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Category Archives: Newspaper Coverage

“We Love You, Lizzie – Oh, Yes We Do!”

(Originally posted in 2006)

(Think “We Love You, Conrad” from the movie Bye Bye Birdie.)

There was a great deal of sympathy and support for Lizzie Borden from the time of the murders to the time of her Trial – particularly during the time she was incarcerated at the ivy-covered Taunton Jail until June 3, 1893, when she was transfered to the New Bedford Jail.

While at the Taunton Jail, she gained sympathy from the “sob sister” style reporting of her jailhouse interview with Mrs. McGuire which appeared in print on September 20, 1892. In that interview Lizzie tells her of the flood of letters she has received from kind supporters. (Where ARE they? And who has any she may have written back to?)

Then on October 10th, the “Trickey-McHenry” journalistic fiasco by the Boston Globe so promptly retracted with apologies to Lizzie (and John Morse) garnered her more of the “that poor girl” image.

The papers reported the Government had a weak case but the critical revelation of the dress burning incident told by Alice Russell when the Grand Jury reconvened on December 1, 1893, was not published.

By April 1st, 1893, Lizzie was already a popular icon regardless of one’s belief in her guilt or innocence. Her popularity was evidenced by her name receiving the most write-ins for the below contest. The contest was for 5 tickets to the Chicago World’s Fair in 5 specific categories: (1) School Teacher, (2) Policeman, Letter Carrier or Fireman, (3) Mechanic or Gentleman Clerk, (4) Mill Hand, and (5) Lady Clerk – all to be residents of New Bedford. One simply had to cut out the coupon and write the name of the person they felt the most popular and designate which occupation.

Lizzie, a Fall River resident, won hands down for most popular “School Teacher”. Lizzie courteously rejected hers suggesting it be given to another, as it was. (It is believed, however, Lizzie subsequently attended the Columbian Exhibition towards its end run after her acquittal.)

How Lizzie must have relished in the glow of all this popularity. She had never been popular in school and so much wanted to be accepted among her peers. She played her “awful confinement” to the hilt.

Then, exactly one month later, on May 1st, 1893, there was the trumpeting of an “outraged” Mary Livermore at the police for their abuse and sheer adacity to even suspect this virginal Sunday school teacher who was the younger daughter of her long deceased friend, Sarah Morse Borden. And in this same article (below) we learn that even Emma received many letters of sympathy and support.

Lizzie’s Trial would begin on June 5th. She was still perceived as a victim. Her Inquest Testimony was disallowed. Her attempt to buy prussic acid was disallowed. She was acquitted. She was loved. “We love you, Lizzie Borden.”

Well, maybe not so much later.

By the way, just WHERE ARE all those letters Emma and Lizzie received, let alone those constituting their responses if they did correspond back? Emma, I would think, would have disposed of them. They certainly haven’t surfaced in the personal possessions she left Orrin Gardner. Lizzie, on the other hand, may have kept hers. If she did keep them, I have an idea where they might be. She was odd like that. For example, she had no fondness for Abby but she held on to that silver cup Abby gave her all her life.

I think Lizzie would have held on to the mementos that validated her popularity or when she felt loved.

So….

altogether now: “We Love You, Lizzie – Oh, Yes We Do!”

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Timeline for Borden Murders – As it Happened

vicinity

CROWE SKETCH

This one begins in early 1892 through the end of the day of August 5th, the day after the murders, in 1892.  The “Key” to the sources remain the same as in the previous post.

January 21, 1892 Andrew Borden, Vernon Wade, and Andrew Jennings witness Southard Miller signing his Will. (LR24)
February 12, 1892 Former President Abraham Lincoln’s birthday is declared a national holiday in the United States.

