February 2, 1751

1751 February 2 (Saturday).  At Eve in much Trouble.  A Cow ready to Calve missing: and my young Horse lam’d himself in the Stable.  He was hung by one of his fore feet in the floor of the Manger, and after much Striving fell down on the outside of the Manger, in great pain — but was heard and Seasonably reliev’d — but the Cow (which I bought of Mr. James Ball) missing all night though we search’d up and down the woods till about midnight, and considerable Snow upon the Ground.

February 3, 1751

1751 February 3 (Sunday).  The little black Cow, missing last night, found this morning with a Calf, in the woods — was late at meeting by Reason of trapsing (in the Snow) so late last night.  Read but the Two first Verses of Lev. 15, and gave some Observations upon it.  Preach’d on Tit. 3.1, a. and p.m.  Din’d at Esquire Bakers and p.m. read part of Acts 7.

February 5, 1751

1751 February 5 (Tuesday).  Worcester Court at which we expect the Case of our Treasurer Mr. Ebenezer Maynard by Appeal against the Reverend Roger Price, for Mr. James Maynards Rates, is expected to come on.  Mr. Haven came to see us at Evening.  N.B. Ebenezer and Thomas, Mary and Lucy gone to dine at Lieutenant Tainters and wait upon his Daughter Sadler[1] in her going home to Upton.

[1]Elizabeth Tainter married Stephen Sadler of Upton.

February 7, 1751

1751 February 7 (Thursday).  Mr. Haven bought of me Dr. Atterburys Two Volumes of Sermons.[1]  He leaves us to go to Brookfield, North part of it, to preach on probation there.  Mr. David Baldwin of Leicester sold me 1000 of White Pine Boards for £15.10/ Old Tenor for which I paid him 10£ old Tenor.  As I Sat at Captain Maynards came in the Reverend Mr. Price from Court — tells me they gave him the Case yesterday, as he was sure all men of any Reason and Justice would.  Captain Maynard urg’d me much to dine there but I return’d home.  P.M. nigh Evening I visited Mrs. Pratt.  When I came home had Mr. Jonathan Bond with me.  N.B. Ebenezer and Thomas carried Loggs to the Saw Mill, and Boards to the New House.

[1]Francis Atterbury, Sermons and Discourses on Several Subjects and Occasions, 2 vols. (London, 1730).

February 8, 1751

1751 February 8 (Friday).  Ebenezer in the Woods about Loggs.  Thomas to Marlborough and brought an Horse Hide of Mr. Felton — cost 58/.  He paid Lieutenant Nathan Brigham 21£ old Tenor in full for the Land I bought of him by the Meeting House.  Thomas brings word that Cousen Sally Brigham was brought to Bed this Morning and bore a Son, being (I think) thirty Weeks Since her Marriage.

February 10, 1751

1751 February 10 (Sunday).  Many of Hopkinton People at Meeting with us Mr. Barrett[1] being Sick.  A.M. read Levit. 16.  Preach’d on Rom. 12.18.  Din’d at Justice Bakers.  Deacon Kimbal[2] and others of Hopkinton din’d there also.  P.M. read Acts 7 from number 26, gave short Exposition each part of the Day.  Preach’d on Rom. 3.24 — freely by his Grace — (and by Reason of my Interruption last Eve did not finish the Subject which I was then engaged upon) I us’d from page 16 to 24 of sermon on Eph. 2.8.  My Wife this Day 34 Years old.  May God grant her the Grace so to number her Days as to apply her Heart to Wisdom.

[1]The Reverend Samuel Barrett.

[2]Ebenezer Kemble.

February 13, 1751

1751 February 13 (Wednesday).  I rode to Hopkinton to See Mr. Barret in his Sickness — find he is much better.  I din’d there.  The Desolations in Hopkinton by the great Storm much greater than among us.  Mr. Barretts, Mr. Price’s, and 10 or 11 Barns more in that Town blown down.  Mr. Barretts Cattle, and his Negro Man also in the Barn at that Instant.  I was at Lieutenant Woods where lay ill Phebe Chamberlin and at their Request I pray’d with her.  At Aaron Warrins Shop for a large Cargo of mended Shooes.  Call’d at Mr. Hezekiah Pratts, whose wife wastes very much.  My Son Ebenezer breaks Flax.  Thomas at his Trade.

February 14, 1751

1751 February 14 (Thursday).  A fine Day after a Sharp Night, but the prospect of my Debts, Building and Family Expences very gloomy and distressing.  P.M. rode out — designing to visit Lieutenant Tainter; and yet what can he be able to do for me in these uncommon Times of Difficulty and Straitness in the Province! and especially in Times of Such Trouble and Division in the Parish!  As I pass’d by Mr. Nurse’s Lieutenant passed along in the Common Road and went to my House — but carry’d no money for my Relief.  As Soon as I was inform’d that Lieutenant had passed along the Road I turn’d my Course (from going to his House) and it being probable that the Lieutenant Saw, and was inform’d that it was I, that was at Mr. Nurse’s, yet that he had no Special Business with me, I went to Mr. Ebenezer Rice’s and reckon’d with him.  I Should have proceeded up the Road to visit Joseph Grout, but heard he was better — had no fit Since Lords Day Evening.  Lieutenant Tainter here while I was abroad.

