The Salem Witch Trials Essay

The Salem Witch Trials Essay

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The events that transpired in Salem, Massachusetts occurred between the years of 1688 and 1693 constituted the most significant witchcraft outbreak in the history of the New England colonies. The entire event was quickly labeled as “colossal mistake” by the government after they had passed.(Ray, 2010) With this in mind the question remains; how did it get started and how did it get out of hand so quickly?
Salem is a town in Massachusetts that has unfortunately earned its reputation from these trials. It was founded in 1626 when settlers led by Roger Conant settled in Naumkeag after a failed attempt in 1623 to create a fishing settlement at Cape Ann. (Salem, a brief history, n.d.) Its name was Christianized to Salem in 1629. The land within the boundaries of Salem was not fertile however which led the residents to expansion in order to obtain more fertile lands to produce crops. Some of the basic themes of the village of Salem were, therefore the Puritan church which was allowed to function independently, the need to expand to produce crops and political tensions with the crown and commonwealth in regards to their charter. Factors like these led to political tension that are attributed to creating the events that would eventually culminate into the infamous Salem Witch Trials.
In 1688 Rev. Samuel Parris preached for the first time in the village and became the officially hired as the village minister the following year. Samuel was the minister during the Witch Trials of which he was a driving force. The religious hysteria began with and was led by this man.
In January 1692 the daughter and the niece of Rev. Samuel Parris.(Salem's Most Visited Museum, n.d.) When they failed to improve in a reasonable amount of time they were...


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...f the Salem Witch Trials." History, Travel, Arts, Science, People, Places | Smithsonian. N.p., 23 Oct. 2007. Web. 23 May 2014. .
Ray B. "The Salem witch mania": recent scholarship and American history textbooks. Journal Of The American Academy Of Religion [serial online]. March 1, 2010;78(1):40-64. Available from: ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials, Ipswich, MA. Accessed May 25, 2014.
"Salem, a brief history." Salem, a brief history. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 May 2014. http://catholic-resources.org/Millennium/Salem/3History.html.
"Salem's Most Visited Museum." Salem Witch Museum. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 May 2014. .
"Salem Witch Trials." Timeline. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 May 2014. .



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