MARY BRADBURY TRIED AND CONVICTED OF WITCHCRAFT
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 after 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.
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.
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.
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.
Mary Perkins Bradbury, Salem Witch is my 7th cousin 12 times removed.
your father → Rufus S. Nichols
his father → Tressie (King) Nichols
his mother → Michael O. King
her father → Margaret (Wright) King
his mother → James G Wright
her father → William Wright
his father → John Wright Jr
his father → John Wright, Sr.
his father → Anne Minor - Wright
his mother → Col. John Washington
her father → Reverend Lawrence Washington
his father → Lawrence Washington, Sr., Esquire of Sulgrave Manor, Mayor of Northampton
his father → Elizabeth Lyte
his mother → Ursula Light
her mother → Elizabeth Blount
her mother → Sir Richard Blount, Kt., of Iver, Sherriff of Buckingham and Bedfordshire
her father → Sir Thomas Blount, Kt.
his father → Margaret Blount
his mother → Joan Astley
her sister → Thomas Astley, Esq., Sheriff of Staffordshire
her son → Alys Perkins
his daughter → Henry Perkins
her son → Thomas Perkins, Sr.
his son → Henry Perkins
his son → John Perkins, Sr.
his son → Mary Perkins Bradbury, Salem Witch Trials