Moment in Oddity - The Great Pumpkin Weighs As Much As Volkswagon
When Diane was a kid, her family grew pumpkins in their little backyard garden. For several of those years, they managed to grow at least one really large pumpkin. Diane's dad would carve out the pumpkin and the elementary school would display it at the front counter area. They would then bring it home for Halloween to grace the front porch. The largest pumpkin was big enough for four kids to sit on top comfortably. We all are aware that giant pumpkin growing contests are held at this time of year and the winner for 2020 was the Great Pumpkin indeed. Travis Gienger is a horticulture teacher who lives in Anoka, Minnesota, which also just happens to officially be the Halloween Capital, and he grew the winning pumpkin. He drove his giant pumpkin 35 hours to California for its official weigh-in. The pumpkin tipped the scales at a whopping 2,350 pounds. That means this pumpkin weighed more than Volkswagen Bug! This also earned him a prize of $16,450. That's a lot of pumpkin pie filling and that huge pumpkin, certainly is odd!
This Month in History - Explosion During Ice Show at Indiana State Fairgrounds Coliseum
In the month of October, on the 31st, in 1963, a propane gas explosion at the Indiana State Fairgrounds Coliseum killed 74 people and injured 400. The fairgrounds was hosting a "Holiday on Ice" skating exhibition inside the building and the skaters were just finishing up their final piece in the show and the group was gliding into a pinwheel formation. Suddenly, some propane gas that had leaked from a rusty tank in the concession area ignited and the explosion it created shot a ball of fire up through the south side seats. People and chairs went flying. A huge crater had been blown in the ground and many people fell into it and were buried by concrete. Fifty-four people were killed on the scene and another 20 died later. Indianapolis Star reporter Richard R. Roberts wrote of the event, "You walked into a nightmare. This was the worst thing I have seen since combat in World War II. The lights above still cast a bluish light onto the ice show. A red satin slipper lay on the ice. Three feet away was a pool of blood. A gray-haired man lay on his back staring lifelessly at the ceiling. Ambulance attendants threw a gray blanket across him. Chairs were scattered like ten-pins on the south end of the big building. The fairgrounds itself was almost like a battleground." Several people were indicted by a grand jury: the state fire marshal, the Indianapolis fire chief, the general manager and the concessions manager of the Coliseum and officers of the propane gas company. Only the president of the gas supplier was convicted, which was later overturned by the Indiana Supreme Court. Victims and survivors got $4.6 million in settlements.
Ghosts of Whitechapel
Jack the Ripper. That name can cause one's blood to run cold. No serial killer is as famous as Jack the Ripper. He was birthed during a time long before the term serial killer was devised by the FBI. His crimes were horrific and remain unsolved to this day. Since these multiple murders happened 130 years ago, Jack the Ripper is considered one of the first serial killers in documented history, although students of history know that serialized killing has been with us since man first discovered he could take a life. This killer was unique in that he seemed to be the first who reveled in provoking the police. The area where these crimes were committed, Whitechapel, would hold onto its infamous reputation. On this episode we will examine the crimes, talk about the victims, theorize on who the killer may have been and share the hauntings that have plagued Whitechapel ever since.
Many people may not know that there are possibly eleven victims that could be attributed to Jack the Ripper. That is why the term canonical is used when referencing the five victims that historians and detectives have always connected with confidence to Jack the Ripper. These crimes took place in Whitechapel,
London in 1888. The
five victims were Mary Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride,
Catherine Eddowes and Mary Kelly. Most of them were murdered in a 31 day
time frame that abruptly ended. No one knows for sure why there was an abrupt end. Did the killer die? Was this just a sudden killing spree that he got out of his system? Did he leave the area? Was he arrested for some other crime? Let's first look at the area where the crimes were committed.
The Whitechapel of late 19th century London was overcrowded and dirty.
