Lizzie Borden took an axe, And gave her mother forty whacks; When she saw what she had done, She gave her father forty-one.
On this day in history, August 4th, 1892, to be exact, Andrew and Abby Borden were murdered in their home. The chief suspect, Andrews daughter (Abby’s step daughter) Lizzie. Though a jury of her peers could not see fit to convict a good Christian girl of murder, it is well believed to this day that she was the culprit.
Motives vary, but it’s believed hostility in the home had been growing among the Borden children because their wealthy father had been gifting the children of his new wife with homes of their own. Fed up, Lizzie retrieved an axe from the basement and went up to one of the bedrooms where her step mother was tidying up. She delivered a single blow to the head, which brought her down. Lizzie then sat on her back and struck 19 more times to the skull.
She then went downstairs to the parlor where her father is believed to have been sleeping on the sofa. Without a word she swung, delivering 10 wacks to the face of her own father.
Although she was never convicted, it was always believed she was responsible and so the nursery rhyme was born. Lizzie and her sisters actually went on to live a some what charmed life, having inherited their father’s estate valued at $300,000. (Today an approx $7,900,00)