August 1, 1751

1751 August 1 (Thursday).  At Deacon Newtons[1] whose son John is thought to be very dangerously ill.  At Mr. Pratts.  Neighbour Stephen Maynard going to Boston with his Team, my Brother after Spending the forenoon about my new Windows, and dining with us rides my Mare to Boston.  Ebenezer Carts a Well-Crotch, Bed, Powdering Tubb with pork etc to the New House.  Boards also from the Mill.  Thomas and William reap Wheat.  P.M. they rake Hay in the Southside and Ebenezer mows.

[1]Josiah Newton.

August 2, 1751

1751 August 2 (Friday).  John Newton sends for me being near his End.  Went: he wants I Should repeat to him the Discourse I had with him yesterday.  Pray’d with him.  Stephen Newton[1] is taken ill with the Same Distemper.  Call’d at Mrs. Pratts — she is just gone — has inward Comfort, but great outward Trouble.  Molly and Sarah go over to tarry at the New House to dress the Carpenters Diet.  They lodge there; a Second Bed being Set up there.  P.M. heavy Showers of Rain.

[1]Another son of Deacon Newton.

August 3, 1751

1751 August 2 (Friday).  John Newton sends for me being near his End.  Went: he wants I Should repeat to him the Discourse I had with him yesterday.  Pray’d with him.  Stephen Newton[1] is taken ill with the Same Distemper.  Call’d at Mrs. Pratts — she is just gone — has inward Comfort, but great outward Trouble.  Molly and Sarah go over to tarry at the New House to dress the Carpenters Diet.  They lodge there; a Second Bed being Set up there.  P.M. heavy Showers of Rain.

[1]Another son of Deacon Newton.

August 5, 1751

1751 August 5 (Monday).  Deacon Kimball[1] of Hopkinton came to Plaister the West End of my New House.  Mrs. Rachel Pratt, the Wife of Neighbour Hezekiah Pratt, dy’d about 1 p.m.  I was with her a.m. and we talk’d of her Decease — she having comfortable Evidence of Grace.  Mr. Pratt has carry’d himself in a very exemplary Manner towards his Wife; and his House is now turn’d into a Bochim.[2]  The Lord Sanctifie this Death not only to them but to all of us!  Stephen Newton Sick of the Throat Distemper but is thought to be better.

[1]Ebenezer Kemble.

[2]Judges, II, 1-5.

August 6, 1751

1751 August 6 (Tuesday).  Deacon Kimbal at the New House.  Baldwin and his Man John all this Time there and my Daughter Molly lodges and works also, tending upon the Workmen in their Meals etc.  Mrs. Pratt was bury’d and with much Lamentation.  May it please God to enable us to improve this Breach.  Mr. Martyn[1] came here while I was gone to Mrs. Pratts Funeral.

[1]The Reverend John Martyn of the north precinct.

August 8, 1751

1751 August 8 (Thursday).  Deacon Kimball etc.  Ebenezer and Thomas Carted Two Load of Hay from the Meadow to the New Stack Yard which was mow’d last Saturday was sennight, and was made up the Friday following — being drench’d by the Storms of Rain.  Enough for Some Number of Cocks was left finally, and lost.  Yet I suppose Mr. Samuel Hardy (who had the work in his Hands) took what Care he could but it prov’d a very wet Season.

August 9, 1751

1751 August 9 (Friday).  At the New House.  Deacon Kimball, and his Son Ebenezer lay on the Plaistering.  Cornelius Cook[1] tends them.  The Carpenters Still there and Molly and Suse to provide for us.  Ebenezer and Thomas Cart one Load more from the Meadow to the New Stack-Yard — having stack’d up the remainder of the Hay at the Meadow, there till some better Season for Carting it.  Towards Night they came home to mowing.  Have much of our haying to do, when many others are done.  Deacon Newton came for me to visit his son Stephen who grows worse.  Went according and discours’d and pray’d with him.  Visited also the Widow Newton.[2]  At Night the Walls of my New House being so green and damp, with the New Mortar, no body cares to lodge within them.  Deacon and Baldwin make up a Couch in the unfinish’d part of the House.  Molly and Suse go to the Widow Newtons.  Others disperse otherwise.

[1]The son of Parkman’s neighbor.

[2]Mrs. Thomas Newton.

August 11, 1751

1751 August 11 (Sunday).  Read Numb. 10 and preach’d on 1 Cor. 6.9, the first 4 pages, which I deliver’d in the Year 1727/8.  My Family din’d at the New House.  Mr. Stephen Maynard at noon came for me to go up to Stephen Newton who is nigh expiring and I comply’d.  P.M. read the last Chapter of Acts.  Went on with 1 Cor.  Deliver’d page 5 and from page 13 to 19.  (For although I had prepar’d in part on Job 15.11, Yet I could not finish it, having So many Different Cares and Encumbrances at the Time of So many workmen, and at such a Distance from home.)  Stephen Newton Expir’d p.m.

