Hysteria that even leads to the detention of a child? I'm talking of course about the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692 and their aftermath. If y'all haven't already done so, you might enjoy picking up a copy of Skeptic magazine, v21n4, the issue currently on newsstands. It features a book review by yours truly on the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692 and their aftermath.
In it I review three books: The Witches by Stacy Schiff, In the Devil's Snare by Mary Beth Norton, and America Bewitched by Owen Davies. Schiff discusses the 1692 epidemic with grace and comprehensiveness, Norton makes a step by step case about why the 1692 trials were longer and deadlier than any other in the colonies. Davies notes that some things haven't changed: it was women who were mostly executed in 1692, and women who were involved in most of the cases since, as late as the 1950s.
Skeptic magazine, by the way, looks to science to explain strange phenomena.