Guide A Hymn for Eternity: The Story of Wallace Hartley, Titanic Bandmaster

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A crowd had gathered, but nobody knew her.

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He took her up, and propped her against the shutters of a shop. She slipped, drunkenly, sideways. After a few hours in the cells at Bishopsgate police station, Catherine Eddowes was slightly recovered from her binge and ready to be released. She had studiously avoided telling the police her real name; she took the moralisms of the duty officer in good spirit; she pulled the door to the police station almost to; and she turned left, heading away from Whitechapel. It was one in the morning, on 30 September Within forty-five minutes, Catherine too would be found dead.

Above it, anti-Semitic graffiti had appeared, unseen by the beat policeman on his previous rotation. Had the killer stopped to chalk his prejudices neatly into his bizarre criminal narrative?

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Perhaps hubris was taking over — but, if so, there followed an unlikely intermission of more than a month. The trail went cold. Was the killer in retirement? Or would he return? The chemical weapons attack in Syria has reminded the world just how horrific the use of poison gas in conflict can be.

Of course the use of gas as a method of mass killing has been around since the First World War. Yet somehow, amid all the carnage of the Second World War, we were spared a spectre similar to that of the trenches where gas was used on the battlefield by both sides resulting in more than a million casualties. But it was a close run thing. By the time Britain declared war on Germany in the Japanese had already used mustard gas against the Chinese in their war which had started in And few realise that when Britain was facing the prospect of invasion in Churchill and his military chiefs planned to use mustard gas to repel German forces as they landed on the beaches.

A Hymn for Eternity : The Story of Wallace Hartley, Titanic Bandmaster -

Later in the conflict, when Britain was again facing another grave threat, that of the V-1 rocket campaign against civilians, Churchill again considered using chemical weapons. While the Germans had developed deadly nerve agents like Tabun, the Allies had stockpiled toxins too and stationed them around the world in case the chemical warfare broke out.

A tragic accident in Italy in showed how close we came when an American ship carrying mustard gas was damaged in a German air raid with casualties. But there were many in America towards the end of the Second World War who were calling for gas to be used in the Pacific theatre. While President Roosevelt had famously declared that the US would never use chemical weapons in a first strike, the huge losses suffered by US forces taking islands like Iwo Jima led some military chiefs to consider just that as a way to speed up victory over Japan.

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  5. Some say that he had an abhorrence of the weapons from his own time as a soldier in the trenches. More likely is that he had judged that the Allies had weapons just as potent as his own, while his own population was also short of gas masks. Whatever the reasons the mass use of chemical weapons between was avoided. Let us hope the same remains true in the years ahead. Sunday September 30 It was quite a pleasant day for this time of year, so much so that I decided to walk to the station this morning and take in the autumn sunshine. What a difference half an hour can make. I took two men with me and got there within twenty minutes, but was surprised to see the usual crowd of onlookers were already there, along with several police officers from another station, who looked like they were searching the yard.

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    I was absolutely fuming; it was by now nearly 9 a. Nothing much on the ground in the way of evidence, but for once, quite a number of possible witnesses. I looked around and was surprised to see my sergeant, who, as far as I was concerned, should be hard at work back at the station. The sergeant explained to me that the City of London Police had just contacted him and told him that yet another prostitute had been found murdered on their patch, in Mitre Square. I could hardly believe my ears, two in one day, or night, as I was soon to find out.

    She had been found mutilated at about 1.

    I did manage to question PC Watkins, who actually discovered the body. He was not exactly a young man and had many years experience in the force, but he told me that when he first saw the body, he almost fainted, so horrific were her injuries. The day however, was far from over, for within a short while Inspector Daniel Halse of the City of London Police arrived on the scene and informed that an important piece of evidence had been found in Goulston Street, Spitalfields.

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    The important piece of evidence, he informed me, was a piece of material with bloodstains on it, which had been found lying on the floor, close to the entrance to a block of flats called Wentworth Model Dwellings. The material, he told me, matches exactly the apron that Catherine Eddowes had been wearing when she was found dead in Mitre Square earlier on. Just before three — that is over seven hours ago, and this was the first I had heard of it. I left my sergeant there and hurried over to Goulston Street without delay. Just as I expected, the piece of bloodstained apron was not there, as the PC who had found it, had taken it to Commercial Street Police Station, but I was shown something else, which was a message, written in chalk, on the wall just above where the piece of apron had been found.

    I thought this rather strange, and definitely not written by the murderer himself, as he would hardly have stopped in the entrance to the flats, thrown down the piece of apron, and started writing on a wall, whilst in all probability, having bloodstains still upon himself. My main concern however, was that Wentworth Model Dwellings, not only stood in a largely Jewish locality but was also inhabited almost exclusively by Jews, and within a few short hours would also see the opening of the vast Wentworth Street, and Petticoat Lane markets, which were run almost entirely by Jews.

    There have been a number of attacks on Jews in this area since the Leather Apron scare, and I am sure there will be more if this graffiti is left for everyone to see. The graffiti must be erased from the wall immediately. As usual, they all think they know more than me.

    A Hymn for Eternity: The Story of Wallace Hartley, Titanic Bandmaster

    Inspector Halse? I left him at Mitre Square, and now he follows me here and puts his two penneth in. Sir Charles Warren has just arrived at the scene; thank God for common sense. The graffiti has now been removed! I finally got home just before 11 p. My wife, God bless her, asked if I had had a nice day! Thursday October 4 According to Lusk, we are doing absolutely nothing to apprehend the killer. He has asked none other than the Prime Minister, Lord Salisbury himself to put up a reward for the capture of the murderer, whom he is now calling Jack the Ripper.

    The Friday Digest brings you the best of the week's history news gathered from the experts:. It is remembered as a period in which women emerged to play a greater role in society, with more moving into the workplace and finally getting the vote.

    Now, new research has shed light on another area in which the First World War changed the lives of women. There has even been a revival of Sherlock Holmes in modern times.

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    But who does Sherlock Homes belong to? Some 95 years after the last Sherlock Holmes story was published, several parties are locked in a landmark US litigation case. Seventy-five years after the Munich Agreement signed with Hitler, the name of Neville Chamberlain, British prime minister at the time, is still synonymous with weakness and appeasement. Is this fair, asks historian Robert Self. Jaime Clarke, a Boston-based author and independent bookstore owner, sends out a public plea for readers to resist buying his new novel from the e-commerce giant. It is likely the bones were washed from a nearby burial site along one of London's "lost" rivers - the Walbrook.

    Since the Crossrail project began, about 10, Roman items have been discovered. From Agatha Christie to Bridget Jones women wearing trousers has been a developing story in the world of fiction. Who were the pioneers of the pant? But were they really so bad? But what's brewing in this new crop of commercial meaderies - as they are known - is lot more refined from the drink that once decorated tables across medieval Europe.

    The group represent the charity GOL , who aim to promote a positive image of Welsh football fans abroad and who raise money for worthy causes along the way. Cars from North and South Wales drove almost 2, miles through 10 countries.