||Cotton Mather was involved in the Salem Witch Trials.|
Join: Witch Trials Project
Cotton Mather, the son of Increase Mather and Maria Cotton, was born February 12, 1663 in Boston. He was the grandson of both John Cotton and Richard Mather, prominent Puritan ministers. Mather was named after his maternal grandfather, John Cotton. He attended Boston Latin School, where his name was posthumously added to its Hall of Fame, and graduated from Harvard in 1678 at age 15. After completing his post-graduate work, he joined his father as assistant pastor of Boston's original North Church. In 1685 Mather assumed full responsibilities as pastor at the Church.
Mather was known for his vigorous support of the Salem Witch Trials and is credited with providing key support for the use of 'spectral evidence' during the trials. 
In 1706 a slave, Onesimus, explained to Cotton Mather how he had been inoculated as a child in Africa. Mather was fascinated by the idea. By July 1716, Mather had read an endorsement of inoculation by Dr. Emanuel Timonius of Constantinople in the Philosophical Transactions. Mather then declared, in a letter to Dr. John Woodward of Gresham College in London, that he planned to press Boston's doctors to adopt the practice of inoculation should smallpox reach the colony again. This created a major debate in the city. The Franklin brothers, James and Ben were important participants in the debate.
Cotton Mather wrote more than 450 books and pamphlets, and his ubiquitous literary works made him one of the most influential religious leaders in America. Mather set the moral tone in the colonies, and sounded the call for second- and third-generation Puritans, whose parents had left England for the New England colonies of North America, to return to the theological roots of Puritanism. 
Cotton Mather died in 1728 and was buried at Copps Hill Burying Ground, Boston. His memorial has photos and links to those of his parents, three wives and a child. His second wife, Elizabeth Clark was the mother of their son Samuel Mather.
- Copps Hill Burying Ground, Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts
- Find A Grave Memorial# 684
- Cotton Mather at Wikipedia has a full biography with pictures.
- ↑ Wikipedia entry for Cotton Mather
- ↑ There is a great deal on the debate on inocultation in the Wikipedia article.
- ↑ Cotton Mather at Wikipedia has a full biography.
- ↑ Cotton Mather memorial at Find A Grave.
- WikiTree profile Mather-42 created through the import of Tom.ged on Jun 1, 2011 by Tom Elliott.
- Cotton Mather profile http://www.nndb.com/people/377/000048233/
Searching for someone else?
Do you have a GEDCOM? Login to have every name in your tree searched. It's free (like everything on WikiTree).
No known carriers of Cotton's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.
Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Family Tree DNA.
Images: 2 Collaboration
- Login to edit this profile.
- Private Messages: Send a private message to the Profile Manager. (Best when privacy is an issue.)
- Public Comments: Login to post. (Best for messages specifically directed to those editing this profile. Limit 20 per day.)
- Public Q&A: These will appear above and in the Genealogist-to-Genealogist (G2G) Forum. (Best for anything directed to the wider genealogy community.)
On 13 Sep 2016 at 00:28 GMT Cheryl (Aldrich) Skordahl wrote:
"New England Families, Genealogical and Memorial....." Vol 1, p. 1.see at archive.org
On 7 Jan 2016 at 15:22 GMT Sally Stovall wrote:
This is an awesome Profile. Thank you for all of your hard work you have put into this one. GREAT JOB.
Sally ~ WikiTree Leader / Mentor
Cotton is 14 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 10 degrees from Stephen Hopkins, 21 degrees from Ben Kingsley, 18 degrees from David Selman and 16 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II of the Commonwealth Realms on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.