A few weeks ago I spent some time in Salem, Mass (yes, *that* Salem) to gather some information for articles. If you’ve never been to Salem, you might be a bit overwhelmed by all the “witch” goings on there. Salem sure does like its witch heritage.
They have witch and haunted tours, graveyard tours, and if you’ve even wanted to buy the ingredients for a spell, this is definitely the place to go.
On a more serious note, next to the town cemetery is a stone bench memorial for all of the women and men who were hanged or pressed to death for being witches. I have yet to go and not see token on each of the benches left by relatives or simply those who want to say they are sorry.
But Salem is so much more than witches. It has an incredible maritime history. Here is the Custom House where all goods coming in from ships were weighed and recorded. Nathaniel Hawthorne worked here and inside you can see his desk and the pen that he used when he recorded shipments.
Speaking of Nathaniel Hawthorne, in Salem you can also visit the House of the Seven Gables which inspired the book of the same name. (For the record, The Scarlet Letter by Hawthorne remains one of my most favorite stories – it was my first introduction to a strong, kick-butt woman.)
Just down the street from the House of the Seven Gables is Ye Olde Pepper Candy Companie – America’s oldest candy company where they make fudge and old fashioned treats.
While there, I stayed at an AirBnB run by a friend of mine, Hope. She calls her home Rose Garden because of the rose bush with a trunk “as thick as a tree” in her front yard. It’s an older, completely charming house that reeks of history. If you want the whole Salem experience consider staying in an AirBnB like this one.
Hope loves to pamper her guests and she provides the most incredible breakfasts when you stay with her. This is a breakfast tart made from cherry tomatoes freshly picked from her garden that morning. On top of this, the other guests and I had a sweet bread, eggs, potatoes, bacon, and cup after cup of deep, rich coffee. It’s pretty hard not to be happy when you start the day like this.
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
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