Annie was a wander of Spitalfields, a 45 year old, short and plimp lady who had been living at Crossingham’s lodging, 35 Dorest Street where it cost 8 pence a night for a double bed. Annie was a person that lept some fairly cordial relationships, was not so offensive but had a weakness for drink. She did crochet work, made and sold artificial flowers and made up further money where she could with her work as a prostitute.

Harry the Hawker and Ted Stanley where both her regular clients. Stanley would often spend Saturdays to Mondays at Crossingham’s. He said Annie was told to turn other men away for him, he in turn denied this fact saying that he had only visited her once or twice. It was the only time trouble for Annie was with the “pensioner” Stanley. It also transpires he was a brick layer and not a pensioner.

There was another incident reported, though the details are sketchy so perhaps little can be placed on it but a woman named Eliza Cooper said she had loaned Annie a bar of soap, Annie gave it to Ted and when she kept asking for it back was thrown a ha’penny to go and buy some more. Apparently this carried on, a few days later Annie slapped Eliza and a fight broke out, Annie apparently the worse off for this as the bruises were evident in the post mortem.

Annie’s last days were spent in pain, her health was on the decline and when asked by a friend Annie reponded with opening her dress to show bruising on her chest. A few days later Amelia (the same friend) saw her and commended on being very pale and Annie agreed saying she felt no better and planned to go to the casual ward for a few days, she had also only had a cup of tea that day, Amelia gave her two pence and warned her not to spend it on rum.

Three days later she was even worse and was still standing there ten minutes later when Amelia Palmer walked past. She told her she had to earn the money for her lodgings. 7th September 1888 Annie turned up at the Lodging House and asked for a stet, she was allowed to the kitchen and sat there till the early hours. She was too ill to work and had been in the infirmary when she was rejected from the lodging house having had some potatoes and seemingly worse for wear due to drink. He told her if she could find money for beer she could find the money for rent.

She headed off tipsy and off towards Spitalfield’s Church saying she would be back for the bed with the money. Later that day a woman fitting her description came in to the Ten Bell’s Pub, a man in a “little skull cap” came to call her out.

Regardless of the movements and trying to fill in missing hours it is assured that by 5.30am she was on her way around Hanbury Street not far from the Ten Bells. There were houses there with backyards, hallways and landings used for illicit purposes of the prostitute’s trade. Number 29 was typical of this and John Richardson enters the situation at this time.

Some months prior to this particular even the padlock from the cellar door into the backyard had been broken, this meant a more regular check had to be done on the premises to make sure all was well. That morning one of his boots pinched on a toe and so he sat down to trim the leather off with a knife. From where he was sitting he saw the padlock was in place and saw nothing suspicious.

Between 5.15am to 5.32am Albert Cadoche, local carpenter, said he heard a woman’s voice saying no but could no be sure which property though it was between 27/29. He said it sounded like something suddenly touched the fence but he carried on along his way instead of looking over. This doesn’t seem so out of place, remember the time and the rough nature of the area.

Just after 5.30 a woman called Elizabeth Long spotted a woman talking on the right hand pavement near the door to Number 29. She didn’t see his face but said he looked foreign with a dark complexion. He was of a shabby genteel look and around five foot in height. She said that she was sure the woman was Annie Chapman when she identified her at the morgue later on. She said that as it was common place she had not thought anything suspicious of it.

Just before 6am it was John Davis, elderly resident of Number 29 Hanbury Street, who came along through to the back door and was left reeling in horror. The man called over two workmen and they were witness to the mutilated corpse of Annie Chapman, the second of the Ripper Victims. She was lying on the ground between the steps and wooden fence.

Her head was turned towards the house, her clothes pull up above her waist to expose her red and white stockings. A handkerchief was around her throat, which she had been wearing before, and her hands and face were covered in blood. She had put up a struggle and tried to fight to hold her slit throat. The men set to action to get the police and the horror of the whole thing set in with one of them, James Kent who had to abandon the search and get a brandy.

An officer who was approached said he would not abandon his post (what a jobsworth!) but fortunately they got someone via demanding a senior officer at the station. Inspector Joseph Chandler hurried to the place and past the gathering crowd, he had the place cleared and then had Dr Goerge Bagster Phillips, Divisional Police Surgeon, make his way over. The body was covered until his arrival and by then several hundred people were gathered, she was beyond help and he pronounced her dead sending her to the Whitechapel Workhouse Infirmary.

They ordered no one touch the corpse until Phillips could do his post mortem, which revealed a ghastly story. This was partially ignored and then Chandler placed PC Barnes in charge of the watch. Both he and Dr Phillips were utterly furious when they later found only two hours after they left two nurses ignored this, and under the instructions of the Clerk of the Workhouse Guardians they stripped and washed the body.

Regardless of this the post mortem revealed a ghastly story. The poor woman’s face was swollen along with her tongue; she had again suffered the terrible throat slash, the blood of which had covered the fence behind. Later on that day in the post mortem it was found that she had been further mutilated when her womb was removed, placing her with a similar scenario to the first victim, Mary Nichols.

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