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Escaping Salem Book Questions Answers

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Who are the key people involved in the “the other witch hunt?” what roles do each play in the incident? Specific examples/evidence from book the whole 1) Katherine Branch
a) Servant of Daniel and Abigail Wescot
b) Has fits may or may not be real
c) accuses Disborough and Clawson
i) claims Disborough was her guide to compo there and back
ii) accused Clawson of pinching her and later red spots appeared on Kate which later turned into black and blue bruises d) begins trial and other colonist’s confession to start coming forward because of her 2) Mercy Disborough

a) Accused witch by Katherine Branch
b) Many neighbors accuse her of witchcraft
i) Goody Godfrey and Goodman Benit’s daughter went to visit Mercy Disborough and told her about the rumors going around. Mercy was very angry. That night Goody Godfrey could not sleep and heard strange noises. The next morning she and her husband found one of their heifers dead near the door. ii) Kate immediately fell into one of her fits in the meeting house when Mercy Disborough looked at her c) From compo

3) Elizabeth Clawson
a) Accused witch by Katherine Branch
b) Many neighbors accuse her of witchcraft
i) Goody Clawson was angry because Goody Newman’s daughter had taken some fruit from her orchard, some angry words were said and the next day 3 sheep died suddenly.
4) Daniel Wescot
a) Master of Katherine Branch
b) initiates trial by going to —— magistrate
c) possibly influences Katherine’s accusations
d) “Nathaniel and Abigail cross had confronted Mister Wescot with the charge that Kate was counterfeiting her torments to which he replied “I’ll venture… that she’ll do a trick tomorrow morning that nobody else can”.
5) Abigail Wescot

a) Wife of Daniel Wescot
b) Master of Katherine Branch
c) Possibly influences Katherine’s accusations
i) Mentions possible names while Katherine is “unconscious” in her “fits” ii) When she wakes up says same names that Abigail mentioned 6) William Jones
a) Magistrate in charge of trials
b) Comes up with list on grounds for examination of a witch and for accusing a witch
c) Runs the trials and also seeks advice from more experienced higher up priests

How do the people of Stamford react to Katherine Branch “torments?” what are their different reactions and motivation 1) “Stamford townsfolk were for the most part remarkably cautious in reacting to Kate’s accusations. The officials responsible for handling Connecticut’s witch crisis refused to make hasty judgments about the accused and insisted on weighing carefully the evidence against them. If witch suspects were to hang, their guilt must be irrefutable. 2) Believe her fits and accusations are real and truthful

a) Believe mercy and Clawson are guilty
b) Ebenezer Bishop took his turn to watch Kate and witness
i) During Kate’s fits she cried out “Goody Clawson! Goody Clawson!” “Now they’re going to kill me! They’re pinching me on the neck!” Ebenezer examined her neck and saw a red mark about the same size as a large coin. Kate cried out again they were pinching her again and he could see another red patch. A few hours later both marks turned black and blue. Who did this? Ebenezer was sitting with her the whole time. He knew that no visible force had caused these marks. “Any doubts he may have had that Kate was under an evil hand faded as he observed the marks on her neck.” c) Mister Wesot himself claimed

i) During one of her fits Kate stuck out her tongue to a great length. “I put it back into her mouth again, and then looked in her mouth and could see no tongue but what looked like a lump of flesh down her throat.” ii) Very much convinced of Kate’s bewitchment

3) Believe they are counterfeit and she is faking it
a) Believe they are innocent
b) “ Joseph also wondered about Daniel Wescot’s role in his servant’s soused affliction” c) “Nathaniel and Abigail cross had confronted Mister Wescot with the charge that Kate was counterfeiting her torments to which he replied “I’ll venture… that she’ll do a trick tomorrow morning that nobody else can”. d) Many people watching over her did experiments

i) Nathaniel and Joseph took out a knife as if to cut Katherine while she appeared to be senseless and unconscious. Kate then popped wide awake and ran outside. Kate then had another fit and they brought her back inside while she was “senseless”. Again they take out the knife and again she suddenly wakes up saying “you’re going to cut me!”

According to Godbeer, what is the local legal process of dealing with Katherine Branch’s “bewitching”? 1) Many people of Stamford watched Kate closely and carried out experiments to ascertain whether her fits were natural, supernatural, or counterfeit. Once everyone was convinced that it was witchcraft, her tormentors had to be identified, evidence had to be gathered, and witnesses willing to speak out. a) This was risky because most previous trials had not resulted in conviction. If witches were tried, acquitted, and released, they might wreak terrible revenge upon those who had testified against them.

According to Godbeer, what is the colonial legal process of dealing with Katherine Branch’s “bewitching”? 1) Everyone went to trial, suspects, witnesses, judges, magistrates, jurymen, defendants a) Tried to put together all evidence into either a conviction or not

What does the ending or the conclusion of the trials indicate about the process of “bringing witches to justice” in Puritan New England? 1) Few witches were actually convicted and sentenced to death a) Of the sixty-one known prosecutions for witchcraft in 17th century New England, excluding the Salem Witch Hunt, 16 at most (maybe 14) resulted in conviction and execution
b) Very hard to prove guilty unless confessed being a witch i) 4 of the accused individuals confessed. If those cases are omitted then the conviction rate falls to just under one fifth 2) National or regional origins, ethnicity, race or religious affiliation played an important role in accusing and “bringing witches to justice” a) In 1688, Mary Glover was tried and executed as a witch in Boston, her identity as a Gaelic speaking Irish Catholic was clearly an issue. Puritans believed Catholics to be servants of the Antichrist and France was officially a Catholic country. b) New England puritans war with French over territory don’t like each other 3) As the difficulty of securing a legal conviction for witchcraft became increasingly apparent, New Englanders became less inclined to initiate legal prosecutions.

a) 19 witch trials in New England during the 1660s
b) 6 trials in 1670
c) 8 trials in 1680
4) Once New Englanders became convinced that a particular individual had bewitched them, they had the right to lodge a formal complaint and so initiate a criminal prosecution. a) Anything bad that happens after a confrontation between two people resulting in accusation of witchcraft According to Godbeer, what does the trial in Connecticut reveal of “witch trials” in New England? In other words, why does Godbeer argue this case is so important to witch trials in New England? 1) Elizabeth Clawson and Mercy Disborough were the first residents of Connecticut to stand trial for that crime in over 20 years a) Thought the case was authentic

b) Because it had been so long many people had lots of stories and evidence they had acquired over the years against Clawson and Disborough 2) Had many sources of documentation to support this trial and represent time period and how other witch trials may have happened 3) The witch hunt that took place in Connecticut provides a useful corrective to the Salem story that has long been distorted our perception of early New England a) Uses this story to provide a factual view of the way of life in early New England b) Happened the same year as Salem witch trails

4) Escaping Salem provides a corrective to the stereotype of early new
Englanders as quick to accuse and condemn. That stereotype originates with Salem, which was, in its scale and intensity, unlike other outbreaks of witch hunting in New England. Stamford’s witch hunt was much more typical. a) He wants to correct people’s way of thinking when it comes to New England puritans and witch hunts

Using Katherine Branch’s case, explain why witch trials were present in puritan society during the 17th century in the colonies. 1) Everything including the government system was based on religion
a) Witches associated or worked for the devil
b) Because religion ran the political system
2) Didn’t have the technology and knowledge we have now of medicine and mental disorders
3) The trial and fits gave Kate a lot of control and power
a) Gave people lower down on the social ladder to have some power and influence

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