Home   |   About Us   |   Investigations   |   Resources   |   EPR Recommends   |   Links   |   Contact Us

“Lizzie Borden took an axe,
Gave her mother 40 whacks.
When she saw what she had done,
Gave her father 41.”
Lizzie Borden, the key player to what was one of the most horrific murders in the 19th century.  On August 4, 1892, in Fall River, Massachusetts, her stepmother was found dead with 19 whacks of an axe while her father had received 11.  Lizzie was found not guilty and this sparked 115 years of armchair sleuths offering their opinions on what really happened that fateful day.
The home the family resided in has since been turned into a bed and breakfast and for years, there have been reports of paranormal activity.  While any fan of the macabre can fork over the money to stay the night in Lizzie’s room or any of the other 6 bedrooms, very few are allowed to actually hold a paranormal investigation in the home for a night, let alone a weekend.
On February 2-3, 2007, I was one of the few lucky paranormal investigators to actually participate in a weekend-long investigation hosted by WheezyRon Trips.  WheezyRon Trips are investigations across the country hosted by Brian “Wheezy” Harnois and Ron “Q” Milione from the Sci-Fi Channel’s “Ghost Hunters”.  The fact that the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast was featured on one of their episodes leaves no doubt that the weekend investigation was secured by Brian’s fame with the show.
The home, a relic of its time, stands out on the street on which it stands.  Modern buildings surround it and the drone of automobile engines is constant.  When you walk into the home, you feel as if you have stepped through a time portal. Everything in the home, the wallpaper, the furniture, the rugs, have all been recreated from the crime scene photos.  You truly feel as if you have left the modern world behind.  As if you are in a cadaverous museum, you don’t want to sit on anything or disturb what seems to be a scene frozen in time.
After a lecture from Ron about the equipment he brought for us to use and one from Brian about investigation techniques, including sharing his own personal experiences, Donna LaCroix, who has since left TAPS, shared some stories as well, and then the staff of the B&B gave us dinner.  Pizza, cold cuts, salad, and on Saturday night, homemade calzones, we couldn’t have asked for a more friendly group of people.  They were willing to share their own stories of activity they have experienced in working in the Borden home.
Friday evening, I spent the evening with Brian and Brian’s friend, Lucky.  We started in the Morse Room, where Abby Borden had been found slumped over next to the bed.  I caught some EVPs in this room, including one that said “Oh good, you’re leaving” as we prepared to head to Lizzie’s bedroom.  Once in Lizzie’s room, we shut all the doors that lead to other rooms.  Shortly thereafter, the three of us begun to smell the scent of perfume, one that reminded you of something your grandmother or great-grandmother might have worn.  Both guys “sniffed” me to make sure it was nothing I had on, which turned quite comical.  When a few minutes, the scent began to move around the room and we began to chase it, following it as it seemed to pace around the bed.  I also caught some EVPs in this room, mainly to the tune of “Get Out”.  We remained in this room for about 45 minutes, at which time people began cutting through the room as they ventured to other parts of the house.  At this point, we took a short break. Venturing outside in the cold to get some fresh air and to regroup, I had the opportunity to talk to Brian and get to know the “guy behind the ‘Ghost Hunter’”.
A short time later, we ventured upstairs to the attic area, which now houses a couple more bedrooms and a sitting area.  Tim Weisberg, host of “Spooky Southcoast”, a radio program on Saturday nights on WBSM in New Bedford, Massachusetts, had described lying crosswise on a bed up there, with the room door closed but closet door open, and having his leg lifted up off the bed.  I lay across the bed for about 5 to 10 minutes, but did not experience anything.  As I got off the bed, Ron Milione and Tim came in the room.  Brian decided he wanted to try and see if he could get anything to happen.  As Brian reclined on the bed, Ron’s young son came in with a video camera and Tim lay on the floor, trying to incite the spirits to move Brian’s leg.  It is said that a small boy and girl take refuse in this bedroom.  They were drowned by their mother, who then killed herself.  For whatever reason, they decided that they prefer to “live” in the closet of this particular room.
