- This event has passed.
Legacy of the Connecticut Witch Trials at the Naugatuck Event Center
October 12, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
The Legacy of the Connecticut Witch Trials will be held on October 12th from 7 pm to 9:30 pm at the Naugatuck Event Center in Naugatuck.
Join Dr. Richard S. Ross, Professor Emeritus and former College Librarian at Trinity College, Hartford Connecticut as he gives a presentation on the CT Witch Trials.
His book “Before Salem: Witch hunting in the Connecticut River Valley 1647-1663,” McFarland & Company, 2017 is his second book. His first book was the well reviewed “Contagion in Prussia, 1831 the Cholera Epidemic and the Threat of the Polish Uprising,” 2015.
His presentation for this program is based on his recent book “Before Salem: Witch hunting in the Connecticut River Valley 1647-1663,” McFarland & Company, 2017. From 1647-1663 eleven people were hanged as witches on the New England frontier, the Connecticut River Valley. The outbreak of witch hunting in New England was directly influenced by the English Civil War and the witchcraft trials begun in 1644 led by the witch hunter Matthew Hopkins in East Anglia, England.
The authorities in New England were armed with a legal manual influenced by recent English demonological writings for identifying a witch and new techniques pioneered by Hopkins for examining witches. For a variety of reasons examined in this book the witch hysteria spread rapidly throughout New England and first erupted in the Connecticut River Valley. Earlier reports of these activities and trials were collected primarily by ministers and included information on demonic possession, bewitchment, counter magic, witch accusations, legal issues, and the clerical role in these trials.
These earlier witchcraft trials later influenced contemporary writers on the Salem witch trials in 1692. This study offers a fresh assessment of the first outbreak of witch accusations, trials and executions in the Connecticut River Valley. It discusses the witchcraft trials before Salem and the reasons for the continued witch hunting that led to the executions of convicted witches up to 1663.