February 15, 1751

1751 February 15 (Friday).  Snow.  Old Mr. Maynard and old Mr. Whipple here.  By Mr. Whipples Discourse I perceive there are new Disgusts with Lieutenant Tainter — that he doth not take Steps towards Mr. James Maynards Rates being Sunk by the Precinct: there being a Warrant up for a Meeting and nothing of Mr. Maynards Affair in it; nor to Consult the Precinct about it.

February 16, 1751

1751 February 15 (Friday).  Snow.  Old Mr. Maynard and old Mr. Whipple here.  By Mr. Whipples Discourse I perceive there are new Disgusts with Lieutenant Tainter — that he doth not take Steps towards Mr. James Maynards Rates being Sunk by the Precinct: there being a Warrant up for a Meeting and nothing of Mr. Maynards Affair in it; nor to Consult the Precinct about it.

February 17, 1751

1751 February 17 (Sunday).  I read (and gave Some Expository Hints on) Levit. 17.  Preach’d on Rom. 12.18.  Din’d at Justice Bakers.  My wife has for a long Time refus’d to dine with me there fearing to be burdensome, though the Justice has repeatedly manifested his uneasiness at her not coming, and Said that she gave him more trouble as she did not dine there.  P.M. read Acts 8, and though I had provided sufficient for another Exercise on the same subject which I preach’d on in the forenoon, yet being unwilling to harp too much on that string at this Time, I conceiv’d it best to wave what remain’d for the present, and chose to finish the Subject I was upon last Lords Day a.m. and therefore deliver’d the Rest of that Discourse (without the Reconcilement of St. James and Saint Paul) on Eph. 2.8 from page 24 to page 36, from Rom. 3.24.  Which may God be pleas’d to add his Blessing to!  N.B. I publicly notified a meeting at Mr. Hezekiah Pratts next Wednesday.

February 18, 1751

1751 February 18 (Monday).  Was in a great deal of Anxiety on Account of my Family Circumstances, being in divers Straits and Difficultys — much in Debt already (by means of my New Building chiefly) and unwilling to keep my Creditors out of their dues, yet oblig’d to keep plunging much deeper if I would go on with my New House and place — and no reason to say any word to the Parish, they being so involv’d, and in Such Contention.  But I took a Walk to Mr. Whipples, Mr. Williams’s (to each of their Houses) to Deacon Newtons, Widow Newtons etc.  In the middst of my disconsolateness on outward Accounts, desire I may not leave trusting and reposing myself in a Mercifull and faithful God: who I pray may be my Supporter under all!

February 19, 1751

1751 February 19 (Tuesday).  Wrote to my Kinsman Davis[1] and to Captain Charles Morris at Halifax.  P.M. I rode to Mr. Grouts to See his son Joseph who is still sick, and pray’d with him.  In every Conversation yesterday and to Day, with the Parishioners, endeavour to my utmost to promote peace and agreement, and to engage others to do what in them lies with those immediately concern’d, that the Contention may go no further.  Was at Esquire Bakers at Eve.  He is going into Connecticut with Mr. Shattuck Flax-trader — who is there, to sett out in the morning — wrote to Mr. Pierpoint.[2]  Solomon Baker[3] designing to go to Boston in the morning, Sent my Watch by him to Mr. Moses Peck by him to have a Glass fitted to it.  N.B. My son William this Day ten years old — he goes over to Mr. Benjamin Hows, and at Eve Ebenezer and Thomas go over there, and to my Grief tarry (all of them) too late.  P.M. Ebenezer thrashes Barley.

[1]Parkman’s niece, Lydia Tyley of Boston, married Robert Davis, June 9, 1748.

[2]James Pierpont, Jr., of New Haven.

[3]The son of Squire Edward Baker of Westborough.

February 20, 1751

1751 February 20 (Wednesday).  Manifested to my sons Somewhat of my affectionate Concern for them.  Ebenezer acknowledges.  Thomas more insensible.  P.M. at Mr. Pratt and his Wife’s Desire, and agreeable to public Notice, given last Lords Day, preached to a Considerable Assembly at Mr. Pratts, his wife lying in a languishing Condition, and long confin’d from public Worship.  I us’d Luke 12.40 for the Text.  Pick’d the Exercise out of Sermon on Mat. 24.44, and added Two Extracts from Mr. Flavels Touch-stone.[1]  Viz. Mr. Sedgwick’s and Mr. Sydenham’s Marks in brief.  N.B. old Mr. Whipple and Lieutenant Tainter tarried at Mr. Pratts after the Exercise, and I endeavour’d to have some misunderstandings removed and peace promoted.  I advis’d Lieutenant to make Mr. James Maynard a Visit.  O that the God of peace would give peace!  At Eve Mr. Jedediah Hows of Brookfield here, and Neighbour Stephen Maynard.

[1]John Flavell, The Touchstone of Sincerity: or the Signs of Grace and Symptoms of Hypocrisy (Boston, 1731).  This appeared originally in a London edition of 1678.