Salem is a coastal city in Essex County, Massachusetts, in the United States. Located on Massachusetts' North Shore, Salem is a New England bedrock of history and is considered one of the most significant seaports in Puritan American history.
Salem, located at the mouth of the Naumkeag river at the site of an ancient Native American village and trading center, was first settled by Europeans in 1626, when a company of fishermen from Cape Ann led by Roger Conant arrived. Conant's leadership had provided the stability to survive the first two years, but he was immediately replaced by John Endecott, one of the new arrivals, by order of the Massachusetts Bay Company. Conant graciously stepped aside and was granted 200 acres (0.81 km2) of land in compensation. These "New Planters" and the "Old Planters" agreed to cooperate, in large part due to the diplomacy of Conant and Endecott. In recognition of this peaceful transition to the new government, the name of the settlement was changed to Salem, a hellenized form of the word for "peace" in Hebrew ???? (shalom), and the name mentioned several times in the Bible and traditionally associated with Jerusalem.