For Hallowe’en Sophie (age 7) and Ellie (age 5) tell the story of witches in history. We learn how the Witchfinder General in England used to find so called witches and about the Salem Witch trials in America.
People in Europe are very worried about witches 500 years ago. They think that witches are people who are working with the devil. They worry that they are flying on broomsticks and have cats who are friends with the Devil. But actually, they are just picking on mostly poor and lonely women.
In East Anglia there is a scare about witches caused by a man known as the Witchfinder general. He gets paid for finding witches – so he keeps finding them. He has lots of unfair tricks to prove people are witches. He also writes a book about how to do it called “A discovery of witches”.
The book is popular in America. Especially in a town called Salem. Salem is very worried about witches. The whole town starts looking everywhere for witches. Hundreds of people are accused. Even a four year old girl gets accused of being a witch. A panic takes over the whole town. One person refused to say either way whether he is a witch or not and meets a terrible end.
Eventually everyone realised that there was no such things as witchcraft and it was all made up. People started to learn more about science. They passed laws to stop people being prosecuted for witchcraft.
It’s obviously a bit of a spooky topic and we have some spooky music but it’s not an especially scary episode and Sophie and Ellie had no issues with it so we think it’s okay to listen to before bedtime. We also make it very clear that these people are not witches and the whole thing is made up.
We also talk about our new Patrons’ Club. There are different tiers of membership. But they all involve more episodes each month and you can get to choose your episode or even be in an episode. We’d love you to become a member and Sophie and Ellie have got to know many of the children through it. Go to https://www.patreon.com/historystorytime to sign up. We have exclusive episodes on the Seven Wonders of the World and on the Bayeux Tapestry. This last episode ties in with our recent Battle of Hastings episode.