Lizzie Borden. That name may sound familiar to some but others probably don't know anything about her. On Thursday, August 4, 1892 one of the most gruesome crimes ever committed in the United States occurred. Andrew J. Borden and his wife, Abby Borden were both slain. Abby was hit about 19 times in the back of the head with an axe. Her husband was hit at least 11 times. The main suspect in these murders: Lizzie Borden.
Why did she kill them? I don't think anyone knows the answer to that question. No one even knows if she really did kill them. What makes this such an interesting case is the circumstances around it. Lizzie Borden was a church-going, Sunday school teacher. No one could even think that she would be capable of murder. Though some actions that took place the day before the murder says otherwise. There were reports that Lizzie had gone to Smith's Drug Store to purchase some prussic acid. Eli Bence claimed that Lizzie told him she wanted the acid to kill insects in her sealskin cape.
Lizzie had stated that she was out on that day but wasn't at Smith's Drug Store. Later, she changed her story and claimed she never left the house. Another thing is that her Uncle John Morse arrived that afternoon intending to stay overnight but didn't have any luggage. Both he and Lizzie testified that they did not see each other until after the murders but Lizzie knew he was there.
Lizzie was questioned by the police as to her whereabouts and she gave them many different stories. It wasn't until August 7, when a witness reported that Lizzie had burned a stained dress, that she was formally charged with murder of her father and stepmother. During the grand jury's last week of its session, November 7th through December 2nd, the case was heard. On December 2, Lizzie was charged with three counts of murder (the murder of her father, stepmother and the both of them).The trial was set for June 5, 1893. The trial lasted fourteen days and it only took an hour for the jury to come up with a verdict: Not Guilty on all three counts.
Five weeks after the trial, Lizzie and her sister Emma purchased a 13-room house located on a fashionable residential area called "The Hill" and named it Maplecroft. The name was carved into the top stone step. At this time, Lizzie began referring to herself as "Lizbeth."
Lizzie died on June 1, 1927 from a long illness that followed complications from a gall bladder operation. Emma died 9 days later from a fall at her house in Newmarket, a house that she bought and moved to shortly after a dispute with Lizzie. They were both buried in the family plot along with their sister, mother, stepmother and father.
The Borden House is now a bed and breakfast/museum. You can actually sleep in the room that Abby Borden was killed in or sit on the sofa were Andrew Borden died on. There are reports that the inn is haunted. Some have heard a woman crying, footsteps on the stairs when no one else is in the house, doors shutting by themselves, etc. The house may be haunted but I feel the real attraction is the unsolved murders and the people who continue to this day to come up with a theory as to how Lizzie actually did it.
More info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lizzie_Borden