The Victims- Jack Merrywell
Mary Ann Nichols
Mary Nichols is the first confirmed Ripper victim. Her body was discovered during the early morning hours of August 31, 1888. She was first found by a pair of carmen; however, they did little about their disturbing find. Later, a constable passed the area on his beat, the alarm sounded, and Dr. Llewellen was called to examine the body. Because of the gloom, the extent of the woman’s injuries was unknown until she was taken to be autopsied. It was determined that Mary was found within thirty minutes of being found; however, there is much dispute over whether or not she was killed at the location of the find. Much of the evidence was lost when the body was washed before being properly examined. Mary’s wounds included a slit throat (left to right) and cuts to the left side, windpipe, gullet, and spinal cord. There was also some bruising to the neck, possibly the result of strangulation. It seems likely that the killer had some knowledge of anatamy, perhaps that of a butcher or doctor.
Annie Chapman, the second Ripper victim, died on September 8, 1888. Her body was found in the back yard of a house on Hanbury Street by John Davis, a carman. Her left arm was across her chest, and her legs were spread apart with the soles of her feet on the ground. There was quite a lot of blood, and some of her entrails were lying by her side. Once again, the victim’s body was prematurely stripped and washed before a full examination occured. The wounds inflicted during this murder were consistent with the wounds found on Polly Nichols: the throat was cut from left to right. There was a leather apron found near the site of the murder, leading to speculation of a butcher’s involvement; however, it was not connected to the crimes.
On Sunday, September 30, 1888, a driver named Louis Diemschutz came across the body of Catherine Eddowes, the third victim of Jack the Ripper. Her throat had been cut from left to right an there were other lacerations to her face; however, the lack of the Ripper’s other signature cuts points to the theory that Diemschutz disturbed the murderer as he was commiting his crime. This was highly unfortunate, as the unfinished crime seems not to have satisfied the killer’s bloodlust…
The fourth Ripper victim, killed the same nite as Catherine Eddowes, was Elizabeth Stride. She was discovered in Mitre Square by PC Edward Watkins. Her injuries were considerably more complete than those of Eddowes: she had her throat cut, her bowels removed, here stomach cut, and she was lying in a pool of blood. Here face had been badly mutilated. It seems as though Jack the Ripper’s MO was escalating.
Mary Jane Kelly was the fifth and final Ripper victim. She was discovered by her landlord’s assistant, Thomas Bowyer, who had been sent to collect her rent. Kelly was lying naked on her bed, her body horribly mutilated. There were two lumps of flesh lying on the bedside table, and the body itself was barely recognizable as human. Much of the abdomen and thigh tissue had been removed, the breasts were cut off, the extremites mutilated, the neck was very nearly completely severed, and the face was completely unrecognizable. Several internal organs were also found scattered around the body. It was the most horrific and violent of the murders, and certainly the culmination of the Ripper’s deeds.