William Dawes: The Forgotten Midnight Rider

William Dawes was a Boston tanner and one of the riders sent by Dr. Joseph Warren to alert John Hancock and Samuel Adams of the approaching British army on the night of April 18th, 1775.

Dawes was born in Boston on April 6, 1745. He was the second of twelve children born to William Dawes and Lydia Boone. He married twice, first to Mehitable May, who died in October of 1793, and then to Lydia Gendall.

On October 28, 1767, Dawes was one of 650 Boston citizens who signed a “nonimportation agreement,” promising not to buy goods imported from Britain, which included furniture, clothes, nails, anchors, gauze, shoe leather, malt liquors, loaf sugar, starch and glue. To further support this cause, the Boston Gazette states that Dawes also wore a suite made entirely in America on his wedding day.

In April of 1768, Dawes joined the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, a private training organization for militia officers, and was also promoted to second major of the regiment of the Boston militia. Dawes was also a member of the patriotic group the Sons of Liberty and was a Freemason, although it is not clear which Boston lodge he belonged to.

William Dawes oil painting by John Johnston circa 1785-95 - 300 x 362

William Dawes, oil painting by John Johnston, circa 1785-95

According to the book “History of the Military Company of the Massachusetts,” as an ardent patriot, Dawes often rode throughout the colony trying to find recruits for the colonial cause:

“He scoured the country, organizing and aiding in the birth of the Revolution. His granddaughter wrote: ‘During these rides, he sometimes borrowed a friendly miller’s hat and clothes and sometimes he borrowed a dress of a farmer, and had a bag of meal behind his back on the horse. At one such time a British soldier tried to take away his meal, but grandfather presented arms and rushed on. The meal was for his family. But in trying to stir up recruits, he was often in danger.’”

In October of 1774, Dawes planned and led a daring break-in at the gun house on Boston Common. While the guards were at roll call, Dawes and several members of his artillery company stole two small brass cannons, sneaking them out the back window, and hid them in a large box under the desk in a nearby school house. When a British sergeant later discovered the cannons were missing, he exclaimed: “They are gone. These fellows will steal the teeth out of your head while you are keeping guard.” The guards searched the yard, gun-house and school house but never found the hidden cannons. The cannons remained there for two weeks until Dawes had them removed one night in a wheelbarrow and hid them under a pile of coal in a blacksmith shop. On January 5, 1775, the Committee of Safety voted to move the stolen cannons to Waltham. The cannons remained in active service throughout the revolutionary war.

Dawes also injured his arm during the break-in and was attended to by fellow patriot Dr. Joseph Warren but, due to the illegal nature of the event, Dawes thought it best not to tell Warren how the injury happened.

It was Warren who later sent both Dawes and Paul Revere on their famous midnight ride on April 18th,  according to the book “History of the Military Company of the Massachusetts:

“For some days before the 19th of April, 1775, it had been known the British were preparing to move. It was suspected that the destination of the troops would be Concord, where stores of war material were gathered, and in the vicinity of which were Hancock, Adams and other Revolutionary leaders. On the afternoon of the day before the attack, Gen. Warren learned that the British were about to start. He waited until they had begun to move their boats, and then sent out William Dawes, Jr, by the land route, over the [Boston] neck, and across the river at the Brighton Bridge to Cambridge and Lexington; and directly after, ‘about ten o’clock,’ he ‘sent in great haste’ for Paul Revere, and sent him by the water route through Charlestown to Lexington to arouse the country, and warn Hancock and Adams.”

