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  #76  
Old 06-26-2012, 03:42 AM
Robin Hood Robin Hood is offline
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I think Lizzie did it too. I have often thought she wanted her own style of life and couldn't do it living at home. Her father wouldn't have given her money to live as she was accustomed and her sexuality was being suppressed at home. Her father may well have been molesting her and her sister and her stepmother wasn't popular with Lizzie. Lots of reasons and motives.
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  #77  
Old 08-04-2012, 07:46 AM
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:59 PM
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Bridget Sullivan

I've tried to locate a record for Bridget Sullivan in Fall River but the 1890 US census was destroyed and other records online turn up nothing.

Always referred to as Bridget Sullivan in the newspaper articles about the trial at the time, according to an online news source she moved out west to Montana and in 1905 married a John Sullivan, also an Irish immigrant ??

There is a listing for Bridget and John Sullivan in Anaconda Montana in 1910, no children just the two of them aged 40 and 41.

Just a coincidence? Not very common for people to marry having the same last name but it does happen I suppose.
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Old 01-06-2014, 08:32 PM
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This is a fascinating case and I'm honestly not sure what to think. Even after reading through this thread and learning things I didn't know about, I still don't know who I think did it or why.

There are a few points I'd like to make.

Regarding the dress Lizzie put in an oven, IMO that could work either way. If she was innocent she may have been afraid of getting in trouble because of it. At the time, there were no DNA analysis techniques as there are now. As to how it got there, it really could have been menstrual blood, or when she found her father's body and rushed to it, some blood from the scene may have gotten on her.

I don't think that cleaning a sealskin coat during a heat wave is necessarily strange, she may have decided to clean it when she wasn't in need of wearing it so it would be ready when the cold came around. It seems odd that if Lizzie wanted to kill her family that she would try it twice in such a short amount of time AND using such different methods. The description of the axe murders makes it sound like the killer was angry or inexperienced, not someone coldly planning a murder.

Something I've thought is that maybe the contradictory testimony could be due to her hiding something else. If she had a secret girlfriend, maybe the two were meeting at the time and Lizzie obviously couldn't say so without getting in trouble for it.

It may also have been the laudanum. The fact that she was calm could be due to laudanum or, if she seemed calm before, due to shock.

Can someone elaborate on the theory that the uncle did it? Time frame, etc. It doesn't seem impossible but I don't know much about it. The fact that he remembered a multi-digit number is odd but it could just be that he was bored and happened to notice it, had a good memory... any number of things. I wonder if the driver was ever questioned, IMO he'd remember an unfamiliar face boarding, especially on a day where I assume many people would avoid going out altogether.

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Old 01-07-2014, 12:11 AM
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Some info gleaned from the lawyer's journals:

"Before Abby was photographed, the bed was moved and her body was “rolled over and set up” while authorities examined her head....he found her “lying perfectly still with both arms under her.” He said her head was a “couple feet from the mop-board,” better known as the baseboard today"

and

"Charles Sawyer, a sign painter who lived at 78 Second St., was put on guard duty by police officer George A. Allen to watch the body of Abby Borden. He told Jennings that a yard stick lay next to Abby, and about a foot of her body was “almost under the bed. According to the journal notes: “Think she was running to get away from the party, away from the door, as if she had run around the bed as far as she could.”

Sawyer told Jennings she was likely using the yard stick to smooth over the made bed and had it in her hand to go out the door."

"Martins said this leads the reader to believe that Abby did see the assailant and was trying to get away. He said that perhaps her running away means it was someone unknown."


