One of the locations that we feature on our walk is a corner of Mitre Square that has been given the nickname “murder corner.”
Mitre Square was the location where the body of Catherine Eddowes, the fourth victim of Jack the Ripper, was found at 1.45am on 30th September 1888.
This photograph of the corner shows it in the 1930’s when it was photographed by William Stewart for his book Jack the Ripper A New Theory.
Stewart is one of the writers to have but forward the theory that it wasn’t “Jack the Ripper” but that it was, in fact, “Jill the Ripper.”
Now the idea that the murders were carried out by a woman has been put forward several times and it is a theory we actually consider in some depth on our Jack the Ripper Tour.
It has, for example, been suggested that the killer was a midwife abortionist and that the murders themselves were little more than bungled abortions, hence the horrific abdominal mutilations suffered by the majority of the victims. According to this theory, since the police thought the killer was a man then a woman could have walked through the streets and attracted no suspicion whatsoever.
Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of the Sherlock Holmes stories, suggested that the killer may have been a man but that he dressed up as a woman after each of the murders gain to facilitate his escape, as the police were not looking for a woman.
Whatever the case and the method of dress (or disguise) that the killer used to evade detection, these theories demonstrate how it is easy to come up with a theory and then to twist the known facts in such a way as to make that theory, nor matter how outlandish, totally plausible!