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HillĘs Photographic Studio (New Bedford, Massachusetts)
Collection of Brad Feuerhelm
This is possibly the most famous in the series of Nineteenth Century American Murder cases. Lizzy Borden was acquitted of giving her parent the notorious "40 Whacks" with an axe. Although only Lizzie and the maid were in the house at the time, there was no incriminating evidence to link Lizzie to the case. A handless hatchet was found in the basement and Lizzie had apparently burned a dress a few days after the killings under weak explanations. None the less she was acquitted under lack of evidence.
Explanations abound the current research about who did the killing. Some speculate that Lizzie was having a lesbian affair with the maid and was caught by her stepmother thus bringing on a pact of murderous license with the maid as accomplice. Others have pointed out repeatedly that the strength of the axe blows and the resulting damage had to have been caused by an outsider of larger proportions. To this day, the case remains unsolved.