February 26 , 2008



A journal written between 1679 and 1791 is discovered and published by the author and his wife, Carole, in 2010. The author of the journal is Mildred Morris, who writes about the major events in her life from age 13 to 24. She grows up in Newbury, Massachusetts, and leads a troubled childhood because of her rebellious nature. Mildred is repeatedly suspected of witchcraft by the townspeople after several incidences in which she appears to have some supernatural powers, and she is forced to endure a hearing with the local pastor after she has a clandestine meeting with a group of gypsies. Her brother Aaron dies at an early age, and her parents die in a fire, so Mildred becomes an orphan and must find her own way in the colonial village. She befriends Thomas Noyes, a leading figure in the community, who helps defend her against the witchcraft accusations. Mildred becomes a healer with her friend Abigail Humphrey, marries William Franklin and has a child, who is taken away from her at birth by the accused witch Tituba. After both Abigail and William are lost, Mildred is pectedly reunited with her daughter, Deborah. Her suspicious activities continue to alarm the townspeople, and eventually she is formally accused of being a witch and stands trial twice. Her life is spared the first time primarily because of intervention by Thomas Noyes, but she is whipped publicly and banned from civic and church activities. She is formally charged with witchcraft one more time after the mysterious death of two town fathers and this time is convicted and sentenced to death. But she escapes from prison while awaiting execution and leaves Massachusetts for the last time just months before the famous Salem witch trials, taking Deborah with her.
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