July 2, 1752

1752 July 2 (Thursday).  Publick Fast on the Account of the Small pox and other Malignant Distempers at Boston and divers other Towns.[1]  N.B. We had no proclamation, but read what is inserted in the Boston Gazette.  However there was So much Said of there being no Proclamation in the County of Worcester, and that in several parishes there would be no Meeting, as at our North End; at Shrewsbury etc. that I doubted of an Assembly (some number did go to work and came not at all: some came from their work in their Sweat and Dirt).  I therefore threw aside my design’d sermon for the forenoon, and took that on 1 Pet. 5.6 which I deliver’d.  But there was So considerable a Congregation that I took Heart, and p.m. preach’d on 1 Kings 8.37.38, and may God please to add his Blessing!  N.B. Dr. Willson[2] of Hopkinton here at Eve.

[1]A study of the extent of smallpox at this time may be found in John Duffy, Epidemics in Colonial America (Baton Rouge, [1953]). pp. 57-61.

[2]John Wilson or Willson, the physician.

July 4, 1752

1752 July 4 (Saturday).  Alpheus Newton[1] gave an half Day, mowing at my Island — and the great likelihood of foul Weather made me conceive it to be my Duty, part of the p.m. to assist my son William in raking.  If the rain should come upon that sort of thing, it would be of very little value: but this was the Chief of the English Hay I should have to trust to.  And I was fully apprehensive that I should not be able to prepare more than one sermon for the sabbath.

[1]The son of Abner Newton.

July 8, 1752

1752 July 8 (Wednesday).  I thought it most adviseable personally to see and talk with Mr. Beriah Rice about the Meadow, and therefore rode over to Upton.  Din’d at Mr. Rice’s.  Did not buy the Meadow, but hir’d the Grass for this Year for 20/ old Tenor per Load.  Visited Mr. Fish and call’d at Captain Sadler[1] — was mistaken in my Road home — came by Boons and Kellys.

[1]John Sadler of Upton.

July 9, 1752

1752 July 9 (Thursday).  Mr. Claffland and Daniel Adams mow’d in the Ministerial Meadow, the Weather hot, and very tedious to hard labourers — but now is the principal Season of Vigourous Engagement.  P.M. came up a violent Storm.  Thunder and Lightning.  N.B. Mrs. Mary Steward visited us and left a present in silver (50/ old Tenor) in new linnen Cloth for Shirts for several of my little Children, and in some Rie meal, to the Value of near 5£ old Tenor.

July 10, 1752

1752 July 10 (Friday).  Mr. Samuel Williams with my Mare, and with Billy to lead, plough’d among my Indian Corn: and Mr. Eliezer Rice came with plough, Horse and Boy and plough’d likewise, but there were but few Hoers — only Mr. Edwards Whipple and his Boy which made me go to Mr. Clafflands and get Robert to help.  The Men broke off about 1/2 after 10 a.m.  The Boys, viz. Robert Claffland, Moses Sever and my Billy, hoed all Day, but did not finish the work.  N.B. Sow’d Rie, which I had of Mr. Hezekiah Pratt, at the Hilling.  This work was gratis, as was Alpheus Newton’s also, who mow’d at the Island a.m.  Mr. Jonathan Bellows (upon hire) mow’d and rak’d at the Meadow, and Mr. Eliezer Rice help’d him rake p.m. changing work with us.  N.B. Mr. Eli Forbush here, and paid me 10 Dollars for Books which he has had.

July 11, 1752

1752 July 11 (Saturday).  Rak’d Hay at the Island.  Billy finish’d the Hilling there.  P.M. Mr. Aaron Nurse help’d us get in a Load of Hay from the Island.  It was very hot and tedious to me to bear — but I think it my Duty to do what in me lies having so large a Family and so little help.  At Eve rode to Grafton and Mr. Hutchinson[1] came here.

[1]The Reverend Aaron Hutchinson.

July 12, 1752

1752 July 12 (Sunday).  Preach’d at Grafton on Ps. 4.7, a. and p.m.  Return’d home at Night.  [N.B. Mr. Forbush and my Daughter Molly were publish’d at Westborough.]  Mr. Hutchinson return’d home likewise.  We met at Mr. Abraham Temple’s whose young Child is in a Miserable Condition, and has been so from its Birth, by a Tumor on the Back.

May 14, 1752

1752 July 14 (Tuesday).  Rode about for Labourers to work in the Ministerial Meadow, and to take to the Halves the Grass of Mr. Beriah Rice’s Meadow which I have hir’d.  Succeeded with Joseph Bruce to take half of this latter.  Was at Messrs. Daniel Forbush’s and Harrington’s: at Ensign Millers, Messrs. Phinehas Hardys and Grouts — the last two consent to help me next Week, to mow in the Ministerial Meadow.