Revere and Dawes took different routes during their rides. Revere crossed the Charles river by boat and rode from Charlestown through Somerville, Medford, Arlington and Lexington. Dawes traveled a longer distance than Revere, going south across Boston neck to Roxbury, then west and north through Brookline, Brighton, Cambridge and Lexington, covering a total of 17 miles in three hours. Dawes’ route also required passing through a guarded gate at Boston neck, which was on high alert at the time, according to the History Channel website:

“Dawes set off around 9 p.m., about an hour before Warren dispatched Revere on his mission. Within minutes, he was at the British guardhouse on Boston Neck, which was on high alert. According to some accounts, Dawes eluded the guards by slipping through with some British soldiers or attaching himself to another party. Other accounts say he pretended to be a bumbling drunken farmer. The simplest explanation is that he was already friendly with the sentries, who let him pass. However Dawes did it, he made it in the nick of time. Shortly after he passed through the guardhouse, the British halted all travel out of Boston.”

Unlike Revere, Dawes didn’t stop to alert colonial minutemen during his ride and instead rode straight on to Lexington. It’s not clear why Dawes did this but it is possible that he believed his mission was only to alert John Hancock and Samuel Adams of the approaching British army. As a result, the militia took longer to respond to the British army’s approach on Dawes route than on Revere’s.

Dawes finally met up with Revere at the Hancock-Clarke house in Lexington, where Hancock and Adams were staying, around 12:30 am. After warning Hancock and Adams of the approaching army, Revere and Dawes mounted their horses again and set off for Concord, running into Dr. Samuel Prescott along the way.

Prescott decided to join them on their trip but the three riders soon encountered a British patrol around 3 am. According to Revere’s account of the ride, Dawes and Prescott managed to get away but Revere was captured:

“After I had been there [at the Hancock-Clarke house] about half an hour, Mr. Dawes came; after we refreshed our selves, we and set off for Concord, to secure the stores, &c. there. We were overtaken by a young Doctor Prescott, whom we found to be a high Son of Liberty. I told them of the ten officers that Mr. Devens met, and that it was probable we might be stopped before we got to Concord; for I supposed that after night, they divided them selves, and that two of them had fixed themselves in such passages as were most likely to stop any intelligence going to Concord. I likewise mentioned, that we had better alarm all the inhabitants till we got to Concord; the young Doctor much approved of it, and said, he would stop with either of us, for the people between that & Concord knew him, & would give the more credit to what we said. We had got nearly half way. Mr Dawes & the Doctor stopped to alarm the people of a house: I was about one hundred rod a head, when I saw two men, in nearly the same situation as those officer were, near Charlestown. I called for the Doctor & Dawes to come up; – were two & we would have them in an Instant I was surrounded by four; – they had placed themselves in a straight road, that inclined each way; they had taken down a pair of bars on the North side of the road, & two of them were under a tree in the pasture. The Doctor being foremost, he came up;and we tried to get past them; but they being armed with pistols & swords, they forced us in to the pasture; – the Doctor jumped his horse over a low stone wall, and got to Concord.”

Dawes, tried to outrun the patrol but knowing his horse was too tired, he scared off the two soldiers chasing him by riding up to a nearby farm house and shouting “Halloo, boys, I’ve got two of ‘em!” The soldiers feared it was an ambush and rode away. Unfortunately, Dawes had halted his horse so suddenly that he was bucked off it. His whereabouts for the rest of the night are unknown.

Dawes reportedly later joined the Continental army in Cambridge and some sources state he fought at the Battle of Bunker Hill in June, 1775. He also moved his family to Worcester, sometime during the ongoing Siege of Boston, where he was later appointed commissary.

According to the book “History of the Military Company of the Massachusetts” when a group of captured British and Hessian soldiers that had been looting Worcester along their march were brought to Dawes for their daily rations, Dawes deliberately shortchanged them out of revenge:

“The Germans stole and robbed houses, as they came along, of clothing and everything on which they could lay their hands to a large amount. When at Worcester, indeed, they themselves were robbed, though in another way. One Dawes, the issuing commissary, upon the first company coming to draw their rations, balanced the scales by putting into that which contained the weight of a large stone. When that company was gone (unobserved by the Germans, but not by all present), the stone was taken away before the next came: and all the other companies except the first had short allowance.”

Paul Revere Illustration published in Paul Revere's Ride 1905 - 300 x 212

Illustration of Paul Revere’s ride published in “Paul Revere’s Ride” by Longfellow circa 1905

Despite the fact that Dawes played a pivotal role in the midnight ride of April 18th, 1775, he has been almost entirely forgotten by historians and completely overshadowed by Paul Revere. One reason is because Revere wrote a personal account of his ride, which has been widely circulated, yet very few records exist of Dawes’ participation in the ride. Another reason is because of the publication of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere” in 1861, which wrote Dawes and Prescott out of the event entirely.

In an attempt to remedy this, Century Magazine published a parody of the poem, titled “The Midnight Ride of William Dawes” by Helen F. Moore, in 1896:

I am a wandering, bitter shade,
Never of me was a hero made;
Poets have never sung my praise,
Nobody crowned my brow with bays;
And if you ask me the fatal cause,
I answer only, “My name was Dawes”
‘Tis all very well for the children to hear
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere;
But why should my name be quite forgot,
Who rode as boldly and well, God wot?
Why should I ask? The reason is clear –
My name was Dawes and his Revere.
When the lights from the old North Church flashed out,
Paul Revere was waiting about,
But I was already on my way.
The shadows of night fell cold and gray
As I rode, with never a break or a pause;
But what was the use, when my name was Dawes!
History rings with his silvery name;
Closed to me are the portals of fame.
Had he been Dawes and I Revere,
No one had heard of him, I fear.
No one has heard of me because
He was Revere and I was Dawes.

Sadly, not only have historians forgotten about Dawes but even some of his own peers forgot his name, according to the History Channel website:

“Contemporaries couldn’t even recall his [Dawes] name. William Munroe, who had stood guard at the Hancock-Clarke House, later reported that Revere arrived along with a ‘Mr. Lincoln.’ In a centennial commemoration, Harper’s Magazine called Dawes ‘Ebenezer Dorr.’”

Dawes died on February 25, 1799. Even the real location of his grave has been forgotten. For years it was believed that Dawes was buried in King’s Chapel Burying ground, where he has a headstone. Yet, in 2007, it was discovered that Dawes might be buried in his wife’s family plot in Forest Hills Cemetery instead.


“William Dawes and His Ride with Paul Revere”; Henry Ware Holland; 1878

“Legend of the Third Horseman”; Charles J. Caes; 2009

“Paul Revere’s Ride”; David Hackett Fischer; 1995

“History of the Military Company of the Massachusetts, Now Called the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts, Volume 2″; Oliver Ayer Roberts; 1895

Harvard Gazette; Revolutionary Discover; July 16 2013: http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2013/07/revolutionary-discovery/

PBS: William Dawes: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/patriotsday/peopleevents/p_dawes.html

History Channel: The Midnight Ride of William Dawes: http://www.history.com/news/the-midnight-ride-of-william-dawes

John Hathorne: The Salem Witch Judge

John Hathorne was a judge during the Salem Witch Trials and the great-great grandfather of author Nathaniel Hawthorne.

Hathorne was born in Salem on August 5, 1641 to William Hathorne and Anne Smith. He was the fifth of nine children. His father was a local judge who came to the New World on the “Arabella,” one of John Winthrop’s eleven ships that brought over 800 puritans to the colony in the summer of 1630. William was known for being a “bitter persecutor” of Quakers and was responsible for ordering the public whipping of Ann Coleman in Salem in 1662. William was also in the military, serving as a captain of the Salem military company in 1646, during King Phillip’s War, and was promoted to major in 1656.

A savvy businessman, William used land grants to secure an extensive property, which he turned into farmland, and owned much of Salem Village, which is now Danvers, including the hill upon which the Danvers State Hospital was later built in 1874.

