Salem Witch Trials

Jacquelyn Olson

The Start

The young girls started accusing people in 1692. They started accusing people of being witches after a doctor diagnosed a young girl as being "bewitched." Being bewitched meant the girls would throw them self's on the floor and scream uncontrollably and had fits that were unexplained. After some time neighbor girls started doing the same thing.


Between 1692 and 1693 there was about 19 people accused of being witches

-June 10: Bridget Bishop,

-July 19: Rebecca Nurse, Sarah Good, Susannah Martin, Elizabeth Howe, Sarah Wildes,

-August 19: George Burroughs, Martha Carrier, John Willard, George Jacobs, Sr. John Proctor,

-September 22: Martha Corey, Mary Eastey, Ann Pudeator, Alice Parker, Mary Parker, Wilmott Redd, Margaret Scott, Samuel Wardwell

-More accused witches died in prison: Sarah Osborn, Roger Toothaker, Lyndia Dustin, Ann Foster,

-Giles Corey was pressed to death after failing to plead guilty or not guilty


The Economy of Massachusetts bay was very important to the Salem Witch Trials. Because of the class gaps the rich kids would blame the poorer people of being witches and bewitching them. The rich kids would be believed because they come from a rich family. This made it very hard for the accused to be proven not guilty.


The top 5 ways to be "proven" guilty in the Massachusetts Bay colony

1.Bound Submersion- There hands and feet were tied together and you were thrown in with a heavy rock attached to them, if they drown they were a witch if they didn't drown they weren't a witch

2.Pressing-torture designed to make the accuser talk when a large rock was placed on there chest

3.Forced Confession by Dunking-Accused would be held under water repeatedly until they would give tell them what they wanted

4.Touch Test- When the accused would try to fight they would become calm after a hand was placed on them

5. Lords prayer test-Accused would be made to recite the “Lord’s Prayer” from heart without any error including stumbling

-The importance of the lords prayer was that any body should be able to recite the Lord's Prayer without messing up under "God's Eyes"


There were a few ways of exacting the accused witches.

1. Hanging on Gallows Hill

2. Drowning

3. Pressing

4. Died in prison


"Salem Witchcraft Trials: List of Dead and Death Warrant." Salem Witchcraft Trials: List of Dead and Death Warrant. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.

"The Salem Witch Trials - The Colony and Accusers." Paganism / Wicca. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.

"10 Tests For Guilt at the Salem Witch Trials." Listverse. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.

"History of Massachusetts." History of Massachusetts. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.