Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Timeline of the Salem Witch Trials


1629:
Salem is settled. The settlement soon develops into two sections: an agricultural area where the lower class live, known as Salem Village, and a more developed area where the upper class live, known as Salem town.

1641:
British government makes witchcraft a capital offense.

1684:
Massachusetts Bay Colony Charter is revoked.

November 1689:
Samuel Parris named new minister of Salem.

October 1691:
Resident of Salem town disapprove of Parris, who denounces them as greedy and unPuritan-like, and try to force him out of Salem. Salem villagers support him. The hostility creates tension in the colony.

British government issues a new charter for the colony. New charter places many restrictions on the colony, also causing tension amongst the colonists.

January 1692:
Elizabeth Parris and Abigail Williams begin to have fits and exhibit strange behavior. Soon Ann Putnam Jr. and other Salem village girls begin displaying similar behavior.

February 1692:
Doctors are unable to determine the cause of the strange behavior and suggests the girls are under the influence of satan.
Tituba bakes a witch cake made from rye and the girl's urine to counteract the evil spell placed on them.
The girls accuse three women, Tituba, Sarah Good and Sarah Osborne, of witchcraft. Arrest warrants are issued for the women.

March 1 1692:
Judge John Hathorne and Judge Jonathan Corwin examine Tituba, Sarah Good and Sarah Osborne.
Tituba confesses to working for the devil and states there are many witches in Salem.

March 12 1692:
Martha Corey is accused of witchcraft by Ann Putnam Jr.

March 19 1692:
Rebecca Nurse is accused of witchcraft by Edward and John Putnam after a number of land disputes with the Putnam family in Salem Village.

March 21 1692:
Martha Corey is examined by Judge Hathorne and Judge Corwin.

March 23 1692:
Four-year-old Dorcas Good, daughter of Sarah Good, is accused of witchcraft by Ann Putnam, Mercy Lewis, and Mary Walcott and arrested.

March 24 1692:
Rebecca Nurse is examined by Judge Hathorne and Judge Corwin.

March 28 1692:
Elizabeth Proctor is accused of witchcraft by Abigail Williams and Mercy Lewis.

April 3 1692:
Rebecca Nurse's sister, Sarah Cloyce, is accused of witchcraft after defending her sister.

April 11 1692:
Elizabeth Proctor and Sarah Cloyce are examined by Judge Hathorne, Judge Corwin, Deputy Governor Thomas Danforth, and Judge Samuel Sewall.
John Proctor is also accused of witchcraft by Abigail Williams and Mary Walcott and imprisoned.

April 18 1692:
Bridget Bishop, Abigail Hobbs, Mary Warren and Giles Corey are accused of witchcraft by many of the Salem Village girls and arrested.

April 19 1692:
Bridget Bishop, Abigail Hobbs, Mary Warren and Giles Corey are examined.
Abigail Hobbs confesses.

April 22 1692:
Edward and Sarah Bishop, Mary Easty, Nehemiah Abbott, William and Deliverance Hobbs, Mary Black, Mary English and Sarah Wildes are arrested on charges of witchcraft and examined by Judge Hathorne and
Judge Corwin.
Nehemiah Abbott is cleared of all charges.

May 2 1692:
Dorcas Hoar, Lydia Dustin, Sarah Morey and Susannah Martin are arrested on charges of witchcraft and examined by Judge Hathorne and Judge Corwin.

May 4 1692:
George Burroughs is accused of witchcraft by several girls and arrested in Wells, Maine.

May 9 1692:
George Burroughs is examined by Judge Hathorne, Judge Corwin, Judge Sewall, and Judge William Stoughton.
Sarah Churchill, one of the afflicted girls, is also examined.

May 10 1692:
George Jacobs, Sr. and his granddaughter Margaret Jacobs are are arrested on charges of witchcraft and examined by Judge Hathorne and Judge Corwin.
Margaret Jacobs confesses and testifies that both her grandfather and father are witches.
Sarah Osborne dies in prison.

May 14 1692:
Increase Mather returns from England with the new charter and new governor, Sir William Phips.

May 18 1692:
Mary Easty is released from prison but arrested a second time after her accusers protested her release.
Roger Toothaker is accused of witchcraft by Elizabeth Hubbard, Ann Putnam Jr. and Mary Walcott and arrested.

May 24 1692:
Mary Toothaker is accused of witchcraft by Mary Warren and Mary Ireson.

May 27 1692:
Governor Phips sets up a special Court of Oyer and Terminer to hear the witchcraft cases. The new court has seven judges: Lieutenant Governor William Stoughton, Nathaniel Saltonstall, Bartholomew Gedney, Peter Sergeant, Samuel Sewall, Wait Still Winthrop, John Richards, John Hathorne, and Jonathan Corwin.

