"Because you can't chop your mother up, in Massachusetts!"
--"The Lizzie Borden Hoe-Down," from "New Faces of 1952."
One was real, the other fictional, and immortalized by Joan Crawford!!!!!!! But both were crazy bitches, and you know how much I love them!!!!!!!!!!
Last Saturday, David and I took an L and M Bus Tour to the Lizzie Borden House. Its official address is 230 Second Street, Fall River, Massachusetts. What struck me as odd was, as I stood in front of the house, I spotted the number 92 on the center of the front door. Which was fascinating, as the murders happened on August 4th, 1892.
Before Lizzie is examined, let me make clear that the sophistication level of those on an L am M Bus Tour is impossible to under, or over, estimate. Each trip brings its own crew of motley characters. Ours on this trip were fascinating to me, as I learned some tidbits, which I will share with you, in future posts.
The other discovery was, do prostitutes only hang out at New Jersey truck stops??????????
I recorded on here about seeing a real, live one, at the Joyce Kilmer Service Plaza, which was near my home town of Highland Park. It was so exciting! I can't wait to get dolled up as Lilly Rush, and go out on the beat, and meet with the working girls, to solve cold cases. Those girls know the score, hons!!!!!!!!!
I was avidly looking forward to scoping out the truck stops in Connecticut, which, ironically, is where Miss Porter's School is located. That state must have some Madonna-whore thing going!!!!!!!!!!!!
Not a single prostitute turned up at any of the Connecticut truck stops. Oh, I saw plenty of trucks with their back lights on, even in day, a sure sign of "action wanted." But I wanted to tell these guys to drive to the Joyce Kilmer Service Plaza, in Jersey, because, I am telling you, it looked like nothing was happening when we stopped in Connecticut, and these guys certainly were not going to score!!!!!!!!! Had I warned them, they might have snapped me up, and I don't give it all away!!!!!!!!!! My standards are high, just like Baby Gojira's!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
But back to Lizzie. I am in the camp that says she did it. Though how she had the strength to wield an ax, and plunge it into the bodies of her parents is unfathomable to me. Unless she was fueled, as I believe, by an ungovernable rage.
Let's get a few things out of the way. Lizzie hated her father, and stepmother. Her own mother died, when she was two, and the murders were committed thirty years later. Yes, Lizzie was over 30, and a spinster. Not a great thing to be. But, despite how pics sometimes portray her, she was no repressed thing. She had the Grand Tour, (of Europe) after high school, so her world view was broader than I imagined. Lizzie knew her class distinctions, too; she hated living in the Fall River version of Goat Alley, wanting to move to the fancier neighborhood. Which her father could afford. But he was the progeny of a parent who financially ruined his family. so Mr. Borden went the other extreme--by being miserly. This was bad enough, for Lizzie, but things got worse when the father started favoring the stepmother's family, doling out money to them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was said Lizzie was having a lesbian affair with the Irish maid, Bridget Sullivan. This was discovered by either one of the parents, and fueled Lizzie further. The maid was also suspected. So, too, was an uncle of Lizzie's, John Morse, who had been staying at the Bordens, but was said not to be seen on the premises during the time of the murders. What motive could he have had?????? As Lizzie's real uncle--he was the brother of Lizzie's biological mother--he would have resented the neglectful treatment accorded Lizzie and her sister, and took matters into his own hands. But is this motive strong enough? I don't think so.
What of Lizzie's sister, Emma??????????? She was ten years older than Lizzie, an established spinster at 42, and was out of town at the time of the murders. But was that coincidence, or planned???????? The sisters had an almost symbiotic relationship, and I can easily see this having been planned out between them, with Lizzie, the angrier of the two, having the nerve to pull it off. No one knows for certain, but I assert Emma was complicit in the crime, that she went out of town to allow them to take place on a time decided between the siblings. She was never suspected of such.
Emma was the more conventional sister, though. Once the dust settled, both moved to a house in the fancy part of town; the dwelling was called "Maplecroft." In fact, Lizzie Borden changed her name to "Lizbeth Of Maplecroft." The sisters lived there, till 1905, when, after a falling out about which little is known--though I suspect Lizzie wanted a wilder lifestyle, being ahead of her time!!!!!!!!--Emma packed up, moved away, eventually marrying. When Lizzie died in 1926, aged 66, after a botched gall bladder surgery, the 76-year old Emma, on learning this nine days later, fell down a set of stairs and died. Though apart, their symbiosis was still a component of their relationship.
As to the murders, well--
I accept Lizzie was fueled with anger. Whether the sisters conspired, or coincidence just favored Lizzie, she walked into an upstairs room, where her stepmother was bent over , not seeing Lizzie from behind, giving her the chance to go at stepmom with the ax!!!!!!!!! This was at nine-thirty in the morning.
Around ten thirty, Mr. Borden came home, for his midday meal. Before such, he stretched out on the living room couch, which is where he was killed. Though the first blow, which took out most of one of his eyeballs, may have given him an opportunity to see his killer, whether he understood what was happening, or not, cannot be proven, because dead men tell no tales. Unless remains are exhumed.
Even though Lizzie hated her father, she seemed to hate her stepmother more. Unlike what the famous folk rhyme says, she gave the mother more whacks than the father--about eleven, to the father's ten. Hardly the forty (mother) and forty-one (father) of the folk rhyme.
I poked at walls, and tried to obtain some blood samples from outside. I was also fascinated that the museum has the dress worn by Elizabeth Montgomery in the 1975 TV movie, "The Legend Of Lizzie Borden." I perused it lovingly, wanting to take it home.
You simply have to go, girls!!!!!!!!!! And you need to spend a night in that house to see if you have a paranormal experience. Darlings, my entire life is a paranormal experience, so it would not surprise me one bit. But this little bed and breakfast routine is not cheap--the going rate is $250 a night! That's right; you heard me! Though, I guess it lets Lizzie have the last laugh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Lizzie and Lucy. Two of the most beloved crazy bitches. Too bad a room does not have continuous showings of the 1964 movie, "Strait-Jacket!!!!!!!!!!!" That would be a hoot!!!!!!!!!!!
And, of course, Lizzie inspired it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!