Aged 18
Daughter of Robert and Mary Chandler


Susan Chandler was in fact the step-daughter of Mary Chandler. She had a brother John and an un-named sister but nothing is known about these children.  Susan's father, a widower named Robert, had married her step-mother, a widow named Mary Coe, at Lowestoft on 6th June 1649 when Susan was 5 years old.  There were no children born of this marriage.

Nothing is known about Robert Chandler before this date so presumably he and his family settled in Lowestoft around the time of his marriage to Mary.

Mary Coe was previously married to Thomas Coe, a Yeoman from an old established Lowestoft family.   They were married at Lowestoft on 24th January 1633 and lived in a freehold messuage at the "North End" of High Street. Mary had five children by Thomas, four of whom were still living when he died in May, 1646.  Her maiden name was Draper, but there is no record of her in Lowestoft before her marriage to Thomas.

In the 17th century it was usual for young widows with small children to re-marry very soon after the death of their spouse in order to provide for their children.  The fact that Mary waited three years before marrying Robert Chandler is explained by the fact that her husband left her well provided for in his Will.  He left her " . . . all the houses, landes and tenements of myne in Lowestoft . . . for the educatinge and bring and bringing upp of my children . . ."  Mary Coe was obviously a widow of independent means.

Town records show that at the time of Susan's accusations against Rose Cullender, the family were living at Lowestoft's main Inn, the "Crown" where Robert was the "Innholder".

The wealth and property that Mary Chandler inherited from her first husband were tied-up under the terms of his Will and held in Trust to be sold at her death, the proceeds to be divided among the surviving children of their marriage.  The property was so entailed that it was not possible for her second husband or his children to benefit from it.

This might explain why Susan Chandler was employed as a "servant" elsewhere in town when she claimed to have been bewitched.

There is evidence that Mary Chandler espoused the non-conformist cause for in September 1652 a person with that name was admitted to the Great Yarmouth Congregational Church - the same puritan sect supported by Samuel Pacy and his sister Margaret Arnold.  The latter, who testified at the trial,  lived in Great Yarmouth and attended the church there

As the Trial report notes, Mary Chandler was one of six women appointed by Sir Edmund Bacon to search Rose Cullender for "witches marks".  There is nothing to indicate why she was selected for this task.

Robert Chandler died at Lowestoft in November 1675, and Mary Chandler died there in August 1687.  Both were buried in the parish churchyard but no memorial remains.

As with the other "bewitched" girls, Susan Chandler survived her ordeal and on 28th May 1668, aged 24, she married a 36 year old widower named Samuel Pearson.  Samuel's first wife was Margaret Pacy, a distant relative of Samuel Pacy whose daughters were also "bewitched".  There is no record at Lowestoft of children from their marriage.

Samuel died at Lowestoft in January 1689, being described as a "householder".  Susan survived him by almost twenty years and died at Lowestoft in January 1707.  She never remarried.

Today her mortal remains and those of her husband lay forgotten somewhere beneath the green grass  of St. Margaret's churchyard, Lowestoft. . . . .

St. Margarets Church

Lowestoft Parish Registers,  Suffolk Record Office, Lowestoft
Probate Records for the Archdeaconry of Suffolk,  Suffolk Record Office, Ipswich
Lowestoft Manor Court Records,  Suffolk Record Office, Lowestoft.
Copy of the Original Record of the Yarmouth Congregational Church (1642-1855), Dr. Williams Library, London.