Witch Dungeon Museum, Witch Village, Witch Mansion, Witch Museum, Witch House, Witches Cottage, Witch Burger, Witch Scampi, Fried Witch…
With the exception of the last few, the above are all examples of tourist destinations in historic Salem, Massachusetts, and those are just the ones that refer to themselves as museums. Add in other local businesses like Witch City Segway, Witch’s Brew Cafe and, one of my favorites, Dairy Witch and you get an idea of the extent to which Salem has embraced all things witch. Nearly everything is emblazoned with some version of the Halloween witch, despite the fact the Salem witch trials were about the persecution of innocent people, none of whom had probably ever ridden a broom.
Salem also has plenty of lovely 17th and 18th century architecture, a Maritime National Historic Site and the famed House of the Seven Gables, part of a museum campus of historic homes, including the birthplace of Nathaniel Hawthorne. It is a place rich in history. I’m sure some of the museums even talk about the actual witch trials. But, throw in Count Orlok’s Nightmare Gallery, a pirate museum and a dozen or so tarot card readers and they are erring on the side of Halloween camp. Which is to say nothing of the number of people we saw in witch costumes (Chloë is not a fan).
Happily, we are now in Boston and, hopefully, far enough away that the witches can’t cast a spell on us for talking shit about their witchiness.