Sarah Davis Cole was accused of witchcraft in Salem, Massachusetts during the fall of 1692 — but she was not among those executed during the more notorious Salem trials. Her story isn’t widely told, and information is sparse, but this woman did exist — and she produced many descendants.
During the Salem witch craze, Cole was accused alongside another woman named Hannah Carroll. She and Hannah stood accused of torturing a local man with the use of witchcraft, and so they were indicted and jailed. Sarah stayed in jail from September of 1692 until sometimes in January of 1693, when her husband was able to gather up the funds needed to bail her out. From there, she was eventually acquitted on all witchcraft-related charges. For the most part, any other information about Sarah Davis Cole is lost to history, but what is known is that she did have several children — which means that she should have some living descendants out there, somewhere, today.
The genealogy of Sarah Davis Cole
Sarah Cole and her husband produced at least three children — two daughters, and a son named Sarah, Elizabeth and Samuel.
Samuel Cole fathered at least two daughters — Elizabeth and Ruth. Elizabeth died shortly after she was born, but Ruth did marry — taking the last name Peabody. She mothered at least four children. The Ruth Peabody line is as follows:
Elizabeth Peabody (daughter); Married Isaac Sanderson and produced at least one daughter named Susannah Sanderson Whitney. She produced a son named Charles Whitney. Charles A. Whitney produced several children named Susan, Elvira, Charles Elliot and Harriet. The children of Charles Whitney also produced several children — far too many to list down the line. This particular branch of the Sarah Davis Cole family tree seemed to remain rooted firmly in Massachusetts and New Hampshire into the 1900s. Surnames associated with this branch descended from Sarah Cole are Whitney, Gove, Watts, McKenny and Preston, among many others.
Elizabeth Cole mothered at least two children — Samuel Jefferds and Sarah Adams. Samuel Jefferds married Sarah Wheelwright and produced multiple children: Elizabeth (Jefferds) Pike, Samuel Jefferds, George Jefferds, Simon Jefferds, Sarah (Jefferds) Ham, Mary (Jefferds) Hemenway and Abigail (Jefferds) Wells. The majority of the children produced by Elizabeth Cole also produced their own children. Surnames of interest include Jefferds, Jeffers, Ham, Hemenway, Littlefield and Furbish.
As you can see, Sarah Davis Cole has the potential of thousands of living descendants — and a multitude of potential surnames to research for connections. It also seems that the vast majority of the branches in her tree remained rooted in the New England area.