First-hand Accounts of Sarah Good's Salem Witchcraft Trial

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The Salem witchcraft trials of 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts can be considered a horrendous period in American history, yet is also viewed as the turning point in what was considered acceptable in a contemporary society. In a documentation of a trial against a woman named Sarah Good, the reader is able to see the way in which such an accusation was treated and how society as a whole reacted to such a claim. Sarah Good fell victim to the witchcraft hysteria because she was different, and that fear of her divergence from the Puritan lifestyle led to her eventual demise. The Puritan society was a close knit one with religion as the core keeping it together. Whole congregations would go to the New World together, following their minister to wherever he led them to. Sarah Good was a target of this environment due to the fact that she was not conforming to the everyday life around her which led people to believe something was wrong with her followed by the accusations of performing witchcraft. Unlike other documentations of the trials against those accused, the reader gets to hear a little bit of Sarah Good and what she has to say. In the examination of Sarah Good she states that she is "falsely accused"; the documentation shows the actual conversation that she has and it makes her appear more personable and seeing as how she is claiming innocence, more wrongful charged as well. The defendants' case even more solidified when more examinations are shown in documentation portraying the blamelessness of Sarah Good in that "she never had familiarity att the devell" This raises the question of how Sarah Good can be charged with conspiring with the devil when she has no familiarity of it. Sarah Good may be acting, but she is doing a pretty good job at it, saying "her God is the God that made heaven and earth" . Although it might appear that she has a legitimate chance in this case, this is only one voice against dozens of others accusing her. When a whole town is witnessing ten people make a case against one who is not considered a true Puritan, the litigation will not be a fair one, especially in a society where a nonconformist equals an outcast. It has been researched that when one person says something others rally behind it and convince themselves that it is true.

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