August 12, 1751

1751 August 12 (Monday).  At the New House with the Carpenters.  P.M. at the Funeral of Stephen Newton.  N.B. had Din’d at Mr. Martyn’s — and Committed to his Care a paper for Subscriptions to My Collection of Poems, he being about to go to ministers Meeting at Stow tomorrow, or likely to see several ministers in their Journey there.  Hot Day.

August 14, 1751

1751 August 14 (Wednesday).  Jeduthum Baldwin and John Woods go over to work at the Meeting House at the North End of the Town.  Their Tools carry’d over in Mr. Martyns Chair, drawn by my mare.  I agree to give Baldwin 18/ old Tenor per Day for 60 Days, to his Journey man, William Parkhurst, 15/ per Day, 26 Days and to his Apprentice, John Woods 10£, lumping the Latter part of his Time.  (The former part he was so new and raw, nothing more than his Diet could be expected.)  In all, my Debt to Baldwin is 83£ 10s, old Tenor — his Credit 3£ 10.  This Day due to him 80£.  N.B. he offers to take 75£ if I pay him 40£ within a Month, and 35 within 2 months More, or give him Bond for it.  The Same Day My Son Thomas carted over my Desk, Study Table, and a Number of Books, etc.  Ebenezer went over and with Edwards Whipple and a few more, rais’d the Well-Crotch and sweep.  P.M. They went to their Haying at home.

August 15, 1751

1751 August 15 (Thursday).  Molly has liv’d at the New House ever since we dieted the Workmen, to Day she went home, and after much hard work in the Day return’d at Eve.  I visited Mrs. Martha Warrin[1] in the Morning.  Over to the other House to point sashes though I do but little of it.  I tarried all Day at the new-House.  Din’d there alone, but went back to Mrs. Parkman at Night: She being full of pain; has strange Cramps.  Has also Indications that her Travail is not far off.  The Lord prepare her and all of us for the Changes before us.  Rainy and stormy Night.  N.B. my mind in much Exercise by Reason of the great Urgency that we remove and yet our House and place there exceedingly unfit to receive us.  The Hearth’s unlaid, the Banks of Gravel at Each Door unlevelled.  No pasture for a Cow, or feed or Hay for an Horse etc. etc.

[1]Mrs. Daniel Warrin.

August 17, 1751

1751 August 17 (Saturday).  I lodg’d at the New House.  My Family here and Molly, Suse and Alexander.  A very fine clear Day.  Ebenezer in the Morning brought over another Barell of Cyder, and Severall Boxes of Books and Pamphletts.  Mr. Samuel Harrington and Mr. Phinehas Hardy brought each of them an heavy Load of Large Flatt Stones from Mr. Harringtons Quarry, for my Hearths and passage to the Well, etc., both which were gratis.  Daniel How din’d with us.

August 18, 1751

1751 August 18 (Sunday).  Read Numb. 11, preach’d on 1 Cor. 6.11.  Din’d at the New House.  P.M. read Rom. 1.  I gave an account of the Epistle and the Contents of the first Chapter.  Preach’d on Job 15.11.  Return’d to the old House at Eve, with Mr. John Green[1] who (as also old Mr. Joseph Green) din’d with me to Day.

[1]This was perhaps a man by that name, referred to as “a sore trial to the thrifty farmers who had to ‘entertain’ him by turns, and who appointed successive committees in town meeting to ascertain whether he belonged of right in town, and whether he had no relatives anywhere who could support or relieve him.”  DeForest and Bates, Westborough, p. 105.

August 19, 1751

1751 August 19 (Monday).  At the New House in the morning — when I came back rode up to Mr. Asa Brighams to desire Mrs. Brigham to release Hannah Pratt to nurse my wife.  N.B. was at Mr. Gershom Brighams who made me a present of Cheese — and visited Mr. Samuel Fays Wife: but din’d at Mr. Joseph Knowltons who gave me 3/4 Bushel Rye.  When I came home, found Mr. Cushing, and Several Women, our near Neighbours to see Mrs. Parkman, who is every Day and Night in great Pain, and has been for some Time.  Here was also Mrs. Patty Haven, and with her Deacon Burnaps[1] Daughter.  Those last lodg’d with us.

[1]Benjamin Burnap of Hopkinton.

