February 1, 1742

1742 February 1 (Monday).  It was a rainy Day, but I rode to Grafton and Sutton.  Mr. Prentice[1] though his Child was very ill, yet was gone up to Sutton.  In going from Deacon Halls[2] in Sutton in order to find Brother Hicks’s[3] I wandered fruitlessly; for though I found the House they had dwelt in yet they having removed to their own House lately (which I was not informed of) I missed of them and struck across the woods to the Road up to Town.  Mr. Edwards was come from Leicester.  Mr. Webb[4] of Uxbridge and Mr. John Fairfield[5] there.  Mr. Edwards to a large Assembly on Ps. 18.35.  At Eve in a very rainy, stormy Time I preached to a Considerable Assembly on Ps. 68.8.  I lodged at Mr. Halls.  Religion has been of late very much revived in Sutton, and a general Concern about their souls.

[1]Solomon Prentice (1705-1773), Harvard 1727, minister of Grafton, 1731-1747, Easton, 1747-1755, and Hull, 1768-1772.  SHG, 8:248-57.

[2]Percival Hall of Sutton.

[3]John Hicks was Parkman’s brother-in-law, having mar. Rebecca Champney, sister of Parkman’s first wife, Mary (or Molly) Champney, May 8, 1721; CVR, 2:71.

[4]Nathan Webb (1705-1772), Harvard 1725, minister of Uxbridge, 1731-1772; SHG, 7:617-19.

[5]Possibly John Fairfield (1712-c. 1767), Harvard 1732; SHG, 9:150.

February 2, 1742

1742 February 2 (Tuesday).  Rainy morning.  Mr. Edwards utterly denyed going out in the Storm.  I resigned and took Leave.  Mr. Edwards coming to the Door and seeing it began to clear up he put on Resolution and came with me to Westborough.  Here were Mr. Cushing,[1] Mr. Stone,[2] Mr. Smith, Capt. Williams,[3] Dr. Gott and Mr. Daniel Barns,[4] who dined with me.  Mr. Edwards preached to a great Congregation on Joh. 12.32.  And at Eve at my House on Gen. 19.17.  N.B. Mr. James Fay[5] was greatly wrought on by the sermon on Joh. 12.32.  So were Samuel Allen[6] and Ezekiel Dodge,[7] who manifested it to me:  and doubtless multitudes besides were so, Deo Opt. Max. Gloria.

[1]Job Cushing (1694-1760), Harvard 1714, minister of Shrewsbury, 1723-1760.  SHG 6:45-46.

[2]Nathan Stone (1708-1781), Harvard 1726, minister of Southborough, 1730-1781. SHG 8:99-105.

[3]Abraham Williams (1695-1781) of Marlborough.

[4]Daniel Barns of Marlborough.

[5]James Fay later attended separatist meetings in Grafton.  When he sought a dismissal to Hardwick in 1747, he acknowledged his disorderly conduct; WCR, 80. (Aug. 17, 1747).  On the Fay family, see particularly Douglas L. Winiarski, Darkness Falls on the Land of Light: Experiencing Religious Awakenings in Eighteenth-Century New England (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina press, 2017), 374-80, 386, 403.

[6]Samuel, son of Ephraim and Susanna Allen, b. Sept. 7, 1720; WVR, 10.

[7]Ezekiel Dodge (1723-1770), Harvard 1749, minister at Abington, 1750-1770; SHG, 12:367-69.

February 3, 1742

1742 February 3 (Wednesday).  Mr. Edwards returned upon his journey.  My wife and I accompanyed him to Shrewsbury to Mr. Cushings, where we parted.  I afterwards heard that he preached at Worcester.  We dined at Mr. Cushings and at returning home we called at Bezaliel Eagers,[1] with whose wife,[2] mine was School mate.  Fine Day.

[1]Bezaleel Eager, born Dec. 2, 1713 (MVR, 65); died Oct. 31, 1787 (Northborough VR, 133.

[2]Persis, wife of Bezeleel Eager, d. Oct. 1, 1768 (ibid., 133).

February 7, 1742

1742 February 7 (Sunday).  On Luk. 19.10 a. and p.m.  Hope there was Some good Effect.  Deo Laudas!  Mrs. Walker[1] and Mrs. Joslin,[2] Two gracious women dined here.  Raw Cold.

[1]Mary, wife of Josiah Walker, joined the church, Mar. 26, 1727; WCR, 5 (she was then the wife of Isaac Shattuck).

[2]Katharine, wife of Joseph Joslin, joined the Westborough church and her husband owned the covenant, Jan. 29, 1727 (WCR, 5).

