Halloween Season Is The Best Time To Take This Local-ish Spooky House Tour With Your Boo
In search of local adventure and thrills this Halloween season, today’s contributor found herself on a tour of the home of one of the most notorious figures from late 19th century American history.
Fame seems so easy to attain these days.
There are so many ways to become famous: YouTube sensation or reality show favorite or gameshow contestant or reality contestant sensation. (How many Rhode Islanders have been on So You Think You Can Dance/The Great Food Truck Race/The Voice/Chopped/Amazing Race? There are three Rhody natives on this season of Survivor alone! Are there any citizens of the Ocean State remaining who have not yet been on a TV show?)
Notoriety is even easier to achieve, just commit any sort of faux pas and there is surely to be a camera within range to record your antics for posterity (…like the time I was cleaning my gutters and tipped over the ladder. My neighbor made my dangling feet famous. Thanks, Mrs. Kravitz!).
And there are so many metrics to measure fame/notoriety in this day and age. How many views did your latest “challenge” video get? How many friends do you have on FB? How many followers on IG? How many times did your witty retort get retweeted? Was your viral video showcased on a national talk show?
But, alas, social media is an ephemeral existence. Vines gave way to Tik Tok and memes that were once all the rage fade into obscurity. Anyone remember Philoso-raptor? Badgers, Badgers, Badgers? Dramatic Chipmunk?
Imagine being so well known people still talk about you 127 years later… being so notorious that crowds flock to where you once lived just to ogle…being at the center of an event so shocking it has become the stuff of myth and legend? Can you even fathom that anything of this magnitude was possible before hi-def color photos, before televised news, before the internet?
Well, you don’t even have to imagine or go very far to learn about someone with that kind of prominence. Such is the infamy of Lizzie Borden! A name so readily recognized because it has been popularized in movies, countless books and even a rhyme recited by children to this very day. (I bet you just sang it to yourself!) You can explore the site of the notorious double murder crime scene first-hand. You can even stay overnight if you’d like at the Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast Museum.
During our recent tour of the Borden homestead, we learned about the dynamics of the Borden family, the extent of the family’s business interests and theories about the motives for this husband and wife murder. We witnessed both crime scenes, even experiencing how one of the victims was discovered. The home is well-preserved and meticulously staged as it would have been on August 4, 1892.
Our super-knowledgeable tour guide walked us through the events that unfolded on that day and filled us in about the family and significant people involved. She told us about the trial that followed and about Lizzie Borden’s life after the acquittal. (That’s right, acquittal!) We were able to take photos in each room we toured and learned that this was the first crime scene in the USA where photography was part of the criminal investigation.
Those of us who participated in the tour developed our own assumptionsabout the ghastly murders at 230 Second Street, Fall River. You can tour, stay or even partake in a paranormal event. For more info, go to lizzie-borden.com.
About The Author
Christina is a life-long Rhode Islander who has been dedicated to mission-driven human services work. A mother of two, she recycles, composts, and runs her household with solar energy. An animal lover and a world traveler, this bon vivant has jumped out of a plane, bungee jumped (twice!), run over the Newport Bridge, swum across Narragansett Bay, and penguin plunged.