April, 1892 Borden barn is broken into.
April 25, 1892 Bertha Borden is born. Daughter of Jerome C. Borden.
April, 1892 Lizzie tells dressmaker Hannah Gifford that Abby is a “mean old thing”.
May 4, 1892 Picker room fire in the Durfee Mill.
May 9, 1892 Painter John W. Grouard delivers paint to Borden house; AJB tells painter to wait for Lizzie’s approval. Lizzie goes to Grouard’s house to say color is not right. (TT1249)
May 10, 1892 Lizzie inspects paint in tubs in barn and gives approval to painter Grouard; Lizzie selects “drab” color. (LR32) & (TT1350)
May/June 1892 Andrew kills pigeons roosting in the barn. Morse visits end of June.
June 30, 1892 Morse spends one day at Bordens; takes Butcher Davis’ daughter & Emma for a ride. (CI 96)
July 10, 1892 Morse again visits Bordens. AJB asks Morse if he knows of man to run Swansea farm. (CI 96)
July 11, 1892 Union laborers in Fall River celebrate new 58-hour workweek with giant parade.
July 18, 1892 Emma and Lizzie deed back house on Ferry Street to Andrew and receive $2,500 each. (LR556)
July 19, 1892 Lizzie’s 32nd Birthday.
July 20, 1892 Grover Cleveland passes thru FR enroute to NYC for Democratic Convention. (VVII-326)
July 20, 1892 Lizzie supposedly sees a stranger at the back door when she returns from being out that evening.
July 21, 1892 Lizzie & Emma leave Fall River; Lizzie stops at New Bedford to visit Carrie Poole & her mother; Emma stopping at Fairhaven to visit the Brownell’s.
July 21, 1892 Lizzie travels on to New Bedford, staying with Mrs. Poole and her daughter at 20 Madison Street.
July 23, 1892 Lizzie went on street alone (New Bedford) to buy some dress goods (gone from rooming house 30 minutes). (WS31)
July 25, 1892 AJB writes letter to Morse telling him to wait about getting a man to run his farm. (CI98)
July 25, 1892 Lizzie visits the girls at Marion at Dr. Handy’s cottage.
July 25, 1892 FR Daily News reports on ladies in vacationing in Marion. (LR62)
July 26, 1892 Lizzie, Mrs. Poole & Mrs. Poole’s daughter ride to Westport to visit Mrs. Cyrus Tripp (Augusta, old schoolmate).
July 26, 1892 Lizzie takes train from Westport to New Bedford to connect with Fall River.
July 30, 1892 Fall River Board of Health reports 90 deaths due to extreme heat, 65 are children under age 5. (VVII-331)
July 31, 1892 Bridget prepares first serving of the infamous mutton for Sunday supper.
August 2, 1892 Andrews tells associate there is “trouble” in the Borden household.
August 2, 1892 Swordfish is served for supper and served again warmed over for dinner.
August 2, 1892 Andrew and Abby vomit during the night.
August 3, 1892 THE DAY BEFORE THE MURDERS
8:00 am Abby goes across street to Dr. Bowen; tells him she fears she’s been poisoned.
9:00 am approx Dr. Bowen crosses street to check on the Bordens; Lizzie dashes upstairs; Andrew rebuffs his unsolicited visit.
10:00-11:30 am Lizzie attempts to buy prussic acid from Eli Bence at Smith’s pharmacy on Columbia Street. (PH310)
12:00 Noon Lizzie joins Andrew and Abby for the noontime meal in the dining room.
12:35 am Uncle John Vinnicum Morse leaves by train from New Bedford. (CI98)
1:30 pm John Morse walks from train station & arrives at Borden house; Abby lets him in front door.
2:00-4:00 pm Morse and Andrew talk in sitting room; Lizzie hears conversation. (TT141)
4:00 pm John Morse hires horse and wagon at Kirby’s Stable and drives to Swansea in late afternoon. (CI 99)
7:00 pm Lizzie visits Alice Russell in the early evening, states her fear “something will happen”.
7:00-8:00 pm John Morse visits Frederick Eddy at Borden farm in Swansea, brings back eggs. (WS36-37)
8:45 pm Morse returns from Swansea, talks in sitting room with Andrew and Abby. (CI99)
9:00 pm Lizzie returns from Alice Russell’s, locks front door, and goes upstairs to her room without speaking to father or uncle.
9:15 pm Abby Borden retires to bed.
10:00 pm Andrew and Morse retire to bed.
August 4, 1892
THE DAY OF THE MURDERS (Note: Times given are based on various testimonies taken primarily from the Preliminary Hearing held August 25-September 1st, 1892, and are approximated as close as possible).
6:15 am Bridget goes downstairs, gets coal and wood in cellar to start fire in kitchen stove, and takes in milk.
6:20 am Morse goes downstairs to stting rm.
6:30 am Abby comes downstairs, gives orders for breakfast to Bridget
6:40-6:50 am Andrew goes downstairs, empties slops, picks up pears, and goes to barn.
6:45 am Bridget opens side (back) door for the ice man.
7:00 am Bordens and Morse have breakfast in dining room. (Lizzie is still upstairs).
7:15 am Bridget sees Morse for first time at breakfast table.
7:30 am Bridget eats her breakfast, and then clears dishes.
7:45-8:45 Morse and Andrew talk in sitting room; Abby sits with them a short while before beginning to dust.
8:30 am Morse sees Abby go into the front hall.
8:45 am Andrew lets Morse out side door, invites him back for dinner.
8:45-9:00 am Morse leaves for Post Office and then to visit a niece and nephew at Daniel Emery’s, #4 Weybosset Street. (CI101)
