Mary Bradbury (Perkins) (1615 - 1700) MP

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Birthplace: Hillmorton, Warwickshire, England
Death: Died in Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts
Cause of death: Escaped conviction and died of old age.
Occupation: Arrived in Boston MA 1631 Charged as a Witch in 1692, sentenced to death as witch, 1692; escaped
Managed by: Christopher Lee Empey
Last Updated:

About Mary Bradbury (Perkins)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Bradbury

Salem Witch Trials: Accused, tried, and convicted of witchcraft. Not executed.

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Baptised September 3rd, 1615 at Hillmorton, Wawrickshire, England

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During her trial for witch craft on July 28, 1692, her husband, Thomas Bradbury testified:

We have been married for fifty-five years, and she hath been a loving and faithful wife unto me unto this day. She had been wonderful laborious, diligent and inustrious in her place and employment about bringing up our family which have been eleven of our own and four grandchildren. She was both prudent and provident, of a cheerful spirit, liberal and charitable. She being now very aged and weak, and grieved under afflictions, may not be able to apeak much for herself, not being so free of speech as some others might be. I hope her life and conversation among her neighbors has been such as gives a better or more real testimony than can be expressed by words.

118 of her neighbors signed this statement:

We the subscribers do testify that it [her life] was such as becomes the gospel. She was a lover of the ministry in all appearances, and a diligent attender upon God's holy ordinances, being of a courtsey and peaceable disposition and carriage, neither did any of us (some whom have lived in the town with her about fifty years) ever hear or know that she had any difference or falling out with any of her neighbors, man, woman, or child, but was always ready and willing to do for them what lay in her power, night or day, though with hazard of her health and other danger. More might be spoken in commendation but this for the present.

In her own defense she stated:

I am wholly innocent of any such wickedness through the goodness of God who has kept me hitherto. I am the servant of Jesus Christ and have given myself up to him as my only Lord and Savior, and to the contempt and defiance of the devil and all his works as horrid and detestable and have accordingly endeavored to frame my life and conversations according to the rules of his holy word, and in that faith and practice, resolveby the help and assistance of God to continue to my life's end. For the truth of what I say, I humbly refer myself to my brethren and neighbors that know me, and to the searcher of all hearts for the truth and uprightness of my heart therein (human frailties and Unavoidable excepted) of which I bitterly complain every day.

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MARY BRADBURY TRIED AND CONVICTED OF WITCHCRAF T

Mary (PERKINS) BRADBURY was one of those unfortunate people who, in the dark days of witchcraft delusion, was among the accused. Among those accused of assuming animal forms (most were beasts common to the pioneers) Mary's most unusual

metamorphosis was that of a blue boar. Her specialty was supposedly in casting spells upon ships, and Massachusetts merchant Samuel ENDICOTT testified that two firkins of butter , purchased from Mary by one of his captains, had been bewitched and caused dire effects on the seamen's voyage. As the ship sped through the warm waters of the Caribbean, the butter turned sour just before an unexpected storm arose. One night soon a f ter ENDICOTT was sitting on deck and happened to glance upward in the moonlight and there perched jauntily on the windlass was none other than Mary BRADBURY, or her spirit, dressed as she customarily appeared, in a white cap and neckcloth. His testimony and that of others proved costly and she was found guilty of practicing magic and was sentenced to be executed.

The conviction could not be reversed, but by the efforts of her friends her execution was delayed, the horrid delusion passed away, and she was discharged. By some accounts she was allowed to escape, 'though not officially released she did return to her home.

The papers connected with her trial , as well as those of others, who were (some of them) less fortunate, have been preserved, and are to be seen on the files in the Clerk of Courts Office in Salem, Massachusetts.

