Historical Building in Salem

Boston, MA

Salem Witch Trials

HST 490

Dates: On Desoto Campus: July 29-30 & August 9-10, 2018; In Boston and Salem: July 31 - August 8, 2018

Credit Hours: 3

Instructor: Dr. Melinda Rice, Instructional Assistant Professor

Cost: $1250 plus tuition

Application Deadline: April 11, 2019

Itinerary subject to change. Students should wait to make travel arrangements after confirming dates and times with instructor.

  • Study one of the most famous and mythologized events from early American history: the Salem Witch Trials.
  • Learn the European foundations of witch trials, and the New England context for the period.
  • Travel to Boston and Salem to make site visits to better understand the “little communities” that made up Massachusetts Bay Colony, and colonial New England as a whole.
  • Tour historic site such as Plimoth Plantation, Boston Common, the House of Seven Gables, the North End, and Copp’s Hill Burying Ground.
  • Visit sites with direct ties to the Witch Trials, such as Balch House, Hale Farm, and Johnathan Corwin’s home.
  • Understand how different historians have interpreted the fascinating historical puzzle of the Salem Witch Trials.
  • Improve writing and critical thinking skills, and utilize primary sources from 17th century to inform final paper.


Class will begin on the Desoto campus on July 29th and continue July 30th. Students will make their way to Boston on July 31st, and class in Massachusetts will begin that evening. Class in Boston and Salem will run July 31 – August 8, with students returning to the Desoto Center on August 9th for two more days before class ends on August 10th.


Students will spend 8 days between Boston and Salem, MA.  Shared accommodations will be provided.

Program will be of interest to History, Sociology, Anthropology, English, Education, Gender Studies, Medieval Studies, Psychology, and Religious Studies majors. History club, Center for Inclusion and Cross Cultural Engagement, Cultural Connections, Cultural Passport, Law Association of Women, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Ole Miss Mock Trial Association, Teachers of Tomorrow, Theta Alpha Kappa Religious Studies Honor Society

Course fee is $1250. Included in the course fee are housing, site entry fees, ground transportation, and select group meals. Excluded from the cost are the Study USA application fee, tuition, airfare, and personal spending money.

Students will make their own travel arrangements to and from Boston, MA. The easiest airport to travel into will be Boston Logan International Airport.