Living and working conditions were deplorable and the sanitary
conditions were terrible. Single gas lamps guttered along the maze of
streets and alleyways, offering very little light. The smell of animal
and human excrement hung heavy in the air. Around 15,000 people were
homeless and unemployed and for those that could get housing, they
usually shared it with another family to make ends meet. Single people
would be crammed into large rooms with around 80 other people and pay
four pence for a bed for the night. Death for children was common and
only around half the children in Whitechapel would live to see the age
of five. Prostitution was often the only choice for women and during the
Victorian Period, around 1,200 prostitutes were working in Whitechapel.
Typically, these women were bloated, sick and missing teeth because
they were alcoholics and they looked far older than their real age. Many
would be attacked by their clients and rarely did the police pay any
attention to these complaints. So when the Ripper started his attacks,
the police were not really concerned.
Martha Tabram also went by the name Martha Turner and there are those who believe she could have been the Ripper's first victim. She was born Martha White in 1849 and married a man named Henry Tabram in 1869. This marriage would be very troubled as Martha was an alcoholic. The couple had two children before Henry finally left in 1875. Martha eventually took up with another Henry. His last name was Turner and she would take his name although they never married. Her drinking would end this relationship as well and she found herself in need of income. There were not many options and eventually she was selling her body on the streets of Whitechapel. This is what she was doing in the early morning hours of August 7th in 1888. She and a client that she had met in a bar where she was drinking with another prostitute, walked to George Yard. The body of Martha Tabram was found in George Yard around 3:30am by a cab driver. He left her on a landing where he assumed she had passed out drunk, so the authorities were not notified until 5am when a resident of the building realized she was dead. Martha had been stabbed 39 times, so we're not sure why the cab driver thought she was just sleeping. Nine of the stabs were to her throat, two in the right lung, five in the left lung, five in the liver, two in the spleen, one in the heart and six in the stomach. Historians do not consider her a Ripper victim because her throat was not slit and she was not disemboweled. But the killing was frenzied, which might be something a first time serial killer would do until he had refined his method of attack. She was killed in a very violent way with a knife, in a secluded area and on a day that was near a holiday, which was the same as the five main canonical victims. So her being a victim is very possible.
The first canonical victim is Mary Nichols. She lived a rough life as so many women did in Victorian Whitechapel and much of it was her own making. She had married William Nichols in 1864 and they had five children. She left William and the children in 1881 mainly because she was an alcoholic. He continued to support her until he heard that she was working as a prostitute which meant he no longer was responsible for supporting her. Mary worked some odd jobs and was placed in a workhouse and finally ended up as a maid in Wandsworth. She left that job after stealing clothes from her employer and lived in a common lodging house with another woman in 1888. On the night of August 30th, Nichols was in need of money to obtain a bed and so she went out on the corner of Osborn Street and Whitechapel Road wearing a new bonnet. Her roommate met up with her an hour before her death and asked if Nichols had made any money. She replied that she had made enough for the bed three times over and when her roommate asked to see the money, Nichols remarked that she had spent it on drink. This was the last time Nichols was seen alive.
A carman named Charles Allen Cross found Nichols' body on the ground in front of a gated stable on Buck's Row, which is today Durward Street, at 3:40 AM. Cross asked another man for his opinion on whether Nichols was dead and this man was unsure. They went looking for a policeman and found PC Jonas Mizen. Cross told him, "She looks to me to be either dead or drunk, but for my part, I believe she's dead." Mizen inspected the body and another policeman named John Neale joined him. He flashed his lantern to get another policeman to join them. This was John Thain. The policemen questioned people in the area, but nobody had heard or seen a thing. PC Thain got surgeon Dr Henry Llewellyn to come to the scene and he found that Mary had been stabbed multiple times. Her throat had been slit twice from left to right and her abdomen had been mutilated with several incisions and one deep jagged wound. There was little blood, only "about enough to fill two large wine glasses, or half a pint at the most". The abdominal wounds took about five minutes to perform and were made by the murderer after she was dead. The attack was brutal and savage, but quick and quiet. The police decided they needed a man with a knowledge of the area to come in and help and that man was Inspector Frederick George Abberline. Abberline had spent fourteen years as a detective in the district where the Ripper crimes occurred. He was a well respected man and suited to the work.
