ISSUE 2, July 2002
Editorial
Brothers in endurance: Sir Ernest Shackleton
Travel: Florida
Jack the Ripper: Exploring the Masonic link
Quarterly Communication: Annual Investiture address by the Grand Master and Report of the Board of General Purposes and Report of the Library and Museum Trust
Masonic News: Order of Service to Masonry; Grand Lodge deficit; Alvin Coburn pioneer photographer; Royal Masonic Variety Show
   Royal Arch News: Concern over falling exaltations
Charity News: Masonic relief grants launched; New RMBI video; Help is at hand through the NMSF; RMBI challenges and change; Update on RMBI projects; RMBI resident Jessie is Britain's oldest person; Grand Charity grant to National Asthma Campaign; TalentAid
Masonic Homes: Proud and independent
Library and Museum news: Recent library acquisitions
Letters
Gardening
Book reviews

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Mary Kelly, the eyewitness to the said marriage, thinking she may be in danger, then flees to the East End of London. There she fell in with Nichols, Chapman and Stride, who later became murder victims and, with their help, tried to blackmail the authorities into buying her silence.
    The plan misfired, and Sir William Gull was charged with the extraordinary job of silencing them. According to Stephen Knight, the other unlikely accomplices were Queen Victoria, Prime Minister Salisbury, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Charles Warren, Assistant Commissioner Sir Robert Anderson and the Freemasons.
    Even the Ripperologists yes, that is what they are called! - who make a study of every small detail of the murders, and who meet as the Cloak and Dagger Club every month above a public house in Whitechapel, consider Knight's book a good story.
    It is a film producer's dream, and many films still use it, such as Murder by Decree, and only this year, From Hell, starring Johnnie Depp.
    In History Today (Volume 50, May 2000), William Rubinstein reviewed the achievements of the 'Ripperologists.' He states:
    "The Royal-Masonic Ripper theory appears to be palpable nonsense from beginning to end, without a shred of evidence to support it. The whereabouts of senior Royals is known with considerable precision: the Duke of Clarence was in Scotland at the time of the murders.
    "There is no evidence that any member of the Royal Family ever set eyes on any Ripper victim, or that Mary Kelly was blackmailing a Royal or anyone else. There is no evidence that Clarence entered into an illegal marriage with anyone. Sir William Gull was 71 in 1888 and had suffered two serious strokes the year before. The five Ripper victims were not associates: there is no evidence that they ever met.
    "As for the Freemason link, over the past 250 years, tens of thousands of Englishmen have been Freemasons in hundreds of Lodges, without any Masonic 'ritual murders' being reported. The Masonic link is of the like ilk to the 'Popish Plot' and The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and belongs in the same dustbin."

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