8:45-9:00 am Andrew goes back upstairs and returns wearing collar and tie, goes to sitting room.
8:45-9:00 am Abby tells Bridget to wash windows, inside and out.
8:45-8:50 am Lizzie comes down and enters kitchen.
8:45-9:00 am Bridget goes outside to vomit.
8:45-9:00 am Andrew leaves the house.
8:45-9:00 am Bridget returns, does not see Lizzie, sees Abby dusting in dining room, does not see Andrew.
9:00 am Abby goes up to guest room.
9:00-9:30 am Bridget cleans away breakfast dishes in kitchen.
9:00-9:30 am Bridget gets brush from cellar for washing windows
9:00-9:30 am Lizzie appears at back door as Bridget goes towards barn; Bridget tells Lizzie she need not lock door.
9:30 am Abraham G. Hart, Treasurer of Union Savings Bank, talks to Andrew at Bank.
9:15-9:45 am Morse arrives at #4 Weybosset Street to visit his niece and nephew. (WS29)
9:30-10:05 Andrew visits banks.
9:45 am John P. Burrill, Cashier, talks to Andrew at National Union Bank.
9:50-10:00 am AJB deposits Troy Mill check with Everett Cook at First Nat’l Bank; talks with William Carr. (WS29)
9:30-10:20 am Bridget washes outside windows, stops to talk to “Kelly girl” at south side fence.
9:30-10:00 am Abby Borden dies from blows to the head with a sharp instrument.
10:00-10:30 am Mrs. Churchill sees Bridget outside washing NE windows. (CI126)
10:20 am Bridget re-enters house from side door, commences to wash inside windows.
10:29 am Jonathan Clegg (fixed time by City Hall clock) stated Andrew left his shop heading home. (TT173)
10:15-10:30 am Andrew stops to talk to Jonathan Clegg, picks up old lock; Southard Miller (at Whitehead’s Market) sees AJB turn onto Spring St; Mary Gallagher sees AJB at corner of South Main & Spring; Lizzie Gray sees AJB turning north on Second Street. (WS10, 43)
10:30-10:40 am Joseph Shortsleeves sees Andrew. (PH230&WS10)
10:40 am James Mather sees Andrew leave shop (PH231)
10:30-10:40 am Mrs. Kelly observes Andrew going to his front door. (PH209)
10:30-10:40 am Andrew Borden can’t get in side door, fumbles with key at front door, and let in by Bridget.
10:30-10:40 am Bridget hears Lizzie laugh on the stairs as she says “pshaw” fumbling with inside triple locks.
10:35-10:45 am Bridget sees Lizzie go into dining room and speak “low” to her father.
10:45 am Mark Chase, residing over Wade’s store, sees man on Borden fence taking pears. (WS45)
10:45-10:55 am Lizzie puts ironing board on dining room table as Bridget finishes last window in the dining room
10:45-10:55 am Lizzie asks Bridget in kitchen if she’s going out, tells her of note to Abby & sale at Sargeant’s.
10:50-10:55 Mark Chase observes man with open buggy parked just beyond tree in front of Borden house.
August 4, 1892
10:55 am Bridget goes upstairs to her room to lie down. (CIp24)
10:55–10:58 am Bridget goes up to her room; lies down on her bed. (WS3)
10:55-11:00 am Andrew Borden dies from blows to the head with a sharp instrument.
11:00 am Bridget hears City Hall clock chime 11:00.
11:05-11:10 am Hyman Lubinsky drives his cart past the Borden house. (TT1423)
11:05-11:10 William Sullivan, clerk at Hudner’s Market notes Mrs. Churchill leaving the store. (WS10)
11:10 am APPROX. Lizzie hollers to Bridget to come down, “Someone has killed father”. (TT244)
11:10-11:12 am Lizzie sends Bridget to get Dr. Bowen. (TT245)
11:10-11:13 am Bridget rushes back across the street from Bowen’s, tells Lizzie he’s not at home. (TT245)
11:10-11:13 am Lizzie asks Bridget if she knows where Alice Russell lives and tells her to go get her. (TT245)
11:10-11:13 am Bridget grabs her hat & shawl from kitchen entry way and rushes to Alice Russell’s. (TT245)
11:10-11:13 am Mrs. Churchill observes Bridget crossing street, notices a distressed Lizzie and calls out to Lizzie who tells her “someone has murdered father.” (PH281-282)
11:13 am Mrs. John Gormely says Mrs. Churchill runs through her yelling “Mr. Borden is murdered!” (WS9)
11:10-11:14 am Mrs. Churchill goes to side door, speaks briefly to Lizzie, and then crosses street looking for a doctor. (PH283)
11:12-11:14 am John Cunningham sees Mrs. Churchill talking to others then uses phone at Gorman’s paint shop to call Police.
11:15 am Marshal Hilliard receives call from news dealer Cunningham about disturbance at Borden house.
11:15 am Marshal Hilliard orders Officer Allen to go to Borden house. (Allen notes exact time on office wall clock).
11:16 – 11:20 am Mrs. Churchill returns from giving the alarm. (PH284)
11:16 – 11:20 am Dr. Bowen pulls up in his carriage, met by his wife, rushes over to Borden’s. (PH 273)
11:16-11:20 am John Cunningham checks outside cellar door in Borden back yard, finds it locked.
11:18-11:20 am Dr. Bowen sees Andrew, asks for sheet; alone with Lizzie for approx. one minute.
11:20 am Officer Allen arrives at Bordens, met at door by Dr. Bowen. Sees Lizzie sitting alone at kitchen table.
11:20–11:21 am Allen sees Andrews’s body at same time Alice Russell and Mrs. Churchill come in. (Where was Bridget?)
