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Withcraft at Salem: America’s First Battle With PreconcessionFor along time, the United States has been given the subtitle “The Land of the Free.” In fact, one of the reasons people migrated was for freedom of religion, but in the fall of 1692, freedom, was not the case. The Salem Witchcraft Trials, a series of false accusations, today show people that our land was not what it seemed. Today, the United States is a world power, and with what small amount of influence the Salem Witchcraft Trials had in making the United States gain it’s power, it did influence it’s development. One of the most important terms in American society is prejudism, and the Salem Witchcraft trials started this propensity. Still, other countries admire the United States, and all the aspects with it. This brutal, yet crucial event started the pathway to the traditional society Americans practice today. Also, this demonstrated the importance of a fair trial, and what can happen if all guidelines in a trial are not followed.OutlineI. IntroductionII. Chapter One: The Beginnings of WitchcraftA. History 1. Statistics 2. How it came to New EnglanB. The Accusations begin 1. Strange occurances 2. Who girls were 3. What the fits were like 4. The people they accusedc. Why they started 1. Questions begin 2. Why they choseIII. Chapter Two: Accusations Proceed; The Trials BeginA. Sarah Good 1. What she said 2. What was said to herB. New women are accused 1. Abigail Faulkner 2. John ProctorC. Evidence aginst girls 1. Sarah Bibble 2. Rebecca Nurse 3. Sarah Nurse 4. Trap still goingD. New Statements 1. Against Sarah Bibbler 2. CounteractionsIV. Chapter Three: The Trials End; The AcceptanceA. Reaction to falseness 1. Thomas Brattle 2. GovernerB. Girls confess 1. Praise of executedThe witch trials of Salem Village, Massachusetts, were America’s most notorious episode of witchcraft hysteria. Belief in witchcraft was carried to colonial America from Europe, where in the two centuries before 1650 thousands had been executed as witches. Witchcraft began the rage of prejudism and stereotypes in the world today. Accusations, although not exactly the same, exist today just like the Salem Witchcraft Trials. These series of trials were one of the first trials to take place of such importance. Equivalent examples of today are limitless, any false accusations can highly relate to Salem. These trials were the start of prejudism in America, as well as the importance of fair trial. But were all innocent of the charge leveled against them? The practice of witchcraft, for instance. It is not merely a notion some people had, a mistaken belief many shared. It did actually exist, and was indeed practiced. “…One cannot fully understand any aspect of events at Salem without a recognition of the genuine power of witchcraft in a society that believes in it. The failure to appreciate this fact has vitiated all previous accounts of witchcraft as Salem.” A said by Chadwick Hansen.

Chapter One: The Beginnings of Witchcraft Witchcraft is the worshiping of nature, which can applied in positive and negative ways. It started as early as the fourteen-hundreds. Just how many of the beliefs about witches were based on reality, verses delusion, will never be known. Witchcraft was started in Europe, prominently Switzerland, Austria(where vampires also originated,) and Germany. Throughout the world, between 1560 and 1680, over 3,000 people were executed, and 5,000 put on trial. About 1,350 people were executed in England, which is how witchcraft was brought to America. Women were accused more often then men because they were believed to be weaker then men, and more likely to succumb to the devil.The year 1692 seems to have been a particularly trouble one in New England. To men and women who were brought up in a restricted evangelical world, the troubles of 1692 were brought up by the devil. Early in the year, several girls of Salem Village, presently known as Danvers Massachusetts, began to sicken and display alarming symptoms. The most distributing and most frequent of these symptoms was compulsive fits; fits so grotesque and so violent that eyewitnesses agreed the girls could not possibly be acting. It all started when a group of unmarried women visited the house of Reverend Samuel Parris, to listen to his slave, Tituba’s tales to the West Indian lore. His daughter, Elizabeth, age nine, and her cousin Abigail Williams, age eleven, the first to start, were so emotionally exited by these get together, coming on the onset of puberty, that they went on to fits of uncontrollable sobbing and convulsions. “There motions in their fits,” wrote the Reverend Lawson, “are preternatural, both as to the manner, which is so strange as a well person could not screw their body into; and as to the violence also it is a preternatural, being beyond the ordinary force of the same person when they are in their right mind. Their arms, necks and backs, were turned this way and that way, and returned back again, so impossible for them to do this themselves, and beyond the power of any epileptic fits, or natural diseases can effect a person.” There were other symptoms quite alarming: temporary loss of hearing, speech and sight; loss of memory, some girls couldn’t even remember what happened to them in their fits. They would often feel themselves being pinched or bitten- sometimes there were apparent marks on their skin. The diagnosis seemed in no way unusual, the overwhelming majority of seventeenth-century physicians believed that witchcraft was the cause of some diseases. It was enough with two girls, but soon many other girls got involved. Ann Putman, twelve; Elizabeth Hubbard, seventeen; Mary Walcott, twent

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