Fleet Collection

John Fleet Collection

DESCRIPTION

This small archive is comprised of handwritten notes recorded in August, 1892, by Assistant City Marshall John Fleet (1848-1916) detailing his observations while investigating the Borden murder case. 

The collection is supplemented by the truncheon that Fleet carried when he arrested Lizzie A. Borden on August 11, 1892.

HISTORICAL NOTE

John Fleet served as assistant city marshall in Fall River, Massachusetts, from December, 1886, to November 1909. In that capacity, he was a key figure in the police investigation of the murders of Mr. and Mrs. Andrew J. Borden.

PROVENANCE

JF001-JF003: John Fleet (1848-1916); to his wife, Lydia (Wallis) Fleet (1850-1926); to their daughter, Mrs. John William Isherwood, née Harriet Emma Fleet (1881-1972); to her daughter, Mrs. Roy Burton Power, née Harriet Lydia Isherwood (1913-2003); to the FRHS, 1992, Accession Number: 1992.065.

JF004: John Fleet; to his wife, Lydia W. Fleet; to their daughter, Mrs. John W. Isherwood; to her niece by marriage, Mrs. Joseph Henry Isherwood, Jr., née Grace Leah Bardsley (1897-1983); to her son Joseph Bardsley Isherwood (1923-2002); to the FRHS, 1983, Accession Number: 1983.060.

INVENTORY

JF001 – Notes: August 4, 1892

Holograph notes, unsigned; wove paper, ruled, with watermark of John Carter & Company, Boston, Massachusetts, 8” x 11”; three sheets inscribed on one side only. 

Subject: Fleet’s actions upon arrival at the Borden residence and his interview with Lizzie Borden.  

Object Identification Number: 1992.065.001 

JF002 – Notes: August 4, 1892

Holograph notes, signed; wove paper, ruled, with watermark of John Carter & Company, Boston, Massachusetts, 8” x 11”; five sheets inscribed on one side only. 

Subject: Similar in nature to JF001, but also containing two pages dedicated to Fleet’s interview with John Vinnicum Morse (1833-1912). 

Object Identification Number: 1992.065.002

JF003 – Notes: August 10, 1892

Holograph notes, unsigned; wove paper, ruled, with watermark of John Carter & Company, Boston, Massachusetts, 8” x 11”; one sheet inscribed on one side only. 

Subject: Fleet’s observations in the vicinity of the Borden house. 

Object Identification Number: 1992.065.003

JF004 – Truncheon:
Wood, metal, leather, and cotton; unidentified manufacturer; 12”; last quarter, 19th century.

Note: The truncheon was given to Mrs. Joseph Henry Isherwood, Jr., in the 1920s by her husband’s aunt, Mrs. John W. Isherwood, to use to protect herself when walking home in the evening from Isherwood’s Garage & Electrical Company, 2127 South Main Street, Fall River, a family business, where she was employed part-time.

Object Identification Number: 1983.060.001

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