1754 October 1 (Tuesday). Was up at 4, morning, and Saw the Eclipse: and before Light took up a large, well-fill’d Hive of Bees. Mr. Jonas Twitchell work’d for me in clearing the Newton Meadow. Sent home to Mr. Samuel Livermore junior the fourth Volume of the Foundling; by the Hand of Mr. Joseph Stretton of Waltham. A.M. exceedingly perplex’d for want of money to pay my just Debts and especially for Spinning. I went to Ensign Fay to borrow, but very much in Vain. We are also out of Cyder, and I sought to him for present Supply; which I answer’d my End in — but remain in great difficulty on the other Account.
1754 October 2 (Wednesday). Mr. Jonas Twitchel at Work to Day also, clearing at my Meadow. William waits upon his Mother to Mr. Martyns, and Lucy undertakes to wean little John. Ebenezer here at Eve and has my Chair and Mare to go with his Wife and son to their Father Harringtons. Mrs. Miller (Ensigns Wife) here to bring me word that if I would have Cyder of him I must fetch it tomorrow or not at all, whereas not being warn’d of it my Barrells are not soak’d, nor do I know whether I can have either Man or Team, so that although I want it much, and dont know but that I must go without if I have it not of him, yet I must Send him denyal. And this is also the Third Message which I have had of this kind, which because so Sudden I have been forc’d to deny. N.B. Received a Letter from Brother William Parkman dated July 10 last: brought by Dr. Crosby. N.B. Mr. Simon Tainter now of Sutton coming in to my Door fell down upon the Floor in a Fit — I Suppose Epileptic — but after a while came to, and he proceeded with his Wife and Child to their Father Bruce’s.
1754 October 3 (Thursday). Sent Billy to Mr. Garfields for pursely Water for little John, and bagg of Apples from Mr. Joseph Knowlton — which he brought. I preach’d at Lieutenant Tainters on Hos. 2.8.9. May it please God to add his effectual Blessing! When I came home found Mr. Ball of Grafton here, who had carry’d Mr. Bliss’s Stackhouse for me. Mr. Fay brought a Barrell of Cyder.
Purslane, a low, succulent herb.
The Reverend Daniel Bliss of Concord.
A work of the English divine, Thomas Stackhouse.
1754 October 4 (Friday). In the latter part of the Night and Morning Some refreshing Showers, but clear’d off afterwards So that I rode over to Mr. Martyns and brought home my Wife. No word pass’d about our Epistolary Contests. At Evening came Mr. Benjamin Tainter with his Wife, his own Mother, and his Wife’s Father, Mother and Brother. N.B. Thomas lodges at t’other House to my great Grief and Trouble, as there are Several young Women like to lodge there, and Mr. Foster is gone to Holiston to See his Father who we hear is Sick.
1754 October 6 (Sunday). Read 1 Sam. 13. Preach’d a. and p.m. on Mark 16.19, and Sat on the Right Hand of God. P.M. read Rev. 6. Mrs. Woods, Mother in Law to Mr. Benjamin Tainter, din’d here. Mr. Ephraim Bruce’s Wife had a fit and was brought in here at noon. P.M. we had a Publick Contribution for the Relief of Mr. Thomas Gleason of Oxford.
1754 October 7 (Monday). Lieutenant Tainter, Messrs. Jonathan Forbush, Eleazer Whitney, Thomas Twitchell, Amariah Thurston, with several Lads, Daniel Grout and Joseph Harrington came and cutt up my Corn at the Island, and Mr. Ebenezer Forbush with his Team brought it in. They made 4 Load of it and had done by noon. Four of them stay’d to dine. It was our purpose to have husk’d in the afternoon (for some persons said they Should choose it rather than in the Eve) and a few Neighbours were Sent to, but none came but old Mr. Maynard. So then we sent again, desiring they would come in the Evening, but neither did there come any but a few Boys who ran away home again. N.B. Mr. John Hicks of Cambridge and his Wife and little son Jonathan here, going to Sutton. Mr. Abijah Gale here at Eve with a Paper of Acknowledgement.
1754 October 8 (Tuesday). To Day some of my own Family who did not use to husk, put their Hands to it. Deacon Newton came in the Morning to assist in Counting the Contribution-Money. We found it to be £9.6.10 old Tenor. Noah Forbush part of p.m. husking — a number more came in the Evening, viz. Thomas Hardy, Alpheus and Abner Newton, Charles Rice and Ebenezer Rice junior — very frosty Night, they did not stay to husk the whole.
