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cover art for Michael L. Hawley - Dr. Francis Tumblety & The Railway Ripper

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Michael L. Hawley - Dr. Francis Tumblety & The Railway Ripper

Undetected by the FBI for three decades until the turn of the twenty-first century, a handful of elusive, transient long-haul trucker serial killers had been murdering hundreds of sex workers and hitchhikers along major US highways. This was not the first time innocent victims were attacked along major US interstate thoroughfares. Nearly lost to history was a similar pattern of carnage that occurred in the late nineteenth century. No less than thirty-nine unsolved murders and nearly forty brutal assaults of women were committed in the United States, but instead of along major highways, these heinous crimes were committed along the railways. At the time, the attacks were termed ‘mysterious,’ since they seemed to be motiveless—meaning there was no evidence of the usual rape or robbery. In cases where an assailant or suspicious person was spotted, his physical description was the same: tall, middle-aged, and wearing a specific gray overcoat. Shockingly, one of Scotland Yard’s prime Jack the Ripper suspects cannot be eliminated as having committed each of these Stateside crimes. That suspect was the tall, transient hater of women, Dr. Francis Tumblety.

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