I cordially express my acknowledgments to the Hon. Benjamin F. Browne, of Salem, who, retired from public life and the cares of business, is giving the leisure of his venerable years to the collection, preservation, and liberal contribution of an unequalled amount of knowledge respecting our local antiquities.
Charles W. PALFRAY, Esq., while attending the General Court as a Representative of Salem, in 1866, gave me the great benefit of his explorations among the records and papers in the State House.
Mr. Moses prince, of Danvers Centre, is an embodiment of the history, genealogy, and traditions of that locality, and has taken an active and zealous interest in the preparation of this work. Andrew Nichols, Esq., of Danvers, and the family of the late Colonel Perley Putnam, of Salem, also rendered me much aid.
I am indebted to Charles Davis, Esq., of Beverly, for the use of the record-book of the church, composed of “the brethren and sisters belonging to Bass River,” gathered Sept. 20, 1667, now the First Church of Beverly; and to James hill, Esq., town-clerk of that place, for access to the records in his charge.
To Gilbert Tapley, Esq., chairman of the committee of the parish, and Augustus Mudge, Esq., its clerk, and to the Rev. Mr. Rice, pastor of the church, at Danvers Centre, I cannot adequately express my obligations. Without the free use of the original parish and church record-books with which they intrusted me, and having them constantly at hand, I could not have begun adequately to tell the story of Salem Village or the Witchcraft Delusion.
MAP AND ILLUSTRATIONS.
The map, based upon various local maps and the Coast-Survey chart, is the result of much personal exploration and perambulation of the ground. It may claim to be a very exact representation of many of the original grants and farms. The locality of the houses, mills, and bridges, in 1692, is given in some cases precisely, and in all with near approximation. The task has been a difficult one. An original plot of Governor Endicott’s Ipswich River grant, No. III., is in the State House, and one of the Swinnerton grant, No. XIX., in the Salem town-books. Neither of them, however, affords elements by which to establish its exact location. A plot of the Townsend Bishop grant, No. XX., as its boundaries were finally determined, is in the State House, and another of the same in the court-files of the county. This gives one fixed and known point, Hadlock’s Bridge, from which, following the lines by points of compass and distances, as indicated on the plot and described in the Colonial Records, all the sides of the grant are laid out with accuracy, and its place on the map determined with absolute certainty. A very perfect and scientifically executed plan of