11:20-11:22 am Allen checks front door and notes it bolted from inside, checks closets in dining room and kitchen.
11:20 am Morse departs Daniel Emery’s on Weybosset Street, takes a streetcar back to the Borden’s.
11-22-11:23 am Officer Allen leaves house to return to station, Bowen goes out with him. Allen has Sawyer guard back door.
11:23-11:33 am Dr. Bowen returns home, checks rail timetable, goes to telegram Emma, and stops at Baker’s Drug store. Telegram is time stamped at 11:32. (PH274)
11:25 am Off. Patrick Doherty, at Bedford & Second, notes City Hall clock time enroute to Station. (T589)
11:23-11:30 am Lizzie asks to check for Mrs. Borden; Bridget & Mrs. Churchill go upstairs, discover body. (PH29-30)
11:32 am Officers Doherty & Wixon leaves police station for Borden house. Reporter Manning on rear steps, Sawyer inside at screen door. (Bridget in s/e corner near sink) (PH329)
11:34 am Bridget fetches Doctor Bowen’s wife, Phoebe. (T250)
11:35 George Petty, former resident of 92 Second Street, enters the Borden house with Dr. Bowen. (WS21)
11:40 am Bowen returns to Borden house. Churchill tells him they’ve discovered Abby upstairs. (TT322)
11:35-11:40 am Officer Patrick Doherty & Deputy Sheriff Wixon arrive at house; see Manning sitting on steps, met at back door by Dr. Bowen, who lets them in. (T447)
11:35-11:40 am Francis Wixon and Dr. Bowen check Andrew’s pockets and remove watch.
11:35-11:40 Officer Doherty questions Lizzie who tells him she heard a “scraping” noise.
11:35-11:40 am Officer Doherty views Abby’s body with Dr. Bowen pulls bed out to view her better. (PH330)
11:35-11:45 am Morse arrives at Borden house, first going to back yard.
11:37 am Officer Mullaly arrives.
11:39-11:40 am Officer Medley arrives at 92 Second Street. (TT686)
11:44 am Doherty runs to Undertaker Gorman’s shop around corner and phones Marshal Hilliard. (PH331)
11:45 Dr. Bowen shows Doherty Andrew, then Abby. Pulls bed out 3 feet. (PH330)
11:45 am Doherty returns; Officers Mullaly. Allen, Denny, and Medley arrive.
11:45 am Dr. Dolan arrives, sees bodies.
11:45 am Morse talks to Sawyer at side door, later testifies he heard of murders from Bridget.
11:45-11:50 am Morse sees Andrew’s body, then goes upstairs and sees Abby’s body.
11:50 am Morse speaks to Lizzie as she lays on lounge in dining room.
11:50 am-Noon Asst. Marshal Fleet arrives; sees bodies; talks to Lizzie in her room w/Rev. Buck, says “…she’s not my mother, she’s my stepmother” (PH354)
11:50 am Morse goes out to back yard and stays outside most of the afternoon.
11:50 am –Noon Deputy Sheriff Wixon climbs back fence and talks to workmen sawing wood in Chagnon yard. (TT452)
11:50-Noon Doherty, Fleet and Medley accompany Bridget to cellar where she shows them hatchet in box on shelf. (WS6)
12:15-12:20 am Officer Harrington arrives at the Borden house.
12:25 am Officer Harrington interviews Lizzie in her bedroom (she wears pink wrapper).
12:45 am Marshal Hillliard & Officers Doherty & Connors drive carriage to Andrew’s upper farm in Swansea.
2:00 pm Dr. Dedrick arrives at Borden house.
3:00-4:00 pm Crime scene photographs are taken of Andrew & Abby. (PH160)
3:40 pm Emma leaves on New Bedford train for Weir Junction to return to Fall River. (CI107)
4:30 pm Stomachs of Andrew and Abby removed and sealed.
5:00 pm Emma arrives in Fall River. (TT1550)
5:00-5:30 pm State Detective George F. Seaver arrives from Taunton. (PH453)
5:30 pm Dr. Dolan “delivers” bodies of Andrew and Abby to Undertaker James Winward. (PH388)
5:35 pm Winward & assistant remove sofa from house and store it in a room at his building. (BG8-5-92)
6:00 pm Alice leaves 92 Second St. to return home for supper. (CI149)
August 4,
8:30 pm Mrs. Charles Holmes leaves the Borden girls and returns to her home on Pine.
8:45 pm Officer Joseph Hyde, observing from a northwest outside window, sees Lizzie & Alice go down cellar.
9:00 pm Officer Hyde observes Lizzie in basement alone.
August 5, 1892
6:00 am Off. FL Edson arrives at Borden house, sees Morse in kitchen; goes with Harrington to cellar and retrieves 2 axes and 1 hatchet, and returns to Police Station
6:30 am Morse comes to side door and speaks to officer on duty. (WS9)
8:30 am Morse leaves house and crosses street to Southard Miller’s house to get Bridget. (WS9)
8:30 am Morse goes to Post Office and sends letter “in haste” to Wm. A. Davis in South Dartmouth.
8:30 am Morse wants to hire someone to bury bloodstained clothes. (ES8/6)
9:00-9:30 am Winward at the Borden house, bodies in caskets; notified not to bury them. (Did AJB have on clean Prince Albert?) (PH388)
August 5, 1892 State Detective Seaver and Marshal Hilliard question Lizzie at her home.
August 5, 1892 Evening Standard reports Emma & Lizzie notify newspapers of $5,000 reward for capture of assassin.
August 5, 1892 Clothing from Andrew & Abby taken from washtub in cellar and buried in yard behind barn.
August 5, 1892 John Morse goes to Post Office followed by a large crowd.