MANY CAME TO HER DEFENSE

Her defense in answer to the accusations of her persecutors, the testimony of her husband with that of Rev. James ALLIN and John PIKE (father of her daughter-in-law), her ministers, and the united testimonial of over one hundred of her neighbors and townspeople all were of no avail. These papers show her to have been a most estimable, pious and good woman, and should be recorded to her praise; copied here from the original:

The answer of Mary Bradbury to the charge of witchcraft or familiarity with the Devil. - I do plead not guilty. - I am wholly innocent of such wickedness through the goodness of God that hath kept me hitherto. I am the servant of Jesus Christ and have given myself up to him as my only Lord and Saviour, and to the diligent attendance upon him in all holy ordinances, in utter contempt and defiance of the devil & all his works as horrid and detestable; and have endeavored accordingly to frame my life & conversation according to the rules

of his holy word, and in that faith and practice resolve, by the help and assistance of God, to continue to my life's end. For the truth of what I say as to matter of practice, I humbly refer myself to my brethren and neighbors that

know me, and to the searcher of all hearts for the truth & uprightness of my heart therein, human frailties & unavoidable infirmities excepted, of which 1 bitter complain every day. Mary Bradbury.

July 28: 1692. - Concerning my beloved wife, Mary Bradbury, this is what I have to say: We have been married fifty-five years, and she hath been a loving and

faithful wife to me. Unto this day she hath been wonderfully laborious, diligent and industrious, in her place and employment about the bringing up of our

family (which hath been eleven children of our own and four grandchildren) she was both prudent and provident, of a cheerful spirit, liberal and charitable. She being now very aged and grieved under her af fliction, may not be able to speak much for herself, not being so free of speech as some others may be. I hope her life and conversation have been such among her neighbours as gives a better and more real testimony other than can be expressed by words.

Tho. Bradbury.

Being desired to give my testimony, concerning the life and conversation of Mrs. Bradbury of Salisbury among us wch is as followeth, viz: I have lived nine years at Salisbury in the work on the ministry and now four years in the of fice of a pastor; to my best notice and observation of Mrs. Bradbury she hath lived

according to the gospel among us, was a constant attender upon the ministry of ye word; and all the ordinances of the gospel, full of works of charity and

mercy to the sick and poor, neither have I seen or heard anything of her unbecoming the profession of the gospel. James Allin.

Having lived many years in Salisbury and been much conversant there, according to my best observation and notice of Mrs. Bradbury must needs a f firme to

what is above written, and give my oath to it if called thereto. John Pike.

Concerning Mrs Bradburies life and conversation, We the subscribers do testifie that it was such as becometh ye gospel, shee was a lover of ye ministry in all appearence and a diligent attender upon Gods holy ordinances being of a curteous and peacable disposition and caring, neither did any of us (some of whom have lived in ye town with her fifty yeare) ever heare or know that she

ever had any difference or falling oute wth any of her neighbors, man, woman or child-but was alwayes readie and willing to doe for them wt laye in her power night and day, though wth hazard to her health or other danger - more might be spoken in her comendation but this for the prsent.

(signed by 117 men and women of Salisbury).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Bradbury

Early life

Mary Perkins was daughter of John and Judith (Gater) Perkins, baptized in 1615 at Hilmorton, County Warwick, England. Her family immigrated to America in 1631, sailing on the "Lyon" from Bristol.

In 1636 she married Thomas Bradbury of Salisbury, Massachusetts, considered one of its most distinguished citizens.

Witch trials

In the notorious witch trials of 1692, Mary Bradbury was indicted for (among other charges):

"Certaine Detestable arts called Witchcraft & Sorceries Wickedly Mallitiously and felloniously hath used practiced and Exercised At and in the Township of Andivor in the County of Essex aforesaid in upon & against one Timothy Swann of Andivor In the County aforesaid Husbandman -- by which said Wicked Acts the said Timothy Swann upon the 26th day of July Aforesaid and divers other days & times both before and after was and is Tortured Afflicted Consumed Pined Wasted and Tormented..."

