Francis Reed

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Medical assistant to Dr. Frederick Wiles, 56 Mile End Road.

Born c.1858, Somerset[1]. Usually referred to as 'F. S. Reed' in contemporary press reports.

In the absence of Dr. Wiles, Reed received the Lusk Kidney on 18th October 1888; his initial opinion was that it was a human kidney, that it was divided longitudinally and that it had been preserved in spirits of wine. He was also reported as stating that it was probably genuine. He then took it to Dr. Thomas Horrocks Openshaw at the London Hospital for further examination.

On returning from the hospital, Reed told the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee that

Dr. Openshaw, at the Pathological Museum, stated that the kidney belonged to a female, that it was part of the left kidney, and that the woman had been in the habit of drinking. He should think that the person had died about the same time the Mitre-square murder was committed.[2].

Dr. Openshaw refuted these claims in a press interview the following day[3]. It appears that initial considerations of the kidney being 'ginny' and belonging to Catherine Eddowes were fuelled by Mr. Reed's early statement to the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee.


  1. Census report 1891
  2. Evening News, 19th October 1888
  3. The Star, 19th October 1888