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Salem Possessed: Primary Sources

Primary sources

When historians talk about evidence, they often mean primary sources. Primary sources (diaries, letters, speeches, newspaper accounts, artifacts, etc. created during the time period being studied) can offer rich and unique insights into your topic.  Thousands of primary documents have been digitized and can be found online on university, government and museum websites.  The Bentley Library also has collections of these documents in printed source books.

You might also try searching our American History Primary Sources Custom Search Engine


Witchcraft: Cotton Mather’s Part in the “Sad Errours” of 1692

Annals of witchcraft in New England, and elsewhere in the United States, from their first settlement. by Drake, Samuel Gardner, 1798-1875. Publication Date: 1870  Drawn up from unpublished and other well authenticated records of the alleged operations of witches and their instigator, the devil. By Samuel G. Drake. Documentary reader.


Primary Sources from Salem

Salem History: Milestone Documents in American History

  • Scroll and select "Milestone Documents in American History."  Complete a "Keyword" search on your topic (for example, Salem Witch Trials).  Look in the box on the left to cite, email or print.