Witnesses testified that she assumed animal forms; her most unusual metamorphosis was said to have been that of a blue boar.

Another allegation was that she cast spells upon ships.

Over a hundred of her neighbors and townspeople testified on her behalf, but to no avail and she was found guilty of practicing magic and sentenced to be executed.

Through the ongoing efforts of her friends, her execution was delayed. After the witch frenzy had passed, she was released. By some accounts she was allowed to escape. Others claim she bribed her jailer.

Another account claims that her husband bribed the jailer and took her away to Maine in a horse and cart. They returned to Massachusetts after the witch hysteria had died down.

Mary Bradbury died of natural causes in her own bed in 1700.

In 1711, the governor and council of Massachusetts authorized payment of £578.12s to the claimants representing twenty-three persons condemned at Salem, and the heirs of Mary Bradbury received £20. A petition to reverse the attainder of twenty-two of the thirty-one citizens convicted and condemned as a result of the trials was passed by the Massachusetts General Court in 1711, and in 1957 The Commonwealth of Massachusetts reversed the stigma placed on all those not covered by earlier orders.

Descendants

Children of Thomas and Mary (Perkins) Bradbury were:

- Wymond Bradbury (1637-1669) m. Sarah Pike, daughter of Major Rober Pike - Judith Bradbury (1638-1700) - Thomas Bradbury (1640-1718) - Mary Bradbury (1642-1667) - Jane Bradbury (1645-1729) m. Henry True - Jacob Bradbury (1647-1669, Barbados) - William Bradbury (1649-1678) m. Rebecca Wheelwright - Elizabeth Bradbury (1651-?) - John Bradbury (1654-1678) - Ann Bradbury (1656-1659) - Jabez Bradbury (1658-1677)

Her descendants include:

Ray Bradbury, American science fiction writer.

Bradbury Robinson (1752-1801), a great-great grandson, fought for the patriots at the Battle of Concord (1775) and testified that the British fired first.[2][3]

Bradbury Robinson (1884-1949), threw American football's first legal forward pass.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, transcendentalist,a fourth great-grandson of Mary Bradbury, descendant through her daughter Judith.

Sources

Captain Thomas Bradbury and His Wife Mary Perkins; by John V. Beck

The Salem Witchcraft Papers

Bradbury, John Merrill, Bradbury Memorial: Records of Some of the Descendants of Thomas Bradbury of Adamenticus, York, 1634 also of Salisbury, Massachusetts, 1638, 1890

Perkins Family History (hand-written documents, written at various dates from 1600s-present- Des Plaines, IL)

References

1.^ "The Salem Witch Trials 1692". http://www.mayflowerfamilies.com/Salem%20Witches/salem_witch_trials.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-22.

2.^ Statements of American combatants at Lexington and Concord contained in supplement “Official Papers Concerning the Skirmishes at Lexington and Concord” to The Military Journals of Private Soldiers, 1758-1775, by Abraham Tomlinson for the Poughkeepsie, NY museum, 1855.

3.^ "Colonial towns, by the numbers". http://www.wickedlocal.com/lexington/fun/entertainment/arts/x1605763724. Retrieved 2010-04-25.

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Convicted of being a witch.

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http://kristinhall.org/fambly/Perkins/JohnPerkins2.html

Salem Witch Trials:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Bradbury

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The Family of John Perkins of Ipswich, by George A Perkins, M.D. lists the following on Part 1, pages 15 through 18:

5 Mary (John1) was born in England in 1620. She came, with others of the family, to America in 1631, and in 1637 she was married at Ipswich to Thomas Bradbury, and removed with him to Salisbury. He died at Salisbury, March 16, 1695. Thomas Bradbury was a representative in 1651 and after. He was recorder of Norfolk Co.; town clerk of Salisbury, and was captain of a military company. His varied acquirements caused him to be elected to fill many places of honor and trust. He was a man of no mean talents; some of the records of Salisbury are in his beautiful hand-writing.

