Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Mary Jane Kelly Disassembled

Mary Jane Kelly was the youngest and, arguably, 
the prettiest of the victims of Jack the Ripper.

She was the only one killed indoors.

Hers was the most brutal and horrific of all the killings.

Canonically, hers is considered the last of the killings attributed to Jack.

Compared to the other victims, little is documented about the past of Mary Jane Kelly.   She was believed to have been born about 1863 in Limerick, Ireland.  Her father was reputed to have been an iron worker and the whole large family to have migrated to Wales when she was a small child.

Her hair color is reported as anything from blonde to red to brown.  By nickname, she was known as Fair Emma, Ginger, and Black Mary.  She may or not have been married at some point.  She may or may not have had a child.  She may have lived briefly in France as the mistress of a well-to-do man.  

By 1887, she was living in Whitechapel, making a living as a prostitute.  She enjoyed her drink, apt to become quarrelsome under the influence and inclined to drunkenly sing Irish songs.  She lived for a time with laborer Joseph Barnett.  They quarreled on October 30th and he moved out of their rented, single, furnished room.

On the night of November 8, 1888, Mary Jane Kelly took a client to her room.  No one ever saw her alive again.

The scene that met the eyes of the agent of her landlord on the morning of the 9th is one of the most gruesome crime scenes of that century and this.  She was completely disassembled, identifiable only by the blue eyes that had been left in what remained of her mutilated face.

Many reported seeing her out and about at various times during the evening and night.  Close neighbors reported hearing her sing one of her Irish songs late in the night, and, later still, some heard a cry of murder and a plea for help, which never came.

Good night, Fair Emma.  

Your stay in this world was far too brief.  

May your welcome in the next have been far kinder.

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