Patrick Mulshaw

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Witness at Mary Ann Nichols' inquest.

Born c.1857 in Spitalfields, the second of eight children born to Patrick (1834-1890) and Margaret (b.1833) Mulshaw. His siblings were Francis (1855-1912), Kate (b.1858), Jane (b.1862), John (b.1866), Richard (b.1868), Mary Ann (b.1871) and William (b.1874). In 1861, the family were living at 5 Thrawl Street, Spitalfields[1]. Ten years later they were residing at 17 Goulston Court, Goulston Street[2].

In 1888 he was living at 3 Rupert Street, Whitechapel and was a night porter in the employ of the Whitechapel District Board of Works. On the night of August 30th 1888, he was at the back of the Working Lad's Institute watching some sewer works - he started work at 4.45pm and was situated in Winthrop Street.

He remained at his post until 5.55am the next morning. He had dozed a few times during the night, but believed he was not asleep between 3.00 and 4.00am. He did not see anyone around after midnight and heard no cries for assistance. He did however, see two constables, one of whom was PC John Neil, but he couldn't say what time that would have been.

A man later passed by and said "Watchman, old man, I believe somebody is murdered down the street". Mulshaw promptly went to Buck's Row and saw several police officers and working-men standing by Mary Ann Nichols' body[3].

Patrick Mulshaw was later recorded as living with his mother (now widowed) and several brothers at 33 John Street, St George in the East and was described as a general labourer[4].


  1. Census reports 1861
  2. Census reports 1871
  3. Inquest report, The Times, 12th September 1888
  4. Census reports 1891