Tituba

The Salem Witch Trials

In the play Crucible...

Tituba was a slave for Reverend Samuel Parris and his ten year old daughter Betty. When Reverend Parris was a merchant, he met Tituba who originally lived in Barbados before becoming a slave for him in Salem Village. She was blamed for doing witchcraft by Reverend Parris's seventeen year old niece, Abigail Williams. Even though Reverend Parris had seen his daughter, and niece along with Tituba in the woods dancing with other girls which some were naked, had knew what he had seen. The big pot that had tiny pieces of every girls little item of choice went into the pot to give them the granted wish for the boy they all desired the most. When Parris came upon all the girls in the woods, Abigail blamed Tituba for doing witchcraft on all the girls and that is where the huge hysteria first started in the play The Crucible, and as well in the movie. Abigail's words were stronger and more pure than Tituba's so the townspeople and judges believed Abigail the most. Since Tituba "confessed" to “doing” witchcraft, she did it out of the act that she did not want to die or be hung if she wouldn’t have confess. Tituba was then just held in prison until the witch trials ended.

In Real Life...

Tituba was a slave working for Samuel Parris. The various documents and books written about the Salem Witch Trials over the years often refer to Tituba as black or mixed race, but the actual court documents from her trial refer to her as an “Indian woman, servant.” (Brooks) Tituba was born in an Arawak Village in South America. She was captured during her childhood and taken to Barbados as a slave, where Rev. Parris purchased her and brought her to Boston in 1680. ("Tituba") Tituba married another Indian slave which Parris owned named John. In 1689 is when the two got married as well as about the time the Parris family moved to Salem. ("Tituba") Tituba also had a little baby girl named Violet, who also stayed in the Parris's home.

Tituba's Conviction

On February 29, 1692, an arrest warrant was issued for Tituba in Salem Town. Arrest warrants were also issued for Sarah Goode and Sarah Osborne. All three of the accused were examined the next day at Nathaniel Ingersoll's tavern in Salem Village by local magistrates Jonathan Corwin and John Hathorne. (Lewis) After that, Tituba confessed to witchcraft and said that both Sarah Goode and Sarah Osborne were witches, confessed to doing spectral spells and witchcraft, and admitting to meeting with the Devil. (Lewis)

Work Cited

Brooks, Rebecca Beatrice. History of Massachusetts. 2013. Web. 2 Jan. 2013.

Linder, Douglas O. Salem Witch Trials 1692. Douglas O. Linder. September 2006. Web. 2 Jan. 2014. Tituba.

Lewis, Jone Johnson. Tituba. Jone Johnson Linder. Web. 2 Jan, 2014. Tituba.