Several of us noticed that it seemed that Brian’s leg was beginning to move.  He swore that he was not moving it and as Tim yelled at it like a soccer coach would to encourage his team, Brian’s leg moved up higher and higher.  On the toe of his tennis shoe, indentions appeared as if someone was grabbing the toe of his sneaker and pulling upwards.  Ron’s son caught all of this on video, I captured about 20 seconds worth on my digital camera’s video mode.  Brian was trying to force his leg back down, but couldn’t.  You could tell by looking at his leg and foot that it was still in a relaxed position.  If you were laying flat on your back and trying to raise your leg, the muscles and tendons would tighten up, showing obvious change in the leg and foot.  There was no such change.  It held his leg out at almost a 90 degree angle for about 5 minutes before it dropped the leg and the indentions in the shoe disappeared.  After this experience, we took about 15-30 minutes to let Brian recoup and let him digest what had just happened.  After that, we explored the main floor of the house until about 1:30am, at which time I headed back to my motel to try and get some sleep.
On Saturday, I ventured to the cemetery where Lizzie and her family are buried. It is the most popular grave in the massive graveyard and there are arrows painted on the ground that lead you right to her marker.  Later in life, she had decided to go by the name “Lizbeth”.  There is a large family marker and just a short distance away is a simple stone that says Lizbeth.  After taking in some other sites in Fall River, it was time to return to the home and complete the second night of investigation.  As there were additional investigators on Saturday night, the same lectures were repeated from Friday night.  I took this opportunity to go lay claim on the bed from the previous night and see if I could experience anything in this room myself.
After about 20 minutes of lying on the bed, I tried to entice the children to come out and play.  I dared them, then I double dared them, but when I triple-dog dared them, the bed I was on shook violently.  It shook so had that the night stand, with lamp on top, and a chair on the other side of the night stand shook as well.  Not expecting it, it startled me.  The entire time I had been on the bed, I had watched the reflection of the lights of tractor trailers and buses go by.  The bed had never moved previously in that 20 minutes.  It was almost like the whole house shuddered.  Knowing there were two investigators in the room next to me, I had my partner quiz them and they had not felt nor heard anything.  At this point, I knew something wanted to play.  About 5 minutes later, Ron Milione, his wife and son, and two other investigators came into the room.  I told them what I had experienced and they were ready to see what we could make happen.
I lay back down on the bed and Ron began trying to encourage the children to come out.  I began to feel a cold static-electric feeling in my arms.  I thought that maybe it was from laying on the bed for so long, so I dismissed it. Suddenly, I felt this same feeling on the back of my thighs, moving downward towards my calf.  It felt as if my left leg was moving slightly.  I asked if it was, and was told that it had begun to move.  Slowly, my leg would rise a bit, stay put for a few seconds, and then rise again.  Eventually, it was out at a 90 degree angle!  I tried to force my leg back down, but it was to no avail.  I could not get it to move!  Then, without warning, my right leg began to rise in the same manner until it, too, was at a 90 degree angle.  My legs remained extended like that for at least 7 minutes.  It was also noted that my legs and feet still had the “relaxed” look to them.  After what seemed like forever, my legs were dropped and the cold electric feeling left.  As I sat up, I felt light-headed and drained and sat on the bed for about 5 minutes, at which time I moved to sit in a chair and nurse a headache.
Ron’s wife lay on the bed, but the moment she felt something on her feet, she got off the bed and went downstairs.  Ron tried it and although he had some movement of his left foot, it wasn’t lifted very high and it was only for a few minutes.  At this point, Ron went downstairs to get one of his “gadgets” he invented. For lack of a better term, it basically “fed” the ghosts.  It created ions in the air and the room felt like a thunderstorm had passed through.  Another investigator lay on the bed and had his leg lifted.  It was not as high as mine, but higher than Ron’s.  He explained he felt the same things that I did, the cold static-electric feeling, the headache, etc.  I believe Ron’s son caught my experience on video as well as he did have the video camera with him again while he was in the room.
After taking about 20 minutes to let everything that had happened sink in, I then ventured downstairs to the basement, where Ron had a group that was spraying high-powered Luminal in areas suspected of having blood from the murder.  I witnessed the sink basin, a door, and one of the floorboards show, under black light, what could have been the remains of bloody evidence.  Laundry detergent, however, can also produce the same effect, so without doing any type of DNA analysis, it’s impossible to say for sure that what we witnessed was absolutely blood.
About the point the clock struck 1 am, it was time for me to head back to my motel room once again to try and get a few hours of sleep before my drive home.  I had a blast at the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast.  The staff there was absolutely wonderful.  I enjoyed the opportunity that I had to meet and get to know other investigators.  In fact, the majority of us will be back for a second investigation of the premises this fall.  I had the opportunity to learn new techniques not only from one of television’s “Ghost Hunters”, but from the other investigators as well.  My weekend trip was completely worth it. Although I would have loved to have shared it with the rest of EPR, I still had a lot of fun and enjoyed sharing my experiences with them.

Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast