And the jury says…

John Carrington, a 33 year old carpenter, arrived in New England in 1635 and settled in Wethersfield, Connecticut with his wife and several children. Sometime in 1649-1650 he and his wife were accused by their fellow citizens of witchcraft. The circumstances of the accusations are unknown as there is no testimonial record of the trial.

The indictment and conviction of the Carringtons: A Particular Court in Hartford upon the trial of John Carrington and his wife 20th February 1650.

Magistrates at the trial included Mr. [John] Webster, who later became Governor of Connecticut and was our ancestor, as was one of the probable jurors, Edward Griswold, as he served on several similar witch trials in the same time period he probably also served on this one.

The verdict for both John and his wife are on record and read as follows:

John Carrington thou art indicted by the name of John Carrington of Wethersfield carpenter, that not having the fear of God before thine eyes thou hast entertained familiarity with Satan the great enemy of God and mankind and by his help hast done works above the course of nature for which both according to the law of God and of the established law of this commonwealth thou deserves! to die. The jury fmds this indictment against John Carrington March 6, 1650/51. 

Joan Carrington thou art indicted by the name of Joan Carrington the wif(e) of John Carrington that not having the fear of God before thine eyes thou hast entertained familiarity with Satan the great enemy of God and mankind and by his help hast done works above the course of nature for which both according to the Jaws of God, and the established law of this commonwealth thou deservest to die. The jury finds this indictment against Joan Carrington March 6, 1650/51. Source: CoU. CHS, 22 (1926), pp. 92-93.

Both of them were hanged. This is not the only trial ancestors of ours were involved in, we also have ancestors Pitkins, Loomis, Marsh and Newell. None were living in Salem at the time of the famous witch trials, but there were plenty of other crazy people in New England to keep the courts hopping in many other towns.

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