Important Persons in the Salem Court Records

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People and TopicsBiographical Data

Ann Pudeator

Executed on Sept. 22, 1692, the widow Ann Greenslit Pudeator was one of the seven unfortunate victims of the final hanging on Gallows Hill during the Salem witch trials. Highlights from her trial included the usual testimony of the circle of accusing girls that Ann had afflicted them in "spectral" form. John Best, Sr. also accused Ann of having murdered his wife, whom Ann had served as a nurse. Mary Warren went to the extreme of implicating Pudeator in the deaths of four people. Historian Carol Karlsen speculates that Pudeator may have been targeted due to her profession as a midwife that placed her in direct competition with male care providers, as well as her defiance of the Puritan female gender ideal of meekness and submission to male authority. Although the details of Ann Pudeator's birth are unknown, it is estimated that she was between 70 and 75 when she was hanged, still protesting her innocence at the hands of false accusations.

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