The murder of Mary Kelly took place on the 9th of November, 1888, and led to an increase in the terror and panic that had been gripping the East End of London throughout the autumn of that year.
Mary Kelly’s funeral took place on Monday the 19th of November, and she was laid to rest in St Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cemetery in Leyton.
On the 21st of November, 1888, as the East End of London was still reeling from the shock of the murder of Mary Kelly, news began to circulate in the district that another murder had taken place a few streets away from where Mary Kelly had been murdered.
OUR VIDEO ON THE ANNIE FARMER CASE
I recently made a full video on the Annie Farmer case which you can watch below.
HAD JACK THE RIPPER RETURNED?
Annie Farmer’s story was one that had become a depressingly familiar one over the course of the previous few months as the Whitechapel Murders had increased in number.
According to reports in the newspapers she was the wife of a respectable tradesman on the City Road, and the couple had three children together.
However, Annie, had turned to drink, and, as a result, her marriage had broken down and she had gravitated to the streets of Spitalfields, where she was spending nights at the enclave’s common lodging houses.
To raise the money for her bed, she resorted to prostitution, and was a familiar figure by night around the railing of Christchurch, Spitalfields.
SHE MEETS A MAN
On the morning of Wednesday the 19th of November, she had spent the night wandering the streets and had been unsuccessful in raise the money for her bed.
Around 6.30am she was standing by the railings of Christchurch, when a man approached her and asked her why she was out at such an early hour? She told him that she had no money to pay for a bed in a common lodging house, at which point he invited her to go for a drink with him, an invitation she accepted without hesitation.
The couple visited several pubs in the neighbourhood, ending up at one on Brick Lane, which may well have been the Frying Pan at the junction of Brick Lane and Thrawl Street.
THEY GO TO A COMMON LODGING HOUSE
The man suggested that they go to a common lodging house together, and Annie Farmer agreed.
They made their was a few streets to number 19, George Street, which happened to have been the common lodging house at which Martha Tabram was residing at the time of her murder on August the 7th 1888.
Here, the man paid eightpence for a double bed and the couple retired to a cubicle on the first floor of the lodging house.
Between 9.30 and 10am, several people were standing outside the common lodging house, when a man came running down the stairs and, exiting the lodging house, headed off along George Street, and turned left along Thrawl Street.
At that moment they heard a woman screaming that he had cut her throat.
Several people chased after the man, but they lost him in the crowds.
ANNIE FARMERS INJURIES
Annie Farmer had suffered several wounds to her throat.
These were treated as best they could by residents of the lodging house, until a doctor arrived and was able to dress the wounds.
QUESTIONED AT THE POLICE STATION
Annie was then taken to nearby Commercial Street Police Station, where the police attempted to interview her, but she was still drunk and was incapable of answering their questions.
When she sobered up, the police found the answers that she gave concerning confusing, and it would appear that they concluded that the couple had argued over money.
JACK THE RIPPER HAD STRUCK AGAIN?
Meanwhile, newspaper reporters had begun to arrive in the district, and were trying to gain information from the police and locals alike about what had happened.
The police were saying nothing, so the reporters began talking to the locals, several of whom were convinced that the woman had been murdered and shockingly mutilated.
As a result, several evening newspapers reported that this had been another Jack the Ripper murder, and hen news of this “latest atrocity” spread around the district, panic-stricken crowds began to arrive at the scene of the supposed murder.
NEWS STORIES CORRECTED
However, later editions and the next day’s newspapers, printed the fact that no murder had taken place, and the attack was soon ruled out as having been carried out by Jack the Ripper.
THE PERPETRATOR NEVER CAUGHT
No one was ever charged or brought to justice for the attack on Annie Farmer, and, owing to the fact that she claimed to have known the man for about a year, the consensus in the district was that she had tried to rob the man, and when caught in the act she had invented the story that he had attacked her in order to create a distraction.