 

 

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An Assessment of the Lizzie Borden film by other experts who know the facts

Poor Lee-ann Wilber, manager of the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast.  She and her staff are left with the mop up duties due to all the misinformation and urban legends contained in the Lifetime Movie Channel’s Lizzie Borden Took An Axe, starring Chrsitina Ricci.

As I predicted, awful production has only served to perpetuate the myths and untruths about Miss Borden and the case itself.  Too bad the LMN’s target audience are breeders more than readers.

“Lizzie Borden film:  A Hatchet Job” – by Deborah Allard, Fall River Herald News, interviewed local Lizzie Borden affcionados and moi.  Read it HERE.

Richard Behrens, who authored Lizzie Borden, Girl Detective – a clever and astute non-fiction book, posted this on a chat forum – and I completely agree:

“There must have been a corporate meeting at Lifetime where they planned everything exactly because they were aiming for a specific audience. If the women wore hats, the 20-something Twilight fans would think it’s old fashioned. If they used period music, they won’t download the soundtrack from iTunes. If they cast a teenager-looking actress, the teenagers in the audience will assume she is a teenager. If they show stuff about Fall River and the textile mills, they’ll flip the channels to another station. If they don’t show Lizzie hacking up bodies, the movie will be boring. In short, no ambiguity, no subtlety, no grown-up issues. Let’s make a movie about a 32 year old woman who is really a trouble teenager who wants to smash open people’s skulls like they do in the zombie and vampire movies.”

 

  • Historians: ‘Lizzie Borden’ film a hatchet job

  • “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

– See more at: http://www.heraldnews.com/article/20140127/NEWS/140126634/?tag=2#sthash.vNKjppF5.dpuf

  • emailprint 0
  • Lifetime's "Lizzie Borden Took An Ax" on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

     Zoom

    Submitted PhotoLifetime’s “Lizzie Borden Took An Ax” on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

    »  RELATED CONTENT
  • LINKS
  • Deborah Allard
    Herald News Staff Reporter

    Posted Jan. 27, 2014 @ 7:24 pm
    Updated at 7:28 PM

    FALL RIVER — The reviews are in.

    “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

    Local historians and Lizzie experts hated the rock music, Lizzie Borden’s wardrobe and the absence of several main characters.

    Leonard Rebello, a local historian and the author of “Lizzie Borden: Past & Present,” said it was “difficult to watch.”

    “It leaves myths and legends for a new generation,” Rebello said.

    The biggest historical inaccuracy, according to Rebello, was when officials performed an autopsy on Andrew and Abby Borden on the dining room table, after the couple had been bludgeoned to death by an ax (actually, a hatchet).

    “That did not happen at all,” Rebello said.

    The autopsies were completed in the house, but Rebello said they were performed on undertaker boards. Andrew Borden was in the living room, and Abby Borden in the dining room.

    There were other historical errors, as well, such as when Lizzie Borden burned her dress in a cauldron outside for all to see.

    Rebello said it was hard to watch after spending six years researching the facts of the Borden murders and case.

    “Overall, it was not very well done,” Rebello said.

    The Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast, the actual site of the Borden murders at 92 Second St., is in “damage control” mode, according to curator and manager Lee Ann Wilber.

    She said she and her tour staff will be “setting everyone straight” for years to come, separating fact from fiction and rumor from truth.

    The film did spark a renewed interest in the Borden murder mystery. Wilber said the B&B has seen an increase in visitors all weekend. Each hourly tour on Sunday was attended by 15 to 20 curious visitors.

    Michael Martins, curator of the Fall River Historical Society, which displays the largest collection of Borden artifacts and crime scene items, was put off by the film.

    “The film was inaccurate in all aspects — from historical facts, to costuming and sets,” Martins said.

    Martins said the society has for years been at the forefront of researching the Borden story, uncovering new material and presenting that material to the public.

    Martins and assistant curator Dennis Binette recently published “Parallel Lives: A Social History of Lizzie A. Borden in Fall River,” which shed new light on Borden and the murders.

    “It is unfortunate that they chose not to utilize the resources available here,” Martins said. “Visitors repeatedly tell us that that is one of the things that sets the Historical Society apart — fact, not fiction.

– See more at: http://www.heraldnews.com/article/20140127/NEWS/140126634#sthash.qrUgGY3G.dpuf

    • Historians: ‘Lizzie Borden’ film a hatchet job

  • “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

  • emailprint 0
  • Lifetime's "Lizzie Borden Took An Ax" on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

     Zoom

    Submitted PhotoLifetime’s “Lizzie Borden Took An Ax” on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

    »  RELATED CONTENT
  • LINKS
  • Deborah Allard
    Herald News Staff Reporter

    Posted Jan. 27, 2014 @ 7:24 pm
    Updated at 7:28 PM

    FALL RIVER — The reviews are in.

    “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

    Local historians and Lizzie experts hated the rock music, Lizzie Borden’s wardrobe and the absence of several main characters.

    Leonard Rebello, a local historian and the author of “Lizzie Borden: Past & Present,” said it was “difficult to watch.”

    “It leaves myths and legends for a new generation,” Rebello said.

    The biggest historical inaccuracy, according to Rebello, was when officials performed an autopsy on Andrew and Abby Borden on the dining room table, after the couple had been bludgeoned to death by an ax (actually, a hatchet).

    “That did not happen at all,” Rebello said.

    The autopsies were completed in the house, but Rebello said they were performed on undertaker boards. Andrew Borden was in the living room, and Abby Borden in the dining room.

    There were other historical errors, as well, such as when Lizzie Borden burned her dress in a cauldron outside for all to see.

    Rebello said it was hard to watch after spending six years researching the facts of the Borden murders and case.

    “Overall, it was not very well done,” Rebello said.

    The Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast, the actual site of the Borden murders at 92 Second St., is in “damage control” mode, according to curator and manager Lee Ann Wilber.

    She said she and her tour staff will be “setting everyone straight” for years to come, separating fact from fiction and rumor from truth.

    The film did spark a renewed interest in the Borden murder mystery. Wilber said the B&B has seen an increase in visitors all weekend. Each hourly tour on Sunday was attended by 15 to 20 curious visitors.

