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About the Beautiful Stranger Mystery

A great San Diego/Coronado mystery solved at last by John T. Cullen

A True Crime of 1892, Now a Famous Ghost Legend

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About (page 2 of 3): Tragic Woman's Story: Fallen Victorian Angel

About (page 2 of 3)—Tragic Woman's Story The real story of beautiful but air-headed and desperate young shop girl Lizzie Wyllie from Detroit was cruelly covered up. It is a story she deserves to have told, even 125+ years after her tragic death. Contrary to the muddled stories, she was not murdered; at least not directly. She was driven to suicide as a Fallen Woman in Victorian times. She was torn from her loving sister and mother in Detroit, and tangled in a vicious plot by grifter Kate Morgan and the very man who 'ruined' Lizzie—her lover, John Longfield, married and father of several children. In the end, it was Lizzie who lay dead, not Kate Morgan. Kate disappeared into history, while John Longfield managed to return to his family in Detroit amid a bunch of lies, as if nothing had happened. He claimed he was in Cleveland, looking for work after being fired in Detroit along with Lizzie (with whom he was having an affair) and her sister May (who blew the whistle and was also fired amid scandal).

Fallen Angel, a Victorian Trope. The Beautiful Stranger, lying on display in a San Diego shop window on Fifth Avenue for weeks, was the real thing. The age of Queen Victoria is rife with tragic women in fiction, paintings, and music. Think of the pre-Raphaelite painters with their drowning princesses, or composer Maurice Ravel in Paris with his haunting 1899 Pavane for a Dead Princess, or the famous authors Charles Dickens (e.g., Sissy Jupe in his 1854 novel Hard Times) and Thomas Hardy in his 1892 novel Tess of the d'Urbervilles: A Pure Woman Faithfully Presented . The 19th Century is rife with the tragic female, typically like Tess D'Urberville, a virtuous woman brought low through no fault of her own by a cruel world. There were in fact many tragic women (and men, like prematurely deceased Prince Albert of England, for whom his widow Queen Victoria, Queen of England and Empress of India, mourned all her life). Lizzie Wyllie, the Beautiful Stranger at the Hotel del Coronado, was one true embodiment of the Fallen Victorian Angel. That's one reason why this is a true and important women's story, and a tale for men to read as well. (continued next page).


A great San Diego/Coronado mystery solved at last by John T. Cullen

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