Barnard House
Rev. Thomas Barnard House, Andover

The Geography of Salem


The events of 1692 are known as "Salem" Witchcraft. There are good reasons for this. The episode began in the house of Salem Village's minister, Samuel Parris, the first three accused witches resided in the village, and the principal afflicted girls as well as and many of those they complained against lived either in the village or Salem Town. In addition, Salem Town became the center of the outbreak's legal apparatus, the location of examinations, trials, and executions. Nevertheless, numerous other communities in Massachusetts (including its frontier region of Maine) were directly involved. With some notable exceptions, such as Mary Beth Norton's In the Devil's Snare, historians have paid relatively little attention to events outside of Salem Village and Town. But the timing, extent, and manner in which distress radiated outward from Salem Village provide additional insight and perspective on the 1692 witch hunt.

To determine the extensiveness of the 1692 outbreak, click Next.