After John Hathorne came of age, he worked as a book keeper and was granted a small share of the family estate, a small portion of Mill Pond Farm along the edge of Salem town, according to the book “Death in Salem”:

“John launched his career keeping books for Salem’s merchants, but he soon recognized the rewards of land speculation. By the age of twenty-one, he had become a propertied man and eligible bachelor, yet he wouldn’t wed until thirty-three, and then to Ruth Gardner, the fourteen-year-old daughter of a Quaker couple who had fled to Hartford, Connecticut, leaving her in the care of her uncle.”

Soon after marrying in 1675, Hathorne acquired a ship, a wharf and a liquor license and earned enough money in the shipping trade to build a mansion at 114 Washington Street. In 1681, he was granted a tract of land along the wharf to build a warehouse on. Hathorne and his wife had six children together, including five sons who all later became sea captains.

Oh Give Me Leave to Pray illustration of John Hathorne and Cotton Mather examining Marth Corey circa 1902 350 x 277

“Oh Give Me Leave to Pray” illustration by Samuel S. Kilburn and John W. Ehninger of John Hathorne and Cotton Mather examining Martha Corey with Mary Walcott seated next to her. Published in “The Poetical Works of Longfellow” circa 1902

Although he was involved in the shipping trade, Hathorne himself didn’t go to sea often, except for his occasional voyages as supercargo, during which he would travel on board the ship to manage the selling and buying of the cargo himself at various ports.

In 1687, Hathorne was asked, as an appointed member of the colony’s council of assistants, to mediate a dispute over whether Salem Village should break away from Salem town. Hathorne and the other two judges involved simply advised the villagers to “act as God shall direct you.”

The next time Hathorne returned to Salem Village, it was in 1692 as the chief examiner of the Salem Witch Trials, a position he may have used to his advantage, according to the book “Death in Salem”:

“Hathorne’s haste in convicting the detainees, and his refusal to reconsider a verdict even after major witnesses had recanted their testimony, has left some historians wondering if he wasn’t profiting materially from his victims’ demise. The belongings of convicted witches were routinely seized, ostensibly to pay for their jail expense. They were also served attainders, which stripped them of their rights, including their right to own and bequeath land. After Samuel Wardwell was executed and his wife sentenced to death, the couple’s property in Lynn, Massachusetts was confiscated an assigned to court officials, including John Hathorne. That case would have personal implications, as Sarah Wardwell had been married to Hathorne’s younger brother, William. Even if the judge did not personally benefit from the witchcraft convictions, his calm in the presence of Satan’s minions seemed somewhat odd, as he was a devout man who professed belief in satanic power.”

Hathorne’s first examination took place on March 1st when he questioned Sarah Osbourne, Tituba and Sarah Good at the Salem Village meetinghouse, according to court records:

“[Hathorne]: Sarah Good what evil spirit have you familiarity with?
[Good]: None
[Hathorne]: Have you made no contract with the devil?
Good answered ‘no’
[Hathorne]: Why do you hurt these children?
[Good]: I do not hurt them. I scorn it.
[Hathorne]: Who do you imploy then to do it?
[Good]: I imploy no body.
[Hathorne]: What creature do you imploy then?
[Good]: No creature but I am falsely accused.
[Hathorne]: Why did you go away muttering from Mr Parris his house?
[Good]: I did not mutter but I thanked him for what he gave my child.
[Hathorne]: Have you made no contract with the devil?
[Good]: No.
Hathorne desired the children all of them to look upon her, and see, if this were the person that had hurt them and so they all did look upon her and said this was one of the persons that did torment them — presently they were all tormented.
[Hathorne]; Sarah good do you not see now what you have done why do you not tell us the truth, why do you thus torment these poor children?
[Good]: I do not torment them.
[Hathorne]: Who do you imploy then?
[Good]: I imploy nobody I scorn it.
[Hathorne]: How came they thus tormented?
[Good]: What do I know you bring others here and now you charge me with it.
[Hathorne]: Why who was it?
[Good]: I do not know but it was some you brought into the meeting house with you.
[Hathorne]: We brought you into the meeting house.
[Good]: But you brought in two more.
[Hathorne]: Who was it then that tormented the children?
[Good]: It was osburn.
[Hathorne]: What is it that you say when you go muttering away from persons houses?
[Good]: If I must tell I will tell
[Hathorne]: Do tell us then.
[Good]: If I must tell I will tell, it is the commandments I may say my commandments I hope.
[Hathorne]: What commandment is it?
[Good]: If I must tell you I will tell, it is a psalm.
[Hathorne]: What psalm?
After a long time she muttered over some part of a psalm
[Hathorne]: Who do you serve?
[Good]: I serve god.
Hathorne]: What god do you serve?
The god that made heaven and earth though she was not willing to mention the word God her answers were in a very wicked, spiteful manner reflecting and retorting against the authority with base and abusive words and many lies she was taken in. It was here said that her husband had said that he was afraid that she either was a witch or would be one very quickly the worsh Mr Hathorne asked him his reason why he said so of her whether he had ever seen any thing by her he answered no not in this nature but it was her bad carriage to him and indeed said he I may say with tears that she is an enemy to all good.”