Annie Chapman was the second canonical victim. She was born Eliza Ann Smith in 1841 and married John Chapman in 1869. They had three children. Their youngest was named John also and he was born disabled in 1880. They lost their eldest daughter in 1882 and both of these things are thought to have led the couple to drinking and eventually separating in 1884. Chapman moved in with another man, but John continued to support her until he died from alcoholism. When the man she lived with left her soon after, she became very depressed and people started calling her "Dark Annie." She sold flowers and did crochet work, but it was never enough and she soon was prostituting herself on the streets of Whitechapel. Annie found herself in the same predicament as Nichols in the early morning hours of September 8th in 1888. She needed money for lodging and decided to turn some tricks. Her body was discovered at 6am by a resident of Number 29 named John Davis. She was on the ground near the doorway in the backyard. A witness named Mrs. Elizabeth Long testified at an inquest that she had seen Chapman talking to a man at about 5:30am just beyond the back yard of 29 Hanbury Street, Spitalfields. The woman may have seen Chapman's murderer and she described him as over forty, a little taller than Chapman, dark haired a foreign and shabby appearance that entailed him wearing a deer-stalker hat and dark overcoat.
Dr George Bagster Phillips was the police surgeon and he described how he found the body, "The left arm was placed across the left breast. The legs were drawn up, the feet resting on the ground, and the knees turned outwards. The face was swollen and turned on the right side. The tongue protruded between the front teeth, but not beyond the lips. The tongue was evidently much swollen. The front teeth were perfect as far as the first molar, top and bottom and very fine teeth they were. The body was terribly mutilated ... the stiffness of the limbs was not marked, but was evidently commencing. He noticed that the throat was dissevered deeply; that the incision through the skin were jagged and reached right round the neck ... On the wooden paling between the yard in question and the next, smears of blood, corresponding to where the head of the deceased lay, were to be seen. These were about 14 inches from the ground, and immediately above the part where the blood from the neck lay. The instrument used at the throat and abdomen was the same. It must have been a very sharp knife with a thin narrow blade, and must have been at least 6 to 8 inches in length, probably longer. He should say that the injuries could not have been inflicted by a bayonet or a sword bayonet. They could have been done by such an instrument as a medical man used for post-mortem purposes, but the ordinary surgical cases might not contain such an instrument. Those used by the slaughtermen, well ground down, might have caused them. He thought the knives used by those in the leather trade would not be long enough in the blade. There were indications of anatomical knowledge ... he should say that the deceased had been dead at least two hours, and probably more, when he first saw her; but it was right to mention that it was a fairly cool morning, and that the body would be more apt to cool rapidly from its having lost a great quantity of blood. There was no evidence ...of a struggle having taken place. He was positive the deceased entered the yard alive...A handkerchief was round the throat of the deceased when he saw it early in the morning. He should say it was not tied on after the throat was cut." Chapman's throat was cut from left to right and she had been disemboweled, with her intestines thrown out of her abdomen over each of her shoulders. The morgue examination revealed that part of her uterus was missing. Her murder was quickly linked to Nichols'.
Elizabeth Stride went by the nickname "Long Liz." She was different than the other victims in that she got into prostitution early in her life, not because of a failed marriage and the resulting poverty. She had been born in Sweden in 1843. She eventually married a man named John Thomas Stride and stopped working as a prostitute, but they separated eight years after marrying. She ended up in a lodging house for a time and then moved in with another man. They had a tempestuous relationship and she had broken up with him for a final time, four days before her death. Her body was found at 1am on September 30, 1888. She was wearing a black jacket and skirt and black crepe bonnet. A policeman had seen her with a man wearing a hard felt hat who was carrying a package about 18 inches in length. The murder had happened so close to her discovery by Louis Diemschutz that blood still flowed from a wound on her neck. Stride only had a slit throat and no mutilations, so people believe that the Ripper was interrupted while he was murdering Stride. It is believed he grabbed her from behind by a handkerchief around her neck and that he pinned her to the ground on her back with his knees as he quickly slashed her across the throat.
Since Jack the Ripper was interrupted before he could finish his work with Stride, he went out and found himself another victim. This would be Catherine Eddowes. She was born in 1842 and had two common law husbands. She had three children with the first one named Thomas Conway. She was an alcoholic and left the family in 1880 and took up with John Kelly. She started casual prostitution to help pay the bills. Friends said she was a jolly woman who loved to sing, but she had a fierce temper. On the night of her death, she had been arrested for public intoxication. She was sober enough to be released by 1am. She was found dead in Mitre Square at 1:45am by PC Edward Watkins. Police surgeon Dr. Frederick Gordon Brown wrote of the scene, "The body was on its back, the head turned to left shoulder. The arms by the side of the body as if they had fallen there. Both palms upwards, the fingers slightly bent. A thimble was lying off the finger on the right side. The clothes drawn up above the abdomen. The thighs were naked. Left leg extended in a line with the body. The abdomen was exposed. Right leg bent at the thigh and knee. The bonnet was at the back of the head—great disfigurement of the face. The throat cut. Across below the throat was a neckerchief. ... The intestines were drawn out to a large extent and placed over the right shoulder—they were smeared over with some feculent matter. A piece of about two feet was quite detached from the body and placed between the body and the left arm, apparently by design. The lobe and auricle of the right ear were cut obliquely through. There was a quantity of clotted blood on the pavement on the left side of the neck round the shoulder and upper part of the arm, and fluid blood-coloured serum which had flowed under the neck to the right shoulder, the pavement sloping in that direction. Body was quite warm. No death stiffening had taken place. She must have been dead most likely within the half hour. We looked for superficial bruises and saw none. No blood on the skin of the abdomen or secretion of any kind on the thighs. No spurting of blood on the bricks or pavement around. No marks of blood below the middle of the body. Several buttons were found in the clotted blood after the body was removed. There was no blood on the front of the clothes. There were no traces of recent connection."
After a post-mortem he wrote, "After
washing the left hand carefully, a bruise the size of a sixpence, recent
and red, was discovered on the back of the left hand between the thumb
and first finger. A few small bruises on right shin of older date. The
hands and arms were bronzed. No bruises on the scalp, the back of the
body, or the elbows. ... The cause of death was haemorrhage from the
left common carotid artery. The death was immediate and the mutilations
were inflicted after death ... There would not be much blood on the
murderer. The cut was made by someone on the right side of the body,
kneeling below the middle of the body. ... The peritoneal lining was cut
through on the left side and the left kidney carefully taken out and
removed. ... I believe the perpetrator of the act must have had
considerable knowledge of the position of the organs in the abdominal
cavity and the way of removing them. The parts removed would be of no
use for any professional purpose. It required a great deal of knowledge
to have removed the kidney and to know where it was placed. Such a
knowledge might be possessed by one in the habit of cutting up animals. I
think the perpetrator of this act had sufficient time ... It would take
at least five minutes. ... I believe it was the act of one person."
The police disagreed as to whether the killer was highly skilled with anatomical knowledge. At about 3 a.m. on the same day as Eddowes was murdered, a blood-stained fragment of her apron with fecal matter was found in the doorway leading to Flats 108 and 119, Model Dwellings, Goulston Street, Whitechapel. Above it on the wall was a graffiti written in chalk that read: "The Juwes are the men that Will not be Blamed for nothing". The writing may or may not have been related to the murder, but either way it was washed away before dawn on the orders of Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Charles Warren, who feared that it would spark anti-Jewish riots.
On October 1st, a postcard that was called the "Saucy Jacky" postcard
and signed "Jack the Ripper", was received by the Central News Agency.