August 20, 1751

1751 August 20 (Tuesday).  The Young Women rode with me to the New House, and we din’d there p.m.  I rode back and brought my Wife here to the New House, where now we take up our Dwelling, for the present, at least.  O may God be pleas’d to take up His Dwelling with us.  Rainy morn.  They work part of the Day in Clearing out Shavings and Dirt out of the New House.  At Eve, while we were in our New Circumstances, came Mrs. Peggy and Mrs. Isabella Breck, wifes of Messrs. John[1] and Robert Breck[2] of Boston; (accompany’d by Captain Maynard) and they lodg’d here.

[1]Mrs. Parknian’s cousin, a merchant of extensive business, often engaged in the Newfoundland fishery.  Samuel Breck, Genealogy of the Breck Family (Omaha, 1889), pp. 18-19

[2]This cousin of Mrs. Parkman was a cooper of Boston.

August 21, 1751

1751 August 21 (Wednesday).  I waited upon the Ladys as far as the Edge of Southborough in their Journey.  My sons Ebenezer and Thomas go to mowing at the Island — but by Various Hindrances, did not begin to mow there till late in the forenoon.  My Wife grew so ill that we were glad to See Mrs. Forbush[1] (the Midwife) coming to See us.  And we detain’d her all night.  Mrs. Bekky Warrin with her Child here, and tarrys to her Aunts Labour.

[1]Old “Granny” was the widow of Thomas Forbush.

August 22, 1751

1751 August 22 (Thursday).  Mrs. Forbush tripp’d away home just after break of Day.  But my wife grew so bad that I hastily rode away for her again and brought her.  It proves a very hot Day; but we must gather the Neighbouring Women.  I rode up the Street and alarm’d the four nearest, and proceeded for Mrs. Baker — likewise for Mrs. Nurse and Mrs. Williams who came — and Suddenly about 11 o’Clock a.m. a Son was born.  My Twelfth living Child, and my Sixth living Son.  The Name of the Lord be magnifyed!  May I obtain the Grace to walk in Wisdom and faithfullness towards all the Children which he has graciously given to me!  P.M. I preach’d the Sacramental Lecture from 1 Tim. 6.2.  “Partakers of the Benefit.”  It prov’d a very trying Time to me: But may God Support me through!  After Lecture I got Mr. William Nurse to lead up my Mare to Mr. Eleazer Pratts for his Daughter Hannah, who came at Evening to Nurse my wife.

August 25, 1751

1751 August 25 (Sunday).  My Great Care was that both my Wife and I might transact aright with the glorious God in the Important Work of this Day.  Read (publickly) Numb. 12.  Preach’d on 1 Pet. 1.19.  The precious Blood of Christ.  Deacon Forbush,[1] his sister Byles,[2] and Mrs. Eleazer Harrington, (Mrs. Bonds Sister) din’d with us.  P.M. read Rom. 2.  Preach’d on Job 15.11, and baptiz’d my Son Samuel.  And may God accept him and make him a Great and rich Blessing to us!  I have call’d him by this Name, out of respect and Affection to my Brother Samuel at Boston.  May he be so endow’d as to be worthy of it!

[1]Jonathan Forbush.

[2]Mrs. Joseph Byles of Westborough.

August 26, 1751

1751 August 26 (Monday).  Ebenezer Carted over my principall Book Presses, and several Boxes more.  And it seems now like something of Remove.  I was at Morning Prayer with my children at my former Dwelling.  After Exercises I gave them Exhortation and Solemn Charge to keep the Way of the Lord.  May they have Grace to attend to it and observe it!  Before we parted from home, came Mr. Martyn and his Wife, accompany’d by Mr. Michael Dennis, Bookseller in Boston.  Who all went with me to the New House.  Where came also to visit us Mr. Miller and Mrs. Harrington each with a Cheese.  Thomas to the Island a. and p.m.  Ebenezer only latter part of P.M.  Lieutenant Wood of Hopkinton here.

August 29, 1751

1751 August 29 (Thursday).  Mr. Frost and Rogers mow’d with Ebenezer in the Swamp at home, endeavouring to cutt down all to Day that we can come at to mow.  Nathaniel Whitney and his Brother in their going with a Team to the Meadow, brought me two Load of stones for the underpinning the East End of my New House.  Mr. Daniel Forbush work’d here in laying the west room Hearth but did not finish it.  Brother Hicks here.

August 31, 1751

1751 August 31 (Saturday).  I walk’d over to my Farm House, having no Horse here at the New, from thence I might Set out for Southborough whither I went towards Evening — got there when the Sun was about an Hour high, and Mr. Stone[1] came to Westborough.  N.B. Madam Thatcher[2] of Middleborough there.  N.B. She Show’d me the Notes of her Husband, of his Father, and his Grandfather.

[1]The Reverend Nathan Stone of Southborough.

[2]The widow of the Reverend Peter Thacher of Middleborough.