Mary (Perkins) Bradbury was one of those unfortunate people who, in the dark days of witchcraft delusion, was among the accused. She was also convicted, but by the efforts of her friends her execution was delayed, the horrid delusion passed away, and she was discharged. The papers connected with her trial, as well as those of the others, who were, some of them, more unfortunate, have been preserved, and are to be seen on the files in the Clerk of Courts Office in Salem, Mass.

He defence in answer to the accusations of her persecutors, the testimony of her husband with that of Rev. James Allin and John Pike, her ministers, and the united testimonial of over one hundred of her neighbors and towns-people were of no avail. These papers show her to have been a most estimable, pious and good woman, and should be recorded in her praise. We copy them from the original:

"The answer of Mary Bradbury to the charge of witchcraft or familiarity with the Devil. - I do plead not guilty. - I am wholly innocent of such wickedness through the goodness of God that hath kept me hitherto. I am the servant of Jesus Christ and have given myself up to him as my only Lord and Saviour, and to the diligent attendance upon him in al holy ordinances, in utter contempt and defiance of the Devil & all his works as horrid and detestable; and have endeavored accordingly to frame my life & conversation according to the rules of his holy word, and in faith and practice resolve, by the help and assistance of God, to continue to my life's end. For the truth of what I say as to matter of practice, I humbly refer myself to my brethren and neighbors that know me, and to the searcher of all hearts for the truth & uprightness of my heart therein, human frailties & unavoidable infirmaties expected, of which I bitterly complain every day.

Mary Bradbury."

"July 28: 1692. - Concerning my beloved wife, Mary Bradbury, this is what I have to say: We have been married fifty-five years, and she hath been a a loving and faithful wife to me. Unto this day shee hath been wonderfully laborious, diligent and industrious, in her place and employment about bringing up of our family (which hath been eleven children of our own and four grandchildren) she was both prudent and provident, of a cheerful spirit, liberal and charitable. She being now very aged and grieved under her affliction, may not be able to speak much for herself, not being so free of speech as some others may be. I hope her life and conversation have been such among her neighbours as gives a better and more real testimony of her than can be expressed by words.

Tho. Bradbury."

"Being desired to give my testimony concerning the life and conversation of Mrs. Bradbury of Salisbury among us wch is as followeth, viz: I have lived nine years at Salisbury in the work of the ministry and now four years in the office of a pastor; to my best notice and observation of Mrs. Bradbury she hath lived according to the gospel among us, was a constant attender upon the ministry of ye word; and all the ordinances of the gospel, full of works of charity and mercy to the sick and poor, neither have I seen or heard anything of her unbecoming the profession of the gospel.

James Allin."

"Having lived many years in Salisbury and been much conversant there, according to my best observation and notice of Mrs. Bradbury must needs affirme to what is above written, and give my oath to it if called thereto.

John Pike."

July 22: 1692.

"Concerning Mrs Bradburies life and conversation, We the subscribers do testifie that it was such as becometh ye gospel, shee was a louer of ye ministry in all appearance and a diligent attender upon Gods holy ordinances being of a curteous and peacable disposition and cariag, neither did any of us (some of whom have lived in ye towne with her fifty yeare) ever heare or know that she ever had any difference or falling oute wth any of her neighbors, man, woman, or child - but was alwayes readie and willing to doe for them wt lay in her power night and day, though wth hazard to her health or other danger. - more might be spoken in her comendation but this for the prsent."

The above was signed by 117 men and women of Salisbury.

Mary (Perkins) Bradbury died in Amesbury in 1700, at the age of eighty years.

Children of Thos. and Mary (Perkins) Bradbury were:

Wymond, b. Apr. 1, 1637.

Judith, b. Oct. 2, 1638.

Thomas, b. Jan. 28, 1640.

Mary, b. March 17, 1642.

Jane, b. May 11, 1645.