1754 October 9 (Wednesday). Mr. White, Painter from Billerica to Paint the Pulpit. Thomas and Billy husk. Joshua Lock here again about his and his wifes Confession etc. I endeavour to show him briefly the absurdity of his turning to the Church of England, unless he had better acquainted himself with the Controversie. Daniel Goddard of Shrewsbury here to ask my Advice about his Learning Latin. He goes away disgusted because of my defending Mr. Cushing. Mr. Fish of Upton and his Wife dine here. He preaches my Lecture on John 3.14, a moving and profitable Discourse! May God add his Blessing. Mr. Hicks of Cambridge and his Wife and son from Sutton came and lodge here. Mr. White the Painter with Mr. Francis Whipple, Spend some Time in the Evening here. Thomas and Billy, and 3 Rices (Merchants Sons) husk in the Evening.
The son of Edward Goddard. He evidently did not pursue his interest in higher learning.
Job Cushing of Shrewsbury.
1754 October 10 (Thursday). Mr. Hicks etc. return to Cambridge.
1754 October 12 (Saturday). Mr. White finishes his painting the Pulpit etc. Brushes over my Chair, gratis — dines with me — returns home to Billerica.
1754 October 13 (Sunday). The Pulpit etc. are not dry. We make a convenient Station for preaching and Communion Table before the Deacons Seat. Many Shrewsbury people here — Mr. Cushing being gone a Journey. Mrs. Amy Maynard grows worse. Read 1 Sam. 14 to number 23. Preach’d on Mark 16.19. Administered the Lords Supper. P.M. read Rev. 7, and having Spent my Preparations in the forenoon I repeated Sermons on John 11.24. Deacon Miles and his Wife, Mrs. Foster of Holliston and her Daughter Twitchel din’d here. At Eve I visited and pray’d with Mrs. Maynard, and My Wife watch’d with her.
Samuel Miles of Concord. [Additional note: This may have been Deacon Samuel Miles of Shrewsbury, son of Deacon Miles of Concord.]
Mrs. Jacob Foster.
Mary Foster married Moses Twitchell of Westborough.
1754 October 14 (Monday). Visited Deacon Newton to Settle with him for the Year past respecting my Note given him. P.M. Mrs. Judith Bellows here in a peculiar Domestic Difficulty, but deferrs opening the particulars to a Visit which She prays me to make with them. Mrs. Foster (the Schoolmasters Mother) with divers others here.
1754 October 15 (Tuesday). Sent the second Volume of the New Universal Magazine to Captain Storer at Boston per Mr. Ebenezer Rice. Mr. Davis came this way for my Company to Southborough. Rode down there to Ministers Meeting. Messrs. Barrett, Martyn, Seccomb, Smith — were the rest that attended. See the Minutes of the Association. At Eve our Conversation was upon the Qualifications for Communion at the Lords Table. N.B. Mr. Stone is Strongly in the Sentiments of Mr. Stoddard.
John Seccomb of Harvard.
Solomon Stoddard, An Appeal to the Learned. Being a Vindication of the Right of Visible Saints to the Lords Supper, though they be Destitute of a Saving Work of God’s Spirit in their Hearts: against the Exceptions of Mr. Increase Mather (Boston, 1709).
1754 October 16 (Wednesday). Mr. Martyn preach’d on Luke 9, ult. Many useful and awakening Thoughts on the great Evil and Danger of Apostacy — May God sett them home upon my own Heart! N.B. when we return’d to Mr. Stones, Mr. Davis a terrible Fit — shaking etc. N.B. Mr. Martyn desires me to Change next Sabbath to which I Consent. I return’d home by t’other House and Call’d to see Mrs. Amy Maynard, who grows worse.
1754 October 17 (Thursday). Rainy Day. A.M. my Wife and I went to See Mrs. Mainard and found her much worse. She thinks she shall dye — she prays audibly, though with low voice; very importunately, and pertinently. I can’t tell whether She was aware that she Spoke So loud as to be heard by others. I receiv’d also her Testimony to the Gospel and the Ordinances thereof. Pray’d with her and left her in a very solemn manner. P.M. Catechiz’d at the School House.
1754 October 18 (Friday). Lieutenant Tainter and Solomon Miller brought home 6 Barrells of Cyder from Ensign Miller, at 20/ per Barrell. Went (by special Desire) over to Mrs. Maynards again, She being, as they think, dying. We endeavour’d to Commend her departing Soul to God by Prayer — but I left her breathing.
1754 October 20 (Sunday). I walk’d over to t’other House and thence rode over to Mr. Martyns and preach’d there a. and p.m. on Ps. 119.60. I read some Passages of the Psalm a.m. but did not read. Mr. Martyn preach’d a.m. on Eph. 5.8.9. P.M. on Ps. 57. He did not read either a. or p.m. We each return’d at Eve.
1754 October 21 (Monday). A.M. Mrs. Amy (or Emma) Maynard was buryed. Some Number of persons din’d here, among which Captain Maynard; it being inconvenient for them to go home after the Funeral because there was to be a Precinct Meeting at 1 o’Clock. It was to Vote me Support and Wood. And when they came together they Voted to do as they did last Year — and Lieutenant Tainter came to acquaint me with it. I sent them a Line by him: which although it did not induce them to alter their Vote, yet a Number of them were induc’d to subscribe Wood by the Cord — and it amounted to 20 Load. This was brought me by Mr. Ephraim Bruce, and he said it was freely and heartily done. So that I made no further Difficulty. My Brother Samuel Parkman from Boston waits on Reverend Mr. Gay of Hingham here, and lodge. They are going to Leicester, to the Ordination of Mr. Joseph Roberts.
Joseph Roberts (Harvard 1741) had preached at various places. He served Leicester, 1754-1762. Sibley, XI, 65-68.
1754 October 22 (Tuesday). Came the Reverend Messrs. Barrett and Eliot and with them Deacon Barret of Boston and his son, and Mr. Thayer of Boston also — and they din’d here. N.B. Deacon Barret ill and with his Brother returns to Hopkinton. The rest to go Leicester. P.M. came Mr. Joseph Briant from Stoneham and lodges here.
Andrew Eliot of the New North Church in Boston.
1754 October 23 (Wednesday). Mr. Briant to Leicester. Sent by him Lieutenant Nathan Brighams Deed to be recorded at Colonel Chandlers Office. At Night Mr. Solomon Baker brought up from Mr. Kneeland one of Mr. Edwards Enquiry etc. Price 4/6, Lawful Money. The Reverend Joseph Roberts’s Ordination at Leicester.
Jonathan Edwards, A Careful and Strict Enquiry into the Modern Prevailing Notions of that Freedom of Will (Boston, 1754).
1754 October 24 (Thursday). Messrs. Eliot, Thayer and Young Barrett from Leicester — only call’d at the Door in their Way to Hopkinton. P.M. Went down to see Mr. Jonathan Bellows and wife; but he was not himself at home. I discours’d with his Wife according to her particular Case, and pray’d with her and Such as were in the House. N.B. Dr. Chase was with me and he visited at Mr. Ithamar Bellows’s their Daughter Elizabeth having the Rheumatism. I talked freely with the Doctor concerning his own Conduct; and wish a Blessing!
Thomas Chase, the young physician of Westborough.
1754 October 25 (Friday). A very Rainy Day. N.B. Some Number more of Bears kill’d among us and on the Confines. The Whitneys have kill’d and assisted in killing 4 or 5 within a very few Days. Tis Said about 20 have been kill’d in this Town.
1754 October 26 (Saturday). A Cool Morning after the Storm. My Wife goes on in plunging little John in Cold Water. The Reverend Mr. Bliss of Concord here in his way to Upton.
1754 October 27 (Sunday). John dip’d again. Read 1 Sam. 14 from number 24. Preach’d on John 1, number 16, a. and p.m. N.B. Jane Smith (Sister of Rody) fell into a fit in the Time of afternoon sermon, was carry’d out, and carry’d to my House; there She remain’d in her Fitt for four Hours. A sorrowful Spectacle!
1754 October 28 (Monday). Mr. Henry Barns, Merchant in Marlborough, here. Is about to set up the Pot Ash Business in Hopkinton. Messrs. Bliss and Fish here and din’d with us. P.M. Was at Lieutenant Forbush’s.
1754 October 29 (Tuesday). Brother Samuel Parkman here in his Return to Boston, but I was not at home. At Eve Mr. Foster who lodg’d here. Mr. Samuel Fay junior acquaints me with Mr. Billings Case and Request.
1754 October 30 (Wednesday). Mr. Fay last night was so importunate to have me visit Mrs. Billing that to Day I went. Din’d at Captain Bezaleel Eagers. I found Mrs. Billings Case to [be] very deplorable both in Body and Mind. Pray’d with her. At Eve came Messrs. Hezekiah Pratt with a Yoke of Oxen, Solomon Baker with a Plough and with 2 Yoke. Mr. Eleazer Williams, Joseph Baker — and my sons Ebenezer and Thomas.
1754 October 31 (Thursday). I made a Visit to Mr. Eliezer Rice and to Mr. James Maynard. The former was not at home.