In the public debate over notorious trials a great deal depended on who got to tell the story, and on how persuasive and authoritative they were. In some of the most interesting cases available to us, accused women have offered their own account of the events they participated in, explaining or justifying their actions, usually to deny guilt.
Legal innocence is not always recognized if one's neighbors persist in a belief of moral guilt. The jury's decision to acquit is simply not enough to reintegrate the charged person into the community. Mrs. Kinney was acquitted of having poisoned her husband, but she found her church and her town unwilling to accept her. She eventually wrote this book justifying her actions and decrying the constant suspicion under which she lived, claiming (as most accounts of trials do) authenticity and veracity: "lay[ing] before an excited public an undisguised statement of facts, just as they occurred."