Image from Witchcraft in Salem Village 1692 by Winfield S. Nevins, 1892.

Accusations of witchcraft started in Salem after some young girls began reporting fits, fever, and strange behavior. Rev. Samuel Parris, father to one afflicted girl, and uncle to another, sought medical assistance from the local doctor, William Griggs. When Griggs could not find a physical cause, he suggested that they may be bewitched. The “afflicted” girls named a slave, Tituba, along with Sarah Good, and Sarah Osborne as the witches that caused their illness. Tituba confessed to conspiring with the Devil, and proclaimed that many witches were working to destroy the Puritans, setting off a wildfire of accusations and paranoia. Often those accused were social outcasts, often poor widows, slaves, and other non-conforming members of Salem’s Puritan society. Many others of the accused were political enemies of the Rev. Samuel Parris.

Image from Witchcraft in Salem Village 1692 by Winfield S. Nevins, 1892.

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