Sunday, October 2, 2011

Jack The Ripper: A Royal Family Cover Up?

Ok, so if you don't see it coming already I feel obligated to warn you that this is totally a conspiracy theory piece. That's right, I have finally given in to my obsession with conspiracy theories and figured what better part of history to talk about the the worlds most famous serial killer, Mr. Jack the Ripper. So by now, that your two sentences into my opening paragraph, I bet your asking how can this be a conspiracy? Well hold onto your knickers because this theory involves hookers, doctors, a Prince, the Queen of England and France. Now how are these all related? I guess your going to have to keep reading, and trust me you'll want to.

                                          tvtropes.org

The story of Jack the Ripper is perhaps the best known murder mystery in history. We also know, well you should from reading my other works, that I tend to stick to American History but this is theory is just too good to pass up. But let me quickly recap what is actually known about Jack the Ripper. The Ripper was and still is unknown and was given his name by an anonymous letter which was allegedly written by the killer himself. He murdered five prostitutes in London's Whitechapel district in 1888. Not only did he murder them, but the bodies were subjected to mutilation and he then proceeded to remove some organs. The murders gripped the city of London and the situation was not helped by publications of letters that were supposedly written by Jack the Ripper which all included facts about the murders that only the killer would know. The murders then mysterious stopped in the beginning of November (1888). But why? Well this is where the conspiracy starts.

                                     libraryanything.com

Yes, it is a cheesy looking cover, something like you'd find at a garage sale or second hand store but it contains perhaps the most entertaining theory on Jack the Ripper. Jack the Ripper: The Final Solution was written by Stephen Knight, however Knight didn't just make this up out of thin air. Knight was inspired by the claims of Thomas Stowell and Joseph Gorman. Now who are these two blokes? Well, Stowell was a surgeon who did an independent study of the Jack the Ripper case and private notes of the Sir William Gull ( the Royal Family's doctor) and came to the conclusion that the Royal Family was tied to the murders. Mr. Gorman also claimed that the Royal Family was involved but that he was a directly linked to those involved. This two men and their claims are the basis for Knight's book, but it is their words and works that made this conspiracy come to life.

                                                                                     guardian.co.uk

The image above does not depict a madman with a blood lust, but more like a man that is patient and focused. This fits directly into Stowell's study, but the man in the picture will be explained a little bit later. Stowell was not some crack pot conspiracy nut ball, he was quite educated, obtaining a PHD in Medicine (1927), Industrial Health (1954) and served on several committees relating to health standards. But it was in 1970 when Stowell dropped the bomb on the world that Jack the Ripper was a Royal Family cover up. Now, with Stowell shaking up the Royal Family Tree, it was the talk of England. So what was his theory? Well hold on, grab some tea and crumpets and get ready for a smashing good time.

                                              superstock.com

This dashing fellow dressed like he just walked off the cover of the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover is Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale. According to Stowell, it is this man that is the reason for the Jack the Ripper murders. Now the important link of Prince Victor is that he is the grandson of Queen Victoria. Stowell found that the Prince was institutionalized in the fall of 1888 after he committed the first for murders. The reason for committing the murders? Well the Prince had syphilis. Stowell put together that the Prince may have contracted the disease as a child on a visit to the West Indies. He goes on to explain that the Prince also escaped the institution to commit the final murder before finally dying of his disease. However, and of course, the Royal Family called Stowell a liar. First, Royal Doctors that treated Albert Victor claim he died of pneumonia. Second, Royal Family Historians claim that at the times of the murders Prince Albert Victor was attending Royal Family functions. Finally, at the time of the Prince's stay at the institution Royal Family Historians again, claim he was serving in the British Army. Now if that doesn't stink of cover up I don't know what does. Oh wait, here is the icing on the cake. On November 9, 1970 Thomas Stowell passed away, coincidentally an apology letter was printed in The Times, which is supposedly written by Stowell himself. The letter claims that Stowell retracted his statements claiming the Royal Family member was involved. And to make it even more fishy, Stowell's son destroyed all his father's papers claiming them to be "nothing of importance." Now could Stowell have stumbled across the truth? Could the Royal Family again covered up the Jack the Ripper murders? Before you ponder this, wait till you hear the next theory.

