6/19/14 Thursday in Moody, ME (Moody Beach-TT/OW)
On our way after 8:30 am and picking up Susan/Bill. First time actually using the EZPass and it was so slick. We just kept rolling at 65 mph through the toll. Cool. Susan and Bill got really interested in it after seeing all the benefits and the only cost is the hassle of getting it. We arrived in Salem by 10 am, with John managing to find a spot to park on the street. That was a minor miracle-they’re tough on limiting parking time and towing you away if you are even a bit over. We confirmed with a passer by that our spot was good all day. It was not far from the House of the Seven Gables.
We had a bit of walking to find our primary destination, the Salem Witch Museum, but that just means more good exercise! On our way there we saw the Derby wharf where they have the Friendship boat (reproduction) from the 1600’s. This is also where the National Park has the Salem Maritime National Historic Site.
Nearby was the Pickering wharf. Lots of shops there, but I didn’t picture them.
We arrived at the Witch Museum just in time to get tickets and get in to the show. Here they shared the story of how it all came about in a kind of diorama in the dark, parts exposed as the story progressed. Essentially young Puritan girls, stressed with the severe winter and hard life, listening to a black maid’s stories, started to experience trances and babbling that the local doctor proclaimed meant they were under evil influences. Pretty soon their imaginations led to blaming it on innocent people like Nurse Good, who was pretty old, and the maid who’d been telling them stories. 19 people were hanged and 1 crushed for saying they were innocent. If they admitted guilt they were simply jailed and forgotten. While jailed their families were responsible for the cost of jailing – food, chains…
The statue is of Roger Conant (1592-1679). The first settler of Salem in 1626. “I was a means through grace assisting me to stop the flight of those few that then were here with me, and that by my utter denial to go away with them, who would have gone either for England, or mostly for Virginia”.
There is also the Witch House. It’s the only house from that time period where people are allowed to tour inside. Since it had a fee we all figured it was okay to just enjoy the outside. We’d seen a lot of old houses by now.
Next up: The Visitor Center, which is also a National Park. Then it was time for lunch so we decided on Kushco Bistro, recommended by my phone app Urban Spoon. It’s a deli with the best and BIG sandwiches. We were all stuffed after just the first half but we were all able to work our way to the end, they were so tasty.
Now we could explore Salem. Here are some buildings that caught my eye:
The yellow building was owned by John Crownshield and we saw his (and his wife’s) graves in the town graveyard. There is also the building/property once owned by Capt. Richard More, also buried in this graveyard. Note also after that the Five Cents Savings Bank.
Near the graveyard is the Witch Trials Memorial to those hanged (one was pressed) to death as witches. It’s called the Wall of Intolerance (surrounding the grassy area). Quotes of the last words of these brave innocents are printed into the concrete under our feet.
Some Salem scenes, including the red line you can follow to see the Salem sites. The last is Salem Commons. Such a lovely park right next to all the action.
Just beyond where our car was parked is the House of the Seven Gables, the actual house owned by Nathaniel Hawthorne’s cousin, that he based his similarly named book on. I wanted to see it (and 3 other buildings moved there including his birthplace), but the others really didn’t. We were tired, footsore and still had a trip to Costco yet.
Thanks to our GPS we found Costco, did our shopping quickly while Bill and Susan got something to drink, then headed back home. Whew! Another big day.
At home we relaxed then had a simple supper of chili (no popcorn even), then enjoyed the campfire with Randy/Sherri and Susan/Bill until late.