1744 January 1 (Sunday). If I have heretofore taken Some Notice of the wondrous Patience and Longsuffering of God towards me in Time past, what far more increas’d Reason to now! O that Since God is vouchsafing and protecting His rich Mercys to me, it might please Him to add This Great Mercy to all the other Grace to enable me to make a right Improvement thereof! The Thoughts and Conversation of People Seem to be very much engross’d by the Appearing and Continuance of the Comet in the West. I think it the largest that I have ever Seen, and that it comes Nearer and Nearer to the Earth. I desire it may put me in Mind of the Greatness, Glory and Power, and the wisdom and So great Dominion of the infinite God whose works these are; And that I may bring to remembrance and have an abiding sense of that Day that Shall burn as an Oven, when this Earth also shall be sett on Fire and, all the wicked shall be Consumed. Mal. 4.1. 2 Epistle of Pet. 3.7. I preach’d on Col. 1.21. Mr. Coolidge though in town yet not well nor at meeting.
1744 January 2 (Monday). Mr. Garfield of Shrewsbury here. Conversation mainly of the State of Religion in these Times.
1744 January 3 (Tuesday). Was to have assisted Mr. Cushing in keeping a Fast at the House of one Samuel Brown in Shrewsbury, who is in a distress’d if not distracted Frame and has been so for Several Years without Relief. But it was Such a storm of Snow that I was prevented. Short of Wood but Nathan Maynard kindly helpfull in Splitting what was at the Door, etc.
1744 January 4 (Wednesday). Nathan Maynard, Daniel Bellows, Benjamin Whipple and [blank] came and got me a present Supply of wood. P.M. Colonel Nahum Ward here. Seems to have a Concern about Religion. At Eve Abner Maynard of Shrewsbury here and brought me a Token of respect from the Society I had lately preach’d to in that town. 20 shillings old Tenor from these Lads.
Son of Eleazer Bellows.
Son of Francis Whipple.
Son of Sergeant Simon Maynard, one of the founders of the Shrewsbury church.
1744 January 5 (Thursday). Preach’d at the private Meeting at Deacon Forbush’s on Matt. 11.26. N.B. Lieutenant Tainter sick. N.B. after Meeting relating the Story of Mercy Wheeler of Plainfield her wonderful Recovery, Mrs. Whitney Scarcely Contains. [?] N.B. My wife went with me and we were at old Mr. Rice’s in the Evening.
See Benjamin Lord, God Glorified in His Works, of Providence and Grace. A Remarkable Instance of it, in the Various and Signal Deliverances, that Evidently Appears to be Wrought for Mrs. Mercy Wheeler, in Plainfield (Boston, 1743). See also Thomas S. Kidd, “The Healing of Mercy Wheeler: Illness and Miracles among Early American Evangelicals,” William and Mary Quarterly 3d ser. 63:1 (Jan. 2006), 149-70. Kidd quotes Parkman, p. 149.
1744 January 6 (Friday). I have been acquainting myself somewhat with that Excellent Man’s Life and writings Mr. Robert Bolton. May God Bless them to my highest Good!
The Works of the Reverend…Robert Bolton…as They were Finished by Himselfe in his Life time. The Life and Death of the Author, by E. B[aghaw].
1744 January 7 (Saturday). [No entry.]
1744 January 9 (Monday). Another fruitless Town Meeting, concerning My Support and Dividing the Town. This Meeting was oversatt by the plan that several Men were not Warned. Brother Hicks here and lodged. I had Some perplexity by Means of Neighbour John Rogers his having promis’d me money and continually Disappointed me.
1744 January 10 (Tuesday). Dr. Smith here and din’d with us. P.M. I visited the Wife of Mr. Samuel Fay junior who has been long confin’d.
1744 January 11 (Wednesday). Pleasant Day again.
1744 January 12 (Thursday). A Lecture to young People on Prov. 7.7, and by my Closeness upon them with respect to Unclean Practices, and the [illegible] of Behaviour among Youth which lead thereto.
1744 January 13 (Friday). We kill’d a second Hogg, Weight 265, by Neighbour Ebenezer Maynard and Thomas Winchester.
1744 January 14 (Saturday). Thomas Winchester cutts Wood for me in Neighbour Chamberlains Name Gratis.
1744 January 15 (Sunday). On Coloss. 1.21, a.m. On Prov. 7.7, p.m. Mr. Coollidge here.
1744 January 16 (Monday). Cold, Windy. Neighbour Wheeler here, he brought 2 Bushels of Rie at 16 shillings per Bushel. John Roberts of Grafton was also here, to ask my Advice concerning his applying to Books and Learning in order to his Education for the Ministry.
Roberts did not pursue his interest. Later in 1746 he married Elizabeth Fay of Westborough. Pierce, Grafton, 559.
1744 January 17 (Tuesday). Thomas Winchester Came and Elijah Rice to dress Flax, but it was So very Cold that they could not Stand it, they broke off and got Wood for me a spurt and went off.