So, Abby was not calm and collected as she was killed.


http://www.heraldnews.com/news/x2734...en-case?zc_p=1
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  #81  
Old 01-22-2014, 01:34 PM
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Premieres Saturday, January 25 on Lifetime:

8:00PM (EST) Lizzie Borden Took An Ax (2014)

On a scorching, hot summer day in 1892 in Fall River, Massachusetts, Lizzie Borden returns home to the house she shares with her father Andrew, stepmother Abby and sister Emma. But, unlike any normal day, Lizzie encounters the bloody scene of her parents violently murdered. Police quickly question multiple suspects in town, but evidence keeps pointing back to the Borden’s youngest daughter Lizzie, the seemingly wholesome Sunday school teacher, as the prime suspect. Lizzie’s lawyer, Andrew Jennings, proclaims her innocence arguing that it is inconceivable a woman could commit the heinous crime of brutally murdering her family with an ax. Or is it? Lizzie is put on trial for the murders, both in the courtroom and in the press, sparking a widespread debate about her culpability. As the case rages on, the courtroom proceedings fuel an enormous amount of sensationalized stories and headlines in newspapers throughout the country, forever leaving Lizzie Borden’s name in infamy...

http://www.mylifetime.com/movies/liz...den-took-an-ax
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  #82  
Old 01-24-2014, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by BetteDavisEyes View Post
Premieres Saturday, January 25 on Lifetime:

8:00PM (EST) Lizzie Borden Took An Ax (2014)

On a scorching, hot summer day in 1892 in Fall River, Massachusetts, Lizzie Borden returns home to the house she shares with her father Andrew, stepmother Abby and sister Emma. But, unlike any normal day, Lizzie encounters the bloody scene of her parents violently murdered. Police quickly question multiple suspects in town, but evidence keeps pointing back to the Borden’s youngest daughter Lizzie, the seemingly wholesome Sunday school teacher, as the prime suspect. Lizzie’s lawyer, Andrew Jennings, proclaims her innocence arguing that it is inconceivable a woman could commit the heinous crime of brutally murdering her family with an ax. Or is it? Lizzie is put on trial for the murders, both in the courtroom and in the press, sparking a widespread debate about her culpability. As the case rages on, the courtroom proceedings fuel an enormous amount of sensationalized stories and headlines in newspapers throughout the country, forever leaving Lizzie Borden’s name in infamy...

http://www.mylifetime.com/movies/liz...den-took-an-ax
I am actually looking forward to this movie. Although I haven't seen her performance, Christina Ricci seems like a good choice. She certainly resembles her more than Elizabeth Montgomery (please tell me I am not the only other person old enough to remember her excellent performance as Lizzie).

I beleive Lizzie committed the murders. There is a good layout of the house in one of the books written by John Douglas (last one of his I will ever purchase, but the diagram was interesting). Looking at that I was even more convinced than ever that she did it. I just don't see, with the layout, that a stranger entered that house, murdered two people and was not seen by Lizzie or Bridgett. That, combined with all the other circumstantial evidence just points to Lizzie IMO.
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  #83  
Old 01-24-2014, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by chlban View Post
I am actually looking forward to this movie. Although I haven't seen her performance, Christina Ricci seems like a good choice. She certainly resembles her more than Elizabeth Montgomery (please tell me I am not the only other person old enough to remember her excellent performance as Lizzie).

I beleive Lizzie committed the murders. There is a good layout of the house in one of the books written by John Douglas (last one of his I will ever purchase, but the diagram was interesting). Looking at that I was even more convinced than ever that she did it. I just don't see, with the layout, that a stranger entered that house, murdered two people and was not seen by Lizzie or Bridgett. That, combined with all the other circumstantial evidence just points to Lizzie IMO.
I love the Lizzie Borden movie with Elizabeth Montgomery, but I think that Christina Ricci will do the role justice. DH and I will be in a hotel tomorrow night and hope that we get Lifetime. I will be disappointed if I can't see the premiere.

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment...#axzz2rKfZIKKM

When we did a Canada/New England cruise a few years ago, we were going to rent a car and drive to Fall River to visit the Borden home that is now a Bed & Breakfast/historical site. Guests actually stay in the house where Lizzie hacked her parents to death Anyhoo, when we found out how long it would take to drive to the house from Boston, we decided against it.

http://lizzie-borden.com/index.php/a...the-rooms.html
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  #84  
Old 01-25-2014, 11:36 AM
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I'm in a hotel tonight too and they better have lifetime lol!

