Take A Weekend Getaway To Salem Massachusetts This OctoberOct 13, 2021 05:58PM ● By Virginia Dean
On the north coast of Massachusetts lies perhaps one of the most well-known seaports in the country. Famous for its 1692 witch trials, during which several locals were executed for allegedly practicing witchcraft, Salem offers such landmarks as the Witch Museum, the House of Seven Gables, the Witch House, Witch Trials Memorial, the Burying Point, Witch Dungeon Museum, and the Willows Park.
Settlement by Europeans began in 1626 by a company of fishermen who arrived from Cape Ann in northeastern Massachusetts. The town now has a population of nearly 45,000. One of the most widely known aspects of Salem is its history of witchcraft allegations. After the 1692 witch trials, 19 people were executed by hanging because of the false accusations. During the American Revolution of 1775-6, the town became a center for privateering. Salem was incorporated as a city in 1836 after townspeople became involved with East Indies and Old China trade. The town is also the birthplace of the National Guard.
Today, tourism is still centered around the witch trials and witches in general. Located 16 miles north of Boston, Salem typically welcomes more than half a million visitors during October for its month-long Haunted Happenings. However, other attractions include a reconstruction of a three-masted East Indiaman trading ship, waterfront redevelopment, a 92-foot catamaran, a replica of the original Fame fishing schooner, and the Peabody Essex Museum, a leading museum of Asian art and culture and early American maritime trade and whaling. The town is also full of colonial architecture, shopping, and restaurants.
If you’re looking for a festive, seasonally appropriate weekend trip this month, you would be hard-pressed to find a New England destination that celebrates Halloween and all its amenities as thoroughly as Salem.
Contact the Salem Chamber of Commerce, 265 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970; www.salem-chamber.org or 978-744-0004.