After Cry Innocent, we decided to explore the Salem Witch Trial Memorial. It is located directly next to the Burying point. It is a memorial to those 20 who were executed (19 hanged 1 pressed to death) during the Salem Witch Trials. It is a U-shaped area with bench type granite stones sticking out, each one memorializing 1 individual who lost their life during the 1692-3 Witch Hunt.
Bridget Bishop: Hanged: June 10, 1692
Bridget was the first to be hanged as a witch. She was once before accused of being a witch in the 1680’s but was cleared at that time. So many people testified against her that it only took 8 days to charge, try and execute her.
Sarah Good: Hanged: July 19, 1692
Accused along with her daughter Dorcas. They were a poor homeless family and Sarah had an unfortunate reputation of being an unpleasant person. She was arrested on February 29, 1692 along with Sarah Osbourne and Tituba. She was sentenced to hang but granted a stay of execution until the birth of her child. The baby died in prison with Sarah. Sarah’s 6 year old daughter Dorcas was imprisoned for 8 months after her testimony against her mother resulted in her being accused as well. Eventually released on bond in October when her father (a poor man) was able to raise the money. Unfortunately the psychological damage had been done and the poor child was never the same.
Elizabeth Howe: Hanged: July 19, 1692
Born near Rowley, England in 1635 and immigrated to Massachusetts with her family later in the 1630’s. Previously accused of bewitching a 10 year old girl in 1682 but was never arrested or charged. She was arrested in May of 1692 at her home in Topsfield.
Susannah Martin: Hanged: July 19, 1692
67 year old widow from Amesbury. Born in Buckinghamshire, England in 1621. Also had a previous reputation of being a troublemaker and a history of witchcraft accusations dating back to the 1660’s. After she failed to win her dispute against her fathers will and her husbands death, she was left penniless with no one to come to her aide when she was again accused in 1692.
Rebecca Nurse: Hanged: July 19, 1692. Accused 71 year old grandmother and sister of accused Mary Easty and Sarah Cloyce. Her mother before her, Joanna Blessing Towne was also a suspected witch. Her March 24, 1692 arrest came as a shock to the town as she was known as an upstanding citizen. Coincidentally the Nurse family did have a history of property disputes with the Putnam family. Originally found NOT GUILTY, but the verdict was changed.
Sarah Wildes: Hanged: July 19, 1692
Previously accused of witch craft. Arrested April 21, 1692. Known as a wild child in her youth, Sarah had a history of bad behavior and was previously arrested for wearing a brightly colored scarf. Like many other accusations during this time, Sarah’s accusation was likely politically charged.
George Burroughs: Hanged: August 19, 1692
Minister of Salem Village from 1680-1683.
Borrowed money from the Putnam family and was unable to pay it back for 12 years. He paid it back but he was still arrested at his home in Wells, ME and brought back to Salem where he was charged, tried, found guilty and executed.
Martha Carrier: Hanged: August 19, 1692
Daughter of one of the founding families of Andover, MA.
Married a Welsh servant named Thomas Carrier.
Salem documents show that her crime was not actually witchcraft but an “independent mind and unsubmissive character”. However she was accused 2 years prior to the witch hysteria of causing a small pox epidemic with witchcraft.
George Jacobs: Hanged: August 1692
Accused by his granddaughter who was also accused.
Hanged at the age of 72.
Like so many others, his accusal could have been fueled by personal grudges.
John Proctor: Hanged: August 19, 1692
60 years old when he was accused, tried and hanged.
Challenged the court to reexamine the validity of spectral evidence.
John Willard: Hanged: August 19, 1692
Accused in April of 1692 after refusing to arrest those he believed to be innocent.
Accused by his wife’s grandfather after he claimed to fall ill after getting a “mean look” from John.
Giles Corey: Pressed to Death: Sept 19, 1692
Accused in April 1692. He stood mute, refusing to stand trial because if he was convicted the state would seize his property leaving none for his sons. Because of this he was sentenced to pressing (having stones placed on top of a board laid across his body) as a way of getting him to confess. He died after 3 days having never uttered any words except “more weight”.
Martha Corey: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
Wife of Giles Corey. Known as a dedicated church goer. Her accusal was a shock to the community because of her pious dedication to the church.
Mary Easty: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
The 58 year old sister of Rebecca Nurse. Kind, religious, mother of 7. Unlike many of the other accused she was not outspoken and not a social outcast. She was briefly set free a few days after her examination but was re arrested and convicted after she was once again, cried out upon.
Alice Parker: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
Lived in Salem Village and was wife to Fisherman John Parker. Like so many of the others she was convicted solely on hearsay and spectral evidence.
Mary Parker: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
Some speculation suggests that she was not the Mary Parker the “afflicted” meant to accuse as there was another Mary Parker who also lived in the area and had been to court numerous times for fornication. This is an entirely plausible scenario if you remember that in most cases the accused and the accusers had never even met in real life before the trials.
Ann Pudeator: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
a 70 year old widow, nurse and midwife. Like many others, she claimed to have never even met her accusers. After being found guilty, she wrote a petition against her accusers stating that they had broken the 9th commandment, bearing false witness against her.
Wilmot Redd: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
Previously accused of witchcraft in 1687. Had a reputation of being a mean woman and unpopular with her neighbors. Her home was once located to old burial hill on the southeast corner of Redd’s Pond. On October 31, 2001 Massechusetts Governor Jane Swift signed a bill pardoning her and 4 other victims who had been executed for witchcraft.
Margaret Scott: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
Born in England. Married to Benjamin Scott in 1642. The couple had 7 children but only 3 survived to adulthood. When Benjamin died in 1671 she was left penniless. Being poor was a large factor that left many open to accusal.
Samuel Wardwell: Hanged: Sept 22, 1692
Born in Boston to a Quaker family, he was known as an eccentric but harmless man who liked to entertain by telling fortunes and playing with magic. Surprisingly not an uncommon practice of the time but forbidden by puritans. Arrested August 15, 1692
Check out our other Adventures in Salem, MA
Here are some of our favorite books and movies about the Salem Witch Trials: