The Five
Hallie Rubenhold

The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper

Reviewed by: bikerbuddy
Category: Non-Fiction
Date Read: 19 February 2020
Pages: 348 (416 including Notes, Bibliography and Index)
Published: 2019

Father: Edward Walker - Blacksmith, possibly worked making type for Fleet Street printers.

Mother: Caroline Walker - Died of TB

Siblings: 2nd of three – Edward, Polly, Frederick

Education: Until 15. Could read and write

Marital Status: Married to William Nichols 1863

Children: Six children

Hardship: Husband began relationship with Rosetta Walls (employed to help Polly after pregnancy). This resulted in Polly’s long-term homelessness and reliance on the Government Workhouse system. Dependence on alcohol. Lost her children to husband and Rosetta

Means of support: Workhouses, Begging, Domestic Service

Evidence she was a prostitute: None. Evidence strongly suggests she never was.

Murdered: 31 August 1888

Father: George Smith, Member of Queen’s Life Guard; Valet to Commanding Officers; House Servant

Mother: Ruth Chapman

Siblings: 1st of 8 – Annie Eliza (born out of wedlock), George William Thomas* (born after parents’ marriage was officially backdated prior to Annie’s birth), Emily Latia, Eli**, Miriam**, William** - Born after Scarlet Fever and Typhus outbreak - Georgina, Miriam Ruth

(Four siblings died in 3-week period)

* Died of Typhus

** Died Scarlet fever

Education: Education compulsory for regimental children. Received education through Regimental School.

Marital Status: Married to John Chapman, coachman, head coachman. De facto with Jack Sievey after separation from husband, later with Edward Stanley

Children: Emily Ruth (died age 12 – meningitis), Annie Georgina

Hardships: Father’s suicide (cut his own throat) led to mother losing husband’s army pension. Annie an alcoholic as was probably her father. Separated from husband to save his job after he was warned about her drunkenness. Husband’s payments to her stopped when he died at age 45. Often slept rough because lodging money was spent on alcohol.

Means of support: Domestic Service, peddling, crochet work, selling matches and flowers

Evidence she was a prostitute: None

Murdered: 8 September 1888

Family Background: Swedish. Elizabeth emigrated to England in 1866

Father: Gustaf Ericsson, Farmer

Mother: Beata Ericsson

Siblings: 2nd of – Anna Christina, Elisabeth

Education: Minimal. Mostly religious

Marital Status: Married John Stride, a carpenter who attempts to run coffee houses. Cut from his father’s will, he is forced to sell second coffee house. De facto relationship with Michael Kidney after John Stride’s death

Children: Stillborn girl

Hardships: Became pregnant out of wedlock (illegal in Sweden) and subjected to regular examinations by police. Contracted syphilis. Mysterious scandal forced her from domestic service in London. Arrested once for soliciting, arrested several times for drunk and disorderly. Suffered late stages of syphilis.

Means of support: Domestic Service, prostitution (Sweden), Maidservant to British family returning to London, Coffee Houses with husband, prostitution (London), charwoman, con artist.

Evidence she was a prostitute: Became a prostitute in Sweden after she appeared on police register for pregnancy. Arrested once in London for soliciting, but no evidence she returned to the trade after that.

Murdered: 30 September 1888

Father: George Eddowes, Tin worker, dies of TB

Mother: Catherine Eddowes, dies of TB at 42

Siblings: 6th of 12 – Alfred (Mentally disabled – epileptic fits), Harriet, Emma, Eliza, Elizabeth, Catherine, Thomas, George, John, Sarah Ann, Mary, Willian

Education: Attended Dowgate School. Taught reading, writing, arithmetic, the Boble, music and needlework. Well-educated and deemed smart

Marital Status: De facto relationship with Thomas Conway, former British soldier, now chapbook seller and pedlar. Later has de facto relationship with John Kelly (who also drank) after split with Conway.

Children: Catherine, Thomas Lawrence, Harriet, Frederick (died in infancy)

Hardships: Father forced to bring family to London after arrest over industrial agitation left him without work. Tin-working job in London inadequate for his large family. Employer dissolved when Kate was 14. Father died of TB when Kate was 15. Forced into workhouse when about to give birth due to lack of permanent home. Kate became dependent on alcohol. Arrested twice drunk and disorderly. Beaten badly by Thomas Conway. Estranged from her sisters over her drinking problems

Means of support: Tin Scourer. Polisher. Chapbook seller and pedlar. Begger.

Evidence she was a prostitute: None. The judge at her inquest assumed prostitution after John Kelly said he didn’t want to see her walk about the streets at night. He meant she would often be forced to walk about, having been moved on by police when she couldn’t afford the money for lodging. Kelly was attempting to avoid the fact that he had used money to obtain lodging for himself on the night of her murder, while she had none.

Murdered: 30 September 1888. She was released at 1am from a gaol cell still drunk after she was arrested for being drunk and disorderly earlier in the evening. She had nowhere to go.

Father: Unknown

Mother: Unknown

Siblings: Unknown

Education: Presumed to be well-educated, possibly from a middle-class family.

Marital Status: Claims to have been married at 16 to a miner named Davies or Davis – uncertain. Joseph Fleming, lover. Joseph Barnet, lover who spoke at her inquest.

Children: May have had a child in 1883. No evidence of its existence.

Hardships: May have been disowned or sent away by family after sex before marriage. Escaped abduction and exploitation in a brothel after a trip to Paris, but lost trunk with expensive dresses. But may have had to abandon more lucrative prostitution and live in lower-class neighbourhood to avoid retribution by her would-be captors. Became alcohol dependent after this experience.

Means of support: Prostitute for wealthy clients, sometimes attending dinner events for gentlemen. Later worked in lower class neighbourhoods as prostitute. Gave up prostitution when she began relationship with Joseph Barnet.

Evidence she was a prostitute: She was.

Murdered: 8 November 1888, while sleeping in her bed. While she had worked as a prostitute, she was not soliciting when she was murdered. She was asleep.