The weekend before going up there, I read a popular new novel that's set in Salem, The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry, who lives there in town. It was fun to read it and get a feel for Salem from a native's perspective, and I felt more familiar with the sights and streets because of it.
One of the things the novel mentioned a few times was the statue of the first settler of Salem, Roger Conant, who settled there in 1626. The statue is located right near the town common, and it was one of the first things we saw when we got there.
We went to the Salem Witch Museum, which is in an old church and has a really cool presentation on the Salem Witch Trials of 1692, as well as a very interesting exhibit about the history of "witchcraft" and "witches" up to today, which I learned a lot from. I put those words in parentheses because of what I learned there. It was very informative!
Then we walked around and explored for a little while and had a delicious lunch of roast prime rib at a great little restaurant on the harbor.
Alyson and a really cool ship
Salem has a lot of fun little shops. I liked how the baskets hung from the ceiling in this one. That is such a classic colonial New England thing, and I love things like that. I feel like they're a part of my heritage, since this is how many of my ancestors lived.
The New England Pirate Museum is in Salem. Pirates and witches; what a combination! We didn't go into that Museum but Alyson did get friendly with a pirate:
These were a few of the other fun sights we saw while walking around downtown:
I'm pretty sure this was a real witch. Male witches (or rather, Wiccans) do not like to be called warlocks--that's a derogatory term to them. That's one of the things I learned at the Witch Museum.
"Half way down a by-street of one of our New England towns stands a rusty wooden house, with seven acutely peaked gables, facing towards various points of the compass, and a huge, clustered chimney in the midst." -Nathaniel Hawthorne, The House of Seven Gables
The last thing we did before leaving to return home to Connecticut was the Terror Trail. We went to the Common for a walk around town led by a long-time resident who told really good, true ghost stories, ones from history and ones happening today to people he knows in town. We loved this!
I bought some good books and the cutest shirt that day. Check out the shirt. It's perfect for me, especially at certain times of the month: