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Salem Witchcraft Papers

Case Files

SWP No. 36

Elizabeth Colson

(See also: George Jacobs Jr. -- Complaint; Lydia Dustin -- Mittimus )

SWP No. 36.1

(Warrant No. 1 for the apprehension of Elizabeth Colson , & Officer's Return)

[May 14, 1692 ]

You are in theÿr Majestyes Names herebÿ Required to Apprehend
& bring before us (upon Tuesday next being the Seavententh day of
this Instant May by Tenne of the Clock aforenoone att the house of
Lef't Nathaniell Ingersolls in Salem Village) the body of Elizabeth Colson of Redding Single woeman, whoe standeth charged in behalfe
of theyr Majestys w'th high Suspition of Sundry Acts of Witchcraft
done or Co[mbar ]itted upon the Bodyes of Mary. Walcott , Mercy Lewis
& others in Salem Village, whereby great hurt hath bin done them:
And hereof you are nott to faile

Salem dat'd Maÿ 14'th 1692

[Pbar ] us
*John Hathorne
*Jonathan.Corwin {
Assis'ts

May 16'th 1692
I have made Diligent Search for the above named Elizabeth Collson
and find shee is fled and by the best Information shee is att Boston
in order to bee shipt ofe and by way of Escape to be transported to
some other Countery whereof I make my Returne
per me *John Parker Constable of
Redding
( Essex County Court Archives, Salem -- Witchcraft Vol. 2 no. 104. )

SWP No. 36.2

(Warrant No. 2 for the apprehension of Elizabeth Colson )

[May 17, 1692 ]

You are likewise required to apprehend [] Coloson of Reding
single woman who we are Informed is gone from Reding to Boston
or Charlstowne, And who Also stands Charged w'th Sundry acts of
witchcraft by her Committed on the Bodys of Susannah Sheldon and
Others of Salem Village. and send her also to Salem in order to her
Examination there Relateing to the Premises afores'd --

Salem. 17'th 3 mo 1692

*John Hathorne --
*Jonathan. Corwin --
[Pbar ] ord'r of the Govern'r & Councill

( MS Ch A, vol. 2, p. 67, Rare Books & Manuscripts, Boston Public Library )

SWP No. 36.3

(Warrant No. 3 for the apprehension of Elizabeth Colson, in Suffolk County)

Complaynt beinge made to me underwritten by William Arnold
of Readinge that the above intended and mentioned Elizabeth Cole- ston is fled from the hands of Justice for which The warr't above is
directed to aprehend her, and that she is now concealed in Bostine,
These are in Their Majesties name to require you to aprehend the
said Elizabeth Colstone & carry Before Lawfull Authority to be
secured till she can be carried to Salem in order to her tryall these
dated in Bostine the 10'th of Sept 1692

To the sherif of the Countie of Suffolk
or his Deputie


SWP No. 36.4

(Testimony of Mary Marshall v. Elizabeth Colson)

[10 September 1692]

10 September 1692 The testemony of Mary Marshall of Moldin aged fortie Six yeare or there abouts testefieth and Sayth about the Eaighth day of Aprill Last past: Elizabeth Coleson of Reding was knocking me downe Strikeing of me deafe and Dumm Tortering my body in most parts; Chokeing of me quite dead for some time Likewise beating of me upon my head and bruseing of itt much; & Ringing of my Neck aboutt that my Chinn was behinde my soulder and Stabing of me in the Shoulders sides and brests, Likewise that this Creture above sd did and hee put my Soulder out of Joynt, and att often times Comeing to my house and abroad and at the Meeting house in time of publick worship frighted me and knocked me down

These taken from the #[own] mouth of said mary Marshall before four or five wittnesses by ye Sherriff of ye County of Middx 7th 9th 92

(MS Ch K 1.40, vol. 2, p. 186. Dept. of Rare Books and Manuscripts, Boston Public Library)


SWP No. 36.5

(Testimony of William Arnold v. Elisabeth Colson)

[10 September 1692]

William Arnall of Redding forty years of age or thereabouts
testifieth and Saith, that on ye Sabbath day last being the 4th Instant
7br: 92 early in ye morning being Commanded by ye Constable of said
Redding J[ohn] Parker to assist him in the Execu-
tion of his office pursuant to a [warrant] from Major Wm Johnson Esqr
to apprehend Elisabeth Colson &c. under Suspicion of ye Sin of Witch-
craft Then they Coming to ye house of Widow Dastin the Con-
stable opening ye out most dore, and finding ye inner doer fast that he
Could not gett in, Called me to him and Said he could not gett in and
as soon as I Came I Came to him we heard ye back dore open then I
ran behind ye house & shee then I saw said Elisab: Colson run from
ye back dore and gott over into John Dixes feild and I called to her be-
ing not far from her, and asked why she ran away for I would Catch her.
She said nothing, but run away and at last quickly fell down and got up
againe and ran again shaking her hand behinde her as it were strikeing
at me, and I ran and seeing I could not gaine ground of her, I sett my
dog at her, and he ran round about her, but would not touch her, and
runing litle further there was a stone wall and on ye other bushe side
of it a few bushes yt tooke my sight from her a little, being but litle be-
hinde her and when I came up to said Bushes I lookt into them, and
Could Could see no thing of her, and running on further there was
great Cat Came running towards me, and stared up in my face, being
but a litle distance from me, near a fence. I Endeauoured to sett my
dog up upon her, and ye dog would not minde her but went ye Con-
trary way, and on I offering to strike at her wth my stick she seemed to
run under ye fence, and so disappeared, and I could get sight of maid
nor Cat neither any more. Spending some litle time looking about for
her & further Saith not.
William Arnall
7br. 10th: 92

[endorsed]Wm Arnollds Euid

Suffolk Court Files, vol. 1212, docket 162281, p. 82. Massachusetts State Archives