Jacob, b. June 17, 1647.

William, b. Sept. 15, 1649.

Elizabeth, b. Nov. 11, 1651.

John, b. Apr. 20, 1654.

Ann, b. Apr. 16, 1656.

Jabez, b. June 27, 1658.

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Mary was convicted of witchcraft 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts. She escaped execution with the help of relatives and friends, she died of natural causes in 1700. 1750 the Gov. of Massachusetts cleared her name of all charges. There is lots of info about her on the web, just type in her full name & Salem, Ma. 1692 if you want to read more.

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http://www.angelfire.com/mi4/polcrt/Perkins.html

On May 26, 1692, Mary [Perkins] Bradbury was named as a tormentor of Mary Walcott, Mercy Lewis, and Ann Putnam, Jr. She was arrested by Constable William Baker when she was 70 years of age. Her husband, Captain Thomas Bradbury, was disliked by Suzanna Martin for his suspected tampering with her father's will.

On August 9, 1692, Mary's accusers depostions were taken. Suzanna Martin, enemy of her husband, was already hanged on July 19, 1692.

Mary was supposedly seen signing the Devil's book. Other enemies were John Carr and his niece Anne Putnam, Jr. John Carr desired to marry Mary Bradbury's daughter. Mary did not agree to his wants, since she thought her to be too young to marry. Later on, John Carr died in 1689. Mary Walcott and Ann Putnam, Jr. told the court that Uncle John appeared to them in a sheet as a spectre and told them that Mary Bradbury had killed him. John's brother William, on the other hand, felt that John Carr had died of natural causes.

On Saturday, September 10, 1692, Mary [Perkins] Bradbury was sentenced to hang. Most of the testimony against Mary came from the Endicotts and the Carrs. The Carrs were the brothers of Mrs. Ann Putnam, Sr.

Samuel Endecott testified that butter he bought from Mary Bradbury turned rancid and full of maggots. They also said that she turned herself into a boar and charged Zerubabal, George, and Richard Carr's horses. James Carr was said to have been "behagged" when he was courting the same woman as one of Mary Bradley's sons. The flesh of the boar/swine was forbidden by Levitical law. Moses only warned about any "unclean" animals. The unclean mammals were those with cloven feet. Swines were thought to induce cutaneous disorders in hot climates. It was thought that leprosy was related to the eating of pork. Heathen nations like Palestine ate pork.

A herd of swine (Matthew 8:32) allowed the devil to enter their herd. The wild boar makes its home in the woods (Psalms 80:13), which the English felt that pagan inhabitants in nature.

See my article on Salem, MA. under the heading "New England's Wilderness" for more about what the Puritans felt about nature.

After Mary's sentence a group of her supporters broke Mary Bradley out of jail. One of her accusers, Samuel Endicott, was said to have left home around the same time as she broke out of jail. He never returned. Seven years later he was still not found and was declared legally dead.

By Saturday, January 14, 1693 (four months later), Mary Bradbury was still in hiding, fearing that if she came back she would be charged for Samuel Endicott's murder.

On Friday, May 12, 1693, Mary Bradbury rejoined her family and lived another seven years, until her death in 1700. By 1693, most prisoners were set free and the "Witch Hunt" was over.

http://books.google.com/books?id=7dQWAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA51&lpg=PA51&dq=wicken+bonant,+uk&source=bl&ots=qoKin6ga7r&sig=0igHUjE7mNBvOENe1dLj29YV5lw&hl=en&ei=0xB6S62UGIOoNpm2oLQH&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CAoQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=&f=false

She was tried as a witch in Salisbury, MA. 118 people testified against her, but the moving testimony of her husband, a very respected man of the community, saved her. Had been an immigrant from Co. Essex, England.

Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, Vol 1, p. 229

After 56 yrs. of good cohabit. was accus. of witchcraft in the dark hours of 1692, but her age was not sufficient to condemn her, she was qcq. and d 20 Dec. 1700.

