she encountered Jack the Ripper.

For more information on the tragic lives of the Ripper’s victims, this video provides a good summary.

Just today (August 25), I ran across this video on one possible solution to the Jack the Ripper mystery. This is a video by Pat Brown, a former criminal profiler. She believes the Ripper to have been Jacob Levy, a local butcher. Her reasoning is very interesting. For one example: Jacob Levy is known to have been a local butcher with a shop in Whitechapel. Ms. Brown believes that this explains one reason that the Ripper could disappear so quickly after a murder: he ran to his shop.

One word about the video: the first fifteen minutes are boring as Pat Brown explains why she was the first to come up with this theory instead of several others who developed after she did. However, what she reveals is worth suffering the boredom.

For more information on Jack the Ripper, this Wikipedia article provides a summary of Jack the Ripper’s murder spree. For more excellent Jack the Ripper YouTube videos, follow this link to “Missing Evidence: Jack the Ripper” and “Unmasking Jack the Ripper”, whose producers limited them to be played only on YouTube

More superb videos on Jack the Ripper are available to you on The Chamber’s Jack the Ripper Playlist on YouTube.

The Illustrated Police News for September 8, 1888
The Illustrated Police News for September 8, 1888

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Remembrance of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888.

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Remembrance of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888.

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

Day 1 of the Jack the Ripper Remembrance

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.


Jack the Ripper is probably the most famous serial killer in the English-speaking world. 134 years after his killing of five prostitutes (a puny number compared with the serial killers of the late 20th century) his name still instills fear, shock, and trepidation. Undoubtedly, the terror associated with his name comes from the way he killed, as he suddenly materialized out of the darkness in a nearly empty street to brutally and viciously butcher a woman with apparently intense hatred in only a few minutes and then disappear back into the darkness like a phantom. This idea of a sudden and incredibly violent death out of nowhere must strike a primal fear in nearly everyone and this fear is compounded by the Ripper’s anonymity. As Lovecraft famously said:

The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown

H.P. Lovecraft, Supernatural Horror in Literature (1927)

Another terrifying perspective on the Ripper murders is that they show a purely evil side of human nature. Again, the Ripper’s anonymity magnifies this when one considers that this evil could be lurking in anyone, even people we consider harmless and inoffensive, but it is hidden so well that we might never recognize it until our throats are already cut.

PC_Jonas_Mizen_Discovers_Mary_Ann_Nichols_31_August_1888A.jpg
PC Mizen comes upon the first Ripper victim, Mary Ann Nichols in the early morning of August 31, 1888.

Why then should we want to remember the Ripper? One would think that we would forget something like this that is so far in the past that it can no longer affect us, but that is not the case. While the Ripper without doubt died decades ago (unless you believe the Ripper is eternal as in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode “Wolf in the Fold”), there is nothing to say that it could not happen again but perpetrated by a successor. So, perhaps it is best that we remember “Saucy Jacky” to keep us from being too comfortable in our lives and we foolishly start to believe that a sudden, gruesome demise out of nowhere could not happen to us.


Almost thirty years ago, I started on a novel about a fictitious serial killer and I researched the backstory by reading everything I could lay my hands on about serial killers until, after a few years, the research became so nauseating that I put it all aside and did not start on it again until recently. While I am no forensic psychologist and have no college credits in forensic psychology, I believe this research did give me a modicum of insight into the nature of serial killers and a rudimentary familiarity with the basics of how their minds work. I will do my best to apply this in my layman’s analysis of certain aspects of the Ripper case as this series progresses. I can offer no solid answers to any aspect of the Ripper case, but I do hope to pose some questions to which you will enjoy finding the answers on your own.

The first question I pose to you is: where did The Ripper originate? How did he come to be “Saucy Jacky”?

Modern forensic psychology can develop a basic profile of the Ripper (late 30’s to early 40’s, probably Caucasian, probably isolated, possibly quiet, probably rather poor, though he could also be from the upper middle class, probably comes from a broken home, probably tortured small animals as a boy, if he was indeed a boy, and gradually progressed to murdering adult women to whom he was sexually attracted). How accurate is this profile? No one knows or probably will ever know, but this is probably one of the best descriptions we can have of the Ripper to date.

Jack did not spring out over night as a serial killer. Abilities like his develop over many years, usually starting with tormenting pets and strays and then children and then, finally, adults. So it is likely that the Ripper had several more victims well before the murders in Whitechapel began. Indeed, the five victims most commonly associated with the Ripper and known as “the canonical five” as they are almost certainly the work of one man (or of one woman). There are a few others before and after the cases of the canonical five that might have been the work of the Ripper, but they could also have been the work of someone else as well, because they were not committed in quite the same style as that of Saucy Jacky. This may be because the Ripper was developing his style at the time, and because the science of forensics was in its infancy, thus what we would consider pertinent details of many cases today were not recorded. Therefore, the true tally of the Ripper’s victims will probably never be accurately known.

