A Trip to Salem Brings History to Life


Karina Borisova, Reporter

  Salem Massachusetts, just a ferry ride and a two-hour drive from Hampton Bays, is the village that was home to the Salem Witch Trials, the real-life event that inspired Arthur Miller’s “The Crucible” which eleventh graders are currently reading in English Class.  25 innocent women and men died and over 200 were accused of practicing witchcraft during this dark period. In total, 19 of them were hanged, 5 died in prison, and one was crushed to death. While it was a dark period of our history, it remains incredibly interesting. 

  A visit to Salem for my birthday this October was a perfect way to get away for a while and bring my classroom experience to life. There are places all over to town to learn about th e history of Salem, with live-action reenactments and tours. Salem attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year, and a vast majority of them arrive in October, a month when things are busy and mysterious. From dark history to modern-day witches, Salem is a fascinating city.

     Unfortunately, the Covid-19 restrictions caused my trip to be somewhat underwhelming. Maybe it was the fact that I didn’t get to go see everything I wanted because things were closed, but the town seemed barren and not as busy as it should have been. Many places and night walks were closed due to an 8 o’clock curfew that was set. 

   Part of the fun of traveling to Salem, Massachusetts is simply wandering around the town and enjoying its many unusual shops and businesses.  Many open restaurants use Salem’s history as a way to lure people in. Shops and other knick-knack stores were open with tarot cards and psychic readings, but only allowed a certain amount of people in at a time.

     When visiting Salem you have a more in-depth experience by visiting museums and guided tours of the village. While staying in Peabody, a small town next to Salem, we visited the Peabody museum. Though not necessarily “witch-related,” the Peabody Essex Museum is a great stop during any visit to Salem. When I visited the museum, I was able to see many art pieces from around the world.       

     If you were considering traveling to Salem, I recommend going when there is not a pandemic, so definitely wait until 2021, and during Halloween or closer to Halloween.  The prices may be higher, but there would be more to do than just museums and restaurants, like seeing everyone dressed up in costumes, going to haunted houses, and visiting the homes with a mysterious history.  

If you’re looking to plan ahead before you go, consider a Salem Massachusetts Halloween experience. For example, The Salem Tour is a 2-Hour Salem History Walking Tour and is one of the highest-rated in the area. Led by a local guide, the tour takes you to all the iconic sites of Salem. You’ll hear about the Salem Witch Trials as well as the city’s past as a Native American settlement and its role in the American Revolution.