Mary was accused and convicted of witchcraft, but, through the efforts of her friends, was able to avoid execution; after the hysteria had passed, she was released; d. Dec. 20, 1700; eleven children.

ndictment 1, Essex County, MA, 1692:

The jurior of our Sov. Lord and Lady, the King and Queen, doe present that Mary Bradbury, wife of Capt. Thomas Bradbury of Salisbury in the County of Essex, Gent. on the 28 day of July, in the years aforesaid and divers other days, and times as well before as after certaine detestable arts called wichcraft and

soceries wickedly, malliciously and felonicully hath used, practiced, and exercised at and in the township of Andivor in the County of Essex aforesaid in upon and against one Timothy Swann of Andiver in the County aforesaid husbandman by said wicked Acts, the said Timothy Swann on the 28th day of July, aforesaid and divers other days and times before and after and also for sundry other acts of wichcraft by the said Mary Bradbury committed and done before and since that time against the peace of our Sov. Lord and Lady, the King and Queen, theire Crown and dignity and the foreman of the stattute in that case made and provided.

Witness: Mary Walcott, Ann Putman.

Indictment 2, Essex County, MA, 1692:

The juriors of our Sov. Lord and Lady, the King and Queen, doe present that Mary Bradbury, wife of Capt. Thomas Bradbury in the County of Essex, Gent. on the 26 day of July, in the years aforesaid and divers other days, and times as well before as after certaine detestable arts called wichcraft and soceries wickedly, maliciously and felonicely hast used, practiced, and exercised at and in the town of Salem in the County of Essex aforesaid in upon and against one Sarah Vibber, wife of John Vibber of Salem aforesaid, husbandman. by which said wicked acts, the said Sarah Vibber on the 26th day of July aforesaid and divers other days and times before and after, was and is tourtured, afflicted, consumed, pined, wasted, tormented and also for sundry other acts of wichcraft by the said Mary Bradbury committed and done before and since that time against the peace of our Sov. Lord and Lady, the King and Queen, their Crowns and dignity and the forms of the Statutes in that case may be provided.

Witness: Mary Walcutt, Elis Booth, Ellis Hobard, Mercy Lewis.

Mary Bradbury's answer to the charges:

The answer of Mary Bradbury in ye charge of witchcraft for famililiary with ye devil, I do plead not guilty.

I am wholly innocent of any wickedness through the goodness of God that he kept me hitherto. I am the servant of Jesus Christ and have given myself up to him as my only Lord and Savior and to the diligent attendance upon him in all holy ordinations in utter contempt and defiance of the Devil and all his works as horrid and detestable and accordingly have endeavored to frame my life and conversation according to the wiles of his holy word and in that faith and practice resolve by the help and assistance of God to continue to my life's end for the truth of what I say as to matter of practice I humbly refer myself to my brothers and neighbors that know me and ye Sacred of all Hearts for the truth and uprightness of my heart therein (human frailties and unavoidable infirmatices excepted) of which I bitterly complayne every day.

Signed: Mary Bradbury.

Statement of George Herrick v. Mary Bradbury, 26 May, 1692:

Being at Salem with Constable Josp Neale the persons under written was afflicted much and complained against, viz: Mary Walcoott, Ann Putman upon Capt. Bradbury's wife of Salisbury, and Mary Walcoott, Ann Putman, Mrs. Marshall upon Goodwife Read of Marblehead, and Mary Walcott, March Lewis, Ann Piyman upon Goody Foster ye same women tells them of the afflicys of Mr. Taft's Negro.

Attest, Geo. Herrick, Marshall.

