The Salem Witch Trials

Decent Essays

IQ #1- What were the Salem Witch Trials? The Trials happened in 1692 in Puritan Massachusetts, in a town called Salem. Nineteen men and women were hanged on grounds of practicing dark magic and making a pact with Satan (in other words, for being witches). Hundreds of people were imprisoned; several died there. Additionally, one man (of over seventy years!) was crushed to death with heavy stones and "the lives of many were irrevocably changed." (Salem Witch Museum)
IQ #2- How and why did the Salem Witch Trials start? There are several reasons why the Trials started where and when they did. "Some historians believe a dispute over the local minister, Samuel Parris, led to the witch hunt. Parris received much support from the poorer farmers of Salem village. To them, Parris and the village church represented stability and traditional values." (World Book S-Sn17, 2013) Another factor in this unfortunate mix of events leading up to the trials was the ongoing frontier war with the Native Americans. This fear of attack also played upon the villager's minds. Lastly, and perhaps most disquieting, is that there had been a witch incident four years before. A woman named Goody Glover had been convicted of witchcraft and hanged. Now you know the why, but what about the how? It all started with a group of young girls. "The tight-knit community was at a loss to explain the convulsive seizures, screaming, and trance-like states that afflicted the youngsters." (EyeWitness

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