Florence Maybrick, née Chandler, was born in Mobile, Alabama, the daughter of a one-time mayor of the city. At age 17, on board a steamship bound for England with her mother, she met James Maybrick, a cotton merchant 23 years her senior. They married in 1881 and settled in Aigburth, a suburb of Liverpool, and had two children. The couple had an active social life and seemed happy, but both partners had extramarital relationships. In 1889, her husband died under what his brothers considered suspicious circumstances, and Florence was charged with murdering him. After a sensational trial, she was convicted and sentenced to death, but the sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. After serving 14 years in prison, she was released in 1904. She returned to the USA and initially earned a living on the lecture circuit. She never saw her children again. Her autobiography, My Fifteen Lost Years, was published in 1905.