Cover image for The Salem witch trials : a day-by-day chronicle of a community under siege
Title:
The Salem witch trials : a day-by-day chronicle of a community under siege
Author:
Roach, Marilynne K.
Personal Author:
Edition:
First Cooper Square Press edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Cooper Square Press, [2002]

©2002
Physical Description:
xlvii, 688 pages, 12 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780815412212
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

Presenting the events of Salem's witch hysteria in 1692 and 1693 in a chronological format, this authorative book makes use of previously unknown court records and documents.


Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

The Salem witch trials of 1692-1693 remain one of the enigmas of American history. How did the witchcraft hysteria come about? Did the imaginations of the townspeople run wild so that they viewed unneighborly acts as an evil threat promulgated by Satan's minions? Roach (In the Days of the Salem Witchcraft Trial) answers these and other questions in her monumental daily chronology of the trial years. She introduces her account with an exhaustive narrative history of the Salem community from 1661 to 1691. With workmanlike precision, she provides historical details-such as the conflicts between church congregations and ministers and the increasing frequency of Indian attacks-as she contends that the hysteria arose most likely from the political, religious and social turmoil of the time. Using newly available diaries, journals and letters, Roach then reconstructs, for the first time, daily life during the height of the witch trials as well as accounts of court proceedings, arrests and suspects' confessions. In an epilogue, Roach shows that, just a decade after the trials, preachers sought repentance for the injustices done and that the desire to right the wrongs of the trials lasted well into the 19th century. Roach's detailed reference book provides deep insights into the trial years by letting us listen to the voices of everyone involved. 35 b&w illus. and maps. (Oct.) Forecasts: Roach's book will provide a nice companion to Mary Beth Norton's In the Devil's Snare (Forecasts, July 1), also being released in October; booksellers who display them together may see increased sales. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Choice Review

Roach's well-documented book draws from contemporary trial accounts, bills, letters, deeds, almanacs, and other original documents, 1692-97, the period of the witch trials in Salem, Massachusetts. The book intends to serve as a new way of exploring the witch trials and to move away from the speculations, historical analysis, and stereotyping that have characterized the study of the trials. The book includes hand-drawn maps and an introduction that sets forth the study's approach, outlines the beliefs about witches and witchcraft in Salem at the time, and situates the witch trials in Salem's political life. The well-written text is formatted much like a diary of excerpted, paraphrased, and quoted documentation, arranged in chronological order with headings by place. An epilogue discusses the aftermath of the trials and summarizes historical debates. Several appendixes list the accused, the victims, church membership, and petitioners for the accused. Summing Up: Recommended. General readers and undergraduates. G. Wood SUNY College at Cortland


Table of Contents

Mapsp. vii
Prologuep. xiii
Introductionp. xv
Part I 1692
1 Januaryp. 3
2 Februaryp. 12
3 Marchp. 24
4 Aprilp. 64
5 Mayp. 103
6 Junep. 154
7 Julyp. 189
8 Augustp. 219
9 Septemberp. 260
10 Octoberp. 306
11 Novemberp. 328
12 Decemberp. 340
Part II 1693
13 Januaryp. 359
14 Februaryp. 373
15 Marchp. 385
16 Aprilp. 396
17 Mayp. 400
18 Junep. 405
19 Julyp. 410
20 Augustp. 415
21 Septemberp. 419
22 Octoberp. 426
23 Novemberp. 431
24 Decemberp. 435
Part III 1694
25 Januaryp. 441
26 Februaryp. 444
27 Marchp. 446
28 Aprilp. 449
29 Mayp. 452
30 Junep. 454
31 Julyp. 458
32 Augustp. 462
33 Septemberp. 465
34 Octoberp. 468
35 Novemberp. 470
36 Decemberp. 475
Part IV 1695
37 Januaryp. 479
38 Februaryp. 483
39 Marchp. 488
40 Aprilp. 491
41 Mayp. 494
42 Junep. 498
43 Julyp. 501
44 Augustp. 503
45 Septemberp. 506
46 Octoberp. 509
47 Novemberp. 511
48 Decemberp. 512
Part V 1696
49 Januaryp. 517
50 Februaryp. 519
51 Marchp. 522
52 Aprilp. 524
53 Mayp. 528
54 Junep. 531
55 Julyp. 534
56 Augustp. 537
57 Septemberp. 540
58 Octoberp. 543
59 Novemberp. 545
60 Decemberp. 547
Part VI 1697
61 Januaryp. 555
Epiloguep. 559
Appendixesp. 589
Appendix Ap. 591
Appendix Bp. 609
Appendix Cp. 613
Appendix Dp. 615
Appendix Ep. 619
Endnotesp. 623
Bibliographyp. 675
Indexp. 695
Acknowledgmentsp. 711
About the Authorp. 713