BDE boston to Fall River is about 40 mins but it goes fast, next time you're here you should definitely make the trip down. It's VERY creepy being in the actual house!


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  #85  
Old 01-25-2014, 07:32 PM
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I have no doubt Lizzie committed the crime. She had the means, motive, and opportunity to do so. She got off because she had some heavy hitters representing her in court. The former governor of Massachusetts was one of her lawyers. Another attorney served as United States Attorney for the District of Massachusetts in the early 1900s. That's some top notch counsel. It's also legal counsel with some serious pull in the legal system.

The Borden Affair is more like the O.J. Simpson trial in the 1990s. We all pretty much know he did it, but he had good legal talent that got him acquitted.
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Old 01-25-2014, 10:43 PM
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I think Lizzies acquittal was also influenced by the times. 12 men, in 1892, just could not get their heads around the concept that a woman had committed such a brutal crime.

Very unladylike.
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  #87  
Old 01-25-2014, 11:08 PM
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I find it rather received "wisdom" to believe that, because Ms. Borden's legal team was effective, she therefore did the murders.

Most who account the crime to have been hers do so because of the child's rhyme

Lizzie Borden took an axe
And gave her mother forty whacks.
When she found what she had done
She gave her father forty-one.

There was, is, and will remain a great possibility that she was not guilty of the crimes she was found not guilty of committing.
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Old 01-26-2014, 12:40 PM
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I watched the Lifetime movie last night and after that, I was surfing WS and saw this thread -- which thread I found very interesting !

However, I have always believed that Lizzie did it -- and still believe Lizzie did it ...

JMO but she got "lucky" : a good defense team and an "all male jury" ... Women were "second class citizens" back then and did not serve on juries ...

Ah, but would it have been different IF women were on the jury ? Maybe they would have looked at the circumstances differently ? We'll never know ...

I have never believed a "stranger" did it -- someone probably would have seen this "stranger" with blood on their clothes/body leaving the scene ... Also, either Lizzie or the maid MAY have seen the "stranger" hiding out in the house at some point ...

More theories later ... fwiw ... lol !

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Old 01-26-2014, 01:27 PM
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This "all male jury" thing -- counterintuitive and not in a good way, what, to believe they'd acquit a woman of killing her stepmother and her father, the latter a (wait for it) man, and a not unpowerful one in the community? Because -- um, why? -- that's what all-male juries do in a patriarchy, acquit women of nefarious deeds? I don't think that's how it works.
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Old 02-04-2014, 03:46 PM
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This "all male jury" thing -- counterintuitive and not in a good way, what, to believe they'd acquit a woman of killing her stepmother and her father, the latter a (wait for it) man, and a not unpowerful one in the community? Because -- um, why? -- that's what all-male juries do in a patriarchy, acquit women of nefarious deeds? I don't think that's how it works.
Actually, there is substantial evidence that that is very much the way it worked in Lizzie Borden's time. A number of scholars have written on the ways that the American court system has historically been biased both for, and against, women due to prevailing cultural stereotypes of the "angel in the house." Read Trifles. Yes, it's a play, but it's based on things that Susan Glaspell saw and heard in her position as a court reporter in the early 1900s. Part of patriarchal hegemony is in the construction of women as "weak" or "child-like" and therefore incapable of the kind of planning that would go into covering up and/or denying a crime like the one Lizzie Borden was accused of. So it's not just the murder itself--it's the coldness and guts-iness required to tell a bald-faced lie at the inquest, under oath. That's part of what the court system may have felt reluctant to believe about a female defendant. Sure, they could believe that a woman might get over-emotional, fly off the handle and lash out--after all, that very picture of women as "too emotional, too ruled by the heart and acting without thinking" is exactly what has been put forth as reasons to keep women off of juries, out of political office, out of certain professions, etc. But to believe that a woman could be cool, calculating, controlled, and keep her wits about her afterwards? That was a kind of strength that many did not want to attribute to women--because after all, pulling off a double murder like this required some pretty big balls.

