Jack the Ripper - THE TERROR BEGINS

This 1838 engraving, by an unnamed artist, depicts “House Cellar Dwellings (Exterior).” It gives us a look at how people lived in parts of the UK during the 19th century. It is online via Manchester Local Library Image Collection. Click on the image for a full-page view.


How did "Whitechapel" get its name? According to 19th century accounts, the place owes its description to a small chapel "whose white exterior made it a land mark on the way out of the City" of London. Not everything in this part of town was evil.

Most streets in Whitechapel were narrow. People often lived in cellar rooms with little light and ventilation. The area was filled with pubs where the Ripper’s victims found their "customers." Some of the popular hangouts of 1888, like "The Ten Bells," are still open and are still famous.

On August 31, 1888 the Ripper’s terror first struck Whitechapel. Mary Ann ("Polly") Nichols, a 42-year-old mother of five who lived on Flower and Dean Street, was brutally murdered.

Polly's father, testifying at the inquest, said his daughter was “too good” to have enemies.

No one in the area heard any screams. By the time a constable found her, Mary Ann Nichols had been dead about 30 minutes.

People weren’t shocked that a murder occurred in Whitechapel. They were very upset, however, about the way the deed was done. 

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5189stories and lessons created

Original Release: Oct 01, 2001

Updated Last Revision: Jul 20, 2019

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"THE TERROR BEGINS" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 01, 2001. Dec 13, 2019.
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