The Salem Witch Trials I: Introduction Attention Getter: During the Salem Witch Trials, about 200 people would be accused of Witchcraft, 19 would be executed as witches, and one man is his 80’s would be put to death by stacking stone upon stone on his chest. General Purpose: To educate my audience about the Salem Witch Trials. Specific Purpose: My purpose is to display to you the power of fear in a place like Salem, or any place when they have the “witch hunt mentality. ” Thesis Statement: The witch trials was a product of great fear, the want to stomp out evil, along with a story that will live on forever.
Establish Credibility: I may not be an expert, however I have learned lots of the history that was the Salem Witch Trials, the Puritans, and witch hunts in general. I did this by reading books from our library, along with a teaching guide, several scholarly articles, along with a history channel movie. Preview Main Points: First, I will explain who the Puritans were along with, what they believed in. Secondly, I will explain how the hunt of witches started in Salem Village. Thirdly, how it progressed. Lastly, I will explain how it ended.
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Transition Sentence: First off, to prepare you for the witch accusations, I will breakdown who the Puritans were and how they came to Salem Village. Body Main Point 1: The Puritans had a very strict religion and thats what brought them to America. 1. Heyrman, Christine Leigh declares in her teaching guide on Puritanism and Predesination, that The Puritans were religious reformers that developed in the sixteenth century England. They believed that the Holy Bible was the law, wanting to purify culture.
Arbella Conventant in 1630 once stated in a sermon speaking to the puritan society, “For we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a hill, the eyes of all people upon us. ” Their conviction was that not all would be selected to go to heaven and that God knew who would go to heaven and who would not before history began. The people who were “predestined” to go to heaven, or the elect, had the ability to interpret the will of God. People who were considered to be the Elect had to go through conversion through their church, they also had to be “visibly Godly” and to reject all he sinful ways of the corrupt. Transition Sentence: Consequently, now that you know a little bit more about the puritans, it is crucial to know how the witch hunts initially started in Salem Village. Main Point 2: How the witch trials started was a reaction of the state of the village, young girls accusations against other women, and the trials against those women. To set the scene Salem Village, it is called a village however it is more like a few towns and farm settlements. The village was settled in 1626 by the Puritans. This was considered to be in New England.
The people in Salem were more focused on local matters than they were on building a new country. After reading Robert Rapley’s “Witch Hunts from Salem to Guantanamo Bay” I learned that, It was also commonly accepted that women were more likely to be witches. There was a fear of women because they are portrayed at corrupter’s of men through out the Bible. Take for example Eve convincing Adam to eat the forbidden fruit. So, it was more so plausible for a women to be an agent of the devil, to be his allies in witchcraft. Minister Samuel Parris settled in Salem Village in 1689.
The previous reverend George Burroughs and his predecessor left the village because of all the disputes in the town, the constant criticism, and all the fighting. February of 1692, 9 year old Elizabeth Parris and the 11 year old Abigale Williams claimed that Sarah Good for supposition of witchcraft. At the end of 1691 they began to act strange. Sarah Good received a warrant, along with Sarah Osborne. Quite a few more accusers came from the shadows all claiming to be suffering from the acts of Witchcraft. Doctors were brought to the possessed and it was confirmed that they were at an evil hand.
Tituba was a slave brought from Barbados by minister Parris. She was told to make a “witch cake. ” It had particular ingredients like rye meal and the urine of the possessed girls, after words it was to be given to a dog to “uncover a witch. ” However, it did not do much good. The girls started having painful fits which ended up placing Tituba in the court house with Sarah Good and Sarah Osborne. Transition sentence: Next, the fear in the town was growing bringing all the towns people together to examine the supposed witches.
Main Point 3: How the fear grew to something that could not be contained. Lewis Carol who wrote Alice in wonderland stated, “Sentence first-Verdict later. ” In the trials it was quite similar. Rapley writes that, “If you were accused, then you were guilty. ” Sarah Osborne was not a very liked person, she had a poor reputation and was elderly. In a village like this, she was not a church goer making her a prime target to be suspected of a Witch. She claimed to be innocent, denying every claim. Sarah Good also had a bad reputation and did not attend church services, though she was well off financially.
S. Good claimed to have done no harm, and denied having any part in witchcraft. However, S Good made a very powerful statement that she was not a witch but Osborne was. Tituba was trialled that same day and according to Upham who wrote, An account of Salem Village, she claimed that the devil approached her and said, “To bid me serve him. ” She then said, “I will serve you no longer” The devil carried with him a yellow bird and claimed to give her more pretty things if she served him. Also, she claimed that it was true, Sarah Good and Sarah Osborne were in fact witches.
Tituba opened up the playing field, there were more witches in the town. In the end of this day it was decided S Good and S Osborne were definitely witches and Tituba knew to much to just let go, they were all sent to jail to await further examination. The puritans felt like they were being attacked by the devil, they sought to, “identify and wipe out” every witch. “Search! Find! Destroy. ” With everyone in the village gossiping about one another, if you did not have the best reputation you were likely to get accused. Fear was increasing across the town.
Transition Sentence: Lastly, how the Salem trials rose to kill many people across Salem Village also neighboring towns, then ending with many people dead thus ending the trials. Main Point 4: Spectre evidence and the many people trialled, examined, jailed, and ultimately, killed. 1. Specter evidence is not like the evidence you see in a court room today. Specter evidence is evidence that only someone who was possessed or one of the “afflicted” could see. You see the girls Abigaile, Elizabeth, and many others that were claiming to be suffering from witchcraft, they would say they saw the accused specters. . The evidence was purely based on someone elses word against the defendant. Because the puritans believed that it was not the women themselves that were causing harm, it was their specter, the part of them that was in league with the devil would borrow their spirit and body to do the devils work. 3. And if that was so, then could the devil use the witches without their permission? Did they have to be in league with him? Or was it the devil who was acting, or the accused? And if it was the devil could anything he said or did be believed? 4.
According to Gretchen Adams, The first wave of accusations were what you would call the “usual suspects. ” This was because of their living conditions, church habits, but after a few were trailed and there were more witches were found Minister Parris, Elizabeth’s father decided that specter evidence was possible and accurate, he was able to do this because he was elect. 5. The second wave was anyone who would stand in the way of the afflicted church goers, men and women alike would be accused. Like Minister George Burroughs the former minister in the village and Reverend Hale.
Rebbecca Nurse, a well thought of lady. 6. By September so many accused witches were in jail, with the poor weather conditions it was unbearable. In October the trials were suspended. Over much review specter evidence was declared to be insufficient there being no measurable proof. 7. ) Anyone who was in jail for the months between October and December, were trialled is the Superior Court in Judicature between the months of January and May. All defendants in the proceedings confessed to witch craft and only 3 were convicted. 18, Adams) Add in Cotton Mather. Transition Sentence: Now to summarize the Salem Witch Trials how it started, how it progressed, and how it ended. III. Conclusion Recap Specific Purpose: If you will take to memory any thoughts about the Salem Witch Trials it would be that horrible things could brew in a rural village when fear is growing it will become something so big and terrifying it appeared as unstoppable. Review Main Points: The puritans who had a very strict religion would end up killing many possibly innocent people.
The Slave Tituba who spent a year in colonial jail, was examined, confessed and was not executed. Rebecca Nurse, proclaimed innocent till the very end. No existing bad reputation, no regular evidence and was to be executed. Bridget Bishop executed in June next, 5 more in July then, 5 more in August, and then 8 more in September. Closing Statement: Though many people were greatly effected by the Salem Witch Trials, the village sought out to rebuild the community and to support its members.