It claimed responsibility for Stride's and Eddowes' murders, and
described the killing of the two women as the "double event." Since the
postcard was mailed before the murders were public, the letter is
thought to be legitimate. But the postmark was more than 24 hours after
the killings took place, long after details were known by journalists
and residents of the area and so police think a journalist wrote the
letter as a hoax and many historians today believe the same thing. Then
there was the "From hell" letter that came with a parcel on October 16,
1888. Inside the parcel was half a human kidney. The writer claimed to
have "fried and ate" the missing kidney half. The handwriting and style
were unlike that of the "Saucy Jacky" postcard.
Mary Kelly was the Ripper's last victim. She was known by a variety of aliases from Fair Emma to Marie Kelly to Ginger to Black Mary. It is believed she was born in 1863, but the details of her life are little known. She had lived with a man named Joseph Barnett before her death. Around 1879 is when it is thought that Kelly started prostitution. Most reports of Kelly claim that she was a pretty woman and liked to sing when she was drunk, but she could get abusive after drinking too. A woman who lived near Kelly reported on the night of her murder that Kelly came home with a stout ginger-haired man who was wearing a bowler hat. She went out again around 2am. Her body was found on the morning of November 9th by a man working for her landlord who was trying to collect her rent that she was six weeks late on paying. When Kelly didn't answer the door, he looked through the window and saw Kelly's mutilated body. The scene was horrific. The Ripper had a lot of time with the body since they were inside her room and he took full advantage.
Dr. Thomas Bond wrote of the scene, "The body was lying naked in the middle of the bed, the shoulders flat but the axis of the body inclined to the left side of the bed. The head was turned on the left cheek. The left arm was close to the body with the forearm flexed at a right angle and lying across the abdomen. The right arm was slightly abducted from the body and rested on the mattress. The elbow was bent, the forearm supine with the fingers clenched. The legs were wide apart, the left thigh at right angles to the trunk and the right forming an obtuse angle with the pubis. The whole of the surface of the abdomen and thighs was removed and the abdominal cavity emptied of its viscera. The breasts were cut off, the arms mutilated by several jagged wounds and the face hacked beyond recognition of the features. The tissues of the neck were severed all round down to the bone. The viscera were found in various parts viz: the uterus and kidneys with one breast under the head, the other breast by the right foot, the liver between the feet, the intestines by the right side and the spleen by the left side of the body. The flaps removed from the abdomen and thighs were on a table.
The bed clothing at the right corner was saturated with blood, and on the floor beneath was a pool of blood covering about two feet square. The wall by the right side of the bed and in a line with the neck was marked by blood which had struck it in several places. The face was gashed in all directions, the nose, cheeks, eyebrows, and ears being partly removed. The lips were blanched and cut by several incisions running obliquely down to the chin. There were also numerous cuts extending irregularly across all the features. The neck was cut through the skin and other tissues right down to the vertebrae, the fifth and sixth being deeply notched. The skin cuts in the front of the neck showed distinct ecchymosis. The air passage was cut at the lower part of the larynx through the cricoid cartilage. Both breasts were more or less removed by circular incisions, the muscle down to the ribs being attached to the breasts. The intercostals between the fourth, fifth, and sixth ribs were cut through and the contents of the thorax visible through the openings. The skin and tissues of the abdomen from the costal arch to the pubes were removed in three large flaps.
thigh was denuded in front to the bone, the flap of skin, including the
external organs of generation, and part of the right buttock. The left
thigh was stripped of skin fascia, and muscles as far as the knee. The
left calf showed a long gash through skin and tissues to the deep
muscles and reaching from the knee to five inches above the ankle. Both
arms and forearms had extensive jagged wounds. The right thumb showed a
small superficial incision about one inch long, with extravasation of
blood in the skin, and there were several abrasions on the back of the
hand moreover showing the same condition. On opening the thorax it was found that the right lung was minimally
adherent by old firm adhesions. The lower part of the lung was broken
and torn away. The left lung was intact. It was adherent at the apex and
there were a few adhesions over the side. In the substances of the lung
there were several nodules of consolidation. The pericardium was open
below and the heart absent. In the abdominal cavity there was some
partly digested food of fish and potatoes, and similar food was found in
the remains of the stomach attached to the intestines." The work took
about two hours. The murder was linked to the four previous victims.
