31 October 2013

Halloween in Salem Massachusetts

I wanted to celebrate this Halloween season by sharing a spooky story, but instead, I decided to make a trip to Salem, Massachusetts and visit the Witch Trial Wax Museum. I’ve been asked by many, “What’s in Salem?”


Did you know that the damning evidence used in the Salem Witch trials to convict these innocent men and women who were then condemned to hang at the gallows was this thing called spectral evidence? That means young girls (witnesses) accused certain people of casting evil spells upon them and the way they identified the person is they testified they saw the person in a non-physical state. It was thought that the only way they could present themselves in this form is by making a deal with the devil.

These witnesses would be on display in the courthouse, possessed, screaming out that they were being targeted in the very room where the accused stood trial. Anyone familiar with the Manson trial and the gaggle of young women who claimed Manson spoke to them in their minds from where he sat while they testified? Spooky.

Spectral evidence alone in many cases ensured the so called “witches” hung for their crimes. The fear spread quickly throughout Salem and 20 people were executed for practicing witchcraft before the governor ceased the trials. Why did he put an end to the trials? Because his wife, as well as a few other prominent citizens, were accused. Imagine that.

According to a local museum, to this day, only one judge has made apologies for this unfortunate historical tragedy, and only one of the “witnesses” expressed sorrow for her part in this fiasco. Amazingly enough, we find out this all started from the isolation of three women, Sarah Good, a homeless person, Tituba, a slave, and a woman named Sarah Osborne, who remarried to an indentured servant.

Local magistrates tossed the three accused women in jail and the folks of Salem discovered the power wielded in the accusations of witchcraft. Thus began the wildfire that spread from the underlying family feud between the Putnams and the Porters. Fueled by fear and mass hysteria, things had obviously gotten out of hand, especially when prominent citizens had fingers pointing at them.

How did you spend your Halloween? Trick or treating? Giving out candy? What about haunted houses? We went through this one.

I never screamed so loud in my life. Spooky scary! No lie.

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