Lizzie Borden took an axe
And gave her mother forty whacks.
When she saw what she had done
She gave her father forty-one.
The question remains: did Lizzie Borden murder her mother and father? Honestly, there's no clear answer. They never found the murder weapon or blood evidence yet they barred her testimony from the trial and excluded the prussic acid she purchased. Not to mention the dress she burned in the stove, claiming it was ruined from a paint smear. Sounds pretty suspicious.
Lizzie was 32 at time of the alleged murder. She was definitely mature enough to be able to cover up a murder but did she have motive? Let's just say that her father was a cheap, cruel bastard. For instance, Lizzie had been keeping pet pigeons in a barn, happily tending to them everyday, when one day she found them decapitated. He chopped off their heads with an axe because he didn't want boys coming around the barn. He also refused to upgrade to modern conveniences like indoor plumbing and bought cheap meat, leaving it on the stove for days while it spoiled. On top of that, she was never close with her stepmother, most likely resenting her for replacing her dead mother.
Then there's the motive of money. Her father was very wealthy. Relative to today, he would still be considered extremely wealthy. Upon her father's death, her sister and her split the assets.
Still not convinced? There was a theory that it could have been the maid but it doesn't seem to quite fit if you think about it. The maid was only 26, rather young compared to Lizzie and on top of that, lacking in clear motive. Another theory points to her father's illegitimate son seeking revenge but that doesn't seem plausible either.
In my opinion, she did it. The only reason they didn't convict her in 1893 was because she was a woman. Women weren't people. Women couldn't think rationally. Women couldn't even vote. The judge and jury probably just scoffed at the idea of a woman murdering anyone and decided to let her go. So she got away with it. She knew what she was doing. She got rid of the evidence and let the system fail on it's own. She knew they wouldn't convict a woman of murder nor would their investigative abilities be good enough to discover any real evidence. In fact they could have used fingerprinting but the police doing the investigation didn't trust it yet.
Times certainly have changed. If Lizzie Borden had murdered her parents today, I doubt she would have gotten away with it.
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