John Hathorne Grave 11-21-10 300 x 400

John Hathorne’s grave in the Old Burying Point Cemetery. The headstone reads: “Here lyes interred ye body of Co John Hathorne Esq, Aged 76 years, Who Died May ye 10 1717″

In his book “Salem Witchcraft,” historian Charles Wentworth Upham points out Hathorne’s accusational style of questioning during Good’s examination:

“It will be noticed that the examination was conducted in the form of questions put by the magistrate, Hathorne, based upon a forgone conclusion of the prisoner’s guilt, an expressive of a conviction, all along on his part, that the evidence of ‘the afflicted’ against her amounted to, and was, absolute demonstration.”

Although most historians agree that Hathorne was cruel at times, some feel he has been overly criticized for his role in the witch trials, according to the book “The Salem World of Nathaniel Hawthorne”:

“He [Hathorne] was appointed a magistrate of the court oyer and terminer by Governor William Phips. The chief questioner of the presumed witches, he always seemed to suppose them guilty. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s sister, Elizabeth, quoted cousin Ann Savage as saying that Charles W. Upham had ‘purposely and maliciously belittled’ John Hathorne in his two-volume study, Salem Witchcraft. Hathorne’s task was to query the victims about serious accusations in a time when virtually all Christians believed in witchcraft. That he was sometimes cruel in his questioning is true. When he and Justice Corwin were examining Elizabeth Cary of Charlestown, she asked to be seated. He said that she had ‘strength enough’ and left her standing. Captain Nicholas Cary thought Hathorne and others were cruel to his wife and declared that he was ‘extremely troubled at their inhumane dealings,’ and hoped ‘[T]hat God would take vengeance on them.’ This curse as well as Sarah Good’s threat to Nicholas Noyes may have been in Hathorne’s mind when he wrote in The House of Seven Gables of Matthew Maule’s prophecy that Colonel Pyncheon, who had ‘hunted [him] to death for his spoil’ would be given ‘blood to drink’ by God in retribution. Chadwick Hanson believes that Hathorne was ‘never more brutal nor more intolerant than in the examination of Martha Corey,’ another accused and subsequently hanged witch.”

The New England Magazine ran an article in 1892, titled “Stories of Salem Witchcraft,” in which it referred to Hathorne’s examination of Martha Corey as “a sample of cross-examination and brow-beating on the part of the magistrates, which finds parallel only in the conduct of some ungentlemenly shyster lawyer of a type happily now rare. It was quite extended, but confined mainly to an effort to make the prisoner confess.”

During the examination, Hathorne repeatedly badgered Corey and outright accused her of lying, according to court records:

“[Hathorne]: Tell us who hurts these children?
[Corey]: I do not know.
[Hathorne]: If you be guilty of this fact do you think you can hide it?
[Corey]: The Lord knows.
[Hathorne]: Well tell us what you know of this matter.
[Corey]: Why I am a Gospel woman, and do you think I can have to do with witchcraft too?
[Hathorne]: How could you tell that when the child was bid to observe what cloths you wore when someone came to speak with you?
Cheevers interrupted her and bid her not to begin with a lie and so Edward Putnam declared the matter.
[Hathorne]: Who told you that?
[Corey]: He said the child said
Cheever: You speak falsely
Then Edward Putnam read again.
[Hathorne]: Why did you ask if the child told what cloths you wore?
[Corey]: My husband told me the others told
[Hathorne]: Who told you about the cloths? Why did you ask
that question?
[Corey]: Because I heard the children told what cloths the
other wore
[Hathorne]: Goodman Corey did you tell her?
The old man denied that he told her so.
[Hathorne]: Did you not say your husband told you so?
[Hathorne]: Who hurts these children now look upon them?
[Corey]: I cannot help it.
[Hathorne]: Did you not say you would tell the truth? Why you asked that question: how come you to the knowledge?
[Corey]: I did but ask.
[Hathorne]: You dare thus to lie in all this assembly. You are now before authority. I expect the truth, you promised it, Speak now & tell [what cloths] who told you what cloths?”

After the Salem Witch Trials ended, even though many participants in the trials regretted their actions and made public apologies, Hathorne showed no remorse.

Hathorne kept his seat on Boston’s Governing Council and later followed in his father’s military footsteps as the commander-in-chief in the failed Siege of Fort Nashwaak in Nova Scotia in 1696.  According to the book “Nova Scotia’s Massachusetts,” it was Hathorne’s military inexperience that led to the failure of the King William’s War battle:

“While returning to Boston, [Colonel Benjamin] Church was amazed to meet three Massachusetts vessels carrying 100 men under the command of Colonel John Hathorne of Salem, a member of the Massachusetts Council. Hathorne had been appointed the new commander-in-chief of the expedition and had orders to attack Fort Nashwaak and to capture ‘the ordnance, artillery, and other warlike stores, and provisions lately supplied to them from France.’ Church was, as he put it ‘not a little mortified’ at what he considered to be the inexperienced Hathorne’s effrontery in shouldering aside the famous Indian fighter. Church argued that his troops had had enough of Nova Scotia, and ‘having their faces towards home, were loath to turn back’ – but turn back they did, at least as far as the mouth of the St. John River. Hathorne’s October assault on Nashawaak was a failure; he should have remained in Salem where his military skill might have been of some value. After a desultory thirty-six hour siege, his force meekly withdrew to the mouth of the river where it joined the rest of the volunteers and hurried back to Boston…The Hathorne-Church fiasco disgusted many members of the Massachusetts General Court and the general populace. It seemed to be convincing proof that Massachusetts lacked even the necessary military resources to deal effectively with the tiny French force in Nova Scotia. The fiasco appeared to drain away whatever might have remained of Massachusetts’ expansionist independence.” 

In 1702, Hathorne was appointed to the Superior Court. He held this position for 10 years before he finally resigned from the bench in 1712 and died on May 10th, 1717 at the age of 76. Hathorne is buried at the Old Burying Point Cemetery on Charter Street in Salem.

Nathaniel Hawthorne photographed by Mathew Brady circa 1855-1865

Nathaniel Hawthorne photographed by Mathew Brady circa 1855-1865

Even though Hathorne never expressed regret for what he had done during the Salem Witch Trials, his descendants were ashamed of their connection to him, particularly Nathaniel Hawthorne, who is rumored to have changed the spelling of his last name to distance himself from the witch trial judge.

