My special guest tonight is author Rebecca Pittman who's here to discuss the horrific murder and haunting of the Lizzie Borden. Get the book.
New evidence and photos! On August 4, 1892, the brutal murders of Andrew and Abby Borden were committed within the walls of their modest home, in broad daylight, on a busy street in Fall River, Massachusetts. It is today, 124 years later, still considered America's biggest unsolved murder mystery. Their youngest daughter, Lizzie, was accussed, and the bizarre case of how she did it, and why she did it, still baffles. But now, just in time for the 125th Anniversary of the Borden murders, comes new evidence: What if...there was proof of two murder plots the week of the murders? What if...for the first time...the identity of the two men the police and attorneys searched for, who were seen on the Borden property the day of, and three days prior to, the murders, are now revealed? What if...the police sent off the wrong items to be tested for poison? And, what was it Bridget saw from her attic window that had to be hushed up? It's all here. After five years of exhaustive research, Rebecca F. Pittman presents new evidence and photos, based on trial testimony, police reports and interviews. Never-before-seen photographs of Lizzie's Maplecroft mansion, and her bizarre behavior within its walls, are documented. Also included, are reports of the paranormal activity happening at the Lizzie Borden B&B today.If you think you know the story of Lizzie Borden and the events leading up to the murders of Andrew and Abby Borden...think again! Other books in Ms. Pittman's History and Haunting Series include: The History and Haunting of the Stanley Hotel, The History and Haunting of the Myrtles Plantation, The History and Haunting of Lemp Mansion, The History and Haunting of Salem: The Witch Trials and Beyond, and coming July 2020, The History and Haunting of the Palace of Versailles. www.rebeccafpittmanbooks.com where you can also sign up for her Ghost Writings newsletter.
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Lizzie Andrew Borden (July 19, 1860 – June 1, 1927) was an American woman tried and acquitted of the August 4, 1892 axe murders of her father and stepmother in Fall River, Massachusetts. No one else was charged in the murders, and despite ostracism from other residents, Borden spent the remainder of her life in Fall River. She died of pneumonia at age 66, just days before the death of her older sister, Emma.
The Borden murders and trial received widespread publicity throughout the United States, and along with Borden herself, they remain a topic in American popular culture to the present day. They have been depicted in numerous films, theatrical productions, literary works, and folk rhymes and are still very well-known in the Fall River area.
August 4, 1892Body of Abby Borden, August 4, 1892Body of Andrew Borden, August 4, 1892
John Morse arrived in the evening of August 3 and slept in the guest room that night. After breakfast the next morning, at which Andrew, Abby, Lizzie, John, and the Bordens' maid Bridget "Maggie" Sullivan, were present, Andrew and John went to the sitting room, where they chatted for nearly an hour. Morse left around 8:48 am to buy a pair of oxen and visit his niece in Fall River, planning to return to the Borden home for lunch at noon. Andrew left for his morning walk sometime after 9 am.
Although the cleaning of the guest room was one of Lizzie and Emma's regular chores, Abby went upstairs sometime between 9:00 am and 10:30 am to make the bed. According to the forensic investigation, Abby was facing her killer at the time of the attack. She was first struck on the side of the head with a hatchet, which cut her just above the ear, causing her to turn and fall face down on the floor, creating contusions on her nose and forehead. Her killer then struck her multiple times, delivering 17 more direct hits to the back of her head, killing her.
When Andrew returned at around 10:30 am, his key failed to open the door, so he knocked. Sullivan went to unlock the door; finding it jammed, she uttered a curse. She would later testify that she heard Lizzie laughing immediately after this; she did not see Lizzie, but stated that the laughter was coming from the top of the stairs. This was considered significant as Abby was already dead by this time, and her body would have been visible to anyone on the home's second floor. Lizzie later denied being upstairs and testified that her father had asked her where Abby was, to which she replied that a messenger had delivered Abby a summons to visit a sick friend.
Sullivan stated that she had then removed Andrew's boots and helped him into his slippers before he lay down on the sofa for a nap (a detail contradicted by the crime-scene photos, which show Andrew wearing boots). Sullivan then informed Lizzie of a department store sale, Lizzie said Sullivan was welcome to come along with her, but Sullivan felt unwell and went to take a nap in her bedroom instead.
Sullivan testified that she was in her third-floor room, resting from cleaning windows, when just before 11:10 am she heard Lizzie call from downstairs, "Maggie, come quick! Father's dead. Somebody came in and killed him." Andrew was slumped on a couch in the downstairs sitting room, struck 10 or 11 times with a hatchet-like weapon. One of his eyes had been split cleanly in two, suggesting that he had been asleep when attacked. His still-bleeding wounds suggested a very recent attack. Dr. Bowen, the family's physician, arrived from his home across the street and pronounced both victims dead. Detectives estimated that Andrew's death had occurred at approximately 11:00 am[35
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