May 31 1692:
John Alden Jr., Martha Carrier, Elizabeth Howe, Wilmott Redd and Phillip English are examined by Judge Hathorne, Judge Corwin, and Judge Gedney.

June 2 1692:
Bridget Bishop pronounced guilty of witchcraft and condemned to death.
After Bridget Bishop's trial, Nathaniel Saltonstall resigns from the court and is replaced by Judge Corwin.

June 10 1692:
Bridget Bishop is hanged at Gallows hill in Salem. Her hanging is the first official execution of the Salem witch trials.

June 16 1692:
Roger Toothaker dies in prison.

June 29-30 1692:
Susannah Martin, Rebecca Nurse, Sarah Good, Elizabeth Howe and Sarah Wildes are tried for witchcraft and condemned.

July 19 1692:
Susannah Martin, Rebecca Nurse, Sarah Good, Elizabeth Howe, and Sarah Wildes are hanged at Gallows hill in Salem.

July 22 1692:
Martha Emerson, daughter of Roger Toothaker, is accused of witchcraft by Mary Warren and Mary Lacey Jr.

July 23 1692:
John Proctor writes a letter to the Boston clergy describing the torture used against the accused and asks for the Salem Witch Trials to be moved to Boston.
Martha Emerson is arrested and examined by Judge Gedney.

July 30 1692:
Mary Toothaker is examined by Judge Gedney, Judge Hathorne, Judge Corwin and Judge Higginson.

August 2-6 1692:
George Burroughs, George Jacobs, Sr., Martha Carrier, John and Elizabeth Proctor, and John Willard are tried for witchcraft and condemned.

August 19 1692:
John Proctor, George Jacobs, Sr., George Burroughs, Martha Carrier, and John Willard are hanged on Gallows Hill.

August 20, 1692:
Margaret Jacobs recants her testimony against her grandfather George Jacobs Sr. and George Burroughs.

September 3 1692:
Margaret Prince and Elizabeth Dicer of Gloucester are accused of witchcraft by the Salem village girls and arrested.

September 9 1692:
Mary Easty, Martha Corey, Ann Pudeator, Alice Parker, Mary Bradbury and Dorcas Hoar are tried and condemned.

September 13 1692:
Joan Penney of Gloucester is accused of witchcraft by Zebulon Hill.

September 17 1692:
Wilmott Redd, Mary Parker, Margaret Scott, Samuel Wardwell, Rebecca Eames, Abigail Faulkner, Mary Lacy, Abigail Hobbs and Ann Foster are tried and condemned.

September 19 1692:
Giles Corey is pressed to death after refusing to enter a plea.

September 21 1692:
Dorcas Hoar confesses. Her execution is delayed.
Joan Penney is arrested on charges of witchcraft.

September 22 1692:
Martha Corey, Alice Parker, Margaret Scott, Ann Pudeator, Mary Easty, Samuel Wardwell, Wilmott Redd and Mary Parker are hanged at Gallows hill.

October 8 1692:
Thomas Brattle writes a letter criticizing the witchcraft trials and the use of spectral evidence. Governor Phips bans spectral and intangible evidence in the trials.

October 29 1692:
Governor Phips forbids further arrests, releases many of the accused and dissolves the Court of Oyer and Terminer.

November 3 1692:
Rebecca Dike, Esther Elwell and Mary Rowe of Gloucester are accused of witchcraft and arrested.

November 25 1692:
The General Court of the colony creates the Superior Court to try the remaining witchcraft cases.

January 1693:
49 of the 52 remaining accused witches in jail are released because their arrests were based on spectral evidence.

May 1693:
Governor Phips pardons the remaining accused in jail.

January 14 1697:
The General Court orders a day of fasting for the victims of the Salem Witch Trials. Judge Samuel Sewall publicly apologizes for his role in the Salem Witch Trials.

1697:
Minister Samuel Parris is replaced by Joseph Green.

1702:
The General Court declares the 1692 trials illegal.

1706:
Ann Putnam Jr. publicly apologizes for her role in the Salem Witch Trials.

1711:
The colony passes a bill restoring the rights and good names of the accused and grants 600 pounds in restitution to the victim's heirs. Some of the victim's families do not wish to be named in the bill and do not seek restitution.

1752:
Salem Village is renamed Danvers. Salem town keeps the name Salem.

1957:
Massachusetts formally apologizes for the events of 1692.

1992:
On the 300th anniversary of the trials, a witchcraft memorial designed by James Cutler is dedicated in Salem.

2001:
The Massachusetts legislature passes a resolution officially exonerating five victims not named in the 1711 bill: Bridget Bishop, Susannah Martin, Alice Parker, Wilmot Redd and Margaret Scott.

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