July 19, 1752

1752 July 19 (Sunday).  Read Deut16.  Preach’d a.m. on Mat. 1.21.  P.M. read 2 Cor. 11.  Preach’d home at Eve on Job 7.9, made up of several parts of sermon on John 5.28.29 (as See upon the first page).  Benjamin Hastings[1] and Anna Tainter[2] of Watertown din’d with us.

[1]Hastings married Mary, the daughter of Deacon Simon Tainter of Westborough, April 14, 1726.

[2]The daughter of Captain John Tainter of Watertown.

July 20, 1752

1752 July 20 (Monday).  Rode early to Mr. Dunlops to offer them some of Mr. Beriah Rice’s Meadow, Seeing Mr. Dunlop had urg’d he might have part.  Return’d and visited Mrs. Twitchell.  Went over to Mr. Martyns and din’d there.  Return’d at Eve.  Mr. Batheric joins with John Bruce and they mow in the Rice Meadow.

July 21, 1752

1752 July 21 (Tuesday).  In the Morning walk’d to the Ministerial Meadow, hoping to find a Number of Hands there, but there was only Mr. Phinehas Hardy mowing there.  I went to Mr. James Maynards to get a Hand to be with him, but succeeded not — to Mr. Joseph Green junior and prevail’d.  He mow’d p.m.  I din’d at Mr. Edwards Whipples p.m.  I went down into Chauncy Meadows and passed through the Rice Meadow.  My undertakers there who rake to Day what they mow’d Yesterday, complaining much of it.  Consulted Lieutenant Forbush about it.  N.B. Lieutenant Forbush complains to me of my strictness in Examining Candidates for Admission into the Church.  N.B. My Wife to Mr. Martyns — but return’d home at Night.

July 22, 1752

1752 July 22 (Wednesday).  Aaron Warrin mows, rakes, and Carts from Ministerial Meadow.  I walk’d there, and to Mr. Greens.  Rode his Horse to Mr. Knowltons.  His son Henry works in the Meadow p.m.  Aaron Warrin got home one Jagg of 11 Cocks — ventures into the Meadow with the Team for Second and getts mir’d, boggled and belated — came home with 8 Cocks in the Rain and Dark — and is sick in the night o’bed.  Ebenezer Forbush brings me 12 Cocks from the Rie Meadow and Joseph Bruce helps unload it.

July 25, 1752

1752 July 25 (Saturday).  Aaron and Billy to the meadow.  Thomas goes there with the Team and carrys home to the other House, a stout Load of Hay from the Meadow.  Lieutenant Bruce kindly brought me the last Load from Mr. Rice’s Meadow, and this was a large Load of 18 Cocks.  So that I have now got all my part of that Hay and my mind greatly reliev’d.

July 26, 1752

1752 July 26 (Sunday).  I was much impeded by a Cold yet it did not hinder my public speaking, but my Limbs are much pain’d and my Stomach deprav’d — but I desire humbly to place my Confidence in God.  Read Deut. 17 and preach’d on Mat. 1.21.  P.M. read 2 Cor. 12.  Preach’d on Prov. 3.9.  May God please to add his Blessing!

July 27, 1752

1752 July 27 (Monday).  Somewhat poor Night — am stiff and in pain this Morning.  So that I don’t stirr about without Difficulty.  Thomas and Billy rak’d a Load of Hay which Aaron mow’d and carted it to t’other Barn.  My wife to Ensign Millers to Mr. Harringtons and Lieutenant Tainters — borrows his Chaise for some of us to go to Watertown on Mollys Account.  Sister Hicks and her Daughter Hannah at t’other House.

July 28, 1752

1752 July 28 (Tuesday).  A poor Night again with pain.  A.M. to Mr. Ebenezer Rice’s to get Mr. Dunlop to reap, he having long disappointed me, yet it is Winter Rie and suffers.  Mr. Jonathan Bellows reaps from about 11 a.m. till night — and p.m. Mr. Dunlop and Short Richard Kelly come from Mr. Ebenezer Rice’s and reap.  My son Billy also reaps.  Sister Hicks etc. are still at t’other House.  Mrs. Hannah here at Evening and lodges here.

July 29, 1752

1752 July 29 (Wednesday).  Exceedingly poorly — Know not how to go to my intended Journey.  Sister Hicks and her Daughter dine here.  N.B. Mr. Parsons[1] of Newbury calls at the Door when we are at Dinner but he will not come in.  About 4 p.m. my Daughter and I undertook a Journey in Lieutenant Tainters Chaise.

[1]The Reverend Moses Parsons of Newbury (Byfield Parish), 1744-1783.