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Hail Salem, Massachusetts! Visiting the Satanic Temple art gallery, Gothic clothing boutiques & occult witch shops.

Satanic Temple salem, Baphomet Statue, satan devil lucifer sculpture

Last Halloween, someone had a date with the Devil… in Salem, Massachusetts!

All hail the Satanic Temple, who have a headquarters and art gallery in Salem — the New England town where the 1692 witch trials took place. Read on for a peek inside…

In part 1 of my Salem Goth Guide, I took you to the witchiest museums and historic attractions, including the local cemetery and Witch House. (Since these tend to close early, around 4-5pm, I suggest that you visit them first if you are only here for a day).

cute skeleton dolls plush toys goth

In this second installment of my Salem adventures, I’ll show you what we did in the later afternoon (around 4-7pm). This is the ideal time to check out the Gothic stores on Essex Street, as they don’t generally close until 6pm. But before we go shopping, let’s pay a visit to The Satanic Temple of Salem.

Coronavirus Note: Salem will still be having “haunted happenings” this year, but with safety precautions to prevent COVID. Please see the tourism board’s FAQs about travel, mask requirements, and events in Salem for Halloween 2020, before you visit.

visit the satanic temple Salem Art Gallery massachussetts

Because of COVID-19, the Salem Art Gallery is open only by appointment. You can easily make an advance reservation via their site.

The gallery and Satanic Temple are located at 64 Bridge Street. The street number is a few digits shy from 666, but the black and red signpost makes up for it.

Don’t feel apprehensive about visiting this devilish lair — everyone is welcome here. I saw families and children wandering inside, and snapping cheerful photos with Baphomet.

goth pope chairs gothic red antiqu furniture

The Satanic Temple (TST) has chapters worldwide — remember when I went to their disco party in London! — but their head office is in Salem, MA.

The Satanic Temple has been designated a tax-exempt church, but they’re a non-theistic organization and don’t “worship the devil.” In their words, “Satan is an icon for the unbowed will of the unsilenced inquirer – the heretic who questions sacred laws and rejects all tyrannical impositions.”

Members believe in respecting the freedoms of others, and acting with compassion in accordance with science. (Unlike certain religious figures who sit on chairs like these…)

satanic temple church, house headquarters salem ma

Logistics time. What’s the best way to get to the Satanic Temple of Salem?

Most of Salem’s historic / tourist attractions are in the central part of the town. The TST is a little further north (15-20 minute walk, or 5 minute car ride). If you’re only here for a day and short on time (as we were), I suggest taking an Uber to maximise your time. 

Opening hours: TST usually closes at 7pm, which is why we visited it last. (Salem’s other Gothic attractions close earlier). Keep in mind that it is closed Monday/Tuesdays, and that this year (with COVID), you must make an appointment through their site first.

satanic temple pride rainbow flat lgbt gay

The Satanic Temple and Art Gallery are easy to spot. Look for a dark grey historic house with a rainbow flag of the goat-headed one.

Many members identify as LGBTQ+. The Satanic Temple stands for equal rights, benevolence, and freedom of expression — often taking part in campaigns for LGBTQ+ and reproductive rights.

pentagram lucifer devil wreath

How charming is this goat-headed wreath? The Satanic Temple’s logo is a Sigil of Baphomet (the Sabbatic Goat) and an inverted pentagram.

 Lucien Greaves, Baphomet Statue, satanic t-shirts, satanic temple merch

Inside, you can sit on the lap of Baphomet — check out Daddy’s hooves! (More about this controversial statue further down.)

arms with snake garden eden painting

Founded in 2013, The Satanic Temple rebels against arbitrary, tyrannical norms that interfere with individual freedoms. They’ve made waves by using devilish imagery (such as black masses and “Snaketivity” sculptures) to fight encroachments on the separation between church and state.

If you’re confused about the Church of Satan vs. Satanic Temple, here’s a funny guide to the differences between the two. (The former was founded in 1966 by Anton LaVey, author of The Satanic Bible).

salem art gallery artists exhibit

For members of TST, Satan isn’t a supernatural deity. He represents the never-ending search for knowledge, using the best scientific evidence available to make rational decisions.

The Satanic Temple has seven fundamental tenets, which focus on living with compassion, justice, and wisdom.

Statue of Baphomet satanic temple, bronze sculpture

In addition to serving as an office, Salem’s Satanic Temple is an art gallery and creative gathering space. Anyone is welcome to visit and see the rotating works on display.

(Admission must be made in advance via their site. Note the local logo, featuring a death’s head or winged skull that is found on many Puritan graves.)

satanic temple merchandise shirts store

It’s well worth the visit — you get to peruse a dark collection of memorabilia for sale, and see art such as the original concept sketch for the Baphomet statue.

satanic salem walking tours

The team also offers a Satanic Salem Walking Tour, and various activities. You can attend a lecture, take a class on making candles for a Satanic ritual, or watch a screening of documentary Hail Satan? (which focuses on co-founder Lucien Greaves, and TST’s activities).

devil satanic art drawings

As you’d expect, the Satanic Temple of Salem is a Gothic dream-house. Built in 1882, the Victorian-style interiors once housed a funeral parlor. Wander up the winding staircase, and be inspired by the artwork by mostly local artists.

baphomet goat headed statue salem

Lissette and I were delighted to stand with the infamous Baphomet statue, which is 8.5 feet tall and weighs 3000 lbs. Originally a pagan idol associated with the Knights Templar, the horned deity evolved into the Sabbatic Goat, and is a symbol of both TST and the Church of Satan.

When a Ten Commandments statue was placed outside Oklahoma State Capitol, The Satanic Temple created this Baphomet to sit beside it in the name of religious equality. The court ended up removing the Christian statue on the grounds that state property shouldn’t be used to further religions — win!

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The bronze Baphomet is a political symbol, and a powerful work of art especially when seen (and sat on) in person. Love the pentagrams, snakes, and two children staring up at him.

satan throne chair pope devil

The Satanic Temple has fought against religious encroachment in other creative ways. They asked to give a Satanic invocation before Scottsdale City Council, since only Judeo-Christian groups have said prayers in this public forum. They were arbitrarily denied, and are currently in court to defend their First Amendment rights.

I got a kick out of their response to the Christian Good News Club, which some public schools offered as an after-school children’s program. Enter the After School Satan Club! “While the Good News Clubs focus on indoctrination, instilling them with a fear of Hell and God’s wrath, (we) focus on free inquiry and rationalism, the scientific basis for which we know what we know about the world around us.” V-fingers to that, from our perch on these Pope chairs.

The Satanic Temple Veterans' Monument

The Salem headquarters also holds the Satanic Temple Veterans’ Monument. In response to a two-foot steel cross memorial placed in Belle Plaine’s remembrance park, the Satanists donated this statue. However, they were denied the right to place it — and are currently still fighting for the same access to public spaces as other religions.

The monument is simple yet strong: a black steel cube marked with a gold inverted pentagram, and an empty soldier’s helmet on top where people can leave messages.

death masks museum satanic temple

Be sure to visit the Satanic Temple’s library. They have a fascinating collection of death masks and medical devices, which reminded me the Morbid Anatomy exhibit.

satanic temple salem books library

A wonderful collection of books and objects on the subject of witch-hunts, Satanism, and occult matters. 

1980s satanic panic books funny 80s satan

Peruse the fascinating collection of Satanic Panic literature and records. In the 1980s, there was a widespread and unfounded fear that Satanic ritual abuse had become widespread, resulting in child blood-lettings and other dark matters. These books (Halloween Satanism, Turmoil Toybox) look ridiculous now, but they were taken seriously at the time.

heavy metal satanic worship symbols

The moral panic even led to police guidelines on how to spot a Satanist. I laughed out loud… if your teen draws a yin-yang or is listening to Dio, you better pray for their soul!

satanic temple difference Church of Satan

Intrigued by this “hell house?” Then crawl on over to The Satanic Temple of Salem for an enlightening visit.

(You can find out more about their work in the Hail Satan documentary.)

goth clothing shops salem ma, gothic fashion

Now, let’s check out some spooky boutiques. Salem is an incredible destination for those who love Gothic fashion and home decor. (Note that these photos were from my visit last fall, so things may have changed with COVID.)

Some of the stores are more on the tourist side, and sell generic Halloween goods. However, there are also wonderful indie boutiques with local / handmade Goth items (like this skull sweater).

die with boots on salem goth fashion shop

I didn’t get to go to every Goth store — I missed out on Die With Your Boots On, purveyor of underground / subculture fashion and locally made products.

Most of the Gothic boutiques are on Essex Street, between Summer – Washington – Hawthorne. I suggest starting at one end and walking along Essex, and meandering to the side streets as well.

witch city wicks, black cat pillows

Lissette and I were fans of Witch City Wicks, an independent, handmade, local candle and home goods company.

salem witch shops, goth clothes

In addition to artisan candles, Witch City Wicks stocks hand-crafted interior decor and gifts — perfect for witchy women.

satanic jewelry shop salem, pentagram necklaces

They carry an enticing selection of silver jewelry with witch and occult themes. These pentacle necklaces and pendants are by Burial Ground.

witch spell candles salem store shopping

All their candles are made with vegan-friendly soy wax, and have alternative scents and packaging influenced by Salem’s culture.

glass star pentagram lanterns pentacle

Witches tend to be associated with horror and darkness in popular culture, but Witch City Wicks shows the positive, spiritual side of wicca.

halloween silver pumpkin necklace pendant

Be ready to spend when you’re in Salem… it’s hard to resist designs like these, especially when they are by indie makers.

goth witches salem goths scene clubs

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble… Can you picture me stirring a cauldron by this hearth?

I’m wearing a rare OG pleats dress by Moi-meme-Moitie (the elegant Gothic Lolita brand of Mana-sama, guitarist of Moi dix Mois and Malice Mizer).

vampfangs salem boutique vampire store

Salem isn’t just for witches. The little New England town with a ghastly history had drawn in other bloody subcultures.

Coffin-dwellers will love the boutique Vampfangs. Founded in 1993, they carry all things vampire-related including red contacts and sharp fangs. 

vampire rings silver skull ankh jewellery

There’s a selection of jewelry that looks like it belongs to Lestat. I spot an anhk and skull.

salem witch potions herbs

Vampfangs also has a variety of fragrances, oils and skincare — wiwth vampiric names like Bitten, Immortal, Funeral Parlor, Black Cloak.

devil horns headband

Need a skull, or a horned headband? Vampfangs has you covered.

salem goth vampire store vampfangs

These specialty boutiques are run by locals who participate in the subculture, and put careful attention to design details. Salem’s historic atmosphere adds to the charm of shopping for Goth goods.

hex old world witchery shop

“I put a spell on you…” All your ritual needs can be found at Hex Old World Witchery.

devil goat lucifer ouija board

This old world witchcraft store is a wonderland of herbs, crystals, divination objects, voodoo dolls… 

bronze sculpture baphomet

Hex pays homage to deities and demons from all cultures. The Satanic Baphomet sits next to Kali, Hindu goddess of destruction (remember I visited her temples in India?)

witch essential oils spells salem witchcraft

So many potions to choose from… In Salem, it’s always the Season of the Witch.

designer leather witch hat

Can you picture yourself wearing this pointed witch hat with a skull?

human skull, voodoo altar witches

Be sure to pay your respects to the altar at the entrance of Hex, which brings together Santa Muerte candles, voodoo dolls and a human skull.

salem witch tarot readings readers spells witches

Many Salem stores run special events and workshops. No matter when you visit, you’ll find something witchy or artistic to partake in. Tarot card readings, spell casting, broom-making… If only I had more time!

witchcraft designers salem art

You can visit the store websites and Destination Salem to learn about upcoming activities. Or just wander around, and see what happens to be going on (we stumbled upon a small vendors fair).

the coven's cottage salem shopping street

The sun, it burns! Outside The Coven’s Cottage, which has a pagan and metaphysical focus, especially on Norse/Asatru.

salem witch board museum, witch city hall

The word “witch” is found on pretty much everything in Salem… Impossible to see everything in a single day. I’ll have to come back for more.

salem halloween costumes, witch city ink

Be sure to read Part 1 of my Salem Goth Guide as it covers the best museums (including the Witch Trials of 1692), and Goth-friendly attractions like Count Orlok’s Nightmare Gallery of monsters.

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A hearty hail to The Satanic Temple of Salem for the special tour. (Keep in mind that I visited last year, so these photos are from the pre-COVID days.)

witches goths salem gothic parties

Salem, MA more than lived up to my Gothic expectations! I hope you’ll get to safely fly (either by plane or broom) to Destination Salem and revel in these haunted happenings for yourself.

(For more, check out the first instalment of my Salem Goth travel guide and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina the teenage witch adventure. Happy Halloween!).

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