I believe you will see this development as you watch these videos. The first murder of the Ripper’s, that of Mary Ann Nichols, was violent, but it was nothing compared with the final murder, that of Mary Jane Kelly, whose gruesomeness is still legendary. You will also notice that the Ripper gradually learns to find his victims in increasingly isolated areas, where he is able to take more and more time with his unholy work.

Of course, this makes me wonder if, after the Mary Jane Kelly murder, the Ripper was never caught because he developed his black art to such as a degree that police investigations of the period were simply insufficient to catch him. So far as anyone knows, Jack may have gone on killing for decades. In fact, some theories as to why he stopped pose this very question, with one even stating that he came to the US and pursued his work over several states.

With those few points now brought into the open, I will now let you start your own visit into the world of Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall in late Victorian-era London.

Buck's Row, now Durward Street, east London, where the body of Mary Ann Nichols, victim of Jack the Ripper, was found lying across the gutter.
Buck’s Row, now Durward Street, east London, where the body of Mary Ann Nichols, first victim of Jack the Ripper, was found lying across the gutter.

For more information on Jack the Ripper, this Wikipedia article provides a summary of Jack the Ripper’s murder spree. For more excellent Jack the Ripper YouTube videos, follow this link to “Missing Evidence: Jack the Ripper” and “Unmasking Jack the Ripper”, whose producers limited them to be played only on YouTube

More superb videos on Jack the Ripper are available to you on The Chamber’s Jack the Ripper Playlist on YouTube.

Frederick George Abberline (January 8, 1843 Blandford Forum, Dorset – December 10, 1929) attending "Dynamitards" trial (1885). Abberline was an inspector for the London Metropolitan Police and was a prominent police figure in the investigation into the Jack the Ripper murders.

Sketch of Inspector Frederick George Abberline (1843-1929) in 1885. He was the lead investigator in the Ripper murders. He was portrayed by Johnny Depp in the movie “From Hell”. See the trailer below for more information.

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Remembrance of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is remembering the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

You are invited to The Chamber Magazine’s Commemoration of the Jack the Ripper’s Murder Spree

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888.

In the spirit of the horror and true crime genres, over the next several weeks in its blog, The Chamber is commemorating the horrific murder spree of the infamous Jack the Ripper during the late summer and early fall of 1888. At 10:00 a.m. (US Central Time) on the anniversary of each of the five “canonical” murders (August 31, September 8, September 30, and November 9) , The Chamber will run a documentary on Jack the Ripper from YouTube along with a few other esoteric tidbits of information. So grab the tea or coffee of you choice and a light breakfast and join us for should be four intense yet fascinating mornings.

Special Feature: “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge”

On Sunday, March 7, a friend of mine, Tim Stamps, whom I have known since college way back in the dark ages of the 70’s, sent me this link to a truly dark video. I thought it would make an excellent special feature for The Chamber. Here’s what he says about it:

“Hey Phil, check this out —A friend [Samuel Hanon is the name on the video] put this together. Playing the Twilight Zone version of “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” with a Pink Floyd concert CD “Live at the Empire Pool, Wembley Park, London” recorded in November, 1974. Nothing is edited out or changed, except color effects added. All the lyrics and everything synchronistically match on queue. Play here: https://www.facebook.com/samuel.hanon.3/posts/545802596336504

As you will learn with Rod Serling’s narration during the intro, this is not a Twilight Zone production per se. This is a French telling of the classic tale “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” by Ambrose Bierce. It was the winner of the 1962 Cannes Film Festival and of several other international prizes as well. The original version is truly haunting, but the additional soundtrack and colorization take it to a whole new, nightmarishly surreal level.

What I find interesting about the story is that, when it was written in 1890, feelings about the Civil War were still very intense. After all, the Civil War had erupted only thirty years earlier in 1860. Many soldiers on both sides were still alive. Many African-Americans were still alive who had been slaves. Bierce had served with the Union Army and had seen combat several times including at Shiloh. He sustained a traumatic brain injury at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain, whose effects he felt for the rest of his life. Nonetheless, Bierce penned this story about the hanging of a Confederate soldier told from the rebel’s perspective. Bierce did not see his former enemies as inhuman monsters, which I am sure many former Union soldiers did. He recognized the humanity in them and he brings this out in this story, making his readers, many of whom doubtlessly still had strong feelings about the war, feel sympathy for their suffering as well and made them see the former rebels as human.

In our current atmosphere of political turmoil (which cannot hold a candle to the turmoil before, during, and after the Civil War), there is a lesson for us in this classic work of American literature. It shows us that in spite of our feelings about current political and national issues, no matter how intense they are, we must not lose sight of the fact that our political opponents are as human as we are and feel as deeply and as intensely as we all do. We are people with differing opinions, but we are all still people. We must not lose sight of that fact.

I hope you enjoy this video as much as I did.

By the way, I will take submissions of links to dark videos or films so long as they meet the stipulations in The Chamber’s submission guidelines and so long as the person submitting owns the copyright. There are a wide range of formats to which I can link, so please query first and I will let you know if I can link to it.