Saturday, October 19, 2019

Our Salem Witch

The Salem Witch Trials

The Salem witch trials were a series of hearings and trials to prosecute people accused of witchcraft in Essex, Suffolk, and Middlesex counties of colonial Massachusetts, between February 1692 and May 1693. Over 150 people were arrested and imprisoned, with even more accused but not formally pursued by the authorities. The two courts convicted twenty-nine people of the capital felony of witchcraft. Nineteen of the accused, fourteen women and five men, were hanged.*

One of those women, Mary EASTEY was my husband’s 7th Great Grandmother.

Mary Towne Eastey (also spelled Esty, Easty, Estey, or Estye) (August 24, 1634September 22, 1692) was a victim of the Salem witch trials of 1692. Mary’s sisters, Rebecca Nurse and Sarah Cloyce, were also accused of Our Mary Towne Eastey lineagewitchcraft; Rebecca was executed, but Sarah was not.**

Mary gave an impassioned appeal to the judge that brought tears to the eyes of the spectators but to no avail.  She was tried and condemned to death on September 9, 1642.  She was hanged, along with 7 others on September 22, 1642.  To read more check out the references at the end of this post.

Our connection, partially shown on the left, leads to New Brunswick  to our Ira MILLER who married Salome Estey HARTLEY.

Are you related to any of the Salem witches?  Are you related to our Salem Witch Mary Eastey?

Comments are welcomed.





24 Responses to “Our Salem Witch”
  1. Apple says:

    I descend from their daughter, Sarah. Several geneabloggers descend from one of the Towne sisters.

  2. NOra Jamieson says:

    Hi Joan, I came across your site in searching my roots in New Brunswick, I’m a Jamieson, descended from Samuel Jamieson/Jameson/Jemison (take your pick!) and Mary P. Miller whom I thought was the daughter of Salome Hartley Miller, but when I see your Ira Miller genealogy, now I’m not sure. I’m looking for Samuel’s father and mother. I was told they were John Jemison and Harriet Pine but I can’t find anything linking them to Samuel. One curious thing though is that Samuel is listed as Native in the 1851 census, then English/Scot is the 1881 census. When I do find a listing for a John Jemison and Harriet Pine the same is true of them. Have you come across this?

    And do you have a Mary P. Miller in your Miller genealogy.


  3. Hi Nora,
    I do have a Mary “Polly” Miller born about 1804, died June 16, 1887 who was married to George Hillman. This is from the research of another individual and I’ve hadn’t a a chance to verify the connection to our family yet. I don’t have a mother and father for her listed.

    We have a Salome Estey Hartley married to our Ira Miller with many children listed (source: census records)
    I looked for Jameisons (any spelling variation) in our database and and didn’t find it.

    Good luck with your research and thanks for stopping by.


  4. Nora says:

    Hi Joan, thanks. I realize that we are related, Salome Estey Hartley was married to Ira Miller, their daughter Mary P. Miller married Samuel Jameson in New Brunswick, Canada and had my grandfather, Theodore Jamieson.


  5. mark david ahern says:

    trying to find out what rebecca nurse was teaching or practicing she is my great great grandmother.

  6. mark david ahern says:


  7. Hi Nora,
    It is always great to find a connection. (this is why I have my webpages – for the family connections!) I will be in touch to compare notes with you.


  8. Hi Mark,
    Thanks for stopping by. I’m afraid I don’t know much about Rebecca Nurse other than her famous last words before she was hanged “Oh Lord, help me! It is false. I am clear. For my life now lies in your hands”. *

    I suggest visiting libraries or achives to get the complete story. Libraries can do interlibrary loans. Check out to see what is available.

    Good luck!

    *Source: “Witchcraft Hysteria in Colonial New England” by Janet Elaine Smith, Heritage Quest Magazine September/October 2002 Volume 18. Number 5. Issue 101.

