In 1845, a two family home was built in Fall River, Massachusetts. It remained two family until Andrew Borden moved in.
Lizzie Borden was born in 1860
3 years later her biological mother died. 3 years after that Andrew Borden remarried a woman named Abby.
They all lived in that house until that infamous afternoon on a Thursday in August of 1892.
Family strife – –
Emma and Lizzie Borden hated their stepmother Abby, referring to her as “Mrs. Borden” and avoiding her company. They also refused to eat meals with their parents creating a serious home. It was stern and lacking of love.
Lizzie Borden felt neglected. She rebelled. Shoplifting at local stores, forcing her father Andrew to fix things with the owners. He kept young Lizzie out of jail. Lizzie respected her father but most likely didn’t love him.
Much strife came from Emma and Lizzie’s suspicions of their stepmother. Thinking she was only with Andrew for his money. Made them jealous of the lavish gifts he showered on Abby.
Andrew & Abby Die
The Borden family was sick just days before the infamous Thursday in August of 1892.
The girl’s uncle stayed overnight to help. Just before 10:30am Abby was up in a guest room making the bed. Hearing a noise, she turned to see someone holding a sharp hatchet in the air.
Over and over this murderer swung. Across Abby’s head as she turned and fell to the floor. The killer swung more, driving the sharp edge into the back of her head 19 times before Abby mercifully died.
Andrew returned from his morning walk. He tried the front door but his key didn’t work. He knocked as the maid ran up and noticed the lock was jammed from the inside.
CREEPY :: Laughing from upstairs
The maid tried pulling at the handle. She stopped, a soft noise coming from behind. Listening and hearing from the top of the stairs. Laughing, like from a little girl. She couldn’t see who it was and said nothing.
The maid had no idea Abby lay dead upstairs.
The jam removed and Andrew popped open the door. The maid went about her duties up the back stairs to clean the 3rd floor. A few minutes later Lizzie yelled up,
The police found Andrew Borden on the couch with his legs resting on the floor. Someone had swung a “hatchet like weapon” on his face 11 times.
They said he was sleeping because a closed eyelid was split perfectly in two.
Tried but not Convicted
Lizzie Borden was the only suspect. The trail was long. Every details carefully examined.
The maid testified. She didn’t see the murders, just the laughter and Lizzie being in the house. All creepy but not considered evidence.
Lizzie told the police…
They asked for the dress Lizzie was wearing that day. “I burned it”, she said, claiming paint spilled down the front.
The police found a perfectly cleaned hatchet head without a handle in the basement. Prosecution argued Lizzie Borden removed the blood stained handle. Strangely the jury thought it far-fetched.
INTERESTING FACT :: Lawyer shows Lizzie her parent’s skulls
In desperation the prosecution tried to expose Lizzie’s lack of emotion, wanting to show how little she cared for her dead parents.
They put out two large cases on the table, near the jury and in eyesight of Lizzie Borden. Slowly opening it, they revealed the fully stripped and bashed-in skulls of Andrew and Abby Borden.
They thought Lizzie would be cold. She swooned and fainted for all to see.
That was it. The jury came back “not guilty” and Lizzie Borden was free.
Deemed innocent by the court, but not the people.
She became legend, as shown in the famous rhyme…
And gave her mother 40 whacks
When she saw what she had done
She gave her father 41”
The rhyme believed to be created at a local newspaper for marketing. But the number is inaccurate. Lizzie whacked Abby 19 times and Andrew 11 times.
She was considered a murderer. Residents of Fall River upset the sisters inherited the Borden house. Living there for years.
Then Emma moved out in 1905. Nobody sure why, but rumor said she found out the truth about Lizzie.
In 1927 Lizzie Borden died of pneumonia. She’s buried with her family, including Andrew and Abby in the local Oak Grove Cemetery.
A Night’s Stay
You can stay in the Lizzie Borden House. Sleep in the room where Abby was murdered. Have tea where they found Andrew Borden.
Dark tourism at its best.
The ghost of Abby – –
An older woman wanders the house. Believed to be Abby Borden going about her chores. Mostly seen in the second floor hallway by guests.
And inside that guest room where Abby was killed, sleeping visitors will feel covers tighten around them. Hands run along the bed covers and over their bodies.
Said to be Abby making the bed. Just like on that Thursday morning.
The ghost of Lizzie – –
Guests in the room beside Lizzie’s bedroom will wake late at night to sounds coming through the wall. Like a woman quietly crying.
Also on one random night… the house’s owner fell asleep in the main parlour after a long day. At 3am she woke and saw movement from the foyer.
Pressed against the wall was a shadow slowly stretching up the stairs. Staying quiet as the shadow moved. Looked like somebody was walking upstairs. It moved to the top and disappeared.
Believed to be Lizzie Borden. Residual energy remaining from that tragic Thursday when she slowly climbed the stairs and met with her stepmother one final time.