Between the months of June to September of 1692, the infamous witch trials in Salem, Massachusetts resulted in the hanging of 19 men and women; the deaths of five others, including two children, while imprisoned in jail; the pressing to death of an 80-year old man, and the stoning of two dogs for collaborating with the Devil. Hundreds of others faced accusations and dozens more were jailed for months during the progress of the trials. For over three hundred years these events have not only captured the general publics' imagination, but that of the academic community. Beginning with Charles Upham, in 1867, historians have attempted to explain the mass hysteria that swept through Salem in 1692. These accounts vary both in their
Puritans settled in the Massachusetts town of Salem in 1630, with their leader John Winthrop. Winthrop claimed that Salem would be “As a City Upon a Hill,” meaning that the Puritans coming to the New World would set a religious and civilized example among other colonies. However, this wasn’t the case. The Salem Witch Trials were a series of accusations and persecutions due to what was thought to be witchcraft among Salem townspeople. King Philip’s War played a role in the trials. It caused regional mass hysteria which lead to the accusing of witches in Salem. Samuel Parris was the local preacher of Salem and in 1691 he started preaching about the devil and focused more on hell instead of more positive things which also played a role in the crafting of the witch trials. Rich versus poor feuds, the desire to feel around and inspect women, and easily being able to have someone punished by accusing them of being a witch, fueled and motivated the Witch Trials of Salem in 1692.
The Salem Witch Trials is an infamous event due to its bizarre and seemingly hysteric circumstances. Eric Foner contributes this incident to Europe’s growing population as well as the replication of English hierarchical social structure in the colonies. I believe that the established social class influenced the Salem Witch Trials to some extent, but the series of trials and executions were caused more by general social and economic tension in the colonies during the 17th century. Those who lived in Salem during 1692 faced numerous hardships. Work was incessant and exhausting- duties including making clothes, raising livestock, and farming in harsh climates and rough terrain. Most families had to be self-sufficient and upkeep strict Puritan values. A recent smallpox epidemic, growing small-town rivalry, and an influx of political conflict in a colony teetering between governments. The constant threat from nearby Native American tribes also magnified the Puritans’ irrational fear.
Kappanadze, Margaret. "Baker, Emerson W.: A Storm of Witchcraft: The Salem Trials and the American Experience." Library Journal 15 Sept. 2014: 92. General OneFile. Web. 14 Sept. 2014.
In 1692 the Puritans, colonists that believed in the bible, settled in America. They believed in witchcraft, and believed that people who study it should be executed. This led to many people being accused and executed. What made the Salem witch trials of 1692 such a threat and fear to the people of Massachusetts? The Salem witch trial hysteria of 1692 was caused by the fear of being possessed by the devil, by the fear of being accused and what your consequences would be, and lastly the belief of people being witches which was a crime worthy of death.
The lawful framework in early New England changed drastically as an effect of the witch trials. As their religious convictions ran inconsistent with a reason-overwhelmed lawful framework, a contention happened which prompted social shearing in a group accepted to be tormented with suspected profound foes. There are sure conditions that started such turmoil, for example, their tenacious confidence and social qualms that could now be vocalized. This vocal impetus uprooted the common holiness of social request. This is one reason other such examples fizzled from getting to be boundless. Notwithstanding when such examples happened, a generally sensible arrangement of choosing blame or purity was created to decide the destiny of the suspected witches' lives.
It only takes one word to ruin a person’s life. In Salem, Massachusetts,1692, there were mass amounts of witch hunts leading to dozens of executions. Social class tensions, intense religious beliefs and political approach led to the production of the Salem Witch Trials.
