The Facts

Witchcraft is often referred to as "The Old Religion" and "Craft of the Wise."  Witchcraft has been present since the beginning of humanity, in many forms.  It was never a defined, organized religion, particularly not a universal one, but it was everywhere, as it is now. Those who practice Witchcraft are called Witches, no matter their sex.  A very common misconception is that a warlock is a male Witch.  This could not be further from the truth.  Warlock means "oath breaker," and can be applied to either sex.  Basicly it is someone who betrays the trust of a coven.
  Witches are not evildoers, rather, they are the most moral, most aware and sensitive people you will ever come across.  They realize that every action has a reaction in every reality.  Most Witches abide by a code of "harm none, do as thou will."  This rule can be interpretated in many ways, but in short, it means do as you wish, and be sure not intentionally harm any innocent.  Most Traditional Witches are also familiar with the old saying a Witch who can't curse, can't heal.  What does this mean?  To most Witches, it means if someone is harming you, your family or friends, by all means do something about it.   Turn the other cheek is not necessarily the best motto when dealing with people whose intent is to harm.
 Witches tend to be pantheists---that is they recognize the divine in all things.  Most Witches in some fashion worship the Goddess and her consort, the Horned God.  The Horned God is a deity of fertility and festivity, often represented by a man with deer antlers, or a satyr-like being, as artifacts of Pan and Cernunnos depict.  One can easily see now where the Christian concept of the devil originated.  It is always wise to remember that the gods of the old religions become the devils of the new in many western cultures.  So, never have Witches worshipped "the devil" as Christianity portrays.  They actually find the idea of personifying evil rather stupid, for if you give something a name, you give it power.  Witches, likewise, don't believe in Hell. They cannot believe in an "all-loving" god that would send its own children to damnation, simply because they did not worship him in a certain form.  Instead, Witches believe in a transient-like afterlife, sometimes called the Summerlands, as well as reincarnation.
    Most Witches practice magick and or some form of spellcraft, following along the lines of "harm none."  Magick cannot be defined as "black" or "white," because of the complexity of the results.

~Salem Witch Trials~

The Salem Witch Trials of 1692
The events which led to theWitch Trialsactually occurred in what is now the town of Danvers, then a parish of Salem Town, known as Salem Village. Launching the hysteria was the bizarre, seemingly inexplicable behavior of two young girls; the daughter, Betty, and the niece, Abigail Williams, of the Salem Village minister, Reverend Samuel Parris.
In February, 1692, three accused women were examined by Magistrates Jonathan Corwin and John Hathorne. Corwin's home, known as the Witch House, still stands at the corner of North and Essex Streets in Salem, providing guided tours and tales of the first witchcraft trials. John Hathorne, an ancestor of author Nathaniel Hawthorne, is buried in the Charter Street Old Burying Point. By the time the hysteria had spent itself, 24 people had died. Nineteen were hanged on Gallows Hill in Salem Town, but some died in prison. Giles Corey at first pleaded not guilty to charges of witchcraft, but subsequently refused to stand trial. This refusal meant he could not be convicted legally. However, his examiners chose to subject him to interrogation by the placing of stone weights on his body. He survived this brutal torture for two days before dying.
It is remarkable 552 original documents pertaining to the Witchcraft trials have been preserved and are still stored by the Peabody Essex Museum.
Eerie memorabilia associated with the trials, such as the "Witch Pins" used in the examination of witches and a small bottle supposed to contain the finger bones of the victim George Jacobs can be found there as well.
TheSalem Witch Trials Tercentenary Memorialdedicated in 1992, can be found adjacent to Charter Street Old Burying Point.

You can find out more on the Salem Witch Hunts by going to this siteThe Salem Massachuttes Witch Hunt

Another good place to find out about Salem Witch Hunts

Salem Witch Village

Some Graphics on this page are courtesy of Witch Way.