Statement of Thomas Bradbury for Mary Bradbury, 26 Jul 1692:

Concerning my beloved wife Mary Bradbury this is what I have to say: We have been married 55 years and she hath been a faithful and loving wife to me this day. She hath been wonderful, laborious, diligent, and industrious in her place and employment about the bringing up of our family which have been 11 children of our own and 4 grandchildren. She was both prudent and provident of a cheerful spirit, liberal and charitable. She being now very aged and weak and grieved under her affliction may not be able to speak very much for herself, not being so free of speech as some others may be. I hope her life and conversation hath been such among her neighbors as give a better and more reall testimony of her than can be expressed by word.

Signed: Owned by me, Tho. Bradbury.

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Keep in mind that she was about 77 years old when this happened!

"Mary was one of those unfortunate people who, in the dark days of witchcraft delusion, was among the accused. She was also convicted, but by the efforts of her friends her execution was delayed, the horrid delusion passed away, and she was discharged. The papers connected with her trial, as well as those of the others, who were, some of them, more unfortunate, have been preserved, and are to be seen on the files in the Clerk of Courts Office in Salem, MA.

Her defense in answer to the accusations of her persecutors, the testimony of her husband with that of Rev. James Allin and John Pike, her ministers, and the united testimonial of over one hundred of her neighbors and towns-people were all of no avail. These papers show her to have been a most estimable, pious and good woman, and should be recorded in her praise."

Copy from the original: Her statement:

"The answer of Mary Bradbury to the charge of witchcraft or familiarity with the Devil.- I do plead not guilty. - I am wholly innocent of such wickednesss through the goodness of God that hath kept me hitherto. I am the servant of Jesus Christ and have given myself up to him

as my only Lord and Saviour, and to the diligent attend once upon him in all holy ordinances, in utter contempt and defiance of the Devil & all his works as horrid and detestable; and have endeavored accordingly to frame my life & conversation according to the rules of his holy word, and in that faith and practice resolve, by the help and assistance of God, to continue to my life's end. For the truth of what I say as to matter of practice, I humbly refer myself to my brethren and neighbors that know me, and to the searcher of all hearts for the truth & uprightness of my heart therein, human frailties & unavoidable infirmaties excepted, of which I bitterly complain every day. Mary Bradbury."

The statements of her ministers:

""Being desired to give my testimony concerning the life and conversation of Mrs. Bradbury of Salisbury among us w eh is as followeth, viz: I have lived nine years at Salisbury in the work of the ministry and now four years in the office of a pastour; to my best notice and observation of Mrs. Bradbury she hath lived according to the gospel among us, was a constant attender upon the ministry of ye word; and all the ordinances of the gospel, full of work's of charity and mercy to the sick and poor, neither have I seen or heard anything of her unbecoming the profession of the gospel. James Allin."

"Having lived many years in Salisbury and been much conversant there, according to my best observation and notice of Mrs. Bradbury must needs affirme to what is above written, and give my oath to it if called thereto. John Pike."

July 22: 1692.

The statements of her friends and neighbors:

"Concerning Mrs Bradburies life and conversation, We the subscribers do testifie that it was such as becometh ye gospel, shee was a louer of ye ministry in all appearance and a diligent attender upon Gods holy ordinances being of a curteous and peacable disposition and caring, neither did any of us (some of whom have lived in ye towne with her fifty yeare) ever heare or know that she ever had any difference or falling oute wth any of her neighbors, man, woman, or child-but was alwayes readie and willing to doe for them w' lay in her power night and day, though wth hazard to her health or other danger. - more might be spoken in her comendation but this for the p'sent."

The above was signed by 117 men and women of Salisbury.

-------------------- LDS Family Search AFN: 9GQZ-TT

Mary Bradbury was accused, found guilty and imprissoned for Witchcraft during the Salem Witch Trials. She was led to escape by her friends after a period of time. When she returned home, the trials were drawing to a close so she was never taken back. Her health was compromised and she died about a year later.

Her son-in-law was one of the Magistrates in charge of some of the trials.

