Black Dahlia Memorial – Medford, Massachusetts - Atlas Obscura

Black Dahlia Memorial

Massachusetts memorial to murder victim Elizabeth Short near the spot where she was born. 


On January 15, 1947, 22-year-old Elizabeth Short, also known as the Black Dahlia, was found dead in an empty lot in Los Angeles. She was naked, severed in half at the waist, with three-inch gashes extending both corners of her mouth. Her lower body was arranged in a wide V, her upper body with her arms angle above her head in a rough Y. Her body was bloodless, as was the ground around it, indicating that she had been moved there from some other location.

The ensuing investigation became of national interest, with armies of investigators sorting through throngs of suspects, numerous leads, and scant evidence, all to no avail. They never figured out what happened, why it happened, or who did it.

Short was born in Hyde Park, MA, but was raised half an hour north in the town of Medford, the local historical society of which has erected a small memorial to her near where her house once stood (it was demolished for a traffic rotary for I-93).

The memorial is a large trapezoidal stone inset with a plaque that tells the story of the Black Dahlia and highlights her connection to the area. It was installed in 1993 and faces Salem Street at a point near the aforementioned rotary. The easiest way to get to the trapezoidal stone is to take Fountain Street, which ends in a cul-de-sac directly behind the memorial.

Adapted with Permission from: The New England Grimpendium by J.W. Ocker

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