  9. Michael MacDonald says:

    Hi Joan – just came across your posting. I’m related to Mary Towne Estey through the same line you show above through George Adkin Hartley – then through his son Valentine Adkin Hartley, to his son, Rev. George Adkin Hartley, to his son Rev. Frederick Clarke Hartley, to his daughter Ruby Helena Hartley and her husband Hugh William MacDonald – to my father William Hartley MacDonald and to me, Michael Hartley MacDonald. Mary Towne Estey (and all those other spellings) is my 8th Great Grandmother.
    Interestingly, we just found out my wife is directly related to Mary’s brother Edmund Towne, which makes my wife and me 10th cousins through that connection, and we’re also looking at possible connection to Martha Cory (another ‘witch’ hanged with Mary on Sep 22, 1692). We’re currently researching both of our families and, as everyone else has found, this has become an ‘all consuming passion’ for both of us.
    We are attending our first regional Towne Family meeting next week in Memphis, and are planning to attend the Towne Family Reunion trip to England next year (September 2012). Unfortunately we’ll miss the Towne Family reunion in Salem this year (August 13-15 if anyone else is interested in attending).
    Thanks for letting me stop by and comment!

  10. Hi Michael,
    That is an interesting connection. I’ll mention it to hubby as he is the descendent of Mary Towne Estey. He will be pleased to know he has another cousin :)

    Thanks for visiting!


  11. LDP says:

    Mary is my husbands 8th great grandmother thru her oldest son Joseph.

  12. Hi LDP,
    Interesting! Your husband would be a distant cousin of mine.

    Thanks for commenting.


  13. I descend from Mary’s (and Sarah and Rebecca’s) brother, Edmund Towne. The house I live in now is on land that was owned by Towne descendants in the 1800s in Londonderry, New Hampshire. Blogger Bill West is also a descendant of Rebecca Towne Nurse. I grew up near the Rebecca Nurse homestead, but when I was little we didn’t know we were descendants.

  14. Hi Heather,
    I’m finding my non-genealogist hubby is related to lots of my geneablogger friends through his New England ancestors. We must get down there to visit and research!


  15. Audrey says:

    I, too, descend from Mary Towne Estey (8x great-grandmother)

    All in New Brunswick:
    Abigal Estey m. George Adkin Hartley
    Their dau.Sarah Hartley m. Oliver Miller
    Their dau. Christiana (sp?) Miller m. James Smith
    Their son Hugh Wallen Smith m. Hilda Mae Grant
    ….. and so on to my grandmother, my mother and me

  16. Hi Audrey,
    You are definitely a relative of my husband’s….we just have to work out how!


  17. Janice Harshbarger says:

    I’m a descendent of William Towne and Joanna Blessing through their daughter Susanna, who married John Hayward. William, Joanna, and Susanna were all dead when the Salem hysteria began, so they didn’t have to know the fate of their daughters/sisters. But other family members would have known. I can’t imagine what they would have been thinking and feeling. Tell your husband hello, from a distant cousin!
    Janice in Indiana

  18. Kathleen says:

    Hi, Joan
    I believe I descend from Mary Towne Estey, a fact I only discovered today!
    I am tracing my family using the internet,(how I found your site)
    The connection is from my father’s side. His mother, Christina Bubar, daughter of A. Samuel Bubar and Alice Estey 1864-1925 who was daughter of Lewis Estey 1800-1912 who was son of Samuel Estey 1780- ?— who was son of Moses Estey 1755-1840 who was son of Richard Jr Estey 1728-1817 who was son of Richard Sr Estey 1706-1791 who was son Isaac Jr Estey 1662-1713 who was son of Isaac Estey and Mary Towne.
    I was born in N.B. but now live in Ontario.

  19. Hi Kathleen,
    Thanks for the comment. My husband’s Miller family were in NB and you and him are likely distant cousins given the Estey connection.
    All the best with your research.


  20. Hi Janice,
    Thanks for dropping by and so nice to make a new cuz connection :) I let my husband know.


  21. Sarah says:

    I am the 11x grand-daughter of Mary through her son Isaac,and a direct descendant of the New Brunswick Esteys;my 3x grandmother was Jerusha Estey,who married William Collicott.

  22. Marilyn Miller-Bailey says:

    Hi Joan, good to see your website. Wonderful! Remember me I am the from the Miller line that my grandfather Leslie Howard Miller is in the daughter of his son Vaughn. My cousins via my Uncle Leo are having a Miller family reunion this summer here in Ontario. Don’t know if I will get to it, since I will just be getting back from NB.

  23. Karen Estey says:

    I am a direct desendant of Issac Estey and Mary Towne
    Issac Jr.
    Zebulon Jr

  24. Jeff Record says:


    I am the 9th great grandson of Rebecka Towne Nurse through her daughter Elizabeth Nurse Russell, and the 8th great grandson of Martha Allen Carrier, through her son Andrew.

    You have a great tribute page here! Many best wishes, sincerely,

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