Notes for Rebecca Blessing Towne: Rebecca Blessing Towne was 9th great grandmother. Her great granddaughter, Tomasin Nurse married into the Bixby family, and my great grandmother was a Bixby. Notes on Rebecca NurseL Rebecca Nurse was hung for witchcraft in Salem Village, Essex, MA 19 July 1692. Book of Witch Trails, A Delusion of Satan" by Frances Hill. Salem Mass, 1692:
Rebecca Nurse` the mother of eight children. At the age 71 she was was hanged on Gallows Hill with four other women, July 19, 1692. She had been a respected and religious person. Even the magistrates that served her a warrant had hesitated. Rev. Samuel Parris was the accuser of Rebecca Nurse.
She was baptized at Yarmouth, England, on February 21, 1621/22,who came to Salem with her family in 1640. She was the daughter of William Towne and Joanna Blessing.
On her arrest, she said, "I am innocent as the child unborn, but surely, what sin hath God found out in me unexpected of that He should lay such an affliction on me in my old age." One of Rebecca's sisters, Mary (Towne) Estey, was also hung on charges of being a witch.
The court at Ipswich April 10, 1683 had a petition brought about by Rebecca and her brother's and sister to settle her parents estate since there was no will. (Ipswich Deeds, Vol 4 page 515) A tribute to her entitled "Rebecca Nurse, Saint but Witch Victim", by Charles Sutherland Tapley. Contains a list of her descendants compiled by Charles A. Towne of Park Ridge, Illinois about 1930.
Nineteen accused witches were hanged on Gallows Hill in 1692:
1692 (7/19) N Eng/MA Salem (V)* 1 Nurse, Rebecca f Hanged (Sources: Boyer and Nissenbaum. The Salem Witchcraft papers. 1977)
Salem: Governor Winthrop's Massachusetts Bay Company arrived on the ship Arbella at Salem in June 1630. After a week, Governor Winthrop went to Charlestown an area he liked better. 1st settlers in Salem were Salem in 1628. Other cities were Plymouth in 1620, Gloucester in 1623 and Concord was founded in 1635.the following girls as perpetrators: Samuel's daughter Elizabeth Parris - seven (7) years of age. Lived with Samuel Parris. "Betty" Parris' cousin Abigail Williams was nine(9) years of age, and lived with Samuel Parris. Ann Putnam, Jr. seemed to have done the most accusing and identification of "witches." (age 12) Her mother always took her daughter's part and generally was the dangerous gossip that put thoughts into Anne's head. Anne later confessed, at age 26 [fourteen years later], that she and the others were wrong in their accusations. Ann lived with Thomas Putnam, Jr. Mary Walcott (age 17) lived with Thomas Putnam, Jr. The aunt of Mary Wolcott turned to "white magic" to break the witch's spell on her niece. Elizabeth Hubbard (age 17) lived with Dr. William Griggs. Elizabeth Booth (age 18) Susannah Sheldon (age 18) was known as "Widow Shelton." Mary Warren (age 20) lived with John Proctor as his maid-servant. and Sarah Churchill (age 20) lived with George Jacobs, Sr. Sarah Bibber of Wenham. Mercy Lewis (age 19) was a servant in the house of Thomas Putnam. At the time of the witch trials, Mercy Short a New England servant girl of a Boston family, had violent fits and visions of the devil from 1690 until 1693.
Tried and executed as a witch. Deafness was prime reason for her being convicted. She was a devout Puritan. Geneol. Dict. of NE (p. 316-317) -four sons (all married) -Sarah (not married)
Citations Walter Goodwin Davis, Mass. and Maine Families, v.3, p. 501-502. http://www.rootsweb.com/~nwa/nurse.html
Rebecca Towne, the oldest child was born in England in 1621. Her father , William, and her mother, Joanna Blessing, plus 4 or 5 children, sailed to Boston, MA around 1632. They lived in Topsfield, near Salem. Rebecca gardened and gathered herbs to make medicines to heal people. When she was 72, some girls in Salem had learned about witchcraft and dancing from a servant named Tabitha. Many people in the village were accused of being witches, like flying through the air, putting spells on people, and making cows sick. Many people believed these girls, as did the minister of the church and most importantly, Cotton Mather, the judge. Rebecca and her sisters, Mary and Sarah, were accused of being witches. Sarah escaped to Maine, but Rebecca and Mary were hung with many others. Later they were buried in one grave. There is a library on Newbury Street in Boston that has a lot of information on the Towne family, as they were early settlers in Massachusetts. There is also a General Salem Towne house at Sturbridge Village.
http://www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/salem/SAL_BNUR.HTM Information from the witch trial of Rebecca Towne Nurse found that the magistrate accused Rebecca of being a witch, someone "n the crowd would either heatedly accuse her or one of the afflicted girls would break into fits and claim Nurse was tormenting her. Upon realizing that the magistrate and the audience had sided with the afflicted girls Nurse could only reply, " I have got nobody to look to but God." She then tried to raise her hands, but the afflicted girls fell into dreadful fits at the motion." --------------------------------------------------- Rebecca Nurse Homestead Home of the Danvers Alarm List Company 149 Pine Street-Danvers, MA 01923 ---------------------------------------------- The Nurse family had been involved in several land disputes ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- Rebecca Blessing Towne would be 8-great grandmother to me.
More About Rebecca Blessing Towne: Date born 2: 21 Feb 1621, Great Yarmouth, Norfolk.3493 Date born 3: 21 Feb 1621, Yarmouth, England.3494 Died 2: 19 Jul 1692, Salem, Essex, Massachusetts, USA.3494
More About Rebecca Blessing Towne and Francis Nurse: Marriage: 24 Aug 1644, Salem Village, Essex, MA.
Children of Rebecca Blessing Towne and Francis Nurse are: