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1873 mystery
  • Published
    August 7, 2022

    Chapter 12: Strange letters in Lewiston

    It struck everyone as more than a little suspicious that a letter purporting to come from Lizzie was so chock full of help for the things her husband wanted, including, apparently, Jennie Blood.

  • Published
    July 31, 2022

    Chapter 11: Lizzie’s mother pays a visit

    The Lewiston Evening Journal said at the time the meeting between James Lowell and his former mother-in-law “was evidently not a pleasant one for the prisoner. He was a good deal agitated when the silk dress was carried in with them, was shown to him for the first time.”

  • Published
    July 24, 2022

    Chapter 10: The inquest, day one

    Their first decision was to bar the crowd outside from squeezing into the room, keeping those inside to a minimum — the coroner, Androscoggin County Attorney George Wing, the witnesses and the press. It seems that Frank Dingley, the Lewiston Evening Journal’s intrepid editor, was always allowed to see whatever he wanted.

  • Published
    July 17, 2022

    Chapter 9: The life and times of James Lowell

    James Lowell served in Company G, which never saw active fighting, but didn’t have it easy. Among the places its men guarded were the Seneca Quarries in western Maryland, where the stone for the original Smithsonian building came from.

  • Published
    July 10, 2022

    Chapter 8: Getting ready for Lowell’s inquest

    Interest in the case ran so high that when copies of the Journal began rolling off the press, hordes waited outside the building for a chance to buy one for 2 cents. Some stood patiently for hours since the editor declared that subscribers would get their papers first.

  • Published
    July 3, 2022

    Chapter 7: A big scoop for the Journal

    Arriving at the jail, the city marshal told James M. Lowell he’d get the best accommodations possible and brought him to the northwestern corner cell, where the local newspaper editor noticed that the bones collected on Switzerland Road — thought to be the remains of Lowell’s wife — were still bound up in a mat in the corner, some of them protruding into the air.

  • Published
    June 26, 2022

    Chapter 6: Rounding up a suspected killer

    After James Lowell stepped down off a wagon, where he was loading rags at the Munroe’s Paper Mill in Lowell, Massachusetts, Officer E.D. Wiggin of Lewiston handed him a copy of that day’s Boston Journal, which carried an account of the discovery of the headless skeleton in Lewiston.

  • Published
    June 19, 2022

    Chapter 5: Lizzie’s mother has a strange dream

    Though the dream had no impact on the discovery of the skeleton, it likely contributed to the stir caused by the find in a spot eerily similar to what Sarah Burton imagined.

  • Published
    June 12, 2022

    Chapter 4: The Lowells’ troubled marriage

    In the first hours after the grisly discovery of a body in the woods, the Journal tracked down a few people who remembered Lizzie and her husband, James M. Lowell.

  • Published
    June 5, 2022

    Chapter 3: The day Lizzie Lowell vanished

    When the Lewiston Evening Journal reported the skeleton of a woman had been found near the Switzerland Road, women in town “said with one accord: ‘I think that’s Mrs. Lowell’s remains.’”

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