February 9, 1742

1742 February 9 (Tuesday).  Ensign Team and another Team partly mine partly Neighbour Chamberlains going to Day.  Neighbour J. Rogers,[1] Stephen Mainard,[2] Ebenezer Mainard,[3] Noah How,[4] Samuel Bumpso,[5] Thomas Winchester[6] and Moses Pratt[7] cutting and sledding wood.  P.M. came Neighbour Jedidiah How and Seth Rice.[8]  N.B. Mr. James Fay came for me to go and see Isaiah Pratt[9] who lay in a Strange Condition at his House — not having Spoke nor been sensible ever since nine o’Clock last night.  I went to him and seeing him lye so insensible, and his pulse exceeding Slow I advised them to send for Dr. Gott to bleed him, but sitting by him and rousing him by Degrees he came to.  Many were present and were astonished.  When he regained his senses he Said he had not been to Sleep; had seen Hell and had seen Christ; and said Christ told him his name was in the Book of Life etc.  When he had taken some Slender Food he yet further revived and Spake more freely.  We gave Thanks and prayed and I gave some Exhortation.  N.B. One of the Deacons of the Church was there who took me aside to lament to me his Dullness and backwardness in the Things of God.  These Things are now (blessed be God) more frequent which heretofore were very rare.  May God increase them and furnish me abundantly for His Work in every part of it!

[1]John Rogers owned the covenant, May 25, 1740; WCR, 56.  His wife Susanna died Apr. 2, 1740 (WVR, 252).  He died Oct. 11, 1756 (Parkman diary).

[2]Stephen, son of John Maynard, Jr., was bapt. Nov. 20, 1720 (MVR 124).

[3]Ebenezer, son of David and Hannah Maynard, b. May 18, 1716 (MVR, 125).

[4]Noah, son of Hezekiah and Elizabeth How, b. Sept. 8, 1721 (MVR, 105).

[5]Samuel Bumpso or Bumso, described by Parkman as “Indian” (Feb. 11, 1736), worked occasionally for Parkman.  He died in 1756 or earlier, as his estate was probated in 1756; Index to the Probate Records of the County of Worcester, Massachusetts, from July 12, 1731, to July 1, 1881, Series A (Worcester: Oliver B. Wood, 1898), Case 8935.  There was a vendue (i.e., auction) to sell thirty-six and a half acres of land in Natick, “late Estate of Samuel Tobumso, late of Westborough, deceased”; Boston Evening-Post, Oct., 23, 1758.

[6]Thomas Winchester was the son of Benjamin Winchester and his first wife, Prudence (May).  Benjamin Winchester’s second wife was Elizabeth Chamberlain, widow of John Chamberlain, daughter of Joseph Champney, and sister of Parkman’s first wife, Mary Champney.  Thomas Winchester worked for Parkman over several years before marrying Mary Pratt of Grafton (Nov. 24, 1748; WVR, 222).  He and his wife moved to Hardwick.

[7]Moses, son of Isaac and Eunice Pratt, b. Oct. 7, 1723 (WVR, 85).

[8]Seth, son of Edmond and Ruth Rice, b. Oct. 1, 1705 (MVR, 105); mar. Dorothy Robinson, Dec. 22, 1727 (WVR, 201).

[9]Isaiah, son of John and Bathshebah Pratt, b. Feb. 14, 1723 (WVR, 85).

February 10, 1742

1742 February 10 (Wednesday).  By agreement with Mr. Cushing this Day was kept in a Religious Manner at my House (as a Time of Humilliation and Supplication) but as privately as we could: and I Sent Letters last week to the neighbouring ministers to Join with us in it that we might united implore Divine Direction in such an Extraordinary Day as this is, and that we might obtain the Out pouring of God’s Spirit upon us and our respective Charges — but none came but Mr. Cushing.  Mr. Cushing prayed.  I read a paper which I had drawn up on this Occasion and read Mr. Reynolds of Zeal[1] — and Mr. Lorings sermon on 1 Thess. 5.19.

[1]John Reynolds (1667-1727), Zeal a virtue: or, A discourse concerning sacred zeal (London: Printed for John Clark, and sold by Thomas Gittens and John Rogers, 1716).

February 11, 1742

1742 February 11 (Thursday).  Brother Hicks and his son here, upon their Journey to Cambridge.  Capt. Goddard[1] also here.  Mrs. Pratt with her son were here according to my appointment to acquaint me further with what he had Seen, or apprehended he saw, in the Time of his Trance, or reverie t’other Night.  He having informed me of his Seeing (as he thought) the Devil who met him as he seemed to be in the way towards Heaven and told him that there was no room for him there; of his seeing Hell and hearing the most dreadful noise of roaring and crying; his seeing Heaven So wondrously happy a place as nobody could tell but those that were there; and Christ, who looked more pleasant than ever he had seen any man, and who had a great Book before him, and in turning over the Leaves of it told him that his name was there, and shewed it him; and that he had seen a great many more Things which were such Great Things that he could not Speak of them.  I told him that these Things were not to be depended upon but that the Apostle Peter has cautioned us, saying that we have a more sure word of prophecy to which we should do well to take heed etc.  I endeavoured further to instruct, direct and Comfort him and to lay the Charges of God upon him.  P.M. I preached at Mr. James Fay’s on Luk. 19.9 to a great multitude — and it pleased God to give it some success.  As soon as the Exercise was over Deacon Fay[2] broke forth with a loud noise, with Tears of Joy and blessed God he saw this Day etc.: desiring that I would in due Time have an Exercise at his House — and bore a Message from his Brother, old Mr. Samuel Fay[3] that I would have one at his also — which it was a chearful thing to hear, considering his Temper and Conduct for some years past.  The rest of the people Seemed so inclined to religious Matters that they did not freely go away.  Many tarried to discourse of the Affairs of their Souls and hear of the Experiences of one another.  Ex. gr. Deacon Fays, Mr. James Fays, Mr. Merriams (of Grafton), Lieut. Tainters[4] etc.  At Eve several young men here to be instructed in singing.

