Saturday, 2 July 2011

Anne Hutchinson

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“ Anne Hutchinson’s religious beliefs started as a religious point of difference and grew in to a

schism the threatened the political stability of the colony” (Behling, ). Anne Hutchinson was

born in England in 151 (Crawford, 11-15). Hutchinsons maiden name was, Anne Marbury. In

164 she married and became Anne Hutchinson (Garman, 5). Anne was also the mother of 15

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children (Garmen, 5). In Anne’s early life she greatly looked up to her father and was greatly

influenced by his beliefs. “Much of Anne’s later independence and willingness to speak out was

due to her father’s example. Anne admired her father for his defiance of traditional church

principles (Buckingham, ). Anne’s father was a very loyal minister of the Anglican Church

(Garmen, 5). A man by the name of John Cotton also had great influence over Anne during this

time. Cotton was a minister that Anne worshipped and looked up to for years (Buckingham, ).

Cotton got in trouble and was asked to leave in 16. Anne thought her and her family should

follow Cotton. Anne said “God had told her to follow Cotton” (Raul, ). In 164 Anne and her

family followed Cotton to Boston (Garman, 5).

Anne was very surprised when she arrived in Boston, Massachusetts. The main reason for her

journey was seeking religious freedom. Anne wanted to freely express herself under leadership of

John Cotton (Buckingham, ). During this colonial time, woman were not supposed to be

speaking up about how they felt. Women were supposed to obey men at all times. Woman were

also not allowed to teach religion during this time (Mayer, 1). Anne began holding meetings in

her home that focused on topics of religion (Garman, 5). The meetings that Anne was holding,

became bigger in size and changed to also include men. The objectives of the meetings also

changed to greatly criticize the church (Behling, ). “Hutchinson believed, people could

communicate directly with god without the use of ministers, churches and bibles” (Maier, 1).

The meetings, deeply divided the colony and the leaders were getting very nervous ( Maier,1).

Anne and her followers went against everything that was normal for this time. Anne was teaching

her followers to believe in an “Inner Holy Spirit” (Behling, ). Anne was teaching woman to

learn about themselves and make their religious beliefs meaningful to themselves (Buckingham,


Hutchinson taught woman that they could receive an answer from god if they listened. Anne

became known as a radical (Buckingham, 4). Woman were always excluded from religious and

government affairs (Raul, ).

Puritan leaders were fearing that the more Anne preached, the more they would have to work

to remain in control (Raul, ). Puritan leaders were getting very nervous that the woman were

gaining a sense of power for themselves (Buckingham, 7). Anne and her followers became known

as “Antinomians or lawless ones” (Buckingham, 5 ). Antinomian also refers to, people who failed

to follow the laws of the Old Testament (Commile, 605).

John Winthrop, the governor of Massachusetts at this time, wanted Anne Hutchinson

banished immediately (Buckingham, 6). Winthrop spoke very disrespectfully towards Hutchinson

and her beliefs. Winthrop quoted, “she shall be tried as a woman whose willful ways made her go

a whoring from God, she is an American jezebel” (Crawford, 108). In 167, people started to act

against her. In August 167, the leaders called a meeting to discuss Anne’s “erroneous opinions”

(Maier, ). Anne was arrested and put on house arrest while she awaited her trial (Buckingham,

7). During this time, Anne had a miscarriage while carrying her sixteenth child. People during this

time looked at the miscarriage as a punishment towards Anne’s behavior (Commile, 604). Anne

went to trial on March 15, 168 (Behling, ). Anne was accused of many different charges while

on trial. Anne was accused of breaking the 5th amendment (Behling, ). Winthrop wanted Anne

banished before she was even convicted of doing anything wrong (Buckingham, 6). She was

almost set free during her trial until she stood up and yelled out, “God said he would save me for

you” (Buckingham, 6). After a long two day trial consisting of only male jurors, Anne was

banished from Massachusetts (Sherr, 165). Winthrop was very proud of being the head of

Anne’s banishment (Buckingham, 7).

Anne picked up herself and fifteen children and moved to Rhode Island in 1640 (Maier, ).

Anne later moved to Long Island where her and her family was murdered during an Indian

massacre (Maier, ). Anne’s beliefs were blown up to be an attack against the church and their

beliefs. People celebrated when Anne was banished. They were quoted to saying, “divine justice”

(Sherr, 165). Hutchinson’s religious movements have had many influences on how we live today.

If it was not for woman like Anne Hutchinson in history, we would not have rights such as

freedom of speech and freedom of religion. Bibliography- Anne Hutchinson

Andrews, Charles M. The Colonial Period of American History. New Haven Yale University

Press, 14. 551

Behling, Sam. “Anne Hutchinson-Notable Woman Ancestors.” 15. 1-


Buckingham, Rachel. “Anne Hutchinson American Jezebel or Woman of Courage?” Oct.15.

- http//www.cpug.org/user/billb/hutch.html

Burnham, Michelle. “Anne Hutchinson and the economics of antimomian selfhood in colonial

England.” Criticism Summer. 17 7.

Crawford, Deborah. Four Women in a Violent Time.’ NY Crown Publishers Inc., 17. 11

Commile, Anne. “Women In World History.” Biographical Encyclopedia. vol. 7(Harr-I). CT

Yorkin Pub, 000. 600-06

Magil, Frank. Great Events From History, American Series. NJ Salem Press, 175 . 85-0.

Maier. World Book Online. “Religious freedom the trial of Anne Hutchinson”. Mass, 000.


Mayer, Robert. “Use the story of Anne Hutchinson to teach historical thinking.” The Social

Studies. May-June 10. 105

Morison, Samuel. Oxford History, American Series. NY, 165. 10,110

Raul, Elizabeth. “Making a difference, Anne Hutchinson, courage before her time”


Sherr Lynn, Jurate Kaziackas. The American Woman’s Gazetteer. NY Bantam Books, 176.

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