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On August 4, 1892, the bloody corpses of Andrew Borden and his wife were found in their home. Lizzy's stepmother had been killed by 19 hatchet blows to the head, and her father had died of similar injuries.

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Introduction

On August 4, 1892, the bloody corpses of Andrew Borden and his wife were found in their home. Lizzy's stepmother had been killed by 19 hatchet blows to the head, and her father had died of similar injuries. Within a week, police arrested a most unlikely suspect, Andrews's own daughter, Lizzie Borden but she was acquitted after a sensational murder trial. Lizzy's actions, particularly her burning of a blood-stained dress in the kitchen stove a few days after the murders, led many to believe that she was guilty of murdering her parents. The Lizzie Borden trial is one of the most bizarre unsolved murder cases in American history. She was arrested amid a swirl of controversy. ...read more.

Middle

Sometimes the first 10 pages of a paper were devoted exclusively to the trial. Public opinion was sharply divided over Lizzie's guilt. However, insiders knew her eccentric reputation in the town: she was a known shop-lifter, a rabid social climber, and a constant target of derision among Fall River's more conspicuously wealthy citizens. For, much to her humiliation, Andrew's wealth was matched only by his miserliness. But she was still a lady. In Victorian America, ladies swooned, ladies sewed, and ladies served, but ladies did not reign over twenty combined hatchet blows on the heads of a parent and a step-parent. And so, despite some very damning circumstantial evidence, Lizzie Borden was acquitted on both counts. ...read more.

Conclusion

"Lizzie Borden took an axe/And gave her mother forty whacks/When she saw what she had done/She gave her father forty-one." This children's rhyme, invented so long ago, is still recited today. New books continue to be written; new theories continue to be advanced. The real Lizzie Borden took her secrets with her to the grave -- but the myth of Lizzie Borden refuses to die. Children Sing "Lizzie Borden took an ax and gave her mother forty whacks. When she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one." Lizzie "That's not true, It wasn't an ax, it was a hatchet. Abby Borden wasn't my mother, she was my stepmother. I only gave her 20 whacks. And I only gave my father 10 ...read more.

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