, Newburyport, MA


December 31, 2013

Confessions of a midwife


In the Priscilla Wilson-Samuel Appleton fornication case, midwife Hawthorne gave quite a scandalous testimony. According to her, “the child was the image of Mr. Samuell Appleton from the crowne to the foote” (EC 9:65). No doubt, Appleton was in the doghouse! His new bride was with child and his father on the bench, but Wilson’s father held high rank as well, so a compromise was reached. In the end, Appleton dodged a guilty verdict when the infant died shortly after birth. The court ordered him to pay half of all associated costs, and his wife surely put him on a tighter leash.

All things considered, the Essex County judges should have been grateful that they had lovers making unlawful entry between the sheets rather than on the streets!


Happy New Year! Visit Melissa Berry @

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