The “Witches” of Salem, Massachusetts

The Magistrates, Ministers, Jewries, and all the People in general, being so much enraged and incensed against us by the Delusion of the Devil, which we can term no other, by reason we know in our own Consciences, we are all Innocent Persons.
John Proctor, written on July 23, 1692, while he was imprisoned. He was hanged in Salem Towne on August 19, 1692.


The Witch by Joseph E. Baker, 1892.

The Witch by Joseph E. Baker, 1892.

Witch hunts occurred worldwide, particularly in the 15th–18th centuries. Though it is impossible to know how many people were executed for witchcraft in Europe and the American colonies, it has been estimated to have been from 40,000-50,000.

Until about 1420, witchcraft-related prosecutions in Europe centered around the concept of using supernatural powers specifically to harm others. It was not until the early 15th century that witchcraft began to be associated with Satan. It was at this time that organized witch-hunts increased, as well as individual accusations of sorcery. At the same time, several papers were published that helped to establish a stereotype of the witch and their Satanic connection.

In the 17th Century, witch hunts began in the American colonies, particularly in Massachusetts and Connecticut. About 80 people were accused of practicing witchcraft in a witch-hunt that lasted throughout New England from 1648-1663. Thirteen women and two men were executed. Some twenty years later, the Salem witch trials occurred in 1692–93, culminating in about 72 trials and 20 executions. Trials occurred between February 1692 and May 1693. Though generally known as the Salem witch trials, the preliminary hearings in 1692 were conducted in various towns across the province, including Salem Village, Ipswich, Andover, and Salem Towne, where the Court of Oyer and Terminer conducted the most infamous trials.

A Boston merchant named Robert Calef, who denounced the Salem witch trials of 1692, would write:

“And now Nineteen persons having been hang’d, and one prest to death, and Eight more condemned, in all Twenty and Eight, of which above a third part were Members of some of the Churches of New England, and more than half of them of a good Conversation in general, and not one clear’d; about Fifty having confest themselves to be Witches, of which not one Executed; above an Hundred and Fifty in Prison, and Two Hundred more accused; the Special Commission of Oyer and Terminer comes to a period…”

The Witch Hunt went on far too long. Only when Governor William Phips’ wife was accused did he finally take a stand against any further imprisonments and forbade any more executions for witchcraft in Salem. Because of the governor’s actions, the nearly 150 men and women who were still chained to prison walls were set free, and many who had been convicted of witchcraft were pardoned.

In 1711, the Massachusetts Legislature passed a general amnesty that exonerated all but six of the accused witches. Centuries later, in 1957, the Massachusetts state legislature passed a resolution exonerating Ann Greenslit Pudeator, who had been hanged. Finally, on November 1, 2001, acting Massachusetts Governor Jane Swift approved a bill that cleared all the accused witches hanged in Salem in 1692 and acquitted the final five who had not been cleared by the previous amnesty resolutions — Susannah North Martin, Bridget Playfer Bishop, Alice Parker, Margaret Stevenson Scott, and Wilmot Redd.

The Salem “Witches”

Witches of Salem:  Index   A  B  C  D  E  F-G  H  I-J  K-N  O-P  Q-S  T  U-Z

Found Guilty and Executed:

Bridget Playfer Bishop (Hanged, June 10, 1692)

George Burroughs, Salem Village (Hanged, August 19, 1692)

Martha CarrierAndover (Hanged, August 19, 1692)

Martha Corey, Peabody (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Mary Towne Easty, Topsfield (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Dana Michael Foley (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Sarah Solart Poole Good, Salem Village (Hanged, July 19, 1692)

Elizabeth Jackson Howe, Topsfield (Hanged, July 19, 1692)

George Jacobs, Sr., Salem Village (Hanged, August 19, 1692)

Susannah North Martin, Amesbury (Hanged, July 19, 1692)

Rebecca Towne Nurse, Salem Village (Hanged, July 19, 1692)

Alice Parker, Salem Towne (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Mary Ayer Parker, Andover (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

John Proctor, Peabody (Hanged, August 19, 1692)

Ann Greenslit Pudeator, Salem Towne (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Wilmot Redd, Marblehead (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Margaret Stevenson Scott, Rowley (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Samuel Wardwell, Sr., Andover (Hanged, September 22, 1692)

Zarah Wildes, Topsfield (Hanged, July 19, 1692)

John Willard, Salem Village (Hanged, August 19, 1692)

Refused to Plea and Executed:

Giles Corey, Peabody (Pressed to Death, September 19, 1692)

Died in Prison:

Rebecca Addington Chamberlain, Billerica

Lydia Dustin, Reading

John Durrant, Billerica

Ann Alcock Foster, Andover

Good Infant, Salem Village

Sarah Warren Prince Osborne, Salem Village

Scargen Infant, Beverly

Roger Toothaker, Billerica

(As many as 13 others may have also died in prison.)

Found Guilty and Escaped:

Mary Perkins Bradbury, Salisbury

Indicted, Imprisoned, and Escaped:

Captain John Alden, Jr., Boston

William Barker, Sr., Andover

Edward Bishop Jr., Salem Village

Sarah Wildes Bishop, Salem Village

Elizabeth Walker Cary, Charlestown

Mary Hollingsworth English, Salem Towne

Philip English, Salem Towne

Accused, Imprisoned, & Later Released:

Arthur C. Abbot, Topsfield

Sarah Hood Bassett, Lynn

Mary Black, Salem Towne

Hannah Varnum Tyler Brumidge, Haverhill

Andrew Carrier, Andover

Richard Carrier, Andover

Sarah Carrier, Andover

Thomas Carrier, Jr., Andover

Hannah Carroll, Salem Towne

Rachel Haffield Clinton, Ipswich

Mary Cox, Malden

Dane Male, Slave, Andover

Deliverance Haseltine Dane, Andover

Mary Bassett DeRich, Salem Village

Ann Higginson Dolliver, Gloucester

Sarah Dustin, Reading

Daniel Eames, Boxford

Thomas Dyer, Ipswich

Edward Farrington, Andover

Captain John Floyd, Revere

Elizabeth Betts Fosdick, Malden

John Howard, Rowley

Elizabeth Hutchinson Hart, Lynn

Abigail Hobbs, Topsfield

Deliverance Hobbs, Topsfield

William Hobbs, Topsfield

John Jackson, Jr., Rowley

John Jackson, Sr., Rowley

Abigail Johnson, Andover

Stephen Johnson, Andover

Jane Lilly, Reading

Sarah Murrell, Beverly

Mary Clements Osgood, Andover

Elizabeth Carrington Paine, Malden

Mary Prince Rowe, Gloucester

Benjamin Proctor, Peabody

Sarah Proctor, Peabody

Sarah Davis Rice, Reading

Susanna Rootes, Beverly

Elizabeth Scargen, Beverly

Mercy Short, Boston

Mary Harrington Taylor

Edward Wooland

Accused and Fled Before Being Arrested:

Daniel Andrew, Salem Village

Ann Wood Bradstreet, Andover

Colonel Dudley Bradstreet, Andover

John Bradstreet, Rowley

Elizabeth Colson, Reading

George Jacobs, Jr., Salem Village

Ephraim Stevens, Andover

Released on Bond, Never Tried:

Bethiah Pearson Carter, Woburn

Dorothy Faulkner, Andover

Abigail Faulkner Jr., Andover

Eunice Potter Frye, Andover

Dorcas Good, Salem Village

Mary Green, Haverhill

Frances Alcock Hutchins, Haverhill

Margaret Skillings Prince, Gloucester

Rachel Varney Cook Langton Vinson, Gloucester

Sarah Lord Wilson, Andover

Sarah Wilson, Jr., Andover

Found Guilty and Pardoned:

Abigail Dane Faulkner, Sr., Andover

Dorcas Hoar, Beverly

Elizabeth Johnson Jr., Andover

Mary Post, Rowley

Elizabeth Bassett Proctor, Peabody

Sarah Hooper Hawkes Wardwell, Andover

Pled Guilty and Pardoned:

Rebecca Blake Eames, Boxford

Mary Foster Lacey, Sr., Andover

Accused, Not Indicted, and Released:

Nehemiah Abbot, Jr., Topsfield

Katerina Biss

Bethiah Carter, Jr., Woburn

Sarah Towne Cloyce, Topsfield

Mary Dustin Colson, Reading

Rebecca Dike, Gloucester

Esther Elwell, Gloucester

Thomas Farrar, Sr., Lynn

Tituba Indian, Salem Village

Mary Leach Ireson, Lynn

Sarah Parker, Andover

William Proctor, Peabody

Abigail Rowe, Gloucester

Margaret Toothaker, Billerica

Ruth Wilford, Haverhill

Tried, Found Not Guilty, and Released:

Abigail Wheeler Barker, Andover

Mary Barker, Andover

William Barker, Jr., Andover

Mary Bridges, Jr., Andover

Mary Tyler Post Bridges, Sr., Andover

Sarah Bridges, Andover

Sarah Smith Buckley, Salem Village

Candy – Slave of Margaret Hawkes, Salem Village

Sarah Aslett Cole, Lynn

Sarah Davis Cole, Salem Towne

Sarah Hawkes, Jr., Andover

Margaret Jacobs, Salem Village

Rebecca Andrews Jacobs, Salem Village

Elizabeth Dane Johnson, Sr., Andover

Julie Kildunne

Mary Lacey, Jr., Andover

Mary Osgood Marston, Andover

Hannah Post, Boxford 

Susannah Post, Andover

Job Tookey, Beverly

Mary Allen Toothaker, Billerica

Hannah Tyler, Andover

Mary Lovett Tyler, Andover

Mercy Wardwell, Andover

Mary Buckley Witheridge, Salem Village

Accused, but Never Arrested:

John Busse, Wells, Maine – Minister in Wells

Reverend Frances Dane, Andover – Minister

Sarah Noyes Hale, Beverly – Wife of Reverend John Hale

James Howe, Topsfield – Husband of Elizabeth Jackson Howe

Hezekiah Usher

Mary Spencer Phips, Boston – Wife of Governor William Phips

Sarah Clapp Swift

Margaret Thacher, Boston – Mother-in-law of magistrate Jonathan Corwin

A witch trial by Joseph E. Baker in 1892.

A witch trial by Joseph E. Baker in 1892.


Dunking was often used to determine if someone was a witch. If the accused sank he or she was considered innocent, while floating indicated witchcraft.

Dunking was often used to determine if someone was a witch. If the accused sank, he or she was considered innocent while floating, indicating witchcraft.


©Kathy Alexander/Legends of America, updated January 2024.

Also See:

The Salem Witchcraft Hysteria (Main article)

Accused “Witches”

The “Afflicted” Girls

Procedures, Courts & Aftermath

Timeline of the Witchcraft Hysteria

Towns Involved