Why Connecticut is Exonerating Witches

Little-known victims of witch trials may finally receive justice


In 1642 colonial Connecticut adopted a list of 12 capital crimes, which included murder, kidnapping, treason—and witchcraft. Five years later Alse Young was the first person recorded in colonial America to be executed for the crime of witchcraft. On May 26th 1647 she was hanged on the grounds of the Hartford meeting house, now the site of Old State House. Ten other people were executed for witchcraft in Connecticut and more than 30 people were indicted for it between 1647 and 1697. More than 375 years after Young was executed, her absolution may be nigh.

Last month a judiciary committee of the state legislature agreed to consider a resolution that would exonerate those accused of witchcraft in Connecticut. At a hearing on March 1st William Schloat, a nine-year-old, testified that he wished he had a time machine so he could help the accused. John Kissel, a Republican state senator, wondered about the state’s role in any exoneration, since the trials took place before the United States existed, when Connecticut was a colony: “Once you go down that path, where does it end?” Luther Weeks, a descendant of a deacon who may have been involved in the prosecutions, countered that the state had no issue celebrating the positive aspects of colonial history; it needed to acknowledge the dark side, too.

Many accused of witchcraft were vulnerable. Unmarried pregnant woman were frequent targets. Young, a new arrival, may have been targeted because some thought she caused an outbreak of influenza. Beth Caruso, co-founder of the Connecticut Witch Trial Exoneration Project, made up of amateur historians and descendants, says her husband’s ancestor was found guilty of bewitching a gun that had accidentally killed someone three years earlier, even though she was not there. Some may have been coerced into confessing. Many met their end at the gallows. Others faced the ducking test: suspected witches were dropped into water; the innocent sank and the guilty floated.

Sarah Jack, co-host of “Thou Shalt Not Suffer”, a witch-trial podcast, discovered three years ago that she was a descendant of Winifred Benham, the last person accused of witchcraft in Connecticut. “I was confused,” she says. “I had no idea there were more witch trials in New England outside of Salem.” Schoolchildren learn about the witch trials that took place in neighbouring Massachusetts. Arthur Miller, a playwright, used the trials of 1692 as an allegory of the anti-Communist panic. Salem, the heart of the hysteria, has embraced its history and become a kitschy, witchy tourist spot, with plenty of wands for sale.

Massachusetts has made several efforts to atone. In 1702 the General Court of Massachusetts declared the trials unlawful. A decade later the state overturned the convictions. In 1957 and 2001 more alleged witches were exonerated. Thanks to the efforts of children working on a history project, the last accused witch in Massachusetts was cleared of wrongdoing last summer. Also last year Nicola Sturgeon, then Scotland’s first minister, issued a posthumous apology to the thousands of people persecuted as witches in Scotland.

But in Connecticut efforts have been successful only on the local level. The town council in Windsor, where Young lived, exonerated her in 2017. Proponents of the bill hope a history trail remembering those accused would be meaningful. Some say lawmakers have more pressing matters to deal with than exonerating those dead for nearly four centuries. Jane Garibay, who introduced the bill in the state’s House of Representatives, says exoneration has been a long time coming, and that any injustice is worth putting right. “It was a wrong,” she says. The bill is “saying we’re sorry”.

ChatGPT Looks at March 2023 for Sagittarians

ChatGPT is a free Artificial Intelligence software where you can ask questions and a computer will give you an answer. I was intrigued and wanted to see how it might handle a question on astrology. So I asked the question: What can we expect for Sagittarians in March 2023?

Here is the reply:

As an AI language model, I do not have the ability to predict the future with certainty as it is uncertain and constantly changing. However, I can provide some general insights and advice based on the traits and characteristics associated with Sagittarians.

Sagittarians are known for their adventurous spirit and love for exploration. In March 2023, they may feel the urge to break out of their routine and try something new. This could be a good time to plan a trip or take on a new hobby or interest. Sagittarians should follow their intuition and listen to their inner voice when making decisions about what to do next.

In terms of career and work, Sagittarians may experience some changes or challenges in March 2023. This could be a time for them to reevaluate their goals and priorities and make adjustments as needed. Sagittarians should be open to learning new skills and taking on new responsibilities in order to grow and develop professionally.