1744 January 18 (Wednesday). [No entry.]
1744 January 19 (Thursday). Mr. Cushing here. Troubles in Shrewsbury increase. Zebediah Johnson, Lieutenant Stone, etc. very uneasy as if they had not Spiritual Diet. Mr. Cushing and I din’d at Ensign Maynards with Colonel Nahum Ward, Colonel Williams and others at the giving out a Number more of Commissions — and particularly Ensign Maynard is now Constituted a Captain. N.B. Lieutenant Lee of Worcester his unguarded Talk, both at Captain Maynards and at my House.
Ward, Shrewsbury, 334.
Isaac Stone, one of the first selectmen of Shrewsbury.
Stephen Maynard of Westborough.
1744 January 20 (Friday). Nine Men came and got Wood. Neighbour Hezekiah Pratt, James Bradish, Eleazer Williams, Noah How, Paul Newton, Elijah Rice, Thomas Winchester, Solomon Baker and James Maynard. 12 Large Load. N.B. Trouble in the Young Mens Society on account of Richard Roberts a young Man of Grafton who is hir’d to keep School on the South west Corner of the town, and who being a serious and Religious person many are desirous should meet with them but Nathan Maynard chiefly opposes it (he being a New Light) and they bring the Difficulty to me. I sent for Nathan and he Came and gave his Reasons. But I advis’d that Roberts defer his meeting till the society can be a little more Compos’d.
Son of Deacon Josiah Newton.
Son of Edward Baker.
1744 January 21 (Saturday). Thomas and Elijah at the Flax — but I was not well myself one Day after another.
1744 January 22 (Sunday). Coloss. 1.21, a.m. 2 Pet. 3.9. Mr. Coollidge constantly dines with me on Lords Day, but it is grievous to me either to ask him to say Grace, or cast the Shame upon him at refusing him. My Heart akes exceedingly for him.
1744 January 23 (Monday). Reverend Mr. Smith of Marlborough made a Visit. We don’t meet without some Contests about the Times. He Thinks that there are as many and as deeply heart searching sermons among those term’d opposers as any others whosoever etc. He din’d with me but it was at a Time when a Number of my Neighbours were here getting Wood. Viz. Mr. Grout, Thomas Whitney, Harrington, Bowman, Daniel Forbush, Jonathan, Phinehas and Eli Forbush, Daniel Stone, Eliezer and Jeb Rice, Benjamin and Daniel Fay, each of which with a Team. Dan Warrin, James and Ebenezer Miller, Eleazer and Oliver Whitney, Samuel Baker. N.B. What wood was at the Door before and what there is now brought amounts to at least 50 Load now in the Piles, D. Gr.
1744 January 24 (Tuesday). At Dinner at Captain Maynards, both my wife and I with Captain Tyler who with a Considerable Number and Mr. Frost their minister is conducting his New spouse Home to Mendon.
Rev. Amariah Frost (HC 1740), minister of Milford, Mass., 1742-1792. SHG, 10:494-96.
Mary, daughter of John Cloyes of Framingham.
1744 January 25 (Wednesday). I went out with Design to go to see Lieutenant Tainter who continues sick, but the Rain prevented my going any further than Captain Bakers. N.B. There was Mr. Marshal Baker and his wife.
1744 January 26 (Thursday). Went to Lieutenant Tainters who is weak and feeble yet. Was also at Stephen Fays. His Brother James there. He acquaints me with Mr. Halls going to Framingham shortly to preach there. Desir’d me to let him preach at his House. I chose he should at the Meeting House and wrote a Letter to Mr. Hall for that End, which he took the Care to Convey.
1744 January 27 (Friday). Letter from Brother Samuel Parkman. N.B. his wife destracted about the Comet. Moderate weather.
1744 January 28 (Saturday). Cold. Storm of Snow.
1744 January 30 (Monday). Another Town Meeting upon my support etc. They voted but £200 — Old Tenor. The North Side very Resolute. They urg’d that the Town gave me last year more than I needed or desir’d, that provisions were cheaper, etc., whereas I never gave so much as for both my Beef and my Rie — and also for Labour. The Moderator Mr. Livermore would not as much as Send me any Committee or Message of what they had done — said it was not in the Warrant. The Year has been of far greater Labours than Ever with me for them and of far greater charge on the Account of the Company etc., by means of the multiply’d Exercises, Lectures, etc. But God grant me an Even mind and resignation to His will! O that I may also have Grace to Examine my Ends, aims and Views. Mr. Whitneys Daughter Mary here — also Brother Hicks. At Evening Captain Warrin and Lieutenant Forbush here.
Samuel Forbush of Westborough.
1744 January 31 (Tuesday). Not willing to perplex myself any longer about Mr. Rogers’s Small Debt, at his Request, made known to me by Mr. Chamberlain, I transferred the Business, to Mr. Chamberlain — not willing to use the Law if by any means, though to my Hurt, I could issue this troublesome Affair.
Ebenezer Chamberlain of Westborough.