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American Freedom

            Lori Lee Wilson is a historian that has studied many books that describe the history of the Salem Witch Trials. Fifty percent of the book, How History is Invented: The Salem Witch Trials tells what happened during the Salem Witch Trials. A large number of people were a suspect to be witches were innocent but accused guilty of witchcraft. Wilson explains the life of colonials living in Salem in 1692. These people lived in an isolated community where they felt threatened by the Indians, feared the bears and the animals in North America, and often disputed with neighbors about land boundaries. Throughout the book, Wilson creates a painted picture for readers for a better understanding of what puritan lifestyle is like in Salem during the late 1600's. In 1977, Wilson received a B.A. in history at Westmont College in California. Her love for history is from listening to stories of her great-grandmothers, and grandmothers, and mother told her. The stories they told her were interesting enough for Wilson to want to become a historian. Wilson has only written this book and one other book about the history of Trinity Episcopal Church in Shelburne. .
             Witchcraft has evolved from 35,000 B.C. up until the 1600's and 1700's. The word witch comes from the Celtic word Wicca, meaning "wise one" or "magician." The term witchcraft is using special magical powers to harm someone or damage their property. The word demon in Greek mythology, meant that there were evil spirits who would take the possession of a person's mind and body causing them to scream, fall into fits, blurt prophecies and hidden truths. All this is important to know because during the 1600's and 1700's a fear of witchcraft swept through most of Europe. The courts allowed gossip and rumor to be used for evidence. Many children began to testify against their own parents. The American colonists brought their belief of witchcraft from England to the New World.

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