Lizzie Borden took an axe Gave her mother 40 whacks
When she saw what she had done She gave her father 41.
Officially, none of the song is true because after a year in jail awaiting trial, Ms. Borden was acquitted of the 1892 murders.
Although there were no other credible suspects and there were many discrepancies in her story, the verdict was based on the assumptions that a woman would be too inept and frail to wield an axe with such effectiveness and that a good unmarried Christian woman of 32 would not do such a thing to the dad and stepmom she lived with.
The public didn’t buy her story and most believed that Lizzie got away with murder.
But even with that assumption, the song took some poetic license with the truth. Whoever wielded the axe gave only 19 blows to Mrs. Borden and 10 to Mr. Borden.
Upon release from prison, Lizzie and her sister, Emma, inherited the $500,000 family estate in Fall River, Massachusetts, where they led long and comfortable lives.