In relationships, Sagittarians may experience some turbulence or conflict in March 2023. It's important for them to communicate openly and honestly with their loved ones and work through any issues that arise. Sagittarians should also focus on building strong and supportive friendships during this time.

Overall, March 2023 may be a time of growth and change for Sagittarians. They should be open to new experiences and challenges, and trust in their ability to navigate any obstacles that come their way.

UFO Festival

I just found out about this annual UFO festival in Exeter, New Hampshire on September 3 and 4. Maybe next year?

PlanetsNorman Muscarello was hitchhiking back from his girlfriend’s house near Exeter, New Hampshire in the early morning of September 3, 1965, when he saw pulsating lights in the sky. The US Navy enlistee froze in his tracks beside the Dining family farm on rural Route 150 as the lights hovered overhead, disappeared, then returned in throbbing red bursts. “There was absolutely no sound, other than the fact that I heard horses in Dinings’ field raising holy hell, kicking the barn. Crickets just seemed to quit,” he recalled in a 1980 interview. Petrified, Muscarello ran across the street and hid. A few minutes later, the lights zoomed away, leaving the 18-year-old alone on the road.

The Incident at Exeter, as it’s now known, is the force behind the annual Exeter UFO Festival. Following a pandemic-fueled hiatus, the celebration is back for its 10th anniversary on September 3 and 4, 2022. The entire commercial district of Exeter—population 16,000, with a quaint downtown lined with historic architecture clustered along the Squamscott River—gets in on the action. The Town Hall hosts a variety of talks and other-wordly swag tables. There are costume contests, kids’ activities, and even trolley rides that transport you to the site where it all began.

What makes the Incident at Exeter such an enduring example of UFO phenomenon, Blumenthal says, is that multiple people observed it. After Muscarello reported the sighting to the police, he and two police officers, David Hunt and Eugene Bertrand Jr., returned to the scene, where they all witnessed it simultaneously. Earlier in the evening, a woman reported to Bertrand that she had been followed in her car on a nearby road by a large object in the sky with flashing red lights. Similar sightings in the region the following day have led to the Incident at Exeter becoming one of the best-documented UFO sightings in American history.

Christmas Star’ to Shine for First Time in 800 Years Because of Jupiter, Venus and Regulus

Christmas starBut it's 2020, so expect clouds. Astronomers are excited that Jupiter and Saturn will appear closer together on Dec. 21 than they have since the Middle Ages. The alignment is known as the “Christmas Star” because of the star in the Bible that led the three Magi to baby Jesus. Astronomers believe a conjunction of Jupiter, Venus and the star Regulus around 2 B.C. created a bright point of light that could align science and Christian tradition. To see this year’s light show you’d better be quick: NASA warns that “both planets will set shortly after sunset.”

Whatever the stars portend, it should bring a monumentous 2021. Get ready to see it in the sky on December 21 which also happens to be the solstice....

Presidents Elected in Years Ending in 0

Curse of tippecanoeEver hear of the Curse of Tippecanoe? 

The name Curse of Tippecanoe (also known as Tecumseh's Curse, the Presidential Curse, Zero-Year Curse, the Twenty-Year Curse, or the Twenty-Year Presidential Jinx) is used to describe the death of Presidents of the United States in office while elected or re-elected in a year ending in "0".

Read more on this here:American Indian Myths & Mysteries

It is a strange coincidence that even Snopes will not dispute but every twenty years when Jupiter and Saturn conjunct in an earth sign, the sitting President dies in office. The exception was Ronald Reagan who was elected during a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in an air sign (Libra) and was fortunate to survive an assassination attempt.

President               elected   died        Jupiter-Saturn conjunction

Harrison              1840        1841        Capricorn

Lincoln                1860        1865        Virgo

Garfield               1880        1881        Taurus

McKinley              1900        1901        Capricorn

Harding               1920        1923        Virgo

Roosevelt            1940        1945        Taurus

Kennedy             1960        1963        Capricorn

Reagan               1980        2004        Libra – not an earth sign

Bush                   2000    (This was a disputed election and experts say he was not the winner in 2000)

??                       2020                    Capricorn


My prediction does not suggest inevitability. Please go to the polls, vote and prove me wrong.

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