[1]Capt. Edward Goddard of Framingham.

[2]John Fay (1669-1748) was among the first inhabitants of Westborough whom Parkman listed on the flyleaf of the church records; he was among thirteen men, including Parkman, who signed the church’s covenant, Oct, 28, 1724; WCR, 377-79.  He was elected deacon, Oct. 12, 1727, and accepted that office on Jan. 7, 1728; WCR, 8, 10.

[3]Samuel, son of John and Mary Fay, b. Oct. 11, 1673 (MVR, 70).

[4]Simon Tainter (1694-1767) was admitted to the church, Apr. 3, 1726, and was elected deacon, Jan. 16, 1757; WCR, 3, 106-07.

February 12, 1742

1742 February 12 (Friday).  At Eve Mr. Stephen Fay[1] was here in great Distress concerning his Spiritual state fearing that all he had done in Religion was only to still Conscience.  I directed him to read what was most awakening still and most Searching; and particularly Mr. Alliens Alarm[2] and Meads Almost Christian.[3]  Mr. John Fairfield came from Smithfield and lodged here.

[1]Stephen, son of John and Elizabeth Fay, b. May 5, 1715 (WVR, 42); mar. Ruth Child, Mar. 7, 1734 (WVR, 150).

[2]Joseph Alleine (1634-1668), An Alarm to Unconverted Sinners (Boston, 1703).

[3]Matthew Mead, The Almost Christian Discovered: or, the False Professor Tryed and Cast (Boston, 1730; 1742).

February 21, 1742

1742 February 21 (Sunday).  It Snowed last night pritty much, and to Day it continued.  There came no more to meeting than could very well gather into my House, and chiefly into my Kitchin.  I was also so indisposed with my cold, and the stirring in the Snow was so very difficult that I Should not have gone out.  I repeated Sermon on Act. 3.19 from Mat. 18.3 and performed all the Exercises in my own House.  Benjamin Warrin (who sat the Psalm) dined with me.  N.B. Capt. Merrick[1] of Boston and his Brother[2] of Lambstown[3] and Mr. Samuel Robinson[4] of the same Place were here at Meeting, as they were upon their Journey to Lambstown.

[1]Capt. Merrick of Boston.

[2]Possibly Constant Merrick of Hardwick (c. 1701-1792), son of Nathaniel Merrick (1673-1748).

[3]Hardwick, Massachusetts, was formerly Lambstown plantation.

[4]Samuel Robinson (1670-1767) was born in Cambridge, moved to Hardwick, and was a founder of Bennington, VT, where he died.

February 22, 1742

1742 February 22 (Monday).  Mr. Jennison returned — informed that they had no meeting on the North Side, nor did he preach.  Jonathan Green[1] here with a Message from Mr. McAllister[2] who lay bad with the Rheumatism that I would go over and see him but my own illness was so great that I could but little more than go about House.  The Snow is likewise so very deep that were I well it would be impracticable to get to him unless upon Racketts.  No School to Day.

[1]Jonathan Green, possibly a son of Joseph Green (d. Sept. 2, 1758).

[2]John McAllister (also spelled in the records as McCollister) and his first wife Jennet had their son Charles baptized, Nov. 29, 1724 (WCR, 1), with the church records noting “recommended to us from Stow.”  Although there is no record that he joined the church, he may have been regarded as a half-way member.  Thus, when five members of the church asked to be dismissed to join the new church in the north precinct (later Northborough), Parkman noted “the Desire of John McAllister to have a Certificat,” May 4, 1746 (WCR, 74-75).  Parkman noted McAllister’s death in Northborough, Mar. 5, 1769, “Above 90.”

February 26, 1742

1742 February 26 (Friday).  Thomas Winchester thrashed Barley.  My son Thomas[1] went to Mr. Johnsons Mill and by his being belated he got no farther back than Mr. Amsdens and lodged there.  We not knowing what had befallen him sent Mr. Smith (a Taylor) and Thomas Winchester for him: but they returned without him.  We reposed in Gods Providence.

[1]Thomas Parkman, son of Ebenezer and Mary Parkman, b. July 3, 1729 (WVR, 83).

February 28, 1742

1742 February 28 (Sunday).  I was Still So infirm and the Weather So cold that I preached again in my own House.  Text Mat. 11.12 a. and p.m.  Mr. Winchester[1] dined here.  Some Number of the Members of the Church requested that Considering that it was so Extraordinary a Time of Gods Grace, the Church would observe a Day of Fasting and Humilliation.  I therefore laid it before the Brethren present and they universally came into it.  N.B. not being able to visit Mr. McAllister yet, I prevailed with Mr. Jenison to go after the Exercises on the North side were finished.

[1]Benjamin Winchester.