276: Abigail Dane Faulkner Sr

Salem Witch

Born: 13 October 1652, Andover, Massachusetts Bay Colony (Present-day Massachusetts, United States of America)

Died: 5 February 1730, Andover, Massachusetts Bay Colony (Present-day Massachusetts, United States of America)

Abigail escaped hanging because she was pregnant at the time of the trials.

Abigail and her husband Francis were quite wealthy, thanks to the nice estate Francis received when his father died. Some have speculated the money was why Abigail and her family were targeted during the trials. Her husband became mentally ill early into their marriage, leaving Abigail in charge of the money and land.

Not only was Abigail envied for her money and land, but her father, who happened to be a reverend, was also an outspoken critic of witch trials in general, but especially those in Salem.

Her young daughters, niece, nephew, and sister were also arrested and accused. Her son may have been arrested, but the evidence for that varies on who you look to.

In 1703, Abigail petitioned the court to be exonerated on the charges she’d been found guilty of. However, in 1709 she had to ask again because the exoneration had never been completed. Finally, in 1711 the court exonerated everyone who had been found guilty at the trials.

Despite her family being so widespread throughout the aspects of the trial, Abigail and the rest of the Dane/Faulkner Family are not characters in Arthur Miller’s The Crucible.

Her grandson went on to fight in the American Revolution, fighting at the Battle of Concord and then later heading up a regiment that would guard the prisoner of war General John Burgoyne.

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