Francis Thompson

Francis Thompson

Poet Francis Thompson is Jack the Ripper. Thompson was born in December 1859 and died in November 1907. Richard Patterson has spent 20 years investigating Jack The Ripper. Richard, an Australian teacher, has come to the conclusion Francis Thompson is Jack the Ripper.

Thompson's work wasn't published until five years after the 1888 murders took place. Patterson is convinced the poet took to murder after a relationship with a prostitute ended. Thompson had surgery experience and was said to keep a dissecting knife in his possession. Thompson was also believed to have been taught a rare surgical procedure that appears to mimic the mutilations found in more than one victim. Patterson said "Soon before and soon after the murders, he wrote about killing female prostitutes with knives."

After college Thompson moved to London and is alleged to have become addicted to Opium. His first book Poems was published in 1893.

Thompson is said to have resided in Spitalfields at the time of the Whitechapel murders. Thompson lived at No. 50 Crispin Street, in the Providence Row night refuge. It has been claimed victim Mary Jane Kelly and Thompson stayed at the same address.

Patterson's research will be published in his book, "Francis Thompson - A Ripper Suspect".

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  1. anthony j m brady Brady

    Hello! I worked in Providence Night Refuge & Home 50 Crispin Street, Spitalfields, London from June 1973-Dec. 1979. While there, I met with Stephen Knight RIP: he was researching what became his published book - Jack the Ripper -the Final Solution. I was quite knowledgeable about Jack The Ripper - facts and fiction - but definitely no expert. I was though quite interested to know more about Francis Thompson as I had learned his poem - The Hound of Heaven - as a typical catholic schoolboy. Indeed, I would have to planned to write about the poet's use of Providence Row. The one clear reason I feel that Thompson could not have been the Ripper is that once a person was admitted to the Refuge for the night they were locked in. This was still the regulation unchanged there when I arrived. If a person left of their own accord, they would not be able to gain re-entry, as the sleeping area dormitory was locked and the night supervisor was locked in it also. On exit in the morning, the night users were checked out according to the Refuge register which had to be maintained by law under the then Vagrancy Act. The whole point of being a Night Refuge was that it was a safe and secure place for all who sought refuge within.
    Anthony J M Brady
    Author of the Memoir Quartet:. Scenes from an Examined Life - Book 4 is titled - Nothing Matches but It's Home - and portrays the Refuge at the time. As a fud raiser, I ran a "Jack the Ripper" evening Walk for some time. I led the walk starting at 50 Crispin Street, calling at the scenes where the 4 bodies were found on the various Ripper locations. Only incidentally, as my main topics were 19thc poverty and the work of William Mayhew, Charles Booth and William Booth,Charles Dickens and Baroness Burdett-Coutts.
    Providence Row Night Refuge,
    Founded as a non-sectarian charity by the Reverend Daniel Gilbert in 1860. Originally a night refuge for homeless women and children in a former stables in Providence Row, Finsbury Square, these premises soon proved to be too small and a in Crispin Street was purchased for a new building. The replacement building was opened in 1868. It provided accommodation for 300 women and children, and 50 men, as well as a convent for the Sisters of Mercy who ran the refuge. Annexes in Gun Street and Artillery Lane were opened as hostels for working girls.
    According to oral history, Mary Jane Kelly is alleged to have stayed there, a claim also made by Joseph Sickert and expanded by Stephen Knight. The story has it that Mary Kelly was staying here when she was chosen by the nuns to take up a position as a shop assistant in Cleveland Street, thus instigating her involvement in the 'Royal Conspiracy Theory'.[2]
    In a BBC interview in 1973, an elderly nun at the refuge claimed that she had been a novice there in 1915 and was told by an old sister who was there in 1888 that "if it had not been for the Kelly woman, none of the murders would have happened.

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