Those suspected of being Jack the Ripper are numerous, numbering in the hundreds. There were many arrests made during the investigation, but no one has ever been convicted of the crimes and theories as to who committed the crimes continues today with libraries full of books focusing on various characters that seem to meet the qualifications to be Jack the Ripper. Men who were arrested include a ship's cook named William Henry Piggott who was detained after being found in possession of a blood-stained shirt and making misogynist remarks. He was cleared. Swiss butcher Jacob Isenschmidt matched the description of a blood-stained man seen acting strangely and he had a distinctive ginger moustache and a history of mental illness. He was locked up in an asylum. German hairdresser Charles Ludwig was arrested after he attacked a prostitute and then tried to stab a man at a coffee stall. Both Isenschmidt and Ludwig were exonerated after another murder was committed while they were in custody. Other suspects included Friedrich Schumacher, pedlar Edward McKenna, apothecary and mental patient Oswald Puckridge and medical student John Sanders. No evidence was found against any of these men. Edward Stanley was another suspect who was dropped after his alibis for the nights of two of the murders were confirmed.
Mary Kelly's boyfriend Joe Barnett was questioned about her murder and the police thought maybe he killed her in a rage. He was exonerated. Other suspects included George Chapman, Dr. Francis Tumblety, Michael Ostrog, James Maybrick, Walter Sickert, Charles Cross, Montague John Druitt, Thomas Cutbush and Aaron Kosminski. Some outlandish suspects include Prince Albert Edward Victor, Lewis Carol, The Freemasons, Dr. Barnardo and more recently, H.H. Holmes, which was a theory made more known by the recent TV show "American Ripper." Author Patricia Cornwall believes Walter Sickert was the Ripper. Many of the suspects have viable reasons for being Jack the Ripper.
In 2014, mitochondrial
DNA that matched one of Eddowes' descendants was extracted from a
shawl said to have come from the scene of her murder. The DNA match was
based on one of seven small segments taken from the hypervariable
regions. The DNA was said to uncommon with a 1 in 290,000
frequency worldwide. Many pointed out that there were errors. Other DNA on the shawl matched DNA from a relation
of Aaron Kosminski, one of the suspects. This match is also questionable and many have said that there is no evidence that the shawl was Eddowes'. This shawl has been handled by so many people through the years that we wouldn't trust any claims about it. But Aaron Kosminski as the Ripper is very plausible. We'll just never know. If only the spirits could tell us because many of the victims still seem to have an afterlife here.
Mary Ann "Polly" Nichols is said to haunt the place where her body was
found on today's Durward Street. The ghostly sounds of murder and
muffled cries have been heard. The apparition of a body has been seen
lying in the gutter where Polly was found and many have claimed that it
has an ethereal grey or green color to it. These reports started as
early as 1895. Horses and dogs have shied away from the spot. A man was
photographing the area when he heard a man and woman coming up on him.
He turned and stepped aside only to find that no one was near him.
The house in which Annie Chapman was slaughtered was demolished in the 1970s and the Truman Brewery was built in its place. In the 1930s, when the house still stood, people claimed to hear the sounds of Annie being murdered in the backyard of the house. A resident said he heard the disembodied gasps of breath of a woman and this was heard along with a male breathing heavily and the sounds of a knife plunging into something. Then there were the sounds of a body being dragged as though the murder were replaying invisibly. More terrifying are the reports of a headless figure sitting in the backyard and Annie's ghost has been seen walking down Hanbury Street and then stopping at Number 29. Occasionally, a shadowy male figure accompanies her. As I said, the site of the murder is now occupied by the former Truman Brewery building and employees there claim that on the anniversary of Annie’s murder, September 8th, the brewery’s boardroom becomes icy cold.