    Michael Martins, curator of the Fall River Historical Society, which displays the largest collection of Borden artifacts and crime scene items, was put off by the film.

    “The film was inaccurate in all aspects — from historical facts, to costuming and sets,” Martins said.

    Martins said the society has for years been at the forefront of researching the Borden story, uncovering new material and presenting that material to the public.

    Martins and assistant curator Dennis Binette recently published “Parallel Lives: A Social History of Lizzie A. Borden in Fall River,” which shed new light on Borden and the murders.

    “It is unfortunate that they chose not to utilize the resources available here,” Martins said. “Visitors repeatedly tell us that that is one of the things that sets the Historical Society apart — fact, not fiction.

– See more at: http://www.heraldnews.com/article/20140127/NEWS/140126634#sthash.qrUgGY3G.dpuf

    • Historians: ‘Lizzie Borden’ film a hatchet job

  • “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

  • emailprint 0
  • Lifetime's "Lizzie Borden Took An Ax" on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

     Zoom

    Submitted PhotoLifetime’s “Lizzie Borden Took An Ax” on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

    »  RELATED CONTENT
  • LINKS
  • Deborah Allard
    Herald News Staff Reporter

    Posted Jan. 27, 2014 @ 7:24 pm
    Updated at 7:28 PM

    FALL RIVER — The reviews are in.

    “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

    Local historians and Lizzie experts hated the rock music, Lizzie Borden’s wardrobe and the absence of several main characters.

    Leonard Rebello, a local historian and the author of “Lizzie Borden: Past & Present,” said it was “difficult to watch.”

    “It leaves myths and legends for a new generation,” Rebello said.

    The biggest historical inaccuracy, according to Rebello, was when officials performed an autopsy on Andrew and Abby Borden on the dining room table, after the couple had been bludgeoned to death by an ax (actually, a hatchet).

    “That did not happen at all,” Rebello said.

    The autopsies were completed in the house, but Rebello said they were performed on undertaker boards. Andrew Borden was in the living room, and Abby Borden in the dining room.

    There were other historical errors, as well, such as when Lizzie Borden burned her dress in a cauldron outside for all to see.

    Rebello said it was hard to watch after spending six years researching the facts of the Borden murders and case.

    “Overall, it was not very well done,” Rebello said.

    The Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast, the actual site of the Borden murders at 92 Second St., is in “damage control” mode, according to curator and manager Lee Ann Wilber.

    She said she and her tour staff will be “setting everyone straight” for years to come, separating fact from fiction and rumor from truth.

    The film did spark a renewed interest in the Borden murder mystery. Wilber said the B&B has seen an increase in visitors all weekend. Each hourly tour on Sunday was attended by 15 to 20 curious visitors.

    Michael Martins, curator of the Fall River Historical Society, which displays the largest collection of Borden artifacts and crime scene items, was put off by the film.

    “The film was inaccurate in all aspects — from historical facts, to costuming and sets,” Martins said.

    Martins said the society has for years been at the forefront of researching the Borden story, uncovering new material and presenting that material to the public.

    Martins and assistant curator Dennis Binette recently published “Parallel Lives: A Social History of Lizzie A. Borden in Fall River,” which shed new light on Borden and the murders.

    “It is unfortunate that they chose not to utilize the resources available here,” Martins said. “Visitors repeatedly tell us that that is one of the things that sets the Historical Society apart — fact, not fiction.

– See more at: http://www.heraldnews.com/article/20140127/NEWS/140126634#sthash.qrUgGY3G.dpuf

    • Historians: ‘Lizzie Borden’ film a hatchet job

  • “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

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  • Lifetime's "Lizzie Borden Took An Ax" on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

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    Submitted PhotoLifetime’s “Lizzie Borden Took An Ax” on Jan. 25, starring Christina Ricci as the famous Fall River murder suspect.

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  • Deborah Allard
    Herald News Staff Reporter

    Posted Jan. 27, 2014 @ 7:24 pm
    Updated at 7:28 PM

    FALL RIVER — The reviews are in.

    “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” at least when it comes to those who know the intricate details of the crime and case, presented glaring historical inaccuracies from start to finish.

    Local historians and Lizzie experts hated the rock music, Lizzie Borden’s wardrobe and the absence of several main characters.

    Leonard Rebello, a local historian and the author of “Lizzie Borden: Past & Present,” said it was “difficult to watch.”

    “It leaves myths and legends for a new generation,” Rebello said.

    The biggest historical inaccuracy, according to Rebello, was when officials performed an autopsy on Andrew and Abby Borden on the dining room table, after the couple had been bludgeoned to death by an ax (actually, a hatchet).

    “That did not happen at all,” Rebello said.

    The autopsies were completed in the house, but Rebello said they were performed on undertaker boards. Andrew Borden was in the living room, and Abby Borden in the dining room.

    There were other historical errors, as well, such as when Lizzie Borden burned her dress in a cauldron outside for all to see.

    Rebello said it was hard to watch after spending six years researching the facts of the Borden murders and case.

    “Overall, it was not very well done,” Rebello said.

    The Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast, the actual site of the Borden murders at 92 Second St., is in “damage control” mode, according to curator and manager Lee Ann Wilber.

    She said she and her tour staff will be “setting everyone straight” for years to come, separating fact from fiction and rumor from truth.

