Salem is a city in Essex County, Massachusetts. Home to Salem State University, the Salem Willows Park and the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem is a residential and tourist area that includes the neighborhoods of Salem Neck, The Point, South Salem and North Salem, Witchcraft Heights, Pickering Wharf and the McIntire Historic District (named after Salem’s famous architect and carver, Samuel McIntire). Salem was one of the most significant seaports in early America. Much of the city’s cultural identity reflects its role as the location of the Salem witch trials of 1692.
Located at the site of an ancient Native American village and trading center, Salem was first settled by Europeans in 1626, when a company of fishermen from Cape Ann led by Roger Conant arrived. On February 26, 1775, patriots raised the drawbridge at the North River, preventing British Colonel Alexander Leslie and his 300 troops of the 64th Regiment of Foot from seizing stores and ammunition hidden in North Salem.
The Old China Trade left a significant mark in two historic districts, the Chestnut Street District and the Salem Maritime National Historic Site. The Samuel McIntire Historic District, to which the Chestnut Street District belongs, represents the greatest concentration of 17th and 18th century domestic structures anywhere in America. By executive order, the city was also recently designated as the birthplace of the U.S. National Guard.