Nathaniel Hawthorne was haunted by the figures of his ancestors, both John and William Hathorne, and wrote numerous novels and short stories, many of which were about overbearing Puritan rulers, with them in mind. Hawthorne feared that John and William’s persecution of Quakers and alleged witches brought a curse upon his family. Although the Hathorne family had been wealthy during the 17th century, the succeeding generations continued to lose the family’s land and money until they had almost nothing left, prompting the rumor about a family curse. In an autobiographical sketch for the introduction of the “Scarlett Letter,” titled “The Custom-House,” Nathaniel wrote a scathing criticism of John and William Hathorne, during which he apologized for their actions and asked for the curse to be lifted:

“But the sentiment has likewise its moral quality. The figure of that first ancestor, invested by family tradition with a dim and dusky grandeur, was present to my boyish imagination, as far back as I can remember. It still haunts me, and induces a sort of home-feeling with the past, which I scarcely claim in reference to the present phase of the town. I seem to have a stronger claim to a residence here on account of this grave, bearded, sable-cloaked and steeple-crowned progenitor,—who came so early, with his Bible and his sword, and trode the unworn street with such a stately port, and made so large a figure, as a man of war and peace,—a stronger claim than for myself, whose name is seldom heard and my face hardly known. He was a soldier, legislator, judge; he was a ruler in the Church; he had all the Puritanic traits, both good and evil. He was likewise a bitter persecutor, as witness the Quakers, who have remembered him in their histories, and relate an incident of his hard severity towards a woman of their sect, which will last longer, it is to be feared, than any record of his better deeds, although these were many. His son, too, inherited the persecuting spirit, and made himself so conspicuous in the martyrdom of the witches, that their blood may fairly be said to have left a stain upon him. So deep a stain, indeed, that his old dry bones, in the Charter Street burial-ground, must still retain it, if they have not crumbled utterly to dust! I know not whether these ancestors of mine bethought themselves to repent, and ask pardon of Heaven for their cruelties; or whether they are now groaning under the heavy consequences of them, in another state of being. At all events, I, the present writer, as their representative, hereby take shame upon myself for their sakes, and pray that any curse incurred by them—as I have heard, and as the dreary and unprosperous condition of the race, for many a long year back, would argue to exist—may be now and henceforth removed.”

In a strange twist, a number of John Hathorne’s descendants married descendants of the accused witches Mary and Philip English and John Proctor. Two of Mary and Philip’s grandaughters, Mary and Susannah Touzel, married two of Hathorne’s grandsons, Captain William Hathorne and Daniel Hathorne (great-uncles to Nathaniel Hawthorne). Proctor’s great-great-great grandson, Thorndike Proctor, married John Hathorne’s great-great grandaughter Elizabeth Hathorne (cousin to Nathaniel Hawthorne).

In 1953, John Hathorne appeared as a major character in Arthur Miller’s play “The Crucible.” In the play, Hathorne is depicted as a biased and vindictive judge who acted more like a prosecutor than an impartial judge.


“Death in Salem: The Private Lives Behind the 1692 Witch Hunt”; Diane E. Foulds; 2013

“The Encyclopedia of Witches, Witchcraft and Wicca”; Rosemary Guiley; 2008

“The Salem Witch Trials: A Reference Guide”; K. David Goss; 2008

“The Salem World of Nathaniel Hawthorne”; Margaret B. Moore; 2001

“Salem Witchcraft”; Charles Wentworth Upham; 1867

“Historic Homes and Institutions and Genealogical and Personal Memoirs of Worcester County”; Ellery Bicknell Crane; 1907

“Nova Scotia’s Massachusetts”; George A. Rawlyk; 1973

The Literary Traveler: Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Struggle and Romance with Salem: http://www.literarytraveler.com/articles/hawthorne_salem_ma/

Scarlett Letter; Nathaniel Hawthorne; 1878 http://www.gutenberg.org/files/25344/25344-h/25344-h.htm

Hawthorne in Salem: The Paternal Ancestors of Nathaniel Hawthorne: http://www.hawthorneinsalem.org/Life&Times/Family/Paternal/Introduction.html