Salem – History and Culture

So, for the Floating City project I teamed up with Caitlin and Maggie. Alec told us we don’t have to do Belfast, so we decided on doing Salem, Massachusetts. The city has an interesting history, and we had great ideas how it would look like at the very beginning. After some research on the city itself, I made some sketches. Previously we decided on focusing on the atmosphere, and the witchcraft part of the city.

Unfortunately we couldn’t go and visit Salem itself, so we had to rely on the internet. I found a lot of useful information on the city’s official website, and their historic website as well. I had a quick read on the United Stated History website ( on the town itself, and on Nathaniel Hawthorne as well. In my research tho I was mostly focusing on the Salem Witch Trials of 1692-93. I watched a documentumfilm on the issue (Salem: Unmasking the Devil, 2011) and found a few books as well. I had a look at The Devil in Massachusetts: A Modern Enquiry Into the Salem Witch Trials, written by Marion L. Starkey. Unfortunately I know I won’t have time to read the whole book before the final hand-in, but it’s enough to get a basic knowledge on what could have happened. For me the city seems like it still dwells on the past, a lot of tourist attractions are based on the witches, and this just strengthened my focus on this part.

I also had an opportunity to read Hawthorne’s Young Goodman Brown. I really wanted to get into the atmosphere of the town’s history before starting to sketch anything.


  • Hawthorne, N. (2005) Young Goodman Brown. Wildside Press.
  • Salem: Unmasking the Devil (2011). Directed by David Lee. United Kingdom.
  • Starkey, M.L. (1982) The Devil in Massachusetts: A Modern Enquiry Into the Salem Witch Trials. Little Brown & Co.

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