Excerpts from my diary from our “New England” trip on Wednesday, August 14, 2013
It was raining a bit on our way out today. I sped on the interstate behind a black car, not realizing it was a cop car. He put on his lights. I thought he was pulling me over, but lucky for me, he just took the next exit. I guess he was trying to warn me that my lights weren’t on or something. Needless to say Boo is driving now. We are thinking of driving to Salem, witchcraft capital of America. I think we’re going to get some good pictures there…not sure of what though.
We made it to Salem (last few letters from the word Jerusalem) and went on a Night Ghost Tour. I’ll try to get some good day shots of the places we visited tonight.
Some of the most memorable places on this night tour included:
A house where a prominent man locked up his young maid in the attic when it was discovered she had smallpox. He was afraid his wife and baby were going to come down with the fatal disease and locked her upstairs on the third floor attic without food or drink until she died… She scratched the boards and screamed until she eventually died. The family ended up abandoning the house for several years until a new, young family moved in. The husband went crazy one day and killed his wife by pouring hot wax and boiling water down her throat and then he smothered his baby with a pillow. Kids stuck pretty close to me after that story!
A memorial where the last words the innocent people said was engraved in stone. Stone seats with the names of the “witches” and how they were killed. All those condemned were basically hung from a tree except one elderly man in his seventies…who was “pressed”. Giles Corey was savvy about the law and knew that if he confessed to being a “witch”, he would be allowed to live, but would lose all his possessions. He had 5 boys and was determined to keep his property to bequeath to them. He also knew that if he claimed he wasn’t a witch he would be hung. So he said neither that he was or was not a witch. That angered the folks trying to get a “confession” out of him so they lay a flat board on top of him, placed three men on top of that, and then kept adding large stones as well . It took three days for the poor old man to die in this manner. The prosecutors were unable to get a confession out of him, so his family got to keep their land.
Then we saw a corner of a building (which I believe is now owned by Bell) where the witches were held captive until their trials. Tomorrow I’m going to try to go take the kids to some kid friendly sites (a witches museum, the witches dungeon, and a pirate museum with cove/boat), while Boo goes to the museum to see art and faberge eggs.