Real Name: Obadiah Shaw
Identity/Class: 17th century terrestrial civilian;
English citizen (see comments)
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Abigail Harkness
Enemies: Hiram Shaw;
Henry (not an enemy, but just was in the way of his freeing Abigail)
Known Relatives: Hiram Shaw (father), Sarah Shaw
(mother, deceased), Elizabeth Shaw-Worthington,
Cornelius Shaw, Esau Shaw, Jacob Shaw, Sebastian Shaw, Shinobi Shaw, and presumably Szandor Shaw
it is unclear whether he actually did ever marry Abigail Harkness
Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
formerly the Shaw house, Salem, Massachusetts
First Appearance: X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (January, 2000)
Powers/Abilities: Obadiah demonstrated no particular abilities beyond horsemanship and experience with a pistol.
He had the fortitude to stand up to/against to his intimidating father, at least to defend his love.
Height: Unrevealed; perhaps 5'8" (he looked to
be at least inches shorter than his father, although he may well have
been crouching or in some other odd perspective; he may also have not
been fully mature)
Weight: Unrevealed; perhaps 140 lbs. (see above)
Eyes: Unrevealed; dark, perhaps brown (the story is mostly colored in an odd hue...not black and white, but where nothing has distinctive colors)
Hair: Unrevealed; likely dark brown
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Obadiah was likely born in England and moved to the USA with his parents, Hiram and Sarah, when his father was drawn to Salem, Massachusetts amidst the witch trials.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Obadiah fell in love with Abigail Harkness, the daughter of a widow, whom his father and many others suspected of being a witch. Hiram did want Obadiah to see or be seen with Abigail.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Unlike the rest of the congregation, Obadiah did not enjoy his father's hellfire and brimstone anti-witch sermons.
Obadiah was presumably unaware of his father's secret activities as would be "Sorcerer Supreme," defending humanity from demons such as Dormammu
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Obadiah and Abigail planned to get married.
Obadiah tried to tell his parents about his plans for Abigail, but Hiram would hear nothing of it.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb)) <1692> - After one such sermon, as Obadiah headed out, he was pulled into the woods by Abigail, who delivered a passionate kiss to him despite his warnings about his father. Obadiah confirmed his love for Abigail and told her he believed in Abigail, unaware his father was oberving them from a distance.
That evening, Obadiah returned home, answering his mother's queries on his whereabouts by claiming to have spent the day with his friends Thomas and William. Having seen those two boys return to their homes without Obadiah, Hiram exposed Obadiah's deceit and forbade him from ever seeing Abigail again. Obadiah refused to accept this, telling his father he didn't care what he thought and that he loved and planned to marry Abigail.
Hiram angrily warned Obadiah he would neither see his wishes ignored nor would he allow Obadiah to condemn his eternal soul to Satan's furnace for "the temptations of that filthy witch." Obadiah argued that Abigail was not a witch and he couldn't prove she was, but Hiram turned his back and walked away as he asked, "Can't I...?"
After Hiram walked away, Sarah
urged Obadiah to obey his father, and when Obadiah told her he could not deny
his heart, she added, "Nor can your father deny his. He believes he is
God's sanctioned agent, sent to punish the wicked for their sins."
When Obadiah replied that without proof of her involvement in the dark arts, there could be no case against Abigail, Sarah hugged Obadiah and told him that she prayed Hiram did not find proof, for both their souls.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - That evening, following another encounter between Hiram and Dormammu, the demon slew Sarah, leaving her a dessicated corpse with spiders crawling out of her eye sockets.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Burying Sarah, to cover his own involvement, Hiram accused Abigal Harkness of being responsible for Sarah's death.
Abigal Harkness was arrested and brought to (presumably biased) trial.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb)) - At the trial, after Abigail was found guilty and condemned to be hanged the next morning, Obadiah vowed to save her; but Hiram told him that power demanded a sacrifice and that someday he would understand this. Obadiah ran off, vowing that he would never abide his father's ways.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Obadiah arranged to board a ship in Boston harbor to escape with Abigail.
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb)) - Ambushing and knocking out the guard, Henry (and then begging his shriveness (forgiveness)), Obadiah broke Abigail out of her prison and fled with her on horseback, planning to take ship from Boston in the morning.
The town was enraged, but none moreso that Hiram, who led the horseback pursuit, prepared to chase them through perdidtion's flames to save face in the community's eyes.
As their pursuers closed in, Obadiah turned to fire his pistol at them in hopes of frightening them off; however, Abigail revealed she truly was a witch, and she unleashed a fiery blast that bypassed Hiram but slew the other men with him.
Obadiah was shocked to learn Abigail really was a witch, but she told him to just ride, as their troubles would soon be ash
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - Obadiah Shaw wrote "The Truthful Account of the Salem Witch Trials," opening with "I give this accounting of those terrible days to cleanse my soul of their ungodly taint, and to protect future generations from the pestilence that is my namesake..."
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 - BTS) - In recent years, Irene Merryweather obtained the book and traveled to "the haunted church" in Salem, where an unidentified priest shared the story of Hiram & Obadiah Shaw on the condition that she swore what he told her never left the sanctuary. After she departed, unidentified parties (presumably associated with Sebastian Shaw and/or the Hellfire Club) apparently shot and killed the priest (a gunshot was heard in the shadows after he found the gate unlocked, and then the story ended).
Comments: Created by Ben Raab and Charlie Abalard.
As Obadiah looked to be around 16-18 years old (maybe as young as 14,
and people matured and were married at a much younger age in the 17th
when there was talk of Hiram coming to Salem, one would presume he was
born in England and moved to the USA with his family, but that's not
clearly spelled out.
Regardless, I think prior to the Revolutionary War, all of the colonists in America were citizens or subjects of England
As clarified by Loki,the Kingdom of Great Britain formed with the Union of Crowns circa 1707, and became the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland in 1801.Prior to the Union of the Crowns, England and Scotland were still separate kingdoms and separate countries, even though by this point they shared a single monarch.
There's more Salem Witch Trial information on these pages (and sup-profiles): Charity Brown, Cotton Mather, Dark Rider, Abigail Williams, Betty Paris, and Way Wilcott, and, of course, Agatha Harkness.
Though there is nothing beyond perhaps cicrumstancial evidence, Obadiah may have been planned to marry Abigail because she was pregnant...or perhaps she was pregnant but either did not yet know it or had not told Obadiah. The information at the end seemed to indicate that Obadiah may have been so upset upon learning Abigail's true nature that he might have left her. However, we don't know any of the above for sure. What we do know is that Shinobi, Sebastian, Jacob, Esau, Cornelius, and Elizabeth are Hiram's and Obadiah's (the latter confirmed in Sebastian Shaw's most recent OHotMU entries) descendents. So, either Abigail had at least one child by Obadiah, or perhaps Obadiah remarried. It is also possible that Hiram had other children after departing Salem, but that seems less likely to me.
Profile by Snood.
Obadiah Shaw should be distinguished from:
(X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (fb) - BTS) - At some point after fleeing Salem with his lover, Abigail, who proved to be a witch, Obadiah Shaw wrote "The Truthful Account of the Salem Witch Trials," opening with "I give this accounting of those terrible days to cleanse my soul of their ungodly taint, and to protect future generations from the pestilence that is my namesake..."
In recent years, Irene Merryweather obtained the book and traveled to "the haunted church" in Salem, where an unidentified priest shared the story of Hiram & Obadiah Shaw on the condition that she swore what he told her never left the sanctuary. After she departed (presumably with the book), unidentified parties (presumably associated with Sebastian Shaw and/or the Hellfire Club) apparently shot and killed the priest (a gunshot was heard in the shadows after he found the gate unlocked, and then the story ended).--X-Men: Hellfire Club#1
images: (without ads)
X-Men: Hellfire Club#1, story pg. 1, panel 4 (book);
pg. 8. panel 3 (full, oblique);
pg. 12, panel 3 (face);
pg. 17, panel 1 and 3 (Henry standing and lying down);
pg. 20, panel 1 (horseback-front view);
pg. 21, panel 2 (horse-back-side view)
X-Men: Hellfire Club#1 (January, 2000) - Ben Raab (writer), Charlie Abalard (artist), Mark Powers (editor)
Last updated: 02/26/15
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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