Special Sub-Topic: Daughters of H.E.L.L.
|My smart and lovely daughter is in trouble. She was doing so well, until just before she turned 16. Then she dropped out of high school and married that Thornton boy. That didn't work out, and now she's taken up with a young man named Clyde - and I just know he is a criminal! Do you know her name? |
Bonnie Parker. Born in Rowena, Texas in 1910, Bonnie was a good student with a talent for writing, but she felt lonely and trapped. Six days before her 16th birthday, she left school and married Roy Thornton, but their union was not destined to last. Meeting Clyde Barrow in 1930 fulfilled both her need for love, and her desire for adventure, novelty and notoriety.
Between 1932 and 1934, Bonnie and Clyde (and their gang) killed at least nine policemen, several civilians, and committed over 100 felonies. On May 23rd, 1934, they were killed in Bienville Parish, Louisiana by four Texas officers, and two Louisiana officers.
|All right, the trouble with my Mary may be partly my fault - I admit to dressing her as a boy after her brother died, to fool her grandmother because we needed her financial support - but now Mary is a grown woman! Dressing as a man, pretending to be a man, risking death or imprisonment for piracy - I am at a loss! Have you heard of her exploits? Have you heard her name? |
Mary Read. There is some dispute as to when Mary Read was born - historians believe it was either 1680 or 1690 - but whatever the year, she was born illegitimately to a sea-captain's widow in England. After Mary's older - and legitimate - brother died, Mary was dressed as a boy by her mother so that the family could continue to receive financial support from the brother's paternal grandmother.
After a stint in the British military, she married a Flemish soldier - and dressed as a female for the first time in her adult life. But, after his premature death, her subsequent capture at sea by pirates, and her eventual involvement with Calico Jack and Anne Bonny, it was a ruse that Mary would employ again.
In 1720, both Read and Bonny were arrested and sentenced to death in Spanish Town, Jamaica, but due to pleas of pregnancy, they were spared the noose. While Bonny seems to have disappeared into history, in 1721 Mary Read died of childbed fever. And, there is no record of her baby's life or death.
|I don't know what to do about my daughter! The James boys and the Younger brothers have turned her head! In fact, I do believe she may marry a bootlegger or rustler - or perhaps even a horse thief! You do know who she is - right?|
Belle Starr. Born in Carthage, Missouri in 1848, Belle (Myra Maybelle Shirley) knew the James boys and the Younger brothers from an early age. She married Jim Reed in 1866, and after his death in 1874, she is rumored to have been married to Cole Younger for three weeks in 1878. While she was possibly involved in some of the criminal activities attributed to both men - and their families and cohorts - her documented involvement began after her marriage in 1880 to Charlie Starr.
Belle and Charlie were both charged in 1883 with horse theft, and both served time in jail. After a life characterized by murder, bootlegging, rustling and robbery, Belle was murdered in an ambush in 1889 in Eufaula, Oklahoma.
|I know I should not say this, but I am afraid my daughter has a fondness for arsenic! I've had nightmares for a while now - and in each one, my daughter poisons her children, husbands and lovers! Can you help her before she commits these crimes and goes to the gallows? Do you know which English daughter I am describing?|
Mary Ann Cotton. While it is unclear just how many people Mary Ann Cotton killed, she was convicted, and hanged, in 1873 of murdering Charles Edward Cotton, her fourth husband's remaining son. While most of her 21(?) victims died of what was termed 'gastric fever', it is believed that arsenic poisoning was the actual cause of their deaths.
|Oh, I should not be worried, but my daughter has hopes of becoming a Voodoo priestess. She seems to think that she can become powerful enough to influence her wealthy clients here in New Orleans! Have you heard of her?|
Marie Laveau. Marie Laveau was born in 1782 in New Orleans' French Quarter. The daughter of a white planter and a free Creole woman, she grew into a powerful Voodoo priestess, and established herself as a figure to be both feared and revered.
Much of her life is a mystery, of speculation rather than fact, but it is believed that she was married for one year to Jacques Paris, then took Louis 'Christophe' Dumesnil de Glapion as her lover. Marie and Christophe had 15 children - including a daughter named Marie Laveau II who also became a Voodoo priestess. Marie Laveau has become a pop culture icon, and a true legend in New Orleans' history.
|When I became a stepmother in 1865, I had such high hopes! But things have grown increasingly tense - between the girls and their father, and so also between all of us. I am not so worried about Emma, but Lizzie scares me a bit. We are a well-known name in this community, and I would hate to have our reputation chopped to bits. Have you heard of our family? Do you know the name? |
Borden & Lizzie Borden. Born in Fall River, Massachusetts in 1860, Lizzie Borden's mother died in 1863, leaving her father to remarry in 1865. By all accounts, it was not a well-adjusted or happy family life, with Lizzie and her sister remaining in the home well past the usual time most girls would have left to start their own families.
On August 4th, 1892, Lizzie's father and stepmother were murdered with an axe, and while evidence was scant, popular opinion held that it was Lizzie who had committed the crime. There was animosity, and at least one true argument, about the division of family property, the beheading of Lizzie's pigeons by her father, and while the family rarely dined together, not long before the murders the entire household took ill with what was diagnosed as food poisoning. After Lizzie's acquittal, she and her sister Emma moved to a new home - still in Fall River.
|Success! That is all my daughter talks about! She is driven - positively obsessed with seeking her fortune. She has said she does not want to be one of the little people - because only they pay taxes! - and that becoming a real estate investor will earn her more than just the nickname 'Queen of Mean'. Do you know who she is? |
Leona Helmsley. Born in 1920 in Marbletown, New York, 'Lena Mindy Rosenthal' was planning on financial success from an early age. She quit high school in order to pursue her dream as quickly as possible. On the path to attaining her dream, she displayed a ruthless and hard-headed attitude in both business and personal interactions.
She was a millionaire when she married the multi-millionaire Harry Helmsley in 1972, and eventually amassed a fortune of over a billion dollars.
Unfortunately, her nickname 'Queen of Mean' seemed well-deserved, and her habit of refusing to pay workers and contractors led to her downfall. She was convicted of tax evasion in 1989, and while she was first sentenced to 16 years, she served just 19 months in prison, and another two months of house arrest.
|Oh, I think my daughter has been caught up in the political maneuverings of her father and brothers! But, she seems to be embracing the intrigue, the power, the plotting and poisoning! All of Italy may know her name some day. Do you?|
Lucrezia Borgia. Lucrezia Borgia's involvement in her family's political intrigues is unsure, as is her reputation for 'poisoning'. But she is historically cast as a 'femme fatale', and her life was certainly not one of peace and constancy.
The illegitimate daughter of Pope Alexander VI and Vannozza dei Cattanei, she was married three times - with each marriage being politically advantageous for the House of Borgia.
Perhaps more a pawn than a poisoner, Lucrezia Borgia is still a name associated with the Machiavellian politics of her time.
|Oh, my little girl - the press is calling her the 'Long Island Lolita', but she was only 16 when she began acting out. After she wrecked our car, without telling us, she took it to the body shop - and ended up having an affair with the owner. And then she tried to kill his wife! Did you hear of this? Do you know my daughter's name?|
Amy Fisher. Born in 1974, Amy Fisher began an affair with Joey Buttafuoco when she was just 16 years old. At the age of 17 she attempted to kill Joey's wife, by shooting her in the face. Mary Jo Buttafuoco survived, and eventually recovered, although her marriage to Joey came to an end in 2003.
Amy Fisher was charged with first-degree attempted murder, but pleaded down to first-degree aggravated assault, and was sentenced to 5 to 15 years in prison. She served six years. In 1993, Joey was convicted of statutory rape, and started a six-month prison sentence.
|I think my daughter may be planning on doing something horrible to her five children! I know she has been depressed, and in and out of the hospital, and I am afraid of what may happen! She's no longer my smart sweet little girl, but she will always be my daughter. Have you seen her here? Do you know who she is? |
Andrea Yates. On June 20th, 2001, Andrea Yates drowned her five children (four boys and one girl) in the bathtub. She confessed, and was subsequently found not guilty by reason of insanity. After a promising start in life - which included being the captain of her high school swimming team, an officer in the National Honor Society and eventually a registered nurse - she fell victim to depression. After repeated suicide attempts and different drug and psychiatric approaches, she gave in to her despair, and 'saved' her children from what she considered her poor mothering.
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