                                           darkestlondon.com

Now this fine gent is Sir William Gull, the Royal Family physician who mysteriously retired in 1889. Joseph Gorman was interviewed by the BBC in a Jack the Ripper investigation inspired by Stowell's theory. Gorman claimed to be the son of Walter Sickert, a well known painter in London. Gorman stated that Sickert had passed on the story of Prince Albert Victor and the cover up of the murders, along with his own relation to the Royal Family. Gorman states that the Prince and Sickert become close friends. During a night out the Prince met Annie Elizabeth Cook and began a relationship. The problem here is, well, Annie was not only poor but Irish and Catholic something that would not sit well with the Royal Family. However, love could not be stopped and Albert Victor and Annie Elizabeth were married (1885) in the Whitechapel section of London and the marriage was witnessed by Sickert and Mary Jane Kelly (the final Ripper victim). The couple then produced a child, well more like the heir to the throne, Alice Margaret Crook. The family had a small and unnoticeable residence in Whitechapel, but that was all about to change.

                                                                                        gift-tours.com

That's right cue the creepy music, let the fog role in because this is were the fiction rubs elbows with fact. As all marriages go, everything is perfect and lovey dovey and then the Royal Family finds out and ruins everything. Word of the Albert and Annie's marriage had reached the top, Queen Victoria and Prime Minister Lord Salisbury. The Crown was furious at the news of an Irish heir and feared revolution across the British Empire. Salisbury called for a raid on the apartment but before British officials could reach the house Albert was tipped off. He then sent his daughter to live with Annie's close friend, Mary Jane Kelly. As Albert and Annie were taken into custody, Albert was confined to Buckingham Palace were he died of "pneumonia" and Annie was declared insane, by none other then Sir William Gull and placed in an insane asylum for the next 30 years before dying in 1920. So, I am sure your piecing this together already but here is were the killings start. Mary Jane Kelly along with friends, who were also fellow ladies of the night, Mary Ann Nichols, Annie Chapman and Elizabeth Stride had the bright idea to blackmail the Royal Family. It was due to this and the fact there was an Irish heir to the throne that Salisbury, the Crown and Scotland Yard conspired to silencing and eliminating all evidence of the child. The killings were then the duty of Sir William Gull. He lured these women into his carriage and then murdered them and removed organs as to look like the killer was deranged and to make it more of a conspiracy, to look like the Free Masons were involved. However, Gull never expect for the Ripper killings to become on of histories greatest mysteries and have historians, conspiracy nuts or skeptics look deeper into the killings. But the killings are still  unsolved and there are still no leads to who the murderer actually is.

                                   comicvine.com

So what happened to Alice? All those that knew of her existence were silenced, so where did she go? According to Gorman, Alice would eventually grow up and become mistress to Walter Sickert and from that affair came himself. Others say that Alice was ushered off to France to be protected from meeting the same fate as her parents. As for Knight's take, he believes Gorman's story but still could not find a trace of Alice...anywhere. So could Alice have grown up to mother Gorman, which would then make the heir to the British throne a Irish/German Catholic? Or was Alice sent off to France to never know her true identity, which in that case would make the heir to  the throne a French national of Irish ethnicity. Either way this aspect sure throws a wrench in the story of Jack the Ripper and Royal Family history.

                                                                                   historyguy.com




Today, this is the Royal Family but is it the real Royal Family? After Stowell, Gorman and Knight's theories were presented the Royal Family was defended from within and without. Every theory had holes punched clean through it by the British Government. And lets be honest, imagine the news of an Irish heir to the British Crown, England as we know it would be turned upside down due to the history between the two countries and peoples. But how true are these theories? Can they be trusted? I sure don't know but they do make for great entertainment. Any type of controversy surrounding the Royal Family will always lead to a conspiracy, it always has and always will. I like to believe there is some truth behind this accusations, but again I love a good conspiracy. It would also give a good ending to the murders and a mystery that seems to have no answers. 

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