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If Bridget had gone shopping. . .


What remains of Sargent’s store today on North Main Street

Much has been made about Lizzie Borden’s sudden mention of a sale of dress goods at Sargent’s store to the maid just before the murder of her father that Thursday morning. Bridget Sullivan, weary from washing the windows and doing chores all morning, paused to consider the news about the sale, and voiced the statement she hoped to get herself some of the dress yard goods. But with her morning nausea, and weariness from chores, she opted to rest upstairs on the third floor instead. It is about a ten minute walk to Sargent’s at average pace, so the maid would have been gone about 40 minutes, allowing time to travel back and forth, shop, and get back in time to begin the noonday meal had she gone to Sargent’s. Lizzie would have been left alone with her father. Did Lizzie suggest the sale to get the maid out of the house? The story may have ended very differently had Bridget stayed downstairs.


Original ad for the dress goods sale on August 4th