Thursday, January 22, 2009

The LaLaurie Mansion

It was said that Mme. Lalaurie's manners were sweet, gracious and captivating. She was born in the society's upper circles. She was accustomed to and acculturated to the good life. Yet there were persistent rumors that she treated her servants with disdain and in a cruel, abusive manner.

And still, those who visited her said that she was kind to her servants. If one of them tremble in her presence or startled at the sound of her voice, she would soothe and endeavor to reassure her. Nevertheless, the stories of barbarity increased. The smothered indignation on Royal Street grew.

One day the street was filled with the wild rumor that Mme. Lalaurie was seen by the neighbors cowhiding a little girl in the courtyard. The terrified young thing fled across the yard, into the house and up the winding stairway from gallery to gallery followed by her infuriated mistress. She rushed out onto the belvedere and darted up to roof, with Mme Lalaurie hot on her heels.
In another instant the child reached the edge of the roof -- falling with a dull thud to the courtyard below. She was lifted up and borne into the house a silent, crushed, lifeless mass of humanity. In the old yard there was a shallow well that is now a mere pit and neighbors assert that the night the young girl fell to her death, she was buried by torchlight in the well.


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