The place were Elizabeth Stride was murdered is not very active. The gates of a school are located there now and there have been no complaints about unexplained activity. But this was not always the case. In the months after Stride's murder, people claimed to hear the ghostly sounds of a woman who seemed to be struggling against something and they have even heard her cry out.
The body of Catherine Eddows lies beneath a plaque that claims her as a victim of Jack the Ripper. Her body had been found on the northwest corner of Mitre Square and legend claims that on the anniversary of her death on September 30th, the cobblestones in this corner glow red. A more common occurrence that continues today is that people see her partly transparent body lying where it had been left after her murder and the mutilations can clearly be seen. A medical student had thought he was seeing a bundle of clothes in the square when he was walking home. The bundle moved slightly and he thought it might be a person in distress. He realized he was looking at a woman as he got close and just as her reached to touch her, she vanished. A young couple saw a shadowy figure running away from what they thought was a pile of rubbish. They walked over to the pile and recognized it as a woman. Again, the body disappeared.
Leonard Matters wrote the book "The Mystery of Jack the Ripper" in 1928. He visited Duval Street, which had formerly been Dorset Street, and he found an elderly man who had been a boy when the Whitechapel murders took place. He pointed out the house where Mary Kelly had been killed and said, "That’s the house. They say it’s ‘aunted, but I never seen nobody comin’ out of it at nights." Through his research, Matters found stories from several witnesses who claimed to have met Mary Kelly several hours after doctors stated that she had been murdered. This has caused some to speculate that the ghost of Mary Kelly was walking the streets of Spitalfields just hours after her death. A witness named Caroline Maxwell claimed to have a conversation with Mary at 8am the morning after her murder. She had mentioned to Mary that she looked unwell and Mary said that she did in fact feel sick. The flat where Kelly was murdered was covered in blood and this blood seemed to leak through the paint after the room was relet. One woman claimed that a bloody handprint on the wall would reappear after the wall was painted over. Her apparition has been seen over the decades walking in the area, clad in black.
There are other hauntings in Whitechapel too. The Ten Bells Pub is an infamous landmark in Whitechapel that has been around since the 1740sIt is located at the corner of Commercial and Fournier Streets. Many of Jack the Ripper’s victims drank at the pub and were seen there shortly before their murders. People report having many unexplained experiences here. The apparition of a old man dressed in period clothing has been seen. The pub's upper floors are rented out and tenants have complained of being awakened by the phantom of an old man. He is usually lying next to them in the bed. People also claim to have been pushed by something they can't see when on the stairs. The Jack the Ripper Tour website writes, "Although the descriptions were always similar, nobody could pinpoint the man’s identity. However, in 2000, a new landlord arrived. While clearing out the cellar, he found an old box hidden in a corner. The box contained items belonging to a certain George Roberts, including a wallet containing a 1900’s press cutting talking about Roberts’ murder. After further research, he found that Roberts had been the landlord of the pub around this time. Was it his ghost the staff kept seeing?"
On Durward Street where Mary Ann Nichols' body was found, a man went into a warehouse in December of 1974 and he saw the ghost of a young boy dangling from a rope that was tied to a ceiling hook. The building had once been a boarding school. It no longer exists, having been demolished. There is the Old Bass Sales Office on Cephas Street that had once been a doctor's surgery and is now an office building. In 1980, employees in the building complained about smelling embalming fluid and experiencing severely cold spots. The Royal London Hospital on Whitechapel features a grey lady who walks the hallways. The legend here claims that if the shutters are not closed at night, a death will follow. There is an eerie oddity here as well. The Elephant Man's mounted skeleton is kept here at the medical school.
The Tower of London is found in Whitechapel too. Check out Ep. 152 for more. Are these locations in Whitechapel still harboring spirits from the past? Could some of these ghosts be victims of Jack the Ripper? That is for you to decide!