Remember, this is during the push for suffrage in the US, and a patriarchal system has a lot at stake in denying that women had the agency to commit a crime such as this, and a lot at stake in not considering women "fully adult" and therefore not fully culpable for such a crime--and therefore not capable of the agency and reasoning needed to be able to vote. Note that I'm not saying the jury consciously thought, "Oh noes! If we find Lizzie Borden innocent, then they'll let the womenfolk have the vote!" It's not that cut-and-dried. But there very definitely was a prevailing attitude that women just were not capable of carrying through a criminal plan and then dissembling while under oath (in the same way that it's often obvious when a small child is lying). In the same way that some might argue today about trying juveniles in adult court, "If you're old enough to do the crime, you're old enough to do the time,"...well, the same reasoning applied at that time to women: if they were "adult" enough to be held legally responsible in the same way that a man would be, then that seriously weakened the argument that women weren't "adult" enough to do the things that were reserved for men, such as the right to serve on juries, hold office, own a business under their own name, vote, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wfgodot View Post
I find it rather received "wisdom" to believe that, because Ms. Borden's legal team was effective, she therefore did the murders.

Most who account the crime to have been hers do so because of the child's rhyme

Lizzie Borden took an axe
And gave her mother forty whacks.
When she found what she had done
She gave her father forty-one.

There was, is, and will remain a great possibility that she was not guilty of the crimes she was found not guilty of committing.
Also, I think it's a little insulting to say that if someone has formed the opinion that Lizzie Borden was guilty, it must be because they are not capable of seeing further than a children's rhyme. I mean, I personally think that Jack Sprat could, in fact, eat lots of fat, and that his wife hated eating lean, and that Peter Pumpkin-Eater did not put his wife in a pumpkin shell. Just knowing a rhyme doesn't mean that it automatically colors one's thoughts. We all know it wasn't really 40 and 41 respective whacks, after all. Sure, there's a great possibility that she was not guilty of the crimes--and you're correct the she was found "not guilty" in a court of law, and she's not alive to be retried, so "not guilty" is forever going to be the official ruling. But there's also a great possibility that she was guilty. She wouldn't be the first to get away with murder, and acknowledging that doesn't mean basing one's argument solely on a child's rhyme.
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Old 02-04-2014, 04:53 PM
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Also, in Lizzie's case, I think social class and social standing played into it as well. Yes, her father had considerable standing in the community--which means that his daughters did, as well. We can all think of plenty of cases where we don't like to think that "nice people like that" would do something so heinous. Look at how many people are rushing to defend Woody Allen simply because "he's famous, and such a great director."
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Old 02-05-2014, 11:23 AM
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Books About Lizzie Borden

Years ago, I read a library book about the Borden case written by a woman named Victoria Endicott Lincoln, who grew up to be a novelist as well as a writer of non-fiction. She grew up in Fall River, had been a child when the Borden sisters were still living, and actually remembered the Borden sisters after they had moved to the fancy new house (with indoor plumbing) in the "society" part of town. The part of the book I remember most is when Victoria asked her mother why people in town avoided Miss Borden (Lizzie) and her mother's reply was "She wasn't very nice to her parents a long time ago". There was also a paragraph about how the children of Fall River would have accepted cookies from Lucretia Borgia if they had been offered, but not Lizzie's cookies.
Apparently, William and Mr. Borden had a combative relationship, Lizzie was mad at her father because of his miserly ways, she hated her stepmother because Mrs. B. "disapproved of some of Lizzie's ways" (lesbianism?), and I have often wondered if Wlilliam and Lizzie plotted together and William told Lizzie something like "Make sure you are out of the house on this day at this time and I will take care of it". I do think Lizzie either knew who did it or did it herself.