She was accused by the brother of the man who wanted to court Mary's grand daughter Sarah. Mary told the man that her grand daughter was too young. The man went off and became sick, then later died. His brother was sure that the Tuttle man was bewitched. The second charge was by a sailor who said the butter Mary made and sold to the ship's captain after a disagrement about the price, spoiled after they were out to sea. A (drunken) sailor said he saw Mary's spector on the bowspirit. The third charge was from neighbors who thought they saw an animal cross the road in front of them then turn into a woman who looked like Mary.

Many of her friends and neighbors were unjustly accused and murdered at that time in history.

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Mary was tried, convicted, but not executed, of Witchcraft. She was defended by Major Robert Pike.

-------------------- During the Salem Witch Trials, she was tried on July 28, 1692 in Salem and in spite of petitions on her behalf and letters testifying to her exemplary life, she was found guilty on Sept. 22, 1692.

Here is Mary Bradbury's statement on her behalf (in the original spelling).

I doe plead not guilty. I am wholly inocent of any such wickedness through the goodness of god that have kept mee hitherto) I am the servant of Jesus Christ & Have given my self up to him as my only lord & saviour: and to the dilligent attendance upon him in all his holy ordinances, in utter contempt & defiance of the divell, and all his works as horid & detestible; and accordingly have endevo'red to frame my life; & conversation according to the rules of his holy word, & in that faith & practise resolve by the help and assistance of god to contineu to my lifes end: for the truth of what I say as to matter of practiss I humbly refer my self, #[my selfe,] to my brethren & neighbors that know mee and unto the searcher of all hearts for the truth & uprightness of my heart therein: (human frailties, & unavoydable infirmities excepted) of which i bitterly complayne every day. Mary Bradbury

Mary was able to escape the gallows with the help of friends and family and was not executed. It is believed that she was hidden and overlooked by authorities.

Mary (Perkins) Bradbury was one of the wealthiest women in Salisbury. The daughter of Ann (Carr) Putnam was one of Mary's accusers of witchcraft. It was well known that the Carr and Bradbury families had fought for years over land, which was probably an additional motive in the charges against Mary Bradbury.

Witch trials

In the notorious witch trials of 1692, Mary Bradbury was indicted for (among other charges):

Witnesses testified that she assumed animal forms; her most unusual metamorphosis was said to have been that of a blue boar.

Another allegation was that she cast spells upon ships.

Over a hundred of her neighbors and townspeople testified on her behalf, but to no avail and she was found guilty of practicing magic and sentenced to be executed.

Through the ongoing efforts of her friends, her execution was delayed. After the witch debacle had passed, she was released. By some accounts she was allowed to escape. Others claim she bribed her jailer.

Another account claims that her husband bribed the jailer and took her away to Maine in a horse and cart. They returned to Massachusetts after the witch hysteria had died down.

Mary Bradbury died of natural causes in her own bed in 1700.

In 1711, the governor and council of Massachusetts authorized payment of £578.12s to the claimants representing twenty-three persons condemned at Salem, and the heirs of Mary Bradbury received £20. A petition to reverse the attainder of twenty-two of the thirty-one citizens convicted and condemned as a result of the trials was passed by the Massachusetts General Court in 1711, and in 1957 The Commonwealth of Massachusetts reversed the stigma placed on all those not covered by earlier orders.

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Mary Perkins Bradbury, Salem Witch Trials's Timeline

1601
1601
Wenham,Essex,Massachusetts,USA
1615
September 3, 1615
Warwickshire, England
September 3, 1615
Warwickshire, England
September 3, 1615
Newent, Gloucester, England
September 3, 1615
Hillmorton, Warwickshire, England
September 3, 1615
Hillmorton, Warwick, England
September 3, 1615
Hillmorton, Warwick, England
September 3, 1615
Hillmorton, Warwick, England
September 3, 1615
Hillmorton, Warwickshire, England, United Kingdom
September 3, 1615
Hillmorton, Warwickshire, England, United Kingdom