During the time period of 1691 to 1692 the town of Salem, a small thriving community within the Puritan Massachusetts Bay colony, was struck by widespread hysteria in the form of witch trials. The way these trials and accusations played out are historically unlike any other witch trials found in European and American history. Historians have pointed to a number of economic, political, and social changes of the then existing institutions throughout the Massachusetts Bay area to be the cause of the Salem witch trials, along with the direction they took. If studied closely however, it becomes apparent that the main cause for the Salem witch trials can be found in the way the people of Salem viewed and
Today modern-day analysts and historians believed this was resulting from asthma, encephalitis, Lyme disease, epilepsy, child abuse, delusional psychosis, and convulsive ergotism.To continue, Ergotism is caused by eating anything made of rye and the rye being infected with ergot; the drug LSD is a derivative from rye infected with ergot. Parris pressured Abigail and Elizabeth to tell him who was torturing them. With this they replied saying it was Tituba and two other women. Sarah Good and Sara Osborn who did not attend church regularly.Seeing as Sarah Good was a waspish beggar, and Sara Osborn was an old woman who was bedridden, she was scorned by the people for her romantic involvement with an indentured servant, it was easy to believe their involvement. (Inside the Salem Witch Trials) Tituba finally confessed after stating she was innocent her confession “The Devil came to me and bid me serve him.” she described seeing black dogs, red cats, yellow birds and a black man. She admitted to signing a book, saying there were other witches after the Puritans. She said she saw two other names Good’s and Osborn’s. All three women were jailed. (A Brief History of the Salem Witch Trials) Good and Osborn proclaimed their innocence but Good had accused Osborn. Soon upstanding members of the community began getting accused. Many of the accused were disliked by the Puritans. The official court of Oyer (to hear) and Terminer (to decide) was presided over by William Stoughton, court
Imagine living in a period of time where everyone around you was afraid of being put under the spell of a witch or even worse, being accused of being one. It all began back in 1692 in a Puritan village in Massachusetts known as Salem. Reverend Samuel Parris’ daughter, Betty Parris, became sick and started to hallucinate. This then spread to her friends and they began showing the same behavior. A doctor examined the girls and tried to cure them using common medicine but that failed. He suggested it was the work of witchcraft. The talk of witchcraft then took over Salem Village like a plague and the hunt for witches began. The gossiping and accusations had consumed the small town of Salem. Women and men were accused of being witches or practicing witchcraft. Even a dog was accused. Some were sentenced to jail, some were hung, and others were stoned to death. The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 occurred because of many factors such as religion, politics, and social division. Other factors included Native American contact and ergotism, a mold that caused an array of symptoms, also played part in the chaos. Centuries later, the Salem Witch Trials still remain an unsettling event in American history.
The infamous Salem Witch Trials began in the spring of 1692 after a group of young girls in Salem had become consumed by disturbing fits, including seizures and blood curdling screams.They claimed to be possessed by the devil and had accused several women of witchcraft. This ignited the start of the witch trials. More than 150 people had been accused of witchcraft. 8 of which were children. At the end of all the accusations there were 20 people who were put to death by hanging or in the case of Giles Corey pressed to death. Many more had perished in jail. The Puritans had targeted vulnerable people, people they deemed to be susceptible to the devil. This included people from the outside, whether it be their class or if they had just moved there. Moreover there was a fight between people who supported Reverend Parris and those who had opposed him. Then to top it all off the town had struggled through 20 years of trials and hardships and they needed a scapegoat, who better to blame than Lucifer himself. I do not believe that it is one theory or one reason why the town of Salem had accused the people living within the town boundaries. Instead it was a collection of things that had initiated the tragedy. To say that there was one reason that lit the fuse is to be blind all other theories.
An infamous episode in American history, the Salem witch trials of 1692 resulted in the execution by hanging of fourteen women and five men accused of being witches. In addition, one man was pressed to death by heavy weights for refusing to enter a plea; at least eight people died in prison, including one infant and one child; and more than one hundred and fifty individuals were jailed while awaiting trial. Due to the survival of many relevant records, including notes, depositions, and official rulings, the main facts of the accusations, arrests, trials, and executions are known. What has always engaged scholars is the search for the causes of the "witch hysteria." The proffered explanations for the witchcraft occurrence are many and conflicting.
In the year 1692, almost a century after the colonization of Jamestown, Virginia, Salem, Massachusetts took a turn for the worst. One of the most notorious witch hunts in American history occurred in Salem, Massachusetts. Through the Salem Witch Trials many innocent people began to be accused of witchery, causing the deaths of a vast majority of the population, both male and female. The rise of witchcraft began in the spring and lasted for a long amount of time, “Throughout the spring, the number of accusers grew, and the jails continued to fill… And so it continued until September 22, when a mass hanging ended the executions” (Background Essay). The deaths of those innocent colonists may have been caused by their lack of ability to lie, but the cause of the Salem Witch Trials had a totally different reasoning behind the madness. The cause of the Salem Witch Trials are as follows: jealousy, lying girls, and the division of the town because of wealth and power.