The Bridget from Montana is indeed Bridget the maid from the Borden house. I believe she was from Ireland originally, and she and her husband were childless. She got married after she left the Borden's employment.
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  #93  
Old 02-05-2014, 12:01 PM
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Has there ever been a modern day crime scene tech to look over the evidence. Things like angle of ax swings, blood splatter, etc.? The technology and knowledge is such now that I think they could say more accurately whether Lizzie did this or not.
I am on the fence.
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Old 02-05-2014, 01:12 PM
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Bridget Sullivan reportedly died in 1948 so she was still living when I was a little kid.
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:10 PM
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I know Lizzie burned her dress- but did she wash her hair? If you hacked some people up wouldn't there be blood splatter all over your person? Your hands and face would be easily enough cleaned, but your hair (back in the day before dryers and if it was long as was the fashion) might take an hour to dry.
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:20 PM
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It seems that a person who hacked another to death would be covered in blood but I don't know any ethical way to prove it one way or the other.
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:22 PM
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Has there ever been a modern day crime scene tech to look over the evidence. Things like angle of ax swings, blood splatter, etc.? The technology and knowledge is such now that I think they could say more accurately whether Lizzie did this or not.
I am on the fence.
I remember a TV show where they did this, maybe the History chanel? They had Tom Vannater, a detective on the OJ case, review all the evidence.

If I recall correctly they determined she was guilty.

At any rate, my opinion of her guilt is certainly not based on a nursery rhyme and that is a completely insulting statement.

I don't believe there is an credible evidence that anyone else was in the house, she had more than enough motive, and I think her eventual estrangement from Emmay also points to the fact that at some point Emma figured it out.

I have read numerous articles and a couple of books about the case, so my
opihion is not based on the nursery rhyme or the TV show I reference above that, frankly, I found so boring I barely remember it.
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:24 PM
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I know Lizzie burned her dress- but did she wash her hair? If you hacked some people up wouldn't there be blood splatter all over your person? Your hands and face would be easily enough cleaned, but your hair (back in the day before dryers and if it was long as was the fashion) might take an hour to dry.
Unless you covered it with scarf/bandana, whatever.
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Old 02-23-2014, 12:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Boyz_Mum View Post
Thanks all of you, this is really interesting!

I didn't realize all the different aspects of the case (lesbianism, the half brother, other axe murders, etc...)

Neither did I.


Quote:
Originally Posted by kbl8201 View Post
oh and i'd be remiss if i didnt do this.


'lizzie borden took an axe, and gave her father 40 whacks.

and when she saw what she had done,

she gave her mother 41'
How does such a murder become a nursery rhyme?

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Originally Posted by Mac62 View Post
I just saw a show in which a modern forensics team examined evidence and got results from luminol that showed the killer had washed during the half hour it took the police to arrive. They concluded that it was indeed Lizzie that did the killing.
I wonder if it's the same one I just watched on Destination America Channel. The info on TV doesn't have a date on it, but it sounds similar.

According to the show, Bridget was never called by her real name. The Bordens didn't care enough and they called her by the name of their last maid. There was speculation that she did it because she gave two different stories. Lizzy corroborated one of Bridget's stories and she was dropped as a suspect. If she had pointed the finger at Bridget they think Bridget would have been convicted because she was an immigrant. So if Lizzy did it, why would she let Bridget off the hook?

I recorded the show and I'll watch it again and give more info from the show later.
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Old 02-23-2014, 05:07 AM
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http://www.history.com/news/9-things...-lizzie-borden

I'm going to list the topics. You'll have to read the article for more;

9 Things You May Not Know About Lizzie Borden
By Barbara Maranzani
August 3, 2012

1. Many people might have wanted to see Andrew Borden dead.
2. The case revealed some skeletons in the Borden family closet.
3. The lack of forensic evidence played a key role in the case.
4. Andrew and Abby Borden made an appearance at the trial—sort of.
5. The famous rope jumping rhyme got it wrong.
6. Lizzie Borden struggled in her later life.
7. Lizzie Borden made an appearance on “The Simpsons.”
8. New information may still come to light.
9. You can stay at the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast.
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