In The Crucible, who were the Wabanakis? What did the Puritans think of them?

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The Wabanakis were a Native American tribe with whom the English colonists were engaged in war as of August, 1668, some four years before the Salem Witch Trials began.  The colonists had suffered tremendous losses as a result of this war.  In Maine, especially, the colonist population had been so decimated that towns were abandoned and left to the Indian warriors to people.  As a result of all this, the relationship between the Puritans and Wabanaki Indians was pretty bad.

The Puritans tended to associate natives with the Devil.  Their skin color, their religion, and their tactics in war made them suspect.  To the colonists, the Indians were heathens who attacked them mercilessly, killing their men and often their wives and children.  Just as the Puritans saw themselves as victims of visible attacks by the Indians, they felt themselves to be constantly under attack by the Devil and his witches as well, and so it didn't take long for the colonists to associate Indians with witches.  

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