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SWP No. 72.16

(Deposition of Isaac Cummings, Sr. v. Elizabeth How )

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[June 27, 1692. ]

Jun 27. 1692

The disposition of Isaac commins iyner aged about sixty yers or thare abouts who testyfyeth and saith that about aight yers agon James how jun'r of ipswech. came to my hous to borow a hors I not being at home my son isaac told him as my son told me whan i cam home i hade no hors to ride on but my son isaac did tell the said how that his father hade no hors to ride on but he hade a mare the which he thought his father would not be wiling to lend this being upon a thursday the next day being Fryday I took the mare and my self and my wif did ride on this maer abute half a mile to an naighbours hous and home again and when we came home I turned the maer out the maer being as well to my thinking as ever she was next morning it being saterday about sun rising this said maer stood neer my doore and the said maer as i did aperehand did show as if she head bin much abused by riding and here flesh as I thoug much wasted and her mouth #[much] read semenly to my aperehantion much abused and hurt with the bridel bits I seing the maer in such a sad condition I toke up the said maer and put her into my barn and she wold eate no maner of things as for provender or any thing w'c i gave her then i sent for my brother thomas andros which was living in boxford the said anderos came to my hous. I not being at home when I came home a litil afore night my brother anderos told me he head giving the said mear somthing for the bots but as he could purseve it did do her no good but said he I can not tell but she may have the baly ach and said he i wil try one thing more my brother anderos said he wold take a pipe of tobaco and lite it and put itt in to the fundement of the maer I told him that I thought it was not lawfull he said it was lawfull for man or beast then I toke a clen pipe and filled it with tobaco and did lite it and went with the pipe lite to the barn then the said anderos used the pipe as he said before he wold and the pip of tobaco did blaze and burn blew then I said to my brother anderos you shall try no more it is not lawful he said I will try again once mor which he did and then thar arose a blaze from the pipe of tobaco which seemed to me to cover the butocks of the said mear the blaz went up ward towards the roof of the barn and in the roof of the barn thar was a grate crackling as if the barn wOld have falen or bin burnt which semed so to us which ware with in and some that ware with out and we hade no other fier in the barn [b]ut only a candil and a pipe of tobaco and then I said I thought my bar n or my mear most goe the next day being Lords day I spoke to my brother anderos at noone to come to see the said mear and said anderos came and what h[e] did I say not the same Lords day at night my naighbour John hunkins came to my hous and he and I went in to my barn to see this mear said hunkins said and if I ware as you i wolud cute of a pece of this mear and burn it I said no not to day but if she lived til tomorow morning he might cut of a pece off of her and burn [if] he would presentely as we hade spoken these words we stept out of the barn and emedeiatly this said mear fell downe dade and never stured as we coold purseve after she fell down but lay #[stone] dead

Isac Commings sen'r declared: to the Jury of inquest: that the above written evidence: is the truth: upon oath June: 30th 1692

( Essex County Court Archives, Salem -- Witchcraft Vol. 1 no. 330 )