American Civilization-Dueling Document

I have chosen this document for my ePortfolio because I was very proud of myself and the grade I had received on it! I especially love this one because I have a fascination with these witch trials and a fascination with how ridiculous peopler were back when in the olden days. My grandmother, on my father’s side, was lucky enough to visit where these witch trials took place and she brought back some soveniers for us, for me she gave me a bookmark that held all the names of the people who died, and it told of how they died. And this document just goes to show that what people don’t understand they fear and reject, and in this case, they were fearful of ‘witches’. Enjoy!

American Civilization-Tuesdays

Dueling Document #1
Accusations And Defenses In The Salem Witchcraft Trials
After reading these dueling documents about the Salem Witchcraft trials there are three
women against one man. Sarah Bibber, Ann Putnam, and Mary Warren all seem to be going up
against John Procter, accusing him of witchcraft and all verifying that he came to them and
started torturing them when they would not do what he wanted them to do. They all accused him
of witchcraft on June 30th 1692 before the Grand inquest in the Salem Village. I gather, and this
is mostly due from the fact of reading The Crucible, that they are afraid of people accusing them
of witchcraft so they try and pawn the attention off of them onto poor John Proctor, and all he’s
trying to do is prove them wrong. And when those three girls win, he writes to Mr. Mather, Mr.
Allen, Mr. Moody, Mr. Willard, and Mr. Bailey telling them that they are wrong and how he
knows that he, and the other people, are innocent and are not Devil worshippers as other have
called them so.
20 people died in those trials due to the fact that people were scared, and the upper class
folk used that fear to gain what they wanted. If a guy had a nice piece of land that he wanted, he
would accuse that neighbor of being a witch and would get his land. Same goes for anything
else. It just goes to show that when people were afraid or wanted something that they couldn’t
have, it showed that they used fear to their advantage. The Puritans were afraid of women and
didn’t really trust them, and from what you have said in the notes, the Puritans were always
afraid and deeply paranoid, which I think lead up to the Witch Trials.
Basically the documents summarize how Sarah, Ann, and Mary were “attacked” by John
Proctor and how he came to them and started torturing them. All three of them gave a different
account of how John had tortured them because they didn’t do what he wanted them to do. Sarah
said that he was pinching and pricking her to death and tried to make her drink something that
was as red as blood. Ann said that he was also pinching her and choking her until she wrote in
his book, and Mary said that he also pinched her, bit her, and choked her and pressed on her
stomach until blood came out of her mouth. But both Ann and Mary mention something about a
book while Sarah did not and I found that interesting. But John’s document, or letter, states that
none of it is true, and that they will always be innocent in God’s eyes no matter what. And I’m
on John’s side because he is innocent and innocent blood was shed because some girls didn’t
want to get in deep trouble for doing stupid stuff. They didn’t want to own up to their mistakes or
problems so they used fear to get out of trouble.
One thing that I found interesting was at the end of John’s letter he wrote, “…Sheeding
our Innocent Bloods, desiring your Prayers to the Lord in our behalf, we rest your Poor Afflicted
Servants.” I think that this shows America’s past pretty well during that time period. People
controlled other people through fear, especially when they know they might be losing them.
They controlled people by putting the blame on other innocent lives in order to maintain control.
They think that because they’re on the top they can do what they want with the people on God’s
behalf, they’re afraid of losing control. And so the “Afflicted Servants” pay the price. And that’s
what I thought was interesting on that little phrase at the end.


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