A Season With the Witch

A Season With the Witch

The Magic and Mayhem of Halloween in Salem, Massachusetts

Book - 2016
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A single event in its 400 years of history--the Salem Witch Trials of 1692--forever changed the city's character and reputation in America. Salem has never left the shadow of those days but instead thrives as a haven of the bizarre and a modern outpost for the weird. Despite its year-round eldritch spirit, Salem is a seasonal town--and its season happens to be Halloween. Every October, this small city of 40,000 swells to close to half a million as witches, goblins, ghouls, and ghosts (and their admirers) descend on Essex Street. For the fall of 2015, occult enthusiast J.W. Ocker moved his family of four to downtown Salem to experience firsthand a season with the witch, visiting all of its historical sites and macabre attractions. In between, he interviews its leaders and citizens, its entrepreneurs and visitors, its street performers and Wiccans, its psychics and critics. From these exchanges, he creates a picture oi this unique place and the people who revel in, or merely weather, its witchiness.
Publisher: New York, NY : The Countryman Press, [2016]
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9781581573398
1581573391
Branch Call Number: 133.4 O16s
Characteristics: xiv, 338 pages : illustrations, 23 cm

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If Halloween is your favorite holiday and Fall your favorite season, this book is for you. Ocker moves, along with his two children and spouse, to Salem for the entire month of October to witness the phenomenon that is Halloween in Salem, MA. While the witch trials of 1692 are at the foundation of Salem's reputation as the capital of the spooky and morose, Salem's history includes so much more. Ocker leaves no stone unturned as he explores Salem's unique trajectory and popularity as a tourist destination. He interviews historians, business owners, witch trial victim descendants, modern day witches, performers, the mayor, police, etc. While the tone throughout the book is lighthearted, he ends the book with a serious question: Would we trade the death of 24 innocent victims for the Salem we know today? What responsibility does Salem, and the many tourists who visit, have to the victims and their stories?

KatieD_KCMO Sep 30, 2019

If Halloween is your favorite holiday and Fall your favorite season, this book is for you. Ocker moves, along with his two children and spouse, to Salem for the entire month of October to witness the phenomenon that is Halloween in Salem, MA. While the witch trials of 1692 are at the foundation of Salem's reputation as the capital of the spooky and morose, Salem's history includes so much more. Ocker leaves no stone unturned as he explores Salem's unique trajectory and popularity as a tourist destination. He interviews historians, business owners, witch trial victim descendants, modern day witches, performers, the mayor, police, etc. While the tone throughout the book is lighthearted, he ends the book with a serious question: Would we trade the death of 24 innocent victims for the Salem we know today? What responsibility does Salem, and the many tourists who visit, have to the victims and their stories?

w
wickedflagon
Feb 11, 2018

Great book, well written and informative. Has become a yearly tradition of mine to read it in October.

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