Cotton Mather Research
On February 12, 1663 I came into a family of Puritan Ministers - Cotton Mather Research introduction. My father was a well – respected Puritan Minister of a small church in the town of Boston, Massachusetts. At age 12 I attended the University of Harvard. After being born into a Puritan family, I brought it upon myself to become a minister. My first sermon was preached during the month of August in the year 1680. At the age of 22, I officially became a minister in the year 1685 (Walker). After the Salem Witch Trials were over, a play writer named Arthur Miller created a play called The Crucible.
I believe I was a very important part of the play considering I helped the judges collect spectral evidence during the trials, but Miller did not think so, therefore I was not portrayed in the play. I published a book in 1964 called Remarkable Provinces, stating my first encounter with witchcraft. The Goodwin family had been afflicted by Satan. I took their eldest , 13-year-old Martha, I brought her into my home and studied her actions as the devil would afflict her. I began to engage myself more into the trials, more than before.
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I was interested in the ” craft and actions of Satan(Walker). I was a witness to ” to a large part of what I tell; and I hope my neighbours have long thought, That I have otherwise learned Christ, than to ly unto the World”(Mather). I believe in witchcraft, I believe that Satan wants these little girls to go to the place of hell and evil. However, when the Salem witch trials came about, I wrote a letter to “John Richards of Boston, urging caution in the use of spectral evidence” (Walker).
As the trials proceeded I wrote Return of The Several Ministers and sent it to the Salem court officials. I simply stated that they should use caution “in the use of spectral evidence, saying that the devil could indeed assume the shape of an innocent person, and decrying the use of spectral evidence in the trials”(Walker). George Burroughs, a minister, was up for trial in the 1700’s. In my book Remarkable Provinces a very accurate way of discovering if a person were a witch or not, they had to recite the Lord’s Prayer.
Before Burroughs was hung, he recited the Lord’s Prayer perfectly, as people began to protest the hanging, I spoke out immediately and said, “Devil has often been transformed into an Angel of Light” (Walker). With that, George Burroughs was put to his death because of Witch Craft. As a Puritan Minister, I would be “seeking to bring the Church to a state of purity that would match Christianity as it had been in the time of Christ” (Linder, David O. ).
I set my sermons as if people were going to hell so they would start living there life as if they are meant to go to heaven. During the trials, I never thought about the trials being false accusations, I went along with what people told me, just like everyone else, treating the accusers as celebrities hoping they would feed more into our interest of it all. After the trials, I began to wonder that maybe I was not “quite as convinced of the righteousness of the trials” (Walker) as I thought I was. I faced a “time of intense regret and remorse about the trials” (Walker).