    The film did spark a renewed interest in the Borden murder mystery. Wilber said the B&B has seen an increase in visitors all weekend. Each hourly tour on Sunday was attended by 15 to 20 curious visitors.

    Michael Martins, curator of the Fall River Historical Society, which displays the largest collection of Borden artifacts and crime scene items, was put off by the film.

    “The film was inaccurate in all aspects — from historical facts, to costuming and sets,” Martins said.

    Martins said the society has for years been at the forefront of researching the Borden story, uncovering new material and presenting that material to the public.

    Martins and assistant curator Dennis Binette recently published “Parallel Lives: A Social History of Lizzie A. Borden in Fall River,” which shed new light on Borden and the murders.

    “It is unfortunate that they chose not to utilize the resources available here,” Martins said. “Visitors repeatedly tell us that that is one of the things that sets the Historical Society apart — fact, not fiction.

– See more at: http://www.heraldnews.com/article/20140127/NEWS/140126634#sthash.qrUgGY3G.dpuf

 

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UPDATE: No Matter How Inaccurate, Lizzie Borden in the Media is Good Business

Someone messaged me on Facebook: “Faye, you are helping to promote this awful movie by posting about it.” Oh no, I’m not. I’m doing blogs about it, I’m commentinig on internet chat rooms etc. about it,  I’m responding to the buzz that’s already out there giving a totally different POV. My POV is based on decades of research, interviews, published papers, speaking engagements, case related collectibles, etc. I want my opinions dispersed out there in the world wide web. Hopefully when the hype heightens and people Google about Ricci, the film, Lizzie, Fall River, etc., they will have my POV to ponder rather than simply accepting as truth the horseshit they will have viewed.   Hopefully, I will help to slow the resultant predictable tide of misinformation that perpetuates the myth of Lizzie Borden.

SO HERE IS THE LATEST:

LBAXE

CLICK HERE —->UPDATE 1/3/2014

Excuse me whilst I stab my eyeballs out.

The Lifetime Movie Channel-Christina Ricci rendition of the Lizzie Borden story has her (Lizzie) sneaking out of the house days before the murder to attend a wild party. (Thump. <–sound of me banging my head against the wall).

The script apparently establishes as fact Lizzie & Emma were surrogate wives to Andrew until he married the stepmother. (Thump. Thump).

Ricci, so says the article, did extensive research into her role. (Thumpity, thump, thump).

I’d type more but I can’t see thru the blood of my eyeballs.

In Uncategorized on January 3, 2014 at 3:30 am

Image

Photo by Bryce Vickmark for The New York Times

It’s only been recently that the Fall River Chamber of Commerce has publicly acknowleged the revenue and residual advantages of touting their most famous citizen, Lizzie Borden.  Perhaps it’s taken them that long to figure out thousands have trekked to Fall River for one purpose only:  To visit the murder house at 92 Second Street.  It’s the same gravitational pull that feeds tourism in Dallas at Dealy Plaza.  And once in Fall River they proceed to only 3 other locations before getting back on the highway towards Newport or Boston.  Those 3 sites are:  The French Street stately home called “Maplecroft” in the Highlands where Lizzie lived the other half of her life, the Fall River Historical Society to view part of their world’s largest collection relative to the case and Lizzie herself, and finally to Oak Grove Cemetery where she is buried.  It’s usually the repeat visitors or regional residents that discover Fall River has a little more to offer on a day’s visit, i.e., some great restaurants, Battleship Cove, great vistas overlooking the Taunton River and…and…and…well, the hidden John Mann murals on the walls of the auditorium at the old Matthew Kuss Middle School at 217 Rock Street.  Thing is you can’t get to them. 

Well, now comes along another TV movie on Lizzie Borden starring Christina Ricci.  I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.  Christina Ricci would be appropriate casting as Lizzie Borden if Justin Bieber played Andrew Borden.  If that doesn’t tell you right off the bat about how accurate this Lifetime Movie Production will be….will read the following New York Times article and determine for yourself.

The only good thing is that whenever the media hypes Lizzie, there are spikes in the revenue for the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast – and Fall River in general.  I’m all for that.  Fiction or Fact.

 

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Providence Journal on 120 Years Since Lizzie Borden Acquittal

It”s been 120 years since Lizzie Borden was acquitted of the hatchet murders of her father and stepmother, so it’s no surprise the media would exploit this case once again.

The Providence Journal  is doing an extensive article running six consecutive days.  This little piece is a “teaser” for the 1st installment this Sunday, June 23.

shelley3Shelley Dziedzic poses on floor between bed and dresser where Abby Borden was found with 19 blows to the head on August 4, 1892.

Until last summer, Shelley Dziedzic, whom I’ve known for many, many years was a tour guide at the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast Museum.  She is the one who used to produce those annual August 4th re-enactments at  the B&B.   Shelley has added “historian” to her credentials, and aptly so, as she is extremely well informed on the case.  Her favorite smells are the hatchet cookies made at the B&B and, of course, the ever predictable rose.

The Lifetime Movie Channel’s Lizzie Borden is sure to exploit the slash and slice aspect of the case.  I’m fairly certain the Providence Journal will not, but we will see.

Meanwhile, check out my Facebook page:    CLICK HERE

 

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Ariel Castro and Lizzie Borden – Notorious Domiciles and Why People Can’t Stay Away

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This NBC News article  on the house of Ariel Castro in Cleveland, Ohio, has five paragraphs on the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast Museum in Fall River, MA.

