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  • In Salem Witch Trial Conspiracy, join author Katherine Howe as she embarks on a historical journey to bring you the truth behind the world's most famous witch-hunt. Of the over one hundred people charged with witchcraft, five died in jail, 19 died on the gallows and one was crushed to death. Each of these deaths was the result of an overwhelming religious hysteria, and even to this date historians are uncovering more about what really occurred. One of the first victims was a British born ancestor of Katherine, who revisits the site of the trials to examine fascinating new research and delve into Salem's horrific past. By studying the sermons of the village's Puritan minister Samuel Parris, historians have deduced that a chilling plot could have been the cause of the frenzy that followed. Parris was at the very heart of Salem's terror, and it was the supposed possession of his own niece and daughter that led to the first arrest. From studying his hand-written notes, which have been preserved to this day, it seems he believed his ministry was under attack. But was his true enemy the devil, or his own employers? [as appears at National Geographic's UK site, under the title "Salem Witch Trial Conspiracy"]

    1692, Salem, Massachusetts; 162 people are arrested on charges of witchcraft. Five die in jail, one is crushed to death and 19 die on the gallows. The Salem witch trials have long been regarded as the textbook example of what happens when people are overwhelmed by hysteria. Now, author and historian, Katherine Howe, returns to the site of her ancestor's execution to discover how the very latest research has unearthed a chilling possibility that the most famous witch trial in the English speaking world was actually the result of a cynical plot by Salem's embattled Puritan Minister: Samuel Parris. [as appears at National Geographic's US site, under the title "Salem: Unmasking the Devil"]

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