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It’s a long shot, but imagine if some dark-minded entrepreneur managed to acquire the property and turn it into a Bed & Breakfast.  Guests could chose between Attic, Second Floor or Basement accommodations in the “Ariel Castro House of Horrors”.   Canopy beds with chains would be extra.  Souvenier duct tape sold in the Garage Gift Shop.  Too morbid you say?  Think again.

Never underestimate the draw of pop culture “celebrity” when mixed with murder and mayhem.  It can become a stone, cold hit.

 

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Lizzie Borden Salem Exhibit & the Bleeder-Readers

UPDATE:  The Salem Exhibit not only lost its lawsuit with the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast but closed down after 1 year.  The following RECYCLED post shows the enttire exhibit via the photos I took when visiting Salem.

I’ve posted before about the Lizzie Borden “True Story” exhibit in Salem and now, I give you some overall glimpses of most of the exhibit.

I’ve written before on this subject and those posts can be found HERE

and HERE and HEREBE SURE TO READ THE NEWSPAPER ARTICLE AT THE VERY END OF THIS POST!

The facility is 3,500 square feet of which 3,000 feet is exhibit space.  It is brand, spanking new, extremely well organized with the spacial layouts of the storyboards which are very well done with a clear, readable font.  It seems more thought and planning went into the storyboards than the actual floor displays.

There is nothing new to be found here in terms of information or “true” story.  What it is, is a factual telling of the case thru the extremely text-heavy storyboards.  All the content is what has already appeared in numerous books or newspapers.  One feels they ARE reading a book.

The “True Story” exhibit is located on Essex Street in Salem’s “boardwalk” of numerous museums, shops, restaurants, cafes, bookstores, etc.

It is right next door to the large Witch History Museum

The first thing you see when approaching the door is the display of “Halloween’ type skulls displayed in the large glass window.

Once inside, your eyes take in the neatly displayed variety of gift and souvenier items.

There are NO interactive displays.  No audio memories.  No audio guides.  No videos of any kind.  No forensics display.  No interactive forensic exhibit that would engage the visitor to “solve the crime”.  It’s all about the READING.

After paying for your ticket and going thru the entry turnstyle, you enter a small narrow hallway and the READING begins:

CAUTION:   CAN BE HAZARDOUS TO YOUR EYES!

AND READ……….

AND READ………

READ ABOUT THE BORDEN FAMILY (Too bad there isn’t audio with voices depicting the family members *telling* you about themselves.   Oh well.  Ho-hum.)

AND READ………

AND READ…………

KEEP MOVING – KEEP READING……..

AND READ………….

Now if you didn’t know better and skipped the “reader boards”,  you would incorrectly assume both Andrew and his wife were murdered in the same room because of the body outlines shown in the same display space.  One is FORCED to read to get the facts.  (Might as well get a book.)

OKAY, MOVE ON NOW.  THERE’S MORE READING TO DO……….

AND READ………

Ahh!  Finally something different to LOOK at!  A 3-D paper mockup of the Borden house and immediate neighbors.  (Here you can relax your eyes for a moment or two.)

BUT THEN…………

YOU KEEP ON READING……….

AND READ ABOUT THE DISCOVERY OF ANDREW’S BODY AS OUTLINED  ON THE BLUE, NOT BLACK (SO00000 “UNTRUE” SOFA).

READ ABOUT THE LEGAL PROCEEDINGS AND TRIAL IN A VERY UN-AUTHENTIC MOCKUP OF THE JUDGES BENCH AT THE SUPERIOR COURT IN NEW BEDFORD.

AND READ………..

The “mastoidian” type teeth in the skull of “Abby” was so inaccurate that Mr. Pickel removed them.  The skull is now without teeth.  However, the autopsy report on Abby clearly states she had false teeth in the upper jaw, but visitors do not see the “true” replica of Abby’s skull.

READ ABOUT LIZZIE MOVING TO MAPLECROFT.  NO, THAT’S NOT LIZZIE’S FURNITURE.  NOTHING IN THE EXHIBIT IS A LEGITIMATE ARTIFACT FROM THE CASE OR FALL RIVER’S HISTORY.  BUT DON’T LET THAT STOP YOU FROM READING BECAUSE THERE IS FAR MORE TO READ THAN ITEMS TO LOOK AT.

I don’t know why the picture of these dogs are on the wall.  They were not the kind of dogs Lizzie or Nance O’Neil had.  Perhaps something was just needed to fill up the wall space and its just temporary.

READ ABOUT NANCE O’NEIL

READ ABOUT FALL RIVER TODAY (HUH?) AND THE LIZZIE BORDEN BED & BREAKFAST (THEY FORGOT TO ADD THE WORD “MUSEUM”)

There is no really “Wow!” factor in the exhibit.  But I suppose the closest would be this replica of the Andrew Borden grave site in Oak Grove Cemetery.  Very well done.  It is the next to last thing you see in the exhibit.  It has a dark-mirrored background in back of which is the gift shop.

AND READ…………

THE GUEST BOOK BEFORE YOU GO THRU THE EXIT TURNSTYLE.

There has been much reporting in the media lately of Leonard Pickel’s new “True Story of Lizzie Borden”.  What follows is pure FICTION.

YOU CAN MAKE UP YOUR OWN NEWSPAPER HEADINE AT THIS SITE.

 

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